“We see the damage a lack of government accountability, transparency and oversight has caused at the national level. On the local and county level, good government is even more critical. The COVID crisis has shown us that now, more than ever, it’s critical that we hold our government representatives to the highest standard.”https://www.larsenforfreeholder.com
Here’s why we enthusiastically endorse Jennifer Larsen for Essex County Freeholder:
Contract Vetting: I will rigorously review all county contracts to make sure they reflect fiscal responsibility and the values of constituents.
Comment: The contract vetting and bidding process must be transparent and competitive.
Pay to Play: I will not exchange professional service contracts for donations to my campaign or the campaigns of my friends/allies. When possible, I will open contracts up for a competitive bidding process, instead of automatically renewing last year’s contract.
Professionalism: I will commit my time and energy to full length meetings that make information accessible to the public. I will not support rushing through an abbreviated consent agenda.
Meeting location: I believe meetings should rotate throughout the county in order to make attendance more feasible for residents of all municipalities.
Meeting structure: I believe the bulk of the meeting should focus on county business rather than award ceremonies or speeches.
Meeting accessibility: I support using technology to make meeting attendance more accessible for residents, via recording or live-streaming of meetings or other remote attendance options.
Information reporting: I support easily accessible online meeting agendas and minutes. I support user-friendly budgets so residents can easily see how public funds are allocated. I support user friendly agendas that include explainers about resolutions being voted on.
Comment: Lack of access to clear, understandable information hinders public accountability.
The “county line” in primary election ballots: Realizing that being placed in a preferential ballot position hinges on freeholder candidates and that the county line is misleading and manipulative to voters, I will take a firm stand against the county line and advocate for a bubble ballot as is used in every other state and in some counties in NJ.
Responsible County Entity Oversight: I will work to ensure that the county entities I oversee — libraries, parks, technical schools, community colleges, correction facilities, infrastructure — are safe, professionally staffed and appropriately funded.
Appointments to Boards, Authorities and Commissions: I will appoint people with diverse perspectives to boards, authorities and committees, opening up government for greater participation, rather than selecting the well-connected. Because new ideas and voices are important, I will seek out new residents to fill these board positions rather than having the same individuals serve for decades.
More information about Jennifer Larsen:
Education: Columbia University, B.A.
Current Occupation: Advertising
Public/party service: Volunteer/activist: Junior League of Montclair-Newark; CASA of Essex County; NJ11th for Change; BlueWaveNJ; Women’s March; March for Our Lives; ICE Free NJ; Essex Rising, SOMA Action; PTA.