BERKELEY – When Senator Chris Connors announced his retirement earlier this month, speculation began about who would take his place and Mayor Carmen Amato was on that list. Now, he has formally announced his candidacy.
“I am thrilled to announce my candidacy as I seek to represent the extraordinary people of the Ninth Legislative District. I believe my service for the past 11 years as mayor of Berkeley Township will provide great insight into the issues and concerns of all of the people who choose to call this magnificent area of the State of New Jersey home,” he said.
Amato, a Republican, has been a member of both the local and Central Regional School Boards. He is the director of the county’s Printing and Graphics Department. He also serves on the Ocean County Board of Health, and the Ocean County Utilities Authority.
He will have to be vetted among other Republicans interested in the spot. An internal vote in that party will choose who they want to represent them on the ballot in November. He might still face a primary challenge.
The 9th District legislators are all up for re-election this year. Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf, former mayor of Little Egg Harbor, endorsed his candidacy. “Having known Carmen Amato for over 25 years, I believe Carmen to have the passion, integrity, and knowledge necessary to be a dynamic choice to succeed my long-time partner in the ninth district, Senator Chris Connors. I look forward to working with Carmen to continue the unprecedented constituent services for which the Ninth District legislative office has long been known.”
The 9th District is made up of the following areas: Barnegat, Barnegat Light, Beach Haven, Beachwood, Berkeley, Eagleswood, Harvey Cedars, Lacey, Lakehurst, Little Egg Harbor, Long Beach, Manchester, Ocean Gate, Ocean Township (Waretown), Pine Beach, Ship Bottom, Stafford, Surf City, and Tuckerton.