1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
8 Thursday, June 21, 2007
12 Council Chambers
13 Scranton City Hall
14 340 North Washington Avenue
15 Scranton, Pennsylvania
25 LAURA BOYANOWSKI, RPR
4 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:
6 MS. JUDY GATELLI, PRESIDENT
7 MS. JANET EVANS
8 MS. SHERRY NEALON FANUCCI
9 MR. ROBERT McGOFF (Not Present)
10 MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT
11 MS. GARVEY, CITY CLERK
12 MS. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK
13 MR. AMIL MINORA, ESQUIRE, SOLICITOR
1 MS. GATELLI: Roll call.
2 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
3 MS. EVANS: Here.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci?
5 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Here.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
7 MS. GATELLI: Here.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
9 MR. McGOFF: (Not Present.)
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.
12 MS. GATELLI: Dispense with reading
13 of the minutes.
14 MS. GARVEY: THIRD ORDER - 3 A. -
15 CONTROLLER'S REPORT FOR THE MONTH ENDING MAY
16 31, 2007.
17 MS. GATELLI: Are there any
18 comments? If not, received and filed.
19 MS. GARVEY: That's all I have for
20 third order.
21 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mrs.
22 Garvey. I just have a few announcements.
23 First of all, I am sure many of you know for
24 the last several days in the City of
25 Scranton we have been hosting the
1 Pennsylvanian League of Cities and
2 Municipalities Convention. It has been very
3 interesting, and it has been quite
4 successful. And one of the speakers today
5 was Chief Richard Prishodi. He was the
6 fireman who survived 911. He was the chief,
7 and he gave a wonderful presentation, very
8 tearful and very emotional.
9 He has a book called Last Man
10 Standing. I was going to buy a copy, but
11 they were all out of them. That's how many
12 people bought a copy of his book, but it was
13 very, very moving. So if anyone can pick up
14 that book at the library, it would be
15 worthwhile to hear what he has to say.
16 Secondly, I brought a friend back
17 with me. It's a friend I met when I was out
18 in Pittsburgh last year at the League of
19 Cities meeting out there. And we became
20 pals, and she's also a council president.
21 And she's the council president in
22 Harrisburg. Her name is Vera Jean White.
23 Vera, stand up.
24 In the paper this week I guess it
25 was teacher's week because in one article
1 there were two retired art teachers, one of
2 whom I worked with, Lenore Fiore Mills, an
3 art teacher, and Francine Douighy and they
4 had a big article about their art show in
5 Philadelphia. So I just wanted to
6 congratulate them on that endeavor. The
7 other one was Bernice McAndrew. She's a
8 teacher at Willard and she was Northeast
9 Woman in Sunday's paper. She teaches the
10 children a lot about the environment. So
11 we'd like to congratulate her.
12 And our last teacher is our
13 colleague, Mrs. Evans. And she's leaving
14 tomorrow with her students. And we'd like
15 to wish her good luck, and we want her to
16 bring home the trophy. Good luck, Mrs.
18 MS. EVANS: Well, win or lose, I am
19 very proud of these students who have
20 performed in an exceptional manner and it
21 is, indeed, a great honor to represent the
22 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in the
23 Panasonic Academic Championship and even
24 greater honor to be playing against teams of
25 such extraordinary skill. So we wish the
1 team the best.
2 MS. GATELLI: Next week PP&L is
3 having their hearing. We had sent a letter
4 requesting a hearing in Scranton. So the
5 hearing will be next Thursday at 2:00. I am
6 going to see if Kay can't make it maybe we
7 can send Neil to represent council.
8 It's in the state office building in
9 Room 317 for anyone that's interested in
10 attending. That's the rate hike for PP&L.
11 And staring this evening through Saturday
12 evening is the annual Saint Joe's Picnic in
13 Minooka on Davis Street. So I just wanted
14 to tell everyone about that. And the last
15 thing I have is on Saturday July 8, the
16 Scranton police officers and fire fighters
17 are hosting a benefit for Officer Dan
18 Shauffler of the Scranton Police Department.
19 It will be held at Tink's from 1 to
20 6. He has been diagnosed with cancer, and
21 he's going to require extensive
22 chemotherapy. So I would encourage everyone
23 to try to support this endeavor. I do have
24 some fliers here. If anyone wants to take
25 them and hang them anywhere, I'll leave them
1 with Neil.
2 And that's all I have for
3 announcements. Bill?
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: I will ask for
5 council's indulgence on this. This is out
6 of the ordinary and maybe not 100
7 appropriate, but maybe I can explain to you
8 why I am announcing this. There's two
9 elderly senior citizens in Scranton -- I
10 believe they're 80 years old. And they rely
11 on this dog they have to help them and the
12 dog is missing. And I don't normally
13 announce missing dogs, all right, but
14 because they are so old and they rely on
15 this dog -- the dog got loose on them
16 somehow. It's a German Shepard. It's eight
17 years old. It's black and brown, and it's
18 been missing since Saturday in upper South
19 Side. And again, these people rely on it.
20 They're 80 years old, both of them. And if
21 somebody has any idea where the dog is or
22 sees it, they can reach a gentleman by the
23 name of Joe Bowen at 346-3050.
24 And they're also willing to offer a
25 reward if you find this dog. It's very
1 important to these two senior citizens. I
2 will leave the name and number with Kay so
3 if anybody would like it. There is no
4 collar it. It slipped its collar. That's
5 how it got away.
6 And, again, I don't normally
7 announce missing dogs, but it's very
8 important to them. And I'd appreciate it if
9 you can help them out with this. And that's
10 all I have. Thank you.
11 MS. GATELLI: No one else? Mrs.
13 MS. EVANS: Good afternoon. I hope
14 that all the fine gentlemen of our area
15 enjoyed a very happy father's day on Sunday.
16 And please remember in your prayers William
17 Lyden, a retired principal and teacher in
18 our local schools and his family and friends
19 that he leaves behind. I attended the Hill
20 Neighborhood Association meeting this week
21 where I learned that this association will
22 be actively seeking donations to purchase a
23 drug dog and a bomb sniffing dog for the
24 Scranton Police Department.
25 In past years the hill neighborhood
1 has often assisted our police department and
2 our city by donating two drug dogs and
3 police bicycles. We thank this great
4 association for their never ending
5 generosity to our city. I also listened to
6 the problems and concerns of the hill
7 residents which I have included in my list
8 of citizens' requests for this week.
9 I do hope that OECD and the DPW will
10 address these issues as soon as possible.
11 And, Kay, I would like to see a copy of the
12 study by Wallace, Roberts and Todd that
13 pertains to approximately 40 blocks of lower
14 South Side.
15 I'm not certain in whose office this
16 may be located, which is why I'm requesting
17 your assistance.
18 MS. GATELLI: I have a copy of that.
19 MS. EVANS: Oh. May I borrow that?
20 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
21 MS. EVANS: Thank you. Comcast is
22 beginning a major project to upgrade our
23 cable system in the Scranton area. Work
24 will proceed neighborhood by neighborhood
25 with sections of Scranton being completed
1 each day. Work each week day will begin at
2 6 a.m. and be completed by 3 p.m. Scranton
3 contains 75 upgrade areas, and construction
4 dates begin July 23 and August 31st.
5 You will be alerted to this work the
6 day before the company will appear in your
7 neighborhood. Finally, I have citizens'
8 requests for the week. And it's been a very
9 busy week. 1027-1029 Woodlawn Street,
10 please send an inspector to notify the owner
11 about garbage on the property and the
12 ordinance restricting trash to sit outside
13 for no more than 24 hours.
14 A letter to Mr. Kearns of Municipal
15 Energy Management regarding the 2200 block
16 of Woodlawn Street. A petition for a
17 streetlight was submitted to Mr. Hayes in
18 April 2006, and residents were told that a
19 light was a proved for installation by
20 Kearney Electric according to residents of
21 the block. When Kearney Electric was
22 contacted by the residents, they did not
23 know of any reason for the holdup, so,
24 please update council on this matter.
25 A letter to the DPW, pave the 900
1 block of Stipp Court. Residents of the
2 neighborhood report that this court has not
3 been paved in 33 years. Also, pave the 200
4 block of North Dewey Avenue. This was
5 originally requested in July 2006.
6 Residents of the area have been most patient
7 for the last year and request this paving
8 again this summer.
9 A letter to Chief Elliott, the Hill
10 Neighborhood Association states that it is
11 missing one patrol bicycle. They have
12 contacted the police department about this
13 matter and have received no response.
14 Please update city council about the
15 location of the bicycle and when to expect
16 its return. Further, when will beat cops be
17 assigned to the hill again. Residents
18 report the open observable lack of patrol
19 cars and beat cops in their neighborhoods
20 and consequently are very anxious about
21 public safety.
22 A letter to Mr. D'Angelo, OECD, when
23 will the $30,000 in Community Development
24 Block Grants be -- which was approved for
25 allocation to the Hill Neighborhood
1 Association two or three years ago be
2 released to the association? Mr. Neverosky
3 reports that he spoke to OECD within the
4 last few months in response to its request
5 for $10,000 from the hill neighborhood's
6 allocation to transfer to the Women's
7 Resource Center. And they are aware that
8 within the Hill Section there are areas
9 which do not fall into low to moderate
10 income ranges. However, the Hill
11 Neighborhood Association's office itself is
12 indeed located in a low to moderate income
14 A letter to Mr. Eugene Barrett,
15 Scranton Sewer Authority, please repair a
16 water catch basin in the 100 block of West
17 Mountain Road.
18 This problem has been ongoing since
19 1994 and has damaged residential properties.
20 I have a letter from a resident and a photo
21 for Mr. Barrett's examination that we can
22 attach to that correspondence. Please send
23 an inspector to Riley Landscaping on Mylard
24 Avenue. Residents are concerned by the
25 amount of mud which later turns to dust
1 clouds left by Riley trucks on lower
2 Electric Street.
3 Previously neighbors asked Riley to
4 use Market Street as an alternative route.
5 And they complied. However, Riley is again
6 traveling Electric Street and if they must
7 use this travel route residents request that
8 Riley would clean up the dirt and mud they
10 A letter to Mr. Parker and Mr.
11 McMullen, residents request an appropriate
12 sign on lower Electric Street between Mylard
13 and Sanderson Avenue. Although it's a small
14 will stretch of road, vehicles speed
15 excessively. And since many children reside
16 in this neighborhood, parents fear for their
18 A letter to Mr. McDowell, tax
19 collector, when will EMS Tax refunds be
20 issued. Council has received numerous
21 complaints, and it requests an update on the
22 progress of 2006 and 2007 refunds. Please
23 send an inspector to 895 Providence Road.
24 Neighbors report overgrown grass, brush and
25 trees. Contact the owner and direct him or
1 her to address this eyesore which blemishes
2 not only the surrounding homes but the
3 businesses as well.
4 Please send an inspector to the
5 corner of Luzerne Street and the 400 block
6 of 14th Avenue. Neighbors complain of
7 broken windows and concrete, rocks,
8 overgrown grass and weeds, et cetera.
9 Garbage sits on sidewalks seven days
10 per week. They further state that Mr.
11 Setizinger informed them that he did cite
12 the property owner in November of 2006 and
13 was awaiting a date before the magistrate.
14 Please provide an update on this eyesore.
15 Nearly eight months later, council wishes to
16 know if the case has been heard and if
17 proper measures have been taken.
18 And an address correction to a
19 request I made on June 14, 2007, regarding a
20 property at 1217 Luzerne Street. Please
21 send a new memo, it is 1712 Luzerne Street.
22 And that concerns overgrown grass, garbage,
23 beer bottles, mattresses, et cetera.
24 It was, indeed, a very busy week for
25 me in terms of the many problems of the
1 citizens, but I do intend to do my best to
2 get all of this solved for you, and that's
4 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mrs.
6 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Last weak we
7 were talking about the Radisson and the fact
8 that they had a lien put on them, and we
9 were going to loan them money from OECD.
10 That lien has been satisfied. But as of
11 right now, they have not had their closing
12 and none of the moneys has exchanged hands.
13 So we did not close on that lien. There was
14 also a question about Northern Lights. This
15 property had been sold, and we had already
16 loaned them money from OECD twice.
17 One of the loans has been satisfied.
18 The other one is $22,000 which they were in
19 contact with the original owner and it will
20 be satisfied very shortly. The other good
21 news, Whistles, which was really deferred on
22 one of our loans -- he had made arrangements
23 to pay this week with one of his attorneys.
24 And he's going to pay the loan back and also
25 the legal fees that have been incurred from
1 the city. So that's really great, and I'm
2 happy for that. That really was the only
3 one that we have had problems with.
4 And I want request a letter to DPW.
5 I'd like have the lines painted outside of
6 Robert Morris School. There has been some
7 problems over there at the end of the school
8 year with people not knowing where the
9 crosswalks were, so if we could update the
10 crosswalks before school is in, that would
11 be really a big help for those people.
12 And also I want to just say thank to
13 you to Mark Setizinger. He did very, very
14 quick action this week helping some of the
15 residents in the Hill Section. And I just
16 want to thank him. And the neighbors thank
17 him also, and that is all I have.
18 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mr.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Just two brief
21 items. I don't see Jimmy Stucker there his
22 week. I went up to Church Street. The sign
23 is missing as Mr. Stucker said. And I spoke
24 with the DPW today. They're going to put
25 another sign up on Church Street. And, Kay,
1 just one item. Then I will be finished. I
2 asked for a report from Mr. Parker on Canaan
3 and Pittston Avenue, and I haven't gotten
4 any. And I would like to see if we can get
5 it before he exits the city. So if we can
6 ask him again if I could get that. And
7 that's all I have. Thank you.
8 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Just three
9 items -- there was an article on the
10 television last night about Cemetery Avenue
11 back in South Side where they're -- have
12 started to dump. So if anyone is ever in
13 that area, please watch because Marty
14 Corbett volunteers to clean up that area.
15 And he's to be commended for that. He's
16 been in that neighborhood all of his life.
17 And Marty Tomarelli also also takes care of
18 the cemetery. And it's disheartening when
19 you go back and see all of this trash that
20 they've just dumped overnight in that area.
21 So I'd like to encourage people that
22 see anyone dumping to please get a license
23 number. I went on a neighborhood walk this
24 week with our community justice council, and
25 there's a very serious problem in O'Connor
1 Place in South Scranton. And I'd like to
2 assure the neighbors that it is going to be
3 rectified very shortly.
4 We're going to use some of our money
5 that we have for our Elm Street project in
6 South Scranton from Rick Santorum to
7 purchase and demolish these particular
8 properties. So that's going to be
9 addressed. And I just wanted to comment on
10 one thing that Mrs. Evans said about citing
11 people at the magistrate's. I'd like the
12 public to be aware that the inspectors do
13 cite people at the magistrate. It is not
14 always corrected.
15 The magistrates sometimes let the
16 people go or they extend the time to them to
17 clean up the property, and sometimes then
18 it's never cleaned up because the followup
19 isn't there. It is not always the inspector
20 who gets the blame. I mean, it is often the
21 inspector that gets the blame. And it's not
22 totally true in all cases. So you need to
23 contact the magistrate in your area when
24 there is a property that needs to be taken
25 care of and ask him if there was a citation
1 issued, when the hearing is, possibly if
2 you're not working and you can attend, it
3 does help when the neighbors are at the
4 hearing and to find out what happens at the
5 hearing, because often it is in the
6 magistrate's office that the problem goes
8 So I just wanted people to be aware
9 of that also. And that's all I have.
10 MS. EVANS: May I just comment on
11 that? Certainly my purpose was not to
12 indict the inspectors.
13 MS. GATELLI: No, no. I knew that.
14 MS. EVANS: They do a wonderful job.
15 And really there are means of outreach to a
16 followup on any property. And if that is
17 the case as you said, that the magistrate
18 has ruled and still nothing has happened,
19 then together with the neighbors I think the
20 inspector, you know, can officially write a
21 report on that again so that stricter
22 measures can be taken against that property
24 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Anyone else?
25 MS. GARVEY: 4 B. - FOR INTRODUCTION
1 - AN ORDINANCE - APPROVING AND AUTHORIZING
2 THE TRANSFER OF THE REAL ESTATE AND
3 IMPROVEMENTS LOCATED AT THE CORNER OF ADAMS
4 AND LACKAWANNA AVENUES IN THE CITY OF
5 SCRANTON KNOWN AS THE CASEY GARAGE OWNED BY
6 THE REDEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF
7 SCRANTON TO THE PARKING AUTHORITY OF THE
8 CITY OF SCRANTON.
9 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
10 entertain a motion that 4 B. 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. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.
16 MS. EVANS: Aye.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
18 MS. GATELLI: Opposed? The ayes
19 have it and so moved.
20 MS. GARVEY: 4 C - FOR INTRODUCTION
21 - A RESOLUTION - APPROVING THE AMENDMENT OF
22 THE SEWER AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF
23 SCRANTON'S ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION TO
24 EXTEND THE AUTHORITY'S CURRENT CHARTER TO
25 JANUARY 9, 2058 TO ACCOMMODATE A THIRTY YEAR
1 BOND ISSUE AND DEFEASANCE SCHEDULE FOR THE
2 PURPOSE OF FINANCING NECESSARY AND REQUIRED
3 COLLECTION SYSTEM IMPROVEMENTS.
4 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
5 entertain a motion that 4 C. be introduced.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
7 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Second.
8 MS. GATELLI: On the question?
9 MS. EVANS: Yes. I would ask if
10 council would consider tabling this issue in
11 that I was not able to read the backup on
12 this particular issue, and I even have
13 questions just from that brief perusal where
14 amending to 2058 to accommodate a 30 year
15 bond issue, which actually I think would be
16 more like 2038 rather than 2058. But I
17 really would like the time to examine the
19 It's a resolution requiring only two
20 readings, and so I would beg your indulgence
21 for more time.
22 MS. GATELLI: I'll second that
23 motion. On the question? All those in
25 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Aye.
1 MS. EVANS: Aye.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
3 MS. GATELLI: Opposed? The ayes
4 have it and so moved. By the way, I think
5 most of us won't even be here in 2058.
6 MS. EVANS: I know, but our children
7 and grandchildren will.
8 MS. GATELLI: Yes. It's kind of
9 scary to look at that number.
10 MS. GARVEY: FIFTH ORDER. No
11 business at this time. SIXTH ORDER. 6-A -
12 FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTE ON
13 FINANANCE - FOR ADOPTION - FILE OF COUNCIL
14 NO. 98, 2007 - CREATING AND ESTABLISHING
15 SPECIAL CITY ACCOUNT NO. 02.229586 ENTITLED
16 "SCRANTON POLICE CRIME SCENE UNIT
17 INVESTIGATION" TO RECEIVE AND DISBURSE FUNDS
18 FROM AND FOR THE CRIME SCENE UNIT OF THE
19 SCRANTON POLICE DEPARTMENT.
20 MS. GATELLI: What is the
21 recommendation of the chair on finance?
22 MS. EVANS: As chair for the
23 committee on finance, I recommended passage
24 of 6-A.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
1 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
3 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
4 MS. EVANS: Yes.
5 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci?
6 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.
7 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
8 MR. MCGOFF: (Not Present).
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
12 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare
13 6-A legally and lawfully adopted.
14 MS. GARVEY: 6-B - FOR CONSIDERATION
15 BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -
16 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 99, 2007 - CREATING AND
17 ESTABLISHING SPECIAL CITY ACCOUNT NO.
18 02.229587 ENTITLED "SCRANTON POLICE
19 DEPARTMENT ATHLETIC LEAGUE" TO RECEIVE AND
20 DISBURSE FUNDS FOR AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS THE
21 CITY RESIDENTS AND PURCHASING EQUIPMENT
22 NEEDED FOR SUCH PROGRAMS.
23 MS. GATELLI: What is the
24 recommendation of the chair on finance?
25 MS. EVANS: As chair for the
1 committee on finance, I recommended final
2 passage of item 6-B.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
4 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
7 MS. EVANS: Yes.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci?
9 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
11 MR. MCGOFF: (Not Present).
12 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
14 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
15 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare
16 6-B legally and lawfully adopted.
17 MS. GARVEY: 6-C - FOR CONSIDERATION
18 BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -
19 RESOLUTION NO. 151, 2007 - REPPOINTING
20 ROBERT SHUMAKER, 702 STAFFORD AVENUE,
21 SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18505, AS A MEMBER
22 OF THE BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS FOR THE CITY
23 OF SCRANTON. MR. SHUMAKER'S TERM WILL
24 EXPIRE ON JULY 1, 2007 AND HIS NEW TERM WILL
25 EXPIRE ON JULY 1, 2010.
1 MS. GATELLI: As chair for the
2 committee on rules, I recommended final
3 passage of 6-C.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
5 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
7 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
8 MS. EVANS: Yes.
9 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci?
10 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
12 MR. MCGOFF: (Not Present).
13 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
15 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
16 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare
17 6-C legally and lawfully adopted.
18 MS. GARVEY: 6 D. - FOR
19 CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES -
20 FOR ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 152, 2007 -
21 REAPPOINTING RAY DOMINGUEZ, 2010 FARR
22 STREET, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18504, AS
23 ALTERNATE NO. 1 MEMBER TO THE BOARD OF
24 ZONING APPEALS, FOR THE CITY OF SCRANTON.
25 MR. DOMINGUEZ'S ORIGINAL TERM WILL EXPIRE ON
1 JULY 1, 2007 AND HIS NEW TERM WILL EXPIRE ON
2 JULY 1, 2011.
3 MS. GATELLI: As chair for the
4 committee on rules, I recommend final
5 passage of 6-D.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
7 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
10 MS. EVANS: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci?
12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.
13 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
14 MR. MCGOFF: (Not Present).
15 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
17 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
18 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare
19 6-D legally and lawfully adopted.
20 MS. GARVEY: 6-E - FOR CONSIDERATION
21 BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -
22 RESOLUTION NO. 153, 2007 - AUTHORIZING THE
23 MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS
24 TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A LEASE AGREEMENT
25 WITH HORSEPOWER HARLEY DAVIDSON, INC. TO
1 LEASE ANNUALLY FOR THREE YEARS POLICE
2 PACKAGE MOTORCYCLES.
3 MS. GATELLI: As chair for the
4 committee on rules I recommend final passage
5 of 6-E.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
7 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans?
10 MS. EVANS: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci?
12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yes.
13 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff?
14 MR. MCGOFF: (Not Present).
15 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright?
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
17 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli?
18 MS. GATELLI: Yes. I hereby declare
19 6-E legally and lawfully adopted.
20 MS. GARVEY: SEVENTH ORDER -
21 CITIZENS' PARTICIPATION.
22 MS. GATELLI: Douglas?
23 MR. MILLER: Good afternoon,
24 council, Doug Miller. I will be unable to
25 attend next week's meeting because I will be
1 out of town. So I would just like to remind
2 everyone in Scranton to please attend our
3 park cleanup on Saturday June 30th at 9 a.m.
4 at the Jackson Street playground.
5 I have already expressed my concern
6 for the playground, and I hope everyone else
7 will do the same. I again ask council to
8 begin looking into possible funds that could
9 be used to improve the park.
10 Junior council is committed to
11 helping West Side Crime Watch. We made that
12 commitment, and we won't let them down. In
13 order for this park to become clean, safe
14 and healthy, we need assistance from
15 council, the mayor and residents of
16 Scranton. I hope to see you all at the
17 Jackson Street playground on Saturday June
18 30th at 9 a.m. Please show your support.
19 The junior council is asking
20 everyone in Scranton to support our
21 children's handicapped accessible swing set
22 project at Nay Aug Park. We ask that you
23 consider making a donation towards our
25 Your help will make our project
1 successful. And you may send your donation
2 to 340 North Washington Avenue, Scranton, PA
3 18503. I would like to welcome all the
4 honorable elected officials who are here in
5 Scranton for the Pennsylvania League of
6 Cities Convention. And I would like to
7 welcome Mrs. Vera Jean White from the City
8 of Harrisburg. She's the City of
9 Harrisburg's Council President, and it's
10 great to have you here today. So welcome.
11 We should all be proud that our city
12 was selected to host this year's convention.
13 A convention such as this one will allow our
14 mayor to interact with other mayors and find
15 ways to improve our city. I encourage Mayor
16 Doherty to inform other mayors about our
17 junior city council. Share with them the
18 positive impact our council has had on
19 Scranton. Our junior council has attracted
20 many students who have taken more of an
21 interest in our government. A junior
22 council is a wonderful tool for any city
23 that wants to attract young people. Our
24 junior council has completed many community
25 projects, and we are currently working on
2 We have all learned about the
3 operations of our city government, and we
4 have worked well with our elected officials.
5 I encourage cities all across Pennsylvania
6 to consider forming a junior council to
7 bring a young energetic perspective to your
8 government. The young adults all across the
9 Commonwealth are the future, and the
10 decisions made today are the ones that will
11 affect us tomorrow.
12 Lastly, I would like to wish Mrs.
13 Evans and her Scholastic Bowl Team the best
14 of luck in their national championship. Win
15 or lose, Scranton is proud of you and proud
16 of what you've accomplished. And again, I
17 will be out of town next week. So I would
18 like to wish everyone a happy Fourth of
19 July. Thank you.
20 MS. EVANS: And thank you, Doug.
21 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mrs.
23 MS. FRANUS: Fay Franus, Scranton.
24 Every year around the fall Mayor Doherty
25 comes looking for money -- borrowing money.
1 He's done it in the past, and I'm sure he's
2 going to do it again. And, Mrs. Gatelli,
3 it's your duty as the president of city
4 council to put this on the agenda like you
5 have in the past. You didn't have to, but
6 you chose to do this.
7 Now, we're looking at you again to
8 see if you are going to put this on the
9 agenda for the mayor to borrow more money.
10 10 million was given to him -- or 14 million
11 last time. He may be asking for 10 million
12 this time. Are you as council president
13 going to put this on the agenda this time?
14 MS. GATELLI: No. I don't intend to
15 vote for any more borrowing.
16 MS. FRANUS: Mrs. Gatelli, you said
17 that last year. And two months later you
18 voted for it. I mean --
19 MS. GATELLI: I would do it once
20 because I thought it was going to help and
21 the tax increase, but I'm not going to do
22 that again this year. I intend to have
23 meetings in August for anyone that can come
24 from council. It will strictly be volunteer
25 to start working on the budget.
1 MS. FRANUS: Are you going to
2 consider Mrs. Evans' budget this year? I
3 mean, last year you completely ignored it
4 and costing the taxpayers 25 percent
5 increase in their taxes.
6 MS. GATELLI: I will consider the
7 things that I think are appropriate. If I
8 don't agree with them, then I won't go along
9 with them. We will work on them together.
10 MS. FRANUS: But apparently last
11 year you didn't think anything was good
12 because you didn't give her one bone here.
13 Nothing you gave her. I mean all the hard
14 work and --
15 MS. GATELLI: Some of the items I
16 agreed with.
17 MS. FRANUS: But they didn't get
18 included in the budget. I mean, you didn't
19 take any of her advice for cutting anything.
20 MS. GATELLI: Well, it was a part of
21 a whole package, but I hope that we can work
22 on it earlier this year than we did last
24 MS. FRANUS: I don't think the time
25 makes a difference.
1 MS. GATELLI: Oh, yes, I think it
2 does. I think if we have some work sessions
4 MS. FRANUS: It wasn't because the
5 -- the time element is not why you didn't
6 include Mrs. Evans' thoughts in her budget.
7 Anyway, I just hope -- since you put it on
8 the record that you're not going to give him
9 any more money, I am going to hold you to
11 MS. GATELLI: You can hold me to
13 MS. FRANUS: Are you going to vote
14 for a 25 percent increase in --
15 MS. GATELLI: Will not.
16 MS. FRANUS: No more tax increase
17 for the --
18 MS. GATELLI: Not for this year, no.
19 MS. FRANUS: Next year?
20 MS. GATELLI: Well, next year I will
21 have to see what --
22 MS. FRANUS: I mean, this budget
23 coming. You are saying you will not vote
24 for another 25 percent?
25 MS. GATELLI: No.
1 MS. FRANUS: Could you possibly
2 revisit the budget from last year and change
3 that 25 percent, or is it too late?
4 MS. GATELLI: To cut the budget?
5 MS. FRANUS: Yes.
6 MS. GATELLI: I don't know --
7 MS. FRANUS: You can do it if you
8 choose to, but you don't choose to. Is that
9 it? I mean, I am correct in that?
10 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Franus, I'm
11 trying to answer you the best I can.
12 MS. FRANUS: I'm asking you. I
13 don't know myself. Could you possibly?
14 MS. GATELLI: I don't know. We will
15 have to examine the budget, and I intend to
16 have that committee --
17 MS. FRANUS: My question was, could
18 you revisit the budget if you chose to?
19 MS. GATELLI: Yes, absolutely. I'm
20 sure we'll be looking at that budget again.
21 MS. FRANUS: I hope you do, and I
22 hope you cut something because it's
23 ridiculous. We can't afford it. Now I will
24 ask you once again for the third time, are
25 you, Judy Gatelli, as an individual not as
1 an official of a city -- of city council --
2 going to use taxpayer funds to sue the
3 taxpayers in a libel action?
4 MS. GATELLI: I'm not going to
5 answer those questions because it's in
6 litigation, and my attorney advised me not
7 to answer any questions. So if I don't
8 answer you, that's why I am not answering
10 MS. FRANUS: I don't believe that
11 because the answer to that question has
12 nothing to do with the litigation itself,
13 who is paying for it. I'm not asking what
14 is involved in the litigation. I'm asking
15 you is taxpayers' money going to be used in
16 this lawsuit.
17 MS. GATELLI: I don't know. I don't
19 MS. FRANUS: You don't know if you
20 are going to be using taxpayers' money or --
21 MS. GATELLI: I don't know that
23 MS. FRANUS: You don't know if you
24 are going to using your own money?
25 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Franus, please.
1 I'm trying to answer you in a respectable
3 MS. FRANUS: How come you didn't
4 answer me for the last three weeks?
5 MS. GATELLI: Because you don't talk
6 to me in the proper manner.
7 MS. FRANUS: Would you care to go
8 back and look at the tapes? I said, Mrs.
9 Gatelli, the same exact question I asked you
10 tonight, how is that not respectable? Did I
11 yell? Did I say it in a nice voice? I
12 asked just as I asked you tonight.
13 MS. GATELLI: I said to you --
14 MS. FRANUS: You said nothing. You
15 had your head down and looked down.
16 MS. GATELLI: I have to talk to the
17 attorney because I was told not to discuss
18 the case.
19 MS. FRANUS: That's not what you
20 said the last three weeks. You didn't
21 answer me the last three weeks. You didn't
22 even reply to me. Is it possible because
23 this gentlewoman is here that you might be
24 answering me today, whereas she wasn't here
25 before --
1 MS. GATELLI: Then I'll stop
2 answering you again if that's what you'd
4 MS. FRANUS: I'm not saying that's
5 what I want. I am trying to figure out why
6 you're answering me now but you refused to
7 answer me for weeks on end. I'm just trying
8 to figure this out. But my point is this.
9 It has nothing to do with litigation whether
10 you could answer me or not. Nothing. I'm
11 not asking you what is in the lawsuit. It's
12 not none of my business. I'm asking you,
13 Judy Gatelli, are you as an individual going
14 use your own money, or are you going to use
15 my money and everybody else in this city's
16 money to pay for your lawsuits against the
17 taxpayers in a libel action? Now, you know
18 if you're going to use your own money. You
19 said, I don't know. I think I know if I'm
20 going to pay for something or if I'm not.
21 Now could you answer that? Are you going to
22 use our money or your own personal money to
23 pay for this lawsuit?
24 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Ozzie
1 MR. QUINN: Good afternoon, Ozzie
2 Quinn president of Scranton and Lackawanna
3 County taxpayers and citizens association
4 incorporated. Welcome, madam president. On
5 behalf of the taxpayers' association, I want
6 to announce that we had a very successful
7 swim -- kids free swim free at Nay Aug Park
8 last Sunday. They had access to the pool
9 and the sliding board.
10 And I want to thank everybody who
11 contributed in the community for this. We
12 had approximately -- we had -- not
13 approximately -- we had 434 children 15 and
14 under that used that pool that day. And I
15 think that's a record number and some of
16 these children never ever used that slide
17 because of the low income, and they had that
18 opportunity that day. So Andy Sbaraglia and
19 Bill Jacowitz who are the subcommittee are
20 to be commended for that as well as all who
21 contributed, and we will have another day on
22 July 4th of the same.
23 So that will give the kids an
24 opportunity to do something in the park.
25 The other thing is this here, there was an
1 editorial in the Scranton Times Tribune on
2 Monday whereby they chastised the school
3 board for hiring an events coordinator or
4 events manager for memorial stadium in
5 regards to creating a new job at $30,000.
6 And they also created a new job for
7 your former colleague who was a councilman
8 who is booted out as the principal of
9 Scranton High School at around $90,000
10 earlier this year, okay. And they wanted to
11 say that the new coordinator got to be very
12 careful when he plans these events that he
13 doesn't schedule all at the same time as
14 taxpayers revolt might be that same day.
15 And I think he maybe -- wishful
16 thinking. But sometimes wishful thinking
17 may come true. Okay. The way we are in the
18 city right now, again, we are 300 million in
19 debt, long-term indebtedness in the City of
21 We have a school board that we're in
22 debt 152 million, and we have the county
23 which is in debt almost $200 million which
24 is appropriated to us, would be $70 million
25 dollars. We have a half a billion dollars
1 coming out of the same pockets of the city
2 taxpayers while our tax base is considerably
3 going down and going down with our
4 population, our official population.
5 I'm worried, and the taxpayers are
6 worried. And what are you going to do to
7 get revenue? You're not going to get enough
8 revenue from the taxpayers. And I don't
9 know where you're going get revenue. And in
10 all due respect, Mrs. Gatelli, you had the
11 violin out yesterday I guess for
12 Philadelphia -- Mayor Street about the
13 problems you have as president of council.
14 But, you know, you bring it upon
15 yourself by doing that 25 increase on the
16 taxes this year, the 25 percent that you
17 said you are going to do next year and the
18 $300 million in debt. Now, did you tell
19 Mayor Street about that indebtedness and
20 what we're supposed to do and how people are
22 MS. GATELLI: I told Mayor Street
23 that we only had two tax increases in 17
24 years, and he was shocked.
25 MR. QUINN: Did you tell him 25
1 percent and 25 percent?
2 MS. GATELLI: He was shocked by
3 that. The school board raises it every
5 MR. QUINN: Maybe he was shocked
6 that it was 25 and 25. But the fact is we
7 have a problem in the City of Scranton, and
8 we got to start facing that problem. We're
9 a half a billion dollars in debt. And the
10 mayor is running around showing the city to
11 everyone. And, Madam President, you're here
12 today, and you got to hear the other side of
13 the story.
14 And we are very much concerned, and
15 we know what is going to happen in 2008.
16 He's going to come before you, and he's
17 going to ask for additional money. He never
18 presents a capital improvements budget to
19 you and you let it slide. You vote three to
20 two on every resolution that comes before
21 you, the three of that you side with the
22 mayor. And it's got to stop. We've got to
23 start looking out for the people out here
24 and not for Mayor Doherty because we are
25 above and beyond ever paying this.
1 As we said repeatedly, it's our
2 great, great grandchildren who are going to
3 be paying this debt. And I'm sorry -- but
4 I'm going to be in here every, every week to
5 really bring this across until we start
6 realizing what we are doing and not giving
7 lip service because the only time we really
8 realize this here, as I said before, is in
9 November when the budget comes down and
10 everybody starts scurrying, how are we going
11 to pay it. I appreciate what you are going
12 to do in August, and I hope you welcome the
13 taxpayers to be part of that, okay.
14 And I know of the last thing that
15 you did, you didn't invite the taxpayers
16 association. Thank you very much.
17 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mr. Quinn.
18 Reverend Simmons.
19 MS. SIMMONS: Good afternoon, city
20 council, junior council. And, Madam
21 President, welcome to Scranton. I have to
22 begin by saying that I was not at the
23 mayor's festival that he's having. So what
24 I'm about to say, President Gatelli, you
25 know I was not there today, so it's going to
1 be sort of a little gift from heaven that
2 we're talking about the same thing.
3 I came here today wearing somewhat
4 of a different hat, and I pray that you will
5 hear me out before you tell me to shut up.
6 Oh, yes. I know you don't want me to talk
7 about spirituality when I'm here, so I'll
8 leave my ministry at the door. Instead I
9 come here as a proud Scrantonain born and
10 raised 55 years ago who even in my most
11 lowest moments of life kept praise for those
12 known as Scranton's finest, her
14 These persons have bravery that come
15 only from celestial power, and it was shown
16 this past week in Charleston, South
17 Carolina, where nine of their fellow heroes
18 were called to the final test. I tell this
19 today because I want you to know that these
20 people deserve any and all requests
21 financial and otherwise that they ask for.
22 These are true heroes, daily heroes
23 who deal with life threatening incidents we
24 know nothing about. Someone asked me why
25 should the mayor give the union a helping
1 hand of any kind . Well, and I hope this
2 never happens. But some night his child
3 might be in an accident and the firefighters
4 might be called out. Or his house might be
5 engulfed in flames and the firefighters
6 might be called out.
7 And I hope and pray to God that no
8 one ever has to say to him a life was lost
9 because there weren't enough to be called.
10 Someone asked me last night -- I was in
11 Philadelphia as a matter of fact yesterday
12 -- engrossed in conversation with someone,
13 and they asked me why the South Carolina
14 fire happened, was the chief not doing his
15 job, et cetera, et cetera.
16 I believe, President Gatelli, it
17 happened because five babies died the day
18 before in Pittsburgh a fire, and I believe
19 they were wandering around looking for the
20 steps to get home. And my father said, let
21 me send some earth angels to guide these
22 babies who better to send than the
23 firefighters. Mayor Doherty, Councilman
24 Evans, Councilman Fanucci, Councilman
25 Courtright, President Gatelli, I ask you on
1 this day to surround this firemen's union
2 with all of the support and the love that
3 you have. They need it. They deserve it.
4 And I just pray that when their time
5 comes, you'll say yes to everything you have
6 to give. Thank you.
7 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. John
8 Guzzy? Mr. Morgan, I'm sorry, but I didn't
9 see your name. So you can come next. I
11 MR. GUZZY: I'm Don Guzzy, resident
12 of Scranton, 104 Olive Street. I'm
13 basically here because again I know Mike
14 Wallace was scheduled to be here as you had
15 said last week. This is the reason I'm
16 here. I understand he was rescheduled.
17 That's not a problem.
18 I just -- I'll take this time just
19 to kind of expand on what is going on in my
20 neighborhood. In reference to that mission,
21 again, he basically wants to put a drug and
22 alcohol abuse center down there, and he says
23 he's a church. He's not a church. He
24 doesn't go to church. He doesn't have a
25 church. He doesn't have a religion because
1 I've asked him, and there's constant trucks
2 pulling up unloading beds, kitchen cabinets,
3 et cetera. There are now people living
5 Now, I don't care about the house
6 side, but I live on the side where the
7 mission is. Because of my age, I get up
8 twice a night to go to the bathroom. And my
9 bathroom window is directly across the
10 street from the mission.
11 There's five -- four rooms -- and I
12 know there's four rooms in there because
13 I've been in the building. One night --
14 three separate nights I seen lights over
15 there, but one night in particular it really
16 concerned me that I seen an individual walk
17 from room to room to room. The first thing
18 thought of is are they already putting
19 people up there? Now, whether they are or
20 not, I don't know.
21 But I did see the person walk
22 because you can -- each room there's a
23 window. And I seen the door open, and I
24 seen the outline or the silhouette of the
25 person looking in. Now, I don't know
1 whether he was checking something, whether
2 he was checking beds. That's wrong. And
3 the element of those type of people two
4 blocks away from the city school, does
5 anybody remember Virgina Tech a couple
6 months ago? That's the kind of people that
7 was involved there. Doesn't anybody care?
8 Those people within two blocks of a city
9 school --
10 MS. GATELLI: May I interrupt for a
11 moment Mr. Guzzy? It's me. It just sounds
12 like it's coming from the back. They were
13 supposed to come here this week, but the
14 attorney was in trial and couldn't make it.
15 He's supposed to be coming next week. But I
16 was told that because it's in litigation,
17 that it cannot be a public caucus, it must
18 be in private.
19 So you will not be able to attend
20 the meeting, but council will be there, our
21 solicitor will be there, and I'm going to
22 have our solicitor, if he would be so kind
23 as to call the city attorney and see why
24 they can't do something about what's going
25 on down there. Even though it's in
1 litigation, it seems like they could do
2 something, but I'm not sure. Maybe they
4 MR. GUZZY: See, Mrs. Gatelli, I
5 understand all what you're saying and I
6 agree with you. But here's my question.
7 And I'll ask the attorney. Just answer yes
8 or no. If the zoning board votes 5 to 0
9 that they can't have a variance, what does
10 that mean? What does it mean?
11 MS. GATELLI: It means you --
12 MR. MINORA: I spoke to Attorney
13 Farrell on this after you came to the
14 council meeting last week. The matter has
15 been litigated through our court locally,
16 through Commonwealth Court and is now on
17 appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
18 That is the holdup in enforcement from what
19 Attorney Farrell tells me.
20 Now, I didn't look at the document
21 -- please, you asked me, let me try and -- I
22 went through the trouble to look for you. I
23 didn't see the documents. I haven't seen
24 the appeal papers. I don't know whether
25 there's a stay on enforcement or not, and I
1 don't know whether or not the Commonwealth
2 Court was a divided court.
3 Court en banc heard it, which means
4 all the judges of Commonwealth Court sat to
5 heard this appeal. I don't know whether it
6 was a divided court or not. Ordinarily when
7 Commonwealth Court sits, it sets as a three
8 judge panel only. So all -- I believe it's
9 15 judges sat to hear this. So Attorney
10 Farrell is concerned that Commonwealth Court
11 felt that there was such an important issue
12 between religion and zoning that the Supreme
13 Court has a very good likelihood of hearing
14 the case and did not feel it was prudent to
15 enforce while there is a pending appeal. So
16 that's what I know, and that's the answer to
18 And I can't second guess him on that
19 because I haven't done -- I didn't do all
20 the briefs.
21 MR. GUZZY: Just let me reiterate --
22 and again maybe you said it and I don't
23 understand what you're saying. The way I
24 understand is it if you vote five to nothing
25 and it's appealed, you cannot do what you
1 requested. You cannot do the variance, am I
2 not correct?
3 MR. MINORA: What I'm trying to
4 explain to you is they're concerned with the
5 issue being heard by the Supreme Court and
6 the Supreme Court overturning it and
7 exposing the city to liability.
8 I understand your position, and I --
9 frankly I understand his position just as
10 well. It's a legal call that lawyers don't
11 always like to make but somebody has got to
12 make them. And apparently that's the
13 judgment of Attorney Farrell on whether or
14 not to proceed any further with enforcement
15 than he already has. And whether or not
16 they're violating things, I don't know.
17 MR. GUZZY: I understand all that.
18 But I still can't comprehend the City of
19 Scranton -- and that's who I'm dealing with
20 here -- have a department -- a zoning board
21 vote five to nothing and then have somebody
22 override and say, screw the zoning board yet
23 you can buy that building and go start and
24 do what you want to do. How do they get
25 that permission?
1 MR. MINORA: If you want, I can talk
2 to you after the meeting. You're past your
3 five minutes.
4 MS. GATELLI: I will talk to you
5 after the meeting.
6 MR. MINORA: You are past the five
7 minutes. I will be glad to talk to you and
8 explain it the best I can.
9 MS. EVANS: Mr. Guzzy, they're
10 scheduled I believe to come next week. And
11 I think it will be very advantageous for
12 council and our solicitor to discuss the
13 situation particularly with one of the city
14 solicitors. My prime certain is to learn
15 there is a stay of enforcement for the city.
16 And my follow-up question then would be if,
17 indeed, there is such a measure taken, why
18 then is there no stay toward the Scranton
19 rescue mission in that they proceeded along
20 dispite rulings of the zoning board and
21 losses within this court system. It would
22 seems if we are prevented from enforcing
23 violations at that property, why then would
24 he not be prevented from actively utilizing
25 the property for whatever his business may
1 be and in fact we are all unsure as to what
2 that business is.
3 MR. GUZZY: That's it. My point is
4 the appeal, the appeal itself was he's a
5 church, he lost that appeal.
6 MS. EVANS: Yes.
7 MS. GATELLI: Right.
8 MR. GUZZY: Therefore, how in God's
9 name did he open up? Let me just -- and
10 I'll --
11 MS. EVANS: I understand. Evidently
12 he must have decided on a new avenue to --
13 MR. GUZZY: It's frustrating. If I
14 say to you I'm going to open up a church of
15 the devil, all right -- no, you're laughing.
16 But listen to what I've got to say. And I
17 go before the board and you all say, I'm
18 nuts and denied -- you say that. So does
19 that mean I can turn around and say, well,
20 I'm appealing it, I am going to open up
21 anyway and you can't stop me? Is that --
22 MR. MINORA: I will be glad to
23 explain Attorney Farrell's thoughts you to
24 you because I spoke to him.
25 MR. GUZZY: One other question.
1 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
2 MR. GUZZY: And this was told by the
3 law officers of the zoning board, he issued
4 a permit for the sign on the premise that if
5 they won the appeal the sign could stay.
6 They lost the appeal. I want the sign down.
7 MS. GATELLI: All right. We will
8 discuss that with Attorney Minora after the
9 meeting, Mr. Guzzy. You can discuss that
10 with Attorney Minora. Thank you. Lee
12 MR. MORGAN: Good afternoon,
13 council. The first thing I have is -- we
14 appreciate the council president from
15 Harrisburg being here today, and we hope
16 that you don't get the opinion that we have
17 no respect in some ways for this council.
18 But --
19 MS. GATELLI: She knows, Lee. She's
20 in Harrisburg.
21 MR. MORGAN: Okay. Well, I just
22 want to be fair and just say that the vast
23 majority of the people in this city are hard
24 working but we have a very serious problem
25 with this council and the mayor. And I
1 don't want to try to skirt something, and I
2 don't want you to leave here believing that
3 people come to this podium there's something
4 wrong with them. We're just a group of
5 people that have been just seriously wronged
6 by our government here for over 50 years and
7 our population has gone from over 100,000
8 down below 67,000 because the middle class
9 has totally fled this city. We've got some
10 very serious problems here.
11 The first thing is I have made some
12 criticisms of council two weeks ago. Then
13 when I stepped away from the podium, council
14 didn't appreciate what I said, and I'd like
15 to revisit that momentarily. Mrs. Gatelli,
16 you weren't here that time. I'd just like
17 to say that before the election CRF was
18 brought up. It didn't go through. After
19 the election, CRF went through.
20 All that money has been spent.
21 That's something that Mr. Courtright did.
22 Mrs. Fanucci voted to give a councilman a
23 pension even though in the Home Rule Charter
24 it said that he wasn't entitled to it which
25 was a direct violation of the charter
2 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: The defendant
3 won in court.
4 MR. MORGAN: It may have went to
6 MS. GATELLI: It won in court.
7 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: It won in
9 MR. MORGAN: The whole point was
10 that you were bound by the charter and you
11 violated the charter. You were bound by it
12 because the charter says that a council
13 person has no right to a pension.
14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Actually I
15 protected lots of money for the pension, but
16 you're not mentioning that, are you?
17 MR. MORGAN: I would like to finish
18 if I may.
19 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Yeah, I think
20 you should.
21 MR. MORGAN: In order to bring that
22 about, they brought two other individuals
23 in. And I believe that that's what gave
24 this individual standing, but also by the
25 same token the judge who heard the case is
1 also the judge who helped write the charter.
2 And the other thing I have here is,
3 Mrs. Evans, you wanted to plug $3 million
4 from the sale of the golf course into the
5 budget when everybody knows that that money
6 was supposed to go into trust. It was
7 wrong. Okay. I mean, the situations that
8 face this is city are going to call for
9 leadership and people who believe in the
10 rule of law and that home rule charter means
12 Now -- and during the last budget,
13 the tax group was willing to come forward
14 and examine the budget. Nobody wanted us
15 there. Okay. Continually things still even
16 now come up to council and are voted on with
17 no information basically whatsoever.
18 You never have a whole picture of
19 what is going on, and we're making numerous
20 mistakes. Now, today on the agenda it's the
21 Sewer Authority and the 2058 -- there is
22 absolutely no need for that. I sat down
23 with Mr. Barrett before I came here. I
24 brought Mr. Miller with me. I'd like to say
25 that when we decided to vote a junior
1 council in existence it was decided that two
2 junior councilmen would work with every
3 single council person. That hasn't
5 We need to find a new direction for
6 this city. And in order to do that, we have
7 to teach the young people here to have
8 respect for the residents, respect for the
9 law, which is the Home Rule Charter. Now,
10 we have to also be honest and say that this
11 council had no problem voting to put $2,600
12 worth of fees on delinquent property owners
13 as if they are the problem, and they're not
14 the problem.
15 As President Quinn has said from
16 this podium, this city is $500 million in
17 debt. And I think that that number is more
18 greater than that at this time, and I that
19 by the time the school construction is has
20 taken place and the Scranton Sewer Authority
21 has done all the upgrades it has to do, this
22 city is going to be a billion dollars in
23 debt with 67,000 -- with a falling
24 population base.
25 And as far as leadership is
1 concerned, I think that the only one that I
2 heard that made any sense because we've been
3 a distressed city since I believe 1992 --
4 and that city hasn't acted like that. And
5 this city has to cut its budget by at least
6 14 million dollars, and it's not going to do
7 it because politics is in the way.
8 It's a problem. We have meetings
9 with the PEL with one member of council
10 instead of having three people from council
11 meet them so that these meetings can be in
12 the public. Thank you.
13 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. John
15 MR. GILROY: Good afternoon, city
17 MS. GATELLI: Good afternoon, John.
18 MR. GILROY: I only have a few
19 things to say. One is about the mission.
20 But my main concern is, Mrs. Gatelli, you
21 were at my house -- in our neighborhood last
22 June when we got flood and I showed you the
23 fuel oil that I got into my house. It took
24 me four months to get out. Well, last
25 Sunday the door was open to that place and I
1 went in and I took pictures of this -- the
2 fuel oil -- the --
3 MS. GATELLI: That Sherett's place?
4 MR. GILROY: Sherett's place, and I
5 would like to show them to you.
6 MS. GATELLI: Can I keep them?
7 MR. GILROY: Yeah. Yeah, I know. I
8 was in there when I worked there. It just
9 got worse.
10 MR. GILROY: In the back of that
11 building the roof is caved in. And I talked
12 to Mark Dougher. He has been down a few
13 times with another guy -- I don't know who
14 it was. And they said it has to go through
15 the historical society before it could be
16 torn down.
17 But when you have a cinderblock
18 building, I don't see what is so historic
19 about that.
20 MS. GATELLI: It's just part of the
21 process that they have to do.
22 MR. GILROY: That building burned
23 five years ago.
24 MS. GATELLI: That letter was sent
25 over a year ago.
1 MR. GILROY: Yeah, but five years.
2 Now, I've had water on my first floor twice.
3 I've -- I put five furnaces in my house,
4 five water heaters. I can't keep nothing in
5 my basement. And I mean, I could put up
6 with the water in the basement. But the
7 fuel oil, I mean, I sprayed, sprayed and
9 MS. GATELLI: We'll send it these
10 are along with another letter if council
11 will agree -- we will all put our names on
12 it. And we will say that we want this down
13 as soon as possible. To me it looks like an
14 emergency with all the oil and gasoline, et
15 cetera --
16 MR. GILROY: The one part they're
17 going in there and throwing garbage in
18 there. There are rolls of rug. There is
19 tires. I counted about 40 tires. And --
20 MS. GATELLI: We will send a letter,
21 and I will call Mr. Setizinger when I get
23 MR. GILROY: One other thing now --
24 from when people come from the high school
25 to go to Capouse Avenue, now that school is
1 out, the speed limit is low, but they're
2 going through Olive Street at 60 miles an
4 I mean, there should be a stop sign
5 put someplace to slow these people down.
6 But that's all I have to say. Thank you.
7 MS. GATELLI: Thank you very much.
8 William Needham.
9 MR. NEEDHAM: Good afternoon,
10 council, William Needham, city resident and
11 taxpayer. The reason I'm here -- I'm sorry
12 that Mr. McGoff is off because when I have a
13 problem I like to go to the source, the
14 person that shares it or the proper
16 You sort of run out of patience when
17 you go through the department aspect of it.
18 What transpires, you talk to this one, you
19 talk to this one, you talk to this one.
20 Well, you can talk to -- tired of talking to
21 everybody in the department and you talk to
22 everybody in the department, the problem
23 still exists.
24 Now, a perfect scenario, over in our
25 neighborhood we have a huge ground hog dead.
1 I called about it. The police says, it
2 isn't animal control, it isn't the police,
3 DPW would pick that up. I go out that
4 evening and see two little children playing
5 with a dead animal. The animal is still
6 laying there when I left home this morning.
7 I called the dispatcher at DPW. I called --
8 you know, everybody I called the health
9 inspector. She called down there, and it
10 was still laying there. But this is what I
12 We have departments that are
13 supposed to take care of the people's needs.
14 The Department of Public Works is very
15 laxed, very laxed in my instance. I had a
16 problem out in the street. I had to come to
17 you people, I mean, to get this done.
18 You're legislators. You legislate the laws.
19 You can't do it for the people. Go
20 to the source. You go to the source, and
21 you still don't get it done. But I mean,
22 you call and -- refuge supervisor, Tommy
23 Davis, nothing, nothing. Yet you go around
24 the city, they got a four by. Come over and
25 pick that thing up and whatever we have to
1 do or call a truck. You said before about
2 paving. The court alongside of my house, 40
3 some years it wasn't done. I have a major
4 problem in my backyard. I'm not dealing
5 with the city with -- through law and the
7 Someone is going to get hurt. It's
8 a storm drain that is running through the
9 two properties for years -- for years. Back
10 and forth they're going to do this, they're
11 going to do that. This is going to cave,
12 and I am going to lose my garage. I don't
13 see why they don't rectify the problem.
14 They got to go on and on. That's why I said
15 you people are here to legislate. You make
16 the laws. You do write letters. You try to
17 help out. But the people that's getting
18 paid, very laxed department, our DPW, very
20 You call and call and call with a
21 problem -- you know, problems. And nothing
22 gets done. They wouldn't come out. They
23 wouldn't answer your call. The reason why I
24 came today I thought I would speak to Mr.
25 McGoff. He chairs that. And maybe he could
1 intervene for me.
2 MS. EVANS: What is the address
3 where that storm water basin is?
4 MR. NEEDHAM: I live at 418 Pear
6 MS. EVANS: 418 Pear Street. I know
7 I have a similar problem going to Mr.
8 Barrett of the Sewer Authority, and I
9 believe at this point in time because of an
10 agreement made between the mayor and the
11 Sewer Authority, the entire system now seems
12 to be under their jurisdiction.
13 So I would be happy to add this to
14 the other situation for you for the Sewer
15 Authority to address.
16 MR. NEEDHAM: Okay. That would be
17 fine, yes.
18 MS. GATELLI: Are they going to
19 repair them?
20 MS. EVANS: He had repaired them in
21 the past.
22 MR. NEEDHAM: I talked to a
23 gentleman down there that's very -- an upper
24 with the Sewer Authority. They told me
25 going some of the scenarios they are going
1 through now because of the upgrading of the
2 systems. But this is -- the last time it
3 went down my garage caved in there was two
4 cars in there. I mean, and it's going on
5 and on. You get tired of running back and
6 forth. Any help I can get I would
7 appreciate. But I don't like -- I like to
8 go to the source rather than bother council.
9 You're the legislative branch. You do the
10 best you can, and that's why I am here. I
11 wanted to see Mr. McGoff. He's absent. I
12 did call him last week. Evidently, you
13 know, he must be ill or sick, you know. But
14 whatever you can do for me I'd appreciate
16 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. That's by
17 his house, too. Bill is already calling.
18 Mrs. Krake?
19 MS. KRAKE: Good afternoon, council.
20 I work in the city treasurer's office. And
21 just so the three people that voted for this
22 draconian legislation, the exorbitant tax
23 penalties, would like to know what the
24 citizens -- I should say property owners are
25 receiving in the mail. They're receiving a
1 copy of the Times Tribune web page.
2 Apparently that's just as good as
3 legislation or laws. I would like to know
4 who authorized this being sent out since
5 when I'm faced with these questions, I have
6 no answers for people. This is not
7 legitimate in any way, shape or form.
8 They took the time and effort to
9 send this web page, yet they did not itemize
10 what people owe. No one knows what their
11 bill means. They get an act number, and
12 they get a total. That's it.
13 MS. EVANS: Who sent that letter?
14 MS. KRAKE: That came from NCC, Mrs.
15 Evans. They sent two sheets. They send
16 your sheet with the amount that you owe,
17 just a total though, nothing itemized, no
18 years. So there's no way at all you can
19 possibly find a receipt. The people are
20 scared. They're sad. They're hurt. The
21 wording in here, I have to say it's slightly
22 better than some of the letters I've seen
23 over the years, but still nowhere near
25 You should be aware that your
1 delinquent real estate tax account with the
2 city may be subject to the new legislation
3 passed by city council at its Thursday, June
4 7th meeting. A copy of the newspaper
5 article setting forth possible additional
6 penalties if your delinquent tax liability
7 is not paid is enclosed for your review.
8 MS. GATELLI: Can we have a copy of
10 MS. KRAKE: Absolutely.
11 MS. EVANS: Mrs. Gatelli, could we
12 possibly get the manager of NCC in for a
13 caucus is so that we can --
14 MS. GATELLI: I would just like to
15 investigate it myself first with Attorney
16 Minora and see what is going on. Then I'll
17 call them.
18 MS. KRAKE: This is outrageous. If
19 you had to deal with the people I've had
20 calling today, they're disabled, they're
21 elderly. I could -- could you imagine
22 because I'm sure you get those same calls in
23 council. This was devastating to people.
24 It was devastating that these amounts were
25 passed to begin with and now to be done in
1 this forum is extremely degrading. And I
2 would also like to add that our mayor who
3 proposed it even though council voted for it
4 hasn't spent one single second following up
5 and if Ken McDowell has been collecting the
6 delinquent wage tax since 2003. That used
7 to bring in $1 million a year with one clerk
8 collecting it, not a company, one clerk.
9 I's sorry to say I believe he does
10 not follow up on that because these are the
11 same people that contribute to his
12 campaigns. These are the pay-to-play
13 people. The clerks have been told, you
14 know, maybe this isn't priority. Maybe it's
15 more priority to go after the homeowners and
16 the elderly in this city.
17 MS. GATELLI: If you know any of
18 those and you can prove and show me who they
19 are, I will go right to the newspaper with
21 MS. KRAKE: You can't do it. It
22 been tried. It was tried under Mayor
23 Connors. You should remember that, Mrs.
24 Gatelli. You cannot --
25 MS. GATELLI: I don't remember that.
1 MS. KRAKE: The Scranton Times went
2 after that when Mayor Connors was --
3 MS. GATELLI: There's people that
4 don't pay the wage tax and they are being
5 allowed to get away with it?
6 MS. KRAKE: Let me put it this way.
7 It has not been collected as it used to be
8 since the fall of 2003. They brought in --
9 MS. GATELLI: If there's impropriety
10 there and there's something going on then
11 there needs to be an investigation. Why
12 should I pay and you and you and all of us
13 in here pay the wage tax if we're working
14 that is --
15 MS. KRAKE: The mayor who says --
16 MS. GATELLI: -- and somebody else
17 doesn't have to pay it? That's absurd.
18 It's 3.4 percent.
19 MS. KRAKE: It's just as absurd to
20 say that people who need to make up holes in
21 the deficit are homeowners struggling to pay
22 their taxes who are no longer working.
23 Thank you.
24 MS. GATELLI: Leave that with us.
25 Mr. McCloe.
1 MR. McCLOE: Good afternoon. My
2 name is Brett McCloe, Scranton taxpayer.
3 Today I would like to say welcome to the
4 mayors and other city officials from all
5 over our Commonwealth. I hope you will get
6 to know City of Scranton, the people and not
7 just City of Scranton, the corporation. I
8 hope you will take an unscripted walk or
9 drive throughout our city, not to evaluate,
10 judge or compare, but to kick back and take
11 advantage of our hospitality and enjoy our
12 -- enjoy your visit to our city.
13 Last week I had a few people come up
14 to me at the grocery store, work or while
15 pumping gas and they'd like voice their
16 opinions. The number one thing I hear as
17 well as -- I'm quite sure -- a lot of other
18 speakers is when they're out and about is a
19 thank you from all of those who speak on
20 behalf of the silent majority.
21 Some of these of this council
22 wouldn't know who they were because they
23 situate themselves in such small circles
24 that bring them in a -- that they get
25 elected by.
1 Some council members had have
2 admitted and made it clear by statements
3 made and by the way legislation is passed.
4 The second question is, why does it always
5 seems to be a three, two vote or the ever so
6 popular four-to-one shutout? I try to be
7 objective and not blame the mayor or his
8 vision for what seems to be a statistical
10 People who ask really don't know why
11 or how the votes seem to fall as they do.
12 So as a private citizen, I would like to
13 know on behalf of all those who have asked
14 me questions, what are the statistics of how
15 those votes passed, not on any particular
16 issue, but was there ever a Gatelli,
17 Fanucci, Evans versus Courtright, McGoff?
18 Was there ever a McGoff, Evans, Fanucci
19 versus Courtright, Gatelli? Was there ever
20 a Courtright, Gatelli, McGoff versus Evans,
21 Fanucci or any other combination possible
22 than the seemingly loaded three, two vote or
23 the four one shutout of Ms. Evans? I think
24 the people would be very interested in those
25 numbers along with what those numbers
1 represent so they can is a more insight into
2 the mindset of those who we elect or cause
3 to be elected because of lack of voter
5 And in my opinion, I think it's time
6 we stop unvoting people into office. The
7 fault lies with our fellow neighbors and
8 co-workers who travel in those so-called
9 circles. It does not lie with this council.
10 What I heard from those who support the bulk
11 of the three-two decisions, is a law of the
12 jungle, too bad so sad, survival of the
13 financial fittest, I'm getting mine, you get
14 yours, ship your mom off to a nursing home
15 for a buck, how come you're not like me
16 mindset that seems to fuel some of this
18 And we need to call them on it
19 whenever possible. They say the words of
20 the -- of those that speak here at the city
21 council meetings has nothing to do with city
22 business. They're wrong especially since it
23 seems to be that there are more than one
24 city council meeting going on at any given
25 time, one here in this building, others held
1 in back rooms or cocktail parties. Those
2 same people and those same circles will
3 admit that that's where they get what they
4 need from this city council.
5 It makes me wonder if the people of
6 this city are Scranton's greatest asset when
7 we allow this kind of thinking to go
8 unchecked or uncontested. We can do better
9 than this. This is not what we are made of.
10 And this is city business. Thank you.
11 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mr.
12 Sbaraglia. Just for the record, I think we
13 voted four to nothing for everything today.
14 It happens a lot. They only focus on the
15 ones when you don't.
16 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
17 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians, I
18 was a co-chair on the kids free swim
19 program. But most of the praise or anything
20 that you can say goes -- should go to Mr.
21 Jacowicz who raised thousands and thousands
22 of dollars for this program. He went out
23 there and went to neighborhood after
24 neighborhood after neighborhood and really
25 got the funds.
1 We spent $1,118 up at the pool for
2 that one day. There's two businesses that's
3 contributed two-thirds of that money. One
4 was Star Uniform, and the other was Buona
5 Pizza. And I wish to thank them and wish to
6 thank everyone else, of course, who
7 contributed, namely all of you, too, me and
8 so forth. But it was successful. I think
9 the kids got a deal especially with the park
10 being closed up at Connell, that pool. I
11 think a lot of people normally would have
12 went there went to Nay Aug.
13 Now, let's get on to the more
14 important things. I'm going to bring up
15 like I always bring up -- I didn't get a
16 chance to speak on this before the meeting,
17 of course, was cancelled approving penalty
18 and interest for the collection of
19 delinquent real estate taxes before you
20 voted on it.
21 I went through my taxes. My taxes
22 last year -- city tax -- I am not talking
23 about the school because this is only
24 concerning the city -- was $369. I would
25 use a term of $400 because the math is
1 easier. We got a ten percent penalty if you
2 didn't pay it on time. Now, notice if
3 you're three months late with your taxes,
4 this penalty comes into effect. You have a
5 ten percent put on by the city or --
6 prothonotary court or whatever. We got NCC
7 tacking on 25 percent. So your $400 tax
8 already went up to $540.
9 Now, look at the other penalty. I
10 don't blame people for being frightened.
11 They should call all of you that voted for
12 that it and really ring your phone off the
13 hook. Let me read some of the fees again.
14 Review of the lien, 25 bucks, that's
15 A., B. was 160, C. was $35, D. was $175, E.
16 God's the limit on that because it's up in
17 the air about that fee, F., 175, G., $30,
18 H., $75, I., well, that's another fee up in
19 the air, J., $800, K., well, that's another
20 fee that's up in the air, L., 175 bucks, M.
21 $30, N., that's another fee that's up in the
22 air, 0, $50, P., $25, Q., $400, R, $30, S.
23 $100, T., $50 , U., well, that goes $60 --
24 that's a fee that could be God knows what,
25 V., that's another fee that's up in the air,
1 W., another one that's up in the air.
2 Gentlemen, I told you before that was
4 $400 is all the taxes of the city
5 was. How could you put on a penalty of over
6 2,000? It doesn't make sense anyway. Now
7 you turn out and say, well, the school board
8 did the same. You don't even know if it's
9 in conjunction with the tax because your tax
10 is on 400. All of these penalties are the
11 $400 fee.
12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: That's not
13 accurate. It's not.
14 MR. SBERAGLIA: You speak for the
15 school board?
16 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: I'm talking
17 about our fees -- that's not all implied and
18 implemented under every person. That is not
20 MR. SBARAGLIA: No, the $400 I took
21 as a means.
22 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: What I'm saying
23 is that A. to Z., A. to Q. List that you're
24 using, all those fees are not added on
25 everyone's bill. That is not accurate.
1 MR. SBARAGLIA: I don't care. It
2 could be added on one person's bill. It's
3 still immoral. I don't care where you put
4 it. This is so many variances and that you
5 have no way of even knowing what it's going
6 cost. You don't even know if it's going to
7 be in conjunction with the school if they
8 are going to do it and you're going to do it
9 and both fees are going to be added on to
10 the people. You don't even know that.
11 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: They did not.
12 MR. SBARAGLIA: This legislation
13 does not say that.
14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Well, our
15 legislation has nothing to do with school
16 board legislation. Exactly.
17 MR. SBARAGLIA: You do not speak for
18 the school board, and you have no way of
19 knowing if they're going to impose the same
20 penalty fee on the citizens of Scranton.
21 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: The school
22 board already enacted theirs. It's
23 finished. It's done and collected. It's
24 not true.
25 MS. GATELLI: Ron Ellman.
1 MR. ELLMAN: I'm not going waste no
2 time like I always do. I went to Nay Aug
3 over the weekend for the car show, and I
4 want to say how nice it was and there must
5 have been a million dollars in cars there
6 people and the nicest people -- I guess I
7 talked to 15 or 20 people, you know, about
8 the poor city government. And everything
9 come up except for cars, and that's what I
10 was there for.
11 But they had food and bathrooms and
12 everything, but there is no place to sit.
13 You know we got $10 million and there's no
14 benches anywhere. I thought maybe with all
15 the trees they've cut down they can put some
16 of those big old pieces of the trees
17 different places for you to sit on because
18 it gets tiresome standing. I don't know
19 where all the money went for the place.
20 You know, this is a good city. I
21 got all kinds of notes there like I'm off --
22 a couple weeks ago I was mentioning about
23 Joe Snedeker riding his bike and -- for the
24 home and the Byrnes having the food giveaway
25 and Mr. Bolus having the meal for the
1 people. And I don't know I don't always
2 agree with Reverend Simmons and Sister
3 Adrian's views, but I know they mean in
4 their heart the best for the city.
5 There's a lot going for it, but
6 there's so much graft and corruption with
7 this administration. This plan illegal.
8 Moving the exit isn't going to terminate the
9 dirt and the dust and what is going on. The
10 plant is illegal. It ought to be closed.
11 It out to be terminated. And the KOZ ought
12 to be stopped on it. They put another KOZ
13 building on the damn place. And besides
14 that, the man has three KOZs, one of the men
16 If that isn't showing gross
17 favoritism by the school board and the
18 mayor, I don't know what is. This deal is
19 as crooked as a dog's hind leg. It's just
20 -- everything about it stinks. I've talked
21 to some people that are much more
22 knowledgeable than I am about it that know
23 what is going on. And it is an illegal
24 plant. It's not zoned or anything.
25 I wasn't going to mention it, but
1 I've had three phone calls suggesting I keep
2 off this subject. And no one is going to
3 intimidate me. I don't care if it's Mr.
4 Lewis or his -- you know, somebody he has
5 phoning. This is a terrible situation, and
6 it ought to be -- I think a grand jury out
7 to investigate it. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong,
8 but I'm not wrong.
9 And I have one other thing I'd like
10 to say. I had a couple come up to me at the
11 car show from -- they got displaced out of
12 the Olive Street apartments evidently, and I
13 suggest that they keep on top of things.
14 That's all I can say because the college
15 didn't buy the school building without the
16 intentions of growing. And the only way
17 they can grow is into these two projects,
18 and these people know it.
19 This is another deal that shouldn't
20 be allowed. These apartments can be saved
21 very simply, and I've talked to an engineer
22 who told me they knew they didn't have to
23 move out all of these families to work on
24 the buildings. It's just another deal from
25 this administration and the banker up there
1 at the Scranton housing against the people
2 of this city. Thank you.
3 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Is there
4 anyone else that would care to address
5 council ?
6 MR. HUBBARD: Daniel Hubbard,
7 president of the lower Green Ridge
8 neighborhood association. I understand the
9 caucus was cancelled because the attorney
10 for the rescue mission wasn't able to
12 MS. GATELLI: Our attorney.
13 MR. HUBBARD: But what does that
14 have to do with Daron?
15 MS. GATELLI: Daron is in
16 litigation, too.
17 MR. HUBBARD: Daron is in private
18 litigation between the citizens -- the
19 rescue mission as far as I know is in
20 litigation with the zoning board appealing
21 the decisions for zoning.
22 So I can understand where the
23 conflict of interest with the rescue mission
24 would be because they are actually fighting
25 the city on the appeal for their -- the
1 zoning votes to shut them and not give them
2 their variances. But Daron Northeast is
3 under private litigation through private
4 citizens, and their litigation is a nuisance
5 action. So what does that have to do
6 with --
7 MS. GATELLI: I will have you talk
8 to Attorney Minora after the meeting. He
9 knows the legal answers.
10 MR. HUBBARD: Okay. Sure. I'll --
11 that threw me off track, Judy. I expected a
12 little bit more of an answer than just
13 referring me to Mr. Minora. You were
14 talking earlier about trash dumping in the
15 area in the city. Scranton DPW is currently
16 dumping enormous amounts of trash at the
17 intersection of Nay Aug and Albright.
18 We have large sections of cut down
19 industries, piles of broken concrete. We
20 have fill, manhole covers, old rock, busted
21 up this and that. And they're in there
22 today as I was coming here with a backhoe
23 and a dump truck pushing the dirt around
24 because that's where they decided to store
25 all their -- either the trees they cut down
1 and collect and/or the dirt that they get
2 from other people -- they are getting a lot
3 of free fill from the Meadow Brook Project.
4 So they're storing it there. So not only do
5 we have to look at a non-repaired riverbank,
6 we have to look at the flood gates that
7 don't have a levy around them.
8 Now we have to look at the DPW
9 trucks coming in almost every other day and
10 dumping large amounts of fill dirt across
11 the street from a damaged riverbank that the
12 city refuses to fix. Now, I understand
13 there was a meeting at the Days Inn in
14 Wilkes-Barre. Mr. Doherty sent a letter
15 because he could not attend. And his letter
16 read that they're not too concerned with the
17 repairs of the riverbank in lower Green
18 Ridge because he and Mr. Parker only
19 consider it a small hole in the levy.
20 Well, the last I checked a small
21 hole in a levy becomes a very big hole when
22 the water starts coming through it. So that
23 shows us why, one, we don't have our flood
24 siren? $20,000 in CDBG funds was needed to
25 put a flood siren in. This city government
1 hands out money like candy to children to
2 big commercial companies that are
3 multimillion dollar businesses, and you
4 can't give $20,000 to lower Green Ridge for
5 a flood siren?
6 I mean, it just -- it appalls me.
7 You give coffee shops 150,000 so they can go
8 out of business and sell, but you can't put
9 $20,000 worth of money towards a
10 neighborhood. And, Judy, you know, this is
11 kind of directed at you because in 2005 you
12 stated in an article in The Scranton Times
13 that, I'm going to be a neighborhood person,
14 I'm going to be for all the neighborhoods,
15 not just South Scranton.
16 I think that the way Mr. Doherty
17 changed since the primary, he's really
18 interested in the neighborhoods. But how
19 the hell interested is he in the
20 neighborhoods? How interested in the
21 neighborhoods are you? Daron Northeast is
22 still operating illegally polluting the
23 environment, killing residents -- the
24 riverbank has yet to be repaired. Our one
25 year anniversary is coming up next year.
1 And maybe -- you know, maybe the -- I was
2 unaware that the president of the Harrisburg
3 council was going to be here tonight.
4 But maybe she would like to see the
5 pictures of the flood in 2006 so that she
6 can see what the residents of lower Green
7 Ridge have to deal with and the fact of the
8 ineffective Department of Public Works
9 refuses to repair the riverbank and they
10 have the ability, the dirt and the machinery
11 to do it, but somebody is telling them not
12 to do it. That would lead me to believe
13 that's Mr. Doherty because he sees a small
14 hole in the levy. Why can't you help our
16 I mean, there is a big initiative
17 going on in South Side for blighted houses
18 and condemnations to clean up South Side.
19 I'm glad you're raising your property
20 values. What about ours?
21 MS. GATELLI: I will talk to you
22 after the meeting because I told you what to
23 do about Daron. I gave you an attorney to
24 talk to for free.
25 MR. HUBBARD: Judy, there is already
1 two private nuisance actions filed and one
2 attorney that you told me referred me to the
3 one that's already got the nuisance action
4 filed. The lawsuits are filed. And they're
5 already tied up in litigation for four years
6 -- four years. These are zoning violations
7 not to mention -- let's touch on what Mr.
8 Quinn said in the past.
9 Site plan review procedures for
10 certain uses, the following procedures shall
11 be filed for any request reviewed under this
12 section for the planning commission. Ten
13 copies of any required site plan shall be
14 submitted to the city. At least one copy
15 shall be retained in the city files. Have
16 you been able to find it? Ozzie asked for
17 that weeks ago. Has anybody been able to
18 file -- find the copy that should be by our
19 zoning book retained in the city files to
20 show that the Daron Northeast company went
21 through proper procedures for a site plan
22 review and that it was okayed to operate in
23 the manner that it is because it's zoned
24 light industrial, but it's not zoned light
25 industrial in a residential district.
1 Therefore, it should have been applied for a
2 variance because in light industrial
3 residential districts, you're not allowed to
5 All uses that would have serious
6 threat upon being unable to comply with the
7 performance standards of this ordinance
8 especially including the environmental
9 protection requirements of article V. shall
10 not be permitted to operate in light
11 industrial zones. And we've already
12 discussed this. There's how many violations
13 in the Environmental Protection Article 5 of
14 the Scranton ordinances for zoning?
15 So these just -- if the zoning
16 office would just enforce five of these
17 violations that I have in here in the
18 environmental protection, then we can
19 probably stop Daron Northeast from operating
20 the way that they are. But since you're
21 more concerned with cleaning up South Side
22 and not giving us a riverbank and certainly
23 not trying to protect the residents --
24 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Your time
25 is up. Next speaker.
1 MS. EVANS: Mr. Hubbard, just an
2 extra suggestion when the applications
3 arrive this summer for the CDBG allocations,
4 as a neighborhood association, you should
5 complete that application and apply for
6 $20,000 minimum for a siren in your
7 neighborhood. And though OECD and the mayor
8 generate the list of CDBG allocations, you
9 know it does come before council for
10 approval. And council can add and delete
11 projects before it takes a final vote, and I
12 would be very happy to stand up for the
13 allocation with that siren in lower Green
15 So I hope you will obtain that
16 application from the office of OECD. And it
17 should be come out, I expect, in July if it
18 hasn't already.
19 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: I want to say
20 one thing. Daniel, you know we cannot give
21 money to restaurants the same exact money
22 that, you know, you're saying we give money
23 to restaurants. Well, if -- the only reason
24 we can't give you the money for the flood
25 siren is because there is no job creation.
1 It is a different account. It's a different
2 type of money.
3 So it really is comparing oranges to
4 apples. So that is why I would love to be
5 able to say, we will come in and fill out an
6 application for, you know, a block grant
7 fund. But you cannot do that for the same
8 thing. It has to be for job creation. So
9 that is why you haven't gotten a grant for
11 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Stucker.
12 MR. EVANS: Actually all of the
13 CDBGs though are not --
14 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: He's comparing
15 it to restaurants. He was comparing it to
17 MS. EVANS: You're looking at a --
18 very often a commercial industrial revolving
19 loan which is a horse of a different color.
20 But for these purposes, for example, little
21 leagues and football leagues and
22 neighborhood associations, frequently apply
23 annually. So you, too, have that ability do
24 so, and I will spearhead that for you.
25 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mrs. Evans.
1 Mr. Stucker.
2 MR. STUCKER: Okay. We have little
3 problems over where I live. And I was
4 riding a bike today in Green Ridge. Upon
5 the hill there's a green building. I don't
6 know who -- it is all closed up. There's a
7 lid -- not a lid. It's all pushed up in the
8 air -- I hit it a couple times with the
9 bike. So maybe you can get somebody over
10 there. And I see some of the drains -- some
11 of our drains are mine -- where the lids are
12 on top. I seen a couple of them all blocked
13 up. There dirt on top, one in Green Ridge
14 -- one there. And there's a couple on
15 Capouse and a couple over town I see. Okay.
16 Murphy -- Mike Murphy -- I don't
17 know. I was in a basement once with a girl
18 with his sister -- helping her carry beer
19 upstairs and there is a lot of garbage in
20 her basement, mattress and tables, chairs,
21 dressers, everything in the basement, maybe
22 we can get somebody to check it out over
23 there in at Mark Murphy's -- Mike Murphy
24 hisname is. And the other day I was riding
25 -- walking up the sidewalk and Murphy --
1 Kevin Murphy grabbed me, pushed me against
2 the wall -- pushed me against the wall, and
3 slapped me and he pushed me about ten times
4 against the wall the other night, Saturday
6 So the cops came, and I went to the
7 magistrate today, dropped the name off,
8 dropped his address off. So I can't go to
9 the bar anymore, Murphy's bar. I don't care
10 about it.
11 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Thanks, Mr.
13 MR. STUCKER: Our garbage hasn't
14 been picked up a lot, okay. And over by
15 Scranton -- over by the laundry mat --
16 middle -- over near at Providence Square and
17 Market Street, there is a lot of stuff there
18 -- where you park the cars, if lot of leaves
19 and stuff. Last year I did it. The city
20 owns it. The city owns the -- half of the
21 laundry mat over at Providence Square and
22 Market Street, maybe have them guys clean it
23 up or I can do it and have them -- have the
24 city pay me or somebody. I don't care who.
25 I did it last year. The laundry mat -- the
1 guy who runs the laundry gave me money, gave
2 me 30 bucks to it clean up. So maybe get
3 the city over there to do it. All right?
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Jimmy, you weren't
6 here before. They are going to put your
7 sign up. I was there over the weekend on
8 Church Street.
9 MR. STUCKER: On Church Street?
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the pole that
11 you were complaining about. They are going
12 to put it up. It might be there when you go
13 home today. Okay. Thank you.
14 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Sam
16 MS. PATILLA: Sam Patilla, Scranton
17 resident, Scranton homeowner, Scranton
18 taxpayer. Good afternoon, Ms. Evans. Good
19 afternoon, Mr. Courtright, Madam President.
20 Welcome to the City of Scranton, home of --
21 since May 2nd out of 11 full-time employees
22 of the school district, you have ten
23 minorities. Welcome to the City of Scranton
24 where you have no minority representation on
25 any level of Chris Doherty's administration,
1 not one.
2 I intended on speaking of Daron
3 Northeast, but my friend Daniel did quite a
4 good job. Instead I will move onto my
5 second pet peeve, the subordination
6 agreement. What a lot of people fail to
7 realize, you're just looking at these fees.
8 You're not looking at the other
9 increases that people have to face, the
10 school board, for example, the property --
11 the property taxes -- but the sewer the
12 water, the cost of food. All right. All of
13 that adds up. Okay. And I don't care what
14 anybody says. We're talking about poor
15 people, and we're talking about senior
16 citizens. All right.
17 They're going to steal these
18 people's homes point blank. There's no ifs,
19 ands or buts about it. That company is in
20 the business for making money. It's a for
21 profit business, they're not here for
22 charity work. They're not here to save
23 people's homes, all right. We're talking a
24 lot of money. Sure, the taxes -- the
25 deficiency might be $400. When you throw
1 everything else into that, that can easily
2 amount to $4,000. With a blink of an eye
3 when you throw all the other fees that these
4 people have to face, all right. And that
5 was a really, really dangerous move to make
6 on the postion of council to approve that
7 because it reminds me of back in the wild
8 wild west days and the land grabbers because
9 that's all it boils down to.
10 You know, you just can't look at one
11 aspect of an issue and think that's it.
12 These people are poor, or they're low to
13 moderate income, they have limited funds to
14 begin with -- to begin with. And when you
15 start tacking on the 25 percent property
16 increase, you start attaching all the
17 increases in the sewer, the water, the
18 cable, whatever, the phone, whatever, you
19 know, all that adds up.
20 And it's immoral. Just like we said
21 earlier, that's immoral. You have 100 city
22 solicitors in there. Like I told you
23 before, you might get the city back on its
24 feet, you cut spending, you reduce
25 government. All right. You got plenty,
1 plenty of retired people in this audience,
2 out there in the general public that can
3 provide you with the guidance and
4 information you need for a minimum to no
5 cost because they love Scranton, the
6 residents of Scranton.
7 Now moving on back to the Scranton
8 School Board thing because I hear a lot
9 about the Scranton School Board, and I don't
10 know if I'm correct or not, but it's my
11 understanding that they're undergoing
12 another round of T. B. testing at that
14 And if that's true, I'm not sure --
15 that's true, all right, this is the second
16 time the public hasn't been made aware of
17 that. That newspaper is so busy printing
18 lies and untruths, and they never tell the
19 citizens of Scranton what is actually going
20 on in this city.
21 I told you before, you take that T.
22 B. scare, you take the silicosis with Daron
23 Northeast, you got black dust on one side
24 and you got white dust on the other side,
25 both of them poison. This whole city --
1 everybody in this city should write a letter
2 -- print a letter to the secretary of the
3 department of health of the Commonwealth and
4 let them know what is going on because
5 you're putting us all in jeopardy. You
6 don't have to be on Dickson Avenue to be
7 affected by silicosis. It gets in the air.
8 It's airborne, same thing with T. B. You
9 don't have to be in that area. One person
10 gets it, and they pass it along. Before you
11 know it the whole city is under wraps.
12 Not only are we facing half a
13 million, a half a billion dollar deficit, we
14 also facing losing 30 percent of 50 percent
15 of the 67,000 people we have living here.
16 This is as nice as this meeting has been, so
17 I don't know if everybody is on their good
18 behavior because you're here or not. These
19 meetings get hot and heated because people
20 do care. All right.
21 We are concerned. We do love this
22 city. Most of them pick up and go. All
23 right. They have to deal with a 25 percent
24 property increase and, like I said, every
25 other increase in the city. All right. The
1 mayor of this city has been in violation and
2 circumventing the home rule charter and
3 recovery plan almost since day one with his
4 cronie hires, his new job creations. All
6 Not one person has stood up and took
7 the -- man or woman and said, look, we have
8 to cut spending, we have to reduce
9 government. Every time you turn around, we
10 are losing another business. We just lost
11 another business, 200 jobs I think -- just
12 lost another business. All right.
13 They're giving hundreds of thousands
14 of dollars to coffee shops and beauty
15 parlors, won't give a quarter to a mom and
16 pop store. I am going to tell you like it
17 is for real. I am not here sugar coating
18 anything. That's not my job. I knew that
19 was coming. You have a nice day.
20 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
21 MR. DAVIS: Salaam Aleikam. My name
22 is Jim Davis, and I'm a member of the I
23 guess -- the second class citizenship of
24 Scranton. We have a first class
25 citizenship, and we have a second class
1 citizenship. And today my only subject is
2 is what are we going do about Washington
3 West, the ones that you the city council sat
4 by and allowed them to say with their
5 inspector here from the city that it's
6 uninhabitable, we have to take all the
7 people out -- what are we going to do with
8 the people you took out?
9 When are we going to rearrange for
10 those people to move back into the Scranton
11 housing? I mean, we have a very small
12 amount of housing here for low and moderate
13 income people.
14 Believe it or not, most of the rents
15 here in Scranton are above 2 to 300 for
16 single people, which if you are low to
17 moderate income, it makes it almost
18 impossible. What are we looking to do about
19 it? We moved them out. We got them all out
20 of there. We find out we made a mistake.
21 Who made a mistake? Your inspectors made a
22 mistake. Mr. Fiorini who is now going on
23 vacation or going -- leaving the employment
24 of the city -- he made a mistake. He's the
25 one who said you had to close them down.
1 This is what you told us.
2 Then we find out six months down the
3 road when all the people are out and
4 reallocated or relocated to different places
5 that that wasn't true, the housing was
6 perfectly all right.
7 There was a minor problem with fire
8 walls, et cetera, but things that could have
9 been taken care of while they were still in
10 their apartments. But it's too late. The
11 people are out. What are you going to? Can
12 you find out from the Scranton Housing
13 Authority how soon they going to make that
14 housing available to the low and moderate
15 income again?
16 I hear of a lot of money being
17 spent, but I didn't hear of any of that
18 money being used to improve the situation of
19 the low and moderate income of Scranton, I
20 really don't. Everything is for either the
21 corporate America or corporate stance in
22 Scranton or a well established business of
23 some sort. So I questioned your
24 feasibility, your truthfulness, your honor
25 when you say you're here to protect all the
1 citizens of Scranton because I just don't
2 see the results of it personally. If you
3 can find out for me personally as a
4 representative of the minority community,
5 what are we going to do about the low and
6 moderate income housing on Washington West.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Davis, have you
8 done a housing authority meeting? Over
9 here, Mr. Davis. Have you gone to a housing
10 authority meeting and asked them?
11 MR. DAVIS: Three.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: What did they tell
14 MR. DAVIS: They have no answer.
15 MS. EVANS: And when I have sent
16 written correspondence on behalf of
17 questions posed by tennants of housing
18 authority properties, I'm advised that those
19 residents should attend a Scranton Housing
20 Authority meeting and pose those questions.
21 And as you may know, I have attended a few
22 of those meetings in the past, and very
23 often I'm not seen these questions directly
24 answered. So we appear to be in a catch-22
25 here because we have no authority over SHA.
1 They are an autonomous body. We have
2 nothing to do with their funding, et cetera.
3 But they have failed to respond to my
4 correspondences, and they have failed to
5 respond to the residents.
6 MR. DAVIS: So, therefore, you do
7 have a right to question their ability to do
8 what they're doing? And they had the reason
9 they have to answer you. I think that there
10 has to be a report. There has to be some
11 sort of an understanding between your
12 authority which is governed by the city, and
13 they have to follow the same statutes as
14 everybody else.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you, Mr.
17 MS. EVANS: Actually I think they're
18 overseen by HUD.
19 MR. DAVIS: Also --
20 MS. EVANS: They're not overseen by
21 city council. I can tell you that.
22 MR. DAVIS: They're not? They don't
23 to report as an authority?
24 MS. GATELLI: No, HUD. Definitely
1 MR. LYMAN: Raymond Lyman. Mrs.
2 Gatelli, can I ask your guest a question?
3 MS. GATELLI: No, she's not here to
4 answer questions. You can talk to her after
5 the meeting.
6 MR. LYMAN: Well, I'm going to ask
7 you a question to ask her.
8 MS. GATELLI: She will be here for a
9 couple minutes.
10 MR. LYMAN: I will ask you to ask
11 her a question. Mrs. Gatelli, a question,
12 she's -- if I'm not correct, she was a --
13 she's a council president for Harrisburg's
14 council. Well, the question is, since she's
15 a council for -- city council for Harrisburg
16 -- since she's city council of -- Harrisburg
17 city council since we here in our city
18 council since you harass us and treat us
19 like -- I'm not going say this -- but treat
20 us like an animal --
21 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Lyman.
22 MR. LYMAN: I got five minutes.
23 Don't cut me off. And Neil saw the two
24 people who were with me yesterday. They
25 were from the ACLU. And the question is to
1 her, since you took the cameras out, you
2 faked the death threats, you almost had me
3 arrested, I had to go -- I had to call the
4 ACLU, and I will file a lawsuit against the
5 city council and mayor.
6 And I did get a response from the
7 federal attorney general. And I'm tired of
8 being --
9 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Do you have a
10 response with you?
11 MR. LYMAN: At the house.
12 MS. NEALON FANUCCI: Bring it to us
13 so --
14 MR. LYMAN: I will bring it, and I
15 will -- I'll bring it, and I will bring
16 copies of the letter.
17 MS. GATELLI: Could you also bring
18 that letter you talked about the last time
19 that Attorney Minora was looking for from
20 your lawyer?
21 MR. LYMAN: No. I sent it to the
22 federal attorney general's office.
23 MS. GATELLI: Attorney Minora wanted
24 to look at it.
25 MR. LYMAN: You and him wrote the
1 letter and sent it on city council
2 letterhead. Why would I have to send it
3 back to you?
4 MR. MINORA: We are not going
5 through this again. You never got a letter
6 from us. We're not going to go through this
8 MR. LYMAN: You guys sent it to me.
9 Why would I have to send it?
10 MR. MINORA: You want to start
11 again? Get me a copy of that.
12 MR. LYMAN: This is my time to
13 speak. Can I speak?
14 MS. GATELLI: Is this going to be on
15 Utube tonight? We at least we make national
17 MR. LYMAN: Ms. Gatelli, are you
18 insulting me? Can I speak?
19 MS. GATELLI: You can say whatever
20 you want, Ray. Go right ahead.
21 MR. LYMAN: Okay. Now, Ms. Krake
22 spoke about what the Scranton on the NCC
23 about that letter -- about people losing
24 their houses. Now, we must talk about the
25 Rinaldis, DeNaples and all these other
1 people that owe back taxes. Why don't you
2 go after them -- Kevin Murphy's mother who
3 didn't pay for years.
4 MS. GATELLI: You can't talk about
5 anyone else at the council meeting.
6 MR. LYMAN: These people owe back
8 MS. GATELLI: Bring it here and
9 prove that they owe back taxes. You bring
10 those papers here, and we will do something
11 about it.
12 MR. LYMAN: They owe money.
13 MS. GATELLI: Go find out what they
14 owe and bring it here.
15 MR. LYMAN: Councilmen, I'm not in
16 political power.
17 MS. GATELLI: Well, you cannot --
18 MR. LYMAN: I am just an average
19 person. Maybe I should run for city
20 council. And people told me I should run.
21 I think I will run for office. Maybe I
22 should run against you --
23 MS. GATELLI: That's a good idea.
24 That's a good idea.
25 MR. LYMAN: And if I run, I will not
1 take -- raise taxes and treat people like
2 dogs and take the cameras out. And if I ran
3 for office, one thing's for sure, I won't
4 tell -- lie and say death threats and say,
5 oh, I'm scared and run out there in fake
6 tears in my eyes and do that.
7 MS. GATELLI: You ran when the
8 policeman came though, didn't you?
9 MR. LYMAN: No, I didn't run. No, I
11 MS. GATELLI: Oh, yes, you did.
12 MR. LYMAN: I wanted the cops to
13 arrest me so I can file a lawsuit.
14 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I know you did.
15 MR. LYMAN: That's right.
16 MS. GATELLI: I saw it on Utube.
17 MR. LYMAN: Because one thing, Mrs.
18 Gatelli, the tapes showed it only two
19 minutes and ten seconds, and I showed the
20 tape to the two people from the ACLU. And
21 it was only two minutes ten seconds. And
22 Mr. Minora lied. He said it was three
23 minutes. So he perjured himself.
24 MS. GATELLI: Well, we'll all be in
25 Allenwood together, Amil. We will start a
1 racquetball club.
2 MR. LYMAN: So, Mrs. Gatelli, I got
3 one more question. Since all of South Side
4 was paved, why can't I have Capouse Avenue?
5 For years I asked Capouse Avenue to be
6 paved. Why can I not have Capouse Avenue
8 MS. GATELLI: I don't know. Maybe
9 when I'm the mayor, I will pave it for you.
10 MR. LYMAN: It doesn't need the
11 mayor of Scranton to be paved. You guys
12 always have all these other streets paved
13 like Elm Street, Boulevard Avenue, all of
14 North Main Avenue, all the --
15 MS. GATELLI: Your time is up. Sit
16 down, please. Mrs. Shumaker.
17 MS. SHUMAKER: Marie Shumaker. I do
18 have a number of questions this afternoon.
19 I would ask you to hold the answers until I
20 finish because I probably have more than
21 five minutes again.
22 First off, I'd like to know what the
23 status of the audit is. The next I would
24 like to know -- I'm assuming that OECD is
25 returning to this municipal building because
1 as I recall last July it was stated it was a
2 July to July lease and that's certainly a
3 good way we could save a lot of money by
4 returning OECD to some of the empty space in
5 this building. I think we all agreed on
6 that last year.
7 I would like to know whether we've
8 heard back from the water company on color
9 coding the hydrants to reflect the flow
10 pressure. And now I'd like move to read a
11 couple of articles from the monopoly
13 First, from April 5th, 2005, Mr.
14 Fiorini said the cost to board up the
15 building and later to demolish it would be
16 added to a lien that will have to be paid
17 before the land can be sold. That's a quote
18 in reference to the Holiday Manor building.
19 Then going back to July 26, 1994, there was
20 an article on a property an Hamm Court that
21 contained 10 to 20,000 tires. Mrs. Gatelli
22 then as deputy director of OECD is quoted as
23 saying, we attempted to use city money to
24 have the tires removed and as is customary
25 placed a lien against the property for the
1 value of the work.
2 After obtaining informal bids for
3 the work, Gatelli learned removal of the
4 tires is not an eligible use for city funds
5 usually used to take care of emergency
7 Then we go back to the Holiday Manor
8 in January of 2006 where the low bid for
9 demolition of the Holiday Manor was
10 $219,000. And the quote from that article,
11 Mayor Chris Doherty has said he has no plans
12 to put a lien on the property to cover
13 demolition costs saying he's covering it as
14 part of the sity's economic development
16 The cleared site will help get the
17 land used and back on the tax rolls. Now, I
18 have serious questions I believe that is an
19 obligation of the city to place liens on
20 where work is done for private properties.
21 I don't think that is an option of the mayor
22 to give that to any one individual. I
23 visited the county records department
24 yesterday. There is still no lien on the
25 demolition of the property down at -- on
1 Moosic Street for the -- Edmond and Chris
2 Pisano brothers, still no lien placed there.
3 It's well over a year.
4 There is no lien on that Holiday
5 Manor. I don't think the taxpayers can
6 afford those kinds of gifts to private
7 individuals while taxing other people out of
8 their homes.
9 Next I'd like move onto -- okay --
10 to -- sometimes I think Nay Aug Park should
11 be renamed the money pit. I think a couple
12 weeks ago Mrs. Evans talked about the fact
13 that the tree house which was supposed to be
14 about $300,000 came in at $650,000. Now we
15 learn that the -- so-called Kanjorski -- it
16 really should be the taxpayers' bridge --
17 came in way, way over budget.
18 The -- just the amount for the
19 construction was one million seven thousand
20 dollars. Now, Mr. Kanjorski had some
21 earmark. That does not include the design.
22 However, when I talked to the Department of
23 Transportation, PennDOT, they told me that
24 the overruns were due to a poor design.
25 Now, I have some questions and I
1 would hope have more of a question and
2 enough of an curiosity to find out the
3 answer. Was the design poor or -- and if it
4 was all design or did the company that bid
5 on the construction, why did they not know
6 the design was poor and call that to the
7 attention of PennDOT?
8 In any case, I think if there isn't
9 already an ordinance on the books, I think
10 that these companies should be put on a
11 special list and they should not be allowed
12 to bid if they go over a certain threshold
13 because we have this all the time. I don't
14 think there's a project up there that hasn't
15 gone over. And then I will go on to my
16 comfort station, this wonderful edifice --
17 if I -- may I finish?
18 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
19 MS. SHUMAKER: Thank you. Since
20 2001 we federal taxpayers have invested
21 almost $30,000 in building this handicapped
22 accessible comfort station across from the
23 greenhouse. It's been locked a lot of the
24 time. I was up there yesterday, and it was
25 opened, but it is hardly handicapped
1 friendly. You have to turn the knob and in
2 kinds of handicapped vehicles, you cannot
3 reach the knob to turn it. There's no
4 device to automatic turn it. I walked in,
5 and I was appalled.
6 Not only was there no toilet paper,
7 no hand washing material, no paper -- no
8 paper to wipe your hands -- there weren't
9 even receptacles for those. Now, why have
10 we invested six years -- over a period of
11 six years, almost $30,000 and that is still
12 unusable? That's a travesty.
13 MS. GATELLI: I will try to get some
14 answers for you. As far as the liens, we
15 passed a motion here several weak ago about
16 the liens.
17 MS. EVANS: And, Mrs. Shumaker, I
18 have answers to some of your other
19 questions. Regarding the status of the
20 independent audit, the auditors from Rossi
21 and Son are currently in the process of
22 field work and that began several weeks ago,
23 as Mrs. -- no, no, no -- I think you also
24 questioned the lease for OECD and its
25 relocation to city hall.
1 Actually last year when I was
2 working on the 2007 operating budget, I
3 learned from -- actually the new lease that
4 OECD entered into last summer for a period
5 of an additional three years at an increased
7 So actually OECD is locked into a
8 lease currently that I think would probably
9 cost us even more money to violate at this
10 point. And so they will continue to sit in
11 those offices for at least another two
12 years, and there has been no response as yet
13 from the water company regarding the color
14 coding of the fire hydrants.
15 And then Mrs. Gatelli I believe
16 answered your questions about the lien, and
17 I believe that was a unanimous vote of
19 MS. GATELLI: Is there anyone else
20 there to speak? Chrissy, are you checking
21 on the school we're all working on?
22 MR. SLEDENZSKI: I'm checking on
23 that, Judy. I am still checking on that. I
24 can't find it. Janet, good luck down there
25 on your trip. Good luck. Thank you.
1 MS. EVANS: Thank you, Chris.
2 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Anyone
3 else? Motion to adjourn.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
5 MS. EVANS: Second.
2 C E R T I F I C A T E
4 I hereby certify that the proceedings and
5 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the
6 notes taken by me on the sentence of the above cause
7 and that this copy is a correct transcript of the same
8 to the best of my ability.
Laura Boyanowski, RPR
12 Official Court Reporter