Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Carmelo Garcia & version no. 3 of his lawsuit survives

Insta-analysis on Carmelo Garcia's lawsuit in version no. 3 surviving a motion to dismiss

Last month, Carmelo Garcia in his third lawsuit suing everyone, survived a motion to dismiss against Mayor Dawn Zimmer and her husband.

This third version adds a NJRICO claim and this allegation like so many others survives for the moment.

On a motion to dismiss, the court will give every "inference of fact" to the plaintiff. This is all good and well until you must show actual evidence supporting your allegations. Should your allegations turn out to be lacking evidence and be nothing more than a big steaming pile of lies, perhaps there's confidence in one's ability to convince others the lies are true notwithstanding the lack of evidence.

Would anyone think such is the case involving one Carmelo Garcia?

Previous versions of the lawsuit were flushed with the first in 2013 thrown out in its entirety and the second mostly thrown out of court.

Here's the original Hudson County View news story yesterday followed by the legal decision.



Talking Ed Note: Having covered the Hoboken Housing Authority extensively through the period of Carmelo Garcia's late reign, it's not overstatement to say much of the allegations here reek of untruths.

The idea Mayor Dawn Zimmer and HHA commissioners, past and present had any interest in directing, controlling or installing her policies to take any personal advantage with contracts, vendors, etc. within that agency is on the basis of all evidence and analysis here utterly false.

The evidence points in the opposite direction and many of those revelations were unveiled on MSV in a number of exclusives.

Carmelo Garcia pocketing money from vendors doing business at the HHA:
http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2014/05/blockbuster-carmelo-garcia-pocketed.html

HHA audit spells trouble for Carmelo Garcia:
http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2014/07/hha-audit-findings-spell-trouble-for.html

Carmelo Garcia complaining about an ethical HHA board to his wire:
http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2014/02/carmelo-garcia-complains-to-his-wire.html

Carmelo Garcia sued by the Hoboken Housing Authority:
http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2016/05/breaking-exclusive-carmelo-garcia-gets.html

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

On the comeback trail?

MILE SQUARE VIEW EXCLUSIVE


Multiple sources suggest there is a potential Hoboken mayoral candidate contemplating a bid in 2017:

Beth Mason in an earlier photo mulling over an issue on the Hoboken City Council
Reportedly often out-of-state with Virginia a regular destination where a small inn was purchased and previously mentioned on MSV, a Beth Mason third bid for mayor is suggested as under contemplation.

Other sources previously close to the controversial lightning-rod aren't denying the matter; they're simply not talking. A well-funded bid for mayor would throw a likely matchup of Freeholder Anthony Romano vs. Mayor Zimmer on its ear.

MSV reported just earlier in premium one former campaign manager in Mason's 2011 re-election bid for City Council, Ryan Yacco was one of several senior political consultants set for Team Romano.

2017 should be a typical Hoboken year in politics. Which of course means intrigue and surprises.

Talking Ed Note: At first this rumor tied to witness sightings of Beth & Ricky Mason the morning after the election was thought inconsequential and inconclusive. It's changing based on succeeding days and multiple sources since. Always go with multiple sources; a Horsey tradition.

Consequently, the national scene sporting a Hillary Clinton concession on Election Night than taking it back to join recounts in victorious Trump states is also said to be part of a comeback strategy by sources close to her.

Ron Fournier, Associate Publisher of Crain's Business and political writer at The Atlantic suggested exactly that in a series of twitter posts.
The series of tweets reached national attention first reported on midwest right of center blog, The Gateway Pundit. The story has been picked up by other national publications. Give the corporate media a couple more days and see if they will touch the third rail.

Monday, November 28, 2016

MSV Premium: The Hoboken Realignment begins

Out later today is MSV Premium analyzing the election outcome and the Hoboken realignment begins as nationally others fret about same while select efforts are paid by unknown parties to seek recounts in three cherry picked states.

There's no recount in Hoboken and no second chances for some eyeing a seat upstairs at City Hall.
More than one person is thinking about it.

The interweaving between national, state, county and one little Mile Square City is running apace.

Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano (r) is atop the list of mayoral contenders
in 2017 against Mayor Dawn Zimmer vying for a third term as Hoboken mayor.
Carmelo Garcia not included?
 

Lots of Grist for the Mill post-Thanksgiving in MSV Premium out to members.
If for any reason you didn't receive yours, email smartyjones@me.com.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Hoboken Realignment


The delay in MSV Premium didn't mean it's not coming only that the Thanksgiving reaping or is it heaping grows ever higher.

Some additional sauce on the mash.

He's baaaacccck!

Last January, Frank Raia (l) departs after the vote appointing Kurt Gardiner (r) to the NHSA.

Frank Raia who saw over a quarter century on the North Hudson Sewerage Authority with a potential additional five years interrupted is seeking a return with another Hoboken commissioner seat opening up early next year. Word is the application is already submitted and NHSA commissioner Tony Soares has indicated he's not seeking reappointment.

Council members are being lobbied and at least one other applicant is officially seeking the seat.
While the nominal pay of $5,000 annually should motivate applicants, one unconfirmed source says Raia wants to buffer his service for a taxpayer paid pension. It's unclear if his health insurance benefits can be renewed at the taxpayer's expense. Previously, the health benefits perk was eliminated in Trenton by Gov. Chris Christie. Raia managed to get an exception allowing him to keep the perk until his plan for another five year term failed.

Here we go again. Can Hoboken get past this unquenchable need for feeding at the trough?
Ever?

To apply for this Hoboken board position or any other, please see the downloadable application at the link: http://hobokennj.gov/boards/

The rest of this story is MSV Premium and will be released to members Monday.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Dean Kemph, Long-Time Hoboken Political Activist, Passes Suddenly at Age 61

Courtesy of H-mag

Dean Kemph, a former Hoboken resident and long-time government reform activist passed away suddenly this week at the age of 61. He is survived by his wife Anne Torpey and two daughters Emory and Delia. 

Dean, originally born in Barrington, Rhode Island was a part of the Hoboken reform movement in the 90s and through the early 2000s. He was known for his sardonic wit and willingness not to pull any punches, even to those community activists or politicians he was inclined to support. He later moved to Weehawken but would still opine from the hills of his new residence on the political goings on in the valley of politically charged Hoboken. 

To read the whole story:

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Go Fund Me Page:

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

TRUE Mentors Joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement

From the desk of True Mentors:




TRUE Mentors Joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement

Pledges to Raise $15,000 for program expansion in 2017

TRUE Mentors is a proud member of #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals for global philanthropy done locally. TRUE Mentors is proud to be expanding programs and engaging a growing number of Hoboken’s children. Community support has been the foundation of the organizations growth and impact. On November 29, between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, kick-off the holiday season of giving by supporting TRUE Mentors in building a bright future for Hoboken’s children.  

True Mentors is Hoboken’s only one-to-one mentoring program matching children ages 7 – 17 with adult mentors in the Mile Square City.  Our mission is to unearth each child’s potential through relationship building. Mentors become a trusted friends and champions for our children. The TRUE Mentors impact continues with weekly enrichment classes during the school year as well as Hoboken’s only paid teen internship program. Join us on #GivingTuesday and be part of unearthing the potential in the next generation.

“Last year the people of our city raised over $9,000 in 24 hours! This year we are going for double so that we can expand the high demand internship, enrichment, and mentorship programs” said Katie Eades, Executive Director of the startup non-profit. She continued “this is an opportunity for the residents of Hoboken, friends, family and local businesses to support an amazing cause and make an impact in our community.”


This year, Jack and Co., Panera, Cookie Insomina, Ben and Jerry’s, and Hudson Paperie are partnering with TRUE Mentors for Hoboken’s children. Mention TRUE Mentors and a percentage of each purchase will go towards supporting mentoring, enriching, and fostering a bright future for our community’s kids.

For more detailed information and how you can play a big part impacting Hoboken children see:

Monday, November 21, 2016

ASSEMBLYWOMAN CHAPARRO’S BILL TO FINANCIALLY PROTECT DRIVERS WITH A GAP IN AUTO INSURANCE PASSES THE ASSEMBLY

From the desk of Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro:



Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro’s bill (A3721), which would prohibit automobile insurance companies from rating drivers based on a gap in car insurance, was approved by the New Jersey General Assembly today by a 52-19 vote. The bill was also sponsored by 33rd District Assemblyman Raj Mukherji and 31st District Assemblywoman Angela McKnight, and co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Angelica Jimenez (D-32). 

“Despite strong pushback from special interests, I was glad to see my colleagues put their constituents first to support this legislation to protect all New Jersey residents from increases in insurance when there is a gap in coverage,” Chaparro said. “If we’re going to mandate that drivers have insurance, we need to ensure they’re being judged based on their driving record and not factors that tend to favor only certain New Jersey residents.”

A report from the Consumer Federation of America concluded that non-driving rating factors can increase rates by 59% each year for drivers with perfect driving records but non-driving characteristics that suggest a lower economic status in society.[i] The bill was supported by, in part, New Jersey Citizen Action.

“If someone’s driving record does not change and they decide to go without a vehicle to go green or because of a financial hardship, their premiums should not skyrocket,” Chaparro said.

The bill was inspired by residents of the 33rd District and beyond who, despite no change in their residence or driving record, were hit with higher monthly insurance bills because they went without a personal vehicle to take advantage of the robust public transit options in Hudson County and beyond.

“The bill would not prohibit insurance companies from increasing rates on drivers with convictions or suspended licenses,” Chaparro said.  “However, this legislation would ensure that the driving conviction or other offense would be the reason for the increase and that people with voluntary gaps are not lumped in with drivers who have poor driving records.” 

Assemblywoman Chaparro wishes to thank former Hoboken Councilman Tim Occhipinti for working with her and originally bringing this issue to her attention. The Senate version of the bill (S2797), which is pending introduction, is sponsored by 33rd District Senator Brian Stack.

[1] Consumer Federation of America, Major Auto Insurers Raise Rates Based on Economic Factors; http://consumerfed.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/6-27-16-Auto-Insurance-and-Economic-Status_Report.pdf 

Open Office Hours with Mayor Zimmer later today

From the Dawn Zimmer twitter account:

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Mayor Dawn Zimmer on flooding relief




Hi MSV readers,

I wanted to share some good news - for the first time in over 100 years, residents of northwest Hoboken are getting some relief from flooding. While Hoboken experienced torrential rains earlier this week, our newly-built H-5 flood pump kicked in and prevented flooding.

The new 40 million gallon/day pump operated through heavy rain and high tide - a combination that almost always would lead to significant flooding around the ShopRite area. This pump complements the first one completed in 2011, which has reduced the frequency of flooding in southwest Hoboken.

The pump was a real team effort, financed by the city, with the support of the City Council, and constructed and operated by North Hudson Sewerage Authority.

A special thank you to the residents of Maxwell Place for their patience and for looking out for our entire city. Our waterfront neighbors endured months of construction for a project that will reduce flooding in western Hoboken, but now 11th Street has been repaved with new landscaping and it looks great!

Thank you!
Dawn Zimmer

Thursday, November 17, 2016

The passing of a Brother, Dean Kemph

It is with a heavy heart many of us learned today of the sudden passing of our friend Dean Kemph.

Dean Kemph

He was a friend and former resident of Hoboken, a passionate advocate for good governance who moved to Weehawken. He kept his ties to the Mile Square City and called many here friends.

On Facebook, Dean and a Horse would joust on issues far beyond the Mile Square. This Horse addressed him respectfully coining the term Brother Dean and we enjoyed some laughs and good conversation outside the online public square.

He was a warrior in the purest spirit of the Reform Movement in Hoboken when that battle appeared terminally cursed and was an occasional guest columnist on the Hoboken Journal, Grafix Avenger and MSV among other local venues.

I am blessed to have met him in the travails of this life. In this moment of grief, I can only express my heartfelt sympathy to his beautiful family.

May the Lord receive him and bless them all.

Hoboken Realignment

and scenes to Movember.

Third Ward Councilman Michael Russo
The Hoboken realignment is the latest topic of MSV Premium. It will be released November 22nd.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Grist for the Mill: Let the recriminations flow

Post mortem election analysis is the bane of losing campaigns' departures from the land of the political living. Not only do they not get what they want; they don't get what they need, a political lifeline.

Sometimes the results peter out with an impending sense of doom as Parents United suffered this year facing a juggernaut and sometimes it's just the rancidness of the Old Guard crew behind the curtain causing the implosion. As some view the Hoboken Board of Education from a distance, they may miss the overlapping implications for City Hall and the waning influence of the Old Guard at the polls.

After the thuggish incident of FlashlightGate took root among Hoboken voters, the question of  victory for the reform oriented moms of Forward Together was no longer in doubt, merely the margin. The story had gone viral and far beyond district moms who were disgusted with the antics. In a presidential year, the Masonic ape galvanized casual Hoboken voters generating record totals for the winning BoE slate.

Masonic ape collage courtesy of Grafix Avenger

Thousands of additional voters participated compared to the last presidential year in 2012. That year, the infamous Nazi Truck Move Forward campaign managed by the Masonic wannabe shark, scored high in lewd and crude parading a Nazi flag all over town in a graphic connected to the loon at Hate411 but generated the bite of a guppy and likewise led to a sweep.

Considering the walk of doom taken by Parents United, the candidates were remarkably complimentary of their Forward Together opponents wishing them well in the coming year and urging continued progress in the school district. Classy all around and for Hoboken more than a tad odd but they recognized the diligence, sincerity and hard work of the opposition.

Behind the scenes, it was a different story. Anthony "Stick" Romano who has been a looming mayoral candidate can't be thrilled with the effort led by himself and Councilman Michael Russo. The in-fighting doesn't quite parallel the election night meltdown of a spiked CNN story with the candidate attacking campaign staff in a "psychotic drunken rage" but it was a real problem.

Sources say the unhappiness began with the lack of campaign effectiveness among the Parents United candidates but grew worse with the sense overall they were not capable of going beyond negative talking points provided. On the trail, the reports were worse, voter engagement was flailing and desperate measures with the HoLa Charter School rumored to have ended classes early one day to send its students to the PATH telling commuters their school was being shut down by the district. Power struggles ensued and caused the typical mayhem among the frustrated insiders. No one tried to put a headlock on another but they were thinking about it.

Meanwhile, the Forward Together slate was clicking with a unity of advantages not seen since 2009. A group of council members offered an early endorsement and several endorsers played critical roles right through election day. Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher a newbie to campaigning last year in her successful self-managed council bid is now a full-fledged wrecking crew. Mayor Zimmer provided an earlier endorsement than prior years and backed it up by hitting the campaign trail. More volunteers came to the fore making a bigger splash. Targeted voter engagement followed adding to the big bang effect. All of it plus the record setting vote totals spelled doom for the Parents United ticket.

Prior to the election, word had leaked out Anthony "Stick" Romano might be having second thoughts running for mayor and the Old Guard weren't sure he was the shoo-in candidate to back either. His fundraising efforts haven't been stellar worrying his unofficial campaign manager Pablo Fonseca, last seen in the 2015 failed bid of BoE trustee Peter Biancamano's second ward council campaign. The booming election results for what's been called "the Reform Party" is only adding to those concerns.

It turns out the pro-Old Guard "Between the Lines" column got it all wrong once again when it predicted defeat for the Forward Together ticket quoting a OG soldier "they know the mayor's slate is losing."

As if. When you can't even distinguish a dog from a horse, how can you be expected to get anything right. Let the 2017 mayoral election games begin!

Grist for the Mill is MSV's rumor column. Got a tasty carrot for Da Horsey? Send it to smartyjones@me.com. All email is kept confidential until mutual agreement and is protected by Da Horsey's proven Reporter Privilege upheld under the NJ Shield Law in Hudson County Superior Court.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sign of the Times: Das Pump II pumps Hoboken out in first critical test



MILE SQUARE VIEW EXCLUSIVE

The heavy rains blasted through today and the results for Hoboken with the second pump coming online in its first ever test.

The results witnessed on the ground are nothing short of outstanding:

Around midday, after very heavy rain both streets surrounding the ShopRite notorious for flooding were completely clear without a hint of flooding.  The second water pump for Hoboken is now online and kicking much butt.

Only minor collection of water near the corner of Ninth & Madison due to a divot as the water is not collecting at the corner where the sewer is completely clear.

At 11th & Madison, no water was visible impeding the street anywhere as the ShopRite parking lot shows
plenty of business coming and going.

Congratulations to all the officials who brought the second flood pump online with the assistance and cooperation of the North Hudson Sewerage Authority!

Special thanks to Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, the Hoboken City Council, Richard Wolff who leads the NHSA and the NHSA commissioners.

Thank you!

Photo credit courtesy Jhnny "to the butter" Newman

Hoboken council sinks Monarch project settlement with Shipyard Associates

The following report comes courtesy of John Heinis at the Hudson County View:

The Hoboken City Council unanimously voted against (8-0) settling six lawsuits with prominent developer Shipyard Associates, which would’ve stopped the Monarch project but also added an extra 79 units to 800 Monroe St.

 
For the full story, please see the Hudson County View:
http://hudsoncountyview.com/hoboken-council-sinks-monarch-project-settlement-with-shipyard-associates/

Reprieve! Monarch-Monroe Settlement bites the dust in unanimous council vote

City Council bails on proposed Monarch-Monroe settlement in 8-0 unanimous vote

Hoboken residents many from the west side of town packed the council chambers and proceeded to demolish a proposed legal settlement up for approval putting tens of millions into the pockets of the Barry brothers and rewarding them after years of litigation after their reneging on an earlier contract.

The proposed settlement would have forestalled the illicitly proposed Monarch Project towers in the northeast corner and shoved over 70 additional units of density into 800 Monroe where 186 units may be built with a 10% affordable housing component.

While a few residents spoke in favor of the settlement from the uptown second ward, even some of those residents suggested the settlement proposal didn't add up and should be voted down. Most residents decried the burden being shifted into an overly dense development on the west side of town where hundreds of units are already under construction and hundreds more recently approved in the same vicinity.

The City Council having delayed an initial vote set almost two weeks ago saw a full house of residents reasonable dissecting the settlement agreement and tearing to shreds its financial underpinnings.

Some residents began chipping away at the numbers suggesting there was tens of millions of dollars being handed to the Barry Family. The Fund for the Better Waterfront saw both representatives speak out against the proposed settlement even as it stands like the public against the Monarch Project towers.

The Applied throw-in of $500,000 was dismissed as "scraps" to be fought over by the public while the Barry family laughs all the way to the bank scoring profits in the tens of millions of dollars.
The Barry family brothers David and Michael who reneged on the Shipyard agreement with the City of Hoboken.
Hoboken residents are adamant against their being rewarded with tens of millions of dollars for putting Hoboken taxpayers through years of litigation after they cashed in on the Shipyard and refused completing the northeast corner with tennis courts and parking. Residents want the City of Hoboken to win the doable fight in the
New Jersey Appellate Court, not throw in the towel.

The City Council expected by some observers to be marshaling a vote for the settlement's approval saw that  option go down in flames when Councilman Ravi Bhalla, a critically needed yes vote said he would be voting no. The votes needed to pass the settlement agreement promptly collapsed leading to a unanimous vote against approval.

Mayor Dawn Zimmer issued the following statement after the vote:

“I thank everyone who provided their feedback on the proposed settlement agreement. There are very legitimate concerns from residents in western Hoboken about burdening one neighborhood with added density, and I fully understand and respect the City Council’s vote. As a result, we will be back in court in December to continue to vigorously defend the city’s interests in the Monarch and 800 Monroe cases. On a parallel track, if there is a possibility in the future for a settlement that protects our waterfront without increasing residential density, a new agreement will be proposed for consideration by the City Council and community.”

Video of the meeting and the public's remarks leading to the vote are available here:
http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/92767666

From the Barry family Ironstate Development website; they say they "go big" and they have guts.
Hoboken residents want to stand up against them, contract renegers and not reward them
seeing the west side and by extension the entire City of Hoboken's Quality of Life go down with it. 

Talking Ed Note: This bad deal for Hoboken and the Mile Square City's future was scrapped for the moment but City Hall needs to rethink the legal and financial merits of how to move forward dealing with David and Michael Barry. This proposed settlement should never have reached a vote.

The financial acumen required appears missing. When the public smokes out the tens of millions in profits being forked over and says no, the numerical calculus is definitely missing. Or is it being replaced by a focus on political expediency?

Is the public who spoke last night in the know on the legal details thinking the legal case before the NJ Appellate winnable incorrect? The City of Hoboken says there's an inherent risk but the public believes that risk is less than a likely winnable effort and desires a vigorous legal push to move forward.

Forward!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Councilman Ravi Bhalla: 'My perspective on the national election'

From the desk of Councilman Ravi Bhalla:


Dear Friends & Neighbors,

Since last Wednesday, I have heard from so many concerned residents about the results of the Presidential election.  They worry about what’s in store for America.  Some fear for their own civil rights, others worry about their friends, and some are still shaking their heads, wondering how this happened. I myself have seen the hatred of this new political climate earlier this year, when a Hudson County resident and supporter of President-elect Trump called me a “terrorist” and said I do not belong in this country.

But amidst the fear, there’s been an encouraging question I’ve received over and over from good people in this community, which is, “How do I get involved?”  On this day, two things come to mind.

First, as you may know, I am a Sikh American.  Today is a special holiday for Sikhs, the day of the birth of the founder of our faith, Guru Nanak Dev Ji.  Guru Nanak advocated against prejudice based on race, religion, gender, and social status.  Guru Nanak said, “See the brotherhood of all humankind as the highest order; conquer your mind, and conquer the world.”  Guru Nanak was also an advocate of equality of women and all humankind, back in the 15th Century, in accordance with our core values as Americans today.  On this day, we should both remember Guru Nanak and seek guidance from his message to the world, as we confront the challenges of our current political climate.

“Fear none, frighten none,” is another core tenet of Sikh philosophy that we can draw upon when gracefully resisting injustices and unprovoked attacks on our rights and liberties as Americans.  Finally, at the end of the Sikh daily prayer, we say “Nanak naam Chardi Kala, tere bhane sarbat da bhala,” which means that with the name of the Almighty comes rising and optimistic spirits, and that we pray that everyone in the world may prosper and be in peace.  These are high ideals, but as a Sikh, I wanted to share them with you and hope they provide some inspiration that at the end of the day, as Hobokenites, Americans, and world citizens, we’re in this together.  We must reach out, understand, and most importantly, activate!

Let us start organizing at the local level, as real change starts from the bottom up. The key to a powerful party across the state and nation are tight-knit communities full of smart, committed people who will no longer stand on the sidelines and choose to instead build a grassroots effort that spreads the promise of hope and a more progressive future, instead of buying into fear.

It would be easy to tune out politics now if you’re unhappy with the results of the election. But it wouldn’t be the right thing to do, and it most certainly is an un-American response. The President and Hillary Clinton have called for us to root for the success of our country despite our discomfort with Mr. Trump as our president. That’s the right message, but we won’t accept or support initiatives that perpetuate discrimination and are in direct violation of our own personal principles. And while we want a prosperous nation, in my America, we won’t turn a blind eye to hatred or accept bullies as part of life – we stand up to them.

If you’d like to get involved, learn a bit more about how you can help, or just be around like-minded people who want to figure out how to make a difference, there is a group of Democrats meeting tonight, Nov. 14 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Pilsener Haus & Biergarten at 1422 Grand St. in HobokenThe group is called New Jersey Awakens, and Dana Wefer of Hoboken is spearheading the effort to organize locally to make an impact nationally.

If you can’t make the meeting but are curious as to how you can get involved and use your talents to improve our community, state, or country, e-mail me at councilmanbhalla@gmail.com, and I’d be happy to talk to you!

Sincerely,
Ravinder S. Bhalla
Councilman-at-Large

Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher: Public can engage on proposed settlement agreement

From the desk of Second Ward Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher:

Dear 2nd Ward and Hoboken Neighbors – 

Tonight (11/14) at the City Council Meeting at 7pm at 94 Washington St., there is an important vote on a potential settlement for the two litigations that the City has been involved in relating to the proposed Monarch project and the proposed 800 Monroe project.  I will not be voting nor participating in deliberations or public discussions concerning the settlement at the meeting because I am conflicted.  

I urge all of you to read up on the settlement agreement (it is not that long) and attend the Monday meeting and / or send an email to the City Council and the Mayor expressing your views.  I have listed at the bottom of this note all of their emails.  Given the complexity of the agreement, the decision is not certain.  Here are various links to City announcements and the settlement agreement:

Effectively the settlement would conclude litigation on each site, would result in the City getting the land on the waterfront that would be then used only for public open space, some additional affordable housing units, and in exchange Applied would get additional density and other accommodations at their site at 8th and Monroe.  

As you may know, I wear many hats.  I am your neighbor and a resident of the 2nd Ward. I have led the public opposition to the Monarch project.   I am on the Board of the Hudson Tea Buildings Condominium Association which is actually party to all five complaints in the litigation concerning Monarch.  And most recently I was elected by what I think are many of you to be your representative on Hoboken’s City Council.  However, in this instance the hat that creates either the most tangible conflict is that of being a homeowner in the Hudson Tea, on the 2nd floor, facing east.  And with this hat, comes the possibility of receiving financial benefit from the outcome of this settlement, and thus the conflict.  Although I always thought that I had a conflict, I did not contemplate a situation like this.  I always thought any settlement relating to Monarch would be where the outcome would have the same unanimous support that we saw in the beginning of our community fight and would represent a community-wide alignment of interests.  Not one like this where the interests of residents across the city are not as perfectly aligned. Although I know that this is not about me, and is 100% about all of you, no one is more frustrated than I am to be effectively censured on an issue that has significant importance to all members of our community.   

I wish I could say more, but I can’t.  So it is important that you do. 
This email is going to people in all areas of Hoboken so whether you support the Agreement, are opposed to the Agreement, have suggestions on a better solution – whatever you think, please let our Council and our Mayor know.  They need to hear from the public on this.  Your voice will always matter most on local matters.  

Tiffanie Fisher
Hoboken 2nd Ward City Councilwoman




Engage. Inform. Advocate.
"More Voices are Better"







Mayor Dawn Zimmer dzimmer@hobokennj.gov
At Large (all Hoboken) Councilman Ravi Bhalla: councilmanbhalla@gmail.com
At Large (all Hoboken) Councilman Dave Mello: melloforhoboken@gmail.com
At Large (all Hoboken) Councilman Jim Doyle: jimdoylehoboken@gmail.com;
1st Ward (south east) Councilman Mike DeFusco: mdefusco@hobokennj.gov
2nd Ward (north east) Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher: hoboken2nd@gmail.com;
3rd Ward (center west) Councilman Mike Russo: councilmanrusso@gmail.com
4th Ward (south west) Councilman Ruben Ramos: councilmanramos4@gmail.com
5th Ward (north west) Councilman Peter Cunningham: cunninghamforhoboken@gmail.com
6th Ward (center east) Councilwoman and Council President Jen Giattino: jengiattino6@gmail.com;

Development conflict on Monarch & West side Hoboken on tap

Tonight is an unusual scheduled meeting of the Hoboken City Council with the annual League of Municipalities convening later this week in Atlantic City.

On the agenda is the proposed settlement agreement on the Monarch Project with Applied, re: the Barry family. The City is looking to end the litigation by trading on higher density moving dozens of proposed units to west Hoboken at 800 Monroe.

At the last City Council meeting, dozens of Hoboken residents rose in opposition to the proposed settlement announcement displeased in what they conclude as caving in to the illicit actions of Applied and urging the Hoboken City Council to vote against it.

The proposed settlement has opened a sore spot for Hoboken residents opposed to over development. Many have voiced strong concerns about the increasingly bad situation with local traffic especially driving in and out of Hoboken during peak periods among other quality of life issues.

A petition begun after the City's proposed settlement announcement has obtained close to 600 signatures, most of them Hoboken residents in opposition from a new community group named HARMED, Hobokenites Against Radical Massive & Massive Egregious Development.

The announcement stated Hoboken could incur another million in litigation costs and that the outcome against Applied is "uncertain."

Hoboken residents on the whole are furious with the idea of capitulating to Applied. Also known as Ironstate Development, the Barry family reneged on a development deal with Hoboken after making millions in profits on the uptown Shipyard complex refusing to build tennis courts and parking as the original contract called for with the City of Hoboken

The Barry family is litigating the City of Hoboken seeking to build two towers on a pier in the northeast corner called the Monarch Project. They own a property at 800 Monroe and seek over 70  additional units at that location which would offset the tens of millions in profits deferred in the Monarch Project's cancellation.

The uptown office of Applied, re: the Barry family.


Talking Ed Note: Tonight's City Council meeting is scheduled for 7:00 pm. Members of the public can sign up on the resolution scheduled for a vote among eight members of the council. Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher, a resident of the Hudson Tea Building has recused herself.

Five votes approving the proposed settlement are required for passage.

New Facebook page, "New Jersey Awakens" forms after President-elect Trump's election victory

New Jersey Awakens announces:

LOCAL DEMOCRATS TO ORGANIZE IN WAKE OF TRUMP VICTORY

Three days ago, a Facebook page called “New Jersey Awakens” was formed.  Despite how new it is, the group already expects to draw a crowd of nearly 100 tonight in Hoboken at the Pilsner Haus Biergarten, with more than 200 indicating they may come.  The election of Donald Trump to the presidency has led to groups of disaffected Democrats and Independents springing up all over the country to meet, commiserate, and plan for the future.  

New Jersey Awakens, founded by Hoboken resident Dana Wefer, is aimed at “organizing Democrats and other progressives to reform the Democratic party and our political system from the ground up” according to the group’s page.  Wefer herself is no stranger to local activism as she engaged in a very public battle to curtail fiscal mismanagement and ethics issues at the Hoboken Housing Authority, where she remains chairperson of the Board.  “I started the Democratic Social Club because I was disillusioned by the formal democratic committee in Hoboken,” Wefer said.  “In 2013 we had a good Democratic candidate for governor, Barbara Buono, but statewide Democrats threw their weight behind Chris Christie.  It was really disappointing to me and the results have been obviously disastrous for the state.”  The club gathers monthly for a happy hour, has been registering voters at local festivals, and campaigned for Hillary Clinton making almost 800 calls to Pennsylvania voters on Election Day and organizing canvassing opportunities into Pennsylvania.

“Wednesday morning, I was just shell shocked,” Wefer says.  “I thought, I want to get in a room with other Democrats who feel similarly, we need to talk to each other.”  Envisioning ten people in a coffee shop, Wefer sent an email to her group and had more than 30 RSVPs by the end of the day.  When she put the event on Facebook, it continued to gain traction and attention outside of Hoboken.  Wefer rebranded the group “New Jersey Awakens” and hopes that it will serve as an organizing force for Democrats disappointed with the lack of grassroots effort in the Democratic Party.  “The Democratic Party is, in many ways, suffering from the same issues that we see in our society at large, especially social stratification,” Wefer said.  “It’s hard to run for office unless you have a lot of money, so our leaders end up being wealthier than the population they serve. Many have lost touch with the grassroots supporters and are insulated from the everyday issues facing people.  We need to get back to our grassroots as a party.” 

On Monday night the group will be organizing into committees and recruiting volunteers.  “We’re going to be compiling resources ready to mobilize if President Trump or his cabinet members attempt to implement policies discriminating against anyone on the basis of race, religion, orientation, ethnicity, or sex,” Wefer said.  The group is also organizing phone banks to call voters in Louisiana, where a Senate race will be decided next month, and locally to reach more Democrats.  “People are really motivated right now.  We need to harness that and give people a productive outlet to effectuate change,” Wefer said.  “We can’t just sit by."


Tonight's event at the Pilsener Haus Biergarten: 6:30 - 8:30