COMMENTARY: Ficeto (finally) takes seat as DPW (and police) chairman

Ficeto with Carpenter Photo by Denise Ficeto

Things sure do have a funny way of working out for the better.

Four months after the Town Council unceremoniously rejected permitting Councilman Jerry Ficeto to join the council’s Department of Public Works committee, not only is he now on it, as its chairman, but he is also now the chairman of the Police Department’s committee.

This time, the vote was unanimous, 8-0 in favor.

Four months ago, former interim Mayor Peter P. Santana led the charge to keep Ficeto off the committee by claiming it was “nothing personal,”but instead, it was about the “process.” At the time, Mayor Carol Jean Doyle was in an acting capacity before Santana was appointed in an interim capacity.

But the reality was Santana wanted the DPW chairmanship, like his predecessor, former Mayor Alberto G. Santos, and instead of being forthcoming, it turned into a farce.

The vacancies became possible when Santana finished third of three candidates in the Nov. 8 election — he was forced to relinquish his new-found role immediately and since he had to resign from his old Second Ward council seat before that, he’s now a private citizen.

Now, also voting against Ficeto over the summer were Councilmembers Richard Konopka, Eileen Eckel and freshmen Stat Theodoropoulos and George Zapata. Each, in their own way prefaced their votes by noting it was “about the process” of trying to appoint Ficeto before a “new” mayor took office.

A little more than four months later, on Thursday, Nov. 9, Ficeto was at Town Hall being sworn-in by Town Clerk Pat Carpenter, in her office, with his wife, Denise, at at his side — for the DPW and Police chairmanships.

We’ll say this one more time. Things sure do have a funny way of working out for the better.

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.