Chris Velders Running as Independent Candidate in Barnegat

Oct 19, 2016

Chris Velders initially wanted to run for the Barnegat Township Committee in the Republican Primary in June, but did not file on time. So he took the option of running as an Independent, which he said more accurately reflects his political views.

“I am turned off by partisan politics on the national level on down to the local level,” said Velders, a 38-year-old car carrier rig driver. “No matter what side we’re on, we should think of ourselves as Americans first.”

He said property taxes are putting an “extreme burden” on seniors.

“That includes the Pinewood and Brighton subdivisions, as a lot of those residents are on fixed incomes and are barely putting food on the table,” said Velders. “We are spending more than we are taking in, which anybody that knows how to add and subtract would know that that is a serious issue. We are suffering from another tax increase this year. Our seniors need people that will fight to keep their costs down, and that’s what I intend to do. That will also help our residents that are working two and three jobs and trying to make ends meet.”

Velders said if the township needs to spend money, it should first look at repairing parks and playgrounds.

“Our children have run-down parks that are poorly maintained, and even when they have been maintained, vandals come along and and damage the equipment,” he said. “I think it’s time for some fresh ideas to be brought to the committee, someone with an outside and completely objective approach. I am not a politician; I am not supported by either of the two clubs in town, and I’m not beholden to anyone. I would like the chance to get in there and peel back the layers and figure out what exactly is going on.

“We have a great town and a lot of wonderful people in it. As a team we can bring our town to the top of the list of the most desirable places to live in New Jersey.”

He said the township needs to be more proactive in attracting major businesses so the tax burden does “not continually lie on the backs of the homeowners.”

“Getting the Acme here is a start,” said Velders. “But we have to do a lot more. We need to be more business friendly. Barnegat should be a great place for business opportunity, but we’re lagging behind the other communities.”

— Eric Englund

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