|The Hoboken Reporter, April 18, 2013|
As if you haven't had enough excitement with new disclosures about what Governor Christie knew and when he knew it....
Here comes the 33rd District Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia's secretly recorded lunch meeting with the mayor's husband, Stan Grossbard and attorney Bernie Kenny!
Yep, yesterday's Jersey Journal published the actual audio of the lunch meeting that Garcia had convened with Grossbard on January 6, 2013; GA has embedded it here for your listening pleasure:
The most fascinating aspect of the entire secretly taped lunch meeting is the end of the recording. That is where Garcia says goodbye to his old friend, Bernie Kenny, gets in his car and talks to his wire.
Yep, the audiotape ends with chit-chat to his recording device. That's where we learn WHY Garcia secretly taped the meeting, a meeting which he convened.
Garcia tells his wire that "his goal was accomplished" and that "much of what you heard today" involves "them" (the mayor, her husband) "assuming control of my board" to "steer contracts" and "bid rigging", and one of the contract steering claims: "for special counsel to be eventually the firm of Kenny and Florio"
Yikes. Bernie Kenny was an old friend and mentor to Assemblyman Garcia.
GA says "was" because there's nothing like accusing a pal of contract steering to kill a friendship. Try it! You'll see. Not to mention the secret tape-recording part.
Anyway, GA has transcribed the last minutes of the audiotape.
And in my non-actionable and First Amendment-protected opinion, this is where Garcia suggests the 'purpose' of the recording is to set-up the mayor, her husband and an HHA commissioner for the litigation to follow.
Here are 33rd District Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia's last words to his wire:
Okay so, getting into my car now... it is 3:20, and I'm exiting the parking lot, I will now be shutting down, but clearly this goal was accomplished with respect to proving my theory and in fact acknowledging what they're all about. What the bottom line is, it's politics, politic at its worse and what they want to use the housing authority for clearly they are unaware of, where the uh, uh, where the uh, appointing authority powers lie, and where, I uh, my...(pause)... ability on the principles and on what I've been trained and taught to exercise as the statue is what I have to use so that I do not- as I will be consistent to a fault- I do not waiver in my practice so hopefully uh, the federal government, HUD, OIG and those parties that are there to help me will recognize that I was right all along, with , the uh connection of these dots, the mayor having control over all the other boards, and assuming control of my board, and thinking they are in fact the appointing authority, and that by virtue of their powers, they carry out the agenda of the administration, and the mayor. Much of what you heard today, involves them wanting the professionals picked by their people, the majority of four, Jamie Stuiver, Dave Mello, Greg Lincoln and Judy Burrell, which in fact leads to a steering of a contract,and a rigging of a bid, to ah give who they want which is the firm of Chasen Leyner & Lamparalla Joe Garcia to become general counsel and for special counsel to be eventually the firm of Kenny and Florio. That's where I think this is all about. To establish that trust so that their bulldogs, they can call off their dogs, and you know, not try to defame me and saying that the executive director has something to hide. So with that I will close, and hopefully uh, I look forward to a vindication, I look forward to a-uh, means to an end, which is the righteous uh, stance of I know what I've been talking about all along, I've been uncomfortable, it's been a hostile work environment, and it's all been about politics and what they want. Thank you.What do you think?
GA wonders how the press got a copy of the audiotape; why would Zayas go public with this? Simply put, the audio guts his complaint- and his client's credibility- like a fish. One example, the claim that Zimmer had her own "Vision 20/20" plan is disproven by Garcia's taped narrative of how he shopped his Vision 20/20 to Director Brandy Forbes with no mention of the mayor pushing an "ethnically-cleansed" version.
The bottom line is, nothing in this audio is helpful to Garcia's case nor his reputation.
Moreover, now that he's an elected NJ State Assemblyman, why remind his peers in Trenton that he wears a wire?
Perhaps his Trenton peers should consider purchasing a R.A.T. (Recording Affidavit Touchscreen).