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Vainieri chairs Board of Commissioners for seventh consecutive term

The length of his service is tied only with former West New York Mayor and Assemblyman Sal Vega

Vainieri was sworn in as Chairman on Jan. 5. Photo courtesy of the county.

The Hudson County Board of Commissioners elected Commissioner Anthony Vainieri, who represents North Bergen and Secaucus, as chairman again at its re-organization
meeting on January 5. He is also the Chairman of the Hudson County Democratic Organization.

The day after the meeting, Vainieri took to social media to post a statement: “Yesterday, I was sworn is as the Chairperson of the Hudson County Board of Commissioners. This is the 7th year in a row and I’m proud and honored to serve the residents of Hudson County. I’d like to thank all my colleagues for their vote of confidence in me and special thank you to North Bergen Mayor Nick Sacco and Secaucus Mayor Mike Gonnelli for the support that they have always given me to represent their municipalities.”

Vainieri has now held the position for seven consecutive terms, tied with the record for the most in Hudson County. He is the second person to do so, tied with former Chairman Sal Vega.

The former West New York Mayor and State Assemblyman was chairman of the board from 1999 and 2006. If Vainieri is re-elected to the board and elected again to the leadership position in 2024, he will overtake Vega for the record with eight consecutive terms.

Other leadership elected

Anthony L. Romano, who represents all of Hoboken and a part of Jersey City was re-elected Vice-Chairperson of the Board of Commissioners. Commissioner Jerry Walker who represents parts of Jersey City was elected Chairperson Pro-Tempore.

That is the same leadership the board has maintained since 2021. Walker was also designated as Voting Member for the Hudson County Board of Commissioners to attend all meetings and conferences of the New Jersey Association of Counties for 2023.

In addition, Commissioner Fanny Cedeno who represents Union City was designated as Second Alternate Voting Member to the New Jersey Association of Counties for the year 2023. Hudson County Administrator Abe Antun was designated Alternate Voting Member to the New Jersey Association of Counties for the year 2023.

All nine county commissioners are up for re-election in 2023, with a number of progressive challengers declaring their intent to run for a number of seats on the board held by the establishment Democrats as well as for County Executive.

While Vainieri could make history as the longest serving Chairman on the board, that may not be the path he takes. There could also be a change up with an opening on the Board of Commissioners in North Bergen, which Vainieri could run for with the departure of Commissioner Julio Marenco running for State Assembly in the new 33rd Legislative District. 

Vainieri has long been thought to be the mayoral successor to Sacco in North Bergen. While Sacco, who is retiring from State Senate, has made clear he will run for re-election in 2023, Vainieri’s addition to the board could clear the way for a potential mayoral run after Sacco retires as mayor.

However, Vainieri has not yet made clear his intentions.

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.