HOBOKEN BRIEFS
Aug 18, 2013 | 2370 views | 0 0 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend | print
AS DEMOCRATIC AS THEY COME – There is literally no one in Hoboken who can claim to have served the city as long as Mary Pepe, the 91-year-old poll worker who on Tuesday worked her latest election, manning the booths at Wallace Elementary School. Pepe began working Election Day poll places in Hoboken sometime in the 1950s, and has worked nearly every election since. “I don’t even remember who was mayor when I started,” she said. “It’s nice to see people come in to vote with their children, because then I see their children vote later.”
AS DEMOCRATIC AS THEY COME – There is literally no one in Hoboken who can claim to have served the city as long as Mary Pepe, the 91-year-old poll worker who on Tuesday worked her latest election, manning the booths at Wallace Elementary School. Pepe began working Election Day poll places in Hoboken sometime in the 1950s, and has worked nearly every election since. “I don’t even remember who was mayor when I started,” she said. “It’s nice to see people come in to vote with their children, because then I see their children vote later.”
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Chamber of Commerce offering prizes to boost membership

In an effort to bolster its ranks before the anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, the Hoboken Chamber of Commerce has engaged in a series of prize giveaways to its members that bring the largest number of new businesses into the organization.

The group currently has about 100 members, but has worked throughout the past year to recruit newer businesses in an effort to unite business owners throughout town. The winners of the contest will be named at the Chamber’s annual dinner in November.

The grand prize is a marketing package which includes postcards, free digital marking consultations, and free half-page advertisements in local publications, including The Hudson Reporter.

Other prizes include life coaching sessions, cooking classes and massage sessions.

Membership fees vary based on the number of employees a business has. For companies with one employee, the fee is $99, $175 for companies between with between two and 20, and $250 for any business above 20 employees.

To join the Hoboken Chamber of Commerce, visit the website, email the Chamber at info@hobokenchamber.com or call (201) 222-1100.

Man arrested in PATH station allegedly admits to ‘I lost my wallet’ scam

Have you heard the sad story of the man with the cell phone who walks around Hoboken, having a loud conversation in which he says he lost his wallet and is out of money?

Residents have discussed this possible scam for many months on at least one local newsgroup.

A Port Authority spokesman confirmed last week that over the weekend, police arrested Stephen Aprilante, 35, of Brooklyn, for conducting a similar scam. It is unknown if he is the same person who has doing this for many months.

Two days earlier, the spokesman said, Port Authority police had been alerted to an identical scam by a PATH passenger who also furnished a photo of the suspect.

Plainclothes officers were alerted and deployed, and found the suspect allegedly performing the same ruse again, said the spokesman.

Wearing business attire, Aprilante was observed and heard by police plainclothes police officers allegedly perpetuating a scam on train passengers by "phoning" someone and claiming loudly he lost his wallet and needed money. A passenger offered him $14, which he accepted.

Aprilante allegedly admitted performing this scam regularly and was placed under arrest and charged with theft by deception.

Judge awards city eminent domain in Block 12 case, paving the way for 4th Ward park

A judge ruled on Wednesday that the city of Hoboken can purchase a 1-acre tract of the land in the southwest corner of town at a reduced price in order to build the 4th Ward’s first public park, according to a statement from the city.

“I have been involved in the fight for a Southwest Park for many years, and I am very excited that we are finally in a position to acquire the first building block of what will ultimately be a larger park,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “As soon as we deposit the check with the court, we will own the property and can begin the community planning process for this much-needed park.”

The pathway to building the park faces only one final obstacle, a vote in the deadlocked city council.

“We are now just one vote away from turning this vision that so many have fought for into reality. The future of the Southwest Park is now in the hands of the City Council,” she said. “I urge them to support this park because for most of us, parks are our shared back yards, and I believe all our residents – regardless of where they live – should have a park within a short walking distance.”

Zimmer said at her campaign event on Wednesday that she hoped she could count on the support of 4th Ward Councilman Tim Occhipinti, who typically opposes her, to break the deadlock.

“I hope he would vote for it, yeah,” she said.

At the upcoming council meeting, the council will vote both on the deposit of funds, nearly $3 million made available by a state Open Space grant, and on the contractor for the project.

Booker visits Hoboken morning after capturing Democratic nomination for U S Senate

Newark Mayor and new Democratic nominee for United States Senate Cory Booker visited Hoboken Terminal on Wednesday morning to thank voters for their support in Tuesday’s special Democratic primary. He was joined by Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer and 2nd Ward Councilwoman Beth Mason.

Booker easily defeated challengers Rep. Frank Pallone, Rep. Rush Holt, and state Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver on Tuesday, capturing 72 percent of the vote in Hudson County. He won over 59 percent of Democratic voters statewide.

In the Republican contest, former Bogota mayor and two-time gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan defeated Alieta Eck, capturing 82 percent of the Hudson County vote and 79 percent of the vote statewide.

31,343 Hudson County residents voted in the Democratic primary, while only 2,650 voted in the Republican contest.

Booker and Lonegan will face off in an Oct. 16 special election to replace former Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who passed away this year.

Supposed sweepstakes worker scams Hoboken senior out of $405

A 78-year-old Hoboken resident transferred $400 to what she believed was an over-the-phone sweepstakes worker last weekend, after the man claimed that she had won $3.5 million and only needed a processing fee to transfer the winnings.

According to a police report, the woman received a phone call late last Friday from a man who said his name was Agent Anthony Jones of the Sweepstakes Advantage company. Informing the woman that she had won $3.5 million, he began to ask questions about the woman’s bank accounts and living situation.

According to the report, the woman refused to answer his questions, but did purchase a Green Dot Money Pak card worth $405 when the man informed her that he required a processing fee in order for her to receive her winnings. She read the man the card’s serial number over the phone. Records show that the money was collected.

The man said that she would receive her millions on Monday, but the funds never showed up. The man called back several more times, the report said, asking for three further processing fees of $1000, $1000, and $500. The woman refused to transfer any more funds and instead reported the incident to the police.

Winners of Hoboken’s Dig into Reading contest announced

The Hoboken Public Library announced the winners of its annual summer reading program, Dig into Reading, last week. The programs 122 participants, between first and fifth grades, logged a total of 4,915 hours of reading.

The top six readers will be awarded prizes such as books, toys and entrance to special events throughout northern New Jersey.

The first prize winner won a four-pack of tickets to Field Station: Dinosaur. The second place winner won three tickets to the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City. The third place winner won two tickets to the Liberty Science Center. The fourth place winner won a family pack of 4 tickets to Hoboken’s own Silly on Sixth Theatre. Two additional bags of prizes will be given to fifth and sixth place winners. All winners will get books, toys, T-shirts, a tote, a trophy and a medal.

The winners and the number of hours they registered are as follows: Amelie Baveja , 3rd grade – 220.5 hours, Aarohi Baveja, 1st grade – 167.25 hours, Patrick Groo, 4th grade – 101 hours, Lily Conetta, 5th grade – 88 hours, Tomasz Botwicz, 5th grade – 75 hours, and Taylor Glynn – 1st grade – 67.5 hours.

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