Republican freeholder candidates Joe McDevitt, John Bettis, and Rich Dase applauded the announcement of federal funding for the proposed Aviation Research and Technology Park, saying as members of the freeholder board, they will champion similar efforts to expand the economic base of Atlantic County.
?Last year?s casino shut down was economically terrifying to our region. We are going to use the office of freeholder to protect this county by making sure, one, the state never does that again and, two, to bring more industries, more companies, and more jobs to Atlantic County,? said McDevitt, who is running for freeholder at large.
?We fully realize and support expanding the casino industry. By all means, we welcome new investors to Atlantic City,? said Bettis, who is running for freeholder to represent Atlantic City and Pleasantville. ?Yet, a healthy long term job market requires a deep and broad economic base.?
?It may not be in the official job description, but we will actively court more businesses to move into Atlantic County. We will advocate on behalf of existing business. We will lobby for job training funding and programs from the state and federal government. We will try to make the state permitting process move along. We will do whatever we can legally and ethically to draw attention to our county,? said Dase, who is running for freeholder to represent Absecon, Brigantine, Galloway, and Port Republic.
The three candidates described the board of freeholders as a perfect ?bully pulpit? to champion county causes such as economic development.
?With a seat on the board of freeholders, we have a forum to speak out and reach out on behalf of the residents of Atlantic County,? said McDevitt. ?In three years, we want the voters of to say ?McDevitt, Bettis, and Dase did something as freeholders. They stand up for Atlantic County.??
?The title of ?freeholder? will open doors and we will walk through and embrace opportunities to improve our county,? said Bettis. ?That title conveys responsibility to act on behalf of residents whenever and where ever needed.?
?Gaming and tourism will always be the back bone of the county?s economy,? said Dase. ?Joe, John, and I are ready to do the heavy lifting to add even more economic muscle to our region.?