Today, the Scotch Plains Republican Committee as well as the Scotch Plains Democratic Committee announced the candidates that will run in the upcoming June primary municipal election. as the Democratic candidate for Mayor with running Colleen Gialnella.
Deputy Mayor Mary DePaola, who will run alongside BOE veteran, Ed Saridaki, has been in lieu of incumbent Mayor Nancy Malool. Patch sat down with the Mayor today to learn more about her upcoming candidacy and why she was turned away by the Republican Committee.
Today, Mayor Nancy Malool announced that she will run for reelection against Deputy Mayor Mary DePaola. Township Clerk, Bonnie Lacina confirmed that Malool has filed a petition to run off the line under Experienced Republican Leadership in June.
Malool believes she was not selected because of a personal vendetta carried out by Scotch Plains Republican Committee Chairman, Bill McClintock and other prominent members of the Committee.
“I wasn’t surprised that DePaola was selected,” Malool said. “Bill McClintock handpicked the five associate members who screen the potential Republican candidates. He told me that I shouldn’t even bother showing up to the announcement. The selection was basically fixed.”
Malool expressed that she feels the decision to handpick associate members who would not support her candidacy goes back to decisions she and the Scotch Plains town council made while serving as Mayor in 2009 as well as who she chose to support in recent elections.
Malool stated that in 2009 the Council was faced with having to replace the current township attorney, a close friend of former Mayor Martin Marks. The decision to hire a replacement was met with strong contention, a choice Malool feels was the right one, but has worked against her ever since.
“When I asked the committee why they chose to not to support me, I wasn’t given a straight answer other than it had to do with who I had supported in the past,” Malool said. “I have served as an elected official in Scotch Plains for ten years. I would have won in a heartbeat if all of the associate members had been allowed to vote.”
The Mayor also expressed that she felt betrayed by fellow council member Mary DePaola. The two have served side by side for three years and have voted together “99 percent of the time.”
“Mary has always said to me that the only way she would run [for Mayor] is if I was not running. , she said that a police merger will be her top priority. Right now, the . We disagree on how it should be done. I want to make sure that we achieve a merger in a way that is fair for Scotch Plains and adequately represents our tax payers.”
Before serving on the council, Mayor Malool, an attorney, served on the planning board. She has a Masters Degree in public administration with a concentration in local government. Despite the recent tension with the Republican Committee, Malool is confident that she can secure another term.
“The Republican Committee does not represent how the Republican voters in Scotch Plains feel and they do not speak for the whole town,” Malool said. “I still have a lot of supporters. There is no doubt in my mind that I could win another term.”