LAWRENCE: Local, state seats up for grabs

By Lea Kahn, Staff Writer
   Township voters will go to the polls Tuesday to select three Township Council members — potentially altering political control of the governing body — and an assortment of county and state lawmakers and officeholders.
   Voters also will be asked to vote on one public question, which asks for an amendment to the New Jersey Constitution to permit the state Legislature to allow betting on certain sports events at casinos, racetracks and former racetrack sites.
   If voters approve the public question and the Legislature changes the state Constitution, bets could be placed on professional, college or amateur sports or athletic events — with the exception of any college sports or athletic event that takes place in New Jersey or in which a New Jersey college team is playing.
   Estimates of the tax revenue that could be generated by legalization of sports betting range from $30.6 million to $220.7 million, depending on the number of locations and whether Internet wagers are permitted, according to an analysis of the public question by the New Jersey League of Women Voters.
   The downside is that expansions of gambling have historically increased the number of participants, the NJLWV analysis said. It estimated that 2 percent to 5 percent of gamblers become problem gamblers, and legalization of sports betting could increase the number of problem gamblers in New Jersey.
   The polling places in Lawrence Township will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
   At the municipal level, three of the five Township Council seats are up for grabs. The term is for four years.
   Democratic incumbent Councilman Michael S. Powers and his running mates, Cathleen M. Lewis and David C. Maffei, are running against Republican Party nominees Falk Engel, Colette Coolbaugh and Kyle Collins.
   In the 15th Legislative District, Democratic incumbent State Sen. Shirley K. Turner is seeking re-election. She is being challenged by Republican nominee Donald J. Cox. The term is for two years.
   The race for two state Assembly seats in the 15th Legislative District pits Democratic incumbents Bonnie Watson Coleman and Reed Gusciora against Republican Party candidates Peter M. Yull and Kathy Kilcommons. The term is for two years.
   At the Mercer County level, voters will be asked to choose the Mercer County Executive, three members of the Mercer County Board of Chosen Freeholders, the Mercer County Sheriff and the Mercer County Surrogate.
   Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes, who is a Democrat, is seeking re-election. He is being challenged by Republican nominee Jonathan C. Savage. The term is for four years.
   Democratic Freeholders Lucylle R. S. Walter, John A. Cimino and Samuel T. Frisby Sr. are vying for another term against Republican Party challengers Z. Dion Clark, David G. Maher and James V. Castelize III. The term is for three years.
   In the race for Mercer County Sheriff, there is a three-way race. The candidates are Acting Sheriff John A. Kemler, who is a Democrat, and Republican Party nominee Richard Urbani and Miriam Martinez, who is running on the Protecting Through Partnerships ticket. The term is for three years.
   The Mercer County Surrogate’s race pits Democratic incumbent Surrogate Diane Gerofsky against Republican Party nominee Lisa Richford. The term is for five years.
   Voters who live in general election districts 2, 9 and 10 can cast their ballots at the Slackwood Firehouse on Slack Avenue, and voters who live in districts 3, 6, 8 and 11 can vote at the Lawrence Township Emergency Medical Services building at 165 Pilla Avenue.
   Voters who live in districts 1, 4, 7, 15 and 20 vote at the Lawrenceville Firehouse on Gordon Avenue, and those who live in district 5 vote at the Project Freedom clubhouse, off Princeton Avenue.
   The Lawrence Senior Center on Darrah Lane is the polling place for voters in districts 12, 13, 14 and 19.
   The Lawrence Square Village clubhouse, off Quakerbridge Road, is the polling place for voters in district 16.
   Voters in districts 17, 18 and 21 cast their ballots at the Municipal Building on Route 206.