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Judge gives go-ahead to Zimmer - Injunction denied

HOBOKEN - Councilman Chris Campos suffered another loss yesterday when a state Superior Court judge denied his request for an injunction to prevent Dawn Zimmer, who defeated him in the 4th Ward runoff, from taking office tomorrow.

Campos will challenge the results of the June 12 runoff in a trial set to begin July 30. He went to court yesterday hoping to keep Zimmer from being sworn in until the case is settled.

Campos's attorney, Alex Booth, argued that Zimmer's swearing in should be postponed because of an important July 18 council meeting, which cannot be pushed back. Decisions made at this meeting, Booth said, could not be changed even if Campos were to eventually be reinstated.

Study ranks states by highway conditions

A state ranking of highway conditions by the Reason Foundation and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Researchers evaluated roadways by traffic fatality rate, congestion, pavement condition, bridge condition, highway maintenance and administrative costs. 

Bet you can't guess where New Jersey came out on the list.

Click on the full story link. 

Back to work on Sybil's Cave project, Roberts says, as problems ironed out

HOBOKEN - Standing in front of a mound of earth and plywood that now blocks the entrance to the historic Sybil's Cave, Mayor David Roberts announced that the first phase of the city's plan to reclaim the archeological site is back on course.

Progress on the project to restore the cave on Frank Sinatra Drive, at the foot of the cliff below Stevens Institute, has faced several glitches, including safety concerns, stop-work orders - issued by the city's own construction officials - and insurance concerns from the landowner.

The first phase is estimated to cost between $50,000 and $70,000 and includes 6-foot fencing, an iron gate at the mouth of the cave, a stone replica of the original gothic-style facade, landscaping, and four lights to match those across the street.

‘Open Sesame’ Just Won’t Do: Hoboken Tries to Unlock Its Cave

HOBOKEN, N.J., June 21 — The Cave of the Sibyl, where Virgil’s prophetess received Aeneas before leading him to the underworld, was a vast cavern in southern Italy with a hundred mouths. When the Sibyl spoke, her words came in a hundred voices.

A cave today in Hoboken has a similar name, but lacks some of the grandeur. The prophetess is spelled “Sybil,” and the cave’s lone mouth was sealed shut this month with loose dirt.

Nearby, teenage skaters show off in a riverside park, and cars dash by on Sinatra Drive, mostly unaware that this 20-foot-deep cave has its own enthralling history, and possibly historical treasure waiting to be found. It was a 19th-century retreat for wealthy New Yorkers who drank from the fresh spring inside the cave, paying a penny a glass for water that was thought to be medicinal.

In 1841, the bloodied body of Mary Cecilia Rogers drifted to shore near the mouth of Sybil’s Cave, and into legend, the subject of a thriller by Edgar Allan Poe. By the late 1950s, the cave and its magnificent facade had disappeared into the rock and shrubbery.

Judge orders recount in fourth ward Council race

HOBOKEN - A Hudson County judge has ordered a full recount of the votes from the 4th Ward runoff election that saw challenger Dawn Zimmer narrowly beat incumbent Hoboken City Councilman Christopher Campos.

State Superior Court Judge Maurice Gallipoli set the date for the full recount for tomorrow afternoon, officials said.

Failing to clean up after your pet in Hoboken will land you in the online DOG HOUSE

HOBOKEN - The names of dog owners who neglect to clean up after their pooches will now be mud in the Mile Square City.

The nine-member City Council voted unanimously last night to amend an ordinance to allow the city to post the names of pet owners who are cited for not cleaning up after their dogs on the city Web site - for two weeks.

The amendment stiffens fines for violations for failing to scoop up poop from a minimum of $100 to a maximum of $2,000 - allowing fines to double for second-time offenders.

Mayor Roberts' salary gets lost in the budget

HOBOKEN - What happened to Mayor David Roberts' salary?

Last year, the independently wealthy mayor pledged that henceforth he would forgo most of his six-figure salary, and that the money should be used for city projects he holds dear.

He promised to shed 11 months of his annual $124,000 salary for the 2007 fiscal year and save the proceeds in an operational line item in the budget.

Since then, the Mayor's Office has made donations of around $36,000 - the equivalent of a third of his prorated salary - toward civic projects and events, according to accounts provided to The Jersey Journal.

But as for the rest of it? Though Roberts claims the money was spent on particular projects, it's impossible to be certain - the money that would have been his salary wasn't set aside, but rather was left in the general budget.

Campos will challenge his election defeat

Dawn Zimmer is now the official winner of Hoboken's Fourth Ward City Council runoff, having been certified earlier today, officials said.

But the man she defeated, incumbent Councilman Christopher Campos, said he will ask for a recount tomorrow.

Govs demand accountability from Port Authority

The governors of New Jersey and New York are demanding the Port Authority conduct its multi-billion dollar transportation operations in a far more open and ethical fashion, adhering to accountability rules that long have applied to other public agencies.

Jon Corzine and Eliot Spitzer want the bi-state agency to change some of its ways, after decades of being allowed to conduct most of its business behind closed doors with minimal oversight.

"Public confidence in government rests on governing bodies and officials conducting their affairs in a way that is fair, transparent, efficient and ethical,'' Corzine and Spitzer wrote in a letter being sent to the agency's board of commissioners that was provided to the press.

Officials fined for violating Open Public Records Act

For the first time, the state Government Records Council issued fines Wednesday against officials who were found to have willfully violated the state's Open Public Records Act.

The council, created to enforce the 2002 public records law known as OPRA, has never finalized cases before in which it found a clear record that officials chose not to comply with a records request.

In separate cases, two records custodians -- South Bound Brook Clerk Donald E. Kazar and Gwendolyn Morrison, leasing director of the Paterson Housing Authority -- were each personally fined $1,000.