Brick Township Councilman Bob Moore announced at Tuesday night’s council meeting that he is now an Independent and running for reelection.
At the meeting, Moore, who was elected to his first, three-year council term as a Democrat in 2011, touched on the subject just briefly, only saying that he thought about it and recently filed for the party change with the Ocean County Clerk’s office.
On Wednesday, Moore said in a telephone interview that he made the switch recently after Democrats failed to invite him to be on their slate.
“I waited for the call, but it never came,” said Moore, who had a falling out with the other Democratic council members after he voted against a failed effort to appoint a new township clerk in 2013.
Moore said, “I’m not done helping people, my heart is still in it.”
Moore decided to run as an Independent rather than challenging the official Democratic slate in a primary.
“They won’t run me, so shame on them,” he added.
“I have felt like I’ve been an Independent for the past year and a half anyway,” ever since voting against replacing the clerk, he said.
The other council members said at the time that they wanted to replace Clerk Lynette A. Iannarone with former Democratic Councilwoman Kathy Russell because they wanted a clerk who would be more amenable towards communicating directly with council members instead of following past practice of communicating through the mayor’s office. The vote to replace narrowly failed and Iannarone is still clerk.
Moore said that as word spread Wednesday about his decision to run as an Independent, he’s gotten a lot of support from residents.
“My phone has been blowing up all day with people telling me I’m doing the right thing,” said Moore, a popular volunteer firefighter for the past 18 years. “I have a lot of support from my brother firefighters and other residents.”
Moore said he still has a lot of respect for Democratic Mayor John G. Ducey who does not vote with council, in keeping with the township council form of government.
“I think the mayor’s awesome,” Moore said.
Democrats are replacing Moore on their slate with Arthur Halloran, a resident of the township’s barrier island section and a former Democratic county committee member.
Moore had been elected on a slate with current Council members Susan Lydecker, Jim Fozman and then-councilman Ducey.
Moore is a full-time plumber for Perfect Climate, a plumbing, heating and air conditioning company based in Atlantic Highlands