Plainsboro GOP candidate wants to slow growth

By: Gwen McNamara , Staff Writer
Princeton Packet, 10/21/2003

Richard Nicoletti faces off against two Democratic incumbents and an independent candidate.

   PLAINSBORO — Richard Nicoletti, Republican candidate for Township Committee, is on the road to recovery.

   "I am feeling better," Mr. Nicoletti said in an interview Monday.

   Mr. Nicoletti missed participating in The Packet's editorial board session on Oct. 7 after a health problem forced him to go to the hospital.

   Mr. Nicoletti, a teacher at Perth Amboy High School, is vying for one of two seats on the Township Committee. Also running are incumbent Democrats Neil Lewis and Ginger Gold and Green Party candidate Patrick Goldsmith.

   On Monday, Mr. Nicoletti sounded off on many of the issues the other candidates discussed Oct. 7.

   He is concerned the township is growing too quickly and believes the Township Committee should do more to improve traffic flow in the municipality.
   "This town is too developer-friendly," he said. "And I think the rate of growth is just too fast.

   "We also need to put more pressure on the state to fix intersections like Walker Gordon and Plainsboro roads," he continued. "And I am opposed to Route 92."

   Route 92 has long been proposed to connect the New Jersey Turnpike at Exit 8A to Route 1 near Ridge Road in South Brunswick. Mr. Nicoletti believes the roadway would damage wetlands and have an adverse effect on the Plainsboro Preserve. The Democratic incumbents favor the roadway.

   Mr. Nicoletti said he is interested in preserving more open space in the township, particularly in areas other than the Plainsboro Preserve.

   He is also concerned with the availability of affordable housing in the township and believes recent problems between the police department's rank-and-file officers and Chief of Police David Lyon could be resolved if the structure of the department were altered.

   Mr. Nicoletti stressed he will provide a spark of debate on the Township Committee.

   "I may have an 'R' next to my name, but I am an independent-minded person," he said. "Right now there is no debate on the committee, meetings are over in 15 minutes and it seems like everyone is afraid to disagree with the mayor, at least in public. I believe there needs to be more debate."