Perth Amboy Mayor Wilda Diaz unexpectedly fired business administrator Frederick C. Carr on Tuesday morning, creating considerable turmoil in the city less than four months before the November mayoral election.
Carr was fired early yesterday morning, but no reason was given for the move.
“It took everyone by surprise,” said City Council President William Petrick. “The council had no idea this was going to happen. Mr. Carr had no idea.”
Petrick has asked Diaz for an explanation, but said he still hasn’t heard from the mayor.
“Nothing about this was done correctly,” he said. “She (Diaz) didn’t follow any state statutes regarding notification. It puts the city itself in legal jeopardy.”
Diaz has named her former chief of staff, Lisette Martinez, as the interim administrator. The locks were changed on the doors at City Hall, the New Jersey Globe has learned.
Carr, a 63-year-old West Point graduate who was awarded the Bronze Star for his serving during Operating Desert Shield/Storm, had served as business administrator for Bloomfield, South River and Matawan before his appointment to the Perth Amboy post eighteen months ago.
“It took several months to hire Carr,” Petrick said of the process to pick a new administrator. “For her (Diaz) to do this on a whim is interesting.”
In her bid for re-election to a fourth term this year, Diaz faces City Councilman Helmin Caba and attorney Joseph Vas, the son of Diaz’s predecessor.
Petrick said that he would like to see Carr return if voters decide to oust Diaz.
“I have the votes on the council to do that,” he said.
Diaz did not immediately respond to a 1:32 PM call seeking comment.