Home Government Elections Young Minister Launches ‘Fact-Based’ Independent Brick Mayoral Campaign

Young Minister Launches ‘Fact-Based’ Independent Brick Mayoral Campaign

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Rob Canfield (File Photo)
Rob Canfield (File Photo)
Rob Canfield graduated from high school in 2009. Less than a decade later, he believes he is the best choice to run the town he has lived in since 2002.

Canfield, 26, a part-time youth minister at an Assembly of God church in Monmouth County, works full-time for a local dental services company in patient support. He said if he wins the election in November, he’ll give up his job to be a full-time mayor of Brick.

“The main reason I wanted to run is to help people in a more meaningful sense, in a way more than is typical,” said Canfield, who described his political beliefs as “moderate with conservative tendencies.”

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His platform: use fact-based data to solve issues affecting the township, and make himself available to solve the issues of the day.

“I want to be going out, being on the street, cleaning up garbage, whatever it is,” said Canfield.

In order to lead Brick, he will have to defeat Democrat John Ducey, who is running for his second mayoral term. Party sources have said internal polling shows high approve ratings for Ducey, who this year passed the first budget that reduces municipal property taxes in decades.

Ducey, for his part, said he has worked hard to be as accessible as possible to township residents. He frequently meets with various neighborhood associations and civic organizations, and last year began live question-and-answer sessions on Facebook that have drawn thousands of viewers.

“It’s well-watched, filter free – people ask me whatever questions they want and I answer them, if I have an answer,” said Ducey.

Canfield promised to review the township’s budget to see where more savings can be achieved, but promised not to cut public works or the number of police officers on the force. He wants to reduce the township’s surplus account in order to pass more savings to taxpayers, he said.

Canfield’s primary issue, however, is tackling the ongoing heroin epidemic affecting Brick, along with the rest of Ocean County.

“My approach to it is taking what we already have and expanding it more,” said Canfield, promising to expand the HARP program, under which addicts can come to the police department and ask for help without the threat of criminal charges, to be seven days per week.

Ducey said the program, which is offered each Thursday, is available seven days per week already, but Preferred Behavioral Health, the organization which evaluates patients and gets them into a rehab program, can only staff the program full-time once per week.

“If someone comes in on another day of the week, we don’t turn them away, it will just take a little longer,” said Ducey. “If they’re looking for help, they’ll get it.”

Canfield said if elected, he would want to lead a county-wide effort to combat drugs, which has already been a priority for Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato.

“I would be trying to fight to see how the county could help, or how we could get the funding to expand it,” Canfield said.

As to his campaign strategy: “don’t act like a politician.”

“One thing that I’m trying to do is just not give that aura of being a politician,” he said. “People are sick of it. “We’ll look at the facts, not blame anyone, and figure out what we can actually do and what we need to fight for. I will not be slandering anyone or sending out postcards about court cases I know nothing about.”

Canfield said his youth should not be an issue in the race. In fact, he said, he’d like to be an example of someone who is not the stereotypical millennial.

“It all depends on how you carry yourself,” he said, of the age factor. “If you’re actually able to offer something, that’s much better than the stereotype of the typical young person who’s angry over a few issues.”

In addition to Ducey, Canfield will also be running against whichever candidate – Domenick Brando or Martin Ebert – wins the GOP mayoral primary in June.


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  • craigoftruth

    Oh please, a fact based decision maker or rather a faith based decision maker? Honestly we have more enough faith based politicians to go around and we do not need another. I guess to be a Republican these days you have to pray to god rather than supporting your constituents. Just ask MacArthur or Singer one works for the insurance companies and the other works for the Lakewood VAAD,

    • Rob

      Where did you get Republican from?

      • craigoftruth

        I know it says independent however the Republicanism will slip in sooner or later.

    • Matthew Riccardi

      Why the disdain and pessimism simply based on a man’s faith? Is your ideology so small that you immediately shrink to nothing when a good man rises up to fix the problems of a corrupt group of leaders? Christians give more to charity than any other group in the world. Give him a chance and see what he has to offer. If you don’t like his policies that is one thing, but an unfounded attack on his credibility simply based on his faith in God, demonstrates you are either an internet troll or more judgmental than the “Christians” you despise.

      • Andy Pat

        So you admit Christians are judgmental. Yes, if the premise of your entire religion is to “believe what I do or you are condemned to an eternity in Hell”, that is a pretty condescending starting point.

      • Rob

        Actually I think the point is to have compassion on others, feed the hungry, help those in need and allow God to do what He will do. Of course centuries of people have destroyed that and made it more “us Vs them” instead of showing compassion and actually helping those around them in need.

      • albertWestpy

        So you think that God is a male ? Only asking.

      • Rob

        I think God does not have a physical gender. Its more or less the father like qualities.

      • Andy Pat

        All good things you mention. But remember “if YOU do not accept Jesus Christ as YOUR Lord and Savior You cannot enter the gates of Heaven”-Just sayin’ pretty condescending! Religion has been about Us vs. Them since religion began.

      • craigoftruth

        Yes

  • Matthew Riccardi

    Rob will be a great change for Brick! It does NOT take political experience to fix problems, but rather Leadership and problem solving, traits as rare as facts in the sphere of politics and political leaders these days.

  • Goodgrief

    Does anyone know the yearly salary for Brick mayor?

    • Rob

      Last check 54k/yr

      • Goodgrief

        Thanks Rob

      • Rob

        My pleasure

      • Jack Mac

        Add in benefits package ??

  • Stephen Brill

    How many of you realize that the Brick MUA has been donating $1,000,000 per year toward the Brick municipal budget?

    The Brick MUA rates did not go up, they should have gone down!

    Or the excess money could have been used to alleviate lead in the schools!

    Your municipal taxes are understated !

    By the way all the new and improved parks have a price tag that will have to be paid off in future budgets!

    Your MUA bill is overstated!

    • Andy Pat

      So, you are against the MUA donation to the Township (legal) but would be ok with using MUA money to replace internal piping in the schools for the BOE (illegal)??? Please note water rates have not risen and municipal tax rate is going down.

      • Jack Mac

        election year everyone promises change cut back and clean up but when elected they don’t deliver

  • Jack Mac

    His heart and ideas are in the right direction but brick is so stubborn on the past and would never let someone with no ties or history to a party have a chance they’d have nothing to trash talk about him ..Maybe he deserves a chance