James Vigilante, a former member of the Parsippany Township Council and an Air Force Reserves veteran who served in Afghanistan, announced that he is running for the Morris County clerk’s position.
Joan Bramhall, who is a major force in Morris County GOP politics for decades, will not seek a fourth term as Morris County Clerk, opening the door to interest from at least these four Morris County Republicans.
“You know when its time to stop and I want to stop and smell the roses, so to speak,” Bramhall, 74, said from her Morristown office in early January when she made the announcement.
Vigilante operates a construction business, Dream Builders USA, and also continues to serve in the Reserves as first sergeant in the hospital at McGuire Air Force Base.
Vigilante recently completed a tour of duty in Kandahar, Afghanistan, where he was responsible for leading a squadron of airmen in the day-to-day operations at the Kandhar Airport as well as getting soldiers and civilian contractors in and out of the country safely.
In a statement, Vigilante said Bramhall “has built one of the most efficiently run county clerk’s offices in the State of New Jersey” and said he hopes to “improve upon the efficiencies.”
In addition to Vigilante, the following Republicans announced they will be running for the clerk’s office: County Freeholder Ann Grossi, Jefferson Township Councilman Michael Sanchelli, who is employed by the road division within the county Department of Public Works, Denville resident Zbigniew Nowacki have announced. No Democrats have publically announced they will run for clerk. The filing deadline is April 1 to run in the primary.
The group will seek the position in June’s primary for the five-year position that currently pays $124,087.00.
The office of the county clerk, which currently has 36 employees, is required by law to have a County Clerk as an elected constitutional officer. The population of Morris County is 494,976 residents.
In general, the Morris County Clerk’s office records and maintains land records, such as Maps, Mortgages, Deeds and other related legal documents.
The clerk’s office processes passport applications, issues I.D. cards to Morris County residents, and maintains Military Discharges (DD214) for veterans. All businesses and doctors are required by law to be recorded by the Clerks office, as is the administration and swearing in of Notary Publics.
The Clerk’s office administers several important election functions, and has responsibilities for general, primary, school board and special elections. Some of the election services provided include the preparation and mailing of election ballots, nomination petitions, and election night voting results.
Additionally, the office prepares the Morris County Manual, and the Clerk also performs over a hundred Marriage Ceremonies annually.
Vigilante said he will hold an official campaign kick-off event and release his political platform sometime in March.