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Mayor Zimmer Press Conference on saving HUMC

The mayor held a press conference earlier today saying although time is running out and the hospital missed the opportunity to conclude being saved in a sale Wednesday, Hoboken still has a chance if four members of the City Council will “do the right thing for all of Hoboken,” and pass the emergency resolution on the final component needed for the hospital – the parking agreement.

In front of an emotional audience of hospital employees and Hoboken residents, chants of “Save Our Hospital” interrupted the mayor and the Hospital Authority members who spoke with strong applause.  The mayor urged everyone with the welfare of Hoboken in mind to reach out to the four council minority members – Michael Russo, Beth Mason, Terry Castellano and Tim Occhipinti and tell them they can be “heroes of Hoboken” if they vote to allow the sale to go forward by making the already passed parking agreement immediately effective.

There’s no hiding on this one this time for Mike Russo.  It’s prosperity or destruction, yay or nay.

The mayor made it very clear much is in the balance including the City of Hoboken being declared bankrupt.  According to the mayor,  the City would be facing a $63 million dollar bill if the hospital closed on a $100 million annual budget and the impact to the City of Hoboken would be catastrophic.

The mayor was scheduled to leave the hospital to inform City employees the dire situation both the hospital and the City faced. The mayor added massive layoffs would be in store for Hoboken if the hospital sale that was already completed less the parking agreement is not wrapped up with at least one more yes vote on Sunday.  Large tax increases would also be required due to the enormity of the impact.

Later in an interview one nurse noted no hospital in Hoboken can possibly operate successfully without parking. The parking garage was created for the hospital and is an essential piece to the closing of the sale.

Should one of the four council minority members vote yes, the closing would be able to conclude Tuesday of next week.

The consequences for intransigence are extremely dire to the hospital, almost 1200 employees, City workers including public safety and the taxpayers of Hoboken.

In 2007, Council members Terry Castellano and Mike Russo both voted to keep the hospital by making Hoboken taxpayers the guarantors of a $52 million bond. They have both voted against every single hospital related legislation that has come before them in recent weeks that would defease the bond and keep the hospital contractually open for seven years.

Complete and unedited video will be posted later today.

– Posted at full gallop

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