It’s Armageddon in Elizabeth.
Wait, we wrote that last year.
Nothing’s changed. It is simply the ongoing, abiding state of political Armageddon in Elizabeth.
It is – again – an election wherein control of the board is at stake, as the Elizabeth Board of Education affiliated with Rafael Fajardo attempts to hold onto two seats and add a third. Running for reelection from the Fajardo Team are Board members Tony Monteiro (who in June lost his bid for an assembly seat in June) and Elcy Castillo-Espina (below, below left). They are joined on a slate by Michelle Velez-Jonte, a principal in the Perth Amboy School System.
The slate backed by Mayor Christian Bollwage and state Senator Ray Lesniak (D-20) is composed of incumbent Board of Ed Member Charlene Bathelus (pictured, right), and her running mates: City of Elizabeth Firefighter Daniel Nina and Stephanie Goncalves.
Other candidates also filed this week to run in the November election: Rosa Eugenia Moreno-Ortega, Maria Medeiros-DaRassi, and Virginia San Pedro.
Right now, the Fajardo-backed group controls the board by one seat. Given the defection from Team Bollwage last year of Board President Ana Maria Amin, City Hall accepting any loose ends this year, a source told PolitickerNJ.
Both sides want the comfort zone of claiming all three seats.