Grist for the Mill: Hoboken Sweeney Todd

It was the barber on Jackson Street by way of Camden and south Jersey who got Beth Mason the appointment to a seat on the Hoboken Housing Authority.

If not a full Sweeney Todd production, a reliable source at the state level says “Sweeney was the one who got her (Beth Mason) the appointment. The favor was for Sweeney.”

The reference is to the powerful southern NJ State Senator Steve Sweeney (D-3) who also serves as the state majority leader.

For years, Beth Mason funded the political aspirations of the powerful State Senator’s and would host parties in Atlantic City during the annual League of Municipalities conference.

Mason pitched herself as a Lt. Governor on a potential Sweeney bid for NJ governor. However, the eventual expectation of a run for governor never occurred as Phil Murphy, the former Ambassador to Germany and a well-off former player at Goldman Sachs exerted his financial capabilities on key Democratic county chairs.

The entry of Murphy vying for governor on the Democrat line forced Sweeney to rethink entering the race. He would decline after another potential rival, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop announced he would support Murphy’s gubernatorial bid and forgo one of his own.

Beth Mason “hosting” a party for State Senator Steve Sweeney
in Atlantic City back in 2013.

Senator Sweeney had been a sometime ally of the outgoing Governor Chris Christie and built up a good working relationship. In the end, all the vast expenditures by the Mason family purchased not a path out of Hoboken but back to it in the form of a seat on the Hoboken Housing Authority.

Talking Ed Note: While a contribution to the state effort against opioid abuse is welcome, it’s not the driving force in the appearance of Beth Mason onto a seat in the HHA.

Grist for the Mill is MSV’s rumor column. Got a tasty carrot for Da Horsey? Send it to All email is kept confidential and is protected by Da Horsey’s proven Reporter Privilege upheld under the NJ Shield Law in Hudson County Superior Court. In farm animals we trust.

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