1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
7 Tuesday, June 3, 2008
10 Council Chambers
11 Scranton City Hall
12 340 North Washington Avenue
13 Scranton, Pennsylvania
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI- COURT REPORTER
2 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:
MR. ROBERT MCGOFF, PRESIDENT (Not Present)
6 MS. JUDY GATELLI, VICE-PRESIDENT
MS. JANET E. EVANS
9 MS. SHERRY FANUCCI
MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT
12 MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK
MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK
15 MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR
1 (Pledge of Allegiance and moment of
2 reflection observed.)
3 MS. GATELLI: Roll call.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
5 MS. EVANS: Here.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
7 MS. FANUCCI: Here.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
11 (Mr. McGoff not present.)
12 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
13 MS. GATELLI: Here. Mrs. Garvey.
14 MS. GARVEY: THIRD ORDER. 3-A.
15 MINUTES OF THE COMPOSITE PENSION BOARD
16 MEETING HELD ON APRIL 23, 2008.
17 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?
18 If not, received and filed.
19 MS. GARVEY: 3-B. MINUTES OF THE
20 SCRANTON POLICE PENSION COMMISSION MEETING
21 HELD ON APRIL 23, 2008.
22 MS. GATELLI: Are there any comments?
23 If not, received and filed.
24 MS. GARVEY: That's it for Third
1 MS. GATELLI: We'll do some
2 announcements before we start with the
3 public speakers. I just have a few. The
4 Greek Festival is starting this evening at
5 the 500 block of North Washington Avenue.
6 It's from tonight until Saturday. The 500
7 block of Adams Avenue for the no parking we
8 are still awaiting word. Mrs. Garvey has
9 not found any ordinances so she has been in
10 touch with Mr. Hayes and notified him that
11 we wish to pursue an ordinance and that's
12 where that stands.
13 The beat patrols, I spoke to the
14 mayor and he said within two weeks we should
15 have the beat patrols working so we are
16 happy about that for the summer.
17 The Community Justice Office, just
18 for the people in South Scranton, we have
19 not had a Community Justice Office since
20 last fall, so we are going to start that up
21 again. We have a new district attorney
22 that's assigned to us and they will be
23 meeting again every other Thursday at the
24 Renaissance Center from 10 to 2 starting on
25 June 12. If there are any other
1 neighborhoods that have Community Justice
2 Offices please notify Kay Garvey and we will
3 announce when your meetings are so the
4 neighbors can go there with complaints.
5 We talked about McDowell coming here
6 with Attorney Rinaldi and we talked about
7 doing an investigation and issuing
8 subpoenas. Attorney Minora has been in
9 touch with Attorney Rinaldi, he and
10 Mr. McDowell have agreed to come here to
11 meet with council.
12 MR. MINORA: He asked to clear it,
13 there is a couple of things they are in
14 favor of doing it, Attorney Rinaldi has some
15 attorney/client privilege questions that may
16 need waiver and he needs to have that
17 cleared with other -- because of his
18 position with probably the city solicitor's
19 office and some others because of the bodies
20 that they represent, so he needs a waiver of
21 privilege in order to speak on some of the
22 things, and Mr. McDowell, on the phone, I
23 didn't speak with him, needs to consult with
24 one other lawyer on his own behalf for other
25 matters and that's how it was described, so
1 they are in favor of it, but there are
2 questions and I have asked them to please
3 get back to me by next meeting and they both
4 -- Mr. Rinaldi said he would try to have
5 both of them give us a result by next week.
6 MS. GATELLI: Kay. Thank you. And
7 that's all I have. Bill?
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I have just one
9 thing they asked and I emphasize that this
10 is going to be just one day only, I
11 mentioned this little girl's name last week,
12 Riley Jones. They are going to have a pasta
13 sale, it's going to be from LaTrottoria.
14 The tickets will be on sale again one day
15 only at John Marshall School on Oram Street
16 in the back of the school under a tent, and
17 they are going to hold the ticket sales and
18 it's going to be June 4.
19 MS. GATELLI: That's tomorrow.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: From 9:00 until
21 11:00 and then they will have sales from
22 1:00 until 2:30 and then you will be able to
23 pick up your dinner at LaTrottoria on
24 Wednesday, June 11, so I'm assuming it's
25 just the ticket sales, Wednesday, June 11
1 from 3 to 6 p.m. So once again that ask
2 that I emphasize it will be just June 4 so
3 if you would like to help out Riley Jones it
4 would certainly be appreciated 9 to 11 and
5 then 1:00 to 2:30, John Marshall School.
6 That's all I have. Thank you.
7 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Evans?
8 MS. EVANS: Please remember in your
9 prayers this week Mr. John Myers who
10 recently passed away and his dear family and
11 friends who deeply miss him. His daughter,
12 Lisa McConalog, is a highly respected and
13 dedicated music teacher at Scranton High
14 School where I teach.
15 Also, I attended the interfaith
16 service for safety and protection of
17 Scranton firefighters last Wednesday at
18 Bethel AME Church and I was deeply moved by
19 the words and prayers of the Reverend
20 Kathryn Simmons, the Reverend Richard
21 Jackson, Reverend Ray Johnson, Rabbi Joseph
22 Mendelson, and the Reverend Daniel Waters.
23 I was extremely impressed as well by the
24 fifth generational choir, someone whose
25 talented members attend Scranton High
1 School. They are a credit to their family,
2 church and community.
3 And just one last announcement, I
4 will not be present at next week's meeting,
5 I will be attending the graduation ceremony
6 of Scranton High School. I am a teacher of
7 senior students and so those graduates, many
8 of those graduates, are my students. That's
10 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
11 Mr. Sbaraglia.
12 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
13 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians,
14 we got a little paper -- notice in the paper
15 I guess we can believe what the Times put in
16 their big headline, "Taxes won't stop loan."
17 I know it's in the budget,
18 $11 million, no matter what we get through
19 the tax office that's going to go through.
20 The only good thing about it is we are
21 borrowing to pay off debt. We are not doing
22 anything really, but putting ourself deeper
23 and deeper into the hole, but I guess that's
24 the way the city is going to operate for the
25 next two years or until we get a new mayor.
1 The deeper we can go into a hole the better
2 I guess the people like it.
3 Now, I got the city -- the paper
4 quoted something in the paper, I quoted it
5 last week, but it's in the paper and it's
6 printed today, the city operating budget
7 includes an anticipated 13.6 million from
8 property taxes for 2008. You are spending
9 28 million, the city has approximately 25
10 square miles, 25 square miles and you are
11 spending $28 million of public money in one
12 little section. It's pork. When
13 Mr. DiBileo brought it up a long time ago
14 you are right, Judy, you weren't the only
15 ones that got in on this. Mr. DiBileo
16 brought it up and I said was pork then, it's
17 pork now, it's just longer pork. It's more
18 pork and it just keeps climbing. Like I
19 said when he brought it up, he didn't even
20 pay for the engineering, we did. The
21 sidewalks were paved. Two of the people and
22 the ends of that project opt out. You try
23 to get them, Judy, you tried to get them to
24 come before you, Mr. Rinaldi refused to
25 come. You asked questions of how much money
1 he got invested in this project as a
2 developer, he refuses to answer, but yet we
3 are pouring more and more money into it.
4 There has got to be a good reason for it.
5 It's not very -- you can see it, but they
6 got hidden. There is a hidden agenda to
7 this deal and pork stinks all the time, but
8 this pork has been going on for a long, long
9 time and it stinks more and more and more
10 and here we stand, a troubled nation, a real
11 troubled nation and the troubled Scranton,
12 but yet you want to put all of this pork in
13 and you watch the bridge project go from 1.5
14 up to 7.5 million. What are we getting for
15 all of that expense? Who knows.
16 I watched the Governor gave 1.5
17 million to I think Humble Industrial Park,
18 okay? They got 1,100 jobs for that 1.5
19 million. We got 100 jobs and they are not
20 necessarily Scrantonians because it doesn't
21 matter. If you get a federal job it doesn't
22 matter where you live and anybody that makes
23 a buck don't want to live in Scranton and
24 that's true. People don't want to live here
25 because of the high wage tax and the
1 property tax I won't say much about because
2 it's not ungodly, the wage tax is ungodly.
3 The school taxes are high, too, so people
4 don't want to live here, but yet you are
5 pouring millions and millions into what?
6 Six or seven broken down buildings that
7 anybody should -- if they want to build they
8 should pay to tax them up themselves. I
9 mean, if you buy a house do we ask the
10 government to fix up your house? I mean, he
11 got a couple of old broken down buildings
12 down there and they want us to fix it up, he
13 wants to pay for all of the interior work
14 and wants to put a park behind it, the only
15 person that's making anything out of this
16 money is the developer. He is going to come
17 out smelling like a rose because he is going
18 to have a property that's worth more than --
19 a lot more than he invested in it if you
20 ever find out what he invested in it. I
21 just hope he bought the buildings outright
22 not through tax laws because a lot of times
23 they go up for back taxes and you get a deal
24 on that and you get a building that's real
25 reasonable. I don't how he acquired the
1 buildings, but as far as I can see that's
2 the only money he got invested in it was the
3 acquisition of them buildings.
4 MS. FANUCCI: He purchased them. He
5 did purchase them. He did purchase the
7 MR. SBARAGLIA: Oh, I said that.
8 MS. FANUCCI: It wasn't a tax --
9 MR. SBARAGLIA: That's the only way
10 he got in is acquisition of the building and
11 then he wants you to fix it. If I buy a
12 house I'm going to ask come before you,
13 maybe you can give me a grant. Thank you.
14 MS. GATELLI: Ozzie Quinn.
15 MR. MINORA: I did get a call from
16 Attorney Bill Rinaldi who asked that he and
17 I meet, he has certain information that he
18 can give, certain information he can't give
19 and he wanted to discuss it with me what we
20 wanted, what he was able to give, so I'm
21 going to try and meet with him later this
22 week to answer some of the questions that we
23 have and hopefully I'm not trying to put the
24 kabash to the things, but still get our
25 questions answered, so I'll report back next
2 MS. GATELLI: Thank you, Attorney
3 Minora. Ozzie is not here?
4 MS. FRANUS: He is not here.
5 MS. GATELLI: Fay.
6 MS. FRANUS: Fay Franus. I'm pleased
7 to hear that you say about Kenny McDowell
8 coming in, I just hope to see him in the
9 next couple of weeks and I hope you put some
10 pressure on him as far as answering as many
11 questions you want answered.
12 Judy, let me ask you something, I
13 read in the paper today about the
14 $11 million going to be borrowed, you swore
15 that you -- or I shouldn't say swear, you
16 promised that you couldn't vote for anymore
17 borrowing, are you going to vote for this
18 $11 million borrowing?
19 MS. GATELLI: No.
20 MS. FRANUS: Absolutely not?
21 MS. GATELLI: No.
22 MS. FRANUS: Are you going to vote
23 for it, Mrs. Fanucci?
24 MS. FANUCCI: I can answer that
25 question, I mean, I did vote for it in the
1 budget, I knew it was in the budget.
2 MS. FRANUS: So when the vote comes
3 for the borrowing are you going to vote for
5 MS. FANUCCI: I would look -- hope
6 in light of the tax office money that this
7 won't have to be done, so I hope for all --
8 MS. FRANUS: That tax money we won't
9 be getting possibly until next year, and
10 that's still going to be borrowing.
11 MS. FANUCCI: I still believe with
12 the fact that the banks and other people are
13 aware that we have the money coming to us
14 regardless of how much it is that we can
15 come to some type of alternative, you know,
16 aside from borrowing, so I really would
17 rather work on that right now than try to
18 borrow $11 million and that's what I can
19 tell you.
20 MS. FRANUS: Mrs. Gatelli, why did
21 you vote last week for that Lackawanna
22 Avenue project?
23 MS. GATELLI: Why did I vote for it?
24 MS. FRANUS: The three of you.
25 MS. GATELLI: Because I believe in
1 the project and I'm not going to refuse a
2 grant from the state.
3 MS. FRANUS: But you are letting out
4 two people? Are you running for election
5 again? Are you running for election?
6 MS. GATELLI: I haven't decided yet.
7 MS. FRANUS: When do you think you
8 are going to decide? I mean, I'm just
9 trying to figure out where --
10 MS. GATELLI: Next February I'll
11 decide if I'm running for office.
12 MS. FRANUS: Well, I just hope the
13 people know if you are going to be nice and
14 do all of these things that are nice it's
15 because you want to get elected, so I'm just
16 going to sort of keep an eye on you.
17 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Franus, I have
18 been doing nice things for 27 years. I
19 don't know if you aware of that or not.
20 MS. FRANUS: Well, I have seen
21 enough, so get a good look at my face
22 because I'm not going anywhere. I mean, you
23 have no sense of decency when it comes to
24 the people and we are not going to forget
25 it. You know, I watched the D&C debate last
1 week --
2 MS. GATELLI: I don't think that's
4 MS. FRANUS: Well, I think, if the
5 shoe fits wear it, Judy.
6 MS. GATELLI: And I don't think it's
7 very nice. I always return your phone calls
8 whenever you have called me and I have done
9 everything you have ever asked me to do.
10 MS. FRANUS: Well, what was that,
11 fix a pothole or something?
12 MS. GATELLI: You asked about
13 McDowell --
14 MS. FRANUS: Yes, that's one thing.
15 MS. GATELLI: Last week you asked
16 about something else.
17 MS. FRANUS: What was the something
19 MS. GATELLI: I forget what it was.
20 MS. FANUCCI: It couldn't have been
21 too important because you have never done
22 anything for the taxpayers so far. This is
23 the first time that I have known you that
24 have you done anything that I have asked
1 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Franus, I'm not
2 going to listen to your badgering. Just go
4 MS. FRANUS: No.
5 MS. GATELLI; I am not going to --
6 MS. FRANUS: I want the people to be
8 MS. GATELLI: People are aware.
9 People are aware.
10 MS. FRANUS: You said you didn't
11 want Channel 61 on television because you
12 didn't like the way people spoke, that
13 should tell you something. You know why you
14 don't want 61 on television so people will
15 see how you act and they won't see your
16 voting record for the election, the coming
17 election, and that's sad.
18 MS. GATELLI: That's what this is,
19 all politics.
20 MS. FRANUS: On your part.
21 MS. GATELLI: And you're going to
22 badger up here.
23 MS. FRANUS: I'm not a politician,
25 MS. GATELLI: So I won't get elected
1 and who you are going to promote up here,
2 that's all it is all about.
3 MS. FRANUS: I'm not here to promote
5 MS. GATELLI: And the station should
6 not be about that. It should be about city
8 MS. FRANUS: The station is only
9 showing the people how you act and how you
11 MS. GATELLI: And how you are
12 badgering for political reasons.
13 MS. FRANUS: Badger who, me?
14 MS. GATELLI: People badger you for
15 political reasons.
16 MS. FRANUS: You are the one that
17 are badgering people, I'm not going to go
18 there. I said I spoke about that D & C
19 thing last week on television, people were
20 screaming, screaming from the audience, a
21 whole audience was screaming and not one
22 person was called out of order, not one
23 policeman took anybody out of there. Isn't
24 that amazing how democracy works, that was
25 in Washington DC, but here we are at city
1 council and you have had me taken out twice
2 by a police officer. You had cameras
3 removed and people get scanned. How come we
4 are not scanned anymore? My gosh, I have a
5 metal keychain. I mean, how come we are not
6 scanned anymore, Judy? I mean, are you not
7 threatened anymore? Can't you -- another
8 thing, how come you are answering me now,
9 but three weeks ago you weren't. I think
10 it's got something to do with the election.
11 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I'm getting
12 ready already for that.
13 MS. FRANUS: Well, every week. Every
15 MS. GATELLI: You are getting ready
16 to push your candidate, that's what you are
18 MS. FRANUS: I don't have a
19 candidate, I don't even know who is running.
20 MS. GATELLI: Yes, you do. Yes, you
22 MS. FRANUS: May I ask --
23 MS. GATELLI: And I have supporters
24 who run, Fay, and we know what this is all
1 MS. FRANUS: Oh, no, we don't, Judy,
2 never have a clue --
3 MS. GATELLI: I know what it's all
5 MS. FRANUS: But no matter what, I'm
6 not running for office and I don't know
7 anybody that is.
8 MS. GATELLI: Well, you should run, I
9 told you that before.
10 MS. FRANUS: This has nothing to do
11 with me, it has to do with me and how you
12 are trying to pull the wool over people's
14 MS. GATELLI: The people will know
15 better. The people know who has helped them
16 and who hasn't.
17 MS. FRANUS: Yes, that's right,
18 namely, Mrs. Evans and Billy Courtright
19 have. You, McGoff and Fanucci have never
20 helped the people. You vote all the time
21 against the people and we are not going to
22 forget it. Don't ever forget it. I hope
23 you people will never, ever forget. Never
24 to vote for Judy Gatelli, Bob McGoff and
25 Mrs. Fanucci.
1 MS. GATELLI: There is your political
2 advertisement from Scranton, PA. Thank you.
3 MS. FRANUS: I'm a taxpayer.
4 MS. GATELLI: Mike Dudek.
5 MR. MILLER: Mrs. Gatelli, may I
6 address as I normally do in the beginning?
7 MS. GATELLI: I didn't have it down,
8 Douglas, you will have to wait. Mr. Dudek.
9 MR. DUDEK: Mike Dudek, 608 Depot
10 Street, Scranton, PA. I live in the Plot.
11 And the first thing that I want to do is to
12 congratulate the five members of City
13 Council who took my suggestion very
14 seriously about voting for a forensic audit.
15 All I have to ask you to do is to look at
16 what has happened ever since the five of you
17 united together and took that vote, the rats
18 are finally coming out of the Single Tax
19 Office because they all know what this audit
20 is going to bring. I don't know what it's
21 going to bring and the forensic auditors
22 won't know until they do it, but because you
23 have the political courage to do it as a
24 united council of five something finally is
25 going to be done there.
1 Now, I can't make up the stuff that
2 gets printed in our local newspaper, but I
3 will tell you as someone who has taught
4 civics for a number of years, the worst
5 possible perversion of the First Amendment
6 can only occur when a free press decides to
7 get in bed with the government against the
8 will of the people, and I'm just going to
9 use the words of today's editorial to make
10 the point I'm talking about. "Former Tax
11 Collector Ken McDowell has left this office
12 unaccountable," they were talking about
13 pervasive inattention to detail, "But
14 Mr. McDowell is not alone."
15 Listen to this, "During his six
16 years at tax collector he was not pressed
17 for accountability by the three principal
18 governments for which the city, from which
19 the office collects an array of taxes,
20 Scranton, the Scranton School District and
21 Lackawanna County."
22 Now, did I lose my memory or wasn't
23 Mrs. Evans screaming about this for at least
24 the last three years? Hasn't Nancy Krake
25 come up here at least seven different times
1 to talk about seven different instances in
2 that city tax office, in the Single Tax
3 Office over the years? Hasn't Tom Gilbride,
4 the president of the Scranton School Board
5 screamed about this? Do we all forget that,
6 do we collectively forget that awful
7 headline, "Gilbride a liar" or am I the only
8 one that remembers?
9 Mr. Gilbride took very, very
10 positive steps to try to get that
11 information and he has been getting pilfered
12 by this paper for doing it. Janet Evans has
13 been trying to push for this information, we
14 have political cartoons of her, we have
15 editorials lambasting her and occasional
16 news articles lambasting her, and it's just
17 so demeaning, but yet who is rising like out
18 of this like a Phoenix? It kind of reminds
19 me of the 1953 version of the movie the "War
20 of the Worlds", the '53 version where the
21 Army is on one side of the valley and the
22 death ray is on the other side of the valley
23 and up comes the death ray, the flying wing
24 flies over the death ray and drops a nuclear
25 bomb on us, much like the nuclear bomb that
1 have been dropped on you. And the death ray
2 absorbs the power of these nuclear bombs and
3 every time I think of it I keep thinking of
4 Mrs. Evans who keeps coming out of this
5 getting stronger and stronger and stronger.
6 It's almost the same thing. I mean, that
7 you see in the movies, but again, I want to
8 congratulate the five of you for your unity
9 of purpose because if you had not done that
10 we would still be waiting for information,
11 we would still be waiting for answers, but
12 you put the pressure on. This is a very
13 good demonstration of your power as city
14 council people. You have the power to scare
15 people when they need to be scared.
16 There was a good Jesuit priest at
17 the University of Scranton who taught an
18 ethics course, and I hope this will stay
19 with you the way this has stayed with me,
20 whenever you come across a difficult
21 situation especially the kind of situations
22 you have on council, apply three tests: Is
23 the action I'm going to take good or bad,
24 right or wrong, proper and improper. If
25 it's good, if it's right, and it's proper do
1 it because then you cannot possibly go
2 wrong. Thank you.
3 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
4 Mr. Spindler.
5 MR. SPINDLER: Good evening, Council,
6 Les Spindler, city resident, homeowner.
7 After this week or whatever school year is
8 over I guess the former Bishop Hannon
9 building is going to be vacant, I think that
10 would be an excellent place for a medical
11 school to go instead of misplacing people
12 from their residences on Washington Avenue
13 or wherever it's going to be. It's already
14 a school, you know, they don't have to do
15 any building in there or anything. Some
16 people might argue there is no parking, but
17 there is a parking lot right next door to
18 it, if it's not big enough they can build a
19 parking garage right next to. We all know
20 Chris Doherty loves building parking garages
21 so there we go. Enough on that subject.
22 The next thing, I was here quite a few
23 weeks ago when a gentleman spoke to me about
24 the bridge, upper Linden Street past the
25 U-Haul there that the sidewalks were caving
1 in and they with were all in bad shape and
2 anyone look into that?
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Les, I asked and I
4 do not believe that's going to be included
5 in the project on Lackawanna Avenue.
6 MR. SPINDLER: Oh, I understand that
7 it's a different bridge.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I thought possibly
9 it was, but it's not. As far as repairing
10 it I haven't gotten an answer on it.
11 MR. SPINDLER: Yeah, something should
12 be done with that. It's a mess. Next
13 thing, Mrs. Gatelli, Mrs. Garvey, thank you
14 for this ordinance from 1980 about the dogs.
15 One thing I have to read here, struck me
16 kind of strange, Section two, running at
17 large it's called, "It shall be the duty of
18 every police officer or authorized agency to
19 seize and detain any dog or dogs which are
20 running at large."
21 I'm not going to read the whole
22 thing. Why would it be the duty of the
23 police officer, I never heard of them having
24 to do anything with dogs, it should be the
25 animal control officers. First of all,
1 police officers aren't equipped to capture a
2 dog, especially if it's a dangerous dog, I
3 mean, what are they supposed to do, hit it
4 over the head with a billy club or what? I
5 don't know how they could put that in the
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: They can issue
8 citations, I believe, Les.
9 MR. SPINDLER: Pardon me, Bill?
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: I believe the
11 police officers can issue citations, that's
12 why that would be in there.
13 MR. SPINDLER: Oh, okay. I talked
14 about the $11 million more in the paper
15 today, Stu Renda was talking and he said
16 it's possible the city might not get any of
17 that, but I think he is just told that by
18 the mayor to make sure council will vote to
19 have $11 million, but you didn't see Chris
20 Doherty's name mentioned at all in that
21 article, but yet in a separate article about
22 the houses being torn down in west side the
23 mayor said we'll be there for six months, we
24 are tearing down all of the houses, the
25 blighted houses, but when it comes to the 11
1 million dollars it didn't mention him, but
2 we know he is behind him. We don't need to
3 borrow anymore money. The city is in enough
4 debt as it is and instead of tearing down
5 all of these blighted houses I think we
6 would be better off repairing them and
7 fixing them up and giving them to families
8 that need them and let they pay taxes on
9 them. When they are torn down they are
10 going to be empty lots with weeds growing
11 and just places for people to dump garbage.
12 They are going to be no good at all. If
13 they were repaired and given to people to
14 pay taxes at least the city would be making
15 some money on them. Thank you.
16 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
17 Mr. Ellman.
18 MR. ELLMAN: Hello, Council. Ronnie
19 Ellman, homeowner, and still working on it,
20 member of the Taxpayers' Association.
21 I saw your husband on his motorcycle
22 and you were noticeably absent?
23 MS. EVANS: Well, I'm not a real risk
24 taker, I like to keep my appendages where
25 they are.
1 MR. ELLMAN: Maybe you ought to start
2 on a scooter and work your way up to like
3 what he got.
4 MS. EVANS: I think I would be on a
6 MR. ELLMAN: Miss Judy, I'll get you
7 and take you for a ride. Miss Judy, while
8 I'm thinking of it, do you remember, I don't
9 know, a year or so ago I was talking about a
10 house, a condemned house near me and those
11 people living in it, they have -- I don't
12 know the story at all, but they have taken a
13 house and remodeled it and fixed it all up
14 on the outside, I suppose it's the same on
15 the inside, but, you know, people keep
16 coming up here and saying tearing down all
17 of these houses isn't the answer, you know.
18 Again, I'm going to say you're going to be
19 like Memphis, thousands of vacant lots where
20 they torn down houses. Nobody rebuilds, you
21 know, they are just vacant. I'm from
22 Memphis and I know what I'm talking about.
23 The city is really funny looking, you go
24 down any street and there is vacant lots
25 everywhere and I'd say half of them, you
1 know, aren't being kept up by neighbors and
2 all. It's not nice looking. I don't know
3 what the answer is with them all because I
4 know there is some blighted ones.
5 The old Smith house has been vacant
6 three or four years, but it's probably still
7 of sound structure. I had no idea what it's
8 worth and what's going on. The house behind
9 me has been remodeled several times and it's
10 now it's condemned and it's not too bad
11 looking, I don't even know what happened to
12 it. It's Section 8, I think everybody just
13 tore it up over the years.
14 You know, when I go to the Taurus
15 Club I have to make frequent trips to the
16 men's room and, Mr. Courtright, you know,
17 you can't believe the conversations that go
18 on in a minute or two, isn't that the truth?
19 Really. So, the other day two men were
20 talking and they were talking about
21 Mr. McDowell and these are, you know, some
22 business people, one is an attorney I
23 believe, and they said if there is
24 $12 million accounted for how much is
25 unaccounted for we don't know what happened
1 with it, and that's a thought that I haven't
2 seen in the paper or anything, you know,
3 it's probably the truth. This shouldn't
4 have happened, you know. I never heard of
5 nothing like this in a city.
6 I went this morning to see Mr.
7 DeNaples to pick up a check for the swimming
8 and we were talking about a couple of
9 different things and I was thinking when I
10 left this is such a good man and I was
11 thinking a couple of weeks ago I mentioned
12 that I would have liked to seen Mr. Bolus as
13 the mayor, he is a intelligent man and a
14 successful businessman and Father Sica just
15 always being crucified in the paper at every
16 chance. These people, just these three
17 people, have probably done more in
18 10 minutes of their lives than the Lynett's
19 have for this city in the last 100 years,
20 just the whole family, you know, this
21 newspaper you can't rely on it, you have to
22 rely on that -- this station to keep the
23 people of this city informed what's going
24 on. These people out here, you know, they
25 have such a bad reputation with the
1 newspaper, let me just finish my train of
2 thought here, you can't turn this TV off. I
3 think Mr. Miller showed his gross immaturity
4 last week with this statement. If you had
5 any future political aspirations I think you
6 hurt them really. I have heard nothing but,
7 you know, of course, the people I talk to
8 are for the station, but a lot of
9 disappointment in your statement. Thank you
10 very much.
11 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mr.
13 MR. JACKOWITZ: Good evening, Madame
14 President, council members, Bill Jackowitz,
15 South Scranton resident, member of the
16 Taxpayers' Association. April 2008 the
17 unemployment rate for the Scranton/
18 Wilkes-Barre rose another tenth of a
19 percentage point, we are now at 5.9, still
20 ranked 13th out of 14th metro area in the
21 state. The only metro area that has a
22 higher unemployment rate is Johnstown which
23 is a much smaller area. Johnstown's
24 unemployment rate is 6.1 percent. The
25 state's unemployment rate is 5 percent, also
1 the national unemployment rate is a 5
2 percent, so, again, as the numbers show
3 Scranton is again at the bottom of the
4 economic ladder of the state. I am
5 confident that self-proclaimed stooge number
6 one, Councilwoman Fanucci, will have
7 something to say about this. Possibly more
8 jobs than McDonald's like she referenced
9 last week or maybe high-end stores. How
10 about real jobs that actually pay a liveable
11 wage, not part-time job for students or
12 senior citizens jobs, but yet every week the
13 residents are informed how good things are
14 in the area.
15 Last week we were told that we
16 should be happy that Scranton has restaurant
17 and bar jobs available. As a Scranton
18 resident I found that be to very insulting.
19 Scranton residents deserve much better than
20 restaurants and bar jobs. The consumer has
21 no money to spend and in Scranton we no
22 longer have a consumer because most people
23 have no money unless you happen to be
24 politically connected and able to get
25 yourself a state job.
1 By the way, I find it very
2 interesting last week when Councilwoman
3 Gatelli stated that taxpayers' money was
4 spent for her new husband's retirement party
5 from the school district. Councilwoman
6 Gatelli's own words, not mine. I have
7 attended retirement parties and promotion
8 parties in my 29 years of government
9 service, including my own, and never have I
10 heard of taxpayers' money being used to pay
11 the bills for the party.
12 Mr. Minora, as an assistant district
13 attorney I would like for you to look into
14 this matter because if taxpayers' money was
15 spent on a retirement party a crime has been
16 perpetrated. The guests at a party pay for
17 the expenses, not the taxpayers.
18 Also, I would like to see an
19 investigation into the city controller's
20 office. Something is not right there either
21 just like the Single Tax Office. Last week
22 I found it very amusing to hear an appointed
23 tax collector tell an elected council person
24 that it was none of his business what the
25 interest rate is. No wonder why we have a
1 12.2 million dollars in excess, taxes have
2 not been collected in years, and we have
3 been distressed for 17 years. Also, I find
4 it interesting that all of the questions
5 that Mr. McGovern and Mrs. Vitale would not
6 answer appeared in the Doherty Times-Tribune
7 on Sunday. The Doherty Times-Tribune
8 investigative reporters have been working
9 hard, just four years too late.
10 As far as the 500 block of
11 Lackawanna Avenue, I started speaking on
12 this project in 2005, 2006, and 2007. I was
13 lied to, mislead and told that answers were
14 forthcoming and still have not come and what
15 do we have in 2008? More lies, misleading
16 statements and a much larger bigger bill.
17 What a city.
18 As far as South Scranton, what a
19 mess. I was born, educated and live in
20 South Scranton and it is a mess and has been
21 for at least the past 27 years and getting
22 worse everyday. Someone in the local
23 government should step up and do something
24 about this. Oh, I forgot, we are planting
25 trees. That will solve everything. What a
1 city. Now the mayor is going to clean up
2 West Scranton, how about completing South
3 Scranton first? Now I see where the city
4 will borrow another $12 million. We have to
5 repay the loan from 2005, 5.5 million and
6 another 5.5 million to cover the 2008 budget
7 which, by the way, was approved by the
8 current city council without having the
9 money available.
10 What a city. Approve the 11 million
11 and put the city into a deeper distressed
12 debt status, worry about the money next
13 year, remember, for seven years Mayor
14 Doherty has gotten his way every year.
15 Council has supported his budgets, borrowing
16 and Recovery Plan. The citizens get the
17 government they deserve, Thomas Jefferson
18 once said. Respect is something that is
19 earned not a right. You cannot believe what
20 a politician or elected official says.
21 Their voting record is all that matters.
22 And as far as Doug Miller, he IS a
23 harmless, inexperienced kid and president of
25 MS. GATELLI: Thank you for your
1 kind comments. Mr. Dobson. No? Is there
2 anything else that cares to speak?
3 Mr. Davis.
4 MR. DAVIS: Salaam aleikum, peace
5 and blessings of the law be with you.
6 Excuse my costume. I was laying there in
7 the bed and I said someone called me on the
8 telephone and said, "Jim, did you know that
9 they had lined off the streets in front of
10 the school down on Wyoming Avenue even
11 though they are going to close it down?"
12 And it was -- they used to the same
13 paint as they did at Prep and yet they have
14 not done any of streets in central city as
15 far as crosswalks are concerned and I said,
16 yes, I knew that, but I have gone before
17 city council and I have asked them several
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. Davis, could I
20 interrupt you for one second?
21 MR. DAVIS: Go ahead.
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: This past Sunday I
23 believe it was when I was going through town
24 there was somebody doing lines.
25 MR. DAVIS: Where?
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: And I asked him who
2 he worked for, all right? He is working for
3 a contractor so evidently, I don't know for
4 a fact because I haven't looked into it,
5 evidently the city has hired a contractor to
6 paint the lines throughout the city, so from
7 what -- now he is just a worker telling me
8 this, what this gentleman told me they going
9 to paint I believe on the weekends all of
10 the lines in the city.
11 MS. EVANS: And many got them painted
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: So that would be a
14 good thing in my eyes. You know, if we are
15 getting them done. I just think there
16 wasn't the manpower, and I'm not making
17 excuses for them, but there wasn't the
18 manpower to do it. They only had three
19 people in this department, so evidently
20 maybe, Kay, we can look into it.
21 MS. GATELLI: I talked to Jeff
22 Brazil, they did hire a contractor.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: So, we are going to
24 get them painted and I was all upset about
25 it as much as you are.
1 MR. DAVIS: Thank you. I realize
2 that, that's the reason why I didn't keep
3 hanging on you for it.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: I just -- they are
5 going to be painted, thank God.
6 MR. DAVIS: Let's hope they at least
7 go through -- they should be able to do
8 something about doing it on a consistent
9 basis since the traffic is so high in these
10 areas and we do have a lot of kids, we have
11 a lot of senior citizens that walk these
12 streets and accidents are prone to happen if
13 things are not taking care of properly.
14 I have gone to other cities and the one
15 thing that you notice in every large city
16 that you go into is that the pedestrian
17 lines, the street lines are well taken care
18 of and it takes the whole city look clean.
19 It makes the whole city look well taken care
20 of and policed and we don't have that there.
21 That is the reason why many people don't
22 respect it. That's why people overrun the
23 lines and accidents will occur. I saw two
24 old ladies today almost get hit by cars
25 making left turns and not really looking
1 well and they were in the crosswalks, but
2 that's neither here nor there. We can't
3 protect everyone in the world or everyone in
4 the city but we are not doing our jobs.
5 That's your job to make sure that we are
6 safe and secure in this environment and you
7 are not doing it. I don't think so.
8 I hear the problems about the
9 $12 million, you know, every time you talk
10 about being depressed or without money the
11 people that hurt the most are the people
12 down at the bottom of the chain, those who
13 don't have the jobs. The last ones hired
14 are the first ones fired, you have heard
15 that before. We know that for an exact, you
16 know, we know that be true, but yet I'm
17 saying to you, you cannot keep doing this,
18 you cannot keep ignoring the public from
19 it's bottom because eventually they are
20 going to revolt and if they revolt that
21 means it's going to get nasty, and that's no
22 good. We don't even come here to represent
23 us as it stands right now because they know
24 that whatever we say is going to be
25 overlooked and not taken care of. We don't
1 have that kind of sense of responsibility
2 from what we say to you. I spoke about
3 those streets out there for how much years
4 and now they finally get a contractor?
5 Before they told us that they didn't have
6 the money for the paint or they didn't have
7 the money for the people to do it and then
8 they go out and they hire a contractor to do
9 it? There is something wrong. I mean,
10 maybe it's me. Maybe I'm not the right
11 person to ask for things like painting the
12 crosswalks or being earnest and sincere
13 about making people safe when they walk the
14 streets, but I try and I'm glad that we
15 finally found someone to do something about
16 it and I hope it gets done all the way down
17 to Lackawanna Avenue because this is -- our
18 kids that's all how far they walk. Our kids
19 don't bus, that's all there is to it, but we
20 need you to stay on this one if you can.
21 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
22 MR. DAVIS: If you be earnest and
23 sincere with us for a change instead of
24 raising all -- instead of asking for more
25 loans and more money and more money and just
1 make sure the things that are being paid for
2 by us right now are not being done. You got
3 to do something about being a representative
4 to us and for us and you are not.
5 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Anyone
6 else care to speak.
7 MR. DAVIS: Just Silly. Silly.
8 MR. MILLER: Good evening, Council,
9 Doug Miller, president of the Scranton
10 Junior Council. Boy, two weeks to go. I
11 certainly won't miss this, I'll tell you
12 that much. You know, politics as usual.
13 You know, I guess it's not a bad thing to
14 speak towards the end of the meeting, it
15 gives me an opportunity to respond to some
16 comments that are made, I don't usually have
17 that opportunity in other weeks.
18 First, I would with all due respect
19 to Mr. Ellman and his statements about
20 ruining my political career and things like
21 that, you know, maybe if people came up
22 here, Mr. Ellman, and conducted themselves
23 in a professional manner and acted like
24 adults I wouldn't have to make statements
25 like that. You know, I'm all for open
1 government and I feel everyone should have
2 the opportunity to see their government in
3 action, but it's ashame that you have to
4 ruin it for all and that's what I feel about
6 MS. GATELLI: Douglas --
7 MR. MILLER: -- and respect your
9 MS. GATELLI: -- just speak, Honey.
10 MR. DAVIS: He should be addressing
12 MS. GATELLI: Excuse me.
13 MR. DAVIS: That's what we were told.
14 MR. MILLER: Things will never
15 change. As far as Mr. Jackowitz'
16 statements, president of one, or whatever he
17 said, well, I could say that at least I'm
18 here. You know, there is kids out there
19 that have done worse things, at least I'm
20 here dedicated because I love this city and
21 for two years I have been out in this city
22 doing community service projects, where have
23 you people been?
24 Moving on, I would like to also
25 address some statements that were made last
1 week, didn't have the opportunity to do
2 that. Generally, I don't like to respond to
3 critics, but I feel in this case I must do
4 so. First, let me make it quite clear here,
5 that no one puts me up to saying anything.
6 I don't allow anyone to dictate and I speak
7 for myself. The speaker that made the
8 comment is a perfect example of someone that
9 is told what to say. You know, many of the
10 Legion of Doom or whatever they like to call
11 themselves address council with speeches
12 written for them by others to help promote
13 elected official's agendas. The same
14 speaker also made a sarcastic remark
15 regarding the amount of members on Junior
16 Council. Since our inception two years ago
17 nearly 20 high school students have served
18 on our council. Currently the number has
19 dipped to two members, not one as inaccurate
20 once again. You know, maybe if the speakers
21 that attended these meetings acted like
22 normal human beings and set a good example
23 we might have a full table of high school
24 students, but the truth is parents don't
25 want to send their kids here because they
1 don't want to put them in front of this
2 every week and this is truly sad and
3 pathetic and I feel sorry for all my
4 classmates who are missing out an
5 opportunity to learn about their government
6 because it's a great opportunity for them.
7 Now, moving on here some business
8 here. Earlier in the day we received some
9 news about the Pennsylvania smoking ban
10 bill, it's being sent for a final vote.
11 Earlier this morning the House and Senate
12 Conference Committee discussed an ordinance
13 that was approved 5 to 1. The lone no vote
14 was Senator Bob Mellow, he voted, no, due to
15 the fact that the bill that he proposed
16 would allow Scranton and Allegheny County to
17 reenact their ordinances that we adopted a
18 year ago, so he would like to see those
19 changes made so that can happen. Hopefully,
20 talks will continue and we all get on the
21 same page and hopefully at the end of the
22 day we will have a smoking ban in
23 Pennsylvania and we can move forward and
24 have Governor Ed Rendell sign the bill.
25 Last Thursday, the Scranton Junior City
1 Council and West Scranton High School paid
2 tribute to Captain James Robeson and the
3 West Scranton High School Alumni, also,
4 joined by family and friends and special
5 guests we unveiled a plaque that honors
6 Captain Robeson. This plaque will hang in
7 the alumni room and will act as a lasting
8 tribute to Captain Robeson.
9 In addition, a scholarship was
10 formed in Captain Robeson's name. The
11 scholarship is presented to Senior Matt
12 Gavern, and on behalf of junior council I
13 would like to thank everyone that helped
14 make last Thursday a very special day for
15 the West Side community. With that said, I
16 say thank you.
17 MS. GATELLI: Thank you.
18 MR. SLEDENZSKI: Hi, Jude. Well,
19 Judge, we lost another one.
20 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, but they --
21 MR. SLEDENZSKI: It's been a good
23 MS. GATELLI: They had a good year.
24 MR. SLEDENZSKI: I know. Billy, you
25 are the best up there, Bill, remember that,
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Thanks, Chris.
3 MR. ANCHERANI: Good evening.
4 Nelson Ancherani, no Mr. McGoff so I'll
5 speak like he is here anyway. First
6 Amendment Rights, expressing my opinions.
7 Here it is June 3, '08, three more meetings
8 and you will start your two months summer
9 vacation, July and August. When you return
10 in September you will have two months and
11 the administration will be presenting it's
12 209 City of Scranton budget. My prediction
13 it will be another record budget, but that
14 is really nothing new. Every budget that
15 was presented by this administration was a
16 record budget. And you three rubber
17 stampers, Ms. Gatelli, Mr. McGoff and Ms.
18 Fanucci voted for the lasted one. When you
19 think about it for the last seven years it
20 was rubber stampers who voted for the last
21 seven budgets.
22 Last week Mr. McGoff expressed that
23 he didn't want to be the ringmaster.
24 Evidently, it is his belief that these
25 council meetings are a circus. I tend to
1 disagree. What I see are concerned citizens
2 and taxpayers coming to council meetings
3 expressing their concerns for a city that
4 has been home for many of them for their
5 entire lives and others who have come to
6 Scranton to live and make Scranton their
7 homes. They wouldn't stay here if they
8 didn't like it or love their city, so those
9 of you who call council a circus all I see
10 is concerned residents and taxpayers who
11 want to know where their 600 million went
12 and where it was spent. They also want to
13 know why the roads and streets aren't paved
14 when the city will take in 600 million in
15 revenue by the end of this year. In fact,
16 once council raises the 11 million loan the
17 city is going past the $11 million loan the
18 city is looking for, it will 611 million.
19 We know where $5.5 million went and we had
20 to pay American Anglican 5.5 million for an
21 arbitration the city lost for violating the
23 Getting back to the ringmaster
24 remark, Mr. McGoff, if you are don't want to
25 be ringmaster keep your performers in two.
1 Last week when I was speaking Mrs. Fanucci
2 interrupted saying, "That would me. Just
3 say Sherry Fanucci. Don't say certain
4 people, come on. "
5 Mr. McGoff, you bang your gavel when
6 audience members speak out from the back of
7 the room, but yet you let Ms. Fanucci
8 interrupt me, but then again, you show your
9 selectiveness. You are the ringmaster of
10 double standards.
11 How about this in today's Scranton
12 Slimes, 6-3-08, "Scranton, taxes won't stop
13 loan," by Stacy Brown, shaft writer.
14 Stu Renda, business administrator,
15 or in other words, the city's lead
16 cheerleader is beginning to prepare the
17 sheep for the shearing. Stu is preparing
18 the taxpayers for another $11 million loan
19 that the city wants to take out. A 5.5
20 million is earmarked for a 2005 loan.
21 Question, Stu, why weren't payments made on
22 that loan and if it's three-year loan why is
23 5.5 million needed now? Stu was quoted, "I
24 spoke to Mr. McGovern Monday, in looking at
25 our books it seems that probably five
1 million in wage tax collection is ours."
2 Stu, if you looked at your books
3 earlier maybe you would have discovered that
4 the city wasn't getting it's wage taxes.
5 Another question, how can the city need 11
6 million more now when by the end of the year
7 the city will have received $600 million in
8 revenue and loans. 600 million. How could
9 we need 11 million more? I can't
10 understand, but think about it, borrow 11
11 million more it will probably translate into
12 a 30 million payback. Add this one to the
13 approximately 400 million long-term debt and
14 it will go to approximately 430 million
15 long-term debt.
16 Mr. McGoff, you made a remark about
17 doing your homework on agenda items,
18 hopefully, you will start. Maybe you can
19 lose that rubber stamp. Please think about
20 the taxpayers, have mercy.
21 And as long as I have a little bit
22 of time we'll go back to the issues: 15
23 million in raises cumulatively over the last
24 seven years, 59 new hires, 30 clerical
25 positions lost. Potholes. 5.5 million
1 American Anglican arbitration loss paid by
2 the Sewer Authority, again, causing a
3 56 percent raise in sewer bills. 12.2
4 million found in the tax office. Index
5 cards with employee's, city information
6 social security numbers thrown in the
7 dumpster behind city call and blowing around
8 the court. The person who retrieved them is
9 threatened with arrest instead of trying to
10 find out the reason and who threw them out.
11 Thank you.
12 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. Mrs. Evans.
13 Oh, I'm sorry, he is usually last. Nelson,
14 you let somebody get by.
15 MR. HEWITT: Thank you, city council.
16 My name is John Hewitt, city resident and
17 taxpayer, homeowner, also a member of the
18 Scranton Fire Department. I'm here for
19 particularly one reason, I'm also a member
20 of the Black Sheep organization from West
21 Scranton. That organization does a lot of
22 fundraising for the sick children throughout
23 the area. Being a member of that group at
24 one of the recent meetings a motion was made
25 to donate $500 to the police and
1 firefighters' memorial. With that being
2 said, I have a check for the $500 and if
3 that's okay I'll give that to Mr. Miller.
4 Also, on behalf of the fire department
5 I want to thank Junior City Council members
6 and the group from West Scranton High
7 School, I'm sure Jimmy would be honored
8 knowing that he is being honored like he has
9 been throughout the last couple of weeks and
10 also I know his family is very touched by
11 the help and support from this community.
12 So with that said, I'll give it to
13 Mr. Miller.
14 MS. GATELLI: Thank you very much.
15 MR. MILLER: I know I spoke, but I
16 have to on behalf of Junior Council thank
17 the Black Sheep organization and Mr. Hewitt
18 for their support for the police and
19 firefighters' memorial. With everyone
20 working together we know we can reach our
21 goal and very soon we will see a police and
22 firefighters' memorial, so thanks to the
23 Black Sheep organization and Mr. Hewitt.
24 MS. GATELLI: Thank you again.
25 Anyone else? Mrs. Evans.
1 MS. EVANS: Good evening. Last week
2 we briefly discussed some issues pertaining
3 to Channel 61. After skimming today's
4 newspaper as well as the Sunday Times I am
5 more convinced than ever of the necessity
6 for Channel 61, 62 and it's operator of
7 Scranton Today. The banner headline for
8 Tuesday, June 3, "City, taxes won't stop
10 What a surprise. The mayor intends
11 to borrow again as he has done each year
12 since 2003. The real surprise would be if
13 he announced for even one fiscal year that
14 he will not borrow millions of dollars.
15 Perhaps in 2009 during his political
16 campaign he will go cold turkey. He appears
17 to borrow annually to pay for previous
18 borrowing and, of course, to keep pace with
19 his champagne and caviar spending habits.
20 Oddly, however, according to the
21 April 2008 report of the city controller
22 dated May 22, 2008, the 5.5 million 2005
23 loan appears to be sitting in an account, in
24 fact, there is close to 5.9 million listed
25 for that account, but this is all old news.
1 Today's headline was discussed at city
2 council as far back as December of 2007 and
3 as recently as last week's council meeting.
4 By viewing council meetings on Scranton
5 Today Channel 61 you, the viewers, learned
6 of this 11 million Doherty debt package
7 seven months ago. You learned about the
8 over quarter of a billion dollars in
9 long-term debt. You learned that tax
10 information is none of your business. You
11 learned that tax office representatives
12 didn't answer all of council questions and,
13 in fact, they still have not done so. You
14 were shocked by those answers, just as you
15 were shocked that it took two months and the
16 suggestion of the subpoena to obtain an
17 audience with tax office appointees. Yet, I
18 was not shocked because that is the precise
19 behavior of much of the Doherty
20 administration. Transparency and
21 accountability only apply outside of city
23 Further, I take umbrage with the
24 Scranton Times for their failure to
25 investigate and report the truth,
1 specifically over the last seven months, but
2 that's only one confined example. The Times
3 writers state that city and county officials
4 charged with oversight of the tax office
5 failed to notice or intervene. That is not
6 true. Reporters, however, failed to
7 investigate and write about repeated
8 requests for information and declined
9 appearances by not only Ken McDowell, but
10 city department heads as well over the last
11 several years at Scranton city council.
12 I noticed questionable procedures
13 and failures at the Single Tax Office in
14 December of 2007 and even years before that
15 I spoke at council meetings about my
16 concerns. Where were your EMS refunds?
17 Where were tax rebates? Why wasn't everyone
18 responsible for paying the taxman? And you,
19 the viewers, can attest to it. Without
20 Scranton Today Channel 61 you would know
21 only what this mayor and his friendly
22 newspaper wish you to know. The real truth?
23 I brought problems up about the tax office
24 and Mr. McDowell right here, right to the
25 forefront. What did the newspaper do? It
1 endorsed Mr. McDowell for political office
2 more than once.
3 Now, the mayor wants 11 million in
4 borrowing again, he doesn't need it. He
5 doesn't cut costs, he expands them. He and
6 the BA never worried about the numbers from
7 the tax office in 2005, 2006, and 2007.
8 What does that tell you? Remember, the 5.5
9 million from the tax office remarkably and
10 coincidentally will fall into the mayor's
11 lap in 2009 just in time for a reelection
13 Scranton Today Channel 61, they must
14 be replaced in order to prevent information
15 from reaching the public. After all, if you
16 can't control the TV station then you can't
17 spin the information and if you can't spin
18 the information you have got to terminate
19 that station. Now, what can you do? Fight
20 for Scranton Today and Channel 61, protect
21 your right to the truth and read critically
22 because sometimes the only pages of the
23 newspaper that appear to contain the whole
24 truth are the obituaries.
25 Also, I have proof that a complaint
1 was forwarded in February 2008 to the Ethics
2 Commission and others against Electric City
3 TV, but it mysteriously disappeared from the
4 legal department and the Ethics Commission.
5 I would assume that everyone received this?
6 No. Then, I'll share it with you or if you
7 would like Neil can make copies for
9 I also have some requests for the
10 week. A letter to Mrs. Novembrino, city
11 controller, council requests copies of
12 invoices and/or vouchers, unpaid receipts
13 for audits of the Scranton Single Tax Office
14 by McGrail, Merkel, Quinn and Associates for
15 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005. Although the
16 attempted audit in 2005 is reported to have
17 been unsuccessful, was the firm paid for
18 Mr. Marce's work? Please provide copies and
19 any written responses on or about June 13,
21 A letter to Mr. Greg Sunday,
22 business administrator, Scranton School
23 District. Council requests copies of
24 invoices and/or vouchers and paid receipts
25 for audits of the Scranton Single Tax Office
1 by McGrail, Merkel, Quinn and Associates for
2 2002,3, 4, and 5. And please provide copies
3 of any written responses on or before
4 June 16, 2008.
5 A letter to McGrail, Merkel, Quinn
6 and Associates, please provide copies of
7 cancelled checks from the City of Scranton
8 for audits and any work performed in
9 relation to these audits of the Scranton
10 Single Tax Office for 2002, 3, 4, and 5.
11 Also, did your firm submit a proposal or a
12 bid for this work? Please respond on or
13 before June 16, 2008.
14 A letter to HR director, Mrs. Moran:
15 Please provide the city's justification for
16 the termination of the Health Care Cost
17 Containment Committee. I understand that
18 negotiations with the clerical union have
19 been finalized and that this committee is
20 not an issue for other municipal unions.
21 A letter to Mr. Seitzinger, in March
22 2008, you sent a response to city council
23 regarding a property at Luzerne Street and
24 14th Avenue in which you indicated that the
25 problems would be addressed. As of June 2,
1 2008, the garbage and recycle bin remain on
2 the sidewalk 24/7. The former garage area
3 is still littered with chunks of concrete
4 and piles of dirt. This is the third
5 request for action. Neighbors believe that
6 the owner must have political connections
7 since this mess has remained despite
8 complaints, registered by three members
9 council and residents of the area for
10 approximately two years. Please provide a
11 response on or before June 9, 2008.
12 A letter to the board of directors
13 of Electric City TV, why does the name of
14 Chris Balton no longer appear on ECTV's
15 contact page?
16 943-45 Providence Road, in-ground
17 pool remains uncovered and contains water
18 despite the fencing at this abandoned
19 property and the neighbors are concerned for
20 the safety of children.
21 And, finally, in relation to
22 discussion that city council had last week
23 with regard to a piece of legislation on
24 which we were voting, specifically, a grant
25 for the 500 block of Lackawanna Avenue, the
1 Moran family has responded to the statements
2 that were made at last week's council
3 meeting. I don't want to read this entire
4 letter, it's quite lengthy, it is addressed
5 to Attorney Minora and Mrs. Fanucci. It
6 begins, "The original Coney Island and the
7 entire Moran family are deeply concerned
8 about the false, misleading and defamatory
9 statements that you made at the May 27,
10 2008, city council meeting.
11 We expect you to retract your
12 respective comments and offer a public
13 apology to correct the record at tonight's
14 meeting which happens to be the two-month
15 anniversary of the still unsolved arson.
16 And it goes on explaining some of the
17 statements made about opting out and the
18 filing of an injunction and the Moran family
19 states, "You know perfectly well that we
20 never filed an injunction. The next time
21 you state that we filed an injunction
22 against the city or anyone that was
23 dismissed by the Court produce the affidavit
24 bearing our signatures filed with the
25 request for relief, the index number and the
1 judge's order. They don't exist."
2 They do go onto address I think
3 many, many of the misleading statements that
4 were made about them. They are concerned
5 about the eminent domain proceedings against
6 Buona Pizza which is also located within the
7 legislated project area, of course, they are
8 concerned for themselves and they have many,
9 many questions that have not surprisingly
10 gone unanswered through the years because
11 for many years, at least from when Mr. Moran
12 and has told me, it was impossible to talk
13 to Mr. Rinaldi and Mr. Rinaldi remains
14 secretive, although, we are going to meet
15 with a representative obviously of the
16 developer. I think it is important to know
17 all sides of the story. It's not my side of
18 the story, but Moran's side of the story
19 and, you know, it might suggest that the
20 newspaper look more closely into this and
21 read the letter that was sent to council
22 because I think -- I would have to agree
23 with the Moran's there possibly are
24 misleading statements being made at city
25 council and they shouldn't have been, but
1 I'll leave that now to the Morans, I'll
2 leave that to Mr. Rinaldi and I'll leave
3 that to the Scranton Times, and that's it.
4 MS. GATELLI: Mrs. Fanucci.
5 MS. FANUCCI: Well, I'm going to pick
6 up on that. I did receive a letter from the
7 Morans asking me to retract my statements
8 and I certainly will not be doing so. I
9 will agree that there has been many
10 misleading statements made from this podium,
11 it was not by me, but I definitely will make
12 and I'm going to make a motion tonight that
13 in light of the fact that it's the two-month
14 anniversary of the arson that took place for
15 Coney Island that we send a letter, Kay, to
16 the D.A.'s Office requesting that they take
17 over the investigation of the arson so that
18 maybe we can get some closure for this
19 family on what happened with this arson, so
20 I'd like to do that in the form of a motion,
21 I'd also like to cc our director, Director
22 Hayes as well as Chief Davis, and that they
23 also join into recommend that the D.A.'s
24 Office take this over and looks into in this
25 arson for this family. And that's in the
1 form of a motion.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll second that.
3 MS. GATELLI: On the question?
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question, I
5 just, I wouldn't want my second to be
6 misunderstood, and I don't think it's
7 Mrs. Fanucci's intentions that the Scranton
8 Fire Department can't handle it, I'm sure
9 they could.
10 MS. FANUCCI: Oh, God, no, of course.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'm sure they could,
12 just looking for a little bit more help
13 maybe in the form of the manpower and maybe
14 in the form of resources, so I wouldn't want
15 to be misconstrued that we are saying that
16 our department couldn't handle it, I'm sure
17 they could, but we could all use a little
18 help now and then.
19 MS. FANUCCI: I certainly did not
20 mean to imply that, I hope I did not, but
21 that's not my intention.
22 MS. GATELLI: Anyone else on the
23 question? All those in favor? Aye.
24 MS. EVANS: Aye.
25 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
2 MS. GATELLI: Opposed? The ayes
3 have it and so moved.
4 MS. FANUCCI: Also, in regards to the
5 letter, I did receive asking me to change my
6 statements and there was a lot of may I say
7 alluding to the fact that my statements are
8 not only inappropriate from this standpoint
9 because also I work for the Governor's
10 Office, as if I would have something to do
11 with loans. I always said I wish I was as
12 important as people give me the credit for
13 being, but I'm certainly not. I wish I
14 could give grants and loans out and do
15 everything for the state, but unfortunately,
16 the Governor does not think as highly of me
17 as the Moran family does. So I had nothing
18 to do with the decision to decide who gets
19 the money on Lackawanna Avenue.
20 I do believe that these are issues
21 that should not be discussed on a normal
22 basis at Council chambers, I believe this is
23 how we get into our problems. You know, the
24 law is out there for reasons to take, you
25 know, take over. I mean, if there is a
1 problem you go to the Court and you settle
2 it. Just like the eminent domain process,
3 just like anything that goes on in America.
4 We have people out there suing council on a
5 daily basis. Some of them have been made it
6 into a permanent career, but that's what
7 it's about, so, there is no need to come
8 here waiving papers and discussing things
9 constantly that already have taken on their
10 own way which is the system, which is the
11 Court system, and they are out there to help
12 them and in the end if it works out I think
13 it will be wonderful thing if they can prove
14 what they need to prove and I will not be
15 retracting any statements. That's all I
16 have on that.
17 On the 11 million in borrowing.
18 This definitely was not a big surprise to
19 anyone who has read the budget. This was
20 not a big, you know, windfall that all of a
21 sudden the mayor came to us and said, "Oh, I
22 need 11 million."
23 We knew this was coming up. We know
24 we that we're floating a bond for
25 $5.5 million and at some point you got to
1 pay for the bond. Now, do I want to borrow
2 the money? I certainly don't want to borrow
3 the money. I believe in light of what's
4 going on in the tax office now as I had
5 stated to Mrs. Franus before that I hope
6 that we can sit down and come to some type
7 of an arrangement where we do not have to
8 borrow, and maybe the banks will see that we
9 are hopefully getting some money or maybe
10 the audit will show something more than we
11 are expecting which I hope would be the
12 fact, so I am going to sit down this week
13 and try to dedicate as much time as I can to
14 finding some alternate solution so we do not
15 have to borrow.
16 If you think that that's an easy
17 decision up here that is probably the
18 hardest decision we have to make. At some
19 point you have to, you know, decide whether
20 or not we can borrow more money, I would
21 rather not borrow money, so that is
22 something that I would be committed to this
23 week and hopefully deciding some great
24 answer will come up and we'll figure out a
25 way or maybe the bank will let us, I don't
1 know, but I'm going to find out. I'm going
2 to try and see what I can do it.
3 So, let's talk about the Stooge
4 comment, which I love, I would like to
5 address my wonderful who believes they might
6 be my colleague, Mr. Jackowitz, calling me
7 Stooge number one because I said that all
8 jobs are welcome in the City of Scranton.
9 You get up here and you discuss that we are
10 very much unemployed in our city and yet
11 it's a problem that I said all jobs are
12 welcome, that we need minimum paying jobs,
13 we need large paying jobs, we want them all.
14 So, anyone out there who is contemplating on
15 starting a business or coming to the city
16 please do not be afraid if you feel your
17 jobs are not up to certain people's par, we
18 want everyone welcome here, come here and
19 please employ everyone in our city, so that
20 we aren't a statistic because, yes, some
21 people need jobs that are not as high paying
22 because they can't do jobs that are high
23 paying. I, myself, wish that I could go out
24 and get myself a job that's worth $200,000 a
25 year, I can't even with all of my wonderful
1 connections, can you imagine that, but
2 that's life and we welcome everyone here and
3 the most successful cities in America and
4 all over the country there is a McDonald's s
5 and there are wonderful companies employing
6 people for the large amounts of money,
7 that's what it's about. So I'm sorry that
8 in the same token of the conversation you
9 got a little off base by saying we don't
10 want your jobs, but yet we have very
12 And as far as being a stooge, the
13 taxpayers make their own decision, they look
14 around, they see what's going on. I don't
15 believe that they need people getting up
16 here week after week with very sad sarcastic
17 motives telling them how to feel and what to
18 think because, quite frankly, it's not
19 really working out. It doesn't make me look
20 bad it actually makes you look bad. And
21 that is all I have.
22 MS. GATELLI: Mr. Courtright.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes. As far as
24 demolishing the properties, I understand
25 that there is pros and cons and some people
1 are for and some people are against, but my
2 one concern remains the same and that is
3 when the property is demolished sometimes,
4 many times the city does not own the
5 property, they demolish for whatever reason,
6 it's a health hazard or whatever the case
7 may be, a danger, and that remains a concern
8 of mine what becomes of the property after
9 we demolish them and I think I believe I
10 asked last week possibly Mr. Renda, not
11 Mr. Renda, Mr. Seitzinger, give me an idea
12 of what their game plan was in there, with
13 that said, I got a call this week
14 coincidentally, I mentioned there was an
15 empty lot the city had tore down a building
16 on the a corner of Jackson and Hyde Park
17 Avenue, when the gas company I believe it
18 was doing all of the streets throughout the
19 city last year they dug it out they had to
20 repave them on that empty lot they placed a
21 great deal of gravel and they spread it out
22 nice and evenly, every time it rains very
23 hard al that gravel travels halfway down the
24 block into about the 120-122 of South Hyde
25 Park Avenue, the people just can't pick it
1 up anymore, it's extremely, heavy, so if
2 Mr. Seitzinger would take a look at that
3 particular lot for me and see if there is
4 something they can't do with that, I had
5 mentioned last week you can barely see the
6 sidewalk anymore because the gravel has
7 migrated out almost to the road and the one
8 gentleman actually has buckets because he
9 doesn't have a wheelbarrow, he has buckets
10 of this gravel that he swept up from the
11 front of his house and put in the backyard,
12 it's too heavy for him to carry back up the
13 street, it's over half a block. There was
14 another gentleman that put it in a
15 wheelbarrow and wheelbarrowed it back up the
16 street, so I don't almost think that they
17 need to be doing that.
18 The mission or the church or
19 whatever that think we are calling that is
20 down on Olive Street there, I got a letter
21 about that today that I guess it's still in
22 operation, it's still in full swing and not
23 even people from the neighborhood that are
24 sending me, passersby are upset that the
25 people are hanging out in front of it now,
1 so I hate to be a burden to Mr. Seitzinger,
2 but I guess this falls under him again if he
3 it can take a look at that and let us know
4 what the status is on that.
5 And Meadow Avenue and River Street,
6 I guess this would go to Mr. Brazil, what's
7 the status of that light up there if they
8 could just update us on that. I know you
9 are going to kill me, Kay, with all of these
10 unanswered questions.
11 MS. GATELLI: I don't want to
12 interrupt you, but I think that I was told
13 they are not going to put a light there
14 because they're putting it in --
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: They were going to
16 put one lower, right. If he can clarify
17 that for us because they are putting a light
18 about a block down and I know everybody
19 would look to see one at Meadow River, I
20 guess it would be --
21 MS. GATELLI: And I think PennDOT
22 did the study.
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: If they could let us
24 know, then I'll be happy to ask about it.
25 And one last one, Kay, sorry about this,
1 Greenridge Street and Wyoming Avenue there
2 was -- I think it was the Greenridge
3 Presbyterian Church, I don't know who owns
4 it now, but it has been boarded up and the
5 neighbors aren't happy with the way it's
6 being maintained if somebody could take a
7 look at that.
8 I got a call from one of the Times
9 reporters today asking me about something
10 about the tax office and coincidentally they
11 asked about something I was going to ask a
12 question on myself tonight and this was
13 monthly reports, I was asked did I know that
14 the city was supposed to be receiving
15 monthly reports from the tax office and I
16 said I didn't know that when I had first got
17 on council and I'm sure you will read it in
18 paper, so I won't say the whole conversation
19 that I had with him, but, anyway, could we
20 find out I guess it would be from either
21 Mrs. Novembrino or Mr. Renda, are we now
22 getting monthly reports, I believe we have
23 been getting them from the last couple of
24 months from the tax office because their
25 understanding --
1 MS. GARVEY: We did get one report.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: We did get one?
3 Okay. I'm going to talk about this, and I
4 really don't want to, but for me sometimes
5 when I'm in Main Avenue or I'm in the post
6 office or whatnot somebody will yell to me,
7 "Hey, did you get that's guy's scooter yet?"
8 You know, that's been the cry they
9 have been giving me for a couple of years
10 now about Mr. Stucker's scooter and then
11 they would ask a lot of times about the
12 money for cutting the mayor's hedges that we
13 gave Jimmy a little money, now they are
14 asking me when he is going to get the rest
15 of the money, so much make a little
16 humorous, but this isn't too humorous, the
17 last week, I'll try to say this as
18 diplomatically as possible, the last week
19 when I would say hello to somebody or was at
20 a local club that has a lunch the last
21 Thursday of every month, say, hey, you
22 didn't finish eating that, none of your
23 business they are telling me. I say,
24 "What's up?"
25 "None of your business."
1 So the comment I'm getting from
2 everybody from Burger King to the post
3 office is none of your business, and some of
4 the people are a little irate about it, they
5 thought I was being insulted they thought I
6 should have answered that strongly, they
7 have given me what they would said which I
8 can't repeat here on the air, but the common
9 thing from all of the people and it's
10 continuing about this comment that it was
11 none of my business what the interest was,
12 and this is most of my -- I'm talking about
13 school teachers, former school teachers,
14 former principals, judges, just several
15 different people said the same thing to me,
16 you know, that's an insult for them to say
17 that to elected officials, and I say, you
18 know, I can handle that, we get insulted
19 quite a bit, but I think the insult is to
20 the people whose taxes flow through that
21 office because they all say the same thing,
22 it's not only your business, but it's our
23 business, too, and I believe it is. So,
24 maybe now you will stop saying to me it's
25 none of my business when I talk to you, I'd
1 rather you ask me about Mr. Stucker's
2 scooter, all right, but I felt I had to say
3 something because some people felt I should
4 have said something at the time and maybe I
5 should have, I don't know, but I was kind of
6 taken back a little bit, so that's all I
7 have. Thank you.
8 MS. GATELLI: Thank you. I just have
9 a few items, when I'm hearing about
10 demolition and blight and people wanting
11 houses to be rehabilitated, and you go to
12 the neighborhoods and you talk to the people
13 around that structure that's been abandoned
14 for four or five years and obviously no one
15 wants to buy it and no one is taking care of
16 it and there is drug activity there, there
17 is kids going in and having beer parties in
18 there, there is rodents, you can go ask any
19 of those neighbors if they want that house
20 rehabilitated and I will guarantee you that
21 they will say they want the house to come
22 down. They don't want it rehabilitated,
23 they don't want an apartment house
24 rehabilitated because they will get an
25 apartment with 40 people living in it that
1 all say they are related to each other.
2 There is another theory in the
3 neighborhoods about density and if you read
4 neighborhood journals they will tell you
5 that increased density of homes causes
6 blight in neighborhoods. As you know, there
7 aren't as many people living in Scranton as
8 there were many years ago so we do have an
9 abundance of homes which one of the speakers
10 comes here and says, you know, I think you
11 just want to get rid of the homes, yeah, we
12 do. That is one of our goals in South
13 Scranton, in lower South Scranton, get rid
14 of the density and make some green space.
15 They don't want the houses one on top of
16 each other three, four and five units in
17 them, so that is the theory behind some of
18 the demolition issues.
19 Yes, there are programs to
20 rehabilitate homes. There are two beautiful
21 homes that were rehabilitated on the 100
22 block of Pittston Avenue that I would
23 welcome anyone to go and see from Lackawanna
24 Neighbors, they are fantastic. They are old
25 homes that have been redone and they are
1 magnificent. So, yes, we do rehabilitate
2 some of the homes, but some of them that
3 have been abandoned for four and five years
4 go and ask those people and they want them
5 torn down.
6 There is the issue about the grass,
7 and I agree there that that, too, does
8 become a problem, but many of them would
9 rather the grass than the social pollution
10 that comes with some of these abandoned
11 homes. I suggest that as a council, if my
12 colleagues would agree, that we send a
13 letter to the magistrates in the city to
14 encourage them and we'll send a copy to
15 Mr. Seitzinger and Mr. Oleski to use
16 community service to cut some of these lots
17 in the summertime. We do that in South
18 Scranton, Magistrate Russell, and we just
19 had our recent meeting and we are going to
20 buy some lawnmowers and weedwhackers to give
21 to these people that have to do community
22 service and we do get quite a lot of them
23 cut down, so if you guys would agree --
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Can I just say one
1 MS. GATELLI: Sure.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think it was
3 Magistrate Kennedy and Magistrate Russell I
4 had spoken about this several years ago and
5 they are all for that program, the only
6 problem they have is that I guess the people
7 that are doing community service have to be
8 supervised, somebody has to say they were
9 there "X" amount of hours, so they probably
10 would be looking for volunteers. I mean, I
11 would be willing to take my turn to
12 volunteer to supervise, maybe I'll even do
13 some work, but anyway, that's the problem.
14 All the magistrates are in favor of that,
15 but you need somebody to document that they
16 were there for "X" amount of hours and I
17 think it would be a great program.
18 MS. EVANS: I think one other problem
19 though that maybe we can think about
20 addressing is that many of the homeowners
21 next to these now abandoned lots, and as you
22 said they are very happy to have the houses
23 torn down, they wanted it for a long time, I
24 have never heard a complaint in the
25 neighborhood about it, but they do complain
1 about what you just mentioned and often
2 times an adjacent homeowner wants to buy
3 that property because he or she is taking
4 care of that property anyway, they take care
5 of their own and they don't want an eyesore
6 right next to them, so they do it
7 voluntarily, and usually it's not a lot
8 that's going to be large enough for anyone
9 to build another home on, it's just a small
10 parcel of land that they would like to buy,
11 but yet through the years time and time
12 again I have had people approach me, I think
13 you have to, Mr. Courtright --
14 MS. GATELLI: It's cumbersome.
15 MS. EVANS: Many people want to do
16 that and yet for whatever the reasons it
17 never -- well, I shouldn't say never, it
18 very rarely ever happens for anyone, I think
19 we should be actively trying to allow those
20 neighbors to buy those pieces of property
21 because they will take care of them.
22 MS. GATELLI: Yeah, I agree there
23 and they do go through the Vacant Property
24 Review Committee for anyone that's
25 interested in purchasing a property you can
1 call OECD and they will put you in contact
2 with the Vacant Property Review Committee
3 and you can purchase the property through
4 them. It does take several years which is
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Mrs. Gatelli, I
7 don't know maybe I will make this
8 suggestion, maybe you already know, you
9 worked there, as they are getting ready to
10 tear down these properties maybe OECD can
11 get on top of it and find how you can get
12 clear title because I think you right, the
13 people -- I saw it happen on Watress Street
14 where the people on either side bought half
15 and they expanded their yards, so they know
16 what properties they are going to be tearing
17 down maybe they can start through the
18 process of -- because, again, if the city
19 tears it down that doesn't necessarily mean
20 it's the city's lot. They have to take it,
21 and that takes time, a lot of time, so maybe
22 -- and they might be doing that already.
23 MS. GATELLI: Well, they do the
24 Pittsburgh Plan. You know, I don't agree
25 with the Pittsburgh plan.
1 MS. FANUCCI: It's cumbersome.
2 MS. GATELLI: I don't know any other
3 way to do. I know years ago we would have
4 council neighborhood meetings we wanted to
5 sell them all for a dollar, you know, just a
6 quitclaim sale and sell them for a dollar,
7 but there was some legality, you know, that
8 we weren't allowed to do it for some reason.
9 MR. MINORA: The Pittsburgh plan.
10 MS. GATELLI: Well, we didn't want to
11 do the Pittsburgh plan because it takes too
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: Well, if anybody
14 could expedite that it would be greatly
16 MS. GATELLI: Yes. Absolutely. The
17 next thing I wanted to talk about was the
18 loan. I do know that it was in the budget
19 that I voted to pass, however, I was hopeful
20 at the time, and I did tell the mayor that I
21 was not interested in borrowing anymore
22 money. I did speak to him today. I told
23 him about my feelings and he said that it is
24 a last resort and they are looking for
25 avenues to not borrow anymore money, so I am
1 going to keep in contact with Mr. Renda and
2 hopefully we will not have a necessity to
3 borrow anymore money.
4 The pool, I think some of you
5 mentioned a problem with the swimming pool,
6 I had a problem with a pool, someone
7 complained about a pool and I called Patty
8 Jennings, the health inspector, and the very
9 next day the pool was drained and taken care
10 of, so if anyone has a problem with the
11 pool, with water that's stagnant and
12 smelling you can call the Health Department
13 in the city and, like I said, Patty took
14 care of it immediately, and I would like to
15 commend her for that. Bill likes to do that
16 with employees now and then and she really
17 did an excellent job, the next day the pool
18 was drained. And she can be reached at
19 348-4193 and then there is a menu and you
20 would push for the health inspector.
21 As far as Channel 61, there will be
22 a Channel 61, we will be on television. As
23 you can see we are still on. So, you know,
24 for the people that say we are not on we are
25 on and we are going to remain on, you know,
1 one way or another we will be on television,
2 so I'd say not to worry about that. And
3 that's all I have that are tonight.
4 MS. EVANS: Mrs. Gatelli, I'm sorry,
5 I just wanted to add though in this case
6 with this particular pool they have already
7 been in contact with that office and the
8 city had been out there already, but the
9 owner of this abandoned home apparently is
10 ignoring what's been outlined by the city,
11 so I'm just hoping the city then will go to
12 the next step.
13 MS. GATELLI: To the magistrates,
14 yeah, and have to file a citation. Mrs.
16 MS. GARVEY: FIFTH ORDER. NO
17 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. SIXTH ORDER. NO
18 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. SEVENTH ORDER. 7-A.
19 FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON
20 COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT - FOR ADOPTION -
21 RESOLUTION NO. 34, 2008 - AUTHORIZING THE
22 MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS
23 TO EXECUTE AND ENTER INTO A GRANT AGREEMENT
24 WITH THE PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF
25 CONSERVATION AND NATURAL RESOURCES (DCNR),
1 BUREAU OF RECREATION AND CONSERVATION IN
2 ORDER TO ACCEPT THE GRANT OF $50,000.00 FROM
3 THE HERITAGE AND OTHER PARKS APPROPRIATION
4 FOR SWIMMING POOL IMPROVEMENTS IN THE CITY
5 OF SCRANTON.
6 MS. GATELLI: What is the
7 recommendation of the Chair on Community
9 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson for the
10 Committee on Community Development, I
11 recommend final passage of Item 7-
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
13 MS. GATELLI: On the question? Roll
14 call, please.
15 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
16 MS. EVANS: Yes.
17 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
18 MS. GATELLI. Yes.
19 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
20 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
21 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
23 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
24 (Mr. McGoff not present.)
25 MS. GATELLI: I hereby declare Item
1 7-A legally and lawfully adopted. Motion to
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.
1 C E R T I F I C A T E
3 I hereby certify that the proceedings and
4 evidence are contained fully and accurately in the
5 notes of testimony taken by me at the hearing of the
6 above-captioned matter and that the foregoing is a true
7 and correct transcript of the same to the best of my
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI
12 OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER