1 SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING
7 Tuesday, January 20, 2009
10 Council Chambers
11 Scranton City Hall
12 340 North Washington Avenue
13 Scranton, Pennsylvania
CATHENE S. NARDOZZI, RPR - OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER
2 CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:
MR. ROBERT MCGOFF, PRESIDENT
6 MS. JUDY GATELLI, VICE-PRESIDENT (Not Present.)
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. JOHN WILLIAMS, SOLICITOR
1 (Pledge of Allegiance recited and moment of reflection
3 MR. MCGOFF: Roll call, please?
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
5 MS. EVANS: Here.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli.
7 (Mrs. Gatelli not present.)
8 MR. COOLICAN: Ms. Fanucci.
9 MS. FANUCCI: Here.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: Here.
12 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Here. Let the record
14 reflect that Mrs. Gatelli did inform council
15 that she would not be here this evening.
16 She is currently I believe in Washington DC
17 at the inaugural. Dispense with the reading
18 of the minutes. Third Order.
19 MS. GARVEY: 3-A. APPLICATIONS AND
20 DECISIONS RENDERED BY THE ZONING HEARING
21 BOARD MEETING HELD ON JANUARY 14, 2009.
22 MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?
23 If not, received and filed.
24 MS. GARVEY: 3-B. MINUTES OF THE
25 VACANT PROPERTY REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETING
1 HELD ON NOVEMBER 18, 2008.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Are there any comments?
3 If not, received and filed.
4 MS. GARVEY: That's it for third
6 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. Any
7 announcements from council?
8 MS. EVANS: Yes. Please remember in
9 your prayers this week all who have died,
10 particularly Frank Burke, Jr., a former
11 Scranton Housing Authority employee, and the
12 father of retired Scranton firefighter Frank
13 Burke, III, and father-in-law of my good
14 friend Mary Alice Burke, Keyser Valley
15 neighborhood president and activist. Robert
16 F. Shay, a young Scranton firefighter and
17 chauffeur from Engine Nine who served his
18 community and city with devotion and
19 compassion, and Louis Hazzouri, mother of
20 former Scranton council member Alex
21 Hazzouri, and the families and friends who
22 suffer the loss of these great men and
23 gracious women. That's all.
24 MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else? Fourth
25 order. Citizen's participation. Sam
2 MR. PATILLA: Good evening,
3 Mr. Courtright and Mrs. Evans.
4 MS. EVANS: Good evening.
5 MR. PATILLA: To many within the
6 African-America community, as well as
7 communities of other American-born
8 minorities, those considered poor, those
9 looked upon as second class citizens, drugs,
10 corruption, crime -- drugs, crime, and
11 corrupt elected appointed officials go
12 hand-in-hand because one could not survive
13 without the other, and as such it is viable
14 that corrupt and self-serving crooked
15 individuals are we weeded out of government
16 on all levels, but especially on the local
17 level because that is where we as taxpayers
18 and citizens are directly victimized.
19 Victimized of our abilities to trust,
20 victimized as taxpayers, victimized as
21 American citizens.
22 Many minorities are bamboozled into
23 believing that are quest for representation
24 in government is for the sole purpose of
25 requiring employment. That couldn't be
1 further from the truth for what we are
2 actually seeking is a voice to rely or
3 concerns, representation to quell our fears
4 and to ensure that our children are provided
5 more opportunities than we. Some may
6 believe that all we seek is a level playing
7 field, but in fact all we seek is to be
8 judged in our abilities to not only complete
9 the task before us, but judge in our ability
10 to perform based on our commitments and
11 dedication to the quest at hand.
12 The Thomas Savage speech known as
13 inequality, the old boys network, agreed to
14 affirmative action only to later circumvent
15 that later progress with the outsourcing of
16 family sustaining jobs to foreign countries.
17 So I say to you, Mr. Courtright, your job as
18 a public servant is not complete because
19 factually you never were afforded the
20 opportunity to serve this sector and you
21 still have worked to do as a m ember of the
22 Scranton City Council and one of the main
23 responsibilities still facing you is that
24 the citizens of Scranton, irregardless of
25 color, race, religion or creed is that each
1 and every citizen that resides within the
2 borders of the City of Scranton receive true
3 representation in regards to the safety,
4 welfare and ability to pursue their American
5 dream as described by both the Constitution
6 and the Bill of Rights, minority or
7 nonminority, working class and the poor, the
8 elderly and our youth have placed their
9 trust in their elected and appointed public
10 servants to always keep the welfare and
11 safety of the residents and taxpayers above
12 all others, and yet under the current
13 administration here in Scranton all they
14 have to show for their trust is a debt often
15 attributed with cities twice the size of
16 Scranton and lack of family sustaining jobs
17 the creation of crony positions for jobs --
18 and jobs for our rank and file police and
19 fire personnel and their families are forced
20 to go without. A leadership sector that is
21 void of accepting responsibilities for all
22 their shortcomings and failures. The loss
23 of their homes and in many cases the loss of
24 homes that have been in their families for
25 generations. Instead of accountability,
1 they are force fed lies, deceit and
2 corruption instead of an open and honest
3 government they face a government reeking
4 with intimidation and retribution. The day
5 is quickly approaching when the shackles,
6 leg irons and restraints will be removed
7 from your ability to perform your jobs which
8 lead you to the position of public servants
9 in the first place, just as they were
10 removed from my ancestors and the ancestors
11 of many Scranton residents.
12 Are you, Mr. Courtright, willing to
13 answer that call? The call that won't come
14 at 3 a.m. because that phone began ringing
15 the moment Chris Doherty was first seated as
16 a public servant and it hasn't stopped
17 ringing since.
18 President Obama will not be forced
19 to carry the burden of 400 years of
20 oppression solely upon his shoulders nor
21 will he be forced to correct the wrong of
22 those that came before him by himself
23 because we all have obligation. For unlike
24 years past, people such as is Chris Doherty,
25 Austin Burke, Judy Gatelli, Sherry Fanucci,
1 Robert McGoff, will no longer be allowed to
2 desecrate the memory of those such as Dr.
3 King and the minority and nonminorities
4 alike who gave of themselves in order to
5 assure that this country stood tall on all
6 fronts with the prayer of the fathers. For
7 a few within the ministry, the few that I
8 label Uncle Toms who have decided to either
9 turn a blind eye to the wrongdoings of those
10 listed above or patted them upon their backs
11 to shower them false awards and false
12 praise, they will stand alone for in this
13 country the mantra isn't keeping the
14 things -- keeping things their way, but
15 doing it in the American way. Thank you.
16 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Patilla.
17 Andy Sbaraglia.
18 MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,
19 citizen of Scranton. Fellow Scrantonians,
20 as you all know Al Boscov is suing the
21 theatre, but I don't know really care for
22 Boscov's against the theatre, that's not my
23 concern. My concern is the 700,000 low
24 interest loan we gave to the theatre.
25 Exactly is that up-to-date or is that in
2 MS. FANUCCI: I don't know that, but
3 I will find out that for you.
4 MR. SBARAGLIA: Well, that's the
5 important thing really. Most likely from
6 what I see here it most likely in default,
7 but tell me, being that you know this or
8 that, exactly what are we paying for when we
9 pay that 108 for Al Boscov? Exactly what
10 are we paying it on? As you know when it
11 came up before I asked if it was the theatre
12 and somebody said it was with the mall, and
13 so I have to way of knowing. Well, what
14 exactly are we paying all Boscov for on that
15 loan? I hope it ain't for political
17 Okay. Let me get something a little
18 better in here. Our pension plan. I got
19 the figures, apparently, I hope they are
20 up-to-date, but they came out of the --
21 actually out of the audit on our pension
22 plan, and from what I see we are in deep
23 trouble with that pension plan and you don't
24 realize how deep. As you know, we are never
25 up to par anyway with it. They claim that
1 the end of the year the pension plan had
2 $76,512,415.00, but I seen an article in the
3 paper where we lost 20 million out of that.
4 But the crux is we are taking more money out
5 of that than we are putting into it even
6 before the loss. They claim that the total
7 contributors were $5,336,638.00 and that's
8 what we were putting into it, and benefit
9 payments were $9,399,978.00. They claim
10 that a change in assets were about a half a
11 million dollars, but that's in '07. We are
12 in '08.
13 Now, has anybody noticed the
14 administration has opened up anything with
15 the state on this pension plan? Have they
16 did in any inquiries on it before we get hit
17 over the head with it? I don't know. See,
18 you weren't here the last time we had this
19 big show at this thing, you might have been,
20 Mrs. Evans. You remember we look only a
21 percentage of it because we couldn't bring
22 our pension up to par, so we come across
23 with a formula, I don't know if it was 85
24 percent or so forth and so on that we had to
25 have on hand instead of the 100 percent.
1 Well, know with the 20 million
2 dollars loss we are woefully low and the
3 question is that somebody should be looking
4 into that before you get hit with it. I
5 hate to see you come up. The state may say
6 you don't have to have it because, as you
7 know, we have -- well, even with the 20
8 million we have 56 million which is enough
9 to pay for the pensions. I think there is
10 almost 10 million benefit payments are
11 $9,399,978.00, so even with the loss we have
12 enough to cover us for a few years before we
13 tap out the funds, but the question is how
14 are we going to be held accountable for
15 them? That's the quirks. If the state says
16 you have to bring that pension fund up to
17 par we don't have the money, so let's hope
18 they don't.
19 Well, the Connell building, as you
20 know, the state give them $5 million, you
21 are going to put in the grant for another
22 $4 million, $9 million investment into it,
23 whether or not it will ever bring -- I don't
24 know. I mean, there is all kind of money
25 being sent, but it's all taxpayers' money.
1 Let's hope that Obama comes through with a
2 lot of money that we don't have to pay back.
3 Thank you.
4 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,
5 Mr. Sbaraglia. Mr. Quinn.
6 MR. QUINN: Ozzie Quinn, Taxpayers'
7 Association. Mrs. Fanucci, at the last
8 meeting you said that a letter from Janelle
9 Miller from DCED was a big mistake and it's
10 going to be all cleared up?
11 MS. FANUCCI: No.
12 THE COURT: Is that what you said?
13 MS. FANUCCI: No. No, that's
14 incorrect. I never said there was a letter,
15 I said it was a mistake.
16 MR. QUINN: I saw the letter.
17 MS. FANUCCI: I said there was a
18 letter and mistake. What is the question
19 you are asking me?
20 MR. QUINN: I want to know has it
21 been cleared up like you said it was going
22 to be, there was no flags.
23 MS. FANUCCI: There is still no flag.
24 There wasn't no flag and there still is not
25 a flag on the audit, yes. That's what I
1 said and that was correct.
2 MR. QUINN: I saw the letter.
3 MS. FANUCCI: Right. They said that
4 we could be cited, yes, you did see the
5 letter, and that's the problem, everybody
6 went with the letter as if that was what was
7 happening. The problem was that wasn't
8 really what was happening. They sent a
9 letter saying you could be cited if your
10 audit is not done, but the state was working
11 with the administration and also with PEL.
12 They were very aware the audit was not done
13 and we were never cited because they were
14 aware and we are involved in the process.
15 MR. QUINN: They were talking about
16 other things, too, other audits.
17 MS. FANUCCI: That's not what they
18 were talking about. We were talking about
19 the independent audit. We are talking about
20 the independent audit. We were not cited
21 for the independent audit.
22 MR. QUINN: Well, how about the other
23 items that were not monitored?
24 MS. FANUCCI: There were two -- the
25 one project actually the red flags were
1 removed and that was only because of the
2 paperwork. The city was on-time with
3 everything they did filing and in a timely
4 fashion. It was at the state level that
5 that sat. There were two mistakes made on
6 that one, and the other one, yes, there was
7 a red flag because of missed paperwork was
8 not filed that was correctly filed.
9 MR. QUINN: So there was a red flag,
10 so --
11 MS. FANUCCI: Not on the audit, yes.
12 MR. QUINN: Does that effect the
13 Connell building $4 million?
14 MS. FANUCCI: Absolutely not. No.
15 There will no projects that will be affected
16 as far as the red flags are concerned.
17 MR. QUINN: I was wondering because
18 they said it was going to be frozen, the
19 funds were going to be frozen.
20 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
21 MR. QUINN: To me, it appears like
22 somebody is bending that poor lady's arm.
23 MS. FANUCCI: Is what you think
25 MR. QUINN: Yeah.
1 MS. FANUCCI: If you prove it, I
2 think that would be wonderful. So come in
3 with some information and let's talk about
4 it then, Ozzie.
5 MR. QUINN: Okay. I want to ask a
6 question off-hand. Now, the audit before
7 2006 we were in debt $94 million principle
8 only, the last audit where you just had the
9 exit, okay, we are now $95 million in
10 principle debt, okay? It went up $1 million
11 and, of course, that doesn't include the
12 authorities, but we are responsible for the
13 authorities because I want to point down
14 there unless Rossi isn't too sure what's
15 going on in regards to what he is doing with
16 the audit, because it says combined Scranton
17 government assets are 309.6 million dollars,
18 and this includes authorities. So if it
19 includes authorities we're using it as an
20 asset, actually, it should be a debt.
21 That's when it appears to me.
22 MS. FANUCCI: Are you saying the
23 audit was wrong?
24 MR. QUINN: I'm saying that --
25 MS. FANUCCI: So that Rossi was
2 MR. QUINN: I'm saying that we're
3 responsible for all of the debt that the
4 authorities have out there.
5 MS. FANUCCI: So you are saying that
6 the auditors were incorrect in their jobs?
7 MR. QUINN: Yeah. I -- I --
8 MS. EVANS: No, could I just
9 intervene for a moment, I would assume what
10 you might have looked at is what I, too,
11 read through and that is not the complete
12 audit, and I'm going to address that later
13 in motions. We were given 22 pages of
14 financial assets, liabilities, etcetera, and
15 the actual audit itself should exceed 90
16 pages, and the long-term debt was left out
17 of those 22 pages and so I'm awaiting the
18 full audit.
19 MR. QUINN: Okay. But the last
20 audit they didn't include the authorities as
21 a debt owed by the taxpayers and --
22 MS. EVANS: The authorities are
23 always included in the audit.
24 MR. QUINN: Not in the principle.
25 Not in the city debt --
1 MS. EVANS: Oh, no, not in the
2 principle, but there are sections involving
3 long-term debt for the city and each one of
4 the authorities and since the authorities
5 basically borrow through the city and the
6 city must pledge it's full faith and credit
7 in order for that borrowing to be
8 attained --
9 MR. QUINN: That is not included in
10 the $95 million what the authorities owe.
11 MS. EVANS: No, it is not. It is
13 MR. QUINN: Therefore, the city is
14 in debt more than $95 million.
15 MS. EVANS: Oh, absolutely, yes.
16 MR. QUINN: And if you use it over a
17 long-term period with interest you are
18 probably talking about $300 million.
19 MS. EVANS: Well, when I get my
20 hands on the full audit I will make a full
22 MR. QUINN: Well, actually, it's
23 really deception because of the fact that I
24 am a taxpayer, I am paying and everything
25 that the redevelopment authority does with
1 things like maybe lights, I don't know if
2 they are paid for, but I have to pay for
3 that, and that's what I want to know.
4 I'm sorry, could I speak a few more
5 seconds? I want to point out here the fact
6 that I talked to Standard and Poor today and
7 in New York City and the person who is the
8 primary credit analyst regarding the bond
9 rating and he said the bond rating is still
10 BB, junk bonds. How the heck are we going
11 to pay off all of this here? How are we
12 going to pay off the firemen? And he said
13 the BB rating reflects the city as chronic,
14 structural imbalances which management
15 continues to address through deficit
16 financing and other one-time revenues.
17 Lack of a timely remedial action to
18 improve financial performance and below
19 average wealth and income levels and a below
20 average unemployment.
21 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
22 MR. QUINN: Management's failure to
23 development and implement a comprehensive
24 plan to eliminate the structural imbalance
25 for the next couple of years could lead to
1 further credit deterioration. We are as low
2 as you can go.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Quinn.
4 MR. QUINN: Thank you very much.
5 They are speculative bonds and I know that
6 anybody is going to be buying them.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me --
8 MR. QUINN: Mrs. Evans, could you
9 please find out how much debt truly our
10 taxpayers are in debt in the city that you
11 have to incorporate the authorities and
13 MS. EVANS: I will. I have done that
14 each year.
15 MS. GAWEL: Good evening, Council.
16 Tonight I'm going to kind of go just all
17 over the place tonight. First and foremost,
18 I was really sorry to hear that you guys
19 aren't putting personal issues aside in
20 trying to deal with this city. I hope you
21 work on it more in the new year. You know,
22 it's important that you all work together so
23 we can get something accomplished. Thank
25 Now, I may have missed this because
1 I wasn't able to get here during the fall
2 season because I was working so much and,
3 unfortunately, Attorney Minora is not here,
4 but he might be, you might be able to answer
5 the question, how are we standing on the
6 situation with Kenny McDowell and did we
7 ever get him in here or are we ever getting
8 him in here?
9 MS. EVANS: No.
10 MS. GAWEL: Or are we just going to
11 let it go for giggles?
12 MS. EVANS: We have had no current
13 update, but I think we are all assuming that
14 the case is still in litigation and at this
15 juncture in time Mr. McDowell has --
16 MS. GAWEL: Not coming in.
17 MS. EVANS: -- not chosen to come in
18 and I would assume is appealing a decision,
19 and I really don't have a time line on that
20 for you.
21 MS. GAWEL: Now, we started to
22 discuss this a little bit last week, is
23 there any way we are going to get PEL out of
24 here and get us out of the distressed city.
25 I think we realize that, you know, PEL is
1 making money on us left and right and it's
2 like we are in a Catch 22. How do we get
3 out of it?
4 MS. FANUCCI: We will never get rid
5 of PEL until we actually comply and do what
6 they are telling us to do. If we do get rid
7 of PEL, say we for some reason decided that
8 PEL is not doing the job and they hear us in
9 Court, they will just give us another, you
10 know, another company like PEL that will
11 come in and do the same thing until we are
12 out of distressed city status, which is by
13 their standards, set by their standards, we
14 will not get rid of PEL.
15 MS. GAWEL: Okay. Well, I was going
16 to ask you to send a letter to the governor
17 again, but I realize that Mr. Doherty is
18 Mr. Rendell's buddy so that would be
19 redundant at this point, I think.
20 MS. FANUCCI: Can I tell you
21 something though?
22 MS. GAWEL: Yeah.
23 MS. FANUCCI: What can happen is the
24 worst case scenario would be that we do go
25 to Court, say we decide to file bankruptcy
1 or something of that, and we do go to Court,
2 the judge can actually tell us and say,
3 "Here, you have to raise the taxes this
4 amount, you have to do it this amount, this
5 amount and this amount for the next few
6 years to get out of debt."
7 . That is what your alternative is,
8 so the less of the evils, what is the
10 MS. GAWEL: It's a Catch- 22.
11 MS. FANUCCI: Exactly.
12 MS. GAWEL: Now, it's a silly
13 question, but, you know, election time is
14 coming up, so I have a question, how do we
15 go about making it possible for independent
16 candidates to get on the primaries, because
17 a lot of us would rather be independent
18 rather than democrat or republican, but
19 because we can't vote in the primaries --
20 MS. EVANS: Not in the primary. I
21 believe that's a state law that would have
22 be addressed on the state level.
23 MS. GAWEL: No, so -- okay.
24 MS. EVANS: But I agree with you.
25 MS. GAWEL: Now, I have a couple, as
1 Mrs. Evans would put it, citizens' requests.
2 I travel the viaduct in West Side quite
3 frequently on my way to and from work.
4 There are severe potholes that you
5 literally, like, if the guy coming up the
6 hill is trying to go around his pothole and
7 the other person coming down the hill is
8 trying to go around the pothole there is
9 going to be an accident because they are
10 that bad. Then there is a -- there is one
11 that I'm aware of on I think it's Elm
12 Street, is that where Whitehouse hoagie is?
13 All right, if you are coming from Whitehouse
14 Hoagie and you come up the West Side viaduct
15 by the South Side Shopping Center, that
16 section there, there is a huge hole there,
17 you could literally lose a car. I don't
18 know whether it got patched or not any time
20 And we are back to the sidewalks
21 because I see city hall still hasn't cleaned
22 their sidewalks so I don't know why
23 everybody would expect the bridges and stuff
24 to be done, but I think it's very
25 hypocritical of the mayor to expect you and
1 me as citizens to have ours done within 8 to
2 12 hours of a storm and their bridges and
3 their sidewalks even out here aren't done
5 And could we possibly get lights
6 down by the stadium and the high school?
7 When you come off from Mulberry to go onto
8 say down to the Glider Diner, that section
9 right there is so dark and it's right there
10 by the high school and, I mean, like
11 literally the kids -- you know, the kids, I
12 mean, it's very dangerous during like
13 football season and stuff when there is
14 something going on at night.
15 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's been brought
16 up in the past and --
17 MS. GAWEL: Well, I'm bringing it up
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: -- with that
20 intersection, we even discussed that when
21 that intersection was done and it just
22 wasn't done correctly, in our opinion
24 MS. GAWEL: Well, like it should be
25 done all through that whole section. It
1 shouldn't just be at the intersection.
2 MS. FANUCCI: We could just put in
3 during motions to have another study done to
4 see if we could do something, but that is
5 true. I mean, it is a safety hazard
6 especially at game time.
7 MS. GAWEL: It really is. Yeah, I
8 mean, like it's very difficult. Okay.
9 Thank you very much. Have a nice night.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Ms. Gawel.
11 Pedro Gonzalez.
12 MR. GONZALEZ: Good evening,
13 Council, and all in attendance. My name is
14 Pedro Gonzalez, South Side resident,
15 registered voter. I am here to thank the
16 community at large for the MLK weekend, the
17 attendance that was put forth by the
18 community itself, if there is anyone out
19 that doesn't know, the MLK Commission is a
20 group of community leaders and community
21 organizations that their prime directive is
22 to keep Martin Luther King's dream alive of
23 racial equality and education and growth
24 within our communities, neighborhoods and
25 ourselves really in a whole. The three-day
1 event started off this Saturday at Temple
2 Israel lead by Rabbi Joe Mendelson. It wash
3 a tremendous, tremendous event, inspiring,
4 inspirational, very well attended. Reverend
5 Harold Millerbrook came from Knoxville,
6 Tennessee. This reverend actually lived and
7 worked with Martin Luther King so he brought
8 with him and abundant amount of information
9 and experiences that he willingly gave us
10 and made us laugh and made some people cry,
11 but mostly made a lot of people think about
12 where we are and what exactly are we doing
13 as a people, as a community, as a city, per
15 The Sunday event, the snow did not
16 stop too much. It did stop a little bit
17 with some of the acts that couldn't come
18 from the Poconos or from distances far away,
19 but it was very, very, very well-attended.
20 We had close to 150 to 200 people I think
21 was one of the staff members told us was the
22 count in the auditorium at the time, and for
23 the spots that were empty, believe it or
24 not, the actual audience such artistic
25 people that we have in the city volunteered
1 to put a show on. We had people come up and
2 play the piano. Choirs just appeared out of
3 no where. We thank God for that.
4 And on the Monday event we had the
5 March, which was also very well-attended.
6 Many of the dignitaries were there, many
7 people spoke, but the United Neighborhood
8 Centers hosted, I want to say it's a thing
9 for the children, and I think they call it
10 for all teens, a day of peace for all of the
11 teens. They had plenty of food, artwork.
12 The kids we had the LCDC dancers were there,
13 also very well-attended, and Leah Doherty
14 took the reigns on that, God bless her.
15 Mike Hanley was at the inauguration so Leah
16 did a tremendous job, tremendous job. My
17 hat off to the UNC and all of the efforts
18 they put forth to making this a quality,
19 quality event for Martin Luther King.
20 The march we went to courthouse
21 square and then to the Scranton Cultural
22 Center for cake and cocoa, but we finished
23 it off with a service at Salvation Apostolic
24 Temple, I think I'm pronouncing it right,
25 Salvation Apostolic Temple, and they put on
1 a tremendous show. That was also very
2 well-attended. I think someone said there
3 was a close to 300 people there. Sister
4 Mary Alice took over for Sister Adrian. I'm
5 not sure if people know that, some people
6 know that, but Sister Mary Alice she knows
7 she has some big shoes to fill, but let me
8 tell you, she is starting off tremendously
9 well. She is starting to fill them up quite
10 nicely, and my hat is off to her, too. She
11 put on a terrific program at the University
12 of Scranton that fed I want to say, what was
13 the count that we got there, there was about
14 200 adults and children in attendance and
15 everyone was fed for free and a tremendous
16 show was put on, so thank you so much to
17 Sister Mary Alice.
18 And going and finishing up in
19 closing, at the Salvation Temple the energy
20 that was in the room was incredible, it was
21 plain to see that God was there, but more
22 importantly the spirit of what Martin Luther
23 King tried to present to all of us, all of
24 the people, not just the African-American
25 people, Latino people, it has nothing to do
1 with race. Some people still believe it is
2 for some, you know, ignorance I guess.
3 On this historic day that we have a
4 brand new president upon that oath many us
5 were reflecting on the weekend that just
6 passed, and the one message that I guess
7 that I could present to everyone is
8 education. We need to continue to educate
9 ourselves and to continue forward not
10 backwards and with that education we will
11 bring our city together because without it
12 we will perish apart. God bless you all.
13 Once again, my name is Pedro Gonzalez and
14 thank you for letting me express myself.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Gonzalez.
16 Dave Dobson.
17 MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council,
18 Dave Dobson, resident of Scranton and member
19 of the Taxpayers' Association. On this
20 audit the horse is out of the barn for this
21 year, but in future years is there any
22 chance that are measures being taken to
23 ensure that it is much more timely?
25 MS. EVANS: I'm going to address that
1 under motions.
2 MR. DOBSON: Okay. And if possible
3 could we get possibly an announcement in the
4 paper on snow removal? When people pile
5 snow out into the courts and throw it out in
6 the street they are causing some problems
7 with other people before it turns into a
8 neighborhood cupola if these people were
9 aware of what they are doing shouldn't be
10 done maybe they will change their ways.
11 On KOZ's in the future, once again,
12 I'd like to mention industrial parks and
13 where they could be kept clean and in
14 harmony with the neighborhood as much as
15 possible, but we really do need to change
16 our focus here on development somewhat. We
17 are not -- we don't have the deep pockets
19 And on this beat patrol business,
20 Bill, is there any chance that possibly
21 somebody could ride around in an unmarked
22 car and then go out on a beat patrol?
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: They do. They do
24 ride around in unmarked cars.
25 MR. DOBSON: To catch the tire
1 slashers and people like that because if you
2 see a police car you are not going to do
3 something like that.
4 MR. COURTRIGHT: They have one whole
5 unit that is unmarked.
6 MR. DOBSON: Yeah. Yeah. But, also,
7 the thought occurred to me if you had to
8 walk six or ten blocks in this kind of
9 weather it might not be too pleasant, you
10 know --
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: They do it.
12 MR. DOBSON: I do walking myself, but
13 I know like sometimes my hands feel like
14 they are caught in a car door, so it would
15 just be interesting to see somebody maybe
16 roam around and park their car and then take
17 a little walk here and there.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: They have an entire
19 unit, all right, that does that.
20 MR. DOBSON: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, but
21 more or less like all --
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: You don't see them
23 because they are in unmarked cars, see?
24 MR. DOBSON: Yeah. Yeah. Well, I
25 don't see them in my neighborhood, but we
1 haven't had much problems. I had two new
2 knifed tires a couple of years ago.
3 And on policy I have often heard it
4 stated here that Scranton is overbuilt and
5 that may have been the case ten years ago or
6 20 years ago when there was an exodus out of
7 the country and so forth, but if in the
8 future we are to rely on public
9 transportation and so forth, a lot that
10 depends on a high population density,
11 otherwise, it becomes unprofitable. There
12 is no extensive bus service for Dalton
13 Township, per se. There is a bus that goes
14 to Waverly and it's probably empty more or
15 less, but some of the -- some of the houses
16 in our town are just so large that if you
17 can't break them up into an apartment house
18 they almost need to be torn down, and it's
19 really -- I know some people don't want
20 apartment houses in their neighborhoods or
21 whatever or they have issues with that, but
22 it's just something to consider because a
23 couple with one or two kids in a house that
24 used to house 15 or 20 people just don't --
25 with an extended a family the way people
1 used to live these houses were built with a
2 different intent in mind and the only way
3 you could do it is to break them up and
4 alter them into -- to save them, especially
5 like the big Victorians and stuff. They are
6 impossible to heat unless you are wealthy.
7 Have a good night.
8 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mr. Dobson.
9 Marie Schumacher.
10 MS. SCHUMACHER: Good evening. Marie
11 Schumacher, city resident and member of the
12 Taxpayers' group. I'd like to begin tonight
13 by asking Mrs. Evans, with the permission of
14 the chair, whether she knows who will be
15 responding to the NEPA Alliance request for
16 stimulus projects by the 31st of January and
17 whether or not the public/taxpayers will be
18 allowed to comment on the projects prior to
19 submittal to NEPA. May I, Mr. Chair?
20 MR. MCGOFF: Please.
21 MS. EVANS: I haven't received any
22 response to the letter that was sent on
23 behalf of council to Mr. Brazil. As you
24 indicated, we have a January 31 deadline,
25 but I do agree with you that there should be
1 community input because who better knows the
3 MS. SCHUMACHER: Indeed. Thank you.
4 And I would like if someone, maybe Kay,
5 could find out when we expect the 2007 audit
6 to be available on-line? That would be very
7 nice. The others ones are on-line. I'd
8 also like to recommend that Mr. Courtright
9 as liaison with the police department add a
10 daily incident log to the website. The
11 Borough of Dickson City's website would
12 provide an excellent template.
13 Next week I plan, God Lord willing,
14 to speak on the state of the city from a
15 taxpayers' view. I would urge Mrs. Gatelli
16 to bring Pennsylvania Economy League, PEL,
17 to a council caucus to explain why their
18 revenue and expenditure projections have not
19 been updated to include the years 2008, 2009
20 and beyond. Certainly for the money they
21 are being paid with our state tax dollars
22 they should have presented an updated
23 Recovery Plan as they originally expired in
24 2005 long before now. Taxpayers have a
25 right to know the cost of a structurally
1 balanced budget, one where expenses match
2 revenue without borrowing.
3 Some of troubling things I see
4 include the fact that the city's population
5 declined by about 3,500 since the last
6 census. An almost identical number have
7 dropped below the poverty line. We now
8 stand with 40 percent of the population
9 unable to contribute 20 percent below the
10 poverty line and another 20 percent over 65,
11 most of whom are living on fixed incomes.
12 Over 4,000 housing units are not occupied.
13 The 2009 budget is balanced by using
14 a one-time windfall courtesy of the Single
15 Tax Office mismanagement. What is going to
16 balance the budget next year? Are taxes are
17 go to be raise and, if so, how much?
18 Whatever the amount it is unaffordable. I
19 always chuckle when the price of a private
20 commodity rises and the media goes
21 ballistic. However, when a government
22 raises taxes we don't hear a similar outcry.
23 When the price of gas rises we drive less.
24 When the cost of medicine rises we lose --
25 we switch to generics while others do
1 without. When food cost rise we change our
2 menus. With property taxes there is no
3 recourse. You pay or you lose your home.
4 It is not too early to start talking
5 about how spending may be reduced and get
6 PEL into this chamber for a heart-to-heart
7 is step number one. Mrs. Gatelli, I am
8 looking to you as financial chair to get PEL
9 in here within the next six weeks. Thank
11 MR. MCGOFF: I will pass that along
12 to Mrs. Gatelli.
13 MS. SCHUMACHER: Thank you. And
14 Mr. Courtright, too, since -- on the police
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: Can I ask her? Can
17 you just explain to me what you wanted
18 again, I apologize.
19 MS. SCHUMACHER: No need to
20 apologize, I'd like to see an incident
21 report put on the website. If you go to
22 Dickson City Borough they have an excellent
23 website and every day there is a log --
24 MR. COURTRIGHT: Of all the
1 MS. SCHUMACHER: Absolutely.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know that
3 that would be cumbersome maybe for Scranton.
4 We may do 60 some thousand calls a year, the
5 entire county doesn't do that combined.
6 MS. SCHUMACHER: If they break them
7 down by day, the city doesn't report it --
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: I'll ask, but I
9 think that's going to be a tough one.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Whoever would like to
12 MR. TALIMINI: Joe Talimini, City of
13 Scranton. Number one, have we heard
14 anything about the five and a half million
15 dollars that was appropriated from the tax
17 MS. EVANS: Not yet.
18 MR. TALIMINI: Not yet, but the
19 $5.5 million is the budget, is it not?
20 MS. EVANS: Yes, it is.
21 MR. TALIMINI: What happens if we
22 don't get that money?
23 MR. COURTRIGHT: We are in trouble.
24 MS. EVANS: Certainly it will --
25 MR. TALIMINI: More trouble you mean?
1 MS. EVANS: Yes. Yes. And I would
2 think that the city would have to look
3 towards either borrowing more money or
4 raising taxes.
5 MR. TALIMINI: Okay. One other major
6 question that I have, does the council have
7 oversight on all of the city authorities?
8 MS. EVANS: No.
9 MS. FANUCCI: No.
10 MR. TALIMINI: They are autonomous
11 organizations and who did they answer to?
12 MS. EVANS: The members of the boards
13 are of all of authorities are appointed by
14 the mayor.
15 MR. TALIMINI: So the boards
16 themselves, the directors of the boards or
17 the directors of the authorities they answer
18 to the mayor only?
19 MS. EVANS: It would seem so, but
20 they all, for example, provide council with
21 -- well, not all of them I should say, but
22 there are a number of boards and commissions
23 that provide council with minutes of their
24 meetings and they are to provide council and
25 the mayor with a copy of their audits.
1 MR. TALIMINI: Oh, okay. Thank you
2 very much. Mr. Courtright, it's your turn,
3 it's a long-standing thing, but I haven't
4 been there, I asked you to look into the
5 cage situation with the police cars?
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes. Boy, I hope I
7 didn't throw it out. I had it. I have it
8 here somewhere. I hope I didn't throw it
10 MR. TALIMINI: And also the staffing
11 because there is a questioning about
12 availability of policemen at certain hours
13 of the night when they really are needed.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: That I have right
15 here. I wrote all over it, but I'll read it
16 to you the best I could. You can take a
17 look at it, I was writing on it. It's been
18 several weeks since you asked me.
19 MR. TALIMINI: Right.
20 MR. COURTRIGHT: And I haven't spoke
21 to you on it. I just went the particular
22 evening or the weekend prior -- or after, I
23 apologize, after you asked me on that
24 particular night we had a command car, we
25 had a PS-1, PS-2, that's patrol supervisor,
1 PS-3. We had no East 6, no West 6. We had
2 a Central City 2 and Central City 3. We had
3 a GR-1. No GR-2. We had a South 1 and
4 South 2. No South 3. We had a West 1 and
5 West 2. No West 3. We had a North 1, and a
6 Highway 3, Highway 4. And that's it. All
7 of those with the exception of East 6, West
8 6, GR-2, South 3 and West 3 and North 3 that
9 were on that evening have cages, so that's
10 six of them did not have cages. Again, I
11 just took the weekend -- a day on the
12 weekend after you had asked me. It changes
13 on a daily basis.
14 MR. TALIMINI: Of course, you are
15 well aware of the fact there are numerous
16 occasions when there is no transport vehicle
17 available, they have to call eight.
18 MR. COURTRIGHT: Probably every day.
19 Yeah, I did see that.
20 MR. TALIMINI: I just wondered if you
21 would look into the staffing on a regular
22 basis for the police department. We never
23 seem to have enough at the hours that are
24 needed. I'm sure there are overburdened
25 with the daytime patrols which, you know, I
1 never could figure out why there were cops
2 on duty in the daytime.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: I think the problem
4 is this is that, you know, they went to an 8
5 to 4 shift, which the police were always
6 been in favor for and that helped out
7 somewhat. I think the bottom line is this,
8 I don't know how else to say it other than
9 we need more police.
10 MR. TALIMINI: Absolutely.
11 MR. COURTRIGHT: I don't know any
12 another answer. I don't think altering the
13 shifts anymore is going to really do much.
14 You can't, you know, the strip the day
15 shift. In days gone by the day shift didn't
16 handle the quality of calls as maybe the
17 second shift or the third shift does, but
18 crime has changed and people have changed
19 and they are handling more calls I think
20 than they used to.
21 MR. TALIMINI: Oh, absolutely, and
22 for a city with no crime we are running a
23 very close second to Wilkes-Barre right now.
24 One of the things I would like
25 council to consider, when you're coming off
1 the expressway onto Mulberry Street and you
2 get to Wyoming Avenue, there is an absolute
3 need for the left-turn signal there. That's
4 just about impossible to make that.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: That's in the works
6 for quite awhile now. Whenever PennDOT is
7 involved it takes awhile.
8 MR. TALIMINI: Well, whenever PennDOT
9 or DPW is involved everything takes a while.
10 When is the Comcast contract up for renewal?
11 MS. EVANS: It expires at the end of
12 2009 and negotiations already began I
13 believe in November 2008 between
14 representatives of Comcast and
15 representative of the city, specifically,
16 the mayor and the business administration.
17 They are looking for a 15-year extension of
18 their contract.
19 MR. TALIMINI: Isn't there supposed
20 to be a public hearing on that that Comcast
21 has to allow.
22 MS. EVANS: I would believe so, but
23 we have quite a lengthy period of time here
24 before anything is settled I would think.
25 MR. TALIMINI: Because there are
1 quite a few people who are very
2 disenchanted. As you well know, Comcast is
3 under investigation by the FCC for several
4 different things.
5 The only thing I'm going to say
6 about the KOZ extension, I saw our $300,000
7 a year cowboy here, please, use a little
8 common sense. We can afford another KOZ
9 like we can afford five more mayors. I just
10 don't see it happening. We have got a
11 downtown area, we've got a lot of vacancies
12 downtown in the office buildings. Right now
13 you got Circuit City, what, a major, major
14 warehouse which is going to sit idle because
15 nobody can get it. If they are going to do
16 something let them bring some business into
17 the city and put them in the offices that
18 are were available. We don't need for
20 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
21 MR. TALIMINI: What we need is tax
23 MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Jackowitz.
24 MR. JACKOWITZ: Bill Jackowitz, South
25 Scranton resident, member of the Taxpayers'
1 Association. In regards to Mr. Talimini
2 asked one of the questions I was going to
3 ask about this 5.5 million. Can someone
4 take a note for Councilwoman Gatelli, I
5 would like for her next week to have -- is
6 there a backup plan, I would like for her to
7 explain whether there is a backup plan in
8 place if we do get the 5.5 million since
9 it's already budgeted, I would like to know
10 what the backup plan is, how we are going to
11 makeup that 5.5 million that's budgeted into
12 the budget already.
13 You know, we may only get two
14 million, so we are 3.5 million short, so I
15 would just like to know what the backup plan
16 is and if you could pass that onto
17 Mrs. Gatelli for me. Okay, as far as Mrs.
18 Gatelli, Mrs. Gatelli last week challenged
19 me and she did give back $625 and I
20 appreciate that. You know, but then again,
21 she has missed today's meeting. She is in
22 Washington, DC when she should be in
23 Scranton, Pennsylvania, at the city council
25 Now, in the last three years there
1 have been 19 meetings cancelled in the last
2 three years. Nineteen. I'm not counting
3 August meetings and I'm not counting
4 Christmas meetings, I'm talking about
5 meetings of January, February, June, July,
6 September, November, those are the meetings
7 I'm talking about, so there is 19 meetings
8 and I'm not even talking about the meetings
9 that city council members did not attend.
10 Now, if I'm wrong, correct me, but I
11 understand -- my understanding is that
12 council members have been paid for every one
13 of these meetings. So we got 19 meetings
14 cancelled, we got a vacation, plus we got
15 council members who miss meetings whenever
16 they want to. So, me as a taxpayer I do not
17 feel that taxpayers should be paying council
19 Okay, now, getting back to last
20 week's meeting as far as salaries go,
21 Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, city council the
22 president makes $6,800. The members make
23 $6,300. Reading, Pennsylvania, the
24 president makes $5,500, the members make
25 $5,000. Erie, the president makes $7,500,
1 the members make $6,000. Allentown, the
2 president makes $6,149, members make $6,149.
3 Scranton, president makes $12,500, members
4 make $12,500. Last week we attempted to
5 raise the salary to $20,000 which would be
6 $14,000 over what other cities of comparable
7 size is making. That is not fair to the
8 taxpayers. $20,000 for a part-time job, and
9 you can roll your eyes all you want up
10 there, it was on the agenda, it was up for
11 vote, introduction vote, it was there. You
12 can't deny it. $20,000 is ridiculous.
13 Okay, the 2007 audit, I'm glad to
14 see that it's down to $95 million, I guess,
15 but we all know that the audit is not
16 accurate. It's a lot higher. Like I said,
17 there is a lot missing from the audit. No
18 one wants to accept the blame for the audit
19 being late, but yet we all know the audit
20 was late, but no one would step forward and
21 say, yes, we were late getting our
22 information. Yes, we were late. As a
23 matter of fact, they actually attempted to
24 blame city council for it, so if I was on
25 city council I would be jumping up and down
1 and screaming to the authorities,
2 Mr. McGoff, they tried to blame city
3 council. Again, I would be jumping up and
4 down in the authorities and saying, "Hey, we
5 have been talking about this for eight
7 Citizens, speakers have been coming
8 here week after week after week, but yet no
9 one will accept the blame for it.
10 Mrs. Fanucci tried to accept the blame last
11 week, but she was a year off, but I
12 appreciate that. You did try to accept the
13 blame for that.
14 As far as -- okay, last week council
15 members actually proved me right because you
16 guys were saying that you don't get along
17 together, the caucus meetings are terrible,
18 nothing ever gets accomplished, and
19 Mrs. Fanucci is shaking her head, yes, so I
20 think she finally agrees with me on
22 MS. FANUCCI: Oh, my God, that is
24 MR. JACKOWITZ: Although, you did
25 agree with me last week.
1 MS. FANUCCI: I agreed with you last
2 week --
3 MR. JACKOWITZ: You may have missed
4 -- yes, you did.
5 MS. FANUCCI: That is true.
6 MR. JACKOWITZ: I apologize. I
8 MS. FANUCCI: And I think that was
9 our second agreement, so I think we are
10 starting to make amends.
11 MR. JACKOWITZ: I think we are.
12 MS. FANUCCI: I think we are turning
14 MR. JACKOWITZ: I think we are. I
15 think we are going in the right track here.
16 Yeah, I really do. So, but anyway, all I
17 ask for is some leadership qualities, some
18 understanding, working together,
19 cooperation, that's all I ever ask for.
20 Maybe sometimes I'm a little bit too blunt,
21 maybe sometimes in the words of Councilwoman
22 Fanucci I'm sarcastic.
23 MS. FANUCCI: A little.
24 MR. JACKOWITZ: But, all I'm trying
25 to do is make this a better city for
1 everybody, so let's all get together, let's
2 all get along, we have a new president, you
3 know, nothing personal, I just don't agree
4 with a lot of the politics.
5 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you,
6 Mr. Jackowitz. Mr. Ancherani?
7 MR. ANCHERANI: I hope I don't get
8 the same look because some of this is going
9 to be what Mr. Jackowitz said, Mr. McGoff.
10 Last week at the meeting --
11 MR. MCGOFF: I'll try a different
13 MR. ANCHERANI: Oh, Nelson Ancherani.
14 Good evening. Last week at the meeting
15 there was much opposition to raises placed
16 on the agenda for council members. Raises
17 would have been $7,500 to $20,000 a year FOR
18 a one-day a week, two to four-hour council
19 meeting. Imagine getting a $7,500 raise for
20 a one-day a week meeting. If council met
21 every week at $12,500 a year, which is the
22 current wage of council members, it would be
23 over 231 for that meeting or 115 an hour
24 based on 52 weeks and if it was a two-hour
25 meeting. Figure into that raise to $20,000
1 the weekly meeting of council if it met
2 every week, no cancels, no recesses, 52
3 meetings a year, the weekly salary would be
4 $385 for that two to four-hour meeting.
5 Now, I know Mrs. Gatelli says that
6 they, the council members, spend time at the
7 office outside of the meeting preparing, but
8 I would be willing to bet that the
9 preparation for the meetings combined with
10 the meeting doesn't total eight hours, which
11 is a normal workday for most people.
12 Mr. McGoff once said that he was
13 going to have to do more homework on agenda
14 items before they got to the meetings, so
15 far my belief, council is getting a D minus
16 on preparation for council meetings. Prime
17 example was last week's meeting, watching
18 Council President McGoff explain how the
19 raises issue got on the agenda.
20 Anyway, whose responsibility is it
21 to get the agenda --- items onto the agenda,
22 the mayor's or council's?
23 Again, I'm going by the official
24 Scranton, PA, website, so I'm going to be
25 talking about the cancellations, recess and
1 the vacations of council members. The
2 official Scranton, PA, website and I didn't
3 have access to the 1990's meetings that
4 Mrs. Gatelli spoke about having recessed in
5 August and December, I went by the website
6 and found one cancellation in 2005; July 7,
7 2005. No recesses or vacations.
8 In 2006, the first year of the
9 Gatelli presidency on council, there were
10 five cancelled meetings and five recessed or
11 vacation days for a total of ten days off.
12 2007, second year of the Gatelli
13 presidency, there were seven cancelled days
14 and five recessed or vacation days.
15 In 2008, the first year of the
16 McGoff presidency, there were nine cancelled
17 meetings and four recesses or vacation days
18 for a total of 13 days off, so let's figure
19 out how much a council meeting was worth in
20 each of those years: 2005, 245 a meeting;
21 2006, 286 a meeting; 2007, 300 a meeting;
22 and 2008, $380 a meeting.
23 I have been working on the salaries
24 and wages of new hires and the raises. I'm
25 not finished, but partway through, and
1 cumulatively for 2009 I've come up with
2 $17,081,967. That's maybe half of the
3 budget. I can say on that page 64 like Ann
4 Marie Stulgis brought out on the Recovery
5 Plan, all city employees were not to get
6 raises. Here is $17,081,000 that's all in
7 violation of the Recovery Plan.
8 We are on a path with the way the
9 economy is, it looks like we are going to
10 get slammed really good, so I would think as
11 you council members go along that you watch
12 what you vote on and hopefully you will
13 think about us taxpayers. Thank you.
14 MS. KRAKE: Good evening, Council.
15 My name is Nancy Krake. First of all, I
16 would like to say that the Single Tax Office
17 has returned any delinquent city real estate
18 to the City Treasurer's Office. If you are
19 able to pay your 2008 real estate taxes
20 please come into the Treasurer's Office
21 before April 1. You will avoid the
22 25 percent penalty that NCC charges and that
23 money, as I always bring up, does not go
24 into the city coffers, so if you are able to
25 it's a very good idea to pay us, in fact,
1 your county would also be delinquent, your
2 school district, but you should pay us first
3 because we use a collection agency, they do
5 I would like to bring up a few
6 things about the budget. First of all, on
7 page two it says, "In 2008 the tax collector
8 identified a significant amount of tax
9 revenue idle in their internal statements."
10 I find these verbs hysterical
11 actually. Idle. "These funds generated a
12 forensic audit," the funds were to blame,
13 "with an expected completion date at the
14 conclusion in 2008. According to the
15 preliminary accounting records, the city may
16 be entitled to 5.5 million in revenue."
17 I would like to know from what year
18 or years this 5.5 million comes from and
19 didn't anybody miss it? We have an
20 extremely expensive accounting firm courtesy
21 of Governor Rendell and the Pennsylvania
22 Economy League that apparently didn't miss
23 it at all, and it's a pretty magical number
24 5.5 million, in November of 2005 the
25 Scranton Times reports, this is an article
1 about Mayor Doherty's 2006 budget, it says,
2 "The budget does not address the recent
3 arbitration decision against the city for
4 5.5 million for failing to renew the sewer
5 management contract with American Water
7 Then it goes onto say, "The budget
8 also grew because Mr. Doherty increased the
9 amount he would seek in tax anticipation
10 notes, which are short-term loans
11 municipalities use to cover expenses before
12 tax payments start to come in by 5.5 million
13 to 14.5 million."
14 I think there is lot going on here
15 that someone should definitely take a look
16 at. I'd also like to point out that there
17 is a 35 percent savings in health care for
18 clerical employees in the 2009 budget. I
19 would like to know exactly where these
20 figures come from, how they were determined
21 and where the savings will be seen. When I
22 say that I mean in what group will the
23 savings be seen from.
24 Also, in the final page we are
25 missing the actual received column between
1 2008 and 2009, it's on page 78. When the
2 budgets are prepared they always say how
3 much was actually taken in up until usually
4 July of that year, and that's not in here.
5 I would also like to say that the
6 increase in clerical pay is because there
7 are increased hours. There was also a 50
8 cent increase in raises, but I don't think
9 that accounts for much because our health
10 care costs have dramatically increased.
11 I would also like to remind everyone
12 that in then Councilman Doherty's first
13 budget he eliminated almost 30 clerical jobs
14 and over the years there have been over 30
15 clerical jobs eliminated. That was his
16 first budget that he eliminated clerical
17 jobs to pay for tens of thousands of dollars
18 in increases for incoming cabinet members
19 and appointed positions that Mr. Ancherani
20 just pointed out cumulatively well over
21 $10 million at this point. That would
22 account for the 26 million increases in the
23 budget since he took office, that would be
24 half of that.
25 And apparently this mayor who has
1 based everything on his failed Recovery Plan
2 according to Mr. Quinn we now have junk bond
3 status which he proudly proclaimed he was
4 taking us away from in his first year in
5 office, but that didn't last very long.
6 I'd also like to mention that
7 theoretically Act 47 is about financial
8 recovery, I just have one more sentence
9 here. Thank you. State Representative
10 Kevin Murphy has promised to help amend Act
11 47. He worked under this, under Mayor
12 Doherty, he was deceived by Mayor Doherty
13 and saddled by his abuse of this law, and
14 Act 47 is what keeps us oppressed in the
15 distressed city status. Thank you.
16 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Krake.
17 Anyone else? Mrs. Evans?
18 MS. EVANS: Good evening.
19 MR. MCGOFF: I'm sorry, I did want
20 before we went further, just for the record,
21 to indicate that Attorney Williams is
22 replacing Attorney Minora today. Attorney
23 Minora had some surgery and is unable to
24 attend this evening. Thank you.
25 MS. EVANS: Good evening. This is an
1 historic day in our country and millions of
2 Americans are filled with great hope despite
3 the weighty problems that envelope us. We
4 are inspired and motivated by a new
5 president to solve today's painful shared
6 problems in order to create a better
7 stronger tomorrow. This national commitment
8 is one I hope that even local government
9 will exercise at home in Scranton not only
10 in 2009, but in the years ahead as we seek
11 financial stability for our city and it's
13 Following the exit conference of the
14 2007 independent audit, a copy of general
15 fund balance sheets was provided to city
16 council on January 14. The 22 pages
17 received by council represent an incomplete
18 copy of the final audit which should contain
19 over 90 pages and is missing the sections on
20 long-term debt of the city and it's
21 authorities. I am anxious to examine the
22 full audit at which time I will report to
23 you the accurate figures and financial state
24 of our city.
25 Although, I have addressed delayed
1 audits many times over the last several
2 years, even as recently as last week, it
3 bears repeating. The auditing firm of
4 Robert Rossi and Company is not at fault for
5 the overdue laggard audit. During my first
6 year on council, I brought Mr. Rossi to a
7 public caucus in order to discuss the
8 tardiness of the audit and to direct his
9 firm to perform future audits on a more
10 aggressive time line. During that caucus,
11 he explained that he was unable to obtain
12 required information. Requests were sent to
13 the business administrator, municipal
14 authorities, the tax office, etcetera, but
15 the auditor's hands were tied because these
16 entities did not respond in a timely manner.
17 As a result of that caucus, I
18 realized that the auditing firm was at the
19 mercy of those who hold the information,
20 those being the authorities, the tax office,
21 the business administrator, Northeast Credit
22 and Collections, etcetera. In my five years
23 as a councilwoman the city audit has always
24 been late, although, this particular audit
25 has set a new record.
1 On February 11, 2008, for example,
2 the auditor provided to the business
3 administrator a two-page list of information
4 required to issue 2007 audited financial
5 statements by May 31, a timetable was
6 included. By May 27, three and a half
7 months later, the business administrator
8 still had not completed and submitted most
9 of the required information.
10 Further, the Redevelopment, Parking
11 and Sewer Authorities also had failed to
12 submit their required audits. The mayor,
13 business administrator and council's office
14 were all notified by the auditor of the lack
15 of cooperation from the business
16 administrator and city authorities.
17 Unfortunately, council's many
18 requests for timely audit information have
19 fallen on deaf ears for these five years.
20 Why is the information withheld for
21 prolonged time periods? Your guess is as
22 good as ours, perhaps the administration and
23 the authorities don't like the auditing firm
24 since the administration seems to have been
25 opposed to council bidding process and
1 hiring of this company. Perhaps another
2 firm to whom the administration has ties
3 would have received better cooperation; or
4 perhaps there are reasons to prolong an
5 audit so that the most current financial
6 snapshot of the city will not be available
7 to banks as the city, boroughs and those who
8 issue bonds and securities as the city and
9 it's authorities pursue financial
10 agreements. Perhaps, it is simply failure
11 to do one's job or perhaps a system of
12 management controls is not in place or is
13 not operating. You cannot manage what you
14 do not monitor.
15 I don't have the answer, but I do
16 know that authority board members and the
17 business administrator were appointed by the
18 mayor. NCC or northeast credit and
19 collections was renewed by the mayor for a
20 third city contract without the knowledge
21 and approval of council. When the mayor
22 wanted to sell delinquent taxes and the DPW,
23 the Redevelopment Authority responded and
24 complied. When the mayor wanted three new
25 garages, the Parking Authority responded and
1 complied. When the mayor needed to pay off
2 American Anglican, which became American
3 Water Services, the Sewer Authority
4 responded and paid the debt. When he wished
5 to give away UDAG money OECD responded and
6 complied even without the knowledge and
7 approval of city council.
8 When he looks to give out political
9 jobs, the Sewer, Parking and Housing
10 authorities seem to hire his applicants.
11 Even the State Office of DCED appears to
12 respond to him by changing it's statements
13 about a late audit without providing a
15 Now, who do you believe that the
16 authorities, Mr. Renda, and NCC will respond
17 to? Not the auditing firm, and certainly
18 not city council, but history proves they
19 respond to the hand that feeds them.
20 At last week's meeting, I asked my
21 colleagues to consider an amendment to File
22 of Council No. 82 of 2007 which was provided
23 to each of them, the original ordinance
24 approves penalty, interest and fee schedules
25 for collection of delinquent real estate
1 taxes. Now, I had intended to move this
2 amendment this evening and further discuss
3 it, but in the absence of Mrs. Gatelli I
4 prefer to postpone this discussion until and
5 the vote until next week's meeting.
6 There are two items on tonight's
7 agenda which I would like to address:
8 First, Item 7-H authorizing the mayor to
9 apply for and to execute a $4 million grant
10 for the owners and developers of the Connell
11 Building. The Connell Building should be
12 renovated. It's a magnificent downtown
13 structure that has been allowed to
14 deteriorate by it's previous owner.
15 However, the current owner has a history of
16 delinquent taxes. The 2004 and 2005 taxes
17 were paid at some point in time. The 2006,
18 7 and 8 taxes remained unpaid until our OECD
19 director recently pointed this out at which
20 time the 2006 and 2007 taxes were paid. To
21 date, only 2008 taxes are owed which must be
22 paid before the city applies for this
23 $4 million grant. The project cost is over
24 23 million and the owners/developers are
25 investing over $8 million of their own
1 money. Approximately 2/3 of the money will
2 come from public tax dollars.
3 The city has begun to construct a
4 garage next to the Connell building for use
5 by it's tenants and a defined number of
6 downtown employees. The garage will connect
7 to the building for easy access by the
8 Connell building residents and office and
9 retail tenants. Close to $4 million of the
10 garage's worth will be pledged as the
11 matching grant to the $4 million to be
12 obtained from the State of Pennsylvania.
13 It also seems that one of the
14 partners in the Connell Building is part of
15 the Wolfington firm which was paid by this
16 administration to lobby the state
17 legislature to sell the South Side Sports
18 Complex. This is information for your
20 Next, Item 7-I. The City of
21 Scranton will not accept verbal or anonymous
22 verbal requests for information. Scranton
23 open's record officer will accept only
24 written requests for access to records.
25 However, the state Right-to-Know law does
1 not require or mandate that verbal requests
2 for information must be denied, rather, it
3 is the City of Scranton who has decided to
4 deny verbal requests and only respond to the
5 written requests which can intimidate some
6 citizens. Certainly written requests make
7 the process more orderly, but verbal
8 requests are granted to municipalities by
9 the state and I believe verbal requests
10 should be permitted.
11 Government should be open and
12 accountable to citizens. It took many, many
13 years for Pennsylvania to change it's law
14 which had been one of the worst in the
15 United States. When the door is finally
16 opened Scranton wants to close and attach a
17 doorbell. This administration should not
18 make the proces of obtaining information
19 more difficult for citizens. It should
20 accept both written and verbal requests as
21 permitted by law, state law.
22 Finally, I have requests for the
23 week. A letter to Mr. Brazil, DPW, please
24 be sure to plow the one-way street that's
25 located between 127 and 129 West Parker
1 Street in the rear of Hollister Avenue
2 during each snow event. Eight families
3 reside on this block and the snow has rarely
4 been plowed through the decades.
5 And, Attorney Williams, would you
6 please remind Attorney Minora that council
7 awaits a response to the PEG Channel
8 Oversight Committee's questions.
9 MR. WILLIAMS: I'm sorry, could you
10 repeat that?
11 MS. EVANS: Yes. We are awaiting his
12 response to the PEG Channel Oversight
13 Committee's questions.
14 MR. WILLIAMS: I will do that.
15 MS. EVANS: Thank you. A letter to
16 Mr. Seitzinger, a city resident recommends
17 that in an effort to think green or go
18 green, hardwood floors, windows, doors,
19 cabinets, light fixtures, etcetera, should
20 be sold by auction prior to the demolition
21 of a structure. There would be less garbage
22 and debris in the landfills, items will be
23 used once again in other homes, and the
24 monies raised through auction could help to
25 cover the cost of demolition. It is a
1 win-win-win practice which, I am told, is
2 exercised in other cities.
3 And then finally, Neil, because of
4 the haste with which some of the speakers
5 address council with their problems I wasn't
6 able to take down accurately what they were
7 looking for. I know there were pothole
8 requests in West Scranton and also the
9 request that had been made by Mrs. Krake
10 involving the health care figures and what
11 group will recognize those savings,
12 etcetera, if you could please listen to the
13 tape and get those questions correctly
14 formulated and sent to the appropriate
15 parties, and that's it.
16 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Evans.
17 Mrs. Fanucci.
18 MS. FANUCCI: Yes. I actually was
19 going to address that question for Mrs.
20 Krake about the 35 percent savings in health
21 care in the budget and what group will the
22 savings come from, so I think that's
23 something we definitely need to know.
24 I also would like -- I made a motion
25 last week for a letter, but I'm going to
1 change that in light of Mr. Ancherani and
2 Nancy this week, I would like to send a
3 letter to Lisa Moran, and I would like to
4 know what all employees were paid, their
5 base pay, and what the ended up getting paid
6 after overtime and things as such for the
7 past seven years, for each employee in the
8 city. I'd like to know what they started
9 off at, what they were supposed to be paid,
10 and what ended up to be paid at the end and
11 what we paid out. And also healthcare wise
12 I'd like to know what each person has paid
13 for single health care, for family health
14 care, which will help us in understanding a
15 little bit more on that 35 percent savings
16 if actually that is something that's
18 And I was going to speak on the
19 Connell Building, but Mrs. Evans covered
20 that, so, I'm good. Thank you.
21 MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Courtright?
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: I spoke with
23 Jeannie Suetta yesterday and she said she
24 was going to be here and she is not here.
25 MS. FANUCCI: She is probably
1 watching though.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: If she is watching
3 she will be calling me for sure. I have
4 your phone number for your, Jeannie, so you
5 told me not to call you, you were coming
6 here today, so I will get ahold of you and
7 give you the phone number.
8 Kay, I would ask if we can send a
9 letter to Mr. Seitzinger, we have been
10 absent an animal control officer for quite
11 some time now. I don't know, I'm not saying
12 he is not here, but I don't believe he has a
13 vehicle, so he can't do his job and -- or he
14 is not here, but anyway he is absent, and so
15 all of the calls come into the police
16 department and if they can handle them I
17 believe the Humane Society is sick of
18 handling our calls, and also, I would like
19 to know from him what's the status on hiring
20 a part-time animal control officer that was
21 put in the budget.
22 We had an unfortunate incident,
23 there has been several incidents. We had an
24 unfortunate one happen just recently, a dog
25 was left in an apartment and abandoned with
1 no heat and food and froze to death and
2 died, and we don't need that happening, but
3 I would like to thank Officer Paul Reed, I
4 believe he made an arrest of the individual
5 that left that animal there and I thank him
6 for that, so that we don't have any more
7 incidents such as this happening we need to
8 get an animal control officer and a vehicle
9 for that officer, and again, find out about
10 the part-time officer.
11 I'm looking at bridges. Mrs. Suetta
12 brought that up, I went and looked I don't
13 know if they did them today, but they
14 haven't cleared the walks on the bridges and
15 to be perfectly honest with you, I know what
16 happens is they plow -- they plow the
17 bridges and when they plow the bridges all
18 of the snow that they plow goes up on the
19 sidewalk, and if the DPW doesn't get there
20 really quick it freezes, and then the only
21 way to get out there is they have to go with
22 a Bobcat or a backhoe or something and chop
23 it up, so I think we need to find a better
24 way of handling this because it's every
25 bridge. It's not just the one she had
1 brought up. It's all of the bridges.
2 And I haven't gotten an answer, I
3 believe we sent a letter, but I haven't
4 gotten an answer about that property at the
5 corner of Hyde Park and Jackson Street, and
6 as I was coming here tonight I happened to
7 go by there, these people that have the
8 parking lot from Jackson Street Baptist
9 Church, they have to come out of the parking
10 lot and walk on the road even when there is
11 not snow on there because whatever -- when
12 they tore the building down, whatever gravel
13 they put there has migrated down into the
14 sidewalk and there is no sidewalk literally.
15 It's crumbling and there is all gravel on
16 it, and the city tore the building down.
17 We've got to do something. With so
18 many of the properties that are up for sale
19 now, you know, in the city, the realtors
20 don't -- when the owner is not there the
21 realtors don't take care of the property and
22 you can go through the city and see hundreds
23 of houses that still don't have the
24 sidewalks cleared. I don't know what we can
25 do about that, but I hope we can do
1 something about that, but I haven't received
2 an answer back from that one corner of Hyde
3 Park and Jackson, so could we resend that?
4 And I believe that's it. That's all I have.
5 Thank you.
6 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. I attended
7 the audit exit conference and specifically
8 asked the auditors what could be done to
9 expedite the audit process, you know, in the
10 future and their answer was quite simple,
11 they said: Please do your best to see that
12 certain people provide audits whatever on
13 time and to take a more proactive role in
14 doing that, and I know that, you know,
15 Mrs. Evans specifically and others have, you
16 know, on council have attempted to do that
17 in the past. I don't know what we can do it
18 be more proactive, but certainly for the
19 coming year we should probably make a more
20 concerted effort to see that information is
21 provided to the auditing firm in a more
22 expeditious manner.
23 I also asked if there were any
24 particular agencies, whatever, that were
25 chronically a problem and they did mention
1 four, the Single Tax Office, NCC, the
2 Parking Authority and the Redevelopment
3 Authority. They did not mention the
4 business administrator or the city itself,
5 but the other four were specifically
6 mentioned. So, for the record, the auditing
7 firm did not question Mr. Renda or did not
8 mention him or the business administrator
9 for being tardy with or chronically tardy
10 with information.
11 MS. EVANS: Mr. McGoff, if I might
12 though, I have the verification of what I'm
13 saying. These are copies of all of the
14 notices that were sent to us to, the mayor,
15 to Mr. Renda, throughout 2008, and it will
16 backup what I have said at the meeting
17 tonight, that these tell quite a story.
18 MR. MCGOFF: I'm not -- I wasn't
19 questioning your voracity, I was merely
20 stating what the auditors, you know, had
21 said at the exit conference.
22 Also, I had a meeting with Rob
23 Farrell and another member of -- an
24 administrator at the University of Scranton
25 concerning the Mulberry Street project. I
1 said that at a previous meeting that when
2 I -- after I attended that I would report
3 back on what they were -- what was intended.
4 The Mulberry Street Project, the first phase
5 of it for the University of Scranton, is
6 going to be begin in the Spring of '09.
7 They will begin to work on Mulberry Street
8 starting at Jefferson Avenue and work
9 towards Clay Avenue. The intent, as they
10 said to me, was to make it cleaner, safer
11 and more esthetically pleasing for both the
12 City and the University.
13 Things that are included in the
14 initial phase are signage that we had seen
15 or at least examples of it for the corner of
16 Jefferson and Mulberry, and also further up
17 on Mulberry Street sidewalks to be expanded
18 to make them more walker friendly, I guess.
19 Court traffic to be -- they are looking to
20 alter some of the courts so that it's
21 one-way traffic instead of two-way traffic.
22 I know, I can't remember what court it was,
23 the one that specifically I use on occasion
24 that goes up behind the chapel, the Madonna
25 Del Strata Chapel, which right now they say
1 is a problem because it is two-way traffic
2 and exiting onto Mulberry Street is a
3 problem at times, and so they are talking
4 about some possibility of changing some of
5 the court traffic.
6 The biggest thing that they are now
7 actually engaged in is new lighting along
8 Mulberry Street, but along with that they
9 are also putting in new lighting between
10 Mulberry and Vine Streets from Madison
11 Avenue to Irving Avenue so that that area
12 will be, again, brighter and go along with
13 their clean and safe mantra.
14 Also, with having spoken with Mr. --
15 they have spoken with Mr. Santolli and have
16 been working with him to trim trees in that
17 area as well so that the lighting is exposed
18 more and, therefore, brighter and hopefully
19 make it again cleaner and safer.
20 In addition, the initial commitment
21 of money was for $1.1 million. That has now
22 been expanded as the project has been
23 expanded because the project now will be the
24 creation of commercial properties along
25 Mulberry Street which will when completed
1 hopefully house taxpaying retail
2 establishments. Also, additional parking
3 using -- there will be some parking lost on
4 Mulberry Street, but they are talking about
5 putting additional parking between Mulberry
6 and Vine at some already existent property
7 that they have and also behind some of these
8 retail properties that would be metered
9 parking. All in all their projected cost
10 for this project is now approaching the six
11 to seven million dollar range, so that it's
12 gone from a simply changing some lighting
13 and streets to a very comprehensive project
14 along Mulberry Street.
15 In addition, they are also going to
16 in the spring begin or breaking ground on a
17 science center that will be built on what's
18 now the parking lot behind Aquinas Hall,
19 that science center will -- early estimates
20 are a $75 million project. They are looking
21 to spend somewhere over $80 million over the
22 course of the next few years on building and
23 improvements, and from that believe the city
24 receives just in licenses and fees and
25 permits and whatever somewhere around 1
1 percent of the cost, which depending upon
2 how much is spent in these projects, a
3 rather sizeable, you know, amount of money
4 for the City of Scranton, but that is what I
5 was, you know, given just information sake
6 specifically from Mulberry Street and for
7 that new science center. And there was
8 something else and I lost it. Next time.
9 Thank you.
10 MS. FANUCCI: There was something I
11 forgot, and I wanted to have a letter
12 drafted, sorry, Kay. I want to send a
13 letter to Harry Miller of PEL and ask when
14 we can expect the new Recovery Plan. I know
15 that they have been drafting it for quite
16 sometime now so I would like to know when we
17 could expect it and also what I want them to
18 specify outside of the Recovery Plan what we
19 would have to do in compliance to be non --
20 considered nondistressed anymore. What we
21 can do to get out of distressed status, but
22 in like an itemized list next to it instead
23 of having to go through the whole entire
24 Recovery Plan, I'd like to know specifics.
25 Each specific way to get out of a distressed
1 city status, so that maybe we could answer
2 some of questions for the people who are
3 always asking them, and that is all. Thank
5 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you. Prior to the
6 legislation, I would like to make a motion
7 to appoint Mr. Courtright as the temporary
8 Chair for Finance.
9 MS. EVANS: Second.
10 MR. MCGOFF: On the question. All in
11 favor signify by saying aye.
12 MS. EVANS: Aye.
13 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
15 MR. MCGOFF: Aye. Opposed? The
16 ayes have it and so moved.
17 MS. EVANS: I move to table Item 7-J,
18 I believe --
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
20 MS. EVANS: -- prior to it's reading.
21 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
22 MR. MCGOFF: It's been seconded. On
23 the question?
24 MS. EVANS: Yes. I just wanted to
25 explain why. I had read the backup for this
1 legislation, which wasn't entirely clear.
2 It includes a revision of the existing
3 traffic signal along Seventh Avenue and
4 Providence Road at the intersection of
5 Munchak Way and Olive Street to include, and
6 I'm quoting here, a new driveway approach
7 for the Ice Box driveway, which did not seem
8 to make great sense. This is one of the
9 busiest intersections in the city at times
10 during which Scranton High School opens and
11 closes daily. I'm asking to table this
12 until the Ice Box owner or representative
13 can explain exactly what is being done to
14 the driveway on Olive Street and how the
15 traffic signal revision will alleviate
16 traffic at this intersection.
17 MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else? All those
18 in favor signify by saying aye.
19 MS. EVANS: Aye.
20 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
22 MR. MCGOFF: Aye. Opposed? The
23 ayes have it and so moved.
24 MS. EVANS: Thank you.
25 MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Garvey?
1 MS. GARVEY: FIFTH ORDER. NO
2 BUSINESS AT THIS TIME. SIXTH ORDER. 6-A.
3 READING BY TITLE - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 59,
4 2009 - AN ORDINANCE - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR
5 AND OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO MAKE
6 A SUPPLEMENTAL APPROPRIATION FROM THE
7 CONTINGENCY ACCOUNT TO INCREASE THE SALARY
8 OF THE DEPUTY CITY CONTROLLER TO INCLUDE
9 $4,814.00 TO BE PAID AT REGULAR SALARY
10 INTERVALS BEGINNING JANUARY 1, 2009.
11 MR. MCGOFF: You heard reading by
12 title of Item 6-A, what is your pleasure?
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: I move that Item
14 6-A pass reading my title.
15 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
16 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? In
17 light of last week's meeting and what took
18 place concerning raises, I guess what I'm
19 asking is what is the rational for at this
20 point in time now including a raise for
21 another employee?
22 MS. EVANS: I can address that. It
23 isn't a raise. The raise that was actually
24 included in the salary of that individual
25 was eliminated by Mrs. Gatelli, but she had
1 also eliminated the pay increase that was
2 due the individual because of the increased
3 daily working hours at city hall, so that
4 this would have been the one individual who
5 did not receive compensation for working
6 extra hours daily.
7 MR. MCGOFF: Are there other -- this
8 is a nonunion position; correct?
9 MS. EVANS: That's correct.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Are there other nonunion
11 workers that are working extra hours that
12 have not been given -- afforded this raise
13 as well?
14 MS. EVANS: I think you would
15 probably have to speak to Mr. Renda or
16 Mrs. Gatelli about that because this was
17 their amendment. And I would assume that
18 both of them would have gone over the
19 salaries of all of the employees.
20 MS. FANUCCI: You don't have your
21 budget with you?
22 MS. EVANS: No.
23 MS. FANUCCI: Because you actually
24 eliminated this position in the budget. So
25 you would have the salary there; right? I'm
1 just wondering do you have the salary
2 amount? Do you have your budget with you?
3 MS. EVANS: No, I don't. That's at
5 MS. FANUCCI: Oh, okay. You
6 eliminated this so I was wondering --
7 MS. EVANS: Right.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Okay.
9 MS. EVANS: But, obviously, you know,
10 only one item that I presented as
11 amendments, which were several pages, was
12 accepted by council.
13 MS. FANUCCI: Right.
14 MS. EVANS: And so I'm just trying to
15 correct the situation where --
16 MS. FANUCCI: Well, I wouldn't accept
17 this now, we are giving her more money, so?
18 MS. EVANS: Pardon?
19 MS. FANUCCI: Let's just vote on it.
20 MS. EVANS: Well, she's -- what
21 happened the administration had included a
22 raise based on requests from the controller
23 to award the deputy controller a raise.
24 That raise has been denied. This is
25 compensation for hours worked.
1 MS. FANUCCI: Right.
2 MR. MCGOFF: I guess the follow-up
3 question is if someone else comes to us and
4 says that they are working extra hours, you
5 know min a nonunion position and working
6 extra hours are we going to consider raises
7 for them as well?
8 MS. EVANS: Well, I would say that
9 most of those individuals have already
10 received raises throughout the years, quite
11 hefty raises in fact, ranging not in the
12 $4,000 capacity for additional work hours,
13 but some of them have taken jumps of about
14 $45,000 in raises, $30,000, $10,000,
16 MS. FANUCCI: Right, but some of
17 them --
18 MS. EVANS: And I haven't seen any
19 additional duties performed by them and yet
20 these were just, you know, awarded at the
21 pleasure of the mayor prior to this
23 MS. FANUCCI: And also we had taken
24 away, if you recall, the previous budget we
25 had taken away 10 percent I believe in their
1 raises then allowed it back, so it wasn't
2 that they didn't make that jump, it's that
3 we did not allow the raises in the beginning
4 then did it a previous time, wasn't it 10
6 MS. EVANS: When was this?
7 MS. FANUCCI: It was two budgets ago.
8 MS. EVANS: No. No. The only I think
9 any raise was turned down was this year and
10 that would have been the two raises of
12 MS. FANUCCI: No, they were included
13 in the budget, we did not keep them in the
15 MS. EVANS: Correct. This year.
16 MS. FANUCCI: So it was 10 percent.
17 MR. MCGOFF: I'm not arguing with the
18 fact that this person may deserve this
19 money, I just in light of what we spoke
20 about or what was said last week it seems as
21 though we are deviating from the rhetoric of
22 last week and --
23 MS. EVANS: Oh, no. It's not a --
24 MR. MCGOFF: I believe we are.
25 MS. EVANS: No, it wasn't rhetoric on
1 my part at least, and it's not a deviation
2 because I believe in fairness and I believe
3 in equality for workers, and we have seen
4 anything about that over the last seven to
5 eight years here, so I'm simply trying to
6 rectify a situation. I'm not trying to give
7 the mayor a raise that exceeds the salary of
8 a mayor for any city in Pennsylvania this
9 size, I'm not trying to double my council
10 salary --
11 MR. MCGOFF: Excuse me, that didn't
13 MS. EVANS: Well, apparently some
14 people --
15 MR. MCGOFF: You knew that.
16 MS. EVANS: No, I didn't know that.
17 No, I didn't. I'd say it's crystal clear
18 that a number of people here decided that
19 was going to happen, but I do find it
20 unusual with three council members, for
21 example, last week telling us that they --
22 two wanted it off, one wanted it on an
23 agenda, it seemed that the mayor was the
24 final, you know, you went to him looking for
25 his advice on whether or not this goes on
1 the agenda, but yet I was never
2 approached --
3 MS. FANUCCI: That's inaccurate.
4 MR. MCGOFF: -- and I sit on council.
5 MS. FANUCCI: Mrs. Evans, that's so
6 not accurate what happened, but that's okay.
7 You don't have to get personal about this.
8 This is a vote.
9 MS. EVANS: I'm not getting personal.
10 MS. FANUCCI: That was a lot of digs
11 for not reason. And I'm not sitting here, I
12 don't blame you for voting on the fact that
13 you want to take a strike on your normal job
14 so that you got more money, I don't go
15 there, so don't go there when people ask a
16 question. That's part of the life. You
17 decide you want to hold out for more money,
18 other people do the same thing. It's part
19 of the world. It what goes on. They want
20 to get paid for their jobs. Nobody up here
21 is questioning whether this woman should get
22 paid. So let's just take the vote. Can we,
24 MS. EVANS: Well, I don't think,
25 Mrs. Fanucci, for someone who preaches to me
1 so often I might suggest that you practice
2 what you preach.
3 MS. FANUCCI: I have never preached
4 to you a day in my life. Trust me.
5 MR. MCGOFF: Thank you.
6 MS. FANUCCI: I wouldn't bother to do
7 that. Can we take a vote, please? Preach.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: See how we get
10 MS. FANUCCI: Yeah, that's about as
11 good as it's going to get, too. Go ahead,
12 please. I went to the mayor, did I?
13 MS. EVANS: Oh, we do have changes
14 here, Mr. -- I just got a copy of --
15 MS. FANUCCI: From Mrs. Krake --
16 MS. EVANS: -- the budget -- from
17 Mrs. Krake, yes, and it indicates that the
18 confidential secretary and assistant to the
19 controller received a 14 percent raise; the
20 internal auditor investigator a 21 percent;
21 records coordinator 23 percent; program
22 monitor, 14 percent; performance auditor,
23 14 percent. The only people who did not
24 receive a change would have been the city
25 controller who, of course, is an elected
1 official and the solicitor to the controller
2 who is selected and hired by the city
3 controller, so as you can see people were
4 given compensation for extra hours worked.
5 MR. MCGOFF: I knew that. I was just
6 asking if anyone else came forward whether
7 we would consider it. Thank you. All those
8 in favor of Item 6-A signify by saying aye.
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 MR. COURTRIGHT: I almost forgot what
16 we were voting on.
17 MS. GARVEY: SEVENTH ORDER. 7-A. FOR
18 CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE -
19 FOR ADOPTION - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 52, 2009
20 AMENDING FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 8, 1976,
21 ENTITLED "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED)
22 PROVIDING FOR THE GENERAL REVENUE BY
23 IMPOSING A TAX AT THE RATE OF TWO (2) MILLS
24 UPON THE PRIVILEGE OF OPERATING OR
25 CONDUCTING BUSINESS IN THE CITY OF SCRANTON
1 AS MEASURED BY THE GROSS RECEIPTS THEREFROM;
2 REQUIRING REGISTRATION AND PAYMENT OF THE
3 TAX AS CONDITION TO THE CONDUCTING OF SUCH
4 BUSINESS; PROVIDING FOR THE LEVY AND
5 COLLECTION OF SUCH TAX; PRESCRIBING SUCH
6 REQUIREMENTS FOR RETURNS AND RECORDS;
7 CONFERRING POWERS AND DUTIES UPON THE TAX
8 COLLECTOR; AND IMPOSING PENALTIES", BY
9 IMPOSING THE BUSINESS PRIVILEGE TAX AT THE
10 RATE OF ONE (1) MILL FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2009.
11 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
12 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
13 Committee on Finance.
14 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
15 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
16 final passage of Item 7-A.
17 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
18 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
19 call, please?
20 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
21 MS. EVANS: Yes.
22 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Ms.
24 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
25 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
1 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
2 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
4 Item 7-A legally and lawfully adopted.
5 MS. GARVEY: 7-B. FOR CONSIDERATION -
6 BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -
7 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 53, 2009 - AMENDING FILE
8 OF THE COUNCIL NO. 17, 1994 ENTITLED "AN
9 ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED) AUTHORIZING THE
10 GOVERNING BODY OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON TO
11 ENACT 'A WASTE DISPOSAL AND COLLECTION FEE'
12 FOR THE PURPOSE OF RAISING REVENUE TO COVER
13 THE WASTE DISPOSAL AND COLLECTION COSTS
14 INCURRED BY THE CITY OF SCRANTON FOR THE
15 DISPOSAL OF REFUSE", BY IMPOSING A WASTE
16 DISPOSAL AND COLLECTION FEE OF $178.00 FOR
17 THE CALENDAR YEAR 2009.
18 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
19 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
20 the Committee on Finance.
21 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
22 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
23 final passage of Item 7-B.
24 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
25 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
1 call, please?
2 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
3 MS. EVANS: Yes.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
6 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
7 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
8 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
11 Item 7-B legally and lawfully adopted.
12 MS. GARVEY: 7-C. FOR CONSIDERATION
13 - BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION
14 - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 54, 2009 - AMENDING
15 FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 100, 1976, ENTITLED
16 "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED) LEVYING GENERAL
17 AND SPECIAL TAXES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1977",
18 BY SETTING THE MILLAGE FOR THE YEAR 2009.
19 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
20 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
21 the Committee on Finance?
22 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
23 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
24 final passage of Item 7-C.
25 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
1 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
2 call, please?
3 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
4 MS. EVANS: Yes.
5 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
7 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
9 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
10 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
11 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
12 Item 7-C legally and lawfully adopted.
13 MS. GARVEY: 7-D. FOR CONSIDERATION -
14 BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -
15 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 55, 2009 - AMENDING FILE
16 OF THE COUNCIL NO. 11, 1976, ENTITLED "AN
17 ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED) ENACTING, IMPOSING A
18 TAX FOR GENERAL REVENUE PURPOSES IN THE
19 AMOUNT OF TWO PERCENT (2%) ON EARNED INCOME
20 AND NET PROFITS ON PERSONS, INDIVIDUALS,
21 ASSOCIATIONS AND BUSINESSES WHO ARE
22 RESIDENTS OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON, OR
23 NON-RESIDENTS OF THE CITY OF SCRANTON, FOR
24 WORK DONE, SERVICES PERFORMED OR BUSINESS
25 CONDUCTED WITHIN THE CITY OF SCRANTON,
1 REQUIRING THE FILING OF RETURNS BY TAXPAYERS
2 SUBJECT TO THE TAX; REQUIRING EMPLOYERS TO
3 COLLECT THE TAX AT SOURCE; PROVIDING FOR THE
4 ADMINISTRATION, COLLECTION AND ENFORCEMENT
5 OF THE SAID TAX; AND IMPOSING PENALTIES FOR
6 THE VIOLATIONS", BY IMPOSING THE WAGE TAX AT
7 TWO AND FOUR TENTHS PERCENT (2.4%) ON EARNED
8 INCOME FOR THE YEAR 2009 FOR RESIDENTS.
9 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
10 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
11 the Committee on Finance.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
13 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
14 final passage of Item 7-D.
15 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
16 MR. MCGOFF: On the question?
17 MS. EVANS: Yes. The wage tax could
18 have been lowered if the mayor and council
19 majority exercise fiscal restraint during
20 his terms in office. Until this tax is
21 lowered, Scranton will continue to chase
22 industry and homebuyers from it's borders.
23 I will be voting, no.
24 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
25 call, please.
1 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
2 MS. EVANS: No.
3 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
5 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
7 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
8 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
9 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
10 Item 7-D legally and lawfully adopted.
11 MS. GARVEY: 7-E. FOR CONSIDERATION
12 - BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION
13 - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 56, 2009 - AMENDING
14 FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 7, 1976, ENTITLED
15 "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED) IMPOSING A
16 MERCANTILE LICENSE TAX OF 2 MILLS FOR THE
17 YEAR 1976 AND ANNUALLY THEREAFTER UPON
18 PERSONS ENGAGING IN CERTAIN OCCUPATIONS AND
19 BUSINESSES THEREIN; PROVIDING FOR ITS LEVY
20 AND COLLECTION AND FOR THE ISSUANCE OF
21 MERCANTILE LICENSES; CONFERRING AND IMPOSING
22 POWERS AND DUTIES UPON THE TAX COLLECTOR OF
23 THE CITY OF SCRANTON; AND IMPOSING
24 PENALTIES", BY IMPOSING THE MERCANTILE
25 LICENSE TAX AT ONE (1) MILL FOR CALENDAR
1 YEAR 2009.
2 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
3 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
4 the Committee on Finance.
5 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
6 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
7 final passage of Item 7-E.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
9 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
10 call, please.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
12 MS. EVANS: Yes.
13 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
15 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
16 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
17 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
18 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
19 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
20 Item 7-E legally and lawfully adopted.
21 MS. GARVEY: 7-F. FOR CONSIDERATION -
22 BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -
23 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 57, 2009 - AMENDING
24 FILE OF THE COUNCIL NO. 6, 1976, ENTITLED
25 "AN ORDINANCE (AS AMENDED) IMPOSING A TAX
1 FOR GENERAL REVENUE PURPOSES ON N THE
2 TRANSFER OF REAL PROPERTY SITUATE WITHIN THE
3 CITY OF SCRANTON; PRESCRIBING AND REGULATING
4 THE METHOD OF EVIDENCING THE PAYMENT OF SUCH
5 TAX; CONFERRING POWERS AND IMPOSING DUTIES
6 UPON CERTAIN PERSONS, AND PROVIDING
7 PENALTIES", BY IMPOSING THE RATE OF THE
8 REALTY TRANSFER TAX AT TWO AND FIVE TENTHS
9 PERCENT (2.5%) FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2009.
10 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
11 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
12 the Committee on Finance?
13 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
14 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
15 final passage of Item 7-F.
16 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
17 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
18 call, please?
19 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
20 MS. EVANS: Yes.
21 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Ms.
23 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
24 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
25 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
1 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
3 Item 7-F legally and lawfully adopted.
4 MS. GARVEY: 7-G. FOR CONSIDERATION -
5 BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -
6 FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 58, 2009 - AMENDING FILE
7 OF THE COUNCIL NO. 145 OF 2007 ENTITLED AN
8 ORDINANCE RENAMING THE EMERGENCY AND
9 MUNICIPAL SERVICES TAX ("EMST") TO LOCAL
10 SERVICE TAX ("LST") AND BY IMPOSING A
11 WITHHOLDING OF $52.00 FOR THE CALENDAR YEAR
13 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
14 recommendation of the temporary Chair for
15 the Committee on Finance.
16 MR. COURTRIGHT: As temporary Chair
17 for the Committee on Finance, I recommend
18 final passage of Item 7-G.
19 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
20 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? Roll
21 call, please.
22 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
23 MS. EVANS: Yes.
24 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
1 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
2 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
5 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
6 Item 7-G legally and lawfully adopted.
7 MS. GARVEY: 7-H. FOR CONSIDERATION -
8 BY THE COMMITTEE ON COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT -
9 FOR ADOPTION - RESOLUTION NO. 96, 2009 -
10 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER APPROPRIATE
11 CITY OFFICIALS TO APPLY FOR AND EXECUTE A
12 GRANT FOR THE REDEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE
13 CAPITAL PROGRAM ("RACP") THROUGH THE
14 COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA'S OFFICE OF THE
15 BUDGET IN THE AMOUNT OF FOUR MILLION DOLLARS
16 ($4,000,000.00); IF THE APPLICATION IS
17 SUCCESSFUL, ACCEPTING AND DISBURSING THE
18 GRANT; AND COORDINATING THE USE OF THE GRANT
19 FUNDS WITH "SCRANTON-CONNELL, LP AND ITS
20 GENERAL PARTNER "SCRANTON- CONNELL GP, LLC".
21 MR. MCGOFF: What is the
22 recommendation of the Chairperson for the
23 Committee on Community Development.
24 MS. FANUCCI: As Chairperson for the
25 Committee on Community Development, I
1 recommend final passage of Item 7-E.
2 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
3 MR. MCGOFF: On the question?
4 MS. EVANS: I'm very pleased that the
5 Connell building will be renovated and
6 restored to it's rightful place in the
7 downtown, however, I do not approve of the
8 delinquent tax pattern that the current
9 owner has established. Also, in 2007 when
10 the Scranton Parking Authority wished to
11 borrow $35 million to construct a new garage
12 next to the Connell building, I stated then
13 that the Parking Authority ratepayers and
14 taxpayers could not afford this project and
15 that the owner of the Connell building
16 should purchase the property and build his
17 own garage for use at his own building. I
18 will be voting, no.
19 MR. COURTRIGHT: On the question,
20 Mr. McGoff, there is certain things about
21 this project that I don't agree with, but
22 this thing has been there since almost I
23 have been on the council, the Connell
24 building, and we have given money to them
25 before. I listened to Mrs. Aebli the other
1 day and I think she did her homework on it
2 and I think she did a pretty good job, so I
3 would like to see it completed. Again, I'm
4 not 100 percent satisfied with it, but I'll
5 be voting in the affirmative.
6 MR. MCGOFF: I also think that an
7 opportunity -- this is applying for a grant
8 and while there may be some reservations,
9 the opportunity to bring an additional
10 $4 million into the local economy that would
11 be used for building and employment of
12 numerous building trades throughout the area
13 and also the use of this money, you know,
14 and similar ancillary ways I think it's a
15 real benefit to the community if this money
16 is received.
17 MS. FANUCCI: And also I would like
18 to piggy-back on that with the fees that we
19 getting not only the permits and the
20 inspections and everything else that takes
21 place every time we do a project like this,
22 but the wonderful thing is that it keeps
23 people employed every time we pass something
24 like this. It keeps people working and
25 that's our goal right now, so I will be
1 voting, yes.
2 MR. MCGOFF: Roll call, please. I'm
4 MS. EVANS: That's okay. Yes,
5 indeed, there is a great deal of money in
6 terms of permits, for example, that will be
7 gained by the city, but that's a one-time
8 influx of revenue and, yes, building trades
9 will work. There are quite a number of
10 projects at this time actually that
11 hopefully will be underway shortly, but
12 again, that's kind of a one-time influx and
13 I think at this point in time we have to be
14 looking at fiscal restraint using our
15 dollars in the most wise fashion possible
16 for the taxpayers and looking at, let's say
17 long-term infusions of cash, for example,
18 and I'm getting a bit off the track, but
19 I'll just say this and then I think you will
20 find the example suitable. When the
21 University of Scranton is going to invest
22 millions and millions in it's property, yes,
23 again, we are going to get this one-time
24 cash infusion for permits, but that 1
25 percent of the total project doesn't scratch
1 the surface of all of the properties that
2 have been taken off the tax rolls through
3 these many, many years and that's the type
4 of revenue the city needs on an annual
5 basis, that gives back year after year
6 perennially, so I think we have to look at
7 the big picture and the long-term.
8 MS. FANUCCI: And I will agree with
9 you in the big picture and the long-term,
10 people who will be living in this building,
11 people who will be working in this building,
12 people who will be putting their businesses
13 in this building will also be paying taxes
14 to our city. They also will be eating in
15 our restaurants and attending places
16 downtown and that is what it's about. It's
17 about bringing people here to spend more, to
18 live in the city, so that is why I be will
19 voting, yes.
20 MS. EVANS: I agree with that,
21 absolutely. No, every part of it. The only
22 objection I have is that the developer would
23 have constructed the garage himself, but I'm
24 certainly not, you know, opposed to what he
25 is trying to do, I just wish that more
1 developers would be using more of their own
2 money towards their projects.
3 MR. MCGOFF: Roll call, please.
4 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Evans.
5 MS. EVANS: No.
6 MR. COOLICAN: Mrs. Gatelli. Mrs.
8 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
9 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. Courtright.
10 MR. COURTRIGHT: Yes.
11 MR. COOLICAN: Mr. McGoff.
12 MR. MCGOFF: Yes. I hereby declare
13 Item 7-H legally and lawfully adopted.
14 MS. GARVEY: 7-I. FOR CONSIDERATION -
15 BY THE COMMITTEE ON RULES - FOR ADOPTION -
16 RESOLUTION NO. 101, 2009 - PURSUANT TO
17 SECTION 702 OF THE RIGHT-TO-KNOW LAW, THE
18 CITY OF SCRANTON, AS AN AGENCY OF THE
19 COMMONWEALTH, IS NOT REQUIRED TO FULFILL
20 VERBAL OR ANONYMOUS VERBAL REQUESTS FOR
21 ACCESS TO RECORDS; AS SUCH, THE CITY OF
22 SCRANTON'S OPEN RECORDS OFFICER WILL ACCEPT
23 ONLY WRITTEN REQUESTS FOR ACCESS TO RECORDS
24 AND WILL NOT ACCEPT VERBAL OR ANONYMOUS
25 VERBAL REQUESTS FOR ACCESS TO RECORDS.
1 MR. MCGOFF: As Chairperson for the
2 Committee on Rules, I recommend final
3 passage of Item 7-I.
4 MS. FANUCCI: Second.
5 MR. MCGOFF: On the question.
6 MS. EVANS: Both verbal and written
7 requests for information should be allowed,
8 and I won't take a step backward, so I'll be
9 voting, no.
10 MR. MCGOFF: Could -- and again, I
11 know we had tabled this one time and I put
12 it back on, I was wondering if we could
13 perhaps table this again so that we could
14 have Attorney Minora or someone draft it in
15 such a way so that it would read to our
17 MS. FANUCCI: With the verbal, yeah.
18 MR. MCGOFF: With the anonymous
19 perhaps, you know, however --
20 MS. FANUCCI: It was the anonymous.
21 MR. MCGOFF: Where somehow verbal
22 requests can be made.
23 MS. FANUCCI: Right. I agree.
24 MR. MCGOFF: Would that be
1 MS. EVANS: Yes.
2 MS. FANUCCI: Yes.
3 MR. COURTRIGHT: Make a motion.
4 MR. MCGOFF: I'd like to make a
5 motion to table Item 7-I.
6 MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.
7 MR. MCGOFF: On the question? All in
8 favor of tabling Item 7-I signify by saying
10 MS. EVANS: Aye.
11 MS. FANUCCI: Aye.
12 MR. COURTRIGHT: Aye.
13 MR. MCGOFF: Aye. Opposed? The
14 ayes have it and so moved. And motion to
16 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, RPR
12 OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER