Jersey City join forces to get battleship
By CAROL COMEGNO
Officials in Bayonne and neighboring
Jersey City are teaming up in an attempt to get the battleship
USS New Jersey berthed on the Hudson County waterfront and keep
it out of Camden.
Bayonne and Jersey City officials have scheduled a news conference
for 3 p.m. today to release details of their agreement, designed
to put aside competing claims on the ship and to ensure that
it is berthed somewhere on the Hudson River as a museum and tourist
In September, the New Jersey Battleship Commission voted to
recommend to the Navy that the ship be berthed permanently at
the Military Ocean Terminal in Bayonne.
The two cities agree that if the state decides the ship would
fare better at Liberty State Park, it could be moved to Jersey
Camden officials are not only filing their own application
with the Navy, but are suing the state commission, seeking to
overturn its recommendation.
The USS New Jersey, currently in Bremerton, Wash., was berthed
in Bayonne after World War II. It was built on the Delaware River
in Philadelphia by workers from South Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Proponents of bringing the ship to Camden called the Bayonne-Jersey
City agreement moot, saying only the Navy and not the state or
the New Jersey Battleship Commission, has the authority to move
Rep. James Saxton, R-N.J., called the truce "whistling
past the graveyard.
"It sounds like they have concluded what I did a few
months ago - that Camden is the front runner in the Navy application
process," said Saxton of Mount Holly. "They obviously
have teamed up against the front runner, but there is no precedent
for a process within the Navy to have two applicants join up
and say one could be eliminated in the future."