This is the second in a series of closer looks at new members of Congress coming from city government office.
Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.-03) comes to his House seat from his previous post as Mayor of Randolph Township in southern New Jersey. After retiring from a career in the insurance industry, MacArthur began his service in local government in 2011, when he was elected to the Randolph Township Council. During his time on the council, MacArthur served as deputy mayor and then mayor of Randolph, before departing Randolph to run for Congress in nearby Toms River, N.J.
Rep. MacArthur’s local perspective has been colored by his community’s experience during Hurricane Sandy in 2012, which devastated portions of the New Jersey shore and damaged homes, stores, and boardwalks along the coast. He has been assigned to the Water, Power, and Oceans Subcommittee of the House Natural Resources Committee, a nod to his coastal constituency. Rep. MacArthur will also serve on the House Armed Services Committee.
“Serving as a local elected official was a challenging and fulfilling experience, and I’m thankful for the lessons in governing that came from that time,” Rep. MacArthur told NLC. “I saw first-hand how state and federal actions affect local people and communities… hard working taxpayers deserve a responsive, efficient and bipartisan government at all levels. I plan on bringing that approach and working with members of both parties to make sure our constituents can pursue happiness with more freedom and less hassle from government.”
Rep. MacArthur is likely to continue his local focus in Congress: Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in his district could be under threat during the next round of base closures. During the campaign, Rep. MacArthur included concerns about affordable flood insurance in his platform, and he will likely continue to focus on the concerns of coastal residents, particularly as they pertain to natural disasters.
About the author: Angelina Panettieri is the Senior Associate for Grassroots Advocacy at the National League of Cities. She helps empower city leaders to engage directly with Congress on the issues most important to them.