Recent news reports have once again shown that widespread corruption is ongoing within Union City government. As per recent news reports a Clifton contractor pleaded guilty to agreeing to pay off a Union City official in exchange for zoning permits. (The story said he had meetings from 2007 to 2011).
Back in 2008, a Union City Zoning Board member pleaded guilty to extortion. During sentencing, the official stated that he planned to share the money with another person involved in the scheme.
Also in 2008, “A prominent Hudson County architect admitted he made payments to a Union City Board of Zoning Adjustment member – including buying a $3,400 dog for the board member’s girlfriend – to win favorable consideration of building projects over several years.”
Also in the news have been reports that the Union City Housing Authority has been served with federal subpoenas and there is an ongoing federal probe.
In a 2009 federal complaint related to ‘Operation Bid Rig,’ Solomon Dwek, an FBI informant, acknowledged paying off Union City officials in exchange for winning zoning approvals.
In 2011, Union City Police Charles Everett was caught billing the Union City Board of Education for hours not worked and was forced into retirement.
Mayor Brian Stack has done nothing to correct or even address the above issues. No internal investigations have been conducted to determine who these unnamed city officials are, no one has been fired, and no attempts have been made to recover taxpayers’ money that was misused. All we get from Stack is: It is not my fault, I cannot be expected to watch everyone, my ex-wife took a city car and I had no knowledge about it and I am sick over it. Blah blah blah…
When Brian Stack plants a tree he spends thousands of taxpayers’ dollars sending out mailings telling everyone how great he is. When corruption and scandals break, Stack points the finger at everyone else and claims ignorance.
Real leaders do not point fingers at others; they do not blame their ex-wife. They take responsibility for what took place, they investigate, and once the investigation is complete, they take swift and decisive action to send the message to others who may be heading down the road of corruption, and to punish those involved. Corruption in government cannot and must not ever be condoned or accepted. When leaders like Brian Stack fail to take aggressive action and take responsibility they are sending a silent message that corruption is okay. Brian Stack named a Culture Center after a former Union City Mayor who had been convicted for stealing from Union City taxpayers!
His failure to take any action after these recent scandals clearly shows that Brian Stack lacks the leadership skills necessary to govern. It is also clear that he, as an individual, is a part of the culture of corruption that is so prevalent throughout our state.
Brian Stack is not the answer to ending corruption in Union City; he is part of the problem.