Thursday, August 31, 2017

Karen Nason's video series message on 'planning for people'

Karen Nason, a candidate for Hoboken mayor is planning a video series for the next eight weeks to the November election outlining what she plans to accomplish as mayor.

She writes, "I want to be realistic and take care of the needs of a broad spectrum of residents, not just a select few."

Her newest video release speaks to 21st century urban planning. She adds, "It's not about buildings, roads and bike lanes. It's about the social life and fabric of this community. You have to plan for people as much as you plan for buildings."

Nason's latest video:

Team Giattino Petitions Are In!

Official release:

An amazing Team Giattino campaign milestone reached was today!

A total of 1,759 nominating petitions have been filed for Team Giattino for Hoboken. Enough to secure positions on the upcoming ballot for the entire team!
We are continuing our outreach and hope to get even more signatures by the September 5th deadline!

If you have not yet signed, but want to, please respond to this email, which is sent from

And you can always stop in to sign petitions and learn more about volunteering at our office at 152 Newark Street.

Thank you again for your support!

- Jen, Jim, Jason, and Sal

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Angelo Valente Files Petitions for Hoboken City Council Run

Official release:

Lifelong Hoboken Resident, Angelo Valente filed his petitions to run as an independent candidate for Hoboken City Council Tuesday. 

Valente announced his candidacy last month, with a focus on improving the quality of life for all Hoboken residents and a promise of independent leadership in the city. 

His platform is available on ValenteForHoboken.Com

Angelo Valente (center with petitions) from left Valente for Hoboken Campaign Manager Peter Jacobsen, daughter Mia Valente, Municipal Clerk James J. Farina, daughter Marietta Valente, wife Jane Cunning Valente and Municipal Deputy Clerk Jerry Lore. Not pictured, daughter Hannah Valente who is attending college.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

A tale of two ballot positions challenged

Hudson County View yesterday posted a news story of a North Bergen attorney challenging a Hoboken mayoral and freeholder candidate appearing this November on the ballot twice.

The story doesn't mention why a North Bergen attorney is so fascinated with Anthony "Stick" Romano. The attorney, Eric Dixon is quoted saying:

The petition filing deadline is a week from today and no one anticipates the Hoboken City Clerk's Office won't be accepting petitions for mayor from the Romano for mayor campaign.

For the complete story, please see the Hudson County View:

Freeholder Anthony Romano, target of a North Bergen attorney
for running for a municipal and county position this November.

Talking Ed Note: One aspect the North Bergen attorney didn't mention since Hoboken moved its municipal elections to November, Romano finds himself vying for both a municipal non-partisan position and an elected county position. As one legal beagle highlighted, the matter is a political question for the voters to decide.

North Bergen is home to the State Senator and Mayor Nick Sacco. The connections to that locale and his aide with multiple public paying positions into the hundreds of thousands annually is Joey Muniz. A reliable source indicates the attorney is acting on behalf of the Mike Defusco for mayor campaign at the direction of Muniz.

Did anyone doubt this for a minute? As they say in the land of HudCo, who benefits?

The alleged mayhem between the Romano-DeFusco camps reported back in June is how does one say, evolving.

Monday, August 28, 2017

How Jen Giattino saved the Southwest Park

There's misinformation going around in Hoboken's political universe and that's nothing new. The depths however taken by some have delved to new lows in the mayoral race.

One of the recent whoppers attempts to dismiss the pivotal fifth vote by City Council President Jen Giattino leading to passage of the Southwest Park back in September 2013. Without Jen Giattino's vote, there's no Southwest Park, end of story.

Now her "leadership" is being questioned by the concerted efforts of those on the Bhalla campaign and close to the mayor's office as part of a smear campaign.

Except the claim is not true.

In May of 2012, the initial vote passed easily with Jen Giattino in support 7-1. But the binding narrow 5-4 vote in June of 2012 preceded the final critical September vote the following year and decided the matter once and for all. Once again, Jen Giattino lent her vote in support of Mayor Zimmer's effort seeking a Southwest Park.

Site of the Southwest Park in Hoboken where before it's open, an effort at historical
revisionism seeks to undermine Jen Giattino's critical vote approving it.

Talking Ed Note: Mayor Zimmer urged the City Council to support the effort and use eminent domain to purchase nearly one acre of a surface parking lot. Jen Giattino, initially voted against eminent domain but may have preferred the City of Hoboken purchase five acres uptown later approved (at the BASF site) as a priority serving more residents. It didn't stop her from casting the decisive vote backing the Southwest Park's approval in the Hoboken City Council.

So there's the conclusive record on the Southwest Park's legislative approval and how City Council President Jen Giattino played a pivotal role in saving it.

Reform sources intimate to the years long SW Park efforts stating Dawn Zimmer would later offer her support to the idea and adopted it as an issue in her 2007 council race.

The Southwest Park is set this fall for completion.

Correction: The narrow 5-4 vote to keep the SW Park alive in June 2012 is available here:

"For the record" is a new MSV investigative column adding sunlight to the darkness on Hoboken politics.

Councilman Bhalla seeks upgrades to mass transit and infrastructure

Official release:

Councilman Bhalla Calls for Upgrading and Increasing Hoboken’s Mass Transit Options and Infrastructure
                              Says “Improvements are Needed to Keep up with Demand”
 Councilman Ravi Bhalla, candidate for Mayor of Hoboken, today called for upgrading the City’s public transportation infrastructure and increasing service on bus, rail and ferry lines in order to meet the growing demand.  Hoboken has the highest percentage of residents using public transportation to get to work in the entire United States.

Ravi Bhalla said, “Our residents deserve to have reliable, reasonably priced transportation options that can also help to reduce traffic and improve our quality of life.  As  Mayor, I will work tirelessly to advocate for the necessary investments in our mass transportation infrastructure.”
Bhalla called on New Jersey Transit to add additional north/south 126 bus routes west of Clinton Street, and add buses on the current 126 routes exclusively for uptown Hoboken.  He also urged New Jersey Transit to modernize their bus stops in Hoboken with digitally signalized arrival times, similar to what is standard in other parts of the country and world.

Free for All

A free for all is emerging among the four major mayoral campaigns as Labor Day approaches and campaign season enters full bore.

Among the indicators, a recent low key poll thought to be taken by a special interest group of developers hit an unknown amount of Hoboken homes' landlines. The margin of error and many residents only available via their mobile phones means no one is on top or out of the City Hall sweepstakes.

The Hoboken mayoral race is up for grabs as Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano, Councilman Ravi Bhalla, City Council President Jen Giattino and Councilman Mike DeFusco are all in the mix bunched up together.

It's a toss up! Hoboken voters are seeing a mayoral race swing into the fall
with all four major mayoral campaigns in position to claim the top prize.
This local business at 9th and Garden sports three campaign signs, one for Ravi
Bhalla and count'em, two for Jen Giattino. 

Romano's campaign HQ never closed from the spring freeholder campaign merely replacing the signs for office of mayor. The Bhalla campaign was aided by a head start with Mayor Zimmer's sudden withdrawal and backing but remains in the pack. The Jen Giattino campaign was last to enter but in short order has caught the leaders entering the clubhouse turn. Mike DeFusco's campaign finds itself in the mix with him campaigning almost non-stop since his February "council" fundraiser.

It's a long way to the backstretch but the acrimony is well ahead of Mile Square residents winding down summer. More than four dozen comments on last week's resignation of Mayor Zimmer's Chief of Staff who departed oddly midweek to be named campaign manager for Ravi Bhalla reference the unleashed torrent of attacks over on Sybil's Cave or as some are viewing its declarations of a burgeoning enemies lists, Hoboken Antifa.

The gutter attacks are short of the parent organization's weekend mob spree in California, heroes of the party battling "bigotry" and fascists who are hiding in plain sight. No one claims it's completely directed by the Bhalla for mayor campaign but that's where a band of City Hall insiders are launching their attacks on Jen Giattino's "leadership" and Hoboken residents who dare to publicly stray from the party line. (They want you to know they are monitoring you on social media. Yes, all of you.)

Even the death of a parent is fair game in their mob-like attacks.

The rest of this story is MSV Premium content and was released to members today. Others will see a feature "How Jen Giattino saved the Southwest Park" with her pivotal fifth vote on the City Council back in September 2013.


Friday, August 25, 2017

Scrum of a spaghetti dinner

Last night the global cooling summer made for a perfect night at Hoboken's annual spaghetti dinner. Everyone was there and with the mayoral and council at-large campaigns ready to get into overdrive. The evening proved the perfect respite before the fate of campaign follies follow.

City Council President Jen Giattino strikes a pose with her council candidate Sal Starace

BoE scrum? From left: City Council President Jen Giattino, BoE trustee Sharyn Angley, BoE candidate Chetaili Khanna, BoE Trustee Irene Sobolov, Greg Bond, BoE candidate Melanie Tekirian, Second Ward Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher, Fifth Ward Councilman Peter Cunningham, BoE trustee Sheillah Dallara. Did you get all that?

Freeholder Anthony "Stick" Romano arrives and made his presence felt across the length and breadth of the dinner.

Councilman Ravi Bhalla has a lighthearted moment as Director Leo Pellegrini stands nearby.

Councilman Mike DeFusco indicates this many Vote-by-Mails are being lined up right now.
The pile is apparently growing exponentially as he speaks. 

Ghosts of NHSA commissioners past?
Kurt Gardiner's spider sense kicks in as Frank "Pupie" Raia lurks nearby.

Councilman Dave Mello (l) greets Dan Tumpson.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Jen Giattino: 'Hoboken residents deserve a mayor to represent you'

The following report comes courtesy of the Hudson County View:

Hoboken Council President Jen Giattino told supporters “you all deserve a mayor that’s actually running for mayor to represent you and makes Hoboken come first” at a fundraiser at the Pilsener Haus Biergarten last night.

From the article:

“We all need a mayor who actually thinks Hoboken is their home and is running for mayor not because they want to be freeholder, or want to be a Congresswoman, or Assemblywoman … you all deserve a mayor that’s actually running for mayor to represent you and makes Hoboken come first.”

For the complete story please the Hudson County View:

Hoboken Reformer Kurt Gardiner on the mayoral candidacy of Jen Giattino

Kurt Gardiner, a NHSA commissioner and executive committee member on the Hoboken Democratic Committee speaks on backing City Council President Jen Giattino for mayor.

He's taken a lot of heat and gotten the cold shoulder for not following the party line. His criticisms have been pointed on the Bhalla for mayor campaign but his perspectives on what should drive the Hoboken mayoral race differentiates him as a Democrat who knows nationalizing the mayoral campaign does not serve Hoboken's best interest.

There's more than $230 million reasons why attached to the Rebuild by Design federal program.
Who do you think signs off on granting quarter billion dollar projects in the federal government?

It isn't Mayor Zimmer or any council or Hudson County official.

Kurt Gardiner says "Jen Giattino will be a great mayor because of the way she's performed on the City Council."

Talking Ed Note: My view is Kurt Gardiner is known in reform circles for being level-headed, thoughtful and consistent. You won't see any bad analogies from him comparing one fringe of violent rabble participating in political violence as better than another.

Let's hope if a gathering to support the First Amendment is held in Hoboken, there won't be a certain mayoral campaign attempting to cynically hijack and nationalize it followed by the usual bunch of hooded scum attacking citizens.

People who make it a habit around the country of throwing open bottles of urine at police, macing, clubbing and attacking Americans is not in any shape or form being a "protestor." Anyone in Sybil's Cave, City Hall or a mayoral candidate/campaign supporting political violence arguing they are "fighting bigotry" deserves not a single vote of support this November.

Attacking a horse who is out doing a job is equally appalling. Rioting is not protesting. You dig?

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Sign of the Times: Pilsener Haus is sprinkled with the Jen Giattino dust

A perfect late August evening at the Pilsener Haus was the setting for the Jen Giattino for Mayor campaign event.

With City Council President Jen Giattino attending the event her council slate: Hoboken Zoning Board of Adjustment Chair Jim Aibel, Sal Starace and Jason Ellis.

With council members Peter Cunningham and Tiffanie Fisher on hand about 100 people attended to press the flesh and speak with the candidates.

City Council President Jen Giattino addresses the room at the Pilsner Haus earlier this evening with her council
slate in attendance: Jim Aibel, Sal Starace and Jason Ellis on hand. 

BoE district candidates for November


Here are the candidates filed to run for Hoboken Board of Eduction this November:

Three candidates will be elected for 3 Year Terms

Sharyn Angley*
Melanie B. Tekirian
Chetali Khanna
Patricia Waiters
Peter Biancamano*
Lauren Eagle
Anne Marie Schreiber
Bryan Angley
Jennifer Brennan

* denotes incumbent 

For the love of 1984

Late August seems like an appropriate time to pause and ponder the wealth of ideals surrounding us.
Here's the original film 1984, the first rendition of George Orwell's famous book "1984" brought to celluloid.

It's an appropriate time to sit back and read the original but take a gander at the first 10 minutes and see if it reminds you of anything.

War is Peace; Ignorance is Strength; Freedom is Slavery... Violence defeats "Bigotry?"

Talking Ed Note: Wouldn't you know one of those slogans found its way into a Hoboken mayoral campaign. Nationalize, yes nationalize my friends and you will be freed of all common sense.
May your hate and embrace of disinformation deliver the State a powerful ceaseless victory.

Related: Over on, Al Sullivan of the Hudson Reporter is accused of thought crimes.
One can only guess where this hysteria of stupidity against the First Amendment may end.
Apparently, it won't be ending today. Good luck and hang in there Al.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017


Official release:

Mayor Dawn Zimmer announced that Transportation and Parking Director John Morgan will be resigning from his position effective Friday, September 1st, 2017 to pursue other professional opportunities and that her Chief of Staff Vijay Chaudhuri will be serving his last day tomorrow, Wednesday, August 23rd

“I thank Director Morgan for his years of service to Hoboken,” Mayor Zimmer said. “He played a key role in helping our team advance the Washington Street redesign project, Southwest traffic circulation plan, Newark Street safety improvement project, Sinatra Drive shared use path, pay-by-phone parking option, bike share program, upgrades to the Hop shuttle, and many other projects that have improved the safety and quality of life of our community. I wish him continued success as he takes his next steps in his career.”

Mayor Zimmer will be appointing Ryan Sharp as Acting Director of the Department of Transportation and Parking. Mr. Sharp has served as Principal Planner in the department for the past 6 years.

“Vijay has seen Hoboken through many challenges and has been a valuable team member in many of our accomplishments for our City’s residents,” Mayor Zimmer explained regarding his decision to move on to other opportunities at this time. “I thank him very much for his strong dedication to our City and wish him the very best in the future.”

Mayor Zimmer Chief of Staff resigns; named campaign manger for Bhalla for Mayor

Official release:

Bhalla for Mayor Names Vijay Chaudhuri as Campaign Manager 

Ravi Bhalla, candidate for Mayor of Hoboken, today named Vijay Chaudhuri, who is leaving his position as Chief of Staff to Mayor Dawn Zimmer, as his Campaign Manager. Chaudhuri brings an in-depth understanding of Hoboken politics as well as demonstrated political and organizational skills to the task. Before serving as Zimmer’s Chief of Staff, Vijay Chaudhuri worked in a number of capacities for US Representative Joe Crowley (D-NY), including serving as Campaign Manager on one of his re-election campaigns. Chaudhuri has also served as Campaign Manager of Edison Mayor Jun Choi’s re-election campaign.

Vijay joins Christian Duffy, who is serving as Field Director, on the campaign staff. Duffy served as Deputy Field Director for Jim Johnson in his Gubernatorial campaign, and as a Regional Organizing Director for the Hillary Clinton for President campaign, among other campaigns he has worked on around the nation. In 2015, he was the Get-Out-The-Vote(GOTV) Director for the Zimmer-backed Council candidates in Hoboken.

 Ravi Bhalla said,“ I am pleased that Vijay is coming on board full time. Together with Christian, he gives us a strong ground team to lead us to victory on November 7th.”

INSIDERNJ: Jen Giattino - "I'm going to win!"

In INSIDERNJ interview, City Council President Jen Giattino says "I'm not splitting the vote; I'm running for mayor and I'm certain I'm going to win."

In an story released on INSIDERNJ, Council President Jen Giattino is looking toward the November 7th Hoboken mayoral election and sees good things for her mayoral candidacy.

With three other mayoral competitors in the mix, the three time and current City Council President sees her six year record on the City Council of consensus building with others as one reason her mayoral candidacy will be propelled to victory.

Three time and current City Council President Jen Giattino predicts
a great November with a victory in her mayoral bid.

Giattino's record of working with others and constituent service is emphasized.  The article also highlights how an overview of approaching the City is missing. "Our biggest problem is planning and not looking at the city holistically," and points to Hoboken's north end.

For more see the INSIDERNJ article:

Talking Ed Note: Although Jen Giattino is up against three other mayoral candidacies likely all better funded, much if not most of that support comes in money from outside Hoboken. "Jen Giattino's support comes from the grassroots in Hoboken," one well-placed source close to the Giattino campaign said. Even with vacation season in full swing for many Hoboken residents the source added, "Jen's campaign is a locomotive picking up steam and it's rolling."

Over the weekend the Jen Giattino mayoral campaign opened a new campaign office at 152 Newark Street. The campaign office downtown means all four major mayoral campaigns are set up for a big push toward November.

Kurt Gardiner, a long time Reformer in Hoboken and the current Sargent-at-Arms for the Hoboken Democratic Committee endorsed Jen Giattino for Mayor on Monday. After reading the INSIDERNJ article compared her to Joe Namath the famous NY Jets Quarterback who predicted a Super Bowl victory.

City Council President Jen Giattino's new campaign office at 152 Newark Street as pictured here courtesy of Kurt Gardiner who also supplied the Joe Namath meme. 

Peter Cunningham: Join me and meet Jen Giattino & her council slate tomorrow at the Pilsener Haus

Official release:

Good evening Friends and Neighbors, 

Come meet Jen, and her council slate Wednesday night at the Biergarten.

Thanks, Peter

Monday, August 21, 2017

Kurt Gardiner slams Ravi Bhalla's "cynical ploy" to nationalize Hoboken's election; endorses Jen Giattino for mayor

Kurt Gardiner, long time Hoboken reformer, NHSA commissioner and Sergeant-at-Arms Hoboken Democratic Committee man says Ravi Bhalla is attempting to distract voters and create division; makes endorsement of Jen Giattino for Mayor

Kurt Gardiner in an interview with the weekend paper came out with a blistering critique of Councilman Ravi Bhalla, a candidate for Hoboken mayor. He shredded the Bhalla campaign for its attempts to nationalize the Hoboken mayoral election decrying it "a cynical ploy" to distract voters from the local issues.

The long time supporter of the Hoboken Reform Movement who has backed its positions and candidates including Ravi Bhalla in the past, ran with Bhalla' wife as his partner on the local Democratic committee last June prior to his announcing an endorsement of Jen Giattino for mayor.

Gardiner detailed his earlier comments and offered an additional statement for this story. "Hoboken needs a reboot (in the Reform Movement) and that's why I support support Jen Giattino for mayor," he stated in the weekend publication.

Long time Reformer and Sargent-at-Arms on the Hoboken Democratic Committee
Kurt Gardiner endorsed Jen Giattino for Hoboken mayor. 

In an earlier statement, Gardiner offered, "I am proud to support Jen Giattino for Mayor. Local issues are what matter in this critical election and Jen's platform is progressive in that it calls for responsible development and affordable housing for those of less means with a good dose of fiscal stewardship."

In addition, Gardiner explained his reasoning saying as a registered Democrat who did not vote for the president, "... people have the right to express themselves on the national issues as they see fit. However, I would like to see an emphasis on local issues that matter to Hoboken."

The heat turned up when Gardiner stated, "I view Ravi Bhalla's attempt to incorporate national issues into the mix as a cynical ploy to distract voters from the local issues and create an unnecessary division in our electorate."

Breaking the election down this November, Gardiner suggested the Hoboken voters would see beyond the failed baton toss from Mayor Zimmer to Councilman Ravi Bhalla. "The Hoboken electorate is intelligent and many I have spoken to see through this ruse. Additionally they are not necessarily robotically following Mayor Zimmer's coronation/endorsement, as many do not want an extension of Mayor Zimmer's third term. Many good things happened on Zimmer's watch but there are still some areas of concern," he wrote"

He didn't end there.

Gardiner sent in a statement to MSV writing, "My opinions expressed in the Hoboken Reporter are my own as an observer of Hoboken politics over the last 12 years. I evaluated where I was with my campaign's viability and have decided to suspend it after getting about 220 signatures. The path to being elected I feel was too narrow given the number of candidates and political noise."

Then the long time backer of the Hoboken Reform Movement proceeded to uncork a flamethrower writing, "Since giving that interview (to the paper) my concerns about what is happening with some of the nefarious activities and attitudes by the Bhalla campaign have only been magnified."

Gardiner laid out some of those concerns with a number of swirling allegations rumored about the Bhalla campaign in recent weeks. Among them: arm twisting private citizens for Facebook endorsements, misinformation to residents about petitions in a phony effort to "knock Jen Giattino off the ballot" and the actions to keep Jen Giattino from possibly entering the race after Mayor Zimmer laid waste to any Reform concept of transparency when she suddenly withdrew from the November election and simultaneously announced Councilman Ravi Bhalla as her replacement with an endorsement.

Gardiner has seen personal attacks recently on Grafix Avenger; the local satirical website deemed Sybil's Cave here for its intolerance of anyone not backing Ravi Bhalla for mayor. Gardiner who like MSV and others saw comments deleted there left one last comment slamming the lack of "journalistic integrity" and "leaking private conversations."

Regarding the personal attacks there he wrote, "Key supporters of Ravi have been insinuating all sorts of lies about me under varying screen names just because I don't support their candidate. It is not even September yet. I can only imagine how bad it can get from here. Not a good reflection on the candidate and reminiscent of Beth Mason's historic 3rd place finish in 2009."

The long time Reformer ripped the temperament of the "Bonkers for Bhalla website editor," and mocked a possible shadow mayoralty under a would-be Bhalla administration closing with, "Just remember the shadow knows! The shadow knows!"

Gardiner says he wrote the following comment with minor edits from the original on Sybil's Cave:
There is no constructive dialogue going on here just Bitter Bhalla Backers who are devoid of sound argumentation skills. The commenters on here are the real hanky brigade.

Just because I occasionally comment on another blog and tend to see eye to eye more with that blogger on local issues does not mean I support his national views. Quite to the contrary. That attempt to link me with him on that front is weak and disgusting.

It is unfortunate that Bhalla supporters call anyone not religiously following the Mayor's endorsement stupid, juvenile or a white nationalist.

No mayor has done more for infrastructure than Zimmer but I simply believe we have a better option than Ravi for Mayor. Elections are about choices. I am glad to have a choice. 

Enjoy your echo chamber of silly sycophants. No point in staying here for ridiculousness on display here.

And since the author of this blog is leaking private conversations violating any shred of journalistic integrity she might have had, I will share with you what that blog said to me because I caught the Bhalla campaign forcing a a fake Facebook endorsement.

"Go fuck yourself" Yep. That is the temperament of Bonkers for Bhalla website editor. Way to be a positive ambassador Nancy! You go girl! 

Just remember the shadow knows! The shadow knows! 

Talking Ed Note: Kurt Gardiner's decision not to run for City Council is a practical and personal one.

MSV did not contact Grafix Avenger for comment on this story. The hostility of censorship there has led to some unfortunate false accusations about this website so; you lost your Stable privileges and that's why they call you Loser.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Live interview with mayoral candidate Anthony Romano

The following interview took place earlier today at the Romano for Mayor headquarters on Washington St.

The interview comes courtesy of the Hudson County View and was recorded live with questions from editor John Heinis.

Freeholder Anthony Romano confirms the rumor that his third council at-large ticket will be completed with Buddy Matthews, the former Hoboken High School baseball coach.

Update on Washington Street Project

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City of Hoboken, NJ

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Community: Update on Washington Street Project

Dear MSV readers,

Recently there have been a number of inquiries from residents about ongoing construction as part of the Washington Street project. Below is an update with information addressing some of the most common topics.  The project is expected to be completed by summer of 2018. For the latest updates and additional information, visit

Through the multi-year community planning process for the Washington Street project, we learned that our community's top priority was pedestrian safety - with 98% of residents saying it was important to them and the vast majority supporting the use of curb extensions.

Curb extensions are one of the most effective pedestrian safety measures and are recommended by all federal, state, and local engineering design manuals. They prevent dangerous illegal parking in crosswalks, improve the ability of crossing pedestrians and drivers to see each other, reduce pedestrian crossing distances and exposure, and slow turning vehicles, which is a major cause of pedestrian collisions along Washington Street.

In addition to a high frequency of vehicle-pedestrian collisions along the corridor, a senior citizen was struck and killed by a turning vehicle as she was crossing Washington Street in 2015. As is often the case, the driver said that poor visibility was the reason for the crash. Curb extensions improve visibility between drivers and pedestrians, and by slowing turning vehicles, they help ensure that if a collision does occur, the injuries are minimized and the chance of survival increases dramatically.

Curb extensions don’t extend into the travel lane – they take up less space than a car parked car at the curb - so they don’t block traffic. As part of the design phase of the project, turning templates were performed for all vehicles including fire trucks using Hoboken specific fire truck sizes, and the curb extensions are designed to accommodate these turning movements.

The attached diagram shows the turning template for a Hoboken-specific fire truck at a typical intersection indicating that there are no encroachments.

The City is adding over 50 new trees through the Washington Street project. This is in addition to approximately 30 new trees that were planted between 1stStreet and 5th Street in the past few years through the Shade Tree Commission’s Washington Street Beautification Initiative. For this project, three trees have been removed and 16 more are planned to be removed due to utility conflicts such as drainage improvements. We are working to save or replant existing trees where possible, including an evaluation by the project engineer to determine if possible drainage alternatives would result in keeping some or all trees. No more trees will be removed until the City has reviewed the engineer’s report. The City also conducted a walkthrough with the Resident Engineer of the project and a representative from the Shade Tree Commission to evaluate which trees were likely to survive a replanting. An arborist and landscape architect are also evaluating if the t rees can survive replanting and where they could be replanted.

Talking Ed Note: The Washington St. project suffers from a number of issues most critically the timing and complaints about curb extensions or bump outs. 

MSV has been fielding numerous complaints about the bump outs, mostly connected to concern on emergency vehicles inability to navigate them at critical times. The appearance here of the "vast majority" supporting them means an avalanche of complaints are likely reaching City Hall too. 

The City Council has expressed concern and Councilman Ruben Ramos has been vocal saying it's a mistake. There's been no action on the funding which was passed comprehensively as part of the overall plan. Previously, the public by a huge margin rejected the concept of installing separate bike lanes on Washington St. 

Mayor Zimmer alienated many in the public with her insistence on dedicated bike lanes on Washington Street. She clearly wants to regulate the flow of traffic on Washington St. The curb extensions are another means for her to do so.

Even with a costly adjustment later, some mayoral candidates are likely to criticize the construction of the ongoing Washington St. construction for this and other reasons. 

The Washington St. Project was originally slated for completion before the November election. Then the objective slipped to complete half of the street by that time. 

It's doubtful Hoboken will see half of Washington St.'s reconstruction complete by Election Day. The project is officially rescheduled to continue well into 2018. 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

DeFusco Plan: Turn Hudson River into Beach Blanket Bingo

According to a story on the Hudson County View, Councilman Mike DeFusco plans to turn Hoboken's riverfront into a "floating pool and urban beach" if he's elected.

The plan as envisioned is unclear if it will include a reunion of the Village People and Beach Blanket Bingo for seniors.

The new beach line replacing the Hudson River in the imaginings of new energy from Councilman Mike DeFusco.

For more of this Hudson County View story, see:

Talking Ed Note: Just what Hoboken needs, a public place on the waterfront for urination from a bunch of bathers. Don't even ask where the money would come from for construction and maintenance of this summer sales job.

Don't ask too many questions either. One Hoboken resident on Facebook yesterday noted he was blocked  on a Mike DeFusco Facebook page after asking questions. Hey, don't ask questions, just write a comment on how wonderful the candidate is and move on.

Hey, don't you know a lot of people from outside Hoboken invested a whole lot of money in the kid. You want to mess with their investment?

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

DeFusco and Mello go mano a mano

Instagram, the land of friendly pictures of kittens, puppies and fauna turned into the site of political brawling yesterday.

Councilman Dave Mello who was announced yesterday joining the Romano for Mayor council at-large slate had a few choice words on the Instagram account of Councilman Mike DeFusco yesterday.

It started with publication of this by Councilman Mike DeFusco:

DeFusco included a short video where Councilman Dave Mello criticized Hudson County  for the large tax increases on Hoboken. In recent years it's increased over 50% and is now the largest portion of the taxes Hoboken residents pay.

He added a sidebar comment saying Mello "found himself excluded from every other mayoral ticket."

Councilman Dave Mello was incensed and replied:

Talking Ed Note: Well, there's the beginnings of another front opening up in the November election.

Council candidate Joshua Einstein: "If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix it"

Official release

Governments in general, and the current occupants of Hoboken City Hall in particular, often go with solutions in search of problems. From the ongoing Washington Street Destruction Plan, to the Benches for Beggars (which replaced parking by the downtown CVS with red chairs and tables), to repeated back and forth efforts to “fix” traffic in the south and southwest of town, the majority of our current crop of political “leaders” are victim to their own groupthink and hubris. An attitude of doing something because they can and of confusing their preferences with the priorities of our urban community have sadly become pervasive.

Naturally, these “leaders” have consulted with handpicked “experts.” They have undoubtedly conducted a “study”  (or two) with an engineering firm that clearly has no interest in having repeat business, has an 100% immunity to confirmation bias, and in no way, shape, or form, would ever return the results it was asked to sign off on to secure said future continued business. The reality is that it doesn’t take the people of Hoboken an expensive study to know that traffic has gotten worse on Observer Highway and that the Washington St Destruction Plan includes dangerous curb extensions and kills parking spots on the Avenue. The people know Court St isn’t a project to be taken up for the County Board of Freeholders because it’s not one of the handful of county roads our taxes pay so much (and get so little in return) for.

From barely used bike lanes on main streets to tax dodging schemes called PILOTs (Payment in Lieu of Taxes), our city leaders have done things based on their conception of their public image not for the betterment of Hoboken, the bottom line of the taxpayer, or to help ease the schlep in and out of town for the car driving commuter. This pattern of negative behavior is worse than the benign neglect many of my fellow council candidates have engaged in with their silence on the issues.

When elected to city council I will not be silent, I will see if proposed solutions actually address a real substantive problem facing our city or are more of them same attempts by many to “make their mark”. Hoboken has real issues, perennial flooding, a high cost of living, an anti-small business climate, a shortage of housing stock, and an extreme deficient of parking. When elected, I will ensure our city council doesn’t ignore these problems by inventing others.

Joshua Einstein is a member of the New Jersey Republican State Committee and the Hudson County Regional Jewish Council. He co-founded a Democrat-Republican Dialogue group which alternates meetings between Hoboken and Jersey City. He writes a regular column for a north Jersey community newspaper and has been published in over 14 sites and newspapers. He walks dogs in town and is an Executive Board member of the New Jersey State Young Republican Federation.

Bhalla Blasts Trump on Charlottesville

Official release:

Statement of Councilman Ravi Bhalla, candidate for Mayor of Hoboken, on President Trump's Comments on Charlottesville

" President Trump's comments yesterday on Charlottesville  were a failure of moral leadership. Let's be clear. There can be no moral equivalence between white supremacists and neo-Nazis, and those who stand up to bigotry. There can be no "fine people" who march with those chanting racist words. More than ever, for our neighborhoods, communities, and schools we need a message of calm, healing, and affirmation of our nation's highest ideals."