Diaz Doubled Unemployment

The number of unemployed Perth Amboy residents increased 127% during Mayor Wilda Diaz’s term.

The number of unemployed Perth Amboy residents increased 127% during Mayor Wilda Diaz’s term.

PERTH AMBOY — Twice as many city residents are unemployed today as were without jobs when Mayor Wilda Diaz was elected.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 4,179 unemployed people living in Perth Amboy in August while that figure was just 1,840 the month before Diaz defeated longtime Mayor Joe Vas.

That 127 percent increase in unemployment is a key problem that only Billy Delgado has addressed in the campaign, with his detailed plans for initiating a transit village to inspire private investment in the city and collaborating with the new owner of a 250-acre oil refinery to ensure local hiring, prevent pollution and get relief for heavily taxed homeowners.

Four years ago, Diaz had plenty to say about jobs and the economy but her re-election campaign is silent on the matter.

A few weeks before her May 13, 2008 showdown with Vas, Díaz said, “Jobs were created for people who do not live in Perth Amboy, profits were made by people who do not care about Perth Amboy. There has clearly been no benefit to homeowners whose taxes doubled, whose schools are more crowded and whose streets are rapidly becoming more unsafe.”

“Fewer Perth Amboy residents are working. More Perth Amboy families face severe economic challenges, such as foreclosure and unemployment,” said Díaz, who doubled her yearly salary when she joined the public payroll in 2008. She is currently the highest paid mayor in Middlesex County.

Homeowners have seen the municipal property tax levy double at the same time those jobless figures spiked 127 percent, forcing many into foreclosures and homelessness while city services deteriorated under the Diaz administration.

With a focus on phony numbers cooked up to say taxpayers are less in debt, while they are actually $50 million deeper in red ink according to certified documents filed with the state, Diaz has been waging a negative advertising blitz against Delgado, who is the only one of five challengers expected to have a chance of stopping her from winning a second term.

“I’m running for Mayor because Perth Amboy needs a leader who understands how to create jobs, who listens to people and who cares more about what gets done than who gets credit,” said Delgado. “I’m a businessman. I spent my career in the private sector, and I have created jobs. I believe we can restore the American Dream and give our children and grandchildren the promise of a brighter future.”

Voters will cast ballots for mayor the same day as voting for President and other partisan offices, but local offices will appear on a different part of the ballot, prompting concern that confusion may prevail.

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3 comments for “Diaz Doubled Unemployment

  1. secularist1
    October 13, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    There should be no question; Diaz needs to go. http://www.firebrandcentral.com

  2. crezz
    October 12, 2012 at 11:39 am

    Ive lived in this town my whole life and still do. Why is it that my property taxes have more than doubled but the only time a politician from this city leaves the downtown area is at election time?? I recieved a warning of a fine because my garbage can didnt gave a lid on it? Really?? There are no other issues in this city other than my garbage can??? Come on. Its time for someone to care about the other sections of the city, and not just the waterfront and downtown.

  3. phantom17
    October 12, 2012 at 10:41 am

    As the old saying goes – one never know what they have until its gone. Regardless of what you think about Joe Vas – he knew how to get things done and make the city prosper.

    It will be quite sometime until we have as competent an administrator in the mayor’s office. He was someone who knew how to bring federal money into the city, kept property taxes level for over a decade, renovated the Waterfront, and addressed quality of life issues that need to be addressed – noise pollution, illegal housing, and crime.

    This town has done nothing but gone downhill. The waterfront is in shambles, the police aren’t doing their jobs, taxes are going up, our Superintendent is a disgrace, and unemployment has doubled since he left the job.

    So as far as I’m concerned – my vote is for Joe Vas.

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