The Hoboken Journal- Archive Site

A Hoboken Blog about politics and events.

Archive for May 2009

Dawn Zimmer Photos – Grassroots Campaign

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Here is an email sent out yesterday at 5PM. The Zimmer campaign was trying to get a picture that would capture the grassroots essence of her campaign by getting volunteers together for a group photo early this morning. Not a bad turnout on such short notice.

We’re going to have a photographer take a picture of all Zimmer and The Change That Works Slate supporters! We want to capture that this is truly a GRASSROOTS campaign. We would love if all of you, and your families, would come to Church Square Park and have a group photo taken with Dawn and the team. The most important endorsement, the one that really matters, is from all of us and our families!

Here are the details:
Date: Sunday, May 30th (Tomorrow)
Time: 10.30 am
Location: Church Square Park

Here are few photos from the event:

The Main photo on the stairs

Grass Roots Signage – Remember Susan Powter? The other side has a Zimmer window sign

Group birds eye view – getting ready for photos

Written by reformerusg

May 31, 2009 at 7:20 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

Primary Elections this Tuesday June 2nd

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This upcoming Tuesday is the NJ primary election. Governor Jon Corzine is running against 3 opponents in the Democratic Primary namely, Jeff Boss, Roger Bacon, and Carl Bergmanson. The 2 State Assembly, one Surrogate, 4 female State Committee members, 4 male State Committee members are all unopposed. All of the column B candidates are part of the Hudson County Democratic Party political apparatus.

In ward 5, District 1 where this ballot is taken from I am running against Mark Sacco along side Theresa Minutillo for Democratic Committee seats. One male and one female are elligible for each Ward and district combination and voters must be registered as a Democrat to cast their ballots.

This is my frist foray into politics from the elected office perspective. The Democratic committee seat is a minor role but it is important to elect members who will pledge to not use the committee to funnel money to local elections to get around ELEC regulations as was done in the past. Vote 17E for Theresa Minutillo and 18E for Kurt Gardiner for County Democrat Committee in Ward 5 and district 1. The Ward and District is shown below in the diagram in yellow with the checkmark which basically comprises 4 blocks. I will publish the complete list of all democratic committee candidates running later today.

The Republicans have a battle for Governor in their primary between flat tax proponent Steve Lonegan, Guilliani backed moderate Chris Christie, and Rick Merkt. All other positions are unopposed.

Written by reformerusg

May 31, 2009 at 7:00 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

Peter Cammarano Fundraiser at the W Hotel June 1st

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Update: This event is tommorow June 1st. Don’t forget to bring your checkbook if you are supporting Peter Cammarano. Donations start at $250 a pop.

Here is an upcoming fundraiser for Peter Cammarano for Mayor on Monday June 1st at the W Hotel. With contribution suggestions starting at $250 and up this is only an event for the well heeled or connected in or outside of Hoboken. I wonder if Perry Klaussen from Hoboken 411 will get a comp for this given all the free ads (with no paid for language) that he has posted for the Cammarano campaign. No official word on that, just my speculation for the sake of a joke. Here is the invite sent out via email:

Please join Assemblyman Ruben Ramos, Mike Novak, Josh Hodes, Joseph Branco, Michael Schaffer (and the Event Host Committee) for the first ever political reception at the W Hotel in support of :

The Honorable Peter Cammarano
Candidate for Mayor of Hoboken

Monday, June 1st

6:30 PM VIP Reception
7:30 PM – 9:30 PM Cocktail Reception

W Hotel
225 River Dr.
Hoboken, NJ

Cocktail Reception – $250
VIP Reception – Sponsor: $1,000 Co-Host: $2,600 Host: $5,000

For more information and to RSVP, please contact:

Alison Zayas
Mike Novak

Written by reformerusg

May 31, 2009 at 1:20 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

Latest Mailers from Dawn Zimmer

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Following up several mailbox stuffers from Team Cammarano are a few from Dawn Zimmer. She claims “It is time to turn the page on the Roberts Administration”.

Another assertion is that Cammarno passed Robert’s budget every time. Dawn also highlights her vote against Chruch Square PILOTS subsidy fopr those making over $100,000 per year and tough action on the personnel costs that are 80% of the operating budget.

Written by reformerusg

May 31, 2009 at 1:00 PM

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Peter Cammarano – Latest Fliers Part Deux

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Peter Cammarano had a few fliers in the mail for this weekend. Take a look at his latest mailbox stuffers with a few of my comments:

On the flier above, I found it funny when the Jersey Journal quoted “Cammarano walks in both Hobokens” as I thought there was only one. There are two mind sets though, one is patronage as usual which in my opinion Peter represents quite nicely and a service based philosophy (only hire what you need) that Dawn Zimmer represents. Feel free to comment below.

This flier tauts Peter’s experience as an attorney and his City Council experience. I would like to point out that neither candidate has P&L experience listed which is a main function of what ideally a Mayor should have. As a lawyer filling out your time sheets and dealing with a small admin staff is not the same as running a $100 million (Hopefully less) city. Same goes for Dawn. Peter has 2 more years experience than Dawn as City Council member but what does that experience mean if you are on the wrong side of the vote most of the time? Again just my opinion please comment below.

Written by reformerusg

May 31, 2009 at 12:45 PM

Posted in Uncategorized

If I Had $100, 000,000 – Letter to the Editor

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Here is a letter to the editor from Scott Siegel. Scot specializes as bond trader and knows quite a bit about municipal bonds. He has been an excellent source of information from time to time for this fledgling blog:

If I Had $100, 000,000 – Letter to the Editor
on the HUMC by Scott Siegel

One discussion at the Mayoral debate covered Hoboken Hospital. This was very revealing. Peter said we got the hospital debt free, but never gave his figure for the new debt. He also stated that we haven’t used our full bonding capacity. Dawn stated that the figure was $52mm. The Moody’s report cited by Dawn confirms that the figure is indeed $52mm. We have bonded $52mm Peter. HUMC just last month refinanced a $10.8mm loan. We also have a $40.45mm loan outstanding. The actual total is $51.25mm (due to a slightly less issuance cost on the last loan). He also believes that that hospital is “thriving”. In fact the report stated that its cash position is a mere 7.6 days. A very precarious figure. The net income (loss) on a cash basis was minus $4mm last year. Including non cash items such as depreciation the total loss came to $11mm! Peter voted enthusiastically for the hospital, Dawn was not on the Council at that time. The centerpiece on the hospital’s revival is its new emergency room. Previously designed to handle 18,000 patient visits a year it currently handles 32,000. Emergency care is historically highly non insured. This is 40% of HUMC’s volume. Peter was completely unaware that $9mm in construction funds were cannibalized to pay for ongoing operating expenses. The money was supposed to be used for additional construction This move created higher costs to the city. When you use construction funds in this manner, you violate the tax exempt status of the issue, creating a taxable loan (at a corresponding higher interest rate). He calls the $9mm “minuscule”! Dawn was quite aware. This is about as big a red flag on Peter’s judgment as there is.

More amazing was Peter’s valuation on the property at a whopping $100-300mm. Two years ago the property was valued at $29mm. Only Peter believes that its value has risen. According to his math the land has a present value of $35-40mm ($50mm less his $10-15mm “potential liability” after a sale to Hoboken). If you bought real estate 2 years ago do you believe that its value is up? There is a method to his madness. If we “upzone”, meaning 50 story buildings in the center of town. Combined with 27 story buildings on Observer Highway is what Peter thinks this town needs.

This not the first time that Peter was numerically challenged. Last December I was making the point that real estate (including Hoboken) was in the early phases of decline and that we would receive lower tax receipts than forecasted. Only one Council member shook his head no, no, no. That of course was Peter Camaranno. I guess the developers, real estate agents and unions have made their point quite clear. No wonder Dawn kept repeating Roberts Camaranno, Peter made the analogy himself.

Scott Siegel

My Comment: Here are some addtional articles I have published on the HUMC’s situation for additional Background information:

Two articles on the recent financing of the HUMC:

Recent interest only bond issued

Interest only financing? Isn’t that partially what got this country in the mortgage meltdown in the first place? The only rationale for an interest only loan is either to play politics with the budget and make the numbers look good now in terms of total payments per year or that you think the Hospital will fail soon so why bother paying down the principal. Good grief, more of the same Roberts budget chicanery.

This shows the debt schedule

Actually, in the debate Dawn Zimmer was right. The HUMC is tapped out of their recent financial commitments according to this debt schedule. All $52 million has been bonded for. Peter Cammarano was wrong on this and in his defense I don’t think he has been following this closely. He put his trust in Harvey Holtzman and crew. Doesn’t that make you stop and question his judgement on financing or his ability to informed or tell the truth? It does for me.

Peter Cammarano painting quite the rosy picture of the HUMC in June of 2008:

Peter Cammarano on June 2nd, 2008 at a special council meeting on the HUMC stated that we should take the report from the HUMC on its face value and that they were the experts. To question the hospital bordered on paranoia. Look where we are now with the Hospital. You decide if Beth Mason was paranoid. I for one suspected she was right on this issue and now I know she was right all along.

Written by reformerusg

May 30, 2009 at 12:15 PM

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Photos of the Day – Post Mayoral Debate

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Here are two photos from the aftermath of the Mayoral Debate at Our Lady of Grace on May 28th:

Peter Cammarano and Angel Alicea

Dawn Zimmmer and Ravi Bhalla

Editors Note: No photo shop was used on Dawn Zimmer unlike another website known for that.

Written by reformerusg

May 30, 2009 at 11:30 AM

Posted in Uncategorized