Kent Huang (D): Candidate for Montgomery Twp Committee
Chief Risk Officer, Mount Lucas Management
Q: Top three Monty issues?
1) Affordability. 2) Traffic safety and flooding on the Griggstown Causeway. 3) Development and construction of the municipal building and library.
Q: Why are you running?
A friend asked me to participate in Rep. Tom Malinowski’s roundtable discussion on the impact of the new Republican tax signed by President Trump, which capped the federal deduction for state and local taxes, or SALT, at $10,000 — leading to a hefty tax increase to many NJ residents.
The experience led me to consider the prospect of running for township committee. I decided to run after my family, friends, and colleagues expressed confidence that my character and my desire to address and solve problems in an open and unbiased manner would be an asset to our community. I determined I would be able to make the commitment necessary to serve our community, so I decided to run for office.
My wife and I look forward to raising our two boys in this community and we want to be involved in the decision-making.
Q: Why are you running as a Democrat?
While I believe political party affiliation should have minimal impact in local government. Decisions should be made on the basis of shared values of the residents regardless of political affiliation. I am running as a Democrat because I agree with the social values of the party, such as compassion, fairness, equality, and inclusivity.
Q: What do you love most about Montgomery and why?
Montgomery Township is a great place to raise a family. We have a great school system, a diverse population, many public parks and walkways, and public services and programs for all residents in our town. Montgomery has a nice mix of modern amenities and rural charm.
Q: Griggstown Causeway?
I am open to any proposal that improves the efficiency of traffic and the safety of motorists on the Griggstown Causeway, while being mindful of other considerations, such as environmental impacts.
Long-term solutions to traffic safety and flooding on the Griggstown Causeway will need to be determined in conjunction with Somerset County. I believe there are some actions that can be taken to improve safety.
We should install rapid-flash beacons to indicate when a vehicle is approaching from the other direction.
Second, installing a temporary/portable speed hump on the east side of the bridge to reduce the speed of travel for vehicles coming west over the bridge since they’re supposed to yield to incoming traffic. There isn’t much that can be done in the short-term to address the flooding in the causeway but the township should look for ways to improve the flow of traffic on Route 206, Montgomery Road, and other roads that get increased traffic as a result of the causeway being closed.
What would you like voters to know about you?
A: I am an active listener. I believe active listening is one of the most important skills for someone serving the public. I am inquisitive. I believe asking questions is the best way to learn. Lastly, I try to maintain an open mind and remain unbiased. I believe this mindset is necessary understand a topic and to ultimately make an informed decision. ■