New Jersey Working Families State Director Sue Altman is teeing off on the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders for renewing their contract with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement last night.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“The Hudson County Board of Commissioners represented New Jersey politics at its worst last night,” Altman said in a statement.
“The commissioners decided to ignore the clear will of their constituents – represented by hundreds of residents participating in a staggering 12 hours of testimony – and approved a new contract that continues the county’s sorry history of complicity with the worst of our nation’s immigration policies.”
The marathon meeting started at 1 p.m. yesterday and didn’t draw a conclusion until after 1 a.m. Public comment spanned for over nine hours and by the time the vote came the meeting had been going on for more than 10 hours.
Despite over 200 public speakers coming out against the measure, which has been on the books since 1996 and was last renewed in 2018, the freeholders approved the renewal by a tally of 6-3, as HCV first reported.
Freeholders Bill O’Dea (D-2), Joel Torres (D-4), and Fanny Cedeno (D-6) voted no.
The most recent iteration of the contract netted the county $120 per detainee, per day and officials said the agreement will earn them about $8 million this year, though O’Dea argued that with 93 detainees currently in custody that figure is more like $4 million.
The contract can now run for up to a decade, according to the resolution, despite Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise indicating that he planned to “phase out” the agreement shortly after the deal was approved again in 2018.
Altman continued that Hudson County Democrats more closely resemble the Donald Trump (R) administration based on what occurred at last night’s meeting.
“Even as the national Democratic Party is calling for immigration reform, Hudson County Democrats are allying themselves with the worst policies of the Trump administration by agreeing to sign a new contract with a totally broken federal agency to perpetuate policies that rip families apart and divide our communities,” she exclaimed.
“Rather than standing with advocates pushing for reforms, the Hudson County commissioners voted to prioritize money over civil rights — all while condescending toward their own constituents. We applaud the dozens of grassroots advocates who stood up for justice last night.”