Voters in Jersey City and Hillside will head to the polls on Tuesday for a run-off in non-partisan competitions where no candidate received the required 50% of the vote.
In Ward C of Jersey City, Richard Boggiano, a colorful two-term city councilor, faces off against Kevin Bing, president of the Journal Square Community Association.
The race will determine whether Mayor Steven Fulop has six or seven votes on city council when he begins his third term on January 1. While Boggiano had occasionally criticized the mayor, he ran for Fulop’s list this year.
Boggiano was the best voter with 2,385 votes (44.7%). Bing received 1,473 (29.7%) and Tom Zuppa was third with 1,309 (26.4%). Zuppa approved of Boggiano.
Hudson County Republican President Jose Arango and local Jersey City GOP leaders on Friday endorsed Boggiano in the second round.
“As a resident of Ward C, I know that Councilor Boggiano gets the ward and prioritizes the quality and efficiency of local government services,” said Jeff Budney, Republican City President of Jersey City. “Bing represents the radical left of the Democratic Party with socialist policies that will skyrocket taxes, hurt businesses and limit personal freedom. “
Fulop took a landslide 67% to 32% victory over newcomer Lewis Spears in last month’s election.
In Ward E, outgoing James Solomon was re-elected with 68.5% of the vote against Fulop’s candidate, city attorney, Jake Hudnut. This is the neighborhood that Fulop represented for eight years as a city councilor; it was Hudnut’s second loss.
The incumbent president allied to Fulop lost the November election in Ward F, where Frank Gilmore ousted Jermaine Robinson by 1,436 votes (56% -33%) in a three-candidate race. Gilmore is an education activist with a fascinating life story: orphaned at 13, he ended up in prison at 19 and has now “dedicated his life to inspiring the youth of Jersey City through leisure time.”
Six candidates for three general city councils will compete in the second round: incumbents Craig Epps and George Cook and newcomers Lisa Bonnano, Robert Rios, Renee Howard and Armando Guerra.
Nine candidates ran for all three seats after a trio of mayoral candidates gathered full tickets.
Bonnano (2.28), Epps (2,272) and Rios (2,208) – all three ran on a list led by Mayor Dahlia Vertreese, leading the ballot on November 2. The three candidates allied to the mayoral candidate Nancy Mondella – Cook (1,598), Howard (1,485) and Guerra (1,466),
Three other candidates who came forward with Andrea Hyatt – Sip Whitaker (819), Yolanda Rivera-Ziyad (751) and Patricia Brown (749) – ran far behind, but can any candidate avoid a second round.
Mondella gave up her seat on the board to run for mayor.
Vertreese narrowly avoided a second round, winning 50.7% of the vote against Mondella (31.7%) and Hyatt (17.4%).
Hillside suffered a second round for mayor in 2017 after Jorge Batista led Vertreese in the November election, from 35.88% to 30% in a four-candidate race. In 2013, current Union County Commissioner Angela Garretson won a second round for mayor after leading outgoing President Joseph Menza in the first round 37% -32%, Batista finishing third at 31% .