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Mark Sokolich To Take On Judith Fisher In Fort Lee Mayoral Race

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For the first time in more than a decade, there's a new Democratic candidate running for mayor in Fort Lee. NY1's Christina Sico filed the following report on the race.

Democratic candidate Mark Sokolich replaced longtime Mayor Jack Alter on the ballot -- after his sudden death in August. The local real estate attorney worked alongside the mayor for the past three and a half years as a member of the council.

On Tuesday, he'll face off against Republican candidate Judith Fisher, who owns her own accounting software packaging business in Englewood Cliffs. She says she threw her hat in the ring out of frustration.

"The current administration had a lock on the government for the past 16 years and in that time they haven't served the residents well at all," said Fisher.

"I don't do things for any self gain,” said Sokolich. “I don't do things because it's an egotistical thing to do to be the mayor of the town. Look, it's a lot of work. I don't view being the mayor as something that's going to go on my resume one day."

If elected, each candidate plans to tackle taxes, alleviate traffic, and get the Centuria project started. But it's their strategies and approach about revitalizing Fort Lee's downtown that separates them.

"We paid for an architect to develop a plan to revitalize Main Street a couple of years ago and it’s been sitting on the shelves ever since,” said Fisher. “It would require several thousand dollars from each shop owner to implement, and given the foot traffic, the traffic problems, and the lack of parking, I don't see that you can force that down everyone's throat."

"I think everybody misunderstands me when I talk about refreshing and doing some improvements to Main Street,” said Sokolich. “We don't have to start tearing buildings down, but their facades at a minimum have to start being brought into play with some awning program with some aesthetic features to their lower-level retail levels."

The polls open Tuesday at 6 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.

- Christina Sico
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