Thursday, March 31, 2011

Source: 'Mason-Russo rift widens' due to reckless release of police report

The fallout from The New Jersey Sting's exposure of Councilman Mike Russo, less than a week old is being compounded by the antics of Beth Mason's minions including the release of a police report on Hoboken411 - this according to a source on Grafix Avenger.

For the second time in a week, a source claiming inside knowledge on the thinking of the Russo family suggests there's big tempers flaring with the release of the police report on the incident involving a city bus driver and Transportation Director Ian Sacs last week.  According to the source, the leak of the police report by source(s) within the department sympathetic to the Russo's was not meant to be published.

The source, code named Deep Uvula remarked harshly on the utter vapidity of Beth Mason's political operatives who will do almost anything to inflict even kamikaze gnat like attacks on Mayor Dawn Zimmer to impress their paymaster on Hudson Street.  Grafix Avenger conveyed the sentiment of the source on her website earlier today:
Everyone was told to lay low for, stay quiet until they (Russos) figure out their counter-offensive. Nobody's been talking. Except Mason's people.
There's a lot of unhappiness with how (James) Barracato and (Lane) Bajardi have run away with the (Ian  Sacs) story. A lot. The police report was not for publication. You don't expose the people who brought you Ian's carcass on a silver platter. You protect the guy and his job.

Just yesterday MSV noted the work of a suspected Beth Mason's political operative posting the Hoboken411 stamped version of the police report on's Hoboken Forum.  The police report's appearance was not long after a phone interview with the Hoboken Police Department stating any request via official channels would not be met based on the updated policy set by Police Chief Falco.

Minutes later, the police report along with the post disappeared.

Now not a day later, Grafix Avenger's deep throat type character, as shadowy as the Watergate version blows the lid off a widening rift in the Mason-Russo camps.  The Russo family with close ties to the Hoboken Police Department does not appreciate how recklessly Beth Mason's political operatives, as stated on GA - it's James Barracato and Lane Bajardi - are exposing their source(s) at the Hoboken Police Department and risking their jobs.

Yesterday in a phone interview, Detective Anthony Falco addressed concern about the release of the police report and its appearance on Hoboken411.  He added the system was being checked "to see how it got out" indicating access to the report leaves indelible fingerprints by its users.  That access and the exposure to "risk friends" in the police department  for nothing more than a whim by Beth Mason's political operatives infuriated the Russo family, according to the anonymous source.

According to a separate second hand report, Councilwoman Beth Mason has recently been seen on more than one occasion in public with Weehawken political operative James Barracato.  Among the known work Barracato has performed is the registration of the Councilwoman's websites.  He was also spotted repeatedly at the Tim Occhipinti campaign office including the night of the midnight lair video.

The source continued to lash out at Councilwoman Beth Mason for not being competent beyond writing checks stating:

Beth is lazy, embarrassed them because of the police contract, she doesn't read anything in advance and can't run a meeting. She lets 'people' do everything for her.  Doesn't want to work.  Gets mad at Russo for making her look incompetent at the meetings but she can't get out of her own way.  

The anonymous source goes on to lampoon Beth Mason for "looking like a jackass," in her manipulation of the speaker's list with Lane Bajardi at an earlier City Council meeting.  That recent political operation was exposed by MSV and captured in this video:

Talking Ed Note:  All of this deep dish from Grafix Avenger's anonymous source has left one horse turning green with envy.  If on the surface it appears mythical, a quick look on the local Hoboken websites (not including Mason411) shows an erie silence.

The wild desperate punches thrown in the last couple of days has all but stopped.  Seeing that and confirming information first hand appears to make Grafix Avenger's source appear more not less credible and leaves Da Horsey feeling a bit green.

Yesterday sources stated to MSV the same Hoboken police report had been provided to their respective publications.  Neither media body has published or referenced the report to this point. (Correction) - The Hudson Reporter has in fact published the police report although MSV had checked earlier and didn't see it.

Da Horsey - a bit green with envy
Grafix Avenger story:

Lunchtime with Da Horsey and Bet Mazin

Now that the Jersey Sting authors have reconfirmed their source tape and again addressed the matter of another Russo acceptance of the loot, this time the Mike Russo version - we're on to reviewing other tape.

Why?  Because it's just so quiet out there.  How is a political consultant to make any coin when they can't issue a press release on behalf of the biggest politician paying person in town?  Can't a political consultant get a dime?

Of course the silence we're hearing from the army of consultants from Councilwoman Beth Mason is raising quite alarming concern.  How can her army of consultants be expected to feed their families if all they get to write about is college basketball?

Won't someone please ask Beth to show some mercy and churn out some stuff on the $27 million surplus, or how Ian Sacs should be more polite about being assaulted on the job or hey if you really don't want to be on the Beth Mason payroll anymore, just tell her to say she doesn't think it's a swell idea to agree to accept money in the thousands of dollars at $5,000 a pop from FBI informants.

That is of course unless it's her writing the checks.  Here's Da Horsey's videotape starring Bet Mazin and her favorite Weehawken based, law school flunking political operative. Yes we have bumped him up to the top spot over the Mason411 minion.

James B, downfall of a Wannabe Shark
by: smartyjones

The Jersey Sting in pictures (sans surveillance tape)

Wednesday's event captured a spirit of celebration reminiscent of a time when justice swept through Hoboken with a strong hand:

Co-authors of The Jersey Sting: Ted Sherman (r) and Josh Margolin seated at the Malibu in the same location where former mayor Peter Cammarano met with FBI informant Solomon Dwek

1st ward candidate Eric Kurta took time from campaigning to meet the authors.  Author Josh Margolin seemed intrigued by his jacket wondering, are you really taking on one of the Russo's?  Eric Kurta actually is taking on that challenge, facing down Russo cousin Terry Castellano. 

Gone but not forgotten: Peter Cammarano in his famous beltless perp walk photo made it into The Sting.

Challenger to Mike Russo in the 3rd ward, Greg Lincoln had a nice chat with the authors.  Until Sunday, no one had known about the Fed's surveillance tapes capturing Mike Russo with Solomon Dwek.

Co-author Josh Margolin shares an intimate conversation with Hoboken's Grafix Avenger.  Another discovery: Josh Margolin is a reader of the GA website and they exchanged some dish as Ted Sherman looked on.

MSV bonus: the inscription to Mayor Zimmer reads: Madam Mayor - I can't imagine what it was like to take over your office.  Ted Sherman adds his signature for the mayor's keepsake.

The next sting?  Photo from the Tim Occhipinti Midnight Lair video.  Peter Cammarano is gone but his supporters moved their game to Tim "I'm Independent" Occhipinti. 

The Tim Occhipinti campaign election "problems" were kicked up for review to the NJ State Attorney General's office, where last heard it remains outstanding.  Justice can often move slow.  Operation Big Rig III was a years in the making operation.  The Machine moves much faster.  It's already gearing up paper ballot plans with it's captains in the Board of Education race scheduled for April 27th.   Will the Fed's be watching?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sign of the Times: Mayor Zimmer gets autographed copy of "The Jersey Sting"

The Jersey Sting Authors Ted Sherman (l) and Josh Margolin sign two copies for Mayor Dawn Zimmer in front of the Malibu Diner Wednesday afternoon.

About 50 Hoboken residents turned up in the middle of a weekday to catch a bit of Hoboken's corruption past and present as captured in the hot new book "The Jersey Sting."

Co-author Josh Margolin addressed remarks contesting the accuracy of the book by Councilman Mike Russo who said anyone who claimed his meeting with FBI informant Solomon Dwek involved a bribe was "lying."  Margolin stated the authors had reviewed the tapes again and "what we recounted in the book is accurate."

As to when the surveillance tapes might be available with additional detail surrounding Mike Russo and Solomon Dwek breaking bread while discussing multiple payments with an intial $5,000 agreed upon, Margolin added a decision may come soon on releasing the tape(s).

Although there were rumors Mike Russo might send people to harass and heckle the authors, no one from his camp appeared. 

Mike Russo claimed he explained he would not accept a cash payment from Solomon Dwek.  But his retelling of the events with the Fed's star witness Solomon Dwek was kept a secret for almost two years.  On Sunday, MSV was first in revealing the meeting and the government's tape as recounted in the recently released book.

According to another claim made by Mike Russo, the story had been reported previously.  However no one can confirm where any story of Russo and Dwek meeting appeared.  A local reporter told MSV,  there's nothing to be found in the Jersey Journal (or anyone else). 

More to come...

Who gave the police report on last week's City Hall incident to Hoboken411?

Hoboken411 the website in service to Councilwoman Beth Mason obtained the police report on the incident last week involving a city bus and Director Ian Sacs posting the document earlier today. 

While Hoboken police reports are not publicly available based on policy set by Hoboken Police Chief Falco, the document somehow found its way onto the website where it was intermingled with unsubstantiated hearsay and every manner of lies strewn in-between.

But the big question is, who gave it to them?

  The police are investigating who accessed its report system and gave the above report to  Beth Mason's propaganda site where censorship is enforced with an iron fist.

Hoboken Police Detective Anthony Falco stated the police report is not made available to the public especially when "certain information shouldn't be released before court," he said referencing the fact the case has not been deliberated before a judge.

MSV requested a copy and Detective Falco restated the existing policy on not releasing police reports set by Hoboken Police Chief Falco .  "I'm not sure how it got out," he said without mentioning where it was released.  "We're checking the system to see how it got out," he said later confirming he was referring to the police report appearing on Hoboken411.

The police report mentions Sgt. Gigante observing a city bus driver "interlocking" with Director Sacs who calls out for help.  Interlocking?

MSV later saw the same Hoboken411 document posted on's Hoboken Forum by a poster named Antinucci.  Minutes later it was deleted.  Another poster stated Antinucci is one handle of many by a well known Weehawken based political operative who's been employed by Councilwoman Beth Mason.  Among his duties has been registering a website for the Councilwoman. 

MSV contacted the Weehawken political operative several times asking why the the Hoboken411 police report pdf document was removed.  He hung up and after another call shouted, "Get a life!" before once again hanging up.   He later sent a text he did not wish to receive phone calls.

So who in the Hoboken Police Department is releasing its police report to Beth Mason political operatives?

Talking Ed Note: Councilwoman Beth Mason is a well known political ally of Councilman Mike Russo.  She's made no public comment nor returned calls after excerpts from The Jersey Sting revealed Mike Russo had met and kept secret a meeting with FBI informant Solomon Dwek.  The book states federal surveillance tapes revealed Mike Russo agreeing to accept cash payments in installments of $5,000 each.  The book notes Mike Russo did not return to receive payment.

Calls to Councilman Mike Russo have not been returned. 

Update 3-31: It's unclear where the police report is being disseminated from but for the purpose of clarity, it's important to note the police department is not the sole locale for it being publicized.  

On Wednesday, sources indicated Hoboken411 is not the only place where the report has been leaked.  What the computer forensics reveal at the Hoboken Police Department is not certain, nor does MSV wish to convey it is.

It's 'Good Rat' Day at the Malibu - 3:30 for The Jersey Sting

Today is a celebration of Hoboken past, present and most likely future as that authors of The Jersey Sting retake the scene of many bribes recounted in their book and will host an event at the Malibu Diner.

Just yesterday, Grafix Avenger scooped everyone with an inside look on what La Familia is up to here in town. Her source hits all the right notes and suggests the Russo's are planning to strike back hard for the revelation of Mike Russo's well kept secret - he had a sit down with the famous FBI informant Solomon Dwek and agreed to multiple payments of $5,000.

Yesterday while having a bite, spoke to one local business owner who was still lost in last week's news. Told him this week's news was about Mike Russo. His reaction was beyond non-pulsed. He said much like someone in the 'Association.' Well he didn't take the money right? All I could tell him was, "Have you ever heard of the word conspiracy?"

If you wonder why the crooks run rampant in New Jersey, this is the perfect illustration why. Thankfully, this owner is not a Hoboken voter, but plenty share his sentiments as they are and at one point he says to me, "You guys are all the same." No joke.

Today's celebration of Hoboken corruption begins at 3:30 and continues to 5:00. It promises to be a great time, except if you are a supporter of the Russo crime syndicate. Because as Mike Russo once said knowingly back after his campaign manager Peter Cammarano's arrest, calling attention to Hoboken doesn't do any good for anybody.

What he meant was any more light cast on Hoboken is going to get him busted.

With that Da Horsey proudly brings you the satire from August 9th, 2009 to tide you over until the 3:30 event at the Malibu:

No negative light on Hoboken. Capesh?

Word around town is that Pulitzer Prize winner, Jimmy Breslin now 80 is patrolling our streets looking for stories on NJ corruption. He made an appearance at the Jersey City protest earlier this week. Breslin arrives just days after the passing of “On the Waterfront” screenwriter Budd Schulberg. Schulberg had just visited Hoboken last week for a reading of his famous Hoboken based movie.

Now who would Breslin speak to for background on his book in Hoboken? Well how could he not speak to say Mike Russo, Hoboken City Council representative and someone who might know something.

Jimmy Breslin: So Mr. Russo, your father Anthony, former mayor had some run ins with the law.

Mike Russo: My family doesn’t know nuthin about dat. And if we did, it would shed a negative light on Hoboken.

JB: So you aren’t denying that your father was a party to the culture of corruption in New Jersey?

Mike Russo: All I can say is that my family has nuthin to say about no corruption. It would be negative to be talkin about any corruption in Hoboken.

JB: Well I happen to be writing a book right now about New Jersey corruption. You know I’m 80 years old and could use some helpful background.

MR: If you want to see Hoboken as it should be, consider speaking to our potential new mayor Terry Castellano.

JB: Does she know anything about corruption in Hoboken?

MR: You can ask her but she’s busy getting ready for my wedding. Don’t think she’ll recall anything. You know it wouldn’t shed a positive light on Hoboken.

JB: You seem very concerned about Hoboken’s public image.

MR: I do not, and will not speak bad about Hoboken. We have rules here, no negative light on nutin. It's bad for business.

JB: And what about those who differ and have protested after the FBI’s information released on the former mayor?

MR: They are not the real Hoboken. Ask them if they were born here.

JB: Well don’t all residents of Hoboken have the same rights as other Americans?

MR: They have their rights. And they have the right not to put negative attention on Hoboken.

JB: I think I’m getting the picture here.

MR: Glad that you are understanding.

JB: Last question, Mike, do you know what century this is and have you ever heard of the US Constitution?

MR: Have you ever heard the saying don’t rat?

JB: Recall that came up in, “On the Waterfront” a famous movie filmed in Hoboken.

MR: I refuse to watch that movie or have anything to do with anything negative about Hoboken.

JB: Okay, got it. Thanks.

Related: Carly Baldwin's famous interview with Mike Russo:

"Calling attention to Hoboken doesn't do any good for anybody"

Talking Ed Note:  Funny enough, it's not only Councilwoman Beth Mason, Mike Russo's ally who doesn't want to call attention to this, but Hoboken411 is posting the police report on the assault on Director Ian Sacs in the most yellow journalism style with Beth Mason's minon interjecting lies and inneuendo throughout.  

(Grafix Avenger's source indicates the Russo clan had hoped to see Ian Sacs fired and worked hard to bring that result.  They are frustrated they haven't achieved those ends to use against Mayor Zimmer.  Looks like they will give it another try to deflect from Mike Russo.)

That's how desperate they are. They want to keep people from finding out about Mike Russo's sit down.

The Jersey Journal hasn't breathed a word about Mike Russo and Solomon Dwek breaking bread either. Editor Augie Torres had a nice interview published with Mike Russo a few weeks back. Just yesterday the Jersey Journal mentioned the book, but nary a word about Councilman Russo who appears inside.


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Hoboken's corruption artery reopened, 3rd ward race wide open

Hoboken corruption is alive and well and the genetic lineage running through Peter Cammarano lives on in Tim Occhipinti carrying the new "independent" flavor and Councilman Mike Russo the old original coke banner.

The weekend's revelation of FBI informant Solomon Dwek having a sit down with Hudson County pols is nothing new, as most know he was the star in an ongoing production of the Fed's tragic-comedy snaring dozens of NJ pols along the way.  What almost no one knew and Mike Russo kept secret for almost two years was he had a little  tête-à-tête himself with the developer bagman. 

Mike Russo - not laughing now about his just discovered meeting with FBI Informant

Mike Russo however is a different breed of political animal.  He showed a clear love for the taste of the green Solomon Dwek was spreading and surprised many in Operation Bid Rig according to sources when he was willing to sit down with the FBI Informant in a safe secluded locale in Jersey City.  While at the White Horse Tavern he agreed to map out multiple illegal $5,000 payments based on government surveillance tapes revealed for the first time in The Jersey Sting.  The book is a comprehensive retelling of the sordid story of money laundering, bribes and human organ sales in New Jersey and beyond.

While some criticize Mike Russo's antics in the City Council and they are legion, one should never underestimate his street smarts.  When he seems dumb, he's merely playing a clown's game to stall progress on an issue in order to keep it from moving forward.  But in matters of corruption, Mike Russo holds a doctorate degree.  He grew up watching the kabuki theater of his father up close and personal and modeled himself in that NJ style into an art form.  That he was able to stick his tongue out, laugh and touch the third rail of corruption in the form of Solomon Dwek is a testament to his survival skills.

The "Association" on Adams street, the organization handed down from ex-mayor and ex-con Anthony Russo to Mike Russo was a bee hive of activity yesterday.  Reports from the field say things were churning along and Hoboken should expect the Mother of All Distractions to come back swinging in the following days.   

You don't mess with La Familia's business and not get hit.  Whether it's a midnight flyer campaign or some public venomous attack, expect the ugliest stuff imaginable to surface.  Charges of racism on individuals in government or in the community connected to the Zimmer Administration would not be beyond the pale, anything that will garner headlines to take the heat off Mike Russo is the singular objective.

Although there is confusion sown in the Beth Mason-Mike Russo team for the moment, the Masonic Temple of self-adulation on Hudson Street has ordered Hoboken411 to be silent while the corruption artery is bleeding heavily.  Even the online political operatives under Mason's paid direction have fallen silent mostly yesterday awaiting instructions on how to proceed.  While one fanatical Mason minion family is issuing its ugly vitriol on the forum late in the day, the Hoboken Patch La Crude crew was eerily silent as a plan is being hatched.

Where is our holier than thou Councilwoman Beth Mason's public statement either verbal or in her typical voluminous email form sent out to all the media on the matter of this corrupt meeting?  Her cabal of political operatives, one less than notable minion family among them have been on a tear attempting to tarnish any and all people who participate in the legal and healthy political life of Hoboken tossing barbs and gutter talk nonsense on the Hoboken Forum at and now today on Hoboken Patch, some with clearly deigned anti-semetic overtones.  

In the 2009 spring mayoral campaign Beth Mason was the only other notable Hoboken politician thought to have met with Solomon Dwek.  While her meeting led to nothing and ho hum, an attempt to have a middleman set one up with Dawn Zimmer ended in just a phone call.  All day yesterday, an attempt to make something out of nothing on that front was repeated ad nauseum with a less than subtle reference to the family's work in the diamond business.  

So far there has been not a word from Mike Russo's council allies.  Not a word from Beth Mason who was contacted Sunday by MSV, not a word from Councilman Nino Giacchi who is eerily as silent as when Peter Cammarano got pinched and nothing from cousin Terry Castellano who knows when it's best to keep silent and pretend nothing of significance is happening.  No binder notes have been presented to Tim Occhipinti, but that's no surprise the Council of No would not hand him a statement to be issued on this.  His own election review by the Attorney General's office is the last reminder they want to send out to the Hoboken electorate right now.

Wednesday the Pulitzer Prize winning authors of The Jersey Sting will be coming to the Malibu from 3:00 - 5:30.  Will they have any other goodies for Hoboken?  You'll have to come and see for yourself.  It promises to be one helleva show. 

Wednesday at 3:30 - 5:00, the Pulitzer Prize winning authors of The Jersey Sting will be appearing at the Malibu, site of FBI informant Solomon Dwek payoffs and a Russo family favorite haunt. 

Talking Ed Note: Some readers have commented and emailed asking for more information on the surveillance capturing the meeting and recounted in The Jersey Sting.  MSV has looked into this and been told it is under federal seal and not available.

For those who are not aware, Operation Bid Rig is not over.  There are trials going on with more scheduled on all the ancillary pols caught in its web.  Some will talk in order to spare themselves and so don't expect any video or audiotape of Mike Russo to be made public any time soon.

Don't anticipate any mandated truth from Mike Russo on the matter either.  He's not subject to perjury charges unless he makes false statements in court under oath.  He can say anything he wants outside of a federal witness box.  He often does right from the dais of the City Council.

The big news in the Jersey City corruption sit down isn't Mike Russo agreeing to a bribe - that's yesterday's news.  The big news today is council candidate Greg Lincoln is in a race for the 3rd ward.  Godspeed to him. 

Help him spread the word.  Hoboken needs you now more than ever.

Related: Well it looks like another prediction of big trouble brewing and this time it's some big source over at Grafix Avenger.  Don't know the source but the details are a must read and parallel some of what is discussed here.    

Boy is it juicy.  (Okay here's a taste...)

The Russos-with Mama Russo calling the shots, Dad helping  with strategy, and Junior- are planning a huge counter-offensive, going to the troops and old guard... they are reaching down to the "bottom of the barrel" to stop the damage and plan to "take out the mayor and Reform"... because if Mike goes down, the rest are going to fall.  They're back to war... whatever it takes... they're hitting the mattresses. Heard that Russo thugs were going to show up at the Malibu tomorrow to heckle the authors. Lots of activity at the Russo Association, the question: how can we distract attention from this mess?

It gets even better, if you can believe that. 

BoE budget meeting tonight @ 7:00

The meeting is open to everyone in the community.  There will be a presentation and opportunities for the community to comment.

This budget has been reduced for a second year in a row bringing it to the lowest budget allowable under state law.

MARCH 29, 2011 
7 pm
Board Meeting Room
1115 Clinton Street
WHEREAS, the Board of Education has presented its budget for the school year beginning July 1, 2011  and ending June 30, 2012 and has estimated the sum of $59,830,951 to be necessary for the operation  and maintenance of the public schools of the School District of the City of Hoboken for the school year 2011‐2012, and  
RESOLVED, that we hereby submit to the registered voters of the City of Hoboken the attached 2011‐ 2012 school budget.   
RESOLVED, that there should be raised via taxation for General Fund $36,479,095 for the ensuing school  year 2011‐2012.  

RESOLVED, that the Secretary is hereby instructed to prepare one certificate each of this action to be  sent to the Hudson County Executive Superintendent of Schools, the Clerk of Hudson County and the Budget Manager. 

Cliff Godfrey, newest candidate of 2011 Kids First

My name is Clifford Godfrey and I am writing to introduce myself as a candidate to serve on the Hoboken Board of Education. I am proud to be running with Jean Marie Mitchell and Steve Feinstein on the Kids First ticket.

Growing up in the urban public school system of both Newark and Nutley, I thrived as a strong student and athlete. I owe this success to the support of my family, teachers and coaches and understand the importance of paying it forward. That’s why, while completing my Business and Technology degree at Stevens Institute of Technology, I joined organizations that sought to work with young people. Most notably, I was a member of the National Society of Black of Engineers and served as the Pre-College Initiative Chairman. In this post, I mentored many high school students about the importance of education. I also got to know hundreds of Hoboken kids as a student athlete in the Stevens Summer Youth Basketball Program and later as a coach for the Save the Youth Program. To continue my passion for working with our youngest citizens, I have established the ‘Living Our Way’ organization, which provides athletic training to young people.

My passion and vested interest for the continued success of the Hoboken school system lies in me becoming a parent a little over a year ago. My partner, Stephanie LeBlanc and I have made the decision to raise our daughter in Hoboken and have her become a part of the Hoboken school system when she is of age. My mutual goal with Kids First is to enhance our schools for our children to prosper and for other young families, like mine, to be confident in their decision to remain in Hoboken through their child’s Pre-K through 12th grade education.

I am very excited by the accomplishments of Kids First over the last two years. The Kids First focus on student success is evident by the hiring of educational consultants to support teaching staff, the expansion of the laptop program, the return of 8th grade algebra, and the implementation of AP at the high school level. It is most impressive that under the leadership of Kids First the budget is at the lowest level allowable by law; a reduction all the more impressive as it was accomplished without layoffs and after absorbing millions of dollars in state aid reductions.

Serving on the Board of Education takes a great deal of commitment, hard work and the ability to fully participate in all Board functions. I vow to fully commit my time, energy and life experiences to get behind every single student in the Hoboken Public Schools.

Thank you for considering me and my team mates, Jean Marie Mitchell and Steve Feinstein for Board of Education.

Best regards,
Cliff Godfrey

BoE Candidate

Talking Ed Note: Any slate and/or BoE candidate who wishes to post a biography of why they are running may submit 1,000 words or less to  They must include a pledge not to support or agree to be supported by paper ballot election fraud in any shape or form.

The Kids First 2011 team announces...

Dear friends and neighbors, I am so excited to introduce to you the 2011 Kids First Team!!!

Jean Marie has been on the Board working hard for a full year now and is running again this year for a three year term with Steve and Cliff.

They are fully committed to continuing the progress!!! They understand that when the district runs fairly, efficiently and effectively ... time, money and energy goes into the classroom ... where it belongs!

Please "like" the new Kids First Facebook Page and keep up to date on events!!/KidsFirstHoboken

Please check out the new website for bios, platform, endorsements and..... the donation button!


Pass along to all your friends! With your help....we can continue moving forward!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Mike Russo 'Whoever says I agreed to the bribe is lying' - Jersey Sting authors stand by story

Mike Russo who has been silent on the matter of his meeting with the FBI's star witness in Operation Bid Rig that netted dozens of NJ politicians including his former campaign manager and ex-mayor Peter Cammarano back in 2009, finally went on the record with the Hudson Reporter and Hoboken Patch. 

Just discovered: FBI informant Solomon Dwek met 
with Councilman Mike Russo in Jersey City in 2009

Russo describes his meeting with Solomon Dwek, the informant who's testimony led to convictions of other politicians in New Jersey differently than as described in the Jersey Sting - a book by Pultizer winning authors who claim he had agreed to a bribe but later failed to collect on an initial $5,000 payout.

In the Hudson Reporter, the 3rd ward Councilman stated, "What’s not excerpted in the book is that I made it very clear to Mr. Dwek that I would not accept cash contributions, and there was no quid pro quo.  No bribe was discussed.”

In Hoboken Patch, Russo said, "Anyone who portrays that (a bribe) is lying."

But the book's author's, Josh Margolin and Ted Sherman refused to back down from its claim Russo had agreed to the bribe.  In an email statement Monday afternoon they wrote, "First, during the course of our research for The Jersey Sting, we made every effort to give the councilman the opportunity to explain what transpired between him and Solomon Dwek. The councilman chose not to."

"Surveillance recordings we obtained during our research for The Jersey Sting, clearly show Mr. Russo met with Mr. Dwek, and that Mr. Dwek expected to meet again with Mr. Russo.  Mr. Dwek, on other recordings we obtained, articulated his surprise—as noted in the book--at the fact that Mr. Russo discontinued his association with Mr. Dwek without explanation."

Councilman Russo has not commented on why he did not report the incident to the authorities.  A voicemail was left for Councilman Russo, should he reply; the story will be updated.

Talking Ed Note: The award winning authors of the Jersey Sting, Josh Margolin and Ted Sherman will be appearing this Wednesday at the Malibu Diner 3:30-5:00 pm.

Malibu Diner photo - courtesy the Hoboken Journal

Tom Greaney kicks off 2nd ward city council run

Here's 2nd ward council candidate Tom Greaney speaking yesterday at Lola's addressing several dozen supporters at a kickoff event.  Tom is a measured speaker but more importantly a measured thinker.  He's been running for the council seat since January but he's now ready to put things into high gear taking on the monied and heavily consulted Councilwoman Beth Mason.

The contrasts between the candidates is dramatic.  While Tom is thoughtful and committed to the 2nd ward, Beth Mason has shown a tin ear on many issues and has continuously attempted to fool the voters she is something she is not on taxes, spending, ethics, and ability to work with others.  Councilwoman Beth Mason has shown almost a pedantic childish need to oppose Mayor Dawn Zimmer for nothing more than the sake of opposition, even when it's to the clear detriment of Hoboken.

In short, Tom Greaney is everything Beth Mason is not.  What many claim Beth Mason is today is a shadow of what they remember and hoped for when she was elected in 2007.  As one People for Open Goverment founder put it, "Being in elected office hasn't been good for Beth Mason."  It hasn't been good for Hoboken either.

In the video here, Tom Greaney asks for support of 2nd ward residents to get the job done and become not just the ward's new councilman, but to be an accountable councilman.

There's a difference and it's stark.

As an example, you will never see Tom Greaney pull stunts like this political operation Beth Mason did in City Council.  It's only one of several she was caught red handed doing in her brief role as chair:

Greg Lincoln to Mike Russo - 'Answer to the bribe caught on Fed's tape'

Greg Lincoln for 3rd Ward Council announces:


Two investigative reporters from the New Jersey Star-Ledger revealed that in 2009, Councilman Michael Russo agreed to accept a $5,000 bribe in a meeting with Solomon Dwek, an FBI informant. Dwek’s role was pivotal in the FBI sting that brought down former Hoboken Mayor and now convicted felon, Peter Cammarano.

In their book, “The Jersey Sting,” Pulitzer Prize recipients Ted Sherman and Josh Margolin describe the meeting between Councilman Russo and Dwek, which was recorded by the FBI. In the meeting, Councilman Russo tells Dwek he’s a “smart man” for concealing his identity in the deal, and that they will “get along fine.” At the end of their meeting, Councilman Russo is caught on tape agreeing to accept $5,000 from Dwek, with the promise of further payments.

"Peter Cammarano may be in jail for accepting bribes, but sadly, the corruption story in Hoboken is not over. Councilman Russo needs to explain why he agreed to accept a $5,000 bribe, why he refused to answer questions about the incident, and why he never reported it to the authorities," said Greg Lincoln. "This revelation raises many questions, but at least now we know why Councilman Russo refused to ask for Mayor  Cammarano to resign and why he didn't want further attention on Hoboken.  Councilman Russo needs to explain why he agreed to accept a bribe or remain silent and let the voters of Hoboken end this chapter of corruption once and for all."


The Jersey Sting, by Ted Sherman, Josh Margolin, 2011 - Account of Councilman Russo’s meeting with Solomon Dwek: article by Carly Baldwin, July 28 2009 - Councilman Russo explains why he didn’t call for Peter Cammarano’s resignation:


Campaign Press photos:
Campaign website:
Campaign phone: 201-468-0605

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Feds on Mike Russo: Agreed to $5,000 bribe with FBI informant Solomon Dwek


3rd ward Councilman Mike Russo who just submitted a questionable letter of achievements printed in the weekend's Hudson Reporter predicting there would be lies about him is named in a new book - the Jersey Sting.  The book details reveal Mike Russo's meeting with FBI informant and star witness Solomon Dwek in Jersey City's White Horse Tavern where bribes were discussed.

In the meeting Solomon Dwek who was working for the FBI and wired for sound, a discussion on $5,000 in bribe money is agreed upon:

from the book "The Jersey Sting"

Talking Ed Note:  The authors of the book note that "Mike Russo agreed," to take the $5,000 in bribe money but failed to collect.

Solomon Dwek is the same FBI informant who's testimony and wired meetings at the Malibu Diner led to the arrest and prison time of ex-mayor Peter Cammarano.  The ex-mayor was also the campaign manager for Mike Russo in his last City Council run.

MSV contacted Mike Russo several times to ask about his meeting with FBI informant Solomon Dwek and the $5,000 bribe discussed but he did not answer his phone and the mailbox did not allow a message to be left.  MSV would ask why Mike Russo did not report the information on the bribe solicited to the authorities.

A voicemail seeking comment from Councilwoman Beth Mason, a close ally of Mike Russo was left earlier.  Should a statement be made available, it will be added in this story.

Both Councilwoman Beth Mason and then councilwoman Dawn Zimmer were contacted by Solomon Dwek.  Neither agreed to discuss anything on zoning favors although Beth Mason did have a meeting that did not lead to any discussion of illegal bribes, unlike Mike Russo.

Correction: Solomon Dwek did not contact Dawn Zimmer or her campaign.  A middleman made a call and pitched a meeting saying a NY based developer was interested in setting up a discussion as Hoboken under a potential Zimmer Administration was viewed as not open for business.  The call went nowhere and neither side pursued the matter again.

This story is BREAKING....

Mike Russo goes politrickin in the Hudson Reporter

Here is a letter published in the weekend Hudson Reporter from 3rd ward Councilman Mike Russo:

Dear Editor:

I hope you’ll allow me an opportunity to discuss the upcoming City Council race in the 3rd Ward. As this campaign begins, it is clear that my opponent will be pulling out the same old playbook of lies and innuendo that has been used against me in the past with no success.

Here are a few facts. My surname is Russo. I am the son of a former mayor who went to prison for corruption. His last year in office was 2001. This is old news, but that won’t stop my opponent from bringing it up every chance he gets. I’m used to it by now, and the residents of the 3rd Ward have heard it all before.

Here are a few more facts my opponent has either forgotten or simply chooses to ignore.

I am the councilman who initiated the investigation that removed several individuals who were receiving city health benefits incorrectly. Mayor Zimmer, then a councilwoman, did nothing on this issue.

I am the councilman who first asked questions about close to a million dollars in missing income at the Parking Utility. It was the mayor’s office at the time that called the discrepancy “a mistake.” It was my questions that ultimately uncovered the missing funds.

I am the councilman who raised the alarm when the administration was considering moving the municipal garage to Jackson Street. The only reason the municipal garage wasn’t moved to Jackson Street is because we joined with 3rd Ward residents to stop it. These residents will be surprised to learn that my opponent calls their efforts “a lie.”

I am the councilman who took the political heat and held out for a promise of a 3rd Ward park to be included as part of the recent $20 million bond issue.

I am the councilman who has forced this administration to spend tax dollars conservatively, forcing municipal budget cuts that trim fat from the budget and focus spending on needed services. I chair the council committee that will present amendments to the municipal budget that will result in real tax relief for Hoboken.

I’m confident that the voters of the 3rd Ward will see through the lies my opponent will tell during this campaign. It’s one thing to attend a few City Council meetings for a few minutes and call yourself a concerned citizen. It’s quite another to actually do the important work that affects the lives of Hoboken residents. I challenge my opponent to tell 3rd Ward residents what exactly he has ever done for them.

Councilman Michael Russo

Talking Ed Note:  Mike Russo makes some interesting comments in this letter.  He claims he initiated an investigation into illegally paid health benefits.  Actually his charge which MSV showed in its entirety on video claimed over 90 people were illegally receiving those benefits.  It proved to be a handful.  But he doesn't and won't explain how his father, the former mayor and ex-con was put back on taxpayer paid health benefits after getting out of jail.  How did that happen Mike?  What did you know and when did you know it?

Mike Russo claims credit for uncovering almost a million in quarters missing in the Parking Utility.  But once he asked the question about the revenue, he ran away from the answer and refused to cooperate with other council members such as Councilman Peter Cunningham who wanted desperately to pursue the matter.  He fought tooth and nail to keep the Council from acting on a desire to tackle the issue in an audit.  He called THAT pursuit illegal and the revelation of the missing money incorrect and his "mistake."  

Why were you covering up the million dollar theft Mike Russo?

Mike Russo threw a grandstanding party on the Municipal Garage's temporary move, of this there is no doubt.  He spread rumors and undermined the search for a temporary location at every turn claiming the Pino's site was the location intended.  He had a bunch of real estate people help spread the rumor who held a financial interest in the 3rd ward.  In the end the City needed to negotiate the best option for a temporary garage location.  Mike Russo knew that and demanded that only one location be eliminated BEFORE negotiations were complete in choosing ANOTHER location.  In doing so, he may have also revealed confidential information discussed in private executive session.  Way to go Mike!

Mike Russo acted single-handedly to table the bond ordinance to give Hoboken more parks.  He acted similarly on each and every successive bond for open space and parks thereafter in a series of moves to eject the matter out of the City Council just a few weeks ago.  Now he claims he is a parks advocate after flip flopping from public pressure with the resulting publicity of his actions.

If you think Mike Russo "forced" the Administration to curb spending or provide tax relief in any shape or form, MSV has a bridge to sell you.  He did however vote along with his cousin 2nd ward Councilwoman Terry Castellano and Beth Mason to have Director Ian Sacs pay $1,000 in transportation costs for a professional transportation conference he was approved for in advance AFTER THE TRIP at a recent council meeting.

Last, if you think this will be the end of the serious questions surrounding Mike Russo, it won't.  Bet.

The Jersey Sting Comes back to Hoboken

Two star reporters with singular spectacular credentials for investigating New Jersey corruption released their book "The Jersey Sting," and will be paying a timely visit to Hoboken this Wednesday at the scene of one of the well known crime scenes: The Malibu.

Josh Margolin from the New York Post along with Ted Sherman of The Star-Ledger will be at the Malibu Diner for a book signing on Wednesday, March 30, from 3:30-5 p.m.

They have a new book out on the Solomon Dwek case called "The Jersey Sting: A true story of crooked pols, money-laundering rabbis, black market kidneys and the informant who brought it all down", and so far they have been pretty well received.

Their website is and they are on Facebook at

Here's an excerpt from the NY Post.

You can also see the first chapter if you go to Amazon where a download is available on computer and a number of other devices.

Photos of Solomon Dwek and an actual handoff of cash at the Malibu Diner are available at the author's facebook page:

Talking Ed Note: This book may be out but the story isn't over.

Peter Cunningham: new website & 700 paper ballots: 'You just don't understand Hoboken elections'

Dear Friends, Family and Neighbors,

Our official website is now up and running.  Please take a minute and check out and read about Lower taxes, Quality of Life and Economic Development.  These are three of the most important issues we face in Hoboken today.  This will be a hard fought race, and you can never have enough volunteers, so we will need your help to be successful. 

In the 5th ward, I will have three opponents squarely aligned with political powers with access to special interest money and independently wealthy individuals.  All three of my opponents supported the 4th Ward outcome in November 2010, and the other day one candidate went so far to tell me that 700 absentee ballots was "Ok" and that I didn't understand Hoboken elections.  

Hmmm...with that comment alone, we should be concerned that voter fraud could be wide spread - again this May and June.

Beware!  They are not independent as they will claim to be.

Please join our team for fiscal stability and lower taxes, good honest government and continued focus on quality of life issues.  We have so much more to accomplish, and hope you agree that we are moving Hoboken forward.  As always, please pass around, and let me know if you have any questions or concerns.