Sweet and sour

No, it’s not a Chinese restaurant.

Bought an Iced Coffee (the bars weren’t open yet ūüôā¬† in Moristown today and the sugar pack distributed by a Park Place shop¬† was a political ad fort Mayor Tim Dougherty and his council slate.¬† The man at the counter said it was not his doing and referred questions to the owner who was not around.

Clever? Yes.  And sweet? Sort of.

The sugar packs are without the required disclaimer detailing who paid for them.¬† That’s pretty sour.

Twitter Updates for 2009-05-31

  • Steve Lonegan scheduled to be at Rockaway American Legion for a rally today at 2 p.m. #

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A stretch by Lonegan

You have to love the attention Morris County is getting … A new Steve Lonegan ad blasts Chris Christie and John Inglesino. The reference, of course, is to Inglesino’s job with Sen. Joe Pennacchio, which had kept him in the pension system … until Inglesino said he would withdraw from it.

Lonegan’s ad misses the mark when it says that Ingelsino lost reelection to the freeholder board, because he had raised taxes. Untrue … he lost because he had a bad ballot position. That was in 2007. Three seats were up and there were four candidates; voters just voted for the first three.

Signs and signs

Some may recall that a month or so ago, state DOT workers took down campaign signs on Rte 10  in Roxbury for school board candidates Maureen Castriotta and Chris Rogers.  The ostensible reason was that they were on state highway property.

That could be, but there was also evidence that the DOT acted on orders from Trenton and that the folks in Trenton had received a complaint. Castriotta and Rogers, who both won election by the way, opposed the school budget. Some wondered if the NJEA had lodged the complaint. And, in fact, the gov.’s office indirectly confirmed that.

Now with the primary on Tuesday, there are dozens of signs for gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie and others on that same highway. Here’s the question: Where is the DOT? Why aren’t workers taking down those signs?

Cartel the movie

Took a quick break from politics today and saw the movie, Cartel, a documentary that offers a critical look at public education in New Jersey and the power of the New Jersey Education Association.

It’s well worth the nine bucks; the movie documents not only the waste in the Abbott Districts,¬† but how the power of the teachers’ union intimidates school boards¬†and more importantly, state legislators.

Like all documentaries, it has a point of view, but it’s one that is made fairly and for the most part without over the top exaggerations.

A problem is that so far it has no widespread distribution schedule; hopefully¬†that¬† will change. I saw it at the Hoboken Film Festival, but it was shown¬†in Teaneck … Go figure.

Christie on the road

Like a baseball team with a seven game lead with two weeks to go in the season, Chris Christie’s main concern is “complacency.”

Christie kicked off a three-day bus trip around the state this morning with a rally with 100 supporters outside his campaign office in Parsippany.¬† Flanked by his wife and four children, Christie said he was ready for the “home stretch.”

All polls have Christie leading main competitor Steve Lonegan, although the former Bogota mayor has narrowed the gap. Christie said supporters must not take anything for granted.¬† Dressed casually¬†¬† _ without a tie and wearing sneakers¬†¬† _¬† Christie’s first scheduled stop was¬†¬† Bachstadt’s Tavern in Middletown …

Ah, nothing like a Saturday a.m. Bloody Mary.  His bus, which is so enormous it can pass for a small ocean liner, was next scheduled to make its way to south to such places as Glendora,  Wall Township and Point Pleasant before ending the day with a 7 p.m. stop in  Cardiff in Atlantic County.

They're not the same — really

A mailing to District 25 Republicans by Doug Cabana labors to tell people that Assembly candidate Anthony M. Bucco is not state Sen. Anthony R. Bucco.

The younger Bucco is  running for the Assembly along with Cabana and incumbent Mike Carroll. The elder Bucco is not running this year.

The mailing, which is a tabloid newspaper, shows pictures of father and son and asks, “Can you tell the difference?”

Under the pictures, it asks, “Good Republicans don’t let good Republicans confuse loyalty with cronyism.”

More Morristown whirl

Dougherty campaign complaining about mailings not being delivered ….

Morristown election whirl

With the mayoral primary four days away, state Senate President Richard Codey began making “robo calls’ on Donald Cresitello’s behalf to Morristown Democrats today. Codey and the mayor went to the same high school,¬†Oratory Prep.¬†

Meanwhile, a possibly libelous piece attacking Councilman John Cryan is being apparently stuffed in mailboxes … Is the town postmaster watching?

One concern that is watching is Morristown Memorial Hospital … At last night’s debate, Cresitello made reference to wanting to tax as much of the hospital as possible. Hospitals, as we know, are tax exempt, but they do pay taxes on revenue-producing parts. How much that is, is subject to negotiations. The mayor hopes that after all is said and done, the town may be able to garner as much as $2.4 million a year. Hospital officials caught wind of the comments and released this statement this afternoon:

Since its founding more than 100 years ago  Morristown Memorial Hospital has remained a non-profit organization, and is designated as such by the IRS. All activities on the hospital campus are dedicated to our charitable mission and revenue is invested back into services and programs to serve the community.


As is common practice for hospitals in New Jersey and across the country, Atlantic Health has established an insurance company domiciled in the Cayman Islands.¬† AHS Insurance Co. LtD., ¬†is wholly owned by Atlantic Health and its sole purpose is to pay claims against our hospitals, Morristown Memorial Hospital and Overlook Hospital in Summit.¬† We own the insurance company; it most certainly ¬†does not own Atlantic Health nor Morristown Memorial Hospital, ¬†which has been a not-for-profit ¬†for more than a century. ¬†This form of ‚Äúself-insurance‚ÄĚ through an off-shore entity is a standard business structure.¬†


Atlantic Health paid more than $2.5 million in taxes on its revenue generating, for profit businesses in 2007, such as our parking garages and some real estate holdings.  Atlantic Health is the largest employer in Morris County and the largest taxpayer in Morristown.  In addition, in keeping with our mission to serve our community as a non-profit health care provider, Morristown Memorial provided $20 million dollars in charity care in 2008.


Republicans were there; then they were not

Thursday’s night League of Women Voters debate began with the four Democratic council candidates and the three Republican council candidates on stage together.

That was odd. Why were Republicans there; all are going to win. After all, they’re running unopposed in the primary.¬†

When it was time for the mayors to debate, Republican mayoral candidate Jm Gervasio was not on stage; he was in the audience. Gervasio said he submitted a statement to be read by the moderator, but that didn’t happen.

Strange indeed.