Tim Braden will be serving his final year on the township committee in 2013, as he has said he does not plan to seek re-election.
"Six years, for me, is the right number. Other people have their right numbers, but that is... 15 percent of my life," the 53-year-old mayor of Montville said.
Braden was recommended by commenters to be named Montville Patch's Person of the Year for 2012. He moved to the township in 1973 after growing up in Lyndhurst and has one daughter, a Montville Township High School sophomore, currently in the school system.
While Braden already knows he does not plan to continue to serve on the committee next year, he said he has been proud of the work he and his fellow committee members have been able to accomplish together. Braden said he could take no recognition for work done without also recognizing his colleagues.
"I think that we, as a committee, have made a lot of progress in the last year," he said. "Our meetings have been a lot shorter and I think when our meetings are shorter, we are more productive because people are more focused."
Braden said he feels the committee has worked well together over the past five years. He noted the Sandy storm response and said that while committee members are not fully responsible for all the efforts on part of the township, the governing body did play a role in it.
"The only recognition we can take is putting the people in place who responded to the storm. We are responsible for appointments and, I'm guessing, in that sense, we can take credit for what goes on, but personal credit, no," he said. "We were in the background for Sandy and everybody did their job and they did it extermely well."
He also mentioned the completion of the police department study which was conducted after approval by the committee. Braden said he believes implementation of the recommendations included could result in a significant cost savings to the township.
In the new year, Braden said he plans to work with the committee to try to minimize tax increases and to keep the budget with as little year-over-year change, as far as the total budget number, as possible.
When Braden is no longer an elected official, he said he plans to return to volunteer activities he has done in the past, such as coaching and being involved with civic organizations.
"After six years, it's time to let somebody with maybe new ideas and new energy step up and take over," Braden said. "I don't believe that this is a career and some former mayors have made it careers. I strongly feel that it's time to give it the best and move on."