Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla praised first responders and bar owners for pitching in to show a “clear improvement in quality of life” during this year’s annual Leprecon bar crawl.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“After receiving a final report from Police Chief Ferrante and based on my observations during the day, I am pleased that there was a clear improvement in quality of life and safety throughout the city,” Bhalla said in a statement.
“I thank the bar owners and hospitality industry for working to make this a dramatically safer event and look forward to a collaborative relationship moving forward.”
As Hudson County View reported yesterday, Hoboken police, assisted by a number of local departments, responded to 386 calls for service, down from 488 in 2017, 23 people were transported to hospital, as opposed to 28 last year, and only four arrests – 11 people were charged criminally last year.
Police Chief Kenneth Ferrante and the mayor’s office also noted that only three tavern reports were written on Saturday, comparing that to 24 tavern reports made during Santacon this past December.
2nd Ward Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher, who remains at odds with Bhalla after supporting 6th Ward Councilwoman Jen Giattino’s mayoral candidacy, commended the current administration for the successful initiatives, but said she would like to see this trend continue without having to close bars.
On Saturday, Hoboken residents enjoyed having less reckless behavior on our streets and in our neighborhoods than in prior years. Especially when you compare it to SantaCon. I commend our Mayor and public safety officials for making our safety their priority,” Fisher said.
“Most, but not all, statistics improved around 20%, it seems. But I think it will be critical to understand the drivers of this as we look ahead. We had approximately 15% more officers/inspectors, 50% less revelers, 7 of the busiest / largest bars shut down on one of their biggest earning days and an extensive media campaign suggesting people think twice about coming to Hoboken. I would have thought the improvements would have been more.”
Fisher also says officials should work on building a better relationship with bar owners so that everyone can remain open next time around.
The Hoboken Alcoholic Beverage Control Board suspended five liquor licenses late last month, including 1Republik permanently losing their liquor license.
Additionally, Black Bear Bar & Grill and Tally Ho decided to close voluntarily.