Davis, O’Donnell trade punches over $10k spent on study for $62M Bayonne gondola

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Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis and his opponent Jason O’Donnell are trading punches over whether or not the city was justified in spending $10,000 on a study to assess the feasibility of a $62 million aerial gondola that would travel to Staten Island. 

Photo via Leitner-Poma.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“Mayor Davis and his Council team continue to show a complete and total lack of respect for Bayonne taxpayers. Wasting $10,000 of taxpayer money to ‘study’ a $62 million gondola project over Bayonne is such an offensive abuse of taxpayer money that saying it out loud makes it sound like a very bad joke,” the O’Donnell team said in a joint statement.

“Even if the Davis Team Gondola Plan somehow came to fruition it would dump another 4,000 people per hour into our overstressed and overcrowded light rail system. Common sense says that won’t work.”

O’Donnell, who has also routinely called out the Davis administration for giving out 40 tax breaks to developers since mid-2014, further mocked the incumbent for saying that the gondola was a good idea since it “would look cool.”

Davis campaign spokesman Phil Swibinski didn’t appear to be surprised or amused by Team O’Donnell’s stance on the gondola plan.

“Jason O’Donnell is already against MOTBY development and against Mayor Davis’ plans to bring $10 million in new tax revenue to Bayonne, so it’s no surprise that he’s also against the Mayor’s idea to explore an intriguing new transportation option that could reduce traffic,” Swibinski said in an email.

“Mayor Davis released his plan to continue improving Bayonne’s parks and recreation facilities yesterday, so we’re awaiting another press release attacking that too. The O’Donnell campaign has made it abundantly clear that their only agenda is attacking Mayor Davis every chance they get, and Bayonne residents are a lot more interested in continuing the city’s progress than in listening to more attacks from Jason O’Donnell.”

Back in October, Davis, Assemblyman Nick Chiaravalloti (D-31) and then Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-19), expressed their support for the project shortly after meeting with representatives from the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation.