Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Romano campaign tosses back live grenade

The Romano campaign followed up to yesterday's Grist for the Mill column but their response may not be to the anonymous source's liking.

Pablo Fonseca, the campaign manager for Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano picked up the loaded grenade and casually tossed it back at the HudCo source saying, "We do not respond to anonymous sources and their self-serving agendas."

The HudCo source stated earlier if Stick didn't cease and desist from his two-pronged electioneering campaigning for both freeholder and Hoboken mayor, the grenade would be delivered in the form of a Ruben Ramos for Freeholder campaign.

The anonymous challenge to Freeholder Romano came with a mid-week deadline.
Awaiting further developments in the high stakes battle of grenade tosses.
Who's next?

Talking Ed Note: For those unsure, here's the optimum method to deploy and detonate a grenade, courtesy of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch is never a dud and is never tossed back if you follow the instructions.

At least that's what the manual says.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Grist for the Mill: HudCo Ultimatum: "Stick" to Freeholder or we'll run Ruben Ramos


A Stick could get stuck holding the bag.

The Al Sullivan gossip sheet posing as a political column last weekend raised eyebrows quoting Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano saying he's entertaining pursuing both reelection for freeholder and Hoboken mayor at the same time.

Many US states preclude such a practice but the Soprano State only barred dual elected job holders when Gov. Chris Christie took office and insisted on the reform. Romano says he may run and win both freeholder and Hoboken mayor and he'll decide among the possible bounty later.

A Hudson County source says the powers that be are not amused and pulling out a rope of the hangman variety. HudCo allegedly demands an end to any further public posturing. If he persists this week, the claim is the rug will be pulled and and they'll run Fourth Ward Councilman Ruben Ramos in his place.

Sticking it to HudCo? If Freeholder Romano doesn't stop a dual job
dance saying he may run for freeholder and mayor this fall, the powers
at HudCo are priming Councilman Ruben Ramos in his place.
Last November, Romano held a fundraiser at the Hoboken W Hotel headlined by HCDO officials after NJ Senator Corey Booker refused to attend as his special guest. Three years earlier, Romano ran without HudCo support and won the all critical freeholder spring primary, a feat not imaginable outside of Hoboken in Hudson.

The deadline for Romano to knuckle under is reportedly midweek. Should Romano decide to push back and run against a Councilman Ruben Ramos in the June primary for freeholder, he would likely lose the edge among a base of Hoboken voters choosing between the two. Ramos has better name recognition running a solid mayoral campaign in 2013 and serving previously as Assemblyman.

Over the weekend, the Freeholder tried to push back on recent stories he would strictly be running for reelection and would not face off against Mayor Zimmer come November. That story first reported on MSV last month was later joined by the state's newest political website InsideNJ last week.

The HudCo source said the county had no interest getting embroiled in Hoboken's mayoral election this November where Mayor Zimmer will be a favorite to win a third term. Romano further denies any HudCo deal where he would face no primary opposition and in turn not run or endorse against Mayor Zimmer in the fall.

The backdrop to the saber rattling is the continuing efforts to see Councilman Mike DeFusco enter the mayoral race. A discussion seeking mutual endorsements for Romano's reelection bid with a corresponding endorsement for DeFusco have not fared well to date according to another well-placed source who suggested neither official will admit to it.

One way or another some may be interested in clearing a path for DeFusco's campaign entry whether local operatives, HudCo or both.

Freeholder Romano declined comment and referred discussion to his campaign manager, Pablo Fonseca. Councilman Ramos and Fonseca were not immediately available for comment.

Whatever does transpire, one thing is clear. The election fun and games have begun.

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 and is protected by Da Horsey's proven Reporter Privilege upheld under the NJ Shield Law in Hudson County Superior Court. In farm animals we trust.

Friday, February 24, 2017

New Jersey Awakens: Dana Wefer to run for Governor, Meghan Dunworth Dodd to oppose Freeholder Romano

New Jersey Awakens announces:


Coalition of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents launch movement to run for office and take on the political establishment- together

Jersey City, NJ   A Republican, a Democrat, and a bunch of Independents walk into a bar in Jersey City.   No, that’s not the beginning of a joke, it’s the launch of a political revolution, according to New Jersey Awakens founder, Dana Wefer.   “The number one issue facing our state and our country is the corruption of the political system,” Wefer says. “Our government officials go through the political system to become part of the government, so when the political system is corrupted, the government soon follows.”  Through New Jersey Awakens, Wefer and her allies have developed a five point election reform platform aimed at crippling party bosses, forcing accountability from elected officials, and amplifying unaffiliated and independent voices, or, as Wefer bluntly puts it “we want to break the machine.”  

Wefer has teamed up with Democratic gubernatorial candidate and seasoned corruption fighter Bill Brennan, best known for his dogged pursuit of bringing justice to Governor Chris Christie for his alleged role in Bridgegate.  A handful of independent legislative candidates have also signed on to the reforms, and Wefer hopes to have candidates running on this platform for every legislative seat by the June 6th filing deadline for independent candidates.

Wefer’s own candidacy, as a Republican candidate for governor, is unexpected in just about every way.  She’s been a Democrat her entire adult life, spent years working to build the Democratic Party in red Morris County, and campaigned for Bernie Sanders during last year’s primary.  However, her local battles with the Democratic machine in Hudson County and Hillary Clinton’s loss to Donald Trump, pushed Wefer towards the belief that working to reform the Democratic Party from within is no longer a viable option for accountable government.  “If you told me 5 months ago that I would be running for governor, I would have thought you were crazy, never mind as a Republican!” she exclaims.  “It feels as if we’re living in some alternate universe, but our reality is that the Democrats and the Republicans together have rigged the political system against the People through gerrymandering and special interest money.  Only 14% of state legislative seats are competitive in November, which means most elections are actually decided by a small group of people in the primaries.  The politicians know this, which is why they feel more accountable to that small but vocal group over the electorate at large.  The fact is that if you want your vote to count, you have to vote in the primary elections, especially Republican primaries, because that is where most elections in the country are decided now.”

Candidates aligned with New Jersey Awakens vary in their top issues.  Meghan Dunworth Dodd who is running for Freeholder in Hudson County was driven to action after the 2016 election. “I feel compelled to run for office after this last election because local government matters and I can’t sit on the sidelines any longer,” she said.  “The county government intersects with a lot of these national issues and has a direct impact on our community.  That’s why I’m running for Freeholder.”  Sumantha Prasad, who is also new to politics, is running for state assembly in legislative district 22.  “I am passionate about social justice issues, and I believe firmly in intersectionalism. Healthcare is a human right, and residents will be free to live up to their potential when they aren't constrained by worries about insurance,” she said.  

“There are so many issues that we need to address as a state: high property taxes and cost of living, infrastructure issues, criminal justice reform, the pension deficit, healthcare, the opioid crisis, the legalization of marijuana, and much more,” Wefer says.  “The thing is, there’s no shortage of information on these issues and on what steps we need to take to start righting the ship, there’s just a lack of will on the part of our leaders, which is why we need new leadership.” 

New Jersey Awakens is launching its North Jersey kickoff at the Zeppelin Beer Garden in Jersey City on February 26th at 5pm.  The organization will roll out a values-based platform and introduce some of the local candidates running for office.  The program will begin around 5:30.  Press is welcome. 

Up for a new tree on the block?

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City of Hoboken, NJ

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Community: Hoboken Property Owners Invited to Request Street Tree Planting

Dear MSV readers,

In preparation for the Spring 2017 tree planting, the City of Hoboken’s Shade Tree Commission is seeking property owners who would like a tree planted in the sidewalk adjacent to their building and who will agree to care for and water the tree. Qualifying property owners can have a street tree planted in exchange for a suggested $100 contribution towards planting costs and a pledge to keep the tree well-watered.

The City planted has planted hundreds of street trees through the program in the last few years.

Property owners who would like a tree planted in a sidewalk tree well in front of their home should complete the online request form at www.hobokennj.gov/boards/stc/treerequest. Requests will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to available funding.

Each location requested will be surveyed by a professional from the Department of Environmental Services to ensure there are no conflicts with the surrounding infrastructure and that the site is a suitable one for a tree to grow and thrive.

Requests can be made for existing empty tree beds as well as paved sidewalk locations. If a tree well does not exist, one will be opened. Trees will not be planted on private property; only in sidewalk tree wells.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Is CNN about to get Wiki-Leaked?

That's the buzz for the last 48 hours and today is the day; the whistle is set to blow.

This is of course not an unusual story for "the Hoboken blogs" as typically there would be broader national coverage on say the formerly active Hoboken Journal and far less frequently here. Of course the revelations in the last election cycle have been illuminating to those who wish to see and not merely set for reflex to political partisanship. Unfortunately, so many were unprepared for the democratic election results in November as political operatives posing as reporters assured them there was only one inevitable outcome. That of course followed immediately with "protests" not a day after Election Day and some rather novel public displays of vagina costumes. At least the latter saw no violence.

The election cycle revelations are continuing with those who consider themselves above criticism while waving the First Amendment about to see their comeuppance. This is a dynamic anticipated story and the examples for quite some time are numerous, illustrative and sadly conclusive about the news business.

Should a horse deny you what so many will in another typical act of omission? No, the MSV charter revels in uncovering corruption and as some have come to understand, that's not changing. There's thousands of readers who continue to show up here week in and week out even if there's less of the Mile Square City's corruptive influences showing any dire threat in the near future.

Of course that too can change. But for the moment, we're awaiting some WikiLeak-like revelations. Some will shudder and turn their heads away in partisan fury. Others will pretend they never saw the truth seeking the comfort of safer, more limited vehicles of "information." As you like.

Ready or not, here it comes.

Associated Press confirms the news organization is CNN and conservative investigative reporter James O'Keefe who released undercover videos of political operatives planning to deploy violence and a NYC Board of elections official discussing election fraud operations last year is releasing CNN videos leaked to him. 

Update: James O'Keefe in a live DC press conference announces CNN whistleblowers have sent him a total of 119 hours of secretly recorded audio tapes at the CNN headquarters in Atlanta. The tapes from 2009 will be made available WikiLeaks style for the public to digest and uncover.

He notes that CNN admits to using fake and outdated polls and that this is a "new era of citizen journalism" holding the corporate media to account. O'Keefe is offering $10,000 for any whistleblower showing CNN, Fox, MSNBC "deceiving the American people" and says two additional CNN whistleblowers have come forward since the initial announcement.

The release is set to be available with more to follow on CNNleaks.com.
O'Keefe's most recent video stings showed planned terrorist attacks by "J20" on an inaugural ball's ventilation system and planned attacks to shut down the DC metro leading to the arrests of three suspects.

The video secretly recorded at Comet Pizza has been seen almost 1.5 million times.

A recorded segment from the CNN whistleblower on usage of dated polling advocated by a senior CNN Director:

CNN Whistleblower: "I read a CNN poll that was taken on June 26 and 28th, and I know that the hearing for the case, the fire fighters case was on the 29th, so the poll was done right before it, and those are still the poll results we're reporting, so I asked someone in DC who does the poll results about why we hadn't updated it, and said there were a few newer polls from last week and the week before and there's CBS news polls and a Rasmussen poll, and he said we don't use Rasmussen, and I said does CNN plan to do another poll if we're only using that. He said we're not going to be doing another poll, those are the results we'll be using. So I don't see how that's reporting all sides because that poll said hold for release until Friday the 10th."

Arthur Brice: "Who did you talk with?"

Miss X: "Paul [CNN's Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser]."

Arthur Brice: "Yeah, he's your director. Yeah, he's pretty high up in the food chain. I agree. I think it's dishonest to use outdated information if new information shows something that is in variance with what you're reporting. It's just, it's dishonest."

Talking Ed Note: CNN's Arthur Brice is no relation to this farm animal.

Mayor Dawn Zimmer fundraiser with NJ Democratic candidate for Governor Phil Murphy

Mayor Dawn Zimmer announces:

Save the Date!
You are cordially invited to join
A fundraising reception in support of
Mayor Dawn Zimmer's
2017 re-election campaign
with special guest
Ambassador Phil Murphy
Democratic candidate for Governor
Date: April 17, 2017
Location: Porter Collins
1426 Willow Ave., Hoboken, NJ
Time: 6:30 - 8:30 pm
Click here to RSVP and purchase your tickets online
As always, thank you for your support!
Mayor Dawn Zimmer

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Grist for the Mill: HoLa vs. the Hoboken BoE, round II

Ethics charges, the lowest form of NJ politics played out on the grand stage of the Soprano State is the latest riff in two of the Mile Square City's feuding public education institutions.

No one is talking on the record about the latest turn of musical chairs in the legal battle between the Hoboken BoE and the HoLa charter school but that doesn't mean it's not a public feud (or public information).

Ethics allegations likely involve three current and former members of the BoE district: Tom Kleupfel, Jennifer Evans and former BoE trustee Leon Gold. Those behind the sight unseen charges are connected to if not competing administrators at HoLA. The two sides have been embroiled in a years long legal battle over the charter school's expansion to seventh and eighth grade.

The Hoboken BoE considered the expansion encroachment and threw a red legal flag. Predictions of victory have fallen fallow as the proceedings have dragged on for years with no positive result. HoLa bruised but winning with its status quo expansion is retaliating for the bloodletting. Legal bills are into six figures all around.

Hoboken suffers from no dearth of public and private schools; it's more like a potpourri of options and with an exploding school age population, the education institutions are doing good business.

The HoLa expansion approved by the State of NJ back in March 2015 is the epicenter of the years long fight with mounting legal bills and bad blood flowing on all sides. A lawsuit filed on behalf of the BoE school district is thought underwritten by the BoE commissioners and spurred ethics charges in retaliation by HoLa forces.

Ethics allegations, legal bills and arguments on appointed lawyers covering legal bills for the BoE trustees are all part and parcel of the less than public debate. The weekend fish wrap mentions another unrelated case. It will probably require an OPRA request before sufficient details come to light.


Last night, the unheralded but very unopposed for reelection Freeholder, one Anthony "Stick" Romano attempted to celebrate his line of potential Democratic Committee candidates in the upcoming June primary at the downtown restaurant Biggies.

The event turned out to be less committee and more a sequel to Invasion of the Body Snatchers as not one but two Hoboken City Council members crashed the proceedings. Did the event have a happy ending like say the less scary and entertaining movie Wedding Crashers? Sure, if you consider sabotage a successful end to a shotgun wedding.

Oh, the council members teaming up in a tag team duo of party pile drivers punking Romano were Ravi Bhalla and Tiffanie Fisher. They played their parts as gate crashers to perfection for the sequel but the cast is all Hoboken. Perhaps Will Farrell won't mind.

A newer member or less knowledgeable member of the public in attendance in the ways of Hoboken electioneering had a more naive idea of an election day assault asking if anyone had an organized plan to sign up Vote-by-Mail applicants. Stick Romano was said to be very entertained at the notion.

Now a horse will shaddup his face or be back later with more gristy chewables. We'll decide later.

Related: Grafix Avenger blasts the weekend fish wrap for a misleading headline on the ethics allegations noting this kind of deceptive Fake News is intentional.

A horse would highlight the deception but feels the Hudson Reporter is due an apology. After all, MSV never knew the responsibility of editors to perpetuate Fake News. Well as the saying goes, we've come a long way.

One day, the Hudson Reporter editors and publishers might work their way up the ladder to the top of their profession and get a gig at CNN, the leader in Fake News. For now, this horse hears another bomb is about to drop WikiLeak style on the a fake news leader later this week. It's going to be de-lish.

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 and is protected by Da Horsey's proven Reporter Privilege upheld under the NJ Shield Law in Hudson County Superior Court. In farm animals we trust.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Crosstown Traffic: 'Observer Highway failure harms Newark Street'

The following guest submission comes from Hoboken resident Sean Iaquinto and was originally published on his website, Philly2Hoboken.

Newark Street Redesign Is An Example Of How 

Mayor Zimmer Failed

Residents who live along Newark Street can all agree on one thing - the road between Willow and Jackson has turned into a high speed mess. Ask anyone trying to cross Newark and you are literally playing with your life, cars constantly ignore pedestrians at crosswalks and zip down the street often breaking our 25 per mile speed limits. Cars ignore stop signs constantly, and it is only getting worse.
What's changed?
First, the changes to Observer Highway has caused residents to realize that it is easier to speed down Newark Street than use Observer. Observer Highway is a failure. It is an example of Dawn patting people on their heads with her stats and telling us "We know better than you". It smacks of something from the Clinton Playbook, how they tell us how the world works. We all know that we need to scrap the single lane solution on Observer. It isn't working Mrs. Mayor.
Second, there's very little police presence on Newark Street - a perfect example is how I have been reporting buses parked on the Neumann Leather sidewalk since July 2014, and very little has been done about it. I told the police, just go there at 6:45am - 7am every morning and you will see buses parked on the sidewalk. I'm a huge fan of Kenneth Ferrante, and I just feel our police need a special unit dedicated to traffic. I wrote about this before, and I believe we need more police who have one job - traffic enforcement, like the California Highway Patrol (CHiPs) - we have two officers on motorcyles that patrol the city and write tickets on double parked cars, performing speed traps, stopping jaywalking pedestrians (especially by the PATH station and Starbucks on Newark!), and so forth. I asked Dawn Zimmer last night why it was taking so long to get parking bollards up there - we keep talking and talking and nothing gets done. TWO AND A HALF YEARS. The crowd murured with approval when I mentioned how long its taking.
Third, why does 14th and Bloomfield get two dedicated people to work that street every day from 5pm to 7pm? I agree that is a busy spot, but why isn't Newark Street getting some love, especially for the folks at 415 Newark Street. They are trying to cross the street on a daily basis, and no one cares about them. Put a crosswalk guard out there, at least temporarily, until we can fix Newark Street.
Fourth, the solution that Dawn presents involves installing 24 hour a day 7 day a week flashing Pedestrian cross walk signs. I think we need to look into RRFB Pedestrian walk signs which flash on demand. Look at Newark Street at Adams and Grand and they are an eye-sore. The Zimmer plan is to install more at Willow, Clinton, Grand, Adams, Jefferson - the whole street is going to be a mess of flashing lights 24/7. What we need along Newark are better street lights and having lights that flash on demand. I have stood at Grand and Newark with Rocco and people are desensitized to the constant flashing light. They don't understand i'm trying to cross at that moment. Wheras if you push the signal, the light begins to flash, warning cars that someone wants to cross the street - at that moment. We have it at my office at work for employees to cross from the parking lot, and it works perfectly. 
I rarely come out and disagree with Dawn Zimmer, but she needs to take a serious look at fixing Observer Highway, fixing the situation at congestion on Newark and Harrison/Jackson. Her solution is making one-way streets, when the real solution is to WIDEN THE ROAD. Here's a perfect example of that at Newark between Grove and Marin. Narrow the sidewalk, create a lane of traffic.

2016-12-27_9-21-19.jpgTraffic coming from Jersey Avenue and Newark is too narrow. Did you hear about the planned construction on our borders at the old Emerson Radio Factory? They want to build 26 story buildings there. Think about all the new traffic on Jersey Avenue on our same narrow roadways. It is going to be hell to get off the turnpike and traffic will be backed up even worse.
We need less talk and more action. I fully get how Dawn Zimmer includes the public in plans, but the people last night were loud and clear. The problem is...I fully expect Dawn will pat us on our heads tell us "We know better than you" and not listen to our suggestions.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Celebrating Deep State McCarthyism on President's Day

It's President's Day, the combo package where individual greatness gets wrapped in a participation prize. If you made it to US President, you get a mention, a picture on Mount Rushmore or your photo blended in on a holiday circular.

If you're not a past US President, you qualify for a different type of sale: selling out the US Constitution. The question in the form of a narrative goes, "Have you or have any members of your family, friends and political campaign aides ever watched Dr. Zhivago and not rooted for the winning red team?" 

The Deep State motto: "I'll be watching you. Here, there, it's all the same. If watching doesn't work, we'll just make it up and say we saw. "Russ-ya! Russ-ya!" they bray or is it the new McCarthyism without any evidence? 

"Do you denounce all forms of Russian aggression devoid of the hammer and sickle, kulak attacks on the reset button and our glorious new world order where your First Amendment rights are protected by a half-dozen statist corporate media entities who will provide you the correct path to right thinking? Do you denounce as racist all who stand in our way?"

Remember the good old days when Vladimir Putin was a mere misunderstood KGB social justice warrior with bosses who slightly erred deploying socialist brotherhood and the communist utopia breaking 100 million or so eggs? It's not the erasure of a hundred million lives decried but the failure of the well meaning experiment being lost to competing oligarchs not our Soros led no borders team.

If one can put down the "Russia hacked the election" hysteria and the succeeding conspiracies with no credible evidence following Election Day for a moment, you might want to ask exactly who is eligible under the Fourth Amendment if not the current US President and members of his earlier campaign. 

Eli Lake recently dared to throw the red flag, but it's not on behalf of the previous novel utopian version.

Meanwhile the political operative lamestream press is crying its feelings were hurt at a presser because they got called out on the carpet by someone else's First Amendment expression. Their political operative bylines were fouled up and this so soon after its tragic and collective failure last November. Some excuse about racist palomino pony privilege. And this without a single palomino ever making the Budweiser Clydesdale team

The Russian threat is extending to our undocumented friends who push our strollers around the Mile Square, clean the condo and help Buffy with his HOLA! homework. Isn't it our Constitutional right to have someone else pay the bill for the undocumented's hospital, education and social services bill? Hey, the Mile Square City remains an Abbott district but that deal is now under a bit too much social justice warrior scrutiny and we're not even going to delve into unpaid social security payroll taxes.

Alright we've wandered off the path of Russia McCarthyist hysteria enough. No matter what our UN Ambassador Nikki Haley says with other US officials about the Bear's illegal aggression, let's pretend it never happened and stick to the "Russya! Russya!" conspiracy theories.

Hey, as the leftovers at the national listening agency would urge, you have to publish what they say because hey, they say they got a tape. They have lots of tapes. Boy oh boy, they're always taping. It's for your own good. Just maybe not the current person in the oval office. They're working on that Constitutional exclusion, trust them.

Lemmings are already lining up to denounce in support of the latest nouveau unreleased tapes. We now return you to your regularly scheduled deprogramming of reality on the lamestream media and CNN, the leader in Fake News.

Related: Author, screenwriter and former Time Magazine music critic Michael Walsh weighs in: "Enough with This 'Spy Game."

Friday, February 17, 2017

Third suspect in Hoboken murder arrested

Breaking developments in the murder of Adrian Rivera

SPRINGFIELD - An 18-year-old New Jersey man, wanted in connection with the Jan. 24 homicide of a man in Hoboken, was arrested Friday morning at a home in the McKnight neighborhood, officials said.
217 nj guy.JPGKeyshaun Wiggins
Keyshaun Wiggins was arrested by U.S. Marshals and local and state law enforcement after he was trailed to an apartment at 43 Bowdoin St. He had been staying at the apartment of his girlfriend, according to Marshals spokesman Dave Milne.
He was charged with being a fugitive from justice.
Wiggens is one of three suspects wanted in connection with the shooting death of  18-year-old Adrian Rivera in his family's apartment at the Andrew Jackson Gardens public housing complex in Hoboken, New Jersey.
Rivera was shot during an armed break-in at his home. The two other suspects are in custody.
The complete story:

The City of Hoboken offered this official release:

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Friday February 17, 2017

City of Hoboken, NJ

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Community: Hoboken Murder Suspect Arrested In Massachusetts

Dear MSV readers,

The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office announced today the arrest of the third suspect in connection with the January 24, 2017 murder of Adrian Rivera. Keyshaun Wiggins, age 18, of Jersey City was arrested by U.S. Marshals in Springfield, Massachusetts.

"I thank the detectives of the Hoboken Police Department and Hudson County Prosecutor's Office for their tireless work to solve this tragic crime and the U.S. Marshalls for the arrest this morning in Springfield, Massachusetts,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “I hope this provides a measure of comfort and closure to the Rivera family. We are working with the Hoboken Housing Authority on multiple security initiatives because all of our residents deserve to be safe. I thank the City Council for their support to fund new front doors to make the Housing Authority safer. By next week, the Hoboken Police Department will have remote access to the surveillance cameras within the Housing Authority. We will also be exploring additional possible funding through Community Development Block Grants to help with additional needs of the Housing Authority."

The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office issued the following press release earlier today:

Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez has released the following information:

On Friday, February 17, 2017, Keyshaun Wiggins, age 18, of Jersey City was arrested without incident by members of the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force at a residence in Springfield, Massachusetts. He is currently being held at the Springfield Community Corrections Center pending extradition proceedings. Wiggins was wanted in Hudson County for the murder of Adrian Rivera, age 18, of Hoboken.

Prosecutor Suarez credited the U.S. Marshals Service for the arrest. The Prosecutor also credited the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Unit and the Hoboken Police Department for their part in the homicide investigation.

On January 24, 2017, at approximately 3:15 p.m., Hoboken Police Officers were dispatched to 300 Marshall Drive in Hoboken on a 911 call of possible gun shots in the area. Upon arrival officers found the victim in an apartment at that location with a gunshot wound to his torso.
Rivera, who lived in the apartment, was immediately transported to Jersey City Medical Center by ambulance. He was pronounced dead at the hospital at approximately 3:50 p.m.

On Wednesday, January 25, 2017, Khalif Geiger, age 20, of Jersey City and a 17-year-old juvenile from Jersey City were arrested by detectives from the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Unit for the murder of Rivera. They were each charged with Murder, two counts of Felony Murder, Armed Robbery, Armed Burglary, Hindering Apprehension and several Firearm offenses.

On Thursday, January 26, 2017, Wiggins was charged with Murder, two counts of Felony Murder, Armed Robbery, Armed Burglary, Hindering Apprehension and several Firearm offenses and has been wanted on those charges since that date.

The above charges are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. R.P.C.3.6(b)(6).

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Michele Russo passes away

Michele Russo, the wife of former mayor Anthony Russo and mother to Councilman Michael Russo passed away early this morning after a long illness. She was 67.

Michele Russo at a 2012 Hoboken City Council meeting

Michele Russo was the former head of the previous entity of the Hoboken Parking Utility and most recently held a position with the Union City Board of Education. She had been a real estate agent in Hoboken prior and led a cheer group supporting Hoboken girls for many years.

As part of an active political family, she was involved in municipal and BoE elections over decades.

She lived with her husband at 10 Church Towers and is survived by her husband Anthony and her sons.

INSIDERNJ: Stick Romano will not run for Hoboken mayor

Yesterday, Insidernj.com a new online publication wrote Freehold Anthony "Stick" Romano will not be a candidate for Hoboken mayor.

Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano (r) won't be running for mayor
as MSV has written earlier according to Insidernj.com.
It's another three year term as freeholder he's aiming.

MSV late last month reported the same and shared those details with its premium members and highlighted part of it in a public portion of the story, "Hoboken elections, peace in our time?"

Insidernj attributes the news to an unknown Hudson source and further adds Romano will get the Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO) line with his reelection bid for freeholder.

The article pointedly notes Romano won't oppose Mayor Dawn Zimmer's bid for a third term as mayor.

The brief story concludes the HCDO won't be backing any potential mayoral bid for first term councilman Mike DeFusco

Talking Ed Note: MSV did not contact Freeholder Romano for comment at the time of publishing. We'll do so and provide a timely update.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

City Council reconvenes @ 7:00 with Pier A bond

Tonight's City Council meeting is mostly normal business operations and approvals. One item of strong interest is a major bond for repairs to Pier A park:


    The meeting is available for live viewing here: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/beta-council-meeting
Hoboken Municipal Judge Michael Mongieallo

Talking Ed Note: A passing item of interest, the Hoboken Municipal Court reports generating revenues for the City to the tune of $456,782.67.

Some years ago, this figure was well below $400,000 on a monthly basis. Judge Michael A. Mongiello runs a tight efficient ship but these are vastly significant revenue figures.

As an aside, I've stood before Judge Mongiello on too many occasions. The appearances were always due to phony criminal charges filed by some perjuring political operative or tool of the counte$$'s wannabe evil empire.

Since local politics was always somehow connected to the falsified criminal charges, the cases were immediately moved out of Hoboken. In doing so, Judge Mongiello always handled the matters with professional aplomb. One time he admonished both a horse and a Masonista wrestlemania loon on departure for not aiding anyone by misbehaving. This Horse did not have the stomach or the fool's gene to tell the judge his thoughts were well taken if inappropriate to the actual abuse of the NJ criminal code. Thou shall not bear false witness and all that old hat.

At one hearing, his dry sense of humor toward a certain employee of an uptown Washington St. "art gallery" trying to keep the case before him was deftly and swiftly booted pointing to the family owners of said art gallery. (You had to be there to appreciate it.)

Then when the head honcho herself appeared in an abuse of process attempt while still serving as a council member, he seemed genuinely saddened by the course of events before him even before routinely referencing the alleged harassment out of his Hoboken jurisdiction.

Now judge, just for the record if anyone claims this Horse committed suicide with two bullets to the back of the head, don't believe it. The top suspects would be the Iranian non-Italian unibrow who feigns being Jewish and a stinkin' rotting fish up the road - and of course their commanders.

Tight ship Judge Mongiello runs, a very tight ship. Someone should thank him for his infinite patience and service to the Mile Square City. Hey, how about a plaque honoring ceremony that really matters.

Just a thought. No one asked a farm animal.

Hoboken adds to its statewide per capita lead in affordable housing stock: how residents can apply

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Wednesday February 15, 2017

City of Hoboken, NJ

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Community: Hoboken Announces Procedures for Over 100 Units of New Affordable Housing to be Constructed Soon

Dear Horsey & MSV readers,

In the near future, 115 new units of affordable housing are planned to be constructed in Hoboken and made available to the public under new procedures to ensure that housing is available to those most in need:
  • 15 affordable housing units will be included within three different projects in Hoboken, the first such units required by Hoboken’s affordable housing ordinance. The three projects are at 600 Harrison Street (5 units), 1410 Grand Street (4 units), and 721 Clinton Street (6 units).
  • 42 affordable housing units will be constructed at 7th Street and Jackson Street as part of a recently-approved redevelopment agreement.
  • 6 affordable housing units for homeless veterans will be created as part of the redevelopment of American Legion Post 107’s headquarters at 308 2nd Street.
  • 52 affordable housing units are required by the affordable housing ordinance in three recently-completed projects. The City has prevailed and is continuing in litigation to ensure that the developers provide the units as soon as possible.
“Creating affordable housing has been a priority for my administration, and in fact we may be the only city in the state to proactively and voluntarily implement an affordable housing requirement in new residential construction,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “Our affordable housing ordinance along with newly adopted procedures will help ensure that Hoboken remains a mixed income community and that affordable housing is available to those who need it the most.”

The City of Hoboken adopted an affordable housing ordinance that generally requires a 10 percent affordable housing set-aside for residential construction over 10 units when an increase in density is provided. The City also recently adopted the Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing Plan and a guidebook entitled “Administration of Affordable Units: Policies & Procedures Manual” to set forth the policies and procedures for placing eligible individuals and families into the City of Hoboken’s affordable units. The Affordable Housing Program will provide opportunities for both affordable units for rent and for sale. Additional announcements will be made when the first rental units are marketed, which is anticipated this spring (to sign up for announcements, visit www.hobokennj.gov/alerts). Applications will be collected through a website that will be made available at that time.

In addition to the units required by the affordable housing ordinance, all redevelopment plans approved during the Zimmer administration, including Hoboken Yards, Neumann Leathers, and Western Edge, require that at least 10 percent of new residential units be affordable.

Affordable Housing Program Frequently Asked Questions 
As the first units become available, they will be “affirmatively marketed”. What does “affirmative marketing” mean? 
It means that the City will advertise the units throughout the region to attract renters/buyers. The City has adopted a specific Affirmative Marketing Plan (as required by law) to make sure the “word” gets out to as many qualified and interested persons as possible.

What does it mean to be “qualified”?
To be eligible for a unit, an interested person must submit a pre-application to demonstrate that he/she meets a number of requirements as set by the State, such as maximum income limits based on household size. While there is no set minimum income level, there are maximum income limits and limits on how much of the household’s income can be spent on housing expenses. Maximum income limits and minimum income requirements can be found at http://www.nj.gov/dca/services/lps/hss/admin_files/incomelimits.pdf. In addition, whenever possible, the household must include at least one person for each bedroom in the unit selected.

How does an interested person apply?
Interested renters/buyers will be able to apply on-line at a website operated by Community Grants Planning & Housing (CGP&H). Visit www.hobokennj.gov/alerts to sign up for announcements which will be made when the website is available for applications. For those who do not have computers, CGP&H will work with interested applicants by phone and mail.

What happens after I apply?
The City will maintain two separate waiting lists – one for ownership units and one for rental units. When the first affordable units become available for rent or sale, a lottery will be conducted of those on the specified waiting list.

What happens after the lottery is held?
In general, eligible households with the highest lottery number will be contacted and given 24 hours to respond. If they do not want the unit or fail to respond within the 24 hours, although they will not continue to be considered for that unit at that time, they also will not be removed from the waiting list and will be notified of the next available vacancy. The lottery list will be retained for future re-rentals or re-sales, or as new units become available.

So my lottery number is picked! What’s next?
The interested household will be referred to the landlord/seller to view the unit(s) and pay an application fee, if required. The landlord may establish its own non-discriminatory criteria for tenant selection. However, such tenant selection criteria are permitted only to the extent allowed by State and Federal law, and must be the same for both affordable rental units and market rate rental units.

So I have found an affordable unit that I like – what happens next? 
CGP&H will “income certify” the applicant, which involves a review of the total gross income for the upcoming 12-month period of all adult household members who will reside in the affordable unit. Gross income includes, but is not limited to: pre-tax wages, salaries, tips, commissions, alimony, overtime, pensions, social security, unemployment compensation, TANF, child support, disability, interest and dividends from assets. Child support & alimony will be calculated from decree stating amounts, whether payee is current or in arrears. All income information will be verified during the formal application process. The Manual reviews and describes all possible sources of and exclusions from – income as well as details the documents that need to be provided.

After that - For Rentals?
Once the applicant is fully income certified, the landlord is notified that it may execute a lease with the new tenant. CGP&H, as the Administrative Agent, will calculate the maximum rent allowable as permitted by the State, including lease renewals.

After that - For Sales?
Upon certification, the buyer will enter into negotiations with the seller and execute a Purchase Agreement that stipulates the terms of the closing (cost, items to be included in sale, etc.). All these terms are then set out in the Contract for Sale, the legal contract between the buyer and seller, finalizing the negotiations and setting out all material terms of the transaction. The parties then proceed to a closing whereby title to the property is transferred from seller to buyer and the affordable housing deed restriction, recapture note, and recapture mortgage are executed.

Both rental and sale units created under Hoboken’s Affordable Housing Program will be deed restricted for at least 30 years (for units required by Hoboken’s Affordable Housing Ordinance, deed restricted for 40 years) in order to ensure that the units remain affordable to low and moderate income persons wanting to live in Hoboken. While the units may be re-sold or re-leased, the affordability controls will continue to apply to the new tenants/owners. The applicant must maintain the affordable unit as their primary residence and they are not allowed to rent their home. When ownership units are sold in the future, the owner must contact CGP&H who will calculate the maximum restricted sale price and find a buyer off the waiting list.

Councilman Ravi Bhalla: Good news on parks, parking and Trader Joe's

From the desk of Councilman Ravi Bhalla:

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I am excited to share good news about what is happening locally in Hoboken. We have broken ground on new parks in western Hoboken, made historic progress in reducing flooding in Hoboken, and are getting ready to welcome the first Trader Joe’s neighborhood grocery store in Hoboken!

New Parks & New Parking Garage for Western Hoboken
The City is working successfully to double the size of the one acre Southwest Park currently under construction. I helped lead the successful fight to win City Council approval for negotiating a fair price to purchase the vacant property currently owned by Academy Bus, by eminent domain if needed. This larger park will contain storm-water detention to help prevent flooding, a dog run, and WiFi powered by solar power, among other highlights.  And progress continues on a planned large park in Northwest Hoboken to be located on the former BASF property.  The details of a temporary pop-up have been finalized and will be ready for use this summer!  Additionally, recognizing the pronounced need for more parking, the City is building a new municipal parking garage on 13th and Adams, right near the Park.  At this garage, there will be an option for valet parking and ground floor retail amenities for visitors to the park and surrounding neighborhood.

Flood Pumps Working as Envisioned
I am pleased to report that in recent storms, our newly-built H-5 11th Street flood pump worked as envisioned, providing relief from flooding to northwest residents. This pump complements the first one completed in 2011, which has reduced the flooding in southwest Hoboken.

When Mayor Dawn Zimmer was first elected to office, part of her platform was to reduce chronic flooding in Hoboken.  It’s truly a proud moment for the Mayor and many others that after years of hard work, we have seen measurable progress in achieving this goal.

Additional coastal flooding protection measures are central to Rebuild by Design, the City’s comprehensive flood protection plan   The plan is going to be paid for by a $230 million federal grant that Mayor Zimmer actively sought and successfully secured.  To protect Hoboken from future intense storms that are predicted because of climate change, the plan includes building flood protection barriers integrated into the urban landscape to resist coastal flooding, strengthening the electrical grid, and implementing green solutions, such as rain gardens and green roofs, in addition to more flood pumps.

Trader Joe’s To Open this Spring
Hoboken's first Trader Joe's neighborhood grocery store is scheduled to open in May, providing a quality supermarket for City residents.  The nearly 12,000 square foot grocery store will be located at 1350 Willow Avenue and will take up the first floor of the seven story Harlow apartment building.

It is truly an honor and a privilege to serve as one of your Council Members, and play a small role with so many others in continuing to make Hoboken even better every year.  If you every have any questions, want to provide feedback, or have a constituent service request, you can always reach me via email at councilmanbhalla@gmail.com or call me at 201-647-6090.

Ravi S. Bhalla
City of Hoboken

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

MSV featured on The Still Report

One of the intriguing aspects of "the internets" is the traffic of people frequenting MSV from locations near and far from the Mile Square City.

Yesterday's public portion of MSV Premium found one such person from the Still Report, a YouTube national news channel on the economy and Washington run by Bill Still.

Still is a former newspaper editor and publisher having written for USA Today, The Saturday Evening Post and Los Angeles Times Syndicate among others. Here is the report filed late yesterday:

Opinion: Temporary travel ban against terrorist haven states is "bigotry"

The following opinion piece is submitted by Democratic political consultant Joshua Henne.

To N.J. congressmen: If you're not battling travel ban, you're backing bigotry 
Sadly, Congressmen Chris Smith (R-N.J. 4th Dist.) and Tom MacArthur (R-N.J. 3rd Dist.) displayed profiles in cowardice by defending this executive order exploiting immigrants, endangering troops and risking the future of all Americans. 

After taking their sweet time contemplating whose side they're on, Smith and MacArthur chose the wrong side of morality and history. Thankfully, federal Judge James Robart halted the ban nationwide after finding "no support" for claims "we have to protect the U.S. from individuals" from Iran, Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen, Sudan and Libya.

However, the checks-and-balances of America's courts stopping our executive branch's unconstitutional, immoral overreach doesn't let Congress off the hook.
"The executive order is a pause as we find a way to secure and protect Americans while acting with compassion for humanitarian refugees," Smith told NJ Advance Media.

Smith's parsing of words is particularly disappointing after the name he's made for himself on humanitarian missions these past 36 years. He's won awards for work in troubled hotspots like Iraq, Darfur and South Sudan. Yet, now he's turned a blind eye towards the plight of refugees and the splitting of families with green cards from the very areas he's garnered global headlines in.
These past few weeks, while tweeting and facebooking about abortion, Smith's pro-life claims ring hollow since he hasn't uttered a peep about the vulnerable lives imperiled by the travel ban:
  • *The 4-month-old Iranian girl with a heart condition barred from travelling to Oregon for dire scheduled-surgery.
  • *The 9-year-old in a Somali refugee camp requiring treatment for congenital heart disease. 
  • *The toddler badly-burned at an Iraqi refugee camp set for follow-up surgery in Boston, but whose father can't get back to hold his son.
Turning away immigrants based on faith is decidedly un-American. It undermines our values. Even Dick Cheney said, "This whole notion that somehow we can just say no more Muslims, just ban a whole religion, goes against everything we stand for and believe in."

Some Republicans -- such as U.S. Sens. John McCain, Susan Collins and Lindsey Graham-- spoke out. Closer to home, Pennsylvania Reps. Charlie Dent (R-5th Dist.) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-8th Dist.) came out against it. New Jersey's three other Republicans, Reps. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11th Dist.). Leonard Lance (R-7th Dist.), and Frank LoBiondo (R-2nd Dist.) have also been critical. Even corporations like Coca-Cola, Apple and Amazon piped up.  
Last Summer, addressing New Jersey's delegation as the only congressman attending Trump's RNC Cleveland coronation, MacArthur declared, "Everybody for the most part is looking for the same things. People are just trying to better their lives. They're just trying to lift their families up. They're trying to get further than they started." 

Apparently, this was hollow lip service. When it came to Trump's travel ban, MacArthur "applauded him for acting," even though the measure smacks the very opposite of that lofty rhetoric.   

Farleigh Dickinson's latest poll shows 53 perent of New Jerseyans believing Trump's foreign policy inexperience leaves America more vulnerable to those who wish to do us harm. Our representatives would be wise to listen to their constituents. 

Electoral blowback will come for those supporting bigotry. But, you don't have to take my word for it. Here's just two of the hundreds of immediate rejoinders to MacArthur's Facebook post on the ban:

"In the last election I voted for you, but not Trump, because I knew what a Trump Presidency would do to this country, and it's coming true. For you to defend him puts the way of my voting for you in the future in jeopardy. Rethink your decision."

"I thought with some of your other issues you were level-headed and worked across party lines so this statement today was even more disappointing. I as a strong Democrat even voted for you because of it. Today made me question my vote...I'm very sad to see you take a stance like this."

In December, MacArthur heartwarmingly cut red tape so a soldier could formally adopt his gravely ill step-son, making the boy's Christmas wish come true. I only wish MacArthur showed the same compassion for immigrant families split apart and refugee children needing life-saving treatment. If only he'd look out for all military families by opposing measures making soldiers less safe.

Recently, 10 former bipartisan security officials and diplomats said Trump's ban could endanger troops abroad and fuel the Islamic State's recruitment and radicalization. It doesn't just propel propaganda for our enemies abroad, but frays relationships between Muslim communities and local law enforcement here at home.

On Martin Luther King Day, MacArthur tweeted a video-clip about  "living with purpose and courage" above a photo of MLK with the quote, "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
These were his last tweets for the month - through Trump's inauguration, his slew of controversial actions and the travel ban. The uncourageous silence by MacArthur and Smith have them acting like very small men, indeed.

Those supporting Trump's bigotry will be viewed the same way history casts those who supported Jim Crow or South African apartheid and those against women's suffrage or marriage equality.

Joshua Henne is a Democratic consultant and president of White Horse Strategies and can be found on Twitter at @JoshuaHenne.