Thursday, January 21, 2010

OK let's eat!

The Cablevision feud with the Food Network and HGTVappears to be over.  The BankRobber who happens to be on the road got off a plane and fired over the news of the settlement.

Okay, time to eat and does that mean we get to see Giada again?  Rock'in good news.

Dealing with the cards dealt


Councilwoman Beth Mason in an off the cuff interview on break before the City Council's closed session last night spoke about the complex issues facing the city with the upcoming St. Patrick's Day Parade.  She described the problems as weekend generated with drunken activity starting early in the morning, unruly house parties and the Port Authority providing additional trains into Hoboken all exacerbating a difficult management problem.

"The Parade isn't the problem.  There's drinking going on in the morning before the Parade... The Port Authority doesn't help by scheduling more trains coming into Hoboken. The problem is the thousands of people (organizing) on Facebook.  And the house parties are a big problem."

Although we differed on the scale of the last point, the Councilwoman described the additional police and fire efforts to handle the house parties throughout the town and a hope this would tone down some of the excessive "mob behavior" that arises when alcohol is mixed with such large groups of people.  At another point she asked what ideas Da Horsey would suggest to try to get the situation under control.  

Offering that the problem begins with the lack of seriousness by the town and its government combined with the scale of ever increasing crowds, versus the numerous "house parties" Da Horsey noted there's just no way Hoboken's Police and Fire can manage the increasing scale before something very bad happens.

After sleeping on it, we posted our piece earlier today and noted we've yet to hear anyone in government at any level discuss arrests, jail or lockup.  We have to wonder if a few well placed batons or arrests would spread the word better than a summons.  That may sound harsh but is it a better alternative than if a resident(s) gets into a physical battle when drunken revelers are caught urinating on their home.  One such incident occurred just recently with a family member of Councilwoman Castellano leading to serious injuries.  What happens if you multiply those incidents on a wider scale or worse?

MSV would like to thank Councilwoman Mason for the impromptu interview.

Photo: Councilwoman Beth Mason at last night's City Council meeting.  All rights reserved.
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Judy Tripodi - "Surplus to almost double in 2010-11"

Judy Tripodi, fiscal state monitor speaks on a police organizational evaluation before the announcement of the police audit being approved by the State and is due later this month.  Forensic auditing is the next big topic reviewed and the concerns due to corruption is also part of it and Judy mentions the backend research efforts by Finance Director Nick Trasente.  There's some additional discussion about forensic accounting completed in the Parking Authority leading up to the corruption uncovered on that front.

In this segment, Judy also talks about the $4.4 million surplus in 2009 and it almost doubling for fiscal year 2010 beginning July 1.


Related: The Hudson Reporter posted a piece just earlier on raises retroactive two years for the Police union totaling over 10% for three years, and a 2.3% increase for the fourth year.  A change in medical providers offers savings but the figure is not mentioned.  The story by Timothy J. Carroll suggests the City Council and the Mayor are not happy about the deal on the table.  Apparently, this has been leaked from the police union as Judy Tripodi is on vacation and unavailable for comment.

In an earlier interview with Mile Square View, Judy Tripodi said funds were budgeted for the retroactive costs as public safety unions had operated without a new agreement over the last two years.

Earlier MSV had shared with some readers horse sense about arbitration.  It appears that may in fact be the case in regards to the fire unions.
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'bout last nite - City Council Meeting recap

If you missed the City Council meeting, you probably picked the best one in a long while.  It was short and lacked the intensity along with a big crowd to spur on the old Hoboken style showmanship we have come to expect.  Even when it's been fairly unrealistic, its entertainment value is better than most TV fare these days.  No, we are not proclaiming our love for any of it.

Our new colleague at Hoboken.patch.com, Claire Moses actually has an excellent summary of the events in one comprehensive story.  If we could have saved those hours, we might have gotten in some exercise last night.  Oh well check it out and also see Mark Mauer's detailed effort over at Hoboken Now.

Our take is the discussion by Nino Giacchi on St. Patrick's Day was most interesting, as in the trepidation in watching an approaching train wreck.  Everyone on the City Council received a copy of the  editorial, "St. Patrick's Coming Titanic Disaster" and nothing came back but the sound of crickets.  When you watch the anxiety of Nino Giacchi in the video here, it's obvious as to why.  No one really knows what's going to happen and it's clear everyone feels powerless should something bad occur.  (Note the references about planning changes for next year; where have we heard that before?)  Councilwoman Beth Mason chatted with MSV before closed session and expressed legitimate concerns and also asked for our suggestion(s).  (We'll post a piece on our discussion later.)  We do know Councilman Giacchi is working with Mayor Zimmer.  Whether it's effective or not remains to be seen.  Pray for bad weather.  Otherwise it looks like we're heading for some trouble, maybe big trouble.  And we should note, the heavy usage of the words "Zero Tolerance" never seems to go hand in hand with any discussion, past, present or future with the word "Arrest" and/or "Jail."

If you were a drunken amateur lout, would you be worried about going nuts in Hoboken?
Oh you are going to give me a ticket?