Sunday, February 28, 2010

Two Slates Good - Three Slates Bad - BOE Update

Update 7:10 PM Nathan Brinkman left me a voicemail message and confirmed that he will not be running for School Board this time around. I also need to print a correction, Nathan is a co-founder of Hoboken Republicans but not the president.

"Two slates good, Three slates bad"

Update at 1:10PM: Another source has confirmed that Nathan Brinkman has indeed picked up BOE petitions. The plot thickens.

Update at 1PM: This just in. Another source who wishes to remain anonymous has just emailed me that he/she spotted Nathan Brinkman at least meet up with Maureen Sullivan once last week. That was last Tuesday. This makes the connection between the two regarding the BOE race a little less loose and the intrigue all the more palpable.


Tomorrow March 1st is the deadline for the BOE petitions to be filed for the upcoming BOE election in April. Kids First has finalized their slate of Four BOE members and will make their announcement tomorrow.

A source of mine has also let me know that former candidate for Mayor Nathan Brinkman is considering a slate himself. Nathan Brinkman aka "The Red Elephant" is president a co-founder and active member of Hoboken Republicans http://www.hobokenrepublicans.com/ and Maureen Sullivan seems to have found a safe haven over there with her recent cyber blasts against all things Kids First. That is the only link I am aware of the puts Maureen with Nathan but it does indicate the possibilities.

If Maureen is hoping to ignite the Republican base with an alliance with Brinkman it might yield fewer votes than she expected. There is a second Republican group that has been recently formed in Hoboken called Republicans of Hoboken who in my opinion collectively have a much more reasonable take on fiscal reform and austerity. Several people in confidence have said to me that there was a break due to Nathan's lack of initiative with the organization. Has anyone ever seen Nathan at a BOE meeting? I haven't. This could be an issue of legitimacy should he decide to run.

Here is wishing Frank Raia a speedy recovery from his recent surgery. Just because I disagree with Frank Raia politically doesn't mean I wish him any ill health. I hear that he is doing fine after his surgery and is reportedly on the way to good health so things are looking up in "Pupie-ville". This is especially true with Maureen Sullivan's break from Kids First that must have some old school BOE Hobokenites salivating in a Pavlovian response to bring back the days of low show HVAC coordinators and other patronage plums.  A split in reform plays right into the "Pupsters" hands whether or not her decides to run.

There is a lot of speculation as to whether or not Frank Raia will run for school board or not since he basically runs in every race since I have been in Hoboken. Theresa Burns and Carrie Gilliard are likely out due to what I understand to be a change in residence outside of Hoboken. As far as the Old Hoboken slate, there has been very little buzz, almost an eerie calm before the political storm. Anthony Oland, HOLA Charter School Advocate is another consideration and there are likely others not on my radar at this moment.

Scott Delea, who endorsed Roberts in 2005 and also ran for City Council in 2005 and 2007  has made overtures to Kids First and has been said to be looking for a slate to run with. I am not trying to slam Scott  but this observation needs to be made: perhaps Kids First reluctance to put him on the slate has to do with their uncertainty of what he stands for.

Another resident and father plans to possibly run as an independent for the one year term that was made available due to Phil DeFalco's resignation. His issues have to do with the actions of Interim Superintendent Peter Carter that have possibly called him into action. We will know for sure Monday. For now lets just call him candidate X. I see no point in revealing this person unless they decide to run and more importantly I always keep my word.

Three positions that are up are for 3 years and one is for a one year term. A lot is at stake. Will we see two or more slates in opposition to Kids First or will it be mono e mono with Kids First vs. a unified opposition? All will be revealed tomorrow.  To borrow from George Orwell in his book "Animal Farm", "two slates good, three slates bad." At least from a reform perspective.

My Comment: Just to be clear I have supported Kids First in the past as well as Maureen Sullivan independently in 2008. It is important to let my readers know where I stand so they can make their own judgments above what is written above. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Photo of the Day - View of Hoboken Waterfront from Stevens

Today's photo of the day was taken yesterday from Stevens Institute. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Photo of the Day - "Two Feet of Snow"

Two Feet of Snow

Today's photo of the day is a reader submission that is at the core of my inner punologist....
"Two feet of Snow". Finally, a pair of feet bigger than mine. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Hoboken Women for Change event Saturday February 27 @ Jubliee Center

Reminder- Event is today starting at 11:30am.


A new womens' group in Hoboken has been formed and it is called Hoboken Women for Change. It is a community-based organization comprised of women who believe in advancing the community’s interests. It is a non-partisan group and open to everyone regardless of their political beliefs or background.

Our objective is to provide a forum for women to promote civic engagement at a local level. The group is driven by community issues and enables women to move forward collectively to facilitate action. This group provides an opportunity to bring women from different backgrounds together to make a valuable contribution to our community.

Hoboken Women for Change are collaborating with the Jubilee Center for our first event on Sat, Feb 27th, 11.30am-2.30pm at the Jubilee Center. Please see attached flier for details (in jpeg and pdf). It is a community event packed with entertainment for all ages and it is all for a great cause. We want everyone to come along and support a community cause locally and overseas while meeting new friends and neighbors.

Thanks.

Organizing Committee (in formation)
Bindya Bhalla
Stacy Mello
Susan Chait
Jennifer Giattino
Pam Laden
Laura Siegel
Tali Gillette
Tracey Schnabel ◦
Share/Bookmark

Friday, February 26, 2010

Come Fly Away - New Broadway show with music from Old Blue Eyes - Opening March 25th

From the visionary creator of the Tony award winning Movin' Out comes Broadway's new musical love affair......
Come Fly Away
 

A New Musical
Conceived, Choreographed and Directed
by
TWYLA THARP

Vocals
by
FRANK SINATRA


Begins Preview Performances March 1, 2010
With an Opening Night of March 25, 2010
at Broadway’s Marquis Theatre


The new Broadway musical, COME FLY AWAY, conceived, choreographed, and directed by Tony Award-winner Twyla Tharp and featuring vocals by Frank Sinatra, will open this spring at the Marquis Theatre (1535 Broadway). Previews will begin on Monday, March 1, 2010 with an opening night slated for Thursday, March 25. COME FLY AWAY played its sold-out, critically lauded world premiere engagement at Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre this fall.

COME FLY AWAY, the new musical from visionary director/choreographer Twyla Tharp, follows four couples as they fall in and out of love during one song and dance filled evening at a crowded nightclub. Blending the legendary vocals of Frank Sinatra with a live on stage 19-piece big band and 15 of the world’s finest dancers, COME FLY AWAY weaves an unparalleled hit parade of classics, including “Fly Me To The Moon,” “My Way,” and “That’s Life” into a soaring musical fantasy of romance and seduction.

The show’s score combines classic and newly discovered vocal performances from the Sinatra archives along with signature arrangements (Nelson Riddle, Billy May, Quincy Jones) as well as brand new charts for this fresh innovative musical.

COME FLY AWAY is the next and most elaborate chapter in one of the most fruitful collaborations in contemporary dance. Twyla Tharp’s creative relationship with the music of Frank Sinatra began in 1976 with the premiere of Once More Frank, a duet created for the American Ballet Theatre, performed by Ms. Tharp and Mikhail Baryshnikov. The collaboration continued with Nine Sinatra Songs, Ms. Tharp’s acclaimed piece for fourteen dancers which had its world premiere with Twyla Tharp Dance in 1982, and was followed by Sinatra Suite, a duet featuring Mr. Baryshnikov and Elaine Kudo, which had its world premiere in 1984 with American Ballet Theatre at the Kennedy Center.

Citing it as one of the purest expressions of his body of work, Mr. Sinatra requested that Sinatra Suite be performed when he received his Kennedy Center Honors Award.

COME FLY AWAY will star Matthew Stockwell Dibble, Holley Farmer, Laura Mead, Charlie Neshyba-Hodges, Rika Okamoto, Karine Plantadit, Keith Roberts and John Selya, all of whom were in last fall’s acclaimed world premiere production at Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre. The production also features vocalists Hilary Gardner and on alternate performances, Rosena M. Hill.

The company also includes: Kristine Bendul, Colin Bradbury, Alexander Brady, Todd Burnsed, Jeremy Cox, Carolyn Doherty, Amanda Edge, Cody Green, Heather Hamilton, Laurie Kanyok, Meredith Miles, Marielys Molina, Eric Michael Otto, Justin Peck, Joel Prouty, Ron Todorowski and Ashley Tuttle.

COME FLY AWAY features scenic design by James Youmans, costume design by Katherine Roth, lighting design by Donald Holder, and sound design by Peter McBoyle. Music supervision is by the late Sam Lutfiyya and Patrick Vaccariello. Additional arrangements and orchestrations are by Dave Pierce and Don Sebesky.

COME FLY AWAY will be performed at the Marquis Theatre (1535 Broadway) on the following schedule from March 1 – March 27: Monday – Saturday at 8pm, Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm.

Beginning March 30, 2010, the performance schedule will be: Tuesday – Saturday at 8pm, Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm, and Sunday at 3pm.

Tickets, ranging in price from $66.50 - $126.50, can be purchased via http://www.ticketmaster.com/
or by calling 877-250-2929.

For groups of 20 or more, please contact Nederlander Group Sales at 212.840.3890 or 800.714.8452 http://www.nederlandergroupsales.com/
Share/Bookmark

Beth Mason Communique on the Snow Storm and PSE&G Snow Tips

Here is a useful bulletin from Councilwoman Beth Mason on the snow storm which includes tips from PSE& G....


Dear Friend,

An Important announcement from Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&mps;G), New Jersey's largest electric and gas utility, is closely monitoring weather conditions and has its crews on standby now that the National Weather Service has issued winter storm watches and warnings for all counties in New Jersey. The snow is predicted to begin late Wednesday evening or early morning Thursday and continue through Friday afternoon. Heavy snow and strong wind are expected. There also are flood warnings in Burlington, Ocean, Monmouth counties. Accumulations of more than 12 inches are possible in some areas.

PSE&G will have extra personnel and supplies on hand to assure that electric and gas storm-related emergencies are handled safely and promptly.

Snow, by itself, does not pose a serious problem for utilities, but heavy snow or icing can increase the possibility of downed wires and associated power outages. Cars striking utility poles can also cause wires to come down. And cold weather can affect the number of calls we receive from customers with insufficient or no heat.

PSE&G uses an automated system to handle customer calls as efficiently as possible. Customers who get an automated response when calling PSE&G should not hesitate to use it, as it is designed to route their calls to the right destinations. The system also provides the option to speak directly to a customer service representative. Customers are asked to use this option if they are calling to report damage to wires, transformers or poles. This will help PSE&G to restore power more expeditiously.

Depending on the severity of a winter storm, response times for both electric and gas emergency services may be longer than usual.

In anticipation of possible storm conditions, PSE&G offers the following tips:

DOWNED POWER LINES

Accumulation of ice may weigh down power lines and as a result cause power lines to come down. Downed wires may appear dead but should always be considered “live.” STAY AWAY FROM ALL DOWNED LINES. Do not approach or drive over a downed line and do not touch anything that it might be in contact with. Parents are urged to check for downed wires in areas where their children might play and to remind the children to stay far away from any wires. If a wire falls on a vehicle, passengers should stay in the vehicle until help arrives. To report a downed wire, call 1-800-436-PSEG and tell PSE&G the nearest cross street.

CUSTOMERS WITH LIFE-SUSTAINING EQUIPMENT

Individuals who rely on electricity to operate life-sustaining electronic equipment, such as a respirator or dialysis machine, should pre-register with PSE&G to receive priority attention in the event of an outage. To request the service, call PSE&G at 1-800-436-PSEG. They should also inform their rescue squads and fire departments of their needs, in case of emergency. Even though customers with life-sustaining equipment who have registered with PSE&G will receive priority attention during outages, they should also have emergency back-up equipment on hand, since immediate restoration cannot be guaranteed.

IF YOU LOSE POWER

First check your neighborhood. If you are the only one without power, check your fuse box for tripped circuit breakers or blown fuses. If that’s not the problem, look outside at the wire between your house and the utility pole. If it is down, report it immediately to PSE&G. If you lose power:

Throw a blanket over appliances for added insulation.

KEEP REFRIGERATOR AND FREEZER DOORS CLOSED
  • Food will stay frozen between 36 and 48 hours in a fully loaded freezer (24 hours in a half-full freezer).
  • Know how to open your garage door without the electric opener.
  • Remember, electric well and sump pumps will not operate.
  • Unplug all motor-driven appliances like refrigerators and freezers and sensitive electronic equipment (like TVs, microwaves and computers) to prevent a possible electrical overload when power is restored.
  • Leave one light switch on to indicate when power is restored.

HOW PSE&G RESTORES POWER TO CUSTOMERS

In the event of an outage, PSE&G’s crews work around the clock to restore power to customers. Their first concern is always health and safety. After a heavy snowfall, customers should clear walkways so that our employees can safely restore service. Crews work to restore power to the largest numbers of customers first, taking into account “priority” customers, such as hospitals, police stations, fire stations, water and sewer facilities, communications facilities (TV, radio, and telephone), and customers on life-sustaining medical equipment. At the same time, the utility restores power to homes and businesses, starting with the circuits serving the largest number of customers.

IF YOU USE A PORTABLE ELECTRIC GENERATOR, CAREFULLY READ AND FOLLOW THE MANUAL THAT CAME WITH IT

Be sure your generator is UL-approved, installed by a licensed electrician and inspected by your local electrical inspector. There must be a way to physically disconnect your generator from utility lines. Customers who improperly install, operate or maintain a generator are responsible for any injury or damage suffered by themselves, their neighbors or utility workers.

KEEP YOUR GAS METER AND APPLIANCE VENTS CLEAR OF SNOW AND ICE

You can help keep your natural gas supply flowing by keeping your meter free of snow and ice. If you are a natural gas customer whose gas meter is on the outside of your home or business, please take the following precautions:

  • Clear snowdrifts away from the meter and piping.
  • Do not pile snow on top of the gas meter or around its connecting piping when you are shoveling your premises.
  • Brush snow from the meter and piping before a thick layer of ice builds up.
  • Clear snow from dryer vents to prevent fumes from backing up into your house.

CUSTOMERS WITH INSUFFICIENT OR NO HEAT

In many cases, customers are calling because of insufficient heat - their furnaces are working but are having difficulty handling the lower temperatures. Although the company is sensitive to customers’ heating inquiries, insufficient heat is not always caused by defective heating equipment. The colder it is outside, the harder the heating system must work to satisfy the same thermostat setting. The heat loss in a home may exceed the output capacity of the heating system. At times like this, the room temperature may not reach the thermostat setting, especially if the thermostat is raised to a higher than normal setting. Customers can comfort themselves by doing the following:

  • Seal up openings around and under doors and windows
  • Make sure all storm windows are down and tightly closed
  • Lower thermostats serving unused rooms
  • Close dampers in unused fireplaces
  • Move furniture and drapes away from heating registers, radiators, and baseboard element covers
  • Open any register or baseboard dampers
  • Warm air systems - replace dirty/clogged air filters
  • Steam systems - check for sufficient water levels in the sight glass

GENERAL TIPS:

Mother Nature can be unpredictable. It’s wise to have an emergency kit on hand year round. Here are some things to include:

  •  A battery powered radio. 
  • A corded telephone (cordless phones will not work if the power is out)
  • Flashlights and extra fresh batteries.
  • A first-aid kit.
  • Bottled water and an adequate supply of non-perishable food.
  • A non-electric can opener.
  • Matches and candles with holders.
  • Extra blankets and sleeping bags.

A list of emergency phone numbers, including PSE&G’s Customer Service line: 1-800-436-PSEG. Call this number to report power outages or downed wires.

Sincerely,
Councilwoman Beth Mason ◦
Share/Bookmark

Hoboken Public Schools will be closed today Friday February 26

From Hoboken's School Website:

On Friday, February 26th all Hoboken Public Schools will be closed due to inclement weather.


Should it become necessary to close the district due to inclement weather, the following TV & Radio stations will make the announcements: Channels 5 & 12, WOR-AM 710, 1010 WINS and this website. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Comments on DC School Chancellor Michelle Rhee- Maureen Sullivan Role Model

Comments on DC School Chancellor Michelle Rhee- a Maureen Sullivan Role Model



Maureen Sullivan was busy on the blogosphere the day after the selecion of Frank Romano for the next Hoboken Superintendent. Here is her post where she praises Michelle Rhee as a Chancellor of DC Schools. To date Michelle Rhee's performance has been at best mixed and that is putting it kindly. Is this the model replacement Maureen had in mind instead of someone famliar with NJ School Systems? Here is some background......


Maureen Sullivan - February 10, 2010 (from the blogosphere):

"From the moment the last super quit in June, I said the board should hire a headhunting firm that would find top candidates and even poach them from other districts or education-related firms. I envisioned a hunt that would find us the next Michelle Rhee, who is making fantastic changes in the DC schools. I would've been happy to overlook the lack of certification in a candidate who ran an operation like, say, Teach for America or KIPP. As I said last night, I wanted someone with executive experience. Romano has none, not even as a principal (he was a fill-in for a few months during a grade-changing scandal in Fort Lee.) Unfortunately, the rest of the board was content to hire the NJ School Boards Assn, which merely runs ads in the usual places and then hands over a box of resumes. When I suggested that we put an ad in the NY Times, in part to reach out-of-state candidates, I was shot down. Rose Markle sided with the machine against me.

We hired a person without any experience as a super and without tenure in another district and paid him as if we were poaching him from his dream job.

Though the process lasted for many months, it was a search in name only. We didn't actively search--we merely hired. I understand that the other board members think Romano is a swell candidate and that they have found a gem. I, however, was very troubled by the references I checked in Millburn, where he was seen as "destructive" and having "wreaked havoc." prefer Romano. That's fine. why bash? Can't others have differing views?"

- Maureen Sullivan


Note: Maureen has still not replied to my request to publish her rebuttal on addtional cuts above and beyond what Kids First has done. That is ok with me and I can assure my readers I did not lose any sleep over her Facebook unfriending. Offer still stands.

My comments:

From a good source of mine.....

1) First and foremost you cannot overlook state certification in New Jersey Public Schools. NJ State Education Law which requires certificaton and any Superintendent would at least have to get a certificate of eligibility, then the BOE  would have to pay for a mentor because he/she was missing certification.

2) The Hoboken BOE ALL agreed on the requirements, it required certification.

Jack Raslowsky had no certification (but did have a certification of elligibility which required a tax payer funded mentor gor him) and no Public School experience and as many have noted it didn't work out too well. Public school finances come from various sources and demand higher accountability, mandates and guidelines. Just understanding the guidelines and mandates alone, can take years (as the Jack Raslowsky legacy has shown).

Hoboken students deserve someone with experience from one the top districts in the state. Whether this choice works out remains to be seen.
 
Michelle Rhee and Negative comments about her tenure to date:

Here are some comments from the Washington Post on Michelle Rhee's performance as "Chancellor of Schools". There are some positive comments as well but the number of negative comments on her performance in the DC School System far outweighs those. Usually her supporters seem to derive a  benefit from her changes. Here is a small sampling of those negative observations and assessments from concerned educators and parents.......

Here is the link to the comments on an article that is now closed for addtional commentary on the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/13/AR2009061302073_Comments.html

TeacherDC Wrote:

Teachers received almost no Professional Development during the past 2 years...400% improvement? According to who? DCPS used to have the National Board Certification Program that Rhee abolished and many other training opportunities. Krhebiel has done nothing during the past 2 years. We don't even had textbooks adopted during the past 2 years..or standards...The Post is wrong.

Duonoir wrote:

I've read many of the comments on this page and find that there are two obvious camps. Those who support Rhee and those who do not. While sometimes we can agree to disagree, in this case, it is not possible.
Ms. Rhee has alienated most of the very people whom she needs to implement her changes. These people, for the most part, are not dead wood. They are hard working men and women who have been handed so many curricula over the past several years, they don't know their left from their right. They are teachers, administrators, secretaries, aids and social workers. They are people who are so stressed out that the last day of school couldn't come fast enough. They are people who are stressed out by an administration who would rather fire them than work with them.

We have all heard horror stories of how people have been treated. We know that anyone can sue anyone, but when you have almost 700 open lawsuits against a system, there is a problem. If only a smattering are won, they could bankrupt the system.

Since her arrival, I have seen great schools destroyed (Walls, Wilson) with her hires and fires. I've seen uniquely qualified teachers poorly evaluated and threatened with termination. This has got to stop.

This is one time I wish I were a teacher. If the teacher's "worked to the rule" Madame Rhee would be gone in a New York minute.

Yes, there's enough blame to go around. There has been dysfunction in the system for decades. But you don't send in a medical student to do the job of a board certified physician. Perhaps that's why Rhee hasn't been hired at some of the other school systems where she has applied. She is unqualified, that's why she holds the position of Chancellor.

I can only pray her boyfriend will find a job for her in Sacramento and take her off of our hands.

Natturner wrote:

When the end comes for Michelle Rhee her Time cover picture will stand as a small tragi-comic monument to the dangers of bureaucratic hubris. That end is coming up quickly now and Ms. Rhee can feel it.

In effect, the Chancellor said good-bye to the DCPS through Mr. Turque. Listen to her, "If I go down at the end of the day because I didn't play the political game right, that's okay with me," she said. "At least when you're making decisions that you believe are in the best interests of kids, you may not win in the end, but at least you can operate with a good conscience."

The destruction of America's public schools has always been a project of a force President Eisenhower identified as the "military-industrial complex" in his farewell address. Choppy waters ahead. George Vradenburg, a former AOL Time Warner executive and chairman of the D.C. Education Compact, venture capitalist Jonathan A. Silver, who sits on the executive committee of the influential Federal City Council, and Brig. Gen. Anthony J. Tata, the former deputy commanding general of the 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan, will take it from here. Farewell Ms. Rhee.

Oknow1 wrote:

DCPS via Rhee suffers from the lack of skilled leadership. Let's face it, Rhee does not qualify to "run" a school, let alone a school system.

Frankly, I don't understand how the public does not see that glaring aspect. If DCPS had solid leadership it would not be in this state. Hiring a novice only exacerbates the situation. DCPS needs an educator with a skill set to lead transition that has a very strong sense of organizational management. Combine that with the political support Rhee has been given and DCPS could be on the right track.

Folks also need to understand the difference between proposing policies or "new ideas" and the challenge/reality of translating/executing them throughout the system. Everyone smiles at the great idea and the strong get tough talk, but no-one follows up on the "how do you get it done?" part. That's where leadership skills and experience take over.

On another note: I understand many eligible principals are retiring. I understand a notable number of recent Rhee hires are also leaving the system. They are either quitting or not being retained. Has anyone else heard this?

PLMichaelsArtist-at-Large wrote:

I have long felt that Ms. Rhee was a political choice to take on the considerable woes of the D.C. school system, and that probably her ethnicity and gender were assets in this regard. I can't imagine a Caucasion, African-American, Hispanic nor even a Native American man getting away with the harsh, single-minded kinds of choices Ms. Rhee has made based on so little experience: only a few years in the classroom, never a principal,no experience at the High School level, and little respect for the education professionals who have a very tough job, regardless of the qualities brought to the classroom.

As our inner city classrooms become ever more complex in  reflecting the struggles of contemporary life, it is the easiest thing in the world to just blame the educators.....what do they know? (read heavy sarcasm).

True reform has to be visionary and holistic. This requires rather more complex thinking than has been exhibited so far.

For example, what about the school buildings themselves?

Do we really want our future citizens to spend 35+ hours a week in structures that too closely resemble warehouses, prisons or bomb shelters?

Why are we so anxious to have all of our children march to the beat of one drummer when we theoretically prize individuality? (Thus the popularity of charter schools, probably the most important recent development.)

Why have we done away with so much manufacturing when we know that many people (artisans, architects,carpenters, designers,farmers, mechanics, etc.) work best in hands-on occupations? Not every student is meant to be in the science,business, education or military sectors.

And what about the liberal arts? Talk about an area of education that has taken a major hit with so much energy and money given to technology. How do we expect our children to learn how think wisely and critically without the benefits of a well-rounded education that supports the cultural beings that we are?

And getting good educators and supporting them? It's not just hard dollars....scholars.... need time to think, reflect; where are the sabatticals and off-campus retreats that can help educators stay fresh and innovative?

Education is an enormously complex field, and for politicians and inexperienced administrators to treat it as any less shows enormous arrogance and ignorance.

Kronberg wrote:

Rhee supporters generally fall into two camps.

Those who believe the DCPS is terrible and ANY change must be positive support her because she has supposedly "shaken up" the district. Change for the sake of change does not generally result in improvement. Rhee's tenure has proven that the statement "it can't get any worse" is almost never true.

A second group of supporters are those who have personally or professionally benefited by her tenure. As the article pointed out, there are many in the private sector who have supported Rhee because they and their companies have personally profited from that support.

The bottom line in all of this is student achievement. Much can be forgiven if students are actually improving. Despite the rise in scores on DCPS's own tests, the performance of students on nationally, normed tests remains abysmal. It should be clear that Rhee's tenure has been an abject failure.

The editors of the WaPo are among the first group of Rhee's supporters, those who believe that change for the sake of change is worthwhile. Those with that attitude are easily convinced that flowery words can substitute for managerial competence and that a "vision" (whatever the heck that means) can substitute for detailed plans on how to improve academic success.

Rhee simply does not have the necessary skillset to be the superintendent of a large urban school district, and the DCPS is paying far too much for her to get a crash course now.

My final comment: The jury is still out on Michelle Rhee but her lack of experience is evident in these critical observations. These comments are meant to shed some light on the prospect of a "chancellor" type vs. a superintendent of schools familiar with NJ education. Sure Michelle Rhee has undoubtedly gotten rid of some dead weight but the many negative comments give pause to reconsider  to her "scorched earth" reform tactics. She pulls in some big bucks too ($275K) for someone with no experience as a principal. Where have we heard that argument before? Hmm.

Keep in mind that I have voted for Maureen Sullivan twice (both in 2008 and 2009) and have generally agreed with her voting record up to the selection of the Superintendent of Schools. If she broke with Kids First over the Superintendent selection that is certainly her perogative but it is also my right to question her comments on selecting a chancellor type versus a qualified Superintendent with procedural experience in New Jersey. I do feel there is more to the split with Kids First then this one vote so I have repeatedly asked her for what additional cuts beyond what Kids First is doing that she proposes. She  hasn't come back with anything but insults but at least I got to see the another side of Maureen Sullivan. Share your thoughts below....... ◦
Share/Bookmark

Hoboken Museum Receives Generous $2,000 Gift from Hudson County Homing Pigeon Club

Hoboken Museum Receives Generous $2,000 Gift from Hudson County Homing Pigeon Club


Hoboken’s role in competitive pigeon racing is celebrated in new oral history chapbook based on recollections of HCHPC members Vinnie Torre and Lynne Earing

The Hoboken Historical Museum is pleased to announce a generous gift of $2,000 from the Hudson County Homing Pigeon Club, a portion of which will support the ongoing Hoboken Oral History Project, a joint project of the Hoboken Historical Museum and the Friends of the Hoboken Library. Museum Director Bob Foster and Board President Carol Losos visited the HCHPC in January to formally accept the donation from club president Vinnie Torre, with members Lynne Earing, James Corso and John Baginski depicted below...


Vinnie Torre, who maintains the last active homing pigeon loft in Hoboken, and about eight members from nearby towns are keeping alive a proud history of a competitive sport that is still practiced around the world, but which has dwindled nearly out of sight in modern Hoboken. At one time, roofs of Hoboken’s brownstones and apartment buildings hosted more than 70 pigeon lofts, and HCHPC’s membership exceeded 70 dues-paying members.

This year, the club is reviving its nationally renowned race, the Hoboken One-Bird Derby, this fall, October 29 – 31, a tradition that dates back to 1922, when the club was founded. In the late 1960s – 1970s, Hoboken was one of the hot spots of the competitive racing pigeon community, sponsoring the Hoboken One-Bird Derby, which drew competitors from across the country and another 20 races during the year. Half were in the spring for the veteran birds, and half in the early fall for the young birds.

Hoboken’s HCHPC moved to its current club headquarters at 358 Newark Street in 1946. The building continues to serve as a club meeting place, but also doubles as a rehearsal and recording studio for local musicians. The sport has faded with the proliferation of municipal restrictions, and also of hawks, a dire threat to even the speediest of the elite racers. Club members hasten to explain that their “thoroughbreds of the sky” are carefully bred and cared for, sharing little with the common feral birds that populate urban centers like Hoboken.

The sport is still enthusiastically followed in other countries, with million-dollar purse races in South Africa and Asia, and enthusiasts in Belgium, Holland and the United Kingdom. Pigeon racing fans include the Queen of England, actor Jimmy Smits and boxer Mike Tyson. It featured prominently in the movie “On the Waterfront,” which was filmed on location in Hoboken, including the rooftop coops on tenement buildings.

On Sunday, March 14 at 4 p.m., the Museum will release its twentieth oral history chapbook, The Pigeon Guys: Recollections of Vinnie Torre and Lynne Earing, on Sunday. Please join us at the Museum, 1301 Hudson Street, for this free event, during which copies of the chapbook will be distributed, refreshments served, and stories told about Hoboken’s pigeon flyers—past and present.

Vinnie Torre has been racing pigeons since the mid-1950s, when veteran “pigeon guys” passed along their skills, and occasionally their birds, to “the kid.” During the local club’s dormant years, Vinnie continued to raise and train birds at his “Hillside Loft,” and to enter and win races state- and nationwide. In the late 1990s, he met Lynne Earing, a Bayonne animal lover who was soon sharing his life and his enthusiasm for the sport. It did not take long for Vinnie to build “Lynne’s Loft,” alongside his own.

Lisa Sartori interviewed Vinnie Torre and Lynne Earing on Vinnie’s roof last spring. The transcript of their interview, from which the chapbook was derived, has been deposited in the collections of the Hoboken Public Library and the Hoboken Historical Museum. Holly Metz edited the interview, Kevin McCloskey contributed drawings, Robert Foster added photographs, and Ann Marie Manca designed the chapbook. Please do visit the Museum on March 14 and celebrate its release with us.

About the Hoboken Historical Museum

Founded 1986, the Museum’s mission is to educate the public about Hoboken’s history, diverse culture, architecture and historic landmarks. In 2001, the Museum moved into one of the oldest buildings on the waterfront, in the former Bethlehem Steel shipyard, at 1301 Hudson St., Hoboken, where it maintains a series of rotating exhibits. The Museum is open six days a week, 2 – 7 pm on Tues. – Thurs., 1 – 5 pm on Fridays, and noon – 5 pm on weekends. It offers special exhibits, tours, events and lectures, as well as educational programs for adults and children on a weekly basis. An updated schedule of events and an online catalog of many items in its collections are available at www.hobokenmuseum.org. The Museum is a not-for-profit tax-exempt 501(c) entity.
Share/Bookmark

A Message from Hoboken Revolt - On Police Audit

I received this email from Hoboken Revolt on their take on the recently released police audit....

A Message from Hoboken Revolt - On Police Audit


The Mayor and members of the City Council joined with Hoboken Revolt to compel the release of the State’s Department of Community Affairs police audit last week. Hoboken Revolt dedicated significant time and resources and communicated directly with the Governer’s office through State contacts, full page media advertisements, e-mails, telephone calls and faxes. Hoboken Revolt continues to make significant strides in fulfilling our mission, which includes ensuring fiscal transparency and responsibility in City Government.

The audit is over 50 pages long and includes recommendations related to equipment, training, facilities and staffing. The following recommendations stand out:

1) A reduction in staff from 158 to 102-112. (The audit addressed both supervisory and patrol officers)

2) An increase in the workweek from 35 to 40 hours and a corresponding schedule overhall to accomadate the changes.

3) Review of equipment, including the purchases of police vechicles and other transportation such as Segways.

By acting on just these recommendations summarized above it appears the result could be a minimum savings of $3.2M for the FY 2011 budget.

We have elected a Mayor and city council that has pledged to cut spending. Hoboken Revolt urges them to consider the audit and provide leadership to address the safety needs of the City while implementing reasonable cost-cutting actions based on the audit findings and recommendations.

The next Council meeting is Wed. March 3, 2010 at City Hall. All are urged to attend and lend your voices to demand significant cost cutting as recommended by the audit regarding the Police Department, other public safety departments and in all other city Departments.

Love Your Town, Stay Involved.

Visit Hoboken Revolt at: http://www.hobokenrevolt.com/
Share/Bookmark

Chili Cook-Off For a Cause Reminder -2/27/2010 at The Shannon

Chili Cook-Off For a Cause Reminder - 2/27/2010 @ the Shannon


The Chili Cook-Off is just two days away! A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the American Red Cross efforts in Haiti. Join us for a fun filled afternoon of chili tasting and socializing for a good cause. For more information e-mail info@hobokenvolunteers.com.

Hoboken Volunteers is proud to be able to assist Dr. Muni Tahzib and team as they head back to Haiti next month to setup a clinic to help the people of Haiti. Here's how you can help! They need pain medicine for adults and children - Advil, Tylenol, Motrin both capsules and liquid. Also wound care items such as bandages, gauze, Neosporin, etc.

We will have a drop box for these items at the Chili Cook-Off. These items will go directly from you into the hands of the people of Haiti. Dr. Tahzib will be bringing these items with her on their trip to Haiti.

Please find the time to pick up an item or two and bring with you to the Cook-Off at the Shannon on Saturday.

See you Saturday!
Tim Occhipinti
Hoboken Volunteers
http://www.hobokenvolunteers.com/
Share/Bookmark

Republicans of Hoboken Speaker Series on Voter Fraud - March 30, 2010

The Republicans of Hoboken announce the first event of their Speaker Series........

Topic: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy
Date: March 30, 2010
Guest Speaker: John Fund

We are privileged to have as our guest speaker, John Fund. John is a well known journalist for the Wall Street Journal and the best selling author of "Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy".

Location: Award winning Amanda’s Restaurant
908 Washington Street
Hoboken, New Jersey 07030

Time: 6:00 -7:00 check in, registration
7:00 pm dinner, speaker, book signing

Many New Jersey citizens are aware of the persistent problem of voter fraud in Hoboken, Hudson County and parts of New Jersey.

We have also seen what voter fraud can do, not only in our local elections, but in our national elections, as well.

We invite and encourage everyone to attend this event and learn how voter fraud effects the Democratic process.

It promises to be an engaging and informative social event.

For additional information contact: Sue Pregibon 908.962.1281 or at RepublicansofHoboken@gmail.com
Share/Bookmark

City of Hoboken - Winter Storm Warning

City of Hoboken - Winter Storm Warning

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for our area. The alert will remain in effect until 6 P.M. on Friday (February 26th). The alert means significant amounts of snow, sleet and ice may occur. Strong winds are also possible. Please prepare accordingly.

Due to the snow storm, street cleaning regulations for Thursday, February 25th are canceled. Street cleaning regulations will be in effect on Friday, February 26th. Parking meters must still be fed.

The City of Hoboken has made all the necessary preparations for this potential storm. Please be advised that as soon as City streets are covered with a layer of snow, cars must be removed from all emergency snow routes. These routes are clearly identified on street signs. They include:

Name of street and Location
  • Washington Street - Both Sides
  • Willow Avenue West Side- Observer Hwy to 11th Street
  • Third Street North Side- Jackson Street to River Street
  • Fourth Street South Side- River Street to Jackson Street
  • Fifth Street South Side- Clinton Street to Hudson Street
  • 13th Street North Side-Washington Street to Willow Avenue

During a Snow Emergency there is No Parking on these streets. Violators will be towed. This is necessary to move Police, Fire and Ambulances throughout Hoboken in times of emergency for the safety and welfare of all our citizens.

In addition, please be advised that all sidewalks must be cleared of snow six hours after the completion of the storm.

Overnight parking for $5.00 is available: Residents with parking permits can park in the City garages, B, (2nd and Hudson) and D (215 Hudson), and midtown, from 8:00 PM through 8:00 am. Regular $8.00/hour charges will apply during the day.

Please stay tuned to the City of Hoboken website (http://www.hobokennj.org/) for any and all updates related to this winter storm. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Pier 11 Snow Photos and Snow Warning

Below are some photos from my commute on the way to work today......






And a weather warning for Weather.com.....

Issued by The National Weather Service at http://www.weather.com/
New York City, NY
4:30 am EST, Thu., Feb. 25, 2010

A WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 PM EST FRIDAY.

SNOW WILL DEVELOP THIS MORNING AND PICK UP INTENSITY THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON. THERE MAY BE A PERIOD THIS AFTERNOON INTO EARLY THIS EVENING WHEN RAIN MIXES IN WITH THE SNOW BEFORE CHANGING BACK TO ALL SNOW TONIGHT. THE SNOW WILL THEN GRADUALLY BECOME LESS STEADY AND LIGHTER INTO FRIDAY... BEFORE TAPERING OFF TO LIGHT SNOW OR SNOW SHOWERS BY FRIDAY EVENING.

FOR NOW EXPECT ACCUMULATIONS TO RANGE FROM 12 TO 16 INCHES... WITH LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS POSSIBLE... ESPECIALLY IN THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF ORANGE... PASSAIC... AND BERGEN COUNTIES. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Special City Council Meeting on Waterfront Zoning Appeal Postponed to April 14, 2010

FYI

Wenesday , Feb. 24 - Tonight's special City Council hearing has been postponed to Wednesday, April 14 at 7 pm in the City Council Chambers. More information is on the Fund for a Better Waterfront's website: On April 14, City Council will hear FBW appeal of 19 variances granted by Zoning Board.


Fund for a Better Waterfront, P.O. Box 1965, Hoboken, NJ 07030
201-217-0500
http://www.betterwaterfront.org/
Share/Bookmark

Hoboken St. Patrick's Day Suggestion - Use Depends!

Councilman Nino Giacchi and Chief Anthony Falco have been planning and working hard to ensure that the St. Patrick's Day parade aftermath has much fewer incidents than last year. Still, one can never be too prepared.

The will be plenty of porta-potty's available this year in comparison to last year thanks to the new Administration but I suggest those hard drinking types have a back up plan in case you can't get to a porta-potty in time.....


All in jest. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Analysis - Hudson County Superintendent Total Compensation

One of Maureen Sullivan's argument against Kids First is that the new Superintendent's salary of $190,000 bestowed upon Dr. Frank Romano was that it was too high. I decided to look at the Superintendent salaries  to get a better idea of where this measures to others in only Hudson County based on 1/1/2009 compensation levels. Jack Raslowsky was making $182,000 at the start of 2009 and would be making over $189,000 base to start 2010 based on a 4% raise in his former contract. In fact Jack's total compensation for 2009 was reported at $202,426. Again, that was just what was reported. It is important to note that Frank Romano's contract has not been finalized yet but based on salary alone it seems to be in line with other Superintendents in the County.

Here is the link that provides the basis of my analysis:

http://www.state.nj.us/education/finance/fp/ufb/salaries09.xls

Hudson County Superintendent Salary Summary 2009:


Here is the summary of Hudson County Superintendent compensation (2009) with salary, additional compnsation and days off included (click to enlarge):

Click to Enlarge

My comment: Now that the data shows Frank Romano's salary to be in line at least with Hudson County for the Superintendent postion, I will await the final contract to conclude my analysis. Perhaps all Superintendent's in Hudson County are overpaid in the opinion of some but if you are going to attract talent to a district such as ours, with all the politics and issues that our district brings, you are going to be hard pressed to get anyone good by being cheap. As a frequent blogger on Hoboken Republicans I would think that Maureen Sullivan would understand that the compensation awards given to leadership positions is based on market forces.

Feel free to add your comments below......

Share/Bookmark

Judy Tripodi Speaks - On Police Audit - At Mile Square View

Judy Tripodi Comments on Police Audit

Smarty Jones at the Mile Square View got this exclusive quote from Judy Tripodi on the Police Audit.....

"I did not have a draft copy of the report since the summer. I received a copy the same day as it was received by the mayor. I played no role in the writing, editing or release of the report.

I believed that I had the authority to approve the contracts, but have since been told that I do not. I have always acted in the best interests of the taxpayers of this City.

For the record, page 7 of the Police Audit states "While this report's recommendations may affect the staffing and City's fiscal obligation to the HPD, this report has no direct role in the contract negotiations."

- Judy Tripodi

To read the rest of the story go to MileSquare view via the link below:

http://hobokenhorse.blogspot.com/2010/02/judy-tripodi-responds-to-police-audit.html
Share/Bookmark

Haiti Benefit at All Saints February 28 at 1:30 PM

The Hoboken Dance Academy presents Broadway Voices for a Haiti Benefit

Please join us for an afternoon of Broadway singing in an intimate setting in our effort to help raise money for Dr. Muni and her amazing group of volunteers in Haiti.



Place: All Saints, 7th and Washington
Date: February 28, 2010
Time: 1:30 PM
Donation: $15.00 pp, $20.00 per family, free entrance with a set of crutches


Broadway Performers:

John Keuther: Phantom Broadway
Rebecca Pitcher: Phantom Broadway
Julie Hanson: Phantom Broadway
Janet Saia: Phantom Broadway
David Dewitt: Phantom Broadway
Rebecca Judd: Phantom Broadway
Chris Bohannon: Phantom Broadway
LeeAnet Noble: Stomp and Kate Jacobs
Pianist: Brian Knox of Garden Street Music ◦
Share/Bookmark

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Maureen Sullivan "Facebook Unfriends" Reformerus_Gianticus (Me) - Boo Hoo!:)

I have continued to reach out to Maureen Sullivan to ask her for her side of the story and what additional cuts she proposes Kids First to make. I didn't get the response I was looking for but I did  finally get this reply from her on Facebook.....

Maureen Sullivan commented on your note "Maureen First" - Blogger post from Greg Bond":


"If Kids First has become an organization that proudly spews hate like this, then I'm extremely glad I'm out. Now I just have to find the "de-friend" button."

- Maureen Sullivan
 
My Response:
 
Maureen, where is the hate? And I don't speak for Kids First, I speak for myself and so does Greg Bond.
 
I do want to let the readers know that I did vote for Maureen Sullivan twice. I voted for her her in 2008 and for 2 out of the three candidates on the Kids First Slate back then and the whole Kids First Slate in 2009 which she was finally a part of. All that I ask is that if she wants Kids First to make more cuts is to spell out where they would come from rather than just say across the board and then criticize Kids First without merit. I do understand she is upset about the Frank Romano selection but I would also hope that she would realize a split reform ticket will not accomplish what she wants unless that of course is someone from the status quo back in control of the school board.  
 
The offer to print her proposed cuts on this website still stands. This site is about opinion and discussions on both sides. While I am naturally inclined to support Kids First I will as always vote for the best candidates avaialble as I have done in the past including when I voted for Maureen back in 2008.  
 
Now that I have been "unfriended" on Facebook I figured I would reply my own retort in jest not hate. Here is the latest Amazon.com book offering:
 

Share/Bookmark

Hudson County Assembly Public Hearing on Ways to Improve New Jersey March 10 in Jersey City

Here is the latest from the office of Ruben Ramos NJ Assemblyman.....

Hudson County Assembly Public Hearing on Ways to Improve New Jersey March 10 in Jersey City


(HUDSON COUNTY) – Assembly Democrats Joan Quigley, Caridad Rodriguez, Vincent Prieto, Ruben Ramos, Anthony Chiappone and Charles Mainor on Tuesday announced they will hold a special public hearing next month to hear directly from Hudson County residents on ways to cut taxes, maintain services and improve the quality of life in New Jersey.

The hearing is slated from 5 to 8 p.m., Wednesday, March 10 in the freeholder’s chamber at 567 Pavonia Avenue in Jersey City.

Residents and public officials are invited to talk for three minutes each about ideas they have for reducing taxes, maintaining services and improving the quality of life in New Jersey.

Quigley participated in the Feb. 2 Assembly Bipartisan Leadership Committee public hearing in Trenton, where about 150 showed up to talk about their ideas. Because of the number of participants, the committee that day divided into three panels to ensure all attendees could be heard. Their comments were also recorded.

If the crowd is large in Hudson County, a similar process will be followed.

“The Trenton meeting left everyone with a really good feeling,” Quigley said. “That is why I asked my Hudson County colleagues if they would like to try something similar closer to home. They enthusiastically agreed and the freeholders made their chamber available.”

People don’t need to register in advance but will be asked to sign in at the door. Speakers will be heard in the order in which they arrive. Anyone who wishes to bring written remarks or documentation is requested to bring at least eight copies.

“Together the six of us represent three-quarters of a million people and many of them have great ideas for improvement,” Quigley said. “Others may have only strong opinions about what is wrong. We’ll listen to each of them, but we hope speakers will focus on solutions not just problems.”

For additional information, people are invited to contact the Hudson Assembly members:

District 31 (Bayonne and parts of Jersey City)

Assemblyman Mainor (201) 536-7851
Assemblyman Chiappone(201) 436-0473

District 32 (East Newark, Harrison, Kearny, Secaucus, North Bergen, Fairview and parts of Jersey City)

Assemblyman Prieto (201) 770-1303
Assemblywoman Quigley (201) 217-4614

District 33 (Hoboken, Weehawken, Union City, Guttenberg, West New York, and parts of Jersey City)

Assemblywoman Rodriguez (201) 854-0900
Assemblyman Ramos (201) 714-4960

On the Net:

The NJ Assembly Democratic Office Web site- http://www.assemblydems.com/
Share/Bookmark

City of Hoboken Announces Suspension Without Pay of Lt. Angelo Andriani

Here is the latest press release form City Hall.....

City of Hoboken Announces Suspension Without Pay of Lt. Angelo Andriani

City of Hoboken, February 23, 2010 - The City of Hoboken announced today that Lt. Angelo Andriani has been officially suspended without pay pending a full hearing. The decision was rendered by the Hearing Officer Thomas F. Portelli who said, “After consideration of the hearing notes and memoranda, I find that that suspension without pay pending a full hearing is not unwarranted…”

Mayor Dawn Zimmer had called for the suspension without pay of Lieutenant Angelo Andriani of the Hoboken Police Department resulting from an incident involving Lt. Andriani with the Tampa International Airport Police Department. The incident occurred on the morning of Monday, January 18th in which Lt. Andriani was involved in a “passenger causing disturbance” according to TSA Supervisor Taylor Johnson.

“Lt. Andriani’s suspension without pay is a just decision,” Mayor Zimmer said. “This type of behavior can not and will not be tolerated and we are appreciative of the decisive measures taken to remedy the actions of this individual.”

Lt. Andriani was originally suspended with pay by the City of Hoboken as the result of an alleged incident which occurred approximately two years ago.

Here is another FOX 5 News story on the initial disciplinary actions on several Hoboken police officers regarding this incident from February 28, 2008:



My Comment: Finally! Sometimes government can work too slowly for some of us but with the right leadership like Mayor Dawn Zimmer's it is at least moving in the right direction. I have no doubt that if David Roberts were Mayor this guy (Lt. Angelo Andriani) would still be getting paid. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Old Dave Roberts Tax Letter

I saved a few of those Dave Roberts Tax letters I used to get with my quarterly tax bill. I suspected that they might be worth a look back a few years later knowing what I knew then about the spending patterns that were going on in City Hall.

This letter is particularly curious in that it talks about tax stabilization, using $52 million in public money for the HUMC bailout, and talks swmimingly about the appointment of the new Superintendent of Schools Jack Raslowsky without even mentioning him by name.

It also mentions parks and in all fairness Kidney Bean/Pier C Park did make substantial progress only to fall a few railings short of completion during his tenure. That would have been one ribbon cutting ceremony that Dave Roberts would have truly savored given his penchant for ceremony. Read and and laugh or cry depending on your situation...


Share/Bookmark

Vintage Political Item - Reaganomics Doll

Thanks to a friend of mine who is planning on a move I now possess a vintage "Reaganomics Doll" in my collection of knicknacks. I am always looking to promote discussion as you know by now. The question of the day is did Reaganomics actually work or did W Senior have it right when he called Reagan's Economic Plan 'Voodoo Economics"?

The Demand Side not a exactly a "Barrel of Laughs" for the real middle class

"Well, there you go again Reformerus_Gianticus"

Share/Bookmark

Photo of the Day - Hoboken from JC Heights


Here is a winter time photo of Hoboken from JC Heights on a nice clear day. ◦
Share/Bookmark

Monday, February 22, 2010

Statement from Mayor Zimmer on Receiving the Operational Audit of the Hoboken Police Department

Statement from Mayor Zimmer on Receiving the Operational Audit of the Hoboken Police Department


On Friday at 5:00 PM, I received the long awaited Operation Audit of the Hoboken Police Department from Division of Local Government Services Director Susan Jacobucci.

I’d like to thank the Division of Local Government Services for all the hard work that went into producing this report. I’d also like to thank Lori Grifa, the new Commissioner of the State Department of Community Affairs, for giving this matter her personal attention to ensure this long awaited report is finally available to Hoboken’s government officials and to the public.

I look forward to working with the public safety committee of the City Council, Public Safety Director Angel Alicea, Police Chief Anthony Falco and the DLGS to determine the best course of action to implement the recommendations contained within the report.

Thank you,

Mayor Zimmer

Here is the Police Audit released without commentary by me. Feel free to comment below:


Share/Bookmark

Parody - Tiger Woods New Product Endorsement

After Tiger Woods public confessional just last Friday I was wondering what future product lines Tiger could still endorse now that the "cat is out of the bag" about his marital infidelities which are frowned upon generally but even more so in the conservative game of golf. Here is one idea......


Andy Borowitz at http://www.borowitzreport.com/  had this headline on Friday skewering Tiger with his rapier wit:

Tiger’s Penis Issues Rebuttal
'He Does Not Speak For Me,' Says Furious Member

For Discussion: Do you think there is a double standard when it comes to cheating and leniancy when men do it versus women? ◦
Share/Bookmark

Public Service Announcement from Chief Anthony Falco on Hoboken St. Patrick's Day

This notice has been published previously on other sources but after chatting with Chief Falco last night on the parade preparations  I decided to put this on my blog as well.


On Saturday, March 6, 2010, the City of Hoboken will be hosting the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The parade is very popular and draws tens of thousands of people to our city. At times, some of our residents and guests become disorderly and unruly making it a difficult day for our residents who do not celebrate the day. In order to keep our city under control and create a safe and enjoyable environment for everyone, I will have every one of my officers working on that day with almost all of them out on our streets, on patrol. My officers will be strictly enforcing all criminal and motor vehicle laws as well as all city ordinance violations. The following are four violations where there will be a zero tolerance policy in effect for the day:

1) City Ordinance 145-23 A/B (Consumption of Alcohol/Open Container in Public) Any person seen possessing an open container of alcohol in public faces maximum penalties of a fine up to $2,000, and the possible sentence of having to perform Community Service.

2) City Ordinance 145-22 (Urinating in Public) Any person observed urinating on public streets, sidewalks or in parks faces maximum penalties of a fine up to $2,000, and the possible sentence of having to perform Community Service.

3) New Jersey State Statute 2C:33-12 (Maintaining a Nuisance) House parties have become our largest problem on the parade day. Last year my officers responded to 131 calls for disorderly house parties. This year, when a party is deemed to be unreasonably reckless, disorderly and unsafe, the renter or owner of the apartment or house will be charged with this statute. A person is guilty of this offense when one “by conduct which is unlawful or unreasonable, knowingly or recklessly creates or maintains a condition which endangers the safety or health of persons”, or when “one knowingly conducts or maintains a premises or place where persons gather for purposes of engaging in unlawful conduct.” The maximum penalties for this offense are imprisonment of up to six months and fines not to exceed $1,000.

4) New Jersey State Statute 2C: 33-2a (Disorderly Conduct, Improper Behavior) A person is guilty of disorderly conduct if “with purpose to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof he: 1) Engages in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior, or 2) Creates a hazardous or physically dangerous condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose.” This offense carries maximum penalties of a 30 day prison term and a fine not to exceed $500.

I ask all the residents and guests of our city to please be considerate to everyone on this day, and to inform all family and friends to act respectful and orderly. Once again, we want this to be an enjoyable, but more importantly, safe day. The Hoboken Police Department will do everything within their powers to keep it as such. Finally, Do Not Drink and Drive. You may injure yourself or others, and if caught, you will be arrested.

Sincerely,

Chief Anthony P. Falco, Sr.
Chief of Police
Hoboken Police Department
1 Police Plaza
Hoboken, NJ 07030-5704

The announcement is also posted on the Hoboken St. Patrick's Day website:

http://www.hobokensaintpatricksparade.org/html/paradeinfo.html
Share/Bookmark

Viral Video Funny - Mouse and Mousetrap

Here is a very clever commercial and likely viral video hit. Watch the whole commercial before you draw any conclusions.


Share/Bookmark

Retro Ad - Recreation Idea for Hoboken

Remember when David Roberts former mayor of Hoboken promised a City Pool by the Waterfront? That unfortunately did not come to fruition but here is a "Retro Ad" from a national periodical that could deliver the goods so much cheaper even after adjusting for the value of a dollar in 1950. A few dozen of these floatillas off of Pier A Park would do the trick. Share your thoughts below in the comments.....


Share/Bookmark

Photo of the Day - Statue of Liberty Sunset

Today's photo of the day is taken from the the NY Waterway ferry and features the Statue of Liberty at Sunset.

Share/Bookmark

Photo Highlights from St. Patrick's Day Parade Party

Last night at Our Lady of Grace Church Annex in Hoboken, the Hoboken St. Patrick's Day Committee held their annual fundraiser for the upcoming 24th Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade. It was attended by a large crowd as always. Tickets were $50 and included free beer, wine and mixed drinks as well as a corn beef and cabbage supper which was quite tasty.

Many members of the Cunning family were in attendence as well as former Freeholder Maurice Fitzgibbons, Freeholder Anthony Romano, Councilman Nino Giacchi, Council President Peter Cunningham, Councilwoman Beth Mason, NJ Assemblyman Ruben Ramos, former State Senator Bernie Kenny, Hoboken Police Chief Falco as well as many other aspiring and former politicos.  Here are a few photos that captured some of the festivities.

Irishman of the Year 2010 - Dr.  John Crowe

Irish band - the Snakes

Peter Cunningham with his daughter as opposed to how we normally see him (with gavel)

Big Irish Crowd

Big Irish line for the food

Councilwoman Beth Abruzese "McMason" (Italian, Jewish, and Irish so as to appeal to the broadest possible electorate) and City Clerk Jimmy Farina (Honorary Irishman of the Year who jokingly claimed they made him that title so that if the parade aftermath is bad they can blame him).  Jimmy can be very funny at times as well as the life of any party. Even I have a wee bit of the Irish in me (My father's mother had a last name of Miller) 

Share/Bookmark

Waterfront Mini Sinkhole or Major Muni Headache? 16th and Bloomfield

Roving "Citizen Watchdog" and recent HUMC Board appointee and standup guy Eric Kurta does not have a dog, megalomania, or wear crazy shorts during the winter (unlike some other delusional blogger we get a kick out of with his proclamations of greatness and dwindling site comments) but he does enjoy the occasional saunter along Hoboken's Waterfront from time to time.

Here is another potential issue on our Waterfront that could be minor or have a major financial impact on our City once again...

I first noticed this yesterday (Saturday). A few pavers were missing next to a light post on the walkway behind the Tea Building (16th & Bloomfield). More pavers were sagging downward. I removed a few more pavers to reveal a rather large hole. Anyone walking across would have fallen in – there was nothing beneath the pavers but air. The hole goes down several feet. HPD came out to string up some caution tape. It appears that a larger area was cordoned off today.

More repairs to be done! More money to be spent! What else is in store for us? Walk the riverfront at your own peril!

Photos and comments above by Eric Kurta





Share/Bookmark