Thursday, December 26, 2013

HFHA enters fray to counter MSTA in court election battle

HFHA announces:

HFHA Files Motion to Intervene in Latest Attempt by MSTA to Thwart the Will of the People of Hoboken

The Hoboken Fair Housing Association (HFHA) recently filed a motion to intervene in connection with the election contest filed by supporters of the Mile Square Taxpayers Association (MSTA) a developer/real estate interests group.  The MSTA-friendly petitioners are attempting to overturn the election results on Hoboken Ballot Question #1, an initiative this developer group sponsored that would have severely weakened Hoboken’s rent control protections. For the second year in a row the majority of Hoboken’s citizens voted “no” on this dangerous ballot question which resulted in Hoboken maintaining its current rent control protections.

The petitioners who are contesting the election include 31 Hudson County residents, 28 of whom are Hoboken residents who are primarily developers and/or real estate agents.  One of the petitioners is Frank Raia, who ran for council-at-large on the 2013 ballot,   Several of them were also participants in the 2012 election contest where the developer group’s attorney submitted non-credible evidence in order to ultimately overturn HFHA’s 2012 election victory on the same ballot question.  The remaining three petitioners contesting the election reside in Jersey City, including an attorney at Brach Eichler, the law firm that represents the developer group, his wife, and a Jersey City realtor.  The developer group is attempting to steal the election by overturning the results and being declared the winners in the courtroom

The contest brief alleges that over 200 vote-by-mail (VBM) ballots were illegally rejected and, if those VBMs are counted, the election results will be changed.  As with the 2012 election contest, the developers’ lawyer’s petition does not specify the names or addresses on the VBM rejections that they are contesting and why they believe those VBMs were improperly  rejected.

HFHA is being represented by Renee Steinhagen of NJ Appleseed.  HFHA believes that the Board of Elections properly rejected the ballots and that its side once again rightfully prevailed on the election ballot question.  HFHA believes that Hoboken residents deserve fair elections and, like many in Hoboken, have serious concerns about VBM practices in Hoboken. 

Hoboken Fair Housing Association (HFHA), an affiliate of the New Jersey Tenants Organization (NJTO), fights for decent and affordable housing for Hoboken's tenants.