First vote of the whole City Council ends with Doyle approved as two abstentions to be weighed further by court
As anticipated, the City Council’s vote of all members as ordered by the Hudson County Superior Court resulted in a 5-4 vote for Jim Doyle’s appointment. Two of the no votes mirrored prior votes where at different meetings, Council members Beth Mason and Michael Russo voted to abstain.
Corporation Counsel Melissa Longo stated for the basis of the vote, an abstention would be counted as a “no” vote based on her reading of NJ case law. Mayor Dawn Zimmer stepped up to cast the tie breaking fifth vote.
Assignment Judge Peter Bariso who called for the full council to vote on the appointment will now hear arguments when the vote results are brought to him possibly within a week. The judge has said he will examine the vote and listen to arguments on both sides how an abstention should be counted.
The abstention votes will be the point of the legal examination with no small irony as both Beth Mason and Michael Russo certainly are a “no” on the idea of Jim Doyle becoming the decisive vote on the council.
Their absences in October are widely understood as being staged creating a court saga costing Hoboken residents tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees after the City absorbed huge losses in the face of Hurricane Sandy.
Beth Mason arrives late but did vote to abstain as she had in late October. Her family is expected to sue the people of Hoboken again with the Russo clan and Tim Occhipinti joining.
Talking Ed Note: MSV will state its horse sense Assignment Judge Peter Bariso will concur on the consideration of an abstention being a “no” vote.
The people of Hoboken however can expect that the finality on the matter will likely see additional litigation from Beth Mason and her allies. Mason who sent out a home mailer claimed along with Hoboken411 the mayor and the council majority sued to stop an election.
That’s a complete fabrication. It was MORTe who sued to stop Judge Bariso’s order for a vote of the full council in December and tried an appeal to the Appellate Court all in the vain hope to stop the vote tonight.
Even with the judicial results this evening and what’s anticipated, the people of Hoboken can expect to see more legal bills in the tens of thousands with legal action by Mason, Russo, Castellano and Occhipinti.
Yes, they did complain about legal costs even as they sue the people and are likely aiming to do so again.
Here’s the brief discussion leading into the final 5-4 vote.