PARTYTIME IN HOBOKEN, Thursday night joins Friday and Saturday 3:00a.m. Bar closing!

PARTYTIME IN HOBOKEN, Thursday night joins Friday and Saturday 3:00a.m. Bar closing!

June 7, 2012  Ed Mecka - updated: 11:30 p.m.

On May 2, 2012, the Hoboken City Council passed an Ordinance amending Chapter 68 "Alcoholic Beverages" to change and update the hours of operation of licensed liquor establishments.

Viewing the 3 minute City Council meeting video, one would tend to believe the City's reason for making the changes “the City Council wishes to more closely align the City's hours of operation for licensed establishments with the modern holidays recognized and celebrated by the City of Hoboken."

There were no public speakers and no substantive discussion among Council members.  Short, sweet, and the ordinance passed on the second reading.  The Ordinance changes were sponsored by 6th ward Councilwoman Jennifer Giattino and seconded by Councilman at large Councilman David Mello, both aligned with Mayor Dawn Zimmer.

Upon closer examination of the “well intentioned changes,” Hoboken now has THREE late night bar closings!  Either by accident or design.... Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights will have the lucrative 3:00a.m. closings.

Prior to the changes, Hoboken's Alcoholic Beverage Control Ordinance regulated City bar closing times as;

Sunday thru Thursday  - 2:00a.m.
Friday and Saturday – 3:00a.m.

After the changes, the landscape changed to provide an additional late night bar closings;

Sunday thru Wednesday – 2:00a.m.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday – 3:00a.m.

Hoboken residents have first-hand experience with dealing with the weekend warriors who descend on our City disrupting our quality of life. 

The issue is further complicated by the fact that most New Jersey towns have 2:00a.m. bar closings on Thursday night.  That fact alone has the potential of bringing even larger party crowds into Hoboken on a night when most families have to get up early on Friday morning for work and/or school.

What was the Zimmer administration thinking?  Over the past two years, the administration has had a series of missteps with respect to TRANSPARENCY and "behind the scenes" shenanigans.

Here is how the Council pulled this one off:

ORIGINAL ORDINANCE - Sections (A) (B) (C):

Original Section 68-4 (A)(B)(C).jpg

AMENDED ORDINANCE Section "A".  Notice the insertion of item (5) "any other Friday, between the hours of 3:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m."   

Amendment to ABC section 68-4.jpg


Amendment Section 68-4 (C).jpg

Apparently, someone did not like the inconsistencies between Sections (A) and (C).  Guess it was much easier to just insert (A)(5) "any other Friday, between the hours of 3:00 a.m. and 6 a.m." making it compatible with Section (C).   This resulted in a new Ordinance allowing THREE late night 3:00 a.m. closings (THURSDAY, FRIDAY, and SATURDAY).

When Sections (A) and (C) are in agreement, they [quote from Section (C)] " impose a closing time of 3:00 a.m. in the morning on Friday, Saturday, and/of Sunday and 2:00 a.m. in the morning on all other days."

All of this accomplished without public knowledge, input, debate, or having to deal with the OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT and its pain in the ass regulations.  And as a BONUS, the liquor industry will be very accommodating during the upcoming election.

More to come!

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