How did Hoboken screw up snow removal?

12/28/2010:

Hoboken Amateur (PL)Hour

Yes, that’s right – the recent attempt at plowing the city of Hoboken was indeed managed by amateurs.

The outrage and disgust amongst local citizens (and even NBA teams like the Orlando Magic that visited)was so bad – that something needs to come from this experience.

The bottom line as a result of the Blizzard that struck the northeast is this: No matter what spin you hear elsewhere, the city of Hoboken truly botched this weather event on practically all counts (except for the HPD, HFD and EMS – who tried as hard as they could to manage).

  • Prime examples are every city surrounding Hoboken. Everyone who traveled into Hoboken said the roads were fine – until they got to Hoboken. You know what? Those towns are bigger, have more miles of roads – and did just fine.
  • Whomever managed this function of the city did a very poor job. We had hardly any plows – and whatever equipment that came – started much too late, and were woefully inadequate for the job. After this lose-lose situation, the city had to fork over more taxpayer money for out-of-town contractors – who were still painfully underpowered. What happened to those industrial-sized power-house trucks in previous years?
  • And why was our Mayor Dawn Zimmer on vacation in New Hampshire – when she knew well in advance that a massive storm was coming? Who allowed all this time off? And what about the Parking Czar Ian Sacs – who took his 6th week of vacation over in Finland? Why was no mention made of who was governing the city? I heard that double-dipper Arch Liston was running the show – although never officially announced.

City Spins their own blizzard of misinformation

  • The city really turned on the spin machine! For one, if you read any of the sugar-coated press releases churned out of City Hall by spinmeister Juan Melli – everything was fine in Hoboken. They were “managing the difficult storm – had plenty of plows,” and blamed the reason streets were covered with snow on “wind gusts.” You ask any single Hoboken resident who stepped outside – or even just looked outside the window – and they’d say that is a 100% blatant lie. Plows were non-existent – and the ones that did go by – either got stuck – or just plowed an inch of snow off the top because they were not powerful enough. Do you accept the city lying to your face? Now apply that feeling to the rest of the junk spewed out of City Hall and you’ll all understand me better.

    Whomever made the decision to publish such a lie should admit they purposely lied, apologize, then resign. Spin doesn’t work when 1000’s of residents see through the fiction.

  • They also “blamed” it on the fact that it was a big Blizzard. Bullocks. Hoboken has had many blizzards in the past – and were cleaned up quickly and efficiently. Back in 2003 – we had one the same size – with none of these problems. Previous administrations took care of the emergency situations like this with ease.

The Buck Stops with Zimmer

It’s quite possible the total disaster that Hoboken suffered through after our December 2010 Blizzard may have been attributable to one of many individuals – but Mayor Dawn Zimmer is the root cause – since she’s the “Chief Executive” of Hoboken. Whether it’s not having proper staffing despite knowing about the potential blizzard, to not executing emergency weather action or having staff qualified in the “real world,” it is ultimately her responsibility.

I’d have a shred of respect for the city if they identified the problems and admitted what they did wrong. Apologize and have a “detailed plan” to document what steps will be taken to prevent such a debacle in the future.

But then again – you know what happened the last time someone had a “Detailed Plan” (to reduce property taxes….)

Leave a Reply

40 Comments on "How did Hoboken screw up snow removal?"

nacholibre
Member
nacholibre

For the city leadership, as my boss Mr. Henderson says, “Ya blew it!”

I was in MD for the holidays and by late afternoon Saturday, saw the blizzard warning, so I came back early before the storm. How the can any of the local leaders act like this was a big surprise? I have no issue with people taking off for the holidays, but is it too much to maybe check weather.com? Instead they act surprised a huge storm rolled in, when it was predicted in advance and in enough time to start doing something…something would have been better than nothing. I had to drive to work Monday and was amazed there was still almost no action on the streets. Even yesterday, Newark was a mess in many places, but still not as bad as here, and they have much greater fiscal problems than Hoboken.

Years ago I drove back from Chicago in a blizzard with no problems because every state I passed through had trucks either salting beforehand, continually plowing as soon as snow started to fall, or the trucks were staged along the roads.

Poor Prior Planning = Piss Poor Performance

Again, ya blew it!

BarbaraR56
Member
BarbaraR56

As I commented in an earlier post, in the 90’s the then newly elected Mayor Russo had to deal with one of the worst Winters in years. His then newly appointed director of environmental services, Tim Calligy used his God given common sense and took a map of the City and sectioned off the City in 4 parts. This was Mr. Calligy’s first attempt and he succeeded. 4 or 5 major storms hit right after that one and the handling of snow removal got even better. Unfortunately Ms. Zimmer and her directors clearly did not have a plan in case the blizzard warnings were true. Total ineptitude on their parts, and truthfully IMO this will go down in history towards her demise. Many issues in this City have been “backburnered” for far too long, too much “going to Committee”, a little more proaction instead of procrastination is required. 🙄

wiskeytango1
Member
wiskeytango1

R56 correction it was the mayor who made the choice..Calligy was on the job training and not a factor at all..Anthonys forman john Colgrove was the driving power behind every snowstorm in his tenure..Prior to dpw directors Roy Hack was another who knew his job..If anyone remembers the great water main crissis in the early eighty’s..Timmy was persona non gratta..John ran the show…John where did you go? 😀 [quote comment=”201444″]As I commented in an earlier post, in the 90’s the then newly elected Mayor Russo had to deal with one of the worst Winters in years. His then newly appointed director of environmental services, Tim Calligy used his God given common sense and took a map of the City and sectioned off the City in 4 parts. This was Mr. Calligy’s first attempt and he succeeded. 4 or 5 major storms hit right after that one and the handling of snow removal got even better. Unfortunately Ms. Zimmer and her directors clearly did not have a plan in case the blizzard warnings were true. Total ineptitude on their parts, and truthfully IMO this will go down in history towards her demise. Many issues in this City have been “backburnered” for far too long, too much “going to Committee”, a little more proaction instead of procrastination is required. [/quote]

youme66
Member
youme66

Very good points![quote comment=”201444″]As I commented in an earlier post, in the 90’s the then newly elected Mayor Russo had to deal with one of the worst Winters in years. His then newly appointed director of environmental services, Tim Calligy used his God given common sense and took a map of the City and sectioned off the City in 4 parts. This was Mr. Calligy’s first attempt and he succeeded. 4 or 5 major storms hit right after that one and the handling of snow removal got even better. Unfortunately Ms. Zimmer and her directors clearly did not have a plan in case the blizzard warnings were true. Total ineptitude on their parts, and truthfully IMO this will go down in history towards her demise. Many issues in this City have been “backburnered” for far too long, too much “going to Committee”, a little more proaction instead of procrastination is required. [/quote]

boston1
Member

ATT: they have been Towing and Ticketing the Willow Snow Route for the past hour (not 6:30 pm like the hoboken.org website says – shocker!) if parked there, you better get there and move – they started on 13th and are on 8th already.

animal_lover
Member
animal_lover

It would have been useful if the parking renewal envelopes had contained stuffers with useful information like snow emergency routes rather than the twenty is plenty BS. [quote comment=”201410″]ATT: they have been Towing and Ticketing the Willow Snow Route for the past hour (not 6:30 pm like the hoboken.org website says – shocker!) if parked there, you better get there and move – they started on 13th and are on 8th already.[/quote]

homeworld
Member

I saw two large dump trucks with their payloads filled with snow transporting the snow somewhere west of Grand Street last night.

steph32206
Member
steph32206

its funny how when she was running for office you whould see pics of her pushing cars out of floods. but now that she sgot her position i havet seen an effort like that since,her vacation must have been more important i guess, hoboken is so small and the roads where worse than a larger city thats sad

wpDiscuz