The city and Costco officially closed on a deal that sold a parcel of land on the former Military Ocean Terminal Base for a new Costco warehouse expected to break ground in the coming weeks and open late in 2018.
The publicly-traded, Seattle-based company plans to build its warehouse and a gas station on the west side of Route 440 and across from the fire station on Chosin Few Way, where the BCB Pavilion tent once stood.
"Having the chance to bring a company like Costco to Bayonne that pays its employees a living wage and provides great shopping choices and amenities is a homerun for our city," said Mayor Davis. "This property has not paid one dollar in taxes for over 18 years and within a year it will provide $435,000 in new annual property taxes. This is how we fix our city finances”
Dr. Mitchell Brown to run for mayor
Mitchell Brown, a physician and lawyer with a longtime private practice at his office at 758 Broadway, has announced his candidacy for Mayor of Bayonne.
Brown moved to Bayonne after studying medicine in the Dominican Republic, converting an old bar on Broadway formerly called Chippey’s into a medical office to practice internal medicine and geriatrics. After 17 years in medicine, Brown earned a law degree from Rutgers School of Law in Newark.
He has two young children who attend Robinson Community School. He is also an active member of the medical staff at Bayonne Medical Center, has been recognized by Castle Connolly as a “Top Doctor” for the past 20 years, and is a recipient of the “Award of Merit” from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Brown identifies politically as a Democrat, as do his opponents, incumbent Mayor James Davis and former Assemblyman and firefighter Jason O’Donnell, all of whom will be running in the May 8 nonpartisan municipal elections.
Petitions filed to run in May 8 election
The following people have filed petitions to run in the May 8 municipal elections by the March 5 deadline. Running for mayor will be James Davis, Jason O’Donnell, and Mitchell Brown. Running for council seats on James Davis’s ticket are Sharon Nadrowski and Juan Perez for at-large seats, Thomas Cotter for First Ward; Sal Gullace for Second Ward; and Gary La Pelusa for Third Ward. Running on Jason O’Donnell’s ticket will be Dan Ward and Melissa Enriquez-Rada for at-large seats; Sharma Montgomery for First Ward; Kevin Kuhl for Second Ward, and Matthew Klimansky for Third Ward. Running independent of a mayoral ticket is Zoning Board Chairman Mark Urban, who is running for Third Ward city council. Signatures on filed petitions still need to be verified by the City Clerk’s office.
Avenue C 7-Eleven employee allegedly threatened by customer with knife
A 7-Eleven employee was allegedly threatened by a man with a knife on Friday, March 2 after he allegedly stole $32 worth of Hostess cupcakes by stuffing them down his pants, according to police.
A 33-year-old employee told the police that after he asked the man to stop stealing, the man allegedly pointed a knife at him, threatened to “cut” him, and then left the store with the cupcakes.
No arrests were made, and the incident remains under investigation.
Man found dead in car on Military Ocean Terminal Base
An investigation is underway into the death of man whose body was found in a vehicle on Harbor Place in Bayonne at 11:52 p.m. on Friday, March 2, according to the Bayonne Police Department. The body was taken to the state regional Medical Examiner's Office in Newark Saturday morning. Further information is unavailable as the incident remains under investigation.
Another scathing report on county jail detainees
A report released last week by Human Rights First says detainees are served raw and spoiled food, given dirty drinking water and provided insufficient clothing and hygiene products at three NJ jails that are holding federal immigration detainees, including the Hudson County Correctional Facility (HCCF).
Earlier in February, Human Rights First (HRF) researchers visited the three principal facilities that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) uses to detain noncitizens in New Jersey: Elizabeth Contract Detention Facility, the Essex County Correctional Facility, and the Hudson County Correctional Facility.
A team of legal and health professionals joined HRF staff on these visits, which included tours of the facilities, meetings with ICE and facility staff, and individual and group interviews with over one hundred detained immigrants. According to their report, HRF found at the Hudson facility several detained individuals working in the kitchens who complained that the food carts, trays, and dishes are frequently left unwashed, and when cleaned, dirty water is used to wash them. Also, garbage and food waste often remain on the plates and trays.
The report said that individuals at all three facilities reported that food, particularly meat and rice, is often raw, spoiled, or expired.
The report went on to say that detainees at the Hudson facility said that certain officers allow only English programs on the television, that most work positions are offered to English speakers, and that officers may restrict phone usage depending on the race of the detainee.
Women at the Hudson facility complained about one officer who verbally assaults certain women and even restricts certain women from using the phone to call their attorneys, something that all detainees should have unrestricted access to.
The report said that the Hudson facility has a high number of individuals with serious mental health concerns, as demonstrated by the three suicides that have occurred at the facility since January 2016 and 12 mental health hospitalizations in six months.
The Hudson facility utilizes medical isolation rooms to house detained individuals placed on suicide watch. While on suicide watch, a detainee remains in his or her cell for 23 hours per day and is not permitted to have personal items, books, or magazines in the cell. The facility implemented new policies in an effort to respond to the three suicides since 2016.
Hudson County has instituted a number of programs to address these issues, but the report appears to confirm that problems at the facility still exist.
NAMI offers program for caregivers
NAMI Family-to-Family is a 12-week education program designed for caregivers having an adult family member living with a mental illness. The program fosters learning, healing and empowerment among caregivers and has been described by some as “a journey of hope” and by many others as “a life changing experience. Classes will meet April 5 through June 21 at Christ Hospital, 176 Palisade Ave., Jersey City, every Thursday evening 6:30 – 9 p.m. Participation is available on a first come basis and free parking is available.
To register please contact Carmen at (201) 310-5828 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or
Dana at (347) 729-3966 or email at email@example.com.
Register early. Space is limited.
HCCC to showcase independent female filmmakers
The HCCC Department of Cultural Affairs has a number of events coming up. Independent female filmmakers will also be celebrated in a series of films being presented from March 2 to April 28 by the Department of Cultural Affairs in collaboration with director Delaney Buffett.
This is an all-star lineup of short films by female filmmakers which will be screened at the Dineen Hull Gallery Atrium.
Film shorts include “First Match,” “Kid Warrior: The Xiuhtezcatl Martinez Story,” “New Deep South: Kayla,” “Run Mama Run” and “The Spring.” For more information email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Legislative committee advances 6 gun-control measures
The Assembly Judiciary Committee approved six bills that would tighten New Jersey’s gun-control laws, which are already among the strictest in the country, The Record reports. One of the measures, known as a “red flag” law, would allow police to temporarily take guns from people who are ruled by a judge as a threat. Other legislation would impose a 10-round limit on the capacity of gun magazines, expand background checks to include private gun sales, and ban bullets capable of penetrating body armor.
BHS senior files notice of tort claim
The high school student involved in a Nov. 30 incident at Richard Korpi Ice Rink in which a coach and social studies teacher, David McKenna, allegedly pointed a gun at the student and another teacher, has filed a notice of tort claim with the City of Bayonne, the Bayonne Board of Education, and the state.
The claim, filed by Jersey City-based attorney Joel Silberman, allges that David McKenna pointed the gun at the 18-year-old BHS senior inside the coach’s office when he was getting ready for hockey practice, and seeks compensation for emotional injuries.
McKenna allegedly took a semiautomatic handgun brought to the school by Richard Korpi Jr., a Sheriff’s officer and hockey coach, and left it in his holster in the coach’s room, according to the claim.
Activists and lawmakers push for voting rights for the formerly incarcerated
A 174-year-old law that prevents NJ residents convicted of serious crimes from voting even if they are on parole or probation is being challenged by lawmakers and activists who introduced legislation last week that would allow those people to vote in all elections in the state, according to NJ Spotlight.
“New Jersey has barred those convicted of serious crimes from voting until they have served their entire sentences since 1844,” reports Coleen O’Dea. “As a result, more than 94,000 residents, 87 percent of whom are out of jail on probation or parole, cannot vote today.”
The legislation would benefit NJ’s African-American community the most because the state’s prison system is the most segregated in the country. In NJ, an African-American adult is 12 times more likely than a white adult, and a black youth is 30 times more likely than a white youth to be incarcerated.
LGBTQ progress in the State Senate
If state senators have their way, New Jersey will soon have among the most progressive policies on gender identity. According to NJ Spotlight, state senators want to make it easier for people to change the gender listed on their birth and ensure that the death certificate properly reflects the gender identity of the deceased person.
Bill to eliminate surprise medical bills hits snag
Legislation intended to prevent surprise out-of-network health insurance charges cleared an Assembly committee Monday then stalled in a Senate committee, according to NJ Spotlight. The bill, intended to reduce the impact of out-of-network charges incurred in emergencies, is supported by business groups, labor leaders, consumer advocates, insurance providers and the state’s hospital association.