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The Other Bayonne Bennys

Yeah we’re all pretty familiar with the Bennys, those drunk and noisy young visitors who, according to legend, come from either Bayonne, Elizabeth, Newark or (Staten Island) New York.  And I’m certain that the folks that live anywhere near D’Jais or Bar A are much more familiar with them than they would like to be.

But there are some occasional visitors from the Bayonne wing of the Benny Brigade that you may not be as familiar with as you ought to be.

At the top of the list is soon to be Bayonne ex-Mayor Mark Smith.  He was here at Stay Gold Café for our mayor’s re-election kickoff last February.  I guess he was returning the favor because Doherty attended his re-election kickoff at the Chandelier Restaurant in Bayonne earlier in the month.

Also at the Stay Gold event was Bayonne area Assemblyman and Bayonne Public Safety Director Jason O’Donnell.

Mark Smith gets a lot of help from his friends.  One of his biggest friends was the now defunct Birdsall Group, formerly our borough engineers.  Between 2008 and 2012 they donated a total of $23,650 to Smith and the Bayonne Regular Democratic Committee.  Bayonne pols got, by far, more cash from Birdsall than any other town in Hudson County.  More than half of those donations were made secretly and illegally through straw donors.  As we know, Birdsall’s leaders are all under indictment for this and other fraudulent donations.

Also with skin in the game is Belmar’s new engineer, Maser Consulting, who contributed at least $4100 to Smith.

Another Bayonne resident that is here frequently is our redevelopment attorney, William Northgrave.  He is also Bayonne’s redevelopment attorney and apparently is a big Mark Smith fan.

BTW, Bayonne and Belmar also use the same bond attorney, Matthew Jessup.  You guessed it. Another Smith fan.

Another son of the Bayonne Peninsula is a permanent Benny, our very own former administrator “we were in the foxhole” Bill Young.  He left his foxhole two weeks after Sandy to take a job irritating Bayonne residents affected by the deck work the Port Authority is doing on the Bayonne Bridge.   Here’s a fun fact:  As borough administrator, Young awarded nearly $1 million in no-bid work to Maggie Moran employer Ferreira Construction, which also has a contract for the Bayonne Bridge work.  So do Moran clients and fellow Belmar no-bid contractors Conti and J.H. Reid.

Speaking of administrators, here’s something I bet you didn’t know.  Steve Gallo, Mark Smith’s administrator in Bayonne, lists as a source of income on his Financial Disclosure Statement an outfit called Round World Consulting, LLC.  Round World also did quite a lot for Smith:


Here’s the really interesting part: the founder and principle of Round World is Sean Darcy, husband of Laura Matos, who is Maggie Moran’s partner at M Public Affairs.  So what’s going on there?  Is it a Round World or small world?

BTW, to any Belmar residents interested in being a reverse-Benny and visiting Bayonne:  If I were you I would stay off Mayor Smith’s block.  Please read here what happened two summers ago.  He was very upset simply because someone was in a car in front of his house.  He should try living near D’Jais!  And make sure to listen to the audio; the mayor is a very eloquent speaker.  No wonder he had so many financial supporters!

Oh, and this just in……..using the latest facial-recognition technology, we have positively identified the two Smith supporters flanking the soon to be ex-mayor in the photo I posted yesterday.  They are Belmar Mayor Matthew Doherty and Belmar Councilwoman Jennifer Nicolay.  At least that mystery is solved!


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