For the fourth year in a row, North Bergen’s Anthony Vainieri (D-8) will remain the chair of the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders, who decided to stick with the exact same leadership team they had last year.
The votes to appoint Vainieri as chair, Jersey City Freeholder Bill O’Dea (D-2) as vice chair and, Hoboken Freeholder Anthony Romano (D-5) as chair pro-tempore were all unanimous (9-0).
The meeting, which only lasted about 20 minutes, was about as straightforward as anyone could have hoped for, though Vainieri had the crowd in stitches when he referred to himself as “Anthony L. Romano” during the oath of office.
Otherwise, it was business as usual, with the now longtime chairman expressing thanks to his parents, children, state Senator (D-32)/North Bergen Mayor Nick Sacco, and his colleagues for the opportunity to lead the board yet again.
“To my colleagues: thank you everyone for your confidence again. This is the fourth year in a row, that hasn’t been done in a long time. I respect that, I honor that: thank you very much,” Vainieri expressed.
“I want to work with everybody again. I want to work with our new Freeholder [Fanny Cedeno] today two woman, on both sides [of the dais]. That’s the way we have to do it.”
Cedeno (D-6) became the latest member of the board following a Democratic county committee appointment last night, making her the latest woman on the board opposite West New York Freeholder Caridad Rodriguez (D-7).
Vainieri also praised County Executive Tom DeGise, his directors, and other staff for keeping the county government moving smoothly.
The often outspoken O’Dea was even more succinct in his remarks after being sworn in as vice chair.
“I want to thank my colleagues for their continued support and I look forward to continuing working with County Executive Tom DeGise and the administration to get a lot of positive things done from out side,” he said.
DeGise, he performed the oaths of office for Vainieri, O’Dea, and Romano, explained that keeping the 2019 leadership in place is a solid indicator of peace and unity at the county level.
“Having [seen] the last two years, one of them was a year of war and one of them was a year of peace, I think today was an affirmation from the freeholders that by the mayors, by my administration, by the mayors of all the towns: we like peace better,” DeGise told HCV.
“We do a whole lot better, and serve the public much, much better, when we’re not fighting, so I think this was good omen.”
The meeting streamed live on our Facebook page and can be viewed below: