Council outcome: Municipal Garage settlement and attacking speech in the theater of the absurd
Some positives last night and as this is Hoboken, the steps forward to overcome the incompetent past and corrupt present were on show for all to see. Bike Hoboken, a grassroots group came out in significant force with more than a dozen of its members in helmets to support more visible bike lanes in town.
Equally big, news is the announcement of a settlement on the failed buyer of the municipal garage. The commercial market made the original plan of $25.5 million to buy the property untenable. A deal for far less was never going to happen with the property value scaled back with the economy’s real estate decline. The $2.5 million deposit of the developer was contested and it appears an agreement on that amount is at hand. Those who called this a political debacle will be eating their words, perhaps millions of them when the legal settlement is filed and made public.
The highlight of the night in a reduced operating Council, Carol Marsh had a serious family emergency keeping her away, and Beth Mason and Terry Castellano were also absent. This was the second meeting in a row Beth Mason has missed and no one knows why or is saying. But she was there in spirit, even with her resolution to do away with health benefits pulled by her $30,000 4th ward seated rubber stamp Tim Occhipinti carrying out her orders. The orders didn’t end there.
In the video above at the end of the night, Tim Occhipinti announced that they would take another try at removing zoning board member Nancy Pincus for “conduct unbecoming.” Occhipinti then went on at length reading from a satirical series by Grafix Avenger. He presented it as a threat claiming it is part of an “ongoing criminal investigation.”
MSV can add this political attack on speech will not be getting favorable reviews from the Feds in Newark or the FBI. As Occhipinti tried to present Grafix Avenger’s “Letter to the FBI,” as a serious matter, he read through the farce emphasizing the word gun, while trying to skim quickly on the focus and humor of the piece combining the “Vulcan Death Grip,” with GA’s mention of certain potential arrests around town. It was comical to the point suppressing laughter was beyond difficult, audible on the above videotape.
Tim Occhipinti may be the butt of jokes for his lack of self-awareness and basic skills to demonstrate reasonable judgement in City Council meetings, but he’s reached a new low here attacking the US Constitution at the behest of his political patron Beth Mason.
With Beth Mason’s failures as a council chair, managing/passing the budget, and attempts to use email communications as a political weapon, consider this the last gasp to change the subject before the real criminal investigation by the Feds falls hard on Hoboken.
Councilman Mike Russo followed Occhipinti and looked less than comfortable with the FBI becoming a focal point of discussion as he completely ignored Occhipinti’s unplanned comic performance. Da Horsey pleaded for time to speak and was honored to rise on behalf of free speech against a clunky, vengeful, Masonic political attack.
Here’s the original complete letter Tim Occhipinti and his patron of $30,000+ Beth Mason wish to criminalize: https://hobokenhorse.com/2011/08/dear-fbi-letter-no-4.html
Talking Ed Note: Any elected official attempting to criminalize speech particularly satire is pathetic and beyond absurd. MSV would note it won’t be Beth Mason and Tim Occhipinti but the FBI getting the last word – and the last laugh. Promise.
If you went back into history and Beth Mason told Tim Occhipinti to have Mark Twain or Jonathan Swift hanged, he’d do it and boast about it after. Utterly rudderless, clueless and without a modicum of common sense but always ready to serve his puppet masters or try to take credit for the work of others (on camera whenever possible). Guess you have to surrender it all when you sell out the community for personal political gain.