All this talk about 2020, but here in Hoboken we still have 2019 to look forward to…
Ward City Council seats are up for grabs, and days after Mayor Ravi Bhalla‘s relationship with sitting members grabs regional headlines, he introduced his slate of candidates to tentatively replace those councilmembers in the November municipal elections.
I’m proud to announce a slate of qualified candidates who will bring new leadership & fresh perspective we need to the Council: Migdalia Milano, @noradebe42, Lisa Sprengle, @PhilipHCohen & Cristin Cricco-Powell. I know they have the character & integrity needed to serve in office pic.twitter.com/cDH3yyrJfs
— Ravinder S. Bhalla (@RaviBhalla) May 16, 2019
In the First Ward, Migdalia Pagan-Milano will square off against incumbent Michael DeFusco. According to a press release, “Migdalia is a lifelong resident who began working with the community as an assistant in the Cultural Affairs Department for the City for Hoboken. She was instrumental in organizing Hoboken’s first Pride week. Currently, Migdalia works in the newly reconstituted Department of Constituent Affairs where she effectively finds solutions to residents’ day to day issues.” DeFusco, her opponent, has been serving as First Ward Councilperson since January 2016.
In what will likely be a dynamic Second Ward battle, Nora Martínez DeBenedetto will look to unseat Tiffanie Fisher. According to a press release, “Nora is a teacher at Kaplan Cooperative Preschool. She coordinates Art in the Park for the City of Hoboken and was a founding member and volunteer organizer of the Hoboken Uptown Farmers Market for ten years. She is also a lifelong resident of Hoboken.” Fisher, her opponent, has been serving as Second Ward Councilperson since January 2016.
Lisa Sprengle will go up against Council Vice-President Ruben Ramos, Jr. in the Fourth Ward. According to a press release, “An attorney, accountant and a mom, Lisa currently works as the Controller for a large New York based company, actively involved in all aspects of the business large and small, including legal, finance, accounting, human resources and even store construction.” Ramos, her opponent, has been serving as Fourth Ward Councilperson after serving in the NJ State Assembly.
Veteran local campaigner Phil Cohen will go toe-to-toe with Fifth Ward’s Peter Cunningham. “A long-time community activist who has served on number of City and community boards, including the Zoning Board,” says the press release, “Phil currently serves on the Rebuild by Design Citizens Advisory Group and as the Hoboken Democratic Party Chair. He is an attorney.” Cunningham has been serving as councilman since 2007.
Cristin Cricco Powell will take on Council President Jennifer Giattino. “A noted producer and director of television shows and documentaries,” say the press release, “Cristin is an active supporter of the Hoboken Public Education Foundation and of reform candidates for Hoboken School Board. Cristin’s great-grandparents Robert and Raffaela Cricco helped build St. Ann’s Church.” Giattino has served in the Council since 2011.
“Taken together, this slate of candidates represent the new energy, new ideas and public spiritedness we need to keep moving Hoboken in the right direction,” said Mayor Ravi Bhalla. “As Council members, I know Migdalia, Nora, Lisa, Phil and Cristin will put Hoboken first, working cooperatively to move our City forward, forgoing the political attacks and grandstanding that have too often sidetracked the current City Council.”
Of note is the conspicuous absence of a candidate to challenge incumbent Michael Russo in the 3rd Ward.
“The 3rd Ward situation is fluid A couple of people have expressed interest in running We continue to monitor it,” says Rob Horowitz, spokesperson for Team Bhalla.
The election will be Tuesday, November 5.