Friday, February 22, 2013

Wiley names two commissioner hopefuls in West New York recall effort

Wiley names two commissioner hopefuls in West New York recall effort

By Anthony J. Machcinski/The Jersey Journal
on February 22, 2013 at 8:37 PM, updated February 22, 2013 at 8:38 PM
Read Original Article: Click Here

WEST NEW YORK -- Continuing his effort to recall Mayor Felix Roque and the town Board of Commissioners, West New York Commissioner Count Wiley has announced two running mates for his commissioners slate.
Wiley says Roque and the three other commissioners, FiorD'Aliza Frias, Caridad Rodriguez and Ruben Vargas have lost sight of why they were elected in 2011, when they ousted long-time Mayor Sal "Silverio" Vega and his commissioners slate.
To force a recall vote, Wiley must obtain around 5,200 valid petition signatures for each elected official he wants recalled.
Waterfront resident Doug Richardson, 60, and a pastor, Rafael Sanchez, 34, are joining Roque in his recall campaign.
"These two men carry a lot of support," Wiley said yesterday. "I want people to see the beauty in this town."
Doug RichardsonDoug Richardson
Wiley said he chose Richardson because of his knowledge of the town's waterfront issues and his stance of early childhood education.
"A lot of politicians have ignored the waterfront voters," Wiley said. "It's sad what's going on down there. I want them to have representation on the hill and have their support."
Sanchez, a Memorial High School graduate and senior pastor of Worship Ministries in West New York, was chosen by Wiley because of his passion for the community.
"He has a fantastic heart," Wiley said. "He's been successful in the community and he gives back."
Wiley believes that these two, along with two more additions coming soon, are the type of people the town needs in charge.
"I don't care if these people are politicians or not. I want hard workers," Wiley said yesterday. "These are people that really want to make the town better."
Wiley expects that the effort to obtain the necessary signatures will begin next month.
"He has a dream that he wants to be mayor," said Roque, a one-time ally. "Let him do what he has to do."
Roque even joked about offering his experience in recall elections to Wiley. Roque ran a failed recall election against former Mayor Silverio Vega in 2010.
"He should come to me. I consider myself an expert on recalls," Roque joked. "Maybe I could give him some help. I have to say that I could teach him a lesson about how to do a recall."

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Friday, January 18, 2013

Winners and Losers: Week of the South Jersey Sphinx

Winners and Losers: Week of the South Jersey Sphinx

Read more at http://www.politickernj.com/62489/winners-and-losers-week-south-jersey-sphinx#ixzz2LwiUiZai 
By Politicker Staff | January 18th, 2013 - 3:06pm
WINNERS 
Barbara Buono
The Middlesex senator and 2013 gubernatorial candidate received statements of support from South Jersey Democratic leader George Norcross III and Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo, and the backing of the Monmouth County Democratic Committee.
Vin Gopal
The chairman of the Monmouth Democratic Committee endorsed Buono prior to Norcross and DiVincenzo issuing their statements favoring Buono’s candidacy, which makes the progressive chairman appear to have exercised independent judgment.
Frank Lautenberg
President Barack Obama incorporated the senator’s legislation to ban high-capacity ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds into his national gun safety plan. In addition, the President's recommendations to strengthen background checks would require background checks for all guns sold at gun shows, as Lautenberg’s bill to close the gun show loophole seeks.
Steve Fulop
32BJ SEIU, one of the fastest-growing unions in New Jersey, announced this week its endorsement of the councilman for mayor of Jersey City. As part of its endorsement, the union is committed to a voter outreach campaign in support of his election. That’s the good news for Fulop, enough to land him on this list. The bad news is ex-Seton Hall University basketball player Jerry Walker got in the mayor’s race, removing the likelihood of Fulop being able to defeat incumbent Mayor Jerry Healy without a runoff election.
Republican State Committee
The GOP organization raised $3.2 million, spent $3.5 million, and has $247,579 cash on hand, compared to the NJ Democratic State Committee, which raised $1.3 million, spent $1.3 million, and has $81,794 cash on hand.
Count Wiley
The West New York Commissioner – a potential future candidate for mayor - scored news coverage as the sole commissioner on the governing body who refused to support a controversial sign infringement ordinance.
LOSERS
Chris Christie
The New Jersey governor, and national GOP leader, this week again refused to give his opinion on a federal ban on assault weapons, giving ammo to his Democratic opponent and revealing how his road to re-election – with one eye on 2013 and the other on 2016 – won’t necessarily be a cakewalk. This designation is, of course, pending the next poll showing New Jersey voters not caring and still digging the governor. 
Cory Booker
No one on a conference call of county party chairs this week objected when one of them blamed the mayor of Newark for bottling up the gubernatorial process and contributing to party havoc.
The Democratic State Committee
The organization raised $1.3 million, spent $1.3 million, and has $81,794 cash on hand, compared to the GOP State Committee, which raised $3.2 million, spent $3.5 million, and has $247,579 cash on hand. This might be a more serious problem but for Booker's promise to raise a lot of money for the party to help down ballot races this year. 
Felix Roque
Under indictment for computer hacking, the mayor’s championing of an ordinance limiting signs and mobile campaign vans appeared to be paranoid overkill this week and empowered his rivals with a Freedom of Speech issue.
Ronald C. Rice
The elders of Newark politics this week threw their support behind South Ward Councilman Ras Baraka over Rice as the group’s 2014 mayoral candidate. It doesn’t mean the end of Rice’s bid to be chief executive, but he will have to work harder or change his game plan. Anyone looking for a county executive?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

West New York Proposes American Flag Ban

West New York Proposes American Flag Ban

Read Original Article: Click Here
John Celock


West New York, a town in northern New Jersey, may adopt a law that bans the American flag from being displayed.
Tucked into a proposed ordinance that would regulate window displays in businesses and televisions mounted to cars is a provision that would ban "flags, banners and pennants." Flags are included among 19 items "prohibited anywhere" in West New York, a Hudson County town across the Hudson River from New York City. The West New York Board of Commissioners voted 4-1 Wednesday to pass a preliminary version of the ordinance, scheduled for a final vote next month.
The ordinance was authored by Mayor Felix Roque (D), currently under federal indictment for computer hacking. Roque's spokesman, Pablo Fonseca, denied that the ordinance would prohibit the flying of the American flag in the town.
"That takes it to an extreme," Fonseca told The Huffington Post. "The mayor is a retired colonel in the Army."
Fonseca explained that the ordinance only covers commercial "flags, banners and pennants." The ordinance does not specify that banned items are commercial.
Last year, the housing authority in Wrentham, Mass., banned the American flag until an outcry forced a reversal the next day.
Opponents of the West New York ordinance said Roque, elected in 2011, is using the flag ban to fight a recall, as well as an effort to change the town's form of government from a commission with commissioners serving in an executive and legislative role, to another form with separate legislative and executive branches.
Frank Ferriero, the founder of Residents for a Better West New York,told PolitickerNJ.com he believed Roque was targeting his vocal campaign against the mayor, which includes a truck that he drives around town with a television showing anti-Roque videos. Ferriero is leading an effort to change the form of government.
Parks and Public Property Commissioner Count Wiley (D), a former Roque ally now trying to recall the mayor, told HuffPost he believes the political climate in West New York is driving Roque to push the ban. He said there was little discussion of the flag portion of the ban. Wiley was the only town commissioner to vote against the ordinance preliminary passage on Wednesday.
"They are trying to control all aspects," Wiley told HuffPost. "It includes everything. So whenever something upsets them."
Among the other items banned in the proposed ordinance is "flashing, moving, animated or digital signs," all signs emitting smoke and vapor, signs on the exterior of windows, signs that take up for that 15 percent of a window, neon signs, inflatable signs, signs that interfere with traffic and "signs which are not an accessary to a use located on the premises." Violators can be fined $1,000 per sign. The full ordinance can be viewed here.
Wiley questioned the constitutional aspects of the sign ban, noting that if he set up a campaign headquarters he would be allowed only a limited number of signs. He also said the "not an accessary" language could ban businesses from posting political signs.
Wiley and Roque had a falling out since their 2011 election on a reform platform. Earlier this year, Roque was indicted, along with his son, on charges of hacking into apolitical opponent's computer. The case is pending in federal court.
Roque spokesman Fonseca stressed that the proposal is not political.
"It is protect the residents of West New York," Fonseca said.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

West New York Commissioner Count Wiley Officially Files for Recall of Mayor Felix Roque

West New York Commissioner Count Wiley Officially Files for Recall of Mayor Felix Roque


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Monday, October 15, 2012

West New York commissioner announces closure of senior center for code violations; mayor says he doesn't have the authority

count-wiley.JPGWest New York Commissioner Dr. Count WileyCommissioner Count Wiley announced Saturday that he will be closing a West New York community center for seniors because of safety and health violations.

West New York commissioner announces closure of senior center for code violations; mayor says he doesn't have the authority

By Rafal Rogoza / The Jersey Journal 
on October 15, 2012 at 1:00 PM
Read Original Article: Click Here

But Mayor Felix Roque said yesterday that Wiley is “shooting from the hip” and has no authority to close the 4-story facility at 6020 Hudson Ave.
“No commissioner has the authority to close any buildings down,” Roque said. “The only person who can close a building down is the building inspector, Manny Fernandez, or the fire official, Frank Martinez.”
“Manny Fernandez considers the building structurally sound and tomorrow (Monday) it will be open,” Roque added.
Wiley, who is at political odds with the mayor, held a press conference in front of the building Saturday and declared it “the worst building in West New York.”
Citing the findings and recommendations of a Sept. 10 “state inspection,” Wiley said the building is riddled with code violations, including a lack of emergency lighting, obstructed fire exits and asbestos violations.
Wiley said that in his capacity as commissioner in charge of Department of Parks and Public Property he intends to close the facility some time this week.
“I take full responsibility, I’m going to shut this building down,” said Wiley.
Activities for seniors that normally take place at the facility will be moved to local schools and senior housing centers, Wiley said.
The commissioner said he first became aware of poor conditions at the building when he visited seniors there last month.
He said he was shown pools of water in the hallways, walls damaged from leaks, and told of a rampant rodent problem, said Wiley.
“This is some dangerous stuff here,” he said.
Roque said yesterday he had no idea what “state inspection report” Wiley was referring to.
“We did have an inspector come through the building a couple months ago, and he said there are a couple of problems,” Roque said. “This is an old building, if there is a problem ... we are going to try and fix it. (But) right now is not the time to spend $100,000 to put on a brand new roof.”

Journal staff writer Ken Thorbourne contributed to this story.