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            1              SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING

 

            2

 

            3

 

            4

 

            5                          HELD:

 

            6

 

            7                Tuesday, January 29, 2008

 

            8

 

            9                        LOCATION:

 

           10                    Council Chambers

 

           11                 Scranton City Hall

 

           12              340 North Washington Avenue

 

           13                Scranton, Pennsylvania

 

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           23

                            CATHENE S. NARDOZZI- COURT REPORTER

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            1

 

            2   CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:

 

            3

 

            4

                MR. ROBERT MCGOFF, PRESIDENT

            5

 

            6   MS. JUDY GATELLI, VICE-PRESIDENT

 

            7

                MS. JANET E. EVANS

            8

 

            9   MS. SHERRY FANUCCI

 

           10

                MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT

           11

 

           12   MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK

 

           13

                MS. SUE MAGNOTTA, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK

           14

 

           15   MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR

 

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            1        (Pledge of Allegiance recited and moment of

                      silence observed.)

            2

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Roll call, please.

 

            4                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mrs. Evans.  Mr.

 

            5              Courtright.

 

            6                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

            7                      MR. MAGNOTTA:  Ms. Fanucci.

 

            8                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

            9                      MR. MAGNOTTA:  Ms. Gatelli.

 

           10                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

           11                      MR. MAGNOTTA:  Mr. McGoff.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I would like to

 

           13              make note for the record that Mrs. Evans did

 

           14              call and said that she will be late, but she

 

           15              will be in attendance.  Third Order.

 

           16                      MS. GARVEY: 3-A.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?

 

           18              If not, received and filed.

 

           19                      MS. GARVEY: 3-B.  MINUTES OF THE

 

           20              FIRE PENSION COMMISSION MEETING HELD ON

 

           21              DECEMBER 19, 2007.

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?

 

           23              If not, received and filed.

 

           24                      MS. GARVEY: 3-C. MINUTES OF THE

 

           25              SCRANTON-LACKAWANNA COUNTY HEALTH AND


 

 

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            1              WELFARE AUTHORITY MEETING HELD ON

 

            2              DECEMBER 20, 2007.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?

 

            4              If not, received and filed.

 

            5                      MS. GARVEY: 3-D.  AGENDA FOR THE

 

            6              NON-UNIFORM PENSION BOARD MEETING HELD ON

 

            7              JANUARY 23, 2007.

 

            8                      MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?

 

            9              If the not, received and filed.

 

           10                      MS. GARVEY: That's all for Third

 

           11              Order.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: Prior to Fourth Order if

 

           13              there is anyone that have announcements or

 

           14              anything to note.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI: Nothing tonight.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF:  Then we will proceed to

 

           17              Fourth Order.  Citizens' participation.  The

 

           18              first speaker is Doug Miller.

 

           19                      MR. MILLER:  Good evening, Council,

 

           20              Doug Miller, president of the Scranton

 

           21              Junior City Council.  I want to begin

 

           22              tonight by responding in the recent

 

           23              criticism of the South Side tree planting

 

           24              projects.  The Scranton Junior City Council

 

           25              from day one has supported to project.  The


 

 

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            1              South Side Neighborhood Association reached

 

            2              out to us and asked us to participate in

 

            3              this outstanding project.  Junior Council

 

            4              believes that this is a project that will

 

            5              help beautify the neighborhoods in South

 

            6              Side.  This is a project that will certainly

 

            7              improve the quality of life for all of our

 

            8              residents.  Weekly critics say that this

 

            9              project is a waste of time and money yet

 

           10              each week they argue that are neighborhoods

 

           11              are in need of repair.  I believe that life

 

           12              we want to improve our neighborhood we must

 

           13              invest in them and this is exactly what the

 

           14              South Side Neighborhood Association is

 

           15              doing.  The tree planting project is the

 

           16              first of many aimed at improving South Side.

 

           17              On behalf of Junior Council I would like to

 

           18              thank the South Side neighborhood

 

           19              association and their leader, Mr. Wayne

 

           20              Evans, for their hard work and compassion

 

           21              for our city.  While many consistently

 

           22              criticize and offer no alternative, you

 

           23              continue to do what's best for this city and

 

           24              we thank for your dedication and service.

 

           25                   On behalf of Junior Council I would


 

 

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            1              like to take this time to thank the brave

 

            2              men and women who protect us each day.  As

 

            3              our city continues to mourn the loss of

 

            4              Captain James Robeson, we must remember his

 

            5              dedication to our city and his commitment to

 

            6              protect all of us.  Our police officers and

 

            7              firefighters should be praised for their

 

            8              courageous acts.  It takes a very special

 

            9              person to walk into our harmful situation.

 

           10              These brave men and woman put their lives on

 

           11              the line every day and the Scranton Junior

 

           12              City Council believes that it is our

 

           13              responsibility to honor these heroes.

 

           14                      Junior Council would like to see a

 

           15              police and firefighters memorial built and

 

           16              the memorial would act as a lasting tribute

 

           17              to remember the names of those who serve our

 

           18              city.  With that said, Junior Council will

 

           19              join Mrs. Roseann Novembrino and others and

 

           20              begin raising funds to benefit a police and

 

           21              firefighter memorial.  I am asking citizens

 

           22              and business owners to please make a

 

           23              contribution towards this project.  We will

 

           24              be accepting cash or check and all donations

 

           25              can be sent to 340 North Washington Avenue,


 

 

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            1              18503.  As Scrantonians, let's stand

 

            2              together and honor our heroes.  Thank you

 

            3              and have a good night.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you very much,

 

            5              Douglas.  Joe Hazzouri.

 

            6                      MR. Hazzouri:  Good evening.  Joe

 

            7              Hazzouri, Scranton resident.  Before I speak

 

            8              tonight I would just like to say before I

 

            9              relate my story that it's not my intention

 

           10              this evening to get myself in the middle of

 

           11              any political he said she said because I

 

           12              admire the policies of Mayor Doherty and the

 

           13              results they have shown upon the City of

 

           14              Scranton, and I also admire Councilman

 

           15              Courtright for the humble and discipline

 

           16              manners he shows in the face of the

 

           17              intensity of these city council meetings,

 

           18              and having brought those two together in one

 

           19              sentence, I would like to hope that we could

 

           20              agree that when we disagree we lay the first

 

           21              stone on the pathway with compromise.

 

           22                      Now, I'll relate my story.  Two

 

           23              years ago I redid my home mortgage and at

 

           24              the time the loan officer suggested to me

 

           25              that if I were to do -- if I didn't do a


 

 

                                                                       8

 

 

            1              home mortgage, but if I did it another way

 

            2              that I would save myself a few thousand

 

            3              dollars in closing costs, but the only

 

            4              drawback would be that I would have to pay

 

            5              my own city taxes and my own insurance.  At

 

            6              the time it didn't seem like much of a

 

            7              drawback.  My home I have 125 FairView

 

            8              Avenue is my home, 123 FairView Avenue is my

 

            9              yard.  When I got the first bill and having

 

           10              owned the home at the time for 16 years I

 

           11              had never seen of those bills, they went

 

           12              directly to the bank.  I made the mistake in

 

           13              thinking that I was double billed and I just

 

           14              took one bill down to the Single Tax Office

 

           15              and just paid for 125 FairView Avenue.

 

           16                   About eight or nine months later I got

 

           17              a bill from the Single Tax Office saying

 

           18              that I owed taxes on 123 FairView Avenue.  I

 

           19              immediately went down to the Single Tax

 

           20              Office and I paid that bill.  On that day I

 

           21              left with my receipt as well as the

 

           22              confidence thinking my tax had been

 

           23              completed.

 

           24                      Time passed, a little over a year

 

           25              and on December 18 of this year I got a


 

 

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            1              letter from a local law office along with a

 

            2              subheading from NCC, the collection agency

 

            3              from the City of Scranton, saying that I

 

            4              owed $82 to the City of Scranton in real

 

            5              estate tax.  I immediately looked in my

 

            6              family records of all past paid bills and I

 

            7              saw that I had paid the bill and I had the

 

            8              receipt, so I just put them all together and

 

            9              I just thought to myself when I get my bill

 

           10              for this year I'll go down to the Single Tax

 

           11              Office and I'll have them taken care of at

 

           12              that time.  Well, the first week of January

 

           13              I went to the bank to get another small loan

 

           14              for a purchase that I wanted to make.  A few

 

           15              days into the process I got a call from the

 

           16              loan officer saying there was a lien against

 

           17              my property that was put there December 28

 

           18              for $82 and change.  I immediately went with

 

           19              my receipt to the Single Tax Office and I

 

           20              asked them, you know, could you explain this

 

           21              to me and they told me that when I paid the

 

           22              $125 at that time the city had removed it's

 

           23              end of those taxes from the bill.

 

           24                      Now, I didn't ask them why the city

 

           25              removed it and I didn't ask why they didn't


 

 

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            1              tell me the city had removed it, all I asked

 

            2              is how do I pay it.  They told me I would

 

            3              have to go to NCC and pay this bill.  I

 

            4              immediately went up to NCC, explained to the

 

            5              woman the situation, she took the paperwork

 

            6              from me and she said, well, they are is

 

            7              going to be a few extra charges.  Well, that

 

            8              $82 and change by the time the woman got off

 

            9              the phone turned into $532 and change.

 

           10                      I had a feeling in my stomach as if

 

           11              I had been betrayed.  And when that feeling

 

           12              left me the two feelings that brought me

 

           13              here this evening still linger in me.  One

 

           14              is anger that our city government would

 

           15              enact an ordinance which seemingly is so

 

           16              vindictive against the citizens of this city

 

           17              and the second feeling was fear, fear that

 

           18              someone less financially fortunate than

 

           19              myself would have this situation happen to

 

           20              them.

 

           21                      Now, when I started my little story

 

           22              I said to you that I hope that we can all

 

           23              feel that disagreement is the first stone on

 

           24              the pathway to compromise, and that's how

 

           25              I'll leave my speech this evening.  Thank


 

 

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            1              you very much.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Hazzouri.

 

            3              Bob Bolus.

 

            4                      MR. BOLUS: Good evening, Council,

 

            5              Bob Bolus, Scranton.  On the agenda under

 

            6              6-E where you want to enact a fee, a garbage

 

            7              fee, I think you really have to take a good

 

            8              hard look at this because the fee unless

 

            9              it's spread equally across everyone that

 

           10              with KOZ's and nonprofits because they are

 

           11              not exempt from fees, only exempt from

 

           12              taxes, would be part of this or this fee

 

           13              would be illegal.  Any fee that's imposed

 

           14              has to be imposed equally across everyone,

 

           15              there are no exceptions.  So, I think

 

           16              council that look at this and get a legal

 

           17              opinion on it, but right now it's like

 

           18              taxation without representation putting this

 

           19              fee on just for people and not on KOZ's and

 

           20              nonprofits.

 

           21                      Last week I asked a couple of

 

           22              questions here and I'd like to get an answer

 

           23              next week or publically if council would

 

           24              respond to the issue I just brought up.

 

           25              Last week I brought about exploring the idea


 

 

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            1              of windmills to help cut our costs in this

 

            2              city, I also brought about the leachate line

 

            3              coming from the landfill into the sewer

 

            4              authority where we are should be able to

 

            5              collect a fee as a host community on the

 

            6              gallonage aside from what the Sewer

 

            7              Authority does.  I would like to council to

 

            8              look into this and give us an answer on it.

 

            9              This is an issue I brought up over the last

 

           10              two or three years and we have never had a

 

           11              response I think it's time for it.

 

           12                      We have to look into proposing a fee

 

           13              in this city that includes KOZ's and

 

           14              nonprofits, that's spread across the

 

           15              citizens as well as the KOZ's and nonprofits

 

           16              and start paying their fair share.  We need

 

           17              to become creative in what we are doing here

 

           18              instead of just pushing the pea around the

 

           19              plate, that's been going on too long and I'd

 

           20              like an answer for that, also.

 

           21                      Tonight I would ask any council

 

           22              member sitting here, last week I brought up

 

           23              about having a motion put on to put the golf

 

           24              course money in trust, the remainder that's

 

           25              in trust now, and to find a way to recapture


 

 

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            1              the 1.5 million that was taken out of there

 

            2              a year ago and squandered by the mayor of

 

            3              this city.  That was money that belonged to

 

            4              the people, the interest was to be used for

 

            5              the purpose of the parks and recreation and

 

            6              tonight I would like to ask if any of you

 

            7              council members while I'm standing here now

 

            8              would make that motion tonight.

 

            9              Mr. Courtright, Mrs. Gatelli, Mrs. Fanucci,

 

           10              Mr. McGoff, would any of you tonight make

 

           11              that motion to preserve that money and take

 

           12              it out of the hands of this mayor?

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I wouldn't have a

 

           14              problem making it, but I don't know where

 

           15              are we going to get the 1.5 million that we

 

           16              have already spent?

 

           17                      MR. BOLUS: Well, there is probably

 

           18              other ways to do it if you are follow some

 

           19              of the examples we are giving.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT: If we had the 1.5

 

           21              million I would certainly be in favor of

 

           22              doing that.  I just -- I don't know where I

 

           23              can come up with 1.5 million.

 

           24                      MR. BOLUS: Right, but I'm also

 

           25              looking at, and we can split it into two


 

 

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            1              motions, one would be the first motion to

 

            2              preserve the money that's already sitting in

 

            3              escrow and the second motion would be to in

 

            4              the event it's going to be recaptured to put

 

            5              it back for the people, if that could be

 

            6              done tonight if and you would make that

 

            7              motion I would appreciate it.

 

            8                      Mr. McGoff, I would like to ask you

 

            9              tonight on behalf of unions and people here,

 

           10              we have been written up in the paper, we all

 

           11              look like a bunch of fools in this city,

 

           12              literally what's going on between the mayor,

 

           13              the Recovery Plan and all of the nonsense

 

           14              that the city is broke and in the shape that

 

           15              it is, Court rulings and appeals and

 

           16              everything else, I would like to ask you

 

           17              tonight to join in the negotiations to bring

 

           18              the unions and the mayor and his

 

           19              administration publically before the people

 

           20              here live on Channel 61 to discuss this

 

           21              issue and let's get it resolved once and for

 

           22              all instead of a he said, she said and let's

 

           23              try and turn council around and I would ask

 

           24              council, council president, if you would do

 

           25              that because someone has to draw a line


 

 

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            1              here.  These people have been without

 

            2              raises, we are demoralizing the City of

 

            3              Scranton, we are demoralizing our unions,

 

            4              our fire departments and the citizens and

 

            5              someone needs to step up on the plate and I

 

            6              would ask that you do that tonight.  Let

 

            7              council take the lead for a change instead

 

            8              of following this administration because

 

            9              this administration has made us the laughing

 

           10              stock.  We are spending 80 some million

 

           11              dollars a year to run this city and it's

 

           12              ridiculous.  The spending in this city is

 

           13              totally out of control and it has to stop

 

           14              here, but let's start with the people that

 

           15              serve us.  The people we pay all of these

 

           16              taxes for their protection to take care of

 

           17              the people in this city by making this

 

           18              administration once and for all accountable.

 

           19              Let's find out who is and who isn't telling

 

           20              the truth here and that camera doesn't lie

 

           21              and that's why Channel 61 should remain in

 

           22              this room instead of anybody else out there

 

           23              with a bid that wants to play games with the

 

           24              future of this city because that is the

 

           25              truth and nothing but the truth here and


 

 

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            1              something else will fabricate it.  Thank

 

            2              you.  Jim Stucker.

 

            3                      MR. STUCKER: Jimmy Stucker.  A lot

 

            4              of people have been telling me about the

 

            5              scooter, I'm sick of hearing it.  I'm

 

            6              getting really upset about it.  I'd like to

 

            7              know where it is, I'd like to know what

 

            8              happened to it, a lady in East Mountain I

 

            9              heard she has it and Larry told me

 

           10              Courtright has got it now.  Larry thought

 

           11              yesterday up at the Cole Muffler Company

 

           12              that Courtright has got it home.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Stucker, I think

 

           14              that people are just trying to play games

 

           15              with you.  Nobody on city council has your

 

           16              scooter, and I really believe that people

 

           17              are just trying to, you know, play some

 

           18              games with you and get you upset.  I think

 

           19              you are going to have to realize that

 

           20              perhaps the scooter was taken by someone

 

           21              outside of this city, outside of the city

 

           22              government and you probably not going to get

 

           23              it back.

 

           24                      MR. STUCKER: Well, right next to us

 

           25              there is a big dog inside of the fence, he


 

 

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            1              barks 11, 12:00 at night, all night, 2:00

 

            2              sometime all night barks and barks and the

 

            3              people that live there they don't take care

 

            4              of it and don't let him inside, so I want to

 

            5              try to get something done with that dog.

 

            6              All right?

 

            7                      Courtright, I'm sorry.  Larry told

 

            8              me Fanucci told Larry you would have a job

 

            9              for me.

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT: You have a job for

 

           11              him?

 

           12                      MS. FANUCCI:  I have a job?

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Who has a job for

 

           14              you?

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: Again, Mr. Stucker, I

 

           16              think people are telling you things that

 

           17              aren't necessarily true.  Unless -- I would

 

           18              say unless somebody on council said that

 

           19              directly to you that I would not necessarily

 

           20              believe it, okay?

 

           21                      MR. STUCKER:  Well, I need a job.

 

           22              I'm getting bored sitting around.  And,

 

           23              okay, right on Market Street where the bus

 

           24              sits a big hole yesterday right in the road,

 

           25              it was someone hit a big hole in the road


 

 

                                                                      18

 

 

            1              yesterday I was on the bus.  And we still

 

            2              got people parking over by Oppenheim and the

 

            3              Globe store again, cars are parking there

 

            4              and we need a sign up on Market Street, no

 

            5              parking by the laundry mat.

 

            6                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Okay, Jim, we'll

 

            7              take care it.

 

            8                      MR. STUCKER: I want something done

 

            9              with that.

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT: We'll take care of

 

           11              it for you, all right?  Thanks, Jim.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you very much,

 

           13              Mr. Stucker.  Ray Lyman.

 

           14                      MR. LYMAN: I'm here tonight to talk

 

           15              about the stimulus package that President

 

           16              Bush and now the senate is debating about

 

           17              the people who are on disability and social

 

           18              security and veterans.  I'm urging the

 

           19              people of the surrounding areas of 61 to

 

           20              contact Mr. Casey and Mr. Specter.  The poor

 

           21              should be getting this, not the rich.

 

           22              People who are earning over 100,000 to

 

           23              300,000 they do not deserve it, the poor

 

           24              should get it.  It's time that the poor

 

           25              should stand up and fight for their rights.


 

 

                                                                      19

 

 

            1              It's tired of seeing the ridiculous of the

 

            2              rich stealing from the poor.  We have a

 

            3              mayor that's steals from the poor.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Lyman, that's out of

 

            5              the line.

 

            6                      MR. LYMAN:  Mr. McGoff, I have a

 

            7              right to speak under the constitution.  Just

 

            8              sit there and be quiet.

 

            9                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Lyman --

 

           10                      MR. LYMAN: Mr. McGoff --

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: -- I'm going to ask you

 

           12              to leave.

 

           13                      MR. LYMAN: --  under the

 

           14              constitution I have a right to speak.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: You do not have a

 

           16              right --

 

           17                      MR. LYMAN: Oh, yes, I do.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me.

 

           19                      MR. LYMAN: I have a right to speak.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: Yes, you do.

 

           21                      MR. LYMAN:  Or I will take you to

 

           22              Court and I will sue and my lawyer is

 

           23              Munley, Munley and Courtright.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Lyman, you have a

 

           25              right to speak --


 

 

                                                                      20

 

 

            1                      MR. LYMAN: And I did contact the

 

            2              ACLU and they told me I could speak.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: You have a right to

 

            4              speak --

 

            5                      MR. LYMAN:  And I have five minutes.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: You do not have a

 

            7              right --

 

            8                      MR. LYMAN: And that ambulance chaser

 

            9              cannot stop me.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: All right.

 

           11                      MR. LYMAN: My lawyer told me I could

 

           12              not speak.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: That's out of order.

 

           14                      MR. LYMAN: And I'm not fighting with

 

           15              you.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Please leaves the

 

           17              podium.

 

           18                      MR. LYMAN: Let me speak.  You cannot

 

           19              fight with me and harass me.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF:  Please leave the

 

           21              podium, Mr. Lyman.

 

           22                      MR. LYMAN: No, I want to speak.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: You are completely out

 

           24              of order.

 

           25                      MR. LYMAN: I'm not fighting with


 

 

                                                                      21

 

 

            1              you.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: I'm not fighting with

 

            3              you either, but when you are out of order

 

            4              you have --

 

            5                      MR. LYMAN: I'm not fighting with

 

            6              you.

 

            7                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Calm down, Ray.

 

            8                      MR. LYMAN: It's public comment.

 

            9              It's public comment and I have a right to

 

           10              speak.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: Please leave the podium.

 

           12              Thank you.

 

           13                      MR. LYMAN:  No.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: Your time is complete.

 

           15                      MR. LYMAN: And I'm not harassing

 

           16              anybody and I'm not fighting with anybody.

 

           17              My lawyer says I can speak.  I'm not

 

           18              intimidated, I am not threatening anybody,

 

           19              I'm not cursing, I'm not threatening anybody

 

           20              with a knife, I'm not just speaking, you

 

           21              cannot intimidate me, you cannot fight with

 

           22              me, I'm just saying something.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Lyman, I don't want

 

           24              to -- -

 

           25                      MR. LYMAN: Even you lawyer could say


 

 

                                                                      22

 

 

            1              that.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: I do want the officer to

 

            3              have to remove you.

 

            4                      MR. LYMAN: I'm not fighting with

 

            5              you.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: I'm not fighting with

 

            7              you either, but you were out of order and

 

            8              you are being asked to leave.

 

            9                      MR. LYMAN:  You explain to me how

 

           10              I'm out of order.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF:  Because you made

 

           12              accusations of impropriety about people in

 

           13              city government.

 

           14                      MR. LYMAN:  I did not say anything

 

           15              about our state --

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Yes, you did.

 

           17                      MR. LYMAN -- our federal

 

           18              representatives.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.  Officer.

 

           20                      MR. LYMAN: No, you tell me.

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF: Officer.

 

           22                      MR. LYMAN:  If he arrests me I will

 

           23              sue the City of Scranton for

 

           24              $10.9 million --

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF: Okay.


 

 

                                                                      23

 

 

            1                      MR. LYMAN: -- for false arrest, and

 

            2              I will sue, and I'm not Sam Patilla and I

 

            3              will sue the District Attorney's Office.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: Please don't bring other

 

            5              people's name into the --

 

            6                      MR. LYMAN: And I will sue.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Lyman --

 

            8                      MR. LYMAN: Violation of my civil

 

            9              rights.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF:  You are not doing

 

           11              yourself any service, you are costing these

 

           12              people time and --

 

           13                      MR. LYMAN: I'm not doing nothing

 

           14              wrong.  I want to ask a question to city

 

           15              council members.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: You are making a farce

 

           17              of this.  Please remove Mr. Lyman.

 

           18                      MR. LYMAN: Mr. Courtright, I want to

 

           19              ask you a question.  In my neighborhood

 

           20              there is crime running rampant,

 

           21              prostitution, drugs, drugs are being running

 

           22              around, I didn't see a city council meeting

 

           23              in awhile, there are no beat cops.  There is

 

           24              no police running around, I want to know why

 

           25              there is no police beat.  There is no beat


 

 

                                                                      24

 

 

            1              officers.  There is no --

 

            2                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Okay, I'm going to

 

            3              answer your question, Ray.

 

            4                      MR. LYMAN: Police raise or nothing.

 

            5                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Ray, Ray, let me

 

            6              answer your question okay?

 

            7                      MR. LYMAN: Since I have five minutes

 

            8              I want to know.

 

            9                      MR. MCGOFF: Is his five minutes up?

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I'm going to answer

 

           11              your question, all right?

 

           12                      MR. LYMAN: Yeah.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT: You weren't here the

 

           14              other week and I explained what happened

 

           15              with the beat officers.  Now, just let me

 

           16              explain to you before you get excited, Ray,

 

           17              all right?

 

           18                      MR. LYMAN:  I'm not excited, he

 

           19              started fighting with me.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Okay.  All right.

 

           21              Calm dawn, Ray, Calm down, Ray.  The City of

 

           22              Scranton in my opinion didn't give the test

 

           23              in a timely fashion so that we could hire

 

           24              police officers.  When they did give a test,

 

           25              all right, not enough people applied for the


 

 

                                                                      25

 

 

            1              the test, they didn't want to be a cop in

 

            2              Scranton.  Out of the ones applied we got

 

            3              very few that passed.

 

            4                      MR. LYMAN: We got one right here.

 

            5                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Well, you are asking

 

            6              me a question and --

 

            7                      MR. LYMAN: Put him down on Pine.

 

            8                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  You can't do that,

 

            9              Ray, because you have to have --

 

           10                      MR. LYMAN: I give you an order to do

 

           11              it.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Now, Raymond.

 

           13              Raymond, you ask me to answer a question I

 

           14              try to answer it.  Do you don't want to

 

           15              answer or no?

 

           16                      MR. LYMAN: Yeah.

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Then let me

 

           18              continue, all right?

 

           19                      MR. LYMAN: Okay.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT: All right.  He is

 

           21              assigned to patrol.  They have to have "X"

 

           22              amount of guys, a certain amount of guys on

 

           23              patrol.  You can't take him off of the

 

           24              patrols and put them on the streets, it's

 

           25              not allowed by the union contract.  Don't


 

 

                                                                      26

 

 

            1              interrupt me now, let me -- so they are

 

            2              going to give a test. I'll tell you outside.

 

            3              I'll explain it to you.  Your time is up.

 

            4                      MR. LYMAN: Hey, he was fighting with

 

            5              me, I still have time.

 

            6                      MR. COURTRIGHT: No, I don't want to

 

            7              --

 

            8                      MR. LYMAN: Mr. Courtright, I got one

 

            9              more question --

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT: You can't.

 

           11                      MR. LYMAN: -- because he was

 

           12              fighting with me.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me, your time --

 

           14              you were supposed to be going before.

 

           15                      MR. LYMAN: I'll ask you the

 

           16              question.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me, would you

 

           18              please leave the podium.

 

           19                      MR. LYMAN: Then can we have at least

 

           20              a drug hit or something?  We have drug

 

           21              dealers right on the street.

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me, I'm trying to

 

           23              treat you --

 

           24                      MR. LYMAN: Can't you have a drug hit

 

           25              or something.


 

 

                                                                      27

 

 

            1                      MR. MCGOFF: We are trying to treat

 

            2              you with some respect, Mr. Lyman, but you

 

            3              are not cooperating.

 

            4                      MR. LYMAN: But can't you do

 

            5              something, Mr. Courtright.

 

            6                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Ray, I'll talk to

 

            7              you after the meeting, okay, you got to step

 

            8              away.

 

            9                      MR. LYMAN: Since this yahoo don't

 

           10              want to do anything --

 

           11                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Don't call names,

 

           12              Ray, you got to step away.

 

           13                      MR. SPINDLER: Hey, Ray, there is

 

           14              people --

 

           15                      MR. COURTRIGHT: You got to step

 

           16              away.

 

           17                      MR. LYMAN: He is a yahoo.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: I'm sorry that we -- I'm

 

           19              sorry that you needed to be subjected to

 

           20              that.

 

           21                      MR. LYMAN: I'm sorry about you.

 

           22              You're an idiot.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF:  Officer, I'm going to

 

           24              ask you to please take Mr. Lyman from the

 

           25              chamber.  Mr. Lyman, please leave.


 

 

                                                                      28

 

 

            1                      MR. LYMAN: I'll stay here if I want

 

            2              to.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Please leave.  Thank

 

            4              you.  You are taking up other people's time

 

            5              here.  Thank you, Officer.

 

            6                      MR. LYMAN: I'll stay here as long as

 

            7              I want.

 

            8                      (Mr. Lyman is escorted out of the

 

            9              chamber.)

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Officer.

 

           11              Again, my apologies.  Les Spindler.

 

           12                      MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council,

 

           13              Les Spindler, city resident.  Mrs. Gatelli,

 

           14              did you ever find out about those meters I

 

           15              asked about that were taken away from the

 

           16              front of the courthouse?

 

           17                      MS. GATELLI: Yes, I did.  It was an

 

           18              agreement with the mayor and the courthouse,

 

           19              the county commissioners at the time,

 

           20              Cordaro and Munchak for the project, and

 

           21              there is going to be I believe 50 new ones

 

           22              down on Mifflin Avenue, that's where they

 

           23              are going to put some angle parking, so they

 

           24              are going to --

 

           25                      MR. SPINDLER: So that will makeup


 

 

                                                                      29

 

 

            1              for the lost revenues.

 

            2                      MS. GATELLI: I think there was 14

 

            3              removed and they are going to put about 50

 

            4              down on Mifflin and do the angle parking.

 

            5              I'm sorry, I should have told you last week.

 

            6                      MR. SPINDLER: Thank you.

 

            7                      MS. GATELLI: You are welcome.

 

            8                      MR. SPINDLER: I had a question for

 

            9              Mrs. Evans, but she is not here, it will

 

           10              have to wait until next week.

 

           11                      Mr. McGoff, one last thing about

 

           12              this free speech thing, if you are listening

 

           13              to what your solicitor says it's the same

 

           14              solicitor who said that the smoking ban was

 

           15              legal, so just think that over.

 

           16                      Next thing, I think everybody knows

 

           17              about the fire on Linden Street last week.

 

           18              I have to commend the firefighters of the

 

           19              city and the job they did, they saved the

 

           20              building in the front of the houses, Scanlon

 

           21              and the Crazy Pineapple.  Again, I can't say

 

           22              enough about these firefighters, they risked

 

           23              their lives every time they go out and yet

 

           24              for I think it's almost seven years now they

 

           25              don't have a contact, so something isn't


 

 

                                                                      30

 

 

            1              right here.

 

            2                      While we are on that subject,

 

            3              something the mayor said in today's paper, I

 

            4              think the mayor has finally lost his mind.

 

            5              Mayor Doherty said he intends to reduce

 

            6              personnel by between 32 and 38 firefighters,

 

            7              and this is a quote by Mayor Doherty, "It's

 

            8              in everybody's interest that a deal be

 

            9              hammered out, Mr. Doherty said.  It will

 

           10              give peace of mind to the employees and to

 

           11              the people who live here."

 

           12                      Cutting back 38 firemen is going to

 

           13              give peace of mind to people.  Is this than

 

           14              just crazy?  I mean, I'm not going to have

 

           15              peace of mind if we lose 38 firefighters.

 

           16              There is something definitely wrong were

 

           17              this person, something has got to be done, a

 

           18              deal has got to be hammered out with these

 

           19              firemen and policemen and women because this

 

           20              man is isn't capable of handling this

 

           21              situation.

 

           22                      And something else the mayor said in

 

           23              last week's paper, which was an out-and-out

 

           24              lie.  He accused Ann Marie Stulgis of

 

           25              squashing a deal between the city and the


 

 

                                                                      31

 

 

            1              police union.  I was in the union for many

 

            2              years.  One person cannot squash a deal.

 

            3              The representative has to go back to the

 

            4              union and give them the offer, so saying

 

            5              that Ann Marie Stulgis squashed that offer

 

            6              it's a lie.

 

            7                      Lastly, good news for Mr. Joe

 

            8              Pilcheski and the people fighting against

 

            9              the sale of the South Side Complex.  Today

 

           10              Commonwealth Court reversed a decision by

 

           11              Judge Mazzoni and this has to be remanded

 

           12              back to Lackawanna County Court, so this is

 

           13              far from over and I think the South Side

 

           14              complex is going to go back to the people of

 

           15              the city eventually.  Thank you.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Spindler.

 

           17              Andy Sbaraglia.

 

           18                      MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,

 

           19              citizen of Scranton.  Fellow Scrantonians, I

 

           20              see 7-A is up for final passage, that has to

 

           21              do with us buying a lot of infrastructure at

 

           22              this development for a dollar.  Have you

 

           23              realized that once you buy this we have to

 

           24              keep the roads plowed.  We have to fix the

 

           25              roads.  Chances are the sewer system is not


 

 

                                                                      32

 

 

            1              up to par, that means we got to rip all the

 

            2              roads out and separate the drainage from the

 

            3              sanitary.  That's going to cost maybe a

 

            4              million, maybe $2 million, but the question

 

            5              is the subdivision, them roads are probably

 

            6              being paid taxes on them by whoever has the

 

            7              subdivision.  In other words, the parcel of

 

            8              land you pay tax on it.  I know somebody

 

            9              some of it may be KOZ because if you go by

 

           10              Keyser Valley you see a big sign up there

 

           11              saying KOZ so they are not even paying

 

           12              taxes, but now they want us to pick up the

 

           13              infrastructure.

 

           14                      Now, I don't know, what you said the

 

           15              engineer, she isn't there to say that, she

 

           16              said the engineer said it.  Now, for an

 

           17              engineer to say it he had to take core

 

           18              samples.  When you check out a road you want

 

           19              to see how it's built, you got to drill down

 

           20              and you take a core out and they examine

 

           21              that core to see if it's up to par.  Now, I

 

           22              don't know if we have an engineer, a city

 

           23              engineer.  I don't know who even come up

 

           24              with all of this without a dollar amount.

 

           25              You just can't do what you are doing because


 

 

                                                                      33

 

 

            1              we can't afford it.  It's obvious to anybody

 

            2              we just can't afford it.

 

            3                      Now, I realize when this thing comes

 

            4              up, because even if it's a development, I

 

            5              don't know if you are familiar with some of

 

            6              it, but townhouses, you don't own the land,

 

            7              okay?  You only own the building, okay?  And

 

            8              the people had own the land is responsible

 

            9              forth the upkeep of the roads and the grass

 

           10              and so forth and you pay a fee.  Now, you

 

           11              want to relieve them of a great cost and put

 

           12              it on us, and that's not right.  You cannot

 

           13              ask Peter to pay Paul when Paul is broke and

 

           14              Peter got all the money.  There ain't the

 

           15              money on the subdivision.  They knew what

 

           16              they had to do.  Some of it is old, some of

 

           17              it may be new.  I don't know even know if

 

           18              the new part is up to code that they

 

           19              separate the drainage from the sanitary, I

 

           20              have no way of knowing, I assume you all

 

           21              have the answers because it's up for final

 

           22              vote.  Somebody is going to say, yes, to

 

           23              this not caring at what cost it is to the

 

           24              taxpayers because, like I said before, I'm

 

           25              not against any building of the city, we


 

 

                                                                      34

 

 

            1              need more housing.  When people talk about

 

            2              the KOZ up there at Tripp's Park, I was for

 

            3              it, and the reason I was for it was very

 

            4              simple, you cannot take the houses out.

 

            5              Once they are built, they are built.  That

 

            6              means we are going to get tax revenue, but a

 

            7              developer on the land I don't know how it's

 

            8              even broken down, I don't know if that

 

            9              developer is paying tax on the land and the

 

           10              people are paying tax on the houses or

 

           11              anything because it's not brought out with

 

           12              legislation.  There is a lot of

 

           13              ramifications.

 

           14                      Another thing is once you take

 

           15              control of those streets they are taking off

 

           16              the tax rolls because they don't own them no

 

           17              more, the city now owns them, so that means

 

           18              we have to pick up the lost revenue, too,

 

           19              and all of these things should be brought

 

           20              out.  There should be a booklet like that on

 

           21              this, exactly how it's going to affect the

 

           22              city, not some deal worked out between a

 

           23              landowner and an administration official

 

           24              because obviously that was what was done.

 

           25                   The mayor probably had his hands in


 

 

                                                                      35

 

 

            1              this, and I don't know how deeply his hands

 

            2              are in it, but obviously he got his hands in

 

            3              here or this never would have came down.

 

            4              This came from the administration, the

 

            5              administration is run by the mayor, so

 

            6              everything that goes wrong with the

 

            7              administration you blame that mayor for.

 

            8              You are only the second ground, it's just

 

            9              too bad you have to take all of the gripe, I

 

           10              feel sorry for you that way.  That's why you

 

           11              never see me criticize any one of you there.

 

           12              I talk to you as a whole and always do talk

 

           13              to you as a whole even though I don't agree

 

           14              with some of you's, but still as a whole you

 

           15              are council and that's the only way I

 

           16              address you as a whole and will continue to

 

           17              that as long as I got breath or as long as

 

           18              I'm able to.  Thank you.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,

 

           20              Mr. Sbaraglia.

 

           21                      MS. GATELLI:  Mr. McGoff, just for a

 

           22              moment, please, can I say something?

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Yes, you may.

 

           24                      MS. GATELLI: I understand what you

 

           25              are saying about this development and I


 

 

                                                                      36

 

 

            1              think I'm going to ask tonight that it be

 

            2              tabled when motions come because you are

 

            3              bringing up some good points, however, there

 

            4              have been other developments in the city

 

            5              that we have taken over, Fawnwood, Oakwood,

 

            6              Pennwood Park, I mean, this is really what

 

            7              happens when people get a parcel of land and

 

            8              develop it and build houses.  Tripp Park,

 

            9              for instance, too.  We are not going to take

 

           10              that over because we are not happy with how

 

           11              they are treating the people over there, but

 

           12              when a developer comes in and develops a

 

           13              piece of land eventually the city does take

 

           14              it over and they do take is over for a

 

           15              dollar and they have done that in the

 

           16              instances that I have told you, so it is

 

           17              done in certain instances and I would like

 

           18              to look into it further, but I would like

 

           19              you to know it is down throughout the city

 

           20              and has been for the last 50 years.  So,

 

           21              maybe we can talk after, you know, a little

 

           22              further about it.

 

           23                      There are places there in Keyser

 

           24              terrace that have town houses, but there are

 

           25              also a part of is single family homes, so


 

 

                                                                      37

 

 

            1              I'm not sure which part this deals with.  If

 

            2              it's the townhouses where they don't pay

 

            3              taxes and they pay, you know, a maintenance

 

            4              fee that's different, but the single family

 

            5              homes the city should eventually pick it up

 

            6              if the streets and everything are up to

 

            7              code.

 

            8                      MS. FANUCCI:  In the ordinance

 

            9              itself it does say that the streets are up

 

           10              to code and have passed what the city deems

 

           11              fit for the whole entire city.  It is

 

           12              exactly written that the road and

 

           13              improvements were constructed to the City of

 

           14              Scranton's specifications and the city

 

           15              engineer has inspected and found roadways

 

           16              and improvements to meet it's satisfaction.

 

           17              So it has already been done and has already

 

           18              passed the inspection stage before they took

 

           19              over I thought you might find that

 

           20              interesting.

 

           21                      MS. GATELLI:  Thank you, Mr. McGoff

 

           22              much.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Courtright?

 

           24                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I will wait until

 

           25              Mrs. Gatelli makes the motion and I'm going


 

 

                                                                      38

 

 

            1              to vote for it.  I had a couple of people

 

            2              that live there speak about what

 

            3              Mr. Sbaraglia about the core samples.  I

 

            4              don't know what they call the first coat

 

            5              that they put down, the blacktop, but it was

 

            6              several months before they came down and put

 

            7              the second coat and they said there was no

 

            8              core samples taken and they had concerns

 

            9              about curbs and if we do get a favorable

 

           10              vote to table it and maybe Mr. Brazil could

 

           11              give us a report on everything back there.

 

           12                   One  other thing and, Kay, if maybe you

 

           13              could do this from council, I note I got two

 

           14              calls from the last storm, not the ice, when

 

           15              we had snow from people in the Tripp Park

 

           16              development, I don't believe we have taken

 

           17              over those roads back there yet, have we?

 

           18                      MS. GATELLI:  No, but Mr. Brazil

 

           19              plowed them.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  They are plowing

 

           21              them the city is plowing the road, and we

 

           22              haven't taken it over, I don't know there

 

           23              must be a reason why we are doing that.

 

           24                      MS. GATELLI:  We did it because

 

           25              Speicher wasn't doing it.


 

 

                                                                      39

 

 

            1                      MS. FANUCCI: Safety, it was a public

 

            2              safety.

 

            3                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Well, if we are

 

            4              doing it and Speicher isn't doing it then

 

            5              somebody needs to get after him.  It's his

 

            6              responsibility to clean those roads --

 

            7                      MS. GATELLI:  Absolutely.

 

            8                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  -- until what time

 

            9              the city takes them over and then I think

 

           10              the legal department needs to take some kind

 

           11              of action against him if he is not going to

 

           12              hold up his end of the bargain so maybe we

 

           13              can ask Mr. Brazil and if, in fact, that's

 

           14              the reason because he wasn't doing it then I

 

           15              would ask if we could ask the legal

 

           16              department what recourse we have.  We

 

           17              haven't taken over those roads and we are

 

           18              plowing them.  Thank you.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: I'm sorry, Mr. Morgan.

 

           20                      MR. MORGAN: Good evening, Council.

 

           21              I think the first thing I want to inform

 

           22              everyone is that Northeast PA Public Access

 

           23              Project I just would like to come up front

 

           24              and say that I am on the board of directors

 

           25              of that group and we have put in a proposal


 

 

                                                                      40

 

 

            1              to take Channel 61 and I think it's proper

 

            2              for me to come here and tell people that

 

            3              because I do think it's pertinent to be

 

            4              honest, but I have a couple of questions and

 

            5              I'm assuming that people really aren't going

 

            6              to care very much for some of the things I

 

            7              might say today.  It just -- it takes me

 

            8              back to 2004 when I had problem with the

 

            9              communication center and I lost my daughter

 

           10              and this thing spun to the point where the

 

           11              Department of Health was asked to

 

           12              investigate something when in all reality

 

           13              emergency management should have been

 

           14              requested to investigate it and the

 

           15              emergency management won't speak to me

 

           16              because of the death of my daughter and they

 

           17              don't want to touch that and my question is

 

           18              something along that line, okay?  It's when

 

           19              politics, in my opinion, took the place of

 

           20              solid strong focus and judgment on putting

 

           21              trained professional people in place that

 

           22              were capable, and that's why today what I

 

           23              want -- I want to ask a couple of questions

 

           24              here, and I'd like council to try to come up

 

           25              with some answers because there is a lot of


 

 

                                                                      41

 

 

            1              -- there is a lot of people have spoke to me

 

            2              about a situation in regards to the fire

 

            3              chief, Mr. Davis, with all due respect to

 

            4              Mr. Dais.  I am under the impression that

 

            5              Mr. Davis left the fire department because

 

            6              he was severely injured and totally disabled

 

            7              and that's fine and, you know, I appreciate

 

            8              everything he ever did for this city in the

 

            9              line of duty, but then he was appointed

 

           10              chief of the fire department and from what I

 

           11              understand this gentleman shows up at fire

 

           12              scenes not in gear, not wearing the gear

 

           13              that any other firemen would have on and

 

           14              it's come to my attention that even at the

 

           15              last laundry fire he was in the building

 

           16              without his gear on and my question is this,

 

           17              if this is so why he is the chief?  If isn't

 

           18              capable of being a fireman and he is the

 

           19              chief of the fire department and he is in

 

           20              the building fighting a fire without his

 

           21              gear what example does he leave to the

 

           22              people he leads, okay, because he is

 

           23              supposed to be setting an example?

 

           24                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Morgan, would

 

           25              you like me to answer you?


 

 

                                                                      42

 

 

            1                      MR. MORGAN: Well, I'd like to finish

 

            2              first, if I could, then I would certainly

 

            3              appreciate anything you have to say, even if

 

            4              you don't appreciate what I said.  You know,

 

            5              it just cuts to the point of professionalism

 

            6              and being capable and, you know, I do have

 

            7              another question.  We had the fire on Ash

 

            8              Street where we did loose a fireman and my

 

            9              question on that issue is, and I don't know

 

           10              if it's going to be the responsibility of

 

           11              the people doing the investigation or what,

 

           12              and there was a fatality there and with all

 

           13              due respect to everyone, okay, was that

 

           14              truck grounded because when -- I believe

 

           15              that that truck should have been grounded

 

           16              and my question is was that vehicle grounded

 

           17              so that the current that went through that

 

           18              truck could reach ground.  And as far as

 

           19              Mr. Davis, I just think it's time for the

 

           20              people in the city to put somebody in place

 

           21              that's going to lead by example and have his

 

           22              gear on and I think we need somebody who is

 

           23              physically capable of doing everything that

 

           24              a fireman should do and I have all of the

 

           25              respect in the world for this man, but I


 

 

                                                                      43

 

 

            1              just think it's time for somebody to step

 

            2              forward and ask the mayor to tell Mr. Davis,

 

            3              you know, we really appreciate all of you

 

            4              have done for this city, but really you

 

            5              aren't capable, you have been fully disabled

 

            6              and now from what I understand he shows up

 

            7              at fire scenes without gear on, yelling and

 

            8              barking orders and now he is going into

 

            9              buildings that are on fire without his gear

 

           10              on, and you know what, I could be wrong.

 

           11              But, my point is if I'm not right what kind

 

           12              of example is that?  And I think somebody

 

           13              should look into it.  I think it at least

 

           14              deserves that much.

 

           15                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Would you like me to

 

           16              answer you?

 

           17                      MR. MORGAN: Yes, the floor is yours.

 

           18                      MR. COURTRIGHT: First of all, I

 

           19              think he had gear on down there at the Crazy

 

           20              Pineapple there and Scanlons, I believe I

 

           21              saw him with gear on.  Secondly, maybe if I

 

           22              could just get a nod from the firefighters

 

           23              out there, I don't think he is allowed to

 

           24              fight a fire, I don't think he is allowed to

 

           25              have anything to do with fighting the fire.


 

 

                                                                      44

 

 

            1                      MR. MORGAN: Is that because he is

 

            2              not capable and that's --

 

            3                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know whether

 

            4              he is capable or not capable.  I think

 

            5              because he doesn't belong to the union I

 

            6              think he is the chief I think he is a more

 

            7              administrative or supposed to be more

 

            8              administrative.  I guess I have to finish

 

            9              with my time.

 

           10                      MR. MORGAN: Thank you.

 

           11                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Come one, I got to

 

           12              play by the rules, guys.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Morgan.

 

           14                      MR. DAVIS: You were saying something

 

           15              important.

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll finish with my

 

           17              time.

 

           18                      (Whereupon Mrs. Evans enters the

 

           19              council chambers.)

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: We'll give Mrs. Evans a

 

           21              chance to get settled.  Are you good?

 

           22                      MS. EVANS: Yes.  Thank you.  Pat

 

           23              DeSarno.

 

           24                      MR. DESARNO:  Good evening.  My

 

           25              voice is back a little bit, I don't know


 

 

                                                                      45

 

 

            1              whether that's good or bad, depends.

 

            2              Mrs. Fanucci, back here we are again.  I

 

            3              have been told you have found my challenge

 

            4              to you last week a little bit amusing,

 

            5              that's fine, but my questions for you this

 

            6              week would be have you met that challenge

 

            7              and are you going to cite the source of your

 

            8              parks statement.  One condition though, just

 

            9              in case, nothing from a man named of Richard

 

           10              Florida is acceptable because Mr. Florida's

 

           11              quality of place theory that talks about

 

           12              cities promoting their cultural and

 

           13              entertainment value venues is designed to

 

           14              attract what he calls the knowledgeable

 

           15              workers and not the businesses that they

 

           16              might work for, so if you can cite the

 

           17              source I would thank you very much for

 

           18              satisfying my curiosity and, if not, then I

 

           19              would have to ask is that because you won't

 

           20              or you cannot.  Now, I think everyone

 

           21              deserves what your comments were based on.

 

           22                   Some of you are on record complaining

 

           23              about the state of the city council

 

           24              meetings.  Now tonight notwithstanding,

 

           25              speakers come here every week with issues,


 

 

                                                                      46

 

 

            1              questions, input and appeals.  Not only are

 

            2              they ignored they are asked to suck up the

 

            3              insult of ridicule and snide comments hurled

 

            4              at them from that dais and then somehow many

 

            5              of you up there fail to see your own

 

            6              complicity in cultivating such an

 

            7              antagonistic atmosphere here.

 

            8                      Now, Robert's Rules, since a lot of

 

            9              people like quoting that, it doesn't really

 

           10              provide much help with when it comes to

 

           11              decorum, but I think this might.  It's

 

           12              called -- written by Thomas Jefferson, it's

 

           13              called the manner of Parliamentary practice

 

           14              for use at the Senate of the United States,

 

           15              in Section 17 it talks about order and

 

           16              debate and it says, "No one is to disturb

 

           17              another in his speech by hissing, coughing,

 

           18              spitting, speaking or whispering to one

 

           19              another.  Now, to be fair, I have never seen

 

           20              you spit, Mrs. Fanucci, but I have seen you

 

           21              giggle and make faces and as Mrs. Knight so

 

           22              eloquently stated last week you really need

 

           23              to wise up because you do have a lot to

 

           24              learn.  The subjects of comportment and

 

           25              decorum would be good subjects to bone up


 

 

                                                                      47

 

 

            1              on.  If you fully understood those words

 

            2              this exchange would never have taken place.

 

            3              It had to do when Mrs. Gatelli was a little

 

            4              upset about someone laughing in the

 

            5              audience.  Mrs. Gatelli said, "Just so the

 

            6              public knows that everyone back there just

 

            7              sits there and laughs at us.  I know you

 

            8              can't see them on the camera, but that's

 

            9              what we have to deal with.  Everyday they

 

           10              sit there and laugh at us and I'd like the

 

           11              public to know that."

 

           12                      And Mrs. Hubbard said, "And

 

           13              Mrs. Fanucci laughs right back."

 

           14                      And, Mrs. Fanucci, you said, "I do

 

           15              laugh right back at you.  I can't help it.

 

           16              I will always laugh right back at you."

 

           17                      Is that the sort of comportment

 

           18              befitting an elected city official?  A city

 

           19              as progressive as Scranton?  I see it more

 

           20              like the behavior of the 7th grade student

 

           21              council president.

 

           22                      Now, the questions asked here at

 

           23              this podium are not rhetorical.  All too

 

           24              often most of you fail to offer even the

 

           25              smallest courtesy of opining on an issue.  I


 

 

                                                                      48

 

 

            1              think doing so would go a long way toward

 

            2              showing these petitioners that you at the

 

            3              very least heard what was said to them.

 

            4                   Now, the days of allowing you to skate

 

            5              by without comment must end.  Tonight I'm

 

            6              asking everyone up therefore their opinion

 

            7              on the matter of about the put forth.  For

 

            8              those who I chose not no address is, next

 

            9              week I'll reiterate and I'll demand an

 

           10              answer.  The issue is the latest arbitration

 

           11              ars kickin absorbed by the city at the foot

 

           12              of the Fraternal Order of Police.  Several

 

           13              months ago the Scranton fire Department won

 

           14              a grievance in Court that allowed us to

 

           15              recoup the paycheck that was basically

 

           16              stolen from us by Chris Doherty on December

 

           17              8.  You would think someone with so much

 

           18              labor experience would know better.  In

 

           19              spite of that victory by the fire department

 

           20              and in spite of a gentleman's, and this is

 

           21              an oxymoron with this administration,

 

           22              agreement, the city forced the Fraternal

 

           23              Order of Police to refile and fight the

 

           24              exact same grievance.  The arbitrator who

 

           25              found in favor of the FOP was compelled to


 

 

                                                                      49

 

 

            1              offer this admonition:  "I also find--" this

 

            2              is from the arbitrator, "I also find that

 

            3              the city acted in bad fight by persisting in

 

            4              their litigation of this matter at the

 

            5              June 24, 2007, a day one month after the

 

            6              date of the PLRB order in the firefighters'

 

            7              case.  By that date, the city should have

 

            8              reasonably been able to digest the sums of

 

            9              the decisions of the PLRB and the Courts and

 

           10              should have known that it had no likelihood

 

           11              of prevailing in the instant case."

 

           12                      The people who were ultimately

 

           13              saddled with the final cost of the city's

 

           14              bad faith -- I have 30 seconds, Mr. McGoff,

 

           15              if I may.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF:  Go ahead.

 

           17                      MR. DESARNO: Were the taxpayers and

 

           18              not Chris Doherty or Lisa Moran.  As people

 

           19              who are watching out for the taxpayers as

 

           20              one official who receives a public pension

 

           21              with benefits paid for by the public money

 

           22              and yet draws another public paycheck, what

 

           23              do you say to such frivolous waste of city

 

           24              resources.  You might have opinions and we

 

           25              are entitled to know what they are.  Mr.


 

 

                                                                      50

 

 

            1              McGoff, I ask you to set the example and

 

            2              compel your fellow council people who answer

 

            3              this question to opine on these matters, and

 

            4              I'll see you next Tuesday.  Thank you.

 

            5                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. DeSarno.

 

            6              I just have one comment for you,

 

            7              Mr. DeSarno, and for anyone, I have no power

 

            8              to compel my fellow council members to

 

            9              answer any question or to offer any opinion.

 

           10                      MR. DESARNO:  I was hoping you would

 

           11              set the example, sir.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: Candace McColligan.

 

           13                      MS. MCCOLLIGAN: That's a tough act

 

           14              to follow.  Candace McColligan, Scranton

 

           15              resident.  As this is the first time I'm

 

           16              speaking in front of council, I would like

 

           17              to start by saying that I am a working,

 

           18              taxpaying, voting and productive member of

 

           19              society who watches these council members

 

           20              meetings regularly.  Contrary to Miss

 

           21              Fanucci's statement and belief that the only

 

           22              people who aren't happy with the direction

 

           23              of this city are those who attend these

 

           24              meetings each week, I represent many people

 

           25              who are frustrated at home but feel it's


 

 

                                                                      51

 

 

            1              futile to come here as the opinions

 

            2              expressed too often seem to fall upon deaf

 

            3              ears.  When expressing to family and friends

 

            4              that I was nervous to speak here tonight

 

            5              many responded, "Why, no one is listening

 

            6              anyway."

 

            7                      I hope that's just as disturbing for

 

            8              you to hear as it was for me and I hope that

 

            9              is a reputation you will work to change.

 

           10                   City council is a forum where citizens

 

           11              are meant to be represented and to be able

 

           12              to bring issues to the forefront and

 

           13              demeaning comments and eye rolling isn't

 

           14              just immature, it's offensive.  That being

 

           15              said, I am not the type of person who is

 

           16              intimidated by a challenge and I cannot be

 

           17              convinced that my opinion doesn't count or

 

           18              that I can't make a difference.

 

           19                      The decision you make here directly

 

           20              impact me and, therefore, I want you to know

 

           21              my thoughts so that you can take them into

 

           22              consideration when you are casting your

 

           23              votes as the year moves forward.  Holding

 

           24              the title of mayor comes with the

 

           25              responsibility to protect the city and it's


 

 

                                                                      52

 

 

            1              citizens, not only financially, but through

 

            2              showing support for the civil servants who

 

            3              make this city run and make it a safer

 

            4              place.  The same responsibility rests with

 

            5              the title of city council member.

 

            6                      I may be naive, but I find it

 

            7              impossible to swallow that any of you can

 

            8              honestly believe that beautifying a park is

 

            9              more important than decreasing taxes for

 

           10              businesses that look to invest here.  I

 

           11              don't buy that you can truly believe that a

 

           12              $15,000 raised to one person was reasonable

 

           13              while those who risk their lives protecting

 

           14              our citizens and their property can't even

 

           15              keep up with inflation.  I realize that it

 

           16              may be tough to accept a straight-forward,

 

           17              honest explanation from Mrs. Evans about the

 

           18              administrative and salary cuts that this

 

           19              city needs, because too many people seem to

 

           20              be blinded by political connections rather

 

           21              than committed to the people of this city

 

           22              who bear the burden of this administration's

 

           23              misplaced and bloated spending.

 

           24                      It is too late to change your vote

 

           25              regarding the 2008 budget, and I realize


 

 

                                                                      53

 

 

            1              that, but it is never too late to put your

 

            2              votes to use to make the positive and

 

            3              logical changes this city desperately needs.

 

            4                   Mrs. Evans is be congratulated for

 

            5              being a dedicated citizen first and a

 

            6              politician second.  As a resident of

 

            7              Scranton, a nice park is great, but not as

 

            8              great as safe streets, low crime and drug

 

            9              rates, above average school districts, new

 

           10              businesses and at least tax rates that are

 

           11              on par with other cities throughout this

 

           12              state.  I'd even happily pay the wage tax if

 

           13              I had the rest to brag about.

 

           14                      I have for the three years I have

 

           15              lived here been told over and over that

 

           16              Scranton has and always will be corrupt and

 

           17              that it's just the level of corruption that

 

           18              will vary.  Maybe people have become too

 

           19              complacent and have forgotten that we, as

 

           20              citizens, have a voice and that if we do not

 

           21              exercise that voice we are choosing to

 

           22              support the corruption that we are more than

 

           23              willing to complain about behind closed

 

           24              doors.

 

           25                      As a taxpayer, I would like you as


 

 

                                                                      54

 

 

            1              council and the mayor himself to know what I

 

            2              expect from you because I believe that you

 

            3              will never get anything if you don't ask for

 

            4              it.  I want the union contracts to be

 

            5              settled and I want to see those who put

 

            6              their lives on the line treated with the

 

            7              respect that they have earned and deserve

 

            8              from this administration.  I want to see the

 

            9              unnecessary jobs in city government

 

           10              eliminated, and the salaries that are

 

           11              excessive reduced.  I want council to hold

 

           12              the mayor accountable for his spending and

 

           13              to obtain and provide public records when

 

           14              requested, no excuses.  I want to see the

 

           15              money from my taxes be used not to beautify

 

           16              parks, but to pay down debt and fight crime

 

           17              and drug problems to make our streets safer.

 

           18              I want council to make known an expectation

 

           19              of the mayor to live up to his promises

 

           20              including the one made to attend these

 

           21              meetings each week and hear what we have to

 

           22              say.

 

           23                      And, finally, I want you, as

 

           24              council, to represent me as a taxpaying

 

           25              citizen because when you chose this position


 

 

                                                                      55

 

 

            1              you didn't agree to only represent those who

 

            2              said what you wanted to hear and I deserve

 

            3              your attention and respect as equally as any

 

            4              other resident.  It is a new year and a new

 

            5              chance to make the right decisions, not the

 

            6              easiest or the ones that necessarily make

 

            7              the mayor sleep soundly at night, but the

 

            8              right decisions for this city and the ones

 

            9              that represent me and other citizens like

 

           10              me.  Thank you.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you for your

 

           12              comments.  Bill Jackowitz.

 

           13                      MR. JACKOWITZ: Mr. President, City

 

           14              Council Members, Bill Jackowitz, South

 

           15              Scranton resident.  I stand here as an

 

           16              embarrassed Scrantonian today and I'm going

 

           17              to tell you why.  We started the meeting off

 

           18              with Mr. Hazzouri talking about his mess

 

           19              with NCI.  We all knew that was this going

 

           20              to happen, but yet three council members

 

           21              voted for it, now they are going to, pardon

 

           22              my language, but they are going to rape the

 

           23              citizens of the Scranton, people will lose

 

           24              their houses.

 

           25                      I also stand here embarrassed


 

 

                                                                      56

 

 

            1              because of what happened earlier with one of

 

            2              the speakers.  Totally uncalled for and

 

            3              totally unnecessary.  I also would like to

 

            4              commend Mr. McGoff, President McGoff, for

 

            5              the handling of it.  We don't need anymore

 

            6              people arrested like there was in the past

 

            7              with the past leadership.  You showed good

 

            8              sound judgment and leadership by handling it

 

            9              the way that you did.  Hopefully it will not

 

           10              happen again, but if it does I hope you

 

           11              handle it the same way.

 

           12                      And, lastly, I would like to commend

 

           13              the last speaker.  She was excellent.  She

 

           14              hit every point right on the nose and she is

 

           15              lot younger than me and you people sitting

 

           16              up there, but you know something, I think

 

           17              she may be smarter.

 

           18                      Okay, I'd like to read this.  This

 

           19              is an Associated Press story written by

 

           20              Peter Jackson out of Harrisburg.

 

           21              "Pennsylvania should tax --" it's called

 

           22              Rendell assesses administration.

 

           23                   "Pennsylvania Taxpayers have a Right to

 

           24              Know how the Commonwealth spends their

 

           25              hard-earned tax dollars," the Democrats said


 

 

                                                                      57

 

 

            1              in the statement.  Well, guess what,

 

            2              Scrantonians have that same right to know

 

            3              how the City of Scranton pays our

 

            4              hard-earned tax dollars.  Okay?  Also, there

 

            5              was 170 page Governor's report.  Some

 

            6              statistics in the report are of questionable

 

            7              value.  For example, one chart says that the

 

            8              number of jobs created, retained or pledged

 

            9              is a result of the state economic

 

           10              development program grew from about 187,000

 

           11              in 2004 and 2005 to more than 282,000 in

 

           12              2006-2007.  In fact, many of the jobs

 

           13              promised by the companies that accepted

 

           14              state financial incentives never

 

           15              materialized.  I wonder if that ever

 

           16              happened in Scranton?

 

           17                      The Associated Press story in

 

           18              October that focused on Mr. Rendell the

 

           19              first two years in office showed that more

 

           20              than half of the 56 businesses that accepted

 

           21              44 million in taxpayers money failed to hire

 

           22              as many workers as they promised in

 

           23              2003-2004.  I wonder if that ever happened

 

           24              in the City of Scranton?

 

           25                      State Auditor General, Jack Wagner,


 

 

                                                                      58

 

 

            1              who audited the opportunity grants program

 

            2              that is part of the state's economic

 

            3              development arsenal also criticized the

 

            4              administration last fall for it's selective

 

            5              use of statistics to pump up the program's

 

            6              track record.  I wonder if that ever

 

            7              happened in the City of Scranton.

 

            8                      Respect.  Respect is something that

 

            9              you earn.  It is not granted to you because

 

           10              you won an election or because of your

 

           11              agenda.  I have the utmost respect for

 

           12              firefighters, police officers and military

 

           13              members.  Every time they put on their

 

           14              uniform and go to work the possibility of

 

           15              being killed or injured in order to protect

 

           16              the citizens of the community and nation.

 

           17              They have sworn an oath to this, just like a

 

           18              politician swears an oath to uphold the

 

           19              constitution of the United States and work

 

           20              for the citizens.  Not many politicians have

 

           21              worn these uniforms and a few have traded in

 

           22              their uniforms for high priced suits and

 

           23              jobs and the few who have traded in the

 

           24              uniforms for high priced suits and jobs.

 

           25              They have forgotten where they came from.


 

 

                                                                      59

 

 

            1              Not all firefighters and police officers and

 

            2              military personnel earn my respect because

 

            3              like any occupation you have your bad

 

            4              apples, but they are far and few.  On the

 

            5              other hand, most if not all politicians and

 

            6              political appointees who work for them work

 

            7              for themselves, families and friends.  They

 

            8              put themselves first.

 

            9                      I continually read about the

 

           10              Scranton distressed city status and the

 

           11              Recovery Plan.  Yes, the Recovery Plan was

 

           12              voted into law during the 2002 general

 

           13              election.  Yes, 72 percent of the people who

 

           14              voted that day voted, yes, for the Recovery

 

           15              Plan.  That was over five years ago.  Things

 

           16              have changed since then, but the city

 

           17              administration and leadership feels so

 

           18              strongly about the Recovery Plan that I

 

           19              would like to see the Recovery Plan again

 

           20              placed on the ballot in 2008 as an issue to

 

           21              be voted on by the citizens and voters of

 

           22              Scranton.  In 2002 only 21,561 voters voted

 

           23              that day.  My hope and belief is that more

 

           24              Scranton voters would cast their ballots

 

           25              this year.


 

 

                                                                      60

 

 

            1                      This contract battle between the

 

            2              administration and the union needs to stop.

 

            3              This is the most divisive issue in the City

 

            4              of Scranton.  For once how about we put the

 

            5              citizens first and politicians last.  Let's

 

            6              do something it people.  And also last week

 

            7              I talked about -- and I'll be back.

 

            8                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,

 

            9              Mr. Jackowitz.  Brett McClough.

 

           10                      MR. MCCLOUGH: Good evening, Council.

 

           11              My name is Brett McClough, Scranton

 

           12              taxpayer, homeowner.  The right for the

 

           13              majority to decide, the right for the

 

           14              minority to be heard, the right for the

 

           15              absent to be protected, three guiding

 

           16              principals that are the foundation of good,

 

           17              honest and fair government.  During the next

 

           18              11 months pieces of legislations will be

 

           19              passed based on the fuzzy math that some say

 

           20              constitutes the majority.  Some officials

 

           21              have no problem telling us that they are

 

           22              only responsible to those who elected them

 

           23              into office.  When looking at the numbers of

 

           24              who actually voted in reference to all those

 

           25              of voting age who for various reasons did


 

 

                                                                      61

 

 

            1              not vote, you begin to realize how the

 

            2              vision of so few control the destinies of so

 

            3              many.

 

            4                      This silent majority some speak of

 

            5              does not exist.  Instead, what we have and

 

            6              will see is legislation based upon the needs

 

            7              of the very few.  At the same time, the

 

            8              minorities' right to be heard is honored but

 

            9              the request are often ignored or denied.

 

           10              The real silent majority in this city is the

 

           11              taxpaying nonvoters.  They are the actions

 

           12              whose rights need to be protected.  It's the

 

           13              average Jane and John Doe worker in this

 

           14              city who severs this public for long hours

 

           15              for very little pay and as we move to a more

 

           16              service oriented city I think it would be

 

           17              very important for our elected officials to

 

           18              practice the same service standards used by

 

           19              the people who drive this economy.

 

           20                      Meanwhile, local tax legislation

 

           21              looming on the horizon threatens their

 

           22              standard of living through increased

 

           23              property taxes which result in higher rents,

 

           24              higher utility fees as well as the general

 

           25              state of the national economy.  The real


 

 

                                                                      62

 

 

            1              silent majority is not being served.  In my

 

            2              profession as well as many others you can't

 

            3              pick and choose who you are going to serve.

 

            4              My only responsibility is to those who

 

            5              elected me into office, sounds to much like

 

            6              I'm not going to wait on that table because

 

            7              they don't tip.  Both statements are totally

 

            8              unacceptable if we are going to succeed at

 

            9              providing service to the public.  When you

 

           10              make statements like that followed by

 

           11              legislation that echoes those sentiments,

 

           12              fair and honest government is no longer

 

           13              attainable, goodness and honesty cannot

 

           14              can't survive.  I'm not going to pretend

 

           15              that I know much about the mechanics of how

 

           16              government works nor am I someone who is

 

           17              well-connected or has a bunch of letters

 

           18              after their names.  What I am is a citizen

 

           19              looking for an officials to provide

 

           20              substantive hope for all, not the naive

 

           21              audacity of an official telling the citizen:

 

           22              The reason people are having financial

 

           23              difficulties is due to their lack of ability

 

           24              to make better occupational and financial

 

           25              choices.  It's a slap in the face who all


 

 

                                                                      63

 

 

            1              who serve the public, all who pay city taxes

 

            2              in all of it's forms, and it's an omen to

 

            3              the type of hypocritical legislation that

 

            4              most assuredly will be passed over the next

 

            5              11 months.

 

            6                      Hopefully, the dog eat dog too bad

 

            7              so sad, how come you are not like me

 

            8              survival of the financial fittest mentality

 

            9              will not prevail in 2009 because as far as I

 

           10              see it the message from some of these

 

           11              officials it's sending is clear, 2008 is

 

           12              pretty much a done deal.  Thank you.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF:  Thank you,

 

           14              Mr. McClough.  Sam Patilla.

 

           15                      MR. PATILLA: Sam Patilla, taxpayer,

 

           16              resident, homeowner, businessman.  Good

 

           17              evening, Mrs. Evans.  Good evening,

 

           18              Mr. Courtright.  I want to talk about blight

 

           19              in reference to Item 6-A.  You know, as a

 

           20              child my mother, even as adult my mother

 

           21              used to drag me off to these neighborhoods

 

           22              where they had delipidated houses, rundown

 

           23              properties, and she would make me go out

 

           24              there and overturn the grounds so that we

 

           25              can turn their property into a community


 

 

                                                                      64

 

 

            1              garden, be it flowers, vegetables, something

 

            2              to beautify that area and this went on for

 

            3              years and years and years.  The residents

 

            4              loved it, the community loved it, everybody

 

            5              benefited from it.

 

            6                      But, blight isn't only rundown

 

            7              houses.  Blight is also city-owned property

 

            8              that isn't maintained.  Blight is the taking

 

            9              of taxpayers' money to plant trees,

 

           10              especially given Scranton's track record

 

           11              that those trees might be chopped down once

 

           12              their property is sold.  Blight is also a

 

           13              corrupt, crooked administration full of

 

           14              malfeasance from head to toe.  Blight is the

 

           15              disparaging position that the past finance

 

           16              chair was placed in by other members of

 

           17              council.  Blight is when feasible and

 

           18              plausible applications are turned to the

 

           19              wayside and I'd like to commend Mrs. Evans

 

           20              and Miss Olenski over the school board

 

           21              because we know that you are there for the

 

           22              taxpayers.  You know, I had a judge here

 

           23              tell me that his was a position of finding a

 

           24              position favorable for the Commonwealth and

 

           25              that stuck with me for awhile because I


 

 

                                                                      65

 

 

            1              couldn't understand how you could forget

 

            2              that the residents, the taxpayers, the

 

            3              senior citizens, the youth are the

 

            4              Commonwealth.  Not the judges, not the mayor

 

            5              or any other politician, not city council,

 

            6              not school board, but the taxpayers, the

 

            7              people.  We are the Commonwealth, you know,

 

            8              I have been watching the amendment from the

 

            9              House of Representatives and they have also

 

           10              forgotten that.  You know, everybody is so

 

           11              worried about big businesses.  We are the

 

           12              business.  Your residents, your taxpayers,

 

           13              your homeowners, we are your business.  Not

 

           14              Walmart, not K-Mart, not Sears, not Macy's,

 

           15              but us, you know, and I couldn't understand

 

           16              for the life of me, you know, how all of

 

           17              these representatives in the house fail to

 

           18              put the blame where it squarely belongs, on

 

           19              the school district and on the communities,

 

           20              the currents administration for these

 

           21              municipalities through their malfeasance,

 

           22              their cronyism, the nepotism, that puts us

 

           23              in the position we are in now.  Not the

 

           24              children, not the teachers, not the police,

 

           25              not the firemen, but those that we elected


 

 

                                                                      66

 

 

            1              into office with the hopes that we would

 

            2              represent us.  They squandered our money,

 

            3              you know, they are the ones that seek to

 

            4              build new schools instead of purchasing new

 

            5              supplies.  The purpose of a school isn't the

 

            6              building, it's the education that is

 

            7              bestowed upon our children.  Like I said a

 

            8              couple of weeks ago, our children aren't

 

            9              staying here.  They are not dumb.  They are

 

           10              not naive, and just like that lady so

 

           11              eloquently said earlier, okay, they want to

 

           12              be heard, they deserve to be heard, they

 

           13              should be heard, they have earned that right

 

           14              as American citizens, as residents.

 

           15                      Now, we know than come certain votes

 

           16              it's not going to go our way, but that's

 

           17              also blight.  When you put your own interest

 

           18              above those of the majority that's just s

 

           19              ugly as a run down building.  It's just as

 

           20              seedy as a lot strewn with broken glass and

 

           21              other debris.  Blight comes from within just

 

           22              like morals, just like eternity, just like

 

           23              courage.  It's not something that you can

 

           24              just brush off.

 

           25                      You know, in the upcoming months


 

 

                                                                      67

 

 

            1              there are going to be a lot of changes

 

            2              statewide because we the people have grown

 

            3              weary and tired of the treatment we are

 

            4              receiving from our supposedly elected

 

            5              officials.  Thank you.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Patilla.

 

            7              The next name I can't read, I think it may

 

            8              be Lee Morgan again, but I'm not sure.  Is

 

            9              there anyone else that would be an "L" and

 

           10              an "M"?  I just can't read the writing.

 

           11              Okay.  We will skip over it.  Daniel

 

           12              Hubbard.

 

           13                      MR. HUBBARD: Good evening council,

 

           14              Dan Hubbard.  A couple of quick questions on

 

           15              7-A.  I understand that it's been inspected

 

           16              by the city, it's supposed to be up to

 

           17              Scranton standards, obviously my faith in

 

           18              Scranton standards aren't always -- isn't

 

           19              always would it should be, so my question is

 

           20              is the storm drain and sewer system in that

 

           21              development up to the EPA standards, forget

 

           22              Scranton, let's go to the EPA because if

 

           23              it's not then the city's sewer authority is

 

           24              going to have to go in and dig up every

 

           25              street in the development to meet the EPA


 

 

                                                                      68

 

 

            1              mandates for a separate system.  So,

 

            2              regardless of Scranton standards let's make

 

            3              sure that we are up to EPA standards so we

 

            4              save ourselves millions of dollars in the

 

            5              future by not having to dig up that section

 

            6              of the street.

 

            7                      Mrs. Gatelli, you touched on the

 

            8              city had taken over Fawnwood, that's a

 

            9              perfect example.  How many problems and how

 

           10              much money has the city spent in Fawnwood

 

           11              with storm drain issues because it probably

 

           12              is not up to the standards it should be and

 

           13              then we obviously took it over and now we

 

           14              are stuck with the financial liability of

 

           15              updating the systems in Fawnwood so that the

 

           16              residents up there don't have any problems

 

           17              with their storm drains.  So, before we are

 

           18              hasty in taking over somebody else's

 

           19              problems we should probably make sure that

 

           20              it's up to the standards that we have to

 

           21              answer to as a city, and that's the federal

 

           22              standards, not Scranton standards because,

 

           23              like I said, the facts city engineer and

 

           24              Scranton standards in one sentence doesn't

 

           25              really make much sense.


 

 

                                                                      69

 

 

            1                      Also, a question on I guess it's

 

            2              6-G, can somebody explain to me why the

 

            3              zoning around the high school why they

 

            4              decided to change all of the zoning around

 

            5              the high school, after I'm finished.

 

            6                      Then we get down to 6-H trees.

 

            7              Trees.  Trees.  We need trees?  Hundreds and

 

            8              millions of dollars in debt, distressed

 

            9              status and we are going to plant trees?  Of

 

           10              that $60,000 I can pretty give you one

 

           11              project that will cost 20 that council

 

           12              unanimously thought that lower Greenridge

 

           13              should have and let's just be reasonable

 

           14              about it, the two other sections of the city

 

           15              that used to be prone to flooding or now

 

           16              protected and have flood sirens and we are

 

           17              still unprotected and yet we still don't

 

           18              have a siren and the siren was promised to

 

           19              us by Director Ray Hayes in 2006 and then

 

           20              the five of you all felt that it was an

 

           21              important enough issue to vote that we have

 

           22              a siren and that wasn't right, obviously,

 

           23              you didn't do the right thing, so I was told

 

           24              to submit an official request from the

 

           25              neighborhood association, which I did, and


 

 

                                                                      70

 

 

            1              that obviously just fell to the side of the

 

            2              file cabinet, so if you are looking for

 

            3              somewhere to spend money in the city, trees

 

            4              in south side not really high on the list.

 

            5              Flood siren in lower Greenridge probably

 

            6              isn't the grand scheme of the picture high

 

            7              on the list, but it would be a start.  You

 

            8              know, we could spend $60,000 in this city

 

            9              helping the residents instead of planting

 

           10              trees in front of their houses, and I'm

 

           11              pretty sure, you know, the Arbor Day

 

           12              Foundation would do donate trees and we

 

           13              could get the local Boy Scouts to plant them

 

           14              so we wouldn't have to pay 60,000 for

 

           15              somebody to do it.  You know, that's just --

 

           16              I think that obviously at this point we

 

           17              should get a flood siren and I think that

 

           18              instead of throwing $60,000 away on trees

 

           19              that we don't really need you could be -- it

 

           20              would be better spent helping the residents

 

           21              of lower Greenridge and then you could plant

 

           22              $40,000 worth of trees with the rest of it.

 

           23              Thank you.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Hubbard.

 

           25              Mrs. Hubbard.


 

 

                                                                      71

 

 

            1                      MS. HUBBARD:  Good evening, Council,

 

            2              Elizabeth Hubbard, Scranton resident and

 

            3              taxpayer, etcetera.  I'm here tonight to

 

            4              talk again about skunks, two-legged,

 

            5              four-legged, but I want to talk about

 

            6              skunks.  Last August I paid $240 to have two

 

            7              skunks removed from my property after one of

 

            8              them did a job on Daniel, but I had to pay

 

            9              for that, I called the city, they told me

 

           10              this don't do that, and I called the game

 

           11              commission they give me some names and I

 

           12              called the gentleman came and removed the

 

           13              skunks and I paid.  There was a little

 

           14              article in the paper on January 13 by Stacy

 

           15              Brown about a woman in the Hill talking

 

           16              about skunk prints had been found on snow

 

           17              covered back lawns on the Hill Section

 

           18              residents, "The city has to do something

 

           19              because we are already have a number of

 

           20              skunks running around --" this woman said

 

           21              anyway, "Mark Seitzinger, the city's

 

           22              director of licensing, inspections and

 

           23              permits said the city's animal control

 

           24              officer only handles domestic animals.

 

           25              Unfortunately, the residents have to get a


 

 

                                                                      72

 

 

            1              private exterminator to control and take

 

            2              care of the situation."

 

            3                      Well, lo and behold I had the

 

            4              opportunity to come by a bill from the same

 

            5              gentleman that got my skunks in August and

 

            6              this one is made out to Stuart Renda,

 

            7              Departments of permits, licensing and the

 

            8              bill is for almost $1,600 and it's dated

 

            9              December of '07.  So in August they told me

 

           10              they don't do that, they would a woman in

 

           11              January they don't do that, but yet in

 

           12              September of '07 they did it, so I'd like to

 

           13              know who do I talk to to get the money

 

           14              reimbursed to me that I paid to get the

 

           15              skunks out of my yard when all of these

 

           16              other people on Albright Avenue and Cottage

 

           17              Avenue, and I guess that's all a whole bunch

 

           18              of addresses, anyway, they got all of their

 

           19              skunks and critters removed, why should I

 

           20              have to pay to get mine removed, I'd like to

 

           21              get my money back.

 

           22                      MS. GATELLI:  Can I have that list

 

           23              and I'll find out for you because there is a

 

           24              few --

 

           25                      MS. HUBBARD: You can have a copy of


 

 

                                                                      73

 

 

            1              it.

 

            2                      MS. GATELLI: Yes, I'd like that

 

            3              because a few of my neighbors had to pay,

 

            4              too, recently.

 

            5                      MS. HUBBARD: I mean, you know, it's

 

            6              all well and good that the city --

 

            7                      MS. GATELLI: No, I'm interested to

 

            8              know.

 

            9                      MS. HUBBARD: -- doesn't do it, but

 

           10              if you are going to do it for somebody you

 

           11              should do it for everybody.

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI: Absolutely.

 

           13                      MR. HUBBARD: And I want my money

 

           14              back, sorry.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI:  I want to check that

 

           16              out.

 

           17                      MS. HUBBARD:  All right, I'll have

 

           18              to --

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI: Give it to Sue.

 

           20                      MS. HUBBARD:  So I'd like an answer

 

           21              on that maybe by next week if I could have

 

           22              it, I'd appreciate that.  I think that's all

 

           23              I have to say tonight.  I'm sure I get home

 

           24              and think of something I missed, but I'll

 

           25              address that next week.


 

 

                                                                      74

 

 

            1                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Hubbard.

 

            2              Mr. Dobson.

 

            3                      MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council,

 

            4              Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton.  I'd like

 

            5              to express some concern also becomes firemen

 

            6              being terminated.  I certainly hope some day

 

            7              that we don't have a disaster because of it.

 

            8              On 7-A, also one once again, I would like to

 

            9              express that the sewer needs to be

 

           10              addressed, if the street has to be torn up

 

           11              that's not much of a deal and 7-C maybe we

 

           12              could answer after I'm done on private -- is

 

           13              this an attempt at privatizing inspections.

 

           14                   On these skunks, I testified before

 

           15              that there is lot of garbage.  Mr. McGoff

 

           16              caught me taking a walk last week on the way

 

           17              up the hill and a lot of these people are

 

           18              not using cans for the garbage, they are

 

           19              just walking out with the bag and throwing

 

           20              it there and that's what's attracting these

 

           21              animals and it's really getting to be a

 

           22              serious problem I feel.  I see trash all

 

           23              over the place that's been raided by,

 

           24              obviously, problem skunks or squirrels and

 

           25              now I'd like to read something from the


 

 

                                                                      75

 

 

            1              Scranton Times, it has little to do with

 

            2              local politics except that if people would

 

            3              contact their Congressmen hopefully some day

 

            4              we could see something better than this and

 

            5              it's an article on Kabul, Afghanistan, "An

 

            6              Afghan journalist who was sentenced to death

 

            7              for distributing an article about Islam

 

            8              woman's rights is actually being punished

 

            9              for his brother's reporting on the abuses by

 

           10              the warlords a media group said Wednesday.

 

           11              Sayed Perwiz Kambakhash, 23, was sentenced

 

           12              to death Tuesday by a three-judge panel in

 

           13              the northern city of Mazar-e Sharif for

 

           14              distributing a report he printed off the

 

           15              Internet to fellow journalism in Balk

 

           16              University, I think that's how, B-A-L-K.

 

           17              The article asks why men can have four wives

 

           18              but women can't have multiple husbands.  It

 

           19              was written in the Iranian language of

 

           20              Darjik which is similar to Afghan language

 

           21              of Dardic.

 

           22                      And what my point in reading this is

 

           23              that apparently our president has democracy

 

           24              and theocracy confused totally and once

 

           25              again we are being snowed that we somehow


 

 

                                                                      76

 

 

            1              setup a democracy in Afghanistan.  I find

 

            2              this appalling.  George Seldon once said,

 

            3              the author of "Tell the Truth" and "Broad

 

            4              and Witness to a Century" he was a renowned

 

            5              reporter on global politics who witnessed

 

            6              part of the Russian Revolution and the

 

            7              Spanish Revolution and the Nazi complicity

 

            8              in that revolution once said if it winds up

 

            9              at page ten it's probably truth.  Also, the

 

           10              forces who may be embarrassed and have power

 

           11              had it put there after page ten.  So if

 

           12              people out there would contact their

 

           13              Congressmen and let them know that beheading

 

           14              for a personal opinion or a political

 

           15              opinion is not an acceptable form of

 

           16              democracy.  Thank you and have a good night.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Dobson.

 

           18              Mr. Davis.

 

           19                      MR. DAVIS: Salaam aleikum.  My name

 

           20              is Jim Davis and I'm a native of Scranton.

 

           21              Last week we celebrated Martin Luther King's

 

           22              birthday.  This whole month we are

 

           23              celebrating all of the great African

 

           24              Americans who have lived and died and have

 

           25              done for our great country in many different


 

 

                                                                      77

 

 

            1              ways.  I come to you today because I feel

 

            2              disappointed.  I feel that I have let down

 

            3              Martin Luther King, W.E. DeBois, all of

 

            4              those people who have taught us how to be

 

            5              self-sufficient and how to be discerning of

 

            6              the truth.  It seems as though I can no

 

            7              longer tell when I can get the truth when I

 

            8              come before you.

 

            9                      Diversity.  That's a beautiful term,

 

           10              I don't know where you got it from.  I have

 

           11              no idea -- do you know what it means?  Do

 

           12              any of you know what diversity means?  Do

 

           13              you know of it existing anywhere in this

 

           14              building?  I mean, racial diversity doesn't

 

           15              exist anywhere in Scranton.  Can you name me

 

           16              five places where racial diversity actually

 

           17              exists?  I don't think you can.  This is

 

           18              ridiculous.  How do we teach our kids words

 

           19              that we can't explain.  We can't explain.

 

           20              We can't show them examples of, all we can

 

           21              say is it doesn't exist so, therefore, we

 

           22              are right back to being discriminated

 

           23              against.  Is that what we have gone back to?

 

           24              Is this another form of discrimination?  I

 

           25              listen to the young men that came here,


 

 

                                                                      78

 

 

            1              Mr. Patilla and Mr. McClough, speaking so

 

            2              admirably, beautiful.  I'm really very proud

 

            3              of them and the fact that they can sit here

 

            4              and they can say to you what they feel is

 

            5              the truth, what they have known to be the

 

            6              truth in their own experiences and yet know

 

            7              that we can't change them and no matter what

 

            8              I say, no matter what I do, we can't bring

 

            9              Washington West.  How did you allow that to

 

           10              happen?  How did you allow them to go ahead

 

           11              and close that place down and not have any

 

           12              plans for reopening it?  These are the poor

 

           13              people of Scranton.  No.  These are the

 

           14              people that you didn't want to be bothered

 

           15              with.  These are the people who didn't have

 

           16              a vote.  These are the people who don't

 

           17              vote.  These are the people who you don't

 

           18              have to put up with so you can take them and

 

           19              you can remove them physically from their

 

           20              homes, from our communities.  That was our

 

           21              community, that is a part of our community

 

           22              just like you did back in '68 on Adams

 

           23              Avenue.  You went in there and you destroyed

 

           24              a community because you said it was

 

           25              blighted.  You are doing the very same thing


 

 

                                                                      79

 

 

            1              with Valley View.

 

            2                      Now, I don't know if this Valley

 

            3              View problem that you are having is the same

 

            4              Valley View problem that Miss Gatelli

 

            5              brought before us about putting a fence

 

            6              between Valley View and the South Side

 

            7              because the people were coming across their

 

            8              yards and they are going to construct a wire

 

            9              fence with a mesh on the top so that people

 

           10              could not get through it, now, this is about

 

           11              three years ago.

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI:  That was Mrs. Jones,

 

           13              Mrs. Jones wanted that.

 

           14                      MR. DAVIS: Maybe more.  Now, maybe

 

           15              this is not in the plans.  I could not find

 

           16              the plans for Skyview.  I could not -- I

 

           17              went down -- I went to this young lady's

 

           18              office and we went through all of the

 

           19              paperwork that we have there and there is no

 

           20              documents, so she said that maybe I'll find

 

           21              them over at OECD.  When we tried to

 

           22              research and when you tell us to research

 

           23              and when you tell us to find something and

 

           24              we can't find it, what's happening?  Are you

 

           25              liars or don't you know or are you making


 

 

                                                                      80

 

 

            1              decisions or are you giving us answers that

 

            2              are unfounded?  That's even worse.  That's

 

            3              not discrimination, that's just plain oh,

 

            4              hey, you're too ignorant to find out, so we

 

            5              don't have to find you anything.  Which is

 

            6              what we usually get.  We usually don't get

 

            7              an answer at all.  I just feel very, very --

 

            8                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me, just hold Mr.

 

            9              Davis' time, I just can't let this continue.

 

           10              We gave you an answer last week that what we

 

           11              are talking about is improvements to

 

           12              Skyview.  The legislation that's before us

 

           13              says nothing about closing it, it says

 

           14              nothing about coordinating it off, it's

 

           15              improvements.  You are standing here -- you

 

           16              are standing here making statements that you

 

           17              received answers to last week and claiming

 

           18              that you can't get answers and I just

 

           19              couldn't let that continue.  Thank you.

 

           20              Continue his time.

 

           21                      MR. DAVIS: Okay, time is on.  The

 

           22              improvements that you mentioned, when we

 

           23              went to the paperwork that was in the office

 

           24              there is no mention of improvements.  I

 

           25              guess the time is up.  But you go over, go


 

 

                                                                      81

 

 

            1              to the office and check out your --

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: I have it.  Thank you,

 

            3              Mr. Davis.

 

            4                      MR. DAVIS: All right.  And thank

 

            5              you.  Thank you for your answer, I don't

 

            6              know why.  You know, you say you gave me an

 

            7              answer last week and when I go and I

 

            8              research it, it's not true.

 

            9                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Davis.

 

           10              Thank you.

 

           11                      MR. DAVIS: I guess I'm lying, right?

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: There are no other names

 

           13              on the list, are there any other speakers?

 

           14                      MR. UNGVARSKY: Good evening, city

 

           15              council, I'm Tom Ungvarsky, I'm also a

 

           16              member of the Scranton/Lackawanna County

 

           17              Taxpayers.  One year ago a company by the

 

           18              name of Ceecost, LLC, a company out of New

 

           19              York, was granted a $250,000 loan by the

 

           20              State of Pennsylvania.  They were also given

 

           21              $20,000 as a grant to train their work

 

           22              force.  So far I have not heard anything of

 

           23              their development here in Scranton.  I did

 

           24              look it up and they mention several other

 

           25              counties.  The City of Scranton I understand


 

 

                                                                      82

 

 

            1              has voted them $70,000.  Have they given you

 

            2              any kind of inclination if they are coming

 

            3              here?  Mr. Fanucci, I believe that would be

 

            4              your jurisdiction?

 

            5                      MS. FANUCCI: Would you like me to

 

            6              answer that during your time?

 

            7                      MR. UNGVARSKY: Yes, I would like to

 

            8              have an answer, please.

 

            9                      MS. FANUCCI: From what I have heard

 

           10              they have not opened up shop, but that means

 

           11              they also did not receive the cash, so don't

 

           12              -- you know, realize that if they do not

 

           13              come here and start their business they have

 

           14              not received the money, but I would look

 

           15              into it further to find it out if they are

 

           16              destined to still come here and if they will

 

           17              draw on that.

 

           18                      MR. UNGVARSKY: I would appreciate

 

           19              that because it seems like we get a lot of

 

           20              people who say they are coming and don't

 

           21              seem to develop here.

 

           22                      MS. FANUCCI: Yeah.

 

           23                      MR. UNGVARSKY: Thank you.  Also, a

 

           24              few weeks ago I brought up the Post Office

 

           25              warehouse in the 500-block of Orchard


 

 

                                                                      83

 

 

            1              Street.  I understand that the people who

 

            2              own that building were given $200,000 for

 

            3              it, okay?  I also understand that the City

 

            4              of Scranton was given $200,000 to have it

 

            5              ripped down, that was by the state, but I

 

            6              also understand that there was an offer made

 

            7              to the city to buy that building.  Can

 

            8              anyone tell me if that is the correct

 

            9              information that I got?

 

           10                      MS. GATELLI: I don't know.

 

           11                      MR. UNGVARSKY: Could someone find

 

           12              out for me and let me know?

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: I will attempt to find

 

           14              out if there was a purchase offer made.

 

           15                      MR. UNGVARSKY: I would appreciate

 

           16              that.  Thank you.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,

 

           18              Mr. Ungvarsky.  Anyone else?

 

           19                      MS. HUMPHREY: My name is Phyllis

 

           20              Bernadette Fatima Yasmin, also known as

 

           21              Mary.  From Father God, Abraham, Isaac and

 

           22              Jacob, Joseph, all to the decendents to

 

           23              Jessie and David to Jesus Christ, through

 

           24              the vigor of Christ, predecessors and

 

           25              successors, shalom, a salaam aleikum, pacha,


 

 

                                                                      84

 

 

            1              freta.  What I am about to say, Mr. McGoff

 

            2              and Mr. Courtright, you will exempt from

 

            3              what I have to say.

 

            4                      MR. COURTRIGHT: We're off the hook.

 

            5                      MS. HUMPHREY:  My mission we are not

 

            6              to slander, we are not to be judgmental, but

 

            7              when somebody does something wrong then you

 

            8              have to expose them especially if you can't

 

            9              get the property justice in the City of

 

           10              Scranton, Legal Aid, Pro bono all the way up

 

           11              to the Attorney General's Office.  As a

 

           12              Catholic we honor the mother of God and once

 

           13              ago, almost a year ago, I brought documents

 

           14              that I'm so happy to share with everyone and

 

           15              I had asked Mrs. Evans and, Mrs. Evans, I

 

           16              don't use this as an attack on you because

 

           17              maybe somebody did something to maybe pull

 

           18              you down.  Every time I had asked you about

 

           19              miraculous MRI x-rays to send them to Mary

 

           20              the Mother of God church you had forgot

 

           21              them, they were home.

 

           22                      MS. EVANS: No, Phyllis they are

 

           23              here.  They are here.

 

           24                      MS. HUMPHREY: No, I know, I got

 

           25              them.  Last week when I got them prior to


 

 

                                                                      85

 

 

            1              showing them I took the children of city

 

            2              council outside to show them to them, they

 

            3              were intact, but when I got them back I want

 

            4              you to know what has happened.  There was

 

            5              cigarette burns put through the MRI x-rays

 

            6              which was blessed by the Holy Father, the

 

            7              Passionate community and our priests.  This

 

            8              to me is an attack on me as a human being

 

            9              and as my faith in Jesus Christ, my personal

 

           10              savior.  There is stuff all poured over them

 

           11              and I do have to say coffee did pour on the

 

           12              little thing, but they were all completely

 

           13              clean when I gave them to you, I was happy

 

           14              to get my mother's picture back.  I use

 

           15              little things to see how they will be used.

 

           16              How they will be appreciated and who is good

 

           17              for this town and who has to be rooted out.

 

           18                      Over the next couple of weeks I will

 

           19              have Internet and I will go to the four

 

           20              corners of the earth and I will explain my

 

           21              cause.  My cause is for not only my faith

 

           22              and love to end abortion, euthanasia,

 

           23              capital punishment and beheading, but the

 

           24              proper intact of the commandments that have

 

           25              been perverted and our rights and the


 

 

                                                                      86

 

 

            1              constitutional rights that every man is

 

            2              created equal which they actually perverted.

 

            3              A man and a wife is marriage.  They have

 

            4              become not only here in the world as Sodom

 

            5              and Gomorra, I am a little person, a little

 

            6              chunky, and I will be starting to expose

 

            7              what was revealed to me in the City of

 

            8              Scranton, but it's also going on in other

 

            9              places with the voting, with sexual

 

           10              harassment, with abusive children, what I

 

           11              have seen in the political arena.  I am not

 

           12              pointing fingers at anyone of you.  I love

 

           13              every one of you.  Mrs. Judy Gatelli, being

 

           14              a nurse, came to my assistance when I was

 

           15              raped years ago.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis --

 

           17                      MS. HUMPHREY: They did not --

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: Phyllis, we have got

 

           19              to --

 

           20                      MS. HUMPHREY: -- press charges --no,

 

           21              this is criminal.

 

           22                      MR.  MCGOFF: You are starting to

 

           23              move into areas that we should not discuss

 

           24              here.

 

           25                      MS. HUMPHREY: This is about crime,


 

 

                                                                      87

 

 

            1              they got to get these people, put them in

 

            2              jail or they got to get on their knees and

 

            3              go to confession and pray because I'm not

 

            4              going to stand as a human being and a woman

 

            5              to be stepped on, no woman, no man, no child

 

            6              should be used as a carpet, battled or

 

            7              abused and this is my message I'm sending it

 

            8              to the whole world.

 

            9                      I know you are embarrassed with the

 

           10              situation that happened here, Mr. McGoff,

 

           11              all you people are not involved in this, but

 

           12              there is people that got to be rooted out in

 

           13              the City of Scranton.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.

 

           15                      MS. HUMPHREY: That's getting money,

 

           16              getting paid here and supposed to be doing

 

           17              their job.  This is wrong.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF:  Thank you.

 

           19                      MS. HUMPHREY:  And I love you all.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.

 

           21                      MS. HUMPHREY:  And may the peace of

 

           22              Jesus Christ be with you.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.

 

           24                      MS. HUMPHREY: Mozina has just

 

           25              arrived.


 

 

                                                                      88

 

 

            1                      MS. KRAKE: Good evening, Council.  I

 

            2              know everyone heard Mr. Hazzouri who spoke

 

            3              earlier today and it was something that I

 

            4              had warned people about when you were

 

            5              originally voting on the ordinances to

 

            6              instate all of these fees on people and to

 

            7              hire a company that the city has hired.  I

 

            8              would like to explain, since I have gotten

 

            9              many phone calls and questions over the past

 

           10              several weeks, exactly what you used to do.

 

           11              We used to have something called an Action

 

           12              of Quiet Title which went through the City

 

           13              Treasurer's sale.  The normal interest and

 

           14              penalties that were accrued by a property

 

           15              would be paid to the City Treasurer's Office

 

           16              and up until two years after a property was

 

           17              delinquent.  After that, the property would

 

           18              be liened and a letter would be sent out

 

           19              certified telling people that their property

 

           20              was liened and that would it go through the

 

           21              City Treasurer's sale in the following year.

 

           22              At that time, if they were read at the

 

           23              treasurer's sale there would also be a deed

 

           24              filed at the courthouse.  You could come to

 

           25              the treasurer's sale and bid on a property.


 

 

                                                                      89

 

 

            1              You would not get the property though

 

            2              because it's normally -- it would normally

 

            3              be a home.  You would not buy a piece of

 

            4              property at the City Treasurer's sale ever.

 

            5              That went through the Pittsburgh Plan.  This

 

            6              was a very respectful and fair way to

 

            7              collect taxes.

 

            8                      What you have done has such terrible

 

            9              ramifications that I don't think you have

 

           10              any clue of what could happen.  I found out

 

           11              this week about other school districts that

 

           12              were using this -- or not this particular

 

           13              company, but this method and they have

 

           14              actually taken people to sheriff's sale,

 

           15              which is not a treasurer's sale, sheriff's

 

           16              sale for homes from elderly people that do

 

           17              not have mortgages and they put them through

 

           18              a sheriff's sale for two or three years of

 

           19              back taxes.  If you read that ordinance,

 

           20              which I truly don't think you did or

 

           21              understood, that is allowing them to do

 

           22              this.  I can't believe that anyone would be

 

           23              able to agree with that.  You have to think

 

           24              about that, what you are subjecting the

 

           25              citizens of the Scranton to.


 

 

                                                                      90

 

 

            1                      You heard what Mr. Hazzouri said he

 

            2              made a mistake that I would say I hear at

 

            3              least ten times a week, a simple mistake

 

            4              and, in fact, I was called in today to find

 

            5              out who that particular problem to be

 

            6              solved, which I find tonight, I find the

 

            7              reason why, because someone important or

 

            8              relatively important had it happen to them.

 

            9              How do we solve the problem of someone just

 

           10              paying their county, school and library and

 

           11              not their city.  That should have been asked

 

           12              long before this ordinance was passed.  If a

 

           13              person can't afford to pay their taxes to

 

           14              begin with how can you expect them to pay

 

           15              these egregious amounts of money?  Eighty

 

           16              dollars went to $500, and what I find the

 

           17              worst, none of these fees go back into the

 

           18              city.  At least the interest and penalties

 

           19              were going back in city coffers and maybe

 

           20              you could justify to yourself it would be to

 

           21              fix your road or to be pay for your public

 

           22              service, these monies go to attorneys and

 

           23              outside companies not back to the city.

 

           24                      And it's very curious that the same

 

           25              persons that own NCC, the Abrahamsen law


 

 

                                                                      91

 

 

            1              firm, are the same attorneys that are

 

            2              sending out the letters currently and

 

            3              collecting these fees.  I think you need to

 

            4              take a long hard look at what you have done

 

            5              before something very, very serious happens

 

            6              to innocent people.

 

            7                      And I'd also like to say that I

 

            8              don't think we need to apologize for Ray

 

            9              Lyman tonight, he is just himself, he

 

           10              doesn't have a political agenda, neither

 

           11              does Phyllis, and I don't mind sharing the

 

           12              podium with everyone in the city and, once

 

           13              again, I would like to ask Mrs. Evans if she

 

           14              would consider running for mayor.  Thank

 

           15              you.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Is there anyone else?

 

           17                      MR. SLEDZENSKI:  One more, Bob, this

 

           18              is it.  Hey, Bill, how is the wife tonight,

 

           19              Bill?  I was going to ask you how she is

 

           20              feeling tonight?

 

           21                      MR. COURTRIGHT: She is doing good.

 

           22              Thank you, Chris.

 

           23                      MR. SLEDZENSKI: You're welcome.

 

           24              Thank you.

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF: I believe that concludes


 

 

                                                                      92

 

 

            1              our Fourth Order.

 

            2                      MS. GARVEY: 5-A.  MOTIONS.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: 5-A motions.  Mrs.

 

            4              Evans.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: Good evening.  I'd like

 

            6              to begin a few updates.  To date, the 2006

 

            7              independent audit of council has not been

 

            8              received.  The city believed that changes in

 

            9              asset and depreciation values were

 

           10              necessary, thus, the issue is now under

 

           11              review.

 

           12                      Also, I am concerned regarding the

 

           13              timetable for the upcoming 2007 independent

 

           14              audit, that it may be compromised as a

 

           15              result.  It is also a cause for concern when

 

           16              the Scranton Parking Authority can float a

 

           17              $35 million bond without benefit of

 

           18              examination of the most recent audit and, in

 

           19              addition, a Pike County judge can render a

 

           20              decision without benefit of looking at the

 

           21              most recent accurate financial statements of

 

           22              the City of Scranton.

 

           23                      The DPW director was given a

 

           24              deadline of January 28 to provide a written

 

           25              response to council's request for updates on


 

 

                                                                      93

 

 

            1              Smith Place and the Tripp Park development.

 

            2              We have awaited an answer regarding Tripp

 

            3              Park punch list and streetlights since

 

            4              December as well as Smith Place which was

 

            5              brought before council's attention last

 

            6              October.  I certainly hope that the

 

            7              taxpayers are not ignored.  I hope they are

 

            8              taken care of, but this situation certainly

 

            9              makes one wonder.

 

           10                      My confidence can be restored by

 

           11              receiving a report on snow removal and snow

 

           12              emergency plans by February 1, which was

 

           13              requested at a prior meeting.  January has

 

           14              been a fair weather month, fortunately, with

 

           15              very little snow leaving time for daily

 

           16              responsibility to be addressed.  Will we be

 

           17              as lucky in February?  Who knows.  Which is

 

           18              why I feel strongly that council receive a

 

           19              copy of snow emergency procedures before the

 

           20              snow arrives.  Is that too much to expect?

 

           21                   Now, I'd like to like to like many of

 

           22              the speakers this evening, I'd like to pose

 

           23              a question to my honorable colleagues, and

 

           24              it is related to some of the comments I have

 

           25              listened to this evening.  I apologize for


 

 

                                                                      94

 

 

            1              my tardiness I had a 6:00 appointment that

 

            2              was most urgent and please know that I would

 

            3              not miss or be late for a meeting unless it

 

            4              was a matter of urgency.  I understand that

 

            5              I missed several speakers as a result, but I

 

            6              would like to pose this question, as I said,

 

            7              to my honorable colleagues.  Are you

 

            8              agreeable to taking a city resident's home

 

            9              in payment of delinquent city property

 

           10              taxes?

 

           11                      MS. GATELLI: I'm going to answer

 

           12              that question.  Yeah, I'm going to check

 

           13              into that, I have it written down here,

 

           14              because for such a long time the people of

 

           15              Scranton, especially the landlords, I found

 

           16              when I worked for the city would always pay

 

           17              all of their taxes except city taxes because

 

           18              the city never did anything about it.  If

 

           19              they didn't pay their school district tax

 

           20              and they didn't pay their county tax very

 

           21              soon their house was up for sheriff's sale.

 

           22              Now, I'm sure you all see pages and pages of

 

           23              them in the want ads every so often, and

 

           24              when I worked upstairs Ozzie Quinn did the

 

           25              report, he found that there was over 400


 

 

                                                                      95

 

 

            1              landlords that were not paying city tax.

 

            2              They were paying county and they were paying

 

            3              school district because they didn't want

 

            4              their property taken through sheriff's sale,

 

            5              but they never paid their city tax and we

 

            6              didn't couldn't do anything about it, so I'm

 

            7              going to have to investigate that.  No, do I

 

            8              want to take anybody's house, no.  If that's

 

            9              your question, no, I don't, but I don't want

 

           10              landlords to get away with not paying city

 

           11              tax when they are paying county and school

 

           12              district because they are going to sheriff

 

           13              sale and we are not, so I have ambivalent

 

           14              feelings towards it, but I do have it

 

           15              written down here and I'm going to call the

 

           16              sherif and find out a little bit more about

 

           17              it because I thought we weren't being

 

           18              treated fairly, you know, the sherif and

 

           19              county and school district would go after

 

           20              the people, sell their homes at sherif sale

 

           21              and we got nothing and it was mostly

 

           22              landlords, out of town landlords that were

 

           23              doing that, so that's my answer.

 

           24                      MS. EVANS: Thank you.  Anyone else?

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF: I missed it.  I'm sorry.


 

 

                                                                      96

 

 

            1                      MS. GATELLI: She said are you in

 

            2              favor of taking people's homes through

 

            3              taxes?

 

            4                      MS. EVANS: Through delinquent taxes,

 

            5              payments of delinquent taxes.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: Can I respond?

 

            7                      MS. EVANS: Yes.

 

            8                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I'll say, yes,

 

            9              for people who refuse to pay their taxes.

 

           10                      MS. EVANS: And the people who are

 

           11              unable to?

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: I think that needs to be

 

           13              dealt with on an individual basis.

 

           14                      MS. EVANS: Well, you might be

 

           15              crossing a line into the discrimination.

 

           16                      MS. GATELLI:  There are certain

 

           17              cases, and I know of many people that are

 

           18              elderly and I know they like to pay their

 

           19              taxes right away because they get a rebate.

 

           20              I don't know too many elderly people that

 

           21              don't rush right there as soon as they get

 

           22              it in the mail they are there the next

 

           23              morning to pay the rebate.  The second thing

 

           24              is that a lot of elderly people they are

 

           25              very, very concerned about their taxes, I


 

 

                                                                      97

 

 

            1              mean, I think they would pay their taxes

 

            2              before they eat, most elderly people, like

 

            3              they would not take their medicine because

 

            4              it's so costly and pay their bills which

 

            5              they do that, too, but there also a lot of

 

            6              them are getting reverse mortgages to help

 

            7              with some of the bills that, you know, are

 

            8              accumulating for the elderly people so

 

            9              that's another possibility for the elderly

 

           10              not to lose their homes.  Are you going to

 

           11              answer?

 

           12                      MS. FANUCCI:  I certainly don't want

 

           13              to take anyone's house under any

 

           14              circumstance, but I also don't believe that

 

           15              -- there are so many people out there who

 

           16              just are not paying, not that they can't

 

           17              pay, they were just not paying.  They were

 

           18              paying the school district, you can pay the

 

           19              school district which takes so much, take so

 

           20              much money than we do, then I feel that,

 

           21              yes, if they are going to try to play games

 

           22              with us because we did not have a system in

 

           23              place then, yes, I would like to see us take

 

           24              what's rightfully ours, also.  But, do I

 

           25              want to see people lose their houses who


 

 

                                                                      98

 

 

            1              cannot pay, of course not, that just goes

 

            2              without saying.

 

            3                      MR. COURTRIGHT: My turn.  I'm not in

 

            4              favor of taking anybody's house if there is

 

            5              any other avenue.  We do have a lot of

 

            6              elderly people in this area and sometimes

 

            7              they can't pay, you know.  I would be in

 

            8              favor, and I think we have in place payment

 

            9              plans for if somebody is not able to make a

 

           10              payment, I think that there is a payment

 

           11              plan.  I think, you know, that's already

 

           12              setup and I'd like to see that for somebody

 

           13              who is not able to pay.  I just don't

 

           14              think -- I don't know that we could do it on

 

           15              a case by case basis because we like you

 

           16              said be crossing the line.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: Thank you all.  I believe

 

           18              such a cruel and unusually punitive action

 

           19              is intolerable and unacceptable.  And,

 

           20              therefore, I make the following motion and I

 

           21              hope to discuss and elaborate on it on the

 

           22              question, but first I'd like to give a copy

 

           23              to each of my colleagues.

 

           24                      I move to amend File of Council No.

 

           25              82-2007 to approve penalty, interest and fee


 

 

                                                                      99

 

 

            1              schedule for collection of delinquent real

 

            2              estate taxes by striking 3-J 800 and no

 

            3              dollars for the preparation and filing of a

 

            4              writ of execution for sheriff's sale.  3-K,

 

            5              the actual, file, service and execution and

 

            6              poundage fees, if any, for service and

 

            7              execution by the Office of the Sheriff of

 

            8              the county which are in effect at the time

 

            9              of such filing service and execution as

 

           10              established by the Office of the Sheriff of

 

           11              the county or such other instrumentality of

 

           12              government as shown shall be charged with

 

           13              the establishment of such fee.  3-L, one

 

           14              hundred-seventy five and no one-hundredth

 

           15              dollars for the preparation and filing and

 

           16              conduct of proceedings to effect service of

 

           17              process.  3-M, thirty and no one hundredth

 

           18              dollars for costs incurred in connection

 

           19              with the reissuance of writs.  And 3-P.

 

           20              Twenty-five and no one-hundredth dollars for

 

           21              the preparation and filing of any praecipe,

 

           22              petition or motion to continue a judicial or

 

           23              sheriff's sale.  3-Q, four-hundred and no

 

           24              one-hundredth dollars for attendance by

 

           25              legal council at a judicial sheriff or tax


 

 

                                                                     100

 

 

            1              sale, and by striking the following dollar

 

            2              amounts:  3-A.  Twenty and no one-hundredth

 

            3              dollars per lien.  3-B, one-hundred sixty

 

            4              and no one-hundredth dollars.  3-C,

 

            5              thirty-five and no one-hundredth dollars.

 

            6              3-U, the language, "And no more than

 

            7              two-hundred and twenty-five dollars per hour

 

            8              commiserate with the attorney's normal

 

            9              hourly rate.  And inserting 3-A, ten and no

 

           10              one-hundredth dollars.  3-B, forty and no

 

           11              one-hundredth dollars, 3-C, thirty and no

 

           12              one-hundredth dollars.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll second that

 

           14              motion.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: We have a motion and a

 

           16              second.  On the question?

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  On the question,

 

           18              Mr. McGoff, I guess it's good timing

 

           19              Mr. Hazzouri was here today, you know,

 

           20              stating his case and that's probably one of

 

           21              many that I have heard.  I didn't vote for

 

           22              this the first time around and I would be

 

           23              more than happy to change it this time.  I

 

           24              think he might have mentioned, you know, in

 

           25              not so many words, government isn't here to


 

 

                                                                     101

 

 

            1              hurt people, we are here to help people and

 

            2              I believe before and I believe now that this

 

            3              is just hurtful to the people of the city.

 

            4              You know, maybe that $500 prevented him from

 

            5              paying a bill this month, I don't know, but

 

            6              what happens to somebody, as he said, that

 

            7              lives less fortunate than him, and I happen

 

            8              to know him, he is not a wealthy man, he is

 

            9              a working class guy like the rest of us here

 

           10              and what do the people that simply couldn't

 

           11              come up -- what if it was $1,000 and it was

 

           12              a 68-year-old woman whose husband is dead

 

           13              and now it's turning into $3,000 or $4,000

 

           14              how would they come up with that kind of

 

           15              money?  I just don't know and I would be

 

           16              happy to see this changed.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: I wanted to explain in

 

           18              more detail the amendment that I proposed.

 

           19              I have expunged all provisions that contain

 

           20              language to include a sheriff's sale as well

 

           21              as one provision that is redundant, Until

 

           22              the enactment of File of Council No. 82 of

 

           23              2007, sheriff's sales were not utilized in

 

           24              the city to confiscate a city resident's

 

           25              home, rather, Action of Quiet Title was


 

 

                                                                     102

 

 

            1              conducted through the treasurer's office

 

            2              allowing residents to pay their

 

            3              delinquencies while keeping their homes.  I

 

            4              ask you, is it fair to take a senior

 

            5              citizen's home for two or three years of

 

            6              delinquent property taxes owed to the city

 

            7              or is it cruel and unusual punishment?  The

 

            8              normal penalties and interest currently

 

            9              collected will remain in place.  The filing

 

           10              fees and costs incurred by the city will

 

           11              remain in place and NCC will continue their

 

           12              contract and continue to work with Municipal

 

           13              Revenue Services.  Municipal Revenue

 

           14              Services stated that these costs of outlined

 

           15              in that Draconian ordinance have no effect

 

           16              on them or their agreement with the city.

 

           17              They have already paid 1.9 million dollars

 

           18              to Scranton for the purchase of delinquent

 

           19              taxes.  Thus, this amendment is a compromise

 

           20              that provides for the collection of

 

           21              delinquent real estate tax in a reasonable

 

           22              manner.

 

           23                      As Mr. Courtright so eloquently

 

           24              noted just a few moments ago, the purpose of

 

           25              government is to help and protect the


 

 

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            1              people.  This harsh ordinance punishes

 

            2              elderly residents, working families, the

 

            3              disabled, those who have medical problems,

 

            4              we don't know from one day to the next what

 

            5              mishap, what tragedy can befall us, and I

 

            6              know that I would not wish to have that on

 

            7              my conscience for the rest of my lifetime.

 

            8              I don't wish to be judged for something so

 

            9              unnecessary and so unfair to the citizens of

 

           10              the city, and so I'm asking my colleagues,

 

           11              can we agree to take this measure to help

 

           12              the less fortunate, just this once can we

 

           13              take one step in the right direction

 

           14              together as a elected officials.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI: On the question?  I

 

           16              would just like to say that in reviewing

 

           17              this I would need a week to study this.  I

 

           18              don't think it's fair to just put this in

 

           19              front of us and ask us to vote on it.

 

           20                      MS. EVANS: I can explain a little

 

           21              more to you.  3-A, for example, the monies

 

           22              for the consultant, which is NCC, according

 

           23              to Municipal Revenue Service, they already

 

           24              receive 25 percent on top of the actual tax

 

           25              bill.  As for 3-B, all other provisions in


 

 

                                                                     104

 

 

            1              the ordinance charge $30 for preparation and

 

            2              mailing of notices and postage.  Are we

 

            3              paying $130 for file opening and review by

 

            4              NCC?  I'm offering them $10 to do so and

 

            5              reducing the cost to the citizens by

 

            6              three-quarters.  3-C, it's reduced by $5 to

 

            7              maintain parody with 3-G, and as for 3-U,

 

            8              attorney fees are charged by either city

 

            9              attorneys already on the payroll or by the

 

           10              attorney for NCC who is part owner of NCC,

 

           11              that is why the language will allow for an

 

           12              hourly rate of no less than $60.

 

           13                       MS. GATELLI:  Well, I'd still like

 

           14              to make a motion that we table it until next

 

           15              week and possibly have a caucus or early

 

           16              caucus.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: You actually I don't

 

           18              think can make that motion because I have a

 

           19              motion on the floor that's been seconded.

 

           20                      MS. GATELLI: Oh, okay.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI: I would like to revisit

 

           22              this.  I mean, I definitely agree that, you

 

           23              know, somebody some of these fees and the

 

           24              way that we were told when the fee schedule

 

           25              was coming down was that it would only


 

 

                                                                     105

 

 

            1              happen along the way.  Now, what we heard

 

            2              tonight, right, that it did not happen along

 

            3              the way, but that was of the way it was

 

            4              presented to us and told that as long as it

 

            5              went through the system, which would take

 

            6              years, that it would collect along the way

 

            7              and as we heard with Mr. Hazzouri tonight

 

            8              that's not what happened, you know, for 80

 

            9              some dollars, so I'm not sure exactly what

 

           10              that payment was due, I mean, if we were

 

           11              talking four years it would be a different

 

           12              story, but he is claiming one, so that is

 

           13              definitely a problem.  That was

 

           14              misrepresented to all of us at the time.  I

 

           15              definitely want to revisit this and I'm

 

           16              going to also ask that, is Nancy still here

 

           17              or did she go, that Mrs. Krake sends us

 

           18              information so we know what was different

 

           19              than and what is different now as far as

 

           20              your department is concerned because I know

 

           21              that she has been very active in not wanting

 

           22              this.  So, I also want to check in find out

 

           23              how much taxes have been collected since we

 

           24              enacted this opposed to what was collected

 

           25              last year, so I would like to see maybe


 

 

                                                                     106

 

 

            1              another week before, but I definitely

 

            2              believe that this is something after hearing

 

            3              Mr. Hazzouri tonight that we might need to

 

            4              revisit it.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: You do recognize though

 

            6              that this does not rescind the ordinance?

 

            7                      MS. FANUCCI: I do understand that.

 

            8                      MS. EVANS: That much of the

 

            9              ordinance is still intact.

 

           10                      MS. FANUCCI: Right, I understand

 

           11              that it's the fees.

 

           12                      MS. EVANS: It's eliminating any

 

           13              possibility that a city resident would lose

 

           14              their home to a sheriff's sale.

 

           15                      MS. FANUCCI: Right, and I understand

 

           16              that, but I still want like to look into it

 

           17              and see what the taxes that were collected

 

           18              and also maybe talk to Mrs. Krake to find

 

           19              out exactly what the difference is between

 

           20              now and then.

 

           21                      MS. EVANS: I wasn't fortunate to be

 

           22              here tonight to hear Mr. Hazzouri, but I did

 

           23              mention to council, for example, in January

 

           24              the situation of an 88-year-old man with 164

 

           25              or 67 dollar bill that ballooned to over,


 

 

                                                                     107

 

 

            1              well, close to 500 and if were not paid

 

            2              almost immediately it was going to go to

 

            3              over $2,000 at the end of the 30-day period.

 

            4              Now, this man has not the income to address

 

            5              even the $500 payment.

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI: What did he do with his

 

            7              school tax that's ten times as much as the

 

            8              city tax?

 

            9                      MS. EVANS: I really don't.  I don't

 

           10              know how he --

 

           11                      MS. GATELLI: Well, That's my

 

           12              concern.

 

           13                      MS. EVANS: Well, see, this is my

 

           14              concern, how is that being separated because

 

           15              it's not separated on the tax bill.  It's

 

           16              all on one tax bill and that's what I'm

 

           17              working on with Representative Shimkus to

 

           18              have separated so that, for example, you

 

           19              know, whatever the school district is going

 

           20              to do the city can at least gets it's

 

           21              payments separately because the city asks

 

           22              for the least amount of money, but right now

 

           23              I can't understand how they would be making

 

           24              payments to other governmental entities when

 

           25              the bill is combined and you make payment on


 

 

                                                                     108

 

 

            1              the school district and the city together.

 

            2                      MS. FANUCCI: Right, but they have

 

            3              been doing it for years.

 

            4                      MS. GATELLI:  But they separate.

 

            5                      MS. FANUCCI: They do.

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI: You can go and just pay

 

            7              your county and school district.

 

            8                      MS. FANUCCI: And that's it.

 

            9                      MS. GATELLI:  And not pay your city

 

           10              and that's what was happening, so if he is

 

           11              not paying the city tax then I'm sure he is

 

           12              not paying the county or the school district

 

           13              so they are going to sherif sale his house.

 

           14                      MS. EVANS: Well, I'm not going to

 

           15              begin to speak for the school board or the

 

           16              county I'm only speaking for us.

 

           17                      MS. GATELLI: No, I'm telling you the

 

           18              procedure.

 

           19                      MS. EVANS: I'm speaking of what I

 

           20              can --

 

           21                      MS. GATELLI: They have a procedure

 

           22              in place to take the homes.

 

           23                      MS. EVANS: I'm speaking from what I

 

           24              can control.  I have no control over the

 

           25              school district or the county government.


 

 

                                                                     109

 

 

            1                      MS. GATELLI: No, but I think we have

 

            2              a right to the money, too.

 

            3                      MS. EVANS: But I'm saying this is

 

            4              where we do have a voice and I think, you

 

            5              know, it's not just a matter of that one

 

            6              individual, I know we have received letters

 

            7              from businesses, and since I expressed my

 

            8              concern over that individuals' plight I have

 

            9              received numbers of phone calls, letters,

 

           10              people stopping me on the street in cars as

 

           11              I have been coming into city hall for one

 

           12              purpose or another to tell me exactly what

 

           13              was happening to them and why was this being

 

           14              done.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI:  I hope it's happening

 

           16              to the slum lords that never pay, that have

 

           17              40 people living in an apartment because

 

           18              they are the people that abuse it and I was

 

           19              there.

 

           20                      MS. EVANS: I agree.  I agree, but I

 

           21              don't know that we have the right to make

 

           22              everyone else suffer for a certain group.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Perhaps we seem to be

 

           24              going back and forth here on getting away

 

           25              from the original motion.  If my


 

 

                                                                     110

 

 

            1              interpretation of what people are saying is

 

            2              correct that all of us would certainly like

 

            3              to revisit this in some way, however, and I

 

            4              will say that I, too, would certainly be

 

            5              more than happy to revisit this, but asking

 

            6              for a vote without an opportunity to review

 

            7              and take a look and consider it I don't

 

            8              think that that's an appropriate way to deal

 

            9              with it, and not saying that your motion is

 

           10              inappropriate, I'm just saying that I would

 

           11              like to be given more time as well.  And,

 

           12              again, if I'm reading things properly if we

 

           13              go ahead with a vote on this, I personally

 

           14              would at this point in time vote, no.  If

 

           15              you would --

 

           16                      MS. GATELLI:  We can vote, no, and

 

           17              then make the motion to table it.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: Well, I was going to say

 

           19              if you would remove the motion, which she

 

           20              may --

 

           21                      MR. MINORA: It can be tabled without

 

           22              being withdrawn.

 

           23                      MS. GATELLI:  She said I couldn't

 

           24              table it.  I did take a motion to table it.

 

           25                      MR. MINORA:  Well, it wasn't


 

 

                                                                     111

 

 

            1              seconded, perhaps even withdraw.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: What I'm saying is --

 

            3                      MS. GATELLI:  He is saying she

 

            4              doesn't have the right to make a motion to

 

            5              table it.

 

            6                      MS. EVANS: Pardon me?

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF: It is within your power

 

            8              to withdraw the motion before a vote and if

 

            9              that were done I would, given a week to

 

           10              review it, make a motion again next week I

 

           11              think that would be sufficient time for

 

           12              people to review what you have done here and

 

           13              to make at least an informed decision.

 

           14                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. McGoff, can I

 

           15              say one thing before we go on?  I understand

 

           16              that they want more time and I would

 

           17              recommend to Mrs. Evans that she withdraw it

 

           18              and give them the time, the reason I don't

 

           19              need the time is I wasn't for it from the

 

           20              get-go.  I don't think it was any good to

 

           21              begin with.  I'm not saying that we don't

 

           22              want our share of the money, we absolutely

 

           23              deserve our fair of the money, what I'm

 

           24              saying is these fees are insane.  So, yes,

 

           25              we go after the people and, yes, we try to


 

 

                                                                     112

 

 

            1              get our taxes, but we don't saddle them with

 

            2              all of these fees and that's why for me

 

            3              personally I wouldn't need to think about

 

            4              it, but I can certainly understand why you

 

            5              people that voted in favor of it would like

 

            6              to take a look at it and I will recommend

 

            7              that Mrs. Evans withdraw it.

 

            8                      MS. EVANS: Well, I, too, I agree

 

            9              with Mr. Courtright.  If I were opposed to

 

           10              the collection of delinquent taxes I would

 

           11              be asking to rescind the motion, but I have

 

           12              not.  I am asking to amend it in a most

 

           13              reasonable manner that offers a palatable

 

           14              compromise.  Now, I will withdraw the motion

 

           15              so that it can be considered at a later

 

           16              time.  My concern though is this, and I must

 

           17              admit this, at this point in time, at this

 

           18              juncture, probably my greatest concern is

 

           19              that in the interim period we are certainly

 

           20              going to receive quite a number of responses

 

           21              as to why these provisions should not be

 

           22              eliminated, what makes it necessary for this

 

           23              situation and that situation and what the

 

           24              attorneys says, etcetera.  Well, I really

 

           25              hope that you could make an independent


 

 

                                                                     113

 

 

            1              decision and I really hope that you can read

 

            2              this independently and draw the comparison

 

            3              between the original ordinance and the

 

            4              amendment because much is told to us that,

 

            5              in fact, is far from the truth.  Notice how

 

            6              often you receive no written explanation,

 

            7              regulations, any citation to prove what is

 

            8              being told to you.

 

            9                      Like Mr. Courtright, I feel very

 

           10              strongly that this measure is nothing more

 

           11              than an attempt for whatever reason to take

 

           12              people's houses.  I'm an elected official,

 

           13              I'm representative of the City of Scranton

 

           14              and I will not participate in stealing

 

           15              people's homes.  Do I want to collects

 

           16              taxes, delinquent taxes as well?

 

           17              Absolutely.  Unequivocally.  Everyone needs

 

           18              to pay their fair share, but on the other

 

           19              hand, they are many less fortunate and I do

 

           20              call this stealing and I hope that, as I

 

           21              said, council is going to rise to the

 

           22              occasion as elected officials and do

 

           23              something for once for the people of the

 

           24              city, for the little guy, for the person who

 

           25              can't afford it because I know and a lot of


 

 

                                                                     114

 

 

            1              other elected officials know as well, not

 

            2              only within let us say this building and

 

            3              these hallowed halls that there are many

 

            4              people who do not pay taxes and yet nothing

 

            5              happens to them.  They are well taken care

 

            6              of.  There are many people who don't pay

 

            7              wage taxes.  There is another situation

 

            8              that's been swept under the rug for whatever

 

            9              reason for years.  We never even really

 

           10              found out what was so terrible about the

 

           11              auditors from the tax office attending a

 

           12              caucus to explain the collection process.

 

           13              They were forbidden to come and provide that

 

           14              information.  That should raise a huge red

 

           15              flag.  Well, if we are going to be worried

 

           16              about how much harshly we are going to

 

           17              punish the people who have lived here all

 

           18              their lives and paid their taxes just so we

 

           19              make sure we get what's coming to us, we

 

           20              better take a look at the people who really

 

           21              have the money and aren't paying and I know

 

           22              we all know that's the situation in the tax

 

           23              office for quite awhile now, but every

 

           24              everybody get away with it and we all turn

 

           25              our heads and we close our ears and close


 

 

                                                                     115

 

 

            1              our eyes because we don't want to step on

 

            2              political toes.  Well, I can't change what's

 

            3              going on over in the tax office, like I said

 

            4              earlier, I can only change what comes before

 

            5              this desk and I really do urge you to do

 

            6              this on your own.  I don't anyone you need

 

            7              the mayor's opinion or Miss Peterson,

 

            8              Paterson's opinion, take a look at what they

 

            9              gave you initially then listen to what the

 

           10              costs used to be.  Do you know there are new

 

           11              costs on there, things that were done at

 

           12              absolutely no charge are now people are

 

           13              going to be charged $150 for or more.  Why?

 

           14              Somebody is making money off it, but you

 

           15              know what, it's not the city and it's not --

 

           16              because I want the city to get what's

 

           17              legally coming to it, I have provided for

 

           18              that, something else is making that money

 

           19              and I for one I don't want to be in bed with

 

           20              that person.  That's it.  I'm going to

 

           21              withdraw my motion.  I don't think I need to

 

           22              second for that.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't believe so.

 

           24              We are good to go?

 

           25                      MS. EVANS: Now, if I could, I just


 

 

                                                                     116

 

 

            1              have -- I'm sorry, Mr. Courtright, I have a

 

            2              quicky, a real quicky here, two citizens

 

            3              requests and then we go onto Mr. Courtright.

 

            4              Residents of South Side report the presence

 

            5              of numerous abandoned junk vehicles in South

 

            6              Side.  They have tried to contact the

 

            7              appropriate inspector and Mr. Seitzinger

 

            8              with no success.  Plea address this blight

 

            9              issue as soon as possible.

 

           10                      Also, East Scranton residents report

 

           11              that huge stones lie in Richter Avenue in

 

           12              place of curbing near the East Mountain

 

           13              baseball field.  The stones jut into the

 

           14              street causing hazardous conditions for

 

           15              children playing in the area as well as

 

           16              pedestrians and drivers.  Please examine the

 

           17              property and advise a possible solution.

 

           18              And that's it.

 

           19                      MS. GARVEY: Mr. Courtright, can I

 

           20              interrupt for one minute?

 

           21                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Go right ahead.

 

           22                      MS. GARVEY: Just to respond to

 

           23              something before I forget.  Mrs. Evans, you

 

           24              had explained something about Smith Place

 

           25              and the snow emergency letter with no


 

 

                                                                     117

 

 

            1              response, in caucus I did touch on that, but

 

            2              you weren't here so I just wanted to bring

 

            3              you up to speed to that on what happened.

 

            4                      MS. EVANS: Oh, good.

 

            5                      MS. GARVEY: On the letter that was

 

            6              supposed to go out for the snow emergency

 

            7              situation that you wanted to find out

 

            8              something, that's my fault because the

 

            9              letter did go out to them until yesterday so

 

           10              I kind of extended the date for their

 

           11              response.  You wanted it on the 1st, but

 

           12              being that I didn't give them enough time I

 

           13              didn't know if that was fair so I waited

 

           14              until the 5th I put on it.

 

           15                      MS. EVANS: Very good.  I agree with

 

           16              you.

 

           17                      MS. GARVEY: And then Smith Place, I

 

           18              heard from Mark Seitzinger this afternoon

 

           19              and he said that he and Mr. Brazil will be

 

           20              going out there to check into all of the

 

           21              allegations that were made and see what

 

           22              remedies they might need to take place.

 

           23                      MS. EVANS: Did they mention when

 

           24              they think they are going to investigate?

 

           25                      MS. GARVEY: No, he didn't.  He said


 

 

                                                                     118

 

 

            1              he would get out there as soon as possible,

 

            2              but he didn't give me a time or a day.  And

 

            3              the other request that you had last week

 

            4              about Daron Northeast, you wanted another

 

            5              letter to go out there and for me to call

 

            6              Mark and ask him to go out and check on the

 

            7              situation about starting work at 5:00 and

 

            8              ending at 11:30.  He said that he did go out

 

            9              there and he spoke to the one of the owners

 

           10              and the owner said if that, in fact, was

 

           11              taking place, he was not aware that work

 

           12              would have been in those hours, but he would

 

           13              check into it and if it did happen he would

 

           14              make sure it did not happen again and Mark

 

           15              said he would take other actions if

 

           16              necessary after that time.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: Very good.  Very good.

 

           18              Now, they do understand, however, that I'm

 

           19              looking for a written report, too, on Smith

 

           20              Place?

 

           21                      MS. GARVEY: Yes, I did tell them

 

           22              that.

 

           23                      MS. EVANS: Thank you.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Courtright.

 

           25                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.  I think that


 

 

                                                                     119

 

 

            1              one of the problems with answering your

 

            2              questions when it comes to motion I remember

 

            3              who I was answering the one question about

 

            4              Mr. Davis and, Mr. DeSarno, I'm sorry, I

 

            5              forgot what you asked us.  I'll have to look

 

            6              at the tape and see what questions you asked

 

            7              us.  Do you remember, Mrs. Garvey, what he

 

            8              asked us?  Do you have it written down?  You

 

            9              are writing like crazy there.

 

           10                      MS. EVANS: I apologize.

 

           11                      MS. GARVEY: Whose question?

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I forget what

 

           13              question Mr. DeSarno asked me.  He's saying

 

           14              we'll talk about it later.  As far as

 

           15              Mr. Davis, the fire chief, I don't know

 

           16              whether he is qualified or not, that's not

 

           17              for me to judge.  I have seen on two

 

           18              separate fires with his fire gear on so I

 

           19              don't know that if he goes into the

 

           20              buildings without fire gear, I hope he is

 

           21              smart enough not to do that.  I don't know

 

           22              that he is allowed to fight a fire.  It's my

 

           23              opinion that he is not allowed to have

 

           24              anything to do with fighting a fire, so my

 

           25              experience over the years, I think most


 

 

                                                                     120

 

 

            1              people know I'm kind of close with some of

 

            2              the police and firefighters and I've been to

 

            3              a lot a fires, it seems that the chief

 

            4              that's running the shift pretty much gives

 

            5              out the orders and I think if anything other

 

            6              than that would happen it might create

 

            7              chaos, so I hope that that's what's taking

 

            8              place and if that's wasn't isn't happening

 

            9              and I'm wrong, well, then I'm sure some

 

           10              firefighter will call me on the way home.

 

           11                   I'd like to, and this is -- what I'm

 

           12              going to say is now is my opinion, you know,

 

           13              I'm not saying it's fact, it is my opinion.

 

           14              I have seen lately in the last couple of

 

           15              weeks in the paper and I have been told many

 

           16              things about the police contract and I'm

 

           17              basing on what I'm saying now on my

 

           18              conversations with several, not one or two,

 

           19              several police officers over the last

 

           20              several months, you know, in saying

 

           21              Mrs. Stulgis single-handily stopped the

 

           22              negotiations.  I think that's an unfair

 

           23              statement.  I don't think that any one

 

           24              individual could stop that.  And, again,

 

           25              that's my opinion, but when talking to


 

 

                                                                     121

 

 

            1              several, again, I'm talking more than 20

 

            2              police officers they don't believe that's

 

            3              the case either.  What they have told me

 

            4              their concerns were, number one, they had

 

            5              never seen anything in writing and they are

 

            6              little gun-shy to accept anything that's not

 

            7              in writing and I don't say that I blame

 

            8              them.  What you see here tonight with this,

 

            9              we were collecting the delinquent taxes we

 

           10              were told things that weren't true, so I

 

           11              would also want it in writing if I was them.

 

           12                   The other, there was a certain faction

 

           13              that were very much opposed to giving up,

 

           14              they haven't had a contract or a raise I

 

           15              should say since 2002 and I believe what was

 

           16              on the table was having them go from 2002

 

           17              through 2006 or 7 with no raise.  There was

 

           18              many that were opposed to that, there were

 

           19              some that were willing to do that.  I think

 

           20              one of the big things was the health care,

 

           21              almost, I'd say 95, 98 percent of the ones

 

           22              that I spoke to, there were some that didn't

 

           23              agree with this, but the ones that I spoke

 

           24              to were extremely concerned about the health

 

           25              care, they felt that the cost of the health


 

 

                                                                     122

 

 

            1              care would exceed the cost of whatever

 

            2              raises they were going to get going forward,

 

            3              all right, and it's not good bargaining in

 

            4              my eyes, but I'm not the one that has to

 

            5              live with it.  So, I just think that all of

 

            6              this publicity and the negative sheds, you

 

            7              know, the wong image of our police

 

            8              department.  I think we have a great police

 

            9              department, I think they do the very best

 

           10              that they could under the conditions that

 

           11              they are presented with which many times

 

           12              aren't in my opinion acceptable.

 

           13                      I don't know of any other police

 

           14              department that do it, but we got guys that

 

           15              are buy their own cars, they buy their own

 

           16              police officers cars because of the fact

 

           17              they don't feel safe possibly or they don't

 

           18              want to ride around in a car that is junky

 

           19              inside or whatever the case maybe so, I

 

           20              mean, I think you have got to give them a

 

           21              tremendous amount of credit.  They go out

 

           22              and spend their own money and buy their own

 

           23              police cars.  In my opinion I don't think

 

           24              that's the way to go, I think the city

 

           25              should be providing the police cars, but I


 

 

                                                                     123

 

 

            1              wouldn't want all this talk about

 

            2              negotiations and whatnot it seems to be a

 

            3              war between the Times and Mrs. Stulgis, you

 

            4              know, and I think that's part of the facts,

 

            5              that's my opinion.  Through all of this, you

 

            6              know, there was no -- I didn't read it, but

 

            7              I was told about that I think they said

 

            8              crime, violent crime if I'm not mistaken was

 

            9              down 13 percent, am I correct there, Nelson,

 

           10              is that what they said, violent crime or

 

           11              some type of crime was down 13 percent,

 

           12              whatever the case may be.  We are talking

 

           13              numbers and I don't think anybody would

 

           14              disagree that you can make numbers do

 

           15              whatever you want, there is a lot of magic

 

           16              in numbers.  I could sit here today and say

 

           17              in 2007 that homicides went up 200 percent

 

           18              in the City of Scranton and I don't know

 

           19              that anybody could argue with me, homicides

 

           20              200 percent, because they are numbers.  The

 

           21              number that I always have gone by with the

 

           22              police department for me personally was the

 

           23              number of calls they received and we have

 

           24              been 60,000 plus for many years now, 60,000

 

           25              calls for one city, all right?  You know,


 

 

                                                                     124

 

 

            1              that's a lot of calls, so I think these guys

 

            2              are doing a very good job under some tough

 

            3              circumstances and whatever they negotiate I

 

            4              hope is good for all concerned, but I just

 

            5              don't like to see the facts clouded when it

 

            6              seems like there's a go-between Mr. Stulgis

 

            7              and the paper and I think that's wrong and

 

            8              that's all I'll say on that.

 

            9                      MS. EVANS: Could I just add

 

           10              something to your comments?  I had heard

 

           11              recently about a situation with the fire

 

           12              department since the very tragic and

 

           13              untimely death of Captain Robeson the fire

 

           14              department has wished to purchase equipment

 

           15              that would be able to test power lines in

 

           16              the area of the fire to prevent this same

 

           17              type of tragedy from occurring again.  The

 

           18              cost I'm told are quite minimal and they

 

           19              have shopped around, they have tried to make

 

           20              this proposal, but the administration

 

           21              doesn't even want to hear it.

 

           22                      Now, where maybe, what, Captain

 

           23              Robeson I believed January 6 and today is

 

           24              January 29, and already the management and

 

           25              administration won't spend $300 to provide


 

 

                                                                     125

 

 

            1              for safety measures that would prevent

 

            2              another death like that suffered by Captain

 

            3              Robeson.  What does that tell you?

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Evans, I just need

 

            5              to respond here, you are making a statement

 

            6              based on supposition.  You yourself said

 

            7              that you have heard, you know, unless there

 

            8              is verifiable proof of that.

 

            9                      MR. GERVASI: I'll be happy to verify

 

           10              it.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me.  Excuse me.

 

           12                      MS. EVANS: Well, we do have a

 

           13              firefighter in the audience who just

 

           14              verified the statement.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me?

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT: My turn?  Okay.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: It was.

 

           18                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I didn't know she

 

           19              was going to bring that up, but I know a

 

           20              gentleman that works at Tobyhanna and he

 

           21              believes they have that device up there that

 

           22              they use and if, in fact, it's $300 and if,

 

           23              in fact, the fire department thinks they can

 

           24              use that, I'm sure it would be no problem

 

           25              for us to raise $300, we raise a whole bunch


 

 

                                                                     126

 

 

            1              more when we run for office and we get a lot

 

            2              of it from them, so, you know, if, in fact,

 

            3              you could use an it and maybe the fire

 

            4              department would send a representative to

 

            5              educate council on it.  I can't imagine

 

            6              anybody up here on council being opposed to

 

            7              --

 

            8                      MS. GATELLI:  We will be the first

 

            9              to donate it.

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  We can donate the

 

           11              $300 just up here.  I certainly, and I don't

 

           12              want to keep bringing up Mr. Robeson.

 

           13                      MS. GATELLI:  Don't we need them on

 

           14              ladder trucks?

 

           15                      MR. COURTRIGHT: His family is trying

 

           16              to grieve, you know, but I think if the fire

 

           17              department would be so kind as to come to us

 

           18              and explain to us we would certainly

 

           19              appreciate that to prevent any future

 

           20              tragedy.  Staying on the fire department, I

 

           21              think we were all aware of the fact there

 

           22              was a severe fire in the downtown recently

 

           23              at Scanlon's and the Crazy Pineapple there

 

           24              and I know in the media it was said there

 

           25              was a fire wall, you know, that had


 

 

                                                                     127

 

 

            1              prevented it.  I happened to be down there,

 

            2              there was a fire wall, there was also a

 

            3              space in between the front of the building

 

            4              and the back of the building that I think

 

            5              that helped it and I think the wind helped,

 

            6              but I do know that the firefighters made

 

            7              every effort because I was speaking to them

 

            8              as they were coming out to catch their

 

            9              breath and asking them questions when they

 

           10              had a chance, they made every effort to

 

           11              force it towards the Mulberry Street side so

 

           12              that it wouldn't come into the renovated

 

           13              section of the building and I think they,

 

           14              too, deserve credit for a job well done

 

           15              there and I would just like to thank them

 

           16              for that.  Unfortunately, we have gotten to

 

           17              see them in action far too often recently.

 

           18              I hope I don't have to see you guys for a

 

           19              long time.

 

           20                      I spoke last week about Channel 61

 

           21              and then I got a call this week sometime in

 

           22              the summer Scranton Tomorrow, I think they

 

           23              were calling themselves Scranton Tomorrow

 

           24              asked us to go down there for a meeting or

 

           25              something, I don't know if anybody else, to


 

 

                                                                     128

 

 

            1              speak, you know, a little blip they were

 

            2              going to put on Channel 61 for Scranton

 

            3              Tomorrow and now I'm being told that what

 

            4              I -- what I had spoke on, it's only a couple

 

            5              of seconds, is being used by one of the

 

            6              companies that is looking to run Channel 61

 

            7              in their DVD.  I just want to make a note I

 

            8              never authorized them to do that.  I didn't

 

            9              speak to anybody whether it be in writing or

 

           10              verbally to allow them to do that.  I'm not

 

           11              out there pushing for that company.  I told

 

           12              you before, I'm all for the people that are

 

           13              here now staying here, that's me personally.

 

           14              I don't even know if it's legal that they

 

           15              used my -- and are still using me, but I'm

 

           16              going to ask because I don't know if they

 

           17              the right --

 

           18                      MS. EVANS:  I did that as well and I

 

           19              had no idea this was --

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I just got a call

 

           21              this week.

 

           22                      MS. EVANS: You mean, I have been

 

           23              duped into participating in a video for a

 

           24              proposal with --

 

           25                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  That's the way it


 

 

                                                                     129

 

 

            1              appears, I haven't seen it.  I haven't seen

 

            2              it myself, but I've got to get the name of

 

            3              the guy who is -- I think he was the guy

 

            4              that they were telling that he had something

 

            5              to do with the programming that they either

 

            6              when he was taping, I don't know, but

 

            7              anyway, I'm not an advocate for a particular

 

            8              company and I don't want anybody to think

 

            9              otherwise.

 

           10                      MS. EVANS: Chris Molten.

 

           11                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I will ask him to

 

           12              remove me from his tape.

 

           13                      MS. EVANS: I will, also.

 

           14                      MR. COURTRIGHT: They said I'm the

 

           15              first one so, geez, I'm lucky.  There is a

 

           16              family on East Mountain that e-mailed me and

 

           17              they have a parking problem.  I tried to

 

           18              call you a couple of times and in your

 

           19              e-mail you said you watch all of the

 

           20              meetings.  You asked not to have your name

 

           21              mentioned so I won't mention your name, but

 

           22              I did try to call you a couple of times and

 

           23              you don't have an answering machine or an

 

           24              answering machine that I can speak to, it

 

           25              had something about punching a code in, I


 

 

                                                                     130

 

 

            1              don't know what that meant, but anyway, I'll

 

            2              try to call you tomorrow about your parking

 

            3              problem I think I can help you out with it.

 

            4                   Mrs. Garvey, I didn't see, but that

 

            5              doesn't mean we didn't get it, did we get

 

            6              any response back about barricades having

 

            7              their flashers or reflectors on them?

 

            8                      MS. GARVEY: No.

 

            9                      MR. COURTRIGHT: We did send it out

 

           10              though, right?

 

           11                      MS. GARVEY:  That just went out,

 

           12              too.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT: All right.  Just got

 

           14              it.  Good enough.  I don't know where I was.

 

           15              Sorry about that.  I was somewhere

 

           16              midsentence, no, I mean where I was when the

 

           17              person told me, we have so many functions

 

           18              that we attend and I was at some function

 

           19              and a gentleman came up to me, quite

 

           20              sometime ago where the old Casey Hotel used

 

           21              to be they put a parking garage up, a guy

 

           22              had come in here with a big display of all

 

           23              the cracks and all the problems I saw in

 

           24              that garage and I'm fearful that down the

 

           25              road we would have problems and I don't


 

 

                                                                     131

 

 

            1              believe we have so far and I'm praying that

 

            2              we don't, but this gentleman grabbed me and

 

            3              said to me that I need to take a look under

 

            4              the Molly Branigan's sign at that garage

 

            5              that it has never been finished.  I did get

 

            6              down there to take a look at that, I

 

            7              apologize, and I will go and take a look at

 

            8              that.  I don't even know, I can't remember

 

            9              where I was, that's how good I am.

 

           10                   Mrs. Evans has really nice notes there,

 

           11              see what I write mine on, I have them on a

 

           12              sticky note here, and she has really --

 

           13              sometimes she has them typewritten out over

 

           14              there, I didn't know that until I sat here.

 

           15              One last thing, I'm trying to lighten it up

 

           16              here, we have a little tension here and I'll

 

           17              ask Mr. Minora, and I'm certainly not going

 

           18              to ask you to answer it now unless you have

 

           19              the answers right on hand, I don't know that

 

           20              you do.  A couple of calls this afternoon

 

           21              about the South Side complex and the golf

 

           22              course sale and then somebody had brought it

 

           23              up here and my question would be this,

 

           24              evidently the judge has ruled against the

 

           25              city and it's going to go further.  My


 

 

                                                                     132

 

 

            1              question would be this, in the event that

 

            2              the city wasn't able to sell the golf course

 

            3              and wasn't able to sell the South Side

 

            4              complex we got somewhere in the neighborhood

 

            5              of five million dollars tied up there and I

 

            6              guess whatever improvements they did, I

 

            7              don't think they did any improvements on the

 

            8              South Side complex, but I think they made

 

            9              improvements on the golf course, are we on

 

           10              the hook for that money or does the people

 

           11              that purchase it from us do they have title

 

           12              insurance and that will take care of the

 

           13              city, are we off the hook, I don't know and

 

           14              I don't know if you have that answer if not

 

           15              I certainly will wait.

 

           16                      MR. MINORA: I certainly don't have

 

           17              that answer off the top of my head.

 

           18                      MR. COURTRIGHT: That's just my

 

           19              concern is, you know, somewhere in the

 

           20              neighborhood of $5 million where is the city

 

           21              going to come up with that if that's the

 

           22              case, but -- and I'm not going to speculate

 

           23              on what's going to happen, I know it has to

 

           24              come back here, but just in the event that

 

           25              things turn that way I would just like to


 

 

                                                                     133

 

 

            1              know if we are going to be on the hook for

 

            2              that money, if you don't mind.

 

            3                      MR. MINORA: I'll try to find out for

 

            4              you.  And that's all I have.  Thank you.

 

            5                      MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Fanucci.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: I'd like to know if any

 

            7              my colleagues received anything from the

 

            8              Scranton Mission, the rescue mission?  I got

 

            9              a solicitation in the mail.

 

           10                      MS. EVANS: Yes, several times.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI: Several times asking

 

           12              for money and I got so many phone calls on

 

           13              this, also.  So, I'd like to make a motion

 

           14              that we send a letter to Mark Seitzinger

 

           15              finding out exactly to update us on what is

 

           16              going on and how come they are still being

 

           17              able to remain open although they were shut

 

           18              down and zoning was taken from them,

 

           19              everything, right?  They did not comply with

 

           20              anything at the time, so why they are still

 

           21              in business and still open and maybe we can,

 

           22              I don't know, do what's supposed to be right

 

           23              which is make sure that they are not

 

           24              functioning down there.  They should not be

 

           25              in business from our last correspondence, so


 

 

                                                                     134

 

 

            1              I'd like to make that in the form a motion

 

            2              and send out a letter to Mark Seitzinger to

 

            3              update us on the rescue mission and to tell

 

            4              us where they are on the making sure that

 

            5              they are condemned procedure.

 

            6                      MS. EVANS: Second.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  On the

 

            8              motion is to send a letter to Mr. Seitzinger

 

            9              regarding the rescue mission, all in favor.

 

           10                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           15              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           16                      MS. FANUCCI: And, actually, that is

 

           17              all I have tonight.  Thank you.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Gatelli.

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI: I don't have anything.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: I would just a few brief

 

           21              responses to some things that were said.

 

           22              First of all, to Mr. Bolus in terms of

 

           23              joining negotiations with the -- involving

 

           24              firefighters and police, certainly if I felt

 

           25              that it would helpful in any way I would


 

 

                                                                     135

 

 

            1              certainly do that.  I had stated before, as

 

            2              most of us have, that we would like to see

 

            3              those contacts come to a conclusion.  I

 

            4              don't believe that -- I don't see what

 

            5              influence I could have in those negotiations

 

            6              beyond what has, you know, been done

 

            7              already.  I will certainly continue to

 

            8              encourage the mayor and the administration

 

            9              to engage in meaningful negotiations if, in

 

           10              fact, there is a place for one of us to be

 

           11              involved I certainly would take the

 

           12              opportunity.

 

           13                      Mr. Morgan asked about the firetruck

 

           14              being grounded and all of that, I don't

 

           15              think that we can provide an answer to that

 

           16              until there is a final report on the fire

 

           17              and they know what happened.  I think that

 

           18              we are still awaiting or that there is still

 

           19              that report to be completed.

 

           20                      Mr. DeSarno, I believe your question

 

           21              had to with the use of or frivolous spending

 

           22              of a nature and I think that any of us, I

 

           23              don't think there is anyone up here that

 

           24              would say, yes, I approve of frivolous

 

           25              spending.  Certainly the spending of money


 

 

                                                                     136

 

 

            1              or the way in which it's spent is a matter

 

            2              of perception as to whether it's frivolous

 

            3              or not and the things that you mentioned,

 

            4              you know, monies that were spent and things

 

            5              such as arbitrations certainly do come under

 

            6              question and I think that at any time that I

 

            7              deem something to be of a frivolous nature

 

            8              that I would certainly disapprove.

 

            9                      To Mr. Davis, I know I responded to

 

           10              him when he was speaking, he spoke of

 

           11              diversity.  I just, you know, any of us knew

 

           12              what diversity was.  I certainly, you know,

 

           13              if we can name five things.  Speakers at

 

           14              council, I certainly believe that there is

 

           15              quite of diversity of speakers at council.

 

           16              I did participate in the Martin Luther King

 

           17              Day march, there was certainly a diversity

 

           18              of people there.  I think our school system

 

           19              is as people who work within the school

 

           20              system would attest that there is diversity

 

           21              within the school system.  I would like to

 

           22              just on a personal, you know, two more,

 

           23              certainly my parish is quite diverse, and

 

           24              also the neighborhood in which I live is

 

           25              quite diverse, so I just I felt that


 

 

                                                                     137

 

 

            1              Mr. Davis was saying things that were

 

            2              somewhat inaccurate and I just thought that

 

            3              I wanted to respond.

 

            4                      And I think we have talked enough

 

            5              about the NCC and the process and perhaps we

 

            6              will, you know, given a week had time to

 

            7              look into that.  And that is all that I

 

            8              would have.  Now to business.

 

            9                      MS. GARVEY: FIFTH ORDER.  5-B. FOR

 

           10              INTRODUCTION - AN ORDINANCE - APPROVING THE

 

           11              TRANSFER OF A RESTAURANT LIQUOR LICENSE

 

           12              CURRENTLY OWNED BY N&L VENDING, INC., 143

 

           13              COUNTRY CLUB ESTATES, THORNHURST, PA, 18424,

 

           14              LICENSE NO. R-11639 TO POWER MACE, INC. FOR

 

           15              USE AT 1175 KANE STREET, SCRANTON, PA. THE

 

           16              CURRENT LOCATION OF ANGELINA'S RESTAURANT AS

 

           17              REQUIRED BY THE PENNSYLVANIA LIQUOR CONTROL

 

           18              BOARD.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: At this time I make a

 

           20              motion that Item 5-B be introduced into it's

 

           21              proper committee.

 

           22                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  All

 

           24              those in favor signify by saying aye.

 

           25                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.


 

 

                                                                     138

 

 

            1                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

            2                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

            3                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

            5              ayes have it and so moved.

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI:  I'll make a motion

 

            7              that we have a public hearing for that

 

            8              liquor license and, Kay, advertises it

 

            9              properly.

 

           10                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  So moved.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  All

 

           12              those in favor signify by saying aye.

 

           13                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           14                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           18              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           19                      MS. GARVEY: 5-C. FOR INTRODUCTION -

 

           20              A RESOLUTION - ACCEPTING THE RECOMMENDATION

 

           21              OF THE HISTORICAL ARCHITECTURE REVIEW BOARD

 

           22              ("HARB") AND APPROVING THE CERTIFICATE OF

 

           23              APPROPRIATENESS FOR ELITE SIGNS & AWNINGS,

 

           24              220 CLARK ROAD, DURYEA, PA FOR INSTALLATION

 

           25              OF NON-ILLUMINATED SIGNAGE TO BUSINESS


 

 

                                                                     139

 

 

            1              FACADE, LOCATED AT 321 LACKAWANNA AVENUE.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: At this time I'll

 

            3              entertain a motion that Item 5-C be

 

            4              introduced into it's proper committee.

 

            5                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  All

 

            8              those in favor?

 

            9                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           10                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           11                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           14              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           15                      MS. GARVEY: 5-D. FOR INTRODUCTION -

 

           16              A RESOLUTION - APPOINTMENT OF MARY T.

 

           17              GARDIER PATERSON, 1030 PARK STREET,

 

           18              SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18509, TO THE

 

           19              POSITION OF CITY SOLICITOR EFFECTIVE JANUARY

 

           20              14, 2008.  MS. PATERSON WILL BE REPLACING

 

           21              ROBERT B. FARRELL WHO RESIGNED ON JANUARY

 

           22              11, 2008.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: At this time I'll

 

           24              entertain a motion that Item 5-D be

 

           25              introduced into it's proper committee.


 

 

                                                                     140

 

 

            1                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

 

            2                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  I

 

            4              would just like to say that I welcome

 

            5              Mrs. Paterson to city government and a

 

            6              farewell to Attorney Farrell who served the

 

            7              city over the course of the past few years.

 

            8              Anyone else?  All those in favor.

 

            9                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           10                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           11                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  Aye,

 

           14              I'm sorry, I did it again.  The ayes have it

 

           15              and so moved.  All those opposed?  The ayes

 

           16              have it and so moved.

 

           17                      MS. GARVEY: SIXTH ORDER.  6-A.

 

           18              READING BY TITLE - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 5,

 

           19              2008 - AN ORDINANCE - AMENDING FILE OF THE

 

           20              COUNCIL NO. 6, 1976 ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE

 

           21              (AS AMENDED) IMPOSING A TAX FOR GENERAL

 

           22              REVENUE PURPOSES ON THE TRANSFER OF REAL

 

           23              PROPERTY SITUATED WITHIN THE CITY OF

 

           24              SCRANTON; PRESCRIBING AND REGULATING THE

 

           25              METHOD OF EVIDENCING THE PAYMENT OF SUCH


 

 

                                                                     141

 

 

            1              TAX; CONFERRING POWERS AND IMPOSING DUTIES

 

            2              UPON CERTAIN PERSONS, AND PROVIDING

 

            3              PENALTIES", BY IMPOSING THE RATE OF THE

 

            4              REALTY TRANSFER TAX AT 2.5% FOR THE CALENDAR

 

            5              YEAR 2008.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: At this you have heard

 

            7              reading by title of Item 6-A, what is your

 

            8              pleasure?

 

            9                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I move that Item 6-A

 

           10              pass reading by title.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI:  Second.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  All

 

           13              those in favor?

 

           14                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           15                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           16                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           19              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           20                      MS. GARVEY: 6-B. READING BY TITLE -

 

           21              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 6, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE -

 

           22              AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 7, 1976,

 

           23              ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE" (AS AMENDED)

 

           24              IMPOSING A MERCANTILE LICENSE TAX OF 2 MILLS

 

           25              FOR THE YEAR 1976 AND ANNUALLY THEREAFTER


 

 

                                                                     142

 

 

            1              UPON PERSONS ENGAGING IN CERTAIN OCCUPATIONS

 

            2              AND BUSINESSES THEREIN; PROVIDING FOR ITS

 

            3              LEVY AND COLLECTION AND FOR THE ISSUANCE OF

 

            4              MERCANTILE LICENSES; CONFERRING AND IMPOSING

 

            5              POWERS AND DUTIES UPON THE TAX COLLECTOR OF

 

            6              THE CITY OF SCRANTON; AND IMPOSING

 

            7              PENALTIES", BY IMPOSING THE MERCANTILE

 

            8              LICENSE TAX AT 1 MILL FOR CALENDAR YEAR

 

            9              2008.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

           11              by title of Item 6-B, what is your pleasure?

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I move that Item 6-B

 

           13              pass reading by title.

 

           14                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  All

 

           16              those in favor?

 

           17                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           18                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           22              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           23                      MS. GARVEY: 6-C.  READING BY TITLE

 

           24              -FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 7, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE

 

           25              - AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 8, 1976,


 

 

                                                                     143

 

 

            1              ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)

 

            2              PROVIDING FOR THE GENERAL REVENUE BY

 

            3              IMPOSING A TAX AT THE RATE OF 2 MILL UPON

 

            4              THE PRIVILEGE OF OPERATING OR CONDUCTING

 

            5              BUSINESS IN THE CITY OF SCRANTON AS MEASURED

 

            6              BY THE GROSS RECEIPTS THEREFROM;

 

            7              REGISTRATION AND PAYMENT OF THE TAX AS

 

            8              CONDITION TO THE CONDUCTING OF SUCH

 

            9              BUSINESS; PROVIDING FOR THE LEVY AND

 

           10              COLLECTION OF SUCH TAX; PRESCRIBING SUCH

 

           11              REQUIREMENTS FOR RETURNS AND RECORDS;

 

           12              CONFERRING POWERS AND DUTIES UPON THE TAX

 

           13              COLLECTOR; AND IMPOSING PENALTIES", BY

 

           14              IMPOSING THE BUSINESS PRIVILEGE TAX AT THE

 

           15              RATE OF 1 MILL FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2008.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

           17              by title of Item 6-C, what is your pleasure.

 

           18                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I move that Item

 

           19              6-C pass reading by title.

 

           20                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  All

 

           22              those in favor?

 

           23                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           24                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           25                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.


 

 

                                                                     144

 

 

            1                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

            3              ayes have it and so moved.

 

            4                      MS. GARVEY: 6-D. READING BY TITLE -

 

            5              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 8, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE -

 

            6              AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 11, 1976,

 

            7              ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)

 

            8              ENACTING, IMPOSING A TAX FOR GENERAL REVENUE

 

            9              PURPOSES IN THE AMOUNT OF 2% ON EARNED

 

           10              INCOME AND NET PROFITS ON PERSONS,

 

           11              INDIVIDUALS, ASSOCIATIONS AND BUSINESSES WHO

 

           12              ARE RESIDENT OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON, OR

 

           13              NON-RESIDENTS OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON, FOR

 

           14              WORK DONE, SERVICES PERFORMED OR BUSINESS

 

           15              CONDUCTED WITHIN THE CITY OF SCRANTON,

 

           16              REQUIRING THE FILING OF RETURNS BY TAX

 

           17              PAYERS SUBJECT TO THE TAX; REQUIRING

 

           18              EMPLOYERS TO COLLECT THE TAX AT SOURCE;

 

           19              PROVIDING FOR THE ADMINISTRATION, COLLECTION

 

           20              AND ENFORCEMENT OF THE SAID TAX; AND

 

           21              IMPOSING PENALTIES FOR THE VIOLATIONS", BY

 

           22              IMPOSING THE WAGE TAX AT 2.4% ON EARNED

 

           23              INCOME FOR THE YEAR 2008 FOR RESIDENTS.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: You have reading by

 

           25              title of Item 6-D, what is your pleasure?


 

 

                                                                     145

 

 

            1                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I move that Item

 

            2              6-D pass reading by title.

 

            3                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: Yes.  In light of the

 

            6              fact as I mentioned earlier that delinquent

 

            7              taxes, delinquent wage taxes that is have

 

            8              not been collected in a number of years and

 

            9              prior to that not actively collected for a

 

           10              number of years, and I couple that with the

 

           11              fact that the wage tax, at least the city's

 

           12              portion, could have been reduced from 2.4 to

 

           13              2.2 percent that past December I will not be

 

           14              voting in favor of the collection of the

 

           15              wage tax at a rate of 2.4 percent.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else on the

 

           17              question?  Item 6-D, all those in favor?

 

           18                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?

 

           22                      MS. EVANS: No.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: The ayes have it and so

 

           24              moved.

 

           25                      MS. GARVEY: 6-E.  READING BY TITLE -


 

 

                                                                     146

 

 

            1              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 9, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE -

 

            2              AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 17, 1994

 

            3              ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)

 

            4              AUTHORIZING THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE CITY

 

            5              OF SCRANTON TO ENACT A "WASTE DISPOSAL AND

 

            6              COLLECTION FEE" FOR THE PURPOSE OF RAISING

 

            7              REVENUE TO COVER THE WASTE DISPOSAL AND

 

            8              COLLECTION COSTS INCURRED BY THE CITY OF

 

            9              SCRANTON FOR THE DISPOSAL OF REFUSE", BY

 

           10              IMPOSING A WASTE DISPOSAL AND COLLECTION FEE

 

           11              OF $178.00 FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2008.

 

           12                       MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

           13              by title of Item 6-E, what is your pleasure?

 

           14                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I move that Item

 

           15              6-E pass reading by title.

 

           16                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  All

 

           18              those in favor?

 

           19                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           20                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           21                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           22                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           24              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           25                      MS. GARVEY: 6-F. READING BY TITLE


 

 

                                                                     147

 

 

            1              -FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 10, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE

 

            2              - AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 100,

 

            3              1976, ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)

 

            4              LEVYING GENERAL AND SPECIAL TAXES FOR THE

 

            5              FISCAL YEAR 1977", BY SETTING THE MILLAGE

 

            6              FOR THE YEAR 2008.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

            8              by title of Item 6-F, what is your pleasure?

 

            9                      MS. GATELLI: I move that 6-F pass

 

           10              reading by title.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?

 

           13                      MS. EVANS: Yes.  Although taxes were

 

           14              not raised for fiscal year 2008, as you all

 

           15              remember taxes were raised significantly

 

           16              25.6 percent the prior year.  Productions

 

           17              state that they will once again see that

 

           18              increase, in fact, followed by a third

 

           19              increase.  Well, I'm not going to delve into

 

           20              the future, I can only vote in the present

 

           21              and remember the past and that particular

 

           22              tax increase was not necessary.  There were

 

           23              many cuts that could have and should have

 

           24              been made and there were sources of new

 

           25              revenue that should have been pursued and


 

 

                                                                     148

 

 

            1              weren't, so I'll be voting, no.

 

            2                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Anyone

 

            3              else?  Item 6-F, all those in favor signify

 

            4              by saying aye?

 

            5                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?

 

            8                      MS. EVANS: No.

 

            9                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  No.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: The ayes have it and so

 

           11              moved.

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI: I'd like to make a

 

           13              motion that we suspend the rules and move

 

           14              6-A through 6-F to Seventh Order.

 

           15                      MS. FANUCCI:  Second.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Motion

 

           17              to move 6-A through 6-F into Seventh Order.

 

           18              All those in favor? On the question?  All in

 

           19              favor.

 

           20                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           22                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           25              ayes have it and so moved.


 

 

                                                                     149

 

 

            1                      MS. GARVEY: 6-G. READING BY TITLE -

 

            2              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 11, 1008 - AN ORDINANCE

 

            3              - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 74, 1993, (AS

 

            4              AMENDED), ENTITLED "THE ZONING ORDINANCE FOR

 

            5              THE CITY OF SCRANTON", BY CHANGING THE MAP

 

            6              IN THE VICINITY OF THE SCRANTON HIGH SCHOOL

 

            7              AND ITS SURROUNDING AREA, AS MORE

 

            8              PARTICULARLY DESCRIBED IN EXHIBIT "A"

 

            9              ATTACHED HERETO FROM I-L (LIGHT INDUSTRIAL)

 

           10              TO INS-G (GENERAL INSTITUTIONAL) AND C-G

 

           11              (GENERAL COMMERCIAL.)

 

           12                      MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

           13              by title of Item 6-G, what is your pleasure?

 

           14                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I move that Item

 

           15              6-G pass reading by title.

 

           16                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?

 

           18                      MS. EVANS: Yes.  I received

 

           19              information from a member of the Scranton

 

           20              school board that there is currently

 

           21              litigation ongoing between the purchaser of

 

           22              this property and the owners of the law firm

 

           23              which is situated adjacent to the property

 

           24              and, in addition, as I read over the notice

 

           25              of intent to enact zoning amendment I read


 

 

                                                                     150

 

 

            1              very carefully some of the paragraphs and I

 

            2              just wanted to read this to you, and this is

 

            3              what raised a red flag for me in terms of

 

            4              the questions I have been posing over the

 

            5              last two weeks, "Whereas the city planning

 

            6              commission as a meeting dated 12-19-07

 

            7              reviewed the area depicted on Exhibit A and

 

            8              found the zoning designation for the area

 

            9              does not correspond to the actual," this is

 

           10              the important phrase, "actual or planned

 

           11              uses of the area."

 

           12                      Next paragraph, "Whereas the

 

           13              planning commission has recommended the area

 

           14              be zoned to reflect the current and planned

 

           15              institutional and commercial uses."

 

           16                      So evidently the plans commission is

 

           17              providing for a commercial use for that

 

           18              particular property which is going to cause

 

           19              untold problems in the area of Scranton High

 

           20              School, so I will not approve this.

 

           21                      MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question,

 

           22              Mr. McGoff, I wasn't aware that Scranton

 

           23              School District was looking at that.  I

 

           24              would ask that -- I'll vote to pass --

 

           25                      MS. EVANS: The school district sold


 

 

                                                                     151

 

 

            1              that property, prime city property for

 

            2              $7,000.

 

            3                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Well, we are on

 

            4              Sixth Order now, we've got to go one more,

 

            5              are you saying that they are opposed to this

 

            6              change, the school district?

 

            7                      MS. EVANS: No, what I'm saying is

 

            8              that I was notified that there is ongoing

 

            9              litigation over that site and the

 

           10              construction of a fast food restaurant in

 

           11              that area.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I would ask maybe

 

           13              on behalf of council, if council doesn't

 

           14              mind, that Mr. Minora you could talk with

 

           15              Mr. McGrath and find out what the litigation

 

           16              is down there.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: It doesn't involve the

 

           18              school district any longer.

 

           19                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Oh, who is the

 

           20              litigation with?

 

           21                      MS. EVANS: It's between the owners

 

           22              of the law firm and the new owner of the

 

           23              property next to -- it's the property that

 

           24              is being discussed tonight in litigation.

 

           25              They neighbor one another, they are


 

 

                                                                     152

 

 

            1              adjoining properties.

 

            2                      MS. FANUCCI: But right now under the

 

            3              zoning they can put a fast food restaurant

 

            4              there the way it's zoned as of right now.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: So there really would be

 

            6              no need to change it.

 

            7                      MS. FANUCCI: Except for it would

 

            8              lessen and make them have to go to zoning

 

            9              and to planning and have to pass through

 

           10              them.  As of right now they can do it

 

           11              without batting an eye.  If we did it change

 

           12              it will make them accountable to our zoning

 

           13              and planning, so that's what to me would be

 

           14              the benefits of it.

 

           15                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Is that correct,

 

           16              Mr. Minora, because I know we had a

 

           17              go-around a little bit about his last week.

 

           18                      MS. GATELLI: It's a lesser use.

 

           19                      MR. MINORA: It is a lesser use and

 

           20              as a lesser use you have less requirements

 

           21              in the zoning.  In other words, you can put

 

           22              residential in an industrial zone and you

 

           23              will have a much easier time than if you try

 

           24              to do a residential development in a

 

           25              residential area you are going to have to


 

 

                                                                     153

 

 

            1              comply with all of residential requirements.

 

            2              Each use is more strict and has greater

 

            3              requirements for a developer to meet and I

 

            4              think that's what --

 

            5                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  My understanding is

 

            6              this, and please correct me if I'm wrong,

 

            7              that the way it sits now if somebody wanted

 

            8              to put a gas station over there they would

 

            9              be able to, is that correct, because of the

 

           10              zoning?

 

           11                      MS. GATELLI:  They could put a

 

           12              factory.

 

           13                      MS. FANUCCI:  They could put a

 

           14              factory.  It's light industrial.  They could

 

           15              put a Daron there right now.

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I was voting, yes,

 

           17              last week and I will vote, yes, this week to

 

           18              move on and I'm certainly going to look at

 

           19              it closer.  I was voting because I thought,

 

           20              and I hope that I'm correct, that I thought

 

           21              that by changing it that we might limit them

 

           22              to what they could do.

 

           23                      MS. GATELLI: Yes, you are right.

 

           24                      MR. COURTRIGHT: And I'll discuss it

 

           25              with you, I don't know what take up all of


 

 

                                                                     154

 

 

            1              this time, but I'll vote to pass it through

 

            2              and I will certainly research it before next

 

            3              week.  Thank you.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF: We are on Item 6-G, all

 

            5              those in favor signify by saying aye.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

            7                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

            8                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

            9                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?

 

           10                      MS. EVANS: No.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: The ayes have it and so

 

           12              moved.

 

           13                      MS. GARVEY: Just as a note of

 

           14              interest, this public hearing has been

 

           15              scheduled for the 26th of February at 6:15

 

           16              on this topic.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS: Thank you.

 

           18                      MS. GARVEY: 6-H. READING BY TITLE -

 

           19              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 12, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE

 

           20              - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 49, 2006,

 

           21              ENTITLED, "AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE

 

           22              MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS OF THE

 

           23              CITY OF SCRANTON TO TAKE ALL NECESSARY

 

           24              ACTIONS TO IMPLEMENT THE CONSOLIDATED

 

           25              SUBMISSION FOR COMMUNITY PLANNING AND


 

 

                                                                     155

 

 

            1              DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS (AS AMENDED) TO BE

 

            2              FUNDED UNDER THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK

 

            3              GRANT (CDBG) PROGRAM, HOME INVESTMENT

 

            4              PARTNERSHIP (HOME) PROGRAM AND EMERGENCY

 

            5              SHELTER GRANT (ESG) PROGRAM", BY

 

            6              TRANSFERRING $50,000.00 FROM PROJECT NO.

 

            7              96-204 AND $9,493.80 FROM PROJECT NO. 99-212

 

            8              AND $88.75 FROM PROJECT NO. 03-005.9 AND

 

            9              $400.00 FROM PROJECT NO. 05-152 AND $680.59

 

           10              FROM PROJECT NO. 06-182 AND $49.20 FROM

 

           11              PROJECT NO. 06-05.12 FOR A TOTAL AMOUNT OF

 

           12              $60,712.34 TO PROJECT NO. 07-18 TREE

 

           13              PLANTING PROJECT.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: You have heard reading

 

           15              by title of Item 6-H, what is your pleasure.

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I move that Item

 

           17              6-H pass reading by title.

 

           18                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question.

 

           20                      MS. GATELLI: I just have a letter I

 

           21              would like to read from the Neighborhood

 

           22              Association, it's from Wayne Evans:  "Dear

 

           23              Council Members, thank you for your

 

           24              continued support for our neighborhood.  The

 

           25              current regulations authorizing an


 

 

                                                                     156

 

 

            1              expenditure of $60,000 for street trees in

 

            2              our neighborhood is integral to our efforts

 

            3              in implementing recommendations of the Cedar

 

            4              Area Avenue study completed by Wallace,

 

            5              Roberts and Todd, LLC.  We view this street

 

            6              project as a long-term investment in our

 

            7              neighborhood, one that will show positive

 

            8              results immediately, but will be enjoyed by

 

            9              new generations of South Siders for years to

 

           10              come.  The streetscape project will serve as

 

           11              a key component to a successful application

 

           12              for the Elm Street designation.  The

 

           13              programs goal is improve the residential

 

           14              neighborhoods located adjacent to

 

           15              Pennsylvania's downtowns, the premise being

 

           16              that without solid neighborhoods nearby a

 

           17              down town has little capacity for continued

 

           18              growth and improvement.  It should also be

 

           19              noted that part of the original intent of

 

           20              the Cedar Avenue study was to create a

 

           21              neighborhood revitalization blueprint.  We

 

           22              anticipate that this blueprint could then be

 

           23              transferred and put into place in our

 

           24              neighborhoods citywide.  Once again, thank

 

           25              you for your continued support.  We look


 

 

                                                                     157

 

 

            1              forward to working with you in the future.

 

            2              Yours truly, Wayne Evans."

 

            3                      Also, I would like to say that

 

            4              Mr. Santolli, the city forester, has been

 

            5              working on a tree project for the past year

 

            6              in the city.  He does not get paid for his

 

            7              services, he volunteers.  He studied the

 

            8              whole city and South Side had the least

 

            9              amount of trees.  Now, I heard a lot of

 

           10              people get up tonight and say trees are

 

           11              silly and they are not important, but they

 

           12              are important.  They are very important in a

 

           13              revitalization of a neighborhood and that is

 

           14              what we are trying to do in South Scranton.

 

           15              You all know the seriousness of the problems

 

           16              that we have had over there, the nuisance

 

           17              bars, the drug houses, we are trying to make

 

           18              it a better place to live and trees

 

           19              esthetically will make it a much more

 

           20              pleasant place and also for the environment.

 

           21              Mr. Santolli assured me that the next place

 

           22              he is looking at is West Scranton, that will

 

           23              be the next tree and revitalization project

 

           24              that we are going to be working and the

 

           25              following will be North Scranton.  He said


 

 

                                                                     158

 

 

            1              there is no need for Greenridge or the Hill

 

            2              Section they have, you know, plenty of

 

            3              trees, so that is why I will be voting for

 

            4              this and I hope that my colleagues will

 

            5              support South Scranton with me.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: On the question, I

 

            7              would like to say that we all know South

 

            8              Side has so much potential and they deserve

 

            9              not only this, but the projects that are

 

           10              coming up and these projects go

 

           11              hand-in-hand, it's not as simple saying,

 

           12              well, we don't need trees.  That's almost a

 

           13              ridiculous statement.  These projects and

 

           14              beautification goes hand and hand and to

 

           15              take over a neighborhood little by little

 

           16              and make it into what it once was actually

 

           17              and beautify the neighborhood is not, you

 

           18              know -- it is not to be taken lightly.

 

           19              South Side needs our help.  They have needed

 

           20              our help for a long time as did the Hill at

 

           21              one time and little by little we are doing

 

           22              our job and making our neighborhoods a

 

           23              better place to be and I am definitely in

 

           24              support of any type of revitalization for

 

           25              South Side and the plans are absolutely


 

 

                                                                     159

 

 

            1              beautiful and I look forward to seeing all

 

            2              of the progress finally come to play for the

 

            3              first time in a long time, and that's all I

 

            4              have.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: Yes.  I greatly expected

 

            6              that I wouldn't get an answer about what is

 

            7              eligible for CDBG funds so I went onto the

 

            8              HUD website and rather than reading all of

 

            9              the activities that, you know, would be

 

           10              eligible for this type of funding there were

 

           11              a couple that caught my eye such as

 

           12              improvements to streets and rehabilitation

 

           13              of residential structures, demolition of

 

           14              blighted properties.  In addition to that, I

 

           15              know that Mr. Santolli works on such a

 

           16              meager budget annually.  There are many,

 

           17              many, many trees throughout the city that

 

           18              are on quite a lengthy wait list for tree

 

           19              trimming and removal of dead trees and there

 

           20              is just never enough money allocated in that

 

           21              area as well, so I do agree that trees, tree

 

           22              planting is a very worthy project and very

 

           23              necessary.  I also see the need for street

 

           24              improvements, road improvements.  As I said,

 

           25              more money allocated to tree trimming and


 

 

                                                                     160

 

 

            1              tree removal for the trees that are, you

 

            2              know, already decoratively dappling the

 

            3              city.  I'm going to vote, yes, and I will

 

            4              probably continue to do so unless I am

 

            5              receiving calls or e-mails from citizens

 

            6              expressing their viewpoints.  You know, I

 

            7              receive opinions that most people would

 

            8              prefer the money to go into road

 

            9              improvements or most people would prefer the

 

           10              money to go into tree trimming or demolition

 

           11              of blighted houses, etcetera, or home

 

           12              restoration programs then I'll certainly

 

           13              take into in consideration.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: Item 6-H, all those in

 

           15              favor signify by saying aye.

 

           16                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           17                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           18                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           19                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           21              ayes have it and so moved.

 

           22                      MS. GARVEY: SEVENTH ORDER.  7-A. FOR

 

           23              CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC

 

           24              WORKS - FOR ADOPTION - FILE OF COUNCIL NO.

 

           25              2, 2008 - PROVIDING FOR THE ACCEPTANCE AND


 

 

                                                                     161

 

 

            1              DEDICATION OF JAMESTOWN WAY CIRCLE AND PARK

 

            2              EDGE LANE; AS WELL AS ALL THE STORM DRAINAGE

 

            3              SYSTEM UNDERLYING SAID STREETS AND

 

            4              RIGHTS-OF-WAY; ALL OF THE AFOREMENTIONED

 

            5              IMPROVEMENTS BEING LOCATED IN THE KEYSER

 

            6              TERRACE SUBDIVISION IN THE CITY OF SCRANTON,

 

            7              PENNSYLVANIA; ALSO AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND

 

            8              OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO ACCEPT

 

            9              FOR THE SUM OF ONE DOLLAR ($1.00) AND TO

 

           10              RECORD IN THE OFFICIAL RECORDS AT THE OFFICE

 

           11              OF THE RECORDER OF DEEDS FOR LACKAWANNA

 

           12              COUNTY A DEED FOR THE AFORESAID PUBLIC

 

           13              STREETS AND IMPROVEMENTS.

 

           14                      MS. GATELLI: I will make a motion

 

           15              that we table this.

 

           16                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: On the motion to table

 

           18              item 7-A?  On the question?  All those in

 

           19              favor?

 

           20                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           22                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           25              ayes have it and Item 7-A is tabled.


 

 

                                                                     162

 

 

            1                      MS. GARVEY: 7-B. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

            2              BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -

 

            3              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 3, 2008 AUTHORIZING THE

 

            4              AUCTION AND SALE OF CITY-OWNED PROPERTY

 

            5              ACQUIRED PURSUANT TO THE LACKAWANNA RIVER

 

            6              FLOOD CONTROL PROJECT, SITUATED AT THE

 

            7              CORNER OF DIAMOND AVENUE AND WOOD STREET,

 

            8              THE FORMER CORDARO BUILDING AND RECORDED AT

 

            9              RECORD BOOK 0720 PAGE 325.

 

           10                      (Mr. McGoff steps out of the

 

           11              chamber.)

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI:  As temporary chair for

 

           13              the Committee on Rules, I recommend final

 

           14              passage of 7-B.

 

           15                      MS. FANUCCI: Second.

 

           16                      MS. GATELLI:  On the question?  Roll

 

           17              call.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  Roll

 

           19              call.

 

           20                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           21                      MS. EVANS:  Yes.

 

           22                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. Courtright.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           24                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Fanucci.

 

           25                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.


 

 

                                                                     163

 

 

            1                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Ms. Gatelli.

 

            2                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

            3                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. McGoff.

 

            4                      MR. MCGOFF:  (Not present.)

 

            5                      MS. GATELLI: I hereby declare 7-B

 

            6              legally and lawfully adopted.

 

            7                      MR. MINORA: Before we read 7-C, the

 

            8              law department took the motion that you

 

            9              passed last week and changed some of the

 

           10              wording for it to be more appropriate so we

 

           11              need a motion to amend Section 13.2.1 (e) to

 

           12              read:  "That no certificate of occupancy

 

           13              shall be issued until a final certificate is

 

           14              issued by the building underwriter's agency

 

           15              and the Scranton Fire Department fire chief

 

           16              or the fire prevention bureau.

 

           17                      MS. GATELLI:  I'll make that motion.

 

           18                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Second.

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI:  On the question?  All

 

           20              no favor?

 

           21                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           22                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

           24                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

           25              ayes have it and so moved.


 

 

                                                                     164

 

 

            1                      MS. GARVEY: 7-C. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

            2              BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -

 

            3              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 4, 2008 - AN ORDINANCE -

 

            4              AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 86, 1998

 

            5              ENTITLED AN ORDINANCE "AMENDING FILE OF THE

 

            6              COUNCIL NO. 148, 1993, ENTITLED "AN

 

            7              ORDINANCE GOVERNING THE DESIGN,

 

            8              CONSTRUCTION, ALTERATION, ENLARGEMENT,

 

            9              REPAIR, DEMOLITION, REMOVAL, CONVERSION, USE

 

           10              AND MAINTENANCE OF ALL BUILDINGS AND

 

           11              STRUCTURES KNOWN AS THE BUILDING CODE;

 

           12              PROVIDING FOR THE ISSUANCE OF PERMITS,

 

           13              COLLECTION OF FEES, MAKING OF INSPECTION,

 

           14              PROVIDING PENALTIES FOR THE VIOLATION

 

           15              THEREOF, ESTABLISHING MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS

 

           16              FOR BUILDING UNDERWRITER INSPECTORS,

 

           17              DECLARING AND ESTABLISHING FIRE LIMITS" BY

 

           18              ADOPTING THE BOCA NATIONAL BUILDING CODE

 

           19              1993, ALSO REFERRED TO AS THE HOUSING CODE,

 

           20              TWELFTH EDITION" TO INSERT A NEW SECTION

 

           21              2(d) AND ADJUSTING ALL LETTERS AND NUMBERS

 

           22              ACCORDINGLY.

 

           23                      (Mr. McGoff retakes council chair.)

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: Do we need to make a

 

           25              motion --


 

 

                                                                     165

 

 

            1                      MS. FANUCCI: We did.

 

            2                      MR. MINORA: That was already done.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Oh, we did that when I

 

            4              was out.  Thank you.  As chairperson for the

 

            5              Committee on Rules, I recommend final

 

            6              passage of Item 7-C.

 

            7                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.

 

            8                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Roll

 

            9              call, please.

 

           10                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           11                      MS. EVANS:  Yes.

 

           12                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. Courtright.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           14                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Fanucci.

 

           15                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           16                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Gatelli.

 

           17                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

           18                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mr. McGoff.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare

 

           20              Item 7-C legally and lawfully adopted.

 

           21                      MS. GARVEY: 7-D. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

           22              BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -

 

           23              RESOLUTION NO. 7, 2008 - AUTHORIZING THE

 

           24              MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS

 

           25              TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A CONTRACT FOR


 

 

                                                                     166

 

 

            1              PROFESSIONAL SERVICES WITH THE LAW FIRM OF

 

            2              CARL J. GRECO, P.C., FOR LEGAL SERVICES

 

            3              INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO GENERAL COUNSEL

 

            4              TO THE OFFICE OF ECONOMIC AN COMMUNITY

 

            5              DEVELOPMENT ("OECD"), URBAN RENEWAL PROCESS

 

            6              AND PROCEDURE, EMINENT DOMAIN AND RELATED

 

            7              LITIGATION, DISPOSITION OF SURPLUS URBAN

 

            8              RENEWAL LANDS, TITLE SEARCHES AND DEED

 

            9              PREPARATION.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: As chairperson for the

 

           11              Committee on Rules, I recommend final

 

           12              passage of Item 7-D.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Second.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Roll

 

           15              call, please.

 

           16                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS:  No.

 

           18                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. Courtright.

 

           19                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           20                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Fanucci.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           22                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Gatelli.

 

           23                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

           24                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mr. McGoff.

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare


 

 

                                                                     167

 

 

            1              Item 7-D legally and lawfully adopted.

 

            2                      MS. GARVEY: 7-E. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

            3              BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -

 

            4              RESOLUTION NO. 8, 2008 - AUTHORIZING THE

 

            5              ZONING HEARING BOARD OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON

 

            6              TO EXTEND THE CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL

 

            7              SERVICES WITH DANIEL L. PENETAR, JR.,

 

            8              ESQUIRE TO ACT AS IT'S SOLICITOR FROM JULY

 

            9              1, 2007 THROUGH JULY 1, 2008.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: As chairperson for the

 

           11              Committee on Rules, I recommend final

 

           12              passage of Item 7-E.

 

           13                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.

 

           14                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Roll

 

           15              call, please.

 

           16                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           17                      MS. EVANS:  No.

 

           18                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. Courtright.

 

           19                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           20                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Fanucci.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           22                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Gatelli.

 

           23                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

           24                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mr. McGoff.

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare


 

 

                                                                     168

 

 

            1              Item 7-E legally and lawfully adopted.

 

            2                      MS. GARVEY: 7-F. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

            3              BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -

 

            4              RESOLUTION NO. 9, 2008 - REAPPOINTMENT OF

 

            5              JOSEPH DEANTONA, 1331 CORNELL STREET,

 

            6              SCRANTON, PENNSYLVANIA, 18504, AS A MEMBER

 

            7              OF THE SCRANTON LACKAWANNA HEALTH & WELFARE

 

            8              AUTHORITY.  MR. DEANTONA'S TERM EXPIRED ON

 

            9              DECEMBER 31, 207 AND HIS NEW TERM WILL

 

           10              EXPIRE ON DECEMBER 31, 2012.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: As chairperson for the

 

           12              Committee on Rules, I recommend final

 

           13              passage of Item 7-F.

 

           14                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Second.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: On the question?  Roll

 

           16              call, please.

 

           17                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           18                      MS. EVANS:  Yes.

 

           19                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Mr. Courtright.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           21                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Fanucci.

 

           22                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           23                      MS. MAGNOTTA: Ms. Gatelli.

 

           24                      MS. GATELLI: Yes.

 

           25                      MS. MAGNOTTA:  Mr. McGoff.


 

 

                                                                     169

 

 

            1                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare

 

            2              Item 7-F legally and lawfully adopted.

 

            3              Prior to reading of Item 7-G through what

 

            4              are now 7-L, if there is anyone that would

 

            5              wish to speak on any of those they are

 

            6              welcome to.  It appears there is no one

 

            7              wishing to speak.  So, Item 7-G.

 

            8                      MS. GARVEY: 7-G, which was formerly

 

            9              6-A.  FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON

 

           10              FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -FILE OF COUNCIL NO.

 

           11              5, 2008 AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 6,

 

           12              1976 ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)

 

           13              IMPOSING A TAX FOR GENERAL REVENUE PURPOSES

 

           14              ON THE TRANSFER OF REAL PROPERTY SITUATED

 

           15              WITHIN THE CITY OF SCRANTON; PRESCRIBING AND

 

           16              REGULATING THE METHOD OF EVIDENCING THE

 

           17              PAYMENT OF SUCH TAX; CONFERRING POWERS AND</