Monday, October 29, 2018

Councilmembers Jen Giattino, Peter Cunningham & Tiffanie Fisher denounce Local 825 bullying of Councilman Jim Doyle

Official release:

Councilmembers Condemn Attack Ad By Local 825 Union Against Hoboken Councilman Jim Doyle; Cite Ties to Mayor Bhalla; Call for Elected Officials to Denounce Bullying Tactics

Hoboken, NJ – At the end of last week, Elec 825, an affiliate of the Local 825 Operating Engineers union, ran an attack ad against Hoboken Councilman Jim Doyle on NJ12 criticizing Doyle for his “No” vote on the proposed Hilton hotel in Hoboken; a vote that was inconsequential in the 8-1 outcome.  

Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla’s election campaign benefited from $85,000 in advertising spend through the Stronger Foundations PAC which is funded by Elec 825.  Doyle ran with Mayor Bhalla on his ticket and is seen as a close ally of the mayor’s.  

Hoboken City Councilmembers Peter Cunningham, Tiffanie Fisher and Jen Giattino, respond to the bullying of their colleague Councilman Jim Doyle:

“The commercial was both troubling in its attack on Jim for his vote as it was in its messaging to all Hoboken elected officials – vote “yes” or else.  This type of bullying by a union, or any large contributor, will not be tolerated. ” said Councilman Cunningham.

The Hotel proposed by Mayor Bhalla is 20% larger than what was previously passed by the City Council in April 2017.    

“Jim, along with then-Councilman Bhalla before he was elected mayor, consistently voted for a more moderate hotel.  Jim, however, held to his beliefs, voted accordingly and should not have to be subjected to such public threats.” – Council Vice President Jen Giattino

The only public responses given by Mayor Bhalla and the union can be found in Hudson County View’s article from Friday.  While no apologies were made to Councilman Doyle, Mayor Bhalla claims he received an apology from the union, whereas Mike Makarski, Elec 825 spokesman, gave a conflicting message and stated that the union stands behind the message in the ad.  The Hoboken mayor in his comments goes on to say how the unions will continue to be rewarded despite their bullying tactics.  

“The messages here are alarming on many levels. For Hoboken residents who should be concerned that our mayor’s alliance with the unions comes first, but also for Jim and other elected officials across the state where the message is clear - if you run afoul of the Local 825 Operating Engineers union, you will pay politically.  Neither is acceptable.”  - Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher

All three councilmembers stated in unison, “We support Jim and his vote and ask that all other Hoboken elected officials do the same and renounce the bullying tactics employed against him.”  

Although the redevelopment agreement with KMS Development for the Hilton hotel passed on October 17th, the vote on the second (and final) reading of the redevelopment plan amendment will be November 7th.   You can watch the attack ad in its entirety below.

Ravi Bhalla on union attack ad against Jim Doyle, "I'm with them"

Mayor Ravi Bhalla comes out of the cold on union attack ad siding with the construction union and throwing Councilman Jim Doyle under the bus

An outtake from the construction union TV ad run against Councilman Jim Doyle.
The commercial appeared on local TV Thursday and was first published on MSV last Friday.

Hoboken 's rookie mayor Ravi Bhalla came in from the cold late Friday finally making it clear who he stands with in a construction Local 825 union TV ad attacking "ally" Councilman Jim Doyle.

'I'm with them' Bhalla let the world know as he declared his allegiance with the construction union that doled out approximately $85,000 a year ago in TV ads to see him win a controversial mayoral election.

Bhalla said he reached out to the union "who are friends and supporters" letting them know about his personal relationship with Councilman Jim Doyle and said "they immediately took it down and apologized to me" according to a late updated Friday story on the Hudson County View.

They didn't know?

The union TV ad appeared Thursday with MSV publishing the commercial last Friday.

Bhalla added his ties to the construction union are strong insisting development labor in Hoboken ahead will continue signaling major redevelopment is in his plans for the Mile Square City.

One political critic who saw the tepid statements but declined to make it public fearing retaliation said, "When you're bought, you stay bought and Ravi knows he's bought."

Councilman Jim Doyle apparently received no such apology publicly or privately from the construction union, Local 825. To the humiliation of being tossed under the bus, public exchanges on Facebook proved frustrating with one local activist whereupon he exited saying, "I'm out of here."

A spokesman for the union, Mike Markarski was clear in not offering any public apology to Mayor Bhalla nor Councilman Doyle saying, "Councilman Doyle's vote against the first major redevelopment agreement of the Bhalla administration was a miscalculation."

Markarski would also slam Doyle for speaking out against an upcoming billion dollar power plant planned in North Bergen. Doyle is currently planning to introduce a resolution slamming the power plant at an upcoming council meeting according to local government sources.

Snippet of the controversial "terror flyer" used to get Ravi Bhalla elected last year according to rumors by those in the know.

Talking Ed Note: Rumors continue to fly about the less than publicly acknowledged support putting Ravi Bhalla into the mayor's chair.

What can a terror flyer do for you?