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Hoboken Mayor: Christie Administration Held Up Sandy Funds To Help Allies

Governor's office has denied the accusations.

Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer
Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer

Gov. Chris Christie’s administration told Hoboken's mayor she would get funds to help her city recover from Superstorm Sandy only if she expedited a politically-connected development project, Mayor Dawn Zimmer said Saturday.

Zimmer, a Democrat who has long been an ally of Christie, told MSNBC host Steve Kornacki that she was pressured by Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, Richard Constable, the current commissioner of community affairs, and Lori Grifa, the former commissioner, among others.

Christie's administration has denied the accusations.

Art Vatsky January 18, 2014 at 10:48 PM
This falls into the "This must be how it is done in NJ" category. A Mayor with a damaged city might find it hard to believe federal dollars intended to be distributed on the basis of need are, instead, distributed on the basis of real estate decisions. Our governor has the authority/responsibility to distribute. I doubt Mayor Zimmer has a need to fabricate these claims while the governor needs to show executive power.
cassandra January 19, 2014 at 12:47 AM
Looking forward to exactly what project the mayor was referring to. Hopefully she will quickly divulge it. I guess she will have to divulge when she testifys before the various investigating committees. Great fun ahead
cassandra January 19, 2014 at 12:54 AM
According to Horse it is the Rockerfellers development
cassandra January 19, 2014 at 12:59 AM
Interesting! The Rockerfellers group ( a Japanese group) plans a project in the northwest section of town. That's the area where the Hudson River came flooding into town during Sandy.
Outofcontrol January 19, 2014 at 03:17 AM
I'm glad you and your hubby found it laughable, Carol, but if you looked a bit further, the mayor released documents that most likely are covered by subpoena. I find it laughable that you would single out just one document and offer your opinion.
Dr.Scott January 19, 2014 at 06:34 AM
I do not know for sure but I would think theost likely reason the mayor waited until now is because she is not alone. Who wants to be the first one to report corruption? Since that is politics as usual? Christie (I was a supporter) would deny it. Now that the ridiculous fort lee stuff has come out and is backed up by email documentation, I would imagine dawn does not feel like she is alone on a limb stating what is the truth. Her story is all the more believable. I am so sure that she is right. That this is politics as usual. That others will also feel brave. I sure there r other situations out there. We may soon hear others joining victimized pols on the limb.
Campaign news January 19, 2014 at 07:28 AM
Jimmy, let us know where you live now so we can drive through and diagnose all your town's needs and issues. PS> Thanks for not getting out of your car.
cindy goldberg January 19, 2014 at 07:41 AM
Zimmer is a hyprocrite ...I by no means am defending Christie...but there's more to come..I agree with a previous comment she "came out" because she knew others will..@cassandra I wouldn't read anything from Hoboken horse or grafix those blogs are from people paid by Zimmer on the "down low"...they always favor one side: Zimmer's! Totally not creditable they are not even journalist just lonely people that stay home all day and embellish stories to favor their favorite gal..Happy Sunday to all!!
hobokenhorse.com January 19, 2014 at 08:30 AM
The story has gone viral and is already being covered nationally, internationally in UK publications and it's only the weekend. MSV understands Hoboken was mentioned on Saturday Night Live. Hobokenhorse.com, the biggest and best website covering local government, politics and corruption is seeing very heavy traffic. With more than several million satisfied customers, MSV isn't worried about losing eyeballs. It's going to be an interesting story today and in the days ahead. For the story, videos and more on the ground in Hoboken: http://hobokenhorse.com The breaking story here: http://www.hobokenhorse.com/2014/01/gov-christie-blockbuster-mayor-zimmer.html
Campaign news January 19, 2014 at 08:36 AM
@Cindy Goldberg, speaking of hypocrites when are you going to say something/anything about the hate-filled anti-semite and HHA tenant association member and alleged Patch essayist Sigsby Cheatham. You know, this guy: "Is the so called Jew really the chosen people of god? Let's review their story: While the Caveman was having sex with the women from the Indus valley. The cave women were left to relieve themselves as best they could. Their best effort was to have sex with the Jackals of the cave. (WO) man’s best friend. The jackal served other purposes as well. The jackal would distinctly lick the festering sores of their cave consorts. Also when food became scarce the people of the cave would eat the dogs. The Visigoths resorted to eating their dogs when times got extremely bad." You're a so-called Jew, aren't you? Ever make it with a dog in a cave? Thoughts? https://www.facebook.com/scheatham09/posts/773977352615895
Eric January 19, 2014 at 08:43 AM
Your city is a wreck, a lot of your people are in dire straights and the Governor's office is holding up desperately needed funds... What do you do? The bigger crime would be allowing all of those people to suffer. I don't think I would have done it much differently but I'd be mad as hell about it. Payback is a b!tch.
Carol Harrison January 19, 2014 at 11:01 AM
Mr. Drake Hoboken is diverse. There are the multimillion condos, more midest ones, high rent and low rent apartments, basement apartments, subsidised housing, housing projects and a homeless shelter. People in the basement apartments lost everything. It is not like people who lost their second home down the shore. For many the insurance paid very little because it was a basement. Rebuilding Hoboken so the next massive storm surge does not wipe those same basement apartments out again will take money and work. We can't raise Hoboken up on stilts.
Carol Harrison January 19, 2014 at 11:39 AM
OutOfcontrol, As far as I know the only documents Mayor Zimmer produced was her private diary. Our opinion was based on logic and not a law degree. So to check it further I search and found a article in the Boston College Law Review, entitled ""Dear Diary--Can You Be Used Against Me?": The Fifth Amendments and Diaries". I'll post the conclusion. By failing to overrule Boyd and thus providing two possible Fifth Amendment document analyses, the Supreme Court has laid down a smoke screen behind which lower courts may continue to enforce a Boyd style grant of privacy through the Fifth Amendment and under- mine document subpoenas. Given both the practical and philosophical difficulties in consistently applying a privacy standard, and the strong dicta in Fisher against such Fifth Amendment privacy protection, courts should shift from a privacy analysis to an act of production analysis in all documents cases. The Fisher act of production analysis fits within the Court's current view of the Fifth Amendment, and provides a standard that lower courts can apply consistently. The emphasis on the act of producing the documents and not on the contents of the documents will ultimately provide greater protection for truly intimate and personal documents, but will not tend to shield personal documents of a less private nature.
Carol Harrison January 19, 2014 at 11:42 AM
Ms. Goldberg, You have no proof that anyone is paid to support the mayor by blogging. Maybe they should sue you libel. What do you think?
Hoboken Answer January 19, 2014 at 11:46 AM
Carol we've seen all this garbage from "Cindy Goldberg..Dov Arronson, Dawn's Broomstick," so the paid fish from Weehawken working full time for Beth Mason will continue to write some bitter lies on behalf of his counte$$. One can also expect Beth Mason and her clown corrupt cohort Michael Russo to suddenly find some love for Gov. Christie (it's corruption come to light after all) and come to his aid and attack Mayor Zimmer. They have other problems coming to light too. Same old with the same dirty crew.
Carol Harrison January 19, 2014 at 11:47 AM
Typo. Maybe they should sue you for libel.
Carol Harrison January 19, 2014 at 11:53 AM
Hoboken Answer, I'm well aware of their postings, the similarities in the written style. I personally have no definitive proof of their identity and will not waste my time speculating about it. I will point out what I feel is faulty logic. I also will never give them an echo chamber to attack people from. So as long as they talk smack, I will try to talk reason and logic.
jen brez January 19, 2014 at 12:20 PM
If that's the case, disappointed in Christie. That said, the fact that she's coming out with it now (???), after all that's been done for the city of Hoboken is not right. Hmm… makes me think that she has higher aspirations in the Democratic party and if that's the case, she's even more pathetic than I thought.
Pops January 19, 2014 at 12:46 PM
To all the anti-Zimmer folks who repeatedly ask about the timing of her coming forward, I suggest you watch this extended CNN interview where she answers the question numerous times. Not that this will cure you of your rampant anti-Zimmer hate, but at least you will know the truth: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1pG9gIGhQI
B@B January 19, 2014 at 01:25 PM
@Pops: They don't want the truth. The people commenting here are the Christie-worshippers who think Tony Soprano was a real person and forget that the character was a thug. These are the people who thought George W. Bush was a strong manly-man because he cleared brush on his ranch and think Christie is a manly-man because he is a bully.
JeffO January 19, 2014 at 03:12 PM
In terms of credibility, I generally give people the benefit of the doubt unless history has shown that a person has squandered his or her credibility. In my view, Ms. Zimmer gets the benefit, while Christie and his henchmen and henchwomen do not -- for the simple reason that throughout his first term, Christie has shown himself to be a chronic teller of big fat lies.
PeoplePlease January 19, 2014 at 03:54 PM
From what I can see, the people of Hudson County have received roughly 23 million dollars in Sandy Aid. Am I to believe that only 300K of that made it to Hoboken? The mayor requested 1/3 of the money available in the fund she is referring to. 1/3! Now I am not saying people in Hoboken did not suffer damages due to Sandy, but flooded basements do not compare entire towns washed into the Atlantic. If the Mayor was so concerned about getting Hoboken back on its feet, why is the "Hoboken, Lets Keep The Charm" campaign still not up and running? Why, a year after Sandy, was the website only half done? http://hudsonreporter.com/view/full_story/23710181/article-City-halts-work-on-tourism-website---Project--contracted-to-council-candidate--now-bogged-down-in-politics-- Why did the Mayor go against the recommendation of the Lt Gov and not support the reemergence of the Hoboken St Patrick's Day Parade...an event that draws 100's of thousands of dollars to Hoboken business's? I am not condoning the corruption that has happened in Hoboken, but when voters rush to replace wrongs, you often get what you voted for. In this case it's a PR Account Rep with no political experience and a hand up the back of her shirt.
JeffO January 19, 2014 at 04:02 PM
Case in point regarding Christie's chronic lying: When the NJ Dept. of Education's "Race to the Top" application for $400 million didn't make the cut because of missing information -- a mistake NJ Education Commissioner Bret Schundler owned up to -- Christie decided that the best way to spin the fiasco was to falsely blame "Obama's bureaucrats" for refusing to let the application's presenters provide the information he said they had. Only trouble was, "Obama's bureaucrats" had a videotape proving the they did give the presenters (including Schundler) an opportunity to supply the missing info, which they simply DIDN"T have. So Christie implemented Lying Plan B -- firing Schundler for supposedly "lying" to HIM. Sound familiar? But then Schundler produced emails proving he was upfront with the administration about what had happened -- and that Christie was the one who was lying about being lied to. As I'm sure he is with regards to Bridget Ann Kelly. http://www.salon.com/2010/09/02/chris_christie_schundler/
I am Spartacus January 19, 2014 at 05:21 PM
Nobody in Hoboken has received a subpoena. Please stop being so ignorant.
I am Spartacus January 19, 2014 at 05:47 PM
B@B, one person posting here using multiple names is a habitual Zimmer hater who works for every and any politician looking to take Zimmer down. And most of the rest of the posters are regular Hoboken posters. Personally I am a Christie supporter but this story doesn't at all surprise me. Developers bring out the worst in some people and have completely corrupted many politicians. Zimmer is one of the few who refuses to acquiesce to their demands. The people who oppose her would love it if she went away so the Rockefeller Groups of the world could put up their 40 story condo towers all over the place.
Janet January 19, 2014 at 11:07 PM
Steve Kornacki of MSNBC did Hoboken quite a service when he took the time to explain the details of the "No Hurricane Sandy Relief Funds" controversy between Mayor Zimmer and Governor Christie's administration. The tape on Patch's website cut off before Zimmer's interview, but I will go to the MSNBC website to view it. I'm impressed with Mayor Zimmer's integrity, and shocked that the State of NJ doesn't consider Hoboken worth helping on the basis of the essential services it provides to commuters pouring through our transportation hub back and forth to New York City. Is the Christie administration really as corrupt as Zimmer reports? MSNBC's Kornacki made a detailed and convincing case that, hard as it is to believe, this really is the reality. I guess we're going to find out over the coming weeks. I for one thought Mayor Zimmer was just a high-quality, trustworthy mayor with good judgment, doing a good job for our small city. Now I realize the woman is a warrior and a true-blue heroine. You hang in there, babe! You have my respect and admiration.
JeffO January 20, 2014 at 12:45 AM
She wasn't subpoenaed, but the U.S. Attorney's office thought enough about Mayor Zimmer's charges that they invited her in to talk about it. http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2014/01/hoboken_mayor_says_she_talked_storm_funding_with_us_attorneys_office.html
Eric January 20, 2014 at 11:31 AM
PeoplePlease what town in Hudson's county was washed into the sea????? Name another city in this county that had as many affected citizens and businesses AND serves as a major transportation hub. I know you won't answer. You people never engage in anything but name calling and rhetoric.
PeoplePlease January 20, 2014 at 02:42 PM
Eric - Hudson County has received 23MM in Sandy Aid. The $300MM fund was a State fund. By the way - Parts of Jersey City were under water too. Go talk to those along 440 who had their shops and dealerships under 4 feet of water.
Ojo Rojo January 20, 2014 at 07:24 PM
Parts of Jersey City might have been underwater but 80% of Jersey City wasn't underwater.

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