Ocean Township Mayor Daniel Van Pelt appears to be headed to the State Assembly. The Ocean County Republican Screening Committee voted to support Van Pelt for the open 9th district Assembly seat being. The incumbent, Christopher Connors, is running for the Senate seat being vacated by his father.
Beachwood Councilman Ron Roma, Berkeley Councilman Carmen Amato, and Ocean County GOP Vice Chairwoman Barbara Lanuto had also sought the Assembly seat.
Ocean County Republicans will hold their convention on March 22, but historically, the Screening Committee is rarely overruled. One GOP leader says it has happened just twice in twelve years, and expects Roma, Amao and Lanuto to drop their bids before the meeting.
Van Pelt has served on the Township Committee for ten years and has been the Mayor since 2000. He ran for the Assembly in 2003 when Jeff Moran resigned to become Ocean County Surrogate, but lost to Brian Rumpf.