Ravi Bhalla announces temporary retreat to unwind the 2011 pay to play ordinance for election attack on Councilman Mike DeFusco
With the Friday reveal uncovered in an exclusive report on Hobokenhorse.com showing Mayor Ravi Bhalla and his Administration orchestrating an assault on Dawn Zimmer’s 2011 Pay-to-Play ordinance, an end of day retreat last week was announced.
Ravi Bhalla will temporarily halt unwinding of the 2011 Pay-to-Play ordinance leaving it intact for the duration of election season. Bhalla and his council slate instead will turn their guns on Councilman Mike DeFusco with a non-binding resolution claiming its intent “to enforce” the 2011 ordinance.
Unions are limited as political committees to political contributions of $500 in Hoboken. Both Bhalla and DeFusco are competing for those monies and in the end larger amounts if the 2011 ordinance is unwound. In the 2017 mayoral election, outside money contributions to the two saw their totals pop to a whopping $1,000,000.
The Doyle-Jabbour resolution Wednesday targets Councilman Mike DeFusco who’s accepted campaign contributions in excess of tens of thousands in 2017 and is exceeding those limits leading into this November’s council ward races.
But DeFusco dropped a bigger bomb last week launching a nuke on the mayor’s office of Ravi Bhalla, his council slate and a Hoboken insurance vendor Fairview. He’s alleging Ravi Bhalla’s “slate of Council candidates is being supported by a powerful, dark money Super PAC controlled by the city’s health insurance vendor,” Fairview Insurance Agency Associates.
DeFusco first dropped the bomb in a live interview last Thursday with John Heinis, editor and publisher of the Hudson County View. Late Friday, he issued a statement of his own saying he will be offering a resolution at Wednesday night’s City Council meeting
Late Friday, DeFusco said, “I will be introducing a resolution denouncing the influence of dark money on our local politics and calling on all Council candidates to reject support from Super PACs.”
Ravi Bhalla and his mayor’s office have been silent on the Dark Money allegations tied to Fairview Insurance, a Hoboken vendor. Coordination between Ravi Bhalla, his council slate, the Super PAC and the insurance vendor is illegal.
DeFusco also said in his interview he had opposed the big increases offered earlier by Ravi Bhalla to the insurance vendor.
Talking Ed Note: It’s all about the Benjamins… and power. There will be no enforcement of the 2011 Pay-to-Play ordinance by Ravi Bhalla or his administration.
After the 2012 BoE election, the former Corporation Counsel attempted to enforce the 2011 ordinance in a letter to then-councilwoman Beth Mason. It was ignored. An enforcement mechanism as Brian Aloia stated previously does not exist.
No one has challenged let alone won a legal decision against Hoboken’s 2011 Pay-to-Play ordinance.
Although this website urged an enforcement mechanism, none has occurred then or since. It’s not happening heading to November. It’s all posturing for special interest money as Ravi Bhalla intends to compete with DeFusco FOR that money.