Did you catch this headline on the cover of The Hoboken Reporter: "District obligated to pay legal fees in ethics violation."
What ethics violation?
You mean the ethics charges filed with the New Jersey School Ethics Commission against the 4 board members who donated their own money toward the district's legal fees in the pending Appeal against the NJDOE/HoLa?
These charges have not even been found viable yet, much less litigated to any finding of fact.
It is quite possible (more than likely) that the Commission will find that the complaint was filed in bad faith and with malice pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:12-29(e):
"The Commission may find, by majority vote, that a complaint was frivolous and may impose sanctions pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:12-29(e). A “frivolous complaint” means a complaint determined by the Commission to be either (1) commenced, used or continued in bad faith, solely for the purpose of harassment, delay or malicious injury; or (2) one which the complainant knew, or should have known, was without any reasonable basis in law or equity and could not be supported by a good faith argument for an extension, modification or reversal of existing law. The Commission may fine a complainant up to $500."For the HR's information, this is not a civil court; there are no "plaintiffs" and "defendants", there are "complainants" and "respondents."
The editorial voice claiming the district is obligated to pay for an ethics "violation" is the same editorial voice that called the perpetrator of a vicious SLAPP suit a "victim" and the actual (Reform blogger) victims "antagonists."
So, why did the Editor allow such a dishonest, misleading "fake news" headline?
Well, you know its never too early to start sliming Reform for the next election... and in Hoboken the next election is always right around the corner.
Expect the Dark Side's propaganda tabloid to keep beating the "ethics violation" drum in Goebbels fashion until the entire city believes its Big Lie.
Clearly, the Dark Side wants to dirty up Reform's natural advantage on the "ethics" front.
This week's editorial decision to turn an ethics charge into a violation on its cover was no mistake.
- Neither was calling respondents "defendants" (paragraph 1).
- Neither was ignoring GA's disclosure that an HoLa stakeholder is the complainant.
- Neither was ignoring GA's disclosure that all respondents donated their own funds to cover the District's legal costs in the appeal against the NJDOE/HoLa. (For example, Reform BoE Trustee Sharon Angley is not a respondent because she did not contribute to the legal fund)
- Neither was ignoring GA's disclosure that the alleged ethics "violation" was in fact, the donation of board members' private monies to cover public legal costs AND that the matter had been publicly vetted by the Board Attorney AND that there is no statute nor legal prohibition which makes Trustees' contributions an "ethics" violation.
Of course Board members will not talk to the press about the pending complaint.
But the press can find other sources. If it tries. Hint: H-o-L-a.
Speaking of sources, poor Al Sullivan. Now that he's alienated honest Reform sources all he seems to get are Reform malcontents nursing an agenda. This week's column, for example.
He floated a "premature' rumor that Anthony Romano will support Mike DeFusco for mayor (should Romano decide not to run for mayor himself). .
That was contradicted by Max Pizarro's "InsiderAdmin" who wrote:
A Hudson source told InsiderNJ that it’s over; Romano will get the Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO) line for his reelection bid and won’t oppose Mayor Daawn Zimmer.So whose unconfirmed rumor is right and whose is wrong?
The same source insisted the HCDO won’t get behind Michael DeFusco, who is galloping around the mile square city in search of the mayor’s seat.
I'm with Max.