Councilman Ravi Bhalla illuminates anti-wheeling legislation

The City Council meeting Wednesday night offered some stark contrasts and the anti-wheeling measure is ground zero and dead center in the fight for the soul of Hoboken with the May council elections for all intents and purposes well underway.

Councilman Ravi Bhalla took the floor to lay out what Peter Cunningham was not afforded in his ordinance introduction at the meeting – a chance to explain the need for anti-wheeling legislation.

In this clip, MSV captures from the front of the room the dynamics of the discussion with some pans of the audience.  Although the rabble have been following orders and under control for the past several meetings, they are not able to contain their dread of this issue.  Even with “the majority” votes able to squash passage, the mere discussion causes them to froth around more than Linda Blair in the Exorcist under questioning by a priest.

Beth Mason as chair holds the gavel and does try to quell the disturbance brewing. Well she’s feeling a bit divided on when to do so too.  Early in this video, she signals someone on the right side of the room to be quiet but the demons will not go quietly into the night.  The body language of council members during this clip says more than words can express.

The tension finally reaches a crescendo when Ravi Bhalla criticizes comments of Assemblyman Ruben Ramos and the eruption from Mason-Russo political operatives ensues with the Mason411 minion yelling out against the mayor.  Beth Mason does not raise the gavel during his outbursts as he joined by the Timothy Occhipinti absentee ballot bearing fraudster squad but later she does apply the gavel to dissuade the anti-reform faction from further disruption.

The tension around this one clip tells you how terribly fearful the Mason-Russo cabal is of this issue.  It’s clearly not a problem in the rear view mirror.  All these gyrations non-verbally signal the intentions for financial distributions in the May council elections ahead.  Checks are already earmarked. 

Expect a lot of Mason money to be flooding around town in many shapes and guises.  Just like demonic possession, you need to be on alert before it erupts.  On the Hoboken forum, Fin Boy of Weehawken is back on the payroll in his many iterations lobbing bombs at anyone who dares voice anything off base to his assumption Beth Mason will be measuring the mayor’s office for new drapes after the next mayoral election.

As silly as that sounds, the May council races are as much about the mayor as the City Council.  It’s what money intends to buy if Hoboken people allow.  You didn’t think the success in buying the 4th ward seat and council chair was the end did you?

Talking Ed Note: At the 2:00 minute mark a sudden puppet outburst occurs when Tim Occhipinti quite rudely interrupts Ravi Bhalla to inform him anti-wheeling legislation is unconstitutional.  Beth Mason gives him the look the action is unauthorized with a couple of light gavel taps and he promptly shuts up, but not before she has to strike it harder as he continues babbling.

Similar anti-wheeling legislation is already law in Atlantic County among other NJ municipalities for several years with no successful legal challenge proving otherwise.

Tim should stick to reading out of his binder and not go off the script. A bought puppet is best seen and not heard beyond seconding a Mason-Russo motion or voting in lockstep.  He should consider better legal sources than the Mason411 minion when making citations in a Hoboken City Council meeting.  How unfortunate.

4th ward voters should take note.

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