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

Thursday, June 28, 2007


Looks like Chairman Wade wasn't the only County Chair requesting a specific contribution amount.

Here's a letter to Judith Wos from October 2003 (click on the thumbnails):

Straightforward stuff until you break out the Rensselaerian - to - English translator.

First paragraph:

Translation: You like feeding your family?

Third Paragraph:

Translation: We need money so our staff doesn't "lose" your resume. Help me to help you.

Fourth Paragraph:

Translation: Made my list, checking it twice.

Fifth Paragraph:

Translation: For just a little more than a dollar a day you can help feed a Republican. Every three months you will receive a letter from the family you sponsor, with a photograph of your Republican and an update on how they're doing.

Sixth Paragraph:

Translation: Don't really care if you purchase a ticket or come to a fundraiser, just make sure that your contribution equals $359 and we receive it in the next few days.

Translation: Send money now!

One can imagine this plea as a commercial: Mr. Casey (Sally Struthers?)walking slowly through Republican Headquarters (County Office building?). We see images of GOP appointees, stomaches bloated from malnutrition. Flies land on their faces and on their inadequately filled bowls of rice, fingers bandaged from campaign literature paper cuts, throats hoarse from anonymous robo-call recordings. Some nearly collapse, exhausted from the two or three jobs they need to merely survive. They look up at the camera and our hearts go out to them.

Just click on the Sally Struthers icon to help.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Democratic County Chair, Tom Wade, may be in hot water.

According to The Record (June 26, p. 5), a former Board of Election employee has alleged that Wade assessed political employees a percentage of their pay as a campaign contribution or face a dreaded trip to the private sector.

Dick Weaver, a former Bd. of Elections employee says that Wade tithed employees 2% of their salaries (not bad, as tithes go). According to The Record, Wade fired Weaver thirteen years ago. Former Sand Lake Democratic Chair Archie Robinson was told he had to donate $325, claiming only those who supported former Chair Lynne Mahoney were assessed.*

Weaver has called for the District Attorney to investigate the matter.

If proved, Wade's actions could violate the Hobbs Act (the Hobbs Act is a law, the violation of which sounds really bad.)


Interesting stuff but just a few observations:

1) Weaver is now a Conservative. What did Conservative Bob Mirch say when Colleen Regan accused him of using city resources and county employees for political purposes? He called her a 'disgruntled former employee.'

2) Mirch has been doing his best to get the heat off the scandal-ridden GOP. He's thrown a lot of garbage hoping it will stick. Is anyone really surprised it was an enrolled Conservative who alleges misbehavior?

3) Such allegations are difficult to prove because it's a 'He said - He said' dispute. Right now it's a Mirchy saying one thing and Wade saying another.

4) Like we said, proof may be difficult. Now, if something was in writing? That would be different. If a County Chair sent a letter out telling people they were expected to contribute a specific amount....for a fundraiser or whatever....well, that would be unlikely. That type of thing is never reduced to writing. Still, such proof would be hard to deny.

We will give Mr. Wade the same consideration we gave Mr. Crist and the sexual harassment accusations. We'll let it all play out before any judgments are made.

Unless, of course, someone unearths something in writing.

*Mahoney and Wade had been Co-County Chairs until Mahoney lost her chair in a Duck-Duck Goose run-off election.

Monday, June 25, 2007


We have yet another version of how Mr. de Seve came to be ticketed for allowing a sign to be spray painted on his home.

Background here and here.

Quick time line reminder:

1) de Seve sends e-mail calling for resignations of Mirch, Crawley & Buell (McCrab?: March 23, 2007);

2) Code Officer Sheeran conducts a "re-inspection" of home on March 26, 2007 and issues a ticket for graffiti, stating that de Seve had been previously notified of the code violation);

3) de Seve writes Sheeran asking for a specific code violation and also asks that the ticket be amended to reflect the March 26 visit was an initial inspection not a re-inspection. (March 29, 2007);

4) de Seve's reasonable request is ignored;

5) There's an "inspection" (not a re-re-inspection?) on June 6 2007. There's no graffiti, but a "sign" is found.

Don't forget how Code came to be there in the first place. Mirch says routine sweep, Sheeran say anonymous tip. So, that's how many stories? Lets see......tip, routine inspection, graffiti, sign...we lost count.

Now we have another:

So, here's the official time line:

March 20, 2007 - de Seve asks the city to shovel some sidewalks in city parks;

March 23, 2007 - de Seve calls for the resignation of Mirch, Crawley and Buell;

June 6, 2007 - Harry dispatches Code to address snow-covered sidewalks. Code finds a sign.*

To put a positive spin on this: The Administration would never retaliate against a resident for one critical e-mail (March 20th). It takes at least two critical e-mails before any retaliatory strike (which, by the by, is in accordance with City policy).

If you have to ask why such a small episode in the Hudson Valley's own Salò Republic is important then all is lost. The difference between this and a U.S. President using the IRS or FBI or CIA to retaliate against a citizen is a difference in degree, not in kind. One would hope the local print and television media would give this story more than a cursory glance as the First Amendment is their life blood.

* The original, graffiti ticket has been airbrushed out of the archives by the official State Photographer.

Friday, June 22, 2007


If you're like us, you can't wait six months for Smith & Jones to unwrap Phase I of the new Troy Branding campaign (ie. Harry's re-election campaign). So, we thought we'd get a jump on it.

First things first: We need a theme and a face to portray that theme. A figure that people will immediately associate with Troy, NY.

The Uncle Sam theme has been played before and we shouldn't be shelling out major dollars for another variation on that theme. However, it's bound to come up so let's take a look at what our PR people came up with:

Say hello to Aunt Sammi. Could she be the new face of Troy? Aunt Sammi enjoys clumsly political intimidation, Special Prosecutors, using city resources for political purposes and Canasta.

Or, a dose of reality:

Meet Cracky McNasty. Cracky enjoys short, profitable car rides, day trading and Stravinsky.

Or, shall we pursue the Renaissance theme:


If someone spray paints "Conroy for Mayor" or "Tutunjian for Mayor" on the exterior of their home, is that a political sign? Is a sign permit still needed in that situation?

You have forty-five minutes and may!

Thursday, June 21, 2007


There's the infamous subpoena, including the directive that the recipient not disclose the existence of the subpoena. Nothing special. Standard fare. Of course, people talked about the subpoena and it's content before the ink was dry. Welcome to Rensselaer County, Mr. Soares.

We're still not exactly sure what the DA is looking for with this subpoena. Perhaps it has something to do with Mirch's allegation that Legislator Ginny O'Brien asked him to pick up garbage.

Or, perhaps these are the campaigns that Colleen Regan alleges she and other County employees worked on during the work day. No, on second thought, it's probably the garbage thing.

As an aside, Hummel did not disclose any payment to Victory Lane in his campaign filings. This leads us to believe there were no payments. Hummel's treasurer, Troy attorney Dave Gruenberg, is far to ethical (and smart) to not report such a payment.


In other news, word has it that Mr. Mirch has finally filed his own campaign disclosures (dating back to 2003) with the Rensselaer County Board of Elections. Better late then never, Bob.

Mirch had already filed his July 15, 2002 statement with the Board, under the moniker of "Political Endeavors of Bobby Mirch." The treasurer, of course, was Rich Crist. They filed again in January of '03 ("Public Service Pursuits of Bobby Mirch."). Interestingly, Crist was also the Treasurer for the Republican Legislative Campaign Committee in 2005.


Rumor has it that Deputy Mayor Dan Crawley is lobbying for a position with the Troy Housing Authority. Rumor also has it that neither Crawley or Mirch will be part of Tutunjian's second Mayorshipitality. Jeff Buell safe-guarded his spokesmans job by disabling the spell-check on Harry's computer.


The Troy Polloi has always felt it incumbent to speak out against injustice and to speak up for the weak and downtrodden. Word has spread of another Grave Injustice (or GI) in our fair City. Charges against Rabbit Riley for harassing Bob Mirch have been dropped. As we're sure you remember, Riley was ticketed for poking Mr. Mirch (we believe the actual charge was Third Degree Poking with an attempted Purple Nurple).

Many labeled Mr. Riley a criminal. In point of fact, the charge was a violation. Violations are not crimes. You can be convicted of 100 violations and still not have to check-off that "Have you ever been convicted of a crime?" box on job applications (thank god!). So, feel free to commit all the violations you want.

Dismissing the charges was discrimination, pure and simple. Have men like Riley learned anything? It's the 21st Century! Just because someone dresses provocatively does not mean they are "asking for it."

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


We received an e-mail yesterday, sending us a link to a new blog. We're pleased to announce another North Greenbush blog: Vincit Omnia Vertias - Truth Conquers All.

It's always fun to hear another voice in the world of North Greenbush politics. This particular blog has an anti-Ashley/Smith aroma, with a hint of Reformed Democrats. It should prove an interesting counterpoint to the Pipeline, whose author remained anonymous for approximately seven seconds. We wish them well and hope people visit to get another side of the drama that continues to unfold in North Greenbush.

As an aside, the title of this blog does raise questions. Everyone who blogs makes spelling errors from time to time. We're certainly no exception. Still, a blog title is a different beast. You kind of want to get that right. It's your handle after all and something catchy and original is always in demand.

Truth Conquers All, is a damn good title. Except....Someone forgot their Wheelock's.

That's not the title of this new blog: Not the Latin title. Vincit is, of course, 'conquers'. Omnia is 'all'. 'Vertias' is....not a Latin word. The closest it comes to Latin is it's stem, 'verto', or 'To Flee.' So, we guess the Latin title is something along the lines of, "To Flee Conquers All." Hope that isn't a Freudian slip.

That's the whole veritas and nothing but the veritas.

They may want to look into that. Otherwise, go and enjoy their North Greenbush musings.

Monday, June 18, 2007


Thousands flocked to Troy last week for the annual serving of the subpoenas. No serious injuries were reported.

A little background: "Subpoena" is from the Middle English, 'subpenna', which came from the Latin, subpoena. The literal meaning is, "under poena." Poena was the Roman goddess of punishment as well as the patron goddess of proctologists. Poena weighed a reputed 450lbs and if a command of the court was ignored, the person was thrown under Poena, causing them to suffocate.

Anywho, the subpoenas were served on the Board of Election seeking the campaign filings of Troy Civil Court Judge Matthew Turner, City Council President Henry Bauer, former Nassau Town Supervisor Carol Sanford, county Legislator Martin Reid, Troy Councilman Mark Wojcik, Troy council candidate Wayne Foy, former Sand Lake Town Board candidate Jeanie Glasser and former candidates for the county Legislature Leon Fiaco and Paul Santandera.

Many read this as an indication that those named above may be in some trouble relative to Intimigate. That may be a possibility but it is unlikely. It is certainly a rash conclusion based on the limited information available.

More than likely, the DA is just following the money trail. The money trail of who and/or what? One possibility is the selling of endorsements for minor party lines. Another other possibility (and the two are not mutually exclusive) is the purchasing of consulting services by the candidates.

Turner paid Victory Lane, the consulting firm owned by Mirch and Crist, $4,000. Turner listed that expense in his Board of Election filings. Turner also received the Conservative line. It would be interesting to know if the other candidates paid for "consulting services."

Assembly Candidate Martin Reid paid Victory Lane $1,000 in "consulting fees" during the 2006 election. So, it looks like Turner needed a lot more consultation to run a citywide campaign than Reid needed for a run for State Assembly?

Bauer and Wojcik have no disclosure records available through the Board of Election website so we don't know what, if anything, they paid to Victory Lane.

The more important point is, it looks like the District Attorney is going beyond the allegations of misuse of City of Troy resources and digging into allegations contained in Regan's second affidavit. Allegations of a far more serious nature.

Friday, June 15, 2007


Monday's Record Editorial was a damn good bit of ....editorializing. Really, one of their finer moments.

It's about the Open Meetings Law, how that law is ignored and how some reform could give that law some teeth. Here's a sample:

New York state has laws to ensure that government conducts the public's business in public. But the laws are only as effective as their enforcement.To deter officials from skirting the state Open Meetings Law, they need to know they can't get away with it. An amendment to the law has been proposed to serve that purpose. It would require the court in some cases to award attorney's fees and other reasonable costs to the successful party in cases alleging Open Meetings Law violations.

For the rest, go here.

This is probably one of the most violated laws in the state and in our own region. And it's not even that fun to violate.

The theory behind the law is that Public bodies, much like Paris Hilton, are supposed to be open to all. Here's the law, not that anyone really cares about it.

Public Officers Law

§ 103. Open meetings and executive sessions

(a) Every meeting of a public body shall be open to the general public, except that an executive session of such body may be called and business transacted thereat in accordance with section ninety-five [n1] of this article.

(b) Public bodies shall make or cause to be made all reasonable efforts to ensure that meetings are held in facilities that permit barrier-free physical access to the physically handicapped, as defined in subdivision five of section fifty of the public buildings law.

(c) A public body that uses videoconferencing to conduct its meetings shall provide an opportunity for the public to attend, listen and observe at any site at which a member participates.

There are exceptions. For instance:

1) Executive Session;
2) Investigating porn at City Hall;
3) Political Caucus;

The most common violation of the law comes during political caucuses (or cauci). A political caucus occurs when members of the same party hold a meeting about the legislative agenda, how much of pay raise to give themselves, how much to pay Victory Lane or what to order for lunch.

The operative words here are "members of the same party." It would have been nice if the editorial pointed out that when the Rensselaer County legislative majority caucuses, and Majority Leader Bob Mirch is present, they violate the law. Those caucuses should be open to the public.

The amendment to the Open Meetings Law is worthy of passage. It also seems like something that sites like Democracy in Albany or The Albany Project may want to champion. They're good at that kind of thing. We would love to lead the crusade, and we do take these things seriously, but we just booked some time on the squash courts.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


We have an update on Mini-Intimigate. This mini-scandal involved a citizen who called for the resignations of Mr. Mirch, Mr. Crawley and Mr. Buell over Intimigate, only to be ticketed by Code Enforcement a few days later for graffiti on his home. If you don't recall the story, here's our post.

Let us, too long, let us sum up:

1) Citizen pisses off Administration;
2) Citizen gets ticket for graffiti on his home;
3) Citizen not told what section of Code was actually violated;
4) No section of Code applies;
5) Administration says graffiti found upon routine inspection;
6) Administration says graffiti phoned in by anonymous source;*
7) Body of First Amendment found bludgeoned to death in alley (a clean alley, though).

Well, Harry has once again cleaned up the streets of Troy and one more piece of Graffiti has disappeared, never to darken fair Troy again. The graffiti at 262 Tenth Street is gone! We have to hand it to him. Harry gets results.

Through the magic of modern government, the aforementioned graffiti has been transformed into....a sign? (click on thumbnail)

Hell, we didn't know it was a sign! That's a different story.

Once again, Mr. de Seve hasn't been informed of what section of the Code he has violated. But, we can help him out. We found this:
§ 141-34. Signs. [Amended 4-2-1992]

A. The erection of signs on the front of buildings will be allowed if they are constructed of fireproof material, properly protected from the elements and firmly and permanently attached to the front of the building or structure. All signs, whether on the roof or the wall of the building shall be so constructed as to adequately resist wind pressure in accordance with the terms of the Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code.

B. The overhang of any sign is limited to four feet over a public sidewalk or thoroughfare with a minimum clearance of at least 12 feet between the sidewalk level and the bottom of the sign. The designs of any sign or display board having an area on one face in excess of 50 square feet must be submitted to the Director of Code Enforcement for approval before construction will be permitted.

C. Note that there is a fee for the erection of signs, as well as an annual charge.

D. Subsections A, B and C shall not apply in the event that signs are constructed in the City of Troy incidental to the production of a commercial artistic or cinematographic enterprise that has obtained permission from the City to undertake said commercial artistic or cinematographic enterprise.

We're not sure which provision has been violated. It may be Subsection A. There's no way that sign can adequately resist wind pressure. Or maybe the graf....sign...overhangs the public sidewalk too much.

It can't be subsection C. de Seve didn't erect the 'sign.' Don't you have to put a sign up before you are subject to any fee?

We eagerly await next week's ticket. Perhaps the graffiti will become a marquee or an awning.

The violent crime rate may have risen more tha 35% since '04, but at least Troy's rampant sign problems are being addressed. Troy is indeed experiencing a Renaissance and some of the most creative fiction written today is coming right from City Hall.

Gotta run. Some young punk is spraying a sign on my car.

* There is now a third version of how Code came to issue the original ticket, which we'll discuss later.

Monday, June 11, 2007


The Troy Republicans have unveiled their slate for City Council.


Henry Bauer,

Mark Ciccarelli

Maria Talarico

District Seats:

District 1: Mark Wojcik,

District 2: Mark McGrath,

District 3: Mark Balistreri

District 4: Beverly Traa

District 5: Mark Krogh

District 6: Carolin Collier

No surprises except that Mr. Krogh secured his re-nomination with a pledge to change his name to Mark. We're also proud that one of the Troy Polloi's own, Vito "Mark" Ciccarelli, is running. Mr. Ciccarelli was a frequent commentator here, back in the early days, and we're bursting with pride.

This is a fine slate of candidates. Not all will win but each candidate is surely capable of voting yes and ignoring the independent nature of the legislative branch. And isn't that what it's all about?


Since we feel free to criticize the District Attorneys Office for mistakes, we'll highlight one of their victories.

Burton Hunter's conviction for Sodomy, vacated by Judge McGrath for the Prosecution's failure to disclose Brady material, has been reinstated by the Appellate Division. The DA's office took some hits when the conviction was vacated but the higher court agreed with the DA's office. The information was not Brady material (a type of evidence that must be turned of to the defense).

If you're interested, here's the decision (Adobe Acrobat required).


In other news, the Rensselaer County DA's Office is under attack by John Aretakis. According to Aretakis, representing a young victim, the DA's Office isn't attentive enough to his client.
Attorney John Aretakis has charged that the Rensselaer County District Attorney's Office hasn't paid enough attention to his 16-year-old female client even though her alleged attacker was arrested a week after the April incident allegedly occurred. On May 4, Averill Park resident Ralph Roberts, 42, was arrested and charged with third-degree criminal sex act, a class E felony, and forcible touching, a misdemeanor. Roberts was released later that day after paying $20,000 bail. Aretakis, who took on the unnamed girl's case earlier this week, criticized the DA's office Wednesday for failing to return the 10th grader's calls or to publicly expose her alleged aggressor for the safety of other families who might come into contact with the him.

According to the DA's Office:

Aretakis fails to mention the victim already met face-to-face with ADA Christa Book, a representative from Child Protective Services, and an official from the START Center, along with the victim's sister and father for several hours on May 11. At that time, Wohlleber says the merits of the case were discussed with the victim and her family as well as the process involved in moving the case forward through the criminal justice system.

Wohlleber also was confident that Book has promptly returned all phone calls from the victim and the victim's family since the case was brought to their office. "It's just another desperate attempt by John (Aretakis) to get his name in the paper and his face on TV," said Wohlleber. "Everything in this case is going according to standard operating procedure ... this guy was arrested, he posted bail, we met with the victim and we're getting ready to start prosecuting."

Of course, we've heard of victims retaining counsel, even in criminal matters. Typically, this occurs when there's a possibility of a civil action against the accused. The victim's private counsel will usually work behind the scenes and counsel the family and work, if necessary, with the authorities. One of the things they do not usually do is create a media circus.

Aretakis should also know that a District Attorneys Office cannot try a defendant in the media. What a prosecutor can and cannot say about a suspect awaiting trial is limited by the ethics rules.

The Aretakis show has grown tiresome.

Friday, June 08, 2007


As the violent crime rate soars, the mayor seems unconcerned.

In Troy, violent crime - which includes murder, rape robbery and aggravated assault -jumped 17.2 percent from 2005 to 2006 and 20.1 percent from 2004 to 2006. In Schenectady, incidents of violent crime increased 11.8 percent from 2005 to 2006 and a whopping 28.4 percent from 2004 to 2006.Conversely, Albany saw a 4.6 percent decrease from 2005 to 2006 and a 7.1 percent decrease from 2004 to 2006.

The best part is, according to Mayor Tutunjian, "this dramatic increase did not cost the taxpayers of Troy anything. We were able to do it through Federal and State grants and not taxpayer dollars." Next week the Mayor will announce an increase in scurvy and rickets.

According to Mayor Tutunjian, "Results matter, not statistics." We're not really sure what that means. We suppose a pitcher with a 8-18 record and a 5.91 ERA could tell his manager that his record doesn't count, results do. He could also be sent down to the minors.

The statistics may not matter to Mayor Tutunjian...but they have mattered to him in the past.

When the Guardian Angels (where are those guys, anyway) made noise about migrating to Troy, the mayor had this to say:

According to Tutunjian, the group is not needed as crime in Troy is down 4.9 percent. He compared the city's murder rate of seven over five years to Albany (44) and Schenectady (33). According to the 2000 U.S. Census, Troy's population was 49,170 at that time. - The Record, June 29, 2005

And when the Cinema Art was raided in the Spring of 2006 (as violent crime surged), the Mayor informed us..."Our streets are safer and cleaner." (The Record, March 4, 2006). Uh...or not, Mr. Mayor.

While we don't expect Harry to know the difference between Harold Robbins and Proust or Boone's Farm and a Romanée-Conti , the ignorance of this administration is quite breathtaking (how can guys like Buell and Mitchell stand it?). Statistics may not mean much to Harry, but they do contain information that is of value. Statistics alone rarely tell the entire story, that is true. They are of value, nonetheless, if analyzed and used properly.

In reality, mayors, governors, presidents and police have little to do with crime rates. Crime in New York State has declined over the past few years. A large part of that is due to the aging population of northeastern states. It's difficult to reach the get-away car using a cane or walker.

Harry is always ready to attribute good news to his wise stewardship of Troy. So we guess he can take the blame as well.

By the way, where is Harry? We can't find him here or even at City Hall.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Another Tutunjian press release and therefore another episode of SLB.

Why re-invent the wheel? Police substation moving. Harry says city kicked out. Landlord says otherwise.

Last week when Mayor Harry Tutunjian announced the opening of the new substation in North Central, he said both at the podium and in his press release that the city had no choice but to move out of the Lansingburgh location because the building's owner, Northeast Shuttle Services Inc., was expanding. At the podium, the mayor said: "At the same time of the foreclosure, the city was faced with another difficult decision. Our substation in Lansingburgh, which has been there for several years, was recently purchased by Northeast Shuttle ... that business is growing and expanding and they have expansion plans in the future and they asked us to move out of that location if we could."

The press release said: "Tutunjian said that the city was forced to begin looking for new premises for a substation when Northeast Shuttle purchased the building the city had been occupying and moved its national offices to Troy." Northeast Shuttle President Jay Hamel sent us an email Thursday saying he had never asked the city to leave the Lansingburgh building.

In fact, Hamel provided us with a copy of a letter he sent to the mayor that stated:"The city has been a good tenant, and we enjoy having the police substation in our building. If the city has an opportunity to move the satellite station to a location that the city owns, or one that is more suited to the city's needs, we want to accommodate you, and we will gladly release you from the lease. In that regard, are you interested in being released from your obligations under the lease? If you are, we can determine what date fits the city's needs the best, and proceed accordingly."

The full story here.

Want to know if Harry lied in his press release? Ask for a copy of the lease. Either the city broke the contract or Jay Hamel did and does it really sound like Hamel did? Hamel handled the situation with grace, a commodity unknown, and thus unappreciated, at City Hall.

We're not saying Tutunjian is crooked. We're just saying he has to unscrew his socks at night.


Old news by now and not much to add. After demonstrating where service as a Troy City Councilman is on his list of priorities, Hank Bauer has dropped his quest for the DA's office. Chances are that Bauer will run again for City Council.

The real question is why? As Council President, Bauer has conducted meetings with professionalism. On occasion he has displayed an unfamiliarity with Robert's Rules and the Troy City Code which is easily forgivable. Not everyone is a gifted parliamentarian. Still, with a council majority, he has initiated no legislation, has failed to make any issue his own and has failed to protect the independence of the legislative branch of government.

Probably the biggest waste of talent Troy has seen in some time. No doubt the area papers will eagerly endorse him for re-election.

One Troy would-be GOP pol cannot be happy with Hank's back-flip into the council race. He had hoped to get Miner out of the race so he could secure the nomination. Bauer's return means he'll be on the sidelines for another election season.

Monday, June 04, 2007


After recently issuing a ticket to a Troy man for graffiti, the City of Troy discovered has some of it's own.

TROY - The city said it will paint over graffiti that is sprayed all over the second deck of the parking garage at City Hall this morning.But the city is not writing itself a ticket as officials did when graffiti was spotted on a city home."The difference is now I am aware of it," said Department of Public Works Commissioner Bob Mirch of a recent code violation the city handed out for the graffiti on the home. - The Record May 28, 2007

A few weeks ago Jim de Seve was issued a ticket for graffiti. The ticket came just days after de Seve called for the resignation of three administration officials for their alleged role in Intimigate. de Seve's ticket failed to specify what, if any, code provision was violated. A second ticket was sent to de Seve which, once again failed to identify a specific provision. Here's our original story.

Due Process necessitates that someone charged with a crime or violation be given the opportunity to be heard and be informed of the actual charge. The Administration has yet to do that for Mr. de Seve. Additionally, there are two stories as to how the graffiti on de Seve's property was discovered. DPW Commissioner Mirch says the graffiti was discovered on a routine patrol. A Code Enforcement official says the tip came via an anonymous phone call. Administration officials will meet next week to decide which story they want to go with. Or, perhaps they'll come up with a third story.

As for the graffiti at City Hall:

It could not be determined what the graffiti actually means. There are crowns that have the acronym B.T.M. painted on it. B.T.M. presumably stands for Block Town Moffiea, which is also spray painted on the walls of the parking deck.

Our Gang Expert has discovered that B.T.M. actually stands for Bob T(hree Job) Mirch. Mirch allegedly leads the most influential, middle-aged, white, Anglo-Saxon gang in Troy, known for warring over political party turf and trafficking in pension plans.

Friday, June 01, 2007


Time for our new feature which most of you won't care about at all. Welcome to How Appealing, a look at the area legal scene. This may be a bi-monthly column or a one time deal. We're still in negotiations.

The Family Law Section of the New York State Bar Association will hold it's Summer Meeting at the Equinox Hotel in Manchester, Vermont July 12-15.

On Friday, July 13, Bruce Wagner of the Albany Law firm of McNamee, Lochner, Titus & Williams will give a Matrimonial update from 9:00AM-10:15AM. Wagner is a well respected area attorney and we're sure his presentation will be well attended.

Now, you there, in the back, wake up. As enlightening as Mr. Wagner's presentation will likely be, we're far more interested in what will happen after dark.

Furthermore, based upon Ms. Steele's photograph...

It's a safe bet she's the most attractive person at the Equinox that weekend.

We love the idea of Ms. Steele speaking. You have to figure that the more lawyers get laid, the better it is for the rest of us. If Ms. Steele can help, all the better. In fact, we wouldn't be adverse to some private sessions. As an author and sexual empowerment consultant (is her firm accepting resumes?) we're sure she'll have a lot to offer. If you can't make the meeting, you can always visit her website (Warning: not workplace safe except at Troy City Hall).

If you can't visit her website, here's a sample:

You’ve found my one and only official web site! Inside my site Sydnee you will be aroused by photos from my movies past and present. Ever wonder what I am doing besides having sex on film? Take a closer look into my life by checking out the photos I take with my camera phone or sneak a peak into the pages of my journal. If you’re in the mood to watch me and my friends get it on, then this is the place! I have Wicked movies running 24 hours a day. You will find that I have reviewed some of them and even tossed in a few behind the scenes experiences to stimulate you and sometimes make you laugh! I haven’t even mentioned the auctions, this is where you can pick up a personalized photo of me, or maybe my panties, it’s always something new. I am going to have fun with you every day! Come on let’s get it on, it only takes a few minutes and I am all yours.



Leave it to lawyers to take something as wholesome as porn and turn it into something as tawdry as a conference lecture.