Safeguarding the honor of heroes
City council passes resolution mandating greater oversight of 9/11 memorial and environs
by By Joseph Passantino
Reporter staff writer
Feb 26, 2014 | 1589 views | 0 0 comments | 58 58 recommendations | email to a friend | print
LONG MAY IT LAST – Bayonne officials are working to ensure that the integrity of the area at and around the city’s 9/11 memorial is maintained.
LONG MAY IT LAST – Bayonne officials are working to ensure that the integrity of the area at and around the city’s 9/11 memorial is maintained.
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Keeping the sanctity of Bayonne’s site honoring those killed by the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, was the concern of a local citizen’s group and the larger local population. The city council took action to protect that sanctity at its Feb. 19 meeting.

The city will have greater oversight of the work being done at and around Harborview Park at the former Military Ocean Terminal, passing a resolution calling for the authority to “negotiate and finalize” the terms of the Park Improvement Agreement, with Cape Liberty Cruise Port, LLC, for the purpose of infrastructure improvements to the ground where the park is located, as well as for preventive maintenance to the park itself.

The city owns the parkland located at the Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey owns the adjoining area and the port. Since Cruise Port, LLC is designated as the “port manager” for the operation, maintenance, and repair of the port, work had begun recently which included the unearthing of some ground at the site of the “The Struggle Against World Terrorism” memorial, donated to Bayonne in 2005 by the people of Russia and President Vladimir Putin. Workers for the company were making renovations because of the discovery of problems with the port’s infrastructure, including that the berth and existing timber “lagging wall” were in need of repair.

Since it was deemed that the structural deficiencies extended onto Harborview Park, including the possibility of sinkholes forming, the decision was made to take quick action to solve the problems. But the depth of the effort was apparently not communicated to the city, and work that began included the displacement of some of the brick pavers surrounding the memorial purchased by citizens and groups to honor those who died on Sept. 11, 2001.

Group concerned

Frank Perrucci of the Concerned Citizens of Bayonne was at the meeting and again voiced his concerns about the brick pavers being disrupted and his fear that the memorial would be moved. He is also chair of the Bayonne 9/11 Rememberance Commmittee.

Perrucci said that if a fellow Bayonne resident had not happened by as the work started that much more of the area could have been affected.

City not aware

City Council President Terrence Ruane told Perrucci that the city was not aware of the extent of the cruise port’s renovation plans and is asking for greater oversight of the process.

The city was “misinformed about the project,” said Ruane, and he had asked Business Administrator Stephen Gallo to investigate.

Ability to inspect

Gallo referred to a letter from Cape Liberty Cruise Port detailing the need for the work.

“The work that needs to be done involves essentially saving the port,” he said.

The agreement with the Cruise Port will include the city being notified as future work is done, as well as having the ability to inspect it.

Joseph Passantino may be reached at JoePass@hudsonreporter.com.

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