Jersey City files petition for rehearing on pipeline
On Friday, June 22, Mayor Jerramiah Healy announced that the city had filed a comprehensive 43-page petition requesting a rehearing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) which last month conditionally approved an application by Spectra Energy to construct a high-pressure natural gas pipeline through Jersey City.
Among other things, the city’s petition calls into the question the constitutionality of FERC to fairly evaluate construction proposals for gas pipelines since the agency is funded entirely by fees generated from energy companies.
“We have argued throughout this process that it has been one lacking any independent or thorough analysis by FERC,” Healy said in a statement. “The findings and arguments made by the pipeline company have been taken as gospel by FERC, while most, if not all, of our concerns have either been downplayed or disregarded.”
The city’s argument is that since energy companies entirely fund FERC, the agency is biased toward those companies in a way that violates fundamental rights to due process.
The petition cites research that, since 2010, FERC has approved nearly three dozen pipelines.
In every case but one, according to the petition, the agency approved the pipeline routes that the energy companies proposed – despite the existence of dozens of viable, even preferable, alternatives.
Healy added: “If we are not granted a rehearing with FERC, then we will take this issue to the federal circuit court to seek relief.”
Gun buyback continues
Last Thursday, Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy announced that the city would hold another gun buyback day on Saturday, June 23 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Ocean Avenue Baptist Church, First Wesleyan Church, and St. Joseph Catholic Church.
As with the city’s last two gun buyback programs, the one scheduled for June 23 would allow people to trade rifles and shotguns for $100. People who turned in handguns and automatic weapons were expected to receive $150.
Everyone who turns in a gun will receive full legal amnesty.
Funding for the buyback program, known as Operation Lifesaver 2, is provided completely by donations from the local business community, individual residents, and forfeiture funds from the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office.
Jersey City Museum reopens
On Saturday, June 30 the Jersey City Museum at 350 Montgomery St. will reopen to the public after being closed for the past 18 months.
The museum, which struggled financially throughout the recession due to budget cuts, was forced to close its doors in December 2010. Last year the LibertyHealth Foundation purchased the museum building on Montgomery and has agreed to lease the first floor to the museum board for events and exhibitions. The museum board hopes the re-opening will build support for continued programming and renewed funding opportunities.
On display beginning June 30 will be the exhibit “Masters of the Collection,” which will feature masterpieces that depict Jersey City and other local cities during the 19th Century. The exhibit will include landscapes from artists August Will and Charles Linford.
Admission to the museum on June 30 will be free. On Saturdays in July the museum will ask for a $10 donation. The museum will be open from noon until 6 p.m. on June 30. After that date the museum will be open each Saturday from noon until 3 p.m.
This exhibit was made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.
Body of kidnapped JC woman found; witnesses waited 16 hours to report abduction
The body of a woman abducted last Saturday from Jersey City was discovered in Newark’s South Ward Tuesday, according to published reports.
According to a news report posted on NJ.com, investigators are trying to determine the cause and time of death. On Saturday, June 16, at around 10:30 p.m., a 27-year-old Jersey City woman was abducted from Bidwell Avenue and was forced into a car described as a black four-door sedan. Despite several witnesses, the abduction was not reported until 16 hours later.
Bayonne approves gas line deal
The Bayonne City Council voted on June 20 to approve an agreement that would pave the way for construction of the Spectra Energy natural gas pipeline through that city. Bayonne officials said that discussions with Spectra had produced modifications in the plan and will result in more than $2.3 million in annual revenues to the city as well as other perks. Spectra representatives said the pipeline would also have a positive impact for local companies through whose properties the pipeline would travel.
The biggest change was the moving of the proposed pipeline route out of residential areas, placing the west to east route under the Kill Van Kull instead at the southern most tip of Bayonne near Staten Island.
No Gas Pipeline to hold ‘fun-raiser’
On Sunday, June 24 from 2:30 to 9 p.m. the community group No Gas Pipeline will hold what’s being called a BBQ/MusicFest “fun-raiser” to raise money for the organization.
The event will take place at Barrow Mansion, 83 Wayne St. and admission is $15.
Gazelle, Fairmont, Shayfer James, the Winner Takes All Collective, the Micks, the Milwaukees, and the Defending Champions are among the bands that will perform.
The membership-based No Gas Pipeline organization has been at the forefront of community efforts to oppose the Spectra Energy pipeline that might be routed through northern New Jersey – including parts of Jersey City – into Manhattan. Last month the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission gave its approval for the pipeline to be built. The City of Jersey City and No Gas Pipeline are planning separate lawsuits to block the pipeline’s construction.
Political activist Rev. Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping Choir will host a musical performance/ political rally on the Spectra pipeline and hyrdo-fracking on Sunday, July 1 at 1 p.m. This event will be held in New York City at the Highline Ballroom at 431 West 16th Street.
Admission to this event is $12.
For more information, visit http://revbilly.com/events/live-at-the-highline-reverend-billy-the-stop-shopping-gospel-choir, or call Savitri at (347) 693-8857.
Landscape painting, again, at the Reservoir
If you by chance missed last week’s Summer Landscape Painting class at the Jersey City Reservoir, don’t despair. There will be a repeat class offered at the Reservoir this Sunday, June 24 from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. The class, led by artist Marge Colavito, is open to people ages 13 and up. No prior painting experience is necessary
Participants should bring a pencil and a folding chair and be sure to wear light-colored, comfortable clothes they don’t mind getting dirty with paint. If you have an easel or palette, please bring it as well. All other supplies will be provided.
The event is free, but space is limited to 15 people. To RSVP, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call Laura at (201) 259-1800.
Health programs at local library branches
On Saturday, July 7, there will be health-related events at two local branches of the Jersey City Free Public Library.
From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. that day there will be free health fair at the Greenville Branch, at 1841 Kennedy Blvd. There will be free HIV and STD testing available at this fair. For more information, call, (201) 547-4553
Then, at the Jersey City Heights Branch, at 14 Zabriskie Street, there will be a presentation on ways to control cravings for sweets. This free presentation, by health coach Victor La Mantia, will take place from noon until 1:30 p.m.