DeFusco's "Shake Shack" Distraction

You can't make this shit up!

While Mike DeFusco burned a straw-man on Facebook ("Hoboken said "NO" to a SHAKE SHACK downtown, on Washington Street!"), last night at the Council meeting, he introduced a "live a motion" to effectively kill off a $175M infrastructure improvement project...  

GA will have more for you tomorrow- but in short:

DeFusco's 'live motion" aimed to AMEND the "RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE EXECUTION OF AN AGREEMENT  BETWEEN THE CITY OF HOBOKEN AND PSE&G AUTHORIZING THE  TRANSFER OF REAL PROPERTY." This Resolution which DeFusco tried to amend, required approval  for PSE&G to proceed with execution of their $175M deal with Hoboken; the terms of this deal had already gone through a rigorous negotiations between City of Hoboken, PSE&G and the Public Board of Utilities.

In short PSE&G agreed to 'give' $175M  to Hoboken to combine the Marshall Street substation with the Madison Street substation, elevating and modernizing the combined substation with the most reliable, state-of-the-art technology.  Both of these substations are over 50 years old and are at risk from flooding. This is a fantastic deal for Hoboken that wouldn't cost taxpayers one cent.  

But what's good for hoboken, is bad for the mayor's opponents, especially a mayoral challenger...

Hence, last night's stunt at the Council- a 'poison pill' to  kill the deal, disguised as a  live motion.  

DeFusco's 'live motion' would have CHANGED THE  NEGOTIATED AGREEMENT between all parties and VOIDED it....

Had DeFusco's "live motion" passed, it would start the regulatory process all over again, and force everyone back to the negotiating table, likely KILLING  PSE&G's $175M  cost-free  infrastructure improvements to Hoboken. 

And who voted "YES" on DeFusco's "live motion"?  

Mike DeFusco, Ruben Ramos, Mike Russo and Dave Mello.  

It failed, thank G-d.

So, while Mike DeFusco, Mike Russo, Ruben Ramos and Dave Mello were trying to put the kibosh on a $175M  MAJOR infrastructure improvement project being offered FREE to HOBOKEN TAXPAYERS, Mike DeFusco was focusing the public's attention on a myth of lost hamburgers.


This one is about as dumb- and cynical- as Hoboken politics gets.

On Tuesday night, Hoboken's Zoning Board of Adjustments denied a 80% lot coverage variance at 101-117 Washington Street.

This morning, GA found a torches-and-pitchfork style revolt on Facebook, against  the ZBA's alleged "NO" to a Shake Shack on Washington Street!

Who started it?   Mike DeFusco!  

His opening Facebook salvo is: " Last night Hoboken said "NO" to a SHAKE SHACK downtown, on Washington Street."

Only it's a LIE.  

How do we know that (1) "Shake Shack" has never considered tenancy at 101-11 Washington Street and (2) "Shake Shack" was NOT even part of the Application before the ZBA?

It's in the ZBA Planner's Report.  

You see, a few days before each hearing, the ZBA Planner reviews the entire Application: plans, reports, drawings, etc.  The ZBA Planner then summarizes the application, flags potential issues with granting the variance, and notes deficiencies in a report . The report that goes to "everyone"-  and is a heads up to the Applicant  to prepare for the hearing and address deficiencies at the scheduled hearing.

This deficiency was cited in the April 12, 2017 Planner's report for 107-111 Washington Street LLC.
"5.7      Applicant should provide information regarding the type of commercial and/or retail tenants intended for the cellar and first floor space."

See what I mean?

The Application for  107-111 Washington St did not even identify the type of commercial or retail tenants intended for the first floor space  certainly NOTHING about "Shake Shack."  Then, after this was flagged in the ZBA Planner Report, the Applicant had 5 days notice to address to item 5.7 and produce "proof" that any kind of commitment, lease or contract existed with "Shake Shack", or even invite a rep from Shake Shack to testify at the hearing.

As a former full term ZBA board member, I know "marketing" (a.k.a. bullshit) when I smell it.

The Applicant only produced a rendering with the "Shake Shack" sign.  A selling point to the board- a "vision."  That's it.

In short, there was/is NO tenant "SHAKE SHACK" in the Application for variances at 107-11 Washington Street.

 So then why did (former ZBA member) Mike DeFusco post this?

And double-down on the lie when GA called him on it? (typo- "spin" not "spirit")

Note, DeFusco's argument about space for a commercial kitchen when the application was devoid of intended commercial/retail use.

 Even the Architect, the talented John Nastasi called out DeFusco's  "Shake Shack" fairy tale.

So, while the mobs gather to storm City Hall over the NONSENSE started by Councilman DeFusco, no one is paying attention to a truly disgusting political maneuver- echoes of Beth Mason's plan to kill the HUMC.


  1. Mello is and has for years been a spineless idiot who just wants to be liked. He's been an okay councilman but I'd be okay if next year this time he was working on his golf game.

    1. David Mello has been much more than just an OK Councilman. He has always been as he has alway been an integral part of the Zimmer team. I full expect that team will run together as a team and win as a team in November.

      I don't profess to know why individual Councilperson vote on each vote but if I respect that Councilperson I respect his or her right to vote as they see fit.

      I have zero doubt in my mind the Councilman Mello would not have anything to jeopardize the PSE&G deal. I would point out that Councilman Mello and his family literally live down the block from the SW site and he wants to see it remediated and turned into something that will enhance the livability of his neighborhood.

      Now at very least pick a scene name before you call anyone else spineless.

  2. Mr Dave Mello we are delighted by your glowing example of Wanky see Wanky do! Please accept the prestigious Wanker 4th Class lapel pin as a memento of your ... achievement! Must be worn at all times -- even at the beach! Don't worry, it just looks like someone holding a hotdog at a distance! Congratulations you've arrived sort of!!! Fake news!! Sad!! The cover-up is worse than the crime(s)!!!!!!!!!!

  3. We have to wonder who is pulling DeFusco's strings because frankly the kid ain't that smart.

  4. Defusco has a lot to answer for. Some of his Facebook posters are really irate and asking for identities of all the "shake shack" no voters. I guess hate mail is next.


    It is about a young, inexperienced but very ambitious politician looking to play word games and dumb gotcha politics to try to get elected. In the end he just proved he is not fit to hold public office.

    1. What a snowflake. He melts at the first sign of heat.

  6. Well, just tried to post on his Facebook page- but my posting privileges there have been revoked. He's still posting "Shake Shack was a confirmed tenant" which is simply not true.

    1. Even on his own Facebook page he is really getting a lot of pushback.
      He may be blocking a whole bunch more people.

    2. If his claims had any merit - he wouldn't have blocked you. Mike just proved through his own actions how full of crap he is. Nice job there dumbass!

    3. I agree. And it's interesting his supporter -"Dave"- reported an old post to Blogger to shut me up on THIS particular day on THIS particular post. Shows desperation, no?

    4. We will never know how many other people he has blocked from his Facebook, because they don't agree with him. That said even the ones who are left are destroying what is left of his credibility.

  7. "my neighborhood will instead continue to live with an empty lot"
    Actually, most times I walk by the lot is either full or nearly full of vehicles belonging to Walgreens shoppers. Also, nearly every morning there is a large Walgreens tractor-trailer making deliveries parked in the lot. Hopefully this will not lead to the delivery truck parking in the bus stop as is seen elsewhere on Washington St. in the mornings.
    The Walgreens building as it stands now is a rather stately structure. Butting another glassy expanse right up next to it causes it to get lost in the noise. The new building, while itself not a bad design, simply doesn't fit in the neighborhood with its extra-wide extra-glassy look. But I'm just a hobo, not a sophisticated architecture critic.

  8. bye bye

    RE: [6-8046000017040]

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    1. Back at ya, Dipshit.

      False claim filed against my blog by me 7:05 PM

      Dear Blogger,
      It appears a complaint has been filed against a post on my blog about a LIMITED PUBLIC FIGURE in Hoboken (David Liebler). The post "Dave" complains about contains publicly available information-- David Liebler is the Plaintiff of a lawsuit against my city, Hoboken NJ. His lawsuit is frivolous and politically motivated, as is his complaint against my blog post.

      All of the blog post commentary is "fair and privileged"- Mr. Liebler has been politically active in Hoboken for years, publishes political cartoons, is a limited public figure in Hoboken and is a matter of public interest and public concern, as the taxpayers are responsible to pay for defense of his frivolous claim against the Mayor and City Council. It would infringe upon my First Amendment rights for Blogger to take action in "David's" political games.

      I am asking Blogger to follow up and notify this person (and me) that no action will be taken against this post and my account. The context of the complaint is a mayoral election in Hoboken, and the subject of the complaint is a political operative who oppose our current mayor running for re-election. As you can see in his mocking comment posted on my blog (below) - "bye bye" his complaint was frivolous and designed to dispatch a political opponent.

      See Mr. Liebler on this YouTube displaying disorderly conduct at a public meeting:

      See a legal motion that Mr. Liebler has filed against the city of Hoboken:

      Mr Liebler's complaint against this blog should be discarded. He is a nutbag- a public menace in Hoboken- who does not respect the Constitutional rights of others.

      This is the complaint he sent to Blogger and posted it on my blog:

      Anonymous April 20, 2017 at 6:25 PM
      bye bye

      RE: [6-8046000017040]

      Hi David,...

    2. Catch me up here - he wants to shut you up AND is suing the city for violating his free speech rights?

    3. Yeah, I thought the same thing! I'm turning this over to the City's counsel in Liebler v Zimmer, et. al. I think its a great exhibit.

      Unless of course, Plaintiff Leibler says he wasn't the "Dave" who filed the complaint with Blogger. In which case I can go back to Blogger and have them investigate the fraudulent complaint! HA HA... busted EVERY way.

    4. boy, these people are DUMB.

    5. Is the hypocrisy of the OG shill really surprising?

  9. When I started reading this I was thinking, damn, we have a dumber poorer version of Beth Mason. Based on your final couple of lines, looks like you were thinking the same thing. What is it w/ idiots like Mike and Beth who think at the last second they can recut complicated negotiations like this one?

    And Mello - you frigging know better. WTF were you thinking?

    1. BTW - replying to myself here. Clearly you can make this stuff up b/c Mike appears to have been making crap up for a while.

  10. A founding tenet of reform is crumbling before our eyes. Leon Gold lied to, Mello being attacked, DeFusco persona non grata, and a full embrace of the machine. You can't tell who is who anymore, can you?

    1. Oh, we can tell. The guys who voted for DeFusco's live motion to kill the $175,000,000 PSE&G was giving TO Hoboken were MELLO, DeFusco, Russo and Ramos. Is that what you call an attack in North Bergen? SHAME on Mello.

    2. 7:59, you've done a fine job of illustrating the core stupidity of Darkside 2.0.

      A tenet is a belief or principle.

      Mello and Defusco are politicians.

      Politicians either adhere to tenets or they do not.

      The loyalty remains to the tenet.

      The price the politician pays for the loyalty of public is his loyalty to the tenet.

      Were you able to follow that? Write it down.

      This is why Beth is in the political graveyard. Your friends of the moment are on their way there.

    3. Don't we have a shack already w City Discunt ?!!

    4. 9:01- That's a shit shack not a Shake Shack.

    5. 8:24- the word tenet is often used in reference to religion or philosophy not politics. The former follow strict rules of purity and logic while success in the later involves compromise and give and take. Only idealoges seek purity and thus are better suited for advocacy than politics.

  11. He blocked me too. All I did was ask a question.

    1. How Perry Klaussen of him.

  12. This is why we have a Zoning Board, glad the design changed for the better (ever the architect admits!):


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