Jersey City Ward E council candidate Jake Hudnut accused Mayor Steven Fulop of being “basically absent from Jersey City for three years” and highlighted a focus on responsible development during an interview last week.
Hudnut believes his experience as a court appointed attorney or public defender for Jersey City is his strength to be able to stand up for his neighbors needs at City Hall.
“What I do is go into court and stand up for people who have their backs against the wall,” explained Hudnut.
“I am able to do that as city council and stand up for my neighbors’ needs, stand up to developers, stand up to the Port Authority, stand up to fellow elected officials that I don’t agree with and get them to do what’s in the best interests of my neighbors.”
The candidate, who has been out of law school for the last seven years, criticized Jersey City Mayor Fulop after working alongside the mayor, then a councilman, during 2012 and 2013 while serving as a campaign manager for two slates for the Jersey City Board of Education.
“The unfortunate thing is the minute Steve Fulop got into City Hall, he began running for governor and it became apparent in some of his policies. It became apparent in his hiring, and it became apparent in his priorities. He was basically absent from Jersey City for three years.”
During the interview Hudnut explained that he would push for “responsible development whereas “getting rid of the process by which tax abatements for developers take away money from our public schools” and “telling developers that if you are going to build here, help us out with green issues, help us out with sustainability and help us out with support for local arts.”
Hudnut would also fight to make sure that people from all sorts of income can afford to live downtown.
Fulop’s campaign spokeswoman Hannah Peterson brushed off Hudnut’s sharp words and said the facts speak for themselves.
“It’s election season and we anticipate false claims by those with their own political agendas. However, the facts show that our transparency and responsiveness are unprecedented.”
The candidate also feels very strongly about Port Authority issues calling the organization “corrupt” after working for a Port Authority commissioner right after college.
Hudnut pointed out the three major forms of public transportation just in downtown Jersey City and explained how commuters heavily rely on these forms of transportation for different reasons other than work.
“If the Port Authority was accountable than our service would be better.”
He aims to be a strong voice to the local legislatures who will go to Trenton and push for reform.
Although he has never held a position in office, he strongly believes that his “fighter” attitude is his strength to win a seat on the council.
Hudnut is part of Team Matsikoudis, Bill Matsikoudis as candidate for Jersey City Mayor and the Jersey City Council candidates are Esther Wintner, Dr. Michael A. Winds and Esmeralda Trinidad for Jersey City Council-At-Large, Rick Johnson for Ward A, Chris Gadsen for Ward B, Carmen Vega for Ward D, and Yolanda Dortch-Amiker for Ward F.
The Jersey City municipal elections will be held on November 7, 2017.