Bergen County Freeholder John Felice today announced his decision not to pursue reelection.
PolitickerNJ reporter Alyana Alfaro already reported that news here.
Felice’s full statement is printed below:
“Today, after much deliberation, I have decided that I will not seek a third term as Bergen County Freeholder. It has been a great privilege to serve as a Freeholder over these past five years and I am pleased to have led a number of transformative changes that have been made by this board to better the quality of life for the residents of Bergen County. My eagerness to serve the public in elected office has always been driven by bringing common sense and bipartisanship to governing and a more businesslike approach to government itself.
“I am gratified by utilizing, as James Madison once stated, “the salutary power of the negative,” during my tenure as Freeholder. Specifically, not endorsing candidates or policies that I believed were not in the best interest of the people of Bergen County, and in addition, protecting the authority of the Freeholder Board through the use of veto override.
“Other accomplishments I am very proud of during my past five years as Freeholder include: the realignment of the County Police into the Sheriff’s department; serving as Chairman of the Board of Social Services for two years, where as a board, we effectuated positive reform and change to an agency that is a pass-through for $65 million dollars a year of state and federal funds; being a lone voice in protecting the right of free speech as it pertains to campaign fundraising; continuing the public dialogue to the proposed Pilgrim Pipeline, which, I believe will strengthen America’s energy independence; and securing funding for the rehabilitation of county parks in North Arlington and Lyndhurst, a Bergen County Special Services School in Paramus, and the renovation and new construction of the Justice Center and new Administrative Building in Hackensack.
“I look forward to the final year of my term where, as budget chair, I will continue my efforts on behalf of the people of Bergen County to adopt a budget with my fellow Freeholders that will be responsible to the taxpayers, while meeting the ever evolving needs of our nearly 1 million residents.
“I also look forward to working with the County Executive Jim Tedesco, as well as participating with my fellow committee members on the Bergen Regional Medical Center Task Force, to help chart the future of this medical facility that will affect the lives of so many for years to come. I also look forward to serving on the Body Camera Advisory Panel, Health Services Committee, Human Services Committee, Solid Waste Advisory Committee, and Shared Services Committee on behalf of the people of Bergen County.
“Lastly, I would like to thank my family for their unwavering love and support throughout my years of public service. I would also like to thank the Bergen County Republican Organization and its leadership and county committee for their confidence in me, as well as all who have supported my campaigns over the years; I look forward to continuing to be a contributing member of my party. I would also like to thank my colleagues on the board, both past and present, for their guidance and friendship, and the residents of Bergen County whom entrusted me with the honor to represent them.”