PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Don Guardian, the Mayor of Atlantic City, accused New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s Chief of Staff, Regina Egea, of conspiring to initiate a state takeover as a solution to his city’s financial woes.

Guardian, during an interview with Chris Stigall on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT, charged Egea with stealthily plotting the state intervention.

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“The Chief of Staff had a secret meeting, not the Governor, the Chief of Staff, with the County Executive and the County Freeholder and told them they want to take over Atlantic City. They want to get rid of our police department and they want to sell the water company and they can’t do that with the power they have now.”

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He called on Christie to remove her before the process goes any further.

“This Governor has been very good and has shown great leadership. The only place he really hurts is in picking Chiefs of Staff. The first one didn’t like the Mayor of Fort Lee and as a result, we had ‘Bridgegate,’ and now, this Chief of Staff doesn’t like the Mayor of Atlantic City and she’s trying to strip the people of the right to self-government and it’s just another civil rights game. Not the Governor’s doing, this is the Chief of Staff. He needs to fire this one, just like he did the last one.”

Guardian called the proposed state takeover regressive and illegal.

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“This is incredibly bad precedent and it sets the clock back 50 years on people’s lives. You can’t strip the city of their right to elected officials without asking them for the authority to do that. It’s just a very, very sad day for us.”