Grist for the Mill: Old Guard on the brink in Vision 20/20
The rubble from the November sweep by Reform is not far in the rear view mirror and the impact is coming although a weekend column in what some call the Hudson Distorter sounded odd discordant notes on the impending downfall of the Hoboken Housing Authority’s contractor problem in the form of Carmelo Garcia and his massive attempted scam on the city: Vision 20/20.
Spending way too many pixel inches on the proposed Vision 20/20 scam not to be confused with the Ruben Ramos Vision for Hoboken campaign, in the words of Dr. Mccoy, “It’s dead Jim.” That name similarity was no accident, a little inside joke among those expecting to rake in millions in profits to double the size of the HHA’s downtown campus. Apparently, the little secret running down the hill from Union City by State Senator Brian Stack wasn’t just for handing out turkeys to the corner of the Mile Square where one hand holds a turkey and the other a blank signed absentee ballot ready for pickup from a familiar, neighborly Beth Mason political operative.
What didn’t the rest of you Hobokenites get a turkey and $50 for your vote?
There’s no legal challenge in the ready by Councilman Ravi Bhalla or any Reform minded citizens to force Assembly-elect Carmelo Garcia to step down from the HHA contracting position as Executive Director due to unenforced requirements of the Hatch Act. Looks like someone insists on having that written again with the hope of smoking such a plan out in the open. Assemblyman Garcia is your problem State Senator Stack. You guys have a swell two years. Try to stay away from that rat microphone in the interim.
|The political column in the Hudson Reporter talks about Vision 20/20 as if it’s viable failing to note
the absurd lawsuit to blackmail Mayor Zimmer to approve it failed to influence her or the election.
While Sully’s weekend column talks about Vision 20/20 as if it’s an open option, someone spun him between turkey and eggnog season and forgot to tell him the person sitting in the mayor’s chair on the second floor of City Hall held the line and refused to capitulate approving any plan without comprehensive review. The gambit to attack the mayor with an absurd lawsuit claiming she was part of a conspiracy of “ethnic cleansing” not only failed to succeed in blackmailing her to approve Vision 20/20 before the November election, it showed Hoboken’s Iron Lady has both a strong moral compass and not a little of the original Iron Lady’s powerful resilience.
The mayor is calling the shots not a contractor holding a tenuous contract in the HHA. Reform’s council majority will be felt on outstanding appointments needed on the Hoboken Zoning Board, the Hoboken Housing Authority and beyond in January. Expect the Old Guard to cry mightily about the mayor not working together and developing amnesia on everything positive and needed for Hoboken they tried to destroy over the last four years, the local hospital and the 1200 jobs high among them.
The Old Guard council showed Hoboken no mercy in their attempt to regain power, whether through lawsuits via the Mason family checkbook or blocking anything and everything, the repaving of Washington Street just one of many improvements federal and state grants were lost aiding for no reason other than political obstruction.
As for the slew of open board seats, mistakes on appointments previously where “working together” was given lip service won’t be repeated this term. The mayor has a working council majority again and there doesn’t appear to be a way for the Russo Crime Syndicate to have Beth Mason “sue you all” to change that.
The emerging Old Guard internecine warfare on who gets to take control of the opposition will be a fascinating ongoing battle. The Russo clan expects to be on top continuing its alliance with Ruben Ramos but the only fruit ahead is the fourth ward council seat currently occupied by the inert, wobbled Timmy Occhipinti. The Mason puppet learned that election money is not the end all and the arrogant, petulant display he’s put on for all but the last four council meetings is over, not by design but by the Hoboken Syndicate.
As MSV said earlier, the eagerness for a recall of the fourth ward seat wouldn’t get reform backing so the Russo-Ramos desire to get that seat back will wait until 2015 when Ruben Ramos will look to return to the dais and use the ward seat to relaunch a mayoral bid in four years. That’s a long time in politics and in the interim there’s one pissed off Pupie who is eyeing Michael Russo’s third ward seat for a little payback. It finally dawned on Hoboken’s favorite humanitarian developer, the Russo’s will never make good on all his past support over the years and aligning with the toxic Beth Mason is good for in-kind campaign furniture and not much else.
Beth Mason had Perry Klaussen of cybersewer Hoboken411 publicize her distribution of vittles sans turkey to the HHA with hundreds of the baggies showing the manufactured tag line for the Mason Civic. That gets you about five more votes than actually going out at election time and having your political operatives buy them at $40-50 a pop.
At least you can say the HHA residents selling their votes are upfront about their expectations. Everyone is clear on that exploitation contract but there’s others who Beth Mason thought in her camp who she may be finally learning really aren’t. They all went with the Russo clan, among some, they always were.
Which “Masonista” argued vociferously before the election Michael Russo was quaking in his bones at the Solomon Dwek lunch in Jersey City while he pigged out on the FBI informant’s dime and ended the lunch saying the $5,000 down payment check should be made out to “Russo for Hoboken?”
Has Beth Mason finally figured out her political operative Masonista family pals have been playing her for years? The word on the street is they are embracing the Russo Crime Family. Others are saying they always did. Et tu Finboy?
Skeptics will ask how can that be and others will point to an absurd BoE political operative mission on a trustee’s home and ask, how did such a dumb operation go down with Beth Mason’s approval?
The answer is simple; it didn’t. So who in the Old Guard was behind the house photography? Hoboken may need court testimony for an answer.