As City Council President, I feel it is my duty to ease the asbestos scare being perpetuated by a small special interest group.
It is also my duty to inform the public that these claims are merely an attempt to damage the reputation of Stevens Institute of Technology and the City.
It is no secret that Stevens is in negotiation with the current owners of the Maxwell House property to build a school for our city’s children. The very same property the Fund for a Better Waterfront supports building 972 units of luxury apartments upon. This support comes in exchange for control of the proposed public park.
If these asbestos scare claims were valid why wouldn’t Stevens students (many who are engineering and environmental science majors) along with its President (who lives atop the site with his children) also be concerned? Why would the President of the Fund for a Better Waterfront, Mr. Aaron Lewitt and his own son attend the opening day of Hoboken Little League if the field located just a few hundred feet from the Stevens site had hazardous dust blowing around? Why would our Mayor who lives across the street from Stevens subject his own family to such health risks?
Last month I welcomed Mr. Hine and Mr. Lewitt to present their findings to the city council, yet three meetings have passed and no one has come forth with the hard facts or statistics.
As city officials we have an obligation to protect our residents no matter what their political views or opposing visions for our city or its common waterfront.
We are working every day to fulfill that obligation and that is why we have strengthened zoning codes, environmental codes and quality of life issues over the past 10 months in office.
We have been monitoring the site so that residents of Hoboken can sleep easy knowing there is no threat.
If there was the Mayor and City Council would have had our local health officials, Hudson County Regional Health and the DEP stop excavation permanently.
After all, we breathe Hoboken air too.