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Referendum Will Ask to Consolidate Elections

The Hoboken City Clerk approved 1,800 signatures recently. The question to move municipal elections to November and eliminate a run off will be on the ballot in November.

Hoboken City Clerk Jimmy Farina certified , thereby putting the question of moving elections to November on the ballot in the upcoming election. 

If both initiatives are passed by the voters this November, Hoboken’s next municipal elections—when Mayor Dawn Zimmer is op for reelection—will be held in November of 2013 instead of in May. There will also be no run-off elections any more, changing the system to a "winner takes all" model. 

If voters choose to move the Hoboken Municipal elections to November, all future local elections will be held during November general election dates.

FAP August 28, 2012 at 08:33 PM
1,800 signatures is a mandate for change. It will be interesting to see if the council minority supports putting this on the ballot for November.
recallbethmason August 29, 2012 at 12:01 PM
Woo hoo, about time. No more low turnout elections swayed by the Russo mafia!
Hobbs August 29, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Increasing voter participation and reducing costs are a win - win for Hoboken. :-)
Captain Kirk August 29, 2012 at 01:33 PM
This is nothing more than an attempt by Zimmer partisans to run against divided opposition. The mayor fears going head to head against any candidate, because she's never once carried a majority of the city. Therefore she's trying to duck a real election altogether by manipulating the rules.
puzzledone August 29, 2012 at 01:44 PM
This November is a presidential election. Any electoral shenanigans or irregularities (not that I'm claining that any have occurred in the past) should be expected to be very closely scrutinized. The results, as a result, may be very informative.
HBKN North August 29, 2012 at 05:01 PM
I'm all for municipal elections to take place during the general election, but I don't like the idea of winner take all format. Not having a run off election creates the possibility of the next mayor taking office with a plurality of votes and not a majority. Essentially the next mayor could take office with less than 50 percent of the vote significantly undercutting a mayor's mandate...
FAP August 29, 2012 at 05:28 PM
You're saying Mayor Zimmer who basicly tied, within 161 votes, the guy who took tens of thousands in illegal bribes and many more tens of thousands in questionable loans to greatly outspend her, and now she's running as an incumbent who has saved the city's Hospital and kept the city tax rate flat for 3 years is worried about running against... who? Tim Occipinti? Beth Mason? Frank Raia? . Everyone expects the Old Guard to get behind a single candidate when elections are consolidated so even your fallacious point it invalid.
demosthenes August 29, 2012 at 06:18 PM
The anti-Zimmer folks have done three polls in the past couple of months with a fourth now in the field. Maybe Captain Kirk can persuade them to make the poll results public so the public can better understand Zimmer supporters' desperation to avoid an election in May under existing rules. Al Sullivan seems to think Zimmer's a fool for not leaving things as they are and putting a fork in these guys in May since they're so busy fighting with each other they can't even organize a barbecue. Release the poll results so we can learn whether Al is right or just posting Zimmertini spin.
demosthenes August 29, 2012 at 06:22 PM
You mean like Peter Cammarano's 161 vote "mandate" to keep personal control over zoning board appointments and to deliver development favors in exchange for bribes? Sure would hate to "undercut" that!
Ojo Rojo August 29, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Then vote yes on the November change and no on the winner take all format. You don't have to vote yes on both measures.
Eric Kurta August 29, 2012 at 06:29 PM
I'm just as comfortable with a candidate winning with a plurality in a high turnout November election as with one who wins with a majority in a low turnout December election.
Ojo Rojo August 29, 2012 at 06:37 PM
Duck a real election? What a load of #$%%. More people will be voting on those ballot initiatives than in any municipal election in the history of this town and the only way either one of them passes is if they get a clear majority of voters who vote yes. Zimmer isn't running away from a real election. It is the people who don't want those ballot initiatives on the ballot and are afraid of the higher turnout November elections typically have that are the ones running from a real election.
Captain Kirk August 29, 2012 at 06:45 PM
FAP, who is "everyone" and who is "The Old Guard". You have no idea what's going to happen. Neither do I. However, it's not in the nature of most politicians to just lay down to one another. Obviously you think the opposition is unlikely to come together, as I do also, or you wouldnt be pushing these electoral shenanigans. So I dont believe you think it's likely for one second. But let's say both of our crystal balls are broken and the opposition DOES pick one candidate... Well, then your legislation has succeeded in moving that decision (who the opposition candidate will be) out of the voters hands and back into "smoke filled rooms". Congratulations, you've just reversed a century's worth of Progressive reforms to the electoral process. What you've also done is possibly succeeded in constructing your own gallows. What if the field is Ramos/Zimmer/Brinkman? Ahhh, that's a horse of a different color, isn't it? Be careful what you wish for! If our crystal balls ARE broken, you're not screwing the opposition out of a fair election, you're quite posibly screwing yourself. I don't want to see the opposition screwed. I don't want to see the mayor screwed. I don't want the smoke filled room to return. I think it would be nice to have an actual election. This has nothing to do with good gov't. It's not a reform. It's not coming from random concerned citizens. It is a political maneuver from the mayor's operatives designed to short circuit the election. Vote NO!
Hobbs August 29, 2012 at 06:59 PM
I think Councilwoman Castellano put it best when asked who of the OLD GUARD politicos would attempt a mayoral run and she told a reporter that they were just trying to figure out which among them had the least negatives. :-) PS. The current pollsters are asking for names and info....I would advise against giving it to them..
Captain Kirk August 29, 2012 at 07:09 PM
Ojo November elections and no runoffs are two different issues.
demosthenes August 29, 2012 at 07:42 PM
So Captain, you oppose this measure because it will "force" the anti zimmer folks into a "back room" in which they'll cut deals to pick a single candidate? As opposed to what Al Sullivan says they've been doing for the last couple of months?
Ojo Rojo August 29, 2012 at 08:05 PM
You are right. They are 2 different issues and both ballot initiatives are separate on the ballot and require a clear majority to win. You can vote for one, both or neither.
FranzZimmer August 29, 2012 at 08:12 PM
This is a good idea the only downside is when the Zimmer machine loses they're going to start complaining about this move. With the recent lawsuit about the Zimmer bloggers it should turn people's heads and wake them up. It will be a very close election this time, my hopes are Dawn, Carol, David and Ravi all lose, then get this city moving finally in the correct direction.
ThisMeansWar August 30, 2012 at 09:55 AM
This tawdry little attempt to use the courts as a House Un-American Activities Committee to silence criticism through intimidation and fear of reprisal will be long forgotten by the 2013 elections - apart from the permanent damage to its various sponsors. Alas for your sad hopes. Once again the 24/7/365 campaign has not thought through the possible consequences of its anti-democratic powerplays before setting them in motion. Morons.
Hobbs September 02, 2012 at 08:26 PM
The OLD GUARD politicos according to press reports are involved in so much infighting as to who among them " has the least amount of negatives" to attempt a run at being mayor that they may actually be in favor of moving the elections until November just to give them more time to fight each other to see who is top dog (pun intended). :-)
Scott M. Siegel September 03, 2012 at 09:41 PM
We have to be practical. If no candidate wins a November election, the runoff would be in mid December with miniscule voter participation. Maybe that is what Capt. Kirk hopes.Plus that is the way the BOE has always been run and no one has ever complained about that.
oldguard September 10, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Montclair had a non-partisan committee look into moving municipal elections to fall. They voted 8-1 against the move. Among some of the interesting observances - the large fall-off of vote totals from the top election item (Pres or Governor) with the secondary (assembly) and tertiary (referendum) items. So maybe instead of just saying that there will be 24,000 people who come out to vote, we look at how many vote on the secondary or tertiary items on the ballot. I hardly see 1,800 signatures as a mandate for anything. Regardless of what FAP claims.

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