Recall effort dismissed, but Roque announces candidacy
Dr. Felix Roque and the “Together We Can” recall committees were in Hudson County Superior Court this week to challenge the West New York Town Clerk’s finding that the group hadn’t gathered enough signatures to put the recall question before the voters.
However, on Thursday Judge Maurice Gallipoli’s office confirmed that the case was dismissed.
Town Attorney Daniel Horgan said that the case was dismissed because the recall committees failed to provide proofs which Gallipoli had ordered them to collect in January and again in March.
“They never did it,” he said. “Because they don’t have any proof.” He continued by saying that it was only on Thursday that recall committees began to offer to bring in people and proofs.
“The judge was also very clear that the clerk in this had been wrongly vilified for not doing her job,” said Horgan, “when in fact they may have never wanted her to do her job. All they did was simply complain and make excuses.”
Roque, however, said he lost on a technicality and plans to continue the battle to “liberate the town of West New York.”
“My pressure on the town is going to increase,” said Roque. “When the going gets tough, the tough get going and that’s how I feel about this whole situation.”
Turning the obstacle into an opportunity, he said that he is officially announcing his candidacy to run for office in the regular mayor/commissioner election in May 2011.
He added that he will appeal the decision to dismiss the case. “This is not about me,” he said. “It’s about the people. They want a change and I’m going to provide that change.”
Fireworks return to the Hudson
Hudson County’s waterfront cities will once again be treated to a front row seat to this year’s Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks. The show is returning to the Hudson River for the second year in a row.
The colorful explosions will be fired off from six barges in the Hudson River located between the area of 24th St. and 50th St. in Manhattan.
The 34th annual Macy’s fireworks display will begin at approximately 9:20 p.m. on July 4. Additional information about the show will be released after June 1. For more information, please call the Macy’s Fireworks hotline at (212) 494-4495.
Stack introduces bill to have hospitals hold monthly public meetings
State Sen. Brian Stack has announced plans to introduce legislation requiring hospitals to hold one public board meeting a month, a move that would provide members of the community with an opportunity to ask questions or voice concerns about care.
The senator’s proposal comes after he discovered first-hand the difficulty of getting answers from a local hospital, which cancelled his mother’s radiation treatment for lung cancer the morning of her appointment, he said. The procedure was scheduled a month prior.
After making several phone calls, Sen. Stack learned he was unable – in his individual capacity – to address board members at Hackensack University Medical Center to inquire about hospital policy. Sen. Stack said he believes there are countless others experiencing similar problems at hospitals across the state.
Current state law requires hospital boards to hold only one public meeting a year.
“The fact that there are no regular public board meetings at hospitals is absurd,” said Stack. “Hospitals, especially those receiving taxpayer support, should be accountable to the community members they serve.”
The proposal would require all hospitals receiving state or federal funding to open their meetings to the public, and hold at least one meeting per month. Under the proposal, all meeting minutes would also be made public.
“It’s not Margaret Stack, but it’s the Margaret Stacks of the world that I’m concerned with,” said Senator Stack. “I’m concerned about all those individuals that are minorities, African-Americans, Hispanics, Arab-Americans, as well as the poor, who are not being serviced by hospitals in this state. I’m concerned about anyone who is encountering roadblocks when trying to get information about care.”
“This is about human decency,” the senator added. “My mother has me to advocate for her; many people don’t have anyone.”
The bill will be formally introduced when the legislature returns from its budget break in May.
Free English Classes offered by new non-profit
The Open Door, a new non-profit based out of Union City/West New York and serving Hudson County residents, will be conducting registration for free English classes at 914 21st St. in Union City on May 6 and June 3. There will be free child care provided. There are a limited number of spaces available. For more information, please call (973) 780-3818.
West New York Women’s Club in search of volunteers
Volunteers are needed for both the upcoming West New York Women’s Club walkathon and “Taste of West New York” Senior Citizens Mother’s Day Event. Individuals interested in volunteering or information for either event can email email@example.com.
The West New York Women’s Club will hold their third annual walkathon on May 22 beginning at 60th Street and Boulevard East, travelling to Hamilton Park in Weehawken and back. Sign-in begins at 9 a.m. and the walkathon begins at 10 a.m. Men are welcome to join.
All participants must have a sponsorship form which can be received by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. All of the proceeds from the walkathon will be donated to WomenRising.
The “Taste of West New York” Senior Citizens Mother’s Day Event will take place at West New York Middle School on May 15 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The next monthly meeting of the women’s club will be held on May 17 at Hudson Hall, 6018 Hudson Ave. at 6:30 p.m. Detective Thomas Mannion of the WNYPD Narcotics Division will be the guest speaker. He will discuss the identification and hazards of the drug “Ecstasy” in the community.
Free pregnancy health fair
Palisades Medical Center will be hosting “Everything you need to know about Your Pregnancy” on Saturday, May 15 from 2 to 5 p.m.
Physicians, midwives, nutritionists, lactation consultants, and other health professionals will be present to discuss everything about pregnancy, from preconception to postpartum recovery.
Information will be available in both English and Spanish. Free parking, food and refreshments will be provided. Space is limited. To RSVP, call Nikki Mederos at (201) 854-5702.
UC Police department purchases new vehicles
On Thursday Union City Mayor Brian Stack, Chief Charles Everett and the Union City Police Department hosted a press conference to announce the police department’s recent purchase of four new police cruisers and five new motorcycles to be used during patrols.
Both the cruisers and motorcycles were on display.
North Hudson Fire’s hiring freeze lifted
After being barred from hiring new firefighter candidates due to a 2007 NAACP lawsuit against North Hudson Regional Fire and Rescue (NHRFR), the department has had the injunction lifted and will be able to hire off of their own list of candidates.
The NHRFR serves North Bergen, Guttenberg, Union City, West New York, and Weehawken.
A federal judge in 2009 placed an injunction on the Regional, prohibiting them from hiring new firefighters unless they used a court-mandated list that broadened eligible candidates to residents of Hudson, Essex and Union counties. The NAACP has alleged that the department discriminated again African-American candidates.
Before that, the NHRFR only hired candidates who resided in their own five towns. The NHRFR officials stated that hiring off of the newly broadened list would unfairly compromise the chances of Hispanic candidates, who make up a large segment of the local population.
At the NHRFR meeting Monday, Chairperson and Weehawken Mayor Richard Turner announced that the injunction was lifted last week, while the court case will continue. He said that the department would make hiring decisions within 30 to 60 days.
It was also announced at the meeting that hiring application deadlines have been extended to May 29. Interested candidates may visit www.nhrfr.net or may pick up an application at NHRFR headquarters, located at 11 Port Imperial Blvd., West New York, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For more information, read this week’s North Bergen Reporter in print or at www.hudsonreporter.com.
Our publication incorrectly identified the winner of the “Best Single Ad Any Size, Multi-Spot or Full,” created for Bayonne Medical Center by The Hudson Reporter. The award winning ad, “David vs Goliath,” was in fact designed by Spot On! Creative Group LLC, of Montclair, N.J. We apologize for any confusion and congratulate Spot On! Creative Group on their campaign.
“We appreciate the honor and are proud of our team for conceiving and producing this compelling ad,” said Kevin Riedy, partner and creative director.