LETTER: Here’s why ‘Independently Together’ are the best choices for Hoboken council-a-large


In a letter to the editor, Hoboken resident Nancy Colasurdo explains why she feel the “Independently Together” team are the best choices for city council-at-large.

The Hoboken “Independently Together” council-at-large slate, from left to right: Cheryl Fallick, Sheila Brennan, and Paul Presinzano.

Dear Editor,

We’re all exhausted, aren’t we?

From troubling news. From battles about how to protect ourselves and our families. From staying on top of what is happening around us while still living our lives.

How do we move forward? What is the answer to dealing with all of this?

I have one idea: electing people at the city level who will passionately make our communities better so we don’t have to think about it on a daily basis. Less fretting equals better quality of life.

If we’ve learned anything in the last year and a half, it’s that we want that.

Let me give you a real time example of this. In Hoboken our mayor, Ravi Bhalla, is running unopposed in next month’s election. His administration did an admirable job of getting us through the roughest moments of the pandemic and I am grateful for that.

But now I see that as a given. He’s not going anywhere. The health crisis will continue to be handled.

This means, for our sanity, it’s time to look ahead. It’s not just me wanting to get on with things, right?

During Hurricane Ida we saw places flood in Hoboken that have never flooded before. Our residents want representatives who will prioritize these dire issues.

As frequent pedestrians, we’re worried about crossing the street and getting hit by a bike or car. We want to know if development is going to crowd out some who have lived here for decades.

Will unrestricted greed cost us our homes and force us out of the community we love? And then there’s parking. While I’m supportive of the desire to be as green as possible in our efforts, is subtracting parking spaces the answer?

All of this is happening. Meanwhile, if we elect Mayor Bhalla’s entire slate to city council, our town will be run by one voice, a voice that has yet to address these issues. We need a shift, something that will not be achieved by the same policies.

Therefore, in this moment, the option provided by the Independently Together (IT4Hoboken) slate on the ballot is vital.

I don’t know a person in this town better acquainted with how the levers of city government work than Cheryl Fallick.

She is a relentless advocate, already well-known for stirring up “good trouble” to keep people from being displaced from their homes or finding them affordable options.

Her knowledge base is deeper and richer than one issue – i.e., development and our waterfront — but that one is her baby.

Sheila Brennan loves Hoboken so much she moved here from Manhattan and jumped right into community work. As a homeowner and landlord, she incurred 3 feet of water during Ida. Think she’s motivated to work on that issue?

Paul Presinzano, who along with his wife, Ritu, is raising a son here, loves where he lives but sees ways to bring the town forward, particularly when it comes to spending, technology, and transparency.

While there is commonality on the IT4Hoboken team, it also represents three distinct voices the city council desperately needs. There are people in our communities who are naturals for city government. They don’t need to get into the weeds – they’re already there.

With political parties not in the equation at the local election level, we get to look at people instead of a presumed set of beliefs. It’s back to basics. A government with a leader who sometimes gets it right, but who – like anyone else – needs to be held accountable.

One team on the ballot gets us that on Nov. 2. It will bring vigorous debate to our most pressing issues. The other puts us in a position to trust one person, one voice, to do right by our city.

So many feel we’ve had enough to contend with nationally the last five years and we’re ready to bring a more democracy-friendly leadership to our towns. Yes, plural.

Shouldn’t we all be opting for that checks-and-balances government structure we learned about in civics class? Hoboken is but one example.

Not to get all rosy eyed about it, but I crave that. Count me in for the less stressful option.

Let’s please – I beg you – move forward.

Nancy Colasurdo
Hoboken resident

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  1. Isn’t it technically impossible to be “independently together”? Aren’t they polar opposites? Doesn’t one automatically preclude the other? Iff they can’t come up with a clearly defined name that actually names sense, what does that foretell about their ability to run the city?

    Not to mention all the things this letter blames the city for that have nothing to do with the mayor or city council, and are out of their control to change. I get that you want different leaders, that’s fine. But if you’re writing an endorsement letter, it’s at the very least incumbent on you to put forth a realistic argument.

    Count me supportively unsupportive.

  2. Ward City Council members Fisher/Giattino scrambled at the last minute and cobbled together ticket of their camp followers to form this supposedly independent council slate to try to offset the overwhelming support for in Hoboken Mayor Bhalla and City Council at Large members James Doyle, Emily Jabbour and new guy Joe Quintero.
    The needless squabbling and infighting we have all to often seen on the City Council needs to end and our elected officials need to actually work together. It is long past the time for elected officials to put aside their personal grudges.
    Hoboken’s residents deserve to be represented by people who have a real history of working to move our city froward and realistic solutions to our many challenges.

    • The way I see it, all 9 members of the city council play a role in tension on the that we all see whenever we tune in. The little quid pro maneuver removed Falco and during this election we have an chance to remove two additional people that are part of the problems by voting Jabbour and Doyle out. Maybe these 3 can improve things so I’ll be voting for them.

      • You really believe that? You don’t think “these three” would just automatically vote the way Tif and #4placejen want them to? Really? Not sure if this is disingenuous or just naive.

      • The balance of power on the council needs to change. Fisher and her parasitic twin (look it up) have not been a “check” on executive power, they are obsessed with seizing executive power for themselves, and at the expense of Hoboken residents. Whose idea was it to abolish Constituent Services at the height of the pandemic? Fisher and her parasitic twin. The IT slate is a desperate ploy to control the council, cobbled together at the last minute. If you like the Mayor’s governance of Hoboken, and want a council that is not obstructive for obstruction’s sake, vote for his slate.