Superior Court Judge Maurice Gallipoli today refused to dismiss a lawsuit challenging Jersey City Councilwoman Nidia Lopez's eligibility to hold public office in New Jersey. Gallipoli said there were a substantial dispute of facts and credibility, and express some concern about Lopez's own credibility. He wants an opportunity to hear her testimony, and set an October 26 court date.
Lopez, who overwhelmingly won the May election to represent Ward C on the Jersey City Council – becoming the city's first Latina councilwoman – is fighting to hold on to her council seat over allegations that she is technically a Florida resident. She sought dismissal of the lawsuit on the grounds that Lopez has been a Jersey City resident since "at least" 2000 and that it was filed well past the 30 days statute of limitations for challenging election results.