Hudson County, New Jersey

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Grade2.pngC
Budget
{{{1}}}
Meetings
{{{1}}}
Elected Officials
{{{1}}}
Administrative Officials
{{{1}}}
Permits, zoning
Na.png
Audits N
600px-Red x.png
Contracts
{{{1}}}
Lobbying N
600px-Red x.png
Public records N
600px-Red x.png
Local taxes
{{{1}}}
County websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process

Hudson County is one of 21 counties in New Jersey. The population is 634,266 as of 2010.[1]

Website evaluation

The good

  • Budget is published.[2]
  • Officials are listed with phone numbers in the directory.[3]
  • Meeting schedule and agenda available.[4]
  • Current bids are online.[5]
  • Permits and zoning are not applied at a county level in New Jersey.
  • Tax information is available.[6]

The bad

Budget

By a vote of 7-1, the 2011 budget is $472,594,049 which is almost $7 million less than the 2010 budget.[7] The budget includes a property tax hike of 3.8% over 2010 of $279.6 million.[8]

Hudson will receive $87.4 million more in state education aid in 2011 than in 2010. The aid will total $878.4 million.[9]

Budget cuts in 2010 led to the Hudson County Schools of Technology board to vote away with sports two countywide high schools. Some schools are trying to get some sports reinstated despite the fact that the budget is already passed.[10]

Area Cost
Legislative, Executive, and Finance $15,276,677
Insurance $44,753,140
Constitutional Offices $22,459,099
Judiciary $1,795,510
Regulation $27,601,124
Parks $7,840,765
Roads $32,510,897
Health and Human Services $68,802,161
Family Services $52,185,305
Corrections $63,243,351
Eduation $33,990,423
Debt Service $19,726,438
Statutory Expenditures $37,494,072
Capital Improvements $29,030,177
Grants $15,098,220
Total $472,594,050

Stimulus

Hudson County received a total of $425,640,499 from the economic stimulus package.ref>Recovery (dead link)</ref>

# of Awards Total Amount Reported Jobs
Contracts 22 $79,401,480 95.96
Grants 227 $343,988,080 468.75
Loans 1 $2,250,939 0
Total 250 $425,640,499 564.71

Public Employees

Elected Officials

Term Length[11]

  • 3 years

Responsibilities[12]

  • Legislative branch
  • Check on the executive branch (County Executive)
  • Approves contracts
  • Budgeting
First Last Position Term Expiration District
Doreen DiDomenico Freeholder 2011 District 1
William O\'Dea Chairman 2011 District 2
Jefrey Dublin Freeholder 2011 District 3
Eliu Rivera Freeholder 2011 District 4
Anthony Romano Freeholder 2011 District 5
Tilo Rivas Freeholder 2011 District 6
Jose Munoz Freeholder 2011 District 7
Thomas Liggio Freeholder 2011 District 8
Albert Cifelli Freeholder 2011 District 9

Administrative Officials

The County Executive is Thomas A. DeGise.

Term Length[13]

  • 4 years

Responsibilities[14]

  • Choose department heads
  • Manage departments and divisions
Albert Santos Clerk of the Board of Chosen Freeholders
Cheryl Fuller County Finance Officer
Frederick Tomkins Registered Municipal Accountant
Donato Battista County Counsel
Thomas DeGise County Executive

Corruption Case

Former Hudson County Executive Robert C. Janiszewski was found guilty of tax evasion and accepting bribes and received a sentence of 41 months in 2005. Janiszewski was County Executive from 1988 to 2001. He had taken bribes in exchange for county contracts. In one instance he received a $20,000 bribe from Dr. Oscar Sandoval for contracts for psychiatric services for the county jail and mental hospital.[15]

Schwartz Simon Edelstein & Celso, the law firm that represented Hudson County against Janiszewski in 2008, has accused Hudson County of owing them $125,000 in legal fees. According to county spokesman James Kennelly, the original fee agreed upon was $275,000, but the firm went over budget without contacting county officials. The county offered $85,000 to the firm to avoid going to court but the firm refused.[16]

Salaries

See also: New Jersey state government salary

Two former Sheriff Chiefs are being investigate for double dipping. John Bartucci and Andrew Conti are accused to receiving their pension from the police and fire pension fund while having a job covered by that system. Batrucci earned $174,909.94 in pension monies as chief during 2008-2010 and Conti earned $19,217.22 from the fund over a four month span.[17]

The Hudson County Community College average salary range is $18,000 to $58,000.[18]

An undersheriff in Hudson County earned $90,000 a year in 2008.[19]

State Senator Nicholas Sacco holds three public positions in Hudson County. He is a State Senator, mayor of North Bergen, and the assistant superintendent of schools. His combined salary is $278,000.[20]

Below is the 2009 median police officer salary in cities of Hudson County.[21]

City 2009 Median Salary Ranking Salary Among 466 PD # of Officers # who made more than $100k 2008 Crimes per 100 Residents Ranking Crime Rate among 466 PD
Bayonne $87,428 271 197 66 20.8 199
East Newark $51,988 459 7 1 12 334
Guttenberg $78,763 356 21 1 18.8 225
Harrison $75,480 377 46 11 21.9 190
Hoboken $90,208 227 152 46 29.2 116
Jersey City $88,904 248 856 159 40.9 59
Kearny $97,007 129 118 52 30.6 105
North Bergen $82,484 322 115 20 17.5 252
Secaucus $106,648 52 56 34 44.5 49
Union City $102,516 75 152 95 29.6 113
Weehawken $93,546 179 55 19 33.7 84
West New York $83,023 314 103 25 22.9 176

Settlements

Hudson County had to pay a $300,000 settlement over sexual harassment charges against two corrections officers.[22]

Richard Greene, who was charged with corruption but had them eventually dropped, but was not rehired by Hudson County received a $293,000 settlement.[23]

Pensions

See also: New Jersey public pensions

No pension information was available.

Lobbying

See also: New Jersey government sector lobbying

In 2011, Hudson County spent $20,000 on lobbying firm Winning Strategies Washington through the Hudson County Improvement Authority.[24]

Year Amount
2011 $20,000
2010 $80,000
2009 $80,000
2008 $80,000
2007 $80,000
2006 $40,000
Total $380,000

Transparency & public records

The Open Public Records Act (OPRA) was passed by the NJ State Legislature in 2001 and guarantees citizen access to a wide variety of government documents. For more information on OPRA and public records see OPRA Central.

Taxes

The website has a separate website dedicated to taxes and has property tax rates listed.[25]

Below is a table showing where revenue for the 2011 budget came from[26]


Area Percent
Raised by Taxation 59.60%
Other Revenue 10.60%
Family Services 7.40%
State Reimbursement 10.30%
Surplus 5.20%
Health and Human Services 3.70%
Grants 3.20%

Voter fraud

The Associate Director of the NJEA was caught on tape discussing voter fraud for a mayoral race in Hudson County in 1997.[27]

External links

References