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Hoboken City Council Seat Could Remain Vacant For Another Year

The city council will not be voting to appoint Jim Doyle to an empty council seat on Wednesday night.

Hoboken's City Council could be on lock-down for a while.

The city's governing body — which is made up of nine members — currently has an empty seat, that could possibly until December 31, 2013.

Without a majority on the council, many votes could result in a 4-4 stale mate.

after replacing Carol Marsh, has been removed from the council after the minority council members sued over his appointment.

The council minority, made up of mayoral adversaries Theresa Castellano, Beth Mason, Michael Russo and Tim Occhipinti, claimed that Doyle's initial appointment was illegal because he received only four votes to appoint him, rather than the required five. ruling that a majority was needed and the first 4-3-1 vote didn't suffice.

And while Appointment Judge Peter Bariso ruled on Friday that all eight members were required to be present on Wednesday night to vote on Doyle's appointment for a third time, the vote has been postponed.

The minority council members who sued their council colleagues, as well as corporation counsel Melissa Longo and city clerk Jimmy Farina, appealed Bariso's decision.

"The vote will not occur until the Appellate Division decides whether it will entertain an appeal at this time on the issue of whether Hudson County Assignment Judge Peter Bariso had the authority to order the re-vote," according to a city announcement.

If a re-vote is in fact not permitted, the seat will be empty for 12 more months, and Doyle — or other candidates — will have to be elected in the elections scheduled for November, 2013. This is also when Mayor Dawn Zimmer and the three at-large council members are up for re-election.

Gardiner4Freeholder December 20, 2012 at 12:53 PM
Hogwash. This is obstructionism and you know it. Mason's legal games are costing the City money and terrorizing citizens who dare speak against her. Reach across the aisle? And do what? Zero out the surplus? There's a great stupid idea from Ms. Mason which even looks dumber now post Hurricane Sandy.
XJS December 20, 2012 at 03:16 PM
CG- What compromise? The minority are bloodsucking varmint & need to be quashed. If their recent trouncing at the polls hasn't made it clear enough, maybe the letters to the editor will - Hoboken REJECTS THEM. THEY ARE TERRIBLE AT THEIR COUNCIL JOBS AND SHOULD ALL RETIRE.
Hobbs December 20, 2012 at 03:26 PM
Hoboken resident Phil Cohen last night expressed his own and the views of many other people in Hoboken about the leagal actions Councilwoman Mason and the council minority to deadlock the City Council for their own political gain. The You Tube video of Mr. Cohen's remarks has been posted on Hoboken MSV. www.hobokenhorse.com
RFS December 20, 2012 at 03:56 PM
UNSEAT MASON & RUSSO...STOP THE CRAP...THIS IS WASHINGTON ALL OVER AGAIN...IT'S ALL ABOUT ME AND REELECTION...GET A SHOT OF MORAL COURAGE AND DO THE RIGHT THING...DISGUSTING OLD HOBOKEN POLITICS
puzzledone December 20, 2012 at 04:26 PM
The fact that the Old Guard lot is pulling this ridiculous stunt involving complaining about legal fees, running them up, and no-showing for their job shows that the concept of cooperation and compromise is lost on them. If we can't get a responsible result on a simple refinance of a bond that certain council members had originally voted for putting in place or a hospital sale which staved off bankruptcy for the city, why should we expect anything different now?
Ojo Rojo December 20, 2012 at 05:13 PM
Please, spare us your nonsense. Marsh resigned for personal reasons and it was up to her to decide when she wanted to resign. Stop w/ the sour grapes already. You people are in the minority and you will stay in the minority so long as you support dishonest people who do dishonest things for their own personal gain. November elections will insure that.
DaHorsey, SmartyJones of MSV December 20, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Carol Marsh did not "delay" her resignation at the behest of the mayor or anyone. Although Terry Castellano posited that fabrication several times last night, I know it's untrue and called her out on it. So I'm doing the same here with you. Former Councilwoman Carol Marsh had a terrible family illness that changed the life of her family and she reluctantly surrendered to that reality. Of course we know the Old Guard operates on everything in this uncouth fashion. That is not the case with Carol Marsh. She did not want to leave without completing her term but life forced her hand. You love to talk about power as the motivation in moral equivalent terms but only one side operates like that on everything, all the time and tried to bankrupt the city and close the hospital for that sole reason. The Old Guard has your unwavering support. We won't stand by for it.
Journey December 20, 2012 at 06:23 PM
maybe someone should sue you for slander or something. Prove you know what on in Mrs. Marsh's head when she made her discidion. You should be ashamed of yourself, but then you have no shame.
Journey December 20, 2012 at 06:24 PM
All we need is three voters from each ward to form the recall committee to get things rolling in Wards 1, 2, 3, and 4. I volunteer for the 3rd ward.
Grafix Avenger December 20, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Let's face it: the Pied Piper is leading her 3 nincompoops off the cliff, and trying to take us down with them. http://grafixavenger.blogspot.com/2012/12/crazy-at-council.html";
Jimmy Bazz Barry December 20, 2012 at 07:46 PM
It's a joke too watch these 4 people be BIG Babies. thats all it is.They see a First woman mayor in this corrup county, Do a great job. shows courage and heart. don't care how long you lived here,You don't own THE PEOPLE!! You work for us. Russo you was seen on tape acceptting bribe. Your dad stole from the people. And this county continues to give out jobs too this crew. Used word crew, because its street term for mob street workers. These young people don't fear you. acting like your real mobsters. Fear tactics. When you use words to knock mayor, like children. Did any of you learn lessons from parents too dont be so childish. Recall all of them, I see the youth in this town,rising up,Dawn can be in washington one day,in place of bobby m. She is real. For all the people. Im a senior,i don't owe nothing to nobody, I worked for mine. I'm happy being simple. But moving here 9 years ago, seen the low lifes of city rule. sad. Recall them all.. Journey ill help in 1st ward.
T_Swift December 20, 2012 at 08:28 PM
Well said, I'm happy to know I'm not the only one frustrated what is going on.
Jimmy Bazz Barry December 20, 2012 at 09:15 PM
Untitled by Mary Henderson The world weighs hard on the soft, gentle, and broken Standing alone beside The Truth and Crumbling from it’s power Falling to knees and wondering why They’re always bloody Weary and ready to sleep…. For those who held power and now who see it fades too simple and loving and caring choices for all,instead of enriching the greedy few. Jim is a lawyer ,smart and a person who gives of himself. giving back, isn't going into senior buildings with coffee and cake and voter reg. I seen it, never accepted the coffee or reg form. I'm able to do for myself, as i found many more that open-minds to change. The mayor needs to clean house of all side line workers who have favors to these 4. Health dept,human ser, etc. . But she can't because of 4 people egos,that know of no other work. Sad Crew.
demosthenes December 20, 2012 at 09:59 PM
Implicit in your imaginary story is the insane idea that Zimmer would have feared an election this past November. The move of the elections to November won by something like 7000 votes which was pretty much as expected. Somehow I don't think Zimmer would have been sweating out the election results of a council race.
Journey December 20, 2012 at 10:17 PM
Claire Moses will not let me call someone (not going to say who - it was not this story) an opportunistic parasite, but they will let Cassandra say this. It disgusts me.
Journey December 20, 2012 at 10:31 PM
No we should time this so the recall election is in November, otherwise they buy a lot of votes. When and where would good for a strategy meeting? I doubt Room 84 would be work. Turtle Club.
CuriousGal December 20, 2012 at 10:44 PM
Ojo Rojo points out that "they (the council minority) should just show up like people with integrity would."- Well, Ojo Rojo might need Diogenes to help us find someone with integrity on the Hoboken Council. Does anyone recall an incident in February involving Council people Marsh and Cunningham as documented in the Hoboken Reporter: HOBOKEN - Council members Peter Cunningham and Carol Marsh, who are both allies of Mayor Dawn Zimmer, slipped out of City Hall before the council meeting on Wednesday night after being presented with a resolution to put the issue of when to have school board elections on the public ballot. http://hudsonreporter.com/view/full_stories_home/17370420/article--Hoboken-City-Council-meeting-canceled-after-mayor-s-allies-walk-out-of-City-Hall-in-protest-of-last--minute-resolution--?instance=up_to_the_minute_lead_story_left_column
Journey December 20, 2012 at 11:31 PM
The only compromise Russo and company will accept is unacceptable to me. Look at Russo, he agreed to a bribe, and I pray the only reason he has not been charge yet is because the Feds knew that just the tip of the iceberg and they know that with a little more work they can nail him for so much more.
MadisonMonroe December 20, 2012 at 11:41 PM
It's ludicrous to suggest that the Mayor and her team would rather have taken their chances at the ballot box in November than take what they thought was a slam dunk with the appointment of Mr. Doyle. Who would want to slog through senior buildings serving up the cake and coffee, press the flesh or beg donors for cash when your friends are willing to break the law to seat you on the same day the incumbent announces her resignation?
ThisMeansWar December 21, 2012 at 04:08 PM
Exactly. Marsh and Cunningham had no choice but to leave when the alternative was to allow the minority to take away the BOE's prerogative away by remaining in attendance. Unlike the council minority, Marsh and Cunningham understood that the City Council has no business making decisions for or tying the hands of the BOE.
Jay Rattigan December 21, 2012 at 04:31 PM
I actually do not have a problem with the Old Guard on this one. They are acting like a prisoner who is trying to stave off execution. They should drag this through the courts. I will give a dying man some flexibility. The possibility of them ever again enjoying the majority on the council is zilch. They understand that no educated, 30-something, Manhattan transplant, tax-paying, parent will ever vote for them. Kudos to them for using Beth Mason's scratch to ward off extinction. They know long-term they will fail and in the back of their heads, are already comtemplating their last meal.
Grafix Avenger December 21, 2012 at 04:52 PM
Mason, Occhipinti, Russo and Castellano: City Council Black Water. http://grafixavenger.blogspot.com/2012/12/tim-fights-flood-aid-tim-fights-for.html
DaHorsey, SmartyJones of MSV December 21, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Trying to change the subject to salvage anything for Beth Mason is not going to work. Beth Mason pushed to repress Hoboken people's rights to speech in the City Council too: http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2012/12/beth-mason-calls-for-suppressing-public.html#IDComment524925495
DaHorsey, SmartyJones of MSV December 21, 2012 at 05:29 PM
No additional lies will aid Beth Mason and the Old Guard council on this one. Mayor Zimmer won across the board on every election item in November. She has earned the respect of the city by doing a great job working to the benefit of all its residents. Judge Bariso ordered the full council to vote on the Doyle appointment. Trot out the lie again it isn't true and then watch when the law is upheld. You and your curious twinkie are not going to be able to save Beth Mason on this. Neither can her lawyers. Get used to it.
Hobokeneer December 21, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Good point CuriousGal. I remember that the Council Minority introduced a resolution for Councilman Cunningham and Councilwoman Marsh to reimburse the city for that stunt. I think that to be consistent -- don't want to be hypocrites do we -- Councilman Russo, Councilman Occhipinti, Councilwoman Mason and Councilwoman Castellano should agree to reimburse the city for the dollars the city has had to spend in Court to deal with this stunt. Don't you agree?
Hobokeneer December 21, 2012 at 06:17 PM
I applaud Jay Rattigan for his honesty. The only problem with his analogy is that it is the City of Hoboken that is being held "prisoner" as a result of these games, not the poor council minority. You approve of their "dragging this case through the courts" but this political game -- and that is all it is -- costs the taxpayers real money. I do disagree with you on why they will never enjoy the council majority again. The reason they will never get the Council Majority again isn't because the voters aren't smart (like you are smart Jay). The reason they will never enjoy the council majority again is because the City is tired of this crap, and wants their public servants to work for the public, and not to work for themselves.
Jay Rattigan December 21, 2012 at 07:48 PM
I do not know Carol Marsh and have no knoweldge of her personal circumstances. That said, I really wish she resigned sooner so there could be an election to determine her seat. Would have been beautiful to have Jim Doyle annihilate the Old Guard candidate.
demosthenes December 21, 2012 at 08:17 PM
I have no idea what the mayor and her team would rather have done but I seriously doubt she would have trembling in fear at the prospect of a special election this past november. particularly when her opponents' key operatives didn't even know we were having an election this november since they think november elections are quite rare. Soeaking of breaking the law, did Mr. kleinman tell you about the time he helped break the law by lying to the City Council with respect to an illegal early retirement program that ultimate cost the taxpayers $4.2 million? I'll bet that's where his expertise in statutes of limitations comes from since he probably was marking the days off on his calendar until the statute of limitations on malpractice ran out.
MadisonMonroe December 22, 2012 at 07:21 AM
Yes, the Mayor won on issues and candidates she supported in November (including rent control...why she thinks private homeowners should underwrite "poor" people is beyond me but she is a left-wing liberal so what else can I expect?) However, she and her comrades did not have a crystal ball when they decided to appoint Mr. Doyle. Of course they wanted an appointment rather than an election, and did what was necessary to make it happen, including breaking the law. And once again the lie is perpetrated by Mr. Horse that the judge "ordered the full council to vote." No, he ordered them to meet, until that ordered was stayed. The only order the judge made was to remove Mr. Doyle from the council because the vote that put him there was illegal. After decades of cronyism and corruption in city hall, one would think that following the Rule of Law is the most important consideration. But the Mayor has a cadre of followers who routinely make the argument that the end justifies the means. Same old, same old.
CuriousGal December 22, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Mr. Doyle is a fine choice worthy of consideration by the entire council but let's calm down on the drama of the city being "held prisoner" and all the the other ridiculous rhetoric. The city council voted unanimously to appropriate $2.55M in Emergency Appropriations to Pay for Sandy Damage this week. So, there IS cooperation on the council. A 100% of the time? No. But there IS cooperation for Hoboken's common good. Perhaps, instead of trying to simply ram things through the council with a majority vote or with questionable legal advice, there should be more communication, compromising, and negotiating. Maybe then we would have a 9th council person. Dawn and the council majority depended on an interpretation of the law to push their choice through, now they are being hampered by an appeals process to the law based on that interpretation. Resolving arguments via the courts is a reasonable way to proceed when there is no other avenue to a resolution. I would suggest more communication, compromising, and negotiating and less litigation if at all possible.

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