Gillian re-elected in Ocean City

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Council incumbents Hartzell and Allegretto, Madden also win

 Jay Gillian, with wife Michele, speaks to supporters at the Flanders Hotel Tuesday after winning a second term as Ocean City’s mayor. 
 Jay Gillian, with wife Michele, speaks to supporters at the Flanders Hotel Tuesday after winning a second term as Ocean City’s mayor.

OCEAN CITY — Mayor Jay Gillian won a second term on Tuesday, May 13, capturing more than 60 percent of the vote over challenger Ed Price.

Newcomer Pete Madden joins incumbents Keith Hartzell and Michael Allegretto won three open at-large seats on City Council, defeating Mike Hyson and Eric Sauder. 

Gillian won all four wards in his bid for re-election, defeating Price 2,112 to 1,380, including the absentee ballots.

Hartzell took 2,402 votes, Madden 2,199, Allegretto took 2,178, with Hyson taking 1,214 and Sauder at 1,091, according to tallies posted by the Cape May County Clerk’s Office.

Numbers were not yet official as of Wednesday morning.

Smiling as the vote tallies started to come in at the Flanders Hotel, Gillian said he was humbled by the results and happy that the community supported him.

“If this election tells us anything, the people love the fact that the administration and the council work together for the benefit of Ocean City,” Gillian said. 

Gillian said he was disappointed that the campaign took what he described as a nasty, personal turn at the end.

“The days of nastiness, the nasty campaign, are over with,” he said. “Ocean City is a great town filled with great people. I want to thank everyone who supported me; we like it nice and fun here in Ocean City.”

Gillian thanked his wife, Michele, and family for their support.

“There is no way I would be where I am today without my family, and my friends supporting me,” he said.

“We did a lot of things the past four years and we have a lot of things to finish,” he said.

Michele Gillian said the friendly, grassroots effort launched by supporters worked.

“I want to thank everyone,” she said. Their efforts, she said, “touched everyone in Ocean City.”

Price offered his congratulations to Gillian on Tuesday.

“I gave it a shot,” Price said. “I did what I could do, but the voters decided otherwise.”

He promised to help Gillian in any way he could to move Ocean City forward.

Gillian was elected mayor in 2010 after defeating Michael Hinchman by a nearly three-to-one margin. This year the margin of victory was closer. Of 9,003 registered voters, 3,227 cast a ballot in the mayoral election.

 Hartzell  Hartzell Hartzell was the top vote-getter for council, with 2,214 votes. Allegretto received 2,003, Madden 2,040, Hyson 1,115 and Sauder 996 votes.

Hartzell, who ran for his third four-year term, said he left no stone unturned in his re-election effort and took nothing for granted.

“I’m very humbled, very honored by the love and support,” he said. “I worked very hard, and I ran my campaign like I was 10 points behind. I put a lot of effort into it, I knocked on a lot of doors, I did every little bit I could. I was hitting doors up until about 8 o’clock on Monday night.

“The goal was to get as many votes as I could,” he said. “The message I wanted to convey throughout the campaign was how much I loved Ocean City and hopefully I was able to do that.  I will continue to represent the community to the best of my ability.”

Hartzell, who credits his one-on-one, door-knocking style for three council victories, said he enjoyed meeting some new people in this campaign.

“Some of the doors I knocked on, this was my third time seeing them on the campaign trail. Others, it was the first. It was a great experience,” he said.

 Allegretto  Allegretto Allegretto was all smiles after the winners were announced.

“It’s exciting to be elected to a third term,” he said, adding that he would continue working hard to make Ocean City a better place to live, work and visit. “I’m humbled by the support. It should be a fun four years.”

Madden said he was happy to win a seat on council. The campaign trail, he said, was rigorous.

“It was a long process,” he said. “They say it takes a village to raise a family, well it takes a village to elect a candidate to council, too. I got a lot of help from a lot of people and I am very grateful for everyone’s support and confidence in me.

“I met a lot of really nice people, I really enjoyed the opportunity and I will continue to talk to people and listen to their concerns,” he said.

Madden  Madden Madden was elected to a three-year term on the Ocean City Board of Education last November. He previously served a three-year term before taking one year off from the board. He served as president for one year. He will have to resign his seat prior to being sworn in to council on July 1.

“I’m going to miss the school board,” he said. “I’m very sad to leave the board.

“I’m looking forward to wrapping my head around council, to seeing the similarities and differences between council and the school board,” he said. “I have a lot to learn, I have a lot of listening to do. I have to learn the job, understand the job and I’m very anxious to get started. I want to get my feet wet, watch, listen and learn. I will ask a lot of questions, it all starts tomorrow.”

According to the May 8 report from the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission – the last report issued prior to the election – Gillian raised $35,000, minus a $10,000 loan from his father, former Mayor Roy Gillian. The loan was initially reported incorrectly as a donation; Gillian returned the money to his father and amended the initial election report to reflect that.

Hartzell raised the most funding among council candidates, with $16,591.20. He spent $4,511.60.

Madden raised $12,404.58 and spent $8,976.70, as of the most recent reporting deadline.

Allegretto, Hyson and Sauder each indicated that they would not spend more than $4,500 on their campaigns.



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