Letter: Two RPB Candidates Stand Out

I attended last week’s candidates forum sponsored by this newspaper, and report that if the election depended upon the performance of the candidates, only two would be vying for Royal Palm Beach Mayor.

I thought incumbent Matty Mattioli and challenger Felicia Matula were the clear frontrunners in the televised debate. Mattioli recalled his 20 years of experience in Royal Palm Beach. His age is not a factor because he looked surprisingly photogenic on television, and his knowledge of important details of the day-to-day activity of the municipality gave him a commanding presence that his opponents lacked.

Challenger Felicia Matula is an attractive candidate with an endearing smile. She is the chief financial officer of a company with nearly 1,000 employees. She charmed the audience with her wit and impressed with her analytical style befitting an executive with her credentials.

From my perspective, the field consisted of only two fiscal conservatives, Mattioli and Matula. To his credit, Mattioli has officiated over a reduction in taxes from about a $40 million dollar budget when he took office, to the present budget of about $30 million, yet residents have enjoyed greater amenities paid for with fewer tax dollars.

Matula is juggling several bowling pins. She works fulltime, is a fulltime wife and mother, and has invested her time in attending council meetings and garnering support for local issues. If she can keep the mayoral pin in the air without dropping one, she would do a creditable job, because she certainly has the skill set to keep Royal Palm Beach on a fiscally conservative track.

If a congenial and orderly meeting of the council is high on your agenda, Matula will deliver. If the projects that are in the works require a continuity of strong leadership to accomplish them, than perhaps changing horses in midstream is not advisable.

Either way, I hope we have not heard the last of Felicia Matula, because if she can devote sufficient time to the task, it would please me if she were to run for the county commission.

Frank J. Morelli, Wellington