Dale, Goodsir, and Gross slate victorious in GOP primary West Milford. Republican Mayor Michele Dale and running mates Kevin Goodsir and Warren Gross easily handled primary challenges from Township Councilmen Lou Signorino, Peter McGuinness and challenger Steven Castronova in Tuesday’s polling.
Republican primary winners Warren Gross, Mayor Michele Dale, and Kevin Goodsir celebrate their slate's resounding victory Tuesday night.
Charles Kim photo
By Charles Kim
Township Republican voters handed incumbent Mayor Michele Dale and her two GOP committee running mates a resounding victory Tuesday. Dale, who is currently serving a one-year unexpired term for former Democratic Mayor Bettina Bieri, won the GOP nomination over Township Councilman Lou Signorino 1,430-456, according to the unofficial results posted by Passaic County Tuesday night. She will go on to face Democrat Bob Nicholson, who won his unopposed primary Tuesday with 338 votes, in the November general election for a full four-year term as mayor. “It is a huge victory for the township more so than us,” Dale said with a group of supporters at the home of Township Councilwoman Marilyn Lichtenberg. “Because we want to do the right thing for the township. We need to do it one more time in November.” In the Republican primary race for two council seats, committee candidates Goodsir and Gross garnered 1,377 and 1,329 votes respectively, defeating the opposing Republicans Working Together slate of McGuinness and Castronova with 529 and 445 votes respectively, according to the unofficial county results. The Democrats did not put any candidates up for the two, three-year council seats, leaving the Republican council candidates unopposed in the general election. No independent petitions were filed for any of the races by Tuesday afternoon’s deadline, according to the township. Goodsir said he is looking forward to serving on the council, and this was the first time he ever ran for office. “This (election) was for Antoinette (Battaglia),” Goodsir said of the former administrator and clerk who passed away this weekend following a long battle with cancer. It was also the first time Gross entered the political arena, and he said he was emotional winning his race. “I am elated,” Gross said. “I am proud that I am enabled to work for West Milford first, which is of prime importance to me.” The Republicans Working Together slate of Signorino, McGuinness and Castronova posted a statement regarding the election results on its Facebook page. “We would like to thank all of our supporters for standing beside us along this journey. Everyone who shared a post, put up a sign, and told friends and neighbors to support our cause are immensely appreciated. This election unfortunately did not go our way,” the statement said. “We reaffirm our commitment to making West Milford a better place for years to come. Our team members and supporters have proudly endorsed us and outspokenly supported us - for that, we are truly appreciative. Roadblocks and obstacles do not define our character... it is our response that will show who we really are. We remain steadfast in our dedication to helping our community and hometown, West Milford Township. Thank you for the opportunity and we look forward to all the future has to hold for us and our town.” Signorino is the longest tenured on the council with nine years of service and will now give up his seat in December following Tuesday’s loss. McGuinness, who was selected as council president in January, will likewise give up his seat at the end of the year. Following the unopposed general election in November, Goodsir and Gross will officially take those seats in January. The Democratic mayoral candidate, Nicholson, said he was happy with the primary result and looks forward to his contest for mayor with Dale in November. “She is a formidable candidate,” he said. “We will see what the people decide.”