Thursday, January 6, 2011

Coronation Message From Beth Mason

Beth Mason has sent out this letter after becoming Hoboken City Council President. The first meeting was rocky to say the least and the Mike Russo budget on the fly clown show was a sneak peak at the pettiness, ineptitude and fiscal recklessness that seems to be the course over the next 5-6 months. Beth was unable to control the crowd during the meeting and gets poor marks for insufficient use of the gavel. Here is Beth Mason's version of government by press release in her very own words......

Dear Friend,

Happy New Year! As you may be aware, last night my colleagues on the City Council elected me City Council President. I am truly humbled and honored by this opportunity and promise to work hard to continue to make Hoboken an even better place to live and raise a family.

When I first became involved in civic life many years ago a lot of people told me that we could never change Hoboken. They said the odds were too big and the political machine was too strong. But change was at work. Residents who lived here for many years and residents who just moved here understood we would never change what we tolerate. So we came together and began to demand more from our municipal government.

Things were not always easy. Career politicians and special interests threw many obstacles in our way, but we stood together to fight the good fight. Slowly the Mile Square city improved as we moved our neighborhoods forward and Hoboken became the envy of not just Hudson County, but New Jersey. Just last year the American Planning Association named Washington Street as one of the 10 Great Streets under the organizations Great Places in America program. Together we have taken Hoboken to places we never thought possible.

In 2004 when political machines were spending all sorts of money to influence elections across the state we put a referendum on the ballot to end pay-to-play practices. Hoboken voters went to the polls and voted overwhelmingly to enact the toughest campaign finance reform laws in the nation. In 2007 we made those laws even more stringent by expanding them to cover developers and eliminate special interest money from local elections. We broke down the barriers of the past to provide easier and more affordable access to public records. When the party bosses tried to keep us from video taping and televising City Council and Board of Education meetings we took them all the way up to the Supreme Court which agreed we have the right to let citizens see how their elected officials run Hoboken’s government. Now many local media outlets stream City Council meetings live so residents who can’t make it can still watch from home.

We have done many great things, but Hoboken’s best days are not in our past. They are still in our future. However, we still face many challenges. We must make sure that the current budget surplus is used to lower our property taxes. We must work together to repair our waterfront and update our master plan so that future development projects are balanced, include parks and open space, and do not take away the small town feel of our neighborhoods. We must continue to open up the doors of government so everyday people know how their tax dollars are being spent and have easier access to government records. These challenges are tough, but not impossible if we work together and put people before politics.

I look forward to working with Mayor Zimmer, her administration and my City Council colleagues so that we can continue to keep Hoboken moving in the right direction. As always I am here if you are in need of any assistance. Please do not hesitate to contact me at (201)-916-8244 or

Thank you for your time. I look forward to seeing you soon.

- Beth Mason ◦