Moleta Hopes to Keep Kinnelon 'Gem of Morris County'
Councilman running for second term to continue serving borough residents.
The following is the first in our eight-part series of council candidate profiles for the Nov. 8 election. Each day, Tri-Boro Patch will bring you a new profile so that you know who you can vote for and what issues they are most concerned with. On election day, we will bring all of the profiles together for you in one article so you can make an informed decision.
In Kinnelon, two incumbent councilmen are running unopposed. This is a profile story of one of them.
Kinnelon's newest councilman, Gary Moleta, has decided he is not done serving the Borough of Kinnelon.
Moleta is running for his first full term on the Kinnelon Council on Nov. 8. He said he decided to run for re-election because he wants to make a difference in the community.
"I get satisfaction in helping and serving and keeping the character of this community the way it is," Moleta said.
A retired police lieutenant of the Fort Lee Police Department, Moleta was a previous chairman for the KAMELOT municipal alliance committee and coached basketball and soccer when his daughter, Lindsay, 27, was younger. He lives in Kinnelon with his wife, Jane.
Currently, Moleta serves as council liaison to several committees, including the Kinnelon Historical Commission, Health Committee and Technology Committee. He also serves as the council's liaision to the Kinnelon Board of Education.
"I'm able to attend as many committee meetings as I can to let the volunteers of our town know that we appreciate their commitment to the betterment of this town," he said.
One of Moleta's priorities for his future on the council is to continue to work to strengthen the borough's safety and security. Moleta has passionately spoke out in favor of the underage drinking ordinance the borough council is considering adopting and has worked to try to come up with solutions that will appeal to residents who are for the ordinance being enacted but against some of the consequences that were originally being considered.
Moleta also hopes to work more with Kinnelon Public Schools.
"[I hope to work on] the environment and the continued excellence of our educational system, which helps us stand out as the gem of Morris County," he said.
Moleta has praised the current councilmembers, who have been working together since before he was first elected to serve in Mayor Bob Collins' council seat when he became mayor, for being fiscally responsible in their decisions. Tough decisions will have to be made over the next several years when it comes to budgeting, he said, but he is confident that despite state regulations and mandated caps, Kinnelon can remain a "diamond in the rough."
What Moleta loves most about Kinnelon is "the environment," with many trees, lakes and beautiful views, he said, but still being so close to New York City.
"It takes you away from the stressful day," he said.