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Ed Zimmerman, 2022 Rocky Hill Mayor Candidate

Independent Candidate

Ed Zimmerman

Former mayor of Rocky Hill

Independent Candidate

Owner, Princeton Cafe in the Princeton Fitness Center. Executive director of the Governing Officials Associations in Somerset, Warren, and Hunterdon counties — a job that fosters bipartisan cooperation in municipal government in 69 municipalities through education and fellowship.

Family/Personal: Ed and his wife Randie raised three children: Robert, Jodi, and Michelle in Rocky Hill.

Why are you running? After the death of our daughter Michelle last year, the kindness and generosity of our friends and neighbors was overwhelming. I felt that if I can help straighten out the issues facing Rocky Hill, I owe it to the community to serve another term as mayor if they want me to.

Top three issues in Rocky Hill

The library and water system are obvious top issues, but government transparency and financial stability need serious attention. We must return to in-person council meetings that are streamed and archived on our website. Emergency preparedness is also a big issue to me — should another Irene, Sandy, or Ida hit us again.

What economic growth would you like to see in town?

I would like to continue the downtown revitalization project we started with the sidewalk project, done while I was mayor in 2014. Continuation of these types of projects would bring more commercial ratables to our community to help lower property taxes.

Thoughts on the Mary Jacobs Memorial Library?

I would like to see that building become a municipal center that would include borough hall, the nursery school, a community center, and a small community library. We could rent out space in the current borough hall to nonprofits to help offset the cost.

The current stalemate between the governing body, the foundation and the county is inexcusable. Mary Jacobs Memorial Library was the heart of Rocky Hill. I would use whatever leverage the borough has to help move the situation forward. As former president of the Somerset County Library Foundation, I would use my relationships with the county to bring this to a successful result as quickly as possible.

Goals for the municipal water system?

Until the NJ DEP chose an arbitrary measurement of PFOS, our water system was considered one of the cleanest in the state thanks to the filtration system designed by resident Ivor Taylor 40 years ago. He has recommended the science behind the new filtration system that was just approved by the council to remedy the situation.

I would want to review the proposal to see if we could lower costs. While I would never rule out a deal with NJ American Water, I do not think it is appropriate at this time. I am in favor of helping our seniors navigate the rate of inflation by proposing a senior citizens cap or discount on their water bill as is done in many municipalities.

Shared police services:

In 2008 I fought hard to keep the state police in Rocky Hill when Trenton tried to remove them. They are the best trained and equipped police force in the state and from an investigative standpoint they are the best. We have Franklin Township PD for traffic control. In my last year as mayor in 2014, I was working with Franklin on a deal for them to respond to our 911 calls and secure and hold the scene until the state police arrive. Unfortunately, that was dropped after I left office. I will immediately resume talks with Franklin PD. ■


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