Holiday Hudson Reporter advertising, editorial deadlines
Because of the holidays, the Hudson Reporter newspapers will have special advertising and editorial deadlines.
The offices will be closed on Monday, Jan. 2, and will reopen on Tuesday, Jan. 3.
For the Sunday, Jan. 1 editions of the Reporter newspapers, the editorial deadline was Wednesday, Dec. 28 at 9 a.m., and the advertising and classified deadline was noon.
For the Wednesday, Jan. 4 edition of the Bayonne Community News and the Thursday, Jan. 5 Midweek Reporter the editorial deadline is Friday, Dec. 30 at 9 a.m. and the classified and display advertising deadline is noon.
If you have questions about these deadlines or any other issue, please call (201) 798-7800. Also check www.hudsonreporter.com for continuously updated breaking news.
Hoboken gears up for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in 2012
HOBOKEN – It’s never too early to plan for St. Patrick’s Day.
With the annual Hoboken parade moved to a Wednesday in 2012 (date yet to be determined), the city still plans heavy enforcement and a zero-tolerance policy for quality-of-life violations the first Saturday in March – which used to be the traditional date of the Hoboken St. Patrick’s Day parade and celebration until last year’s rowdiness sparked protests.
They will also gear up for the actual date of St. Patrick’s Day, which falls on a Saturday this year -- March 17, 2012.
Mayor Dawn Zimmer announced in March that she would only approve a parade for a weekday in 2012, rather than a weekend, citing “significant public safety concerns.” Thousands of residents and visitors often turn Hoboken into a citywide party before and after the parade lining up at bars and heading to house parties starting in the morning.
Even if people plan to come party in Hoboken on the first Saturday of March without the parade, extra police are likely to be on duty.
“We’re certainly preparing for increased enforcement on both March 3 and 17,” said city spokesperson Juan Melli. “Both dates are ‘blacked out,’ meaning all police are subject to being called to duty. House parties will be monitored and checked on by the Fire Department for occupancy violations and by the Police Department for violations of underage drinking/disorderly conduct/noise/etc.”
A total of 296 citations were issued during the parade in 2011, which was a dramatic decrease from 555 in 2010. The police also made 34 arrests on the 2011 parade day, which was up from 25 in 2010. However, two rape allegations and stories of firefighters under siege clouded the day of celebration.
The Hoboken parade, which has a 25-year storied history in the mile square city, is organized by a group of residents known as the Hoboken St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee.
The parade was traditionally held on the first Saturday in March so more bands would be able to attend, and so that Hoboken was not competing with larger parades such as the one in nearby New York City.
Bill Coughlin, the media contact for the parade committee, said that a date has not been decided on yet. Coughlin said the committee received a letter from the mayor, which will soon be posted on their website http://www.hobokensaintpatricksparade.org/index.html. – Ray Smith
Journal Square taxi owners unhappy with Jersey City’s new ‘open’ cab stand change
JERSEY CITY – On Dec. 21, the owners of 32 Jersey City cab companies met with members of the city’s Dept. of Commerce to rail against recent changes to the Journal Square taxi stand.
In response to years of complaints from residents and commuters who are tired of long lines at the taxi stand, particularly at night, the City Council recently approved a plan to open the Journal Square taxi stand.
Under the new changes, which are temporary, any Jersey City-licensed cab company can make pickups at the Journal Square cab stand during the peak hours of 6 p.m. to midnight.
Before this change was made, only 36 cabs in the entire city were permitted to service the Journal Square taxi stand, even during peak hours when demand for cabs is highest.
The new rules took effect Dec. 14, but expire on Feb. 28, 2012.
On Wednesday, cab company owners told Commerce Director Paul Barna that the changes will hurt their ability to earn a living and insist that wait times at the taxi stand are not a problem. The owners were also angry that the city didn’t consult with them before making the changes.
“We aren’t here to point fingers or blame anybody. We want to come to an equitable solution that suits everybody,” said R&J Taxi owner Rafael Moas, who called for the meeting with the city. Moaz said he first learned of the taxi stand changes from the Jersey City Reporter. “When things are done without the knowledge and input of [cab] drivers and owners, it affects the livelihoods of a lot of people. The council and the city should take us into consideration before any actions like this are taken.”
Communication between the city and the taxi owners appeared to be a problem throughout the meeting. Several cab owners insisted they weren’t aware that wait times were a problem at the Journal Square stand. But Barna insisted that he has discussed the problem with several taxi owners in the past.
At the meeting - which was also attended by two residents, Ward C City Councilwoman Nidia Lopez, and Councilwoman At-large Viola Richardson – the owners suggested several possible ways to improve wait times at the Journal Square taxi stand without opening up the stand to new cabs.
Lopez and Richardson agreed to try to get better signage for the taxi stand and railing for the curb to keep the line orderly. Lopez also said a survey of wait times at the taxi stand might also be needed.
The cab company owners are next scheduled to meet with the city on Thursday, Jan. 19. – E. Assata Wright
Santa Claus controversy in Hoboken school still hotly debated
HOBOKEN – Even on the eve of Christmas Eve, people were still talking about a controversy that occurred at Hoboken’s Calabro Elementary School two weeks earlier.
Earlier this month, a county election worker dressed as Santa Claus visited the school so that kids could have their pictures taken with him. Those who filled out a permission slip and paid a dollar could get a photo, with the money going to the PTO.
However, a parent complained, so the school told Santa to take his sleigh and hit the skies.
The action launched a debate on the internet and was the subject of a story on CBS news. Some parents said Santa belonged in the mall but not in a public school, while others said it was a tradition and still others said all religions should have been represented.
In the end, the school invited Santa back and gave children the option of having their photo taken with symbols of other holidays, like a menorah.
But the discussion was not over.
In an article published in Friday’s Jewish Week, the author said the tenor of the discussion had become angry and may be part of a larger trend in Hoboken.
The article noted:
“A Calabro parent who mistakenly believed the school had cancelled Santa altogether, rather than postponed the event, wrote a message on the town’s e-mail group for mothers asking ‘certain people’ to remember that Calabro is not a Jewish school. She was upset that she had to disappoint her daughter, who had been looking forward to the occasion. In the past decade, Hoboken has changed as a wave of redevelopment launched in the late 1980s and 1990s...The resulting economic and ethnic diversification has generated strain between the so-called ‘newcomers’ and ‘born-and-raised’ that some see playing out here over the role of Santa in the public schools.”
A lawyer for a Jewish group is quoted in the article as saying, “It invites controversy that the schools don’t need, and it’s not as if there aren’t lots of other places where a kid can find Santa.”
Indeed the debate over holiday symbols in schools has been flaring for more than two decades before catching up to Hoboken.
Meanwhile, the debate had been put to rest on the local Hoboken Moms newsgroup – but the moderators asked Schools Superintendent Mark Toback for a statement.
In part, he wrote: “While a picture with Santa may not violate the Constitution, under the format that existed (Christmas photo only), the photo shoot did not promote multi-cultural diversity, which is also considered important in the courts and must be an important consideration in public schools. In addition, an argument could easily be made that the school district is favoring one religion or cultural tradition over another if there is only a Christmas photograph opportunity. The fact that the photos were scheduled during the school day and during class time further complicated matters....”
For his complete statement, go to “up to the minute” at hudsonreporter.com.
Hudson County bands to rock ‘Live at the Park’
UNION CITY – Five of the area’s hottest local youth bands will join forces on Saturday, Jan. 7, at the Park Performing Arts Center in Union City to raise money to support the center’s community art classes for children.
The concert called “Live at the Park” will feature five bands from Hudson County high schools.
The featured bands include Silver Plane Crucifix, with Tim Erbach, Johnny Bauers and Rory Bauers; Monster Sludge, with Evan Dibbs, Mike Prussack, Louis Garrido, and Nahuel Montilla; The .78 Blanks, featuring Conor Brennan; The Cthulu Family Band, with Marcel Rudin and Alex Mercuri; and Outtouched, with Brandon Gallagher, Konrad Foord, and William Kirchoff.
The Park Performing Arts Center is located at 560 32nd St., Union City, N.J.
“Live at the Park” starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. For tickets visit www.parkpac.org.
Workforce and job-seeking skills courses available
SECAUCUS – The Secaucus Public and Business Resource Center has partnered with Hudson County Community College (HCCC) and the NJ State Library to offer four computer classes created to help individuals learn job-seeking skills and skills that will help them in the workforce. The classes will take place in the library’s media center and will be taught by HCCC computer instructors from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays: Jan. 7, 14, 21 and 28. Registration is required. Topics include beginner level lessons on Windows, e-mail, internet and Word. Each class is limited to 14 students. The program is open to all NJ residents. To register, call: (201) 330-2083 or email Director Jenifer May at email@example.com.