The polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
If none of the mayoral candidates amasses more than 50 percent of the votes, a run-off between the top two vote-getters will be held June 14. Residents who register to vote by Monday May, 16 will be able to vote in a runoff.
If one candidate gets 50 percent of the vote plus one, the top three finishers are automatically elected. If not, the top six go to a runoff. Being mayor of Hoboken is a full-time job that involves managing a $72 million budget and overseeing the Parking Utility and four city departments: Environmental Services, Human Services, Community Development, and Administration, which includes the police and fire departments.
For full profiles on the candidates from past weeks, go to www.hobokenreporter .com.
Mayor David Roberts and his ticket
David Roberts, 48, is the 37th mayor of the city of Hoboken. Roberts says his priorities for the next four years are the continuation of quality of life issues, such as the implementation of the master plan for development, and achieving the plan's open space and recreation goals. Roberts also has noted the importance of the public schools' educational partnership with the Stevens Institute of Technology, and the development of affordable housing.
Roberts' family owns profitable establishments including East L.A. restaurant and Westside Plaza. Roberts also believes that he has forged positive relationships with county, state and federal officials, which have benefited the lives of all residents. According to Roberts, these relationships will lead to a quarter of a billion of investments in Hoboken projects.
Roberts will be running with incumbent councilman and Paterson schoolteacher Ruben Ramos Jr., schoolteacher and former housing board member Terry LaBruno, and attorney Peter Cammarano.
Councilwoman Carol Marsh and her ticket
Carol Marsh first became active in Hoboken politics in the mid-1990s when she fought against redevelopment plans that would have built a high-rise office building on Pier A. Only through a grassroots movement was the plan defeated, resulting in the popular Pier A Park.
In 2001, after two decades working in technology for financial firms, Marsh was elected to the Hoboken City Council as part of Mayor David Roberts' ticket. As can be typical with Hoboken reformers, the honeymoon didn't last long. Council members Marsh and her ally, Councilman Tony Soares, slowly became political adversaries of Roberts, because they believe that mayor hasn't lived up to his original promises.
Marsh is running on a platform of controlling city spending, acquiring open space, effectively planning development, and making government accessible to the public. Marsh has been critical of Roberts' performance and said that while in power, Roberts increased spending by about $18 million, acquired no new land for open space, and hasn't effectively managed development. Marsh is running with incumbent Councilman Tony Soares, attorney Brian Urbano, and InÃ©s GarcÃa-Keim, who works for an airline and is a co-founder of the Puerto Rican Cultural Committee Scholarship Fund and the Hoboken Charter School.
Frank 'Pupie' Raia's ticket
Frank Pupie Raia is a born-and-raised Hoboken resident whose family has been in Hoboken for the past 150 years.
Raia has development holdings throughout Hoboken. Most of his projects have been gut rehabilitations of buildings in the city's interior. He has also built affordable housing.
In the late 1990s, under the Russo administration, he won the right to be designated the developer for a number of properties in the Northwest Redevelopment area of Hoboken. This included developing the Shop-Rite that opened in 2003.
Raia is also a partner in a $50 million development, 400-unit project that includes a 90-unit affordable housing building at 1118 Adams St. Raia has pledged that if elected, he will divest himself of his development interests.
Raia has also been a member of the HOPES Head Start Board of Trustees, and a board member of the North Hudson Sewerage Authority.
Raia's platform is that the animosity between the current mayor and the current City Council is only hurting the taxpayers and leading to capricious city planning.
One of Raia's mayoral issues is creating and more effectively managing parking. He would change zoning to require developers to include one space for every bedroom, and one space for the public for every unit. He would also investigate additional diagonal parking. Raia also says city spending needs to be controlled.
Running on Raia's ticket are Anthony Mussara, who runs the Maintenance Department for Hoboken High School and is president of the Hispanic Democratic Civic Association; Board of Education member, teacher and former Marine Theresa Burns; and computer business owner Ron Rosenberg, one of the leaders in putting the pay-to-play ban referendum on the ballot last year.
Councilman Michael Russo, 29, a licensed physical therapist, said that he is running on a platform that includes pursuing "smart development, eliminating reckless government spending, and maintaining a responsible city budget" while providing leadership that is "receptive, honest and accountable."
Russo knows he has to overcome the fact that his father, former mayor Anthony Russo, was sentenced on corruption charges last week. "My father made the worst mistake of his life," Russo said recently, "and he is now paying for it, and he should pay for it. What he did was wrong. He's my father, and I love him, but I'm not going to ever defend what he did."
Since joining the City Council two years ago, the young Russo has been a vocal member of the governing body. He was elected to his father's old 3rd Ward seat as an independent candidate. Russo said the single most important issue facing Hoboken's municipal government today is the city's finances. "We need to look at the facts," Russo said. "The budget was $54 million, now it's $72 million, which, in itself, dictates to the community that we are living well above our means. We need to be able to justify every cent that we spend."
Russo's most ambitious proposal is to have a 10 percent spending reduction in every city department.
Russo's ticket is comprised of Genevy Dimitrion, 32, vice president of product management at the State Street Corporation; Manuel Ortega, 34, the owner of a local nail salon; and Brian Keller, a municipal bond trader and analyst.
Evelyn Smith is running on top of the "The Unbought and Unbossed" slate.
Smith is active in the League of Women Voters, the Friends of the Hoboken Public Library, and the Hoboken Branch of the NAACP.
Longtime resident Smith is running on a platform for more affordable housing, job opportunities, and better education.
Smith said that all the women on her slate have called Hoboken home for decades, but now feel like they have had to join together "to defend the interests of those families who have long been ignored as well as those new families who wish to grow here."
In addition to addressing housing, education and employment problems, Smith wants to promote fiscal responsibility in city government, improve senior services, create more green space for recreation, provide employment opportunities for youth and adults, and utilize funding acquired for Hoboken Housing Authority properties to improve the quality of life of its residents. She added that "Hoboken needs to promote more social public policy that will bring job opportunities, a living wage, real affordable housing, and reverse the trend of declining public school enrollment. We are fighting to put the needs of families ahead of politics. The future of Hoboken depends on it."
Smith's council slate contains Elizabeth Falco, principal of the Demarest Middle School; Carrie Gilliard, a real estate agent and president of the local NAACP; and Diane Nieves, an assistant to the division chief in the Hoboken rent leveling office.
Independents for council
There are two independent candidates running for the City Council Scott Delea and former City Councilman Andrew Amato.
After moving to Hoboken eight years ago, Scott Delea became actively involved with many community groups and founded Party With Purpose, which has raised money for local causes. Delea is an executive vice president on the board of the Hudson County Boys and Girls Club, which recently honored him with a Community Service Award. Delea believes that that Hoboken has been ravaged by partisan politics and special interests. "The city's shutdown was merely the most dramatic example of our government's lack of leadership," he said.
Born-and-raised Hobokenite and former two-term 4th Ward Councilman Andrew Amato is running as an independent for and at-large seat on the City Council. Amato, the former director of Public Works, ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 1993 and 1997 against Anthony Russo.
At 73, Amato is now retired from real estate, construction, and various other self-owned business which he started and grew here and across the river in Manhattan.
"I believe that my lifelong record of community involvement and service to my hometown speaks for itself," said Amato. "I think that elected officials should be able to disagree without the bitterness and derisiveness seen in local government today."