Independent Hoboken Council-at-Large candidate Cindy Wiegand is calling for the restructuring of the city’s recreation department as a nonprofit with up to six board members.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“My proposal would provide Hoboken a framework to help to develop new recreational opportunities commiserate with Hoboken’s status as New Jersey’s crown jewel. No one is
discussing using the Union Dry Dock site as a place to create a world class water complex and pool,” Wiegand said in a statement.
“The ability to complement the current developer commitment to building a pool in town with a recreational fundraising entity could allow us to create a magnificent water complex adjacent to the Hudson set against Manhattan’s majestic backdrop. Just think of the possibilities for residents of all ages!”
According to her plan, a not-for-profit entity would leverage the current rec department’s strengths and resources and augment it with greater input and direction from the community.
Additionally, she says this approach would provide the ability to raise funds from residents, businesses, and philanthropic organizations to increase its financial wherewithal to underwrite and expand activities.
Specifically, she is calling for the rec dept. receiving the same city budget allocation that it currently receives, maintaining “legacy sponsorships” to maintain programs like baseball and softball, and having public and private representatives on a board.
This board would include the recreation director, currently Leo Pellegrini, one or two city council members, and three city residents.
“As the inventors of America’s national pastime, it is well past time that Hoboken leads on reimaging the blueprint for community recreation. Recreation is vital for children, teenagers, seniors and all those in between,” Wiegand added.
“Our city’s current offerings are too limited in scope and are plagued by a signup process that is uneven and lacks transparency and that too frequently leaves residents immensely frustrated.”
There are 10 council-at-large candidates seeking three seats in the non-partisan November 2nd municipal elections, where Mayor Ravi Bhalla is running unopposed.