7 years later, Hoboken Mayor Bhalla still fighting ethics complaint filed by Belfiore


Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla is still fighting an ethics complaint filed by longtime political opponent Perry Belfiore over seven years ago, vowing to appeal a recent decision made by the state local finance board.

Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla (left) is still fighting an ethics complaint filed by longtime antagonist Perry Belifiore over a council vote that occurred nearly eight years ago. Belifiore screenshot via Ustream.
Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla (left) is still fighting an ethics complaint filed by longtime antagonist Perry Belfiore over a council vote that occurred nearly eight years ago. Belfiore screenshot via Ustream.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Bhalla, a two-term councilman-at-large before being elected mayor in November, received a notice of violation from the New Jersey Local Finance Board on November 13th, 2017.

” … The Board … concluded that voting in favor of a resolution providing for the continued legal services of Paul Condon, Esq. while he shared a lease agreement with Mr. Condon constitutes a direct or indirect financial or personal involvement that might reasonably be expected to impair his objectivity or independence of judgement,” wrote LFB Chair Timothy Cunningham.

The letter also states that Bhalla is entitled to an administrative hearing within 30 days of receipt of the notice and the $100 violation has already been waived by the board.

Rob Horowitz, a spokesman for Bhalla, denounced the decision as a “nakedly political decision by the Christie Administration.”

“Mayor Bhalla is appealing this nakedly political decision by the Christie Administration. This complaint has already been dismissed by an Administrative Law Judge on the merits as well as reversed by the Appeals Court back to the Local Finance Board because they made their initial ruling without even a quorum,” he said in an email.

“This was a routine and non-controversial Council vote, which would have passed no matter what Councilman Bhalla did. He voted based on the advice of the City’s Corporation Counsel that there was no conflict. We are confident he will prevail again on appeal and this baseless claim will be finally dismissed once and for all.”

Cunningham is a Christie appointee who is also the director of Local Government Services, a branch of the state Department of Community Affairs. Christie’s last day in office was January 16th.

Furthermore, the decision came down six days after Bhalla was elected mayor

Belfiore, a former 5th Ward council candidate and also ex-housing authority commissioner, insists Bhalla never told city officials the whole truth about this matter.

“The City of Hoboken is defending Ravi Bhalla from a lie he told the City of Hoboken. I’m going to insist the council do not approve the city to continue to defend Ravi Bhalla since he was never forthcoming about sharing a lease with Condon,” Belfiore said over the phone.

This complaint all the way back to May 10th 2010, when Belfiore filed a complaint against Bhalla over a February 17th, 2010 unanimous vote by the city council awarding Condon a $29,000 contract for special legal services.

In October 2014, an administrative law judge called the complaint frivolous and dismissed it, but the local finance board reinstated the complaint in December of the same year (h/t NJ Advance Media).

Additionally, Belfiore received a $51,000 settlement from the city last year after being escorted out of the October 21st, 2015 council meeting by police.

Bhalla was the council president at the time and urged Belfiore that he could not speak about a private citizen, in this instance Stan Grossbard, former Mayor Dawn Zimmer’s husband, during the public portion of the meeting.

Belfiore did not heed the warning and was ejected from the meeting before his five minutes was up.

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    • Here in the Country of Lindastan you must not question the King
      Questions lead to removal by the Royal Police Army
      They will put you in the Royal Mobile Swat Mobile and book you at the Mayors bullet proof desk
      At which time you can watch the HPD twitter feed and media complex hard at self promoting the safety of its citizens

      All is fine in Lindastan just don’t question the king or you will be fed to the lions

      The Shadow, The Cave dweller and the Shape of Water monster will blog you to a bloody pulp

  1. This is old news. Ravi is the greatest thing since an $80k Super PAC. While Trump’s approval rating is around 40% Ravi only got 32.75% of support in the last election. With such underwhelming support us Ravi Bots need to stick together blogging, bloviating and bashing our enemy into hyper partisan submission more than ever.

    News calling into question Ricky Ravi Tavi’s ethics are based on racism pure and simple. I don’t need evidence just making the assertion alone will whip up the base into a looney liberal lather that even Linda Lou will be impressed with. The scorched earth takedown of Ravi’s critics must continue from the shadows of the dark web zeitgeist. I hear even Vijay the malingerer and hanger on has signed off on this.

  2. We can already see what kind of mayor Ravi is going to be — hide behind paid political PR guys to cover up the fact that he likely lied about a conflict….to get a friend a job. It’s kind of like the odd fact that Ravi’s law firm had a contract with the city a year before race got a job.

    What’s really sad is that Ravi will continue to hide behind good liberal causes, to hide all his quid-pro-quo — he is an EXCELLENT politician.

  3. I am shocked to see the new blog has gone the way of The Hoboken Journal, the old blog is promoting Old Guard narratives it used to be there to debunk, and that anyone is pretending to be resisting anything except “Unelectable” proving them wrong.

  4. I just read through all the comments on this thread and couldn’t identify a single coherent substantive thought. It is easy to get angry about the ravings of the small number of troubled souls responsible for much of the strange and nasty commentary, but in truth they harm nobody but themselves so there is no reason to be angry. I feel nothing but sadness for their troubled souls. The pain they feel is real. I hope some day they each receive the the help they need be it spiritual, medicinal or whatever.

    The same cannot be said for elected officials whose actions have real consequences to the community they serve.

    • I think it’s sad that Ravi is not being worshipped. I think it’s sad that anything critical of Ravi is brought up at all. I think it’s sad that I live in exile in JC but still care so much about Hoboken. I think it’s sad I cheerlead personal attacks on my political enemies. I think it’s sad that I am a liberal wimp who is in a bubble of butt hurt ness yet I use that term obsessively. Mark my words. I am important. I am very sad. I forgot my Voltaire quotes.

      • Like I said – it’s sad. I really wish that instead of proving my point with another rant you would take a moment to reflect. There are plenty of resources available to help you but it’s up to you to accept that you have a problem and take advantage of them to get better.

        Do you have a friend you could confide in? That might be a good first step. Sometimes sharing your pain with a confidante, even one without professional training, can help you see things more clearly and you toward a better place.

          • You spam here all day attacking people whose opinions you dont like. You add nothing to the conversation here. You are Lane Bajardi without the brains. Got nothing but attacks against private citizens expressing their opinion. Instead of ruining John Heinis’ site, why dont you go back to your dead blog and talk to yourself under 12 different screen names? Notice you took down comments- cause you don’t get any. That’s why you troll here. An angry, nasty troll who tries to hurt people.

          • Sad when forced out losers and a insane vulgar Unablogger turns on everyone
            Based on a mistakenly sent text message,it looks like Team Bhalla is about to cast off the crazy unablogger from Sybil’s cave.

            Hope nobody is near Sybil that day… especially crazy loner with gun shooting fantasies…

          • Plainly I am living rent-free in your addled brain. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for you. You don’t have the chops for it. Send someone more interesting and maybe we’ll talk.

            Intercepted text message from Bhalla? What’s “sad” is there’s no one left to tell you what a silly plot device that is to move for little story forward. And what’s the story? That I am being “cut loose” from my lucrative position of getting abused for expressing a contrary opinion by a pack of dreary little trolls whose intellectual skillset is limited to personal insults and outings? For a guy that likes to prattle on about the glories of the 1st Amendment, you expend an awful lot of energy trying to bully people into fearing the consequences of exercising it.

            If anyone should be charging rent, it’s Heinis. You have all but singe-handedly ruined any chance this site had of generating a community. There is no exchange of ideas, no debate, no emerging voices to be reckoned with. There’s only occasional attempts at dialog met by outings, insults, and innuendoes. All it proves is a lack of imagination, a lack of self-esteem, a lack of regard for your host, and the lost capacity to hold up one end of an adult conversation.

            If that’s what you wanted, mission accomplished.

          • Now issuing death threats through images… a picture of dead horses is a death threat.

            Knock Knock… we would like to ask you a few questions….

            Maybe Bonkers for Bhalla is having a finale!

    • More indecipherable gibberish from the alt right dead blog-ghost. He’s haunting you John Heinis…. You can’t escape. Did you hear the DOW closed -675.75!! Wall Street HATES the fake Memo!