Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"Taxes are going DOWN!"


In an exclusive interview with vast implications in the final days leading into the Hoboken mayoral election, Judy Tripodi, the state fiscal monitor flatly declared, "Taxes are going down."

Reluctant to speak on the record, Ms. Tripodi at first requested Mile Square View speak to the public information officer.  As a request was made for the extension, she began to express some misgivings about the disinformation coming from "blogs" and requested we "tell the truth."

Indicating that the much awaited budget will in all likelihood be coming after required certifications and appropriate legal counsel review at some time in November, the fiscal monitor guaranteed this budget would be the most transparent to the public.  "As soon as the (Hoboken) counsel clears it, every line item is spelled out, every salary will be available."

In addition, Ms. Tripodi emphasized she is in fact representing the vast interests of Hoboken residents and taxpayers adding, "This will be the most transparent budget cycle they (Hoboken) have ever had."

Update 7:35 - In our earlier impromptu interview, Judy Tripodi, the state fiscal monitor made a number of points.  She emphasized both the budget process, the public's participatory role by statute, re: hearings and the ongoing confidential negotiations with the police and fire unions. She stated the public had a right to information and she was happy to work to provide it but that the information is not available to everyone at all times and a process was required to do the job properly.

Regarding the union negotiations, she wanted it to be understood it's confidential but progressing with both of the unions however neither the mayor, the City Council or the public could participate in the process and that included the tax group, (Hoboken Revolt) who she felt on their homepage were incorrect in asserting a request to have "input" in the confidential process.  While agreeing with her point, we told her of the concern of the public getting a great deal of disinformation from a number of bad sources and we wanted to play a part in dispelling the reckless charges which prompted the call.

"My allegiance is to the taxpayers only" she responded, while praising Nick Trisante, the Finance Director and her whole team who she stated with pride were working very hard to bring this all together.  Judy also remarked she was well aware of who was paying the salaries of her and her team, "We are working on behalf of the taxpayers of Hoboken" she emphasized.

A reference to potential revenue enhancement was mentioned but we don't know what is currently under consideration.  The big news was clearly the tax impact and the budget arriving in November.

Talking Ed Note:  In the end, Ms. Tripodi stated her strong desire to get Hoboken back on track and the efforts her team are currently working on to bring this to fruition.  Without detailing the usual suspects, she was unhappy with the disinformation campaign and hoped Mile Square View would get the true basic facts out.  (We'd like to thank Ms. Tripodi for trusting us to do so.)

Casual readers are aware of the scurrilous charges from the usual places: Hoboken 411, Lane Bajardi and their operatives.  We pointed out the poor behavior in the Mason campaign's own video: Stophidingthebudget, with Lane Bajardi in a previous column last week.

In an earlier press release today, the Mason campaign demanded the Acting Mayor Dawn Zimmer present the budget and charged that she was preparing a 15% tax hike.  "At the current rate of spending Zimmer is on pace to spend more money than any previous mayor in city history," said Mason in her statement.

The complete Mason campaign statement follows.  We've spoken to her campaign earlier and asked for a statement.  Mile Square View will update accordingly.

Woop-Woop: Going down!

The death rattle is becoming audibly raspier and it's only a matter of time now. Can you hear it in the distance not far off? Hoboken's albatross and largest employer, The Hoboken University Medical Center, formerly St. Mary's Hospital put forth or rather spit out its "official" financial statement and along with it, some ominous tones coming out of City Hall.  The problem: we're actually not in position to guarantee existing financial problems for the hospital, let alone future ones.

Seems like only yesterday when we saw the splashy promotional piece in the Hudson Reporter for the hospital's new emergency wing and all the pretty pictures with it.  It looked impressive.  So much so, we thought it would be good to go visit and take some pictures.  But who visits an emergency room for fun?

Obviously there's one clear solution here.  Declare victory and announce the hospital is now free.  Who can argue with free?  Free is all the rage these days.  What's the problem in that? You just have to order the hospital to charge x for services and y for hospital beds and z for doctors and nurses.  We don't need two pay scales anyway.  In case you haven't noticed, there's been a lot of chatter about this over the last few months.  Well it didn't work for Nixon and his price controls (consult your history books kids) and it won't work now.

Okay, everyone line up there behind the '74 Delta 88 and the illegal aliens. (Yes they will be eligible, Obama knows, expects it and count on the ACLU to make sure their constitutionally personage "rights" are protected).  By the way, how's your Spanish?  Mine's not bad from high school and soccer in Central Park.  May be able to jump a couple of spots in line that way.  When Washington tells us to queue up, it'll only be a matter of where.  It just may not be here.

Welcome to Hobotopia.

City Hall press release/links follow.