City Council Preview – 7/22/2009


City Hall is now officially “2009!”

The big news at tonight’s City Council meeting will be that it will be the first to be BROADCAST LIVE over Hoboken411! That’s right, LIVE!

Hoboken City Council Meetings - Live Video Stream

Join us tonight at 7pm for the show and live chat. And what will we be discussing you ask?

Find out what’s on the agenda – after the jump!

(City Council Preview – 7/22/2009 – continued…)

Bad news, good news

Well, things may get off on a somber note as the Mayor and Council takes a moment to reflect on the life of Deputy City Clerk John DePalma, who attended each meeting until his sudden illness this spring. The mood may change as a proclamation is issued honoring Little League player Anthony Branda for pitching a perfect game for the Dom’s Bakery team (way to go Anthony!)

Another proclamation is planned to salute outgoing Community Development Director Fred Bado “for his lifelong service to the City of Hoboken.” That proclamation may be a bit premature as outgoing Mayor David Roberts arranged for his hand-picked Hospital Board to dump George Crimmins as Executive Director to make way for Bado. Critics say Bado’s experience will come in handy if the Hospital goes belly up and the property has to be sold to a developer, as Roberts often said was his “backup plan” in case things didn’t work out. So what about the actual business of the meeting you ask? Well, here goes:

Two ordinances on the agenda

Public hearings will be held on two ordinances, the first changing the law with respect to the operation of doggy day care and kennel services (sponsored by Peter Cunningham, of course) and the second stripping the Mayor of the ability to appoint the Zoning Board of Adjustment AND “confirming the governing body’s role as the city redevelopment agency”. Read the criticisms of this power grabbing move here in our recap of the July 1st council reorganization meeting.

Resolutions to name new directors

The list of resolutions begins with the names of Directors that Mayor Cammarano wants to hire and the Council has “Advice and Consent” powers to approve. The fireworks begin with Angel Alicea for Public Safety Director, who ironically probably wouldn’t be up for the job if Dawn Zimmer hadn’t gotten him removed from the HHA board in favor of her choice, the since arrested Hector Claveria. After the public and council address that appointment, next up is Health and Human Services Director-designate Terry LaBruno (watch for fireworks on this one) followed by Todd Poole for Community Development Director and John Pope as head of Environmental Services. Even if the Zimmer-led majority rejects the Cammarano appointments, State Fiscal Monitor Judy Tripodi is likely to overule them and allow Cammarano to appoint his team. There are 15 other resolutions on the agenda, but the text hasn’t been posted to the city website. Not good folks. Let’s make sure these get online in a timely fashion before the August meeting please? Thanks in advance.

Three new ordinances are up for a “First Reading.” The first establishes the salaries of the Mayor, Council and Department heads. The second involves the Mayor’s proposal to change the gifting policy for City Employees. The third involves a change to the Northwest Redevelopment Plan ordinance to allow the Water Music project to get even taller. This is a stealth high-rise to be built east of the Shop-Rite. It received approvals several years ago when few people lived on the block. Will there be public outcry at the meeting, or will the neighborhood catch on only after construction starts, ala the Gateway/SkyClub project? What will 5th Ward Councilman Peter Cunningham do? Time will tell.


First Public Comments to be streamed LIVE

The public portion should be a doozy. It got longer and longer after the meetings started running on Channel 78. Will streaming the meetings live lead to more public input?

Tune back in tonight right here on Hoboken411 for all the live, late-breaking action. (Video post will be bumped back to the top.)

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