As expected, Albert Ackerman was chosen by his fellow committeeman as the Mayor for 2015, with last year’s Mayor, Menashe Miller to be the Deputy Mayor.
A familiar face to Lakewood, former Fire Chief, Mike D’Elia, was sworn in for a two-year term on the Township Committee, replacing Steve Langert. D’Elia has served on the Township Committee approximately 25 years ago.
Also sworn in, was long-time Committeeman Ray Coles.
Other positions as well saw changes, such as Township Attorney and interim Town Manager.
After some of the official ceremonies, such as the singing of the National Anthem and the swearing in of the Committee members, the audience had an opportunity to hear the goals and feature agendas for 2015 from the elected officials. The latter was prefaced by words of encouragement by Senator Robert (Bob) Singer.
Mayor Ackerman who recognized his families presence that included his parents, reminisced of goals already achieved, such as Tent City and spoke of future goals such as the widening of Route 9.
He also apologized for some “tough decisions” that were carried out, which he said may have slighted some people. Ackerman however said, “decisions are only made with the Township’s best interests in mind,” and this is his main priority. He also reminded the audience that government legislation moves slowly and patience is needed.
Deputy Mayor Miller praised Ackerman for his past service, including while he was Mayor two years ago. Miller said he is committed to working closely with his fellow committeemen on issues such as parking downtown and emergency services which is under the direction on Committeeman Meir Lichtenstein.
Committeeman D’Elia spoke at length as well, and reminded the crowd of his solid commitment to Lakewood as he has shown for over 50 years.
D’Elia expressed concern over traffic issues, something which he plans on addressing at the forefront. He also praised the success of initiating 4-way stop signs in various intersections in town.
Committeeman Meir Lichtenstein spoke about traffic and safety – including sidewalks and streetlights, in addition to emergency services.
Committeeman Ray Coles who spoke last was very accepting to some of the policies that were spoken about by his fellow committeemen, and reaffirmed his commitment to the people of Lakewood – a commitment he has proven, and been respected for, for over a decade on the Committee.
The meeting was followed by reception at the Strand Theatre.
[TLS. Photos by Simcha Weinman for TLS]