By VICTOR E. SASSON
On Friday, The Record ran a poorly edited brief on Hackensack's proposed budget, and buried it inside Local (L-6) -- in contrast to a full-blown story on Teaneck's spending plan on the front of the local-news section two days earlier.
And even though the May 14 Hackensack City Council election is the most important in decades, the Woodland Park daily has written a grand total of only three stories so far, and has denied equal time to a former staffer, independent candidate Victor E. Sasson, editor of Eye on The Record.
Hackensack deserves better than this -- unless head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes and her deputy, Dan Sforza, want to preserve City Hall's patronage system and control of the city by cronies of the Zisa family.
Residents of Hackensack and other communities assaulted by noise from private jets at Teterboro Airport are disappointed to see the airport's control tower spared from closing as a result of federal budget cuts (A-1 and A-5).
A correction on A-2 notes Production Editor Liz Houlton and her snoring copy editors missed the misspelling of a word used in the North Jersey Spelling Bee.
A photo with the story leading Local shows a suspect's heavily damaged car at Englewood police headquarters, but the caption states the vehicle "blocked an entrance to an elementary school after he allegedly went on a drunken-driving rampage" (L-1).
Friday is sentencing day at the Bergen County Courthouse in Hackensack -- one of the busiest in the state -- but readers are being asked to believe the sentencing of a woman for stealing money from a Hackensack lawyer was the only thing worthy of a story today (L-1).
On the other hand, given the $6 million in legal fees Hackensack has had to shell out in cases involving its disgraced former police chief, Ken "I Am The Law" Zisa, this is a rare instance where a lawyer isn't doing the stealing.
City Attorney Joseph C. Zisa Jr. -- the ex-chief's cousin -- and the City Council recently pushed through an additional $500,000 to pay for legal bills racked up by two police officers who were acquitted of criminal charges in one of those cases.
The Record has put readers on a starvation diet with another half-page restaurant review from Julia Sexton, the critic for Westchester Magazine (BL-18 on Friday).
Does Sexton live in North Jersey? Is she a pal of Food Editor Susan Leigh Sherrill? Why is she writing restaurant reviews in the absence of Staff Writer Elisa Ung?
And why bother with Diwani, a mediocre Indian restaurant in Ridgewood that charges $10.95 for a bread sampler?