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Oroho supports members of his team Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:10 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:10 PM EDT

Editor: I am writing today to add my voice to those many voices who support Surrogate Gary Chiusano, Freeholder Rich Vohden, and State Committee members Jill and Parker Space. Gary, Rich, Jill and Parker are our neighbors. Each has put in an enormous amount of time and energy in service to the people of Sussex County. Countless hours of constituent service, meeting with people and listening. I shared an office with Gary Chiusano for five years. He is honest, dedicated and hardworking. Gary cares about people and spends the time to get to know the needs of people, to understand them and to advocate for them. Rich Vohden is a plain-spoken gentleman and a devoted farmer who knows how to get the job done. I am very proud to have him as a member of the Republican team. Jill and Parker Space have been representing Sussex County Republicans at State Committee for four years. This is a volunteer job, and they have put in a lot of time at their own expense representing us, and I applaud them for the work they do. I respectfully ask that you remember these fine people on Election Day, Tuesday, June 4. Thank you. Steve Oroho State Senator

Surrogate need not be attorney Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:15 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:15 PM EDT

Editor: Having practiced for over 40 years as a CPA in New Jersey, I have had many occasions to visit the Sussex County office of the surrogate. The comments in letters to newspapers refer to the qualified experience as an attorney to be extremely important for a candidate for this elected office. Actually, an attorney who practices law is an individual who executors reach out to assist them in settling estates. The surrogate handles the probate of the will or arranges for an administrator when there isn't any will. The same applies as to guardianships where the surrogate assists the applicants. The surrogate office and the surrogate are to service the citizens in completing a required need. The surrogate has to be qualified to meet with and help individuals who need this service. Gary Chiusano has been serving citizens in Sussex County at the local level, county level and state level each time after being elected by the citizens to serve the people. He also has a career working in the financial area which again required helping people. Also, the law is very clear that you do not have to be an attorney and in fact most surrogates are not attorneys. Sussex County has been well served without the surrogate being an attorney since 1753. Additionally, to indicate that he received his appointment as surrogate because of his political connections without any qualifications is not correct. The appointment by Governor Christie was going to be done because the position was open when the then-surrogate retired. Gary saw this as an opportunity to once again serve the citizens who voted for him in other elections and to be out of the legislative area and back into the service are. I was one who encouraged Gary to seek the position. William Kulsar Sparta

Chiusano is most qualified Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:14 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:14 PM EDT

Editor: Party affiliation obviates the opportunity to vote in the upcoming Republican primary for Sussex County surrogate. Had I that opportunity, I would undoubtedly cast my ballot for Gary Chiusano. I have known Gary for several years on a personal and business level. In his capacity as certified financial planner, he has advised me for a protracted period of time and his recommendations have been excellent. Gary has always made himself available when advice was required and never once failed to return a call. He was always well organized and knowledgeable when a need existed for guidance. I attended the recent Republican debate at the Newton Theatre. Ms. Ferrante, the other challenger for the surrogate position, seemed only to be able to offer that she was an attorney as a reason why she was more qualified for the position. This is totally irrelevant since a surrogate cannot offer legal advice when divisions exist over such items as wills and/or associated estates. Only a sitting judge can adjudicate on such matters. Additionally, her experience pales in comparison to Mr. Chiusano's, who not only has an extensive background in finances but has also been a councilman, mayor, freeholder, and assemblyman. When you add in his recent "on the job experience" as the Sussex County surrogate, the reasons for electing him are numerous. As a Democratic committeeman and municipal chairman of Frankford Township Democratic Committee, I hope Republicans will vote for the most qualified candidate in the upcoming primary on June 4 and elect Gary Chiusano as Sussex County's surrogate. Harry Dunleavy, Augusta

Clerk, surrogate budgets do not pay attorney fees Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:11 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:11 PM EDT

Editor: Please correct the unfortunate mistake in Erma Gormley's letter. Everyone has the freedom to choose their candidate in every election. This is the American way, and I sincerely hope that everyone will come out to vote in the upcoming primary election. This is your responsibility; please take it seriously. It is also your responsibility to get the facts correct, and the information that you choose to share with the public should also be accurate. As a former county clerk, Erma Gormley should know that there is no line item in the county clerk's budget or the surrogate's budget to pay for outside attorney's fees. And in fact to my knowledge, there has never been any fee paid for outside counsel. That being said, there will be no savings for legal services by electing an attorney. Carl F. Lazzaro Fredon

Chiusano is only true conservative running Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:07 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:07 PM EDT

Editor: As an elected Sussex County Republican committeeman and lifetime conservative, in my humble opinion there is only one true conservative running for Sussex County surrogate. He is Gary Chiusano. I worked with Gary on legislation to cut taxes, cap spending, fight illegal immigration, protect the rights of the unborn, and protect our Second Amendment rights. He is a strong advocate for Sussex County values. We also worked together providing constituent services for thousands of people throughout the county. Gary has always been there when needed. Please join me in support of Gary Chiusano for surrogate. Louis Crescitelli Franklin

Surrogate does not offer legal advice Pos ted: Jun 01, 2013 10:07 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 01, 2013 10:07 PM EDT

Editor: Quoting a letter of May 31 from Erma Gormley: "Rather than costing the office hard-earned tax dollars to obtain advice on legal proceedings, we can have an in-house attorney on staff." It is unfortunate that people make misstatements prior to getting the facts, especially this late in the election process. The Sussex County budgets for the surrogate and clerk's offices do not include a line item for outside legal counsel ... because it is not the role of the surrogate to offer legal advice. It has always been the practice of the surrogate to suggest that the client seek legal representation of their choosing for advice for the specific questions of handling their estate proceedings. No "hard-earned tax dollars" are, nor ever were, spent "to obtain advice on legal proceedings." If all things are considered, it may prove that appointing an attorney to surrogate may be a legal hazard and landmine, open to legal claims of conflict from attorneys who are representing estates. Christine Logsdon Hampton

'Chiusano Is The Right Choice For Surrogate' Eric Roskelly Friday, May 31, 2013 • 4:27pm I would like to comment on Jim Caragher’s letter dated May 24, 2013. It’s implausible that he could even consider Ms. Ferrante the best-qualified candidate to be the future Surrogate of Sussex County. Mr. Caragher, and Ms. Ferrante herself, touts her attorney status as reason to elect her Surrogate when in fact being an attorney is not a requirement for that position. At no point in time has Mr. Caragher, or Ms. Ferrante, hinted to the fact that she was not “rehired” as the attorney for Vernon Township. Mr. Caragher also makes a point in referring to the position as the “Judge of the Surrogate Court.” While that may technically be true, legal issues can only be adjudicated by a judge in the Superior Court setting. How often do attorneys have to call the Surrogate’s office for advice on guardianships, people with incapacities, and/or adoptions? Our good friend, Nancy Fitzgibbons performed this duty as County Surrogate for 22 years. Did we ever hear a complaint in the press about her? Caragher’s allegation that Chiusano has drifted from job to job lacks veracity in its entirety. It must be noted that Mr. Chiusano was appointed to his present position not only by the State Governor but, most importantly, with the unanimous consent of Democrats and Republicans from both houses of the legislature. Mr. Chiusano is a qualified and successful financial adviser. He was a successful Mayor of Frankford Township.... who always returned everyone’s calls. Mr. Chiusano was an elected Sussex County Freeholder for two terms and Assemblyman for 3 terms representing the 24th District in Trenton. His successful public service means he must have done a lot of things right. Most importantly, he now has "on the job" experience as Sussex County Surrogate. His diverse and extraordinary experiences is why you should be voting for Gary Chiusano for Sussex County Surrogate on June 4, 2013. Sincerely, Eric Roskelly

Support from Sparta Resident for Gary Chiusano Donald Ploetner Friday, May 31, 2013 • 3:51pm Dear Editor: I am writing in support of Surrogate Gary Chiusano who I have known for several years. Gary has a record of community service second to none in Sussex County. As a legislator, his record of constituent service was outstanding. Gary now runs an office that handles the financial matters of those in difficult circumstances and he is doing the job every day and has a high rate of client satisfaction according to a study done on his work there. His professional credentials in finance and financial management make him a perfect fit for the Surrogate’s position. He has also a great deal of experience handling budgets and fiscal matters, which is an important consideration to finding ways to reduce spending and save property taxpayers’ money. Gary Chiusano’s work on behalf of the people of Sparta (and all Sussex County) and has, in my opinion, earned him our support. Please vote for Gary Chiusano for Surrogate on Tuesday, June 4th. Thank you; Donald Ploetner Sparta

Former New Jersey Republican State Committee Chairman Offers Support for Gary Chiusano and Rich Vohden Virginia Newman Littell Saturday, May 25, 2013 • 11:44am To the Editor I have met Alicia Ferrante a few times and she seems like a nice woman and I have heard that she is a competent lawyer. But I would like to clarify to the voters of Sussex County something that she says i n her campaign for Surrogate. Ms Ferrante claims that because she is a lawyer, she is more qualified to be Surrogate. This statement is misleading. Every county in New Jersey has a Surrogate and the requirements and qualifications of that office are set by the State Legislature. When you read those qualifications, it is clear that the Surrogate does not have to be a lawyer. Given the fact that many of the Legislators are attorneys, wouldn't you think if they thought this position should be held by an attorney, they would have put that in the law? In fact, Sussex County has had a Surrogate since 1753 and in all that time there has never been a lawyer in that position. As many of you know my husband, Bob, has the distinction of being the longest serving Le gislator in the history of New Jersey. During his 40 year career he served his constituents with common sense and compassion. He was always approachable and easy to talk to. And Bob is not a lawyer! Surrogate Gary Chiusano embodies these same qualities and has served the people of Sussex County with tireless dedication. We are also fortunate to have another great candidate in Freeholder Rich Vohden. As a farmer, Rich understands the basic needs of Sussex County, and works to contain the cost of County government. So I think it is clear that Sussex County doesn't need lawyers to have good government. We need good Conservative and dedicated people to serve the people in Sussex County. This is why I respectively submit to you that Surrogate Gary Chiusano and Freeholder Rich Vohden are the best choices for Republicans to nominate on Tuesday, June 4, 2013.

Virginia Newman Littell Franklin

Reader Questions Career Politician Characterization Ann Kievit Thursday, May 23, 2013 • 9:05pm Dear Editor: I must disagree with candidate Alicia Ferrante’s mischaracterization of people like my late husband as “career politicians”. My husband, Ken Kievit, served in local government for decades. He worked tirelessly and selflessly for his community until the day he died. People who work in local government, as volunteer firefighters, EMS, or as school board members, do so as an avocation. Whatever small remuneration they receive doesn’t cover the time they put in and they don’t care, because their service is an act of neighborly love, not something “political” as Ms. Ferrante claims. I am also confused by Ms. Ferrante’s claim that you have to be a lawyer to be county surrogate. Can’t she read the law? The qualifications are very clear and you DO NOT have to be a lawyer to be county surrogate. That is THE LAW. Sussex County has had County Surrogates since before the American Revolution and they haven’t been lawyers. Now suddenly this lawyer claims they have to be lawyers because she is a lawyer. Her claim is not true and should be dismissed as political desperation just like her attack on people like my late husband. Sincerely, Ann Kievit Hardyston

More Support For Surrogate Gary Chiusano Kelly Ann Hart Friday, May 24, 2013 • 1:38pm Dear Editor: For many years Gary Chiusano has dedicated his time to public service. He has provided Sussex County with consistent Conservative leadership and he should be praised for it. What seems to be missing from Ms. Ferrante’s platform is, Gary has been elected by the people. To call him a ‘career politician’ or “political establishment” is outright offensive to every voter. Regardless of how Ms. Ferrante wants to run her campaign, there is nothing she can bring forward that will prove that Gary Chiusano has put himself before his constituency; one which she obviously knows nothing about. Her attorney status, which she is trying to sway us with, is totally besides the point. It is a non sequitur. A county Surrogate does not need to be and in my humble opinion probably shouldn’t be a lawyer. We have enough of them ruining the state. No more thanks! During his public service, Gary has served our community on the local, county and state levels gaining experience in every aspect of government. What’s the first thing Gary Chiusano did on his first day on the job… He talked to his staff, looked at their budget and said “Okay, how do we do more with less?” Why, because less means lower taxes for the rest of us. Now, I’d like to take a minute to also address Gary Chiusano’s character. What a smart man. Gary has a calm, collected demeanor and it’s so refreshing. Gary goes out of his way to get to know you. Gary is such a pleasure to speak to. There is not one intimidating part of him. He’s compassionate, caring, and he’s tough when he needs to be. Everything a Surrogate should be. So enough of the snarky insults coming out of the other camp. Gary Chiusano earned everything he’s ever done. I hope one day when Ms. Ferrante looks back she realizes what an ill -informed “Republican” she really is.

Kelly Ann Hart Hardyston, NJ

Councilman Offers Support for Surrogate Gary Chiusano Carlos Luaces Friday, May 24, 2013 • 9:23am Dear Editor: I have been hearing some murmurings about Surrogate Gary Chiusano and his support of Governor Chris Christie. When he was an Assemblyman, Gary Chiusano worked with the Governor and members of the Legislature from both sides of the aisle, to accomplish many goals. I’m a councilman from Byram, the first Hispanic to be elected in Sussex County, and a proud Republican. I grew up in a poor, rough, urban setting but had the great fortune to have a strong mother (a single mom who raised my brother and me by herself) who taught me that you must work hard if you want to do better and to never think that you are entitled to something. When I listen to leaders like Gary Chiusano and Freeholder Rich Vohden talk about their own early lives, I feel that I am part of a long chain of doers and workers who, whether they were born in Sussex County or came here to raise a family, have added their sweat to make this county a better place. I was struck by a figure mentioned during the Freeholder debate last week. Our county’s population is in decline. We’ve lost 4,000 people in Sussex County. At what point do we lose so many people that we can’t afford to pay for services at all? We must take a balanced approach and Governor Christie and Gary Chiusano have been leaders in finding a way forward by working with all sides and coming up with reasonable solutions to relieve future generations. There will always be those who refuse to accept that the world has changed and who hate the messenger who honestly reports that change. We can’t allow them to color our perspective and divide us into warring camps. We are all one family and we all pay the bills one way or another. If we keep that in mind we will learn to work together and accomplish many milestones.

Sincerely, Carlos Luaces, Councilman, Byram Township -offers-support-for-surrogate-gary-chiu

Sussex County Surrogate Thanks Legislative District 24 Assembly Members For Their Support of Law Enforcement Surrogate Gary Chiusano Wednesday, May 1, 2013 • 10:52pm Editor: On Monday, April 29, the NJ State Assembly by a vote of 76-0 passed bi-partisan legislation which I proposed when I was a member of the Assembly. The bill, A-354, was proposed at the request of members of our local police departments and requires that all lamps and lighting devices on motor vehicles be kept in working order. It clarifies existing law and became necessary as a result of a 2009 court case. In that case, the defendant moved to suppress evidence on the grounds that the police officer did not have sufficient cause for initiating the stop because the driver had the minimum number of operating stop lights required by the current law. Bill A-354 is currently co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose and Assemblyman Parker Space, who succeeded me in the Assembly. I want to take this opportunity to thank Assemblywoman McHose and Assemblyman Space for their support of police officers locally and throughout the state. The reason I willingly became a Primary Sponsor of this bill and why it passed unanimously is a testimony to the Legislature’s desire to assist police and to help them perform their jobs more effectively. I anxiously await this bill’s passage by Senator Oroho and the full House and u ltimately seeing it signed into law by Governor Chris Christie. Sincerely, Surrogate Gary Chiusano

Letters to the editor