Update (February 23): The Hoboken City Council voted 7-2 to approve a resolution to issue bonds for the uptown flood pump. Council Members Bhalla, Castellano, Cunningham, Doyle, Giattino, Mello, and Occhipinti voted in favor; Council Members Mason and Russo voted against. The 7-2 margin means the resolution achieved the two-thirds majority necessary to authorize the expenditure, which means the City can move forward with its application for the low-interest loan for the project.
In December, the Hoboken City Council unanimously approved moving forward with construction of a second flood pump in uptown Hoboken. The project would be funded by a bond issuance, the proceeds of which would be used to pay back a low-interest loan provided by the state at a historically low 0.5-0.75% interest rate. In addition, 19% of the loan’s principal would be forgiven at closing using federal Hurricane Sandy recovery funds. The pump would be operated by the North Hudson Sewerage Authority (NHSA) under a 99-year lease from the City.
Last week, a second vote was held on a resolution to authorize and approve the issuance and sale of up to $11,950,000 in general obligation bonds for the project. A two-thirds majority (six votes) is required for the City Council to authorize an expenditure, but the resolution passed by only a 5-2 margin. Of the seven Council Members present (Council Members Occhipinti and Russo were absent), Council Members Bhalla, Cunningham, Doyle, Giattino, and Mello voted in favor, but Council Members Castellano and Mason voted against the resolution. In a statement released after the vote, City Council President Ravi Bhalla said: Continues..