The Hoboken Republican Party is asking for an apology from Hoboken 2nd Ward Councilwoman Beth Mason after her mayoral campaign in 2009, as well as city council campaign in 2011, received a combined $37,500 in fines from New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (NJ ELEC) earlier this month.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
The link sends readers to PolitickerNJ, who broke the initial story, though Mason disputed the amount of the fine listed in the article ($44,000) and added there was no need for an apology during a phone interview with Hudson County View.
“I admit that we were late filing but there were extenuating circumstances for that which we could’ve fought, but we decided not to for the sake of the Hoboken taxpayers,” Mason said, adding that she believed the commission made some errors as well.
“I absolutely believe filings should be transparent, [but] what person hasn’t had a parking ticket or a late filing for something?,” she said, noting that the total violations came to about $37,500, which was reduced to $27,760 by ELEC when the team offered to pay the fines in advance.
The fine was called the 15th largest in ELEC history, with reviews of ELEC reports from any given election cycle typically taking years to sift through.
The formal Hoboken mayoral candidate also said that, she paid approximately $9,700 in fines individually and the total figure was so large since the “One Hoboken” slate from 2009 saw each member of the team get fined by ELEC.
According to a previous report by the commission in March, some of this filings from this election cycle were as many as 222 days late. The contributions and expenditures in question for 2009 totaled $315,435 and $407,809, respectively.
The figures in 2011 were more modest: with $99,692 obtained in contributions and $42,424 used in expenditures.
Hoboken Housing Authority Commissioner James Sanford is the head of the Hoboken Republican Party, getting trounced by Union City Mayor Brian Stack in the 33rd Legislative District State Senate race in November 2013 – the last time he ran for office.