Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Welcome your new City Council President Jen Giattino

Councilwoman Jen Giattino, currently serving as the sixth ward councilwoman since 2011 was overwhelmingly elected to the role of City Council President earlier tonight.

With a full nine members sworn-in to the council, the vote was not in doubt.  Councilman Michael Russo arrived during the vote and asked his yes vote be tallied.

Council members Terry Castellano was absent from the meeting and Timmy Occhipinti arrived late but politely extended warm congratulations.  The lone no vote came from Councilwoman Beth Mason.

In addition, Councilman Ravi Bhalla was elected to serve as Vice President.

Councilwoman Jen Giattino was overwhelmingly elected to City Council President tonight.

Talking Ed Note: Council President Giattino is moving the meeting along nicely and the proceedings are really humming. The dynamics are one can say politically mature.  More on that political reality later.

For now, a hearty and big congratulations to Jen Giattino and her entire family!

Appointments have been moving quickly along with the temporary budget which in the past has seen literally hours of discussion and then failing.  (Typically in NJ a temporary budget will often pass in ten minutes.)

Nine Hobokenites have been unanimously selected to serve on the Hoboken Zoning Board.  MSV doesn't have the comprehensive list yet but among the names as regular members back are Phil Cohen, John Branciforte with Brian Urbano.  Another familiar name is former fire chief Rich Tremidieti.

On the Hoboken Housing Authority easily passing to the five year term Dana Wefer and to the remaining one year term James Sanford bringing that body up to speed with a full seven members.

Brian Assadourian was appointed to the North Hudson Sewerage Authority.

City Council: Enter 2014 and the Death of the Log Jam

'If you have the votes, vote.  If not, complain.'

The above quote comes courtesy of the late E. Norman Wilson via City Clerk James Farina.  Prior to the last meeting of 2013, Farina was chatting with Da Horsey and responding to a query if he would prognosticate the length of the final meeting of the year.

Farina noted the words atop of the late Norman Wilson who had served four terms on the City Council and was respected for his statesmanlike ways.  

The November election results bought a remarkable reality check, stymying all kinds of political bickering and obstruction from a demoralized MORTe.  Tonight the agenda is the end of the log jam where Beth Mason's family underwritten lawsuit blocking a ninth seat on the council gets buried with a headstone mounted "MORTe Obstruction D.O.A."

There's a slew of appointments lined up. There's also a new reorganization slated for the council itself.  MSV believes we'll see the elevation of Jen Giattino to Council President.  She'll be the first woman to hold the role since the 2011 and the disastrous chairmanship held by Councilwoman Beth Mason.

Mason's biggest "accomplishment" in her record short term (according to living memory) was repeated attempts to reduce for a second time the salaries for directors and the mayor, launch an email witch hunt for emails of reform/anti-corruption writers, and jab her finger into the eye of an ongoing FBI investigation.  There was also her demand the City be prevented from having any surplus, zero as in nada.  If a shingle fell off of City Hall, Beth Mason and her Old Guard council allies wanted to force the mayor to raise taxes.

It didn't work out on any of those counts.  The clock ran out on Mason's budget sabotage on July 1, 2011.  Enter Councilman Jim Doyle tonight and Hoboken comes full circle.   

With a full nine members voting members this evening, expect to see massive progress and a slew of appointments to the Hoboken Zoning Board, the Hoboken Housing Authority, the Planning Board, Alcohol Beverage Control Board and the North Hudson Sewerage Authority.

When the bow breaks....  We'll see what's in store and who will remember the wise words of E. Norman Wilson.  Either way, it's going to be historic.

The agenda: http://www.hobokennj.org/docs/council/agenda14/revised-ccm-1-7-14.pdf

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