July 4 fair scheduled; some streets closed

As detailed in our cover story last weekend, various towns in Hudson County are planning individual fireworks celebrations over this weekend, and people are also expected to crowd the Hoboken and Weehawken waterfronts to view the Macy’s fireworks display on Sunday, July 4 at 9:20 p.m.
In anticipation of the crowds, various local and county streets will be closed on Sunday. For instance, Hoboken sent out an advisory on Thursday stating that between 9 p.m. and midnight on Sunday, July 4, cars entering Hoboken from the south will only be able to enter via Marin Boulevard. Jersey City and Port Authority police will direct drivers through the detour.
Hoboken will be running a street fair on July 4 as well on Sinatra Drive between noon and 10 p.m., including music, crafts, and food.
The city has also released a list of prohibited activities for Sunday, including public consumption of alcohol. Security will be increased on the waterfront.
For more information, go to our website, www.hudsonreporter.com, and also check the city’s website, http://www.hobokennj.org/.

Court decision: City can review grand jury testimony from Hoboken cops

A judge affirmed on Wednesday the city of Hoboken’s right to review grand jury testimony related to an upcoming federal civil rights suit against the city and the Hoboken Police Department filed by five police officers.
In a notorious case involving the now defunct Hoboken SWAT team and the now-retired lieutenant in charge of it, the five minority police officers sued in 2008 because they said they were discriminated against by their superiors. They also said they were subject to racial harassment as well as a hostile work environment. Their upcoming civil rights suit has not yet been heard.
The city was granted the right to review the officers’ grand jury testimony last year, but the five officers appealed. However, the matter was upheld by the state Superior Court, Appellate Division, on Wednesday.
The judges wrote: “Since credibility will doubtless be an important issue in the upcoming federal trial, Hoboken has demonstrated a need to discover whether objectors gave inconsistent testimony before the grand jury.”

More information comes out regarding alleged ‘Russian spies’

The U.S. government arrested 10 alleged Russian spies on Sunday, and were pursuing an 11th, saying they allegedly were dispatched to the U.S. to fit into American cities and suburbs and obtain secrets for the Russians. One pair of alleged spies lived in Hoboken for a time.
Newspapers reported that the FBI investigation began approximately seven years ago. Law enforcement officials said the “Illegals Program” was run by the S.V.R., the successor to the Soviet K.G.B.
One couple lived in an apartment in Hoboken since at least 2004, but in 2008 moved with their two school-aged daughters to a house in Montclair.
Little else has come out about them since the initial newspaper reports on Monday, but a London newspaper released a photo later this week of the family enjoying an all-American picnic in a Hoboken backyard.

Hoboken Catholic Academy seeks participants for fundraiser

Hoboken Catholic Academy is partially subsidized through fundraisers. One of its largest annual fundraisers is a golf outing/tournament that will be held on Friday, Oct. 8, 2010.
The event will be held at Meadows Golf Club in Lincoln Park, and will include breakfast, a day of golfing, dinner, awards, and prizes.
People can get involved in the following ways:
Enjoy a day of golf at the course as an individual or with a group of friends/family
Use the event to publicize yourself or your business/endeavor
Take a chance at the 50/50 Raffle
Make a monetary and/or merchandise donation to benefit the school and event.
To donate, ask questions, or to get a form to sign up, call Donna Casper at 201-694-1912 or Mike Tennaro at 201-659-4175. Or write to: 609 Jefferson St. #4C, Hoboken, NJ, 07030.

Volunteers sought to help abused and neglected children

Hudson County CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) is currently recruiting volunteers to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children. CASA and its volunteers speak for children in court, serve as fact finders for the judges and safeguard the interests of the children while they are in the foster care system.
Information sessions regarding the program and the role of its volunteers will be held on July 13 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. in Room 901 of the Hudson County Administration Building at 595 Newark Avenue in Jersey City.
For more information, call (201) 795-9855, e-mail mveenhof@hudsoncountycasa.org or visit www.hudsoncountycasa.org.

Stack’s hospital bill approved by Senate

A bill introduced by NJ State Sen. and Union City Mayor Brian Stack earlier this month related to hospital disclosure – after his mother had problems with a hospital during her radiation treatment – was approved on Monday by the full Senate.
The legislation will require hospitals to hold quarterly public board meetings with time set aside for public participation.
“Hospitals, especially those receiving taxpayer funding, should be accountable to the community members they serve,” said Stack in a press release statement. “The board meetings required under this bill will ensure just that, giving residents more regular access to top hospital officials and providing them an opportunity to ask questions or voice concerns about care.”
Stack introduced the bill (S-2020) after discovering first-hand the difficulty of getting answers from a local hospital that cancelled his mother’s radiation treatment for lung cancer the morning of her appointment.
After making several phone calls, the senator learned he was unable – in his individual capacity – to address board members at Hackensack University Medical Center to inquire about hospital policy. Stack said he believes countless others are experiencing similar problems at hospitals across the state.
“I’m particularly concerned about some of our most vulnerable residents who have nowhere to turn when they encounter roadblocks in their attempt to get information,” said Stack in the release. “Attending a public board meeting would be a last resort, but at the very least it would provide a method of recourse for people who are stonewalled.”
Current state law requires hospitals to hold just one public meeting a year. The bill would require all hospitals receiving state or federal funding to hold a quarterly public meeting of their boards of trustees. They would have to provide public notice of the meeting at least 14 days in advance by posting a written notice in a public location of the hospital and on the hospital’s Web site.
The Senate approved the bill by a vote of 36-3. It now heads to the Assembly for consideration.

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