Former mayor to run for council
By Caitlin Davis, Senior Staff Writer
Apr 1, 2014, 12:31
HOPEWELL — After 12 years on council representing Ward 3 and 12 years off the seat, Anthony Zevgolis, 77, has announced that he will putting his hat in the race for the seat again come election day in November.
“We all know there’s no cohesion on council,” Zevgolis said in the days following his official announcement. “... There seems to be a lot of bickering. I’ve watched what has happened to Hopewell.”
Zevgolis served on council from 1990 until 2002. He served as mayor his last two years on council, from 2000 until 2002.
In a statement from Zevgolis announcing his candidacy, he states that with the tough economic times the city faces, Hopewell “desperately needs someone with a proven record of providing leadership, and making sound fiscal policy decisions.”
Though the election is several months away, Zevgolis was ready to announce his bid for council.
“We have got to people united on the same thing,” Zevgolis said. In his statement, he said one of issues facing the current council is their lack of “institutional memory.”
“Councilors cannot blindly rely on all information or opinions provided by the administration or city attorney. This information may not always be accurate, and opinions are just that, opinions. They must do their own homework, and research all issues coming before them,” his statement reads.
His interest in politics sparked at an early age while sitting, and lending a hand, in his father’s restaurant on East Broadway, Broadway Cafeteria. He said many of the politicians from the city would gather to discuss the problems in Hopewell over coffee and lunch. Zevgolis would bend an ear and listen in on their meetings.
Zevgolis, a veteran of both the Army and Marine Corps, has a degree in business management and spent 20 years as owner and operator of Tony Zevgolis Nationwide Insurance Agency. His cites his experience in business and with the industry in the city as part of his reason for wanting to get back on council.
“I know the local industry in Hopewell like the back of my hand,” Zevgolis said. “I am a business person.”
Mayor Mike Bujakowski, current holder of the Ward 3 council seat, said two years ago he stated he was not going to hold the seat, or any position on council, again. His stance on re-election has not changed.
“When I got on council, I was committed to making things change,” Bujakowski said. “Fixing the Beacon, fixing the Marina, trying to do something about code enforcement. ... We are making good progress on economic development.”
With his time left on council, Bujakowski wants to continue focusing on improving code enforcement and keeping projects in Hopewell moving forward.
“One of the first things I said is I believe in term limits. I think two is a good number to stay on council,” Bujakowski said. “Times change. I had a four-year window of opportunity. Nothing has changed my mind on that right now.”
Though there are many months until the election, Zevgolis is already reaching out for support and beginning his campaign now.
“If I am fortunate enough for the people in Hopewell to elect me, I will enforce those things,” Zevgolis said of the changes he has listed in his statement. “I will be going door to door knocking and telling the residents of Hopewell of how I will try to get it all straight.”