Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Carmelo Garcia's "ethnic cleansing" attorney Louis Zayas lashes out after lawsuit dismissed

Louis Zayas of "ethnic cleansing" fame says third lawsuit attempt is sticking


Carmelo Garcia's attorney has surfaced in a phone interview with John Heinis of the Hudson County View (HCV) yesterday lashing out at the news his client's lawsuit was dismissed in a verbal assault on the demand letter he withdraw his third filed complaint in just over a year.

HCV describes Zayas' depiction the legal demand letter as "more bark than bite." Zayas' reaction was combative to a legal demand letter and news his second (amended) lawsuit had befallen a similar fate as the first.

All claims against the Hoboken Housing Authority and former Chairman Jake Stuiver were dismissed in Hudson County Superior Court last week. At least one federal investigation continues in the HHA since Garcia's contact was terminated last August.

Calling the demand letter urging he drop Garcia's third civil filing on almost an identical set of claims originally, Zayas called the request "baseless," before reiterating his racketeering claim.

The video news report below comes courtesy of John Heinis at The Hudson County View.





News of Carmelo Garcia's second lawsuit dismissed in Hudson County Superior Court broke yesterday on MSV with a demand letter issued by the attorney for the Hoboken Housing Authority and HHA commissioners Dana Wefer and Dave Mello.



Talking Ed Note: Da Horsey with be back with more parting shots on racketeering, ethnic cleansing and how to file a series of lawsuits without providing a shred of evidence to back up your claims.

Hoboken suffers from a severe bout of ethic cleansers.


New Year's Day Update
Da Horsey opines on Garcia's series of lawsuits with additional analysis from legal beagles 

Turf Track Update: The previous two civil complaints failed to survive on a motion to dismiss; although the second took two pokes with the first motion mostly disposing of Carmelo Garcia's outrageous and unsubstantiated claims.

Not a shred of proof has been put forward in each of three of Garcia's complaints. The wild allegations are vague, wildly speculative and conspiratorial in nature. As the Hudson County View said, "more bark than bite," from a projection perspective. (Always an angle worth noting, the Old Guard deploys projection typically as their first line of defense. Often cringeworthy but entertaining nevertheless)

Some legal observers suggest since Garcia's HHA contract was terminated, there is further introspection for the court likely but it hardly means his claims will fare better under NJ law than his earlier filings. As some commenters note, Carmelo Garcia faces danger should any real evidence come to light in related documents, depositions and witnesses which may be turned over to federal investigators.

Another legal view suggests a motion to dismiss is less likely to succeed than under normal circumstances but is appropriate here as the stakes for Carmelo Garcia now fall outside the malicious abuse of process standards.  Using the courts for political purposes is problematic but here it may extend into the criminal arena under a federal jurisdiction of a live investigation. (Housing Authorities are governed under federal auspices not state or municipal. Abuse of procurement rules into the millions of dollars with Garcia pocketing thousands of dollars from HHA vendors opens the door to the possible illicit abuse of federal rules/monies. It's one dangerous avenue previously brought to light.)

Under those auspices, the civil litigation could explode into the criminal arena with a lengthy list of federal laws broken and subsequent criminal charges. Garcia's civil litigation may in fact produce additional evidence for the Fed's current investigation or compliment others avenues already underway.

If such a fate befalls Garcia, some legal observers say Louis Zayas will be sounding an immediate retreat as a criminal lawyer emerges in his place.

Happy New Year Mister Carmelo.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Carmelo Garcia amended lawsuit thrown out as HHA lawyer demands: withdraw your 3rd frivolous lawsuit!

MILE SQUARE VIEW EXCLUSIVE


Carmelo Garcia again sees his civil complaint dismissed "without firing a shot!"

Hoboken's litigious environment where public, elected figures attempt to abuse the courts crying victimhood took one on the chin when Carmelo Garcia saw his second (amended) lawsuit dismissed against the Hoboken Housing Authority and its former chair.

Strikingly, the motion to see his amended civil lawsuit dismissed with its added civil rights claim was not opposed by Garcia's attorney Louis Zayas.  

The request by legal counsel, Thomas Abbate of Decotis, Fitzpatrick & Cole representing the Hoboken Housing Authority and its former chairman, Jake Stuiver saw no opposition at all and was approved by Hudson County Superior Court on December 19th.

Earlier this year, Hudson County Superior Court threw out Carmelo Garcia's first civil complaint filing in its entirety. The exclusive MSV story on the findings being "offensive" and "insufficient" was first reported here last December.

The latest dismissal of Garcia's second lawsuit comes as good news for the Hoboken Housing Authority which has been reportedly discovered in severe financial duress after former Executive Director Garcia saw his contract terminated in a 5-2 vote in a special meeting at City Hall last August. 

A mob bordering on a full out riot and some say paid to show up by Garcia's Old Guard allies (re: Beth Mason) attempted to interfere and halt the proceedings and did so successfully for a limited amount of time. An unplanned recess preceded by what MSV called "The Fracas" forestalled but couldn't stop a vote on his eventual dismissal.

Earlier this year, Hudson County Superior Court threw out Garcia's first "ethnic cleansing" lawsuit in its entirety. Garcia and his attorney then refiled the charges adding a civil rights claim. 

The second amended lawsuit remains for the moment against the City of Hoboken, Mayor Zimmer and her husband. It's likely to see a similar motion following the successful one by the HHA's attorney.

The stakes for Garcia who has filed a third outstanding civil litigation against the City of Hoboken, Mayor Zimmer, the HHA and two of its commissioners, Chair Dana Wefer and HHA commissioner and City Councilman Dave Mello get higher. He himself may face a countersuit for frivolous litigation.

Garcia has 28 days to withdraw his last outstanding civil complaint or possibly face "appropriate monetary sanctions."

In a letter dated December 29th, counsel for the HHA Thomas Abbate joined an earlier letter from December 11th on behalf of Mayor Zimmer and the City of Hoboken demanding Garcia withdraw his frivolous litigation. The letter indicates representation on behalf of current HHA Chair Dana Wefer and HHA commissioner Dave Mello who is also an at-large City Councilman.

The letter disassembles Garcia's last lawsuit stating it's a regurgitation of his earlier claims dismissed and "despite his overheated and patently offensive rhetoric," the plaintiff did not put forward "a single interrogatory" or issue "a single document request" or "take a single deposition" concluding his litigious filings are nothing more than "a cheap publicity stunt."

Questions why Garcia failed to act in any substantive way went unanswered. The Assemblyman's press release office failed to respond to an inquiry why he and his attorney allowed his litigation be dismissed without opposition.

One federal attorney in Hudson County familiar with the pleadings of the case described the position of both Garcia and his attorney as problematic and explained one possible reason why not a single shot was fired on his behalf stating, "With a federal investigation at the Hoboken Housing Authority, there's a legitimate reason to fear information revealed in the civil complaint will find its way to the Office of Inspector General (OIG) and its enforcement arm, the FBI."

Adding to the sense of foreboding, the legal beagle offered, "Any attorney worth his salt is not going to hand over evidence likely to find its way to the Feds and see his client not only lose his litigation but see him sent to federal prison."

Asked to explain the silence of Garcia and his attorney, one last observation was offered, "Filing civil lawsuits can be hazardous to your health. Be careful of what you ask for, you just might get it."

Former HHA Chair Jake Stuiver who sees the claims against him by Carmelo Garcia dismissed was unavailable for comment as he's on vacation with his family.

MSV previously reported a federal investigation at the Hoboken Housing Authority is ongoing, confirmed by interim Executive Director Bob DiVincent last month.


This story is breaking hard...


Backlash against possible PATH service reductions mount

Even in the twilight of the holiday period, there's mounting criticism since the Port Authority report targeted service on the PATH for weekday and weekend overnight elimination of service.



First, the PATH's own rider's council announced:

The PATH Riders' Council is strongly opposed to any reduction in PATH service that would adversely impact the communities it serves. We vigorously oppose the suggestion by the special panel convened by Governors Christie and Cuomo to eliminate weekday and weekend overnight service. The proposal itself comes at a time when PATH is experiencing record ridership numbers, when jobs and commuting patterns no longer follow the traditional 9-5pm, and when governments throughout the region and country are investing – not divesting – in transit. The $10M cost reduction – a tiny portion of the Port Authority's $7.8B budget – would be devastating for communities on both sides of the Hudson, especially for hard-working New Yorkers and New Jerseyans in industries like construction, healthcare, and hospitality who rely on PATH to come home from an overnight job or commute to a job with an early morning start.

It would be devastating to a region that relies on mass transit more than any other in the country. Hoboken, one of the cities served by PATH, has the highest rate of transit ridership in the nation at 56%. Jersey City has the second highest rate of transit usage (45.8%) among cities with 100,000 more residents, second only to New York City’s 55.7%, according to the U.S. Census’ American Community Survey. 

PATH is the lifeblood for communities and working families on both sides of the Hudson who rely on the system 24/7 to get to work, to school, to see family and friends.  To eliminate overnight service at a time when more and more families rely on this service is simply unconscionable.
Ya-Ting Liu, Chair
Stewart Mader, Vice Chair
PATH Riders' Council
Stewart Mader details more on his Gotham & Hudson website, which also holds a link on MSV's list of local websites of interest.

Then Carmelo Garcia who had endorsed Gov. Christie in order to obtain State Senator Brian Stack's backing to gain an Assembly seat on his coveted 2013 ticket offered:

“A plan being considered by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to possibly eliminate overnight PATH train service is a bad idea that could have a devastating impact on thousands of commuters.  Many of the 244,000 riders who use the PATH every week are hardworking residents from my district in Hudson County.  Cutting this rail service would cut their livelihood because many of these working class citizens with limited resources would have no affordable alternative
to get to and from work in the middle of the night.  White collar workers, revelers, and tourists would also be left scrambling trying to find a way back across the Hudson River.  

Reducing PATH service could also impact the state and local economy.  Transit hubs like Hoboken, where more than 50% of residents rely on public transportation, owe much of their growth to rail service like the PATH.  The 24/7 public transit access to New York City sets these communities apart from the rest.  And the state has made an investment in promoting transit hubs to help ease congestion and negative impacts to the environment.

As the sole member of the Assembly Transportation Committee whose district is home to multiple PATH stations in several municipalities, I know firsthand how vital this service is to our residents.  Over the past several months I have been working with a variety of neighborhood groups and constituents to try to expand our transportation options.  I concur with the Mayors of Jersey City and Hoboken who believe that cutting service would be counterproductive.  While some say it’s merely a recommendation, it’s definitely an off track one that will hurt riders in both Hudson and Essex Counties.  So let’s get on the right track and work together to increase public transit not decrease it.”

Monday, December 29, 2014

PATH to see weekend and weekday overnight service eliminated?

Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer & Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop oppose proposed service reductions in a Port Authority report released over the quiet holiday period.

The Port Authority report stating numerous problems with a deficit running in the hundreds of millions included service reductions in Hoboken and Jersey City on the PATH train.

The executives over the agency, Governor Andrew Cuomo and Governor Chris Christie have made statements already supporting the agency report. In addition to consideration of eliminated overnight service, the plan calls for other entities to combine with public and private entities to cover the red ink.

Candidates for such consideration could be NJ Transit and the MTA or other entities combined with federal transportation grants.

Federal transportation aid is thought possible in the amount of $15 million.

The Port Authority notes in its report, the PATH system is losing $300 million annually and says reducing service between 1:00 and 5:00 am on weekdays and weekends would save approximately $10 million per year.

From the report:



Mayor Dawn Zimmer released a statement strenuously opposing such a move noting the economic impact alone counters such an argument stating:

"This irresponsible proposal is a classic example of being penny wise and dollar foolish. Shutting down overnight PATH service will cost the State of New Jersey many times the supposed savings in lost economic activity, sales tax and business tax revenues. Cities like Hoboken, Jersey City and Newark are growing because residents and businesses want good access to transportation options like the PATH. It is incomprehensible that any New Jersey official would be willing to even consider this proposal that would only hurt the State's economy." 


Mayor Zimmer was joined by Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop who also issued a statement writing:

"I am sharing this info as the initial report from the Governor's offices of NJ/NY is troubling. I think the fact they would release this on a weekend between Christmas/New Years speaks volumes but even more than that, buried in the many proposals is one that residents should know and be concerned about- reduction of service to the PATH. 
Investment in mass transportation is crucial and any proposal counter to that is counter to the interests of the state regardless of one's party. The PATH's economics are not dissimilar to any train system in the country, it serves at night working families the same as it does people enjoying proximity to nyc and It has more than 100,000 users per year late at night. The hope is that our elected legislative leaders in trenton make sure this doesn't move forward."

Hoboken's mayor signified a major fight urging its residents to gear up for a battle in a tweet yesterday:


The Port Authority says this is the beginning of an overall discussion. The agency however is considered unwieldy and less than responsive to concerns of the public. A recent legislative package of reforms was rejected by Gov. Chris Christie and Gov. Cuomo. Both he and Gov. Cuomo have proposed an alternative reform package.

The full Port Authority December 26th report is available at the link:
https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/SpecialPanelReporttotheGovernors2014-12-26FINAL.pdf


RelatedSee also the NJ.com story.

Talking Ed Note: Both mayors are concerned the loss of 24 hour PATH service impacts Hoboken and Jersey City on multiple levels. Anyone who has ridden the PATH late on the weekend knows the trains are packed.

Reducing service means isolating both Hoboken and Jersey City and making them less viable as extensions of the dynamic NYC area. The economic impact isn't clear but it can't be positive for residents and local businesses.

The Big Story is still coming...

Friday, December 26, 2014

Rock'em sock'em robots: Hoboken ain't done in 2014

The Big Apple across the way is known as the city that never sleeps but Hoboken doesn't want a nap either when it comes to this website's mission statement.

MSV being the best place for Hoboken government, politics and corruption; that part time mission feels more like a permanent mission in exile. The Old Guard is always up to some nefarious actions against the people of Hoboken or looking for new ways to get into their pockets.

There's a big story coming. If ya keep it where it is.


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Three Hoboken police officers promoted in ceremony at City Hall

A promotion ceremony scheduled at Hoboken City Hall Monday saw three Hoboken police officers elevated in its ranks.
This video report comes courtesy of John Heinis at The Hudson County View.



For the full story see: http://hudsoncountyview.com/one-captain-two-lieutenants-named-in-hoboken-police-department/

Talking Ed Note: This story is about the promotion of three Hoboken police officers. While MSV has always held a libertarian spirit when it comes to the First Amendment; it's strongly suggested any comments be focused on the actual story. If you hunger to discuss wider politics on the matter of our Republic, civilization and policing, there's other venues.

MSV wishes to extend congratulations to the newly promoted officers and their families.

Monday, December 22, 2014

And now a message from a new FOH - Friends of Horsey

A Mile Square resident sent this email and graciously granted permission for it to be anonymously published here. While the sentiments are greatly appreciated, all comments from the community: positive, negative or neutral are always welcome: smartyjones@me.com.


Horsey,

My wife and I are happy and privileged to call Hoboken home. It's a truly progressive community with the old-world charm that brings together a quality of life that is unique and unparalleled in the Garden State.

Being around politics my entire life, in and out of the political trenches, I just wanted to write and say that you do a wonderful job.  For the people who aren't in the thick of it daily, you accurately describe all of the forces - good and "evil." You truly do a civic duty.

Some forces in Hoboken and Hudson County (and I've seen it first hand) are some of the most egregious and head-shaking forces I've ever seen.  In the modified words of the immortal Rowdy Roddy Piper, "Just when you think you have all the answers, they (I) go and change the questions."  We've made Hoboken our home and plan on being here until, God-forbid, the wrong people open up the containment chamber ala Ghostbusters and we see Stay-Puft marching down Washington St. destroying all the progress that has been made throughout these past few years.  While much more is needed to do, there's light at the end of the PATH tunnel (figuratively speaking).

Information is everything. The more people continue to read the content on this site, the better off our town will be from the selfish and morally corrupt interests that set progress back.  Whether its shedding light on the Board of Ed, the Housing Authority, or even the Town Council, thank you for what you do.  

Here's to 2015 - the year sanity hopefully continues to reign.



Talking Ed Note: While counte$$ must hear this political reality, her takeaway is the enemies of her ambition for power are Hoboken residents and is upping the ante in her war on the First Amendment and civil rights. More on all this, sooner than later.

In the meantime, MSV continues to ask for the community's kind support as the malicious abuse of the NJ courts continues apace. So many are called but those who hear the call, well - you're the finest folks in our Mile Square land. Truly.

Thanks kindly again to all of you who hear the call and continue to support MSV's efforts for decent and good government reforms in Hoboken. As you know, this War Horse is the tip of the spear.

Happy Holidays!


snail mail for check or 
anonymous money order to:
R.W. Brice
1032 Hudson Street
Apt. 1S
Hoboken, NJ 07030

Can Hoboken's Al Sharpton imitator pave a road to the mayor's seat?

MILE SQUARE VIEW EXCLUSIVE FEATURE



In depth year-end analysis from your friendly neighborhood Horsey


Hudson Reporter continues to push its rumor of Mayor Zimmer resignation as the Old Guard scrambles to promote themselves for Carmelo Garcia's Assembly seat 

As the mourning unfolded across the river with two police officers assassinated as they sat in their patrol vehicle last Saturday, questions arising from the roles certain media and officials played in fostering the political climate leading to that violence are emanating in the Mile Square.

Could an Old Guard candidate applying Al Sharpton tactics take power and bring winning electoral results to Hoboken?

Last weekend, the Hudson Reporter bereft of a single fact or theory continues to spout off repeating the "rumor" Mayor Dawn Zimmer is resigning. Al Sullivan's Between the Lines column began out of the gate with misinformation highlighting an accident at the Borgata in Atlantic City where two people fell into a pool of water at a hotel party.

Deemed not appropriate after speaking to one of the unfortunates, a well known Hobokenite as any mention would be undignified. There was personal injuries suffered in the fall. All local political columnists, from Grafix Avenger to the Political Insider steadfastly avoided naming him when it was at least then possibly newsworthy.

Litigious loving allies Beth Mason and Carmelo Garcia share their joy using the courts for political purposes against obstacles re: enemies/Hoboken residents. She's turned on him attempting in her typically self-centered ambition to purchase higher office using the family checkbook to buy his Assembly seat. Which means Garcia finds himself under the bus where his Al Sharpton race baiting tendencies has so often seen him throw others. 
What if he returns the favor?

The Hudson Reporter for some reason decided to not only name that victim but did so more than a month later while fingering Mayor Dawn Zimmer as the event's host in Atlantic City. Mayor Zimmer who did not host that Atlantic City event or any other during the League of Municipalities last month wasn't anywhere in the vicinity of AC's boardwalk casinos. The political event was a party hosted by gubernatorial aspirant Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop.

As for the weeks long news discussed here, PolitickerNJ and elsewhere about the pending open 33rd Assembly seat, Sully joined the fray saying there's repeat offenders in Beth Mason, NHSA sewerage commissioner Frank Raia and Third Ward Councilman Michael Russo again angling to obtain the seat while a warm body's in it. No one apparently gives a fig about putting in a pitch to State Senator and Union City Mayor Brian Stack and embarrassing Carmelo Garcia, the current occupant.


As corruption smoke swirls around him, Mister Carmelo plots political revival on the public payroll

A recent PolitickerNJ story described Stack's last choice for the seat in Garcia as "high maintenance" and similarly described his odds of holding the seat for another two year term as highly unlikely. But Carmelo "Dead Man Walking" Garcia has other political ambitions even if he's being kicked to the proverbial political curb. In Trenton, colleagues are known not to be fond of Garcia's penchant for surreptitiously recording others.  They reportedly leave post it notes on Assemblyman Garcia's door saying, "The Wire is Here."

Not weeks after his bountiful contract was terminated by the Hoboken Housing Authority Board of commissioners in a 5-2 vote last August, word on the street says Carmelo Garcia tells anyone who'll listen he's making a run for mayor. This even with Mayor Dawn Zimmer not having completed a single year into her second term. (Is this one "source" of Sully's dumb as a rock rumor mongering?)

Even as he left the Hoboken Housing Authority in financial shambles and may be facing a full fledged federal investigation, Garcia's been mobilizing his base of support among HHA residents with an eye to bring his brand of ghetto politics to City Hall and aiming for the mayor's office.

Garcia received national attention when last year he brought the national spotlight on Hoboken filing a civil lawsuit against Mayor Zimmer, the City of Hoboken and the HHA itself saying he was a victim of "ethnic cleansing" while he held the federal post contracted to head the agency as Director. It was and continues to be with his follow-up lawsuits some of the most venomous, vile politics in modern day Hoboken. Many people are deeply offended by the Al Sharpton style gutter tactics; they tend to be reform oriented voters but others in Old Hoboken voice their disgust for Garcia too.

Now in his third filed lawsuit since last year, Garcia had filed the first as initial reports of his recording Hoboken's former State Senator Bernard Kenny and the mayor's husband at a lunch he sought began to leak out. (Those reports coming first at Grafix Avenger and MSV.) That first civil action came on the back of the mayor's and her reform oriented majority on the City Council refusing to approve his undocumented proposal to rebuild and more than double the size of the downtown HHA in a massive taxpayer subsidized redevelopment called Vision 20/20.


The Old Guard council and the Vision 20/20 scam; it's all about the color of money

The Old Guard Council enthusiastically endorsed and voted to approve Vision 20/20 even without any actual documentation. Nor did they publicly ask how it would fit into the City's existing Master Plan. Of those who backed the Vision 20/20 "plan," each are up for re-election next year in the six City Council ward races: First Ward councilwoman Terry Castellano, her cousin and godson Third Ward councilman Michael Russo, Fourth Ward councilman Timmy Occhipinti and the vastly unpopular Second Ward councilwoman Beth Mason.

When Mayor Dawn Zimmer questioned a shady request for an immediate "emergency" approval by Carmelo Garcia and the five member reform oriented council members refused to yield to his rabble rousing spokespeople, the ugliest racial demagoguery was launched in a continuous fusillade of attacks leading into the November 2013 election.

Local media led by the Hudson Reporter made little mention of the disturbing "KKK" attacks as the Old Guard saw the opportunity of millions of greenbacks fall away. In addition, their dwindling Old Hoboken voter base which is becoming increasingly disenchanted with them has further eroded their power and the perception they can deliver.

Vision 20/20 was the huge opportunity seen as the vehicle to rebuild on that declining voter base and a cash cow to milk with many zeroes but in the end, all the hype promoted by Carmelo Garcia led to nothing as he couldn't deliver or intimidate Reform's elected officials to stand down and look the other way.

In the face of the ugliest, race baiting rhetoric in Hoboken memory, Mayor Dawn Zimmer and council members: Peter Cunningham, Jen Giattino, Dave Mello, and Ravi Bhalla said "none shall pass." (Councilman Jim Doyle would likely have joined the battle in the affirmative but was temporarily sidelined in a six figure legal war underwritten by Beth Mason's family until the public crushed that litigation overwhelmingly voting him back into his council seat.)


Is Hoboken about to see a repeat of race baiting hysteria in 2015?

At the prior City Council meeting, former Assembly aide to Carmelo Garcia, bomb thrower Patty Waiters again complained the Old Guard council was unlikely to see Terry Castellano, Michael Russo or Beth Mason elevated to City Council President next month.  At the last Council meeting, Waiters who often speaks at HHA meetings launched a series of ugly rants there last May, advocated for Michael Russo being handed the gavel as City Council President in January.

All the elements are in place to see a brutal, ugly election contest with race baiting unabated by the same players. Since they failed to pay much of a cost in last November's BoE election, expect them all back in play with the vilest politics exploding at the drop of a hat. The City Council itself would be the repeat victim when the nasty voices return to the scene of the crime.

As MSV previously noted, the campaign for the City Council's six ward seats is underway. The Old Guard is in a mad scramble, among themselves for who will appeal to lead Old Hoboken and who will be left standing with any semblance of power. Their factional battle last seen in the BoE race in November failed to obtain a clear victor but Carmelo Garcia saw 2,000 votes for two of his three candidates and thinks he has one-third or more of the votes necessary to win a multiple candidate mayoral race.

Al Sullivan, political columnist for the pro-Old Guard Hudson Reporter
continues to take punches at Mayor Zimmer repeating his rumor she is
resigning but has yet to say once why. His ear is burning with the Old Guard's
jockeying as they urge the mayor to disappear and turn on each other.


Corruption pathway to retaking control in Hoboken

Sully's weekend column says Garcia is aiming to pursue the Sixth Ward council seat currently held by City Council President Jen Giattino. That he gets correct as it's clearly in line with Garcia's stated aim to seize the mayor's chair in 2017.

Pending the outcome of the federal corruption probe in the Hoboken Housing Authority, Garcia is going to marshall a run for the Sixth Ward council seat. City Council President Jen Giattino will not be willing but eager to take on his challenge.

She's been embraced warmly by the reform movement and a consistent ally behind the scenes of sorting solutions among the mayor and her fellow reform allies on the council. Her ability to marshall consensus as a team player is one of her strongest skills. With reform seeking to retain her sixth ward seat along with anti-corruption leader Peter Cunningham in the fifth, there's a solid group of people in the reform tent who know and despise Carmelo Garcia's less than savory actions ready to unleash a strong grass roots campaign.

As for Garcia, he'll have nothing to lose as his Assembly seat is going to find a new occupant when Brian Stack who may team up with Mayor Zimmer makes the choice next spring. He needs another job as the Assembly seat is his only employment check at 49K annually. He's out 175K he was scheduled at the HHA and getting back on the public payroll is a high priority.

As the Hudson Reporter continues to hype a "pending" mayoral special election with its repeated rumor mongering Mayor Dawn Zimmer is resigning; the Old Guard scramble only gets hotter. In addition to Carmelo Garcia's aspiration to make Hoboken his newest Banana Republic, the Old Guard front runner remains Freeholder Anthony Romano, who is raring to go. (Some say he is the source of the repeated suggestion Mayor Zimmer will be resigning as she's going to be indicted the end of this month.)


Michael Russo wonders time to bring back "Russo for Hoboken"committee and take a shot for mayor?

Then there is Hoboken's Old Guard leader/rock star Michael Russo who would love to turn the clock back in the Mile Square City and become mayor. It's killing the Russo clan they've lost control; their hands on the wheel of government power, jobs, the money till and a compliant media.

Can the long trail of corruption, the family tradition be remolded by a refurbished re-branded Mikie Squared? Their machine and perceived power is reduced to control of subsidized buildings mostly in his third ward base, the Church Towers buildings. His fortunes may dovetail on whether he can deliver for his neighbors another PILOT subsidy next year. This time a Beth Mason vote betraying the rest of Hoboken will not be enough. Power or more frustration, which lies ahead for the Russo clan?

At the previous council meeting, that frustration with fangs appeared for Hoboken's universally respected new police chief Ken Ferrante who Terry Castellano congratulated but knowingly predicted a "bumpy ride." Castellano's husband is a retired HPD patrolman who was most recently working there as a dispatcher.  Maybe it's a little more than knowing.

Ferrante is one of the most visible from Old Hoboken who crossed over and found working with Mayor Zimmer in his role leading OEM (Office of Emergency Management) not difficult at all. His consistent classy behavior, on and off the job through personally difficult days when he opposed the police reorganization in 2010 and saw a temporary demotion is not generally known by the public. It impressed many and was a factor leading to his emerging as the right choice to lead Hoboken's Police Department.


Unrelated: For those thinking about commenting on the Hudson Reporter website, MSV continues to advise caution. Your personal information, including actual identity may not be secure and could find itself in the hands of a certain bottom feeding fish who works for a vitriolic litigious family checkbook on upper Hudson Street.

MSV can confirm a similar fate befell a number of Hoboken residents on cyber sewer, Beth Mason sponsored Hate411. More on all that at the appropriate time.

Thank you very much Bet.

Friday, December 19, 2014

h-mag relaunches and hits out at the Mile Square's lifestyle

Hoboken's blogosphere is about to get another big shot in the arm with the relaunch of h-mag, the Mile Square's biggest lifestyle online magazine.

The retooled vision will come courtesy of Chris Halloran, a well known man about town who has infiltrated many aspects of Hoboken's lifestyle, much of it from his intimate, personal experience.

That first hand experience will come in handy along with his vast editorial background inside and outside the Mile Square.

A new feature on the website speaks to his fashion sense which he describes as a spacklersexual: his fashion sense like a 72-year old Irish pig farmer.

What does a spacklersexual dress like? Well you'll have to venture there to the story to see.

There's lots of literary Irish there which is bound to surface readily and often to much hilarity.
Best of luck to Hal and the new, shiny toy for Hoboken - hmag.com


http://hmag.com

Administrative law judge overruled with technical ethics violation ruling against Ravi Bhalla

State Finance Board overrules law judge's decision tossing ethics complaint against Councilman Bhalla who promises another appeal of the years long saga

The saga of what constitutes an ethical violation in Hoboken is again back in the news with an almost five year old saga of a continuing contract involving Councilman Ravi Bhalla and a former office mate, Paul Condon who ran independent law practices.

The ruling by the NJ Local Finance Board overruling an administrative law judge tossing the allegation out is part of a four year plus ethics complaint questioning Bhalla's vote on a unanimous approved continuation of a contract in the Andriani case by attorney Paul Condon.

In early 2010, Councilman Ravi Bhalla conferred with Corporation Counsel Michael Kates before a City Council meeting on the question of whether he should vote on a continuing contract for Paul Condon. The two had a shared office space and much of the back and forth follows about the terms of space shared with their respective independent law practices and a lease for the office.

Perry Belfiore seen at a 2010 City Council meeting sees his years long
ethics complaint advance as a judge's ruling tossing the matter
as "frivolous and unwarranted" is overruled by the NJ Local Finance Board.
Councilman Bhalla says he will again appeal the latest ruling.

Hoboken politico Perry Belfiore filed the ethics complaint and has pursued the case even as he was recently criticized by the NJ Administrative judge who was very dismissive of the entire matter and motivations behind its filing.

The decision reverses the earlier legal opinion by Administrative Law Judge James Geraghty who called the ethical violation allegations "frivolous" and "unwarranted" and declared the matter "wildly speculative."

Councilman Ravi Bhalla promised he's already started another appeal of the latest ruling which falls under the authority of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA). Via email, Bhalla wrote questioning the board's "perplexing decision" rejecting the judge's decision of a "politically motivated ethics complaint."

"Just three months ago, these same charges were dismissed by a judge, found to be "frivolous and unwarranted," Bhalla wrote in his statement quoting the judge they came from "someone who has a history of making 'malicious, bigoted' personal attacks against me."

Bhalla also questioned the process in how the DCA board made the ruling. A 45 day timeline to appeal saw two meetings of the Local Finance Board held and he said both did not take up the issue in any public process. He condemned the ruling being made behind closed doors by unknown state officials.

Belfiore offered his statement pleased with the latest finding by the NJ board writing, "that the appearance of a conflict of interest constitutes a conflict of interest is a quote in the finding that I stated to Ravi at the meeting," back in 2010. He concluded, "the appearance is a standard every elected official should live by."

Some sources suggest the NJ board approval is an extension of partisan politics due to the lack of any public record how they overturned Judge Geraghty's decision and would be a basis for Bhalla's appeal. Another source noted the problems with the issue appeared last September in the midst of election season in Hoboken.

Hoboken's election ran at the same time as the governor's race. Sources say Councilman Bhalla was like some other Hudson County elected officials asked to endorse Gov. Chris Christie's re-election. Bhalla who maintained good relations with the governor politely declined and did not endorse anyone for any statewide office choosing to focus on his own race in Hoboken which is nonpartisan.

The latest decision in the ethics complaint waives the $100 technical violation cost. That fee is apparently not the cost Bhalla is focused on as he noted his "reputation in the (Hoboken) community is paramount" and he'd work toward "again clearing my name so I can continue to advance Hoboken" versus being dragged into a "political fight which wastes taxpayer money."

Related: The NJ Administrative Law judge made his ruling last fall and was reported here in early October. 


Talking Ed Note: MSV attended this 2010 City Council meeting and personally observed Councilman Ravi Bhalla have a brief meeting with then Corporation Counsel Michael Kates on the issue of whether he should recuse himself on a vote for a continuation of a contract with Paul Condon. After conferring, Bhalla went ahead and joined the City Council in a unanimous vote approving the contract extension. 

Hoboken has elected officials walking the streets who requested $5,000 checks be made out to their political committees and another accepting thousands of dollars by vendors they had direct connection in selecting. 

MSV has noted at least one ongoing federal investigation continues in the Hoboken Housing Authority.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Das Pump to pump you out; ta ta ta two timez


City of Hoboken announces:

CITY MOVES FORWARD ON NEW PUMP TO ALLEVIATE FLOODING IN WESTERN HOBOKEN

State Issues Action Plan for $230 Million Rebuild by Design Comprehensive Flood Strategy

On Tuesday, December 16, 2014, the Hoboken City Council voted unanimously to fund the construction of Hoboken’s second flood pump. The 40 million gallon per day H-5 wet weather pump station with emergency generator will alleviate flooding in western Hoboken, including the area around ShopRite.

“This flood pump is part of the ‘Discharge’ component of the comprehensive ‘Resist, Delay, Store, Discharge’ strategy to make Hoboken more resilient to flooding,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “I thank members of the community and all City Council members for their support for this project. While the City implements the Delay, Store and Discharge elements of the plan through pumps, rain gardens, green roofs, and new parks designed to absorb and hold stormwater, we look forward to working with the State to create coastal defense by implementing the ‘Resist’ strategy with the $230 million won through the Rebuild by Design competition.”

The pump, along with a pilot City Hall green infrastructure project featuring large cisterns and rain gardens to reduce stormwater runoff, will be financed by an $11.9 million low-interest loan from the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust which includes 19% principal forgiveness.

State Action Plan for 3rd Round of Federal Sandy Recovery Funds
Yesterday, the State of New Jersey announced its Action Plan for the third round of Sandy funding which includes $230 million for the first phase of a comprehensive flood protection plan for Hoboken, Weehawken, and northern Jersey City awarded as part of the Rebuild by Design competition. The Action Plan Amendment related to the Rebuild by Design plan can be viewed at: www.renewjerseystronger.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/APA-12-English-RBD-Amendment_FINAL.pdf.

According to the proposed Action Plan, feasibility studies will take 1 to 2 years, followed by approximately 2 years for the design phase, followed by construction. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will receive the $230 million in funding and manage the project.

Public comments will be accepted through January 15, 2015 at 5:00 pm. Comments can be submitted at two public hearings, via email tosandy.publiccomment@dca.state.nj.us  and via U.S. mail to Jamie Saults, Constituent Services Manager, Sandy Recovery Division, NJ Department of Community Affairs, 101 South Broad Street, Post Office Box 800, Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0800. The City of Hoboken asks that written comments also be copied tofloodplan@hobokennj.gov so that the City can incorporate community input into its formal feedback on the action plan.

Two public hearings will be held during the comment period:

·         January 6, 2015: Ocean County College, Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Performing Arts, 1 College Drive, Building 12, Toms River, New Jersey, 08754 (4-7 pm)
·         January 7, 2015: Bergen Community College, Moses Center, 400 Paramus Road, Paramus, New Jersey 07652 (4-7 pm)

Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan
The Hoboken City Council also voted 8-1 to adopt the Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan. The Redevelopment Plan supports the ‘Resist’ strategy in addition to requiring the separation of the stormwater and sanitary sewer system, installation of pumps, and green roofs, rain gardens, and other flood mitigation strategies consistent with the comprehensive flood resiliency strategy.


Horse Sense: "Big" Government returns to Hoboken

When Mayor Zimmer faced with a personal dilemma about the future of Hoboken and skyscrapers backed by the power of Big Government, with one mighty voice she stood tall and said "no."

That was facing down the Rockefeller Group, a Japan-owned consortium eyeing a magnificent tower 40 stories high and backed it appears by the most powerful levers of government in the State. As the Lt. Governor would later say, she would not apologize for jobs and economic growth re: progress.

Progress is the watchword as Hoboken stares down another government backed monolith but this one  far more powerful in NJ Transit. The City of Hoboken dared for some time to reverse course from the prior administration and argue against a proposed 70 story building surrounded by towers. To date, there's been some success with Mayor Dawn Zimmer, she the willing fighter in court on behalf of Hoboken who says go ahead make my day. This time not everyone thinks the courts would ultimately be the place for Hoboken to place all its bets. Trenton could enter and ease the way at any time.

Hoboken is trying to make the best of an imposing would be partner in NJ Transit with the template passed
Wednesday night at the City Council. Others are unhappy and don't want to see any change or development.
Is that a viable plan for Hoboken's future? That debate will go on for some time.

Not all local residents however see scaling back the owners of the southern edge, NJ Transit from their proposed nine million square foot monstrosity dominating the southern skies around the Mile Square to a more balanced two million square foot concept plan as both a viable compromise and progress.

The southern entrance way to Hoboken, the blighted warehouse views landscaped on one side with industrial rails on the other side is described as "historic" and beautifully "industrial" worth preserving. Well, that's one perspective and perhaps a sincere one. Other Hoboken residents say, if we must succumb to change, that's the place to do it and why not take the benefits of millions in tax revenues, affordable housing set asides and the economic engine downtown which can come with it?

If Hoboken doesn't find an economic engine to cover mounting public safety, health benefits and other costs who exactly is going to pay the weight of that increased freight? The Western Edge plan kicked around some years ago spoke to the concept of having commercial space to support the residential population on that side of town. The concept turned out to be less than economically viable.

So where is the commercial engine for Hoboken to come? The city has tried to present itself as a Manhattan alternative, encouraging tech firms to come and incubate here but it's not happening and won't lend itself to the revenues required for the local government appetite for tax dollars. For a primer on this, please see the total costs of public safety alone to the annual budget. (Hint: it's well over 50%.)

The Rockefeller Group promised much if they were given the right to transform the Hoboken landscape with a 40 story building and surrounding towers in a $1.1 billion project. The City and its mayor made clear no capitulation was coming even if a powerful governor gave it his blessing.

NJ Transit however is a beast of a different order - and magnitude. They hold not only ownership rights on the southern edge of town; they have the political muscle and worse, the political capital to align influence with NJ legislators. As some of you recall, NJ has a bit of a problem with corruption in all its forms when it comes to elected officials. 

While there's been unanimity among residents and political factions to stop NJ Transit's nine million square foot monstrosity proposed, there's not universal agreement what should be done with the opportunity to partner in its place. Some residents complain the proposed plan represents if not over development in its current form, it's wrong for the City. Others say Hoboken has an opportunity to take something bad and turn it into something good. Who's right?

That all depends on how you interpret realism and Hoboken's future. If you are an armchair quarterback who has your slice of the Mile Square, you can sit back and urge not another stone be turned. Ever. Are you willing to see significant municipal taxes increases as a result? If not, then doesn't it require at least listening to the grown-ups attempt to find a way to maintain the stability Hoboken has seen in its municipal taxes under the Zimmer administration?

It's easy to throw bombs, bark at the clouds and demand no stone be added atop another in Hoboken. Does it solve any of the funding issues at present and into the future? It says here, it doesn't. A traffic study comes first and then the real negotiation with NJ Transit will begin. As it stands, rush hour traffic on the southern end is a mess and even a reduced development downtown will only add to those woes.

Perhaps it's better to look to economic vitality, seek out the options how Hoboken can cover its built-in costs and work with the opportunity posed directly in front of it. Further, take the opportunity to overhaul and improve the necessary infrastructure and some roadways with alternatives satisfying the congestion on the southern end.

Or you can make a fist and yell at the clouds screaming not one more brick. When the inevitable, far higher municipal tax bill comes, you can tell your neighbor how you fought the good fight, stood down progress and how sorry you are they will be moving as you too pack your own bags for departure.

If you don't have a real world solution, perhaps you might try delving into the details and spell out where's the alternative? If not, then your friend Big Government, courtesy of NJ Transit will come and impose the solution for you.

Don't you just love Big Government solutions as they cascade all around you? In the end, it very well could.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Hoboken Housing Authority Chair Dana Wefer addresses new efforts with HPD, generators installation and ED search



Courtesy of John Heinis, The Hudson County View:

In the absence of Hoboken Housing Authority Acting Executive Director Robert DiVincent, HHA Chairwoman Dana Wefer spoke about improving cooperative effort between the HHA and the Hoboken police department, the long-awaited installation of six new generators and the ongoing executive director search.

For the complete story see:

http://hudsoncountyview.com/hha-chair-wefer-talks-improved-security-generators-ed-search/

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

City Council Live - Rail Yards Development on tap




Note: The council meeting is captured here mid-meeting on the topic of NJ Transit and the City's alternative plan.

Better late than never. Timmy Occhipinti is speaking on behalf why the City's plan to work with NJ Transit's development idea scaled back is a winner. He's on fire, speaking strongly in favor of the revenue and other changes explaining why the plan is positive for Hoboken stating, "It's substantially consistent with the City's master plan."  He's opposed by members of the public in attendance advocating for nada.

This is a Timmy Occhipinti never seen.  "I ask for your patience... on these issues...they will be addressed," referring to open ended issues and an upcoming traffic study, one issue among others to be determined but he advocated strongly for the affordable housing component and the revenues aiding the City and public safety costs.

(Seen in pt. 2 available here: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/56558164

The measure passed easily 8-1 with only Beth Mason voting no saying the scaled back version of the plan from over 9 million square feet and towers dozens of stories high to a scaled back version of over two million square feet is still too big.

Previously, NJ Transit's LCORE, its master developer since 2005 made various attempts to bypass the City of Hoboken and pitch their massive plan directly to Hoboken residents, it would host the pitch at various locales along Washington Street just last year.

Among those hosting LCORE in Hoboken to pitch the biggest, baddest development in downtown: 
Beth "Develop or Die" Mason.


The second flood pump for Hoboken was approved in an unanimous vote. The project is anticipated to take approximately 18 months to complete and is slated to begin early next year.

Up the Republic!

Related: Gotham & Hudson filed this take which is a very good, detailed read:
http://gothamhudson.com/hoboken-city-council-votes-8-1-to-approve-hoboken-yards-redevelopment-plan/

Community: Memo from Mayor Zimmer to City Council Regarding Flood Pump & Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan

Office of the Mayor announces:


Community: Memo from Mayor Zimmer to City Council Regarding Flood Pump & Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan



Dear Horsey & MSV readers,

Mayor Dawn Zimmer sent the following memo to the Hoboken City Council regarding the H-5 wet weather pump and the Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan. The memo and attachment can also be downloaded at the following link: http://www.hobokennj.org/docs/mayor/12-16-14-Memo-Zimmer-Council.pdf 




December 16, 2014 

Dear City Council Members: 

I am writing to ask for your support for two important items on the agenda that both support our City's effort to comprehensively protect Hoboken from flooding and help to support our transportation system. 

Flood pump: 
As the attached photo shows, the western side of our City flooded just last week, and has flooded significantly several times since Sandy. Funding for the flood pump on the agenda will help the entire western side of our City during major rain events as well as in the event of another storm surge. 

The City has secured a low interest loan from the State that offers interest rates below 1 percent, and we have been advised by the DEP that it will include 19 percent principal forgiveness on the total $11.9 million loan as part of a Sandy funding opportunity. 

The State has authorized NHSA to go to bid, but the funding bond must be approved in order to move forward. 

The portion of the loan related to the City Hall green infrastructure project offers 50 percent loan forgiveness. (This portion of the project is estimated at about $220,000 of the total $11.9 million loan). The City Hall green infrastructure pilot project is important to demonstrate to property owners and developers what can be done with existing buildings to reduce stormwater run-off and flooding in our city.

Last month, we held a community meeting with residents of Maxwell Place to address their questions and concerns. We provided a Q&A and also revised the interlocal agreement with NHSA for the project to include air quality monitoring. The Q&A can be found on the NHSA website at www.nhudsonsa.com/Public/H-5_WWPS/FAQs.pdf

This pump is a crucial component of the comprehensive Resist, Delay, Store and Discharge Strategy to protect our entire City from flooding. In fact, the Resist strategy that will protect our waterfront from future storm surges will need the flood pump as a protective measure. The pump will also help alleviate flooding during increasingly prevalent flash flood events. 

Mayor Turner and I have met with DEP Commissioner Martin and will meet with him again at 5:00pm today to advocate for the State to move ahead as expeditiously as possible with the Resist strategy to protect North and South Hoboken with the $230 million grant awarded from the HUD Rebuild by Design competition. 

Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan: 
Hoboken has a long history of community activism helping to transform proposed projects for the better, with our waterfront being the prime example. This project has similarly been transformed by City Council and community input. The original proposal supported by both NJ Transit and the past Administration was for 9.2 million square feet. This included a seventy story commercial tower, and would have added approximately 7,300 new residents to our community with several 40-story residential towers. 

Hoboken residents, some of whom are now City Council members, along with several of my Council colleagues at the time, raised their voices, and that project, which was on track to become a reality, was stopped and has been completely transformed. 

The original plan was not only supported by both NJ Transit and the previous Administration, but both took the position that NJ Transit had the legal right to build it even if Hoboken objected. In 2008, as a City Councilwoman, I, together with Councilwoman Mason, Councilman Russo, Councilwoman Castellano, and Councilman Cunningham, forcefully disagreed with this conclusion. In response, legislation was crafted in Trenton in 2009 to remove any ambiguity and permit NJ Transit to move forward with their own plans. Together, local officials successfully lobbied against this legislation. We then worked hard to create a completely new plan that would benefit the City of Hoboken rather than just represent the interests of NJ Transit and their developer. 

The new proposed redevelopment plan will revitalize our transit hub, bring jobs to Hoboken, add affordable housing, and provide funding for open space. It is also an important part of the flood mitigation plan that has received $230 million of federal funding. All of this will be accomplished while limiting residential development to approximately 950 new residents, a scale consistent with that area of Hoboken. 

Thank you to the City Council development subcommittee and the Council as a whole for working with my Administration on this redevelopment plan. Your leadership has and will continue to enable the City to shape this project in the best interests of Hoboken residents. Here are some of the reasons why I believe that it is important to move forward tonight with this plan: 

1. This project offers the opportunity to transform our transit hub. Given the fact that 56 percent of our residents take public transportation to work every day, more than any place in the nation, I hope that you will seriously consider the needs of our residents who commute on a daily basis. 

2. This plan offers the opportunity to bring jobs and create new jobs in Hoboken. Providing residents with more opportunities to work near where they live is one way to make our city less reliant on cars in the long-term. In addition, research shows that commercial development has much less of a financial impact on City resources because it does not expand the need for police, fire, and schools, as residential development does (For this very reason, I appreciate that the subcommittee stood strong and did not expand residential development despite pressure from the developer to do so). 

3. This plan offers the opportunity to require the developer to be a part of the flood protection system to comprehensively protect our City from flooding. It would require the separation of the stormwater and sanitary system, installation of pumps, and green roofs, rain gardens, and other flood mitigation strategies. 

4. Through the redevelopment agreement process, an analysis will determine a fair contribution to the open space trust fund. This funding could go towards funding a larger park in southwest Hoboken, the neighborhood that could be most impacted by this development. The plan would also require at least 4.5 total acres of street level public space and would create pedestrian plazas at Hudson Place and Warrington Plaza with a safe pedestrian zone, connections to various modes of transit, bicycle lanes and bicycle storage and shower facilities. 

5. The plan would create indoor public space that could be designated as performing arts space, accelerator space to support startup businesses, 3 bedroom units for our growing families, and at least 10% of units for affordable housing. 

As members of the Council subcommittee know, the City has to have an economically feasible plan that will stand the test of a legal challenge. While I respect the voices of our citizen activists, we as elected officials have an obligation to look at all the factors and understand that a plan that is not economically feasible will put the City at risk in any possible legal or legislative challenge. I want to thank you for funding our careful economic analysis performed by an experienced NYC firm to ensure a fair agreement for the City of Hoboken. 

The next step in the process, if the City Council passes the plan and if NJ Transit is interested in moving this forward, would be to enter into an interim cost agreement. Under this agreement, NJ Transit and/or their designated developer would be responsible for the costs of conducting future analysis needed to finalize the plan. Most importantly, NJ Transit and/or their designated developer would be required to fund a traffic study and traffic modeling analysis, to be conducted by a firm of the City’s choosing. This modeling would include an analysis of the traffic impact and the proposed changes such as the two-way service road connected to Marin Boulevard. 

Adjustments to the plan could be made based on the results of the analysis. This study can only be conducted once we know what the City Council will approve as a level of development. As you know, the plan proposed by NJ Transit has ranged from over 9 million square feet to 5 million square feet to 3.5 million square feet to 3 million square feet, with more than 40 percent residential and all of the residential located by the PATH. The City Council has settled on a very different approach, with the commercial located near the PATH and a much lower level of density, in particular for the residential development. Once the plan is passed, then it will be time to conduct this important and thorough traffic analysis. 

Given that the City of Hoboken has spent close to $300,000 on the legal, planning, and financial analysis for the plan, I hope you agree that it is now time for NJ Transit and/or their designated developer to fund the traffic study, which can only happen once a plan is passed and we have entered into an interim cost agreement. 

Please feel free to call me if you would like to discuss this further or if you have any questions in advance of the Council meeting tonight. 

Best regards, 

Dawn Zimmer

The Hudson Reporter and their friends

The holidays are upon us but the buzz yesterday rolled through here like an old diesel freight train with the whistle blowing down Washington St. the whole way. It was quite a ride all the way from up on 14th street where fascinating tales are woven with not sugar plums in the Hudson Reporter editor's heads but a Mile Square City where developers rule the land with a mayor sleeping at the wheel or on the take, no matter which. Are we having fun yet?

After a full month snooze when the story broke, the Hudson Reporter finally did a story on Los Federales investigating the Hoboken Housing Authority. The story was an odd mish-mash of old news and a battery of old "Carmelo Garcia said" excuses.

Where was the ever loquacious Carmelo Garcia's comment today on the investigation looking into the reign of his former Banana Republic? Suddenly your best bud (after Bethy's pet fish of course) is not available for comment? It wasn't even noted in the story. Asking the question wouldn't yield a threat of a criminal complaint against you like the editor here. Speaking of which...

Also, why was a reference to the New York City Housing Authority tossed into the story? Is that the only excuse FOG (friends of Garcia) could muster? Pretty weak sauce there. Aren't you guys suppose to maintain minimum journalistic norms?

Months ago back in the summer, a litany of serious issue were featured in the HHA's audit report. It's another area of emphasis in the Carmelo Garcia "ethnic cleansing" sagas which has been completely ignored for inexplicable reasons at the Hudson Reporter. Hey, journalistic reasons now, not  FOG or FOH - Friends of HudCo reasons.

Can the editors explain to the readers why the Hudson Reporter completely ignored the findings of the agency's own audit report? The story was handed on a silver platter and not only by a horse. That would have been one to hijack with no credit and no complaint here whatsoever.

Back in July, we're pretty sure you saw this big MSV headline:

HHA Audit findings spell TROUBLE for Carmelo Garcia



Among the audit findings never mentioned by the Hudson Reporter:
  • Two of five... vendors were paid over $100,000
  • "Questioned costs" totaled over $573,000
  • Payments to numerous vendors was out of compliance with prices authorized by the HHA Board of Commissioners
  • The HHA accounting department was "unable to print a vendors history report" 
  • One vendor overpaid without contract authorization exceeded $753,000
  • No emergency procurement reports were filed with the state as required under law
  • More than $100,000 in expenditures with the illicit use of a credit or store card
  • Section 8 files contained major problems and are "materially incomplete"
  • Costs deemed problematic connected to Section 8 can't be fully determined due to the lack of required documentation
  • The HHA is "not in compliance" with the Housing Choice Voucher Program and the Low Rent Public Housing Program regulations

In addition, the original MSV July story noted: "the audit report findings state payments throughout the year to a host of suspect vendors totaled almost $800,000 and the "state of emergency" due to Hurricane Sandy shows most of the expenditures "occurred outside the scope of the emergency."

Does any of this have an iota to do with New York City's Housing Authority?
So MSV invites the HR editors to explain. We're all ears.



Talking Ed Note: Da Horsey has more questions for the Hudson Reporter. This isn't the time but the time is coming when those questions can be posed.

See, I got these emails and their effin golden.