Toms River Regional (TRRS) Board of Education headquarters. (Photo: Daniel Nee)
Toms River Regional (TRRS) Board of Education headquarters. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

A count of mail-in ballots as of Election Night show Toms River Regional School Board candidates Lisa Contessa, Michele Williams and Ashley Palmiere have the most votes toward three seats on the school board.

A spread of about 680 votes, as of this count, separated Palmiere (10,712 votes) and Ken Londregan (10,040 votes), in a race that had nine candidates:

  • √ Lisa Contessa 13,040 votes (14.97%)
  • Ken Londregan  10,040 (12.04%)
  • √ Ashley Palmiere 10,712 votes (12.3%)
  • √ Michele Williams 10,749 votes (12.34%)
  • Rachel Remelgado 8,980 votes (10.31%)
  • Daynne Glover 7,603 votes (8.73%)
  • Bridget Maillard 8,932 votes (10.26%)
  • Robert Onofrietti Jr 8,128 votes (9.33%)
  • Christopher Raimann 8,001 votes (9.19%)
  • Write-in, 463 votes (0.53%)

Top vote-getter Lisa Contessa, a bank vice president who ran on a “taxpayer/stakeholder” platform, had unsuccessfully sought a school board spot in last year’s race. She and running-mates Ken Londregan and Ashley Palmiere ran under the “Toms River 1st” slogan, highlighting a fiscally conservative view.

Williams, a retired school principal, was the only incumbent seeking re-election. The other two seats that were up are of Ginny Rhine and Michael Horgan, who did not seek re-election.

Williams ran on a slate with Rachel Remelgado and Daynne Glover under the “Children First” slogan.

Besides Williams, there were other names on the ballot that have ran previously or served on the board.

Maillard campaigned with Raimann and Onofrietti — two candidates who were hoping to return to their previously held seats on the board – as the “Moving TR Forward” slate.

The field of nine candidates vied for three seats, for three-year terms representing Toms River on the regional school board. The tree slates of candidates aligned their messaging, sharing opinions on what the district’s priorities should be and how they would achieve them.

Election Day results are unofficial, said County Clerk Scot Colabella, with state law allowing for vote by mail ballots with postmarks no later than November 3 to arrive by mail as late as November 10 and still be counted. Additionally, there’s still provisional ballots to certify as well. Tonight’s numbers represent mail-in ballots processed so far and the polling place ballots for those who had a disability.