A former Union City commissioner candidate and District 6 freeholder candidate, as well as an ex-Union City school principal, Jose Falto, 64, passed away from a heart attack last night while visiting his mother in Puerto Rico.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
Further details on Falto’s passing were not immediately available, though it was confirmed that the longtime Union City native had some health issues leading up to the June 4 Democratic primary against incumbent D-6 Freeholder Tilo Rivas – also a Union City commissioner. Falto lost the race handily.
Falto initially planned on running a ticket against Union City Mayor Brian Stack for the May 13 election, but changed his mind at the last minute when the clerk’s office ruled he did not have enough valid signatures to run, as well as the fact he did not have a full slate to run with him.
Stack’s guidance counselor in high school, Falto tried to have Stack recalled back in 2003 (h/t Hudson Reporter) and ran in a special election for a commissioner seat in 2005, per Hudson Reporter. Neither effort was successful.
Falto was recently in court for a legal matter stemming from an incident back in September, where police arrested him for allegedly saying he might “kill someone” and that he was going to “get” Stack.
A lifelong educator who had been serving as a Hudson County Schools of Technology trustee since 2007, Falto was a Spanish EHS teacher in Union City from 1974 until 1978, before working as a guidance counselor in the district between 1978 and 1994.
After taking a brief hiatus from employment in Union City, Falto returned as a guidance counselor at Emerson High School from 1997 until 1999.
Falto closed out his full-time educational career with three consecutive principal jobs at Robert Waters Elementary School, the principal of a special education program and finally the Union City Alternative Education Program between 1999 and 2005.
Also a certified board member of the New Jersey School Board Association, Falto was known for telling friends, family and former students about how much he loved Union City and wanted to make positive changes for the municipality.
Hudson County View offers our sincerest condolences to Falto’s friends and family during this difficult time.