What is the old saying, “The more things change the more they remain the same”? This is the perfect phrase and scenario with undisputable identification towards our newly elected Mayor of Jersey City, Steve Fulop. Steve was suppose to be our new “Lone Ranger” single handedly battling cronyism and corruption, with new innovated transparent ideas, using his miraculous powers to banish the political demons, exorcising all that is unholy within our municipal government into oblivion. How foolish we must feel now?
Mr. Fulop came to the conclusion that the Jersey City Parking Authority must be eliminated transferring all its duties and reassigning it into the newly established Public Safety Department. We as citizens of Jersey City have been constantly complaining, naturally to deaf ears that this monstrosity has been eternally corrupt and used as a political dumping ground. Yet we had to be lectured from a Healy holdover and present Steve Fulop spokesperson, Jennifer Morrill, that the agency is “A cesspool of political patronage”, if we didn’t know this already. I wonder if she would have made the same statement or come to the same conclusion about the Agency if she was still working for Mayor Healy.
The dismantling of this agency has long been overdue, but will it be business as usual if its duties are moved into Public Safety? What, if any, are the checks and balances that corruption and political patronage will stop? Will there be a citizen’s review board as watchdog? Or will the politicians and their cronies monitor it using it as their own personal political golden calf.
Mayor Fulop also stressed the elimination of, “no bid contracts” in his administration, before the election, yet he is about hire the law firm of Weiner Lesniak with city council approval “without a bid” to handle all aspects in the possibility of dissolving the parking authority. Mayor now that you are the new boss of Jersey City anything you command is legitimate. All that was said before the election can and will be changed to meet your needs. The people, your constituents are secondary to your wishes and desires. Everything changes when you are the victor; even your word is meaningless? Could there also be a strong possibility that this “no bid contract” law firm you selected has some friendly acquaintances with some of your elite political circle of friends in power?
Last month I challenged Mayor Fulop to re-establish the Jersey City Ethic’s Board; this might have stopped some of this non-sense. The mayor could have answered this suggestion, with a simple “no” or “yes”, but with his silence I could only assume his answer was “no”? That’s right Mr. Mayor to the victor goes the spoils. What was good for the Healy administration is perfectly acceptable in your administration? Why have a government of, by and for the people, when you can have Jersey City.
William P. Frasca
Jersey City, N.J.