Gloucester girls basketball back in sectional final after big win over Glassboro -
Explorers Win Two as Scott Improves to 3-0


update 3-4-13

The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic.

John F. Kennedy






By Bill Cleary


NEW AGREEMENT--Last week, thanks to one of our readers, we discovered there was a new settlement agreement between Gloucester City and the owners of Cheerleaders, M.A.G. 6a00d8341bf7d953ef010536e2a426970b-150wi Enterprise. MAG had sued the city planning board in 2010 after the board refused their request to operate an adult entertainment club at their site on Route 130 near Klemm Avenue. The following year the court ruled in favor of M.A.G. owners, Frank Antico and his partner John Meehan. 


Part of the original settlement called for the city to pay $35,000 to M.A.G. Plus Antico and Meehan were to pay no real estate taxes to the city for nine years. Records show the Club pays $16,400 annually in property taxes. The total value of the accord was estimated at more than $180,000. The club owners could have made the city pay its $157,000 legal fees. By giving the Club the nine-year tax break the city avoided having to make a lump sum payment to the owners.


We also found court documents that stated the deal was ruled moot in January 2012 by US District Court Judge Robert B. Kulger after the two sides resolved the matter themselves.  


CNBNews contacted Gloucester City Solicitor John Kearney February 25 asking for an explanation. Kearney replied in a email, “The matter was resolved by the city paying the attorney fee award ($157,000 inserted by CNBNews) over time and agreeing to a rezoning that is being done in connection with the master plan review. When the municipal clerk gets back from vacation next week, I will have her send you a copy of the agreement.”


In a brief telephone interview Antico Jr. was asked about the new agreement.  He said the attorney fees were about $154,000. “We tried to do a tax abatement over 10 years, but we found it to be more complicating than we thought.  I really didn’t want to hurt the city. We worked out a deal in order to reach the $154,000. The city has five years to pay me.”


Antico added, ”The city is supposed to rezone my property in the new Master Plan. According to the judge’s ruling the city has to allow my business to operate somewhere. My block of property will be zoned for what I am using it for now.”


GCEDC CO-CHAIRMAN--Cheerleaders owner Frank Antico, Jr. is the co-chairman of the newly formed Gloucester City Economic Development Corp. (GCEDC). He is one of 7 volunteers who are now in charge of operating the Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ). We have been asked by a number of people, ‘Who is Frank Antico?  How did he become the co-chairman of this important body? What was his background ?” 


A Google search for Frank Antico, Jr. reveals he also owns a Cheerleaders club in Philadelphia and in Pittsburg, along with a bevy of information: some good, some bad, about his past.


Recently he and his partner, John Meehan, were honored by the Pennsylvania Licensed Beverage Association as the members of the month. From the association’s website, “As well as serving on the boards of the Tavern Association, the Pennsylvania Entertainment and Hospitality Association, the Gloucester City Economic Development Association, Frank and John participate with a number of local charities. They are key sponsors of the Episcopal Academy Thomas J. Meehan Scholarship fund which has raised over $500,000 in scholarship proceeds. They support and contribute generously to the Eileen Stein Jacob Breast Cancer Fundraiser, Pin-Ups for Pitbulls, and Toys for Tots. They also are a key supporter of Hair O’ the Dog, a charity benefiting children and their families as they battle cancer.”


Further research reveals John A. Meehan and Frank Antico Jr. were un-indicted co-conspirators in a Philadelphia corruption case, which took down Mr. Antico's father, a former official in that city.

According to court rulings in the 1990s, Meehan and Antico Jr. benefited from a corruption scheme run by Antico's father and namesake. The racketeering, extortion and wire fraud court case lasted from 1998 to 2001. 

Besides Antico Jr., the other members include Chairman David Stallwood, (owner of DJ Auto Electronics) Treasurer Bob Booth, (owner of Gloucester Travel) Daniel Spencer, councilman) Nick Marchese, (former councilman) Frank Wunsch, (Planning & Zoning Board President) and Bob Bevan (aide to the mayor and community relations specialist). 



NJ  UNEMPLOYMENT 4TH HIGHEST IN THE NATION--The US Bureau of Labor Statistics released the 2012 annual average unemployment rates for all 50 states Friday, March 1, and New Jersey did not fare well. We were one of only two states where the annual unemployment rate rose (from 9.4% to 9.5%), and we have the 4th highest rate in the U.S. The data shows that the increase in the number of employed New Jerseyans from 2011 to 2012 (39,000) was not even enough to keep up with the rise in population (44,000).  "New Jersey is still mired in the basement with the 4th highest unemployment rate in the nation. Worse, we're one of only two states that saw its rate increase from 2011 (from 9.4 to 9.5)," says New Jersey Policy Prespective (NJPP> president Gordon MacInnes. "This should pour ice water on New Jersey's leaders. The problem is not tax rates - the problem is jobs." 



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