Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Reformers win Hackensack City Council election

Hackensack Councilman Jorge Meneses, left, chatting with Kenneth Martin, right, the Coalition for Open Government's lead candidate, this afternoon in front of the entrance to the polls at Hackensack High School.

Citizens for Change, the slate of Hackensack City Council reformers headed by incumbent John Labrosse, won today's non-partisan municipal election.

Official results show residents rejected the dirty campaign of the Hackensack Coalition for Open Government, also known as "the Zisa slate," which was backed and financed in part by Lynne Hurwitz, the city's Democratic boss.

Councilman John Labrosse, right, speaking to supporters as votes were tallied tonight at the Elks Lodge on Linden Street in Hackensack.
The first 5 columns represent votes for Citizens for Change.

The winners will be sworn in on July 1.

Since he was elected in 2009, Labrosse has been out-voted 4-1 on the council.

Labrosse and the other four members of his slate were the targets of a campaign of lies and distortions mounted by the Zisa family political dynasty, which has ruled Hackensack for decades.

This morning, former Mayor Jack Zisa blasted independent candidate Victor E. Sasson for a campaign flier that urged voters to end the Zisa family's corrupt rule.

Zisa seemed to be saying he was an honest mayor during his 16 years in office, ending in 2005.

But he didn't explain why he stood by and did nothing while his brother Ken, the city's police chief and a state Assemblyman, broke the law.

Jack Zisa is the city's broker for employee health insurance, and his cousin, Joseph C. Zisa Jr., is city attorney.

Sasson, whose name appeared at the bottom of a column of 10 other candidates, finished last with 344 votes, City Clerk Debra Heck said tonight.

Heck released the following vote totals:

Labrosse, 2,008; Kathy Canestrino, 1,908; David Sims, 1,911; Rose Greenman, 1,788; and Leo Battaglia, 1,804.

Kenneth Martin, a former cop who headed the Coalition for Open Government, received 1,651 votes, Heck said.


  1. I'm sorry your name on the ballot didn't end up having an impact. Sorry also to see that there was at least one ward where nobody voted for you.

  2. That's OK. It was a crash course on democracy, and the reformers won. That's my consolation prize.


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