With less than three weeks to go before Election Day, the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 825 and the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) New Jersey endorsed Hoboken Councilman-at-Large Ravi Bhalla for mayor.
“When we think about what is happening on the national level, as far as we need to make infrastructure investments. We need it for the national level, our state, we need it for our county and we need it for our city,” Mayor Dawn Zimmer said at Pier A Park this morning.
“And so Hoboken is very, very proud, I am very proud, that we have so many infrastructure projects that are started and we need to keep them going: Rebuild by Design, the Northwest Resiliency Park, water main projects – so much that’s happening in our city. And this team, this next mayor, Ravi Bhalla, he will be our infrastructure mayor.”
At the end of June, Zimmer announced that she would not be seeking a third term and practically endorsed Bhalla for mayor in the same breath.
She has since been campaigning aggressively for Bhalla, along with his running mates: fellow Councilman-at-Large James Doyle, Emily Jabbour and John Allen.
Greg Lalevee, the business manager of IUOE Local 825, noted Bhalla’s goals to keep Hoboken commuters happy.
“When we sat down with Ravi Bhalla, it’s clear he understands the needs of Hoboken and he understands how that’s tied to infrastructure,” Lalevee explained.
“He know that Hoboken relies on good transportation, so he has a plan and a vision to work with the Port Authority to ensure good PATH service, to work with New Jersey Transit and other stakeholders to ensure that the train terminal is modern and safe for the commuting public.”
Ray Pucino, the vice president and eastern regional manager of LIUNA, said he was confident that Bhalla “would be the standard bearer for carrying Hoboken into the future” before Bhalla addressed the dozens of labor workers on hand.
“I will be Hoboken’s infrastructure mayor, working hard everyday to upgrade our aging infrastructure including, roads, sidewalks, water mains, sewers, piers, as well as pushing ahead with bus and train service here in Hoboken,” said Bhalla, adding he’s committed to the completion of the $230 million Rebuild by Design project.
Bhalla faces stiff competition in next month’s mayoral contest, with Council President Jen Giattino, 1st Ward Councilman Mike DeFusco, Freeholder Anthony Romano (D-5), business owner Karen Nason and activist Ronald Bautista all in the mix.