Jersey City, News – Written by Jeannette Josue
Former Jersey City Corporation Counsel William “Bill” Matsikoudis says he is different from other potential mayoral candidates because he is not “beholden” to Steven Fulop, unlike Assemblyman Raj Mukherji (D-33) and Jersey City Freeholder Bill O’ 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 “particularly happy with the way the city has been run for the past couple of years.”
He called Fulop’s appointments within his administration “atrocious” and criticized the mayor for having to dismiss six staff members who got caught up in scandals.
Matsikoudis also believes that most of the mayor’s appointments had political motives, mentioning former Police Chief Robert Cowan.
Cowan only held that position for 10 months and “this devastated the morale in the police department,” the former City Hall employee said.
But Matsikoudis pegged the reval as Fulop’s biggest example of a lack of leadership, since it caused “poor people, largely of color in the city’s less developed areas, to essentially subsidize the wealthier home owners in the city.”
Furthermore, he also does not agree with the way abatements have been given out by the city.
“An 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 “gubernatorial ambitions will run up on the rocks.”
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.
Mr. Matsikoudis was born in Jersey City on October 4, 1971, where he presently resides. Mr. Matsikoudis received his B.A. cum laude from Seton Hall University in 1993 and his J.D. cum laude from Seton Hall Law School in 1997. He also published an article entitled Tort Reform New Jersey Style: An Analysis of the New Laws and How They Became Law, in the Seton Hall Legislative Journal and New Jersey’s Redevelopment Law Process: Issues for Legal Consideration, in New Jersey Lawyer Magazine.
Bill Matsikoudis, a founding partner of Matsikoudis & Fanciullo, LLC, has dedicated 12 years of his professional life to public service, including nearly nine as the chief attorney for Jersey City, New Jersey.
Mr. Matsikoudis was appointed Corporation Counsel and Director of the Law Department for the City of Jersey City by Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy, and was confirmed by the City Council on November 23, 2004. During Mr. Matsikoudis’ tenure as Corporation Counsel, Jersey City compelled several corporations responsible for contaminating former industrial sites to remediate those sites, so that they could be used for productive purposes. This legacy of success has made Mr. Matsikoudis a de facto expert: He has frequently lectured on using affirmative litigation to clean up brownfields and on strategies to spur urban redevelopment.