Mayor Zimmer on sentence: ‘Crimes impacted union negotiations’ with public safety
After the sentencing Friday in Newark federal court, Mayor Dawn Zimmer expressed disappointment in the sentence for former IT Manager Patrick Ricciardi saying it failed to send a “strong message” of deterrence and had impacted the union negotiations.
In the mayor’s letter Friday to the federal court, she detailed the city’s private position in sensitive negotiations with public safety were being openly discussed on the NJ.com Hoboken forum. That comment board is well known as a forum where both police and fire members participate.
The mayor wrote the comments about the City’s negotiating position where then Corporation Counsel Mark Tabakin had taken a private position to accept a position of the union at that time was being broadcast publicly on that board. There was no way for the public or public safety members to legally obtain sensitive information on the city’s negotiating position.
Multiple people not only knew of the internal communications in the mayor’s office, they were publicly commenting on it urging the mayor to accept the position of her corporation counsel on the NJ.com Hoboken forum.
Hudson County TV interviewed the mayor after Ricciardi’s sentencing:
Talking Ed Note: The negotiations with the public safety unions which account for about 55% of Hoboken’s total annual budget were compromised. What cost to the people of Hoboken is not and may not ever be known looking in the rear view mirror.
The mayor has described the massive Data Theft Ring as a “widespread conspiracy.” No arrests have been made since Ricciardi was terminated in May 2011 and surrendered to face charges in Newark the day after the election later that year.