Terry Castellano’s letter grumbles about the City spending too much money on legal fees, but fails to mention her own lawsuit against the City to block Jim Doyle’s appointment to the City Council which has wasted nearly $30,000 (and counting) of taxpayers’ dollars. When Judge Bariso ruled, on February 1st, that Jim Doyle was properly appointed on January 16 by a 4-4 vote (counting Russo and Mason’s abstentions as “no” votes) with Mayor Zimmer breaking the tie, Terry Castellano and her colleagues filed an emergency appeal – staying Judge Bariso’s ruling – arguing that her colleagues’ 2 abstentions weren’t really no votes – despite the fact Terry and the rest of the Council minority oppose Jim Doyle’s appointment. Judge Bariso’s February 1 ruling called Terry Castellano’s and the Council minority’s litigation tactics pure “gamesmanship” designed to frustrate New Jersey’s municipal vacancy law.
While the Council minority’s “gamesmanship” plays out in appellate court, the City suffers. We have a deadlocked, gridlocked, do-nothing 4-4 City Council, while Jim Doyle’s tie-breaking Council seat sits empty – and to add insult to injury, we get stuck with the legal tab. No matter how their appeal plays out, nothing will change the fact that Terry Castellano and the Council Minority have tied up and deadlocked the City Council for no reason other than their irrational hatred of the Mayor and their own selfish pursuit of power without regard to the damage caused to the City they have sworn to serve. If Ms. Castellano thinks the City is spending too much on legal fees, she should stop writing protest letters to the Hoboken Reporter, stop the political gamesmanship, do something helpful for a change, like drop her appeal, and finally let Jim Doyle take his seat on the Council dais.