Sign of Tim’s Times: NJ Transit, the constituent that matters most

Last night’s meeting on the downtown redevelopment with NJ Transit was a good mixture of people although not quite jam packed as it was a community meeting where no final decisions would be made.

The mixture on both sides was on the lower side, about 100 people total but the breakdown especially before the meeting was akin to the Hatfields and the McCoys each on different sides.

Those skeptical of NJ Transit on the reform side of the fence sat on the right side of the room while those who might be deemed sympathetic appeared to be on whole sitting on the left.  MSV remarked on this odd circumstance with Director Brandy Forbes before the event and she gazed around the room but didn’t remark to agree or disagree.

If that view was in error, the observation with breakdown into groups later certainly wasn’t. People who might be described as friends of Tim, re: NJ Transit sympathetic were spread out at different tables but nothing seemed too overt.  The folks talking to Councilman Tim Occhipinti eyed the crowd with a look in the eye of adversaries, it was unmistakeable to most but if you really looked… 

After the city’s presentation on the plans it sees as optimal, the audience broke down into groups.  After going to several tables and listening in to the folks participating, it was clear the audience was going through everything with a fine tooth comb. MSV overheard similar questions on what type of stores would make it into the commercial rental locations at two different tables.

While other Council members present: Carol Marsh, Dave Mello, Peter Cunningham and councilwoman-elect Jen Giattino mixed with the crowd, took the printed survey and/or chatted it up with their neighbors on the different charts floating around the room, one Councilman was focused entirely on a different constituency:

Tim Occhipinti (l) speaking with NJ Transit’s John Leon as a table in the background was one of several where residents shared ideas on the different aspects of a potential redevelopment.

Tim Occhipinti appeared glued to the NJ Transit people including its head John Leon for an inordinate amount of time.  While his colleagues were mixing it up with the people, Tim Occhipinti remained with the NJ Transit crowd.  Eventually, the party would break up but we don’t recall if Occhipinti spent any time with the folks.  He may have, it was just glaringly obvious where he spent time parked so unlike his colleagues.

Talking Ed Note: MSV wasn’t the first or only one to notice Tim Occipinti’s constituent focus.  It was not just a momentary thing although one could argue such from a photo.  Take our word for it, it’s representative.

Later we had a chat with activist Jim Vance.  He questioned the camerawork of MSV in a wide ranging discussion and we vigorously defended it.  See the photo above Jim?  It’s called photo journalism; for those who wish to see.

Later Jim shared an interesting rumor of a photo MSV has never taken.  We find it interesting how some are taken in by the stories of others who have a record of being challenged when it comes to the truth.  They have medicine for such delusions. 

Anyway, we’ll have more photos on the community meeting later but tonight’s the City Council meeting and it’s going to be a long night at the big dance.

Come see the Beth Russo show.  There’s only one more meeting with the bad guys before they have to give up the ghost.  You may not get another chance to see the bad guys like this again.

That’s no metaphor.  That’s from the movie Scarface, except it’s fictional and Tony Montana at least had some redeemable qualities.  He didn’t try to destroy a city because he couldn’t control it.

Beth Russo on the other hand are giving it a try.

Related: Hoboken Patch has its news story up.

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