MMM has learned that Monmouth County Freeholder Gerry Scharfenberger will seek the Republican nomination for State Assembly in the 13th legislative district for the seat currently held by Assemblywoman Amy Handlin. Handlin announced last fall that she will not seek reelection.
Scharfenberger is expected to join Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso on the top the the ballot in LD 13 in the June 4 primary and the November 5 general election. DiMaso filed her petition for the nomination last week.
A former Middletown Township Committee member, Scharfenberger joined the Freeholder Board last February to fill the vacancy created by DiMaso’s election to the Assembly. He was elected last November to complete the term which ends this year.
Seantor Declan O’Scanlon and DiMaso welcomed Scharfenberger to their team.
“I am so proud to have Gerry as my running mate,” DiMaso said in a statement to MMM. “He has dedicated years to serving Middletown and Monmouth County. I have complete faith that he will bring that knowledge to the Assembly.”
“I’ve gotten to see Gerry Scharfenberger in action, and work with him over many years,” O’Scanlon said. “There is no more dedicated and effective public servant. I don’t say that lightly because I get to work with a lot of good people. Gerry is special. I am thrilled to have him as part of our District 13 team.”
Scharfenberger’s decision to run for Assembly creates an opening for a Freeholder candidate to be Director Tom Arnone and Sheriff Shaun Golden’s running mate in November. Potential candidates being talked about are Wall Township Committeemen Nick DiRocco and Kevin Orender. Shrewsbury Borough Mayor Erik Anderson’s name is in the mix. Golden, the Monmouth GOP Chairman, is expected to announce his choice of running mate at the annual Lincoln Day Dinner next Friday night in Freehold.