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Re: downtown JC tax abatement
#61
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Do you have anything in writing?
Take a look at any and all materials the agent or developer gave you. Things like listing agreements, papers for marketing the condo, and of course the offers you made on the property presumably through the RE agent.
If you can find anything in writing coming from agent or developer you should be OK. Nevertheless go to both of them after you have done this search.
Did you finance? If yes when the mortgage bank calculated your loan what did they base the tax payment on?

Posted on: 2011/11/3 13:21
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Re: contractor for Ductless, Mini-Split Air Conditioner/Heat Pumps
#62
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Quote:

Josiered wrote:
Avoid mini split a/c's at all costs. I called New England HVAC in Hoboken who we dealt with for many many years and was told these units really stink ! They are all Asian hybrids and do not function properly. In 40 yrs. of business all they do is spend their time and your $ on the phone with a rep at a California "think tank" repairing them...not a good idea and we were told to go with a conventional system. They are nothing more than a "ticking time bomb" and then TRY and fine someone to repair them when they go bad. I've dealt with New England for years and consider them to be above "professional". If you want more info call them and they'll give you the low down on these units. Can't hurt to call and ask them and they'll inform you of the pros and cons. Just a suggestion!


I got no skin in this. I don't sell or install them.
Mini Splits have been around in Asia for about 30 years. They are proven and reliable. Use name brands like Fujitsu, Mitsubishi and Sanyo etc, you will be happy.
Of course it must be installed by a reliable contractor.

FYI Toyota also makes an "Asian Hybrid" (Prius) in a different application. industry. It is generally accepted that it has been a great product for something like 7-8 years now. Of course if you called a Mitsubishi or Hyundai dealer they might give you a different opinion.

Also, keep in mind they are only good for the applications they are intended for. If you already have a forced air furnace, they are probably not the best solution. On the other hand, if your home was built before an electric grid, has Steam or hot water heat, and central AC is at best "challenging" if not impossible to install, they can be a wonderful purchase.
Hope you get my points, I do not mean to offend.

Posted on: 2011/11/3 3:11
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Re: "Direct Energy" asking to see my electric/gas bill...
#63
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They probably only need your account # from your PSE&G bill so you may indeed still be switched from PSE&G. If you are really concerned about it call PSE&G and tell them you do not want to switch, they may be able to help but I am not sure about that, it is just a recommendation.

Can't speak about Direct Energy first hand, but most all of these players in the energy business can offer little to no savings. I do have some experience in the field and I investigated the claims of several of the companies.
Keep in mind if they tell you they will save 12% (as an example) off your current bill, that only applies to the energy part and not the transmission/distribution part. So the savings are not near what you expected even if their rates are lower.
In every one of their ads they always used PSE&G rates that were higher than I had ever seen in reality. So that ate a lot of the supposed savings as well.

Posted on: 2011/11/1 2:18
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Re: Name and Shame Bad Snow Neighbors
#64
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Quote:

heights wrote:
I wish we could name and shame those that throw their shoveled snow into the middle of the street. Especially the ones that are clearing their driveways.


Hi Heights!
I do this frequently, not sure what the issue is. If it is a sunny day and the street is clear, I thought the black of the street pavement would quickly melt the snow thrown on it. I also make sure I do not pile it to high.
Should I stop this behavior? I do not want the humiliation of being shamed on this forum.
Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/30 18:49
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#65
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Rich,
You have some good thoughts and ideas in the above post.
All of them require a government system that is transparent and does not enable individuals and political parties to individually profit with city revenue.

Purchasing through consolidation, yes it is possible that hundreds of thousands could be saved. Right now however I fear know that many millions is lost on corruption, double dipping, nepotism & cronyism.

If an Energy Service Company were to come in today, by default I would figure that someone high in HCDO would stand to gain. I would not be surprised to learn 3-4 years later that the supposed savings would have been a cost because the Energy Services vendor got favorable treatment (IE like a seller of Real Estate to JCPA).

City History? yes it is beyond criminal that JC history is so ignored. Such a shame it is. In the long run I know it would benefit residential property owners to take advantage of what those that have gone before have left. Trouble is what is the solution today? If the current administration were to propose such things as a Historical commission, once again I figure, "great, another Steve Lipski type figure we taxpayers get to support." How about promotions to JC Fire fighters and Police officers that claim to cut costs when no accompanying savings are actually cited? I am sure we both know that my list of grievances could go on and on.

My point? Right now this City needs straightforward and honest leadership. It needs to be able to get simple things done such as decals on city property (vehicles) without politics getting involved. It needs more accountability to taxpayers at the expense of favoring a select few with Health insurance for JCIA board members. It needs enactment/enforcement of "pay to play" rules. It needs to answer why it is necessary to have a chief of staff for the county executive also serve on the city council.
Rich, don't get me wrong, it is good to hear you throw these ideas out.

As a disgusted voter, you get my attention by railing on and then actually changing the current status quo rather than new ideas. My suggestion to you or any wannabe member of the council is to actually tell us what is wrong with the things in front of our collective noses, and actions you will propose within your first six months of serving.

As you have pointed out several times it starts with getting out and going out to vote. I suggest a part of accomplishing this is focus less new ideas, more on ridding city politics of a cancer that should be eradicated.

Rich, I admire you coming here and opening yourself up to criticism and sharing so openly. When you are elected I hope this behavior continues.

Onward!

Posted on: 2011/10/30 15:49
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Re: New Bike Shop in the Heights
#66
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The owner of this shop set me up with a couple of good quality used bikes.
I highly recommended this business

Posted on: 2011/10/29 21:01
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#67
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Rich Boggiano said:
Quote:

5. I want to circle back to my earlier criticism of the various autonomous Jersey City agencies. This entire discussion would be a lot easier to have if all of the money that sloshes around Jersey City wasn't moved around between different accounts where the average resident has no visibility. Instead, we have a system that operates in a manner tantamount to a money laundering operation.


This is the crux of the matter.
Overwhelming majority of the talk on this thread comes back to this.
Love the money laundering comparison, how true.

Posted on: 2011/10/28 22:46
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Re: Goya is awarded $80M tax credit in attempt to entice company to move to Jersey City
#68
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Quote:

sepecat wrote:
Goya isnt moving from Secaucus.. They're moving a warehouse from Brooklyn or somewhere in NY to J City, I think.


That is in error. They are moving from Seacacus. They were considering a move to Rockland County.

Tax breaks Tax Breaks Tax Breaks. Except for the 99% of course.

http://www.northjersey.com/news/Secau ... tions_to_Jersey_City.html

Posted on: 2011/10/28 21:01
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Re: Goya is awarded $80M tax credit in attempt to entice company to move to Jersey City
#69
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Well Put DanL,

As you said in your previous post.
Quote:

at least this should be done in an open and transparent manner with an evaluation and recommendation process ....


Heck, a Repub leaning company could and would have no problem greasing local Dems if it is going to benefit them. Same the other way around for the Dem leaning company.

Posted on: 2011/10/28 18:14
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#70
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Quote:

jcresident0001 wrote:


.......So far ,it has been explained that at the time of the sale the PA lease read that they were responsible for the maintainance of the entire building, even if they didnt own it. Also the rent was going to go up , a quick decision was then made to buy it. The cost for a new appraisal and the time it would have taken to get it done would have put the PA in a corner to either sign a new lease for much more money per month or get out and have no space at all. So the purchase was done.


We are going in circles now. They bought in a down market with an appraisal for older and higher market values. The politicians and administrators should have planned for rent increases and had feasible contingencies for moving the operation in a timely manner. A commercial appraisal of a small property like this (4.3 million is a very small commercial value) takes what? 3 months tops? Is it acceptable for a city of 250K to allow this to happen? Being prepared means they have bargaining power whether purchasing or continuing to lease.

When local governments make quick decisions in buying and selling property, how often do you think taxpayers benefit?
Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/28 18:05
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#71
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jcresident0001, Thanks so much for answering. You have clarified to my satisfaction your stand on things.

I MIGHT come around to your way of thinking on the PA with its present CEO.
Again, my reservations are that the current set up does not provide transparency in the long haul. When a political hack again runs the place, as will happen in Hudson County politcs, JC taxpayers take it in the shorts.

Having said that, I want to point out you say in your last post:
Quote:

......... they bought it at a time when the market was down. The building is in a great location for growth for the city. The building price was 4.6 million..............


Well the market was down. But why did they use an old appraisal from times when the market was up? Only logical reason I can think is someone on the inside stood to benefit. And since selling party happened to donate to Healy campaign, I become suspicious.
If a recent appraisal done at the time of the down market was used, I might not be suspicious of the transaction.
Even so, I would still wonder why the city needed to buy such property in such relatively prime space. The PA is not located at a place central to the city. I also do not see what benefit they have by being near retail space. There must be lots of space in other areas of the city that would have been less expensive property to purchase.
Nothing about this transaction made sense for me as a taxpayer. I just fell, and felt, it was business as usual for Hudson County politics.
All Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/28 17:33
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Re: Red light traffic camera
#72
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Quote:

brewster wrote:
Unfortunately, the most horrifying traffic bad that I've seen much of recently cams can't help: a car stops for crossing pedestrians and and the driver behind simply swerves around at full speed. I've seen this a number of times on Grove, typically at 8th.


I take a kid to school from the Heights to West Side (on Broadway) every school day. I stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk and frequently (1-2x week) a car will swerve and pass me on the right. During the "prime time" of kids walking to school no less!
The rudeness and lack of common sense of the d-bags is so unbelievable. I really believe the city could pay for at least one traffic cop with the proceeds from writing tickets in my 2 mile route alone.

Posted on: 2011/10/28 16:45
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JCPC Salaries and structure
#73
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Doing a little research this AM on the JC website I was surprised to see that there is a director of police as well as a police chief here in JC.

Anybody know what function/role the director (Samuel Jefferson) serves? What is his salary?

Also what is the chief's (Thomas Comey) salary?

My curiosity was aroused when I read about our neighbor city to the North and the police chief making "$218,000 in salary and 48 vacation days, as well as more than two weeks of paid holidays. All told, his contract called for him to work less than a public school teacher."

http://www.nj.com/hudson/voices/index ... _should_former_union.html

As a point of reference Union City has a population of 67K or so. New York City (pop 8mil) pays their Police Commissioner (Ray Kelley) $212,947.

Posted on: 2011/10/28 15:15
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#74
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Quote:

jcresident0001 wrote:
forgot to add..... The building , at the time of sale was NOT a fully Tax ratable property due to the amount of government that occupied the space. So the city may loose (1) tax ratable property at lets say 25K a year, but the occupants cut a check to the city for 8 million a year. I ll take the 8 mill !!!


jcresident0001,
I have been enjoying and learning from the back and forth between you and Mr Boggiano.

First, what occupants are cutting a check to the city for $8mil/year? I am not following that.


Next, in the things you respond to, in my opinion you glossed over or ignored the purchase of the Central Ave Facility with a very dated appraisal and from a Healy campaign contributor no less. Your thoughts or response?

Mr Boggiano, you wrote
Quote:

For example, here\'s what will probably happen with the JCPA building... we bought it for $4.6 million using a bond to raise the money for the purchase. With interest that probably works out to some number closer to $10 million over the life of the bond. A few years from now we\'ll sell the building for $5 million to fill yet another hole in our budget and claim a \"profit\" of $400,000. But we (JC taxpayers) will still owe that $10 million in bond money plus interest. What I\'m saying is that our elected officials use property transactions as a form of money laundering so they can squeeze ever more money out of JC taxpayers and feed it to their friends in a series of convoluted and opaque transactions.

What I understand you to be saying is, "if/when the building is sold, JC is on the hook for the full amount of the 10 million bond, even though the reason the bond was initiated is no longer in existence (the government owned building)" Do I have this right?
In the above you also said "$10 million in bond money plus interest." But previous to this, in the same paragraph, you said the $10 million was the $4.6 mil bond with the interest. Is it possible you made an error and did not mean to add more interest onto the $10 Mil? If not an error, please explain.

As a taxpayer/resident I simply want transparency. I do not think the present structure of JCPA and JCIA can, nor ever will, provide this.
While I am not a fan of the JCPD, my gut feeling is that folding the JCPA into it, could bring about a better Jersey City. At present, I would prefer this over creating another City Department.

Posted on: 2011/10/28 14:07
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Re: Save the Food Trucks of Jersey City
#75
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Quote:

fat-ass-bike wrote:
which means they need the greater protection from cityhall.


FAB, What are you smoking???LOL. What Jersey City person or business of a sane nature would ever want "greater protection from cityhall"??

Posted on: 2011/10/27 23:16
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Re: Save the Food Trucks of Jersey City
#76
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Quote:


Updated: Wednesday, October 26, 2011, 8:26 PM
By Terrence T. McDonald/The Jersey Journal

Owners of brick-and-mortar restaurants also object, according to Tony Kaszuba, a consultant who told the council he represents a number of Downtown eateries. The owners of those establishments pay the city well over $400 monthly to operate, Kaszuba said.


Is this true? Do owners of establishments pay more than $5000/year (excluding property taxes/sales taxes) to the city? I find this hard to stomach/believe.

Posted on: 2011/10/27 15:01
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Re: parked cars blocking my driveway
#77
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Just can't stay away


Buy a can of yellow paint and a brush. Apply to the street or hire someone to do it for you, should take 30 minutes top including clean up.
Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/27 2:27
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Re: contractor for Ductless, Mini-Split Air Conditioner/Heat Pumps
#78
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Just can't stay away


I take issue with roskoe99.
Mini Splits with the Heat pump option can be an excellent heat source in shoulder seasons. He is correct about the resistance heat, it is not efficient and should not be used.
Take a week like this week (and next) you can heat the rooms they are in only during the hours you need heat. At temps above 45 degrees outside, they are very efficient for this, the electricity you use is less cost than natural gas or oil.
Also to be factored is your current furnace or boilers efficiency. But even if you have the most efficient boiler/furnace possible today, (around 95% efficiency) you are better using a heat pump at an outside temp of 35 or above.
At an outside temp lower than 35 degrees. that economic efficiency changes more in favor Oil or Natural Gas.
With normal NJ weather patterns it is conceivable and realistic to not use NG or Oil from until Mid December and then quit using mid to end of March. It is probably not possible to pay for the Mini Splits in a realistic time frame with the savings But you could be looking at a realistic 30% heating cost reduction (at times they are used) of your current fuel bill if you use them correctly. Of course YMMV.
The heat pump option on a Mini Split should not be too many $'s, the option itself should be paid for in less than the first heating season of use.
Should not be to hard to find a good contractor, they are not hard to install. Stick to the well know brands, there are cheaper ones from China being imported that may not be a good choice in the long run.
As time goes on, the technology will change so heat pumps become even more efficient meaning they can be used in even colder weather.

Posted on: 2011/10/26 19:59
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Re: President Obama betting on new plan for struggling homeowners
#79
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I think it is good it helps the homeowner.
What pisses me off greatly about the latest incarnation of HARP is that it gets the Banks off the hook for the bad loans that will be rewritten. Even worse is that it shifts responsibilities to taxpayers.
The cynic in me knows that this is only being made available to help wall street banks, not to help underwater homeowners.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10 ... efinancing_n_1028554.html

Quote:
From the linked article:
But a key new condition in the plan would shift the financial liability for refinanced loans from Wall Street banks to the American taxpayer. And by focusing on lower payments, the program does not confront what housing experts view as the core problem in the foreclosure crisis -- borrower debt that exceeds the value of one's home.


The whole article is worth read. Many of you non-banker types will feel at least a little outrage.

ExUWSguy, I know this may not be the the thoughts you were looking for and I hope the program will help you.
As to being a boost to our area? (I must live at most 3 blocks from you in the Heights). It won't hurt but beyond helping the individual homeowner not doing much for the neighborhood.
I have two friends that owe more than 300k on heights homes that at best would sell for 200k today. I can not imagine either one of them paying for another ten years and most likely not even having positive equity at that point. We are going to be bumping along the bottom for a long time.
Anybody remember the Batman movie, the first one with Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson? It had a line in it uttered by The Joker (Nicholson) that went "This town needs an enema". I often think that the Heights and some other parts of JC need that enema to get rid of all the shitty mortgages that are going to plague the hood for several years to come.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kt2nc2NkcGE

Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/25 15:51
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Re: Homeless in Van Vorst Park
#80
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Br6Dr,
Yes, do please enlighten. I had not heard this before but it could be plausible. Let me know what you base this on please.


Quote:

CatDog wrote:
Quote:

Br6dR wrote:
I don't blame the cops for this, there's not much they can do. What would you have them do, arrest every homeless person in the city on a daily basis? I blame the ACLU for making it impossible to give the mentally ill homeless the treatment they need. (And I'm a liberal.)
wait...what?

Posted on: 2011/10/21 16:18
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Re: Advice for Marketing a for sale by owner condo
#81
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Quote:

linky wrote:
We are listing our condo in Hamilton Park neighborhood, but we want to attempt a for sale by owner route. Any advice for marketing the property and getting some exposure?


I am not a realtor. I have bought, sold and managed numerous properties. And I know that Real Estate Agents earn their money. I have often bought without their services, I have never sold without an agent marketing the property for me.

Shop for the right one, don't be fooled by the one that gives you the highest "listing price", they are usually not the right agent.
Find one that has been in the business in your community for no less than one year. Make sure they tell you honest things rather than what you want to hear.

While no one likes to give up the percentage that RE agents collect at a successful sale, they very often bring a LOT of value.

Other considerations to ask about yourself. Are you capable of screening out unqualified buyers who will only waste your time, are you knowledgeable enough to give advice on financing, If the prospective buyer says they have a home to sell first are you knowledgeable enough to know if it can be sold, do you really want to spend your time answering the phone/returning phone calls with people only inquiring out of curiosity (or expecting to buy it for 1/2 the value), and the list goes on.

Again, the key to it is finding that agent who will do well for you as a seller without building false hopes and expectations. Of course, you as a seller must also have realistic expectations. If you do not, the good agents will stay away from you.

My $0.02 but it may be worth the price charged. LOL

Posted on: 2011/10/21 16:08
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Re: Jersey City Public Schools Need a New Immigrant Superintendent
#82
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Mr Yousef,
If you would have only written the paragraph below, I could possibly have supported you.
Now there is no chance of my vote/support, I fear you are a divisive person.
Best!

Quote:

NJ678 wrote:
I know our JCPS needs a new superintendent who believes in the power of education. The new superintendent should be someone who exercises fairness among the staff and students, someone who respects the students and parents and knows that they are strong partners and allies and not their worst enemy. Someone who knows the meaning of success and knows that failing is not an option. This individual will unite us not divide us because failing within our school system became part of our history.

Posted on: 2011/10/20 13:33
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Re: Hoboken Taxis - How much?
#83
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$5.00 flat fare anywhere in Hoboken

Posted on: 2011/10/16 20:05
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#84
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Quote:

RichBoggiano wrote:

Knowing that adding 400 more cops is not realistic when the city faces an $80 million budget deficit I'd propose an alternative. Right now, Jersey City cops have to be Jersey City residents when they are hired. After they graduate from the Police Academy they can move out of the city after their first year on the job. About two-thirds move out of the city because they want to send their children to better schools. If we have 800 cops on the JCPD I'd say about 250 currently live in the city. Imagine if you had 650 more cops simply living in the city? Over the past 40 years I've done countless things off-duty that make Jersey City a better place - rushing into a burning building a few houses down from me, breaking up fights, and simply being a 24-7 crime deterrent in my neighborhood. Rather than hire 400 new cops why not explore ways to encourage more of our current police force to continue living in the city? Extend the mandatory requirement to live in the city for new hires? Offer a bonus to existing cops? I'd rather have 800 cops living in the city 24-7 than 1000 cops who are only in the city during their shift.



More like this please.
My personal perception is that the cops union views the city and its government only as a paycheck with no interest in making the place better. If a substantial number of JCPD members live here, that might change.
I know their are state laws and court cases that limit what can be done, but find ways to do it.

Posted on: 2011/10/14 19:43
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#85
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Earlier I (asdfdf23) wrote:
Quote:

Binky,
I concede the point about NYC income and sales taxes. That is relevant..........


After reflection I going to take back my concession on sales tax. I remembered that JC has numerous UEZ zones which collect a 3.5% sales tax that all goes to the city. Therefore JC has significant sales tax revenue as does NYC.

Beyond that I promise not to post any more about tax issues in a thread that is supposed to be about a candidate.

Posted on: 2011/10/13 23:03
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#86
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Binky,
I concede the point about NYC income and sales taxes. That is relevant.
Not sure how the much larger tax bases figures in, they also have proportionately more people and area to serve so that cancels out I would think.
As a property owner (as opposed to a renter) I much prefer the NYC system.
Most important, I would say that compared to NYC, JC lacks in transparency and honesty in government. Yes, I know NYC is far from ideal, but if JC was managed as well I am sure our property values, schools, streets and overall quality of life would be much higher than present.
Best!

Posted on: 2011/10/13 21:17
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Re: Rich Boggiano for Jersey City Council At Large
#87
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Quote:

brewster wrote:
I don't know what to say about a countywide consolidation, it seems unlikely. It would take a plebiscite, and even then you'd have a hard time getting people to prefer tax savings to the "parochial pride" that would be drummed up to oppose it. Entrenched economic interests opposing change is one of the greatest obstacles this country faces, whether it's consolidating the 566 NJ municipalities or restructuring healthcare. There's no reason Hudson County shouldn't act as a single city of 600k, but if we can't even consolidate the JCIA & Public Works...


How sad the above is so true.

I sometimes wonder what percentage our taxes could go down with a transparent and well run countywide government that did away with all the political borders and fiefdoms.
On a personal note my wife and I have a couple of NYC properties. The amount of taxes we pay on Queens properties based on the home value is literally less than 1/2 the cost of JC. And I would rate the government services received from NYC as substantially better than JC.

Anybody on this forum want to defend paying 2x more for substandard services??????????

Mr Boggiano, you say the right things. I hope you are true to your word. If we can get 3 or 4 more non HCDO people on the council perhaps some more headway could be made. It is painful to watch JC and Hudson County needlessly suffer with such inept and corrupt local politics and politicians.

Posted on: 2011/10/13 19:01
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Re: Have leak in house, need to patch exterior wall
#88
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Just sent you a PM.

Posted on: 2011/10/13 18:33
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Re: Have leak in house, need to patch exterior wall
#89
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Hard to say, but my first inclination is to "look up".
Are downspouts and gutters eaves and such taking water from the roof and getting it away from the house?
Often times this is the problem more so than where the water is actually entering at.

Next, does the cement the car is parked on slope towards or away from the house? If it slopes towards, this needs to be dealt with. Again it is usually more important to get the water away from the house than to try and "seal" the house.

I hope this helps. BUT.......Keep in mind the advice is worth the price charged LOL.

Posted on: 2011/10/13 2:06
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Re: BOE approves huge $268K settlement -- paves the way for Epps to leave in December
#90
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I am willing to believe the current BOE did the best they could with the mess the previous board had served up.
While I do not like Epps getting this kind of payout, a protracted, expensive and acrimonious lawsuit could have been much worse.

I am going to remember who on the BOE was around to vote for that original "contract extension" when the next election comes up. Those individuals should go.

Posted on: 2011/10/5 12:07
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