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Tim O's Lack of Understanding of Public Finance 101

I moved to Hoboken in 1985. This blog is my take on Hoboken politics.

At Monday's council meeting Tim Occhipinti demonstrated a complete lack of understanding of how public finance operates and his immature behavior. He made the startling declaration that the proposed bond issue would have an underwriter, financial adviser, bond counsel and an auditor. In the words of the equally bright Homer Simpson- Doh! Take a look at the thousands of bond issues and amazingly you will find the same personnel in every single one. This is done for the protection of the issuer. He then pointed out that the bond counsel is politically connected. What NJ law firm worth their salt is not? Can Tim name one? I doubt it. He should have spoken to a bond professional, such as myself so that he wouldn't waste the public's time, as he typically does. Our Corporate Counsel, Mark Tabakin works for one as well. In my opinion he is first class. When MORC (aka MORTe) illegally breached his contract he took the high road and didn't lash out.

Tim also smirks when city layoffs are mentioned. As a city employee how does that make you feel? When I was speaking, Tim rudely muttered something, ignoring the fact that I had the floor. Dave Mello challenged him to say it to my face. Cowardly Tim couldn't do it. Dave later told me he was telling me to shut up. I guess the truth really does hurt.

Hoboken currently has a legal case with no lawyer because MORC will not approve or pay for lawyers. This is part of their effort to sabotage our city's finances and force a state takeover. This time, not because of underfunding, but because 4 obstinate, legal and financial malfeasants want to make our most fiscally responsible mayor since I moved to Hoboken look bad. It beyond shame that these miscreants hate the mayor so much they are willing to destroy this town.

For the second time we received a reprimand from NJ DLGS to convene a special meeting regarding year end transfers that every municipality does in accordance with NJSA 40A: 4-57, which the minority continues to violate. Only in the Orwellian world of Beth Mason can anyone believe that the letter is meant for the good governance majority.

What about our firefighters? Their overtime pay is 46% ($920,000) of the transfers. While I believe that Director Tooke was hired to straighten out such excesses, I believe, unlike Tim and MORC that we should honor our word and contracts. Pay the firefighters the money they earned. $500,000 or 25% (71% total) is earmarked to the bankruptcy law firm of Paul Hollander. As he correctly pointed out to Tim, it was a long series of hard negotiations that produced the deal to save HUMC and Hoboken taxpayers as much as $80 million. It cost taxpayers $2 million in claims and $500,000 for legal expenses. The penny wise, pound foolish, legally incompetent minority wanted Hollander to reduce his expenses. This would have meant a $25 million tax rise in Hoboken. This is another example of why MORC is fiscally incompetent. To be fair, there is a raise in the mayor's office. There was a promotion to Chief of Staff, a common office for a town of our size or larger that cost a whopping $11,000 or ½ of .1%! Other items, fully explained to Michael (“the dog ate my homework”) Russo are mundane actions such as reassigning personnel from one department to another and hiring mandated security guards for Hoboken's Court.

The only hope is for concerned citizens (and firefighters) to attend the special meeting. Beth Mason folded on the Monarch project when the room was filled with Tea Building residents and the same with a boatload of citizens and HUMC employees. This is the only way to get through to these kind of people. They couldn't care less about you or this town. They crave a return to power so we can see overdevelopment, patronage, higher taxes and more perp walks.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

prosbus November 30, 2011 at 06:02 PM
Baseless claims...thought so.
Hobbs November 30, 2011 at 06:03 PM
Poor try at deeflection on your part.Perry Walk through fire? Really ? Why did it take $40 a pop to get hundreds of them to be election day workers for your Plan B boy Occhipinti ? I know you will keep spewing your hate and disinformation as that is just what you do .
peterbelfiore November 30, 2011 at 06:07 PM
Friendly, Green Green -Friday is Pizza night. From May 14, 2011 Hoboken Patch. The Hoboken Family Alliance held its first annual spring gala Thursday night at the W Hotel. During the party the HFA initiative Project Play gave the City of Hoboken the over $50,000 it raised to help renovate the playground equipment at Church Square Park. Speaking to the gathering, Project Play co-founder Zabrina Stoffel thanked a long list of sponsors and supporters, including Mayor Dawn Zimmer, Director of Environmental Services Jennifer Maier, former Mayor David Roberts, Eat Drink Hoboken founder David Liebler, Freeholder Anthony Romano, Club H Fitness, Liberty Realty, Hoboken Volunteers and the Elysianettes Running Society. “Thank you,” Stoffel said. “You told us it was all going to work out, and it did.” Stoffel also thanked the city council for recently passing a $1.6 million dollar bond to pay for further renovation to all of Hoboken's parks. Accepting the very large check, both in dollar amount and actual paper size, Mayor Zimmer thanked the HFA in return. “You're making Hoboken into a place where families are staying,” she said. So where is the MONEY???? Green-I know you don't like to speak at council meeting but don't be so obtuse, it doesn't suit you. Perry
Hobbs November 30, 2011 at 06:16 PM
You can always tell when Peter "Perry" Belfiore dosen't want to answer a question he tries to sling mud and disinformation to distract.
peterbelfiore November 30, 2011 at 07:20 PM
Hobbs, 4th time you posted a variation on a theme. You are close to Dawn. Do you know it is illegal to accept money under false pretenses. This rises to a fraud. Call me what you will but please nwhere isthe $50,000.00 yhose moms in strollers raised. Listening FBI! Perry
Scott M. Siegel November 30, 2011 at 07:21 PM
When it comes to Tim and the 4th Ward in general, there has been a long running saga. HHA residents get paid $40 as "campaign workers". Only a fraction are actually out on the street "campaigning". Amazingly they all fill out absentee or now VBM's, even though it would take them less than 5 minutes to vote. Those that do vote are often accompanied into the booth by politicos such as Ruben's mother. The others allegedly must present an unsealed VBM to collect their $40. Even more amazing is that they vote 100% for the person who pays them $40. There are currently 5 criminal affidavits supporting this scenario in the hands of NJ AG Paula Dow.
Redrider765 November 30, 2011 at 08:03 PM
I suppose the concept of putting money in the bank until it is time to spend it is a bit too complicated for you? Not a shocker at all there big guy.
Ze'ev Choamsky November 30, 2011 at 08:10 PM
You know what would really piss off Frank Raia? If somebody asked why he keeps telling anyone who can tolerate the odor of his cheap cologne that his son was 2007 Valedictorian of Hoboken HS. He'll probably need a defibrillator if you ask him how it was even possible that Ryan Raia was even considered for the award.
pied piper November 30, 2011 at 08:18 PM
Perry, you have got to be kidding me with all of this bnr vs new comer nonsense. It was you and your admin that sad idly by while people were burned alive. It was you and your administration who promised the residents a pool and community center only to reneg and give zoning variances for monsterous condos with abatements. Then, you and your admin blamed the newcomers for taking all of the open space and declared them to be against bnr. You and your admins had better make peace with your maker-there will eventually be a tab to be paid and you guys owe BIG TIME!
peterbelfiore November 30, 2011 at 08:26 PM
Red, Is the $50,000 in the bank? You know this? Shouldn't it be in a designated escrow account not paying other expenses? The plans were approved, the resquite public hearings held, the council voted to authorize the 1.6 Million for upgrades to the playground of Churh Square Park as well as other city Parks. All the pieces are in place. What's the hold-up. If the name of the mayor were not Zimmer. you and your ilk would have spun dozens of conspiracy theories. Perry
Hobbs November 30, 2011 at 08:41 PM
Actually Mr. B., I haven't seen, spoken or in anyway had contact to Mayor Zimmer for close to a year other than to say hello when we saw each other on the street or at the City Council meeting. While your increasingly desperate lame attempts at poltical conspiricy theories are repeatdly shot down you continue to repeat them. I guess you just think that everyone has the same low level of honesty and ethics as as your proffessed longtime, dear friends the Russos or Peter Cammarano.
Redrider765 November 30, 2011 at 08:50 PM
Shouldn't you know the answer to that since you are the one alleging fraud? BTW, for a self-confessed gadfly who goes to CC meetings, you sure don't pay attention. How about you go review what happened at the meeting on 10/5/11 and then go eat some crow.
Hobbs November 30, 2011 at 08:53 PM
OMG Mr. B, are you suggesting that maybe Uncle George may have done something rash with the money ? Sombody contact the FBI we may have another one ! :-) Or. perhaps the money you are so worried about will actually be added into the upgrade budget for Church Street Park like everyone always had planned.
Journey November 30, 2011 at 09:25 PM
Has anyone asked Ms. Stoffel? As the party that gave the city the money, I would expect her to be the party complaining if something was done wrong with it. So what does Project Play have to say? I'm hearing complaints from opponents of the administration, but not Project Play.
Journey November 30, 2011 at 09:30 PM
Considering I have seen a lot hate directed at "Stroller Moms", why is it important to use that a version of the phrase? Besides I think women behind Project Play have children old enough to be out of strollers.
Journey November 30, 2011 at 09:32 PM
There was a meeting scheduled, then canceled. The signs about the canceled meeting are still in the park, so maybe not all the i's have been dotted and t's crossed. Why are you here complaining but not Project Play? Are you using them in your war against the administration?
greenhaven November 30, 2011 at 10:17 PM
Perry - If you have evidence of fraud or any other type of potentially criminal wrongdoing you should do what Mayor Zimmer did - turn it over to law enforcement. Don't you agree HQ? Instead of posting silly unsubstantiated accusations please answer my question: What did you mean when you said electing a Mayor who was not born in Hoboken created a "South Africa like situation" or in your post today when you wrote that you thought that "Incas and Pizzaro" was an even better analogy. A man stands up for what he believes in. You have chosen to instead try to distract and dissemble. Please man up and explain what exactly you meant - not with your usually irrelevent tirade about all things Zimmer but with a straight honest direct to the point explanation of your own words.
Scott M. Siegel November 30, 2011 at 10:36 PM
Perry, the money is most likely in escrow against the bond issue. OPRA for yourself if you really care.
Enough November 30, 2011 at 10:37 PM
friendlty fire, you need to put more effort into getting a clue. The HHA is the Hoboken Housing Authority, where a lot of people whom you don't know happen to live. It is located in the western part of town and most people who make their homes there do not have the financial means to write a check to the city for any kind of park, as much as they would like to do it. In your fruitless effort to be clever, you have confused the fundraising efforts of the HFA, the Hoboken Family Alliance whose check (we hope) is sitting in some bank account earning interest for the City of Hoboken while the playground equipment it was intended for at Church Square Park continues to rot, with no plan in sight. I say "we hope," because while that situation is frustrating, it is better than the alternative of the money disappearing into the black hole of overspent legal and consulting contracts for the city. Patch covered the event where the HFA presented the check to the city on May 14: http://hoboken.patch.com/articles/hfa-hosts-gala-gives-city-check-for-park This is the problem with blogs that are heavy on comments. The opinion of an ignorant fool looks the same as any other.
Redrider765 November 30, 2011 at 11:08 PM
Enough, actually it is you who need to get a clue. A contract was awarded on 10/5/11 for a company to come in and do some of that playground work that the city wants to do city wide this winter. So please, go do some research and stop looking like an ignorant fool. The city is taking some steps to improve the parks just like they are to improve the roads. Things like this take time. You can't just expect everything to get done in the blink of an eye or all at once. Be happy 3 parks will be upgraded in the near future with more to come after that once those plans are finalized.
prosbus December 01, 2011 at 12:37 AM
I still think it is a good idea and I would not rule it out as a possibility. It is not extortion by any stretch of the imagination.
prosbus December 01, 2011 at 12:44 AM
Maybe your hatred for "lack of integrity" of the BNR's is similar to their hatred of you and yours for your self righteousness. I readily admit that you "reformers" have more hatred in your heart, are meaner, and more ruthless than any BNR'er I know. Thankfully, those are not attributes which most people embrace. Capice?
Redrider765 December 01, 2011 at 01:28 AM
Whatever Lame, go do your traffic report now.
hobokenhorse.com December 01, 2011 at 01:42 AM
I'm not sure what phrase in Italian the Persian prosbus is trying to express. Sadly, that is not the spelling of the word. You ain't no defender of Old Hoboken and you ain't Italian either Lame. Now go hug it out with Michele and the other Old Guard crooks.
prosbus December 01, 2011 at 02:26 AM
Actually it is the correct spelling of the word horsey -- I don't really care whether you know what it means or not. But you like using Italian, right? You refer to the council minority with the Italian word for death but you don't really think that is an ethnic insult do you? You don't know the Italian that's used in the street or that these people grew up with....and you don't care. You don't know a lot of things-- but you are too arrogant to give a shit. I'll take any BNR over your kind-- any day of the week. Capice?
hobokenhorse.com December 01, 2011 at 02:55 AM
No prosbus the correct spelling is capisce. You are spelling the mob version or the slang. Do you believe yourself a mobster? Hugging it out with Michele doesn't get you made. In fact, the clan doesn't even like you. You don't speak for any people in Hoboken other than Beth Mason who pays you for things other than friendship. I'll use my MORTe acronym as I well please and don't need any lessons from a Brezhnev eyebrowed Persian from Poughkeepsie about being Italian. Besides, you have bigger more Federal type problems to attend to or don't you know?
friendly fire December 01, 2011 at 03:42 AM
Enough, you are right in the fact that I made a spelling error, i did mean HFA, not HHA. Ignorant fool? Maybe... but let's take a step back and realize that I meant HFA, not HHA.
Enough December 01, 2011 at 10:42 PM
Red, thanks for pointing out that the city has awarded a contract. This reinforces my point that the city is really good at doing that. We'll see how long it takes for the actual work to be completed, at least on budget if not on time.
Enough December 01, 2011 at 10:47 PM
OK, Ms. Emily Litella.
Journey December 15, 2011 at 08:24 PM
So now one of the founders of Project Play has been heard on this subject. The HFA still has the money. Hoboken never recieved the money. Granted the city should have set up the trust so they could accept the money, but the money has not been wasted by the city.

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