Zimmer’s decision is political and hurts families
Oct 21, 2012 | 2579 views | 9 9 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Dear Editor:

Last week Mayor Zimmer wrote that it was too complicated to explain her position on rent control in Hoboken. As a lifelong resident of Hoboken – yes, born and raised – and a member of a family that has been paying property taxes on its home for more than 60 years, my position is not complicated at all: It is completely fair for new residents coming to Hoboken to pay a fair rent. It is completely fair to expect the chief executive of our city to be able to formulate a fair policy and fairly articulate her position. It is Mayor Zimmer’s politics that are complicated, not the issue of rent control. What she is really saying is it will hurt her politically to make an honest assessment of the rent control issue.

It’s a shortcut we’ve seen in Hoboken for 40 years because siding with tenants who are more numerous than property owners is a temptation politicians cannot resist. Mayor Zimmer has never once addressed the unconscionable treatment property owners have endured under the Hoboken rent leveling office and rent leveling board. Through her apathy or consent, Mayor Zimmer has permitted them to compromise their offices to provide windfalls for tenants and their attorneys despite that property owners like myself followed all the rules. I nearly lost a property that has been in my family for 60 years as a result of years of regulatory abuses and corrupt practices in the rent leveling office and on the rent leveling board. Despite the City Council passing amendments to reform rent control, the office and the board continue to manipulate rules to the detriment of property owners.

The problem here is that the city has accepted a horrible lie that is borne of politics: tenants are vulnerable and property owners are found guilty before they are even accused. Every evidence flies in the face of that position. The truth is tenants have all the protections and property owners have none. When property taxes go up by 47 percent do rents go up by 47 percent? No – they go up by less than 2 percent. Even if the yes votes prevails all existing tenants and most new tenants will have their rents regulated by the council – but at least when units are vacant the property owner will be able to charge enough so that they can make needed improvements to aging buildings.

Mayor Zimmer, isn’t it time that you considered what might be fair to those of us whose families built this city and continue to be its backbone? Let me simplify it for you: Your policy encourages devaluing or even taking a family’s property so someone else will get a windfall and support your political ambitions, and that is deeply offensive to any right-thinking person.

Sincerely,
Connie Coppola
Park Avenue Hoboken

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CherryTree
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October 22, 2012
Citizens of Hoboken, did you see Simoncini's last comment? These people are getting ready to sue Hoboken again. We must send them a strong message to stop harming our town and VOTE NO on HOBOKEN PUBLIC QUESTION NO.2 on Nov. 6.
CherryTree
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October 22, 2012
Mr. Simoncini: Your eyes continue to be brown, and the continued dishonesty is an insult to the people of Hoboken. If someone spends lots of money trying to sue the city into submission and they LOSE (which is what recently happened,) they deserve to be out of pocket. Perhaps it taught them a lesson about trying to “shake down” the city of Hoboken. If there was any harm, it was the time and effort our city spent defending itself against the bogus claims that Ms. Coppola took part in. Yes, the harm of that bogus litigation was to the people of Hoboken, not any of the wealthy developers, MSTA, Mr. Gormally or Ms. Coppola. Remember YOU LOST. Thankfully the courts sent a clear message to Mr. Gormally by ruling against him. Are you saying that Ms. Coppola was also trying to rob her neighbors by participating in that bogus onslaught against the city? And now you’re claiming that there was a ruling that NEVER HAPPENED!!! Are you losing your mind?? Such complete fabrication!!! When are you going to stop lying??? Shame on ALL OF YOU!

Citizens of Hoboken, on Election Day, we must send the strongest possible message to MSTA possible. VOTE NO on Hoboken Public Question #2

ronsimoncini
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October 22, 2012
when you defend yourself from people suing you, you are not suing the city. you are being sued and you have to defend whether the suit is relevant or not.

i don't see the city prevailing in any lawsuit related to rent control. i see a judge saying "amend your class action and keep on suing -- i can't decide yet what they owe you."

i think the message that is being sent about fabrication and robbery is being sent by the property owners to the tenants. and the message is: there is no more influence to be had from your fear-mongering and character assassinations. a rational, thoughtful approach to discussing the issue is what's required and you lost all of your credibility with your Referendum. None of the abuses and nonsense you claimed would happen did.

enough is enough -- you can't strangle the lifeblood of the town because you can get 6 people to scream that they are worried about eviction when their status as tenants will not change one bit as a result of this law. it's dishonest. verifiably dishonest. your anonymous attacks lack ethic.

DancingRudy
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October 22, 2012
The letter writer seems to be trying to portray this issue as "old hoboken" vs "newcomers" something it decidedly is not, and the attempt to frame the issue that way is extremely unfortunate. Most "old hoboken" residents do not own rental property and most "newcomers" live in market rate housing. In fact, far more "old hoboken" residents benefit from some form of below market subsidized housing than "newcomers." By framing her argument in this fundamentally inaccurate and frankly revealing way, the writer loses whatever credibility she might have otherwise had. Hopefully the upcoming forum will give people the opportunity to hear the merits of the two sides without the unfortunate misleading and self defeating invective.

Cxgormally
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October 22, 2012
Cherryt Tree

Are you finally ready to reveal who you really are? You post has the unmistakable attributes of the writing of the self infested tenant attorney who has made it a cottage industry suing property owners for violations of the ordinance caused by the city's erratic enforcement and collecting hundreds of thousands of dollars in attorney fees. Btw even Portugal, the location of you retirement estate has updated their rent control laws!

Reveal yourself!

Charles Gormally

Brach Eichler LLC
TommyLover
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October 22, 2012
Why the hell should Cherry Tree have to reveal him/her self? Because a hack like you demands it? If Cherry Tree or even myself wrote under our names you would sue in a heartbeat. That's what you do - sue. It's how you put food on the table. And really, what the hell is a "self infested" attorney? You must have been looking in the mirror on that one.

Can't spell, can't write properly. Yep, you're a lawyer!
TommyLover
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October 21, 2012
"...the unconscionable treatment property owners have endured under the Hoboken rent leveling office and rent leveling board."

Persecution complex much Connie? Connie and her family deserve more because they were born here and, doncha know, just like Jefferson Starship, they Built This City!

What Connie doesn't tell you is she is a card-carrying member of msta and the landlord of at least three apartment buildings. If I lived in one of her apts. I'd be getting a rent calculation immediately.

CherryTree
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October 21, 2012
It's good to understand the background of any author of any letter. It identifies for the reader what the author stands to gain (or, although not applicable to Ms. Coppola, lose.) Ms. Coppola forgets to mention that she is on the committee of petitioners that put this harmful initiative on the ballot. She is also a real estate agent in town: http://www.imrealestateagent.com/New-Jersey/Hoboken/725617-connie-coppola.html. She recently was unable to demonstrate, as a witness, under oath, that she had ever suffered any harm whatsoever as a result of Hoboken's Rent Control Ordinance in the case that Charles X. Gormally recently LOST where he was trying to rob the city's residents of $1mm plus dollars to put in his own pocket! This last little detail is an important one. While she flings insults at Hoboken's hard working rent leveling officer and the Mayor, she couples them with outright false statements in a printed letter to the paper. Shameful really. On Nov. 6th, let's all go to the polls and VOTE NO on Hoboken Public Question #2
ronsimoncini
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October 22, 2012
"never suffered any harm?" What about the years of litigation and the cost of that? Only to prove that the city's administration of rent leveling constitutes a fraud on property owners? is that no cost? and why did she have to bear it? because of greed not by property owners, but by unscrupulous tenant attorneys looking for any exposed vein to dig their fangs into.

this is another example of why the tenant position is so disconnected from reality. they want the law to make them feel better protected at any cost to anyone else, despite the fact that their emotional state has nothing to do with the equities involved. the law is not a teddy bear that can ease fears about the boogie man. there is no boogie man and if there were, that teddy bear wouldn't be able to do a darn thing about it.

time to deal with the reality, Hoboken, and not the symbolic patronage to a tenancy that is amply protected as it is. vote Yes and make it fair once and for all.