1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
7 Tuesday, October 9, 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:
4 MS. JUDY GATELLI, PRESIDENT
MS. JANET E. EVANS
7 MS. SHERRY FANUCCI
MR. ROBERT MCGOFF
10 MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT
MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK
13 MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK
MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR
1 (Pledge of Allegiance recited and moment of
2 reflection observed.)
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Roll call.
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 MR. COURTRIGHT: No business Third
15 MS. GARVEY: No business in Third
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Fourth Order,
18 citizens participation on the agenda items
19 and the first one I have is Mr. Sbargalia.
20 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
21 citizen of Scranton, Fellow Scrantonians,
22 member of the taxpayers' group. I want to
23 say something on 5-C, that's some stream
24 work apparently that is going to be done up
25 there, I guess off of Newton Road somewhere.
1 Did you see any really backup on it saying
2 if we are responsible for any of the costs
3 of the upstream stream work or this is going
4 to be done by the Department of Agriculture
5 through a grant?
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Sbaraglia, you
7 want me to wait until you are done?
8 MR. SBARAGLIA: Go ahead. Go ahead.
9 There isn't much to talk on so go ahead.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: This particular one
11 here is one I visited and the finances of it
12 I'm not 100 percent sure, I visited this a
13 couple of times with Mary Alice Burke. What
14 had happened there was this creek during our
15 last big storm we had last year eroded away
16 an embankment to the point where this
17 gentleman couldn't get to his house. He
18 actually had a ladder in the creek that he
19 would go up the ladder and into his house,
20 so that's what is entailed.
21 MR. SBARAGLIA: No, no. I understand
22 why it has to be done, I'm just asking are
23 we going to pay it for any of the costs?
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: I believe that the
25 funding is coming from the state and
1 possibly the federal government, I'm not
2 100 percent sure.
3 MR. SBARAGLIA: That's a full grant?
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's my belief,
5 but I'm not 100 percent sure. I'll check it
7 MR. SBARGALIA: Well, it's a good
8 idea. You held up that piece of legislation
9 last week we you were taking that money from
10 flood control from a bank restoration and
11 giving it to some kind of a job somewhere
12 along the line. Well, okay. Let me go on,
13 like I say, two minutes goes pretty fast in
14 this courtroom.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Courtroom?
16 MR. SBARAGLIA: 7-C. I didn't get
17 quite all of the figures on the renting of
18 the Packmasters. You did quote some
19 figures, Mr. McGoff, but I didn't get them
20 all. Do you remember exactly what they were
21 or was that a yearly cost or a one-year cost
22 or three-year cost?
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. McGoff had
25 MR. MCGOFF: It was a purchase lease
1 and it was an annual payment, and I'm going
2 to say approximately 80,000. I don't have
3 it with me today and it was a five-year,
4 five payments, so basically what it came
5 down to was 80,000 per vehicle over a
6 five-year period.
7 MR. SBARAGLIA: Okay, that was the
8 total cost. That's reasonable for a
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Ozzie
12 MR. QUINN: Ozzie Quinn, Taxpayers'
13 Association president. I want to speak on
14 7-B about the conveying of 3.7 acres of land
15 to the Scranton School District. To me
16 that's a de facto increasing of taxes by the
17 council because of the fact that they are
18 going to build a $20 million school down
19 there for a $60 million bond issue and you
20 know that that's going to increase our taxes
21 and with the city Doherty is going to come
22 up with a 25 percent increase in taxes for
23 next year's budget and you by de facto
24 conveying this land over to the school
25 district are increasing our taxes and there
1 is no doubt about it. And I don't go to the
2 school board I go to you because you are
3 conveying the taxes.
4 Also, I want to discuss the fact
5 that you have seven pieces of land for sale
6 tonight and this is a probably the last that
7 you will be reading the vacant land, okay?
8 Under the new ordinance that you passed for
9 the sale of properties that are foreclosing
10 on properties because of delinquent taxes
11 they won't come before the city council as
12 you know. The SRA board will draw all
13 ordinances regarding that, okay? So, they
14 will be selling tax delinquent property and
15 us people, our people here will not have any
16 say before the city council about somebody
17 having their house sold out from underneath
18 them, so I don't think that's fair and,
19 again, I think it's circumventing the Home
20 Rule Charter as our lawyer pointed out about
21 504 of the Home Rule Charter, by the fact
22 that we still didn't get a written opinion
23 from Attorney Minora on that. Do we have an
24 opinion on that, Attorney Minora in regards
25 to us filing that suit or are you going try
1 to negotiate that with our attorney?
2 MR. MINORA: I'm sorry?
3 MR. QUINN: For the Sewer Authority
4 circumventing the Home Rule Charter?
5 MR. MINORA: I did not file any
7 MR. QUINN: I can't hear you.
8 MR. MINORA: Are you asking me if I
9 filed a lawsuit?
10 MR. QUINN: No, our attorney sent you
11 a letter and sent Mayor Doherty a letter
12 about us filing a Writ of Mandamus, okay, in
13 regards to the council violating the Home
14 Rule Charter because the Home Rule Charter
15 states that they must pass an ordinance when
16 a public utility is increased, and by not
17 having the --
18 MR. MINORA: The Sewer Authority is
19 not a public utility.
20 MR. QUINN: The who?
21 MR. MINORA: The Sewer Authority is
22 not a public utility.
23 MR. QUINN: That's your opinion.
24 MR. MINORA: No, that's fact. It's
25 a municipal body.
1 MR. QUINN: Are you going to answer--
2 MR. MINORA: It's a municipal body.
3 I saw the letter. You want an answer or
5 MR. QUINN: Are you going to give a
6 reply to our lawyer?
7 MR. MINORA: My answer is this --
8 MR. QUINN: Reply to our lawyer, will
9 you, give our courtesy. He didn't look at
10 the clock and when he rang that.
11 MR. MINORA: Three minutes.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Lori Grudzinski, I'm
14 MS. GRUDZINSKI: Hello, I'm Lori
15 Grudzinski, a voter and a life-long resident
16 of Scranton. I'm here this evening to speak
17 to you on behalf of the sale of a property
18 at Cedar and East Locust Street.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Lori, could I
20 interrupt? Just hold her time. We
21 discussed this in caucus and we are going to
22 table that piece of legislation due to the
23 fact that you had sent us all of this
24 information that we weren't aware of so the
25 attorney is going to take a look at it so
1 when it comes up it will be tabled this
2 week. You can continue to speak, I just
3 wanted to let you to know that.
4 MS. GRUDZINSKI: Thank you. The
5 parcel belongs to my husband, myself and our
6 a children. The parcel of land previously
7 owned by my father, Joe Scott, has been an
8 interest of the city for many, many years.
9 My father tried to develop it several times
10 to have one of the neighbors in particular
11 nag the city into revoking every license he
12 obtained of what he wanted to open there.
13 Granted, my dad had a lot of issues
14 with the city, but he loved the city and he
15 was trying to restore the pride. He wanted
16 to get things going all the time. Weeks
17 before his death he completed the building
18 at the 300 block of Cecar Avenue which is
19 now the sight of a beautiful artist's studio
20 in that section of downtown or our downtown.
21 However, my dad lost the property in
22 question at the Lackawanna County tax sale
23 in 1998. It was sold to a woman for $64,000
24 at the sale who then should have assumed all
25 the prior liens including the taxes. This
1 woman acquired downtown about developing the
2 land and when she started to run through the
3 same barricades as my dad. She sold it back
4 to me a year later in '99. I had no control
5 of this property, however, as long as my dad
6 was alive it was mine in name only.
7 March of this Katherine Ruane, who
8 was the city treasurer at the time, called
9 me from her office and wanted to know when I
10 would catch up the taxes on Cedar and Locust
11 from 1972 on. Well, I was nine years old in
12 1972, I didn't think I was responsible for
13 those taxes. She said that as far as the
14 city knew the property was always my dad's.
15 Where did the $64,000 go from the tax sale
16 and why doesn't the city know who owns what
17 when the purchaser had a deed in her name
18 and then transferred it back over to me at
19 our transaction. There should be a record
20 of this transaction somewhere you would
21 think. She said she would look into it and
22 get back to me with an exact figure on what
23 I would owe, but it never happened. I then,
24 of course, wanted to get it straightened out
25 so I met with Mayor Chris Doherty and he
1 said I would need to pay the last seven
2 years taxes, which is the same for all
3 residents in the city, and that I would have
4 no problem developing the land.
5 I then met with a consultant at NCC,
6 made a down payment, set up a payment
7 agreement which I have been keeping up to
8 date. Coincidentally, around the same time
9 I spoke to city authorities and starting
10 paying the taxes someone all of a sudden
11 realized from over the hundreds of thousands
12 in of properties that my city taxes were
13 behind in that property and set forth to
14 steal the property from me and my family.
15 No one told me I had to pay the taxes
16 in full or lose the land. I received no
17 phone calls, no letters, there are no
18 notices at my house or the property in
19 question. Why is that? I know there are
20 people here thinking, "Just pay your taxes
21 like everyone else."
22 To date this year I have paid
23 $12,585 in taxes on Cedar and Locust this
24 year alone and if I have to get a loan for
25 the balance then I will. What I am telling
1 you today is a mystical slice of scandalous
2 events surrounding this property. My
3 husband and I were born and raised in
4 Scranton as were our parents and now our
5 children. Recently, we were looking to
6 build a new home and where do we choose to
7 build, Scranton. We could have went to all
8 of the new developments in the outer cities
9 and everything, but we love it here. I work
10 a full-time job and I'm running two homes
11 now why we are building and caring for five
12 children, so I guess someone was hoping I
13 didn't have time to see the council
14 meetings. This all just became --I just
15 became of all of this information this
16 Saturday when I had an auction at the
17 building. There was a building on the
18 property and I auctioned off all the
19 contents which was loaded to the ceiling, my
20 dad had kept many things there, and that was
21 my first step to auction everything off to
22 obtain more money for taxes and get the
23 property moving. I'm one person trying to
24 dig out a pile of properties my father left
25 by passing.
1 I just want to start to rejuvenate
2 the properties as long as I have bearings on
3 the city's behalf and if I can't rejuvenate
4 it I'll just sell the parcel. I'm asking
5 tonight out of my love for the city to
6 please consider this matter until it's fully
7 researched. Thank you for your time.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay. We are going
9 to have our attorney look into it and we'll
10 notify you what we found out. Bill
12 MR. JACKOWITZ: Bill Jackowitz, South
13 Scranton resident. I want to speak on 7-B,
14 this 3.7 acres of land for the school board
15 and the building of the new elementary
16 school. I just want tonight is the last
17 reading on it, tonight is the final vote, I
18 just want to all four of you to take into
19 consideration do the taxpayers of Scranton
20 really need more taxes? Do we really need a
21 new school? You know, new school buildings
22 do not educate children, teachers educate
23 children. I mean, most of our forefathers
24 and so on and so forth were educated in
25 one-room buildings. We don't need these new
1 elaborate 80 million, 120 million dollar
2 schools that are going to be built
3 especially when they are being built off the
4 taxpayers of the City of Scranton. We are
5 getting killed by the county, we are getting
6 killed by the school board, we are getting
7 killed by the city.
8 One out of ten people in Scranton
9 and Lackawanna County do not have health
10 insurance, so, please, take that into
11 consideration. Also, home heating oil will
12 be going up 22 percent this winter, so take
13 all of this into consideration because I
14 really don't think we need a new school
15 building. A new school building will not
16 educate the people. Would it be nice? Yes.
17 Would it make the city look better?
18 Probably, yes, but do we really need it off
19 the backs of the taxpayers? The taxpayers
20 are really hurting. Take this into
21 consideration when you make your final vote.
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Jim
24 MR. FLORYSHAK: Good evening. My
25 name is Jim Floryshak, I'm from 109 Emily
1 Avenue, Scranton, I'm here to speak on 7-B,
2 also. To the best of my knowledge this
3 property abuts my property, I should my wife
4 and my property. I wasn't aware that it was
5 on the agenda earlier or two previous times,
6 I apologize, I would have been here then.
7 I'm not against the new school, I think the
8 school is a good neighbor. I'm not a not in
9 my back yard person, but I do have some
10 issues with the overall plan of the school,
11 I'll take those up with the school board,
12 but two things I would like to mention to
13 the council here.
14 Number one, as I said, it's right
15 along the border of my property and I have
16 some pictures and a map here that I could
17 show you. I'm not sure the school district
18 needs all of that property for what amounts
19 to an emergency access road from the new
20 school building on down to the Bulworth
21 Street. I would welcome the opportunity, my
22 wife and I would welcome the opportunity to
23 purchase 50, 75, 100 feet of that land to
24 have a buffer zone between the school
25 district property and our property and, of
1 course, if we were able to purchase that
2 that would be tax producing property and it
3 would act as buffer zone, and to be quite
4 honest with you from seeing the plan of the
5 school, I would think that the school could
6 still do their emergency access road and
7 would have absolutely no bearing on the
8 overall scheme of things.
9 Secondly, if that isn't possible,
10 and I'm sure hope it is, I would like to
11 know is there any way that some restrictions
12 could be placed on that land or at least the
13 trees could stay. I brought a couple of
14 pictures, there is some beautiful oak trees
15 back there that obviously have been around a
16 lot longer than I have, and I would hate to
17 see the school district get this land and
18 all of a sudden just clear everything
19 entirely away, we would have no buffer zone,
20 we would have no trees, we would have no
21 green space, so I ask you, I apologize once
22 again that I'm coming on the third reading,
23 but I'm ask you to really reconsider this is
24 there anyway I could purchase a piece of
25 that land that would be tax producing
1 property that would allow for a buffer zone,
2 the trees would be remain, and I think that
3 would be a great thing.
4 I hate to speak for my neighbor, but
5 I do have a neighbor next to me who also
6 said they would be interested in purchasing
7 a small piece of that land also so they
8 would have a buffer zone.
9 I realize once again I'm here a
10 little late, but please take it under
11 consideration. I have a couple of pictures
12 here, I have a map here's if you would like
13 to see them I'll be glad to bring them up.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Sure.
15 MR. FLORYSHAK: Thank you for your
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: You can give them to
18 Neil. Do you need them back?
19 MR. FLORYSHAK: No.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: David Dobson.
21 MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council.
22 Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton, member of
23 the Taxpayers' Association. I'd like to
24 speak on 6-A. You know, I have some
25 concerns here that this doesn't -- it
1 doesn't spell out what fines and so forth
2 would be and --
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Dave, if you would
4 like I can explain that to you if you would
5 like. You want me wait until you are done
6 speaking so I don't lose your time.
7 MR. DOBSON: Well, it's just a
8 second and then I'll be done and if we are
9 so concerned about particulars in beauty and
10 health and so forth I have noticed that
11 there is an ungodly amount of people that
12 don't have a 32-gallon garbage can and
13 that's what's attracting the skunks. I have
14 a little fellow that comes by every night
15 now and if I walk through a Court I see
16 garbage bags just tossed on the ground and
17 they are left there and my suggestion would
18 be to have the people picking up the
19 garbage, not delivering the garbage, maybe
20 to start writing these people up that they
21 could be sent a letter and please get some
22 trash cans before we have a problem because
23 scavengers bring a case and we get a case in
24 town and somebody is a liable to get in more
25 trouble than what's it's worth. Thank you.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Dave, your question
2 was on 6-A; correct?
3 MR. DOBSON: Yeah.
4 MR COURTRIGHT: Yeah. Because I
5 thought possibly I might have misunderstood
6 it so I checked into it further, 6-A was
7 requested by Lieutenant Mackie through
8 Captain Graziano and then to the law offices
9 of the City of Scranton. I think I might
10 have said this last week, what happened is
11 they ticket a vehicle and you have "X"
12 amount of days to move that vehicle. What
13 people are doing is taking that vehicle and
14 move it from the location that it was
15 ticketed to another street and now they are
16 reticketing vehicles and I believe
17 Lieutenant Mackie and his department ticked
18 to the tune of $60,000 this year, I think
19 that's the fee but, anyway, that's what it's
20 for. It's amending an already existing
21 piece of legislation for that and there was
22 another section in there about the fees. It
23 was requested by I think two of the police
24 department and by some magistrates that
25 were -- weren't quite happy with the way the
1 fees were, so that's basically what it's
3 MR. DOBSON: One of my concerns is
4 how much is it.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: What's what?
6 MR. DOBSON: How much would it be
7 increased to?
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: We had the prices,
9 the prices were there last week, I don't
10 have them with me this week. I can get it
11 for you if you would like.
12 MR. DOBSON: That's not a final
13 reading anyway, right?
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: No, we are only in
15 Six Order, so I'll try to have those for you
16 next week.
17 MR. DOBSON: It would be nice to
19 MS. GARVEY: We have them.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, they're going to
21 be here this week?
22 MS. GARVEY: They are in there.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: If you to want to
24 stop by our office I'll get you a copy of
25 the fees and Kay or Neil will give them to
2 MR. DOBSON: It's just a concern and
3 it seems like they are putting the cart
4 before the horse sometimes with bags of
5 garbage laying on the ground and torn apart
6 by skunks and dogs if they got loose or
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: This is to deal
9 with vehicles.
10 MR. DOBSON: Yea, but it has --
11 according to the way it sounds, it sounds
12 like something to do with some of these --
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's just the
14 ordinance that it's amending.
15 MS. EVANS: Mr. Dobson, I have last
16 week's backup with me, and I can tell you it
17 reads, "Any person violating Subsection A is
18 guilty of a summary offense and shall upon
19 conviction be sentenced to pay a fine of not
20 less than $100 for the first offense, $200
21 for a second offense, $300 for the third
22 offense, $400 for the fourth offense, and
23 $500 for each offense thereafter.
24 MR. DOBSON: Right. Right. And if
25 somebody contacts you about this are you
1 fined right up front?
2 MS. EVANS: Can you state that again?
3 MR. DOBSON: In other words, if
4 someone were to be notified that this car
5 was unacceptable where it's parked --
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: They have a certain
7 amount of time.
8 MR. DOBSON: They have a certain
9 amount of time?
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oh, it's 30 days.
11 They have a long time, if you do it five
12 times you deserve to pay that money in my
14 MR. DOBSON: Could be right, yes.
15 Then you are being stubborn.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Wanda
18 MS. RICKARD: My name is Wanda
19 Rickard and I live at Tripp's Park, 105
20 Emily Avenue and basically I'm going to
21 reiterate some of the things that my
22 neighbor said, Jim Floryshak. I'm here to
23 talk about the transfer of city-owned land,
24 of course, for the new school. I'm not
25 against the new school, so I do want to
1 state that, but I have been trying to
2 purchase the land behind my home for six
3 years and, I mean, really working on it for
4 six years and I was told that I couldn't
5 purchase it. So, now it's being transferred
6 into the city land, transferred over to you,
7 and I'm still looking to purchase the land
8 behind my home up to the emergency road that
9 they are going to use, it's like my property
10 line to the road, and the reason why I want
11 to do is that ensure the quality of life
12 that I sat out to build my home at there to
13 have the tree space, the buffer zone, the
14 esthetic view, and also for the noise factor
15 that would another thing that we would be
16 looking at, so I'm saying this in open forum
17 that I would like to purchase the land from
18 my property line to the emergency road
19 access. Thank you.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Is
21 there anything else on agenda items?
22 MR. BROZZETTI: Good evening,
23 Council, I'm Michael Brozzetti, I'm actually
24 the gentleman trying to buy the property on
25 Cedar and Locust that the young lady just
1 spoke about. I'm not quite sure of the
2 notification process, but I am quiet sure
3 about the process that I went through to
4 purchase the property. I went through the
5 whole procedure for about a year and a half
6 through the buying guide, through the law
7 office here in the city, which also had to
8 have it was four approvals in order to get
9 this level. At that point it went through
10 week one, there was a technicality issue, it
11 got tabled, okay, there was two more weeks,
12 last week it won't through and got back on
13 council and went through, this week it was
14 up for the final reading and, obviously,
15 someone shows up to discuss it.
16 I'm not quite sure of, like I said,
17 the notification process, but I have
18 information here regarding the past 15 years
19 the taxes were not paid on it, okay?
20 Approximately $118,000 is due on the
21 property. My main goal is to first put it
22 back on the tax books for the City of
23 Scranton, the next goal is to start a new
24 business along with moving an existing
25 business to centralize into the Scranton
1 area. I'm not quite sure of the transfer
2 processes that occurred as well. I'm not
3 sure if you can sell something for a dollar
4 and not pay any back taxes. As far as I
5 know, any property that I bought all taxes
6 were accrued up at the time of sail and at
7 the time of transfer.
8 I guess what I'm asking you guys is
9 it just seems odd that after five weeks
10 someone has to come up and make a statement
11 about something because either they were
12 weren't notified or the notification process
13 didn't happen, but, like I said, I went
14 through the process and went through the
15 legal department, through my lawyer, and I
16 guess I'm just asking that this not be
17 tabled and that this go through to get to
18 the property back on the tax books for the
19 City of Scranton and for the population
20 there. I mean, I have great ideas for the
21 location, like I said, new business as well
22 as moving an existing business to the
23 exterior part. If you guys have any
24 questions or anything you guys can ask me
25 now or I'm not sure how that process goes,
1 but it just seems odd, like I said, that
2 after five weeks all of a sudden someone
3 comes up and talks about it. Thank you.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Anyone
5 else? Les?
6 MR. SPINDLER: I wasn't going to say
7 anything tonight, but first of all, Les
8 Spindler, city resident. I also live on
9 Bulwer Street, and I'm not quite as far down
10 as the previous speakers. If they want to
11 buy land in back of their houses and
12 contribute to the pay taxes to the city I
13 think they should be allowed to instead of
14 giving the land away to the school board.
15 This city needs all of the money we can get
16 and if these people want to buy land I think
17 council should let them buy it. Thank you.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you.
19 MR. MORGAN: Good evening, Council.
20 My name is Lee Morgan. I'd like to talk on
21 7-B again and I'd like to say the same thing
22 that I said last week. The Scranton School
23 District has violated it's own Code of
24 Ethics. There has been shenanigans with the
25 person that did the report in regards to
1 what we should do with the Scranton School
2 District, the Matisik report, and 7-B needs
3 to be tabled because that whole report is
4 flawed and we are going off on a report that
5 really has no validity because we don't know
6 how they came to their figures. The company
7 that did the report was looking for
8 contracts and now irregardless the City of
9 Scranton is going to give the school
10 district the property and the whole process
11 was flawed. It's just unbelievable the
12 corrupt things that happen in the city.
13 It's just terrible because all of these
14 people are sitting home they are watching
15 this and they are wondering, how is the
16 council going to transfer this, the Scranton
17 Times reported on this whole thing, and the
18 whole report has been thrown into question
19 and we are going to just to say, "Well,
20 here, take this land and build this school
21 even the report was flawed, even though
22 money was flying all over of the place and I
23 really think there is something wrong with
25 And on 7-C, I asked last week in
1 regard to this 7-C, doesn't Keystone
2 Landfill give the City of Scranton $100,000
3 a year because we signed an agreement with
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know if
6 that's still in effect. I think that's been
7 exhausted, that's just my opinion. Do you
8 know Mrs. Evans?
9 MS. EVANS: I tried to find that
10 answer each year at budget time. I have
11 posed that as one of my questions to the
12 administration, but that particular question
13 has never been answered.
14 MR. MORGAN: I was under the
15 understanding when I was here at council and
16 heard that legislation go through that that
17 continue through the whole length of the
18 contract, and what I have to say here is
19 this, if this council has no idea what's
20 going on and you can't get information from
21 you solicitor from the city what are we
22 debating here? Why do we have anything on
23 the agenda in that case because we are not
24 getting any answers.
25 And on 7-A somebody has to look at
1 this process because you got two people here
2 for this property and the lady is --
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: You time is up, Mr.
5 MR. MORGAN: --made an agreement here
6 and somebody should look into that.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Your time is up.
8 MR. MORGAN: Thank you.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Is there anyone
10 else? No one. All right. FIFTH ORDER.
11 Motions, Mrs. Evans.
12 MS. EVANS: Thank you. Good
13 evening. First I have the latest report on
14 the progress of the independent audit. We,
15 or I should say the auditors, still require
16 responses to the following memos: FEMA
17 flood protection summer and November 2006
18 flooding, general fund expenditure
19 questions, capital project interfund
20 follow-up, special cities East Mountain Road
21 follow-up, accounts payable follow-up, OECD
22 questions and entries, general fund entries.
23 In addition, they again do not have the
24 copy of the Scranton Parking Authority's
25 2006 audit report and they still await
1 responses from three confirmation letters
2 from attorneys.
3 With regard to an issue that has
4 been discussed by some of the speakers that
5 evening with regard to tonight's agenda,
6 specifically, I believe it is seven --
7 actually 7-A and 7-B, I will be making a
8 motion to table both of those items.
9 With regard to 7-A, it has come to
10 our attention just today within
11 documentation provided as evidence to
12 sizable payments that have been made on
13 these tax delinquencies at this property.
14 Apparently, somewhere the wires have
15 crossed, whether through the city and NCC, I
16 really can't say because, as I stated, I
17 wasn't aware until today, and it's my
18 opinion that the process has to be reviewed
19 and settled amicably and fairly to both
20 parties, and before that can occur I really
21 don't believe that council should be passing
22 this particular piece of legislation.
23 As for 7-B, I am going to request
24 again as I did last week that council would
25 table this issue for the following reasons:
1 I think those neighbors tonight who
2 have requested the purchase of the land
3 that, indeed, serves as a buffer zone for
4 their property should be given that
5 authority opportunity by the city to do just
7 In addition, as I stated last week,
8 I understand that this issue will come
9 before the zoning board tomorrow evening,
10 and I think it is ludicrous, frankly, for
11 city council to pass this legislation and
12 then place this project before the zoning
13 board tomorrow night because that in effect
14 in my opinion ties their hands. The ball
15 has already gun rolling and so what issue
16 then can they look at objectively? It would
17 seem that they would have no alternative but
18 to agree to whatever is proposed. So, as a
19 governing body I believe the zoning board
20 should have the opportunity to hear the
21 case, listen to both sides, both speakers
22 who are representing both sides of the
23 issue, render their decision and then that
24 that decision will be forwarded to city
25 council and we can then render our decision.
1 I think right now it's a matter of putting
2 the cart before the horse.
3 In addition to that, as I said, I am
4 very concerned that the citizens should be
5 able to purchase from the city what the city
6 would be giving I believe for a dollar to
7 the school district.
8 In addition, I have quite a list of
9 citizens' requests for the week. A number
10 of these city residents are very upset that
11 the calls to DPW that they have made are
12 either ignored or not returned by
13 management. Others are disgusted at the
14 lack of patrol cars monitoring dangerous
15 intersections. Of course, we are all too
16 well aware that are police department is
17 most often overwhelmed with urgent problems,
18 but I must admit I do share their
19 frustration and their dismay that their
20 calls to some city departments appear to be
21 irrelevant. So, let's get cracking, people,
22 and here is a list that's been around most
23 of it for quite awhile and I'm expecting
24 that it's going to get taken care of this
1 A letter to Mr. Brazil, DPW, 806
2 Phyllo Street, residents report a large deep
3 pothole in the road in front of the driveway
4 at this address, please fill.
5 Also for Mr. Brazil, 1319 Bryn-Mawr
6 Street, while paving the court in the rear
7 of this address the DPW loosened the dirt
8 and the property owner's fence. This senior
9 citizen has called DPW multiple times to
10 report this problem and request assistant
11 and to date she has been completely ignored.
12 Please contact the owner and return her
13 property to it's original condition.
14 Again, for Mr. Brazil, corner of
15 Riverside Drive and Depot Street, the
16 abandoned lot at this location still has not
17 been cleaned up nor have the overgrown weeds
18 and grass been cut, and that is the third
20 A letter to Mr. Setizinger, 118
21 Master's Street, residents of the block
22 report that this property remains a haven
23 for birds and that no work has been done to
24 the house as was promised.
25 A letter to Mr. Brazil, the bushes
1 were never trimmed back at Hawthorne Street
2 in the area of Emily Avenue. Also, the
3 street sign for Emily Avenue was never put
4 up. These requests were made on
5 September 11 at a city council meeting by a
6 resident of Emily Avenue. Twice an
7 ambulance was unable to locate her home
8 because of the lack of a street sign. In
9 addition, health care workers cannot locate
10 the same home. Consequently, the owner must
11 travel by car to lead medical personnel to
12 her home in order to assist her
13 mother-in-law. Place the street sign
15 A memo to Chief Elliott. Residents of
16 the 200 block of 14th Avenue continue to
17 report traffic traveling in the wrong way on
18 their one-way street. Further, they
19 continue to daily observe vehicles running
20 three-way stop signs at the corner of Rachel
21 Court and 14th Avenue. However, they do not
22 observe any patrol cars monitoring these
23 areas as was promised.
24 Also, the residents of the Plot
25 continue to report trucks and cars barreling
1 through the stop sign at the corner or
2 Shawnee and Depot Street. Both areas were
3 previously reported to you, yet residents
4 complain that no patrol cars have been seen
5 in these areas despite the reports and your
6 responses. Residents are fully aware of
7 their city's rise in crime and the police
8 department's burden in addressing countless
9 cases of great and immediate importance.
10 However, they believe that their concerns
11 must be addressed as well. Particularly,
12 since they have waited patiently for four
14 427 16th Avenue, the resident was
15 promised a handicapped parking sign for many
16 weeks now by the police department and DPW.
17 The sign was long ago approved.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: They got that one.
19 MS. EVANS: We did today?
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: If it's not there,
21 it's going there.
22 MS. EVANS: Well, it better be going
23 there because it was promised over and over
24 and it was recently to be installed and as
25 of yesterday it was not, so I'm hoping it's
2 A memo to Mr. Brazil, residents of
3 Grove Street complain that city residents
4 have been dumping refrigerators, washers,
5 furniture, lamps, etcetera at two dumpsters
6 by the DPW shed. When the dumpsters are
7 full items are dumped on the ground nearby.
8 They would like these items taken away and
9 want this procedure to halt since it
10 negatively impacts their neighborhood.
11 A memo to Chief Elliott, city
12 residents complain that vehicles are parked
13 on sidewalks on Moosic Street. They state
14 that they reported this to Mr. Hayes
15 approximately a year ago and it was taken
16 care of at the time, but perhaps the
17 practice, unfortunately, has begun again.
18 And residents of East Mountain request
19 that an arrow be painted on the narrow
20 street which is on the right coming up Route
21 307, it takes traffic onto Snook Street and
22 Conroy Avenue. They report that traffic
23 doesn't know which direction in which to
24 drive since the painted arrows have worn
1 And I wanted to say also regarding
2 the tree branches at the corner of Snook
3 Street and Seymour Avenue, I reported this
4 to Mr. Santolli the first time it was
5 reported to me and he examined the trees
6 shortly thereafter and said in his opinion
7 they were not in need of trimming at this
8 time, and just a quick check here, that's
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Mrs.
12 MS. FANUCCI: I do have not much to
13 speak about tonight, but I just wanted to
14 invite everybody, Anthology, which is new
15 used and new book store that we actually
16 passed a few weeks ago downtown in the Casey
17 laundry building, which is part of the new
18 street on Center Street, they redid this
19 whole area, it's beautiful stamped concrete
20 and everything, they are actually having
21 party to bring in the street. It's
22 wonderful. There is lots of beautiful art
23 hanging down there, Art to Heart provided a
24 lot of the artscape, it's absolutely
25 beautiful, but the party is from six until
1 nine and it's free to the public and they
2 just want everybody to come down and take a
3 look at what's going on in the city, and it
4 sounds like it's going to be a good time.
5 There's going to be a band and lots of food
6 and so that is all I have.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you.
8 Mr. McGoff?
9 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. First, I
10 would like to congratulate the committee of
11 the Steamtown Marathon on another successful
12 marathon which has to this day raised
13 somewhere over $340,000 for the benefit of
14 St. Joe's Children's Hospital, a wonderful
15 cause and a great event for the city.
16 Participants from literally all over the
17 world, all over of the country, I think
18 there were 35 different states represented
19 in this one, come to the area and it's just
20 a great event and I would like to especially
21 congratulate to Fire Captain Jack Davis who
22 finished in 304 and I believe was the first
23 Scranton resident to cross the finish line
24 somewhere around 50th place out of over 1800
25 runners, a really great run for Captain
2 Also, I would like to -- the two
3 items that have been discussed here this
4 evening on property, number one, on the
5 conveyance of the school property, we are
6 not building a school. Now, I know that the
7 people are trying to make a connection
8 between us giving property to the school
9 district and us okaying the building of the
10 school, we are conveying the land for the
11 development but it's not necessarily for the
12 building of a school.
13 If somebody has a problem with the
14 building of a school then I think that it's
15 incumbent upon you to go to, you know,
16 school board meetings and discuss it there,
17 and whether it's the right thing to do, but
18 I do have from the residents that have
19 spoken it seems that the question that's
20 emerging is how much land is needed and how
21 much should be conveyed, are there better
22 ways in which this land could be conveyed to
23 where it could be conveyed. I certainly
24 would at this point in time after hearing
25 people speak I would go along with the idea
1 of tabling this. There seems to be no
2 immediate need to convey this property to
3 the school district. This is not a project
4 that's going to take place, you know, within
5 the next foreseeable time. I certainly
6 would like to see if there is an opportunity
7 for residents to make the purchases that,
8 you know, possibly that they would want to
9 make and, you know, make it something that
10 is acceptable to the neighbors of the area
11 and also, you know, that would maybe
12 ultimately work to the benefit of the school
13 district as well.
14 The second issue, I think I'm also
15 prone to go along with tabling. It appears
16 that we have two people who have legitimate
17 claims to a single piece of property. I
18 know Mr. Brozzetti said he has kind of done
19 his due diligence and done everything he has
20 needed to do in order to purchase the
21 property, Mrs. Grudzinski, I'm sorry, if I'm
22 pronounce it wrong, has also, you know, has
23 reason to believe that the property is hers.
24 She is taking payments on it and has no
25 reason to believe that it's not her
1 possession. Somebody has made a mistake and
2 I don't think that it's our responsibility
3 or I don't think that we have the means to
4 rectify that mistake. We need to go to the
5 city agencies that have lead to this problem
6 and have them resolve it.
7 Obviously, there is some
8 miscommunication somewhere and I know that
9 it's probably not going to work out to the
10 liking of both parties, but I think
11 somewhere along the way somebody has to make
12 a determination as to where this
13 miscommunication took place, and I don't
14 think that we can do it and so, therefore, I
15 will vote to table this. I will vote, yes,
16 on tabling this until we can get the
17 agencies together that are involved in this
18 problem, and that's all.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. I
20 believe we have announced this before, but
21 it's coming up in the near future so I'm
22 going to run it by you quickly again. The
23 pancake and sausage breakfast on
24 October 27th from 7:00 a.m. to 11 a.m. at
25 St. Peter's Lutheran Church on Ash Street
1 and Taylor Avenue and, again, I believe
2 somebody has mentioned it before, but it's
3 coming up so I thought I would mention it
5 AED's are basically some type of
6 defibrillators that I believe the police
7 department was using and now they are no
8 more, so I get an e-mail and somebody asking
9 me are the defibrillators broken, yes, they
10 are, they are not using them, but they asked
11 me if I could find out what the cost of the
12 defibrillator was because they might be
13 interested in donating one to the city, so
14 if you can just give me a reminder I'll call
15 down to Dave Elliott and find out what they
16 cost for the defibrillators, I'd like to see
17 them back in the police cars, they are
18 definitely a plus.
19 This a little peculiar, someone
20 called my mom's house thinking it was my
21 house and asked her if she could ask me if I
22 could elaborate on the Home Rule Charter
23 being violated each week and then they left
24 a message at my karate school for the same
25 question. I'm not quite sure if they want
1 to me to elaborate on so evidently you watch
2 here. They wouldn't tell me or my mom, they
3 wouldn't tell my the mom the phone number
4 so, I can't call them back, so what exactly
5 you would like me to elaborate on if you can
6 give me a call and let me know I'll try to
7 elaborate on it.
8 I ran into the DPW workers today,
9 there is a hole and I thought we sent this
10 to Mr. Brazil, and I'll e-mail rather than
11 have you send it out, Forest Glenn, the DPW
12 came out and they filled a lot of holes and
13 they put maybe a foot and a half of blacktop
14 in this one hole and that just isn't cutting
15 it, it's sinking down in there so we need to
16 get some equipment up there and take a look
17 at that.
18 And one last thing talking about the
19 area of a land back there brings the Tripp
20 Park development to my mind and I asked the
21 question quite a while awhile ago, there is
22 some disgruntled people living in that
23 development and rightfully so and the
24 question was asked to me quite awhile ago
25 and I asked him and still have not received
1 an answer, so this one, Kay, I will ask you
2 to send a letter to, and send a letter I
3 think we need to send it to Mr. Farrell,
4 maybe Mr. Brazil, and anybody else that they
5 could think of so hopefully I can get an
7 MS. EVANS: Mr. Parker.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Well, Mr. Parker is
9 still employed with us so we will end him
10 one, too. The developer had to be put a
11 bond up and I'm trying to find out how much
12 the bond was and was the bond given back to
13 him. I hope the bond wasn't given back to
14 him because he didn't do what we believe he
15 should have. So, I asked that question
16 quite awhile ago and I have not received an
17 answer, and I apologize for letting that
18 slip by, so we will try Mr. Farrell, we'll
19 try Mr. Parker and we'll try Mr. Brazil.
20 Hopefully one of those will get back to me,
21 and that's all I have. Thank you. FIFTH
23 MS. GARVEY: 5-B. FOR INTRODUCTION -
24 AN ORDINANCE - ESTABLISHING A NO PARKING
25 ZONE IN THE 1000 BLOCK OF WYOMING AVENUE
1 (S.R. 3025) ON THE EASTERN MOST SIDE OF SAID
2 STREET PURSUANT TO THE HIGHWAY OCCUPANCY
3 PERMIT APPLICATION OF SCRANTON PREPARATORY
4 SCHOOL AND THE ALTERATION FOR TRAFFIC
5 PATTERNS AT THAT SITE.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: At this time I make
7 a motion that Item 5-B be introduced and
8 moved into it's property committee.
9 MR. MCGOFF: So moved.
10 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
12 All in favor.
13 MS. EVANS: Aye.
14 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
17 ayes have it and so ordered.
18 MS. GARVEY: 5-C. FOR INTRODUCTION -
19 A RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND
20 OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE
21 AND ENTER INTO A PROJECT AGREEMENT BETWEEN
22 THE CITY OF SCRANTON AND THE NATURAL
23 RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE, UNITED
24 STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, PERTAINING
25 TO STREAMBANK STABILIZATION AT THE END OF
1 CULVERT UNDER NEWTON ROAD IN OR AROUND 222
2 NEWTON ROAD AND ON PROPERTY AT 2711 FRINK
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: At this time I make
5 a motion that Item 5-C be introduced into
6 it's proper committee.
7 MS. FANUCCI: So moved.
8 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
10 All in favor.
11 MS. EVANS: Aye.
12 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
15 ayes have it and so ordered.
16 MS. GARVEY: SIXTH ORDER. 6-A.
17 READING BY TITLE - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 126,
18 2007 - AN ORDINANCE AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL
19 NO. 222, 2003, AN ORDINANCE "SECURING THE
20 PUBLIC PEACE, HEALTH, SAFETY, WELFARE AND
21 PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT OF AND FOR THE
22 RESIDENTS AND PROPERTY OWNERS OF THE CITY OF
23 SCRANTON, BY THE REGULATION OF THE OUTDOOR
24 PARKING AND STORAGE OF ABANDONED AND/OR JUNK
25 VEHICLES, WITHIN THE CITY OF SCRANTON AND TO
1 PROVIDE REMEDIES FOR THE VIOLATION OF THIS
2 ORDINANCE" BY CHANGING THE PENALTIES AND
3 DEFENSES FOR VIOLATIONS.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
5 Reading by Title of Item 6-A, what is your
7 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson I move
8 that Item 6-A pass Reading by Title.
9 MS. EVANS: Second.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
11 All in favor.
12 MS. EVANS: Aye.
13 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
14 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
16 ayes have it and so ordered.
17 MS. GARVEY: 6-B. READING BY TITLE -
18 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 127, 2007 - AN ORDINANCE
19 - TRANSFERRING THE FUNDS FROM FUND 02
20 SPECIAL CITY ACCOUNTS WHICH FUNDS AND
21 ACCOUNTS ARE NO LONGER NEEDED FOR THE
22 CONDUCT OF CITY BUSINESS, AND ABOLISHING AND
23 CLOSING SAID ACCOUNTS AND TRANSFERRING THE
24 FUNDS REMAINING IN THESE ACCOUNTS TO THE
25 ACCOUNT NUMBERS LISTED BELOW.
1 MR COURTRIGHT: You have heard
2 Reading by Title of Item 6-B, what is your
4 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I move
5 that Item 6-B pass Reading by Title.
6 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
8 MS. EVANS: Yes. Attorney Minora,
9 are these transfers in compliance with the
10 terms of the original grants and would the
11 regulating bodies that gave the cities these
12 funds sign off on these transfers?
13 MR. MINORA: You are asking a
14 question I'm unprepared to answer because I
15 haven't looked at it. If you would like to
16 me I would.
17 MS. EVANS: Can you prepare an answer
18 for next week's final vote?
19 MR. MINORA: After the meeting I will
20 talk to you and if you let you know I'll do
21 my Best to find the answer.
22 MS. EVANS: I couldn't hear the end
23 of that.
24 MR. MINORA: I said after the meeting
25 if you let me know exactly what you would
1 like I'll do my best to find out and get it
2 for you next week.
3 MS. EVANS: Very good. Thank you.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Do we have a second
5 on that?
6 MS. FANUCCI: I think there was a
8 MS. EVANS: I was on the question.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: All those in favor.
10 MS. EVANS: Aye.
11 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
12 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
14 ayes have it and so ordered.
15 MS. GARVEY: 6-C. READING BY TITLE -
16 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 128, 2007 - AN ORDINANCE
17 - SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT 436-436
18 1/2 RAILROAD AVENUE, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA,
19 TO DENNIS AND THERESA EDWARDS, 441 RAILROAD
20 AVENUE, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18504, FOR
21 THE SUM OF $2,000.00.
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
23 Reading by Title of Item 6-C, what is your
25 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I move
1 that Item 6-C pass Reading by Title.
2 MS. EVANS: Second.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
4 All those in favor?
5 MS. EVANS: Aye.
6 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
9 ayes have it and so ordered.
10 MS. GARVEY: 6-D READING BY TITLE -
11 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 129, 2007- AN ORDINANCE
12 - SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT 2200
13 BLOCK OF ROCKWELL AVENUE, SCRANTON,
14 PENNSYLVANIA, TO LEONARD F. AND BARBARA A.
15 FISHER, 2221 LEACH AVENUE, SCRANTON,
16 PENNSYLVANIA, 18508, FOR THE SUM OF
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
19 Reading by Title of Item 6-D, what is your
21 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I move
22 that Item 6-D pass Reading by Title.
23 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
25 All those in favor?
1 MS. EVANS: Aye.
2 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
5 ayes have it and so ordered.
6 MS. GARVEY: 6-E. READING BY TITLE -0
7 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 130, 2007- AN ORDINANCE
8 - SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT 439-441
9 10TH AVENUE, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, TO
10 JOSEPH G. AND MICHAEL KEEGAN, 102 ARLINGTON
11 WAY, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18504, FOR THE
12 SUM OF $3,500.00.
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
14 Reading by Title of Item 6-E, what is your
16 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I move
17 that Item 6-E pass Reading by Title.
18 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
20 All those in favor?
21 MS. EVANS: Aye.
22 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
23 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
25 ayes have it and so ordered.
1 MS. GARVEY: 6-F. READING BY TITLE
2 OF COUNCIL NO. 131, 2007 - AN ORDINANCE -
3 SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT GRAND
4 AVENUE/BATLUCK STREET, ALSO DESCRIBED AS LOT
5 NO. 134, SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, TO KEVIN
6 AND FRANCINE FITZGERALD, 309 BATLUCK STREET,
7 SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18505, FOR THE SUM
8 OF $1,357.00.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
10 Reading by Title of Item 6-F, what is your
12 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I
13 move that Item 6-F pass Reading by Title.
14 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
16 All those in favor?
17 MS. EVANS: Aye.
18 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
19 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
21 ayes have it and so ordered.
22 MS. GARVEY: 6-G. READING BY TITLE -
23 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 132, 2007 - AN ORDINANCE
24 - SALE OF TAX DELINQUENT PROPERTY AT GRAND
25 AVENUE/BATLUCK STREET, ALSO DESCRIBED AS LOT
1 NO. 154. SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, TO KEVIN
2 AND FRANCINE FITZGERALD, 309 BATLUCK STREET,
3 SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18505, FOR THE SUM
4 OF $1,357.00.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: You have heard
6 Reading by Title of Item 6-G, what is your
8 MS. FANUCCI: Mr. Chairperson, I move
9 that Item 6-G pass Reading By Title.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
12 All in favor.
13 MS. EVANS: Aye.
14 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
17 ayes have it and so ordered. And I think we
18 need to appoint someone as chairperson.
19 MS. GARVEY: As a temporary chair.
20 MS. EVANS: I am the Committee on
21 Finance. Mr. Chairperson, I move to table
22 item 7-A.
23 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
25 All those in favor?
1 MS. EVANS: Aye.
2 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
5 ayes have it and so ordered.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
7 We need to appoint a temporary chair for the
9 MS. GARVEY: Committee on Rules;
11 MS. EVANS: I move to appoint
12 Councilman Courtright temporary chair for
13 the Committee on Rules.
14 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: All those in favor?
16 MS. EVANS: Aye.
17 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
18 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Opposed? The ayes
20 have it and so ordered.
21 MS. GARVEY: 7-B. FOR CONSIDERATION
22 BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -
23 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 125, 2007 - AUTHORIZING
24 THE TRANSFER OF CITY-OWNED LAND TO THE
25 SCRANTON SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR THE
1 CONSTRUCTION OF THE NEW WEST ELEMENTARY
2 SCHOOL; SAID PARCEL LOCATED AT THE WESTERLY
3 END OF BULWER STREET --
4 MS. EVANS: Mrs. Garvey, before you
5 finish, I am going to preempt you and I move
6 to table Item 7-B.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Second.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
9 All those in favor?
10 MS. EVANS: Aye.
11 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
12 MR. MCGOFF: Aye.
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye. Opposed? The
14 ayes have it and so ordered.
15 MS. GARVEY: 7-C. FOR CONSIDERATION
16 BY THE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC WORKS - FOR
17 ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 176, 2007 -
18 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE
19 CITY OFFICIALS TO ENTER INTO A LEASE
20 AGREEMENT WITH 1ST SOURCE BANK FOR THE LEASE
21 PURCHASE OF THREE NEW 25 YEAR REAR-LOAD
22 PACKERS FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: What is the
24 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
25 Committee on Public Works?
1 MR. MCGOFF: As Chairperson for the
2 Committee on Public Works, I recommend final
3 passage of Item 7-C.
4 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question?
6 Roll call.
7 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
8 MRS. EVANS: Yes.
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Fanucci.
10 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
12 MR. MCGOFF: Yes.
13 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
15 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: She's not here. I
17 hereby declare 7-C legally and lawfully
19 MS. GARVEY: EIGHTH ORDER. CITIZENS
20 PARTICIPATION II - GENERAL CITY ISSUES.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Andy Sbaraglia.
22 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
23 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians, I
24 heard a little mention of Mrs. Evans that
25 they haven't completed the audit for the
1 Scranton Parking Authority?
2 MS. EVANS: That is correct.
3 MR. SBARAGLIA: I could swore I read
4 in the paper that there was a preliminary
5 little article in the paper under legals
6 that it was done.
7 MS. EVANS: I'm not aware of that.
8 MR. SBARAGLIA: And not only that
9 that they were 1 million in the red and I
10 would like to have seen a complete audit
11 just in case, but that would make a lot of
12 sense if that little abbreviated audit that
13 they put in for legal points, because I
14 couldn't understand why they would sell the
15 garage to the Scranton Parking Authority
16 from the Scranton Recreation -- from the
17 Scranton Redevelopment Authority, it didn't
18 make sense why they would do that, but if
19 the parking authority was a million dollars
20 in debt then it wouldn't make sense because
21 they borrowed a lot of money, and they
22 certainly had the sinking fund well-padded
23 probably on it because I don't think it
24 costs near that to build a garage they want
25 to build, so hence we are borrowing money to
1 pay off debts, but I keep telling you it's a
2 house of cards. If they are0 -- if that
3 audit that we will get it and check into it
4 when we get ahold of it, I'll go down there
5 and see if it's available. Like I said, it
6 was only an abbreviated audit, if they
7 weren't thoroughly in debt he came before
8 you and told you how good his finances were
9 when they came for that loan then that Mr.
10 Wintermantle made a good presentation that
11 they definitely are going to default.
12 Mr. Court you asked him, have you ever been
13 defaulted? And he said, no. But if he had
14 to borrow $38 million so he wouldn't default
15 then something is drastically wrong in the
16 parking authority, real drastic, and when in
17 a few years it will collapse like I've been
18 telling you all along. You cannot do what
19 he was doing. Whosoever is pulling the
20 strings on Mr. Wintermantle, it's definitely
21 not fiscal responsibility. You can't give
22 away hundreds of parking space and say, "We
23 don't want to pay nothing on it," for this,
24 the hotel, and they gave away hundreds of
25 spaces for free for the life of that hotel,
1 but somebody has to pay for that and
2 eventually it's going to be the taxpayers of
3 Scranton and at that point I hope you all
4 removes yourselves if that comes about
5 because it's not viable anything I told you,
6 the hotel wasn't viable, but nobody would
7 believe it because it looks good political.
8 Everything that is done in this town is done
9 political and not with the idea towards the
10 final cost of the taxpayers. I thank you.
11 MS. EVANS: Mr. Sbaraglia, just a few
12 brief points: Number one, I didn't vote, as
13 you know, for the parking authority to
14 borrow the approximate 35 million. I didn't
15 vote for the deal at the Hilton Hotel
16 either, however, I did find it questionable
17 that the parking authority could obtain such
18 a large bond issue without being in
19 possession of a 2006 audit which lead me to
20 believe perhaps the city's audit would have
21 been used in place of that in which all of
22 the authorities debts are included, but
23 according to our auditors they do not have
24 in their hands the audit of the Scranton
25 Parking Authority.
1 MR. SBARAGLIA: We'll see.
2 MS. EVANS: Thank you.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Ozzie
5 MR. QUINN: Thank you. Yeah,
6 Mr. McGoff, no matter how you put a spin on
7 it you are conveying that for the
8 development of that land. Subsequently,
9 either it's going to be a raise in our taxes
10 so you are going to increase those, regular
11 increases de facto, no doubt about it.
12 Also, I tried to have mention the fact
13 about the land that it was in controversy
14 tonight over in south side, three weeks ago
15 it was tabled, I brought it up two weeks ago
16 and I told you about the problem with the
17 SRA and the developer there and Mrs. Gatelli
18 said, "I don't know anything about it," now
19 you got yourself a big problem. See, you
20 just don't want to listen. You don't want
21 to listen. You just think, "Oh, he doesn't
22 know anything," or whatever. Well, I want
23 to tell you something, okay, we are in
24 serious debt because of this mayor and
25 because of the actions of the city council
1 people. We are making contracts out through
2 our people who are making payments to the
3 mayor's elections and we have cronyism, and
4 yesterday was a piece in the Scranton Times
5 Tribune by Erin Nissey and I'm going to
6 quote the University of Scranton political
7 scientist's, Professor William Parente, and
8 he spoke about political corruption, and he
9 goes onto speak about it and I would ask you
10 people to read it, okay, because it's like
11 most of you people and the mayor looking in
12 the mirror, okay, and he is not talking
13 about some place on the other side of
14 Pennsylvania, he is talking there is no
15 doubt about it about Scranton, Pennsylvania,
16 so let's stop this corruption and let's
17 start getting this city back on the road.
18 We don't care about what's happening down
19 there in coffee shops or whatnot, believe
20 me, we are more concerned about what we are
21 doing to keep the people here and their
22 homes being foreclosed and for the
23 industries not coming in here and spoiling
24 people's lives. Thank you.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Doug,
1 you were out when I called you if you want
2 to come up now.
3 MR. MILER: I apologize about that,
4 I stepped out. Thank you, though. Doug
5 Miller, Junior Council. To begin tonight,
6 again, the announcement that the Scranton
7 Junior City Council is raising funds to
8 purchase Christmas lights to decorate the
9 South Side Renaissance Center, 705 Pittston
10 Avenue for the holiday season and, again, we
11 ask the residents and businesses in the city
12 to consider making donations towards the
13 project. Please send donations to city
14 hall, 340 North Washington Avenue, and you
15 can visit www.Scrantonpa.gov and for more
16 information we can be found on city
17 council's webpage.
18 To address an issue here tonight,
19 over the last week I received numerous
20 complaints from residents regarding Fellows
21 Park in West Scranton. Residents have
22 complained of loud noise, vandalism,
23 inappropriate gestures and actions.
24 Vandalism at the park consists of graffiti
25 to lighting picnic tables on fire. Many
1 residents no longer want to take their
2 children or grandchildren to the park
3 because of it's lack of safety. Personally,
4 I find this unacceptable and this issue
5 needs to be addressed. The playground
6 equipment needs to be repaired, perhaps
7 installing new equipment would be more
8 appropriate. Many other repairs need to be
9 made, the list goes on and on.
10 It is my understanding, however,
11 though that Mayor Doherty just plan to
12 invest close to $50,000 in the park. I
13 would like to know when the mayor plans to
14 begin construction on the park and I'm
15 asking council tonight to look into this
16 matter so we can to try to get the ball
17 rolling here. We need to think about the
18 health and safety of our residents. The
19 Scranton Junior Council is committed to
20 helping to improve the park as tonight we
21 have created a fund to Fellows Park where
22 anyone interested in the city contribute to
23 this fund so we can try to improve the park
24 and we ask people interested to send their
25 contributions here to the city hall, cash or
1 check is acceptable, and you can make sure
2 checks out to the Fellows Park Fund. Thank
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. I'd
5 just like to quickly say, this council voted
6 to give a rather sum of money to Fellows
7 Park I believe it was to the tune of
8 $70,000, I'm not 100 percent sure, and I was
9 notified by I believe it was David D'Angelo
10 that they were contacting Mrs. Woodruff from
11 the West Scranton Crime Watch Neighborhood
12 Association, I should say, so hopeful it
13 will be going on soon. The problem with
14 vandalism has been ongoing there. We had
15 gotten to the point where the people would
16 extend out to there and we are a little bit
17 short of officers, there is a test coming up
18 here on the 15th I believe, so hopefully we
19 will have some more officers on the street
20 and that will be a deterrent. Thank you,
22 MR. MILLER: Thank you. Appreciate
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Les Spindler.
25 MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council.
1 Les Spindler, city resident. Mr. McGoff,
2 last week when Mrs. Krake was asking
3 questions you said there was no way you can
4 make a decision on something you can't see.
5 Well, why did you vote in favor of the
6 project in Lackawanna Avenue because it's
7 obvious you didn't know anything about that?
8 MR. MCGOFF: I said the questions
9 were hypothetical.
10 MR. SPINDLER: Yeah, but, Lackawanna
11 Avenue is a real project and you didn't know
12 anything about that one.
13 MR. MCGOFF: It has nothing to do
14 with knowledge, it has to do with whether
15 it's a real situation or hypothetical.
16 Define the definition for hypothetical.
17 MR. SPINDLER: Well, the Lackawanna
18 Avenue project was real and you lied when
19 you voted for -- first voted against it and
20 then you voted for it. That's all I have to
21 say on that.
22 The Railroad that's at Main Avenue,
23 where Main comes into Euclid, the last two
24 weeks trucks have gone into that and it's
25 happened all the time. Now, I think that's
1 called a railroad problem, but would the
2 city as far as signs, I noticed there is a
3 sign right behind the bridge, that's a
4 little late, and there is one just a little
5 further up than that. I think maybe if
6 there was a sign further up on Main Avenue
7 it would help a lot more.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I can ask about
9 that, Les, believe me, we put signs all over
10 the place on Luzerne Street and they are
11 still getting stuck there, but I could ask.
12 MR. SPINDLER: Because the one last
13 week that was there for hours and hours.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: The game was over
15 and I just got out.
16 MR. SPINDLER: I live right there and
17 I go home that way all the time.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll ask one more
20 MR. SPINDLER: And something else,
21 all the trucks that hit that bridge, I mean,
22 is that bridge constantly inspected, like,
23 could that do structural damage to it?
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Each time that it's
25 hit the police department will call the COM
1 Center whether they belive there is any
2 damage and someone needs to be sent out.
3 MR. SPINDLER: Those trains are going
4 over there pretty heavy. If that bridge is
5 damaged it can be something serious. That's
6 all I have.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Jim
9 MR. STUCKER: About three days, three
10 or four days ago they had a big wreck on
11 Market Street there by the Plot, and we need
12 to put a light there, that's what everybody
13 says. We need a light real bad there.
14 There is too many wrecks at that Market
15 Street Square.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.
17 MR. STUCKER: Providence Square.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: All right, Jimmy.
19 MR. STUCKER: We have a lot of holes
20 again, a lot of holes.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Holes?
22 MR. STUCKER: In the road.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Where at, Jim?
24 MR. STUCKER: Everywhere.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Everywhere, I hear
2 MR. STUCKER: But I heard somebody
3 just told me about two weeks ago somebody --
4 oh, that colored guy at the barber shop I
5 started saying that, the barber shop, the
6 guy in there at Market Street was harassing
7 me because I was walking the sidewalk up and
8 down and --
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Walk on the other
10 side of the street, Jim, then maybe he won't
11 bother you.
12 MR. STUCKER: And the pizza guy,
13 like, the whole block don't like him.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Don't say that,
15 Jim. Just go on the other side of the
16 street then maybe he won't bother you, okay?
17 Is that it?
18 MR. STUCKER: We need a light on that
19 Church Street, Church Avenue, again, I
20 complained about that.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay.
22 MR. STUCKER: Over up on Market
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Church and Market.
25 MR. STUCKER: Market and Oak Street.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Oak and Church?
2 MR. STUCKER: You go down that road.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay, we'll check
4 it out, Jim.
5 MR. STUCKER: We need a light there,
6 a pole light.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: All right. Thank
8 you, Jim. I can't red this. It's Linda
9 maybe on CDBG.
10 MS. STYER: Hello. My name is Linda
11 Styer, I'm the Director of Meals on Wheels,
12 for Lackawanna County, good evening. I am
13 here tonight to ask council, I know we have
14 put in for funding for CDBG monies and you
15 are the bodies that review the applications
16 and I just wanted to have a face connected
17 and a name to the agency and kind of just to
18 give you an overview, if you would allow me
19 to, to talk a little bit about the agency
20 and how long we have been in the county and
21 what services are provided and so forth.
22 Meals on Wheels of Lackawanna County
23 has been here 37 years, started with a $50
24 donation and serving 14 individuals and has
25 expanded currently in 2007 to feed over 900
1 individuals per day and it's border to
2 border Lackawanna County and it's over
3 200,000 meals. Our recipients are one of
4 the most frail populations in our area and
5 our services allow them to remain
6 independent in their homes by receiving a
7 nourishing meal that meets the requirements
8 for individuals 60 years of age and older.
9 And I just wanted to take this opportunity
10 to let you know that about 300 of the
11 persons that we serve reside in the City of
12 Scranton and we do also feed a small segment
13 of the population that's between 18 and
14 59 years of age and I just want to thank you
15 again for your time and I ask council and
16 the administration to consider this when you
17 are reviewing the application for funding.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you.
19 MS. EVANS: If I might respond to
20 you, I have site unseen having never spoken
21 with you prior to this moment I had included
22 Meals on Wheels on my list of additional
23 allocations. At this point, unfortunately,
24 that has not been granted. Now, I have
25 heard, for example, talk that because it is
1 an agency that's serves Lackawanna County
2 and not specifically Scranton that could
3 hinder an allocation, but, on the other
4 hand, I do know that there are, for example,
5 senior citizens centers that are serving
6 senior citizens thankfully who are not all
7 Scranton residents and yet they have
8 received allocations, CDBG allocations in
9 the past that I know for a fact. So, I
10 think what applies to Peter should apply to
11 Paul and I very much would like to see you
12 get that money, and I apologize to you, I
13 have tried I believe. It is a very worthy
14 cause. I know of many, many individuals
15 that you have served not only the nutritious
16 and warm meal they receive per day, but the
17 only visit, the only human contact that they
18 receive as well, which is a very sad
19 testament to the manner in which our elderly
20 are taken care of these days and, again, I
21 apologize to you. If I were -- if I had my
22 way you would be receiving your money.
23 MS. STYER: Thank you very much.
24 Thank you for your time.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: You're welcome. Lee
1 Morgan. Are you here?
2 MR. MORGAN: Yes, I was talking to
3 the Scranton Times reporter, if that what
4 you want to call that gentleman. But, no,
5 he's a nice guy. I want to spend my three
6 minutes to say that --
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Could you state
8 your name again.
9 MR. MORGAN: Oh, yeah, my name is
10 Lee Morgan, and I'd like to start tonight by
11 saying one thing, this city has two major
12 problems, they have voters that don't vote
13 and don't know the issues and complain about
14 what's happening here and don't get involved
15 to a major degree and then we've got a
16 council that just passes stuff without
17 regard to the residents in most instances.
18 Really for the life of me, I can't see how
19 7-B even could have been considered when
20 it's known throughout the whole community
21 that the Scranton School Board violated
22 their own Rules of Ethics and there was
23 money floating around fast and furious, and
24 then you look at how, you know, Mr. McGoff
25 talked about the hypotheticals, well, when
1 the Scranton Sewer Authority raised it's
2 rates and started council I didn't know that
3 was hypothetical. I didn't know that all of
4 the legislation we are going to bring before
5 council every time we ask a question, we
6 almost never get an answer, not this week,
7 not last week, not the week before that.
8 There are some councilmen who try to give us
9 answers, Mrs. Evans is one of the, but the
10 truth of the matter is that most times
11 Mrs. Evans can't get any answers and we are
12 going to all talk about hypotheticals here,
13 and we are going to talk about a revision of
14 -- the revival of the city. How is it go to
15 happen? All the projects we are doing in
16 this city are done with grants basically
17 driven by grants. It's not private
18 investors coming here and investing.
19 I'm going to tell you something, in
20 2000 I went to Washington State, the houses
21 we're tearing down in neighborhoods, I went
22 to look to buy a property there in Sumner,
23 Washington, they wanted $184,000 for a house
24 that was built in 1884, and the plan was for
25 the house to rip it down and build a new
1 one. In this city we rip them down and
2 nobody builds anything, but in that city
3 they paid $184,000 for the opportunity to
4 rip that building down and build a new one
5 and nobody was coming there with a million
6 dollars worth of grant money saying, "Let's
8 So, when you start talking about
9 economic vitality of this city, the politics
10 has to end and there has to be a rebirth of
11 an informed electorate and a reversal of all
12 of the borrowing. We are a BB. We are --
13 how much closer to the ground can we go, I
14 no idea. We are leasing everything, we got
15 policemen buying their own police cars. You
16 know, the volunteer fire department in
17 Honesdale has a truck for sale for 25 grand.
18 You go up and by it, '95, $25,000. I mean,
19 where are we going here? You know, it's
20 time to start thinking about the residents
21 and their homes. Now we are going to put
22 all kind of fees on you if you can't pay the
23 city's share of the taxes. Is that
24 progress? I don't think so. I think it's
25 abuse of the tax base. I think that's why
1 everybody is abandoning this city. I think
2 that it's time for all the smug little
3 answers to end and for the council to vote
4 on information they actually possess, and
5 I'm not singling out any single person here,
6 it's time to think, it's time for you to be
7 leaders and it's time for the city to go in
8 a new direction and 7-B points the road.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Dan Mossey.
10 MR. MOSSEY: Hi, City Council, my
11 name is Dan Mossey, and I'm a south side
12 resident. I'm here on the matter of public
13 safety. This weekend, this past Saturday
14 afternoon, me and couple of my friends were
15 crossing in the cross walk at Cedar and
16 Matt's Avenue when we were missed by an inch
17 of getting hit by a truck. I was wondering
18 if there would be a way that city council
19 would talk to DPW and have them erect a
20 pedestrian cross walk sign?
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Where is that, Cedar
22 and where?
23 MR. MOSSEY: Cedar and Matt's Avenue
24 by --
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Matt's?
1 MR. MOSSEY: Yeah, by General
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay, we will check
4 with DPW for you.
5 MR. MOSSEY: Okay. Thank you.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: You are welcome.
7 David Dobson.
8 MR. DOBSON: Good evening, again,
9 council. Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton.
10 I'd like to talk tonight about some issues I
11 have been seeing in the Scranton Times on
12 sewage, and this article appeared a few days
13 ago, I forget what day it was, that
14 Representative Kanjorski states Congress has
15 approved 20 million to cleanse parts of the
16 Susquehanna, and the article goes on, it's
17 based on overflow which we are facing down
18 $175 million bill potential or $150 million.
19 There is an editorial here from the Scranton
20 Times that I cut out where they basically
21 have the say how come they get it and we
22 don't, and that's my idea and instead of us
23 fighting with each other over how little
24 money we have every week and this is a
25 future issue maybe we should be approaching
1 our Congressmen and so forth and trying to
2 get something for us.
3 We have another part of the article,
4 Matthew J. Earhart, executive director of
5 the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Pennsylvania
6 Office in Demuth, so people down the river
7 would be more than overjoyed if they didn't
8 have to swim in sewage and people in
9 Scranton would certainly be overjoyed if
10 they didn't have to pay $150 a month some
11 day sewer bill, and to me it sounds like a
12 win-win situation except for the federal
13 government getting them to come up with the
14 money. But I would like to ask anybody
15 involved and especially you people because
16 you are in an elected office to more or less
17 lobby are Senators and so forth and try and
18 get some going on this before in other year
19 or two everybody is yelling about that. I
20 thank you and have a good night.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thanks, Dave. Janet
23 MS. RICKARD: Hi. Thank you, Janet,
24 for readdressing my serious problem with my
25 street sign. I do want to point out that
1 Mr. Brazil did return my phone call directly
2 the next day, and he said that he was going
3 to get back to me with whatever he was going
4 to try to do. So, I let the end of the week
5 go and I placed two calls back to him and I
6 haven't heard from him, so that left me very
7 disappointed. Janet has very clearly stated
8 my situation, but I'd like to do it one more
10 I have home health coming in. I
11 have OT, occupational therapy, three days a
12 week, that's three different people. PT,
13 it's never the same person as well. I have
14 a vitals nurse and a person who comes out
15 and does blood work regularly. I have three
16 separate shifts of nurses that come and
17 each-- nobody works seven days in a row so,
18 therefore, that leaves me with new people
19 coming all the time because they are
20 rotating shifts.
21 So, as I said, you know, I don't
22 know when I'll need an ambulance again, I
23 think I got that covered if they are the
24 same people that come to my home all the
25 time, but all I'm asking is simply trim back
1 the -- you know, the trees for the sign for
2 Hawthorne Street, at least that gives me
3 something to help, you know, to find
4 Hawthorne Street, and I don't see how hard
5 it would be to just put a sign where
6 Hawthorne comes up and meets Emily, just
7 simply put a sign there that says "Emily",
8 and then this also gives not only my home
9 this potentially could be someone else on
10 that corner of my section of the
11 development, so anything that council could
12 do to help me with that I would greatly
13 appreciate it.
14 MS. EVANS: We'll make sure it gets
16 MS. RICKARD: Thank you. Thank for
17 your time. Good night.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Is there anyone
20 MR. SCOTT: My name is Barbara
21 Scott, 1422 Prospect Avenue, and it's in
22 reference to the property at 1212 and 1210
23 Cedar Avenue, Cedar and Locust, and what I
24 want to say is that property was sold to a
25 Sharon Argo in 1998 and I was told that I
1 think it was sold for approximately $5,000,
2 and then it was transferred to another party
3 and I also have money invested in it. I was
4 never given notification as to it being sold
5 and right now I'm in the process, I have
6 taken steps to have it investigated. So, I
7 just wanted to tell you that.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: All right. Thank
9 you. Is there anyone else?
10 MR. PATILLA: Good evening, Council.
11 Sam Patilla, taxpayer and city resident,
12 homeowner. It feels kind of free not having
13 the police officer here. I think it's the
14 second time since I have been here I haven't
15 seen one. All right, real quickly, the main
16 reason I'm here tonight is because last week
17 Mr. Davis got up here and stated that maybe
18 people shouldn't vote, you know, and that
19 didn't sit too well with me. A lot of great
20 people die to ensure that the people in this
21 country have the right to vote and, you
22 know, we could do like the other citizens
23 are doing, we can pack up, ship and move out
24 some place else, but that doesn't solve the
25 problem, it doesn't help the problem, it
1 just creates the problem. We need everybody
2 that's registered to vote to get out and
3 vote because 90 percent of the people that I
4 contacted and communicate with are senior
5 citizens and they Scranton has been the same
6 which for 50 years or for 100 years. Well,
7 if Scranton keeps going the same way it's
8 going we are going to be a half trillion
9 dollars in debt, and the reason I say that
10 is I woke up this morning and I saw my
11 Frosted Flakes box, "Made in China," and I
12 grew up on Corn Flakes, General Mills,
13 Quaker Health, Quaker Oats, and to see "Made
14 in China" on the cereal box from my youth
15 kind of shook me back and it brought to my
16 mind maybe that's the problem with corporate
17 America running our cities or our cities
18 trying to run themselves like businesses.
19 Everything is being outsourced instead of
20 growing from within. You know, we really,
21 truly need to come to together as a people
22 and the only way we can do that honestly is
23 for everybody to get out and vote. People
24 in the office that are for the taxpayers and
25 for the citizens, that are for the City of
1 Scranton itself. You know, we talk about
2 tearing down houses. I walked two and a
3 half blocks from my home, I drive throughout
4 the city. I see weeds in lots where homes
5 have been knocked down three and four feet
6 high. I see them in the lots by the school
7 heading down towards Providence 6, 7, 8 feet
8 high. You know, it's one thing to knock
9 them down, but it's another thing like the
10 parks not to be maintain them. What's the
11 sense of knocking them down, there's an open
12 space there wild and free when we could have
13 refurbished those homes and rented them out
14 and sold them and got some tax base and some
15 tax monies coming in to help support this
16 city. You know, one of the main problems
17 that people fail to realize is when you are
18 in a crunch you need to tighten your belt,
19 all right, and it needs to start from the
20 top, everything else starts from the top.
21 So, in order to get this city back on track
22 we need to start from the top and get rid it
23 of that dead weight up there so that we can
24 come back together and start from scratch
25 and build from the ground up, you know,
1 everything changes over time, you call it
2 progression. Scranton can't stay the same
3 as it was 50 years ago or 100 nears ago or a
4 day ago or two hours ago. It has to move
5 along with society for the world with
6 history, with time, all right? And once
7 again, everybody out there that is
8 registered to vote get out and vote. I'm
9 not going to tell you who to vote for, but
10 get out there and vote. Thank you.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Anyone else? Okay,
13 MS. BERNADETTE: Good evening, City
14 Councilmen and women.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: State your name for
16 us, Phyllis.
17 MS. BERNADETTE: To the Muslims my
18 name is Stata Yaski (phonetic).
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: English for us,
21 MS. BERNADETTE: To the Catholics and
22 Americans my name is Mary Phylomica
23 Bernadette. This is very hard for me, and I
24 want to try to do the best I could, (witness
25 speaks in untranscribable verbage). To all
1 my church leaders, to all of the leaders of
2 the government, Senators and our president,
3 but most of all I send my love to the
4 military and to Colonel Jimmy Matisko and
5 Colonel Leon Matisko. They are my cousins
6 and Michael Matisko, III. I'm very
7 American, but I dress because of my mission
8 I am an ambassador for peace.
9 What I want to tell you is this,
10 last week I told you that someone was on
11 there and we needed an interpreter, so I'm
12 going to extend to you what was said. I was
13 called by Sheik Abdul and my documents went
14 in the middle east and he is with us for
15 peace, I'm trying to do the best I can to
16 extend peace to everyone and show them the
17 love of the Lord Jesus Christ. I will be
18 meeting with these ambassadors in time. I
19 don't ask anybody for a penny, I do the best
20 I could. For Homeland security, for the
21 CIA, the FBI and all those who protect my
22 country I want to thank you for your
23 yesterday, my dream came true. In front of
24 the federal building the Holy statute with
25 the 4,000 flags was placed looking at the
1 federal building. They support peace.
2 People don't understand what war is all
3 about. War is about greed, selfishness,
4 killing, everybody's got to turn back to
5 peace in your home, your towns, your cities,
6 all of the way up. Without peace we don't
7 have anything. What we have, you complain
8 about the holes in the roads and the hunger.
9 There is children in other countries that
10 are hungry, they are listening to bombs and
11 seeing big holes being blown in their
12 houses. We've got to be grateful for what
13 we have and what we could do to do the best
14 we could and not just squeezing the common
15 dollar out of the poor people.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you, Phyllis.
17 MS. BERNADETTE: So that's all I want
18 to say and thank you, everybody, for your
19 patience and your prayers.
20 MS. COURTRIGHT: Thank you.
21 MS. BERNADETTE: And God Bless you
22 and may the peace of Jesus Christ come to
23 all of us.
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you, Phyllis.
25 Is there anyone else?
1 MS. GRUDZINSKI: Lori Grudzinski,
2 Scranton. First of all, I was shocked to
3 see that my mom came on the same property
4 issue that was in our family for so long,
5 she just came for a tour of our new home we
6 are building. She is still fighting with my
7 dad, although my dad has passed. They had
8 the longest divorce in the history of
9 Scranton, it was about 25 years long. I
10 just want to say, I'm happy with your
11 decision tonight. I appreciate your full
12 attention to this matter. If I owe more
13 money on the property I'm willing to pay it
14 or sell the property on my terms. However,
15 it's the only one of the nine properties
16 that my dad owned when he died that he
17 willed to me and my husband and five
18 children so it's our inheritance and that's
19 all I have to say. Thank you.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Is there
21 anyone else? You already spoke, ma'am. I
22 can't let you speak again, I'm sorry.
23 Chris, you coming up, Buddy?
24 MR. SLEDENZSKI: Hey, Billy, what is
25 going on, Bill?
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: West side.
2 MR. SLEDENZSKI: That's right, baby.
3 They had a nice game the other night, they
4 played a good game down there Friday night.
5 MS. EVANS: Yes, it was. I think
6 both teams played exceptionally well and
7 nobody has anybody has anything to be
8 ashamed of.
9 MR. SLEDENZSKI: No fights or
10 nothing down there, no fights.
11 MS. EVANS: That's right.
12 MR. SLEDENZSKI: The bell goes back
13 to us, Billy.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you, Chris.
15 MR. UNGVARSKY: Good evening, city
16 council, I'm Tom Ungvarsky. I'm also a
17 member of the Scranton Lackawanna County
18 Taxpayers. I understand that the city is
19 going to tear down the US Post Office in
20 South Side. It seems like we are getting
21 into the business of tearing down buildings.
22 We tore down a plant in lower South Side, we
23 tore down the Holiday Motel. We tore down
24 several buildings on Moosic Street and we
25 tore one down in North Scranton. This
1 building is a fairly new building. It's a
2 well-constructed building and it could
3 probably be used for something else such as
4 a neighborhood center. Has anybody checked
5 with the people in the area what they would
6 like? There are quite a few homes that are
7 very close to this project and whether they
8 would want a neighborhood center or a park
9 there. Before we do anything it might be
10 well for city council to look in it. Thank
12 MR. MCGOFF: I will answer part of
13 that, the neighbors were contacted,
14 neighbors up and down Orchard Street were
15 pleased with the decision to turn it into a
16 park and a green space. As a matter of
17 fact, many of them actually volunteered that
18 they would help maintain the park once it
19 was put in, so the neighbors were contacted
20 and it was the decision to make the park was
21 actually proposed by members of that
23 MR. UNGVARSKY: Well, that's fine,
24 but it seems like that may have been lead a
25 little bit and didn't have a choice of a
1 neighborhood center or the park, but either
2 way I'm not against a park, it just seems
3 ashame to tear down a building of that
4 structure. Thank you.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Anyone
7 MR. JACKOWITZ: Bill Jackowitz, South
8 Scranton. You know, whether it be Tuesday
9 or whether it be Thursday, when we have
10 these meetings or whenever there is a
11 taxpayers' meeting in this building we hear
12 sirens all of the time. You know, sirens in
13 most cases belong to the city police
14 department and the city fire department who
15 out there in inclement weather like tonight
16 and they are responding to these emergencies
17 and doing their job, doing their job as best
18 as they can, and the best -- and they are
19 qualified to do their jobs, the men and
20 women on the police department and fire
21 department, but, yet they are working
22 without a contract for six years now. City
23 council, it's time to do something about
24 that. I hear a siren right now as I speak.
25 You need to do something about this. Get
1 with the mayor and get a contract signed,
2 sit him down even if you have to drag him in
3 by his hair. Get him here and get these
4 contracts signed now. These guys and men
5 and women work too hard.
6 Hypothetical or hypocritical?
7 Mr. McGoff, every week council votes on
8 issue that they have not read, seen or
9 understand. Proof, every week council
10 either does not answer citizens' questions
11 or on occasion they give misleading answers.
12 So, again, I say, hypothetical or
13 hypocritical. I say a mixture of both
14 resulting in distressed city status. High
15 employment, low wages, blighted property,
16 loss of population, lowest per capita wages
17 in the state. Firemen, police officers and
18 clerical workers no contracts. Citizens
19 being arrested for speaking out. Council
20 members being medicated. Houses being torn
21 down, more blight. Business owners being
22 forced out of their properties. Taxes being
23 increased, services being cut, realtors are
24 being given $1.5 million in taxpayer money.
25 Houses not being sold in the city, just torn
1 down. One out of six residents living in
2 poverty. No money budgeted for pool repairs
3 or road repairs. Middle management
4 positions created at high salaries, worker's
5 positions eliminated. Elected officials
6 family members are given jobs, given jobs
7 within the city. So, I ask you,
8 hypothetical or hypocritical? Hopefully the
9 voters answer that question on Tuesday, the
10 6th of November of 2007. You can also
11 substitute these words, facts or fiction?
12 Real or unreal? Fair or unfair? Like I
13 say, hypothetical or hypocritical.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you. Anyone
15 else? I make a motion to adjourn.
16 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: We're adjourned.
1 C E R T I F I C A T E
3 I hereby certify that the proceedings and
4 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the
5 notes of testimony taken by me at the hearing of the
6 above-captioned matter and that the foregoing is a true
7 and correct transcript of the same to the best of my
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI
12 OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER