The City of Troy, New York, "Where Henry Hudson Turned Around."

Tuesday, January 31, 2006


We need a little breather. Here's some blogs we found that might interest you.

For those who can't get enough of Troy, try TroyClick. It's a soft, mellow blog with no hint of sarcasm or satire.

Here's one that covers Upstate.

Here's one that covers central New York, NYCO.

Someone once mentioned a City of Rensselaer blog with a Republican slant. If you'll leave the address, we'll link to it.

Oh, yeah, if you like your politics with a Libertarian slant, try this, along with the State Party site. Perfect with poultry or fish.

If the 2nd Amendment is your thing, check this one out. A heady blog that goes well with mutton or venison.

Enjoy. There are a lot of blogs out there, some good, some bad. Some national blogs have huge audiences, getting more than 100,000 visitors a day. We're happy when ten people place a comment here, while others get hundreds of comments. However, there are some local blogs out there that are true gems, covering their subject matter in a thoughtful, well written and most of all, heartfelt manner. We believe those listed above are quality blogs.

Monday, January 30, 2006


UPDATE: Senator Bruno has endorsed Pirro for AG. We admit we were wrong about Bruno backing Donavan. We're still not convinced he doesn't have a hand in the Donavan camp, especially in light of Pirro's problems with the Conservative Party, but we'll concede the mistake.

Jeanine Pirro's hapless campaign pulled into Rensselaer County last week. Meanwhile, Senator Bruno is pushing Danny Donavan, the Richmond County District Attorney, for AG. Interesting, how far Ms. Pirro's star has fallen and how quickly.

We wonder if Ms. Pirro knows anything about the office of Attorney General. The Record quotes Ms. Pirro:

"The job of New York's attorney general is the job of the chief law enforcement officer in New York, and I have 30 years of law enforcement experience," she said.

That's great, Jeanine. It's completely wrong, but we like the enthusiasm. In fact, New York's Attorney General is not the chief law enforcement officer in the state. Unlike many other states, New York's Attorney General has very circumscribed criminal jurisdiction. True, the office has jurisdiction over some inter-county fraud crimes and it does have an anti-organized crime unit, but its chief role is not law enforcement. In fact, Ms. Pirro had greater jurisdiction over crimes in her former position as Westchester County DA than she'd have as Attorney General.

New York's Attorney Generals Office is the law department for the State of New York, not much different than a city's corporation counsels office. True, Spitzer has increased the office's profile, but ther AG is not a super DA. If Ms. Pirro needs more information, we refer her to the State Constitution.

It makes us wonder: how can she run for an office that she has grossly mischaracterized? Has she even read that part of the Executive Law that describes the powers of the office? That's not much to ask.

Image hosting by Photobucket
Keep smiling, Jeanine, your doing great!


The official response to the Union Street Bed & Breakfast has been anything but flaccid. County health officials will be sending teams of inspectors in an effort to close down the establishment. It is expected that at least four teams of inspectors (each team consisting of one male and one female) will take part in the weekend inspections.

"It may take some time," said one of the inspectors. "We just might have to go back there a few times until we get what we need."

It's amazing how fast County government has responded to this situation. We wish they were that responsive with all matters.

Friday, January 27, 2006


Not much going on in Troy so we thought we'd take a spin through the area.


Reversed. New trial. Failed to disclose Brady material. This is getting old. Franco does a good job with this one. Note, DeAngelis did not hand the case over to Portin until ten days before trial. Also note, Trish tries to throw Ken under the bus. Not a bad place to throw him if you're going to throw him but disingenuous nonetheless.

Here's the TU story. Frankly, we thought it in poor taste to use 'vacates' and 'sodomy' in the same sentence.


The hell with Vegas, we're going to Schenectady on our next vacation. It's closer and it has a lot of fun, family things to do. There was also a gambling bust yesterday. What we can't understand is why people want to come down on this guy. What he does is in the privacy of his B&B. The City Council just screwed everyone with a pay hike for Mayor Stratton and that was in public. What will we tell the children?


We have our definition of victory and John has his definition. We like this part:

The judge said the lawsuit's "unspecified allegations regarding defendant's news coverage, ethics or employment practices are incoherent and superfluous."

If the unspecified allegations are so incoherent, how can the Judge determine they're superfluous? Can anyone take Aretakis seriously?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006



Jim Franco has been beating the legislative pay raise like a drum the past few weeks and we think it's about time he stops. Really. Enough is enough, Jim....Damn! We thought we could get through this without laughing. Actually, we hope he beats the drum for the next four years. This time he takes the Democrats to task. Rightly so.

We finally figured out what bothers us about the pay raise, beyond the obvious. We'll tell you, it's the size of the raise. If they had some imagination and flare, they would have made the seats full time positions with a $45,000 salary. That's a crime we can all respect. A sort of political Brink's job. You'd have to admire the audacity of it all. Instead, we got a few cheap pickpockets grabbing our pocket change. Rather pathetic, don't you think? Selling your soul for $5,000.

We'd call them whores but we wouldn't want to disparage those that work for a living.


Friday's post got the attention of a few people, judging by our e-mail account. We're are not finished with the story, there is more and we are very close to discovering the identity of the person(s) who were involved. Stay tuned. It should be good sport.


Long for those great, old, pre-9/11 days when we were young and innocent? We love stories like this (shame on the Times Union and Record for not running with this). Nothing like a trip down memory lane.


The two most powerful Republicans in the state have big dreams but one thing stands in their way: Mary Donohue. According to sources, Pataki wants to leave Albany early and Uncle Joe salivates over the idea of being governor, even if just for a few months. What's blocking their dreams: what to do about Mary. We have learned that the plan is to get Mary on the Federal bench. The only problem is that such a maneuver is easier said than done. Securing a Federal Judgeship for Mary involves more than Pataki and Bruno, it involves Clinton, Schumer and President Bush. It would be a real coup if they could pull it off.

Monday, January 23, 2006


Middle Eastern countries are taking solace in the fact that their countries are less volatile than North Greenbush.

It's difficult to decide which honeymoon was shorter lived: this one (see bottom of page one) or this one. They only difference between the two is that in the case of North Greenbush.... people got hurt.


Linda Mandel-Clemente has retained famed defense attorney Ray Kelly. Kelly, a fine attorney, is somewhat constrained by his client's bizarre behavior. Kelly is repeating his client's lame mantra about her reasons for stealing files. From Kate Perry's story:

She kept the files after resigning in December, said her attorney, Ray Kelly, because the town's new attorney, Josh Sabo, represented an entity that took legal action against the town.

"Every attorney is mandated by law and by ethics to maintain the confidences and secrets in every file until the file is turned over to a successor attorney," Kelly said. "Every attorney has the obligation to ensure that the attorney that's taking over the file does not have a conflict of interest relating to that file."

Uhmm, Ray? There also another ethics rule, kind of a corollary to the first: "Don't break into your former client's offices and steal files when you think no one will be around because it's not only a Saturday but it's also New Year's Eve and be sure as hell that you don't do it right before the swearing in ceremony for the new board." Remember that little rule?

Clemente's defense can be easily dealt with by any competent ADA. First, confidentiality is the client's, not the attorney's privilege. Clemente should have drafted a letter to the new supervisor raising her concerns and left the files in the town office. But confidentiality is a smokescreen for Clemente's odd behavior.

If she was so concerned, why wasn't this taken care of when she resigned as town attorney. Clemente could have brought the issue to Tazbir while he was still in office? Why did Clemente wait until three weeks after she had resigned to fulfill her "ethical" obligation? Maybe her ski mask wasn't back from the cleaners. Perhaps her get-away driver was all booked-up.

You know what this smells like? You guessed it.

Image hosting by Photobucket

Congrats go out to Ray Kelly and Linda Mandel-Clemente as the first recipients of the 2006 Smells Like Bullshit Award. The two will now be finalists in our end of the year contest.*

* The Smells Like Bullshit award winner will be flown to Utah for some skiing fun with reformer John Sweeney and a bunch of lobbyists to be named later.

Friday, January 20, 2006


The Peter Young Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation that works with recovering drug addicts and alcoholics. The Foundation also runs shelters and half-way houses. The foundation is run by Father Young, a Roman Catholic Priest and former Chaplain at Mt. McGregor Correctional Facility. By all accounts, the Foundation does excellent work and is responsible for helping many people.

Vesta Community Housing Development Board, Inc. is a not-for-profit corporation. 820 River Street, Inc. is another not-for-profit. Although separate legal entities, both Vesta and 820 River Street fall under the Peter Young Foundation umbrella, sharing many of the same board members.

Peter Young, via Vesta and 820 River Street own many properties throughout the state, including:

3215 Sixth Avenue, Troy
820 River Street, Troy
814 River Street, Troy
304-306 Second Avenue, Troy
834-836 River Street, Troy
113-113 Second Street, Troy

Father Young, George Schindler and Kevin Luibrand are the Board of Directors for Vesta. Schindler, Young and Luibrand are also on the Board of 820 River Street, Inc. Also, on the 820 River Street Board is Maureen Dumas, a retired NYS Senate employee. George Schindler is a former Deputy Corporation Counsel for the City of Troy under Mayor Tutunjian. Mr. Luibrand is an attorney best known for making life miserable (rightly so) for the City of Schenectady Police Department. So far so good. We are not suggesting any wrong doing by any of those previously named. We have no reason to suspect them of anything other than being fine, upstanding citizens who are involved with a well-run, above board Foundation that does excellent work.

Recently, Vesta or 820 River Street purchased property on Douw Street. We do not know why the property was purchased but can surmise that it will in some way become part of Father Young's rehab empire.

The property on Douw was purchased for a price not in accordance with true property values. This, of course, is not unusual. Businesses and Foundations will purchase property for far more than the going rate because that is the property they want for a certain project.

Remember Robert Bruno? He's Senator Joe's baby brother. Robert resigned his position at the State Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services (he directed Road to Recovery) back in October of 2004. Bruno stepped down due to unusual (or perhaps creative) financial dealings with the programs he oversaw.

According to a July 14, 2005 Times Union article (Elizabeth Benjamin), Bruno hired Donald Skaarup, a neighbor, for a $75,000. Bruno also tried to get the state to spend $240,000 to buy a closed residential treatment center in Granville, New York. The treatment center was owned by....Donald Skaarup. Skaarup's property was later purchased by...Vesta.*

According to the Empire News Journal, Donald Skaarup and Thomas Plummer were employed by Road to Recovery (they were also Bruno's Queensbury neighbors). Skaarup and Plummer were consultants hired under a contract with 820 River Street Inc.**

What we want to know is:

Who owned the the properties listed above prior to their purchase by Vesta or 820?

Who owned the Douw Street properties prior to their purchase by Vesta or 820?

Were the previous owners (the owners previous to Father Young's involvement) employed by the State or City or County?

If the previous owners were employed by the State, County or City, did they purchase the property within a 2 or 3 year period before those properties were purchased by Vesta?

If so, this needs to be investigated.

*Robert Bruno's shenanigans were not enough to keep him off the public payroll. In July of 2005 he was hired as a budget analyst for the Assembly Republicans. We guess no bad deed goes unrewarded around here

**According to their website, Donald Skaarup is now running Altamont House Rehab for 820 River Street Inc.

Thursday, January 19, 2006


The entire staff is currently working on a blockbuster story. Could get us a Pulitzer. In the meantime:

This should be national news and Lyons has been doing a great job with the story.

John does some skiing but not in New York.

With crime down, Troy hires five new police officers. Couple that with jail expansion and just think what would happen if crime was going up.

Troy Fire Fighters defend overtime.

Weld wants to come to Albany.

That should keep you busy.

With regard to William Weld as a potential candidate: We know Pataki wants Weld. We know Bruno's pushing for Golisano. Here's a safe bet: if Golisano gets the nomination (he still loses) watch who funds the Republican Senate campaigns. Presently, the State GOP has really given up on winning the governor's race, the senate race and the Attorney General's race (Cuomo has raised $4 million+, Pirro $50,000). They desperately want to keep the Senate. Golisano can be their Sugar Daddy.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006



One of our favorite parts of the Troy City Code (or any municipal code for that matter) is the Ethics provisions.

Here's a hypothetical. Get out your pencils and paper.

Lets say a business, X, is working with the city to eventually purchase several lots of property. The property is not in the best of neighborhoods. The city wants X to buy the properties and get up and running.

Lets say an employee or employees of the city approach a lot owner. They offer the owner a fair price for the property. The employee(s) then sell the property to X at a better than 100% profit.*

Is there an ethics problem?

Lets take a look at that code.

§ 43-1. Code of Ethics for officers and employees.**

A. General prohibition.

An officer or employee of the City of Troy shall not use his or her official position or office, or take or fail to take any action, or use City employees or City property in a manner in which he or she knows will result in a financial benefit of any kind for any of the following:

(1) The officer or employee;

(2) His or her outside employer or business;

(3) A member of his or her family or household;

(4) A customer or client;

(5) A business, firm, company, corporation, partnership, unincorporated association or other entity in which he or she has a proprietary interest in excess of 5% ownership; or

(6) A person from whom the officer or employee has received election campaign contributions of more than $1,000 in the aggregate during the past 12 months.

Now, we have no idea what all that means. We're just simple folk, here at the Troy Polloi. Sometimes, all that fancy legal talk confuses us, scares us.

We suppose it would be difficult to establish directly that the employee(s) knew about X's project. However, what are the odds that out of all the properties for sale, the employee(s) just happen to purchase the one lot that can be sold for a huge profit?

If the employee(s) commenced the deal based upon information they received as municipal employee(s), have they violated the ethics code? What should happen to the employee(s)?

You have 45 minutes, starting now! Don't forget to show your work.

We doubt any such thing could ever happen. We're just curious.


Also, our source in the Mayor's Office tells us that Councilwoman Carolin Collier will be taking Mahoney's old job at the Troy Housing Authority. The appointment should come in April. Congrats. The new gig pays $2,000 and will be placed in trust and used to renovate Ms. Collier's hair. Demolition is et to begin in early summer.


We'd also like to wish a fond farewell to Mr. Armet, Ms. Messick, Mr. Judge and Mr. Mahoney. We wish them well in their return to private life. We wonder, when all is said and done, if it's a relief to be out of the public sector.

*This fact pattern is entirely the creation of the author and any resemblance to any similar fact pattern, whether living or dead, is purely intentional.

** One school of thought suggests that the Ethics portion of the Code is not actual law but merely a collection of suggestions.

Friday, January 13, 2006


A little something for everyone.


Special Use Permit

ZB2004-0061 Special Use Permit to allow dwelling units on the first floor of a building at 202 Fourth Street, at Division, a B-4 Zone District. Applicant is JosephÂ’s House, 202 Fourth St. Troy, NY 12180.

On the agenda for January 26, 2006. According to sources, the city's position was jeopardized by some comments made by a council member or two who just couldn't come up with sound reasons to oppose the request. Instead, they resorted to a "who wants 'those' people here' argument". Can't do that folks. Got a rational basis for opposition, state it. If not, keep your mouth shut and let Corporation Counsel do the talking. That's why he gets paid.


A Schenectadian (Schenectadite? Schenectodian? Schenectoid?), Pat Zollinger, may have the right idea. The Rensselaer County Legislature weren't the only ones that had a very Merry Christmas. Schenectady Mayor Stratton nabbed himself a nice, little 40% pay raise. Pat did some research and discovered that if she can get the signatures of 10% of the city's registered voters, the pay raise issue can be put on the November ballot via a permissive referendum. We didn't have time to look into it but it sounds like a state, rather than local, law/ordinance. We could be wrong. Perhaps it's part of the city charter or code. Anyway, feel free to dig around and see if the same can be done in Rensselaer County.

Unfortunately, Pat has until February 5, to get the signatures. We wish her luck. By the way, the Schenectady Democrats did the pay raise thing in the same sleazy way that our folks did. Not at their regular meeting but a few days before Christmas when people may have been just a wee-bit busy.


John Sweeney made some noise by calling for a vote of confidence on the GOP's leadership in Washington D.C. Sweeney called for some party "soul searching." The area Congressman also appeared on Paul Vandenburgh's show. We give John credit for that appearance. We all know how tough Vandenburgh can be on conservatives.

Sweeney recognizes that the Republican Party is getting pounded on the Jack Ambramhoff scandal. Rightly so. So now, John is talking reform and open government and lobbying reform etc. We applaud Congressman Sweeney. Keep up the good work.

Wait a minute. We just checked our calendar. Its an election year. And Sweeney has a well-funded, attractive opponent in Kirsten Gillibrand. Gillibrand also has at least one GOP operative working for her and sources say that he's doing it with Pataki's blessing.


AN INFLUENTIAL GOP leader wants a prominent Republican Party consultant fired for allegedly working to help a Democrat defeat an upstate Republican congressman.

The extraordinary demand was made over the weekend by Saratoga County GOP Chairman Jasper Nolan, a prominent upstate GOP leader.

He says consultant Patrick McCarthy, a former executive director of the party and a close political ally of Gov. Pataki, is trying to undermine incumbent Rep. John Sweeney .

Sweeney, a former GOP executive director, has been highly critical of Pataki's leadership.

Sweeney, a Saratoga County resident and close political ally of Mayor Bloomberg and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, has told friends he believes that Pataki himself approved of McCarthy's alleged efforts to help his Democratic opponent, Kirsten Gillibrand.

Gillibrand is the daughter of Albany lawyer/lobbyist Doug Rutnik, a longtime fixture at the state GOP headquarters and the significant other of Zenia Mucha, the Walt Disney Company exec who was once one of Pataki's top political advisers.

"Doug Rutnik's daughter is not going to challenge Sweeney without Pataki's OK," said one of the state's most prominent Republicans.

Nolan made his demand over the weekend in a stinging letter to state GOP Chairman Stephen Minarik, a copy of which was obtained by The Post.

"I am deeply concerned to learn a paid consultant for our party was recently spotted having dinner at an Albany restaurant with the announced 2006 Democratic opponent of Congressman John Sweeney," Nolan wrote.

"This is an outrageous development, and I respectfully request that Mr. McCarthy be removed from the Republican Party payroll immediately.

". . . He should be replaced by someone who is committed to defeating Democrats and not to aiding and abetting those who seek to defeat incumbent Republicans like our congressman."
McCarthy, who was once Pataki's chief patronage dispenser and is now a lobbyist with the politically wired Patricia Lynch Associates, is paid $25,000 a year as a part-time consultant to the state GOP.

He told The Post that he'd merely had "a couple of sodas" with Rutnik and his daughter.
"I have nothing to do with that effort at all," he insisted, saying that Rutnik was a longtime family friend and that the meeting was strictly social.

But others familiar with the situation said they believe that McCarthy was an informal adviser to Democrat Gillibrand as part of Pataki's effort to retaliate against Sweeney, who has publicly blamed the governor for a long string of GOP defeats.

Could John be just a little worried? Generic polls have the Dems killing the GOP in House contests, scandals are brewing, Saratoga saw big Democratic gains and look: Sweeney's now Mr. Reform. Gillibrand has an uphill battle but her chances are good enough to make Sweeney don the mantle of reform despite the poor fit. Hey, John, where you been the last few years?

Image hosted by
The face of reform?

Next week we'll hopefully have some jail news. Crime down? Expand the jail. Looks like a Pennsylvania firm has gotten the nod as architect of the project.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006



Does every act of the Rensselaer County Legislature violate the law?

Could be, if that kind of thing concerns you.

New York State has an Open Meetings Law. If you don't believe us, just head into your study, peruse your shelves and take down your copy of the Public Officers Law. It's Sec 100 and the specific provision is in Section 108.*

Essentially, all meetings of a public body (Paris Hilton excluded) must be open to the public, with limited exceptions. At times, the public body can go into Executive Session to discuss law suits, confidential personnel matters, dinner orders...).

The law does not apply to caucuses.

In a Caucus, members of a political party can discuss pretty much anything: political business; whose got the nicest ass; who makes the best faux-flatulence sound with their armpit.

A Caucus is a private meeting of a members of a legislative body who are members of the same political party.

Bob Mirch is a Conservative who Caucuses with the Republicans and therefore, the exemption does not apply and when they meet they do so in violation of the Open Meetings Law.
We've been told Marge DerGurahian is an enrolled Conservative or a blank. Thus, the Troy City Council Republicans violate the law when they Caucus.

Mahoney was an enrolled Conservative. Did he Caucus with Dunne? If so, law violations.
It may very well be that the law is silly. Perhaps it should be that if you were endorsed by a party yada, yada. Who knows. That isn't the law and it's broken all the time by the branch of government that creates the laws.

Hard to take 'em seriously when they can't follow the law. In a supreme irony, the new council president lost his last job because he couldn't or wouldn't follow the law.

It may sound petty but this is how it starts. Cutting corners here, cutting corners there. First you violate the Open Meetings Law, then you're into theft, robbery, murder and then breaking the Sabbath. Violations of the Open Meetings Law is a gate-way crime. What do we tell the children?

We suggest they turn themselves in and come clean. Or perhaps a scared straight program is in order.

And that's one to grow on.


Sober has dropped her lawsuit against DA Trish DeAngelis. We never thought much of the merits of the case. Sober never claimed she was fired because of her gender, race, religion or any of the big no-no's. She didn't even sound like a whistler-blower because frankly, she never blew the whistle. Not until she was fired.

It's a suit that shouldn't have been brought but it was a lot of fun while it lasted. The legal merit was nil but the satirical merit? Fantastic. Bolton has the story. Franco, at The Record, had the story yesterday but we couldn't find a link.

Makes us wonder if someone should give Coleman and Sober a little slap on the wrist.

We certainly didn't need Sober in order to examine the problems in the DA's Office. Sober was the least of Trish's worries. In our estimate, there's a lot more teeth to the Katrin Ellis mess. We wonder if our well-paid legislature will look into that matter.

* The County and City have told us they have lost their copies and are not all that interested in getting them back.

Monday, January 09, 2006



If you'd like to comment, please address the topic of the post. Also, you now have to e-mail Democratus by 2:00PM if you'd like to comment. Now, the news.

Republicans in Troy and the County took measures last week that will result is stifling debate and any criticisms of those bodies.

On the Troy side:

The Republicans proposed ending a system that allowed residents to speak for 10 minutes at the meeting's start on both agenda items and other city business. Instead, the GOP proposed two periods with 5-minute speaking limits: one forum at the meeting's start on agenda items only and a second at the end on other city business.

On the County side:

Kelleher interrupted the debate on the amendment, which would remove the requirement that those wishing to speak before the legislature must call the clerk before 2 p.m. on a meeting day and called a vote. The amendment was voted down along party lines, 13-6.

We're sure they have good reasons for both proposals. Sound, logical, economical reasons. They always do. Lets look at what is really going on here.

In Troy, Council meetings tend to run an hour and 1/2. So, if you want to comment on an agenda item, show up at 7:00PM. If, god forbid, you want to comment on something else, wait around for a few hours and they'll get to you. Who's going to do that? A few fun crackpots perhaps. But others work hard all day and want to see their families. Now they have to cool their heels and listen to the Council before they can speak.

The purpose is clear: they don't want criticism. That's it, end of story.

Bauer said:

"It gives the members of the public the opportunity to comment on the agenda, to watch us do our jobs and then comment again when we're done."

They get to watch you do your job? Whoop-dee-doo! Yes, very exciting to see you guys pass a resolution calling for July 5th to be "Lansingburgh Day." Better yet, figuring out how to issue appearance tickets for jay-walkers. Exciting stuff, that. Please, if it leaves committee, they're going to vote yes. No matter how many people comment on it before the vote.

Bauer's off to a rather bad start. Of course, he can't set bail on anyone anymore so his hands are tied. It's a disease with the GOP, from the President on down the line. They despise criticism and do not know how to handle it. Thus, they want it abolished.

Ironically, we saw the end result in play at the meeting. The camera was turned off before the end of the meeting and it took a Democrat to point that out.

In summary, making citizens watch these guys for two hours before being able to address their own representatives is cruel and unusual punishment.

As for the County, Democrats wanted to remove the requirement that anyone wishing to speak at the meeting must call the Clerk by 2:00PM. WTF? We're not sure how long that requirement has been in place but it's pure, unadulterated BS. Perhaps they'll lift the requirement for a few bucks. That's the only thing that seems to make them tick!

Listen up, Democrats, they just handed you more issues.

Friday, January 06, 2006



Steve Dworsky, the former Troy City Manager who presided during Troy's Golden Age, is back. This time, he's in North Greenbush. According to sources close to the TP, Dworsky has been retained by the new administration to.... We're not quite sure what he's doing. Let us hope things turn out better in North Greenbush than they did in Troy.

Perhaps Mr. Dworsky's presence explains this. We like to call it the New Year's Massacre of 2006. And the reviews are in:

"Wow, that's Old School!" - Al Capone

"I haven't seen a hit like that since Valentine's Day." - Albert Anastasia

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Firing union members is usually as difficult as getting the Rensselaer County DA's office to turn over evidence. Yes, it's that difficult. We are increasingly dubious about the propriety of all these firings. Some, fine....eleven? Seems a bit steep to us. Theoretically, we say good riddance. To the victor belong the spoils. Still, the law must be followed. Speaking of the law...

In other North Greenbush news, the Mandel-Clemente saga continues. Attorney Josh Sabo had to run to court on Thursday. Seems Linda Mandel-Clemente brought an Order to Show Cause against the town (maybe she previously lost the Order to Show Cause and it was somewhere in those files). We're not sure what it was all about. Possibly her ouster from the Planning Board. Perhaps something to do with her defilement of the town. As Drudge would say, developing.


For a minute, we thought this was a 'Year in Review' story. Nothing new here. Some old crap. It would be interesting to know if the DA's office had the evidence before or after DeAngelis gave up the case. Unfit to be judge, unfit to be DA. The big question: Will Uncle Joe find her a job before he leaves us or is she on her own? Michele Bolton is on the case.


Along with Dworsky, CB Smith has landed a job in North Greenbush. This may be the most interesting town in a most interesting county, politically speaking. We can't wait to see what happens.


From Kate Perry. Our favorite line: St. Neil hopes to form a committee in the next few months. A committee? In the next few months? We would never challenge the efficiency of a government committee, but why a few months? What, you busy or something? Why not just charge people for speaking at a meeting? Maybe raise some revenue to off-set the raise? So pathetic and no one cares.


The USS Slater caught fire. Our photographer was there.

Image hosted by
Hey, who is that?

Wednesday, January 04, 2006


What the hell is going on in North Greenbush. It's like Linda Mantel-Clemente (the hyphen is silent) week in the local papers.

There's The Record, here and here;

The Times Union, here.

We guess we should chime in too. Why should we get left out of the fun? It makes Troy politics seem tame.

The press and the Democrats are apt to jump all over this. There's even talk about a probe. Now, we like a good probe as much as the next fella but enough is enough. In fact, we think it was very nice of Ms. Mandel-Clemente to pick up the place before the new people moved in. That's called courtesy. And it's damn classy.

Mandel-Clemente may or may not have called in to Paul Vandenburgh's show this morning. The caller identified herself as "Linda" and she knew an awful lot about this clean-up job. Vandenburgh noted that people began e-mailing him after the call, identifying the caller as Ms. Mandel-Clemente.

If it was Mandel-Clemente it was a bad showing. First, the caller said that the files were removed from the office for attorney-client privilege reasons? Yeah, we know. Stop laughing.

Second, the caller noted that some of the town's cases had been worked on by Ms. Mandel-Clemente pro bono (a latin phrase meaning "for the bono"). Since Linda gets a salary we have no idea where the pro bono idea comes from. Sounds a bit Mirchesque if you ask us.

Secondly, according to our legal panel, only the client can invoke or revoke the attorney-client privilege. Here, that would be the town, not the attorney. Told you it smelled funny.

Picture Pat Morphy or Dave Mitchell, having resigned their position weeks prior, walking into City Hall to take files. Can you picture that? Of course you can't.

Look out, here comes a probe.



Image hosted by
Do you have to move fast, hoping no one sees?

Image hosted by
Call Mandel-Clemente Movers
Mornings, Weekends, Holidays
When You Absolutely Have to Make Room
For the New Administration - Remember
Mandel-Clemente Movers