Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Organizer denies political action committee sought to hide contributions
A political action committee financed largely by contractors doing business in Bergen County paid for an event celebrating the county Democratic party's election night victory last November in Hasbrouck Heights, the Star-Ledger reported Wednesday. The PAC that covered the $10,033.54 event, the New Leadership Council of New Jersey, was created by Daniel Ortega, a former Democratic party official under ex-chairman Joe Ferriero. The former party chair was indicted on mail fraud charges, but his conviction was later overturned. Ortega said the PAC was not seeking to hide contributions, according to the report. The celebration was not an official Democratic party event, he said. "The purpose of this PAC is to support current and new …
Sunday, April 7, 2013
County executive's former campaign manager offers free public relations help to Bergen Community College.
Sunday, April 7
The decision by Alan Marcus and The Marcus Group to withdraw their $90,000 contract with Bergen Community College was the appropriate course of action given the County Executive’s past practice of weeding out unnecessary and wasteful spending. However the decision by Mr. Marcus to offer “free” consultation services regarding upcoming labor negotiations is equally disturbing. When does a public agency or in this case a county school board take collective bargaining tips from a public relations executive? Doesn’t Bergen Community College have on retainer legal counsel to handle such matters? The withdrawal of this contract does not cause harm to the institution as suggested, but it saves taxpayers $90,000 on something that wasn’t needed or …
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Calendar printing saved money, clerk says.
Bergen County Clerk John Hogan drew criticism from a freeholder Wednesday for spending $60,000 to print calendars that include 21 photos of himself, NorthJersey.com reported. Freeholder Maura DeNicola, a Republican who is running for reelection, criticized Hogan over the calendars, saying the money would have been better used elsewhere, the newspaper reported. Hogan, a Democrat, said he saved money by combining the calendars with the "My County" poster contest that featured artwork by local children. The calendars and posters were previously printed separately. A Hogan spokesman told the newspaper costs for the calendars were funded by service fees and not taxpayer money.
Monday, October 22, 2012
Watch video from the forum hosted by a Bergen Korean American civic group.
Monday, October 22, 2012
The candidates for Bergen County freeholder debated last week at the FGS Korean Community Center in Englewood, hosted by the Korean American Civic Action Committee. The group has posted video of the full debate on YouTube.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Republicans Robert Hermansen, an incumbent, and Margaret "Peg" Watkins, and Democratic candidates Steve Tanelli and Tracy Silna Zur debated at the FGS Korean Community Center Thursday evening.
Korean American Civic Empowerment (KACE) and the Korean American Civic Action Committee hosted a Bergen County Freeholder candidates’ debate Thursday at the FGS Korean Community Center in Englewood. Noting that the Korean-American population in Bergen County is nearly 57,000, that 14.5 percent of the county’s population is Asian-American and that 6.3 percent is comprised of Korean-Americans, mostly concentrated in Fort Lee, Palisades Park, Paramus, Leonia, Cliffside Park, Tenafly and Englewood Cliffs, KACE staff attorney and debate moderator Chejin Park said the objective of the debate was twofold. “The two objectives of this debate are to help the Asian-American community make an educated decision at the November general election and to …
Saturday, October 6, 2012
Effort to disband Bergen County Police Department failed with a 3-2 vote.
Bergen County Freeholder John Driscoll released a statement Friday explaining why he opted to abstain from a hotly-debated vote on folding the county police department into the sheriff's office. The freeholders on Wednesday voted 3-2 to reject an ordinance that would have eliminated the 89-member county police department. Freeholder Joan Voss also abstained. Driscoll's full statement is below: “I want to take this opportunity to give my reason for my abstention vote on the County Police ordinance. I have sat and watched as this ever import issue was batted around over the last few months. Since July I have been calling for the three leaders of law enforcement in Bergen County to come together on this issue. I believe that there are…
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Effort to eliminate county police department is defeated in 3-2 vote.
The Bergen County Freeholders on Wednesday voted against an ordinance to disband the county’s 89-member police department and merge it with the sheriff’s office, northjersey.com reported. The vote came after more than a year of debate, two studies and legal action. In a 3-2 vote with two abstentions, the board nixed the ordinance after initially approving it on first reading in August with a 4-2 vote. County Executive Kathleen Donovan, a strong supporter of the county police, had vowed to veto a vote to disband the department and called the idea “idiotic” at a freeholder work session. Freeholders Maura DeNicola and Robert Hermansen voted against the merger, along with Freeholder David Ganz, who first voted for the measure in August. …
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
At the final Bergen County Freeholders Listening Tour, residents expressed frustration with the governing body's lack of information
Over the past week, residents from across Bergen County have been flocking to the Freeholders Listening Tour dates seeking additional information about a proposed referendum and ordinance to combine the County Police and Sheriff's Department. While a judge blocked the referendum from moving forward on Friday afternoon, Paramus residents recently turned out to call on the Board of Freeholders to begin working together and actually provide the public with information. "All we have access to is what we read in the paper as John Q Public," former Paramus Police officer Steve Sullivan said. "We pay the salaries of the county police and sheriff's department and we don't know what's going on. Is there a plan because no one has ever come out and …
Thursday, September 6, 2012
Decision set for Friday afternoon.
A judge is expected to rule Friday afternoon on a suit filed by the Bergen County executive to block a ballot question asking if the county police should be merged with the sheriff’s office and an ordinance that would disband the police department. The freeholder board voted 4-2 at an August special meeting to move ahead with an ordinance to dissolve the county police and a non-binding referendum on the proposed merger. County Executive Kathleen Donovan challenged the votes, arguing the freeholders lacked authority to eliminate a county agency and the referendum vote was improper because it did not happen a regular board meeting. Superior Court Judge Menelaos Toskos said Thursday the law required a referendum to be introduced at a regular…
Friday, August 10, 2012
County official vows legal challenge as effort to disband police department moves forward.
The Bergen County Freeholders took the first steps Friday in disbanding the county’s police force and merging it with the sheriff’s office in a move that could be met with litigation from the county administration. The freeholders voted to put a non-binding referendum on the November ballot asking the public’s opinion on having the sheriff's office absorb the county police department. In another move, the board voted to approve an ordinance dissolving the county police force. Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan, an opponent of a merger and a referendum, would not enforce the ordinance and would likely challenge the moves in court. “The county executive has said that she will not enforce this ordinance because this ordinance is …