In Hoboken, Councilman Ravi Bhalla will become the first Sikh Indian mayor in Hoboken history. (More on that here.) Bhalla, who ran a campaign saying he will stand up to Donald Trump and to hate, will succeed Dawn Zimmer as mayor. Unofficially, Councilman Michael DeFusco came in second -- but with nearly 2,000 absentee ballots in play, official numbers won't be available until later.
On election night, Bhalla told his supporters, "I just want to thank everyone in this room for having faith in me having faith in our community, having faith in our state, and having faith in our country. This is what America is all about."
In Jersey City, Mayor Steven Fulop has won a second term by a wide margin. Watch on Wednesday for more information on all nine council seats, and the Board of Education.
In the West New York Board of Education races, the Children First slate appears to have won all three seats, according to Mayor Felix Roque. "Against all odds, having unfavorable numbers, we won against the opposition," said Roque, who backed the slate. "It shows the quality of these individuals. The team, volunteers, the people who came and helped us win this election. It was all about Children First."
The slate featured Incumbent, and current Board VP Damarys Gonzalez, Maite Fernandez, and Jose Mendoza.
In Secaucus, the entire "Moving Secaucus Forward" slate appears to have won re-election, according to Town Administrator Gary Jeffas. "With 10 districts in, all of [Mayor Michael Gonnelli's] team all definitely have won," Jeffas said, around 90 minutes after the polls closed. He added that some ward votes had yet to come in, however.
1st Ward Councilman Robert Costantino was challenged by Steven Kilawattie, 23, a local who unsuccessfully ran for the Secaucus School Board last year. The other races were unopposed.
Regarding the Board of Ed race, Jeffas added that incumbents Lance Bartletta and Ruby Pantoliano are projected to hold on to their seats. However, for "third, they don't know," Jeffas said.
"He [Town Clerk Mike Marra] can't tell and he won't know until probably sometime tomorrow at the earliest, because he said there's 217 absentee ballots, and he will not have the tally on the ballots until then."
The third spot was in contention between candidates Kathleen McFarlane and Georgios Tsirogiannis, but ultimately, McFarlane won.
"I'm satisfied," said Costantino after his projected win. "We don't have total numbers yet."
Read the print editions of your local Reporter newspaper on Sunday, or come back to hudsonreporter.com for more stories. -- Reported by Marilyn Baer, Hannington Dia, Al Sullivan, Caren Lissner