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Re: Okay, so who here thinks the Katyn monument needs to go?

Yvonne, I think you may have left too early; there was more action on this later that night.

Terrence sums it up nicely: ... _plan_would_stop_pol.html

"[After the motion failed] Over the course of the next few hours, there was a flurry of side conversations between council members and city officials, with some exchanging texts with an absent Fulop. At about 10 p.m., Fulop ally Councilman Daniel Rivera announced a deal: the council would re-consider adding an item to the agenda that would rescind the June 13 ordinance that authorized moving the statue, only this time there would be an amendment saying the statue would stay at Exchange Place "in perpetuity." That provision was enough to secure Boggiano's vote, the sixth needed to add the item to the agenda.

The council then took four votes: to reconsider voting on adding the item; to add the item to the agenda; to amend the item to include the "in perpetuity" language; and to introduce the ordinance. All four motions passed. A final vote on the measure could come as early as Nov. 20."

Solomon's outburst was something to behold.

Posted on: 2018/11/9 21:27

Re: I've seen pre-construction sales but this is ridiculous! 323 7th St


brewster wrote:
What I'd also like to know about this property is how are they getting 4 floors in an R-1 zone? Did they get a variance?

It actually looks like it sits in the R-5 zone, according to the city's latest zoning map. 323 7th sits near the junction of Monmouth and 7th? So yeah, in that orange colored bit which is the R-5 (note: had to zoom in like 200% to see it clearly).

So they could have 4 floors, provided 7th St has a sixty feet or more right of way; if it's less, then they'd need a variance.

Posted on: 2018/8/14 18:17

Re: Newark Avenue Pedestrian Plaza Expansion


rescuelife wrote:

Yvonne wrote:
6 people spoke on this, only one wanted this because his child attends the preschool on Newark Avenue. The rest had real concerns.


I got in late so I missed the first few speakers, but the one immediately preceding the parent was decrying the growth of noisy restaurants/rowdy bars on Restaurant Row and worried that the pedestrian mall expansion would lead to more such establishments.

Also, I think it's a little heartless to say that a parent concerned about the safety of his child walking to and from school isn't a "real concern."

Posted on: 2018/7/2 17:13

Re: A lot more people in N.J. will be registered to vote soon.

While it's true that there are a number of circumstances in which American citizens cannot vote (under 18, didn't register X days before an election, are a convicted felon), no less than five amendments to the Constitution speak explicitly of the right to vote: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote [] shall not be denied or abridged..."
I would submit this demonstrates that voting is indeed considered a right in this country, albeit qualified by eligibility requirements decided by each state in the absence of constitutional definition

Speaking philosophically, in a country where suffrage is not considered a right but a privilege-- a country whose citizens do not possess a fundamental right to exercise their power to elect representatives to represent themselves to the government-- can that country truly be considered a democracy? (I mean, for all the ancient Greeks are considered the originators of democracy despite not letting slaves and women vote, that's because they said slaves and women weren't actually citizens... and nobody denies noncitizens don't get to vote)

Posted on: 2018/4/18 21:29

Re: New Tax Rate is Insane!


JCGuys wrote:

Yvonne wrote:
The tax abatement is not 95% city and 5% county. That is an error, in fact, check with the law department of JC if you think I am wrong. It is 100% Jersey City with an extra 5% going to the county. The 5% was a settlement from a Secaucus lawsuit against JC. It was to be 10% but was cut to 5% due to favors due to retribution.

LoL what? People pay 105% of their abatements now?

I'm trying to figure this out- is it possible that 100% of the value of the abatements goes to the city, and then the city needs to make a separate payment, calculated as 5% of that, to the county?
It sounds weirdly convoluted to me but if it resulted from a settlement from a lawsuit... anything's possible, I guess. (And isn't that basically 95/5 when it comes right down to it? Like, 100 out of 105 is 95.2%?) ... rt/2003/02464-98-opn.html
From what I can make out:
- in 1987, Secaucus Township filed appeals on a bunch of abated lots owned by development companies in Newport.
- in a 1989 settlement agreement, the development companies paid Secaucus $165,000 in return for getting the appeals dismissed in tax court
- in 2003, for whatever reason Jersey City tried to get the payment back but the court upheld the settlement and said Secaucus could keep it maybe it's not the city needs to make a separate 5% payment like I was speculating, but the party with the tax abatement? Or maybe just the specific party that was part of the settlement agreement in 1989 with Secaucus? Or maybe it's irrelevant because Secaucus Township and Hudson County are two different entities?

I don't know. I don't have enough caffeine in my system for this. ... --other-towns-may-join-in

Posted on: 2018/3/22 15:19

Re: Ward E Forum sponsored by the DCNA

If anyone wants to follow the Ward E race but doesn't have an hour and a half plus to spare, there's a transcription in progress here: ... own_council_forum_101617/

Posted on: 2017/10/24 16:01

Re: Jersey City Master Plan Kickoff Survey

Perhaps they thought a survey was probably not the format best optimized to discuss so thorny an issue as zoning.

Probably they'll have that discussion as part of the public kickoff meetings later this month. Or at least I hope so.

Posted on: 2016/9/7 20:00

Downtown R-1 zoning status update

I figure anyone trying to keep up with the zoning discussion might be interested in knowing what they told us at the June VNA meeting.

No in-depth report this time as it was a long day and most of my notes are just so much chickenscratch.
But here's the key takeaway: that whole discussion about updating the zoning? the survey that's supposed to go out to residents in the current R-1? it may no longer be happening, at least not any time soon.

It came up somehow to the council/planning board that seeing as the city master plan hasn't been revisited in forever and a day, it might be a good time to update it. So they're looking into that idea. However, the process of updating the master plan would obviously clash with the whole rezone-downtown-R1-to-R5 discussion that's been going on. So that discussion would be delayed until after the new master plan has been drawn up, which could take anywhere from 18-24 months to complete. Again, that's IF they decide to go forward with it.

So everything's sort of up in the air right now.

Posted on: 2016/6/14 2:42

Re: The Village has Gone Crazy - R5 zoning but not in my backyard

Slow down a bit here.

I think people have been ascribing a lot more power (and purpose) to the VNA than it actually has. It wasn't actually trying to make any decisions for the community as a whole.

Based on attending the Mar and May VNA mtgs, this is how I see that the situation unfolded:

- Tonya (Tanya?) the city planner came to the March VNA meeting to present the proposal for rezoning the R1 area to R5
- In the meeting, she asked for community feedback on her proposal
- People had a lot of feedback to give, mainly on the height issue
- After listening to the concerns from that meeting, she revised her original proposal and did the north-south split as a concession to those who had raised objections about height

That was the proposal that was going to go to the planning board.

It's possibly she didn't realize that the feedback from VNA meeting was not actually representative of all the community that was going to be affected by the zoning change- Candice later did, and so she stopped the process so it could be done over properly.

I know that not all of the current R1 is in the Village, but a lot is, so probably the city assumed they could get a fair idea of what the community being impacted thought by going to the VNA (I think they also went to the HPNA). The problem is that though the VNA purports to represent the Village, it's actually only representative of the opinions and views of the people who go to the meetings. And we know that a lot of people don't, so their views didn't get heard.

A lot people who have been posting in this thread have said they are longtime residents in the village- so what historically has been the role of the VNA in the community? I haven't really had the chance to see them in action myself. What I'm trying to figure out is, what role does the VNA see themselves as having in this community, and given that, how much responsibility does it have to determine and then represent the views of the people in it? I mean, making sure your own voice is heard is one thing -and they were certainly very thorough in that- but making sure you give voice to the people in your community is a separate thing altogether.

Posted on: 2016/5/19 14:43

Re: The Village has Gone Crazy - R5 zoning but not in my backyard

As I understand, the flood requirement is not included in the 44ft limit. That's why people were up in arms over it at the March meeting, and wanting the lower 3-story limit; they were saying that builders would build 4 floors up to the max 44ft they were allowed to build to, on top of the 6/9ft flood requirement, making the total height between 50-53ft, thus choking the narrow streets and blocking the sunlight and whatnot. And if they were mistaken in that impression, well, nobody was correcting them.

To be honest, I'm a bit sympathetic to that argument as I live south of Newark, and our streets are narrow. But even then I don't think keeping the R-1 zoning is a good idea. I think having more ground level retail in the area would make it much more attractive and lively and, well, nice. And we would need increased density to support that.

Not to say that VNA attendees are representative of the neighborhood as a whole, but when they did an informal poll at the Thurs mtg an awful lot of people raised their hands in support of keeping the Village at R-1 (barely any for the 4-story option, and a smattering for the 3-story). Even Candice seemed taken aback for a few seconds, before she cheerfully reminded all assembled that our show of hands would not impact her decision, which would be determined by the comments received once formal notice was out to the community.

I have no idea if the people living in the R-1 zoned area outside the Village on brewster's map will be included in the mailing though, although you guys really should be.

Posted on: 2016/5/18 2:20

Re: The Village has Gone Crazy - R5 zoning but not in my backyard

brewster and nick, I would welcome someone to reach out to Candice and confirm this, but that question actually came up during the rezoning Q&A. Someone asked something along the lines of, what about the rest of downtown? it can't just be us dealing with this and she basically said, nope you're the only ones [R1 zoned area] left [in downtown]; everyone else "is either historical, or part of a redevelopment plan." There was something of a collective shudder- of I'm not sure, relief? At having dodged being part of a redevelopment plan? which apparently opens you up to ten story buildings and a parade of developers or something?- and that's the last I remember of that.

dcmot, i'm afraid I can't really help you with that- like I said I'm new and this meeting was only my second. Though I actually was in the March meeting that was the impetus for split proposal for zoning but that was my first neighborhood-civic-governance thing ever and me not having yet decided to keep a record of it, I can only work off memory.

From what I do remember though, Tonya the planner was there at the March VNA meeting, and presented her proposal to rezone the area from R1 to R5. I note that her initial proposal was actually for the whole thing to be 44 ft/4 story. But there was a lot lot of pushback at that meeting from people (I'm guessing who live south of Newark) who were really focused on the height issue. I believe the main theme of the naysayers was that due to the flood zone building requirements in the Village, any new building's ground floor has to be 6ft above, even 9ft in some areas, and people were saying that if you put the four stories in Tonya's proposal in on top of the flood requirements, you'd be going well over 50ft, and the Village streets are on the narrow side in the first place, and sunlight (we're familiar with that argument, I won't rehash it).

So I do think it was based on the, shall we say, somewhat vehement feedback from that meeting that the 31ft-3story-southside split originated.

I wish I could tell you guys if there was any follow-up to that in the April mtg before last week's May mtg (it was around that time that Candice froze the proposal), but I was out of town for work and of course nobody took minutes, so I have no idea what went down. That was about the point I went f*** it, I want to be able to remember what happens at these damn things, I'll have to write it down myself.

ETA: oneIP, Candice said that the mailing will include a tel #, to her directly or to the council office, so that people without internet access can still contact her.

Posted on: 2016/5/17 23:25

Re: The Village has Gone Crazy - R5 zoning but not in my backyard

Hey all

I was at the VNA meet (does that make me a member?) last Thurs and jotted down some notes from the goings-on.

Disclaimer: I'm a new arrival in the village- it was, what, my second mtg?- so I'm not really aware of what the normal dynamic is, or what sort neighborhood politicking was going on, if there was.

Meeting started with the usual community updates, not much to tell. Then a presentation about development at 371 4th St- currently 3 level 2 family house (ground level garage + two floors above). Plan is to keep it at 3 level 2 family: top two floors will be apartments (both planned as 3bd/2ba units) and ground level becomes a restaurant or some other kind of retail to replace the garage. Seeking a use variance for the ground floor.

Then they introduced Councilwoman Osborne as guest speaker and let her take questions. Getting the nonzoning issues out of the way first, we had people asking bout the lead situation, something something about repaving roads, and complaints about traffic (@ the corner of Newark n 3rd, and the Monmouth + Columbus intersection in particular).

Finally the zoning discussion. Started off with background, presumably for newbies like me: the VNA/council office/planning dept has been discussing change to Village zoning for the last one and a half years etc etc, based on feedback from the Mar VNA meeting, the proposal that HAD been slated to go to the planning board was: 44 ft/4 stories/4 units north of Newark, and 31 ft/3 stories/3 units south of Newark. Candice said that in the week or so runup to the planning board meeting she started hearing a lot of chatter from the community; as she then told us, she realized from the volume and general tenor of the chatter that they had not, in fact, heard all the concerns of the community like she thought they had been doing (from what I see on this thread I can see how someone who was mainly looking for zoning feedback at VNA venues might be initially blindsided by the fact that plenty of people who DON'T participate in VNA stuff might nonetheless have opinions about zoning), and so she chose to delay presenting the proposal to the planning board in order to go through a more formal process.

So to dr_nick_riviera's question about who "made the decision to break apart the re-zoning", as far as I can remember and from what I'm seeing in my notes, it sounds like feedback from the people at the VNA meetings was the reason for the N-S split in the zoning proposal. And as for whoever STOPPED the proposal from reaching the planning board (because why do anything quick when you could drag it out for months) this time around, Candice/the council office was explicitly taking responsibility for that.

Anyway, Candice says this is the plan going forward: sometime in the next month or so, the council office will sending a formal mailing to all Village residents to solicit feedback on the rezoning of the Village. The mailing will include a link to an online survey and online comment box, and a telephone # for the non-technologically inclined to call in w/ their comments. Most importantly, the mailing WILL LIST THESE THREE (3) OPTIONS:
Opt 1) Zoning stays as is- R1
Opt 2) Rezone ALL Village to 31 ft/3 stories/3units
Opt 3) Rezone ALL Village to 44 ft/4 stories/4 units.

The office will accept feedback from all: Village homeowners, Village renters, downtown ppl, ppl from neighborhoods far away, hell, people from wherever. But only Village residents will get the physical mailing. They'll tally the results and compile all the feedback and come up with a proposal. Apparently there's a way to figure out exactly where the comments are coming from? So if they see that tons of north-of-Newark ppl are in favor of Opt 3 but tons of south-of-Newark ppl want Opt 2 or whatever, the old split proposal might be resurrected. It'll all be based on the feedback they get.

Also included in the mailing will be a date & place for a communitywide meeting for the express purpose of discussing the zoning situation, which will have people from the planning board (I think planners? "Subject matter experts", whatever) to answer in-depth questions about anything from height maximums to the regulations governing curb cuts. I assume the ultimate proposal the council office comes up with will also be discussed (or torn to pieces, if you prefer) in this community meeting, before it finally goes to the planning board, which Candice estimated to be sometime in the early fall.

And there was some more talk and some more grumbling and brief tangents about Whole Foods and grumbling about the reval (so much grumbling dear god) and eventually it got late enough that the mtg organizers decided to skip the closed forum and we all went home.

Posted on: 2016/5/17 20:47




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