Thursday, May 5, 2011

Peter Cunningham For the 5th Ward- Editorial by Scott Siegel

Here is an editorial from Scott Siegel in support of re-electing Peter Cunningham to Hoboken 5th Ward City Council......

Peter Cunningham For the 5th Ward- Editorial by Scott Siegel

For the past two years I’ve had the pleasure to work with Pete Cunningham as his Treasurer. I’ve learned that Peter is one of the most qualified members on the city council when it comes to financial matters. With Hoboken enduring high taxes it takes a true budget hawk to grapple with the challenges. Pete has bravely stood with Mayor Zimmer who has cut municipal budget by $7.5 million or 10% in six months. Pete realizes that we must tackle the 80% of our budget- personnel costs, if additional meaningful tax reductions are to occur. His opponent Perry Belfiore has continually lied about our budget surplus. Last year he believed in the $20 million lie. This year he purports it to be $27 million. Pete knows it is $14.7 million:

Pete helped expose the underfunded budget which led to the state takeover and then worked to end state rule through sound financial practices. Lenny Luizzi believes that he should have violated his oath of office and voted for the underfunded budget. He is pursuing operational audits of all Hoboken Departments to ensure efficiency and knows we need a minimum 5% surplus reserve to obtain a bond rating that will allow us to properly finance our debt. He supports the police redeployment plan and hopes that it will be soon be enacted so that more police can patrol our streets. He also supports less expensive Class 2 officers where appropriate.

Scott Delea has called the use of surplus as a one shot. He doesn’t understand that unusual items such as 3 years of retro pay, a new 22% increase in pensions, tax appeals etc are not normal occurrences. I urge Perry, Lenny and Scott to attend a municipal government course at Rutgers like Eric Kurta and Rami Pinchevsky so they can comprehend Budgets 101.

With the 5th Ward being the subject of redevelopment it is important to re-elect Pete. Unlike his opponents, Peter will not be seduced by developer money. He supports an escrow fund so that developer promised amenities will be funded. Remember our pool and community center that were never built? He will not support more PILOT’ed skyscrapers which end up costing the Hoboken taxpayer money in the long run. He is strongly advocating for an interlocal agreement with NJ Transit so that Hoboken can maintain control of the process. In the Western Edge he supports Class B office space and affordable housing, knowing that will minimize the impact on our strained city services.

The positive agenda of Mayor Zimmer is being stymied by the current Mason/Russo/Occhipinti Chicken Hawk majority. This is the same group who gave us two of three mayors serving time for bribery, a scandal in the Parking Authority and last November’s 4th Ward race being investigated by NJ Attorney General Dow for voter fraud. This May 10th elect Peter and the entire reform slate, unless you support fiscal recklessness, one shot answers, sweetheart deals for developers at taxpayer expense and of course, continued corruption.

-Scott Siegel
923 Castle Point Terrace Hoboken, NJ

My Comment: To send in your op-ed pieces in support of your candidate sned me an email to You will have to use you full name. ◦