Hoboken hospital parking agreement approved, but won’t go into effect until November

HOBOKEN – The Hoboken City Council narrowly approved a parking access agreement on Tuesday night which officials have said is crucial to the impending sale of the city owned Hoboken University Medical Center.
However, the parking agreement will not go into effect for at least 20 days, after an emergency resolution to immediately implement the ordinance failed to garner a super majority vote (six out of nine members) of the council.
The 99-year agreement essentially continues to provide parking for employees at a rate of $65 per month in city garages after the city sells the hospital to HUMC Holdco, a for-profit company that has common ownership with Bayonne Medical Center. For the first three years, the employees will pay the city $45 per month. Employees are allowed to park for eight hours per day. The resident rate for 24 hours of parking is $185 per month.
Parking and Transportation Director Ian Sacs said because the deal moves hundreds of employees and their cars from the midtown parking garage to garages on Hudson Street, the resident waiting list for parking in midtown would be eliminated.
Mayor Dawn Zimmer’s allies supported the agreement, and her detractors voted no, stating that they don’t agree with the terms of the deal.
Before the vote, officials said the transfer of ownership is expected to take place this week.
HUMC Holdco would not agree to the hospital sale unless the parking agreement was approved by the city, officials said.
The timing could prove to be complicated, according to sources, as it was believed that the new owners would not sign on to the deal until the agreement is in effect. If the new owners want the parking agreement to be effective before they sign on to the deal, the council could be called back in for a special meeting to vote again on the emergency resolution, according to sources.
Councilwoman Beth Mason, an opponent of the mayor who has paid for a TV commercial against the 99 year agreement, said she would lead a referendum petition to put the issue of the parking agreement on the ballot.
City Attorney Mark Tabakin said at the meeting that the hospital can’t meet payroll this week, so the agreement was crucial because the new owners need to step in as soon as possible.
For more on this issue, keep reading HudsonReporter.com. – Ray Smith

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