By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
MARGATE – Following the swearing-in of the candidates who were victorious in the May 9 Board of Commissioners election, newly sworn Commissioner Michael Collins was elected to serve as Margate’s mayor for the next four years. The vote was not unanimous. Commissioner Maury Blumberg, who entered his fifth consecutive term on the board, abstained from the vote.
Rabbi Aaron Krauss provided the invocation asking for blessings of wisdom and compassion for those who serve on the governing body.
“Dear God, keep the permanent and part-time residents safe and secure, and may Margate remain a grand place to live,” he prayed.
The meeting room at Historic City Hall was standing-room-only and packed with supporters and well-wishers.
City Clerk Johanna Casey certified Blumberg, Collins and Cathy Horn as the duly elected winners of the election.
Blumberg was sworn-in by attorney Joseph Sayegh. Former Mayor Michael Becker swore-in Collins, and NJ Assemblywoman Claire Swift swore-in Horn.
As is his custom at most public meetings, Blumberg thanked those who have supported him over the last 16 years, including his mother, wife, daughters, brother, friends, campaign team, and “hundreds of voters for their continued faith in me to represent them and to serve,” he said.
He said the campaign was hard-fought and stressful, “but the Blumberg name and our team survived all the attacks and for that I am proud.”
Collins said he was humbled to see the room filled with supporters.
“It took a long journey to get here. Commissioner Blumberg taught us what this was all about from day-one. It was a learning experience for us and we really enjoyed the chance to meet new people and the community through the process,” he said.
He also thanked his wife and family for the sacrifices they made to get him elected, specifically mentioning his father-in-law, former Commissioner John Amodeo “for taking me under your wing in the process.
He next turned to thank Becker, who is a longtime employee at Collins’ Colmar Home Center.
“Thank you for your guidance for dozens of years. I always looked up to you and you have always been a mentor to me and I thank you for that,” Collins said. “I’m looking forward to the next four years, together we will do great things for Margate.”
Horn, who’s sons told her “no speeches,” thanked all the “amazing” people she met along the campaign trail.
She also thanked Becker for appointing her to the Board of Education 10 years ago, “which has gotten me where I am today,” she said. “Never once did you ever interfere with what I did. You may have not agreed with me all the time and you may have let me know, but you never interfered, and I appreciate that.”
Rev. Vicky Ney gave the benediction, asking for blessings for those who completed their terms of office and to guide the new commissioners for the good of all Margate’s citizens, “particularly through good examples in justice, fair-mindedness, and diligence in their service.”
The elected officials and their families adjourned to The Greenhouse for a celebration.
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