1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
7 Tuesday, October 23, 2007
10 Council Chambers
11 Scranton City Hall
12 340 North Washington Avenue
13 Scranton, Pennsylvania
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI- COURT REPORTER
2 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:
MS. JUDY GATELLI, PRESIDENT
6 MS. JANET E. EVANS
MS. SHERRY FANUCCI
9 MR. ROBERT MCGOFF
MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT
12 MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK
MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK
15 MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR
1 (Pledge of Allegiance recited and moment of
2 reflection observed.)
3 MS. GATELLI: Roll call, Neil.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
5 MRS. EVANS: Here.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.
7 MS. FANUCCI: Here.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
9 MR. MCGOFF: Here.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.
12 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
13 MS. GATELLI: Here.
14 MS. GARVEY: THIRD ORDER. 3-A.
15 PETITION FOR A STOP SIGN ON LAKE SCRANTON
16 ROAD AT THE ENTRANCE TO LUTHERWOOD.
17 MS. GATELLI: Are there are comments?
18 If not, received and filed.
19 MS. GARVEY: 3-B. CONTROLLER'S REPORT
20 FOR THE MONTH ENDING SEPTEMBER 30, 2007.
21 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?
22 If not, received and filed.
23 MS. GARVEY: 3-C. MINUTES OF THE
24 COMPOSITE PENSION BOARD MEETING HELD ON
25 SEPTEMBER 26, 2007.
1 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?
2 If not, received and filed.
3 MS. GARVEY: That's all for third
5 MS. GATELLI: Before we start
6 citizens participation, I would like to
7 announce that as you can see all of us our
8 wearing or red ribbons. It is a red ribbon
9 week that's sponsored by the Lackawanna
10 County Commission on Drug and Alcohol Abuse
11 and the school and the county celebrate this
12 week to alert everyone to the dangers of
13 drugs and alcohol. So, we are all wearing
14 our flyers tonight in support of this cause.
15 Last week someone mentioned, I believe
16 that it was Mrs. Jones, about a property on
17 Pittston Avenue and Harris Street that was
18 overgrown and I wanted to clarify this
19 because she said that the owner was
20 Mr. Brazil, and I wanted to clarify that
21 Mr. Brazil has not owned that property for
22 the last year and a half. I did not want
23 that to be said about someone when indeed
24 it's not true, so I just wanted to clarify
1 I also wanted to thank, and I'm not
2 allowed to say their names for
3 confidentiality reasons, but there were
4 several children that were on juvenile
5 probation and their probation officer had
6 them clean up the Billy Barrett playground
7 in Minooka. There was a lot of graffiti on
8 the sliding boards and on the walls,
9 etcetera, and these children do community
10 service, they worked there all day, and they
11 did a wonderful magnificent job at the
12 playground, so anonymously we would like to
13 thank them for their work in that effort.
14 Also, the Elm Park Church youth
15 group at the corner of Linden and Jefferson
16 is having a spaghetti dinner on November 3
17 from 4 to 7. Adults is $6, children are $3,
18 Eric Lushak is the youth advisor and that's
19 all I have. Does anyone else have any
20 announcements? Mr. Courtright?
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Just one, I know I
22 said it before, but I ran into some people
23 this weekend that asked if I would remind
24 you that the 27th of October from 7 a.m. to
25 11 a.m. will be the St. Peter's Lutheran's
1 Church pancake and sausage breakfast and
2 that's at the corner of Ash and Taylor
3 Avenue. Thank you.
4 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Anyone
6 MR. MCGOFF: Might I?
7 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
8 MR. MCGOFF: I received an e-mail
9 last week and I got it to late to mention it
10 for last week's meeting. It's from two
11 students at West Scranton High School who
12 are conducting what they are calling the
13 Turkey Chase Race, a 5-K run and walk to be
14 held at McDade Park on November 4 at 10 a.m.
15 It's to benefit a student at West Scranton.
16 It's a charity event. It's a 5-K race.
17 There is a registration fee of $15 or you
18 can register the day of the race. If there
19 is anyone interested I have some numbers to
20 contact, two students, Katilyn Farrell and
21 Matt Fabri, but I know it's short notice but
22 if there is anybody that's interested in
23 that type of event and hopefully worth
24 raising money, as I said, for a student at
25 West Scranton, I assume a friend of theirs,
1 but I have the information and it's I think
2 also on-line. Thank you.
3 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Anyone
5 MS. FANUCCI: I just want to say for
6 everyone to say a special prayer for my dad
7 who underwent surgery yesterday so please
8 just keep him in your prayers. Thank you.
9 MS. GATELLI: The first speaker is
10 Andy Sbaraglia.
11 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
12 citizen of Scranton, fellow Scrantonians,
13 under "B" here for introduction, you are
14 taking the money from project No. 05-154,
15 $86,000, and transferring the same money and
16 the same organization. I was just curious,
17 what is 05-154 originally -- what was the
18 money originally for? I don't believe you
19 are going to find it there, I looked or I
20 wouldn't have asked.
21 MS. GATELLI: I'm not sure it says,
22 Andy, but sometimes if the money is not used
23 they have to put it in a new account.
24 MR. SBARAGLIA: I realize that, but
25 it could have been for -- it might have been
1 for a critical project, maybe it was better
2 than the other project, who knows.
3 MS. GATELLI: It may be the same
4 project and they just haven't used it yet,
5 so they have to put it in a new account.
6 MR. SBARAGLIA: But there is no way
7 for you to know and there is no way for me
8 to know exactly what's going on, that's all.
9 That's the only question I had is --
10 MS. GATELLI: We will find out for
12 MR. SBARAGLIA: You know what I mean?
13 Because it's good to know exactly what this
14 money is being transferred for and what was
15 the original intent of the money there.
16 MS. GATELLI: Well, it has to be
17 something that's eligible.
18 MR. SBARAGLIA: Everything in this
19 world is eligible if you write it, so don't
20 give me that.
21 MS. FANUCCI: That's not true.
22 That's not true.
23 MS. GATELLI: Not necessarily. HUD
24 is very fussy.
25 MS. FANUCCI: That's not true with
2 MR. SBARAGLIA: No, it's true. If
3 you know the right people and the right
4 lawyers everything becomes eligible one way
5 or another.
6 MS. GATELLI: Well, tell the people
7 that haven't received the money and they'll
8 tell you differently. HUD is very strict.
9 MR. SBARAGLIA: I know why they
10 didn't get the money.
11 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Quinn.
12 MR. QUINN: Ozzie Quinn, president
13 of the local Taxpayers' Association. Yes, I
14 too want to speak on 5-B and 5-C in relation
15 to the fact that this money goes back to
16 2004-2005, how much more money is in the
17 coffers down at OECD that we don't know
18 about in projects? I'd like you,
19 Mrs. Fanucci, as the chairperson for the
20 OECD to come up with how much money is in
21 reserve down there for projects that are not
22 approved. Why I'm asking this is because
23 I'm a member of the Hill Neighborhood
24 Association and I spoke to Bob Neverosky who
25 was here about a month ago and we were very
1 much concerned because when the Connor's
2 administration was leaving I wrote a grant
3 for the Hill, which I'm a member of, and it
4 was approved.
5 Subsequently, there was no money.
6 Then we wrote one, I wrote one again for the
7 Doherty administration for $60,000 and that
8 neighborhood association provides the police
9 up there, provides the DA, it provides the
10 food banks, just everything. There is 1,300
11 households that belong to that, and also the
12 fact is that, you know, the only
13 neighborhood association would actually need
14 a staff. Now, that $60,000 is laying down
15 there someplace in the building where you
16 are paying rent for which you could be
17 occupying up on the third floor and yet
18 these people up in the Hill Section are not
19 getting that money that was approved.
20 MS. FANUCCI: Ozzie, it was approved
21 and I did check into it after the meeting
22 that was here when Mr. Neverosky came. It
23 was -- he went through the inspection. When
24 they went down they could not provide that
25 money because the meetings would be held on
1 second floor. They will not release the
2 money to them because it is not handicapped
3 accessible so they let them have the money.
4 They didn't comply was the problem, so the
5 money was approved, but they can't give it
6 to them because of the handicapped
8 MR. QUINN: It is accessible for the
9 first floor.
10 MS. FANUCCI: They can't fit the
11 amount of people in the first floor to
12 convey the meetings.
13 MR. QUINN: We had meetings there on
14 the first floor.
15 MS. FANUCCI: I understand. As far
16 as HUD is concerned --
17 MR. QUINN: You can talk to Bob
19 MS. FANUCCI: -- there was not enough
20 room -- -
21 MR. QUINN: You can twist and turn
22 how want to --
23 MS. FANUCCI: Me and HUD are just out
24 to get you, Ozzie.
25 MR. QUINN: Yeah, I'd like to look
1 into how much money is down there in their
3 MS. GATELLI: Ozzie, just to
4 interrupt you for a minute, I'm not quite
5 positive, but I think that the money that
6 Bob wanted was to renovate the second floor.
7 MR. QUINN: That's correct. Right.
8 MS. GATELLI: And the point was that
9 the second floor was not accessible.
10 MR. QUINN: The fact is it's
11 accessible to the Scranton police, it's
12 accessible to the D.A.'s office.
13 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, but they are not
15 MR. QUINN: The handicap goes into
16 the first floor. That's a poor excuse.
17 MS. GATELLI: Well, that's what we
18 were told.
19 MR. QUINN: Well, who told you that?
20 One of your inspectors?
21 MS. GATELLI: The people from HUD.
22 MR. QUINN: That's a shame that those
23 people up there in the Hill with all of work
24 that they do for the people in this
25 community that you can't give them that
1 $60,000, I want to find out how much money
2 is left there in the coffers, I'd appreciate
4 MS. GATELLI: Well, as of today, I
5 believe it was today, the mayor has
6 appointed a new OECD director and we will --
7 I will call her and find out about Bob's
8 money and see exactly --
9 MR. QUINN: I'd appreciate that.
10 MS. GATELLI: -- what it is.
11 MR. QUINN: I don't want politics get
12 involved in the neighborhood --
13 MS. GATELLI: It shouldn't. It
14 shouldn't. And it certainly wouldn't with
15 another neighborhood leader, and Sherry
16 lives there, so --
17 MS. FANUCCI: I love the Hill.
18 MS. GATELLI: We will set something
19 up with Linda and see exactly what it is
20 with that money and if it can be released it
21 will be released, okay? Next is Dave
22 Dobson. Not here? No? Anyone else? Mrs.
24 MS. EVANS: Good evening. I ask for
25 your prayers for Mr. Joseph Reap whose great
1 courage, perseverance and optimism daily
2 transformed his disability into
3 uncompromising abilities and gentility and
4 for his family and friends whom he leaves
6 Also, please remember in your
7 prayers Mr. Frank Shalipco who passed away
8 on Saturday and his family and friends,
9 particularly his daughter, Mary, whose
10 tireless work in her Pinebrook neighborhood
11 surely made her father, Frank, very proud.
12 We did receive a report on the status
13 of the 2006 audit. There has been great
14 progress I would say within the last two
15 weeks. The auditor still requires responses
16 to the FEMA flood protection summer and
17 November 2006 flooding, the Scranton Parking
18 Authorities' 2006 audit report and three
19 confirmation letters from attorneys.
20 However, as I said, there has been great
21 progress within the last two months.
22 The Pennsylvania Economy League
23 intends to begin updating their recovery
24 plan in order to reflect the progress made
25 to date and address the current financial
1 position of Scranton. Last updated in 2002,
2 the recovery plan and accompanying
3 distressed city status have been in effect
4 for longer than the total of the combined
5 years of service of all five seated council
6 members. PEL has requested Mrs. Gatelli's
7 participation in their forthcoming efforts,
8 however, I believe that another five-year
9 plan will earn us nothing other than the
10 reputation of Scranton, the city of
11 perpetual distress.
12 Now, just as a child reaches the age
13 of emancipation and perpetuity, so our city
14 has aged to the point of financial freedom
15 for the betterment of our people. Let the
16 executive and legislative branches of the
17 government take the reigns. They both
18 already bear the responsibility and
19 consequences rather than another five years
20 of absent oversight, platitudes and false
21 projections city government should seek
22 emancipation. And, Mrs. Gatelli, I do
23 recall a meeting at which you made a public
24 statement suggesting that Pennsylvania
25 Economy League would release us from that
2 MS. GATELLI: And I'll second that
3 motion again.
4 MS. EVANS: And so --
5 MS. GATELLI: I will not be attending
6 in case you are wondering.
7 MS. EVANS: Oh, I was just going to
8 suggest were you doing so you would deliver
9 that message to them.
10 MS. GATELLI: I won't be going so I
11 can't deliver the message.
12 MS. EVANS: Okay.
13 MS. GATELLI: That notice is in the
14 circular file.
15 MS. EVANS: Thank you. Channel 61
16 is in need of funding. Council has a few
17 available options to enable this station to
18 survive. It can vote to amend the 2007
19 operating budget to include a $13,000
20 allocation to Channel 61. Other
21 Pennsylvania municipalities provide such
22 funding in their annual operating budgets
23 for public access television or council
24 could, I should say and/or, council could
25 provide a $25,000 allocation in the
1 forthcoming 2008 operating budget. At the
2 same time negotiations for a new cable TV
3 contract will begin in 2008 and funding for
4 Channel 61 should be one of several new
5 requirements in any future agreement, but
6 the present beckons and I have no doubt that
7 the mayor can find $13,000 perhaps in the
8 contingency fund or interest earned on TANS
9 or CD's. Just as a few weeks ago $25,000
10 was a tawdry amount in the minds of the
11 administration, the same individuals who
12 thought nothing of spending an extra $25,000
13 per year for any friendly bloated auditoring
14 firm or money spent for the mayor's
15 advertising campaigns, banners and rugs.
16 Further, the administration wisely
17 donates $50,000 annually to the Everhart and
18 to a wildlife center. Surely the people's
19 access to all city and county government
20 meetings should be at least half as worthy
21 as our zoo in a democracy unless, of course,
22 the mayor prefers a covert operation to a
23 transparent accountable city government.
24 Therefore, I move that Attorney Minora
25 draft legislation for next week's meeting to
1 amend the 2007 operating budget to provide
2 $13,000 to Channel 61.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
4 MS. GATELLI: On the question?
5 MS. EVANS: Yes. I should indicate
6 that council did meet this evening with
7 representatives of Scranton Today and
8 Channel 61. Without this infusion of
9 $13,000 Channel 61 screen will go black
10 effective almost immediately and this will
11 continue through December 31st at which time
12 hopefully three government bodies: County,
13 city council and the Scranton School
14 District will choose again to fund the
15 station for one additional year.
16 I believe firmly that it would be a
17 great detriment to the citizens of this
18 municipality to lose the services of this
19 station particularly in light of the fact
20 that we are, of course, a one newspaper
21 town. I do appreciate the comments made and
22 the information provided this evening by
23 Channel 61. I thank all of you for your
24 years of service and voluntarism to this
25 this community. It's priceless. I wish
1 that I were able to fund you properly, so
2 that you would be competitive with stations
3 throughout Pennsylvania and other states who
4 can certainly provide more extensive
5 programming, but, then again, they are
6 receiving far more extensive funding.
7 I might also add that it is not
8 unusual for any municipality to provide an
9 allocation in their operating budget to a
10 public access station, so we are certainly
11 not attempting to set a precedent.
12 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the
14 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I am prone to vote
15 in favor of this motion. I think that the
16 continued operation of Channel 61 to the end
17 of the year is important. I think it is, as
18 you said, the most reasonable access that
19 many people have to city, county, and school
20 district operations and it would be a great
21 loss to see it removed from the air and so
22 the $13,000 that was indicated that would be
23 needed to continue the operation until
24 December 31 I think is important and I will
25 vote, yes.
1 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else?
2 MS. EVANS: And I just might add for
3 those of my colleagues who do have the ear
4 of the mayor, I would appreciate your
5 intercession with him to find the proper
6 source of this funding and I, of course, as
7 we discussed this evening, Mrs. Garvey is
8 going to contact the D.A.'s Office and learn
9 exactly what remains in contingency, and I
10 suggested the TAN and gave you the amounts
11 earlier of what is currently available, but,
12 as I said, for those of you who can implore
13 for the survival of Channel 61 at least
14 through December the 31st with the mayor I
15 would urge you to do so.
16 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else? All in
18 MS. EVANS: Aye.
19 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
20 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
22 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
23 ayes have it and so moved.
24 MS. EVANS: I also have citizens'
25 requests from the last week. A letter to
1 MAM, residents of Cherry Street and Kurst
2 Court report dim streetlights. They request
3 brighter lights as a safety measure in their
4 neighborhood. The Cherry Street pole number
5 is 56976 and 45349, and there is a number
6 that I have listed as well for the Kurst
7 Street pole or Kurst Court pole I should
8 say. They have previously called the
9 electric company for assistance without
10 success. Please address as soon as possible
11 so that these residents can enjoy security
12 in their neighborhoods.
13 A letter to the city tax office:
14 I'm asking for an update on a $52 EMS tax
15 refund for a particular gentleman, he hasn't
16 received his refund to date. I don't want
17 to give his name on air, however, I did wish
18 to add that council received an announcement
19 regarding the changes in the EMS tax that I
20 would like to share with you this evening.
21 There is a site that you can access by
22 computer www.PLCM.org, and click on the
23 local services tax link at the bottom of the
24 home page and you will find exemption and
25 refund forms and frequently asked questions
1 to help with implementation and I'm hoping
2 that this will assist residents as the EMS
3 tax swiftly approaches for 2008.
4 And, finally, a letter to
5 Mr. Setizinger, residents of the 2400 block
6 of North Main Avenue request an inspection
7 and possible condemnation of 2419 North Main
8 Avenue as soon as possible, and that's it.
9 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
10 Mrs. Fanucci?
11 MS. FANUCCI: I only have one thing
12 to clarify, last week's meeting when I had
13 stepped out to use the ladies' room, someone
14 had indicated that I was wrong in what I was
15 stating about the library. The Scranton
16 Library, what I said and what I'm going to
17 restate is that the library is not closing.
18 It will be a branched, it will still remain
19 open. I did not indicate that south side
20 would not have a library as in the plan, but
21 the plan will keep Scranton Library in the
22 City, so I just wanted to clarify that. I
23 had to watch the replay of the meeting and
24 had saw that that question had come up and I
25 wanted to make sure that I indicated it
1 correctly, and that is all I have. Thank
3 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mr. McGoff?
4 MR. MCGOFF: Just one quick
5 clarification, I received a couple of phone
6 calls about the property that we discussed
7 last week on Cedar and Locust Avenue --
8 Cedar Avenue and Locust Street, a number of
9 people thought that that property was
10 residents from some of the things that were
11 said in council that there was somebody
12 residing on that property and that their
13 property was being sold away from them. I
14 just wanted to make to clarify that that is
15 not a residence, there is nobody on that
16 site at the present time and so no one's
17 home is being sold from them, and that's
18 all. Thank you.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Just two items, I'll
20 send this out myself, Kay. Across from Carl
21 Servino's Funeral Home on South Main there
22 is a street light and it's dark there
23 because of the fact that the tree has grown
24 over the streetlight, it's blocking out the
25 light, the tree is blocking out the light,
1 so I'll ask Mr. Brazil if they can get
2 somebody down there to trim that away, and
3 Mrs. Cook brought up last week about Center
4 Street so I have been going back and forth
5 all week long about Center Street.
6 Evidently, those poles and pillars or
7 whatever those things are call them that are
8 in there were supposed to be temporary.
9 They weren't supposed to be permanent, I'm
10 being told that they could be removed. I
11 was under the impression they were going to
12 be removed but they are still there. The
13 court is no longer vacated and cannot be
14 there. There is some people very upset
15 about it, they have been calling all week
16 long so maybe I'll speak with Mr. Hayes
17 about getting those removed, but you are
18 correct, that's street has not been vacated
19 and I don't know if it's illegal, but it's
20 closed and it shouldn't be, so I will speak
21 to Mr. Hayes about getting those removed.
22 If, in fact, they do want to vacate it
23 I think they need to take a good hard look,
24 vacating that entire street, maybe a portion
25 of that would be bad, that entire street is
1 going to reek havoc, I don't believe I'll
2 talk to Mr. Hayes about it this week.
3 That's all I have. Thank you.
4 MS. GATELLI: When did you last
5 speak to someone?
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Today. Someone
7 from, I don't want to get them fired, from
8 the bank down there, evidently there were
9 some big shot from the bank in and he is not
10 happy about the fact that I guess they are
11 using the bank's lot to cut through and get
12 out of there and it's just causing big
13 problems, so --
14 MS. GATELLI: I'm only asking because
15 I spoke with someone this afternoon and that
16 he said the vehicles could get through.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: They got both ends
19 MS. GATELLI: I don't know if it's
20 true, I didn't check myself.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: It's a bad
22 situation. I've been down there several
24 MS. GATELLI: The intent is not to
25 close it and from what I was gathering it
1 was passable, you know, there was enough
2 room for a fire truck, etcetera, to get
3 through 24.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: They've got it
5 blocked. You can't get in from Washington
6 Avenue, you can't get in from Adam's Avenue,
7 I don't know what you call those things.
8 Mrs. Cook, do you know what they are called?
9 MRS. COOK: Bollards.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Bollards, okay.
11 You've got them on both ends and you just
12 simply --
13 MS. GATELLI: Well, then I was given
14 the wrong information. I was told it's not
15 going to be vacated.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: So, we'll check on
17 it. Thank you for looking into that.
18 MS. GATELLI: That's exactly what was
19 on my notes to talk about. And the only
20 other thing is the issue of the streetlights
21 again. Mrs. Evans brought it up and Mr.
22 Courtright and I know Mr. Courtright sent a
23 letter to Mr. Brazil about a streetlight
24 petition and I gave Neil one tonight to send
25 to Mr. Brazil, but as you recall in the
1 summer we did get a notice that streetlights
2 there is no allocation of funds for
3 streetlights, so you can put all of the
4 requests in you want, you are not going to
5 get a streetlight because there are no funds
6 allocated for that. Now that PPL is not
7 involved we are charged for streetlights and
8 it's approximately $800 per streetlight.
9 So, you know, maybe we ought to look at
10 that for our budget, also, for 2008 to
11 appropriate a portion of funds for street
12 lighting. It is imperative in the
13 neighborhoods when it is dark and it is a
14 deterrent to crime when your neighborhood is
15 lit up properly, so I think we should
16 investigate that and maybe we can even ask
17 OECD if they can pay for them and then we'll
18 owe out of the money there is. So, just for
19 the record, no one will be getting them real
20 quick, so if you put one in and you are
21 expecting one it's not going to happen
22 because there is money, and we will continue
23 as a council to work on that to provide safe
24 streets for our neighborhoods, and that's
25 all I have.
1 MS. EVANS: Mrs. Gatelli, may I?
2 MS. GATELLI: You may.
3 MS. EVANS: The request I made this
4 evening was simply for them to check it.
5 MS. GATELLI: Yes.
6 MS. EVANS: It may need a new bulb
7 or --
8 MS. GATELLI: That would probably not
9 be much.
10 MS. EVANS: Right.
11 MS. GATELLI: So I'll have Jeff take
12 care of that.
13 MS. EVANS: Thank you.
14 MS. GATELLI: For the new ones I
15 think we need to put some kind of funding in
16 place because none have been put in.
17 MS. EVANS: Maybe talk to Mr. Kurz
18 from MEM.
19 MS. GATELLI: All right.
20 Mrs. Garvey?
21 MS. GARVEY: 5-B. FOR INTRODUCTION -
22 AN ORDINANCE - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO.
23 68, 2004 ENTITLED, "AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING
24 THE MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS OF
25 THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO TAKE ALL NECESSARY
1 ACTIONS TO IMPLEMENT THE CONSOLIDATED
2 SUBMISSION FOR COMMUNITY PLANNING AND
3 DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS (AS AMENDED) TO BE
4 FUNDED UNDER THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK
5 GRANT (CDBG) PROGRAM, HOME INVESTMENT
6 PARTNERSHIP (HOME) PROGRAM AND EMERGENCY
7 SHELTER GRANT (ESG) PROGRAM", BY
8 TRANSFERRING $86,000, FROM PROJECT NO.
9 05-154 FRIENDSHIP HOUSE TO PROJECT NO.
10 05-154.1 FRIENDSHIP HOUSE ENERGY FACILITIES
12 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
13 entertain a motion that 5-B be introduced.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
15 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
16 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
17 those in favor?
18 MS. EVANS: Aye.
19 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
20 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
22 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
23 ayes have it and so moved.
24 MS. GARVEY: 5-C. FOR INTRODUCTION -
25 AN ORDINANCE - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO.
1 155 OF 2005, ENTITLED, "AN ORDINANCE
2 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE
3 OFFICIALS OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO TAKE
4 ALL NECESSARY ACTIONS TO IMPLEMENT THE
5 CONSOLIDATED SUBMISSION FOR COMMUNITY
6 PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS (AS
7 AMENDED) TO BE FUNDED UNDER THE COMMUNITY
8 DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT (CDBG) PROGRAM, HOME
9 INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIP (HOME) PROGRAM AND
10 EMERGENCY SHELTER GRANT (ESG) PROGRAM BY
11 TRANSFERRING $40,000.00, FROM PROJECT NO.
12 00-212 COMPUTERIZED MAPPING CAPACITY
13 BUILDING TO PROJECT NO. 06-229.5 UNITED
14 NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS TRANSITIONAL HOUSING.
15 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
16 entertain a motion that 5-C be introduced.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
18 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
19 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
20 those in favor?
21 MS. EVANS: Aye.
22 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
23 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
25 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
1 ayes have it and so moved.
2 MS. GARVEY: 5-D. FOR INTRODUCTION -
3 A RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND
4 OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE
5 AND ENTER INTO A PROFESSIONAL SERVICES
6 CONTRACT WITH GREENMAN-PEDERSEN, INC. FOR
7 PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERING SERVICES FOR DESIGN
8 OF CRISP AVENUE CULVERT REPLACEMENT.
9 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
10 entertain a motion that 5-D be introduced.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
12 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
13 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
14 those in favor?
15 MS. EVANS: Aye.
16 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
17 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
19 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
20 ayes have it and so moved.
21 MS. GARVEY: 5-E. FOR INTRODUCTION -
22 A RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND
23 OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO ENTER
24 INTO A CONTRACT WITH THE COMMONWEALTH OF
25 PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AND
1 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ("DCED") FOR ITS URBAN
2 DEVELOPMENT GRANT PROGRAM TO RECEIVE A
3 $5,000.00 GRANT FOR POOL IMPROVEMENTS TO THE
4 NOVEMBRINO SWIMMING COMPLEX.
5 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
6 entertain a motion that 5-E be introduced.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
9 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
10 those in favor?
11 MS. EVANS: Aye.
12 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
15 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
16 ayes have it and so moved.
17 MS. GARVEY: 5-F. FOR INTRODUCTION -
18 A RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND
19 OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO ENTER
20 INTO A CONTRACT WITH THE COMMONWEALTH OF
21 PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AND
22 ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ("DCED") FOR ITS URBAN
23 DEVELOPMENT GRANT PROGRAM TO RECEIVE A
24 $10,000.00 GRANT FOR SITE IMPROVEMENTS TO
25 STURGIS PARK.
1 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
2 entertain a motion that 5-F be introduced.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
4 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
5 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
6 those in favor?
7 MS. EVANS: Aye.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
9 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
11 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
12 ayes have it and so moved.
13 MS. GARVEY: 5-G. FOR INTRODUCTION -
14 A RESOLUTION - APPOINTMENT OF ANTHONY P.
15 TROZZOLILLO, 115 EMILY AVENUE, SCRANTON,
16 PENNSYLVANIA, 18504, TO THE CIVIL SERVICE
17 COMMISSION EFFECTIVE OCTOBER 5, 2007. MR.
18 TROZZOLILLO WILL BE REPLACING ANDREW E.
19 BUBSER, WHO RESIGNED EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 12,
20 2007. MR. TROZZOLILLO'S TERM WILL EXPIRE
21 WITH THE TERM OF MAYOR CHRISTOPHER A.
23 MS. GATELLI: At this time I'll
24 entertain a motion that 5-G be introduced.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
1 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
2 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
3 those in favor?
4 MS. EVANS: Aye.
5 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
6 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
8 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
9 ayes have it and so moved.
10 MS. GARVEY: SIXTH ORDER. NO
11 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. SEVENTH ORDER. NO
12 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. EIGHTH ORDER,
13 CITIZENS PARTICIPATION II - GENERAL CITY
15 MS. GATELLI: Douglas.
16 MR. MILLER: Good evening, council,
17 Doug Miller, Scranton Junior City Council
18 President. After weeks of reviewing
19 applications from students interested in
20 serving on our council, Junior Council vice
21 president Ian Miller and I have nominated
22 two students who we feel will represent
23 their school and classmates with great pride
24 and commitment. The nominees to fill the
25 vacancy on our council are Casey Bales, a
1 Junior from West Scranton High School and
2 Nicole Bierie, a freshman from West Scranton
3 High School. We believe that these two
4 students are the best candidates because of
5 their involvement in the community and their
6 commitment to make our city a better place.
7 With that said, I ask council president
8 Gatelli to make a motion to formally appoint
9 Casey Bales and Nicole Bierie to the
10 Scranton Junior City Council.
11 MS. GATELLI: I'll make a motion to
12 appoint Casey Bales and Nicole Bierie to the
13 Junior Council.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
15 MS. GATELLI: On the question? All
16 those in favor?
17 MS. EVANS: Aye.
18 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
19 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
21 MS. GATELLI: Aye. Opposed? The
22 ayes have it and so moved.
23 MR. MILLER: Congratulations and
25 MS. GATELLI: Why don't each of you
1 come up and just introduce yourself and say
2 a few things about yourself, I'm going to
3 put you on the spot.
4 MR. BALES: I'm Casey Bales and I'm a
5 junior at West Scranton. I participate in
6 drama club and German Club at West Scranton
7 High School. I also take classes at David
8 Natchee School of Dance and I also take
9 archery lessons.
10 MS. BIERIE: My name is Nicol Bierie
11 and I'm a freshman at West Scranton High
12 School and I'm involved in the drama club,
13 the chorus club, the spirit club, the
14 Spanish club, the mock trial club and I'm
15 currently running for secretary of our
16 class. I also traveled with the school on
17 the last retreat and I traveled to Florida.
18 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. We welcome
20 MR. MILLER: Last week I shared with
21 council a proposal for Junior Council. This
22 proposal involved creating a contest that
23 encourages residents to take pride in their
24 neighborhoods. We researched this project
25 in the City of Wilkes-Barre's website. We
1 hope council is supportive of this
2 opportunity to improve our neighborhoods.
3 Last week that I stated that we would give
4 council a week to review this plan and that
5 tonight I would ask for council to make a
6 motion to approve this project. So, at this
7 time I ask council to please make a motion
8 to approve this project so that we could
9 begin the planning stages of this project.
10 This project involves restoring pride in our
11 neighborhoods and I believe we are all
12 supportive of any efforts that will help
13 improve our quality of life.
14 MS. GATELLI: I don't know about
15 anyone else, but I really didn't get a
16 chance to discuss it with any of my
17 colleagues or to discuss it with the mayor.
18 I think that he would have to be involved
19 and probably Sandy Mashinski down in Parks
20 and Rec and maybe even in the Architectural
21 Heritage Association because they gave
22 awards for homes that are very well done
23 according to their standards. So, why don't
24 we give it a few weeks, Douglas, and I'll
25 talk to my colleagues about it and see how
1 they feel. I personally think it's a good
2 idea, but I think some bugs have to be
3 worked out and we need the cooperation of
4 everyone else before we can commit to it.
5 MR. MILLER: Okay. Thank you.
6 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Sbaraglia.
7 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
8 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians, I
9 read in the paper that Mr. Krushefski is
10 leaving the administration. I would like to
11 know how this affects the audit in any way.
12 We have been waiting for that audit, you
13 were all to blame that the audit was not
14 forthcoming because you didn't act fast
15 enough, now we get a guy that's leaving,
16 leaving at the most critical time of the
17 whole city. You prepared a new budget and
18 this is the man that was supposed to do most
19 of the work on the new budget and he decided
20 to leave. It brings up a lot of questions.
21 Why would a man at the most critical time in
22 the city, a man that's his job to do would
23 leave? And it's hard to say. I don't know
24 why, I was hoping maybe some of you may have
25 an answer on why he should leave other than
1 being sick and tired of doing what he has
2 been doing. I guess I would be, too, though
3 maybe that's the reason. I would get sick
4 and tired of putting out that garbage
5 reports after report and having to stand by
6 it and say, "This is how it should be," and,
7 "This is how it will be," and you know darn
8 well it isn't to be.
9 That's why every year at the end of
10 the year you are looking for money. I am
11 just wondering if the TANS money is
12 available and that's a good question. There
13 is millions of dollars in TANS that has to
14 be paid at the end of this year, could that
15 be one of the reasons why he would leave? I
16 don't want to have to explain to the
17 taxpayers why we haven't got this money
18 available to pay off a lot of things that
19 have to be paid. Maybe he is right. Maybe
20 he should jump ship at this time. It's a
21 good time to leave. He can always get a job
22 somewhere, he is an accountant.
23 As you know, my son has many, many
24 doctorate degrees in accounting and he just
25 don't understand any of it, why somebody at
1 a critical time. I can see after the budget
2 was out maybe leaving, at least you have
3 done their job to the people of Scranton and
4 paid your salary all of them years, but to
5 jump ship at this time it doesn't really
6 smack good in my eyes, probably doesn't
7 smack good in anybody's eyes, it's just
8 something that he has done and there is
9 nothing you can do about it.
10 It's too bad the city is going to
11 suffer because if anybody should know about
12 the finances of the city it's him. He
13 should know if we are deeply in debt, if we
14 can't come up with the TAN money or any of
15 these things. You haven't I get seen the
16 budget and I guess it's not ready to come
17 before you yet or they must have talked to
18 you a little about but, well, regardless
19 it's going to come before, it's going to
20 blow off I guess and it's a sorry sad of
21 affairs if we can't get that TAN money if we
22 have to borrow again to borrow on top of it.
23 Thank you.
24 MS. EVANS: Mr. Sbaraglia, just a bit
25 of information for you, TANS Series A is
1 traditionally paid in full in July each year
2 and that occurred once again this past July.
3 TANS Series B has a last report of the
4 controller's office has not yet been
5 touched. There is ten million and
6 fifty-thousand dollars in an account labeled
7 TAN Series B.
8 MR. SBARAGLIA: Thank you.
9 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Spindler.
10 MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council.
11 Les Spindler, city resident. First of all,
12 as a citizen in this city, Mrs. Evans, I'd
13 like to thank you for making a motion for
14 the $13,000 for Channel 61 because it's the
15 only way that the truth gets out of the
16 things that happen in this city because we
17 all know in the Doherty newsletter they
18 don't tell the truth.
19 Next thing, Mr. McGoff, last week
20 you were asked a question about immigration
21 and you wouldn't answer it in public in an
22 interview and wouldn't answer it in private
23 out in the hallway, why is that? Is that
24 you don't want the people to know the truth
25 about how you feel about things? I guess
1 the answer was -- the question was answered
2 in Saturday's paper when you said, "We need
3 to embrace all immigrants."
4 I take it to believe that you are in
5 favor of illegal immigrants in this country.
6 People that are getting tax free, everything
7 tax free, they don't pay for medical
8 insurance, and we pay for that and I guess
9 you are in favor of illegal immigrants,
10 that's wonderful. You don't care about us
11 taxpayers, you care more about illegal
12 immigrants. Mrs. Fanucci, again on your no
13 empty store fronts that you brought up last
14 week, four more counting -- plus the four I
15 asked you last week, 214 Wyoming Avenue, 219
16 Wyoming Avenue, the old -- where Quint's
17 Army/Navy was and where North American
18 Warhorse was on Mulberry Street, those jobs
19 went to Dunmore, so I don't know where all
20 of your filled up store fronts are, but you
21 are living in the same dream world as Chris
22 Doherty is with his 3,000 jobs he brought
23 into the city.
24 Next thing, Mrs. Fanucci, you say to
25 bring up productive things, which I did, but
1 nobody does anything. Why don't you make a
2 motion to have your solicitor draw up
3 legislation to have the smoking ban for
4 minors in public places and a ban on cell
5 phone use while driving?
6 MS. FANUCCI: Would you like an
8 MR. SPINDLER: Yes.
9 MS. FANUCCI: Because right now they
10 are look into a state ban for cell phones so
11 I did not feel it was necessary to do that.
12 MR. SPINDLER: Well, why don't you
13 be proactive --
14 MS. FANUCCI: Well, do you want the
16 MR. SPINDLER: I don't want all of my
17 time used up.
18 MS. FANUCCI: Well, it's going to be
19 used up if you ask me a question.
20 MR. SPINDLER: Answer the question
21 when I'm done. We should be proactive like
22 West Pittston laws and like Carbondale does
23 and make their own laws. They didn't wait
24 for the state.
25 Last week, Mr. Courtright, thanks
1 for answering my question about Center
2 Street, I also saw those things there, it's
3 a safety hazard. If one of those buildings
4 back there gets on fire they are going to
5 burn down because fire trucks can't get back
6 there and I'd love to know what rocket
7 scientist was that okayed that. Thank you.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Piccolino. He is
9 not here? Mr. Quinn.
10 MR. QUINN: Thank you. Over the
11 weekend the Associated Press unequivocally
12 stated that the America's working poor
13 cannot support and is being stretched to the
14 breaking point. The story is about
15 household income that where it shows that
16 consumers, especially those making less than
17 $30,000 a year, are cutting spending on
18 food, medical care and critical services.
19 According to the news story these households
20 are living from paycheck to paycheck.
21 In the City of Scranton, according
22 to the US Census, the median household
23 income is $31,900. That means that there is
24 $29,999 households, approximately 14,000
25 almost half the households, are below
1 $30,000, so they are really having very
2 difficult time.
3 And why I bring this up is because
4 of the -- it's that time of the year when
5 you are going to pass a budget and it's
6 already been I guess supported by some
7 members of the council here that you are
8 going to increase the taxes here in the City
9 of Scranton, 25 percent. Judy, you said,
10 no, but I don't know what the other ones
11 said, okay? I know Janet is for it.
12 MS. FANUCCI: I want to know where
13 the rumors started that I --
14 MR. QUINN: I'm talking please.
15 MS. FANUCCI: You made it up.
16 MR. QUINN: Tell her to keep quite.
17 MS. GATELLI: Go ahead.
18 MR. QUINN: The fact is that the
19 school board is going to pass -- they passed
20 the $60 million bond and they are going to
21 execute it and you are going to see a raise
22 in their taxes. The county commissioners
23 they decreased the taxes, but they gave an
24 increase in 2004 so they put a spin on it
25 and it was still 26 percent, so what I'm
1 saying is the fact is that people are
2 hurting out there and you passed an
3 ordinance, the fact that you are going to
4 take homes away from people, elderly and
5 people who I mentioned here under the
6 $30,000 who can't afford the basics yet they
7 are going to have to paying -- we are paying
8 taxes now that's exorbitant, you are going
9 to take away their homes from them and I ask
10 you again to go back and try to look at the
11 social economic data in the City of Scranton
12 and make your proposals, your budgets as per
13 the social economic data not what the mayor
14 says or not what anybody at council says,
15 okay, but do it that way with the exception
16 of Janet Evans. Last year she came up with
17 a budget, finance chairperson, ignored it.
18 I hope that they won't ignore Mrs. Evans
19 this time, okay?
20 Now, the last thing that really
21 astounds me is the fact that the City of
22 Scranton franchise Comcast receives over
23 $800,000 a year from Comcast for the cable
24 and you can't fund 61 with over that
25 $800,000? If that isn't a political snafu I
1 don't know what it is. You know, you can't
2 -- it's not looking out for the people,
3 those people who are sitting at home
4 18 percent elderly one in four poverty 17.2
5 percent in poverty, the state is 11.9, the
6 state's medium income is $40,000, so,
7 please, look out for the people, your
8 electorate and do something, look at the
9 data. Look at Mrs. Fanucci, try to think
10 about it Mrs. Fanucci. Don't try to think
11 of coffee shops and whatever, do us a favor
12 sometime. Thank you.
13 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
14 MS. EVANS: Mr. Quinn, I wanted to
15 respond to your final statement regarding
16 the Comcast, in actuality the figures
17 plugged into the 2007 operating budget
18 exceed what has been received by the city
19 this year in terms of payments made each
20 financial quarter reflecting the 5 percent
21 Comcast profits, so we are actually not only
22 receiving less money than we did last year,
23 but the monies received will not even equal
24 what has been plugged into the current
25 operating budget. They are under budget if
1 you will, under our budget.
2 MR. QUINN: What are talking about
4 MS. EVANS: Pardon?
5 MR. QUINN: How much are you talking
6 about dollarwise?
7 MS. EVANS: Oh, I'm going to have to
8 do the math for you, but I believe it's 700
9 and some thousand that was put into the 2007
10 operating budget and I think at this point
11 in time we did receive a payment very
12 recently that is normally not received until
13 November and it was for, I'm going to
14 approximate here, about half of what it
15 should be, and I think this reflects a
16 pattern of cancelled contracts between
17 viewers and Comcast. Their numbers
18 obviously are down because we know that, you
19 know, they have levied increases regularly,
20 but the money simply isn't there. It isn't
21 being received by the city, so there will be
22 a gap in this particular budget line item.
23 MR. QUINN: But they will be
24 receiving 700 and some thousand dollars?
25 MS. EVANS: The city?
1 MR. QUINN: Yeah.
2 MS. EVANS: I don't believe we will.
3 MR. QUINN: How much do you think we
4 will be receiving?
5 MS. EVANS: It's difficult to gauge
6 because of the final payment is not made --
7 the final payment for this current fiscal
8 year will not be made until February 2008.
9 MR. QUINN: Well, let's put it back.
10 I mean, last year, the 2007 budget --
11 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Quinn, we are
12 going to have to address this --
13 MR. QUINN: I was having a
15 MS. GATELLI: I know, but we can't
16 because the other people don't have that
17 opportunity. Mrs. Evans, can you find that
18 out for him later?
19 MS. EVANS: Yes, I'd be happy to.
20 If you want to e-mail I can --
21 MR. QUINN: Certainly. Thank you.
22 MS. EVANS: Share the facts.
23 MS. GATELLI: She will look it up for
25 MR. QUINN: Thank.
1 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mr. Quinn.
2 Mr. Dobson.
3 MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council.
4 Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton and a
5 Taxpayer Association associate. I'm going
6 to put my sewage talk on the side for now
7 and address the 61 issue I wrote a little
8 statement here. I feel it's important to
9 fund Channel 61. It's unconscionable to
10 pledge $25,000 and not deliver it after the
11 services are rendered, and these people
12 provide uncolored news without comment for
13 our citizens. They don't tell anybody what
14 to think, they just show the results of the
15 various meetings, and take my word for it,
16 if somebody got out of line here or was
17 insulting or embarrassing or off center, I
18 talk to a lot of people around town, and the
19 citizens don't always have the best opinions
20 of these people, so if somebody is out of
21 line or whatever usually the people that
22 watch the program are capable of determining
23 that and they don't really consider them
25 And the people that I see propose to
1 take it over they have a political agenda of
2 their own and sometimes they can't separate
3 facts from their own fiction. News reports
4 are edited. One time I attended a town
5 meeting at a local university, social
6 security was the issue, and the former
7 congressman was allowed himself time on
8 privatization, many young people cheered him
9 despite his lack of objective impulse. He
10 left without allowing sufficient comment for
11 objective views, many people were standing
12 in line and they just weren't given any
13 chance to make a comment and basically, this
14 is just an example, but it violates common
15 sense on that objectivity and also IRS rules
16 involving - for nonprofit involving
17 politics, if a none profit or church group
18 is going to invite one candidate they are
19 supposed to invite most of the candidates
20 and give them an opportunity to speak
21 irregardless of whether they agree with
22 their agenda or not. That's an IRS rule for
23 nonprofits, so I would appreciate if we
24 could look into it and wherever if you have
25 to raise my taxes a dollar big deal.
1 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Mr. Davis.
2 MR. DAVIS: Salaam aleikum. My name
3 is Jim Davis and I'm here tonight to talk
4 about the eviction, the eviction of
5 Washington Plaza. Has anybody ever found
6 out what happened to the people and what we
7 are going to do about the houses that lay
8 their empty? Has anybody inquired into it?
9 Does anybody care? That's my problem
10 because I can go through the Hill Section
11 and I can start on Mulberry Street and I can
12 start looking down Taylor Avenue all the way
13 to Prescott Avenue, I have never seen -- it
14 looks like a bombed out shelter, it really
15 does. All of those houses were taken down.
16 All of those -- I used to know most of the
17 people that lived there, that whole
18 community was dispersed and destroyed in a
19 lot of ways. As you know and I know, once
20 you have been raised in a certain area you
21 destroy the homes you destroy the community,
22 I have gone through that four times, I saw
23 Adams Avenue in the city, this beautiful
24 thing of modern -- what was that called,
25 Midtown Redevelopment and the Judy Gatelli.
1 Okay. Jimmy Connors, Mrs. Gatelli,
2 University of Scranton, Hill Neighborhood
3 Association went through the Hill Section
4 and exterminated -- or they didn't
5 exterminate, they --
6 MS. GATELLI: Yes, that's correct, we
7 did exterminate, you are right, we did.
8 MR. DAVIS: You exterminated that
9 whole community I'll tell you what, we have
10 not forgotten, but you know the people said,
11 "Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord."
12 You know, whenever I hear you being
13 afraid of this or afraid of that and I can't
14 understand who pays for this guard, your
15 personal guard? Who pays? Because when you
16 are not here he is not here, so who pays for
17 that, you? Does that come out of your
18 salary? I hope so at least. Then we can
19 say, "Hey, if she -- if see doesn't come,
20 good. We are saving money," but the thing
21 is you have been -- you have been a pain the
22 sides of many people that I know personally
23 for an awful long time and I think you
24 should do something about it like resign.
25 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Davis, I don't
1 intend to resign. When I worked there I
2 closed drug houses.
3 MR. DAVIS: Can I finish?
4 MS. GATELLI: They were drug houses
5 that I closed.
6 MR. DAVIS: All the houses were drug
8 MS. GATELLI: Most of them were drug
9 houses, yes, they were.
10 MR. DAVIS: Have you been up there
12 MS. GATELLI: Yes, they were drug
14 MR. DAVIS: Have you been up there
15 lately? Have you seen the houses that are
17 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
18 MR. DAVIS: Have you seen the
19 properties that are totally wiped out?
20 MS. GATELLI: Marie Schumacher.
21 MR. DAVIS: Totally wiped out. You
22 are a shame. You should be ashamed of
24 MS. GATELLI: Well, I'm not. I'm
25 very proud of my record in community
2 MR. DAVIS: I'm quite sure that God
3 will do the right thing with you.
4 MS. SCHUMACHER: Marie Schumacher,
5 resident and member of the Scranton
6 Lackawanna Taxpayers' and Citizens'
7 Association. A few things tonight, I want
8 to do some follow-up so even though I
9 may ask questions if you would wait until my
10 three minutes have been consumed or I
11 complete before you answer.
12 To start off though, I would like to
13 speak to the rumor that Mrs. Fanucci talked
14 about on the tax incentive, that was PEL and
15 their presentation here, I believe it was
16 last year, that promised us a 25 percent tax
17 increase last year for 2007, 2008 and 2009
18 and if you go back and check the records you
19 will find that's what they promised.
20 And also a point of information
21 before I get to my follow-ups, and that is I
22 don't know yet whether the city has hired an
23 engineer, but the lack of an engineer or
24 anybody apparently in that department to do
25 any follow-up on their subcontractors is
1 really affecting the citizens. By now we
2 should have had the traffic signals
3 throughout the city, should have been timed,
4 that whole project should have been
5 completed, instead, it hasn't even been put
6 out to bid yet and why? Because the
7 Allentown company that was contracted by the
8 city to do that work hasn't been producing
9 and who is there to follow- up? With the
10 price of gas going up it really hurts a lot
11 of people to sit at a red light when they
12 are not timed, if they were timed and had
13 sensors they could be back on their way
14 instead of burning unnecessary fuel.
15 And now to my follow-ups. First,
16 last week as promised I delivered a series
17 of letters to you, two of which requested
18 specific information on specific budget
19 items. I delivered those copies they were
20 -- two of the letters were two months old,
21 the others were more recent, I delivered
22 those to Mrs. Fanucci and Mrs. Gatelli and
23 Mr. McGoff because they are the three who
24 said they had no problem getting information
25 from the mayor. I'd sort of like -- if I
1 moire time I'd like to play a game I have
2 seen on the Price is Right where you get a
3 car if you -- if you ask -- if you have one
4 number right and then a sound comes on and
5 then another, "Do I have two numbers right,"
6 and a sound comes on, and the prize that I'm
7 looking for is some transparency in
8 government, and I'd like to go through all
9 nine questions that were addressed in those
10 documents and say, "Do I get one answer? Do
11 I get two answers?"
12 I would really love the answers and
13 after I hope you will inform as to whether
14 or not you are going to be able to provide
15 those for me. Mr. Courtright, can you
16 respond on the plans for the police
17 headquarters finishing?
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: I haven't gotten an
19 answer yet, sorry. I'll ask again.
20 MS. SCHUMACHER: Maybe you can ask
21 one of your three colleagues who has no
22 problem. Any answers to any of the
23 questions on those? Nothing. Thank you.
24 MS. GATELLI: Is there anyone else?
25 MR. DANSICO: Good evening, again,
1 council, my name is a Lou Dansico, I'm here
2 representing Scranton Today, and I've come
3 to the lectern to just thank you for the
4 action that you have taken tonight. That
5 action will allow us to continue to operate
6 the station for the balance of the year. I
7 thank you on behalf of the citizens of the
8 City of Scranton who I guess we all serve,
9 us in the capacity of being a medium by
10 which your message gets and I thank you on
11 behalf of the citizens who want you to
12 receive that message. I also look forward
13 to next year the opportunity of once again
14 receiving money from the city to continue
15 the work of Scranton Today. Thank you very
17 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Piccolino, I called
18 you a little while ago so you can come up.
19 MR. PICCOLINO: Giovanni Piccolino,
20 taxpayer, business man in Scranton.
21 Scranton police are investigating a pair of
22 fights that sent two University of Scranton
23 students to a hospital. Two unidentified
24 men were assaulted on the 440 Block of
25 Costello Court about an hour apart Friday
1 police said. The alleged attackers names
2 were not released, but the police said they
3 were also college students. The first malae
4 involved eight to ten men who alleged
5 another man unarmed around 7:00 a.m. police
6 said. The second victim in the same area on
7 Costello Court happened around 2:5 a.m. The
8 second victim was also a man who was
9 allegedly beaten by a couple of other men
10 police said. In this incident the victim's
11 leg was placed on the roadway curb and
12 stomped breaking a bone the police said.
13 The victim initially didn't want anything
14 done, but is now working with investigators
15 said Scranton police captain Carl Graziano.
16 Both incidents remain under investigation,
17 no charges have within filed.
18 My point of this is that we are
19 constantly handing things left and right to
20 the University of Scranton and when you are
21 trying to make a town a college town there
22 is more violence and propensity or people
23 drinking and whatnot to create more
24 violence, and I think like violence in the
25 City of Scranton has to be an issue that we
1 look at a little bit more when we are
2 handing this and that and things out left
3 and right to the University of Scranton.
4 You bring in a lot of students, a lot of
5 mixture and that's not a good situation.
6 Each and every time our public safety is
7 called out there, you know, it's a burden on
8 the taxpayers. There has got to be some
9 kind of way that we could somehow someway
10 get some kind of money out of the "U". I
11 know it's a nonprofit, but, you know, if we
12 come up with this NCC deal where we have an
13 ordinance where we come up with these
14 ridiculous $2,300 in penalties and fees if
15 you can't afford to pay your taxes, there
16 has got to be some kind of ordinance we can
17 do in order for us to get some kind of money
18 out of there, because, you know, all of
19 these things, putting a kid's leg on the
20 curb and stomping it and breaking it in half
21 and the taxpayers are paying for that kind
22 of stuff, at the same time th "U" is
23 building up left and right and left and
24 right and basically taking our tax dollars
25 and our police force and our firefighters
1 and everything with it and it's a very, very
2 heavy burden on the City of Scranton
3 taxpayers and we should definitely do
4 something about it.
5 Another issue I would like to talk
6 about is Channel 61. That is very, very
7 vital to all of the citizens of Scranton
8 especially the people who can't get here and
9 handicapped and whatnot, for us to say we
10 are giving them money and then pull it away
11 I think is a big shame. You know, again
12 with all of this tax money that we are
13 digging out of the all taxpayers' pockets,
14 there's got to be some kind of money
15 available for the TV stations so people have
16 the freedom of speech and they can see how
17 their government is being run. Thank you
18 very much.
19 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'd just like to
21 comment on one thing Mr. Piccolino said
22 because I have been thinking about it for a
23 long time and I wanted to wait after the
24 election, I don't want to sound like a
25 political speech, but a lot of businesses
1 throughout this city higher police officers
2 extra duty, The Ice Box, South Side Complex,
3 I think Mr. Piccolino's business, and I
4 thought maybe we could go, I said I will
5 wait to all of the election business is
6 over, maybe we can go to the University of
7 Scranton and ask them to try to be a good
8 neighbor and maybe they can pay for two
9 officers up in the Hill, even on the
10 weekends when the kids are a little bit more
11 crazy, but I think what you need to do is
12 you got officers sometimes working extra
13 duty and they only get straight time, and
14 that's not an extra duty job that they are
15 going to go running for because they are
16 going to really work hard on the weekend up
17 there, so maybe if we get the University to
18 agree to hire two police officers on Friday
19 and Saturday and they were to get time and a
20 half, I think we could control a lot of
21 problems up there. So maybe I'll try to
22 take that on and see if I can't speak to
23 somebody over there and see if they would be
24 willing to help us out with that and I think
25 it would benefit them and us. That's all I
1 have. Thank you.
2 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
3 MR. TALIMINI: Joe Talimini, citizen
4 of Scranton. I'm speaking tonight on behalf
5 of Dan Dowrimple, who as you all know,
6 graduated from West Scranton High last year
7 and Dan is a student at Berkley College
8 music in Boston. Dan put out a CD out of
9 his own costs, it's an instrumental CD, ten
10 original songs, and Dan asked me to convey
11 the message that he would like anybody who
12 wants to buy that CD at $5 a piece to please
13 do so, send the money to Channel 61, that's
14 Dan's contribution to trying to help Channel
16 And I would also like to take issue
17 with the mayor and council that this is a
18 terrible example to set for the citizens and
19 the for the kids in this community that with
20 the exorbitant fees that we pay to Comcast
21 for our TV stations that they can't afford
22 an extra 25 grand, it is sad, but here is a
23 kid who just graduated from high school and
24 is paying his way through college and he is
25 going to donate five bucks for each CD that
1 he paid for to Channel 61, and I would
2 encourage anybody who is interested in
3 purchasing it to please contact Channel 61.
4 Mr. Piccolino has graciously offered to
5 handle some of the CD's down at his place.
6 If anybody needs anything call me at
7 Scranton Large or I'm sure they can call
8 Channel 61 and get that information and
9 thank you very much. And I'm hoping that
10 Channel 61 will stay on the air.
11 MR. JACKOWITZ: Bill Jackowitz, South
12 Scranton resident. This is the third time
13 in six weeks when I come up to speak
14 Mrs. Fanucci has left the room. Life,
15 paycheck to paycheck. Many signs indicate
16 America's working poor and not so poor are
17 being stretched to the breaking point and
18 Mr. McGoff is advocating that we take care
19 of the illegal immigrants and nondocumented
20 immigrants who are living and working in
21 this city for under the table wages and
22 sending most of the money back to their
23 relatives back home. Well documented,
24 Mr. McGoff. Money that you still have four
25 days will only last two days. Americans,
1 Scranton citizens are increasingly unable to
2 stretch their dollars to the next pay as
3 they juggle higher rents, food, and energy
4 bills and higher taxes. Now in Scranton
5 they must worry about losing their homes
6 thanks to Mr. McGoff, Mrs. Fanucci and
7 President Gatelli.
8 Food prices in the last year, milk
9 21.3 percent increase; eggs, 43.9 percent
10 increase; chicken, 8.1 percent increase;
11 coffee, 6.8 percent increase; beef and veal,
12 6.4 increase, and many others. Also, gas
13 prices and heating oil on the rise again.
14 Economists and analysts fear the strain will
15 get worse as people are hit with higher home
16 heating bills this winter. Mortgage rates
17 are going up and Scranton politicians
18 raising city taxes 25 percent, Mr. McGoff,
19 Ms. Fanucci and President Gatelli to make it
20 easier for Scranton homeowners to lose their
21 homes, but yet Mr. McGoff advocates making
22 it easy for undocumented illegal immigrants
23 to take jobs away from Scranton, US
24 citizens. This will create a larger burden
25 for Scranton taxpayers, illegals do not pay
1 taxes. All cities, council members, the
2 mayor and Austin Burke should visit Labor
3 Ready on Wyoming Avenue at 5 a.m. every
4 morning and also at the end of the day when
5 workers are paid. They are usually paid by
6 vouchers or by check which, by the way, no
7 taxes are taken out of them, so, again,
8 illegals and undocumented do not pay taxes.
9 Mr. Courtright, I never said that you
10 do not support Channel 61. What I said was
11 that you and the other council persons voted
12 for $25,000 for Channel 61 not knowing if
13 the money was available, so if anyone was
14 wrong it was you and you fellow council
15 members for voting for a donation you did
16 not have.
17 And, Mr. McGoff, I stand corrected,
18 you did not vote for the $25,000, I
19 misquoted you, I misstated last week. Miss
20 Fanucci, Scranton does not have one-store
21 front property available downtown, you are
22 correct, there are more available than you
23 can count with more becoming available.
24 It's a totally misleading statement, but
25 Scrantonians are intelligent people, we just
1 vote the wrong people into office. Thank
3 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else?
4 MR. MORGAN: Good evening, Council.
5 Tonight I would just like to say that I
6 really hope that city council comes through
7 with the money for Channel 61, but I would
8 also like to inform all of the people in the
9 City of Scranton and outside of the city
10 that Channel 61 is an major asset to this
11 community and I think that people fail to
12 realize that it severs more than just the
13 people in Scranton, I think it's audience is
14 very wide and broad and I think it's goes
15 all the way to Pittston. Myself and Ozzie
16 Quinn, who is the president of our tax
17 group, has sat down in the last month and
18 had discussions about Channel 61, we didn't
19 know that there financial situation was as
20 bleak as it is right now, and I would like
21 to say that I seriously hope that council
22 comes through with the money that they have
23 talked about tonight and that the Scranton/
24 Lackawanna Taxpayers' and Citizens'
25 Association is going to do a drive to raise
1 money for Channel 61, but our position is
2 going to be multifaceted because we would
3 like to see Channel 61 go to low power FM.
4 We would also like it see them broadcast on
5 a lot of different bands like Internet,
6 computers and so forth and so on, so we are
7 going to do a very wide ranging fundraiser
8 that we have already talked to people, I
9 have personally talked to people to bring
10 this about. And the tax group came forward
11 when the free swim came and we accomplished
12 that mission and we are going to tackle this
13 one and we are a small group and we are
14 looking forward to council working with
15 Channel 61 to give them and give us enough
16 time to try and help Channel 61 and for
17 everyone to please give a donation to
18 Channel 61 at 500 Vine Street. No matter
19 where you live in the county it's very
20 important, this channel is a major asset
21 which really brings forth freedom of speech
22 in every way. Judge Munley has a show
23 there, we have -- we just have so many
24 people there that have so many things that
25 are so vital to this community, not just
1 Scranton, places outside of the city in
2 Lackawanna County and I think that everybody
3 should consider sending a donation to
4 Channel 61 and also to support the tax
5 group. You can call Ozzie Quinn at 347-8813
6 or you can call me at 558-1648, and this is
7 a real thing and we are going to make it
8 work. Thank you.
9 MS. FRANUS: Fay Franus, Scranton.
10 What I'm saying tonight is just my opinion I
11 feel very strongly about it. I would like
12 the people in the city to understand where
13 Mr. McGoff is coming from, in my opinion.
14 Mr. McGoff was quoted on October 26 when
15 asked a question by Mr. Courtright why he
16 wanted the job, Mr. McTiernan's seat, he
17 said, "I have no political aspirations. I
18 have no real political affiliations."
19 Well, I believe that, in my opinion,
20 to be an out and out lie, and if Mr. McGoff
21 would lie about something like that he would
22 lie about anything else. Then he also went
23 onto say, and here's a good one, he wants to
24 find someone who he feels he is the kind of
25 person has not been corrupt, has not been
1 corrupted, and he says, and I use that not
2 in a criminal way, but has not been
3 corrupted by political process, somebody who
4 doesn't have an affiliation of constituency,
5 someone holding them, someone going through
6 the city and representing the people.
7 Well, Mr. McGoff, if anybody, if
8 anybody, is politically corrupt you are
9 number one along with Mrs. Fanucci and
10 Mrs. Gatelli. I mean, my gosh, you
11 certainly don't represent the people in the
12 city when you give them a 25 percent tax
13 increase. And then you said you wanted it
14 only for a year and then Mrs. Gatelli said
15 she wanted to bring someone here that had
16 ties -- that had ties to either -- that did
17 not have ties to either political party, so
18 she would like to appoint Mr. McGoff to the
19 city council. Well, this is totally
21 Mr. McGoff, you are all about
22 politics. You are like everyone else there
23 on council you are there to represent the
24 people that appointed you, and the people
25 that appointed you are Mrs. Gatelli and
1 Mr. Chris Doherty. You are there to do his
2 work and his agenda because you have to be
3 responsible for the person who put you in
4 that seat and that's Mayor Doherty. You are
5 not there for the people who work and live
6 everyday and pay and pay and pay the taxes
7 that you as a swing vote enacted upon them
8 and you expect us to want you as a council
9 person? You were never elected by the
10 people. You were appointed, you owe Mayor
11 Doherty and you owe Mrs. Gatelli so how
12 could we possibly want someone like you in
13 office? If anybody has any brains at all
14 they will never put you in office. And so I
15 say remove the politics, remove the taint
16 and remove yourself from council,
17 Mr. McGoff.
18 MS. GATELLI: Ray Lyman.
19 MR. LYMAN: Raymond Lyman. Mrs.
20 Gatelli, the Pinebrook Association
21 dissolved, Jerry Richardson told me that.
22 Him, Mary Shalipko and Mr. Pittick dissolved
23 the association because Mary's father,
24 Mr. Shalipko died, and Jerry said that since
25 the lack of officers they dissolved it and
1 he told me that my neighborhood association
2 is getting a $5,000-block grant. Now, if
3 I'm -- now, I filled out a block grant
4 application for $500 for a camera and was
5 turned down, do you remember, Sherry, you
6 told me that?
7 MS. FANUCCI: It wasn't turned down,
8 Ray, remember, you sent it to the wrong
9 place? They never received it.
10 MR. LYMAN: I sent it to Sara
12 MS. FANUCCI: It was never received
13 to Sara. Remember, you told me you sent it
14 to the wrong place?
15 MR. LYMAN: And then I delivered -- I
16 mailed it back to the right address.
17 MS. FANUCCI: Right, but at that time
18 it was late, it was too late that
19 the expiration date had gotten away, that
20 was the problem.
21 MR. LYMAN: Oh, but either way, he
22 told me that it was sent, that I'm getting
23 $5,000 and then the Greenridge Neighborhood
24 Association is saying that. Now, I want to
25 know the truth? Am I getting $5,000 for the
1 Bell Street Neighborhood Association? Yes
2 or no?
3 MS. GATELLI: I never saw an
4 application for you.
5 MR. LYMAN: Because since they are
6 being dissolved, because he's telling me, he
7 was fighting with me down in the store and I
8 said, "I don't know anything about it."
9 And, number two, if that's true we
10 would fix our catch basin and trim the trees
11 if that's true and --
12 MS. GATELLI: Well' find out for you.
13 MR. LYMAN: And now I have some
14 other problems. Now, up by John Adams the
15 lines need to be painted. Now, you can tell
16 the school boards since they are moving
17 around, shuffling around and I couldn't find
18 out where they were and I see on 61 they
19 were at Robert Morris. I tried to call down
20 when they were at the administration I said
21 why can't they be at John Adams. The
22 secretary told me in an ignorant way, "Mind
23 your own business."
24 She used a little profanity at me
25 since I come down here at city council and
1 she says city council is a joke and I
2 thought that was a little ignorant; and
3 number two, you know the light down by
4 Clinical Labs down here, this light? All
5 three lights, you know, the green, yellow,
6 and red is burned out, so, Kay, can you send
7 a letter?
8 MS. GATELLI: Kay, you are working
9 for Ray.
10 MR. LYMAN: No, the light, not the
11 sign. It's the light.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: There is a problem
13 up there.
14 MR. LYMAN: I got another problem.
15 MS. GATELLI: Well, your time is up.
16 You can wait and talk to us after.
17 MS. LYMAN: But, this is important,
18 Mrs. Gatelli.
19 MS. GATELLI: Will it take one
21 MR. LYMAN: Yeah, one minute.
22 MS. GATELLI: Okay.
23 MR. LYMAN: You know down by on
24 Capouse Avenue on Gibson Street and the
25 800-block of Capouse we need a light there.
1 Sherry, I told you --
2 MS. GATELLI: A stop sign is there.
3 MR. LYMAN: No, a blinker light
4 because when the cars on Gibson and on
5 Capouse the stop sign they come out of,
6 pardon my words, a bat out of hell and the
7 little kids that come from home from John
8 Adams, you know, they try to cross the
9 street and the cars almost hit them.
10 MS. GATELLI: Okay. Thanks you.
11 MR. LYMAN: So can you a send a
13 MS. GATELLI: Absolutely.
14 MR. LYMAN: You mentioned last week
15 or two weeks ago -- -
16 MS. GATELLI: You are going over
17 your minute now.
18 MR. LYMAN: Okay.
19 MS. GATELLI: You said one thing.
20 MR. LYMAN: 1490 can, you guys send a
21 letter to our state representatives about
23 MS. GATELLI: Yes, we mentioned last
25 MR. LYMAN: All five of you can send
1 a letter.
2 MS. GATELLI: We did last week.
3 MR. LYMAN: To all of our state
4 representatives to stop Comcast.
5 MR. GATELLI: Yes, we did that last
7 MR. LYMAN: And you have Verizon and
8 all of the other cable companies coming in
9 the city --
10 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
11 Mr. Patilla is waiting anxiously.
12 MR. LYMAN: Thank you.
13 MS. GATELLI: By the way, you have a
14 great hat on, Ray.
15 MR. LYMAN: Thank you, Judy, a lot of
16 people say that.
17 MS. GATELLI: Are you for Cleveland
18 or --
19 MR. LYMAN: Boston.
20 MR. PATILLA: Scranton resident,
21 member of Scranton/Lackawanna County
22 Taxpayers' Association. Earlier today when
23 I was at the courthouse Channel 61 came up,
24 and, you know, it's kind of pitiful that an
25 elective body can make a promise and then
1 rengeg on it, but when it comes to this
2 council, not everyone, but the council as a
3 whole it's not unexpected. Like I said,
4 that day when you voted on it I waited for
5 it to happen and it didn't happen. You
6 know, Channel 61 as everybody else has
7 stated is very important for the residents
8 in this area, and it would behoove city
9 council as an individual, as a council
10 person to show the way just like the student
11 did and make a donation for that station.
12 I'm not going to ask Comcast for a donation,
13 Comcast gives you guys enough money. Maybe
14 if some of that money went to the businesses
15 in this city or paid down that debt we
16 wouldn't have that problem, you know, but it
17 all boils down to malfeasance and
18 mismanagement. Our money is going to places
19 where it's not doing the city -- the
20 taxpayers any good, you know, and back to my
21 number one pet peeve, we are getting to a
22 few weeks before it's election time so I'm
23 asking every young person out there, every
24 registered voter out there, like I said, I
25 don't tell you who to vote for, not as long
1 as it ain't no body currently in office.
2 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Patilla, you can't
3 say that, please.
4 MR. PATILLA: But it's time for the
5 citizens of the city to be represented, not
6 the businesses, not the corporations, not
7 the lawyers, not the solicitors, but it's
8 the taxpayers, the residents, the Hispanics,
9 the Afro-Americans, the Caucasians, the
10 Irish, the Italian, all of us as a whole
11 because one group doesn't make up this city,
12 just like one group doesn't make up this
13 country. You know, we are Scranton and we
14 deserve to be represented to the fullest.
15 We shouldn't have to beg, we shouldn't have
16 to have certain situations of Channel 61 not
17 having fund being because certain people
18 have their own private agendas. You know, I
19 like say every week, you will not be there
20 come November because I don't see --
21 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Patilla, please.
22 MR. PATILLA: -- positive votes for
23 you in this audience. I see people coming
24 to readdress their council people with their
25 problems and you have yet to show that you
1 are here for the people of this city not
2 Doherty, not anybody else, but the citizens
3 of this city. We are the ones that pay the
4 bills. We are the ones stuck with the
5 bills. I'm done. Have a nice night, Mrs.
7 MS. EVANS: Thank you.
8 MS. GATELLI: You friend, Janet.
10 MR. SLEDENZSKI: Hello, Bill?
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Hi, Chris.
12 MS. GATELLI: Crissy has a sticker
13 on, too.
14 MR. SLEDENZSKI: Hey, Billy. Hey,
15 Judy, two games left this week, Judge, what
16 are we going to do.
17 MS. GATELLI: What are we going to
18 do, are we going to them?
19 MR. SLEDENZSKI: We are going to take
20 it you all the way, Judy, I hope we do. I
21 hope for you, too, Janet, and the bowl teams
22 take it.
23 MS. EVANS: Thank you.
24 MR. SLEDENZSKI: I really mean it.
25 Thank you.
1 MS. GATELLI: Thanks, Crissy.
2 MR. CANNES: Good evening. My name
3 is Jeff Cannes, I'm a businessman here in
4 Scranton as well as a resident. I have come
5 here, well, first of all, I have to
6 acknowledge that I have heard some
7 interesting logic and perhaps rhetoric, but
8 I'm not envious of your jobs here, I
9 appreciate what you did, obviously it's not
10 easy. I'm coming here with a business
11 matter, I don't know if this the right venue
12 or not. In early 2005 we signed a contract
13 with the city for work, construction work to
14 be done at Crowley Park, the project was in
15 the approximate value range of $198,000.
16 The work was pursued with diligence, there
17 were no complaints about the quality of work
18 or anything missing from it. We are still
19 owed I believe $37,400 without any
20 discussions about possible interest for non
21 payment. Basically, our firm has been
22 funding this job for a couple of years. The
23 city's response has been that a grant which
24 had been anticipated did not come through
25 and they were, therefore, unable to pay the
1 bill. The logic of this escapes me. I
2 don't know to whom I might address myself to
3 seek payment. We have on a regular basis
4 requested payment from the city. There have
5 been multiple broken promises. At this
6 point it has been assigned to an assistant
7 solicitor who frankly does not comprehend
8 what has happened, he has spoken with our
9 bookkeeper and clearly demonstrates a lack
10 of knowledge of what has transpired or the
11 figures and it's just going nowhere.
12 I would appreciate the opportunity
13 to address and perhaps outside of this room
14 since I know that my time is short here and
15 demonstrate to whomever the responsibility
16 parties might be the facts of this matter
17 and see how we can get paid. Now, can you
18 please tell me to whom and where I would go?
19 MS. GATELLI: I would ask that you
20 stay for a minute after and we'll have you
21 talk to the solicitor.
22 MR. CANNES: Thank you. I'm fully
23 aware the public monies don't grow on trees
24 either, but it just seems unconscionable.
25 MS. EVANS: What is the name of your
2 MR. CANNES: Jerry Cannes,
3 Incorporated. Thank you.
4 MS. GATELLI: You're welcome. Anyone
6 MR. ANCHERANI: Good evening,
7 Council, Nelson Ancherani, resident and
8 taxpayer, city employee and financial
9 secretary of the FOP, First Amendment
10 Rights. A number of months ago Council was
11 informed that experienced and trained
12 officers would be leaving the Scranton
13 Police Department for improved opportunities
14 with other departments. The exodus had
15 begun with one officer leaving a couple of
16 months ago and now three more are scheduled
17 to leave in the very near future. I'm sorry
18 to say, but it is just the beginning. I
19 don't blame them because they are truly
20 bettering themselves. The departments that
21 they are joining are well-equipped and the
22 officers will be treated with respect. I
23 wish them luck. The officers that are
24 leaving weathered a six-year wage freeze,
25 but enough is enough. That partly
1 illustrates what I mean about treatment.
2 Six years ago the mayor wrote a recovery
3 plan that stripped the police officers of
4 everything they had gained over the years.
5 He instituted a six-year wage freeze and
6 wanted the active workers to pay for retired
7 members health care. The unions resisted
8 and are locked in fierce arbitrations and
9 appeals in the courts. One very important
10 thing the mayor wants to do is to break the
11 unions. I know I sound a like a broken
12 record, but what I'm about to say should be
13 remembered. The mayor violated his recovery
14 plan from the beginning when he gave raises
15 through his favorite people and created new
16 positions. It has costs the city over 11
17 1/2 million dollars cumulatively, that's
18 cumulatively up to December 31, 2007. By
19 the end of 2008, that figure would be close
20 to 20 million cumulatively. This figure
21 does not include consultants and attorneys.
22 The new budget will be presented in three
23 weeks to council by the mayor and I predict
24 Miss Fanucci, Mr. McGoff and Ms. Gatelli
25 will pass a record budget and raise our
1 taxes 25 percent regardless of what Ms.
2 Gatelli says.
3 MS. GATELLI: You just get that
4 wallet ready, Nelson.
5 MR. ANCHERANI: Point of interest,
6 only 23 applicants showed up to take the
7 entry level police exam, 23. That's
8 pathetic. We never had such a low number
9 taking the test since the testing with an
10 opened up to everyone, not just city
11 residents. We have to ask ourselves, why
12 would anyone want to become a police in the
13 City of Scranton and work for one of the
14 lows paid departments in the area? We have
15 approximately 100 patrol officers who
16 answered approximately 70,000 calls per
17 years. This averages out to 700 calls per
18 year for each officer. Needless to say,
19 that is more calls than some municipalities
20 get in a year. I see Lynn Krushefski, our
21 business administrator is leaving probably
22 for better opportunities. I guess $80,000
23 isn't enough even though most police
24 officers in the city make half of that.
25 Thank you.
1 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Anyone
2 else? Make a motion to adjourn?
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
4 MS. GATELLI: I'll see you next
7 (Meeting adjourned.)
3 C E R T I F I C A T E
5 I hereby certify that the proceedings and
6 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the
7 notes of testimony taken by me at the hearing of the
8 above-captioned matter and that the foregoing is a true
9 and correct transcript of the same to the best of my
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI
17 OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER