By W. Homer Axford
Well, it has been a pretty eventful week. First and foremost, New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Officials were in town late last week to gather information about alleged illegal cash hand offs that occurred during Davis’s 2014 run for Mayor. City Hall employee P.J. Leonard (seen below) confirmed what was long suspected about Davis taking money illegally while running for mayor in 2014. Apparently, Davis Administration officials in and out of City Hall have been rolling over on each other to investigators. Information we have obtained about these conversations allege that City Law Director and Mayor of Oceanport, New Jersey, Jay Coffey illegally paid for and provided the “newspaper,” The Peninsula City Tribune, during the campaign. The fictitious newspaper was distributed by Davis Campaign workers during the 2014 mayoral campaign. So if any Davis supporters express anger about lies, rumors or innuendo, please kindly remind them that Davis made his political career on those things. On another note, maybe Oceanport officials should be paying attention to what their Mayor may be up to down there, as well. This is a developing story with much more information to come, especially since witnesses have already stated in public that they provided illegal campaign signs to Davis or saw Davis Administration officials take illegal cash donations from an engineering firm official. In an unrelated note, one of those accusers is suing Mayor Davis and the City for demoting and suspending him. Needless to say, there is no love lost there.
Council & Mayor Ignore Budget Crisis.
Wednesday, the City Council met and fielded questioned from the public about just how they would fill the 15 million dollar budget hole left by a developer pulling out of the Military Ocean Terminal. The Council president was dismissive, rude, and curt while dealing with concerned citizens, but there’s nothing new there. The attitude was pretty nonchalant with the council; they acted like a potential 20% tax increase wasn’t really a big deal. We think by this point most Bayonne residents realize that this is the most incompetent administration in Bayonne history. In 2014, development at the base was a go, a mere 2 years later, the deals are dead. The MOT, the supposed saving grace of Bayonne, will not be bearing any fruits anytime soon. No one in this administration seems to care. Councilman Gullace told the public earlier in the week “It’s pretty much settled.” While Mayor Jimmy Davis told the Jersey Journal “we are gonna be fine.” Either these two are completely ignorant, or they are hip to a new deal that hasn’t been released to the pubic yet. If the latter happens to be true, then Davis, DeMarco, Gullace, Nadrowski, Cotter, Perez, and whoever else know about this, could be breaking the law: development deals cannot be negotiated while a developer deal already exists. If this is the case, Kate Howard LTD could certainly sue the City, further holding up development at the MOT. Some law enforcement officials should also question Councilman Gullace about how he knows “it’s pretty much settled.” We are guessing Gullace didn’t know he could be admitting to a crime when he let out that bit of information to the public.
If there isn’t a new development deal in the works, this would mean a tax increase that busts Bayonne. We pray that this isn’t the case — a 18-20 percent tax increase would kill Bayonne and force many to relocate. Either way, the Davis Administration owes a lot more than they are giving to the Bayonne public. They are showing no signs of decreasing their uncontrollable spending and cronyism. Their complete failure and incompetence thus far have proven that Davis should be removed from office. Bayonne taxpayers literally cannot afford 2 more years of this.
Group Gets Go Ahead to Recall Davis
On the heels of a terrible week for the Mayor, the clerk has formally accepted a petition which allows signatures to be collected to recall Jimmy Davis. As we have stated in previous columns, this won’t be an easy task, but the recall group will certainly get a bump in support from Bayonne taxpayers. Bayonne taxpayers must be sick to their stomachs about the further mismanagement of the MOT by the Davis Administration and a looming budget crisis. In a statement responding to the recall effort, Davis pointed to his self-proclaimed accomplishments like “settling” the teachers contract. In reality, Davis didn’t settle anything, he gave the teachers the same deal that the previous administration offered. No matter, it is a moot point because Bayonne teachers will be going into the summer with almost two years of no raises and no contract. Davis listed a few other “accomplishments,” but in reality Davis hasn’t really fulfilled one campaign promise. What Davis did do was raise taxes, get us into a 15 million dollar budget crisis, dump a developer who was going to develop the MOT, buy himself an SUV, hire his nephew to a high-paying City job, hire out-of towners to run the City, hire like crazy, spend like crazy, use City Hall as a patronage mill, hijack a School Board election… the list goes on and on. But oh yeah, he did spend your money to erect the circus tent, only to announce that it would be torn down. Wonder if its staying up now that the developer has abandoned the property? The mentioned issues and factors can only bolster the recall groups movement. Good luck, guys.
Bayonne is going to hell in a hand basket. All the sins of the past are coming home to haunt Davis and his Administration. All the incompetence, spending, promotions, and unethical behavior are finally catching up with Davis and company. We suggest you find your local recall petition distributor and give your John Hancock. Bayonne is sinking fast, only you can save us.
Please note: Political Insiders will be on hiatus this summer. We have a new shore house and lots of work to do on it. Fear not, we will check in with monthly columns and updates until September.