Bayonne Briefs

State finally issues report on ‘missing’ millions

The New Jersey Department of Education’s Office of Fiscal Accountability and Compliance issued its report on the whereabouts of millions of dollars of allegedly missing school capital projects money.
The city contended in December that the Bayonne Board of Education had not reimbursed it for $11.8 million the city bonded for the Bayonne School District years ago. The BBOE maintained that it had reimbursed the funds to the city via a $6 million payment and money it had written off on what it said were cooperative projects with the city.
In the report, the state office said it could not verify the total amount of reimbursements that were paid to the city by the BBOE, “Because the city and the Bayonne Board of Education were unable to provide complete, verifiable, factual documentation of the respective representations beyond the $6 million check.”
The state office also directed that any future funds received by BBOE, if based on projects bonded by the city, be forwarded to the city to reduce outstanding bond debt. It also recommended that future agreements between the two be spelled out in appropriate written documents, such as memorandums of understanding, and be memorialized by an approved board resolution.
Mayor James Davis released a statement about the report, saying it lends credence to the city’s position over the last 11 months.
“This confirms what we have been saying all along,” Davis said on Nov. 20. For the past several years, there was no paper trail kept between the city and the Board of Education. This lack of documentation and failure to follow best practices has caused doubt and concern within our community as to how taxpayers’ money was spent by the city and Board of Education.”
Board President William Lawson issued a statement saying that the report was received from the state and was discussed at the board’s Nov. 17 meeting.

Bayonne driver charged in two highway deaths

The driver of the car that struck and killed two Bayonne men on Route 440 on Nov. 2 was charged with two counts of vehicular homicide on Nov. 18.
Waqas Ibrar, 24, of Bayonne was arrested by the Bayonne Police Department, according to a daily newspaper.
Media outlets reported that he was allegedly driving more than 100 miles per hour at the time of the accident.
His bail was originally set at $150,000 cash for each count and he was remanded to the Hudson County Jail, a news report said. The bail was later reduced to $125,000, with a 10 percent cash option.

Assumption parishioners hold procession protest

Dozens of parishioners of Our Lady of the Assumption Church on West 23rd Street, slated by the Newark Archdiocese for closure on Jan. 1, participated in a multi-street procession to protest the decision on Sunday morning, Nov. 22.
The procession included former Bayonne Mayor Joseph Doria, a church trustee.
The 113-year-old church is home to 1,700 parish families and is Bayonne’s only church to offer Catholic Masses in Italian and Spanish.

Art show to be held at Hendrickson’s Corner

Hendrickson’s Corner will commemorate the one-year anniversary of its first arts show ever with a new show, “The Street Peddlers Reunion,” on Saturday, Nov. 28 from 6 to 10 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 29, from 1 to 4 pm.
Admission is for the show on the second floor at 671 Broadway, corner of 31st Street.
Artists showcasing their work are Kevin Delaney, Dave Dziemian, Joanne Fedor, Lauren Ferguson, KristieAnn Fitzpatrick, James Herer, Erin Kachmar, Nick Macchia, Vito Moscato, Patty Mulligan, Ann Tedeschi, Maryann Torpey, and Billy Zbylut.
For more information, call (201) 437-4955.

Freeholders address homelessness problems

The Hudson County Board of Freeholders on Nov. 19 approved the county of Hudson to apply for and accept funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for Continuum of Care Program Funds to address the problems of homelessness.
The program provides medical care, medical case management, and social services programs for those who are homeless in the county, according to spokesman Edgar Martinez

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