Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Occhipinti declaring victory, Lenz not conceding

With over 500 vote by mail ballots in dispute, there's not much doubt the numbers after challenges will still be favorable to Tim Occhipinti. He's declaring victory and calling it a victory for the fourth ward but Councilman Mike Lenz has not conceded.

Lenz is quoted on NJ.com as saying there was cheating. It's not clear what he will do and when he might decide to make additional comment, but earlier he said, "I'm looking at al the options. I'm neither conceding nor not conceding. There was a big margin, but there was a lot of cheating."

Tim Occhipinti leads on the machine vote 841 to 791.

When the vote by mail paper ballots are finalized, an update will be posted. There are over 500 of them and about 200 have specific challenges.

There's word the supervisor of the Board of Elections spent all day in Hoboken investigation numerous instances of electoral fraud. It's uncertain how that will play out after any totals are certified.

Many Hoboken residents want to see that investigation followed through. It's not a stretch to say Tim Occhipinti and his campaign will not be among them.

Mayor Zimmer announces revitalized Hoboken Police Department

Office of the mayor announces:


The Zimmer Administration is announcing a series of actions and initiatives, including a police redeployment plan, that save taxpayers money, enhance community safety, and avoid the layoffs of police officers through retirements and the previously announced interlocal agreement with the Hoboken Housing Authority.

"Today, I am proud to announce that we are achieving the cost savings our taxpayers need while improving safety and avoiding layoffs. From the beginning, I've stated that each retirement submitted will save an officer from being laid off. Everyone in our community wins, and I am incredibly thankful to everyone who worked constructively over the past few weeks to make this happen," said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. "I want to be very clear: This was never about political agendas. This is about doing what's in the best interest of all of the people of Hoboken."

Mayor Zimmer's redeployment plan, which was developed with and embraced by Police Chief Falco, reorganizes the Police Department to be as efficient and effective as possible and ensures resident safety by dramatically increasing on-street patrols.

"Through redeployment and civilianization of certain positions, we are drastically increasing the number of police personnel assigned to patrol Hoboken's streets by 38 percent from 72 to 99 officers," said Mayor Zimmer.

Additionally, in order to enhance community safety when activity is highest and restaurants and bars are crowded with residents and visitors, a power shift will be instituted increasing patrol coverage by up to 16 officers between the hours of 8pm and 4am.

The plan calls for technology upgrades to police vehicles and phones, substantial improvements to the fleet, and begins discussions regarding a new Police building.

On Wednesday, September 22, the Housing Authority unanimously approved an interlocal agreement established between the Administration and Housing Authority Executive Director Garcia. The agreement, which also calls for the creation of a Public Safety Resident Council, will improve safety for area residents, save taxpayers money, and save five police jobs.

"I'm very pleased that through my Administration's initiatives with the Police Department, police unions, and the Housing Authority, we were able to realize the cost savings we need to potentially avoid any officers losing their job," said Mayor Zimmer. "In addition to the five jobs saved through the Housing Authority Bureau, we have already accepted the retirements of five police officers and the written commitment of an additional seven officers to retire by December 1st."

The Administration has learned that an additional officer on disability will not be returning to the force.

In addition to the five layoffs already averted through retirements, an additional five layoffs will be averted when the agreement between the City and the Housing Authority is approved by the City Council and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The remaining layoffs will be postponed until December 2nd, and will be cancelled if the expected retirements occur. Civil Service law also requires the temporary postponement of the demotions until that time.

"Both unions have committed to resuming negotiations with the City," said Corporation Counsel Mark Tabakin. "Although much work needs to be done, it is our hope that further cost savings can be effectuated through the negotiations process."

The layoffs of City Hall employees are still proceeding.

"I am incredibly appreciative of our employees and the hard work they do for the City," said Mayor Zimmer. "As I have said before, this is not in any way a reflection of their work. They are the victims of the fiscal challenges our City faces."

Highlights of Redeployment Plan

·        After full implementation of the redeployment plan on December 2nd, the size of the Police force will be reduced from 153 to 140 officers, including 5 from the Housing Authority Bureau.
·        The plan will correct the top-heaviness of the force through retirements and the implementation of demotions.
·        An additional 27 officers (from 72 to 99) – an increase of 38 percent – will be assigned to patrol our streets.
·        A power shift from 8pm to 4am will increase street patrols from approximately 9 officers to more than 20 officers during peak activity hours.
·        A revised Housing Authority Interlocal agreement will increase safety in the Housing Authority area by providing more consistent coverage through dedicated patrol division.

Net result: a more efficient force, focused on providing better public safety through a significant increase in street patrols.

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Occhipinti holds slight lead on machine, anticipated to rake in VBM

Tim Occhipinti leads on the machine vote 841 to 791.

Here are the unconfirmed totals from the machines:

4-1 223 ML 191 TO

4-2 445 ML 184 TO

4-3 102 ML 172 TO

4-4 21 ML 292 TO

With a small lead on the machine vote but anticipated to have a substantial number in the vote by mail paper ballots of the 512 confirmed, even a strong challenge by the Lenz for Council campaign is not anticipated to reverse the course.

MSV will try to get some updated figures tonight after the challenges are complete.

As of 10:10, there is no report on the vote by mail.  Tim Occhipinti is declaring victory although Mike Lenz has not conceded the election.  
(See he knew all along what those paper ballots said.)

The vote by mail numbers of over 500 are not expected to change the outcome even with strong successful challenges.  Uncertified numbers may not come in until tomorrow.

It's the machines versus the paper factory express!

Updated: 8:05

First update since this afternoon and we are seeing some significant turnout numbers.
These are only the machine numbers we are getting up to the early evening with a full hour or more to go!

4-1  418
4-2  650?? ***
4-3  289
4-4  320 ?

(The above numbers are preliminary and subject to confirmation and a final tally by the Hudson Board of Elections.)

At this rate if the 4-2 comes in near 600, there's going to be some positive feeling on the reform side.  But the big question mark looming is the unprecedented amount of paper ballot votes - re: vote by mail.  Of more than 600, it's expected to be heavily lopsided for the Tim Occhipinti paper factory express.

The other striking number above is the unconfirmed number from the 4-4.  It's too high considering the whacked out tallies we'll be seeing in the vote by mail out of the Hoboken Housing Authority.

That raises numerous issues.

A heavy amount of challenges are all ready to go against the vote by mail anticipated to begin evaluation shortly.  Originally thought to be decided in the early afternoon, it is only close to geting underway with people heading over to the County.

On Saturday the challengers for Occhipinti were former Peter Cammarano counsel Michael Goldberg and Michelle Russo.  Will confirm more on this when possible.

There will be four county people evaluating challenges, two Democrat and two Republican.  Any 2-2 ties will be forwarded on to Judge Gallipoli.

Of the miraculous "coincidence" first uncovered here on MSV of 78 of 79 Tim Occhipinti 'campaign workers,' every single one had requested a paper ballot - vote by mail.  Only one hadn't returned that ballot days away from the election deadline to do so.

This is going to be a major issue and will be viewed as a potential benchmark.  If it's is overlooked by the County - it's a blow to a broader claim of widespread vote by mail fraud.

There are a number of differentials those vote by mail ballots can go so speculation isn't productive.  Just know that how the Hudson County Board of Elections treats this is critical.

The whole State of New Jersey will be watching.

Buckle in this is going to be a very bumpy ride.

*** A report just in from the 4-2 now says that tally is expected to come in well over 600 in the 650 range!

Beth Mason out and about with Tim Occhipinti

Beth Mason has ventured out in a rare safari into the fourth ward and is walking around with Tim Occhipinti.  Independent reports say she is over at 3rd and Jackson St. right now.  If anyone can snap a picture, send one in!

A report came in a fourth ward resident saw Beth Mason with Tim Occhipinti and went over to her and hit with a straight one liner - "I'm so disappointed in you."

A surprised Beth Mason replied, "Excuse me."  The conversation ended there as the person had other family considerations.

Talking Ed Note: More positive news on turnout in the 4-2.  With prime time still ahead for that key voting district turnout late afternoon is reported to be well over the four-hundred mark.

This election is going to place a premium demand on real live voters.  Tim Occhipinti has manufactured an unbelievable percentage of his votes in paper.  What will come of it?  Too soon to tell.

There's going to be feedback on an equally record setting challenge to this paper mache production by the Occhipinti campaign.  It may lead to one nasty quagmire.

Illegal car campaigning near polling station @ 220 Adams in the 4th ward

Put this one in the it could have been worse file but it's notable for the continuing pattern emerging over this last day and in this fourth ward campaign overall.  A young mother supportive of the Lenz campaign was on her way to vote and came across a vehicle with signs all over it spouting Occhipinti every which way.  The car was parked well within the 100 feet of a polling station, an activity in and of itself considered electioneering and therefore illegal.

Ooops did we use that word illegal again in connection to the Occhipinti campaign?
Yes, you may think it's a conspiracy but it's just how they roll.

This BMW convertible looked very comfortable and at home sitting double parked and illegally within 100 feet of a polling station.  The car was finally moved after some yelling and pictures taken by a young mother who refused to walk away from the scene before the owner moved the vehicle.

We should be grateful this BMW convertible wasn't double parked outside Occhipinti's headquarters blocking traffic.  You know, Tim really cares about traffic.

Here's the reported conversation between the two as pictures were taken:

She took the pictures, and a man says "C'mon honey, make sure you get a good shot!"
She says, "EXCUSE ME???"
He says, "That's my car" and argued with her about whether or not it
was "parked" in the literal sense. 

She said "Well I vote there and I know you can't be parked there."
He said, "OK I'll move it, anything for you, honey."

Talking Ed Note: If you see something and believe it's not right take a couple of shots including identifying parts such as a license plate but do not confront and get into an argument with another person over such matters.  It's better to call the police and let them explain the law.

The owner of the BMW based on another report is believed to be Michael Cricco.

The Drive for Five!

It's crunch time and also prime time!


The final steps of the home stretch.  Polls are open until 8 pm and every vote matters in this election! (If you are in line at 8 pm you are still able to vote.)
A handful of votes could make the difference between winning and losing.  Make sure you take 5 minutes to vote and encourage 5 of your friends to vote as well! 

If you are sitting at work and want to help:
Copy this to your facebook status: "Let's keep moving Hoboken Forward.  Vote Mike Lenz 9C for 4th Ward City Council!  Polls are open until 8 pm."
Or Tweet: "@lenzforcouncil - #Hoboken polls are open until 8 pm.  Vote Mike Lenz 9C and Vote for Progress.  Make your voice heard! #ivotedforfree" 

Every vote matters.  Make your voice heard!

Thank you for your support!
Mike Lenz

Drop by Campaign HQ (60 Madison), Click Here, Call 201-588-5369, or emaillenzforcouncil@gmail.com to get signed up!
 4 pm - 8 pm: THE BIG PUSH - If voters go inside their buildings before they vote, we lost them.  This is the last chance we have to make sure people vote.

Gristy lunchtime chewables on the 4th ward election

Hoboken's fourth ward election thought to be on the lower side of turnout since there's no larger local and statewide runs driving interest looks surprising strong early in a key battleground demographic.

In the 4-2, considered the home base of Mayor Dawn Zimmer, a strong early morning turnout is evident.  Typically the 4-2 has a preponderance of its vote in the evening.  A strong morning turnout may indicate there's strong awareness of the special election among voters.

No conclusion can be made on how those votes are divided but the 4-2 has been historically a stronghold of reform minded voters.

Candidates go to vote with the media in tow and today was no different.  Tim Occhipinti went to 221 Jackson Street earlier to register his vote.  The tables in that location were divided for two districts, the 4-2 and the 4-3.

For some reason, Occhipinti went to the table for the 4-2 with the media all ready to do their usual candidate photo op except for one problem.  Occhipinti doesn't live in the 4-2.

The poll workers instructed Occhipinti to go to the 4-3 table so he could sign in and cast his vote.  Poll workers were laughing in disbelief a city council candidate doesn't even know his own voting district.

Apparently, that wasn't in the binder either.  Mike Lenz is confirmed as also voting today, but without the humorous aside.

Occhipinti HQ: home of paper ballots
Of great interest in today's fourth ward special election, MSV can confirm the final totals for vote by mail (absentee) ballots is easily the highest ever in the fourth ward!  Where even in a city wide election there's a range in the area of several hundred ballpark, the outstanding final ballots requested in this much smaller special election has reached over 600!

That figure represents only actual ballot applications, not returns.  But it's a figure that is causing concern for different reasons on both sides.

That's the exact figure quoted by an unnamed Hoboken election watcher on PolitickerNJ's earlier story who predicted that figures means "someone going to jail."  So now, there's even greater attention on this Hoboken election and it's not just within Hudson County.

In the same PolitickerNJ story, Occhipinti says he has nothing to do with a vote by mail campaign.  He's quoted as saying, "I'm personally not pushing absentees."

In the 2007 legendary hand to hand battle between Dawn Zimmer and Chris Campos, each of the candidates received 13 and 21 percent of their vote via absentee votes in a fourth ward election dogfight.

Many critics of Dawn Zimmer including diehard loyalists to Beth Mason vehemently point to those absentees as being more than suspicious.  Ironically, some of those same Mason supporters are now hard at work on Tim Occhipinti's campaign. (Da Horsey had some confidential email exchanges with one who mentioned getting together for a beer but who would never comment on a question repeatedly posed if he has any concern Occhipinti might generate several hundred paper ballots in this election.)

Well nowwwwww!  It appears Tim Occhipinti is going to blow away any expectations about what percentage of his vote will come by paper ballots today.

More to come.

Photo: A picture in front of the Occhipinti HQ at dawn.  An illegally parked van for the campaign sits on the street outside blocking Observer Highway traffic.

City Tuesday Hop availability

City of Hoboken announces:

Please note the Blue Hop (downtown route) will run today, November 2nd, 2010, from noon to 8pm. 

Route map and live shuttle location tracking is available at http://hobokennj.org/thehop

Thuggery rears its head in the 4th ward special election

It's election day in Hoboken and there's more trouble out on the streets for some supporters but it's only on one of the two active campaigns in town.  Two new incidents of concern have been confirmed, one just in the early hours of today's fourth ward special election today.

Lynda Walker at the Lenz for Council kickoff
Early this morning, Lynda Walker a Hoboken resident who has served as a Hoboken Housing Authority commissioner discovered all the tires on her vehicle were slashed.  The incident occurred sometime in the early am.

Lynda Walker is a well known Mike Lenz supporter and attended the Lenz for Council kickoff.

Another Hoboken resident Joseph Branco discovered his 2005 Ram pickup was stolen in the area of 7th and Bloomfield.  After checking to see if there was an error in towing, he filed a police report.  The vehicle is tan with license plate SET93U and a Room 84 sticker on the back.

Joseph Branco is widely known in both campaigns as working on behalf of the Mike Lenz for council campaign.  His truck has been featured in recent elections by multiple candidates but he wonders why anyone would steal a 2005 Ram pickup.

Joseph Branco (r) speaking with 5th ward councilman
Peter Cunningham at West End Station last Thursday

Several weeks ago, Patricia Waiters saw her car vandalized on a Friday night while attending a Hoboken High School football game with her family.  The vandal(s) wrote on her vehicle, "Lenz sucks."

Got voter intimidation?

Mayor Zimmer makes the request on behalf of Mike Lenz for the 4th ward election


Dear Friend,

Election Day is here again, and once again if you live in
Hoboken's 4th Ward your vote for my 5th vote on the Council,
Mike Lenz, is critical to continuing to move our neighborhood
and our City forward.

Please get out tomorrow and vote for Mike Lenz,
Ballot Position 9C and the Zimmer Team.

Every vote counts, so please make sure to vote and bring as many
of your friends as you can to vote as well!

Polls open from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm. 
Click here if you need help finding your polling location.


Mayor Zimmer


Horse Sense: Hoboken, we have a problem

Today is election day and most Hoboken residents will have the option of voting for Congress and County Sheriff.  The fourth ward is home turf for the Lenz-Occhipinti battle in the fourth ward special election.  That is, if we really have an election.

MSV does not do endorsements.  We encourage residents to review the important issues and make their decisions with only the privacy of their own conscience dictating their choice.  Besides no one takes voting instructions from a horse.

Which brings us to two problems.  Albio Sires currently holds the 13th congressional district seat.  He has refused to debate his main opponent even once.  This strikes us as undemocratic and equally, unacceptable.  Frankly, that's being a horse's ass.

That leaves in our mind only one candidate among his real contenders: Henrietta Dwyer.  When anti-democratic actions are clearly evident, Da Horsey says resist!  Of course you may resist however you deem appropriate.  You can write in a popular singer or Tim Occhipinti, they each have about the same knowledge of Hoboken issues.  And that gets us to the heart of the matter for most of the town today, no matter where you live.

Hoboken's "On the Waterfront," problem isn't just restricted to the problems on the piers.  The fourth ward has generated a record haul of vote by mail ballot applications - in the neighborhood of 600 total.  PolitickerNJ quoted one observer state a plunder of that size means "someone's going to jail."

Questioned about such a bounty, pun intended, Occhipinti backer Councilman Mike Russo enthusiastically trumpeted it, telling PolitickerNJ "I hope so" to that very total.  Occhipinti's campaign people should be ashamed but they are embracing this vote looting, calling media scrutiny to "The Anomaly" voter suppression, voter intimidation and now just yesterday someone in his camp had some poor HHA residents sign their names in an obviously concocted Occhipinti letter to the dreaded word: racism.  Is there any depths these these people will not go seeking power over all of us in this town?

To the individual who put that letter in front of those Housing Authority residents and had them sign, and this includes Tim Occhipinti, and his campaign bearing equal culpability, there's only one word for them: despicable.

Tim Occhipinti the self-declared independent "personal integrity" candidate who can't even tell you one issue he's independent (we know because we asked) has played a cynical game with residents of the fourth ward.  He was out front barking like a mad junkyard dog with the deception the Pino's site was selected as the choice for the Municipal Garage, a sad cautionary tale of what to expect if Councilman Mike Russo seizes more power.  Occhipinti is eagerly his pliable tool to further damage our town.

Occhipinti's continued cynicism muttering more lies on the city budget parroting Councilwoman Beth Mason's $20 million surplus party line is equally concerning especially in light of his inconsistent contradictions on budgeting and taxes.  Of course it's his magic binder that gives him the answers to parrot word for word and its authors we must hold to blame.  That's not a candidate, that's a puppet!

Tim Occhipinti's debate binder.  A word for word instruction for puppet sellouts.  (Puppet not included.)

Most importantly, MSV has smelled a rat whenever Occhipinti would qualify his remarks about a clean election going back to the summer on Hoboken Patch.   He said his campaign would be clean if there was anything he "personally" would have to do with it.

What Occhipinti neglects, along with his ever retreating remarks surrounding the growing concerns about his expected record setting vote by mail fraud is he as the candidate is responsible.  Instead he just barks the usual nonsense he hears from his handlers about violating the rights of voters, clearly not what the stakes are in this instance.  The stakes are about Hoboken's dignity and self-respect.  Sadly, there's a group of voters economically challenged more than willing and in numbers to sell their vote for $40.

Last summer MSV covered a couple of Housing Authority Health Fair events.  Both times Tim Occhipinti attended but he volunteered zero to the event and brought nothing to the table.  There was no participation with HHA residents or their children.  He was merely there.  Nothing says more about the candidate than his utter indifference to the HHA than we saw firsthand.  He was just milling about, a candidate for hire looking to follow through on selling out to whoever would buy and allow him to attach himself as a brand.

What is Tim's brand exactly?  Deception.  A package to appeal to those who don't follow much of Hoboken government and think he seems genial and non-threatening enough.  That is exactly what he wants you to think.  For that reason, his alliance to the old guard makes him more dangerous.  There's no surprises coming from this guy.  The bill has been paid, small as it was and now the handlers will be coming to collect on their investment.

Tim Occhipinti may seem like a fun loving hear no, see no, speak no evil monkey, but that's because he's already long ago sold out the fourth ward and all of Hoboken.  He's anticipating a record electoral fraud haul of vote by mail votes in the election.  That is if he can get away with it.

Exactly what percentage of Occhipinti's vote will be vote by mail/absentee is unknown for the moment.  But it's likely to be yet another record in the vote by mail scandal underway.  Much of the results in the official count will be based on the Hudson County Board of Elections and perhaps then a Hudson County Superior Court judge.  O Lord hear our plea, have mercy on us.

The fourth ward election is hereby no longer about two candidates.  It's about far more than any candidate, or in fact any one election.  It needs to be a turning point for this town where vote buying with absurdly blatant vote by mail buying schemes are stopped cold, once and for all.

They are starting to feel a little heat.  They are somewhat uncomfortable, the glare of a spotlight is bad for business as usual.  The media is usually compliant, not muckracking.  The thousands of hits yesterday tells us you know where MSV stands, but unfortunately, Hoboken won't see a fair election in the corner of the fourth ward until people are hauled away in handcuffs and locked up in jail first - no matter the outcome of "the election."

So other than that, join MSV in wishing the Occhipinti campaign good luck.  Their boy Cammarano needs company.  Hope they find their way back together again real soon, sooner than later.

For now, we engage the battle for Hoboken, always for Hoboken.

A guy in this video only looks like a NJ State politician.  Is he muttering about voter intimidation too?  Seems like a lot of that noise is coming from certain corners.  On one campaign, it appears real.