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1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING

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3

4

5 Held:

6 Thursday, September 7, 2006

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8

9 Time:

10 6:30 p.m.

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12

13 Location:

14 Council Chambers

15 Scranton City Hall

16 340 North Washington Avenue

17 Scranton, Pennsylvania

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20

21

22

23 Lisa M. Graff, RMR

24 Court Reporter

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1 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:

2

3 MS. JUDY GATELLI, COUNCIL PRESIDENT

4

5 MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT, VICE-PRESIDENT

6

7 MS. JANET EVANS

8

9 MS. SHERRY NEALON FANUCCI

10

11 MR. ROBERT McTIERNAN

12

13 MR. AMIL MINORA, ESQUIRE, SOLICITOR

14

15 MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK

16

17 MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK

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24

25
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1 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Please stand for

2 the Pledge Of Allegiance. Please remain standing for a

3 moment of reflection. Roll call.

4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

5 MS. EVANS: Here.

6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

7 MS. FANUCCI: Here.

8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

9 MR. MCTIERNAN: Here.

10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.

11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.

12 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.

13 MS. GATELLI: Here. Dispense with the

14 reading of the minutes. Third order.

15 MS. GARVEY: Third order. 3-A,

16 APPLICATIONS AND DECISIONS RENDERED AT THE ZONING

17 HEARING BOARD MEETING HELD ON WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 9,

18 2006.

19 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

20 If not, received and filed.

21 MS. GARVEY: 3-B, CONTROLLER'S REPORT

22 FOR THE MONTH ENDING JULY 31, 2006.

23 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

24 If not, received and filed.

25 MS. GARVEY: 3-C, MINUTES OF THE
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1 NON-UNIFORM PENSION FUND MEETING HELD ON JULY 26, 2006.

2 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

3 If not, received and filed.

4 MS. GARVEY: 3-D, MINUTES OF THE

5 COMPOSITE PENSION BOARD MEETING HELD ON JULY 26, 2006.

6 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

7 If not, received and filed.

8 MS. GARVEY: 3-E, MINUTES OF THE

9 FIREMEN'S PENSION COMMISSION MEETING HELD ON JULY 26,

10 2006.

11 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

12 If not, received and filed.

13 MS. GARVEY: 3-F, AGENDA FOR THE

14 NON-UNIFORM PENSION FUND MEETING HELD ON AUGUST 23,

15 2006.

16 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

17 If not, received and filed.

18 MS. GARVEY: 3-G, MINUTES OF THE POLICE

19 PENSION COMMISSION MEETING HELD ON JULY 26, 2006.

20 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

21 If not, received and filed.

22 MS. GARVEY: 3-H, AGENDA FOR THE ZONING

23 HEARING BOARD MEETING TO BE HELD ON SEPTEMBER 13, 2006.

24 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

25 If not, received and filed.
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1 MS. GARVEY: 3-I, MINUTES OF THE VACANT

2 PROPERTY REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON JULY 11,

3 2006.

4 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?

5 If not, received and filed.

6 MS. GARVEY: That's all I have for

7 third order, and I have no clerk's notes tonight.

8 MS. GATELLI: Well, first I'd like to

9 welcome everybody back from our summer hiatus, is that

10 what we would call it? I'm sure that everyone up here

11 was bombarded, as I was, with activities and complaints

12 that we received at our homes and via E-mails. So, we

13 may not have been here, but we certainly were doing our

14 duties as Councilpersons.

15 I would like to thank George Parker for

16 paving Kane Street and Winfield Avenue. It really got

17 to be in very bad condition with all the rains, and he

18 did a pretty good job, although it's going to take a

19 lot of money to put drainage in there. That's really

20 the problem there, but for the time being, it's a

21 pretty good job.

22 I would like to warn everyone, I don't

23 know if you had anything like this going on in your

24 neighborhood, but last week I had two incidents, one in

25 Minooka at my daughter's house, where people were
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1 selling door to door without a permit, and I called the

2 police and reported it.

3 The very next day, they were at my

4 house on my block trying to do the same thing and I

5 again told the gentleman that he did not have a permit,

6 if he would go to City Hall and get a permit, he would

7 be allowed to solicit door to door.

8 He got very nasty and left the porch

9 and continued to walk to the rest of my neighbors, and

10 I again called the police department, and they came and

11 asked him to leave.

12 The police officer told me that there

13 have been some incidents in the city where people are

14 conning the elderly and getting into their homes, so, I

15 would just like the people out there to pass the word

16 that there are people going around soliciting allegedly

17 and trying to get into your homes.

18 The elderly should not go outdoors with

19 these people for any reason whatsoever. They tried to

20 get them to go outside and distract them and then they

21 go into their homes and ransack them. So, I would

22 please ask everyone in the audience and everyone in the

23 viewing audience to pass that word along to be aware of

24 people knocking on your door.

25 I have a few pieces of correspondence
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1 that I received, and it was too late to read them at

2 the last meeting. Dear Mrs. Gatelli and fellow Council

3 members, I'm writing to say a special thank you to the

4 Department of Public Works who paved the 800 block of

5 Crossen Court. They were polite and pleasant as they

6 worked at their specific job to pave the court.

7 As a homeowner and taxpayer I'm happy

8 to write this thank you. I don't know their names, but

9 I felt the least I could do was to sit down and write

10 this thank you so they could be recognized publicly at

11 Council.

12 I feel more people today need to be

13 thankful and recognized for a job well done. So,

14 thanks again to these DPW workers who did not only do

15 their job, but did it in an efficient, competent and

16 pleasant manner. Gratefully, Mary Jennings. So, we

17 will thank the DPW for that.

18 And as we were having the meeting on

19 July 27, one of our clerks, Sue Magnotta, took a call

20 from a woman and she wanted Council to know that there

21 are citizens in the city who are pleased with the work

22 of City Council, they appreciate Council's time and

23 effort and do not like the perception given by some

24 speakers.

25 The woman was hoping this could be read
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1 on air, as she is very uncomfortable attending the

2 meeting. We thank her for her kind comments.

3 I met recently with George Parker

4 concerning the Tripp Park KOZ project up on Euclid

5 Avenue. There are many items that remain unresolved,

6 and Mr. Parker is not going to send anything to us to

7 take over the streets until he is satisfied, so, we

8 will probably hear from Mr. Parker within the next few

9 weeks regarding the Tripp Park KOZ project.

10 There were numerous potholes filled,

11 some streets were paved, Birch Street was also paved.

12 They're too numerous to mention because they're from

13 the whole summer.

14 I wanted everyone to know that I went

15 over to meet Sara Hailstone, and I got a copy for the

16 request for the block grant money for 2007.

17 If the rest of Council doesn't have it,

18 I will ask Kay to make copies for them. And the

19 requests add up to $8 million. We will be getting $3

20 million. So, as you can see, there's going to be a lot

21 of people that are going to be disappointed.

22 So, we will go through these, all of

23 Council, we will meet together to discuss them once

24 everyone gets an opportunity to look at them, and then

25 we will also schedule a public hearing to review these
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1 applications. And I thank everyone for applying, but I

2 hope they would appreciate the fact that certain people

3 have to be cut, because, you know, it's almost triple

4 the amount of money that we're going to be allocated.

5 I also went to the city of Bethlehem

6 this summer, and it was a two-fold trip. I went with

7 the Architectural Heritage Association. They're trying

8 to come up with an ordinance that they can use in the

9 City of Scranton that would work in historic districts.

10 Certain buildings are historic and they

11 have to be remodeled and rehabed in a certain fashion,

12 and that has to come through City Council. So, I

13 thought it would be beneficial to attend.

14 We did attend an architectural heritage

15 meeting that they had in Bethlehem and got some great

16 ideas that John Moore, the president, brought back to

17 his body, and they're currently working on an ordinance

18 for that.

19 We also met with the director of

20 economic and community development there, and I got a

21 lot of information on the Elm Street Program that's

22 going to be taking place on the one through the six of

23 Cedar Avenue.

24 If anyone would like a copy of this

25 program, Leslie Collins of Scranton Tomorrow is going
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1 to be the manager, and the goal is to revitalize

2 neighbors in proximity to the existing downtown by

3 improving the exterior appearance of buildings and

4 streetscapes.

5 It is to formalize a connection between

6 residential neighborhood areas with downtown

7 revitalization activities. So, it certainly is an

8 eligible project, and they are in the planning stages

9 and anyone can have a copy of this grant, also, if

10 Council would like a copy.

11 The last thing I have from Bethlehem is

12 their rental registration program. Down there when you

13 have a unit that has at least three unrelated people

14 there, you are considered a regulated rental unit.

15 Now, we do have a rental registration

16 program in Scranton, but it's not as rigorous as this

17 one is in Bethlehem. They make a lot of money for the

18 city of Bethlehem. They're able to take in a lot of

19 revenue.

20 In the meantime, they're regulating

21 housing, which seems to be one of the prime complaints

22 that City Council members receive. I, myself, I guess

23 I shouldn't speak for everybody else, but the most

24 often complaint I get is always related to housing,

25 whether it's overcrowded, whether the yard's a mess,
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1 blighted condition, student housing.

2 So, I think that it would behove us to

3 also make copies of this for all of Council, sit with

4 Attorney Minora, sit with Fiorini, look at their

5 current ordinance and maybe we can work some of these

6 new things into it to make the program a little more

7 stringent.

8 I was happy to see that they're going

9 to have a blight task force. I hope that they're

10 successful, and I would certainly offer my services in

11 any way I can, as I was the previous director of that

12 department, and I had a very successful run as the

13 director of that program, and I would be willing to

14 volunteer my services at any time to help them.

15 There hasn't been a tavern closed down

16 since then, except for Tony and Mary's, and we had to

17 go through many loops and hoops to get that place

18 closed.

19 And there were ways to work on things

20 like with the task force, with the D.A. and the Liquor

21 Control Board, who were all involved back in those

22 days.

23 So, I would ask Council to please

24 review this, also, and Amil Minora, and maybe within a

25 few weeks we can meet with Fiorini and see if we can
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1 work some of these -- and Seitzinger, because I guess

2 he's the new blight guy, and see if we can get some of

3 these more stringent rules in there and really get the

4 properties to come up to shape, especially the student

5 housing.

6 All right. Before we start with the

7 sign-in sheet, I'm just going to read the rules of

8 Council that were adopted by this Council unanimously.

9 No person shall address City Council

10 for more than five minutes, unless extended by the

11 Council President. The five-minute limit includes any

12 time that Council may speak in response to a person's

13 question or comment. All comments shall be directed to

14 the Council President.

15 No person shall use his or her time

16 during citizens' participation to personally insult or

17 attack any individual. Personal insults, attacks, name

18 calling and other behavior that is inconsistent with

19 the purpose and intent of conducting official city

20 business shall not be permitted nor tolerated.

21 The Council President in her capacity

22 shall determine if and when any person violates this

23 section.

24 Any person violating this section shall

25 be ruled out of order by the President and removed from
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1 the meeting at the President's request.

2 I don't think this will be necessary,

3 and I certainly will ask Attorney Minora's opinion, not

4 just my own, whether things would be inappropriate.

5 We welcome your comments, that's what

6 we're here for. We're here for you. You represent the

7 people, and hopefully we do, too.

8 So, I would ask everyone to please be

9 kind and considerate of each other. We will respect

10 you, and please respect us. We're here for you and

11 we're all trying to make Scranton a better place to

12 live.

13 The first speaker will be Douglas

14 Miller from the Junior City Council.

15 MR. MILLER: Good evening, Council.

16 Doug Miller. I would like to welcome everyone back. I

17 hope everyone enjoyed their summer. I would also like

18 to wish the best of luck to all the students as we

19 begin a new school year.

20 As I've said since day one, I feel it

21 is very important that involvement from the youth in

22 the city is important, children coming here, sharing

23 ideas, speaking out and showing their support.

24 The goal of the Junior Council is to do

25 that. I encourage all young adults from 18 or older
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1 who haven't voted before to register. We are very

2 fortunate that we have this right.

3 Obviously we have the important

4 election in the next few months, so I encourage all

5 those to get out and vote.

6 The Scranton Junior City Council

7 continues to serve and take pride in our community.

8 This past summer, our Council completed its Clean Sweep

9 2006 Program, which was our four park cleanups that we

10 conducted at the Woodlawn Street Islands, the Dorothy

11 Street Playground, the Minooka Playground and McLane

12 Park.

13 On behalf of the entire Junior Council,

14 I want to thank this time to thank all those who came

15 out and supported us, and we really appreciate all the

16 support that we get.

17 We believe that the key to having a

18 strong city is having clean, safe and healthy parks for

19 all of our residents.

20 Our current projects include the

21 Scranton Skate Park, which there will be a fundraiser

22 for this Saturday at the Ice Box from five to 9 p.m.

23 Please come out and support this project.

24 Our most current project is raising

25 funds to purchase a children's handicapped swing set
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1 for Nay Aug Park. All children with disabilities will

2 no longer have to sit and watch other children use the

3 playground rides and feel left out.

4 The Scranton Junior City Council began

5 fundraising for this swing set this past weekend at the

6 Italian Festival.

7 I would like to thank Cesare's Pocono

8 Resorts, Scooter's Hot Dog Hut, the Ground Round and

9 Alfredo's Pizza Cafe for their generous donations.

10 I am proud to announce we raised $500

11 towards this project by selling these raffle tickets,

12 and we will continue to raise more.

13 I would like to thank all the citizens

14 who came out and supported us this weekend by

15 purchasing these tickets. We appreciate your help and

16 support and trying to make progress in the city.

17 Lastly tonight I would like to -- I

18 want everyone to hear this message. I'm very upset

19 that these meetings are considered to some as their

20 comedy hour.

21 Just this past week a local radio

22 station was airing audio clips from a past Council

23 meeting, and they were making fun and making jokes

24 about these meetings.

25 Now, some people come up here for their
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1 five minutes of fame and share no ideas or ways to

2 improve this city. It's time that people take these

3 meetings more serious and not make a mockery of them.

4 We come here to conduct city business,

5 and if nobody likes that, then, please, I ask you don't

6 come here and waste time. Thank you.

7 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Before we

8 continue, Mr. DiBileo, you're next, I have two

9 announcements that I forgot to make.

10 Charlie Spano asked that we call and

11 say that there will be a fifth anniversary gathering to

12 commemorate the 9/11 bombings. It will held at McDade

13 Park on Monday, September 11 between 8:30 and 9:30 at

14 the memorial site near the entrance to the park.

15 So, if you're free and you're able to

16 get there, it would certainly be nice to have a large

17 crowd there.

18 And, also, Saturday at eight on Wyoming

19 Avenue is the Race For the Cure. You can still

20 register the day of the race, and that certainly is a

21 cause, especially for women, but also men are affected

22 with breast cancer.

23 But I'm sure every one of you knows

24 someone that either died from breast cancer or is a

25 survivor of breast cancer, and most of the money is
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1 used for research, 75 percent, which is a large amount.

2 So, The Race For the Cure is Saturday

3 at eight o'clock in front of the old Globe Store,

4 Diversified Records. Mr. DiBileo.

5 MR. DIBILEO: Good evening, City

6 Council members, Madame President Gatelli, Vice

7 President Courtright, Mrs. Evans, Mrs. Fanucci, Mr.

8 McTiernan, Neil, Kay, Amil, pleasure to be here.

9 I'm Gary DiBileo from Scranton. Until

10 about nine months ago it was my job to be here every

11 Thursday night, and I miss seeing you all, and it's

12 been a privilege to serve as a City Council

13 member.

14 It's no longer my job to be here, but I

15 wanted to come as a concerned taxpayer, a concerned

16 business owner, a concerned father of a young family,

17 and I wanted to share my concerns regarding the $44

18 million of borrowing that's on your agenda this evening

19 and for the next two-week period, I believe.

20 I simply wanted to ask you to keep a

21 few things in mind as you begin to enter this decision

22 making process.

23 Firstly, this borrowing plan apparently

24 will include balancing the budget for this year. But

25 keep in mind that the last two years worth of budgets
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1 being balanced were from borrowed money, also, and

2 apparently this plan also includes the next three years

3 of balancing the budget with borrowed money.

4 And just to me it seems as though that

5 doesn't encourage a tightening of the belt. It almost

6 seems as though knowing that your next three years'

7 worth of budgets being balanced by borrowed money is

8 like throwing fiscal responsibility out of the process.

9 It's no longer required, because you're already going

10 to be taken care of financially.

11 Also, you have to ask yourself, I

12 believe, have all cost cutting measures been

13 implemented prior to allowing for additional borrowing?

14 I'd like you also to please keep

15 working families in mind, people like most of us, like

16 myself, that work from paycheck to paycheck every week

17 or every two-week period.

18 Also please keep in mind our retired

19 workers that live on Social Security that struggle from

20 month to month making ends meet.

21 Also, this borrowing includes a tax

22 increase, and this just wasn't promised to people a few

23 years ago, and it's not something that I think people

24 can afford, so it has to be really looked at hard and

25 we're sure that you will do that.
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1 And I think that you and the public

2 deserve to hear from the person at the top regarding a

3 plan for this borrowed money.

4 This could be a legal question, but I'm

5 thinking that perhaps this borrowing plan can be put on

6 the ballot as a referendum. I don't know. That's

7 something that maybe Amil Minora might be able to

8 address.

9 And lastly, as we all know, it's easy

10 to borrow money, but it's much more difficult to pay it

11 back. So, you know, I think that you can either cut

12 costs or cut corners.

13 And we're sure that you're going to

14 take a real hard look at this plan over the next two

15 weeks, it's not an easy decision, but it's one that I'm

16 sure you'll pay very close attention to.

17 And these are just some of the things

18 that I'd like you to consider as you enter this

19 decision making process, and I thank you for the

20 opportunity to speak, and I thank Channel 61 for

21 providing this agenda. Thank you.

22 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mr. DiBileo.

23 MS. EVANS: Mr. DiBileo, if I may, I

24 absolutely agree with you that the mayor owes not only

25 City Council, but all of the taxpaying residents of the
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1 City of Scranton an explanation for not only this

2 particular borrowing, but for the lack of a five-year

3 plan for the dismal financial straits we find ourselves

4 in.

5 But as you well remember, I think it's

6 very difficult to entertain the presence of the mayor

7 in City Council, and perhaps if Council were Yankee

8 Stadium, we'd have a better chance of getting the mayor

9 here.

10 MR. DIBILEO: At a minimum possibly is

11 there was a program, I'm not sure if it's still active,

12 but Conversations with the Mayor, and I don't know if

13 that's now defunct, but maybe that's a topic that can

14 be put on Channel 61, if not, right here in City

15 Council chambers. So, thank you very much. I

16 appreciate it.

17 MS. GATELLI: Thank you for coming.

18 Bob Bolus.

19 MR. BOLUS: Good evening, Council. Bob

20 Bolus, Scranton. Welcome back, and I guess let the

21 games begin, because I'm sure we're going to have a lot

22 of them here.

23 First of all, I'd like to commend the

24 Junior Council. I worked with them throughout the

25 summer. Scooter's Hot Dog Hut, our employees
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1 volunteered their time to see that hot dogs were served

2 to the people that were there. I'd like to thank them,

3 but more importantly the job they did. It shows what

4 character we're building in the city, and Council

5 should be applauded for allowing this to happen. I

6 hope other cities and areas take the lead.

7 Ironically, though, during La Festa, a

8 situation arose. Attorney Frank Costello, who's with

9 the La Festa Committee, actually stopped the kids from

10 selling raffle tickets. They're saying they have no

11 right to sell them.

12 They said other people want to sell

13 tickets, you know, various organizations, and he and I

14 engaged in a dialog about it. I can't say it was

15 heated.

16 He brought up issues about when I

17 campaigned in the city about signs and this and that.

18 This wasn't about me, it was about these kids and the

19 character we're trying to build in them. The last

20 thing he should do is encourage suppression.

21 He said, Don't threaten him. I didn't

22 threaten him. I said I was going to come here and talk

23 about him. I didn't appreciate what he did.

24 These kids have every right in the city

25 as this Council does this. Is a city property, it's
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1 for a city function, it's for a city improvement to the

2 handicapped kids. To say these kids couldn't do it was

3 totally wrong, and I think he should be taken to task

4 on it.

5 Other members of the committee came

6 forward. We compromised somewhat to allow the kids to

7 stay in one corner, which was totally wrong.

8 No one was complaining, only Mr.

9 Costello. I don't think he had a legal right to do it.

10 And he's an attorney, and he should know better.

11 Let's talk about Mr. Doherty and

12 ballparks. While he traveled around looking about how

13 ballparks are played, maybe he should go to South Side

14 and see how he kicked everybody out of there, what he

15 did with our own ballpark. Tell other people how we're

16 giving our ballpark away to the University of Scranton

17 spending $30-some million up here on Mulberry Street

18 and we're not getting anything out of it, other than

19 they're getting a tuition and we'll get a token dollar.

20 He should have spent more time talking

21 to people about distressed cities, how to bring KOZs

22 and non-profits in to pay a fee and educated himself

23 with a recreational idea. We're not here for

24 recreation. We're here to pull Scranton out of the

25 debt he's created.
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1 You cannot borrow to get out of debt.

2 You know, what he could do is show him maybe how to

3 bankrupt the city. And we will get bankrupt, Mrs.

4 Fanucci. I hate to say that, but, yes, the city can go

5 bankrupt, and I believe we're heading there.

6 And maybe we need a trustee to take the

7 reins and use our assets to be profitable here in the

8 city instead of squandering them on a $1 lease, as we

9 did in the one over here with the old station or the

10 old garage we had, the old DPW.

11 Sometimes I question the relationship

12 Mr. Doherty may have with the owners, if it's more of a

13 personal relationship or not, and I'd like to explore

14 that, why this went on.

15 You know, maybe he should give a lesson

16 to other cities, show how to borrow to get out of debt

17 with smoke and mirrors and then eventually tax your

18 taxpaying people that you bury them.

19 That when Parade said this is a place

20 to come and buy a property, bury them so bad in debt,

21 that we give our property away, rather than as other

22 cities.

23 And I just travelled for the summer

24 throughout the continental US mostly on a motor trip,

25 and I saw progress in many, many areas, progress that
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1 should come here, progress that should show that you

2 paw for our assets here, not take them away and give

3 them away because our management at the top has an ego,

4 an ego to consume our money by frivolous spending.

5 He blames unions for not implementing

6 the unions -- our Recovery Plan. But isn't it Mr.

7 Doherty whose arrogance did not sit here publicly with

8 the unions and negotiate as the man as a leader as all

9 leaders do in business to sit here and work it out, he

10 buried us in debt with arbitration hearings with his

11 arrogance. He was going to teach them a lesson.

12 He didn't teach them anything, not a

13 dime come out of his pocket, but it's out of ours.

14 That's the arrogance of leadership.

15 The responsibility here with this

16 Council is to say no to $44 million. Find a way to

17 make the KOZs, the non-profits, the leachate line that

18 I brought up coming from the landfill where you

19 generate several million dollars a year here to pay

20 this debt. If you take that over a ten-year period or

21 20-year period, you do not need to borrow. What you

22 need to do is rein this man in --

23 MS. GATELLI: Wrap up your thoughts,

24 Mr. Bolus.

25 MR. BOLUS: I understand. My thoughts
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1 are, Give Scranton's citizens the break they need,

2 utilize our assets to generate income, make Chris

3 Doherty, his administration, don't see that Carl Greco

4 gets another raise because he got $44 million to

5 squander and other people out here, stop the taking of

6 places like Buona Pizza and disgracing the city on

7 national TV because we're incompetent enough on how we

8 run this city and how we discredit our citizens and the

9 taxpayers to give us away. It's Council's

10 responsibility.

11 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mr. Bolus.

12 MR. BOLUS: Bring him in to task. Sit

13 him here and let him answer us, how we're going to pay

14 this back how these kids are going to pay it back in

15 20 years. Thank you, Council.

16 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Bill

17 Jackowitz.

18 MR. JACKOWITZ: Good evening, City

19 Council. 137 percent increase in Scranton. Bill

20 Jackowitz, taxpayer and South Scranton resident, legal

21 citizen, parents and grandparents also legal citizens,

22 retired United States Air Force, my observations and

23 opinions.

24 $44 million additional loan to close

25 the city budget gap of more than $6 million in
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1 anticipated red ink for the next four years.

2 A $6 million deficit in the 2007 city

3 budget, which this additional $38 million will plug.

4 This money might be used for police and fire contracts.

5 What will the borrowed, and I repeat borrowed money, be

6 used for?

7 My hope is that Scranton City Council

8 has all the correct answers before approving this loan

9 of $44 million.

10 The Legion of Doom raised the

11 possibility that the mayor was going to borrow $40

12 million again this year, but yet City Council acted

13 surprised and stunned when the information became

14 public.

15 My hope is that City Council will not

16 be surprised or stunned when they're called upon to

17 vote on this loan.

18 My hope is that Council will act

19 professionally and have all the answers with legal

20 documentation before casting your vote.

21 That same vote applies when the vote

22 comes up for tax increases. Please do the right thing

23 for all the legal citizens of Scranton. We're going to

24 be paying for the illegal law breakers.

25 I have been reading the articles and
.

27


1 editorials and letters to the editors in regards to the

2 rebuilding of South Scranton.

3 Being a resident born and raised in

4 South Scranton, I would like someone to explain to me

5 how Scranton will benefit by allowing illegal

6 immigrants to migrate, live and work in Scranton.

7 Does Council, South Side Neighborhood

8 Association and the administration realize that illegal

9 immigrants do not pay taxes, vote, defend the country?

10 What they do do is raise health care costs, raise

11 taxes, cause numerous communication problems and more

12 than likely the crime rate will arise.

13 Again, I am only speaking about illegal

14 immigrants. Is that what our politicians and

15 neighborhood associations want? If so, so be it.

16 Personally I've experienced the

17 situation three times, states of New Mexico, Texas and

18 Minnesota. I cannot believe that some people are

19 blaming the decline in population on the fact that

20 people are dying.

21 People die everywhere every day. If

22 you take the time to read the obituaries, concentrate

23 on the surviving family members; example, children,

24 brothers, sisters. See where they reside. I'll bet

25 that it is not Scranton.
.

28


1 And while you're reading the paper,

2 read the marriage announcements. See where the newly

3 married couples will be residing. I bet that it is not

4 Scranton.

5 67,400 citizens in Scranton currently.

6 3,100 jobs lost in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre July 2006.

7 Mayor, Council, neighborhood association, it is not

8 population, it is the economy, stupid.

9 That includes wages, taxes, wages are

10 low, taxes are high and going higher. Homeownership.

11 How can you own a home at $20,000 a year? Maybe four

12 families moving into one house.

13 I'm a very patient individual. My hope

14 is that your children, grandchildren and great

15 grandchildren have the same patience that I have.

16 My advice to the young, do not build or

17 buy a house in Scranton unless you are willing to

18 educate, feed, provide medical care and deal with the

19 crime caused by the illegal immigrants of Scranton,

20 Pennsylvania.

21 What will bring vitality to the city

22 will be the next wave of family sustaining wages and

23 lower taxes? It is the economy, stupid, not jobs or

24 office buildings or giveaways. Wages, money.

25 Why do you think real estate agents
.

29


1 sell homes, teachers teach, nurses nurse, office

2 managers manage, karate instructors instruct and

3 Councilpersons govern? For money and wages. It is the

4 economy, stupid.

5 Wake up, Scranton citizens. Voice your

6 opinions. Attend Council meetings.

7 137 percent increase in foreign born

8 babies in Scranton Hospital. Who is paying, Junior

9 City Council? Today I am. Tomorrow you will be

10 paying. Good luck.

11 City Council, what is the primary

12 responsibility of an elected official? Safety of all

13 legal citizens. When elected officials and department

14 heads are not prepared for emergency situation, that

15 amounts to a scary situation.

16 We could be talking about human lives.

17 How would you like for you and your family to be living

18 in unsafe environments like they are in public housing?

19 Citizens, attend City Council meetings,

20 voice your opinions. We all have one. You cannot

21 ignore any longer, unless you are willing to pay for a

22 long time. Show up, let your faces be seen and your

23 voices be heard, not anonymous unsigned letters.

24 Legion of Doom, fair, honest and open

25 government. That's what Legion of Doom stands for.
.

30


1 Until that happens, I will continue to speak and ask my

2 questions, hopefully answers.

3 Any intelligent person knows the best

4 way to solve a deficit is to grow the economy, not run

5 up our taxes. It's the economy, stupid.

6 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mrs. Krake.

7 MS. KRAKE: Good evening, Council. My

8 name is Nancy Krake. And, Mrs. Gatelli, I would love

9 you to give those rules to The Scranton Times, the two

10 that were just adopted by Council, because the shirt I

11 have on is what they called us. They have no rules to

12 abide by.

13 MS. GATELLI: Well, unfortunately we

14 can't discuss The Scranton Times here, because if I

15 owned it, it would be a lot different.

16 MS. KRAKE: I would love that actually.

17 And, in fact, I believe the Pennsylvania Economy League

18 should be the people that are called the Legion of

19 Doom, and I'm going to send them this T-shirt after

20 tonight.

21 In fact, the Pennsylvania Economy

22 League has been lying to us for the past 12 years.

23 Jimmy Connors knew that. He had his own Recovery Plan.

24 Three of you Councilpeople served under

25 him under his administration. He never felt that we
.

31


1 were distressed.

2 By the time he left office, he had

3 accomplished everything that the Pennsylvania Economy

4 League claims they want to accomplish today, and he did

5 it without them.

6 He brought us out of debt and he gave

7 us a nice little surplus. He settled eight union

8 contracts with cost of living raises, he paved roads,

9 had parties in Nay Aug for everybody, and many, many

10 other things he gave us.

11 And by the way, he did all this and

12 more while being sanctioned by the state. Oh, no. Is

13 that what we're supposed to be afraid of now? I guess

14 he must have been pretty darn courageous. In fact, he

15 must have been brilliant. Maybe we should have hired

16 him as a consultant. It probably would have been a lot

17 cheaper than the ones we hire now.

18 In fact, the Pennsylvania Economy

19 League are the consultants to whom we Scrantonians owe

20 a debt we will never be able to repay, that is to say,

21 the mountain of debt they coerced, encouraged this city

22 to become burdened with, and our children and

23 grandchildren, if they're still here.

24 I think we should take our destiny back

25 into our own hands, I think we should be at least as
.

32


1 courageous as Jimmy Connors.

2 No Pennsylvania Economy League, no

3 borrowing, because that's the easy way out. We should

4 all work together on a budget.

5 Council needs to lead this fight to

6 take back our economic future from out of town

7 consultants. And I know we would all be willing to

8 help. Thank you.

9 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Ron Elman.

10 MR. ELMAN: Oh, well. I'm sorry I

11 missed the fireworks last time. Before you lay down

12 the law, I didn't have nothing about Ms. Fanucci on

13 here, except a suggestion. My father once told me

14 don't put anything in writing you don't want to come

15 back and haunt you.

16 See, I only got four things here. It

17 shouldn't take much over an hour. The second -- now, I

18 want you people to listen to this. I went to McCongee

19 about a month ago for a three-day antique car show.

20 McCongee is ten or 15 miles from Allentown, and you go

21 down a brand new four lane in the middle of nowhere,

22 cut through virgin countryside, and guess what's there?

23 A sound barrier.

24 Scranton has been trying to get Bobby

25 Sheridan and those people for eight or ten years.
.

33


1 There it is sitting out there a half mile on each side

2 of the road with nothing around it. And I think that's

3 a kick in the teeth for the city and Bobby Sheridan,

4 and I think you people need to find out why a half mile

5 on each side of the road is in the middle of nowhere.

6 And thirdly, I was going to complain

7 about these 500 houses that were on the sheriff's sale.

8 One of them is right behind me. The poor guy, he told

9 me a couple weeks ago, beside losing his house, he said

10 he had no oil heat. There's just no way he could make

11 it this winter. He had been there seven, eight years,

12 I guess.

13 I just about paralleled everything Mr.

14 Bolus said about trying to borrow ourselves out of

15 debt. It's never been done in the history of the world

16 that I can find out.

17 And I realize Mr. Doherty, you know,

18 inherited some problems, a lot of financial problems.

19 The problem we face today can't be fixed by the same

20 methods used when they were incurred years ago. And

21 that's what we're doing.

22 You know, years ago there was 25,

23 30,000 people, eight, ten, fifteen years ago. Now the

24 population is dwindling. The tax base is down to

25 nothing, and we got officials that think it's their
.

34


1 own. You know, what was good then isn't necessarily

2 good now.

3 We need to find someone that can stop

4 this insane borrowing program. The taxpayers --

5 there's no tax base left here. This man has to be

6 stopped right now. It just can't go on.

7 I mean, my taxes have more than

8 doubled, and now we're going to really have a mess down

9 there when Century 21 starts up, because everybody that

10 gets their taxes raised are going to go down and

11 complain. It's going to be tied up for years.

12 And let me tell you something that I

13 bet none of you know, years ago we had a lady, a very

14 capable young lady, I forgot, eight or ten years ago

15 maybe, she was hired to set up computers, start this

16 tax assessment and all of that. Do any of you know

17 that?

18 And guess what happened to her? There

19 was a change in the administration, all the nepotism.

20 They hired a young guy that didn't even know how to use

21 computers. That office went down the drain in a couple

22 of months.

23 We're paying double right now for all

24 that that was done then. And the real estate company,

25 I don't care what they tell you, they cannot be biased.
.

35


1 They're going to continuously want the highest rate on

2 a house.

3 I've had some people come by and

4 appraise my house for this reverse mortgage, and

5 they're crazy. I said, My house, you couldn't sell it

6 for two-thirds of that. They say, That's what we think

7 it's worth, two different companies.

8 In closing I just want to say one thing

9 that doesn't even pertain to this, but I'm talking to

10 one individual out there in that audience, I hope.

11 Three weeks I took my bride over to JC

12 Penney. There was a little cat that was three or four

13 weeks old running around the parking lot. All these

14 women are driving. Nobody is trying to avoid the cat.

15 My bride jumps out, tries to catch it.

16 It got away. I went home. Then she phones me, I got

17 the cat. I went back, and I am not a cat fancier, you

18 know. Lump comes to me. I say, Lump, come here, he

19 comes to me. Cats just don't come to you.

20 Anyway, I'm stuck with this cat. But I

21 want to say that somebody is lower than a snack's belly

22 to put a little critter out in a parking lot like that,

23 and I hope they get my message. Thank you.

24 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Jim Stucker.

25 Jim, I think I saw Bill riding the scooter the other
.

36


1 day.

2 MR. STUCKER: Everybody tells me that

3 over town.

4 MS. GATELLI: I'm just teasing you.

5 MR. STUCKER: Yeah.

6 MS. GATELLI: Okay. We have an old

7 problem again. We have over by the Globe Store and

8 Oppenheim's, they're parking their cars again there

9 where the busses are parking, and there's no way the

10 buses cans park there and pick up people on account of

11 the -- they've been parked there and they go inside the

12 jewelry shop or donut shop or any place and they just

13 park and leave their cars there and they go to the

14 bank, and what happens, they turn around, the busses

15 are blocking the cars in. So, I don't blame them. I

16 don't blame the busses blocking them in.

17 MS. GATELLI: We will report that, Jim.

18 MR. STUCKER: Yeah. And up on Parrot

19 Avenue by the school, there's them holes again. They

20 never got to fix them. The city never did. They never

21 black topped that.

22 And we have a -- I have a friend that

23 lives over in my building upstairs, he's been going to

24 soup kitchens a lot, he works there, what he's doing,

25 he's bringing cakes and pies from there and selling
.

37


1 them to people. I want to see one of you do something

2 about it.

3 MS. GATELLI: Maybe you can talk to us

4 after, because I don't want you to say any names on the

5 air, okay?

6 MR. STUCKER: Yeah, yeah. I've been

7 doing a lot of work cutting grass.

8 MS. GATELLI: Good.

9 MR. STUCKER: So, I'm moving again.

10 I'm moving over Adams Avenue. I'm going for a knee

11 operation Monday.

12 MS. EVANS: Good luck.

13 MR. STUCKER: Yeah, Mercy.

14 MS. GATELLI: If you need a good nurse,

15 call me.

16 MR. STUCKER: All right. Okay. I seen

17 you at the Italian Festival. I seen you there.

18 MS. GATELLI: Good luck to you, Jim.

19 MR. STUCKER: Yeah. Okay.

20 MS. GATELLI: Thanks. We'll address

21 your concerns.

22 MR. STUCKER: All right. Okay. Thank

23 you. Good-bye.

24 MS. GATELLI: Les Spindler.

25 MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council.
.

38


1 Les Spindler. I would like to welcome you all back. I

2 couldn't make the last meeting in July, so I would like

3 to comment about some things that Mrs. Fanucci said.

4 She accused Mrs. Evans of writing

5 speeches for people here. I've been coming to these

6 meeting for the better part of five years, and I can

7 safely say Mrs. Evans has never written anything for me

8 and I can safely say she hasn't written anything for

9 anybody else in the audience. So, I think you owe her

10 an apology, Mrs. Fanucci.

11 Next thing, at the last meeting in

12 July, the first part of the meeting lasted twenty

13 minutes until citizens participation started. I wonder

14 why you had to leave so soon, Mrs. Fanucci. It just

15 shows me you don't care what the people have to say. I

16 don't think you had to be back from your lunch after

17 only 20 minutes.

18 Next thing, end of your comments at the

19 last meeting said you want to work with the people to

20 keep the city moving in the right direction, but at the

21 previous meeting you said you won't answer people's

22 questions, that they have to write letters to you and

23 they might not be answered for 90 days. I don't call

24 that working with the people.

25 Don't shake your head no, because other
.

39


1 people here heard that and it's in the minutes.

2 And also, if you wanted to work with

3 the people, you wouldn't have voted against free

4 swimming, that's not what I call working with the

5 people.

6 And I wondered why you changed your

7 mind on that vote. Oh, I know why, Chris Doherty told

8 you to change your mind.

9 Next thing, Mrs. Gatelli, you were

10 quoted in an article in The Times July 25, you said --

11 you're speaking about the public speakers. You said,

12 Many of them think they represent people as a whole,

13 but they only represent themselves. Do you remember

14 that quote?

15 MS. GATELLI: Yes.

16 MR. SPINDLER: Well, I don't think you

17 could be any further from the truth. If you knew how

18 many people came up to me and said they're glad there's

19 somebody like me to come and speak for them. You

20 wouldn't believe it.

21 MS. GATELLI: That's good. I'm glad

22 that you represent the people.

23 MR. SPINDLER: Wherever I go, people

24 tell me that, so your comment was totally false.

25 MS. GATELLI: That's your opinion, Mr.
.

40


1 Spindler.

2 MR. SPINDLER: No, that's a fact. Next

3 thing, the mayor doesn't agree with Mayor Barletta's

4 law about the illegal immigrants in Hazleton. Well,

5 illegal immigrants don't pay taxes, so I guess that

6 means citizens that are here legally don't have to pay

7 taxes either. I wonder what would happen if we tried

8 doing that.

9 Next thing, the party on the Casey

10 Garage they had a few weeks, the mayor was blowing his

11 horn about the downtown renaissance. What downtown

12 renaissance? $16 million empty building?

13 If the mayor wants to have parties in

14 high places, he should try having one on the mountain

15 of debt he's created.

16 Moving on. There's two places in this

17 city where I've asked for couple of years to have lines

18 painted and they still haven't been done, the entrance

19 to the Steamtown Mall on Lackawanna Avenue. For a

20 couple of years they have not had lines painted there.

21 And also the corner of Franklin Avenue

22 and Spruce Street. It's normally three lanes. People

23 don't know what lanes to get in there, and that's also

24 a couple years lines haven't been painted.

25 The next thing, the intersection of
.

41


1 North Garfield and West Gibson, it's by the Cathedral

2 Cemetery, there's no stop sign there. Someone brought

3 that to my attention. I never realized that. I travel

4 that way.

5 And the person who brought it to my

6 attention said they've almost gotten killed there a

7 couple times, and he brought it to somebody's

8 attention, and nothing's ever been done. I think

9 that's a dangerous situation. It should be looked

10 into. That's all I have tonight.

11 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mike Dudek.

12 MR. DUDEK: Good evening, City Council.

13 Mike Dudek, 608 Depot Street, Scranton. That's in The

14 Plot.

15 I'm going to start by commenting on

16 something Mrs. Gatelli said, because I'm so happy to

17 hear it, and I'm going to hold the other four Council

18 members' feet to the fire on it.

19 The very first time in my life I ever

20 spoke in front of Scranton City Council was six years

21 ago asking the City Council to go to the town of

22 Bethlehem and to pick up a copy of the model ordinance

23 they have in that city concerning housing and apartment

24 rental units in that town.

25 It is clearly the very best ordinance
.

42


1 on an apartments you're going to find in the United

2 States. This city needs that ordinance.

3 Scranton is an old city, by that I

4 mean, the housing stock in this city is perhaps the

5 oldest housing stock of any city in the United States.

6 Most of the housing in this city goes

7 back to the early 1900s. Most of the houses in this

8 city are wooden and are over 100 years old. And it's

9 my opinion that whenever an apartment changes hands in

10 this city, that a city inspector ought to go into that

11 apartment and really check it over before it's turned

12 over to the next tenant. That is an absolute must.

13 And, Mrs. Gatelli, thank you for

14 pursuing this. I think you deserve a lot of credit for

15 it. And, please, other members of Council, work with

16 her on this. It was the very first thing I ever wanted

17 to see done in this city once I moved here.

18 Second point I want to make, I would

19 like to thank The Scranton Times for making these

20 wonderful T-shirts necessary for us. Thank you to The

21 Times.

22 The circulation department of The Times

23 put out a little document back in August that shows

24 that the circulation of the paper has gone down nine

25 percent. Usually when a newspaper suffers that kind of
.

43


1 a decline that would usually mirror a similar decline

2 in the population of a city, but I don't think that's

3 the case here.

4 I don't think the population of the

5 city has fallen much more than four percent in the last

6 two years, but for the circulation of a major newspaper

7 without competition to fall nine percent, I think

8 that's something that they have to deal with. But it

9 is a rather frightening thing if it is tied to

10 population, okay?

11 And the last point that I want to make

12 is that we have a city police and fire department that

13 still doesn't have a contract after five years.

14 Now, later in this meeting the

15 president of Council will be reading a list of names of

16 police officers who, to me, I think are doing the most

17 incredible service I have ever seen. Out of their own

18 money, they are buying their own police cars and

19 donating them to the city and they are going to be

20 using them as their regular police cruisers.

21 You're going to be hearing more about

22 this most during this meeting and as the story finally

23 gets out in the paper.

24 But for a group of people, these

25 policemen not to have a contract with this mayor, to be
.

44


1 so dedicated to their jobs that they were buying their

2 own equipment to do the job, I think is one of the most

3 remarkable things I have ever come across. No wonder

4 we call them Scranton's finest. These people really

5 are. Thank you.

6 MS. GATELLI: Thanks. Dick Laske.

7 MR. LASKE: Good evening. Dick Laske.

8 Welcome back. Scranton resident. I'm just going to

9 tell you something. You can tell it to John Pocius

10 when you see him (UNTRANSCRIBABLE). That's Lithuanian

11 and it means -- interpreted, I'm old but I'm still

12 alive. See, there's no Lithuanians here I can converse

13 with now.

14 Okay. The Hollow Avenue fiasco.

15 City truck was definitely on private property. I

16 measured the 50-foot right of way, and it's on private

17 property. Mr. Parker can say whatever he has in mind

18 to, I'm going to the D.A. about this. I want an

19 investigation into this theft of services.

20 And while I'm on the subject, did you

21 contact Gene Barrett about sending a bill for the sewer

22 line on Hollow Avenue?

23 MS. GATELLI: No, I didn't. He told me

24 that they were being assessed, the property was being

25 assessed.
.

45


1 MR. LASKE: Okay. Well, it amounts to

2 a lot of money, because they had a gang up there for

3 over a week and they had some pieces of equipment.

4 MS. GATELLI: If you go to the Sewer

5 Authority, I'm sure you will be able to find out what

6 the assessment is.

7 MR. LASKE: Okay. All right. Now,

8 about the $44 million. I wouldn't give him a dime. If

9 you approve this, you let the taxpayers down. This is

10 a time to unite and show the taxpayers you have some

11 compassion.

12 The senior citizens are at a limit with

13 their taxes now. I know some of you will concede to

14 the administration's wishes. It's awful the way this

15 man wastes money.

16 Now, before the meeting started you

17 said about Council members being out of order or

18 speakers being out of order, does that also apply to

19 Council members? Because I've been in this and I've

20 heard some nasty things said by one Councilperson to

21 another.

22 MS. GATELLI: Yes, I would hope that we

23 would refrain from such activity.

24 MR. LASKE: Well, I think it's a

25 two-way street here. If you're going to hold us
.

46


1 accountable, then you have to hold yourselves

2 accountable. Okay?

3 MS. GATELLI: That's a fair deal.

4 MR. LASKE: All right. Amil, do you

5 have the pictures?

6 MR. MINORA: No, Mr. Laske, I didn't

7 bring them with me. I didn't get your message until

8 this afternoon, and I was already out of the office. I

9 will bring them next week. I'm sure I have them in my

10 files. I just didn't have them handy. I offered them

11 to you last meeting, you told me to keep them.

12 MR. LASKE: Okay.

13 MS. GATELLI: Thanks, Mr. Laske.

14 MR. MINORA: Incidentally, if you want

15 to come by the office and pick them up, Mr. Laske, if

16 you want to come by the office, I will leave them for

17 you. Just give me call.

18 MR. LASKE: All right.

19 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Moran. Oh, Erik

20 Johnson was next. Do you mind, Mr. Johnson? Go ahead.

21 Go ahead. He doesn't mind.

22 MR. MORAN: Very good. Thank you.

23 Good evening, Council. My name is Bill Moran, I'm a

24 resident of the City of Scranton. I've been so most of

25 my life.
.

47


1 First I'd like to say that I'm sorry

2 that we missed Mr. Parker this evening. Several of us

3 had taken time off from work and our family

4 responsibilities to be here to speak with the man. I'm

5 sure we had several things that we could have

6 discussed, maybe not ironed out, but at least put on

7 the table, and I would hope that he would be here in

8 the very near future to do so.

9 In regards to the $44 million loan, the

10 first question I have to ask you is, look in front of

11 yourself right now. Do you see any documentation for

12 what that loan is going to be used for? Do you see a

13 proposal for the fire department arbitration? Do you

14 see a proposal for the police arbitrations? Do you see

15 a proposal for anything else in front of you? No. You

16 have a $44 million loan proposal that is, for the most

17 part, no explanation why it's in front of you.

18 I would liken that to a consumer who

19 receives -- who can't pay his own mortgage, which let's

20 face it, we're $6 million in the hole this year, we

21 can't pay our own mortgage, they receive a credit card

22 application with an amount of a million dollars,

23 whatever, and they say, Wow, this is great. I'm going

24 to go to Florida, I'm going to buy furniture, I'm going

25 to have a great time.
.

48


1 The only thing we're forgetting is when

2 that bill comes due, we do have to pay it, and we can't

3 pay our bills now. With the declining population, how

4 do we expect to pay that bill when it comes?

5 There's two ways to balance a budget,

6 cut spending and to raise taxes. Anybody who works

7 with people who have problems with credit understands

8 that you cannot borrow yourself out of debt. We can't

9 do it. We're only putting ourselves further into the

10 hole.

11 If we need to raise taxes, that's the

12 pain that we have to endure. It's going to happen at

13 some point. A loan is not going to solve our problems.

14 We have to understand that 23 percent

15 of our population in the City of Scranton as reported

16 by The Scranton times is under the poverty line. One

17 quarter of our people are under the poverty line. How

18 can we pay that money back?

19 I have suggestions. I hate to come

20 here and tell you we can't do this, we can't do that

21 without giving you some suggestions.

22 I personally can think of one position

23 in administration that was created, 65 K a year. That

24 along is 260 K in the next four years. There's one

25 solution.
.

49


1 There were five raises, I believe,

2 given out at $10,000 a year. Rescind those raises.

3 That's $50,000 a year, $200,000 over four years.

4 People who are in those positions will

5 go on to bigger and better jobs after they get out of

6 the administration because of the experience they've

7 had with government.

8 There's no reason that they have to be

9 paid these salaries, they're not exorbitant, I'll

10 agree, they're not huge, but they're too much for what

11 we can afford.

12 Also, I'd like to say that Ms. Gatelli

13 has a fantastic idea when it comes to the landlord

14 licensing. I've read our landlord licensing law and I

15 found several major problems with it.

16 First off, I believe we currently

17 charge $10 per unit. I worked with the groups that

18 developed the program in Allentown. I believe their

19 fee was $30,000 a year -- excuse me -- $30 a year per

20 unit.

21 What that did was pay for the

22 inspectors. The inspectors covered one-fifth of all

23 the rental units every year, so every five years every

24 unit was inspected, okay?

25 In addition, I think what they did was
.

50


1 go in there when units were sold. That's a good money

2 maker. We just brought a new gentleman on to do blight

3 control. Instead of paying for him out of the

4 municipal budget, let's pay for him out of the people

5 who are making money on it.

6 Once again, I do want to say I'm very

7 disappointed that Mr. Parker is not here. We had a lot

8 to say to him, and I think it shows a certain arrogance

9 that he would leave all of us hanging like this.

10 Finally I just want to say, Mr. Laske

11 is lucky to have a new great grandchild. She's lucky.

12 She doesn't live in the city. She won't have any

13 responsibility for our debt.

14 But those of us who do have children

15 and great grandchildren and grandchildren in the city,

16 those kids will be paying the debt if they live in the

17 city.

18 There comes a time when you have to say

19 no and enough is enough. We need to change what we're

20 doing. We're doing things wrong now. We need to make

21 a correction. You have the power.

22 I know each and every one of you have a

23 certain stance, but understand, we can't do it anymore.

24 You're breaking our backs. Thank you.

25 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Erik Johnson.
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1 MR. JOHNSON: Good evening, City

2 Council and staff. Eric Johnson, resident and taxpayer

3 of Scranton. Month-long City Council recess hasn't

4 calmed any of the troublesome waters that at times seem

5 to wave out of control of problems looming to the dark

6 side.

7 Unless drastic measures are

8 accomplished to solve ongoing old and new problems,

9 some of the very dark side of the questions that will

10 hurt the City of Scranton are, Should Scranton

11 administration raise taxes, should Scranton go the

12 route of bankruptcy, should the City of Scranton

13 contribute to layoffs in all departments from top to

14 bottom of all services, or should the city

15 administration and Council go for the mayor's $44

16 million borrowing plan which would be used to balance

17 the budget over the next four years, make capital

18 improvements, as I see, one of the most important and

19 expensive issues to settle, the police and firefighters

20 contracts.

21 Which of the four issues is the least

22 damaging? If we raise taxes, which I think is going to

23 happen anyway, even if we go with any of the other

24 three, it will hurt business and working people to the

25 point that both will be leaving Scranton, possibly the
.

52


1 elderly and poor enduring harder times.

2 Bankruptcy would mean all union

3 contracts are divorced with the administration.

4 Scranton and no credit are progress for many, many

5 years to come. And as for capital improvements, forget

6 it. Capital would be history.

7 Cutting costs and cutting corners means

8 layoffs. I see it happening anyway in a possible mild

9 sense, but a massive layoff would hurt the City of

10 Scranton to the point where the city couldn't function

11 properly any more and for sure a rise in crime and

12 drugs that would make Wilkes-Barre without compare.

13 The last proposal, the $44 million

14 borrowing plan, as people call the alcoholic plan, will

15 be a quick four-year fix and pay off the police and

16 firefighters arbitration awards and settle the

17 important police and firefighters contract, which I

18 think should be not a four to six-year contract but a

19 12-year contract for all city services, clerks, DPW,

20 building inspectors and police and firefighters. It

21 would benefit the city taxpayers, administration and

22 all the employees.

23 But that wouldn't never happen, so what

24 are we going to do? Whatever happens , it's a big hurt

25 to the taxpayers and the other residents of Scranton.
.

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1 Does the Scranton city labor unions

2 have a better plan? If so, let's hear now before

3 taking on a $44 million loan. Talking about a $44

4 million loan from PNC Bank, what's wrong of having a

5 loan or considering First National Community Bank?

6 It's a local bank, who would be for the best interest

7 of Scranton, unlike PNC Bank for its self interest and

8 its headquarters in Pittsburgh. Thank you for letting

9 me speak.

10 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Lee Morgan.

11 MR. MORGAN: Good evening, Council.

12 Mrs. Gatelli, you know, I hope you give the people

13 watching Channel 61, I mean tonight, Council's phone

14 number at the end of the meeting and invite them to

15 give their opinions besides the people that are here at

16 Council, what they think the city should do in regards

17 to borrowing, because there's a lot of unheard voices

18 in this city, and maybe they'd be confident enough to

19 pick up the phone and speak to Council secretaries or,

20 you know, maybe one of the people on Council would be

21 there and maybe you get a much better opinion of what

22 the people in this city really think.

23 And I think that that's the one thing

24 we're really missing here is that we have to create an

25 atmosphere in this city where the residents can
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1 succeed.

2 We've made a very serious error in

3 electing the gentleman that's mayor, mayor. And I

4 think that the residents of this city are starting to

5 really see that there's been serious errors made on

6 their part.

7 About a month ago the mayor decided

8 that he was going to chase me down and come after my

9 properties in violation of law.

10 I image that what's going to happen is

11 somebody's going to be sued. But did he have the power

12 to do what he wanted to do? Yes, he did, and he used

13 it. But was it proper? No, it wasn't.

14 And I think that he should have talked

15 to a couple of judges in the Lackawanna County

16 Courthouse before he decided to come after me, because

17 I've got judges in the courthouse that won't even pick

18 up their ink pen when I'm in their trial rooms.

19 And I think that the mayor has made so

20 many errors. Even when he was on Council, he was the

21 finance chair who moved the legislation through for the

22 Scranton Sewer Authority. That fiasco is still costing

23 us a ton of money. He also allowed somebody else to

24 run it. They ran all the equipment into the ground.

25 It's just been one bit of incompetence after another.
.

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1 The pension fund was looted, the DPW

2 compound was borrowed against, South Side Sports

3 Complex was sold to the University of Scranton and the

4 money was dumped into Nay Aug Park.

5 It's been -- Huey Long would really be

6 proud of this gentleman, but this isn't Louisiana, so

7 -- and you see the fiasco they have going on there. I

8 mean, billions of dollars have been pumped into that

9 state and they still haven't straightened out New

10 Orleans.

11 And this mayor has just wasted money

12 time after time after time after time. That's why, you

13 know, that's why I bought this shirt today. And

14 tomorrow, these people here have this Legion of Doom

15 shirt on, but I think The Scranton Times has it

16 backwards, because the Legion of Doom is the mayor and

17 all the consultants and all the hang-on -- all the

18 people hanging on and the PEL and all these people that

19 say they represent us.

20 This city is in the worse shape that I

21 ever remember. We're all talking about illegal aliens.

22 You know something, that's not even the reason to have

23 a discussion here, okay?

24 The real issue here is incompetence.

25 We have got housing projects in this city that were
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1 built years ago with no fire walls. This has been an

2 ongoing problem in this community for a very, very long

3 time.

4 Just go up to the top of Green Ridge

5 Street and look at that school. They had a problem on

6 the opposite side of the building. McDade came here

7 and offered money to bring that money up to code and

8 put it back on line in the Scranton School District.

9 The school board didn't want the money. The school

10 board wasted a ton of money.

11 The City of Scranton isn't the only

12 problem we have here. That's why recently they decided

13 to borrow $60 million.

14 You know, it just comes to the point

15 that, you know, I was going to run for a seat on -- as

16 a county commissioner after what happened to my

17 daughter because the person they hired to run the

18 communication center wasn't qualified and she lost her

19 life.

20 But I think what's going to happen here

21 is in the next election I'll run for a Council seat and

22 we'll see if people will elect a person who only wears

23 a T-shirt to Council meetings or whether the only

24 people that are credible are the people with suits and

25 ties on.
.

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1 Because you know what, we've had enough

2 of their crowd, and there's no more room for them. The

3 city has been looted. I think carpet baggers would be

4 very proud that this mayor is in office. Thank you.

5 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Pedro

6 Gonzales.

7 MR. GONZALES: Good evening, Council,

8 Junior Council members, and all in attendance. My name

9 is Pedro Gonzales, South Side resident, taxpayer,

10 registered voter.

11 Since the very first time I took this

12 podium, a lot of things have happened and changed for

13 the Latin people in this city and around it, and we

14 thank God for that.

15 And I'm here just to, like normal,

16 update everybody on what's going on and the progress of

17 the Latin people and the different organizations that

18 have popped up since the very first time I stepped to

19 this podium.

20 First off, I want to say, how about

21 Gary DiBileo coming up here and speaking? I thought

22 that was pretty good of him, pretty nice of him to come

23 up here and speak.

24 Junior Council is having something

25 September the 9, this Saturday, The Icebox Arena. The
.

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1 LCDC will be there, the Latin Cultural Diversity

2 Center. Members of that group will be there raffling

3 off baskets for them for the skate park project. That

4 is our contribution to the kids of this city, plus

5 other things as usual.

6 August 12 and 13, the inaugural

7 festival and parade for the Latin people. It went

8 down, it was nice, it was tremendous. A lot of people

9 in attendance and a lot of people to thank.

10 If I forget anyone tonight, please

11 forgive me, but I want to thank the newspapers, The

12 Times-Tribune, the Electric City, The Panorama

13 newspapers, TV stations, News 16, Channel 61.

14 The sponsors of the event, Latino, the

15 Latin Cultural Diversity Center, Gary DiBileo,

16 McDonald's.

17 Main, main sponsor was the Foley Law

18 Firm. Lori Agostini came out. She was their

19 spokesperson and their rep that day, a tremendous

20 woman. Thank you to Foley Law Firm.

21 We want to thank Natalie and Dr.

22 Katherine Cullens from the Lackawanna Valley Heritage

23 Authority.

24 People that came out in support, La

25 Senorita Gatelli, thank you so, so much, Senor
.

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1 Courtright, thank you for coming out and supporting the

2 Latin people, Commissioner Mike Washo, Sid Prejean from

3 the Kiwanis, OECD Sara Hailstone was out there.

4 We want to thank the Parks and Rec.

5 Department for helping us with the show mobile and the

6 parks and all the tables and the garbage cans,

7 everything they provided for us. Thank you so much for

8 the Parks and Recreation Department.

9 All the workers in Nay Aug Park

10 shuffling around the show mobile and the tables and the

11 cans and things to that effect.

12 Ray Hayes, our Director of Public

13 Safety, Corporal Newcomb, the police department, all of

14 the Scranton Police Department, thank you all so, so

15 much. Very much appreciated. The fire department came

16 out, was in the parade.

17 The Lackawanna Library, the book

18 mobile, the Lupus Foundation, Migrant Educational

19 Workers, the Rose Mediator Center, Mike Tavern runs

20 that, if I'm not mistaken, the Boy Scouts, the Girl

21 Scouts, all the performers that came out that day that

22 did everything pro bono. Not one person got paid for

23 that. They all came out.

24 A lot of people from Scranton came out,

25 performers. We had people from Allentown, we had
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1 people from Reading and Lancaster also that came out

2 and gave up their time.

3 And most we want to thank the Latin

4 people for coming out and showing support, and most of

5 all, all the people of the City of Scranton. Thank you

6 all and God Bless.

7 Again, my name is Pedro Gonzales, and

8 thank you for letting me express myself.

9 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Pedro. Tom

10 Baux.

11 MR. BAUX: Good evening, Council. This

12 is my first time ever here, so I'm just going to wing

13 it. My story might not be as important as everybody

14 else's, but I have a concern about your liturgy and

15 your resolution to sell Sloan Little League to the

16 Scranton School District.

17 I've been involved with Sloan for 19

18 years. We've asked for funds from the city. Numerous

19 times we were turned down, turned down, where West Side

20 Little League got money, Lackawanna Little League got

21 money, this one, this one and this one.

22 So, three years ago we sat down with

23 Councilman Evans, Councilman Courtright and the school

24 board, we sat down about this problem that they wanted

25 to take over our field.
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1 We said, Fine, you can have the teener

2 league field, but we want to keep everything else. It

3 went back and forth, and I guess the -- what do you

4 call them, the CEO, said, Oh, no, never mind. We're

5 not going to do it.

6 The problem I have right now, there's

7 three little leagues in the West Side of Scranton. Why

8 is Sloan put on -- I want to know why Sloan is on the

9 agenda.

10 It's just like out of the blue that

11 they're going to sell the field out from under us. Why

12 don't we get the chance to buy the field? I really

13 want to know that.

14 There's three little leagues in the

15 West Side, why weren't those other two picked on? I

16 wonder why we are. That's my problem. I want to know

17 who brought this resolution up to the Council?

18 MS. GATELLI: Are you asking me that

19 question?

20 MR. BAUX: Yes. I just want to know

21 why is Sloan picked of all the fields to be brought up?

22 MS. GATELLI: I don't know that answer.

23 I don't know why Sloan was picked.

24 MR. BAUX: Because I talked to Mr.

25 McTiernan just before this meeting, because I asked
.

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1 him. We sat down, two council members, Mr. Courtright

2 and Mrs. Evans and Mrs. McGuigan the beginning of July

3 and we sat down and we talked about it. We talked and

4 hashed over what we felt.

5 She said, Well, she would have to go

6 back to the rest of the Council, talk to them, the

7 board, and they would get back to us. That was the

8 beginning of July.

9 They wanted to sit down and talk to us.

10 We've been waiting since July 27, was their next

11 meeting. It is now, what, September 7, 8, why is the

12 school board all of a sudden now in the forefront and

13 pushing Sloan Little League to the side? That's what I

14 want to know. I don't think it's fair to the kids.

15 I've put 19 hard years in it. We've

16 been willing to let the West Scranton use the field,

17 it's just that I can't understand why they want to buy

18 it and take it off us when we've been dong it for

19 40-odd years.

20 My question is why is Sloan on the list

21 of wondering whoever brought it up. I would like to

22 know that eventually.

23 MS. GATELLI: I don't know where the

24 idea ever originated. I don't know that answer.

25 MR. BAUX : Do me a favor. Could you
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1 find out for me so maybe I can find out? Because

2 there's other members -- because there's a couple

3 hundred parents that are wondering why. Because --

4 MS. GATELLI: I will find out for you.

5 MR. BAUX: Thank you.

6 MS. GATELLI: And I will not vote for

7 Sloan to be taken off you.

8 MR. BAUX: Thank you.

9 MS. GATELLI: Is there anyone else that

10 cares to speak tonight?

11 MR. HEALEY: Good evening, City

12 Council.

13 MS. GATELLI: Good evening.

14 MR. HEALEY: Now, I mean, I hate to be

15 a broken record, you, know --

16 MS. GATELLI: Please be quiet so we can

17 give the courtesy to the speakers, please.

18 MR. HEALEY: See, I have a complaint.

19 MS. GATELLI: Your name, please.

20 MR. HEALEY: My name is Gerard Healey.

21 MS. GATELLI: Gerard Healey?

22 MR. HEALEY; H-E-A-L-E-Y, yes. I come

23 here several times and explained a deplorable situation

24 on a property that the city owns. And there's proof

25 that you own it because I from your city solicitor
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1 that, you know, it is in my opinion that the city can

2 transfer its interest in this property to be acquired

3 in a treasurer's sale, so, therefore, you own it.

4 And since then, that was back in June I

5 came here and I said, this is what will happen. Now,

6 you know, I said, this is going to hit my house, you

7 know, well, my neighbor's house.

8 Unfortunately a very nice Hispanic

9 gentleman moved in. He bought the house next door to

10 me. The people sold it. Three months ago he bought a

11 house, and in three months, three trees slammed into

12 his house.

13 The first one, I got pictures, if you

14 want to look at them. Here's the pictures. That was a

15 bad one. That went through the back window of the

16 nursery, you know where the baby sleep, you know? And

17 the other one are on the wires, and, you know, there's

18 live wires on the ground.

19 As a matter of fact, the last time it

20 happened was on Labor Day weekend. I came home, I was

21 going in the backyard I saw -- I thought it was

22 fireflies, but it wasn't fire flies, it was sparks

23 flew, live wires, you know, in the wet grass.

24 I mean, I explained this is going to

25 happened, and this happened three times in three
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65


1 months.

2 I mean, I feel bad for my neighbor, he

3 just bought a house in Scranton, now I'm going to be a

4 taxpayer and get all the benefits we get here, you

5 know, and here's what I got for it.

6 The city owns a property, they won't

7 fix it. Smashed my house three times, ripped the

8 siding off, you know? And --

9 MS. GATELLI: Could you please give all

10 that to Attorney Minora, and maybe he can contact --

11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Sir, didn't the city

12 come out there and take a look at that?

13 MR. HEALEY: Yeah. You know, they did

14 come out and the -- the first time they came out and

15 said, somebody on Council said, we don't own the

16 property. I showed them the letter. I think the

17 lawyer is lying, because he said you do.

18 So, then they came out again. They

19 scoped it out and said, Well, we have nothing to do to

20 solve this problem. We have no equipment that can

21 remove this stuff. We have nothing that can move it.

22 So, you know what, I got an idea. How

23 about if we put the bid up through somebody, like a

24 professional tree removal place that can actually do

25 the job and, you know --
.

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1 MS. GATELLI: Well, somebody can clean

2 it. Either the city owns it and they have to clean it,

3 or --

4 MR. HEALEY: The city owns it.

5 MS. GATELLI: -- a person owns it and

6 they have to clean it. So, give your stuff to Attorney

7 Minora, and we'll have him call Attorney Farrell and

8 we'll see if we can get it straightened out.

9 MR. HEALEY: I've been telling this for

10 years now, okay, for years now. I mean, like, when is

11 it going to happen?

12 MS. GATELLI: Well, I don't know, but

13 please give it to --

14 MR. HEALEY: And my phone line got

15 knocked down, too, so and it takes 12 days to get that

16 fixed.

17 MS. GATELLI: Now, what's the address

18 of that property, that empty property?

19 MR. HEALEY: Rear 1320 Vine Street. Do

20 you want the numbers for the tax record, W17B37.

21 MS. GATELLI: And it's an empty lot?

22 MR. HEALEY: Yes.

23 MS. GATELLI: All right. Give all that

24 stuff to Attorney Minora, please, and we will see if we

25 can get you an answer.
.

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1 MR. HEALEY: Now the guy -- see, before

2 it was just my house got smashed, but now you got

3 children playing in the yards and three trees have

4 fallen down in three months in the summer, and

5 electrical wires are still laying out there right now.

6 And here's the pictures here, if you want to look at

7 it.

8 MS. GATELLI: That's just not

9 acceptable.

10 MR. HEALEY: The future, I told you the

11 future. You didn't do nothing, it happened, you know?

12 MS. GATELLI: All right. You can give

13 it to Neil. He'll give it to Attorney Minora. Thank

14 you, Mr. Healey. Next speaker, please.

15 MR. HUBBARD: Good evening, Council.

16 Daniel Hubbard, Gardner Avenue, lower Green Ridge.

17 First I'd like to start by thanking

18 Mrs. Gatelli, Ms. Evans, Mr. Courtright for the effort

19 and the pressure you put on Mr. Parker to do his job

20 clearing the bridge. I appreciate that. It took

21 63 days, but it's done.

22 A couple of other concerns we have is

23 the full length of Gardner Avenue is still half dug up

24 from the sewer project. PW Washo's supposed to get

25 paved. We're still kind of waiting on that. There's
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68


1 barriers everywhere, manholes 4 inches above the

2 street. It's hard to park. I would like to know when

3 we can get that paved. And we have ongoing sewer odor

4 problems.

5 MS. GATELLI: Speak into the

6 microphone. I'm having a hard time hearing you.

7 MR. HUBBARD: We have an ongoing sewer

8 odor problem with one of the catch basins. The odor

9 trapped in the catch basin was basically removed by the

10 flood.

11 MS. GATELLI: I already sent them over.

12 MR. HUBBARD: Yeah, the Sewer Authority

13 has been there. They've determined that it is not

14 their responsibility. It is the responsibility of the

15 DPW to put the odor trap in. Those call continue to

16 fall on deaf ears.

17 MS. GATELLI: And what corner was that?

18 MR. HUBBARD: It's on the corner of

19 Marion and Gardner. It's pretty obvious which catch

20 basin it is. The odor is very prevalent.

21 MS. GATELLI: Now, when I sent the

22 gentleman over, he said there was no odor.

23 MR. HUBBARD: It's there. It's

24 definitely there.

25 MS. GATELLI: All right. I'm just
.

69


1 telling you what they told me.

2 MR. HUBBARD: Yeah, it's unmistakable

3 for the length of the block. It's very noticeable,

4 especially when we get some rain, it's even more

5 noticeable. We just would like to get those two thing

6 cleared up.

7 The street getting paved, I'd like to

8 have the street -- at least see it get paved before the

9 snow falls. I mean, they're not going to be able to

10 plow the street with the manhole covers --

11 MS. GATELLI: And what street was that?

12 I'm sorry to be repeating it, but I can't hear you.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Neil --

14 MS. GATELLI: Neil, do you want to take

15 him outside, because I can't hear. I'm sorry.

16 MR. HUBBARD: Oh, it's okay. It's the

17 full length of Gardner Avenue, the 1400 and 1500 blocks

18 were dug up for the sewer project previous to the

19 flood, and it seemed like everything -- once the flood

20 hit, everything in that neighborhood just stopped, it

21 just completely stopped on all progress.

22 MS. GATELLI: It's funny, but I'm

23 putting Cedar Avenue --

24 MR. HUBBARD: No, it's Gardner.

25 MS. GATELLI: -- because Cedar Ave., I
.

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1 know, has been ripped up for the last six months.

2 MR. HUBBARD: Yeah, we're feeling the

3 same as they are. One of the houses on Gardner Avenue

4 was bulldozed when they were working on the bridge.

5 That is -- we appreciate that.

6 MS. GATELLI: And that's the one that

7 was vacant.

8 MR. HUBBARD: There's still vacant

9 houses that are on the demolition list, one is on

10 Albright. It's the one that was burned out on the

11 second floor, and there's another. I don't know the

12 address on the one on Gardner. There's one more house

13 in the 1400 block of Gardner.

14 None of these houses have been touched

15 since Ivan, so there's two major floods where these

16 houses were filled with water, the water receded, and I

17 can only imagine what the mold is like in these tow.

18 You couldn't look into those two houses. They're

19 pretty tight.

20 MS. GATELLI: Could you call me with

21 those specific addresses, please?

22 MR. HUBBARD: I'll give you the

23 addresses, sure.

24 MS. GATELLI: Thanks.

25 MR. HUBBARD: It's nice to see stuff
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71


1 getting done, I appreciate it, everything that you guys

2 did.

3 MS. GATELLI: I'm very happy to hear

4 that you started a neighborhood association.

5 MR. HUBBARD: We need to. We needed

6 to. We didn't have a choice this time.

7 MS. GATELLI: And if you -- did you

8 elect your officers already?

9 MR. HUBBARD: We're working on that

10 right now.

11 MS. GATELLI: Okay. As soon as you do,

12 make sure you tell Neil so we put it in the office and

13 also call zoning, because then you will be notified of

14 all the zoning --

15 MR. HUBBARD: -- any meetings or

16 anything like that.

17 MS. GATELLI: And you can call Mary

18 Alice Burke and ask her if you could be a part of the

19 council of neighborhoods.

20 MR. HUBBARD: Thank you. I appreciate

21 the information. And once again, I appreciate the

22 help. It was nice to finally see something get done in

23 the city.

24 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

25 MS. SIMMONS: Good evening, Council.
.

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1 Good evening, Youth Council. I welcome you back from

2 your vacation. We needed you three weeks ago, but

3 that's all right. We will forgive you for your

4 absence.

5 My name is Reverend Kathryn Simmons,

6 and I'm a lifelong Scranton resident. Thirty-eight

7 years ago my daughter and my husband and I were

8 promised if we allowed the city to bulldoze our

9 neighborhood, they would give us a better neighborhood,

10 a lifelong neighborhood, if we allowed them to come in

11 and demolish our heritage and our history, that we

12 would have another heritage and history to give to our

13 children.

14 Well, our children's heritage and

15 history are about to be torn down and leveled to the

16 ground. Now, to some I know it's just a project, and

17 what's a project? It's family.

18 I don't care if people don't like

19 families who live in projects, that's not my business.

20 My business is to surround those who do live in the

21 project, because they were promised a better life.

22 Thirty-seven years inspectors have been

23 coming in and out of that project, Scranton Housing

24 Authority have been sending inspectors in, HUD has been

25 sending inspectors in, and no one saw the flaws in
.

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1 these codes. Well, I find that hard to believe, but

2 we'll save that for another day.

3 I've submitted to the mayor a request

4 from Florence Midtown Crime Watch that the city hire a

5 private inspector, because I don't believe any report

6 that comes from the city, that comes from SHA and that

7 even comes from HUD. Why would I, when they've been

8 giving us reports for 38 years? Why would I? They're

9 going to tell us whatever they think will calm us down

10 for the moment.

11 Someone asked me on the phone the other

12 day, they said, Where do you think the city will find

13 this money? You'll find it, if you need it. I don't

14 care where you find it at. You'll find the money to

15 tear those houses down, you'll find the money to move

16 those people out and throw them in the streets.

17 You found the money to go in there and

18 tell them that they no longer had homes. I'm sure you

19 can find the money to find a private inspector to get

20 in and find out if it's true what they're telling us

21 about the rest of these projects. I don't believe a

22 word that's in these reports.

23 I received a phone call today before I

24 came here. Someone called my home and told me in not

25 too nice words that I better not show my face here this
.

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1 evening. Well, to them I say, I'll come wherever I

2 feel like coming, on whatever day I feel like coming,

3 because the light of God surrounds me, the love of God

4 enfolds me --

5 MS. GATELLI: Reverend Simmons --

6 MS. SIMMONS: -- the power of God

7 protects me.

8 MS. GATELLI: Reverend Simmons, before

9 you go on any further, please don't bring any religious

10 comments.

11 MS. SIMMONS: Well, it's not religious,

12 I'm just telling you who protects me and why I'm

13 standing here right now.

14 MS. GATELLI: One moment. One moment.

15 Attorney Minora, do you -- was that --

16 MR. MINORA: We'd like to just keep the

17 comments to city business.

18 MS. SIMMONS: Are you telling me that I

19 as a resident can't stand here and tell you who

20 protects me, but somebody can call me and tell me

21 whatever they want to?

22 MR. MINORA: Our rules require comment

23 to be limited to city --

24 MS. SIMMONS: In other words, what

25 you're telling me --
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1 MR. MINORA: Can I finish?

2 MS. SIMMONS: You're not letting me

3 finish.

4 MR. MINORA: Finish then.

5 MS. SIMMONS: I was going to say Amen.

6 MR. MINORA: Fine.

7 MS. SIMMONS: I was done.

8 MR. MINORA: That's five minutes and

9 20 seconds.

10 MS. SIMMONS: So, what you're telling

11 me any more is I can't come to City Council and mention

12 God's name?

13 MS. GATELLI: No, it's not allowed in a

14 public forum. We stop other speakers and we have to

15 stop everyone --

16 MS. SIMMONS: Well, we will go to court

17 about this. Thank you. You have a good night.

18 MS. GATELLI: There is a separation of

19 church and state, and we must acknowledge that.

20 MS. SIMMONS: Well, we will go to court

21 about this. Thank you.

22 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else?

23 MR. BUDZINSKI: Fred Budzinski,

24 Scranton resident. Last two months I witnessed two

25 seniors that are women waiting for the bus and had to
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1 take them to the hospital. One of them told me she

2 takes prescription pills and she gets dizzy and she was

3 about to fall over until somebody had to hold her up.

4 Up at this podium I heard about six or

5 seven people speak about benches for the seniors and

6 some Council members spoke about benches. Everything

7 looked good, now here, nothing.

8 And other issues, you're talking about

9 $44 million which is going to cost $84 million, and

10 over the last four or five years, the city has lost

11 arbitration, and at the beginning if they settled that

12 arbitrations, they probably wouldn't have to seek $44

13 million now.

14 Also I read in the paper seven months

15 ago the city demolished over 400 properties. You see

16 these properties all over the city, they're vacant.

17 They took them off the tax base. Many of them homes

18 could have been saved, even if they gave them away to

19 responsible people and get them on the tax base.

20 That's another reason why we have to borrow $44

21 million.

22 I read a lot of good reading in the

23 paper, city going bankrupt. Also I read about the

24 housing project, and there's another five other complex

25 no fire walls, this and that, and the Washington Plaza,
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1 and the other ones are just as bad as them, and I can't

2 see how they can kick people out of there and the other

3 housing projects are just as bad.

4 Now, I live in the Jermyn, that was

5 remodeled about ten years ago, and that is a safe

6 apartment, there's fire doors on each side of the

7 elevator, I have five sprinklers in my apartment, and

8 in the hallway there's 16 sprinklers on every floor, so

9 I think that is a safe place. And all of these other

10 housing projects, I doubt if there's sprinklers, fire

11 doors and whatever. So, I don't see how they can kick

12 people out of Washington Plaza when the others are just

13 as bad. Thank you.

14 MS. GATELLI: Thank you very much.

15 MS. SHUMAKER: Good evening and welcome

16 back. Marie Shumaker. I originally didn't intend to

17 speak tonight, but there were a few things that were

18 not on the agenda that I expected, and one that I did

19 not expect.

20 So, item 5-F on your agenda tonight is

21 the capital budget, so I assume that's available in

22 Mrs. Garvey's office, is that -- if I come over

23 tomorrow, I can get a copy of that? Thank you.

24 I expected to see an ordinance

25 introduced tonight on pool maintenance. It's been
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1 several months since I brought that here to give the

2 authority to Mr. Fiorini's people to go out when people

3 don't maintain their pools, except for his arbitrary

4 rule of some particular level at which mosquitoes can

5 breed. I think we need it. I brought some sample

6 ordinances, and I'd be happy to do more research.

7 MS. GATELLI: I'm not sure that we need

8 an ordinance for that, because I think that that would

9 be covered under the health code. I mean, I could be

10 wrong, but we emptied a lot of pools when I was there

11 because of health reasons. I mean, stagnant water is

12 not healthy. Forget the mosquitoes.

13 MS. SHUMAKER: No. But I called. I

14 was told no. I was asked what the level of water was

15 and that, and I was told that that was Mr. Fiorini's

16 justification for going out or not going out, and

17 that's what started this whole process of me coming and

18 asking.

19 So, I don't want to use up all my time,

20 so I hope to see a pool maintenance ordinance, because

21 that would give the required authority to that person

22 to go out and check these out when they're reported.

23 Also, before recess there was a

24 dialogue about the traffic existing the mini-mart at

25 Meadow and River, and nothing has been done. It's
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1 still a stop and pray and hope you don't get killed

2 when you go around the corner.

3 There are no signs in that mini-mart

4 saying it's illegal to make a left turn. Mrs. Fanucci

5 said that she was sure that that was a requirement.

6 It's not there.

7 And now I'd like to move on to -- the

8 other night I was watching TV and some municipality

9 around here had just outlawed burn barrels. And I

10 thought, Hmm, I remember back when I was growing up in

11 South Side and almost everybody had a burn barrel, and

12 some would deteriorate and they'd get holes and then

13 the cracks and the sparks would fly out through the

14 cracks and you'd go and you'd stamp one out and, you

15 know, you could do that all the time.

16 And I look at this loan that the mayor

17 is asking for in the same way. You can keep stamping

18 out little fires all around or you can replace the burn

19 barrel and not have those little sparks flying out of

20 the holes.

21 There is absolutely nothing. The new

22 burn barrel is a balanced operating and capital budget

23 that is within the revenue of this city, and until that

24 is done, you're borrowing four more years at what cost?

25 Double the amount. You're going to pay
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1 double the amount when you include the debt service,

2 and you're going to be in the same place, because your

3 operating budget at the end of the four years is still

4 going to be out of balance and you're still going to be

5 including capital projects that there's no revenue to

6 cover.

7 So, it's time to stop this slide, this

8 downhill slide. I hope you all -- I was here. I told

9 you I was the one who reported that I had read on the

10 Doherty Deceit website that a $40 million loan was

11 going to be called, and you all went (UNTRANSCRIBABLE),

12 and here it is. Now it's $44 or $43, I don't remember.

13 But I ask you to think about it and I

14 certainly hope that you're going to require a

15 detailing, and I would hope that the budget would be

16 scrubbed and items would be cut and the hard choices

17 would be made now and not five years later on somebody

18 else's watch. Thank you very much.

19 MS. GATELLI: Thank you very much. The

20 next speaker.

21 MS. SUTTON: Hi. My name's Judy

22 Sutton, I'm a resident of South Side.

23 MS. GATELLI: Well, hello, Mrs. Sutton.

24 MS. SUTTON: Hello, Mrs. Gatelli. How

25 are you?
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1 MS. GATELLI: I'm fine. How are you?

2 MS. SUTTON: Well, I've got a little

3 bit of a head of steam here. I live in South Side in

4 very close proximity to Mr. Morgan's property that he

5 spoke of before. I don't know about the other

6 properties, but I do know about the one on Stafford

7 Avenue.

8 He had tenants in there that made our

9 life unbearable. There was constant screaming,

10 fighting, cursing all hours of the day and night.

11 Mr. Morgan was approached and asked to

12 speak with his tenants. He said he would, but a few

13 days later, the police were called.

14 The police were called there on several

15 occasions, and on July 20, someone was taken out of

16 that building with a drug overdose.

17 There were also many, I won't say many,

18 there's several unregistered unlicensed vehicles on

19 that property, which I believe there is a city

20 ordinance against, plus another one was brought there

21 last week.

22 So, if anyone that knows me knows I am

23 not a fan of Mr. Doherty, and since Mr. Morgan said

24 Mr. Doherty is responsible for it, I say something to

25 Mr. Doherty that I didn't think I would ever say, thank
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1 you. You restored peace and tranquility to our

2 neighborhood.

3 I have a couple other issues. On that,

4 ironically that building was shut down on August 1. On

5 August 2, I read an article in the paper about Forest

6 City publishing an ordinance, I don't know if the City

7 of Scranton has one, that if you have three disturbing

8 calls to a residence, the landlord must evict those

9 tenants. Do we have that ordinance in the City of

10 Scranton?

11 MS. GATELLI: We have an ordinance

12 similar to that, but I don't know that it's functioning

13 at its proper capacity at the present time.

14 MS. SUTTON: Well, I think we should

15 have that.

16 MS. GATELLI: I'm hoping that Mr.

17 Seitzinger will take that ordinance and --

18 MS. SUTTON: Because I'm sure this

19 incident on Stafford Avenue is not isolated. I'm sure

20 other parts of the city have, you know, the same

21 problem.

22 By the way, I was born and raised in

23 the City of Scranton. I've lived here all my life.

24 Well, a few years I lived out in the surrounding areas.

25 Also, I have a petition here that was
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1 brought down in November and it was checked on in

2 January. We're looking to get a street light on --

3 another street light added to Old Log Road. Are you

4 familiar with Old Log Road? It's pretty dark. And

5 also, I have a photograph here. I have some other

6 photographs, too, of another issue I have.

7 But if we could get some trimming done

8 on Old Log Road, your vehicles, you by there. I have a

9 copy of that petition, also.

10 Now on a more personal issue. Adjacent

11 to our property there's a piece of a small parcel that

12 we believe is owned by the City of Scranton. There's

13 never been any maintenance done to that in 14 years

14 that we know of.

15 We are getting a new fence, we're doing

16 other work on our home, but we're getting a new fence,

17 and we wonder if we can get this cleaned up. Can I

18 show you the photos?

19 MS. GATELLI: Uh-huh.

20 MS. SUTTON: It's not a big piece of

21 property, but there's garbage on there and you can see

22 there's a drain.

23 MS. GATELLI: Oh, I see it, uh-huh.

24 MS. SUTTON: We had the stake there

25 last year, and they built up curbs, because we're
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1 having water come into the front yard, and they said

2 that part of the property problem was that drain, so if

3 we can get that looked at and maybe get it cleaned up.

4 There's other areas around there that

5 our neighbors clean up, but I don't have the time and

6 Jim isn't capable of it, because he has back problems,

7 so if we could get that looked at, I would really

8 appreciate it.

9 MS. GATELLI: Do you know what the

10 address of this would be?

11 MS. SUTTON: No. It's right -- I wrote

12 --

13 MS. GATELLI: I know you have adjacent

14 --

15 MS. SUTTON: It's right at the end of

16 our property. If you look there, you can see the

17 fence. That's our fence there.

18 MS. GATELLI: You're at 16 --

19 MS. SUTTON: Yeah, right. It's right

20 there at the end.

21 MS. GATELLI: So, would it be 14 or

22 would it be 18?

23 MS. SUTTON: I don't even know if it

24 has an address. It's just --

25 MS. GATELLI: But I mean, do you think
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1 it would be a lower number or a higher number?

2 MS. SUTTON: No, it'd be higher. It

3 would be 18.

4 MS. GATELLI: A higher number, okay.

5 MS. SUTTON: And can you check on that

6 petition for me?

7 MS. GATELLI: Give the petition to

8 Neil. The street lights go to George Parker and MEM

9 investigates them.

10 MS. SUTTON: It was checked on in

11 January. We were told Mr. Parker would get to it when

12 he gets to it, and it's almost a year, okay? Thank you

13 very much.

14 MS. GATELLI: We'll forward it for you.

15 Thank you. Anyone else care to speak?

16 MR. TORRES: Hi. My name is William

17 Torres, West Side resident, taxpayer registered voter

18 here in Scranton, and I just want to continue where

19 Mr. Gonzales left off thanking people for the event we

20 had.

21 We would like to thank the Governor who

22 came down, although he had a tight schedule, but he

23 came down and spent a few hours with us, had a great

24 time having him here.

25 We also would like to thank the Mayor,
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1 Chris Doherty, who also had other engagements, but he

2 took the time to come down spent a few hours with us,

3 enjoyed the day, also marched in the parade, the first

4 Latin parade, I should say, here in Scranton, and, of

5 course, City Council for being there for us, you know?

6 We brung this idea to you guys and you

7 guys just said, Let's go for it, and the support you

8 gave us gave us that extra push to go ahead and do this

9 work and create this historical weekend that we had,

10 this first Latin festival, first Latin parade here in

11 Scranton. We were proud of it, and I hope the City of

12 Scranton is proud of what we accomplished that weekend.

13 And, again, I just want to thank everyone who was

14 involved in any shame or form, and, again, City

15 Council, thank you.

16 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

17 MR. DAVIS: I don't know what to say.

18 I always start off by saying Assalaam Alaikum, which is

19 peace and blessings of Allah be with you, but now I

20 can't even mention God. Allah is God to me. So, I'm

21 just wishing you the very best of everything. And if

22 you say we can't use that term, I don't know if my

23 greetings will even work.

24 But I have other problems that are even

25 more important than that. We have streets out here on
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1 Washington Avenue where our senior citizens have a hard

2 time going from Gibson or going from Pine or Olive all

3 the way downtown because the lines are not there.

4 We had this problem before and we were

5 going to create some sort of a magic paste or magic

6 line that would last a little longer or something like

7 that, and for some reason or another it just went away.

8 We never kept up on it.

9 There's no follow-up in your systems.

10 And maybe I'm wrong, but the thing is, our adults, our

11 grandparents, our mothers, they can get hurt very

12 easily by just something as stupid as a line to guide

13 themselves across the street. Well, okay. I guess if

14 you drive them everywhere they go, then there's not a

15 problem.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Davis, would you

17 like me to answer that? I spoke to Mr. Parker, I

18 didn't speak to him, I sent him a letter and he sent me

19 one back, he -- because one of the people asked about

20 why on the highway do the lines last longer than they

21 do in the city.

22 Well, he's using the same paint that

23 they're using on the highway. He said it's just due to

24 the heavy traffic that we get, and he's saying they

25 keep on trying different paints, it's the best they can
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1 find that meets the requirements, because they have to

2 meet environmental requirements.

3 So, I didn't ask him about the tape

4 that we heat down. I think that's a matter of cost. I

5 think that's really expensive. It lasts a long time.

6 MR. DAVIS: They do it down by Prep, it

7 works down there and it's right on Wyoming Avenue, you

8 know that.

9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah, we got the

10 answer to why they did it by Prep. That was a long

11 time ago. Does anybody --

12 MR. DAVIS: Yeah, it's the same

13 problem.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mrs. Gatelli said they

15 paid for it.

16 MR. DAVIS: Yeah, that's true.

17 MR. COURTRIGHT: It was way back when

18 Jay was here. I know I asked that question why they

19 got it down there. I can't recall the answer to be

20 honest with you.

21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Please stay at them.

22 It's important. It really is. I'm not asking it for

23 me. I could still see pretty good, but I'm saying that

24 it's important because I see too many people of age

25 trying to be independent and go from one place to
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1 another.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think the problem is

3 we need to add another person in that department,

4 because I don't think we have enough people in that

5 particular department.

6 MR. DAVIS: Take a kid from high

7 school, give him a job. Great. That's a great idea.

8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll suggest it. I

9 probably won't get too far with it.

10 MR. DAVIS: Thank you very much. This

11 has been a fantastic summer. I've watched the Latin

12 Alliance come to fruition, I've seen them celebrate

13 their holidays in the city that didn't even know they

14 existed two years ago. Beautiful crowd of people,

15 beautiful ambiance. It was just a warm pleasant thing

16 to actually have around us. I enjoyed it immensely.

17 Of course they're a minority group, so

18 I'm sort of that way, but the thing is, we can do that.

19 We have the ability to have all of our people

20 intertwined and we can respect them equally.

21 I know that we can do it, because our

22 parents did it before us. My father used to say to me,

23 Hey, look, when I come out of the coal mines, I look

24 like everybody else that comes out of that coal mine.

25 You don't have time to fear or be downtroddened by
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1 anything that happens to me, because at that time a

2 coal miner was next to dirt, as I remember. But that's

3 beside the point. We've gone beyond that.

4 Now we have kids that are being treated

5 like dirt to me. And, Ms. Evans, of all the people

6 that I see up there on the stage and the people who are

7 trying to represent we, the residents, and I hear a lot

8 of people out there, and a lot of people have come to

9 me about, what are you guys going to do about

10 Washington Plaza, are you going to keep on fighting for

11 them or is it worth it?

12 And you know, you're the only one who

13 showed up to defend the people.

14 MS. EVANS: Thank you.

15 MR. DAVIS: And I really appreciate it.

16 I wanted to say that to you. I don't give a lot of

17 compliments out, but I compliment you on that.

18 MR. DAVIS: I never compliment you.

19 But on top of that --

20 MS. GATELLI: Finish up your thoughts,

21 Mr. Davis.

22 MR. DAVIS: Excuse me.

23 MS. GATELLI: Your time is up. Finish

24 up your thoughts.

25 MR. DAVIS: Thank you. The kids that
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1 are in Washington Plaza are traumatized. We had a

2 party for them last Friday night after all this broke

3 out, and they were really traumatized to the point

4 where they didn't know what they wanted to do, they

5 didn't know where they wanted to go, and they need

6 help.

7 And it's really urgent that we do

8 something now to allay this problem and solve this

9 problem. Don't give us any more verbiage about what's

10 good and right.

11 I know when you come up over the hill

12 and all you see is the projects there, you don't want

13 to be bothered with them. But I'm telling you right

14 now, these kids are your future also. There's a lot of

15 success stories that come out of projects.

16 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Thank you,

17 Mr. Davis. Anyone else care to speak before Council?

18 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Good evening,

19 Council. How was your summer? I don't even know where

20 to begin. What can I say? You know why I'm here.

21 Hollow Avenue. How can you even justify this to me?

22 You can't, can you? Can anybody here justify that to

23 me?

24 MS. GATELLI: No.

25 MS. EVANS: No.
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1 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: All right. I am

2 here because I am paying taxes on land I cannot use,

3 and I've had it.

4 All right. The thing that bothers me

5 in the article that Stacy was very kind enough to write

6 for me, Mr. Farrell, the only thing I can say to you is

7 you should do your homework. This was once a street.

8 It was three-quarters of the way up.

9 Very simple answer to you, Mr. Farrell,

10 check the taxes. My family paid house taxes all

11 through the sixties until 1972, when the home was torn

12 down and then they paid lot taxes, and I'm still paying

13 the lot taxes.

14 So, don't tell me that this wasn't a

15 street and that they don't open new roads. Hollow

16 Avenue is a perfect example of it's who you know, and

17 I'm tired of it.

18 I don't know who to see, I don't know

19 what else to do. And there isn't one of you up there

20 that can't tell me that I am being unjustly paying

21 taxes, is there? Where do I go from here, without

22 rocking the boat too, too much, as I've already done?

23 What do I do? Where do I go? City

24 Council, what do I do now? Do any of you have an

25 answer for me?
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1 MS. EVANS: I think we need to speak

2 with Mr. Parker. It was my hope that he would have

3 attending this evening's meeting.

4 However, perhaps during one of the

5 September meetings, he will attend, and we certainly do

6 need a discussion on the Hollow Avenue situation,

7 because unfortunately it has spiraled into Treegate.

8 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Yeah, I

9 understand. And I'm not trying to be here to cause

10 more problems. I was here long before that, and I'll

11 be here long after that until my problem is solved.

12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Sarine, we've gone

13 back and forth and back and forth for almost two years

14 now, right?

15 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: More.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: I mean with myself,

17 and we've talked to Mr. Parker, and on more than one

18 occasion I thought we had it settled, but it just never

19 seems to get -- I don't know what we're going to do

20 now.

21 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: I mean no

22 disrespect, but isn't it a terrible death to be talked

23 to death?

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah.

25 MR. STOKER O'MALLEY: To be talked to
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1 and promised and promised more times than anybody.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Did he or did he not

3 say at one time, I was almost positive, he said at one

4 time he was going to clear the road for you. Didn't he

5 say that?

6 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Yes.

7 MR. COURTRIGHT: And then what

8 happened?

9 MS. EVANS: Wasn't that during the

10 election?

11 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Probably,

12 probably.

13 MS. EVANS: I've spoken on two

14 different occasions over nearly the last three years to

15 Mr. Parker about your situation, and he indicated that

16 at one point the brush and trees would have been

17 trimmed on that property by the DPW; however, he did

18 reiterate that the city is not going to open a right of

19 way.

20 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Okay. On that I

21 want to say this, okay? Yeah, I can see it, but this

22 is a right of way that is paid by the State to the city

23 to maintain this, and they never bothered to do this.

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Sarine, if he takes

25 the trees down, you have the right of way then, don't
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1 you?

2 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: No, I don't. I

3 have a trench.

4 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's the back part.

5 But I mean leading into there.

6 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Half way up,

7 Judy, right?

8 MS. GATELLI: There's almost like a

9 creek there.

10 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: I have a trench

11 literally where people could jump in and, like, water

12 could run, you know, but, like --

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Was the road opened

14 beyond that trench at one time?

15 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Yes, sir.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the other side of

17 the trench?

18 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Yes, sir. Yes,

19 sir, they were. And this is --

20 MS. EVANS: But more importantly I

21 think two things, I don't know whether it's the policy

22 of the city to clear right of ways or not, but the fact

23 remains that now they have.

24 They've set the precedent, which, in my

25 opinion, requires that further right of ways be
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1 cleared, unless such a policy is developed saying it

2 will never be done for anyone under any circumstances,

3 because as far as I'm concerned, what's good for one

4 person is good for another. It's either everyone gets

5 it or no one.

6 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Well, somebody

7 got it, but I didn't. Now, I was told by Mr. Parker

8 that this was supposed to -- after the Salvation Army

9 was done, I was next. They went right up to Hollow

10 Avenue. Hello. And, you know, honestly, that's the

11 sad fact.

12 MS. EVANS: Are you a committee person?

13 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Oh, no, I'm not,

14 and I never will be.

15 MS. EVANS: Are you a campaign

16 contributor?

17 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Absolutely not.

18 MS. EVANS: Well, that explains why you

19 got nothing.

20 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Yes, it is. Yes,

21 it is. It totally is. And, again, you know, I'm not

22 here to rock the boat or cause a problem. I was here

23 before Hollow Avenue, and I'm going to be back because

24 of Hollow Avenue.

25 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I know.
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1 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: I was really

2 wondering -- hoping Mr. Parker was going to be here

3 tonight, because believe me, I have a lot that I'd like

4 to speak with Mr. Parker about.

5 The mayor will not see me, Mr. Farrell

6 will not see me. He's been on vacation for the last

7 two weeks, I want you to know. Because every time I've

8 called or faxed -- I did receive one phone call from

9 the secretary stating that he was on vacation. He

10 would return my call. I still haven't heard from him,

11 and this is two weeks now.

12 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

13 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Thank you.

14 MS. GATELLI: I'll talk to you -- are

15 you going to stay after?

16 MS. STOKER O'MALLEY: Sure. Thank you.

17 MR. GERVASI: Good evening, City

18 Council. My name is Dave Gervasi. I'm the vice

19 president of the firefighters union.

20 From some comments that were made here

21 tonight and from repeated articles in the newspaper, it

22 seems that, once again, this $43 million of borrowing

23 and the deficits they're going to try to blame on the

24 unions.

25 So, I just wanted to just make a few
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1 statements here tonight and see if this Council

2 actually understands what's going on, and I know most

3 of you do.

4 Number one, when Mayor Doherty took

5 office, and you need to know this, when Mayor Doherty

6 took office, there was an operational budget surplus.

7 There was a surplus in 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002. 2003,

8 we haven't had the updated numbers and we didn't do a

9 financial analysis of it.

10 During our arbitration award, our big

11 contract arbitration award, the mayor, instead of using

12 Pennsylvania Economy League to bring the numbers, they

13 hired a firm for $40,000 to come in to tell the

14 arbitrator the city was broke.

15 We sent him on his way, two of them,

16 sent them on their way because it was completely

17 contrary to what the independent audits of the city

18 said.

19 So, with that said, I'm very sure, you

20 don't have to believe me, but I'm very sure we had a

21 surplus since 1999, operational budget surplus. That

22 surplus was increasing every year up until 2002.

23 Now, now we're told we have to borrow

24 $43 million because it's the unions' fault. Does

25 anybody up there know how much the city actually paid
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1 in arbitration awards to the present day? Does anybody

2 know? I'll tell you what they paid, zero, because

3 they're not -- they're still in court.

4 How many of you people know how much

5 raises the police and firefighters got in the last five

6 years?

7 MS. EVANS: Nothing.

8 MR. GERVASI: Zero. Did you also know

9 that both departments, our overtime budget has

10 decreased in the last two years? We are now running

11 the police and fire department with less money than we

12 spent when Mayor Doherty took office.

13 Now, with all of that said, the

14 newspaper is going to continue to print without

15 actually verifying all this fraudulent information that

16 they're printing that this is all because of the police

17 and fire union because of arbitrations and the Recovery

18 Plan.

19 Number one, we have received nothing in

20 five years; number two, our budgets are actually less.

21 The only thing that's probably up is our health care

22 costs. And why is our health care costs up? Well,

23 let's see. I didn't chase 100 people out the door that

24 still have health care, I didn't hire $3 million plus

25 employees to replace those people that are on health
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1 care, I'm not the one or the unions aren't the one that

2 did no bid contracts. We didn't do any of that.

3 Am I correct to say that the unions do

4 not control the city budget, the unions cannot sign

5 checks or spend money; am I correct saying that?

6 MS. EVANS: Yes.

7 MR. GERVASI: Okay. So now that we

8 have cleared up, how can we possibly be guilty of the

9 mayor having to spend -- borrow $43 million more, when

10 we received nothing?

11 Am I not correct that when the mayor

12 took office, the budget was approximately $57 million?

13 Am I correct now that the future budget coming up with

14 preliminary numbers we've been hearing may hit $72

15 million?

16 What did the police and firemen get?

17 Zero. Who's to blame for borrowing more money and

18 having a deficit? Is it the unions or is it the guy

19 who controls the checkbook? I didn't see anybody on

20 Council spending $43 million or $9 million or $3

21 million.

22 There's one person who controls the

23 money in this town, and that's Mayor Chris Doherty.

24 And I don't care how many times the newspaper prints in

25 the paper that it's the union's fault, it's not true.
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1 It's a lie and it's a fraud.

2 We have received nothing in five years,

3 zero, and our budget went up approximately $14 million

4 in five years.

5 And now he wants to borrow $43 million,

6 which, in fact, just so you know, when Mayor Connors

7 left office, there was a $38 million deficit. I think

8 there was approximately $70 million borrowed since

9 then. I think it's more than that.

10 And now $43 million on top of that.

11 That's going to raise our annual debt payments by over

12 $7 million a year for the next 28 years, and that

13 $7 million could never be used again to clear trees or

14 pave streets or buy fire trucks or buy police cars for

15 the next 28 years.

16 We didn't do it. I can prove we did

17 not do it. It has nothing to do with the unions. So,

18 I hope enough people hear me tonight, and I'm telling

19 you the truth. We didn't write the checks, we didn't

20 spend the money. He did, not us. Thank you very much

21 for letting me speak.

22 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

23 MR. GERVASI: And one more thing, not

24 only is the police and fire department going to pay for

25 the debt he put us in, now the people are going to pay,
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1 because now they are going to have their taxes

2 increased.

3 And now you're not only going to pay

4 the same amount of taxes for lesser services when we

5 get 30 firemen laid off, you're going to pay more money

6 for less services so that he could continue to do his

7 pet projects.

8 MS. EVANS: And, Mr. Gervasi, just as a

9 footnote, if indeed this $44 million passes, it will

10 increase our long-term debt to approximately

11 $300 million

12 MR. GERVASI: And my question is where

13 --

14 MS. EVANS: And never in the history of

15 this city has such figures ever been tossed about.

16 MR. GERVASI: Yes. Where is the state

17 and where is the PEL? Nowhere to be found. They've

18 been here 14 years and we're in a bigger hole now than

19 we were that made us distressed.

20 MS. EVANS: They enabled it.

21 MR. GERVASI: They enabled it.

22 MS. GATELLI: All right. Thank you

23 very much. Next speaker.

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah, knock it down a

25 little. Go ahead, Chris.
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1 MR. SLEDZINSKI: Welcome back, Jude.

2 MS. GATELLI: Welcome back, Chris.

3 MR. SLEDZINSKI: Well, Jude, our

4 victory is in the books now, baby.

5 MS. GATELLI: Yep.

6 MR. SLEDZINSKI: Tomorrow night we got

7 Riverside tomorrow. Guys, good luck tomorrow. Thank

8 you.

9 MS. GATELLI: Thanks, Chris.

10 MR. BECK: Good evening, Council.

11 Wayne Beck, city resident and taxpayer. I wasn't going

12 to come over this evening, but I pulled out the agenda

13 for this evening and was just fascinated by 5-E, and I

14 don't have the legal mind that Attorney Minora has, so

15 I had to sit down and read it three times and then try

16 to put it in layman's terms, so I have a few questions,

17 because 5-E seems to set the stage for 5-F.

18 But as far as 5-E is concerned, it

19 appears from what I read that the city intends to lease

20 properties to the Redevelopment Authority and the

21 Redevelopment Authority will execute a lease agreement

22 that declares the guarantee of the SRA's lease revenue

23 bonds for a city project, that project being later on

24 this whole lease -- referred to as this whole lease

25 agreement, in which a lease rental debt will be
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1 incurred, and that debt is not to exceed $44 million,

2 which happens to be the amount of the increase or the

3 loan that the mayor is looking for.

4 The lease agreement will state the

5 realistic estimated useful life of the facilities

6 pledged as collateral for the bonds, so we have to have

7 some idea what properties he's talking about. That's

8 one of the questions I have. What are we looking at as

9 far as the collateral?

10 The lease rental debt -- I'm sorry. I

11 covered that. The city will then sublease the

12 facilities and guarantee the bonds through an agreement

13 made back with the SRA. The required debt statement,

14 which is required by a reporting law, from what I read

15 into it, the required debt statement will be filed with

16 OECD, thus authorizing the preparation of a debt

17 statement and borrowing based certificate.

18 This also concerns me. This action

19 will repeal inconsistent prior ordinances allowing for

20 the city to execute and deliver the previously

21 mentioned documents, which would be the lease

22 agreement, the sublease agreement and the guarantee

23 agreement, in order to allow the city to pursue the

24 project that is desirable for the health, safety and

25 welfare of the residents of the city.
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1 I think there's a lot of -- a lot of

2 questions I have that need to be answered. Again, what

3 properties are we speaking of, why are all of these

4 legal steps to get the SRA involved, and then maybe an

5 explanation, but I'd like to know what it is, and what

6 existing ordinances might be in jeopardy and repealed

7 if this is passed?

8 Again, I'm not saying it's good or it's

9 bad, but I think it needs to be looked at. And one of

10 the reasons I think it needs to be looked at is -- as

11 you know, I used to come here quite a bit, and I have

12 quite a bit of notes and a lot of articles from The

13 Scranton Times-Tribune, and I have one from April the

14 22 of 2001.

15 Keep in mind the city's current debt

16 status. In there it says, A little more than a month

17 in office after a financial briefing by city business

18 administrator John Cawley, Mr. Doherty declared, We're

19 on death row.

20 By the end of that year, the city's

21 debt was more than $6.7 million. If we were on death

22 row at $6.7 million, where are we now? And I think

23 that needs to be considered when you're asking all of

24 these questions and trying to maybe cut some expenses

25 to reduce the amount of debt that we may have to go
.

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1 into, if we have to go into any at all. And that's all

2 I ask is that you ask them and maybe provide the

3 answers to it.

4 And on a lighter note, I would like to

5 say that this past summer we went through one of the

6 heaviest -- well, the heaviest rainstorm that we've had

7 since East Mountain Project had been completed, and

8 there were absolutely no problems. It withstood

9 everything. The water was taken properly, drained

10 properly, no buckling or heaving of the East Mountain

11 Road, and I think that everyone involved with that

12 project should be commended. And I didn't see anything

13 downstream.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Wayne, maybe I might

15 be able to shed a little light. I think what they're

16 going to do is the same thing they did when they did

17 the DPW Complex.

18 I don't know for a fact. I think one

19 the properties they might use would be the police

20 station, which is probably worth $3 to $4 millin. I

21 don't know what else. Maybe they're going to use City

22 Hall. I don't know. But I think it's the same.

23 They're trying to do the same type of deal they did.

24 MR. BECK: I think the same questions

25 arose back then, though, because the funding for those
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1 properties are already in prior budgets and supposed to

2 be paid for, you know?

3 And so, it just seems like it's an

4 ongoing thing, and it's got to stop somewhere.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think it takes an

6 attorney to decipher it.

7 MR. BECK: Well, that's why I said I

8 had to put it in layman's terms, and I'm not so sure I

9 interpreted properly anyway. So, that's why Amil is --

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: You seem to do pretty

11 good to me.

12 MR. BECK: Thank you.

13 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

14 MR. ANCHERANI: Good evening, Council.

15 I'm Nelson Ancherani, resident, taxpayer, financial

16 secretary of the FOP. I'm here to exercise my First

17 Amendment rights.

18 It's been three months since I've

19 attended a Council meting. I missed them, and after a

20 while it gets in your blood.

21 A lot has happened in those three

22 months. We went from having someone writing what we

23 saw at Council for us to the city possibly going

24 bankrupt.

25 First of all, I would like to say that
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1 I write what I say here by myself. No one writes

2 anything for me and no one tells me what to say.

3 If someone did write my speeches, I

4 wouldn't have the mistakes and grammatical errors that

5 I have in them.

6 Over the last three months the daily

7 tabloid has been having a field day with the unions and

8 Council speakers. So far the Council speakers have

9 been called crazies, inane, malcontents, and that's

10 fairly new, Legion of Doom, Halloweeners and low-lifes.

11 As you can see, I chose the Legion of Doom, as some

12 other speakers here tonight did.

13 I never saw so much free advertisement

14 as this tabloid give these speakers. This makes me

15 think that these speakers have much to say about the

16 events of this city, so they say it.

17 It makes me think that the tabloid

18 doesn't want what the speakers have to say about a $44

19 million loan that is about to be asked for, the

20 violation of the Recovery Plan by the city costing $6

21 mill by the end of this year with new hires and raises,

22 the firing of the health care consultant costing the

23 city millions of dollars, forcing city employers out at

24 full medical insurance and replacing those employees

25 with the same coverage as the original ones that were
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1 forced out.

2 Well, the speakers are back and they

3 are going to say what the tabloid won't. There's so

4 much to address, and we can only get five minutes to do

5 it, so we have to pick and choose what we say tonight.

6 At future Council meetings we will be

7 able to get everything in. One headline in the

8 tabloid, City Offered Help in Union Flap. PEL and DCED

9 showed up at a hearing at the courthouse on 8/24/06.

10 There were two attorneys there who argued before Judge

11 Munley that they should be allowed to be included in

12 the appeal for the arbitrator's award on the police

13 contract. They showed up in court three and a half

14 years late and 26 arbitration hearings later.

15 They now want to be included when they

16 refused to supply any records or information that the

17 unions subpoenaed. This is PEL, who has been

18 invisible, except for the time when the city was

19 sanctioned by the State under Mayor Connors.

20 I guess they feel it's time for them to

21 come out from under the rug before this city has to go

22 bankrupt, so they come out with a threat.

23 I have to ask, what has PEL done for

24 the city except get it sanctioned under Connors and

25 accept a pay check for doing nothing?
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1 They should have been jumping up and

2 down standing on their heads raising the ceilings when

3 the mayor violated the Recovery Plan and put forth a

4 $74 million budget for 2006, an approximate $9 million

5 increase over 2005.

6 Where was PEL when the city put a

7 public safety director in the budget costing $500,000

8 for the past five years and now hiring a deputy

9 director of public safety director and secretary at

10 approximately $75 a year? Enough with PEL. They're a

11 failure getting paid for doing nothing.

12 As for the bankruptcy issue, the city

13 needs the $44 million loan to stay afloat. We pay back

14 $40 million in interest. That's almost a 50 percent

15 increase. $84 million is what we pay back at $3

16 million a year for 28 years.

17 Add that $84 million to the $240

18 million plus that the city owes over the next 28 years,

19 Wow, taxpayers. Just think, $240 million plus $84

20 million puts us around $350 million for the next 28

21 years. Taxpayers' great, great grandchildren, get

22 ready.

23 In the tabloid article on 9/6/06,

24 Scranton seeks $44 million to cover debt projects.

25 Both city business administrator Leonard Kresefski and
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1 Mayor Doherty said there will be hire tax increases

2 next year. Told you so. We are going to pay and pay

3 dearly. You people up three have a big decision to

4 make. Me? I'd refuse the loan.

5 Mr. Moran mentioned that we could save

6 money by eliminating X amount of new hires and raises.

7 Think of this, if no raises and new hires weren't hired

8 in the last five years in violation of the Recovery

9 Plan, there would be no $6 million deficit this year.

10 As I said before, the raises and new

11 hires total $6 mill to the end of this year. Isn't it

12 ironic that the deficit is the $6 mill in raises and

13 new hires in violation of the Recovery Plan by the

14 city? That's not our fault.

15 But I can see it down the road, the

16 unions will get the blame and the tabloid will pour it

17 on. Also, don't forget the legal fees for the

18 arbitrations that the city is paying. One thing, I

19 don't buy the paper, I read it for free. Thank you.

20 MS. GATELLI: Thanks.

21 MS. STULGIS: I'm Ann Marie Stulgis, a

22 city resident and president of the city police union.

23 I would just like to pick up where

24 Mr. Gervasi left off as far as wasteful spending and

25 excessive costs. We all know that the city is claiming
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1 that the cost of health care is extraordinarily out of

2 control, but whose fault is that? Why are health care

3 costs out of control?

4 Before he came into office, we had a

5 health care consultant that was hired as the result of

6 a fire arbitration that was mandated by the unions to

7 come in and get health care costs under control, and we

8 did, and we saved the city $7 million. So, what

9 happened? Mayor Doherty fired her. He fired her. She

10 saved the city $7 million, and she was fired.

11 And then we went without a health care

12 consultant for a couple of years, had to go back to

13 arbitrators and see what we can do. And now we have

14 another health care consultant, thanks to Council, who

15 pushed the issue about two and a half years ago.

16 How much progress have we made in those

17 two and a half years? Do you know how much? None. We

18 still don't have the people listed as working in the

19 correct departments. We had one of our city inspectors

20 listed as retired firefighter.

21 Our human resource department evidently

22 doesn't have any idea who works where, so health care

23 cost are out of control. Because you know why? Mayor

24 Doherty doesn't have anybody watching the money.

25 There's no reason for health care costs
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1 to be what they are, except nobody seems to care to get

2 a grip on the spending. We've tried.

3 We've spent our money to fight the city

4 to save the city money. The last time he asked for

5 money, I came here and I begged you, please don't do

6 it, please don't do it. The threat was we would go

7 payless paydays.

8 Well, what difference does it may?

9 We're just going to end up paying what little we make

10 now to pay this debt down anyway. I say, Don't do it.

11 The only way to force fiscal

12 responsibility is not to allow the money to be there,

13 then you force belts to be tightened.

14 If I can't afford steak, I don't go out

15 and take out a loan to buy it. I eat chicken. That's

16 what has to happen in this city. It really has to

17 happen, and it's up to you people. You're the only

18 hope we have, the five of you sitting there.

19 I'm telling you, we have hundreds of

20 city employees who are saying, bringing on the payless

21 paydays, if that's what it takes. Please don't put us

22 in any more debt than we already have. It's up to you.

23 Now, on another note, I'm sure you're

24 all aware it's on tonight's agenda about the police

25 officers who are buying police cars, and it's quite
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1 controversial even among other police officers, because

2 the belief is that since the mailmen don't have to buy

3 their own mail delivery trucks and the UPS drivers

4 don't have to buy the UPS trucks, why are policemen

5 buying police cars?

6 I'll give you a perfect example. Just

7 last week our C-1 car was driving downtown. Thank God

8 he was in traffic and he was moving very slowly. He

9 had had the car in for repairs and there were repair

10 slips done on it and he was told nothing was wrong with

11 it three consecutive days.

12 And suddenly there was a loud noise and

13 the car stopped dead. The reason the car stopped dead,

14 is the mount that was holding the motor up fell out.

15 The motor dropped down. That's why policemen are

16 buying police cars.

17 Had he been doing 65 or 70 miles an

18 hour when that happened, the results would have been

19 catastrophic. They're buying police cars because they

20 want to go home after their shift and the city isn't

21 making that possible and probable, the condition of the

22 vehicles.

23 And I also would like to end by

24 commenting on the arbitration award that the

25 firefighters recently lost. The firefighters didn't
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1 lose it, but the residents of the City of Scranton lost

2 it.

3 Because if I was a principal of a

4 school, had a nursing home, had an apartment building,

5 a college dorm where automatic alarms are used, do you

6 realize because of this arbitration award, now only one

7 truck responds and only two people.

8 And God forbid there's a fire in a dorm

9 or in a hospital, the soonest you're going to get more

10 firefighters there is five minutes. To save a couple

11 dollars in fuel, how much is a life worth? That's all

12 I have to say.

13 MS. GATELLI: Thank you very much.

14 Anyone else care to speak before Council?

15 MS. GARVEY: 5-A, motions.

16 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Evans.

17 MS. EVANS: Good evening. I'm very

18 pleased that City Council is back in session and I look

19 forward to hearing your opinions and helping you solve

20 all of your problems.

21 To begin, I'd like to make the

22 following announcement. There will be a free rabies

23 clinic on Saturday, September 9 from one to 3 p.m. at

24 the Dunmore Pet Health Center located at 1317 East

25 Drinker Street, Dunmore. This free rabies clinic is
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1 sponsored by the Scranton Animal Association.

2 I'd like to recognize the wonderful

3 work performed by the DPW last Thursday and Friday.

4 Not only was the debris cleaned from beneath the

5 Albright Avenue bridge, but the riverbank was built up

6 several feet along the old Laminations building.

7 Friday afternoon I watched the DPW

8 trucks deliver one load of dirt after another and I

9 watched as a bulldozer solidly leveled those walls.

10 And I say, Excellent job to the DPW.

11 I'm also elated to see the medallions

12 that we fought so hard to preserve will be part of the

13 Medallion Garage facade once again. Thank you

14 particularly to the Architectural Heritage Association

15 we worked with in 2005.

16 I would also like to announce that

17 Mr. Fiorini any contacted Daron Northeast on August 2

18 about watering down the street to prevent unhealthy air

19 quality in the air. If problems persist, please call

20 Mr. Fiorini or myself through City Council's office.

21 Also notable, the streetlight on Henry

22 Street was finally installed in August, and thankfully

23 after three years of talking, badgering, Kane Street

24 will be paved.

25 I have some new requests, first of all,
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1 a letter to Mark Seitzinger, 1015 Mount Vernon Avenue

2 residents complain of a condemned house which is an

3 overgrown eyesore.

4 Next, speed limit or school signs are

5 needed on Wyoming Avenue in the block of Scranton Prep.

6 Construction is exacerbating the traffic speeding and

7 road rage, and the crossing guard has been requesting

8 these signs for years without success.

9 A letter to Mr. Wintermantle and the

10 SPA, city businesses complain that downtown employees

11 are using metered parking spaces in front of their

12 businesses thereby prohibiting customers from parking

13 and patronizing their establishments.

14 These workers appear every two hours to

15 refill the meters and remain in the parking spots

16 throughout the working day. Can you develop a policy

17 to remedy this situation?

18 In other cities tires are marked with

19 chalk after a set number of hours remaining in one

20 space and the owners of the vehicles are ticketed.

21 Surely two new parking garages can accommodate some

22 downtown employees.

23 I have several complaints about houses

24 and properties on Prospect Avenue, which I would like

25 forwarded to Mr. Fiorini.
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1 A letter to Chief Elliott, residents of

2 Grove Street report that despite signs that prohibit

3 truck traffic, 18 wheelers from Topps Bubble Gum and

4 the soda building frequently travel Grove Street. They

5 come dangerously close to parked vehicles and sometimes

6 drive over residents' properties. Further, the curbs

7 on Albright Avenue are being destroyed. Please, can

8 you enforce the signs?

9 Next, city residents request pedestrian

10 walking lines at Nay Aug Park in the area of the mine

11 and parking lots. One reports that he nearly was

12 struck by a car this summer and a cyclist was injured

13 trying to avoid a car.

14 Next, a letter to Ms. Hailstone, why

15 have the benches in the downtown not been installed as

16 promised, and when will they be installed?

17 Next, pave the entire length of Gardner

18 Avenue. Paint the traffic lanes at Franklin Avenue and

19 Spruce Street and the entrance to the Steamtown Mall on

20 Lackawanna Avenue and paint the crosswalks once again

21 at Pine and North Washington and Gibson and North

22 Washington.

23 Also, I received a response from

24 Mr. Seitzinger, a very timely response, regarding

25 913-915 Green Ridge Street, however, the request I made
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1 was not properly addressed.

2 I do understand that the property is in

3 a blighted condition and that it is not city owned

4 property, rather, it is owned by a bank.

5 My question was, would he please

6 facilitate the purchase of such property by a neighbor

7 who wishes to renovate. I believe it's Mr.

8 Seitzinger's intention to demolish the structure, when,

9 in fact, there are citizens who are more than willing

10 to rehabilitate this Victorian.

11 Lastly, we had a notice tonight about a

12 sad cave-in that needs black top in the 1000-block of

13 Mohawk Street, and they appear to have called about

14 this problem all summer long, and Council has received

15 a picture of that huge depression, which is also

16 flooded.

17 I also wanted to bring Council's

18 attention to a letter we received in our mail this

19 evening from a young man, Brian Kusick from Troop 16 of

20 the Boy Scouts, who's working on an Eagle Scout

21 project. This was discussed, I believe, almost a year

22 ago. Do you recall, Mr. Courtright?

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.

24 MS. EVANS: And he would like to

25 install a flag pole at the East Mountain Fire House.
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1 He chose this project to honor the people in public and

2 military service, including his very own brother and

3 father who recently returned from Iraq and Afghanistan,

4 as well as all other civil servants.

5 He needs $900 to complete the project,

6 and I would move that City Council should donate $200

7 from Council's budget to Brian Kusick's Eagle Scout

8 project to erect a flag pole at the East Mountain

9 Firehouse.

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll second it.

11 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All in

12 favor.

13 MS. EVANS: Aye.

14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

15 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

17 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

18 have it and so moved.

19 MS. EVANS: Thank you. Kay, did I

20 receive a response from Ms. Hailstone regarding the

21 loan information I requested by September 6?

22 MS. GARVEY: No.

23 MS. EVANS: Please contact her tomorrow

24 and remind her that I'm waiting.

25 Also, I require her written response to
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1 the letter of July 6 requesting answers for Mr.

2 Sbaraglia and identifying the party ultimately

3 responsible for loan repayment when a business closes.

4 And while we're on the topic of OECD,

5 I've noticed that NDC, the newest consultant, is hiring

6 Scranton Tomorrow at a fee of $3000 to serve as their

7 consultant on economic development, thus, the

8 consultants who do the work of the city employees will

9 now also have a consultant.

10 Also, I have yet to receive the

11 independent audit which was due by law in May 2006.

12 But none of these occurrences should surprise us after

13 the highly eventful weeks of August and September.

14 Since Council recessed, we have

15 witnessed the following, The city tried to take a

16 business through condemnation, the city tried to evict

17 low income residents of an SHA housing project, the

18 city submitted a two-page incomplete capital budget,

19 and to no one's surprise, the Doherty debt is rising by

20 another $84 million in long-term debt. He's pointing

21 the finger of blame at everyone but himself, and he

22 wants Council to clean up his mess .

23 Now, I ask you, if your house is a

24 filthy mess, can you call up your neighbors and ask

25 them to clean it for you?
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1 And if you set your house on fire, can

2 you call up your neighbors and ask them to rebuild it

3 for you? And isn't this the guy who said he was going

4 to reduce our taxes when he first ran for mayor?

5 But now he claims he said all along

6 that he would increase taxes. He wants to borrow $44

7 million to cover projected deficits. So, in other

8 words, he's asking us to okay his never having to

9 balance a budget.

10 In the meantime, while taxpayers are

11 told to pay all the Doherty debt, 23 percent of this

12 city lives in poverty, and the region's unemployment

13 rate is up over five percent. How can we pay these

14 bills? How can our senior citizens pay these bills?

15 In November and December 2004, together

16 with Mr. DiBileo and Mr. Courtright, I created a budget

17 that would have saved this city $4 million. We had a

18 plan, a good viable plan, so that the mayor would not

19 have to borrow any money. He vetoed that budget and

20 borrowed the $4 million.

21 My fellow Scrantonians, I ask you, as

22 to alternatives, when has this mayor ever taken the

23 advice of City Council?

24 Mr. Doherty is not interested in

25 alternatives, so the public relations team better dream
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1 up a better line for the next newspaper article.

2 The bottom line is, now you're all

3 strapped with a tax increase and many, many more to

4 come, which I have been predicting for the last three

5 years. The more money we give this fellow, the longer

6 and greater the tax increases will slap us in the face.

7 And since when is accumulating over

8 $300 million in long-term debt considered, quote, going

9 in the right direction? That's it.

10 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mrs. Fanucci.

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Well, it's really

12 fun to be back. I want to thank everybody for coming

13 out, all my friends.

14 I just want to say a few things. This

15 has been an actually a pretty productive meeting, I

16 think. I feel that we are starting to communicate on a

17 better level, which is great.

18 One thing I want to tell Mrs. Evans,

19 the Parking Authority, I had the same complaint about

20 meter feeding and all that. They are looking into new

21 meters and some way of stopping that. I'm not sure

22 exactly what they were, but I know that they had told

23 me that they were looking into some new meters.

24 MS. EVANS: Thank you.

25 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Okay. But also I
.

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1 want to talk about Mark Seitzinger. I'm very big on

2 believing in this program. Blight in the city is

3 definitely something that I have been an advocate in

4 getting rid of, and I know Judy, as well as everyone

5 else, feels that this is something to help us.

6 When we are paying our taxes and doing

7 what we can to keep our properties up and there is a

8 property next door that may be is decreasing your

9 property value, I don't think that is something that we

10 should just let go.

11 And unfortunately we do not have the

12 manpower to do that. So, I am happy that this is

13 happening, and I do believe in the longrun this will

14 help bring in more tax base and keep people in the city

15 for a longer period of time.

16 On the bankruptcy issue, I believe that

17 my words were very -- I'm going to stand by what I said

18 about being bankrupt.

19 From what I have read and who I've

20 talked to in the State, we will not be able to file

21 bankruptcy under any circumstances, this is what they

22 tell me, that the judge will not let us file bankruptcy

23 until we up implement some plan.

24 Now, whether or not it is with this PEL

25 or someone else who comes in, the judge will throw it
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1 back. They said the reason for that is because if we

2 do not implement a plan, everyone else in all of

3 Pennsylvania will just file bankruptcy, that it would

4 be the easy way out.

5 This is what I've been told. Now, I'm

6 sure that next week we'll have a lot of dispute on

7 that, but this is what the explanation was to me, that

8 bankruptcy was not an issue for us at this time. That

9 was something that someone had said tonight, so that

10 was the only reason.

11 As far as the $44 million, this is

12 probably the most difficult decision I think that any

13 of us will have to even ponder for the next few weeks.

14 I am doing my best to sit down and educate myself on

15 this.

16 I've heard a lot of comments about the

17 $44 million. I, myself, am not inclined to give out

18 that kind of money right now. I am not sure that I

19 have enough information to make my decision

20 100 percent. I am definitely going to vote it in

21 tonight so that I could take time to figure out what we

22 have to figure out.

23 And I would like to sit down with

24 everyone and see if we can come up with some

25 money-saving alternatives.
.

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1 And I know that Mrs. Evans said that

2 she had done that years ago with the last Council.

3 Maybe that is something we need to do. I know that it

4 should not be on our lap, but I feel like it is.

5 And as far as I am concerned, I believe

6 that it is our job to at least try to save something or

7 some money or do something that we can be proud of at

8 the end of all this. And that is all I have tonight.

9 Thank you.

10 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.

11 Mr. McTiernan.

12 MR. MCTIERNAN: Thank you,

13 Mrs. Gatelli. Just two items. First of all I'd like

14 to thank the Scranton School District maintenance

15 department for taking the initiative to paint the

16 crosswalks around the schools in the city for the

17 safety of the students as school begins this past --

18 beginning of September.

19 And also, Kay, if you would send a

20 letter or Neil to Mr. Parker. I made a verbal request

21 last time we had a meeting regarding a sinkhole that is

22 developing along Forest Glen Drive and now it's

23 obstructed by trees overhanging and that is getting

24 larger and dangerous. It is in an area that there

25 aren't houses, so I don't know of an address.
.

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1 MS. GARVEY: Okay.

2 MR. MCTIERNAN: If they could take a

3 look at it. And that's all, Mrs. Gatelli. Thank you.

4 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Courtright.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes. I had a taxpayer

6 send me a letter asking about the CRF loan and what

7 project had been funded from the CRF money, and they

8 asked if I would read it off here, and I certainly will

9 do that.

10 One was D & S Auto Sales, they got

11 $50,000, and two jobs were created. They need to

12 create one job for every $35,000 that they receive.

13 The second one Edmund and Chris Pisano

14 Partnership, $250,000, and that's eight jobs. The

15 third is Scranton Dunlap, Incorporated, and that's

16 $200,000, seven jobs.

17 The next one is National Pastry Bake

18 Shop, Mr. Bill Fox, $250,00, eight jobs, and the latest

19 one I have, I don't know if there's -- no, I believe

20 there isn't any more, we haven't voted on them, is

21 Denise's Salon, LLC, $75,000, three jobs.

22 The one thing that I would say is this

23 is that these are loans, they're not grants, they're

24 loans, and none of this money could be given unless

25 Council votes on it, and every single one of the ones I
.

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1 just read were unanimously approved by everybody on

2 this Council. Nobody voted no on any of these, so I

3 think we all felt they were good projects.

4 And I'll ask to keep updated on whether

5 projects come through. But for your own information,

6 you'll see us voting on them, because they can't get

7 the money without us voting on them.

8 And on a note that I think is a happy

9 note, I started working on something a while back with

10 Mr. McTiernan, and this -- approximately two Fridays

11 ago I met with Congressman Kanjorski, Chris Doherty,

12 Karen Feather, who is Congressman Kanjorski's Chief of

13 Staff, Tom Williams, who is the District Project

14 Director for Congressman Kanjorski, and we went up on

15 Main Avenue and took a look at a project that we wanted

16 to do, and that project is from Jackson Street to

17 Luzerne Street curbs, sidewalks, lights, trees and

18 possibly underground utilities.

19 And Congressman Kanjorski came up there

20 to take a look at it. He seemed to be excited about it

21 and he said he would certainly help us fund this.

22 So, I asked Kay if this week if she

23 could send out a letter to -- you did that today maybe,

24 Kay, to the mayor?

25 MS. GARVEY: No, it didn't go out yet.
.

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1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay. So, if we can

2 send it tomorrow morning possibly asking him to get us

3 an estimate on this project so that we can get it

4 moving.

5 I know the people in West Scranton are

6 really looking forward to this, and I want to do

7 everything I could to speed it up. And I just want to

8 thank all concerned for considering this project, and

9 hopefully it will get done.

10 I understand and I've explained to the

11 people in West Scranton that it takes a long time

12 before you're going to actually see it completed, but

13 at least we've got the ball rolling, and I'm really

14 hoping that it takes hold. So, I'd just like to thank

15 everybody concerned.

16 The Sewer Authority has asked us,

17 correct me, Kay, if I state this wrong, that if we have

18 a problem with anything to do with the Sewer Authority

19 that we call this specific number and they'll handle it

20 that way; is that correct?

21 MS. GARVEY: That was the first

22 response that I had gotten from Mr. Scopelliti, he

23 called and said regarding any of these requests that

24 are coming in, there's no need to send the letters,

25 they can just call this dispatch number or that we
.

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1 could call it for them if we got those requests, but

2 then two weeks after having gotten that message from

3 him, Gene Barrett from the Sewer Authority called me to

4 tell me that a certain catch basin had been taken care

5 of, and I told him of Mr. Scopelliti's phone call, and

6 he said, no, that he would prefer that the letters

7 continue. He would rather have them in writing. So,

8 I'm --

9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay. All right. I know

10 that letter is in our box, I just didn't read it. I

11 saw it tonight. Okay.

12 Well, anyway, Neil, I know I had Neil

13 call about this one to that particular number, it was

14 947 Euclid. The road has been torn up for quite a

15 while, and I don't know. I haven't gotten -- I

16 apologize to the person that lives at 947 Euclid, I

17 lost your number.

18 I had several conversations back and

19 forth with this individual, and the last time I spoke

20 to them, the road wasn't paved. So, maybe we need to

21 send a letter then, I guess, the phone call is gone to

22 the wayside, okay.

23 All right. So, if we can send a letter

24 asking about 947 Euclid, that entire road there that

25 they tore up, if they could take a look at that.
.

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1 And just probably down the street a

2 little bit from where Mr. McTiernan talked about, there

3 is a house in front of this. It's 33 Forest Glen.

4 There has been a depression across the road there for a

5 long time, and I've asked at least three or four times

6 if the DPW can go up there and take a look at it,

7 because winter will be here faster than we want it to

8 be, and then for sure we're not going to get it done.

9 And one last thing, with the

10 $44 million, I asked Kay if she could contact PEL, and

11 she did that for me, we did it both on the phone and I

12 believe E-mail, and a gentleman by the name of Jerry

13 Cross called me today.

14 And my question was this, Does PEL

15 agree with borrowing $44 million? And he couldn't

16 answer me. He said that what he needed to do was they

17 get their direction from the State before he can give

18 me any answer and that he would -- he called me early

19 this afternoon and he said he would try to have that

20 answer to me before the meeting, if not, he would have

21 it for me for next week.

22 And so, all I asked was a simple

23 question, Does PEL condone borrowing $44 million? So,

24 hopefully by the next week meeting we will have that

25 answer. And that's all I have. Thank you.
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1 MS. EVANS: Mrs. Gatelli, I forgot one

2 thing. May I?

3 MS. GATELLI: Sure.

4 MS. EVANS: Kay, since Mr. Beck brought

5 that question to City Council regarding a -- well, an

6 explicit definition of the project, I've perused the

7 backup, I cannot ascertain exactly what the project is,

8 other than to assume the project is the project of

9 borrowing this money by virtue of the SRA, so can you

10 please write a letter to Mr. Kresefski asking for an

11 explanation of the projects, specifically what is being

12 leased back.

13 And, Mr. Beck, if you would like, I

14 would be very happy to share the backup information

15 that I received tonight with you.

16 Oh, also, I was very, very pleased to

17 hear about the Main Street project that Mr. Courtright

18 described a few moments ago. I know it was something

19 that we had discussed even with, I think, Dr. Minora

20 asking for his assistance, because so much had been

21 done for the North Scranton area, so I'm very, very

22 glad to see this moving along, although I guess you

23 have different partners now.

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: I explained to them

25 that I spoke with Dr. Minora, and because the money
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1 possibly comes from Congressman Kanjorski, they did

2 theirs a different way, I'm not well enough versed in

3 it, but they actually went through neighborhood group

4 to send the money through and they said we wouldn't

5 have to do it that way. And in all honesty, whatever

6 way they handle it, it's fine with me, as long as they

7 get it done, you know?

8 MS. EVANS: I agree, and I think it's

9 commendable to have the Congressman on board.

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yeah. Hopefully it

11 will work.

12 MS. GATELLI: Okay.

13 MS. EVANS: Thank you.

14 MS. GATELLI: You're welcome. The only

15 thing I would like to do is I'd like to make a motion

16 that we send a letter to Mr. Seitzinger, who is the new

17 blight coordinator, and I would like to have from him a

18 list of all the housing inspectors that are employed in

19 the City of Scranton and where they are assigned;

20 number two, I would like a monthly list of where the

21 inspectors have gone, the addresses of the properties

22 that they have gone to, what they went there for, and

23 the plan of action, whether there was a citation filed

24 or a notice given, et cetera.

25 I seem to be having a very difficult
.

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1 time getting answers about houses. I've called

2 numerous times about grass being high, and it's still

3 high. The snow is going to knock it down.

4 So, I really want to have this, and I

5 think Mr. Seitzinger in that position now is going to

6 be able to tell us this information. So, I'd like to

7 put that in the form of a motion.

8 MS. EVANS: I would be thrilled to

9 second that, because I think that's going to be the

10 best piece of information this Council would receive in

11 a long time.

12 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All in

13 favor.

14 MS. EVANS: Aye.

15 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

16 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

18 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

19 have it and so moved.

20 The next letter I'd like to send, and I

21 don't know, I guess I'll make it in the form of a

22 motion also so that it comes from all of Council,

23 rather than just one individual, I'd like to send --

24 make a motion to send a letter to Donny King concerning

25 the mini-mart on Meadow Avenue.
.

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1 I talked to him at least six months ago

2 and he said that that traffic study was complete, so

3 I'd like to know where is the traffic light that was

4 promised there when the market was built, and also

5 about the signs that Mrs. Shumaker said when you leave

6 the parking lot, to see if he can expedite those signs

7 being placed there, because there is going to be a

8 tragedy there. So, I will make that motion.

9 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

10 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

11 MS. EVANS: Yes. I think if you go

12 back in time to the construction of that mini-mart,

13 there may have been a stipulation whereby the owner

14 would have had to incur the costs for that light.

15 MS. GATELLI: Yes, that's true.

16 MS. EVANS: But then the State stepped

17 in, and I believe they indicated that the cost would be

18 incurred by the State, and thereafter everything

19 disappeared.

20 So, perhaps it would be helpful, also,

21 to speak to the owner of the mini-mart, and I think

22 maybe he could fill us all in on the history.

23 MS. GATELLI: Okay. We can have Kay do

24 that, if she would be so kind as to call. But motion

25 is to send a letter to Donny King and someone seconded
.

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1 it. Anyone else on the question? All in favor.

2 MS. EVANS: Aye.

3 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

4 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

6 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

7 have it and so moved.

8 I'm going to make one more motion, and

9 I don't mean to be so verbose, because it's very late,

10 and you know I go to bed early, so I don't like to try

11 to lengthen the meeting at all, but I think that we

12 also need to, and I don't even know who to address this

13 to, probably Mike Wallace, the zoning officer, because

14 it's going to be concerned with zoning, I'd like to

15 make a motion that we send Mr. Wallace and possibly

16 Dan Penetar, the attorney for zoning, to investigate

17 some ways to determine how many people live in a

18 building.

19 Many, many homes and apartments are

20 overcrowded to the max. And when they go there to

21 check, they don't seem to have the tools to prove how

22 many people live in there, so maybe they can

23 investigate other communities, et cetera, to find out a

24 better way that we can determine how many people are in

25 a house.
.

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1 MR. MINORA: If I can interrupt you for

2 just a moment.

3 MS. GATELLI: Yes.

4 MR. MINORA: I took a look at that

5 Bethlehem ordinance that you brought back, and although

6 I didn't have obviously a great deal of time to study

7 it, it does include in the licensing of the rental

8 units how many people, who they are, identification,

9 all that would be on record in the city itself, if the

10 city chose to adopt or -- I'm not sure what we have,

11 whether we -- we'd probably have to repeal what we have

12 and replace it with this, but all of that would then be

13 available, I don't recall if it was the housing

14 inspector or who the officer was in charge in

15 Bethlehem, but that information was going to be

16 available in order to get a license to rent your place.

17 MS. GATELLI: My only problem with

18 that, Attorney Minora, is that I'm also concerned with

19 single family homes, where there's 40 people living in

20 there, and they say that they're related.

21 That is a rental -- no, they're not

22 rentals. They're people that are buying the properties

23 and they're in all the neighbors, and you know what I'm

24 talking about, and there's 30 and 40 people living in a

25 property and they're being very disruptive to the other
.

138


1 neighbors.

2 So, they are owner occupied, they're

3 just having other family members possibly or friends of

4 theirs living there, et cetera.

5 So, the rental thing is for three

6 unrelated people in a rental unit. I'm talking about

7 --

8 MR. MINORA: Yeah, I didn't look to the

9 statute for that.

10 MS. GATELLI: I'm talking about single

11 family homes that are overcrowded. Maybe we can even

12 call Bethlehem. I can do that myself. But I'd still

13 like to send a letter to zoning and have them see if

14 they have any means of finding out how many people live

15 in a home.

16 I know the post office is one way to

17 find out, but I don't know that our zoning officer is

18 pursuing the postal service to find out how many people

19 live in a home. So, I'd just like to send that.

20 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: I second that.

21 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the

22 question? All in favor?

23 MS. EVANS: Aye.

24 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

25 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.
.

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1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

2 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

3 have it and so moved.

4 The next thing I'd like to talk about

5 is the $44 million. Boy, would I like to win that in

6 the Powerball. Wouldn't we all?

7 I'm going to vote tonight to introduce

8 the legislation, but I don't want anyone to perceive

9 that as my support of the $44 million.

10 I spoke to the mayor before I came to

11 this meeting tonight and I said that I wanted his

12 administration to be here next week to explain to us

13 and to the public and to the viewing audience exactly

14 what this is all about.

15 My forte is not finances. I pay my own

16 bills, I pay my own mortgage, I'm never late, I've

17 always paid my taxes, but to get into something like

18 this, I am definitely not an expert.

19 And I think it's our responsibility as

20 a Council to bring people here to inform the public

21 about this decision and about what they have to say,

22 and that's why I'll be voting to introduce it tonight,

23 and I'm also going to be meeting with friends of mine

24 that are CPAs and financial specialists to get their

25 input on it, because I'm not very astoot in financial
.

140


1 matters of this magnitude. So, that's why I'll be

2 voting yes. That's all.

3 MS. GARVEY: 5-B, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN

4 ORDINANCE - SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT 530-532

5 BROADWAY STREET, SCRANTON PENNSYLVANIA, TO KEVIN

6 SHAUGHNESSY, 1004 RILEY STREET, TAYLOR, PENNSYLVANIA,

7 18517, FOR THE SUM OF $4,000.00.

8 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

9 entertain a motion that the item be introduced into its

10 committee.

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: So moved.

12 MS. EVANS: Second.

13 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question, I'm

15 going to abstain from voting on this. This is my

16 brother-in-law's brother, so I don't want to make it

17 look like I did anything wrong.

18 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the

19 question? All in favor.

20 MS. EVANS: Aye.

21 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

22 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

23 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

24 have it and so moved. That will be four yeses and one

25 abstention.
.

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1 MS. GARVEY: 5-C, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN

2 ORDINANCE - VACATING THE RIGHT OF WAY KNOWN AS THE 300

3 BLOCK OF MAHON COURT BETWEEN MULBERRY AND LINDEN

4 STREETS, AND PARALLEL TO CLAY AND NORTH WEBSTER

5 AVENUES.

6 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

7 entertain a motion that 5-C be introduced.

8 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

9 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

10 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

11 MR. MCTIERNAN: Mrs. Gatelli, we need

12 to have this ordinance sent to the city planning

13 commission and the Lackawanna County regional planning

14 commission for their review, so I would like to suggest

15 and make a motion that we send -- have this public

16 hearing and send the ordinance to them.

17 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: I'll second that.

18 MR. MCTIERNAN: City clerk, will you

19 make the necessary arrangements for that, please?

20 MS. GARVEY: Yes, I will.

21 MR. MCTIERNAN: Thank you.

22 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Do we have a

23 second? On that question? All in favor.

24 MS. EVANS: Aye.

25 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.
.

142


1 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

3 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

4 have it and so moved. And that was unanimous.

5 MS. GARVEY: 5-D, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN

6 ORDINANCE - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 162, 2005, AN

7 ORDINANCE ENTITLED GENERAL CITY OPERATING BUDGET 2006

8 BY TRANSFERRING $4,700.00 FROM ACCOUNT NO.

9 01.051.00082.4210 (SERVICE AND MAINTENANCE FEE) TO

10 ACCOUNT NO. 01.401.10030.4299 (ZONING BOARD OPERATING

11 EXPENSES) TO PROVIDE FUNDING FOR ZONING BOARD EXPENSES

12 THROUGH YEAR END.

13 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

14 entertain a motion that the item be introduced.

15 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

16 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

17 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

18 those in favor.

19 MS. EVANS: Aye.

20 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

21 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

22 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

23 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

24 have it and so moved. That was unanimous.

25 MS. GARVEY: 5-E, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN
.

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1 ORDINANCE - AUTHORIZING THE LEASE OF CERTAIN REAL

2 PROPERTY TO THE REDEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF

3 SCRANTON, PURSUANT TO A LEASE AGREEMENT; DECLARING THE

4 GUARANTY OF SAID AUTHORITY'S GUARANTEED LEASE REVENUE

5 BONDS FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON,

6 LACKAWANNA COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA, TO BE A PROJECT OF THE

7 CITY FOR WHICH LEASE RENTAL DEBT IS TO BE INCURRED;

8 STATING THE REALISTIC ESTIMATED USEFUL LIFE OF THE

9 FACILITIES RELATING TO THE BONDS; DETERMINING TO INCUR

10 LEASE RENTAL DEBT IN AN AGGREGATE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT NOT

11 TO EXCEED $44,000,000 IN RESPECT OF SAID PROJECT, SUCH

12 DEBT TO BE EVIDENCED BY THE CITY'S SUBLEASE AND

13 GUARANTY AGREEMENT WITH RESPECT TO SAID BONDS;

14 AUTHORIZING CERTAIN CITY OFFICERS TO PREPARE, CERTIFY

15 AND FILE WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AND ECONOMIC

16 DEVELOPMENT THE DEBT STATEMENT REQUIRED BY SECTION 8110

17 OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT UNIT DEBT ACT AND AUTHORIZING

18 THE PREPARATION OF A DEBT STATEMENT AND BORROWING BASE

19 CERTIFICATE; APPROVING THE FORM OF, AND AUTHORIZING,

20 SUBJECT TO CERTAIN CONDITIONS, EXECUTION AND DELIVERY

21 OF THE AFORESAID LEASE AGREEMENT AND SUBLEASE AND

22 GUARANTY AGREEMENT; REPEALING INCONSISTENT PRIOR

23 ORDINANCES; SETTING FORTH CERTAIN CONDITIONS TO THE

24 EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF THE AFORESAID LEASE AGREEMENT

25 AND SUBLEASE AND GUARANTY AGREEMENT; AUTHORIZING THE
.

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1 PROPER OFFICERS OF THE CITY TO TAKE ALL REQUIRED,

2 NECESSARY OR DESIRABLE RELATED ACTION IN CONNECTION

3 WITH SUCH PROJECT AND THE EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF THE

4 LEASE AGREEMENT AND SUBLEASE AND GUARANTY AGREEMENT;

5 DECLARING SAID PROJECT DESIRABLE FOR THE HEALTH, SAFETY

6 AND WELFARE OF THE RESIDENTS OF THE CITY.

7 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

8 entertain a motion that 5-E be introduced.

9 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

10 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

11 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

12 MS. EVANS: Yes. This is a tough

13 decision, and I can't argue that point, however, it's

14 far easier to approve borrowing and spending and let

15 other people do the work than it is to create your own

16 budget, as three Council members did in 2004, and it's

17 far more difficult to stand up against unnecessary

18 spending of a vast and vocal and vindictive

19 administration.

20 I see no effort to cut costs, I see

21 lack of Worker's Comp buyouts beginning in 2003 that

22 could have potentially saved the city $4 million a

23 year, I see wasted money, $10,000, on the sale of one

24 property in The Plot lost, $275,000 in the month of

25 July alone for outside legal fees beyond what we pay
.

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1 through the budget our city solicitors, 100 forced

2 retirements, no new revenue, outside of the EMS tax, no

3 bid contracts, poor collection of some tax

4 delinquencies, particularly a garage in Downtown

5 Scranton that hasn't been addressed in many years.

6 Well, in my opinion, this borrowing

7 should not have even made the agenda. It should not be

8 introduced tonight.

9 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question,

10 Mrs. Gatelli. Kay, Mrs. Evans brought up something

11 that maybe -- I guess we're back to sending letters.

12 Maybe you can send a letter to -- I would imagine it

13 would be Lisa Moran. I would just like to know is

14 there any intentions on any buyouts in the near future.

15 I think that might be something we need to take a look

16 at, so that's a good point you brought up. She can

17 just tell me where she stands on that, I'd appreciate

18 it.

19 MS. EVANS: I think there actually may

20 have been some in the last year or so, but they should

21 have been initiated immediately, and I also think that

22 we have a number of retirees who are now in -- it's a

23 type of insurance policy, I'll have to get you more

24 information on it, but we have $18 million in a fund to

25 cover that.
.

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1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Right. That's what I

2 thought, yes.

3 MS. EVANS: And that $18 million really

4 isn't necessary if these retirees are bumped into the

5 proper level.

6 So, there are numerous avenues

7 available for cost savings, not to mention, for

8 example, the golf course proceeds. Do they still

9 indeed exist?

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: I hope so. But the

11 $18 million is the reason I asked the question. Is

12 that still there? Do you know that that's still there?

13 MS. EVANS: Purportedly.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.

15 MS. EVANS: But, again, those buyouts

16 should have begun in 2003. We've missed the boat on --

17 by millions of dollars.

18 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's all I have.

19 MS. GATELLI: The letter that you sent

20 to Mr. Kresefski, maybe we can have that ready for next

21 week.

22 MS. EVANS: Of if he's here.

23 MS. GATELLI: He's going to be here.

24 MS. EVANS: And he can just explain it.

25 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, he's going to be
.

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1 here. So, maybe Kay can forward that ahead of time so

2 he knows to have that, you know, here and prepared.

3 And before we finish the vote, Kay,

4 would you set a caucus for 5:30 and notify the mayor to

5 have whoever he needs to have here to explain this to

6 us and to the public, what the money is going to be

7 used for and exactly what's what, because I'm not quite

8 sure about the whole deal.

9 So, I want to know and I want the

10 public to know why this is even being asked for.

11 Anyone else on the question?

12 MS. EVANS: Well, you know, what it

13 was, Mr. Courtright, a debt insurance policy --

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.

15 MS. EVANS: -- that I was referring to.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: All right.

17 MS. GATELLI: I believed it was moved

18 and seconded, was it not? Anyone else on the question?

19 We'll take a roll call on this.

20 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

21 MS. EVANS: No.

22 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

23 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.

24 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

25 MR. MCTIERNAN: Yes.
.

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1 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: No.

3 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.

4 MS. GATELLI: Yes. And I hope that

5 everyone is here next week to listen to the

6 presentation and that the people at home are listening.

7 It will start at 5:30, and it will be televised. Thank

8 you. Mrs. Garvey.

9 MS. GARVEY: 5-F, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN

10 ORDINANCE - APPROVING AND ACCEPTING THE REVISED AND

11 UPDATED CITY OF SCRANTON CAPITAL BUDGET FOR THE YEAR

12 2007 WHICH UPDATED THE 2003 FIVE-YEAR CAPITAL BUDGET.

13 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

14 entertain a motion that 5-F be introduced.

15 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

16 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

17 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

18 MS. EVANS: Yes. As I stated in 2005

19 about the 2006 capital budget, I will state again that

20 the 2007 capital budget violates the Home Rule Charter

21 Section 904, because it does not include appropriate

22 supporting information as to the necessity for listed

23 improvements, whether funded or unfunded, nor does it

24 include a method of financing each project, and the

25 recommended time schedules for each project.
.

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1 It does not set forth the estimated

2 annual costs of operations and maintaining of

3 facilities that are constructed or will be acquired in

4 the future.

5 In fact, this budget is a disgrace. In

6 its present form the 2007, capital budget does not

7 merit comment on any of its entries, either on the

8 revenue side or the expenditure side.

9 Because as it was submitted to City

10 Council, I cannot inquire into the necessity or

11 validity of any entry. I cannot determine if it's good

12 for the people. This is yet another attempt to

13 diminish the oversight authority of Council.

14 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Evans, do you have a

15 suggestion of what we should do with this, just send it

16 back?

17 MS. EVANS: Last year -- we can send it

18 back, as we did last year. We received a letter of

19 explanation from Attorney Butler indicating that

20 because an original budget was submitted in 2003, this

21 requires no further clarification; on the other hand,

22 we are violating 904 of the Home Rule Charter, not to

23 mention the fact that the capital budget is not a

24 stationary piece of paper. Revenues change,

25 expenditures change, and we need the full explanations
.

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1 of each.

2 So, as a result, no capital budget was

3 passed last year. It never came before City Council

4 for final approval.

5 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Anyone else on the

6 question? We better do a roll call on this one, too.

7 MS. GARVEY: Wait one second.

8 MR. MCTIERNAN: We didn't vote on the

9 last one, Kay, that's why I was holding up.

10 MS. GARVEY: We missed the vote on the

11 last one, that's why I was going to wait until it got

12 out of committee before I made the motion for the

13 public hearing.

14 MS. GARVEY: Okay. So, are we waiting

15 for it to go into something before you call for

16 anything?

17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.

18 MS. GARVEY: You can take your vote

19 now.

20 MS. GATELLI: You guys have me all

21 jazzed up.

22 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yeah, really.

23 MS. GATELLI: It was moved and

24 seconded. Now we're going to vote.

25 MS. EVANS: Uh-huh.
.

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1 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Vote.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Then he's going to

3 make a motion for a public hearing.

4 MS. GARVEY: Right.

5 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

6 MS. EVANS: No.

7 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

8 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.

9 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

10 MR. MCTIERNAN: Yes.

11 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.

12 MR. COURTRIGHT: No.

13 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.

14 MS. GATELLI: No. We don't need a

15 motion for a public hearing. And the mayor, maybe we

16 can send a letter, Amil, this would probably be you, if

17 it's violating the Home Rule Charter, and tell him if

18 he sends it down in the proper fashion, that we will

19 put it on the agenda again.

20 MS. EVANS: Did you notice the length

21 of the budget, a two-page capital budget?

22 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Minora, can I ask

23 you a question? As long as one of us has voted in the

24 negative, we can reintroduce it if we get the

25 information that we need, correct?
.

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1 MR. MINORA: Yes.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: But it has to be one

3 of us that voted in the negative; is that correct?

4 MR. MINORA: Yes.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.

6 MS. GATELLI: And besides, I think it

7 would be different. If it had the proper information,

8 it would be different, and I don't think we'd even have

9 to reintroduce it. If it's different than the first

10 case --

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Right, because

12 it'd be a different piece of legislation.

13 MR. MINORA: Either way I think it

14 would work.

15 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Fine.

16 MS. GARVEY: 5-G, FOR INTRODUCTION - AN

17 ORDINANCE - AUTHORIZING THE TRANSFER OF CITY-OWNED LAND

18 SUBJECT TO ALL NECESSARY APPROVALS, SPECIFICALLY THE

19 TRANSFER OF THE SLOAN LITTLE LEAGUE TO THE SCHOOL

20 DISTRICT OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON.

21 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

22 entertain a motion that 5-G be introduced.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

24 MR. MCTIERNAN: Second.

25 MS. GATELLI: On the question?
.

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1 MS. EVANS: Yes. Mr. Baux raised a

2 number of very important questions tonight, one of

3 which I don't think was answered as yet, how this

4 particular item came to be on this evening's agenda at

5 all.

6 But that being said, I have a few

7 questions I'd like to pose, first, in the event of such

8 a transfer, who would reimburse Sloan Little League for

9 the fence and bleachers they paid for for the teener

10 league?

11 And despite the lack of approval of a

12 new lease, legally speaking, it appears that the lease

13 would continue day to day, and, therefore, I think that

14 it would include all of the city's athletic fields,

15 therefore, if you were to pass this, you've broken a

16 lease, and I wouldn't be surprised that Sloan can and

17 would sue the city.

18 Also, as Mr. Baux indicated, there has

19 been no formal contact between the Scranton School

20 District and Sloan Little League in many, many, many

21 months, other than an informal meeting that was

22 conducted in July, at which time a school director

23 promised to contact Sloan with the school board's

24 decision and failed to do so.

25 I really believe this legislation puts
.

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1 the cart before the horse. Let the two entities sit

2 down, negotiate and come up with their own solution and

3 then let City Council pass that legislation.

4 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the

5 question? I'd just like to say that I didn't know it

6 was coming either, but I put it on here so that maybe

7 the interested parties could finally get together and

8 solve this, because it just keeps going back and forth.

9 If there's a possibility of putting

10 Sloan into that mix, I'm not sure, but I would like

11 Sloan -- if this is going to happen, and I'm in favor

12 of this happening, because I'd like to see the kids

13 over there on the teener field, but I also would like

14 Sloan to be part of it, so maybe we can table this or

15 add an amendment to it or something that Sloan would be

16 a sublessee --

17 MR. MINORA: I don't know that we can

18 do that, because you're binding the school board, who's

19 not really party to our legislation. The school board

20 is going to have to sit down and be part of the

21 solution.

22 MR. BAUX: That's all we're asking.

23 MR. MINORA: Right now they don't seem

24 to be.

25 MR. BAUX: That's all we're asking.
.

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1 MS. GATELLI: All right.

2 MR. MCTIERNAN: Before we vote any

3 further, Mrs. Gatelli, I had raised some concerns based

4 on the concerns of the folks who were involved with the

5 Sloan Little League, and they were concerned about

6 retention of access and control over the little league.

7 I would vote yes for this legislation,

8 but I will personally contact some folks at the school

9 district to find out if we can add provisions to

10 maintain accessibility for the little league.

11 As I said in remarks several months

12 ago, I don't believe the school district has any use

13 for the little league field due to its physical

14 constraints and the requirements of the PIAA regarding

15 high school athletics. So, I'll make that contact

16 tomorrow and then I can bring that information

17 back.

18 MS. EVANS: I like what you're doing,

19 Mr. McTiernan, opening the lines of communication, but

20 I still feel adamantly about Sloan sitting down with

21 the school district, rather than intermediaries. I

22 believe the two entities involved need to iron this out

23 to both of their satisfaction.

24 MS. GATELLI: I do, too, but I don't

25 think there should be any other parties involved
.

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1 because other people put their spin on it and somehow

2 it becomes not what it's supposed to be. It's supposed

3 to be West Side, Sloan.

4 The same kids that play at Sloan are

5 going to go to West Intermediate and they're going to

6 go to West Side High School, and we're all talking

7 about the same kids. We just can't get to the point we

8 need to get at.

9 MS. EVANS: So, why doesn't City

10 Council then keep its hands off it until they finish?

11 Well, actually until they start and finish their

12 negotiations?

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mrs. Evans, as you

14 recall, we met at Sloan Little League. I said to Mrs.

15 McGuigan that I didn't want to know anything about

16 this, I didn't want to see anything come before me

17 about this --

18 MS. EVANS: Yes, you did.

19 MR. COURTRIGHT: -- until what time

20 Sloan and the school district had some kind of an

21 agreement. I don't know how this falls on us. I mean,

22 I understand it's city property, but they're the two

23 groups that have to decide this. I don't think it's up

24 to us, I really don't.

25 MS. EVANS: Because as I raised other
.

157


1 issues beyond the use of fields outside the teener

2 field, there are other issues at stake, because these

3 people have been maintaining those fields and have been

4 fundraising independently for years, and every

5 improvement that was made has come out of their pockets

6 and off the sweat of their brows and they deserve the

7 consideration, monetary consideration, I believe, from

8 the school district.

9 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know. I just

10 thought after we met that night, that they were going

11 to come back to the Sloan Little League, that was my

12 understanding --

13 MS. EVANS: They didn't.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: -- and then we

15 wouldn't see anything until those two had some kind of

16 an agreement. That's what I thought we had agreed on

17 that night, but evidently that didn't happen.

18 MS. EVANS: I agree with you.

19 MS. MCTIERNAN: Mrs. Gatelli, one

20 additional thing. You're looking at information from

21 the school district. In our backup packet there is a

22 copy of a resolution that passed 8-0 on May 15 by the

23 Scranton School Board, and I'll just read the paragraph

24 that I think is pertinent here, Whereas, the School

25 District of the City of Scranton recognizes that such
.

158


1 entities, including but not limited to the Sloan Little

2 League Association, have an interest in continuing to

3 utilize the field for their purposes and it is not

4 therefore the intention of the district to preclude the

5 Sloan Little League Association from use of the

6 premises or any other groups so long as it is not

7 inconsistent with the needs of the district.

8 So, there is some discussion and there

9 is some official notation of the district's desire to

10 work with Sloan Little League, and that passed 8-0 on

11 May 15.

12 MS. EVANS: I think that, you know,

13 that's commendable, although I don't feel that the

14 language particularly protects Sloan Little League,

15 however, I'd be willing to gamble that Sloan Little

16 League didn't even know about that. They didn't.

17 MS. GATELLI: Well, why don't we --

18 we'll vote on it as it is right now, and we will have

19 Mr. McTiernan bring those ideas back to the school

20 district.

21 MR. COURTRIGHT: One last thing, if I

22 may, I know we're here very late. If you go back to

23 the one page where Mr. McTiernan just read from, the

24 very first line to the members the board of directors,

25 The intergovernmental agency committee recommends the
.

159


1 following solution be considered, so I believe that

2 evening -- didn't Ms. McGuigan say she was the

3 intergovernmental for the --

4 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, she's the liaison.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Right. So, evidently

6 she must have recommended this, correct? Am I correct

7 in assuming that?

8 MS. EVANS: That would indeed be

9 accurate, that she never made that -- well, let us say

10 she never disclosed that fact during the evening that

11 we all met.

12 MR. COURTRIGHT: No, she didn't

13 disclose the fact that she was going to recommend it.

14 I don't know --

15 MS. EVANS: That passed May 15. We met

16 the first week of July.

17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, right. Okay.

18 MS. EVANS: It just seems as if the

19 school district was moving along and ready to take over

20 without ever even giving Sloan the courtesy of becoming

21 aware of the situation.

22 MR. BAUX: That's all we're asking.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'm sorry. I didn't

24 put the dates together there. I forgot the date that

25 we had met. So, she known that at the time when we
.

160


1 were meeting.

2 MS. EVANS: Yes.

3 MR. COURTRIGHT: And we weren't made

4 aware of that.

5 MS. GATELLI: Well, I think that in

6 this part here where it says, Whereas, the school

7 district recognizes that such entities, including but

8 not limited to Sloan Little League, have an interest in

9 continuing to utilize the field for their purpose, and

10 it is not the intention of the district to preclude the

11 association or any other group so long as its use is

12 not inconsistent with the needs of the district.

13 If we take those words out of there and

14 we put in there somewhere that says the Sloan Little

15 League must be allowed to continue to use their -- even

16 if they describe it or put a map in there and say,

17 Sloan can still use their portion, you know, then maybe

18 we can settle it.

19 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think the intent --

20 the district's intentions are good, I just think that

21 we can't seem to come to an agreement from --

22 MS. EVANS: Well, again, if the

23 district would just sit down with Sloan, let them

24 settle it.

25 MR. COURTRIGHT: I agree. I know --
.

161


1 MS. GATELLI: Let's suggest that.

2 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't want to be

3 involved in this.

4 MS. GATELLI: Let's suggest that. I

5 suggest that none of us be involved. You know, that's

6 where I work, and, you know, I have to listen to the

7 kids all the time coming in, that they don't have a

8 place to practice.

9 But I will keep my nose out, we will

10 all keep our noses out, and let's -- even if Attorney

11 Minora, maybe you can be our liaison to get these

12 groups together. It's our intention that, yes, we want

13 West Side to be there, but we don't want Sloan to be

14 hurt.

15 MR. MINORA: Why don't --

16 MS. GATELLI: We want them included in

17 the mission.

18 MR. MINORA: Why not have whoever made

19 the motion withdraw their motion, table 5-G, I guess,

20 and send letters.

21 MR. COURTRIGHT: I did, right, Kay?

22 MS. GARVEY: Yes.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll withdraw it. I

24 said so moved.

25 MS. GARVEY: Yes.
.

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1 MR. COURTRIGHT: I will withdraw my so

2 moved. Somebody has to --

3 MR. MINORA: And somebody needs to make

4 a motion to table it, and then send a letter to --

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll make a motion

6 that we table Item 5-G.

7 MS. EVANS: Second.

8 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All in

9 favor?

10 MS. EVANS: Aye.

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

12 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

14 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? Unanimous

15 to table it for now. Thank you. H, Kay.

16 MS. GARVEY: 5-H, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

17 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

18 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A

19 PARTICIPATION AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY OF SCRANTON

20 AND THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF THE

21 TREASURY, FOR THE INVESTMENT OF FUNDS IN THE INVEST

22 PROGRAM.

23 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

24 entertain a motion that 5-h be introduced.

25 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
.

163


1 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

2 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

3 those in favor.

4 MS. EVANS: Aye.

5 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

6 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

8 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

9 have it and so moved. Unanimous. Excuse me for a

10 minute. But if anybody's wondering why I'm saying the

11 vote, because Lisa needs it. And when we don't say

12 who, you know, what the vote is, she's very confused.

13 So, I want to apologize to people why I keep saying

14 what the vote was.

15 MS. GARVEY: Right. It needs to be

16 clarified.

17 MS. GATELLI: Yes, it needs to be

18 clarified. It's something different, so I didn't want

19 people to think I was just losing it here.

20 MR. COURTRIGHT: You are anyway.

21 MS. GATELLI: It's part of the

22 formality of the meeting.

23 MS. GRAFF: I'm losing it.

24 MS. GARVEY: 5-I, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

25 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER
.

164


1 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS FOR THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO

2 EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO AMENDMENT NO. 1 TO THE GRANT

3 AGREEMENT WITH THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, ACTING

4 THROUGH THE OFFICE OF THE BUDGET, CONTRACT NO. ME

5 300-155 FOR THE MULBERRY CENTRAL REDEVELOPMENT

6 ASSISTANCE CAPITAL PROJECT IN THE CITY TO EXTEND THE

7 TERMINATION DATE FROM OCTOBER 31, 2006 TO DECEMBER 31,

8 2007.

9 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

10 entertain a motion that 5-I be introduced.

11 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

13 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

14 those in favor.

15 MS. EVANS: Aye.

16 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

17 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

19 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

20 have it and so moved, unanimous.

21 MS. GARVEY: 5-J, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

22 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

23 APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO ENTER

24 INTO A PROFESSIONAL SERVICE CONTRACT WITH THE LAW FIRM

25 OF HOURIGAN, KLUGER & QUINN, P.C. FOR LABOR AND
.

165


1 EMPLOYMENT LEGAL SERVICES.

2 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

3 entertain a motion that 5-J be introduced.

4 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

5 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

6 MS. GATELLI: On the question?

7 MS. EVANS: Yes. We have as a city

8 government quite a healthy legal staff of solicitors

9 and assistant city solicitors, and yet the city has

10 contracted with, well, I can't even give you a firm

11 count on the number of attorneys at additional costs,

12 and I indicated earlier what that cost was for one

13 month out of the year.

14 I believe we'd be far more productive

15 to just sit down and settle the contracts, stop

16 violating the contracts. We don't need to be wasting

17 more money on more attorneys' fees, so I will be voting

18 no.

19 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the

20 question? I just have a question, Attorney Minora.

21 MR. MINORA: Yes.

22 MS. GATELLI: I probably shouldn't ask

23 you the question, because you're an attorney.

24 MS. EVANS: They can't testify against

25 one another.
.

166


1 MS. GATELLI: It's like a spouse, you

2 know, you can't testify against each other.

3 MR. MINORA: Try me.

4 MS. GATELLI: Do you need certain

5 lawyers to do labor law?

6 MR. MINORA: Well, labor law is

7 certainly a specialty that general practitioners do not

8 usually engage in on a day to day basis.

9 So, you know, among a few things that

10 you might call a specialty, labor law is really kind of

11 one of them, and municipal labor laws is a subspecialty

12 of that. So, I've answered that yes.

13 MS. EVANS: Doesn't, Attorney Minora,

14 every attorney really practice within an area of

15 specialization, for example, we have those who

16 represent the injured, those who represent the parties

17 in a divorce, those who involve themselves in estate

18 law, those who involve themselves in tax law, corporate

19 law, et cetera?

20 MR. MINORA: Well, I'm not sure what

21 you're asking me. Do people do all those things, sure,

22 but --

23 MS. EVANS: No. What I'm saying is,

24 don't attorneys have specialties?

25 MR. MINORA: Not in the sense that
.

167


1 doctors have specialties, and I guess what I was trying

2 to impart to Mrs. Gatelli was that in the sense that

3 doctors have specialties and subspecialties, in law, I

4 think that labor law would be considered --

5 MS. EVANS: A specialty.

6 MR. MINORA: -- more like a specialty

7 that you'd find in the medical profession. So --

8 MS. EVANS: I'm just wondering then,

9 though, what specialties are practiced by our city

10 solicitor and our four assistant city solicitors? I

11 would expect in those positions that they would be very

12 well versed in municipal law and all of its appendages.

13 MR. MINORA: In that office, because I

14 sad in that office, you have a great deal of exposure

15 to obviously municipal law and municipal labor law.

16 And I will tell you that when I took

17 that office under Mayor Connors, I did not have

18 municipal labor law experience. I had a lot of

19 municipal law experiences as solicitor and worked for

20 other townships and boroughs, but municipal labor law

21 was not something I really was familiar with.

22 And we had a fellow named Ken Jaren who

23 was from Philadelphia that --

24 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I remember him.

25 MS. EVANS: I've heard of him, yes.
.

168


1 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I remember him.

2 MR. MINORA: And obviously I became

3 familiar with it. I was -- whether I liked it or not,

4 you're thrown in the water, sink or swim, but I don't

5 know that I would personally feel comfortable right

6 now. I mean, I think --

7 MS. EVANS: Right now, but our

8 attorneys are five years into the process.

9 MR. MINORA: Well, I say back then I

10 would have felt a lot more comfortable with it. But it

11 is a specialty.

12 MS. EVANS: Thank you.

13 MR. MINORA: Okay. Was that honest

14 enough for you from a lawyer?

15 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, and you didn't

16 really protect them too much. We'll just wait a few

17 minutes for Bill and Mrs. Fanucci. Moved and seconded.

18 And on the question? Roll call.

19 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

20 MS. EVANS: No.

21 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

22 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.

23 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

24 MR. MCTIERNAN: Yes.

25 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
.

169


1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.

2 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.

3 MS. GATELLI: Yes. The ayes have it

4 and so moved.

5 MS. GARVEY: 5-K, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

6 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

7 VIN NUMBER 2FAFP71W83X217888 FROM POLICE OFFICER

8 PATRICK R. GILMAN FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT

9 TO A LEASE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER

10 GILMAN.

11 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

12 entertain a motion that 5-K be introduced.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

15 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

16 those in favor.

17 MS. EVANS: Aye.

18 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

19 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

21 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

22 have it and so moved, unanimous.

23 MS. GARVEY: 5-L, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

24 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

25 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A
.

170


1 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER PATRICK R. GILMAN

2 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER GILMAN'S PRIVATE CRUISER

3 AS DEFINED HEREIN.

4 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

5 entertain a motion that 5-L be introduced.

6 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

7 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

8 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

9 those in favor.

10 MS. EVANS: Aye.

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

12 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

14 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

15 have it and so moved, unanimous.

16 MS. GARVEY: 5-M, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

17 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

18 VIN NUMBER 2FAFP71W33X130657 FROM POLICE OFFICER PHILIP

19 CONDRON FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT TO A LEASE

20 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER CONDRON.

21 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

22 entertain a motion that 5-M be introduced.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

24 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

25 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
.

171


1 those in favor.

2 MS. EVANS: Aye.

3 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

4 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

6 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

7 have it and so moved, unanimous.

8 MS. GARVEY: 5-N, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

9 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

10 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A

11 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER PHILIP CONDRON

12 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER CONDRON'S PRIVATE CRUISER

13 AS DEFINED HEREIN.

14 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

15 entertain a motion that 5-N be introduced.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

17 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

18 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

19 those in favor.

20 MS. EVANS: Aye.

21 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

22 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

24 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

25 have it and so moved, unanimous.
.

172


1 MS. GARVEY: 5-O, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

2 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

3 VIN NUMBER 2FAFP71W53X203074 FROM POLICE OFFICER ROBERT

4 KEIPER FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT TO A LEASE

5 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER KEIPER.

6 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

7 entertain a motion that 5-O be introduced.

8 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

9 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

10 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

11 those in favor.

12 MS. EVANS: Aye.

13 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

14 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

16 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

17 have it and so moved, unanimous.

18 MS. GARVEY: 5-P, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

19 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

20 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A

21 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER ROBERT KEIPER

22 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER KEIPER'S PRIVATE CRUISER

23 AS DEFINED HEREIN.

24 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

25 entertain a motion that 5-P be introduced.
.

173


1 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

2 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

3 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

4 those in favor.

5 MS. EVANS: Aye.

6 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

7 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

9 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

10 have it and so moved, unanimous.

11 MS. GARVEY: 5-Q, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

12 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

13 VIN NUMBER 2FAFP71W23X196911 FROM POLICE OFFICER ROBERT

14 STANEK FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT TO A LEASE

15 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER STANEK.

16 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

17 entertain a motion that 5-Q be introduced.

18 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

19 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

20 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

21 those in favor.

22 MS. EVANS: Aye.

23 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

24 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
.

174


1 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

2 have it and so moved, unanimous.

3 MS. GARVEY: 5-R, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

4 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

5 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A

6 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER ROBERT STANEK

7 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER STANEK'S PRIVATE CRUISER

8 AS DEFINED HEREIN.

9 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

10 entertain a motion that 5-R be introduced.

11 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

13 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

14 those in favor.

15 MS. EVANS: Aye.

16 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

17 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

19 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

20 have it and so moved, unanimous.

21 MS. GARVEY: 5-S, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

22 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

23 VIN NUMBER 2G1WF55K639387382 FROM POLICE OFFICER PAUL

24 STAFURSKY FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT TO A

25 LEASE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER STAFURSKY.
.

175


1 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

2 entertain a motion that 5-S be introduced.

3 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

4 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

5 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

6 those in favor.

7 MS. EVANS: Aye.

8 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

9 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

11 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

12 have it and so moved, unanimous.

13 MS. GARVEY: 5-T, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

14 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

15 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A

16 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER PAUL STAFURSKY

17 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER STAFURSKY'S PRIVATE

18 CRUISER AS DEFINED HEREIN.

19 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

20 entertain a motion that 5-T be introduced.

21 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

22 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

23 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

24 those in favor.

25 MS. EVANS: Aye.
.

176


1 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

2 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

4 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

5 have it and so moved, unanimous.

6 MS. GARVEY: 5-U, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

7 RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE GIFT OF A POLICE VEHICLE,

8 VIN NUMBER 2FAFP71W33X139262 FROM POLICE OFFICER SCOTT

9 MORAN FOR USE IN THE CITY'S FLEET PURSUANT TO A LEASE

10 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY AND OFFICER MORAN.

11 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

12 entertain a motion that Item 5-U be introduced.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

15 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

16 those in favor.

17 MS. EVANS: Aye.

18 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

19 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

21 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

22 have it and so moved, unanimous.

23 MS. GARVEY: 5-V, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

24 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

25 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A
.

177


1 LEASE/POLICY AGREEMENT WITH OFFICER SCOTT MORAN

2 GOVERNING THE USE OF OFFICER MORAN'S PRIVATE CRUISER AS

3 DEFINED HEREIN.

4 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

5 entertain a motion that 5-V be introduced.

6 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

7 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

8 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

9 those in favor.

10 MS. EVANS: Aye.

11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

12 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

14 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

15 have it and so moved, unanimous.

16 MS. GARVEY: 5-W, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

17 RESOLUTION - APPROVING THE MODIFICATION OF EXISTING

18 TRAFFIC SIGNALS ON SOUTH MAIN AVENUE (SR3013) AT

19 ST. ANN'S STREET/LANDIS STREET TRAFFIC SIGNAL PERMIT

20 NO. 6356.

21 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

22 entertain a motion that 5-W be introduced.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

24 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

25 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
.

178


1 those in favor.

2 MS. EVANS: Aye.

3 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

4 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

6 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

7 have it and so moved, unanimous.

8 MS. GARVEY: 5-X, FOR INTRODUCTION - A

9 RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

10 APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO

11 THE 2006 AMERICAN DREAM FUND CONTRIBUTION AWARD

12 CONTRACT AND ACCEPT A FUND CONTRIBUTION AWARD IN THE

13 AMOUNT OF $6,000.00 FROM FANNIE MAE.

14 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll

15 entertain a motion that 5-X be introduced.

16 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

17 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

18 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All

19 those in favor.

20 MS. EVANS: Aye.

21 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

22 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

24 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The ayes

25 have it and so moved, unanimous.
.

179


1 MS. GARVEY: Sixth order. No business

2 at this time. Seventh order.

3 7-A, FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE

4 ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 83, 2006,

5 APPOINTMENT OF JOSEPH GUIDO, 211 LARCH STREET,

6 SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, AS A MEMBER OF THE SCRANTON

7 RECREATION AUTHORITY. MR. GUIDO WILL BE FILLING THE

8 TERM OF EMMANUEL JOHNSON, WHO RESIGNED EFFECTIVE JULY

9 12, 2006. MR. GUIDO'S TERM WILL EXPIRE ON DECEMBER 31,

10 2007.

11 MS. GATELLI: As chairman for the

12 committee on rules, I recommend final passage of Item

13 7-A.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.

15 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll

16 call.

17 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

18 MS. EVANS: Yes.

19 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

20 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.

21 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

22 MR. MCTIERNAN: Yes.

23 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.

25 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
.

180


1 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare

2 Item 7-A legally and lawfully adopted by a unanimous

3 vote.

4 MS. GARVEY: 7-B, FOR CONSIDERATION BY

5 THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO.

6 84, 2006 - APPOINTMENT OF ANN HARRINGTON, 316 GENET

7 STREET, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18505, AS AN ALTERNATE

8 MEMBER OF THE CITY PLANNING COMMISSION, EFFECTIVE JULY

9 10, 2006. MS. HARRINGTON'S TERM WILL EXPIRE ON JULY

10 10, 2011.

11 MS. GATELLI: As chairperson for the

12 committee on rules, I recommend final passage of Item

13 7-B.

14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.

15 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll

16 call.

17 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.

18 MS. EVANS: Yes.

19 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.

20 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.

21 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McTiernan.

22 MR. MCTIERNAN: Yes.

23 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.

24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.

25 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
.

181


1 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare

2 Item 7-B legally and lawfully adopted, unanimous vote.

3 Can I have a motion to adjourn?

4 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

5 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.

6 MS. GATELLI: All in favor.

7 MS. EVANS: Aye.

8 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.

9 MR. MCTIERNAN: Aye.

10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.

11 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Thank you.

12

13 (MEETING WAS ADJOURNED.)

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1 C E R T I F I C A T E

2

3 I hereby certify that the proceedings and

4 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the

5 notes taken by me on the hearing of the above cause and

6 that this copy is a correct transcript of the same

7 to the best of my ability.

8

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LISA M. GRAFF, RMR
11 Official Court Reporter

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