Candidate Profile: Robert Moore (D)
Candidates for the Brick Township Council respond to questions posed by Brick Patch
Editor's Note: Each of the eight candidates running for a seat on the township council responded to a questionnaire sent by Brick Patch. Their answers to our questions will be published on our site verbatim. Two candidate profiles per day – one Republican and one Democrat – in alphabetical order according to last name, will appear this week until all have been published. We have disabled comments on profile articles to ensure the candidates' statements speak for themselves and readers can decide, without additional, potentially anonymous commentary, their view on those running for office.
Full Name: Robert "Bobby" Moore
Current Age: 44
Highest level of education achieved (feel free to list your high school, college, and the nature of any degrees you have earned):
I graduated from Colonia High School in 1985. In 1986 I graduated from Middlesex County Fire Academy. In 1988, I went to a trade school in Clark, NJ to learn the plumbing industry. In 1991, I attended Monmouth Vocation Technical School to learn heating and air conditioning.
Manager in the plumbing, heating and cooling business.
Do you currently receive any public salary compensation? If so, from what public agency?
I do not receive a public salary.
Have you ever previously held an elected office in Brick or elsewhere?
I have never run for public office.
If elected or re-elected to council, will you choose to receive taxpayer-funded health benefits from your elected position? Why or why not?
I will not accept the tax-payer funded health care benefits if elected to Council. It is my goal to save our residents money any way possible and this is one way I can do that.
Like those in most New Jersey communities, property taxes are, perhaps, the primary concern of most township residents in this election cycle. Regardless of the impact of state policies on our property tax bills, summarize some specific ideas you have to stabilize or reduce the property tax burden for Brick residents.
I know that we need a change when our municipal property taxes increase by 24% in just one year. Something is definitely wrong with the current Township Council. Our team has a 6-point plan to address spending and property taxes. If all four of us are elected, we'll have the votes to do what needs to be done. Here's what we'll do.
- Eliminate unnecessary political jobs.
- Eliminate overpriced no-bid contracts to campaign contributors.
- Eliminate Cadillac benefits for MUA appointees.
- Implement a plan for regular maintenance of our roads and infrastructure.
- Conduct an operational audit to identify more cost savings.
- No more full-time pay for part-time work.
I believe that the Cadillac benefits for MUA appointees are especially troubling in this economic environment, when our town’s families are working hard just to pay the mortgage. Despite these trying times, the Township Council’s appointees to the Brick Municipal Utilities Authority are taking almost $30,000 in salary and benefits for attending only one meeting per month. This is just one outrageous example of chronic overspending by this administration. We will appoint new members to the MUA who will not collect any pensions or health benefits. This will save Brick over $1 million over the next 10 years. Our team of Ducey, Lydecker, Fozman and Moore will implement a real plan and timeline to cut expenses and hold the line on property taxes.
Though it held relatively stable in the recent FBI Uniform Crime Report, crime in Brick has been trending upward in recent years. Compounding matters, our police department, due to budgetary constraints, also recently had to disband its Selective Enforcement Team (SET Team), a specialized anti-crime unit. Please describe your plan, including specifics, to maintain and promote public safety in Brick.
As a volunteer firefighter, I work hand-in-hand with police officers as the first responders who work hard every day to keep our town safe. I was the captain of the Laurelton Fire Company for 7 years and I know that we have an obligation to pull together in our time of need. For example, during the “Blizzard of 2011,” our fire company had a call about a boy with a broken arm who needed to get to the hospital, but his family was snowed in and the ambulance couldn't get to him. We decided to take the call but were stopped by a wall of snow two blocks from his home. Together with two fellow firefighters, we waded through waist-deep snow, and made it to the home. It had been over 24 hours since the boy was injured, and he needed immediate care. We called the chief, asked for and immediately got a backhoe to clear the street and got him to the hospital. I want to be elected to Council because I know how to pull our resources together to help residents in crisis.
Please describe your vision for the former Foodtown site on Route 70, and how you would favor executing that vision and bringing it to fruition.
There unfortunately seems to be no plan at all by the Acropolis administration for the Foodtown property. Since the town bought it in 2003, this eyesore has been a symbol of the Acropolis’ team failure to have a plan for our community. It has cost us over a million dollars in lost property taxes, and all we have today is a ridiculous sign promising another shopping mall. We have other properties, like the abandoned gas stations all around Brick that sit without any action at all. We need a strong plan to get our town moving again. We can’t have more of the same, which has resulted in a 24% property tax increase this year. Let’s get that Foodtown property back on the tax rolls, and let’s carve out a place for our own senior/community center where we can gather as a town. The Foodtown site is a perfect location for both.
Brick has more frontage on Barnegat Bay that any other community in Ocean County. In all, it boasts 53 miles of waterfront. Keeping in mind that many of these waterfront lands are privately owned, what is your plan to promote public access to natural areas and maintain other recreational facilities for Brick residents?
I am a strong supporter of open space and natural resources, but we have to protect our environment in a cost-effective manner. Many residents are unaware that our open space tax ballooned by 127 percent in 2010, from $471,000 to more than $1 million, after the property revaluation. The open space tax, unlike the separate municipal tax, is based on a fixed percentage, and does not decrease when the municipal tax rate is adjusted. The Township Council has the authority to lower the open space tax in the same way that it adjusted the tax rate, but it did not. Once again, this Township Council has never met a tax that it did not like. Our team of Ducey, Lydecker, Fozman and Moore will continue to maintain our open space and recreational opportunities, but will do so in a cost-effective manner