Tuesday, July 28, 2015

1st Ward Fever


It's official: Michael DeFusco wants to unseat Terry Castellano from her broomstick!

That's right.

Next November DeFusco will be running with- not against, Reform on a ticket with Tiffanie Fisher (2nd ward), Dana Wefer (4th ward-pronounced Wee-fer), Peter Cunningham (5th) and Jen Giattino (6th).    DeFusco is a surprise for those who know he has long been allied with folks GA affectionately calls 'The Dark Side.'

I am not surprised.

I served two years with DeFusco on the ZBA, and know he's decent, smart, cordial and reasonable; not your typical Dark Side traits. Young and energetic-  he has more to offer First Ward residents than some bitter, crusty sea hag whose name escapes me.

In 2011, First Ward candidate Eric Kurta lost by 151 votes...  but that was before Castellano's abysmal performance in the aftermath of  Hurricane Sandy....

Castellano TRASHES Zimmer's appeals for HELP in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy

In 2011, Reform came close to winning the First Ward, and that was before Castellano:
  • tried to KILL the sale of the HUMC to HoldCo ...which would have doubled (or tripled) municipal taxes to pay off the $52M bond default ...lost 1,200 hospital jobs at Christmas ...destroyed our City's Bond rating making bonding to fund City operations extremely expensive ...likely resulting in massive layoffs of municipal workers 
  • voted NO on a cost-free garage bond refinance forcing a preventable $4,500,000 payment of taxpayer money from our surplus 
  •  tried to ZERO-out our budget surplus in 2011, which we need for emergencies like Sandy 
  • voted NO to bond to repair Sandy damage to Pier C Park, keeping the park closed for months
  • voted NO to bond for a traffic light at a dangerous Hoboken corner near 1600 Park 
  • voted NO to replace HOP buses destroyed in Hurricane Sandy 
  •  SUED the City to keep Jim Doyle off the City Council in the aftermath of the hurricane, after Mason and Russo rigged an absence and an abstention from the City Council on the vote to fill the Marsh vacancy... and the list goes on.
Mike DeFusco  needs our help to unseat this disaster...  

WE CAN, WE WILL, WATCH US!

47 comments:

  1. Hector Torres JunyaJuly 28, 2015 at 5:33 PM

    Didn't Castellano also vote against the 9-11 monument? Thought so with her klanmate Mikie Russo, Timmy Occhipinti and Beth Mason.

    A lot of people don't like them at all. Everyone here knows Timmy is finished. People in the first ward need to act on this once and for all.

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    1. You're right, Hector Torres Jr. I meant to ask if you still use a ghostwriter. You know, that one with the big, hairy eyebrow that jumps around his forehead like a nervous caterpillar.

      Right, Terry did vote NO on the 9-11 memorial as did her cohorts on the CC. Maybe DeFusco can ask her WHY.

      Please, keep adding to the list of Castellano's crappy record.

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    2. The Quarters!!!!! Who could forget "It's all cleared up"

      I look forward to meeting DeFusco and learning more about him. But he is a welcome change from that vile Castellano

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    3. In Castellano's typical passive aggressive way she voted against funding the 911 Memorial and then bitches and takes every opportunity take cheap shots as to why it is not done.

      .

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  2. I don't like what happened to Terry's broom GA. How is she suppose to fly safely without her broomstick? Mike is obviously cruel with his "War on Witches" effort.

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  3. After Councilwoman Castellano's NO vote on the Second Wet Weather Pump for Hoboken, Michael DeFusco was credited in changing her vote.

    I can remember my see a City Council meeting while Castellano was Council President vowed to kill any funding for addition open space in Hoboken. Now she and her godson Michael Russo try to take credit for it after the people of Hoboken voted on a referendum to raise the money.

    It is always amusing to listen to the vicious, nasty snide remake Mrs. Castellano makes at the City Council and then riffs on how others are not being civil.

    When the final vote to save the hospital was called a bitter Terri Castellano was a no show at City Council.

    The whole missing millions of quarters that Castellano tried to dismiss as it's settled.

    The list is long and well known and as she well knows being the wife of a police officer and related to a convicted felon, anything she has said can and will be used against her.



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  4. 100 votes that I received in 2011 are now in the 6th ward, post-redistricting. That makes the 6th even more solid, and leaves the 1st even more difficult to win. Best of luck with that.

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    1. Did the 6th ward pick up any additional area like a Church Towers building or had that been there previously?

      I am not even sure if one is in there but I believe I had read that

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  5. Terry also lost votes in the redistricting , specifically the Applied building on corner of 2nd and Willow. Her base has also begun to age itself out over the past four and a half years...this is a different election than May 2011.

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  6. One of the Church Towers buildings is and has long been in the 6th. No change there.

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    1. By the time Garcia is done with them they will wish they were back in the 3rd. They will be the focus of his class warfare disguised as populism campaign.

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    2. you already sold out. shut up now

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    3. Moved away after years of fighting the good fight = "sold out" on your planet, troll?

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    4. Don't feed the 12:20 am troll. Things can get weird if the Gremlins on 12th and Wash are fed after midnight

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  7. Nuts, can't figure out how to get my handle attributed to this. Happens every once in a while - Luddite that I sometimes feel like. Anyway...

    Aging or not, Marine View is a lock for Terry. First ward has a lot of transience with large non-rent controlled buildings subject to huge rent increases every 6-months to a year. The (transient) residents in 2011 didn't vote, the new residents in 2015 won't vote either - they're just "temporary." Some solid first ward reform votes are now in the 6th - others have sold their properties or been displaced and then there's incumbency which always gives a candidate an edge, particularly with low information "new" residents. The Applied Building on 2nd & Willow might have been a lock for Terry - now it's just another transient property – net/zero. The “it’s a different election than May 2011” can lose votes for “reform” although political junkies aren’t aware of this dynamic or, completely discount it as (wrongly) irrelevant presuming that none of those votes are “reform” (big mistake!) The “it’s a different election” is another way of saying “it’s a different town” – those that are feeling the displacement push (non-Marine View and Church Towers residents) aren’t happy with the lack of attention paid to displacement and the pushing out of long-term residents. No matter how many times someone attributes the use of the phrases “class warfare” or “fake populism” as old guard rhetoric – displacement is a problem that has been completely ignored for four years. Can Michael pick up the voters that are concerned about seeing their friends having to leave or their own possible displacement or, will those voters sit this one out? It’s a good question that “reform” might not even think needs asking and an issue that “reform” might think needs no attention. This ‘pay no attention to the displacement behind the curtain’ is a dynamic of the election that could easily be exploited. Those voters have been either taken for granted or presumed (incorrectly) to be non-reform. It will be an interesting election season. I wouldn’t place a bet on any ward except the 6th.

    ---Indiecom

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    1. In the Mayoral election didn't Zimmer win MarineView?

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    2. with all due respect, indie, i don't think this is as big an issue as you paint it to be. the 1st ward will be a very tough fight for michael, no doubt, but i just don't think people actually blame their local council people for high rents. in fact, lots of people are opposed to local government becoming a nanny state and choosing who to subsidize.

      i'm not saying you are 100% wrong, but i think what you're pushing as a huge issue is actually a much smaller factor in how an election is won or lost.

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    3. Yes she did.
      Hopefully those like Indiecom can see beyond their single issue politics and support the reform candidate and not take a regressive stance.

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    4. One of those people raising rents in Hoboken is Terri Castellano herself who owns many millions in real estate much of it in the First Ward.

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    5. Hey anon 10:06 - I don't disagree w/you - I don't think it's a huge issue either, but it's not a non-issue & to presume it is a non-issue is a mistake. I don't think people blame any one specific elected official for high rents or lack of affordability for both renters and owners, but let's face it, affordability is not a priority for this administration. Complete streets, resiliency and parks are. (Not saying that there's anything wrong with these priorities, but it's not all that there is.) Even the administration's focus on taxes, which IS an affordability issue isn't 'talking pointed' as an affordable housing issue.

      Anon 10:14 - those "like me" tend to be informed voters - not 1-issue voters regardless of how we are painted; and people "like me" tend to support policies that favor stability over transience which is better for the community in the long run

      Anon 10:18 - I'm not here to defend Terry, but of all the things one could say about her, displacing her tenants and rent gouging them is probably not one of them and owning millions in real estate doesn't disqualify anyone from being a viable candidate - heck, Ravi & Peter own millions of dollars worth of real estate, so what? Sorry, to me, mud slinging is silliness - I'm interested in a candidates platform and policy positions. I'm interested to hear more about DeFusco's; that's all.

      ---Indiecom

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    6. All good, indie. We're pretty much on the same page, thanks. -- the anon@10:06

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  8. No need to attack Indie, she's done more for reform than anyone who sits at Zimmers kitchen table these days

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    1. I'm the anon@10:06, that wasn't an "attack" of any kind on anyone, just a different perspective. we're in trouble if everyone is so thin-skinned that we can't even have a discussion anymore, even one that starts with the words "with all due respect" and ends with "i'm not saying you are 100% wrong".

      geez.

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    2. Hello again anon 10:06/11:52 - my guess - that comment probably wasn't aimed at your comment...more likely the 1-issue voter nonsense. Admittedly, I am a bit of a broken record about affordability these days, but someone has to talk about it; it's an issue that towns/cities everywhere are, at least, acknowledging if not taking pro-active steps to address; however, here in Hoboken, (aside from the: I don't know how many homeless vets we have, but we'll make that a 2015 priority) it's nowhere to be found on any policy agenda. Anyway, all that aside, I'm always happy to have a discussion and feel strongly that people that have different or differing opinions need to keep communication channels open to get anywhere with anything. With that said, although I don't think anyone would suggest that I'm think-skinned, it is true that when "indiecom" pops up on a thread, invectives frequently pop up as well.

      --Indiecom

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    3. thanks again, indie. i was actually accusing the anon@11:10 of being the thin-skinned one, not you. it all gets a bit confusing when we're all anons! ;)

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    4. Indie

      Not on any agenda? The city just won an appellate division decision this week upholding the 10% set aside for affordable units against a challenge from developers.

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    5. Actually - the case was brought by Fair Share Housing against the developer and Hoboken's own zoning board for not enforcing their own 10% affordable housing requirement. What's up with that!?! - great that the city joined Fair Share in the case but... what was going on with the zoning board that they weren't enforcing our own laws??....has me stumped. I am, however, glad to hear that of the SEVEN HUNDRED+ new uptown exceedingly high-end luxury units a whopping 55 of them will be affordable...

      -Indiecom

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    6. Unless there is a strict means test enforced during the entire tenancy of those units - it is nothing more than a handout for the connected few. I hate those sorts of programs.

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    7. Sort of like those government handouts to developers that purchase properties in industrial zones with a max. height of 2-4 stories at prices to match and then watch them get upzoned to 10-12 stories... just waiting to be packed with luxury units and high-end commercial... and often lucrative PILOTs that shift the tax burden to others.....Now, THAT'S what I call a government handout!!!....That's the sort of program that deserves some real hatred. And don't tell me about givebacks....I've been around a long time & I'll believe the community gets the long end of the give back stick when I actually see it happen. In the corrupt ol' days of Hoboken, who REALLY put the government handout in their pocket? - wasn't any affordable housing tenant.... unless, of course, they had their fingers in one or more development pie. But, that's ok - this true narrative doesn't play as well as the false: rich, greedy tenant living in affordable housing does and is a little too nuanced for the average elected official to grasp.

      ---Indiecom

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    8. Gotta side with Indie on this one, MUCH bigger handouts have gone to developers over the years than tenants, not even close. And before you say "well, the developers improved the town for everyone here", I say there are a lot of ugly high-rises in town that have made sidewalks and restaurants overcrowded with lots of boring privileged folks. But that's just me, some people apparently like living in plain vanilla land.

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    9. A handout is a handout is a handout. Only a hypocrite differentiates or refuses to acknowledge that the social aims of the handout in question can only be achieved if a strict compliance regime is put in place to insure only the deserving get the handout. No means test means no chance in hell the social aim of providing affordable housing for the deserving for the life of that building will be achieved. It is past time to kill any subsidies not strictly tied to a means test. And no amount of handouts for affordable housing will ever rectify the damage done by over-development. Quite the opposite in fact. Developers will claim they need to build more to compensate for having to affordable housing handouts.

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    10. Indie also is conveniently ignoring that the voting block that most resists reform is the people who live in "affordable housing" where there is no means test. I can think of at least 3 people currently on the city council who never would have been elected if the tenants of those buildings had to abide by a strict means tests to maintain tenancy. And at least 2 of those people and the political machine they belong to are responsible for a ton of the development Indie constantly complains about. But she will never admit that without those programs and the voters that benefit from them, that political machine would have lost power years earlier and probably well before much of the over-development occurred.

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    11. I don't recall Indie ever saying he/she is against means testing. Maybe I'm wrong, but that sounds like a straw man argument to me.

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    12. It is by no means a strawman argument. Means testing goes to the heart of the concept of an affordable housing program. If you do not have a vigorous means test, it completely defeats the purpose of any affordable housing program. And I would point out, we have a ton of people in affordable housing in this town who absolutely have no financial need to live there. And we have a ton of people who are far more deserving who are locked out of those programs because of a lack of space. You cannot fix that by perpetuating the status quo.

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    13. anon@8:15, you misunderstood my statement. i meant it in relation to the swipes being taken at indie.

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    14. If I wanted to take a swipe at Indie, I would have talked about a hell of a lot more than these new units. Hell, thinking back on strawman arguments, she is the one that went off on development projects that were approved so far back that nobody can change the deal they have. We can't do anything to change those, but we sure as hell can make sure no other developer gets a deal like they got. And we sure as hell can make sure no other affordable housing program gets abused like the programs of the past have been abused.

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    15. Anon @725 - you are correct, I don't oppose means testing for affordable housing units. Actually, it's absolutely necessary. I do oppose means testing on rent controlled properties...that is, unless we means test the landlords too;-)....were that the case....have at it....

      Anon@10:42 - I don't know what you mean when you say I "went off on development projects that were approved so far back...." what exactly does that mean? (other than you're obviously very angry about something.) If I oppose anything, I do it in real time....any of those projects that were approved "so far back" are projects that I was opposing "so far back." Sure we can ensure that new development and new affordable housing (if we ever get around to any) isn't abused as they were in the past....but, if we're so busy looking and moving forward....maybe we'll forget the "mistakes" of the past and, if we're not careful, we could end up repeating them.

      ---Indiecom

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    16. We are not moving forward if we approve any additional affordable housing that has no means test attached to it. And your entire rant at 3:39 PM was directed at projects approved by pre-Zimmer mayors.

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    17. Anon@8:16am - why don't you just own that you don't like affordable housing and you don't want to see any new affordable housing built in Hoboken period and stop hiding behind the means testing rant? I haven't seen any posts anywhere suggesting that any affordable housing that might someday be built in Hoboken shouldn't have means testing, so who are you arguing with? And, what you refer to as my 3:39 rant was my opinion, however, the recent court decision requiring that 55 of the hundreds of uptown luxury units which anon@4:05 referenced as representative of the administration's affordable housing agenda are all in connection with buildings built after 2009. The affordable housing case was filed in 2011 against the developers and Hoboken's Zoning Board of Adjustment. Those large developments with ZERO affordable housing units are not ancient history - they're actually some of the most recent development projects in Hoboken.

      ---Indiecom

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    18. I am perfectly fine with all sorts of social programs that help the needy. But I am not at all fine with any program that just provides a handout to someone or some business group that isn't tied to a legitimate social goal subject to strict oversight. Personally I see "affordable housing programs" that have no means test attached to them to be just as bad as PILOTs for developers. A handout is a handout is a handout.

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    19. Quite honestly I am arguing with you. You constantly advocate for "affordable housing" but you completely ignore the fact that other than the HHA, not one single unit of affordable housing in this town is governed by any law, rule or ordinance that insures a means test applies to those units during the entire course of a person's tenancy. You constantly wage war against developers but you completely ignore the cancer misguided affordable housing programs has created in this town - a cancer completely fueled by people trying to "game the system" and "keep what's theirs". You completely ignore the greed of city residents and how if the city stopped picking winners and losers and treated every single resident equally, we'd probably be better off. I am fed up with these misguided policies that pit one set of residents against others without any regards to merit. You on the other hand just want to go after the developers and seem to not at all care that the policies you keep pushing are half the reason the developers got away with bloody murder in this town for so long.

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    20. Way to hijack a thread about DeFusco, can't you two get a room? ;)

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    21. This thread's from a couple of days ago anyway, no one's really reading it anymore except this Anon who's got a bug up his a$$ about me.

      Anon @11:46 - so, if I understand the argument you're trying to make, it seems like you are suggesting that because of the lack of means testing in CT & Marine View, etc., - we should abandon the idea of creating any (much needed) new affordable housing in Hoboken. It is an argument that I've heard from more than one "reform" person. It's what I call the Church Towers excuse and it goes something like this: 'We can't do anything with affordable housing until we fix the Church Towers problem.' It's a ridiculous argument and an unsuccessful attempt to justify not dealing with the affordable housing and displacement issues (I won't say crisis, but...) that are impacting residents in Hoboken today and that cannot wait until 2019 (or whenever the CT Pilot expires) to have the issue addressed. You are mistaken if you think I'm ignoring CT. Why would I want units that are not occupied by persons that need affordable housing counting in our full complement of affordable units? I just would never justify that as a cause for continued inaction. I'm not "waging any war" on developers; that's childish rhetoric. Who's the one that feels so under attack from my words? Is it you? I mean, they're just words, right? - ya' know, free speech and all...what's all this whole me "going after developers" thing? All I've ever done is pay attention and spoken up. It's well known that I'm not a big development fan, nor am I a fan of silly talking points. So, what? That's not "waging war." Would you rather that no one ever questioned any development project?

      sorry anon@11:52 - hope this is the last non-defusco comment - although I will say, I'm curious about what his position is on affordable housing needs in Hoboken;-)

      ---Indiecom

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  9. Will Ferrante turn out MV towers for Terry or Mike now that he's Chief?

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    1. Hopefully Mike!!! I would suggest to Mike that he meets with the Chief ASAP

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    2. I believe Ferrante will simply because I don't believe DeFusco is a true reformer. Me thinks they are gaming us all. Changing the tide of new BNR's while we believe we have the upper hand. I hope I am wrong.

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    3. Currently the 1st ward has the WORST possible representation. Unless DeFusco is caught with a dead body he would be the one to vote for here.

      As for him being a "New BNR" he is not from Hoboken so not much to speculate on there since he lacks the being born and the being raised parts

      I would suggest meeting him and hearing him out.

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