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New Mendham Mayor Presides Over First Meeting

Rick Merkt oversees his first full meeting as Mendham Township's mayor Monday night.

Monday's meeting of Mendham's Township Committee will be the first full meeting presided over by former Assemblyman Rick Merkt who was sworn in at the reorganization meeting held in early Jan.

Merkt, along with new deputy mayor Maribeth Thomas and new committeeman Chris Baumann have a lot on their plate for 2013, including the fallout from hurricane Sandy and the upcoming budget.

"I would love to be the first mayor in three years to not contend with a major storm," Merkt said at the last meeting.

But all kidding aside, Merkt brings with him years of experience in politics and a perspective that he says is rooted in community.

"In my opinion everyone starts out with good intentions in public service," Merkt said. "It is when they go down the road of thinking they know better than the people they serve that there is an issue."

Merkt also said that work on the upcoming budget will include the aforementioned people the committee serves, as well as a former committeeman.

"We’ve had some wonderful people, real talented financial people who have given the use their intellect and service to the community," Merkt said. "Not all great ideas come from the dais."

Monday's meeting of the Township Committee meets at 7:30 p.m. in the Mendham Municipal Building.

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