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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Phil Cohen denounces MORTe "chutzpah" for suing the People of Hoboken



Public remarks leads to all out brawl with personal attacks on Carol Marsh, Cohen with Beth Mason finally answering to hiding out on critical council vacancy vote blocking Jim Doyle's legal appointment

Phil Cohen's remarks:

Council members and members of the public, my name is Phil Cohen.

Tonight I’m going to talk about “Chutzpah”.  “Chutzpah” is a Yiddish word, which loosely translated means “that’s some nerve”.  The classic example of Chutzpah is when a man, after killing his mother and father, pleads for mercy from the court because he is an orphan.  That’s Chutzpah! 
Here, in Hoboken, the Council Minority has given us a new definition of Chutzpah.  Let me try it out:

When you don’t attend a council meeting, and don’t phone in to participate, then claim the Council’s vote was illegal because not enough people voted . . .  That’s Chutzpah!
In October, the City Council voted twice on filling Carol Marsh’s vacancy.  Beth Mason didn’t attend on October 3rd and Michael Russo didn’t attend on October 17th.  Neither of them phoned in. 

Then, the four members of the Council Minority sued the People of Hoboken, claiming they not only had the right not to show up and vote on filling Carol Marsh’s vacancy, but when in December Judge Bariso ordered the four to show up (or participate by phone), they dragged their case out another month, APPEALING to the Appellate court, claiming (with a straight face) that they would be IRREPERABLY HARMED if they had to show up and vote on Jim Doyle’s appointment.  They said the Appellate Court should “stop the vote” just like the Supreme Court stopped the Florida recount for George W. Bush in the 2000 Presidential Election.  Well the appellate court denied that silly motion, and on January 16 you four were finally FORCED, BY COURT ORDER – heaven forbid – to do your job, show up and vote to fill the council vacancy. 

On January 16, I asked you to “cast an honest vote” and vote “no” and not “abstain” claiming your abstention shouldn’t count as a “no vote”, because everyone knows you oppose the majority’s choice of Jim Doyle, and you are fooling no one.  But Mr. Russo and Ms. Mason insisted on playing games, when they abstained and kept right on suing, claiming their abstentions shouldn’t count towards a 4-4 tie. 
 On February 1st, Judge Bariso called out your frivolous lawsuit.
 This is what Judge Bariso said:
“Mayor Zimmer correctly used her power to cast a tiebreaking vote . . . To conclude otherwise would permit a single member of a city council to exercise veto power over the filling of a vacancy which would thwart the process established by the Municipal Vacancy Law.  This Court cannot countenance the notion that the Municipal Vacancy Law was intended to encourage gamesmanshipCouncil members should not be permitted to undermine the deliberative process . . .”

Instead of complying with Judge Bariso’s latest order, letting Jim Doyle sit beside you, you appealed again, dragging out your lawsuit for months

Some may think you can play these political games, not voting at meetings, then suing and appealing, as much as you like, because it only costs you money, not the taxpayers.  But make no mistake, your courtroom games cost us all.

I’d like to hand up two documents I received in response to a recent public records request. 
These are two invoices from the City’s lawyers, McManimon & Scotland, for services rendered in October and November of 2012.  You’ll see the description “Castellano v. Zimmer” – that’s your lawsuit, Mrs. Castellano.

These invoices total $16,163.08.  That’s real money. That’s our money.  For only two months of Hoboken’s legal fees for a case you have dragged out five months, with no end in sight!
Now, if it’s Chutzpah to claim that since you missed a meeting, there can’t be a 4-4 tie;
and, as Judge Bariso found, if it’s gamesmanship to plan to abstain, and then claim because you abstained, there can’t be a 4-4 tie, so Mayor Zimmer can’t legally break a tie;

Then it’s OUTRAGEOUS for you to expect me, and the other taxpayers of Hoboken to pay the City’s costs opposing your frivolous lawsuit and the appeals you file, each time Judge Bariso rules against you. 
So, let me conclude by asking Ms. Castellano, Ms. Mason, Mr. Occhipinti and Mr. Russo a question: 
Will you agree to cover the City’s costs opposing your manufactured lawsuit against Hoboken’s taxpayers -- or, do you seriously expect Hoboken’s taxpayers to pick up this $16,163.08 tab?
Thank you.

It's Timmy's developer pal up for approval for his violations riddled restaurant in City Council @ 7:00


It's that time again. Are you ready for more of MORTe's we sue and sabotage you follies. In Episode VIII, Jim Doyle, a legally appointed councilman-in-waiting stands by and watches as Beth Mason's family checkbook appeals the judge's decision.

In the meantime, the bill costing Hoboken is in the five figures and counting.

If Judge Bariso had a chance to speak to Beth Mason, Michael Russo, Terry Castellano and Tim Occhipinti about their crybaby staged lawsuit last October what do you think he'd say?

The big item early on the agenda is an ordinance on the zoning violations riddled restaurant at 61 Jackson Street.  It was a nightmare of a structure ignoring the City's rules and then having the additional moxie by quite literally stealing 500 feet of Hoboken land.

Tim Occhipinti who has yet to see a developer he won't suck up to pre-announced his support at the last meeting even with the obvious theft of public property.  The developer happens to be one of his contributors even before he had announced he would be running.

It's that kind of cozy relationship most Hoboken residents have forgotten about since Peter Cammarano sold zoning variances for a song to Federal informant Solomon Dwek.

As for Occhipinti, one day he walked out of a live City Council meeting to go downstairs and speak on behalf of the developer's project at the Hoboken Zoning Board.  He was stopped right at the beginning by the board attorney who told him it was inappropriate.

Hey, at least you know where Timmy's heart is.  As for his voting, he's about as conflicted as the HHA attorney who advised the board to vote and approve his contract.

No doubt Timmy will tell others on the City Council they should also not deviate and do so for his developer pal.

Shades of Peter Cammarano, Timmy doesn't disappoint. It's been kicked back to first reading as an ordinance.

Here's the full agenda: http://www.hobokennj.org/docs/council/agenda13/revised-ccm-02-20-13.pdf


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Sign of the Times: Hoboken Housing Authority on the brink or Brink's Truck?

With no small irony, the Hoboken Housing Authority is the site where a Brink's Truck backed up loading away the loot if concerns raised here and at the resident Queen of Satire's website, Grafix Avenger are accurate.


Grafix Avenger owned the story going back last summer raising questions on padding in the invoicing asking if prior payments for wiring and other accouterments are being lumped together to cover up the ludicrous per capita expenditure.


Not even a Masonista Matterina Dancer can make the questions go away.

Nothing in comparison of course to the so-called 20/20 redevelopment plan being railroaded down Hoboken's throat with a 25% expansion raring to go.

Councilman Dave Mello who also serves as an HHA commissioner has asked for community feedback inviting comment via:

 MelloForHoboken@gmail.com or 917-699-1312

The HHA rabble rousing isn't so much astroturfing, it's a new variety altogether attacking Jake Stuiver.  
All that noise over an invalidated, conflicted attorney appointment.  Sorry Carmelo, ask Joe for a t-shirt.

Yesterday, HHA Chairman Jake Stuiver announced the City attorney, Corporation Counsel Melissa Longo responded to his official request last week to review the appointment with a legal opinion Charles Daglian's appointment is invalid.   

It's creating much agita here, there and at the Hudson Reporter where a rare comment war has broken out over a Masonista letter gone haywire.  Its placement on Mason's favorite website Hoboken411 where iron-fisted fascist censorship is the norm only makes it appear more ridiculous.

As the HHA issues heat up, there's also a City Council meeting tonight.  With an appeal outstanding keeping Jim Doyle's legal appointment from completion, the Old Guard can take heart one Mason lawsuit is bearing obstructionist fruit if nothing else.

Where are all those Old Guard loyalist voices complaining about legal bills now when Beth Mason's family checkbook along with Michael Russo, Terry Castellano and Tim Occhipinti are suing Hoboken people in a pure cynical power grab after Hurricane Sandy inflicted so much damage?

Adding to the hurricane tally is a Hoboken legal bill in the tens of thousands. And counting.

Talking Ed Note: The vitriol is rising and Hoboken is nowhere near its November election.  Over at the Hudson Reporter, Masonista operatives think Da Horsey is a dancing human.  Well that's comical since Da Horsey ain't a humanoid but is known to foxtrot on occasion with dark chestnut fillies sporting long tresses.