Former Jersey City Corporation Counsel William “Bill” Matsikoudis says he is different from other potential mayoral candidates because he is not â€œbeholdenâ€ to Steven Fulop, unlike Assemblyman Raj Mukherji (D-33) and Jersey City Freeholder Bill Oâ€™ Dea (D-2).
Matsikoudis explained that his experience in public service is what really fueled him to run for mayor because he has not been â€œparticularly happy with the way the city has been run for the past couple of years.â€
He called Fulopâ€™s appointments within his administration â€œatrociousâ€ and criticized the mayor for having to dismiss six staff members who got caught up in scandals.
Matsikoudis also believes that most of the mayorâ€™s appointments had political motives, mentioning former Police Chief Robert Cowan.
Cowan only held that position for 10 months and â€œthis devastated the morale in the police department,â€ the former City Hall employee said.
But Matsikoudis pegged the reval as Fulopâ€™s biggest example of a lack of leadership, since it caused â€œpoor people, largely of color in the cityâ€™s less developed areas, to essentially subsidize the wealthier home owners in the city.â€
Furthermore, he also does not agree with the way abatements have been given out by the city.
â€œAn abatement should never be given unless it absolutely necessary to get a development to happen.”
He would like to see a law revision making abatements share proceeds with the schools which can be a good revenue source to prepare for the possible cutting of state funded school aid.
Matsikoudis predicts that he will be running against Fulop in 2017 because his â€œgubernatorial ambitions will run up on the rocks.â€
He also said that he agrees with the only current declared gubernatorial candidate, Phil Murphy, filing an Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) complaint against Fulop, since it is obvious he is using his ELEC account – designated for a mayoral run – to campaign for statewide office.
While he referred to Mukherji and O’Dea as “friends,” he added that they are “beholden” to Fulop and have already publicly expressed that they will not seek the mayor’s seat if Fulop does.
A city spokeswoman did not return multiple inquiries seeking comment.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly mentioned current Jersey City Police Chief Philip Zacche.