BRICK – Mayor John Ducey (D – Brick) is pushing back against allegations against his administration made by, Councilman Jim Fozman (R – Brick) on his way out of the Democratic party, while doubling down on accusations that Fozman’s switch was motivated by a desire for a public job and not principal
In a written statement provided to Ocean County Politics, Brick’s Democratic mayor fired back at his former running mate’s announcement that he was leaving the party and critical of his administration.
Ducey: Brick Dems Have Been More Conservative
“Councilman Fozman’s announcement that he is becoming a Republican needs to be analyzed,” Ducey said.
“He states that he is switching because there is a lack of transparency despite the fact that I appear whenever and where ever invited to speak and answer all questions posed. Also twice a month there are Facebook Live sessions where residents ask me whatever questions and they are answered fully and completely. Other Mayors call me crazy for allowing this type of transparency but residents love it and take advantage of it,” Ducey said.
Mayor Ducey said that Fozman wanting to switch to the GOP out of fiscal conservatism was a “complete joke” and claimed that in his 5 years as mayor, Brick saw “…the lowest increase in the history of Brick Township.”
“Spending has increased 3.1% over the 5 years whereas the previous five year growths were 25.4% (’09-’13), 25.4% (’04-08), 36.3% (’99-’03) and 19.2% (’94-’98),” Ducey added.
Ducey: Fozman’s Reasons for Switching “Not Based on Fact”
Mayor Ducey is doubling down on his allegations that Councilman Fozman was set on receiving a public job, an allegation both him and his wife have fiercely denied. Ducey provided more detail about his allegations concerning Fozman’s alleged push for a job as the township’s director of public works.
“Once the DPW Director position opened Fozman’s goal was to have that job,” Ducey said in his statement. “He first asked the MUA to pay for his classes at Rutgers so that he could get his DPW Certification which was a requirement for the position if we were hiring from outside the department.”
The mayor claimed that Fozman pushed for the DPW position based on his experience serving as the chairman of Brick’s DPW committee.
“They turned him down and he asked to not be reappointed to the MUA which was obliged by the council because he should not have been on there in the first place, He then requested the job be given to him because of his years of experience as the Chairman of the DPW committee.”
Mayor Ducey claimed that he refused to hire Fozman for the DPW job based on his status as an elected official, and attempted to associate Fozman with names who have become synonymous with the excesses of past administrations.
“I denied his request and told him that we would never hire a sitting councilman or family member to a township job as that is blatantly against what we stand for,” he said.
“It is clear that Fozman wants a tax payer funded job and the door for that was shut. He now joins the Brick Republicans who are well known for providing jobs to elected officials and family members as a matter of course.”
Ducey linked Fozman to past Brick GOP leaders that have had public jobs. “From Acropolis, to Sangiovanni, to Brando, to Toth, to Scatturo, to Matthews, to DeLuca and on. Fozman obviously wants to join that gravy train.”