Hoboken Freeholder Anthony Romano (D-5) said he was “pleased and honored” to be running for mayor at his kickoff event at his campaign headquarters this morning.
“I am pleased and honored to announce my candidacy for the esteemed office of the mayor of the City of Hoboken,” Romano said to applause from a room of about 75 supporters.
“During my terms as a Hudson County freeholder, I gained a tremendous amount of experience and a profound understanding of the local government – and working with the many different levels of government in our state and in our county.”
Romano, a third generation Hoboken resident, also said that he believes that the chief job of the mayor should be to be an advocate for the people.
Hudson County View first reported that Romano, often referred to by his nickname “Stick,” would be entering the mayoral contest about two weeks ago.
Then, one week ago, Mayor Dawn Zimmer stunned political observers by announcing she would not seek re-election, instead endorsing Councilman-at-Large Ravi Bhalla to take her seat.
Taking questions from the media, the freeholder told Hudson County View that he was “surprised” Zimmer backed out of the race “since there had been commitments that had been given to her.”
Zimmer already had the highly sought after endorsement of Union City Mayor/state Senator Brian Stack (D-33) and appeared to also have the support of Democratic gubernatorial nominee Phil Murphy when she exited the race.
On June 6th, Romano scored nearly 4,000 votes in the Democratic primary election for freeholder, when he ran on the Hudson County Democratic Organization line with the likes of Murphy and Stack.
When questioned if his plan was ultimately to be on the ballot twice on November 7th, Romano said that decision was going to be made at a later date.
“Well, in time we’ll decide with the campaign staff, and others, what road we’ll take in that area,” responded Romano.
The retired police captain, as well as a former board of education trustee, dives into a crowded field that already includes Bhalla, 1st Ward Councilman Mike DeFusco, business owner Karen Nason and local activist Ronald Bautista – with Council Jen Giattino to formally enter the contest tonight.
With that in mind, Romano stated that his game plan remains the same regardless of how many people decide to run for mayor in the Mile Square City.
“Whenever I run for any office, you have to give 100 percent. I recognize and respect each opponent that’s in the race, they’re all well-qualified, and I just have to do my best and stay focused on the people that matter: and that’s the people, the City of Hoboken.”