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            1              SCRANTON CITY COUNCIL MEETING

 

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            3

 

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            5                          HELD:

 

            6

 

            7                   Tuesday, May 12, 2009

 

            8

 

            9                        LOCATION:

 

           10                    Council Chambers

 

           11                 Scranton City Hall

 

           12              340 North Washington Avenue

 

           13                Scranton, Pennsylvania

 

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                    CATHENE S. NARDOZZI, RPR - OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER

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            2   CITY OF SCRANTON COUNCIL:

 

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            4

                MR. ROBERT MCGOFF, PRESIDENT

            5

 

            6   MS. JUDY GATELLI, VICE-PRESIDENT

 

            7

                MS. JANET E. EVANS

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            9   MS. SHERRY FANUCCI

 

           10

                MR. WILLIAM COURTRIGHT

           11

 

           12   MS. KAY GARVEY, CITY CLERK

 

           13

                MR. NEIL COOLICAN, ASSISTANT CITY CLERK

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           15   MR. AMIL MINORA, SOLICITOR

 

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            1   (Pledge of Allegiance and moment of reflection

 

            2   observed.)

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF:  Roll call.

 

            4                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Evans.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS:  Here.

 

            6                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Gatelli.

 

            7                      MS. GATELLI:  Here.

 

            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.  Dispense with

 

           14              the reading of the minutes.

 

           15                      MS. GARVEY: There is no business at

 

           16              this time in Third Order.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF: Thank you, Mrs. Garvey.

 

           18              Any announcements from council?  Mrs.

 

           19              Gatelli?

 

           20                      MS. GATELLI: This Saturday evening

 

           21              at Holy Rosary Hall there will be a benefit

 

           22              for Carol Cavaletti.  She is a North

 

           23              Scranton resident that is battling cancer.

 

           24              The proceeds will assist Carol to pay her

 

           25              medical fees and any other expenses that may


 

 

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            1              arise during her illness.  Tickets are

 

            2              available at the door.  This summer the Boys

 

            3              and Girl's Club has announced a Parket

 

            4              Program.  It runs from June 22 to August 28,

 

            5              Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 1:00 and it's a

 

            6              playground program with arts and crafts,

 

            7              games, lunch, snacks, and it will be

 

            8              conducted at Bancroft Elementary School,

 

            9              John Adams, McNichol's Plaza and West

 

           10              Scranton High School, and it is for children

 

           11              ages 6 to 18.

 

           12                      I wanted to talk about a book that

 

           13              was authored by a Clarks Summit resident and

 

           14              it's called "Father's Day" and it's a

 

           15              private eye novel and it's by Keith Gilman.

 

           16              Keith was a resident of the Hill Section and

 

           17              he was a 1977 graduate of Central High

 

           18              School.  He will have a book signing at the

 

           19              Anthology Book Store on the 30th of May at

 

           20              2:00.  And that's all I have.  Thank you.

 

           21                      MS. EVANS: Please remember in your

 

           22              prayers all those who have died this week,

 

           23              particularly, Olga Lucas, faithful member of

 

           24              the Pinebrook Neighborhood Association and

 

           25              downtown senior citizen center, and her


 

 

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            1              devoted family and friends she leaves

 

            2              behind.  Also, please pray for Molly Maraski

 

            3              ski who passed away last night from cancer,

 

            4              and Molly had just loss her husband to

 

            5              cancer about a month and a half ago.  They

 

            6              leave behind two sons and I ask that

 

            7              everyone please remember Molly, her husband,

 

            8              Larry, and their children and family and

 

            9              friends in your prayers.

 

           10                      Saturday, May 16, is Armed Forces

 

           11              Day.  The Armed Forces Day parade will kick

 

           12              off at 10:45 in downtown Scranton.  Please

 

           13              come out and line the streets of our city to

 

           14              honor our servicemen and woman.  We owe them

 

           15              that much.

 

           16                      And the Upper Hill Ecumenical

 

           17              Committee invites everyone to partake in the

 

           18              Friendly's Family Fun Night next Wednesday,

 

           19              May 20, from five to eight p.m. A percentage

 

           20              of the food receipts from those who dine at

 

           21              Friendly's in Dunmore will be donated to St.

 

           22              Francis of Assisi Kitchen, and that's it.

 

           23                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Mr. McGoff, I just

 

           24              wanted to see if I could --  I think

 

           25              possibly some people might speak on this and


 

 

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            1              maybe we can get this out of the way in the

 

            2              beginning.  I believe we all received a

 

            3              letter from Mr. Jarbola, the District

 

            4              Attorney, about us asking for a criminal

 

            5              investigation into the tax office and just

 

            6              some of the highlights he has there is that

 

            7              he was under the impression, as we were,

 

            8              this was a forensic audit and it wasn't and

 

            9              I guess the disturbing thing is that he had

 

           10              has not had one single conversation with

 

           11              anyone from that office, so what he's saying

 

           12              is, he can't do a criminal investigation

 

           13              until there is audit and I would just like

 

           14              Mr. Minora could you -- did you get this

 

           15              letter or could you give us --

 

           16                      MR. MINORA: I read it.

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT: -- your opinion on

 

           18              it?

 

           19                      MR. MINORA: It was in my box, I read

 

           20              it.

 

           21                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Would you willing

 

           22              to --

 

           23                      MR. MINORA: Sure.  I actually took a

 

           24              look at the analysis that they had on-line.

 

           25              It's not a forensic audit.  It's not an


 

 

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            1              audit.  They're terming it an analysis.  As

 

            2              far as I know, that's not an accounting term

 

            3              that has any kind of credibility for

 

            4              anything, and in order to proceed with a

 

            5              criminal charge, a very basic thing you have

 

            6              to prove in a theft is that there was

 

            7              something missing.  This analysis doesn't

 

            8              say there is anything missing.  I know what

 

            9              Mr. McGovern said in the newspaper, but if

 

           10              you take a look at that analysis on pages 12

 

           11              through 14, which is what I looked at it,

 

           12              doesn't say money is missing.  It says it's

 

           13              unaccounted for.  Unaccounted for is not a

 

           14              theft and a Court of law would throw out a

 

           15              criminal charge based on that.

 

           16                      I read Mr. Jarbola's letter, he

 

           17              asked for a forensic audit, I think he and

 

           18              everybody else thought it was a forensic

 

           19              audit for a year, and a forensic audit would

 

           20              be the necessary basis to begin a criminal

 

           21              charge for a theft because it would show

 

           22              money.  Well, it would show whether or not

 

           23              money was missing and if money were missing

 

           24              then he would have credible evidence of a

 

           25              theft.  There is no credible evidence of a


 

 

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            1              theft in this report.  I don't know whether

 

            2              it is or it isn't, but I can tell you for

 

            3              sure there is no credible evidence in this

 

            4              report of a theft and it would be really

 

            5              dereliction of duty to just try and arrest

 

            6              somebody without evidence.

 

            7                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  So where do we go

 

            8              from here?  What did we do?

 

            9                      MR. MINORA: Well, I think, you know,

 

           10              the first step if there is a question of

 

           11              criminality and, incidentally, this analysis

 

           12              indicates there isn't any.  Now, it's an

 

           13              analysis, it's not a forensic audit, so is

 

           14              that credible?  I don't know.  The first

 

           15              step would have to be a forensic audit, and

 

           16              I can tell you I have been in the District

 

           17              Attorney's Office 32 years, there is no

 

           18              Forensic Auditing Division.  It's a very

 

           19              expensive undertaking and in a situation

 

           20              like this, I'm no expert, but it would be

 

           21              well into the hundreds of thousands, if not

 

           22              more.  I mean, this analysis was, I don't

 

           23              know was in the paper --

 

           24                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  We've already spent

 

           25              $130,000 and counting.


 

 

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            1                      MR. MINORA: Right.

 

            2                      MR. COURTRIGHT: For this?

 

            3                      MR. MINORA:  Right. Spent 130,000

 

            4              for this and, I mean, I understand it

 

            5              provides guidelines and going forward,

 

            6              ideas, which is great because, obviously,

 

            7              you know, going forward there needs to be

 

            8              some things looked at, but in retrospect in

 

            9              terms of making a criminal charge out of

 

           10              this, it can't be done.  It can't be done.

 

           11              Wouldn't get past a preliminary hearing.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT: But I think this

 

           13              council, and I think the people out in the

 

           14              audience and the viewing area, would like to

 

           15              know for sure what's happened so the only

 

           16              way you are telling me that is going to

 

           17              happen if we get a forensic audit, which we

 

           18              haven't gotten yet, we paid $130,000, we are

 

           19              still paying, I would suggest that we stop

 

           20              paying.  You know, what are we paying for

 

           21              right now?

 

           22                      MR. MINORA: I don't know.  But

 

           23              without a forensic audit, frankly, you don't

 

           24              have anything -- I mean, by the very name a

 

           25              forensic audit indicates that it is for


 

 

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            1              legal purposes, for a legal outcome of some

 

            2              kind, criminal or civil, and that's the

 

            3              basis of a forensic audit.  It looks to any

 

            4              criminality or some fraud of some kind.

 

            5              That's what they do and this -- it starts

 

            6              out by saying it's not a forensic audit,

 

            7              it's not a -- what does it say?  It's not an

 

            8              audit, it's not a review, and it's not an

 

            9              attestation.  Those are all things that

 

           10              would be guidelines of some kind set forth

 

           11              by, you know, the certified public

 

           12              accountants, and will give you something,

 

           13              but this, as I said, gives guidelines going

 

           14              forward and I don't think it's nothing, it

 

           15              has guidelines going forward on how to

 

           16              handle accounts, you know, with tomorrow's

 

           17              money and next week's money, but looking

 

           18              backwards, no, it doesn't do any of that in

 

           19              a very good way.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So I guess we

 

           21              thought we paid for a forensic audit,

 

           22              somebody dropped the ball and we didn't get

 

           23              a forensic audit and now the three taxing

 

           24              bodies are going to have to decide if

 

           25              whether they want to pay for a real forensic


 

 

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            1              audit in order for us to go forward; is that

 

            2              --

 

            3                      MR. MINORA: That's exactly right.

 

            4                      MR. COURTRIGHT: -- forward.  All

 

            5              right.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: I mean, I was under the

 

            7              assumption that's what we were getting and

 

            8              we feel mislead in that department.

 

            9                      MR. MINORA: I understand.

 

           10                      MS. FANUCCI: And especially the fact

 

           11              that we waited so long to get nothing.  We

 

           12              actually received nothing in return.

 

           13                      MR. MINORA: Well, it's -- as far as

 

           14              looking back and looking for criminality or

 

           15              fraud or that kind of think, there isn't

 

           16              anything in there that you can point to as

 

           17              particularly helpful.  As I said, it has

 

           18              guidelines for going forward so that extent

 

           19              if it couldn't have been done internally at

 

           20              least they did that from an external

 

           21              standpoint.

 

           22                      MS. FANUCCI:  My next thing, and I

 

           23              think we should send a letter finding out,

 

           24              how did they figure out we were $12 million

 

           25              ahead and it was gone because it's


 

 

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            1              inaccurate.  Their first assumption is

 

            2              wrong.  The claim in the beginning was not

 

            3              accurate.

 

            4                      MR. MINORA: Well, there's a --

 

            5                      MR. FANUCCI:  I mean, you can't say

 

            6              it was there if you can't find it now.

 

            7              Where is it?

 

            8                      MR. MINORA: Well, there were a lot

 

            9              of loose comments that really --

 

           10                      MS. FANUCCI: Yeah.  Exactly.

 

           11                      MR. MINORA: -- that had no basis I

 

           12              think.

 

           13                      MS. FANUCCI: I'm sorry, I didn't

 

           14              mean to take on your role, but it's

 

           15              frustrating.

 

           16                      MR. MINORA: I didn't do it.

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Thank you.

 

           18                      MR. MINORA: You are welcome.

 

           19                      MS. GATELLI:  I would just like to

 

           20              say that I attended the meeting last Friday

 

           21              at the Commissioner's Office with the school

 

           22              district and the county and the city

 

           23              represented and we did discuss the matter

 

           24              and they are going to have the solicitors

 

           25              get together and try to all agree with the


 

 

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            1              declaratory judgment that we made last week

 

            2              here at this particular meeting.  They all

 

            3              agreed that that was something that they

 

            4              wanted to do, but they had to go back to

 

            5              their board and see if the school board

 

            6              would agree with those proceedings, so that

 

            7              the solicitors will be meeting to go forward

 

            8              with the declaratory judgment and the next

 

            9              meeting is next Thursday at 2:15 with all of

 

           10              the interested parties, and that's all I

 

           11              have to report from the meeting.

 

           12                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Thanks.

 

           13                      MR. MCGOFF: Okay.  Citizens

 

           14              participation.  Andy Sbaraglia.

 

           15                      MR. SBARAGLIA: Andy Sbaraglia,

 

           16              citizen of Scranton.  Fellow Scrantonians, a

 

           17              few words on 7 -- I guess it's 5-B.  It

 

           18              seems like we are going to come into

 

           19              $2,318,352 for some projects.  There is a,

 

           20              well you got the backup there, they did a

 

           21              lot of different ways of doing it, but the

 

           22              portion of it for $916,485, which was the

 

           23              second part of it, 300 is supposed to go for

 

           24              roads, $400,000 for -- $300,000 for roads,

 

           25              $400,000 for job creation, but the


 

 

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            1              administration cost is $66,485.  Who

 

            2              actually does the administration on that?

 

            3              Would that be our good office down there?

 

            4                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  I think so.

 

            5                      MR. SBARAGLIA: The SRA or down there

 

            6              at HUD?  One of them, huh?  Okay.  The

 

            7              second is 5-C, our costs overrun on our

 

            8              bridge.  You know what, originally, they

 

            9              were going to do that bridge for $1.5

 

           10              million, it then went up to $7,025,000 so

 

           11              forth and so on.  Now it's up to $8,735,250

 

           12              or an overrun so far of $1,710,000.  This is

 

           13              Lackawanna Avenue in reverse.  We are going

 

           14              to spend $30 million and still climbing on

 

           15              the 5000 block and now on the other end we

 

           16              are going to spend God knows how much more.

 

           17              All I know is something is wrong somewhere.

 

           18              Well, it's hear nor there.

 

           19                      Now, we all know, I don't really

 

           20              like to get into it too much, but some of

 

           21              the things draw you in and you got to ask

 

           22              questions, like Carl Greco, $6,050 to the

 

           23              mayor's campaign.  Now, we all know he got a

 

           24              job with I think with Scranton Redevelopment

 

           25              Authority, and then we have some more money


 

 

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            1              given Boscov's.  We just gave him $3 million

 

            2              now he gives back I think it's $6,000 to the

 

            3              campaign.  You start looking at the amount

 

            4              of money that was received by this man and

 

            5              start looking at all of the names and you

 

            6              will see a names with a lot of construction

 

            7              going on with the city tied in with this.

 

            8                      Now, I'm not saying it's illegal,

 

            9              I'm just saying something is wrong with the

 

           10              way the system runs.  We got to get away

 

           11              from this type of a system even if the

 

           12              citizens have to pay for the campaigns for

 

           13              -- like they do for the presidential

 

           14              campaigns so much money, we got to do it

 

           15              here in the states -- I mean, in the State

 

           16              of Pennsylvania because you don't know if

 

           17              there is illegal or not illegal.  I have no

 

           18              way of knowing it.  All I can say is we give

 

           19              the man $3 million, he gives back $6,000, I

 

           20              mean, it's just not quite right.  Now, I'm

 

           21              not saying it's illegal, I'm just saying

 

           22              it's not right and the lot of these things

 

           23              are people having contracts, but in the

 

           24              city.  That's not right.  Somewhere we got

 

           25              to pay for these campaigns.  It's the only


 

 

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            1              way we are ever going to get an honest

 

            2              government inside anywhere in this age.

 

            3                      The system that we have now is

 

            4              inherent corrupt, there is no question about

 

            5              that, because they are out there getting

 

            6              money from all kind of pacts, this, that and

 

            7              whatever and things are done by the amount

 

            8              of money they receive or they call it an

 

            9              ear.  They are not bribing a politician,

 

           10              they are giving money so they can lend an

 

           11              ear.  Now, it's semantics.  There is

 

           12              something wrong with semantics.  You can't

 

           13              call one thing one thing and another.  It

 

           14              just don't smell right.  Like you used to

 

           15              say, there is something rotten in Denmark

 

           16              and there probably is a fish, and if you

 

           17              keep it long enough it stinks.  In politics

 

           18              it's getting like that, and that's sad.  We

 

           19              got to turn from the way we with are doing

 

           20              it to a knew way.  There has got be a

 

           21              different way and a better way.  We don't

 

           22              want to ruin democracy, but it's being

 

           23              trampled on.  The people are being stepped

 

           24              upon in a lot of different ways and they

 

           25              shouldn't be.


 

 

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            1                      Government, like I said, for the

 

            2              people, by the way, it should be theirs.

 

            3              Well, I'm not going to get off the soap box.

 

            4              Thank you.  Ozzie Quinn.

 

            5                      MR. QUINN:  Ozzie Quinn, Scranton/

 

            6              Lackawanna County Taxpayers' Association,

 

            7              Incorporated.  First, I'd like to say that

 

            8              our interview with the tax collector

 

            9              candidates, Bill Courtright and Mrs. Flynn

 

           10              will be shown for the first time tomorrow

 

           11              night at 9:00 p.m. on ECTV.

 

           12                      As long as I'm going to talk about

 

           13              the tax collector and your argument before,

 

           14              again, we are going to have to pay for that

 

           15              forensic audit because somebody wasn't

 

           16              paying attention down there.  Somebody

 

           17              wasn't paying attention, so there no was

 

           18              communication.  We have to pay for it, the

 

           19              taxpayers.  Even if the AG does it, the

 

           20              Attorney General, it's our money.  It's

 

           21              ashame.

 

           22                      And, Mrs. Gatelli, I got five phone

 

           23              calls today about South Side about the mayor

 

           24              debate last night, they said they never saw

 

           25              the mayor over there in eight years.


 

 

                                                                      18

 

 

            1                      Now, we are $170 million in debt

 

            2              principle only, all right?  I hope that

 

            3              soaks in everybody.  Wage tax is 2.4 and

 

            4              Mr. Doherty promised eight years ago to

 

            5              decrease it.  No way.  Nonprofits he

 

            6              promised, too.  He didn't do a thing.

 

            7                      Now, let me speak about our lecture

 

            8              at the church I go to.  In the Catholic

 

            9              church a lecture gets up and reads Holy

 

           10              scriptures.  Well, let me tell you

 

           11              something, I got a piece -- I got a piece --

 

           12              a couple of pieces of mail that would be

 

           13              hypocritical to get up there and read Holy

 

           14              scriptures and call people like that, their

 

           15              families that, obstructionist, ineffective,

 

           16              embarrassing, destructive.  How would you

 

           17              like to have your little son or daughter

 

           18              read that?  That's terrible.  And that man

 

           19              is a lecture.  He is a hypocrite and it's

 

           20              time we vote him out.  There is no --

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF: That's out of order

 

           22              Mr. Quinn.

 

           23                      MR. QUINN:  I can speak when I want

 

           24              to speak.  The lawyer will tell me when.

 

           25                      MR. MINORA:  You can't advocate a


 

 

                                                                      19

 

 

            1              candidate from that podium.  You know that.

 

            2              We have had this discussion before.

 

            3                      MR. QUINN: What's that?  What case

 

            4              you quoting?  The clock is off now.  What

 

            5              case are you quoting so I can look it up?

 

            6              Give me a citation.  Can you give me the

 

            7              citation?  You can't give me the citation.

 

            8                      You know, I went to an agency once

 

            9              and I complained, and the guy who was head

 

           10              of that agency said to me, "If you don't

 

           11              like those people and the way they are doing

 

           12              it then vote them out."

 

           13                      Let's vote them out, Mrs. Gatelli,

 

           14              Mrs. Fanucci --

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: Mr. Quinn, you are out

 

           16              of order.

 

           17                      MR. QUINN:  Thank you.

 

           18                      MR. MCGOFF: Bob Bolus.

 

           19                      MR. BOLUS: Good evening, Council.

 

           20              Bob Bolus, Scranton.  Such hostilities.

 

           21              It's so much fun to come here.  On the gas

 

           22              line, the leachate -- or the line going from

 

           23              the Landfill Alliance up through Dunmore,

 

           24              you know, I brought it up several times, and

 

           25              I haven't heard any comments about any


 

 

                                                                      20

 

 

            1              emergency plans in place or we're going to

 

            2              charge a fee for the gas going through that,

 

            3              pass legislation and put some money in our

 

            4              coffers, and I think it's time now to act

 

            5              about it instead of talking about it.

 

            6                      You know, it was interesting last

 

            7              night, I don't know if any of you had the

 

            8              opportunity to attend the debate, I found it

 

            9              very refreshing, and it was educational, we

 

           10              actually learned a different variety of

 

           11              brain drain.  All of us had a different

 

           12              version of it, but the end result is that it

 

           13              all comes down to the same people are

 

           14              leaving Scranton.  No matter which way we

 

           15              want to classify it or which way we were

 

           16              criticized for even answering it.  We had

 

           17              9,000 jobs, I have no clue where they are.

 

           18              I would like to see them.  We still have the

 

           19              nonprofits taking advantage of all of the

 

           20              people in the City of Scranton, the KOZ's,

 

           21              and nothing has been done.

 

           22                      You know, we sit here and we see

 

           23              money going out in campaigns, we see

 

           24              legislation passed here for grants to do

 

           25              something, do a study, hypothetically one on


 

 

                                                                      21

 

 

            1              Nay Aug, a study is done knowing full well

 

            2              we have no money to build anything, yet the

 

            3              good ole' boy club and the cronyism somebody

 

            4              gets paid to do a study knowing full-well

 

            5              the city has no money to do anything, and

 

            6              that's what's got to stop.  We have to go

 

            7              back to the issues here of putting every

 

            8              single contract, no matter what it is, out

 

            9              to bid professional or otherwise.  We have

 

           10              lost that.  We have allowed politics in this

 

           11              city and game playing to take over the

 

           12              people.

 

           13                      We get 80 some million dollars.  You

 

           14              have the same 80 some million dollars I'll

 

           15              make you money, I'm not going to spend it,

 

           16              that's for sure, especially if it's not

 

           17              going to places it should, and I believe

 

           18              that should be the theme of everyone.

 

           19                      We are sitting here, and I listened

 

           20              to a lot of things last night and I have

 

           21              listened to the council debates and, you

 

           22              know, we all come here and we speak and why

 

           23              do we do this?  Because we have nothing

 

           24              better to do?  I don't think so.  I think we

 

           25              are all concerned and we are concerned for


 

 

                                                                      22

 

 

            1              where is Scranton going.  We have listened

 

            2              to all of the hype.  We have listened to an

 

            3              individual taking credit for a medical

 

            4              school and how many people are going to stay

 

            5              from this medical school in Scranton?  Just

 

            6              a curiosity question, how many doctors do

 

            7              you think we are going to have stay in the

 

            8              City of Scranton?  A hundred, 200 are going

 

            9              to stay here after they get an education?

 

           10              How many people stay from the University of

 

           11              Scranton or Marywood after they get their

 

           12              degree or they come back and get their

 

           13              master's?  Do they stay here and build a

 

           14              business.

 

           15                      And we this tremendous growth, we

 

           16              have this tremendous tax base that's been

 

           17              created, I don't know where it is, and maybe

 

           18              I'm looking in the wrong direction.  These

 

           19              are the things this council or a future

 

           20              council or a future mayor has to look at.

 

           21              We have to stop the exodus of the city, we

 

           22              have to stop the exodus of the money going

 

           23              out and we need to settle contracts and we

 

           24              need to stop playing games.  That's the hard

 

           25              thing that we do here.


 

 

                                                                      23

 

 

            1                      You know, you can go and put into a

 

            2              campaign one candidate had 500 people

 

            3              contribute, gets a grant for something, that

 

            4              gets better that you have a grant for four

 

            5              for five grand, get $150,000 payback, it's

 

            6              better than going to a casino.  Instead of

 

            7              hedging a bet you get 100 percent of your

 

            8              money, and that's what's happening here and

 

            9              we have exposed ourselves to that.

 

           10                      And, you know, as we go went through

 

           11              a campaign, each and every one of us, we

 

           12              have learned a lot about each individual and

 

           13              we have learned about the little secrets,

 

           14              all of the little nooks and crannies out

 

           15              there that are affecting the innocent

 

           16              people.  That's the kids that want to stay

 

           17              here.  That's the individuals that are

 

           18              trying to build a life here, and it's the

 

           19              seniors that are being destroyed by it.

 

           20              It's so important now that we look to the

 

           21              present and we figure out how we are going

 

           22              to change the channel.  It's not going to be

 

           23              one individual doing, it's got to be all of

 

           24              us.  That's the people sitting home, that's

 

           25              the people sitting here, the people that


 

 

                                                                      24

 

 

            1              attend, this is an issue that we should

 

            2              start holding town meetings monthly, more

 

            3              involvement in council and administrations,

 

            4              in the government of this city, but more

 

            5              importantly the people.  Set up committees

 

            6              where retired people or people want to

 

            7              volunteer their services to help this city

 

            8              get out it's debt.  So, on May 19 I'm asking

 

            9              everyone out there, this is your city, it's

 

           10              your right, don't give it up.  Go out and

 

           11              vote, you have a lot of candidates running,

 

           12              you have had plenty of time to make your

 

           13              decision, but do what's right for yourself

 

           14              and do what's right for the city and get out

 

           15              and vote.  Thank you.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Les Spindler.

 

           17                      MR. SPINDLER: Les Spindler.  City

 

           18              resident and homeowner, taxpayer.  I just

 

           19              want to set something straight that I said

 

           20              last week.  In mentioning council who was in

 

           21              place when the South Side Complex and golf

 

           22              course were sold, and I mentioned Brian Reap

 

           23              as one of the council people, Brian Reap was

 

           24              the only person who voted not to sell the

 

           25              South Side Complex and the golf course.


 

 

                                                                      25

 

 

            1                      Next thing, I want to talk about

 

            2              this flyer that came around last week where

 

            3              the mayor says he is working to keep our

 

            4              city safe.  Well, last Thursday on Taylor

 

            5              Avenue two men had a home invasion, two men

 

            6              had guns and invaded a home, three people in

 

            7              there, and where is the beat cop?  Downtown.

 

            8              There is no crime being committed downtown

 

            9              the crime is in the neighborhoods and Chris

 

           10              Doherty has got the beat cop downtown.

 

           11                      And another thing, he says how great

 

           12              his statistics were about the crime in the

 

           13              city, well, in 2008 there was five murders

 

           14              in the city that were never reported to

 

           15              Harrisburg.  That's why statistics look so

 

           16              good because none of the violent crimes are

 

           17              reported to the right parties.

 

           18                      The next thing, Mrs. Gatelli and

 

           19              Mrs. Fanucci, the two of you should be

 

           20              ashamed of yourselves.  Blaming the League

 

           21              of Women Voter's for giving answers to Mrs.

 

           22              Evans, to giving the questions to Mrs Evans,

 

           23              that's why you didn't show up at the debate

 

           24              last week, that's a crime.  The League of

 

           25              Women Voter's has been longer than the two


 

 

                                                                      26

 

 

            1              of you put together.  They are a very

 

            2              reputable group and you accused them of

 

            3              giving questions to another person, that's

 

            4              just outrageous.  And, lastly, Mrs. Evans

 

            5              wouldn't need the questions on what to

 

            6              debate the two of you.  And I think the two

 

            7              of you owe an apology to the League of Women

 

            8              Voter's, but I don't think you each have

 

            9              enough class to do that.

 

           10                      Another thing, the mayor says that

 

           11              Business Weekly names Scranton one of the

 

           12              best cities to raise your children.  Well,

 

           13              as I just said before, that's because none

 

           14              of the violent crimes are reported and

 

           15              Business Week doesn't know about them.  Is

 

           16              there something funny about violent crimes,

 

           17              Mrs. Fanucci?  Maybe you wouldn't think it

 

           18              was funny if it happened to you.

 

           19                      MS. FANUCCI: What are you talking

 

           20              about, Les, move on.

 

           21                      MR. SPINDLER: As I said, five

 

           22              murders weren't reported last year.  Now,

 

           23              last night it was reported that the

 

           24              Brooking's Institute said the city is

 

           25              suffering from brain drain, and brain drain


 

 

                                                                      27

 

 

            1              is our young children graduate from a

 

            2              college are leaving this city.  Now, who has

 

            3              been mayor for seven and a half years now?

 

            4              So I guess the Brooking's Institute is

 

            5              saying Chris Doherty is the reason why we

 

            6              have brain drain in this city.

 

            7                      And on that same subject, I put a

 

            8              question to this council few months ago, I

 

            9              said, "Can any of you up there give me one

 

           10              reason why a college graduate would stay in

 

           11              this city or a young family looking -- a

 

           12              young couple looking to raise a family would

 

           13              move into there," and nobody said anything.

 

           14              There is nothing to keep young people in

 

           15              this city contrary to what Chris Doherty

 

           16              says, unless they want to get a job at

 

           17              Poochie.  Oh, I forgot, they closed.

 

           18                      Last night the mayor talked about

 

           19              putting a library in South Scranton.  The

 

           20              city has nothing to do with the library

 

           21              system.  The library system falls under the

 

           22              county, and the county has already said the

 

           23              commissioners stated they are not giving any

 

           24              money to a new library, so where does Chris

 

           25              Doherty coming off to say he was wants to


 

 

                                                                      28

 

 

            1              build a library in the South Side.  There is

 

            2              nothing wrong with the downtown here.  It

 

            3              has been there for years and years, it's a

 

            4              beautiful building, he just wants to waste

 

            5              more of our tax dollars, at least the

 

            6              commissioners are smart enough to know we

 

            7              don't need one.

 

            8                      And back to what Andy Sbaraglia

 

            9              said, Al Boscov came here begging for

 

           10              $3 million, it's funny he needed $3 million

 

           11              so bad but he had $6,000 to give to Chris

 

           12              Doherty's campaign.  What is wrong with this

 

           13              picture?  I guess he didn't need the money

 

           14              too bad if he $6,000 to throw towards Chris

 

           15              Doherty.

 

           16                      And lastly, the mayor said last

 

           17              night that the DPW workers have the most

 

           18              dangerous job.  I almost fell out of my

 

           19              chair when I heard that.  To the

 

           20              firefighters and police officers, I mean,

 

           21              that's a slap in the face to them.  These

 

           22              men risk their lives every single day when

 

           23              they leave their house going out on their

 

           24              jobs.  I'm not DPW doesn't have danger, but

 

           25              for somebody to say that's a more dangerous


 

 

                                                                      29

 

 

            1              job than a police officers or a firefighter

 

            2              that just -- it's just unbelievable, and I

 

            3              know why the mayor said it because it's the

 

            4              only union in the city that supports him.

 

            5              Thank you.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: Lee Morgan.

 

            7                      MR. MORGAN: Good evening, Council.

 

            8              I really appreciate the opportunity

 

            9              opportunities I've had to watch most of the

 

           10              candidates express what they believe is in

 

           11              the best interest of the city and it's

 

           12              future, and a lot of people may not like

 

           13              certain candidates and, of course, that is

 

           14              their prerogative, I think that they should

 

           15              appreciate anybody who decides they are

 

           16              going to run for an office no matter who

 

           17              they may be or no whatever stand they make.

 

           18                      I did watch the mayor's debate

 

           19              yesterday, I was there.  I watched the

 

           20              council debate at the taxpayer group and,

 

           21              you know, of course, the one at the

 

           22              University of Scranton.  I'm looking forward

 

           23              to watching the tax collector's debate, and

 

           24              I also appreciated the opportunity to hear

 

           25              what some of the candidates for school board


 

 

                                                                      30

 

 

            1              had to say.

 

            2                      So the most important thing that I

 

            3              could say to everybody here tonight is that

 

            4              on the 19th everybody should vote because

 

            5              that's what's going to make this city move

 

            6              forward one way or another and I would hope

 

            7              that people talk to their neighbors and

 

            8              their friends and ask them to come back to

 

            9              the system because if you don't vote we

 

           10              can't make the change we need, and I think

 

           11              that's been a problem in America for a long

 

           12              time because voting empowers everyone no

 

           13              matter who they are, no matter their

 

           14              economic status, their race, anything, and,

 

           15              you know, if we are going to make change

 

           16              it's going to require struggle and the

 

           17              residents of this city your opportunity is

 

           18              coming and I just hope, actually hope, that

 

           19              everyone will vote irregardless of who you

 

           20              vote for.  Go to the polls, convince your

 

           21              friends to go to the polls and let's move

 

           22              this city forward.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Bill Jackowitz.

 

           24                      MR. JACKOWITZ: Bill Jackowitz,

 

           25              embarrassed South Scranton resident and


 

 

                                                                      31

 

 

            1              member of the Taxpayers' Association.  I

 

            2              wasn't going to speak on this, but I have

 

            3              to, the single tax office.  I heard what

 

            4              transpired with Mr. Courtright's question

 

            5              prior to this, we are missing the entire

 

            6              point.  The entire point is, and what the DA

 

            7              needs to be looking at is it's been reported

 

            8              that state law, single tax office law of

 

            9              1929 combining 23 accounts into one account

 

           10              and also the hiring of a solicitor is in

 

           11              violation of state law.  That is what the DA

 

           12              need to be looking at.  You need to start

 

           13              the investigation into the violation of the

 

           14              state law single tax law 1929.

 

           15                      So, Mr. Courtright, please bring

 

           16              this back up on motions.  We know that a law

 

           17              has been broken.  Let's not worry about the

 

           18              money, let's not worry about audits, that

 

           19              will come once the investigation is started.

 

           20              The DA needs to investigate the violation of

 

           21              single tax law 1929.  It's been reported,

 

           22              the FBI has been in contact with them and

 

           23              they confirm that that law has been broken,

 

           24              so it needs to be checked into.  So, please,

 

           25              somebody look into it.


 

 

                                                                      32

 

 

            1                      Okay, I would like to thank

 

            2              Councilwoman Evans and candidates Joyce,

 

            3              Rogan and Miller and Morgan for showing

 

            4              respect to me and all of the citizens who

 

            5              showed up for the debate and for those who

 

            6              watched the debates on television.  That

 

            7              includes the taxpayers' debates and the

 

            8              League of Women debates.  The only way we at

 

            9              citizens have an opportunity to know where

 

           10              our candidates stands and what they stand

 

           11              for is for them to answer our questions or

 

           12              answer questions that are put forward to

 

           13              them.

 

           14                      We, as the single taxpayers -- or

 

           15              correction, the Taxpayers' Association have

 

           16              never, ever abused anyone who has came to us

 

           17              for debates.  We have had Congressman

 

           18              Kanjorski there, we have had Lou Barletta

 

           19              there, we have had school board members

 

           20              there, tax collectors there, mayor

 

           21              candidates, and we never, ever once abused

 

           22              anyone.  So for Mrs. Gatelli to say she was

 

           23              afraid because she wasn't going to be get a

 

           24              fair shake, I have to disagree with you

 

           25              because we would give you the same shake


 

 

                                                                      33

 

 

            1              that we gave everybody else.

 

            2                      And as far as not showing up for the

 

            3              League of Women Voters, again, the League of

 

            4              Women Voters's have been around for a long

 

            5              time.  They have not a partisan group.  They

 

            6              do not endorse any candidates, they never

 

            7              have, and Patti Fowler deserves an apology.

 

            8              She is a city employee.  She works.  She is

 

            9              a city inspector, Mrs. Fanucci, and I don't

 

           10              think that's funny.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI: I think it's --

 

           12                      MR. JACKOWITZ: I think she got --

 

           13                      MS. FANUCCI: And I --

 

           14                      MR. JACKOWITZ:  Excuse me, I'm

 

           15              talking.

 

           16                      MS. FANUCCI: Well, don't ask a

 

           17              question.

 

           18                      MR. JACKOWITZ: I am talking.

 

           19                      MS. FANUCCI: Well, you asked me a

 

           20              question.

 

           21                      MR. JACKOWITZ: I didn't ask you a

 

           22              question, I think you are hearing things.

 

           23                      MS. FANUCCI: No.  But that's okay.

 

           24                      MR. JACKOWITZ: But she deserves an

 

           25              apology.  She is a city inspector.  She is


 

 

                                                                      34

 

 

            1              hired by the city to go out and inspect, she

 

            2              is a health inspector, and now we are going

 

            3              to tarnish her reputation saying that she

 

            4              leaked questions and that's the reason why

 

            5              we were afraid to go and talk and answer

 

            6              questions to the be public, and that's

 

            7              exactly what it is.  You were afraid because

 

            8              maybe you don't have the answers.

 

            9                      Okay, a trip down memory lane, 2005,

 

           10              109 returned from Iraq sustaining seven

 

           11              casualties.  Mayor Doherty attends Syracuse

 

           12              basketball game.  No bonus for returning

 

           13              city employees, veterans returning from

 

           14              Iraq.  Again, a slap in the face to

 

           15              veterans.  No wage tax reduction as promised

 

           16              seven years ago by Mayor Doherty.  No

 

           17              contracts, police officers, $13,000 raise

 

           18              for the chiefs.  No attendance at city

 

           19              council meetings as promised seven years

 

           20              ago.  No town hall meetings with residents,

 

           21              only speaks to the Chamber of Commerce state

 

           22              of city address.  Most of the people in the

 

           23              Chamber of Commerce are not even Scranton

 

           24              residents.  $175,000,000 deficit short-term,

 

           25              $400 million long-term.  6,000 jobs that's a


 

 

                                                                      35

 

 

            1              joke.  8.7 percent unemployment reality.  If

 

            2              6,000 were created why do we have an 8.7

 

            3              unemployment rate in the area?  I don't

 

            4              understand it.  Maybe someone during motions

 

            5              can explain it to me.  Thank you.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: Mike Dudek.

 

            7                      MR. DUDEK: My name is Mike Dudek,

 

            8              608 Depot Street, Scranton, that's in the

 

            9              Plot.  I left a copy in the Union News for

 

           10              everybody on city council for you to look at

 

           11              at your leisure.  Page six is what I would

 

           12              like you to look at when you have an

 

           13              opportunity.  Those are the labor figures

 

           14              provided by the Department of Labor on a

 

           15              monthly basis to news outlets that publish

 

           16              economic news.  They pointed out the

 

           17              unemployment rate in the area is

 

           18              8.7 percent, for Lackawanna County it's 8.1,

 

           19              but 12 months ago the Lackawanna County

 

           20              unemployment rate was 5.5 percent.  The

 

           21              difference between 5.5 percent and

 

           22              8.1 percent is 44.5 percent.  That's the

 

           23              rates of acceleration of unemployment in the

 

           24              city.

 

           25                      In other words, there are no 6,000


 

 

                                                                      36

 

 

            1              jobs created here.  For 6,000 jobs to be

 

            2              have been created, 10,400 jobs would have to

 

            3              have been lost and the city police would

 

            4              have been spending all day down by the

 

            5              unemployment office trying to direct the

 

            6              traffic in and out of the building with

 

            7              10,400 jobs loss.  The accurate numbers is

 

            8              more like 4,400 jobs and no jobs gained.

 

            9                      Now, every now and then I try to

 

           10              give some guidance to members of city

 

           11              council, and when you are a council person,

 

           12              you really have three things to do, you

 

           13              research, you vote on issues based on the

 

           14              research, and you are exposed to the public

 

           15              like you are here at this meeting in order

 

           16              to explain your vote, whether it would be a

 

           17              meeting like this or any other type of

 

           18              forum, okay?  The way our country's

 

           19              government is structured, and I don't care

 

           20              what state you are in, no elected official

 

           21              has more exposure to the voters or to the

 

           22              people as a city or a borough council person

 

           23              or Illinois in they are called aldermen.

 

           24              You have more exposure to we, the people,

 

           25              than any other elected official.  There is


 

 

                                                                      37

 

 

            1              no insulation between you and us.  You

 

            2              pretty much have to sit there and take it

 

            3              and some of you have taken it with quite

 

            4              good grace.

 

            5                      But one thing has happened that has

 

            6              absolutely left me livid and left me very

 

            7              angry and for once in my life I am not going

 

            8              to pull a punch.  Whenever an elected

 

            9              official owes an explanation to the people

 

           10              as was for instance last week with the

 

           11              debate tore city council, for people not to

 

           12              show up, especially incumbents to that

 

           13              meeting, is one of the most despicable and

 

           14              cowardly things I could ever see, and I

 

           15              don't want a coward on my city council.

 

           16              That was cowardly on your part.

 

           17                      And, furthermore, to insult the

 

           18              League of Women Voters who have been around

 

           19              longer than the dough boys of World War I,

 

           20              that's just showing such a tremendous lack

 

           21              of integrity that I can't even begin to

 

           22              contain my rage about it.  Thank you.

 

           23                      MR. MCGOFF: Bob Martin.

 

           24                      MR. MARTIN:  Distinguished members

 

           25              of Council, Bob Martin, president of the


 

 

                                                                      38

 

 

            1              FOP.  I was away and missed some of meetings

 

            2              in the last couple of weeks.  Some of my men

 

            3              and women that I represent said that there

 

            4              has been some numbers banting around about

 

            5              their salaries and their wages and their

 

            6              benefits and kept calling me with concerns

 

            7              about those numbers, so I thought maybe I

 

            8              better just stop by and see it I can put

 

            9              some perspective on these numbers.  I heard

 

           10              numbers of 80,000, 62,000.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI: 79.

 

           12                      MR. MARTIN: 62, 56,000 bating

 

           13              around, I'm not sure, but I do know that

 

           14              from last year those W-2's that were

 

           15              submitted at that time our base wage was

 

           16              40,009.  We received longevity.  We receive

 

           17              longevity the same as seven other comparable

 

           18              cities in the State of Pennsylvania:

 

           19              Allentown, Bethlehem, Harrisburg, Lancaster,

 

           20              Reading, Wilkes-Barre, and York.  They all

 

           21              receive longevity.  It's not unique to

 

           22              Scranton.  We receive 1 percent for every

 

           23              two years of service with a cap of 10

 

           24              percent.

 

           25                      So, with those figures in mind, and


 

 

                                                                      39

 

 

            1              believe me, I'm really slow at this, a

 

            2              little behind in school, we are at about

 

            3              45,000 for base wage for a second year

 

            4              patrolman, okay?  It should be pretty close.

 

            5                      Ten percent, that would be giving

 

            6              benefit of the doubt if the guy has got

 

            7              20 years of service in he is getting 10

 

            8              percent, 1 percent for every two years.  On

 

            9              top of that, you have to remember that this

 

           10              year every patrol officer received a Court

 

           11              award from the SIT violation from the

 

           12              Commonwealth Court, seven judges en banc

 

           13              which came through I think in the

 

           14              neighborhood of about $6,000, so now we have

 

           15              a base wage for the year of 2008 about

 

           16              $50,000.

 

           17                      What I want everybody to understand

 

           18              is that anything above and beyond that is

 

           19              either overtime or extra duty.  Now,

 

           20              overtime, and I know that Chief Elliott has

 

           21              received accolades from his supervisors and

 

           22              his bosses that he has kept control over the

 

           23              overtime, and I think he has done an

 

           24              extremely good job in that area, so beyond

 

           25              that, the only thing left is extra duty.


 

 

                                                                      40

 

 

            1              Extra duty is the CMC.  We are hired at

 

            2              football games, we are hired at Friendship

 

            3              House, so essentially those guys that are

 

            4              making 59, 60, $65,000 a year, what they are

 

            5              doing is they're out there working extra

 

            6              jobs.  They are out there working a second

 

            7              job.  No different than someone else, such

 

            8              as yourself, that would go to work and then

 

            9              come home and then go out and do another

 

           10              job, so those are where the numbers are

 

           11              coming from and that's what everybody that I

 

           12              represent is concerned about.

 

           13                      But beyond that I don't think where

 

           14              these numbers or why these numbers are as

 

           15              important as everybody thinks they are

 

           16              because again, we tried to negotiate, we did

 

           17              negotiate July 27, 2008, came to an

 

           18              agreement, left the table, two weeks later

 

           19              it fell apart because the city wanted to

 

           20              continue and add management rights.

 

           21              October 1, same thing happened at the

 

           22              University, a month a half later management

 

           23              rights fell back on the table and the whole

 

           24              deal fell apart.

 

           25                      So the point I'm driving home here


 

 

                                                                      41

 

 

            1              is that money and benefits is not the

 

            2              contentious issue here.  It's not the issue

 

            3              that's driving this away from the table or

 

            4              driving this to a relatively fair and

 

            5              equitable solution to this.  It's not -- we

 

            6              are not the greedy people that everybody

 

            7              thinks we are.  This is about the management

 

            8              rights.  Those rights we are not going to

 

            9              give up today or any time.  The city wants

 

           10              to take those rights for all mandatory

 

           11              subjects of bargaining, our hours, our

 

           12              schedules, includes our hours, our days off,

 

           13              our vacations.  They are mandatory subject

 

           14              to bargaining.  Comp time, overtime,

 

           15              mandatory subject of bargaining.  The

 

           16              Recovery Plan strips those statutory rights

 

           17              away from us, the comp time was taken away

 

           18              from us.  Longevity.  We negotiated for it,

 

           19              it was in our contract, 41 of our men and

 

           20              women lost their longevity.  It was striped

 

           21              away from them just last July 7, July 8,

 

           22              taken away, just a pay cut.  Some of them

 

           23              lost 3 or 4 percent.

 

           24                      These are the management rights that

 

           25              the city talks about they we are not going


 

 

                                                                      42

 

 

            1              to give up.  This fight is not about

 

            2              benefits and money as much as it is --

 

            3              they're a major factor, don't misunderstand

 

            4              me, they are major factor, but they are not

 

            5              what this whole argument is about.  Thank

 

            6              you very much.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF: Stephanie Gawel.

 

            8                      MS. GAWEL:  Hi, everybody, how are

 

            9              you tonight?  I strongly disagree with what

 

           10              has been put out by the administration.

 

           11              They have been concerned about the jobs

 

           12              which it says, oh, we are trying to keep the

 

           13              jobs in the city and we are trying to bring

 

           14              them in, we know they tried to basically run

 

           15              Buono out of business because they wouldn't

 

           16              cow-toe to them.

 

           17                      We know that he basically put

 

           18              Channel 61 out of business when it was

 

           19              Scranton Today.  I mean, that was Jack

 

           20              Finnerty's dream, he is the one that started

 

           21              it, he built it up by himself with some

 

           22              help.  He ran it from the library, he didn't

 

           23              have to buy a building, it was 90 percent

 

           24              volunteers.  The only one that got paid was

 

           25              the tech person.  We need to thank Jack


 

 

                                                                      43

 

 

            1              Finnerty, Leslie Collins, Attorney Brian

 

            2              Lenahan, Emily Perry, Lynn Palalino, Karen

 

            3              Bazzarri, Lorainne Tallo, Annette Palutis,

 

            4              Dan Chefaro, Barbara O'Malley, Scott Thomas,

 

            5              Lori Cadden and anyone else I might have

 

            6              forgotten for all of the services they had

 

            7              given us the ten years before the TV station

 

            8              got taken out from underneath them.

 

            9                      Mr. Doherty says he is for citizens,

 

           10              but 90 percent of the campaign money came

 

           11              from people who didn't leave here in the

 

           12              city, we all know that, it came from

 

           13              Waverly, Philly, on and on.  He never talks

 

           14              to the people of the Scranton, never or he

 

           15              would have been here a couple of different

 

           16              times.  The only time he showed up is to

 

           17              Mr. McGoff in office.  That's it.  It's the

 

           18              only time I have seen him in council.  By

 

           19              the way, welcome aboard.

 

           20                      We all know he doesn't go to any of

 

           21              the neighborhood meetings when asked and

 

           22              doesn't -- and he has been sent letters, he

 

           23              has been called, the whole nine yards, and

 

           24              the man doesn't even have the manners and

 

           25              the courtesy to say, no, I'm not coming.  He


 

 

                                                                      44

 

 

            1              just doesn't show.  He has never been to the

 

            2              lower Greenridge, he said last night he was

 

            3              at the Plot, I don't know.  He has never

 

            4              been back at Keyser Avenue when it flooded,

 

            5              back at Cameron Avenue and North Garfield,

 

            6              that area nor has he held any of the

 

            7              promises as far as I know.

 

            8                      He says his opponents run a negative

 

            9              ads, he is the only I hear running the

 

           10              negative ads when I'm hearing the ads and

 

           11              the Times and the governor are right there

 

           12              with him and they all should be ashamed, and

 

           13              that's why I discontinued the Times and I

 

           14              will be calling the Times Leader to find out

 

           15              about their paper.

 

           16                      How many people are aware that NCC

 

           17              is moving to Dickson City?  Why, they don't

 

           18              want to put the mercantile tax?  Do they

 

           19              need more room?  If they need for room we

 

           20              got Southern Union that's got parking, the

 

           21              whole nine yards.  I think it's a good deal

 

           22              for them, but they are moving to Dickson

 

           23              City.

 

           24                      Please don't say the men and women

 

           25              that put their lives on the line on a daily


 

 

                                                                      45

 

 

            1              basis don't deserve a little more than the

 

            2              rest of us.  They deserve a lot more.  I

 

            3              certainly don't have the built to do some of

 

            4              the work they do and I don't have the

 

            5              bravery, I'm a woos.

 

            6                      Okay, 75 percent -- as for the

 

            7              Recovery Plan, probably 75 percent of the

 

            8              citizens didn't read the small print.  We

 

            9              all believe the spin that was put on it.

 

           10              You believe what you hear and that's why we

 

           11              are where we are at.  For the mayor to say

 

           12              he wants the latest crime fighting gear,

 

           13              well, we probably could have had, you know,

 

           14              he had computers in the cars that were never

 

           15              fixed for the longest time, we still don't

 

           16              have cameras in the cars that would save us

 

           17              so much money and save lives it's not even

 

           18              funny, but he doesn't do it.  We know that

 

           19              there is no defibrillators in any of the

 

           20              cars, not on one side or the other side, as

 

           21              Mr. Courtright had mentioned.  Now, that

 

           22              stuff everybody knows, again, you can do

 

           23              through state grants, federal grants, I bet

 

           24              if you is the Marine Corp League they would

 

           25              even, you know, do a fundraiser and get some


 

 

                                                                      46

 

 

            1              monies together to get some of these stuff

 

            2              for us, so I don't know.  There is too much

 

            3              missing.  The only one playing the old

 

            4              school politics is the mayor and Governor

 

            5              Rendell.  You don't have to be the smartest

 

            6              kid on the block to see that.

 

            7                      Oh, by the way, like everyone else

 

            8              ahead of me I would like to know where the

 

            9              6,000 new jobs are.  I can't figure it out.

 

           10              I'm not the brightest math person in the

 

           11              world, but I know if we have got an eight

 

           12              point something in unemployment we don't

 

           13              have 6,000 new jobs in the area.  The Times

 

           14              reported that -- well, I already went over

 

           15              the contributions and truly we know he

 

           16              doesn't really, you know, truly shows he is

 

           17              not in touch with the average citizen of

 

           18              Scranton, ones that struggle to pay the heat

 

           19              bill, the water bill, the sewer bill, and

 

           20              most importantly, the mortgage payments.

 

           21              Could I finish up real quick?

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF: Quickly.

 

           23                      MS. GAWEL:  Okay.  As for any of the

 

           24              former mayors who are backing Mr. Doherty,

 

           25              shame on you.  I realize Jimmy Connors' job


 

 

                                                                      47

 

 

            1              may be on the line, but when the mayor

 

            2              doesn't think we should compensate our

 

            3              firemen and policemen who went to overseas

 

            4              to Iraq and Kuwait, shame on him.  This

 

            5              mayor never goes to cops or a fireman's

 

            6              funeral to say thank you to the family for

 

            7              their years of service.  Mr. Connors does,

 

            8              Mr. Peters does, etcetera.  Thank you for

 

            9              your consideration, Mr. McGoff.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF: Carl Kupchunas.

 

           11                      MR. KUPCHUNAS: Good evening.  My

 

           12              name is Carl Kupchunas, I'm a lifelong

 

           13              resident of the City of Scranton.  As we all

 

           14              know, next Tuesday, May 19, is primary

 

           15              election day.  The Bill of Rights of the

 

           16              United States give all citizens over the age

 

           17              of 18 the right to vote.  It is the right

 

           18              that shouldn't be taken lightly.  The

 

           19              problem in our area is voter apathy.  It's

 

           20              very important that everyone who is

 

           21              registered to vote do so.  I cannot and will

 

           22              not tell you who to vote for.  I will give

 

           23              you some information that maybe will help

 

           24              you make a good decision when you go to the

 

           25              polls on Tuesday.


 

 

                                                                      48

 

 

            1                      If you are in favor of wasteful

 

            2              projects such as the Electric City sign of

 

            3              Linden Street, the $300,000 dog park, the

 

            4              narrowing of the 500-block of Lackawanna

 

            5              Avenue, the bridge to no where and the ever

 

            6              popular treehouse, you know what to do.

 

            7                      If you appreciate getting lied to by

 

            8              a politician who took credit for the medical

 

            9              college and the lower Greenridge flood

 

           10              control project, you know what to do.  We

 

           11              all know Senator Mellow brought the medical

 

           12              college here.  The flood control project was

 

           13              the Army Corp of Engineers project was which

 

           14              first proposed and started through the

 

           15              Connnors' administration.

 

           16                      If you believe a politician who is

 

           17              first closing the fire companies, then does

 

           18              a switch because it's unpopular with the

 

           19              citizens, you know what to do.

 

           20                      If you appreciate having your

 

           21              mailbox filled are propaganda one but seven

 

           22              times, which is not only very annoying but

 

           23              it's also very environmentally unfriendly by

 

           24              a politician who claims to be a friend of

 

           25              the environment, you know what to do.


 

 

                                                                      49

 

 

            1                      If you are an in favor of the local

 

            2              biased newspapers and their recent seven

 

            3              days newsletter in favor of certain

 

            4              politician when newspaper are supposed to be

 

            5              fair and even in their coverage of all

 

            6              candidates, not just the one, then you know

 

            7              what to do.  You can make your voice heard

 

            8              by canceling the subscription to this bias

 

            9              publication and let them now how you feel

 

           10              about the uneven coverage of the elections.

 

           11                      If you are into fantasy and the

 

           12              imaginary 6,000 jobs where no one seems to

 

           13              know where the 6,000 jobs are if they even

 

           14              exist when unemployment is at a record high

 

           15              in Scranton, you know what to do.

 

           16                      If you are no respect for our

 

           17              hardworking police and firefighters who put

 

           18              their lives on the line protecting the

 

           19              citizens of Scranton and the administration

 

           20              who doesn't want to give them a fair and

 

           21              proper wage, who had to wait seven years for

 

           22              a contract, that's un heard of, you know

 

           23              what to do.

 

           24                      If you enjoy paying the 25 percent

 

           25              tax increase and one of the highest wage


 

 

                                                                      50

 

 

            1              taxes in the state and possibility of more

 

            2              25 percent tax increase in these tough

 

            3              economic times, you know what to do.

 

            4                      If you like having your tires

 

            5              damaged, your car alignment damaged by

 

            6              potholes which like many affect all of the

 

            7              city streets, you know what to do.

 

            8                      If you are in favor of all of the

 

            9              empty buildings and, of course, the white

 

           10              elephant of the Southern Union building on

 

           11              Lackawanna Avenue along with the record

 

           12              number at homes for sale in the City of

 

           13              Scranton, you know what to do.

 

           14                      However, if you want change, a

 

           15              change that the citizens of Scranton need

 

           16              and badly deserve, no more distressed city

 

           17              status which has been that affect for

 

           18              17 years you can get this chance.  All it

 

           19              takes is a strong of the pen next Tuesday

 

           20              and the citizens of Scranton will have

 

           21              spoken.  Remember, choose your candidates

 

           22              carefully and end the current rubber stamp

 

           23              mentality.  Make your voice heard and vote

 

           24              next Tuesday.  Thank you for your time.

 

           25                      MR. MCGOFF: Liz Hubbard.


 

 

                                                                      51

 

 

            1                      MS. HUBBARD: That's a hard act to

 

            2              follow.  Just a couple of questions and a

 

            3              couple of -- several weeks ago when Mr.

 

            4              McGovern he talked about the companies that

 

            5              had been taking the wage tax out of people's

 

            6              salaries and not turning it over to the

 

            7              single tax office, does anybody know if

 

            8              that's being pursued because I would think

 

            9              that would be illegal from my own years that

 

           10              I worked with my husband in our business.

 

           11              You don't deduct money from people's

 

           12              paychecks and then keep it, you know, and if

 

           13              that is, in fact, happening or has happened

 

           14              what is the tax office doing about it?

 

           15              Anybody have any idea?

 

           16                      MS. EVANS: I believe they indicated

 

           17              that evening that they were pursuing those

 

           18              types of cases legally.

 

           19                      MS. HUBBARD: Okay.  Another thing,

 

           20              last night at the debate the mayor made a

 

           21              big point of saying how he was for the

 

           22              neighborhoods, but in '06 when they had that

 

           23              flood meeting, and I believe Mr. Hubbard

 

           24              spoke on it several weeks ago and elaborated

 

           25              on what had gone on at the meeting, the only


 

 

                                                                      52

 

 

            1              thing he neglected to mention was that the

 

            2              mayor slept through that whole meeting and

 

            3              there were many people that witnessed it and

 

            4              we actually I think somebody has it on tape.

 

            5                      Channel 61, the money that was used

 

            6              to renovate Mansour's building up there, are

 

            7              we going to get any of that back now that

 

            8              they are not there any more?  If somebody

 

            9              could give me answers to that.

 

           10                      And, Judy, could you explain it me

 

           11              what a master's equivalency is?

 

           12                      MS. GATELLI:  I'll do that in

 

           13              motions.

 

           14                      MS. HUBBARD:  Oh, I may not be here

 

           15              for that.

 

           16                      MS. GATELLI:  Well, you will watch

 

           17              it on TV.  I'm going to answer all of my

 

           18              questions in motions.

 

           19                      MS. HUBBARD: Are you making a note

 

           20              of that question?

 

           21                      MS. GATELLI:  I have a note.

 

           22                      MS. HUBBARD: Okay.  Anything being

 

           23              done about the skunks because they are still

 

           24              there?  Well, I guess I'll have to wait

 

           25              until motions or else catch you tomorrow on


 

 

                                                                      53

 

 

            1              TV.  And, by the way, Sherry, that's a cute

 

            2              little dog, what is it?

 

            3                      MS. FANUCCI:  A miniature toy

 

            4              poodle.

 

            5                      MS. HUBBARD: He's adorable.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: Liz went by the house

 

            7              and actually thought there was a skunk on my

 

            8              porch and it was my dog.  She is black and

 

            9              white and small.  So, I mean, the irony of

 

           10              the whole thing was actually very funny for

 

           11              us.

 

           12                      MS. HUBBARD: But anyway, I would

 

           13              like people out there and make sure

 

           14              everybody gets out and votes on Tuesday

 

           15              preferably for Gary and Janet and her team.

 

           16                      MR. MCGOFF: Please, that's out of

 

           17              order, Mrs. Hubbard, you know that.

 

           18                      MS. HUBBARD: I'm entitled once in

 

           19              awhile to get out of order.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: It's out of order Dan

 

           21              Hubbard.

 

           22                      MR. HUBBARD: Good evening, Council,

 

           23              Danielle Hubbard, lower Greenridge.  A

 

           24              couple quick points tonight really based at

 

           25              Mrs. Gatelli.  I have been home the last few


 

 

                                                                      54

 

 

            1              meetings and watching a couple of comments

 

            2              were made:  One, Judy had made a comment

 

            3              that the D.A.'s Office had told her to wand

 

            4              the residents coming into this building.

 

            5              Well, my question was who had ordered or

 

            6              told the police department to do the

 

            7              wanding?

 

            8                      Secondly, what were they searching

 

            9              for because under Pennsylvania state law

 

           10              this is a public building and residents are

 

           11              allowed to carry weapons in and out of this

 

           12              building freely under law.  In Pennsylvania,

 

           13              schools and courthouses you are not allowed

 

           14              to carry a firearm on you.  At the

 

           15              courthouse if you go into the security check

 

           16              point with a firearm, they do provide you

 

           17              with a secure and safe lockbox for your

 

           18              firearm at the security check point.  So if

 

           19              you were to wand residents in this facility,

 

           20              which is not marked or posted anywhere in

 

           21              the building disallowing firearms, and not

 

           22              to mention it is a public facility, you

 

           23              would have had to provide residents with a

 

           24              safe and secure lockbox that night.

 

           25                      So I would like to know that with


 

 

                                                                      55

 

 

            1              the potential Second and Fourth Amendment

 

            2              violation by wanding residents and possibly

 

            3              searching and seizing any firearms that you

 

            4              would have had on them that night who gave

 

            5              that order to do it because that is

 

            6              protected under the state constitution and

 

            7              the federal constitution.  In Pennsylvania,

 

            8              you actually can openly carry a firearm

 

            9              without a permit in plain sight of public --

 

           10              in public facilities other than courthouses

 

           11              and schools, so who gave the order for the

 

           12              Scranton Police Department to search, in my

 

           13              mind illegal search, residents coming into a

 

           14              public facility for weapons that they would

 

           15              have been legally allowed to carry in and

 

           16              out of this facility?

 

           17                      Anybody have an answer?  I mean,

 

           18              that's a pretty serious violation.  You

 

           19              cannot just decide on one day that you are

 

           20              going to put up an intimidating security

 

           21              force at the door and wand residents at a

 

           22              public facility that they are by law allowed

 

           23              to carry firearms in and out of.  And let's

 

           24              talk about intimidation.  You know, comments

 

           25              were made about you know, council members


 

 

                                                                      56

 

 

            1              feel intimidated in chambers.  Well,

 

            2              Mr. Quinn was just gaveled the first time as

 

            3              being out of order, he was not rowdy, he was

 

            4              just told he was out of order because he had

 

            5              been I guess campaigning.  The officer

 

            6              behind me took ten steps closer to Mr. Quinn

 

            7              that nobody saw on camera, and you want to

 

            8              talk -- I mean, you are intimidated?

 

            9                      You have a police officer in council

 

           10              chambers who walks to the podium as soon as

 

           11              somebody is gaveled out of order.  I mean,

 

           12              that's intimidation.  That's actually very

 

           13              intimidating to a lot of residents that want

 

           14              to come and speak.

 

           15                      And secondly, my last point in

 

           16              closing was under what context is it okay

 

           17              for an elected official from her seat during

 

           18              a public meeting to use the term Nazi in

 

           19              reference to a resident in this city?  You

 

           20              said it.  It's on the record.  What's the

 

           21              definition that you would use to defend

 

           22              using or calling somebody a Nazi from your

 

           23              seat on council during a public meeting?

 

           24                      There is a lot of people in this

 

           25              city that are offended by that term.  I


 

 

                                                                      57

 

 

            1              lived right below a lady in Tel Aviv that

 

            2              was a survivor of the camps and just the

 

            3              mention of that term put her in tears

 

            4              because she lost her mother and father and

 

            5              her entire family and she was a sole

 

            6              survivor, so to throw that term around in

 

            7              these chambers in this country in this day

 

            8              and age that loosely is embarrassing and

 

            9              outright wrong.

 

           10                      And the residents of this city

 

           11              deserve an apology, the Jewish community of

 

           12              this city deserves an apology, and to be

 

           13              honest with you I think quite honestly it's

 

           14              part of your liable suit where you were

 

           15              actually suing somebody for making a

 

           16              reference to you using that term, so you

 

           17              really don't have a grounds to sue somebody

 

           18              for linking you to that term when you sit

 

           19              here under your official capacity and throw

 

           20              it around like it's nothing.  That's a very

 

           21              serious term to be used from an official

 

           22              seat by an official person who is up for

 

           23              reelection in this city.  Thank you.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF: Donna Dominick.

 

           25                      MS. DOMINICK: Donna Dominick,


 

 

                                                                      58

 

 

            1              homeowner and taxpayer.  I am here for two

 

            2              things because I'm just frustrated.  As far

 

            3              as these 6,000 jobs go Mrs. Schumacher last

 

            4              week said a friend of hers wanted to know

 

            5              about them.  Everybody here is talking about

 

            6              the 6,000 jobs.  I haven't met anybody in

 

            7              the last week and a half that doesn't want

 

            8              to know about these 6,000 jobs.  From where

 

            9              I'm sitting, Mr. Doherty in the last few

 

           10              days has had everything under the sun

 

           11              printed in the Times.  I think to put the

 

           12              issue to rest all he has to do is have all

 

           13              of those jobs, the 6,000, published in the

 

           14              Times.  I think that would put it to bed

 

           15              once and for all.  Everybody would know what

 

           16              those jobs were.

 

           17                      Second thing, and this is like

 

           18              beating a dead horse, when it comes to the

 

           19              reducing firefighters or closing engine

 

           20              companies or fire stations, Mr. Doherty

 

           21              said, "Not in the near future," Mr. Hayes

 

           22              said "Not at this time," well, you can't

 

           23              expect that he would say anything other than

 

           24              that, it's election time.  I mean, he would

 

           25              have to be a very stupid man to say anything


 

 

                                                                      59

 

 

            1              other than that.  I don't think you can

 

            2              believe anything that come out of his mouth

 

            3              if his tongue came notarized.

 

            4                      And I have one little four line poem

 

            5              I would like it say before I leave and that

 

            6              is:  Our firefighters risk their lives day

 

            7              and night, yet we have a mayor who continues

 

            8              the fight.  His view of our police officers

 

            9              is very, very dim, so why on earth would you

 

           10              reelect him.  Thank you.

 

           11                      MR. MCGOFF: Charlie Newcomb.

 

           12                      MR. NEWCOMB: Good evening, Council.

 

           13              Just two short ones tonight.  I would like

 

           14              to remind everybody next week to go out and

 

           15              vote on Tuesday and I would just like to

 

           16              remind everybody no matter who you are going

 

           17              to vote for look at what these candidates

 

           18              stand for for city council, for mayor.  Look

 

           19              at the problems in Luzerne County, two

 

           20              judges going to jail, school directors

 

           21              arrested, corruption.  Everybody just look,

 

           22              and you know what, the biggest thing to do

 

           23              is follow the money whenever you are going

 

           24              to vote for a candidate.

 

           25                      My opinion is, whether it's


 

 

                                                                      60

 

 

            1              Mr. Doherty, Mr. DiBileo or Mr. Bolus, you

 

            2              have to ask yourselves, people listening out

 

            3              there seeing all of the billboards, TV

 

            4              commercials or whatever you do, why would

 

            5              you have to spend $1 million, and whether

 

            6              it's $700,000, $800,000, a million dollars,

 

            7              just think of these numbers, for a position

 

            8              that pays $50,000 a year.

 

            9                      So, all I could say and is just

 

           10              listen to what they have to say, look at all

 

           11              of your contributors, who gives to who, who

 

           12              works where, who has a job here or who has a

 

           13              job there and just look and see how much

 

           14              money these people spend to get elected,

 

           15              because like Andy Sbaraglia said in the

 

           16              beginning, something has to change.  That's

 

           17              way, way too much for anybody to be spending

 

           18              on any kind of candidacy.  It's almost like

 

           19              the person with the most money wins the job.

 

           20                      And one other thing I would like to

 

           21              touch on, Mr. Martin touched on it a little

 

           22              bit, but Mrs. Fanucci, when Stu Renda was

 

           23              here last week and he gave you all of them

 

           24              numbers, did he give you a breakdown on like

 

           25              how much of those numbers were, let me think


 

 

                                                                      61

 

 

            1              of the word here, private money, for like --

 

            2                      MS. FANUCCI: Well, it depends on

 

            3              what you are saying?  You mean, like what is

 

            4              the base salary, what is the overtime?

 

            5                      MR. NEWCOMB:  I'll elaborate what I

 

            6              mean by private money.  It would like, in

 

            7              other words, we are going to use a police

 

            8              officer, for example.  Like, let's say he

 

            9              made $80,000, I'll just use that for a

 

           10              number.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI: Right.

 

           12                      MR. NEWCOMB:  Okay.  Well, the

 

           13              people, I'm sure you know or maybe you

 

           14              don't, but what the people out there would

 

           15              have to know is, see, if you have a second

 

           16              job or I have a second job you get two

 

           17              W-2's.  Like, in other words, if I work say

 

           18              for K-Mart and I work for my company --

 

           19                      MS. FANUCCI: This is the W-2, this

 

           20              would be from the city.  So, yeah, this is

 

           21              from the city.

 

           22                      MR. NEWCOMB:  So what I'm trying to

 

           23              say is with any private money, what I mean

 

           24              by private money is if they were work CMC

 

           25              for eight hours, what has to happen is if


 

 

                                                                      62

 

 

            1              it's private and that's all private money

 

            2              they have to pay the city, and that's a

 

            3              straight rate, and then it goes to that

 

            4              police officer, but it's all added into

 

            5              their W-2's.

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI: Right.

 

            7                      MR. NEWCOMB:  So what I'm trying to

 

            8              say is somebody that makes sixty, seventy or

 

            9              eighty thousand dollars, there could be

 

           10              thirty to thirty-five thousand dollars of

 

           11              that that comes from private money which

 

           12              means if let's say you had affair at a

 

           13              wedding or something at the Cultural Center

 

           14              and you had to have a policeman or a fireman

 

           15              there, well, you got to pay them a straight

 

           16              eight hours or whatever or whoever long they

 

           17              have to get paid, so you have to pay the

 

           18              city.  You don't pay them, you can't do that

 

           19              anymore, you have to pay the city and then

 

           20              the city puts it into their paychecks.  So I

 

           21              just wanted to know if you broke down --

 

           22                      MR. FANUCCI: There was a breakdown

 

           23              between overtime, which would be anything

 

           24              above what their normal salary was.

 

           25                      MR. NEWCOMB: Right.


 

 

                                                                      63

 

 

            1                      MS .FANUCCI: Longevity pay.  Yeah,

 

            2              everything was broken down.

 

            3                      MR. NEWCOMB: But, I mean, he gave

 

            4              the numbers from the private money, too?

 

            5                      MS. FANUCCI: He did.  Well, he

 

            6              didn't say -- it wasn't private money, it

 

            7              was overtime.  I believe it was an overtime

 

            8              section of money that was outside of your

 

            9              normal salary.

 

           10                      MR. NEWCOMB: Right, but I just want

 

           11              to say overtime is if they get time and a

 

           12              half, the employees.

 

           13                      MS. FANUCCI: Right.

 

           14                      MR. NEWCOMB: You don't you get --

 

           15              you get a straight rate for private, I just

 

           16              wanted to know.

 

           17                      MS. FANUCCI: I don't remember seeing

 

           18              a separate section of private.

 

           19                      MR. NEWCOMB: When you get those

 

           20              numbers look at it because it's very

 

           21              important.  Like, if I was a policeman and I

 

           22              worked the St. Patrick's parade extra time;

 

           23              well, then I would get time and half.

 

           24                      MS. FANUCCI: Right.

 

           25                      MR. NEWCOMB:  But if I went tomorrow


 

 

                                                                      64

 

 

            1              and I had to go to CMC of the Friendship

 

            2              House or something and I wanted to stay

 

            3              eight hours, I get a flat right, you know,

 

            4              like my hourly rate and you have to --

 

            5                      MS. FANUCCI: We could ask them for

 

            6              that.

 

            7                      MR. NEWCOMB:  Yeah, just because,

 

            8              you know, there is a big difference and, you

 

            9              know, there is a big difference in the money

 

           10              when they do that.

 

           11                      MS. FANUCCI:  I definitely will ask

 

           12              him for that, for that breakdown.

 

           13                      MR. NEWCOMB: Okay, thanks.

 

           14                      MS. FANUCCI: Sure.

 

           15                      MR. NEWCOMB: And again, I would just

 

           16              like to say when everybody goes out to vote

 

           17              next week just vote your conscience, vote

 

           18              your heart and like they say just follow the

 

           19              money and see where it goes.  Thanks.

 

           20                      MR. MCGOFF: Any other speakers?

 

           21                      MR. TALIMINI: Joe Talimini, citizen

 

           22              of Scranton.  I would like to mention a

 

           23              couple of things.  First of all, I want to

 

           24              thank Mrs. Evans for mentioning the fact

 

           25              that be this coming Saturday is Armed Forces


 

 

                                                                      65

 

 

            1              Day.  If it wasn't for the Armed Forces I

 

            2              can assure you that none of you be sitting

 

            3              up here and none of us would be out there,

 

            4              so it would be a very good idea if during

 

            5              the course of your campaigning you manage to

 

            6              show up for Armed Forces Day.  It won't be a

 

            7              drunk fest.  There won't be any big parades,

 

            8              big bands or anything else, but it is a

 

            9              chance to honor the veterans.

 

           10                      And I'd also like to mention the

 

           11              fact that somewhere along the line the

 

           12              United States I think introduced a

 

           13              constitution back in 1776 or 1777 or

 

           14              something like that.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: 1789.

 

           16                      MR. TALIMINI: 1789, thank you,

 

           17              Mr. McGoff, and I think there was the first

 

           18              of the 14 amendments that were added later

 

           19              on, something about free speech.  I think

 

           20              the free speech applies to the citizens of

 

           21              in this room as well as to those of you who

 

           22              sit up there.  So, Mr. McGoff, I

 

           23              respectfully ask gavel a citizen out of

 

           24              order that you also gavel your committee

 

           25              members out of order because they, too, are


 

 

                                                                      66

 

 

            1              just as guilty as some of the people who

 

            2              speak out, and I noticed you have been very

 

            3              reluctant to do that, but I ask that you

 

            4              please do that from now on.

 

            5                      On Friday is another day that nobody

 

            6              seems to know about and that's the

 

            7              policeman's memorial day, and it's a very

 

            8              important day.  We have a little situation

 

            9              out in the hallway which should have been

 

           10              resolved a long time ago.

 

           11                      I would like to point out something

 

           12              that happened to me about a week ago on

 

           13              Saturday, and it's the first time in

 

           14              58 years it's happened.  I was driving into

 

           15              Wal-Mart, there was a car directly behind

 

           16              me, and when I pulled into my parking space

 

           17              the gentleman pulled up directly behind me

 

           18              and parked his car.  He got out of his car

 

           19              and he walked up, and I happened to have

 

           20              purple heart license plates on there, and he

 

           21              asked me if I was a purple heart veteran and

 

           22              I said, yes, I was.  He extended his hand

 

           23              and he shook my hand and he said he was with

 

           24              the Friends of the Forgotten.  I had no idea

 

           25              who they were, but in 58 years it's the


 

 

                                                                      67

 

 

            1              first time anybody has acknowledged the fact

 

            2              that we did have a war in Korea, and I'm

 

            3              very pleased to say I got the gentleman's

 

            4              card.  It says, "Thank you for your service.

 

            5              Friends of the Forgotten, Northeast wing of

 

            6              Pennsylvania."

 

            7                      The other thing I would like to

 

            8              mention, and this is I guess it could be

 

            9              ruled politics, but we have an election

 

           10              coming up next Tuesday, Washington West has

 

           11              been the polling place for District 16-1,

 

           12              nobody has acknowledged it.  I think they

 

           13              had a paid legal advisement in the paper on

 

           14              Sunday, 16-1 will not be voting at

 

           15              Washington West next week they will be

 

           16              voting instead at the United House, and I

 

           17              would like to point that out for all the

 

           18              viewers, all the seniors who can't come

 

           19              here, the people who don't know because

 

           20              unless they are advised this way a lot of

 

           21              people are going to be going to Washington

 

           22              West and when they find out they can't vote

 

           23              there they are going to go home.  So I don't

 

           24              know who is derelict in this, but I would

 

           25              like to make a very, very specific note of


 

 

                                                                      68

 

 

            1              that.  There will be no voting at Washington

 

            2              West this year, it will be at United House,

 

            3              and I understand it's only for one year, so

 

            4              thank you very much floor your time.

 

            5                      MS. SCHUMACHER: Good evening.  Marie

 

            6              Schumacher, resident and member of the

 

            7              Taxpayers' Association.  First, the big fib,

 

            8              the 6,000 jobs created or the claim I should

 

            9              say of 6,000 jobs created.  Probably the

 

           10              easiest method of measuring job volume in

 

           11              the city is to use the EMS/LST amounts that

 

           12              are included in the budget.  This EMS/LST

 

           13              tax is imposed at a flat amount of $52 for

 

           14              every worker earning over $12,000 annually,

 

           15              so it's a simple matter of dividing the

 

           16              amount budgeted by 52 to determine the

 

           17              number of worker's earning over $12,000.

 

           18              Hardly a family sustaining amount in the

 

           19              United States.

 

           20                      Using this formula for 2006, the

 

           21              first year of this tax was imposed, you will

 

           22              find there were 40,385 wage earners.  In

 

           23              2009, the wage earner's amount to 25,547, a

 

           24              decline of 14,838.  So we must conclude one

 

           25              of three things:  Either the Scranton


 

 

                                                                      69

 

 

            1              workforce has declined by 14,838 or 14,838

 

            2              workers slipped below the $12,000 a year

 

            3              threshold or there is an error in the 2009

 

            4              budget.

 

            5                      Personally, after reading the

 

            6              newspaper regularly and seeing all of the

 

            7              drug arrests, I think that maybe the 6,000

 

            8              jobs have been created in the underground

 

            9              market and they are all drug sale's people.

 

           10                      Now, as to the 71 percent of the

 

           11              voters being correct in vote for the

 

           12              Recovery Plan.  My main question is what

 

           13              percent voted for the Recovery Plan because

 

           14              the mayor in June of 2002 warned there would

 

           15              be a tax increase if it wasn't approved?

 

           16                      Tonight during motions, I hope to

 

           17              hear Mrs. Gatelli ask Mr. Minora two things:

 

           18              One, Mr. Minora said -- or the analysis of

 

           19              the single tax office said the budget was

 

           20              exceeded and when they exceeded the budget

 

           21              they dipped into tax revenues of the city

 

           22              and assuming the boroughs and the county.

 

           23              Now, what is that called?  It sounds as

 

           24              though it is theft from the city taxpayers

 

           25              to me.


 

 

                                                                      70

 

 

            1                      And I would like and expect an

 

            2              answer tonight on what the remaining road

 

            3              blocks are before BRT must pay for the land

 

            4              they have been using at 800 Providence Road.

 

            5                      I would like to know if OECD is

 

            6              moving back to city hall in July or not.  If

 

            7              not, what will be the cost of their monthly

 

            8              rent where they are if they are to remain in

 

            9              the Scranton Life building?

 

           10                      I would like know if the city is

 

           11              still at risk for the Village of Tripp Park

 

           12              water runoff problem or has the developer

 

           13              come up with the solution?  Has any council

 

           14              person investigated to see how our

 

           15              permit/inspection process has failed in this

 

           16              endeavor?  This never should have happened

 

           17              in the first place and I would like to

 

           18              believe somebody up there is finding out

 

           19              what went wrong.

 

           20                      And then last night the mayor said

 

           21              we are building housing for the community

 

           22              medical college students.  I don't recall

 

           23              seeing this item in the capital budget or in

 

           24              the OECD budget line item.  Where does the

 

           25              medical college housing appear in the city


 

 

                                                                      71

 

 

            1              budget?  I'll look forward to those answers

 

            2              during motions.  Thank you.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else?

 

            4                      MS. WILLIAMS: Good evening.  Joanne

 

            5              Williams, homeowner and taxpayer.  Well,

 

            6              welcome to the negativity.  You know, I was

 

            7              going to come down here tonight and say a

 

            8              few things, but once again I was approached

 

            9              by Mrs. Hubbard and asked me why I'm here,

 

           10              why do I come during election?  Why?

 

           11              Because I live in the city all my life and I

 

           12              love the city and I have been here before

 

           13              the cameras and I'm tired -- and they talk

 

           14              about negative -- why people don't come here

 

           15              and speak positive about the city, who would

 

           16              want to come here in this room and take this

 

           17              harassment?  This is constant -- and the

 

           18              looks by Fay Franus.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF: Please.

 

           20                      MS. WILLIAMS: It's terrible.  Well

 

           21              --

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF:  We are not going to use

 

           23              names.  It's out of order.

 

           24                      MS. WILLIAMS: Oh, but it's all right

 

           25              when other people use names though, isn't


 

 

                                                                      72

 

 

            1              it?  That's okay.

 

            2                      I just want to touch on a few

 

            3              things, Mr. Bolus all of a sudden is

 

            4              pro-Genesis Wildlife Center, it's amazing.

 

            5              I recall when the Wildlife Center first came

 

            6              to the park these people poked fun at the

 

            7              park, made fun of the monkeys, the TV's,

 

            8              said the zoo was no place to put animals.

 

            9                      Mrs. Beck talked about me last week

 

           10              about the signs and everything, I'm glad to

 

           11              see her back and her husband, she can put

 

           12              100 signs in her yard it's still a false

 

           13              political statement.  The mayor is not

 

           14              closing fire houses.

 

           15                      Each week everybody speak on crime

 

           16              and high taxes and how we can save money,

 

           17              I'll say it again like I said a few years

 

           18              ago, back a few years ago when a playground

 

           19              was being built for children by volunteers I

 

           20              didn't see -- well, they say my name, Mr.

 

           21              McGoff, like Mr. Quinn, Mr. Bolus,

 

           22              Mr. Spindler, Mr. Beck, and I can go on and

 

           23              on and, Mrs. Evans, you weren't there either

 

           24              and I know you told me you had a back

 

           25              problem.  Well, I have a back and neck


 

 

                                                                      73

 

 

            1              problem, too, but all I did is paint and

 

            2              help serve refreshments.  I mean, where were

 

            3              you people then?  You want to raise to your

 

            4              children, no volunteers, huh, at that time.

 

            5                      As far as the medical school it's

 

            6              very, very dear and near to me.  My husband

 

            7              was diagnosed, my late husband, was

 

            8              diagnosed with mild dysplasia syndrome in

 

            9              2005, a form of leukemia.  We had to go to

 

           10              Philadelphia.  We had to go Fox Chase in

 

           11              Northeast Philadelphia.  Gene's Hospital

 

           12              which is supported by the students at Temple

 

           13              University.  Let me tell you, what a

 

           14              beautiful sight it was to see those students

 

           15              working with the doctors in that area and

 

           16              trying to find a cure for leukemia.  Yes, we

 

           17              need a medical center.  Why did the medical

 

           18              center come here?  Absolutely.  The governor

 

           19              helped, Senator Mellow helped, but Mayor

 

           20              Chris Doherty sat down with four or five

 

           21              doctors a few years back and wanted to know

 

           22              what the city was like, what the people were

 

           23              like, where were you going, was it a good

 

           24              place to put a medical school.  They saw the

 

           25              vision there thanks to Chris Doherty.


 

 

                                                                      74

 

 

            1                      And I'm going to tell you one more

 

            2              thing, I'm going to say it, get out and vote

 

            3              people on May 19.  Get out and vote for the

 

            4              people who have made the hard and tough

 

            5              decisions to make this city move forward.

 

            6              We know who they are, and I'm going to say

 

            7              it, Mayor Doherty, Mrs. Gatelli and

 

            8              Mrs. Fanucci.  Thank you.

 

            9                      MR. MCGOFF: Please.  Wait one

 

           10              moment, please, I'm sorry.  Once again,

 

           11              advocating voting for or against a

 

           12              particular person is out of order.  I'm

 

           13              simply asking you to refrain from doing

 

           14              that.  It's a simple request and one that we

 

           15              should follow.  Thank you.  I'm sorry, Mr.

 

           16              McCloe.

 

           17                      MR. MCCLOE:  My name is Brett

 

           18              McCloe, Scranton taxpayer and homeowner.  I

 

           19              was just sitting at home actually and I was

 

           20              watching and I, too, sort of had a problem

 

           21              with the 6,000 job number.  My job I do for

 

           22              a living totally depends on that number.

 

           23              More so than that, what I do for a living

 

           24              totally depends on what kind of money these

 

           25              6,000 or whatever people make.  If the


 

 

                                                                      75

 

 

            1              average of those jobs, if there are 6,000 at

 

            2              all, which I don't really see, if the

 

            3              average of those employees cannot afford to

 

            4              buy the very good and services that they

 

            5              sell that is a recipe for disaster.

 

            6                      Eight, 10 and 12 dollar an hour jobs

 

            7              just gets the taxes paid.  Period.  That is

 

            8              not economic development.  We need to take

 

            9              the emphasis off of economic development and

 

           10              put it towards developing an economy with

 

           11              good paying jobs.  These 6,000 jobs that he

 

           12              is talking about, first of all, I don't know

 

           13              where he got that number; number two, people

 

           14              just aren't making that kind of money, and

 

           15              even if with the medical school, I'm not

 

           16              sure if I want a doctor who graduates from

 

           17              this medical school who is $200,000 in debt

 

           18              then marries another person, another

 

           19              doctor who is also $200,000 in debt, then

 

           20              goes and buys a $400,000 home at Tripp's

 

           21              Park or wherever, you are looking for a

 

           22              person to come into the city who is almost a

 

           23              million dollars in debt right off the bat.

 

           24              You know, I have seen it.  I have seen

 

           25              people that are that deep in debt.  If these


 

 

                                                                      76

 

 

            1              are our new citizens, okay.

 

            2                      Well, I guess I wasn't really

 

            3              prepared.  I was just sort of ticked off and

 

            4              I don't mean to get on you, Mrs. Fanucci,

 

            5              but --

 

            6                      MS. FANUCCI:  Get on me all you

 

            7              want.  Go ahead.

 

            8                      MR. MCCLOE: I'm not trying to,

 

            9              believe me.  I'm not trying to, but it's

 

           10              more for the mindset of the people of this

 

           11              city.  A couple of weeks ago what I found

 

           12              was one of the most economically divisive

 

           13              statements I ever heard was that no one has

 

           14              to pay the same kind of insurance -- or

 

           15              everybody else has to pay more insurance

 

           16              than the firefighters, and not that you were

 

           17              factually wrong, I'm not going to dispute

 

           18              that, I don't know anything about the

 

           19              mechanics of the numbers, but what that did

 

           20              is psychological it just drove a wedge into

 

           21              a lot of people's minds.  What it did was it

 

           22              made people think that, well, I pay all of

 

           23              this and they don't have to pay that.

 

           24                      Well, guess what, People, you don't

 

           25              have to run into a building that's on fire.


 

 

                                                                      77

 

 

            1              None of you have to suck in noxious fumes.

 

            2              None of you have to worry about the asbestos

 

            3              that might be floating in the air and maybe

 

            4              20 years down the line, oh, you have got

 

            5              something, such and such.  That insurance

 

            6              that they get is well-deserved.  For me who

 

            7              waits tables, what I pay in insurance, so

 

            8              what if it's more than -- so what it it's

 

            9              way more than theirs?  They are there to

 

           10              save my life.

 

           11                      I guess that's all I have to say

 

           12              expect for, Folks, this is the time.  Get

 

           13              out there and vote.  The time for talking

 

           14              about certain things is over.  We have a

 

           15              chance to change lot of things, not just in

 

           16              our city but within ourselves which will

 

           17              change the city.  Thank you.  Thank you very

 

           18              much.

 

           19                      MS. STULGIS:  Ann Marie Stulgis, I

 

           20              live in the City of Scranton.  First off I'd

 

           21              like to clarify something we have been

 

           22              hearing a lot about, beat cops.  Beat cops.

 

           23              How great beat cops are.  How the mayor is

 

           24              bringing beat cops back.  Well, Folks, may I

 

           25              remind you that we have approximately 30


 

 

                                                                      78

 

 

            1              less cops than we did when this mayor came

 

            2              into office?  Can I also remind you that he

 

            3              is the one that eliminated beat cops, as

 

            4              much as I came here and protested it

 

            5              happening, he is the one who eliminated them

 

            6              and now it's election time and beat cops are

 

            7              the savior of all saviors.  Maybe they would

 

            8              have been had they stayed here and been

 

            9              working the last seven years.

 

           10                      It all started on October of 2002

 

           11              when he stated we already have enough cops,

 

           12              and then in November of '02 the first eight

 

           13              were eliminated and then it continued and

 

           14              continued right up to December of '04 when

 

           15              he eliminated ten more and now we have beat

 

           16              cops.  Yeah.  We have a beat cop in downtown

 

           17              Scranton.  Well, what about North Scranton,

 

           18              where is their beat cops?  What about the

 

           19              Hill Section, where is there beat cops?

 

           20              Where are all of the beat cops?  There is

 

           21              ten federally funded OECD -- or COMM-D

 

           22              officers, we don't have a ten of them out

 

           23              there.  I don't know where the federal funds

 

           24              are going, but we could do not have ten

 

           25              COMM-D officers on the street.


 

 

                                                                      79

 

 

            1                      Now, we also over the past few years

 

            2              have been blessed with a 25 percent property

 

            3              tax increase, exorbitant increases in our

 

            4              sewer bills, increases in our garbage bills.

 

            5              We have eliminated firefighters, we have

 

            6              eliminated police officers, we have

 

            7              eliminated 48 clerical workers.  Where did

 

            8              the money go?  Police cost less, fire costs

 

            9              less, clerical costs less.  We're sort of a

 

           10              disoriented business.  They are the service

 

           11              people, where did the money go?  What did my

 

           12              money get used for if it wasn't for my own

 

           13              protection and the protection of my family?

 

           14                      What did it get used for if?  Well,

 

           15              it got used for the Davis trail maybe, the

 

           16              trail that got washed away and never got

 

           17              repaired or did it get used for, hmm, the

 

           18              green slime pond where all of the fish died?

 

           19              Did it gets used for that?  What did it get

 

           20              used for?  Did it get used for the treehouse

 

           21              for handicapped people that people in

 

           22              wheelchairs can't get to?  Did it get used

 

           23              for the bridge to no where?  What did it get

 

           24              used for?  Or did it get used for, hmm, the

 

           25              glass we used on the streets instead of


 

 

                                                                      80

 

 

            1              cinders, did it get used for that or the

 

            2              thousands of dollars for garbage cans and

 

            3              flower pots, did it get used for that?  What

 

            4              did it get used for, I'd like to know

 

            5              because the taxpayers have a right to make

 

            6              sure they have enough protection.

 

            7                      And then we have already also heard

 

            8              about the Recovery Plan, oh, those dastardly

 

            9              unions, oh, how they won't allow the city to

 

           10              recover.  They just won't obey that Recovery

 

           11              Pan.  Well, the mayor got his management

 

           12              rights and just what did he change?  Did he

 

           13              change anything in the fire department?

 

           14              Nope.  Nothing.  Did he change anything in

 

           15              the police department?  Well, if you count

 

           16              the fact that we don't have overtime

 

           17              anymore, so quite often the city is being

 

           18              covered by four police officers, 27 square

 

           19              miles and have you got four police officers

 

           20              working, that's about the only thing that's

 

           21              changed is you have less protection.  Other

 

           22              than that, nothing has changed.  Nothing has

 

           23              changed.

 

           24                      The great Recovery Plan, perhaps

 

           25              some of you can find out for me why the


 

 

                                                                      81

 

 

            1              mayor has consistently violated his own

 

            2              Recovery Plan.  Page 63 of the Recovery Plan

 

            3              very specifically says that no city employee

 

            4              can have a pay increase for 2002, 4, 5 and

 

            5              beyond.  Well, by gosh, there are some city

 

            6              employees that have received in excess of

 

            7              $20,000 in pay increases.  I don't hear

 

            8              anybody on council saying, wait a minute --

 

            9              well, maybe an exception or two, wait a

 

           10              minute, he violated the Recovery Plan.

 

           11              Those raises are in violation of the sacred

 

           12              Recovery Plan, but he did it.

 

           13                      And, also, if you wouldn't mind, I

 

           14              would like to know the Recovery Plan

 

           15              mandates that our business manager go out

 

           16              and solicit funds in lieu of taxes, I wonder

 

           17              if you could find out just exactly how much

 

           18              more money our business manager, Mr. Renda,

 

           19              has selected in lieu of taxes over what was

 

           20              collected by the previous administration?

 

           21              Thank you.

 

           22                      MS. FOWLER: I'm patty Fowler,

 

           23              otherwise known as the scapegoat.  I'm

 

           24              uncomfortable being here, but I'm here, too.

 

           25                      MS. FRANUS: Fay Franus, Scranton.


 

 

                                                                      82

 

 

            1              At last week's council meeting, Mrs. Gatelli

 

            2              requested the list of all lawsuits filed

 

            3              against the city by the owner of a local

 

            4              website.  It's important tonight to mention

 

            5              some of those lawsuits that were filed:

 

            6                      Number one, the sale of the South

 

            7              Side Complex, a public recreational park

 

            8              that belonged to the citizens of the

 

            9              Scranton; number two, the municipal golf

 

           10              course, a city asset, which provided annual

 

           11              revenue for the city; number three, ECTV's

 

           12              zoning appeal which the Courts ruled against

 

           13              ECTV; number four, OECD funding of the

 

           14              mayor's advertisements during political

 

           15              campaigns.

 

           16                      It is clear that these lawsuits are

 

           17              filed on behalf of the people and the best

 

           18              interest of this city.  On the other hand,

 

           19              Mrs. Gatelli, an elected official is using

 

           20              taxpayers' money to pay for her private

 

           21              lawsuit which benefits only herself.

 

           22                      Mrs. Gatelli further stated at last

 

           23              week's council meeting that she intended to

 

           24              pay what was billed by Wright and Reihner

 

           25              Law Firm, the City of Scranton, for her


 

 

                                                                      83

 

 

            1              personal lawsuit which totals $38,704.  I

 

            2              would like Mrs. Gatelli to produce a

 

            3              cancelled check as evidence of her payment

 

            4              for her private lawsuit because it is

 

            5              difficult to take Mrs. Gatelli at her word.

 

            6                      For example, she promised four years

 

            7              ago in the Scranton Times that she would not

 

            8              vote for more borrowing.  She lied to the

 

            9              taxpayers and voted for borrowing in 2006,

 

           10              2007, and 2008.  It appears fair to say that

 

           11              Mrs. Gatelli, who does not tell the truth,

 

           12              has little room to accuse taxpayers of

 

           13              lying.  Can we, the taxpayers, afford four

 

           14              more years of Mrs. Gatelli.  Thank you.

 

           15                      MR. MCGOFF: Anyone else?

 

           16                      MR. ELLMAN: Ronnie Ellman, homeowner

 

           17              and member of the taxpayers.  I'm not going

 

           18              to Judy bash yet, you ought to be -- I'm

 

           19              afraid you'll tell one of your friends or

 

           20              something and they'll raise my sewer rate or

 

           21              something.  You remember when I told you

 

           22              don't put nothing in print that can come

 

           23              back and haunt you?  True, wasn't it?

 

           24                      MS. FANUCCI: I don't know.

 

           25                      MR. ELLMAN: Not you, but the mayor.


 

 

                                                                      84

 

 

            1              This shouldn't have been in print.  Even the

 

            2              single tax office doesn't know about jobs

 

            3              like that.  Next they will be telling us

 

            4              that he invented the Internet instead of Al

 

            5              Gore.

 

            6                      You know, I know everybody has seen

 

            7              this trashy stuff here, you know, that's --

 

            8              to me it's -- this political rhetoric is --

 

            9              it's just not just nonsense and distortions

 

           10              it's --I'm trying to be nice and polite,

 

           11              it's -- I don't know, to me it's a blatant

 

           12              lie.  It's from a man that's desperate,

 

           13              that's in trouble, that's drowning, that's

 

           14              grasping at straws.  He didn't need to print

 

           15              stuff like this right off the bat.  It

 

           16              backfired on him because these were given to

 

           17              me by one of his supporters that said things

 

           18              like that to me at my office, you know, at

 

           19              lunchtime.

 

           20                      But, one thing Mr. Quinn has been

 

           21              harping about trying to save properties

 

           22              instead of tearing them down, there is so

 

           23              many houses that could be saved.  I got one

 

           24              behind me that was a first time homeowners

 

           25              and the lady lost it because her husband


 

 

                                                                      85

 

 

            1              wouldn't work and the house was nice.  Now

 

            2              they've striped it and the pipes are gone I

 

            3              understand, but it cost five, $10,000 to

 

            4              tear down a house.  I just don't see why if

 

            5              you want to keep young families here let

 

            6              them have the house reasonable and get them

 

            7              a credit at Lowe's or the department store

 

            8              or something to go work on them.  Ms. Rosie

 

            9              and me put in our kitchen and our bathroom

 

           10              and they come out beautiful, and I didn't

 

           11              know nothing about it, and you can use

 

           12              plastic pipe now, you know, for hot water.

 

           13              You know, people can do it themselves if

 

           14              they want to save these houses and have

 

           15              something.  It's better than knocking them

 

           16              down.  I know a lot of them ought to be

 

           17              knocked down, but there is a lot of them

 

           18              that can be saved.

 

           19                      You know, I'm pretty much a moderate

 

           20              and I vote for the person I think is best,

 

           21              but if Mr. Doherty was anything of a mayor

 

           22              like he thinks he is to me he would have

 

           23              been in Harrisburg a couple of years ago.

 

           24              He wouldn't be here right now fighting for

 

           25              another term.  Rendell doesn't want him and


 

 

                                                                      86

 

 

            1              I think that's why he is spending so much

 

            2              money trying to achieve, you know, his goal

 

            3              of making it in Harrisburg.

 

            4                      I know you are going to get mad, but

 

            5              I can't comprehend in my wildest imagination

 

            6              why an intelligent person would vote for

 

            7              four more years of what we have gone through

 

            8              the past eight years.  Thank you.

 

            9                      MS. O'MALLEY:  Barbara O'Malley,

 

           10              Scranton resident.  Last week I addressed

 

           11              City Council regarding the difficulty I

 

           12              experienced trying to obtain public records

 

           13              related to ECTV's $90,000 loan from the

 

           14              Office of Economic and Community

 

           15              Development.  I have received a reply which

 

           16              provided access to some, but not all, of the

 

           17              records I requested.  This is what I have

 

           18              learned so far:

 

           19                      According to the language of the

 

           20              agreement executed on September 25, 2008,

 

           21              between ECTV and the city.  ECTV received

 

           22              $90,000 in government funding to "Rejuvenate

 

           23              the building at 933 Prescott Avenue."

 

           24                      The project will, "Result in the

 

           25              creation of new jobs as well as remodeling


 

 

                                                                      87

 

 

            1              and refurbishing the project site."

 

            2                      ECTV's applications projected budget

 

            3              for the renovation for these bold

 

            4              improvements was $28,000.  $28,000 in public

 

            5              money for carpentry work, electrical work,

 

            6              plumbing work as well as excavating and

 

            7              paving the parking lot at 933 Prescott

 

            8              Avenue.  A private property leased for one

 

            9              year by ECTV.  ECTV's lease is not being

 

           10              renewed and as I reported last week there is

 

           11              a sign on the door at 933 Prescott Avenue,

 

           12              the project site, indicating ECTV offices

 

           13              are no longer at that location.  A $90,000

 

           14              loan for a project site that was occupied

 

           15              for less than one year.  I doubt any private

 

           16              investors would spend that kind of money

 

           17              given the circumstances.  Why is it

 

           18              acceptable to use public funds so

 

           19              carelessly?  Who is responsible for these

 

           20              decisions?

 

           21                      As for the job creation clause, an

 

           22              absolutely condition of the loan is the

 

           23              creation of three new full-time equivalent

 

           24              permanent employment positions at the

 

           25              project site.  Once ECTV fulfills this


 

 

                                                                      88

 

 

            1              requirement the loan is forgiven and ECTV is

 

            2              no longer required to submit reports to

 

            3              OECD.

 

            4                      According to a letter from OECD

 

            5              dated December 30, 2008, ECTV has fulfilled

 

            6              this requirement with three new employees.

 

            7              The three employees ECTV hired are familiar

 

            8              to any entities or people who dealt with

 

            9              Scranton Today because they were employees

 

           10              of the ousted former operators of Channel

 

           11              61, Scranton Today.  Mark Migliore and

 

           12              Anthony George were on Scranton Today's

 

           13              payroll with the bids were submitted to

 

           14              operate the new community access channel.

 

           15              Mark resigned from Scranton Today after the

 

           16              bid was awarded to ECTV.  Anthony continued

 

           17              to work for Scranton Tomorrow through June.

 

           18              Heather Davis is a former employee of

 

           19              Scranton Today who resigned prior to the

 

           20              contract award.

 

           21                      I ask you, would you call this job

 

           22              creation or job transfers?  A duplication of

 

           23              services perhaps?  Maybe OECD's lawyers

 

           24              could make the case that's technically it's

 

           25              job creation, but is it ethical?  I think


 

 

                                                                      89

 

 

            1              people know when someone is trying to pull

 

            2              the wool over their eyes.

 

            3                      As I stated, by fulfilling the job

 

            4              creation component of the loan it is

 

            5              forgiven, it is now a grant.  ECTV is no

 

            6              longer required to submit reports to OECD.

 

            7              In effect, ECTV has been given $90,000 for a

 

            8              private building that was occupied for less

 

            9              than a year with employees who were already

 

           10              employed in the industry to do a job that

 

           11              Scranton Today did for ten years with a

 

           12              total investment of $13,000 from the City of

 

           13              Scranton.

 

           14                      I do intend to find out how ECTV

 

           15              pulled this off by utilizing the

 

           16              Right-to-Know process to examine the

 

           17              voracity of the documentation that ECTV

 

           18              provided to OECD between September 25, '08

 

           19              and December 3, '08.

 

           20                      In conclusion, I would like to ask

 

           21              the three council persons, Mrs. Gatelli,

 

           22              Mrs. Fanucci, and Mr. McGoff who voted for

 

           23              this project to justify this boondoggle

 

           24              during motions.  Thank you.

 

           25                      MR. ANCHERANI: Good evening.  Nelson


 

 

                                                                      90

 

 

            1              Ancherani, First Amendment Rights.  Some

 

            2              remarks to rebut Mrs. Fanucci's motions of

 

            3              5-5-09.  Sherry asked, "When did we file for

 

            4              bankruptcy, '92?"  FYI, we never filed for

 

            5              bankruptcy.

 

            6                      Sherry spoke about our health care

 

            7              co-pay not going up in any way until the

 

            8              last two pay periods and police are

 

            9              complaining.  FYI, my health care co-pay was

 

           10              $21 before the city lost an arbitration

 

           11              under Connors and had to hire a health care

 

           12              consultant.  Sara Pickard was hired and she

 

           13              straightened out a health care disaster.

 

           14              She saved the city $2 million and my co-pay

 

           15              drops to $5 and the mayor fires her.  He

 

           16              puts Lisa Moran in charge of health care,

 

           17              now supposedly health care has risen to

 

           18              $12 million.  Why?  What does Ms. Moran know

 

           19              about health care?  Remember, Sara Pickard

 

           20              saved the city $2 million and the city

 

           21              raises co-pays in violation of the Court

 

           22              opinion and says that the health care

 

           23              committee should meet and co-pays will be

 

           24              worked out by the committee.  The committee

 

           25              didn't agree before the new pay co-pays were


 

 

                                                                      91

 

 

            1              enacted.  I do not mind paying my fair share

 

            2              as long as it's my fair share.

 

            3                      Mrs. Fanucci said 71 percent of the

 

            4              voters voted for the Recovery Plan.  She

 

            5              should have said 71 percent of the 13,000

 

            6              who voted did voted for the Recovery Plan,

 

            7              Recovery Plan violated from the first year.

 

            8                      She said, oh, wait a minute, just to

 

            9              add to the $80,000 salaries, for your

 

           10              information extra duty is not overtime.  She

 

           11              said 71 percent of the voters -- I'm sorry,

 

           12              she said, "It is my hope that after the next

 

           13              two weeks are over that we can sit down and

 

           14              start to act like civil human beings, stop

 

           15              using this forum constantly as a perpetual

 

           16              use of information that is one-sided and sit

 

           17              down and actually do what we are supposed to

 

           18              do which is work together for the City of

 

           19              Scranton, realize that the taxpayers are the

 

           20              people who are footing these bills and to

 

           21              sit down and do what's best for them not

 

           22              just what's best for our own personal

 

           23              agendas."

 

           24                      Mrs. Fanucci, you talk about vote

 

           25              counting.  You are right, Ms. Fanucci, Ms.


 

 

                                                                      92

 

 

            1              Gatelli and Mr. McGoff, the rubber stampers

 

            2              all voted for the 25 percent tax increase,

 

            3              the 25 percent tax increase that was enacted

 

            4              all the while 12.2 million sat hidden in an

 

            5              account in the single tax office.  Taxpayers

 

            6              are footing the 25 percent tax increase

 

            7              bill.

 

            8                      You three also voted for the 35

 

            9              million Scranton Parking Authority loan.  35

 

           10              million borrowed, 94 million payback.  That

 

           11              translates into 59 million interest.  59

 

           12              million, can you believe that?  Do you know

 

           13              that the 59 million is four million more

 

           14              than Connors' last budget in 2001.  It's

 

           15              more than one of our city budgets.

 

           16                      Taxpayers interest, $300 million

 

           17              long-term debt, our children, grandchildren

 

           18              who will be taxpayers will be paying this

 

           19              bill off.  Taxpayers interest, 20 million in

 

           20              raises, new hires, add in consultants,

 

           21              attorney fees.  $950,000, another taxpayer

 

           22              interest paid for public safety office, an

 

           23              office eliminated under the previous

 

           24              Recovery Plan.

 

           25                      Another taxpayer interest, 879,000


 

 

                                                                      93

 

 

            1              to the Scranton Parking Authority after they

 

            2              received a $35 million loan.  Taxpayer

 

            3              interest, 5.5 million loss arbitration to

 

            4              American Anglican causing 56 percent

 

            5              Scranton Sewer Authority rate hike.

 

            6                      Taxpayer interest, forced out 100

 

            7              city hall workers by January 1, 2003 with

 

            8              full benefits, hiring 100 replacements with

 

            9              full benefits.

 

           10                      Question, does anyone know what you

 

           11              will do when there is a deficit because we

 

           12              are not getting the full 5.5 million that

 

           13              was plugged into the budget from the zero

 

           14              balance account found in the single tax

 

           15              office?  That money has been sitting in that

 

           16              accounts for a number of years and just

 

           17              discovered last year.  If we had a

 

           18              5.5 million deficit that the money from the

 

           19              tax office was going to plug, what kind of

 

           20              deficit will be claimed for 2010?  Will the

 

           21              claim be that we would have an 11 million

 

           22              deficit?  And if we have an 11 million

 

           23              deficit where will that money come from.

 

           24              More 25 percent tax increases?  Thank you.

 

           25                      MR. SLEDZENSKI: Hello, Bill.


 

 

                                                                      94

 

 

            1                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Hi, Chris.

 

            2                      MR. SLEDZENSKI:  Hi, Judy.  Oh,

 

            3              you're leaving, huh?  Here you go.

 

            4                      MS. GATELLI:  We won yesterday.

 

            5                      MR. SLEDZENSKI: Look at it.  Look.

 

            6              I will give it to you now.  I didn't forget

 

            7              you.  Look at it.

 

            8                      MS. GATELLI: Oh, that was so nice.

 

            9              Thank you.

 

           10                      MR. SLEDZENSKI: You are welcome.

 

           11              Well, Jude, we won yesterday, buddy, but we

 

           12              have another one this week so last win it

 

           13              all the way.  Thank you.

 

           14                      MR. DOBSON: Good evening, Council.

 

           15              Dave Dobson, a member of the Taxpayers' and

 

           16              also a resident of Scranton.  I don't want

 

           17              to comment a lot on the election, I think

 

           18              there has been enough comments, but one

 

           19              comment I would like to make on money and

 

           20              donations and is maybe some food for thought

 

           21              in the future would be to put into the Home

 

           22              Rule Charter that unless you are a resident

 

           23              of Scranton please don't come to any

 

           24              elections in Scranton.  We don't need your

 

           25              input, we are the people that have to live


 

 

                                                                      95

 

 

            1              here and pay the taxes and whatever and we

 

            2              would like to keep it that way.

 

            3                      On this job business, for a long

 

            4              time I have been talking about industry and

 

            5              industrial parks, and a lot of these

 

            6              politicians right up to the very top I think

 

            7              their problem is trade packs and it's

 

            8              causing more unemployment around this

 

            9              country and everybody can't be a rocket

 

           10              scientist or even an automative mechanic,

 

           11              it's a very difficult field and most of

 

           12              these fields are difficult, and some people

 

           13              really need a simple job that they could do

 

           14              and, for instance, I play guitar and mostly

 

           15              for my own entertainment, but I play it very

 

           16              religiously three or four hours a day, but I

 

           17              found in a magazine about five years back up

 

           18              in the attic and it had this guitar, it's

 

           19              made in Korea, it was priced at $500.  Well,

 

           20              a couple of weeks ago I got another magazine

 

           21              from the same outfit and the price of that

 

           22              guitar, it was used by one of the Beatle's,

 

           23              John Lennon, that particular model, it was

 

           24              $1,500, so it's coming, you know, it's not

 

           25              going to be cheap.  The trade packs are not


 

 

                                                                      96

 

 

            1              going to be cheaper in the long run.

 

            2                      A couple of weeks ago I asked about

 

            3              taxes not turned over by employers, and we

 

            4              have -- one thing I'm happy to report and

 

            5              that is that it is not the policy of the

 

            6              single tax office to pursue those people,

 

            7              however, you are the people that are out if

 

            8              they don't turn it over, so keep that in

 

            9              mind.  If I hear of employers not turning

 

           10              the money over and deducting it they are

 

           11              stealing off of you.

 

           12                      On the police business inside of

 

           13              council chambers, you know what, a lot of

 

           14              people are probably not like this comment,

 

           15              but you are probably better off with the

 

           16              policeman back there.  You know, we don't

 

           17              have many who are on the sheet, but some day

 

           18              there is liable to be a problem because

 

           19              there isn't one back there.  So, you know,

 

           20              for what I feel they are pretty nice guys,

 

           21              they don't need to get beaten up on like

 

           22              that.

 

           23                      And, oh, my wife I mentioned about

 

           24              the love letter I got last week via city

 

           25              council and my wife asked me to mention that


 

 

                                                                      97

 

 

            1              she prefers I don't cut my hair, and she

 

            2              says that's a lovely dress that you wear,

 

            3              Sherry, do you think they have that in my

 

            4              size.

 

            5                      One other thing I would like to talk

 

            6              about is Boscov's, they should change their

 

            7              policy.  I had a -- I've got a relative a

 

            8              veteran's benefit for her husband's service

 

            9              in World War II and we have to submit checks

 

           10              for everything, so I send her down there to

 

           11              buy some clothes for the lady, she is up at

 

           12              St. Mary's, she can't get around and

 

           13              Boscov's wouldn't accept the check on

 

           14              Sunday, so I'm trying to put the fire out,

 

           15              but it's not easy because she had all of

 

           16              these clothes picked out, and I was

 

           17              wondering why Boscov's doesn't need the

 

           18              business, you know?  She had that and for

 

           19              some reason they just didn't need the

 

           20              business because it was a check on a Sunday.

 

           21              That's silly.  That's very silly.

 

           22                      So good luck for everybody with the

 

           23              election and have a good night.  Thank you

 

           24              for listening.

 

           25                      MS. KRAKE: Good evening, Council.


 

 

                                                                      98

 

 

            1              My name is Nancy Krake.  I would like to say

 

            2              I thought there were many good speakers here

 

            3              this evening and what I have to say will

 

            4              probably be a little repetitive for council,

 

            5              but I do love the fact that I have the

 

            6              privilege to say them.

 

            7                      The mayor tells us what Business

 

            8              Weekly and Money magazine and the Wall

 

            9              Street Journal have to say about Scranton.

 

           10              The mayor's first priority should be about

 

           11              what Scrantonians themselves are really

 

           12              saying and what they need from their city

 

           13              government.  The mayor has gotten hundreds

 

           14              of thousands of dollars in campaign

 

           15              contributions mostly from people who don't

 

           16              live in Scranton and who can't vote here.

 

           17              Once again, the mayor's priority should be

 

           18              taxpayers of Scranton and not how he can

 

           19              give contracts to campaign contributors.

 

           20                      Sticking to his guns.  The mayor

 

           21              repeated that several times at last night's

 

           22              mayoral debate.  He said he is sticking to

 

           23              his guns.  Well, he might as well just shoot

 

           24              us now rather than subject us to another

 

           25              four years of moving forward.  He will be


 

 

                                                                      99

 

 

            1              moving us forward all right with his

 

            2              50 percent tax hike.  That's part of his

 

            3              Recovery Plan, that's the part the

 

            4              Pennsylvania Economy League sat here in

 

            5              council chambers and promised to level on

 

            6              the residents of our city.  They weren't

 

            7              going to be finished until 75 percent was

 

            8              the tax hike they had accomplished, so

 

            9              that's what we have to look forward to in

 

           10              another four years.

 

           11                      That's not bad enough, the mayor,

 

           12              Mrs. Gatelli, Mrs. Fanucci and Mr. McGoff

 

           13              voted time after time to allow NCC and

 

           14              Abrahamsen, Moran and Conaboy to collect

 

           15              fines on homeowners who are unable to pay

 

           16              their taxes on time.  These fines are

 

           17              thousands of dollars compared to the

 

           18              homeowner's original bills for two or three

 

           19              hundred dollars.  The fines go right into

 

           20              the pockets of the collectors.  Talk about

 

           21              pay to play.  Nice work if you can get three

 

           22              people to vote for it.

 

           23                      Now it's our time to vote.  Vote out

 

           24              tax hikes, vote out pay to play, vote out

 

           25              Northeast Credit and Collection, vote out


 

 

                                                                     100

 

 

            1              Abrahamsen, Moran and Conaboy, and you now

 

            2              how to vote them out.  Thank.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF: Mrs. Evans, I believe

 

            4              there was the last speaker.

 

            5                      MS. EVANS: Good evening.  First a

 

            6              few financial matters.  At last week's

 

            7              council meeting, I asked that legislation

 

            8              requiring accountability for the use of city

 

            9              tax collections to augment the tax office

 

           10              operating budget be placed on tonight's

 

           11              agenda.  Attorney Minora drafted this

 

           12              legislation, however, he has requested

 

           13              additional time to research the legislation

 

           14              with Attorney Patterson, city solicitor.

 

           15              Council should have this results for our

 

           16              next scheduled meeting.

 

           17                      Also, Council received a May 12

 

           18              update from Robert Rossi & Company,

 

           19              independent auditors of city council, to

 

           20              date, 14 items must be addressed by the city

 

           21              business administrator.  The auditor still

 

           22              have not received a response to our first or

 

           23              second confirmation request from the single

 

           24              tax office, and they have received the Sewer

 

           25              Authority and the Parking Authority 2008


 

 

                                                                     101

 

 

            1              financial statements.  The Redevelopment

 

            2              Authority report is projected to be issued

 

            3              with their July 2009 meeting.

 

            4                      Once again, it's apparent that the

 

            5              projected completion date of May 31, 2009,

 

            6              which, of course, is dictated by the Home

 

            7              Rule Charter will not be met this year.

 

            8                      Council also received it's monthly

 

            9              report from the single tax office.  On May

 

           10              8t, check 033973 was issued to the city in

 

           11              the amount of $3,727,000.26.  Let's break it

 

           12              down: The year-to-date real estate tax

 

           13              collection is $2,024,594 and the wage tax

 

           14              collection is $1,702,431.  The wage tax

 

           15              collection has increased 84.7 percent over

 

           16              2007 collections.

 

           17                      In addition, a second check was

 

           18              issued for $513,931.  This includes the LST

 

           19              or local services tax year-to-date

 

           20              collection of $30,072.23 and the city

 

           21              business privilege mercantile tax

 

           22              collections of $483,859.

 

           23                      On the topic of city taxes, council

 

           24              also received a letter over a week ago from

 

           25              a local elected official correcting a


 

 

                                                                     102

 

 

            1              statement made at a recent council meeting.

 

            2              I believe Mrs. Gatelli according to that

 

            3              letter had stated that the city only

 

            4              receives 17 percent of your tax dollar.

 

            5              However, the city receives 46.3 percent of

 

            6              real estate taxes and 70.6 percent of your

 

            7              wage tax, and now I believe Mr. Renda has

 

            8              jumped in the fray to assist Mrs. Gatelli

 

            9              with her figures, but the fact is county

 

           10              taxes are actually the smallest dollar

 

           11              amount we pay, and when we add our city

 

           12              property tax to our city wage tax, the city

 

           13              seems to receive the largest portion of your

 

           14              tax dollars.

 

           15                      I offered the chance to lower your

 

           16              wage tax in December 2007, unfortunately,

 

           17              other members of the council voted against

 

           18              it, thus, the working men and women of

 

           19              Scranton continue to pay a 3.4 percent wage

 

           20              tax and apparently more total tax dollars to

 

           21              the city than to any other local taxing

 

           22              body.

 

           23                      My letter of request for an

 

           24              investigation of the Scranton tax office by

 

           25              the District Attorney will be sent by


 

 

                                                                     103

 

 

            1              certified mail this week.  According to

 

            2              statements made in the Scranton Times,

 

            3              Mr. Jarbola does not appear to intend to

 

            4              conduct an investigation until a new

 

            5              forensic audit is performed, and earlier

 

            6              Attorney Minora, an employee of Mr. Jarbola,

 

            7              agrees that a forensic audit must first

 

            8              occur.  Yet, prior to any announcement of a

 

            9              forensic audit last year, Mr. Jarbola had

 

           10              already decided against an investigation and

 

           11              had stated there was no wrongdoing.

 

           12                      Now, this decision for a new

 

           13              forensic audit seems to postpone any

 

           14              investigation until the end of 2009 or

 

           15              possibly even 2010.  At the same time, the

 

           16              current tax office solicitor conceded that

 

           17              as much as $2 million is missing and I am

 

           18              appalled that cash is missing according to

 

           19              the newspaper headline and that the DA is

 

           20              not interested.

 

           21                      In addition, the DA appears to be

 

           22              less than concerned that state law was

 

           23              broken.  Well, ladies and gentlemen, it

 

           24              doesn't past the smell test.  Despite his

 

           25              comments in the newspaper, I will request a


 

 

                                                                     104

 

 

            1              written response from the DA and should he

 

            2              decide, which is his prerogative, against an

 

            3              investigation, I will take our tax office

 

            4              problem to a state authority.

 

            5                      Next, I would like to clarify last

 

            6              week's League of Women Voter's council

 

            7              candidate debate.  First, candidates were

 

            8              notified of the date, time, and place of

 

            9              this debate several weeks in advance which

 

           10              provided ample opportunity for all

 

           11              candidates to schedule time to attend.

 

           12                      Next, the gentleman who ran the

 

           13              debate together with the League of Women

 

           14              Voters president is a political appointee of

 

           15              Mrs. Fanucci, yet, despite this documents

 

           16              political connection, my teammates and I

 

           17              chose to participate in the debate because

 

           18              the issues at stake like 25 percent tax

 

           19              increases, a 3.4 percent wage tax, and

 

           20              wasteful spending are extremely crucial and

 

           21              the people of Scranton and all of your

 

           22              neighborhoods are very important to us.

 

           23                      I don't have to hide have my voting

 

           24              record.  I have taken some very hard stands

 

           25              and made some difficult decisions, but I


 

 

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            1              stand by them because they are based on

 

            2              cold, hard facts and on the priorities of

 

            3              the people.  I didn't tell you one thing and

 

            4              then do another.  And when I said, no, I

 

            5              offered alternatives such as the three

 

            6              budgets I produced and numerous budget cuts

 

            7              I provided each year.

 

            8                      My colleagues state I am the

 

            9              naysayer who says "no" simply to oppose them

 

           10              or the mayor, but I believe that "yes" is

 

           11              not always the right answer.  In fact,

 

           12              sometimes it can be downright harmful to the

 

           13              best interest of the taxpayers.  When other

 

           14              council members tell me they are going to

 

           15              raise taxes by 25 percent because they won't

 

           16              stop runaway spending, my answer will always

 

           17              be "no."

 

           18                      When council members tell me they

 

           19              are going to authorize massive pay increases

 

           20              for underqualified city officials and high

 

           21              paid attorneys like Mr. Greco my answer will

 

           22              always be "no."

 

           23                      And when they want to increase the

 

           24              debt to over a quarter of a billion dollars

 

           25              my answer will be "no."


 

 

                                                                     106

 

 

            1                      And when progress means enriching a

 

            2              few by taxing the many, my answer will

 

            3              always be "no."

 

            4                      However, I will gladly vote "yes" on

 

            5              a reduction in the wage tax, cuts in

 

            6              wasteful spending, and an investigation into

 

            7              the Scranton Tax Office, economic

 

            8              development that doesn't depend solely on

 

            9              taxpayer money to finance it, and a

 

           10              competitive wage and contract for the city

 

           11              unions.  And I will continue to help flood

 

           12              victims with sewer bill relief, keep our

 

           13              neighborhood swimming pools free, feed the

 

           14              poor through food drives, expose the true

 

           15              city debt and most of all, tell you the

 

           16              truth, and you can take that to the bank.

 

           17                      Finally, I wish to correct a

 

           18              statement made by Mrs. Fanucci at our last

 

           19              council meeting.  She stated the city had

 

           20              gone bankrupt but, in fact, the city did not

 

           21              go bankrupt at any time.

 

           22                      Also, when discussing health care

 

           23              contributions made by union employees, she

 

           24              failed to tell you that the health care

 

           25              contributions for management and cabinet


 

 

                                                                     107

 

 

            1              members were not increased.  Further, there

 

            2              is no time line set for increasing their

 

            3              contributions, and equally important is the

 

            4              fact that management employees pay

 

            5              significantly less, for example, for family

 

            6              coverage per pay than do union employees and

 

            7              many management positions pay far greater

 

            8              wages than union jobs.

 

            9                      As taxpayers, you have a right to

 

           10              the whole story, which is what I have tried

 

           11              to provide you tonight.  Examine the voting

 

           12              records of your elected officials and

 

           13              information and pledges made by new

 

           14              candidates then please take the time to vote

 

           15              next Tuesday.  Vote for yourself, vote for

 

           16              your family and your grandchildren because

 

           17              that is how far into the future this debt

 

           18              and this election reaches.

 

           19                      And, Kay, I would like a letter to

 

           20              the mayor requesting the location and

 

           21              funding of student housing for the

 

           22              Commonwealth Medical School.  And just one

 

           23              final note about NCC because it became a

 

           24              topic of discussion earlier among council

 

           25              speakers, there are 23 provisions included


 

 

                                                                     108

 

 

            1              in the delinquent tax ordinance and those

 

            2              are very punitive measures that include

 

            3              additional costs, fees, fines, etcetera,

 

            4              when an individual is unable to make his

 

            5              city property tax payment.  Now, that

 

            6              language is not specific to any one group of

 

            7              people.  It doesn't state anywhere in the

 

            8              ordinance that this applies only to absentee

 

            9              landlords.  This applies to everyone.

 

           10              Granted, it should apply to absentee

 

           11              landlords, though I haven't heard of any

 

           12              whose properties have gone to sheriff's sale

 

           13              yet, but the fact of the matter is when you

 

           14              say it applies only to them that language

 

           15              has to be contained within that ordinance

 

           16              and it is not, and to say you will help

 

           17              other people besides an absentee landlord as

 

           18              much as the intention is good it's

 

           19              discriminatory and the city could be taken

 

           20              to Court for something like that.

 

           21                      So, council members need to be aware

 

           22              of the whole picture and be very careful of

 

           23              what they vote for because you can't single

 

           24              out one group, it applies to everybody,

 

           25              unfortunately.  Absentee landlords certainly


 

 

                                                                     109

 

 

            1              it should apply to them.  We need to rid our

 

            2              city of slumlords, but as for the elderly,

 

            3              the sickly, the working men and women of

 

            4              Scranton who have lost their jobs, that

 

            5              8.7 percent that lost their jobs, do they

 

            6              deserve to lose their homes?  Think about

 

            7              that, and that's it.

 

            8                      MS. GATELLI: First of all, I would

 

            9              like to tell the audience at home that once

 

           10              again policemen had to be called to these

 

           11              rooms this evening.  A person was being

 

           12              harassed out in the hallway and three

 

           13              additional policemen had to be called.

 

           14              Spewing venom and hatred gets nothing

 

           15              accomplished here in these rooms, it just

 

           16              causes more dissension.

 

           17                      First, I'd like to address the

 

           18              reason that I did not go to the League of

 

           19              Women Voter's debate.  I was told shortly

 

           20              after I filed my papers to run for city

 

           21              council that there would be a debate.  I

 

           22              didn't believe that would happen because as

 

           23              far as I could remember city council members

 

           24              had interviews and they did not have a

 

           25              debate.  Then I received a notice that a


 

 

                                                                     110

 

 

            1              city employee was the chair of the debate.

 

            2              I had known for a fact that she had attended

 

            3              rallies for Mr. DiBileo on several occasions

 

            4              and also she was on Facebook on Pat Rogan's

 

            5              Committee for Council and Mr. DiBileo's.  I

 

            6              notified the League of Women Voters about

 

            7              this and they told me that that was not

 

            8              allowed.  That a board member of the League

 

            9              of Women Voters was not allowed to

 

           10              participate in political activity for

 

           11              certain candidates.

 

           12                      I spoke to Mrs. Olgham on Monday

 

           13              before the debate.  I told her that I

 

           14              certainly would not be attending as I had

 

           15              received an e-mail that day after

 

           16              Mrs. Olgham told me that Mrs. Fowler had

 

           17              resigned, and Mrs. Fowler e-mailed me if I

 

           18              was coming to the debate or not.

 

           19                      I feel as though the League of Women

 

           20              Voters it is not their fault, but they were

 

           21              not told the truth about a board member

 

           22              participating in political activities.  That

 

           23              is not allowed, that is a no-no for the

 

           24              League of Women Voters.

 

           25                      Next question I had was what is a


 

 

                                                                     111

 

 

            1              master's equivalency.  A master's

 

            2              equivalency is a degree beyond your

 

            3              bachelor's degree where you have credits

 

            4              equal to a master's degree.  I have 30

 

            5              graduate credits from Marywood College and

 

            6              you need 45 for a master's degree.  I took

 

            7              my other credits through the NEIU and some

 

            8              at Keystone Junior College, so I have enough

 

            9              credits to say that I have a master's

 

           10              equivalency degree and that is how I am paid

 

           11              through the Scranton School District, a

 

           12              master's equivalency.  It's a master's

 

           13              credits, but you didn't get the actual

 

           14              degree from Marywood University.  I only

 

           15              completed 30 graduate credits there.

 

           16                      I found it interesting that they are

 

           17              questioning my education when other

 

           18              candidates don't only property, they don't

 

           19              work so they don't pay the wage tax, and

 

           20              some of them have criminal records of which

 

           21              people are aware and the Scranton Times is

 

           22              aware but it's not being brought forward.  I

 

           23              urge you all to seek out the information

 

           24              about candidates that have arrest records.

 

           25              I think that is far more important than what


 

 

                                                                     112

 

 

            1              my master's degree is in.  I am one of the

 

            2              few candidates that has a master's

 

            3              equivalency.  You can read them, they were

 

            4              in the paper today, exactly what everyone's

 

            5              qualifications are educationally.

 

            6                      As far as the term Nazi that I used

 

            7              last week, if any one of you have ever

 

            8              watched Seinfeld they talk about the Soup

 

            9              Nazi.  It's a common word that's used for

 

           10              things of that nature when people are very

 

           11              strict about something.  It is not meant to

 

           12              disrespect the Jewish people in any way

 

           13              whatsoever.  The woman that watches that

 

           14              particular area likes to make soup and we

 

           15              always call her the Soup Nazi and she

 

           16              watches that particular area of South

 

           17              Scranton and reports everything to us that

 

           18              happens in a bad way.  That area has some

 

           19              problems and she reports to the neighborhood

 

           20              association as she sees fit, so it was not

 

           21              meant to be disrespectful in any way and I

 

           22              certainly do apologize if anyone took it in

 

           23              that manner.

 

           24                      As far as the borrowing, I know

 

           25              Mr. Ancherani talked about the borrowing and


 

 

                                                                     113

 

 

            1              I have a report here about the borrowing

 

            2              from 2002 until 2009.  In 2002, Mr. DiBileo

 

            3              borrowed 7.7 million.  In 2003, Mr. DiBileo

 

            4              borrowed four million.  In 2004,

 

            5              Mr. Courtright and Mr. DiBileo borrowed 9

 

            6              million.  In 2005, $14.5 million was

 

            7              borrowed; and for the all time record of

 

            8              borrowing, as Mr. Sbaraglia talked about it

 

            9              approximately two weeks ago, there was a

 

           10              $72 million loan and it was approved by

 

           11              McCormack, Gilhooley, Hazzouri, Murphy and

 

           12              DiBileo.

 

           13                      So when you look to blame someone

 

           14              for borrowing money, I think that the true

 

           15              test has to be told about who actually did

 

           16              all of the borrowing in the City of

 

           17              Scranton, and you will see that there were

 

           18              many others involved in the borrowing.  It

 

           19              was a way to keep the city solvent to

 

           20              prevent bankruptcy.

 

           21                      I'd also like to comment on

 

           22              Mr. Quinn calling people names and their

 

           23              lectures at church and Mr. Dudek for calling

 

           24              people cowards for not going to a debate.

 

           25              The people that are the real cowards are the


 

 

                                                                     114

 

 

            1              people that harass you on the Internet.  I'm

 

            2              going to say it again because that is what

 

            3              has happened to many people that sit up on

 

            4              this dais.  That is why the police were

 

            5              here, that is why people were wanded,

 

            6              because there were threats and that's why

 

            7              that happened, not for any other reason.

 

            8              And believe me, if any one was unsafe up

 

            9              here I, wouldn't hesitate to ask the

 

           10              district attorney again and the police chief

 

           11              to please protect us.  As you see, there is

 

           12              two police officers here tonight because

 

           13              people were harassed.

 

           14                      This chambers belongs to everyone in

 

           15              the City of Scranton.  Every one, but no one

 

           16              will come here because they don't want to be

 

           17              harassed and they don't want to be spit on,

 

           18              and they don't want to be ridiculed.  As a

 

           19              matter of fact today, I had one of my fellow

 

           20              employees come into my office to tell me

 

           21              that one of my opponent's supporters spit on

 

           22              the ground next to them today because they

 

           23              had my sign in their yard.  If this is the

 

           24              way you want the City of Scranton to run,

 

           25              then don't vote for me 'cause I don't want


 

 

                                                                     115

 

 

            1              it to run that way.  I don't think our city

 

            2              business should be run in this fashion.

 

            3                      And I would just like to tell you

 

            4              for those of you that don't know, I have

 

            5              fought 28 years for the City of Scranton.  I

 

            6              never got paid a dime.  I fought the garbage

 

            7              trucks on Keyser Avenue with Mary Alice

 

            8              Burke and Jimmy Connors.  I fought a plastic

 

            9              plant emitting smoke in our neighborhood and

 

           10              fought Philadelphia lawyers.  I got 10,000

 

           11              names with Jimmy Connors to keep my

 

           12              firehouse open and they are not going to

 

           13              close it because I won't let them.  I fought

 

           14              against another low income housing project

 

           15              in our neighborhood.  We already have over

 

           16              500 families and we didn't need anymore.

 

           17                      I fought zoning issues.  I still go

 

           18              to the zoning board to fight for my

 

           19              neighborhood to fight Charlie's Bar and

 

           20              other places that don't belong in the

 

           21              neighborhood.  I participate in cleanups

 

           22              every year.  We moved illegal -- thousands

 

           23              of illegal tires near the old post office on

 

           24              Orchard Street when the gentleman refused to

 

           25              remove them.  Nancy Kay Holmes was a


 

 

                                                                     116

 

 

            1              councilwoman then and she help us fill

 

            2              trucks and trucks full of tires.

 

            3                      I have advocated for neighborhood

 

            4              police patrols.  I cleaned Connell Park once

 

            5              a month.  I fought and closed nuisance bars,

 

            6              probably some of them that are in your

 

            7              neighborhood, Eichler's, O'Toole's,

 

            8              Hannah's, Chick's Western Bar.  I fought

 

            9              zoning where commercial activities wanted to

 

           10              entered residential areas.  I fought the EMF

 

           11              lines on Palm Street that caused cancer in

 

           12              little children.

 

           13                      When I worked for Mayor Connors I

 

           14              closed 200 homes that were unsafe.  On my

 

           15              tenure here, 30 plus homes have been

 

           16              demolished in South Scranton, 15 in West

 

           17              Scranton and 20 throughout the city.  We

 

           18              have worked on the Elm Street program for

 

           19              Cedar Avenue to make it a better place to

 

           20              live.  Connell Park has been redone where

 

           21              drug dealers don't hang around anymore.  The

 

           22              post office came down and the Orchard Street

 

           23              park is there.  We purchased the Renaissance

 

           24              Center through our neighborhood association

 

           25              where we have our Community Justice Program.


 

 

                                                                     117

 

 

            1                      I have been a fighter my whole life.

 

            2              I fight for my neighborhood and I fight for

 

            3              you, and I will continue to do that as long

 

            4              as I am sitting here, and if I'm not sitting

 

            5              here I will still advocate for my

 

            6              neighborhood, but what goes on in these

 

            7              chambers is not acceptable to me and I do

 

            8              not condone it.  Thank you.

 

            9                      MS. FANUCCI: Well, once again, you

 

           10              definitely got your money's worth for

 

           11              tonight's performances.  I have to say that

 

           12              coming into these chambers tonight I was

 

           13              very well prepared for the intent, which is

 

           14              always to just spew venom, hate, and make

 

           15              sure division stays true in the City of

 

           16              Scranton.

 

           17                      I'm going to talk about the debate.

 

           18              The debate is a major issue, which is

 

           19              amazing to me.  I don't know why it's okay

 

           20              to break rules for some people.  It's a

 

           21              simple rule.  Certainly if I showed up at

 

           22              that debate and found Tom Welby was the one

 

           23              giving the debate, I would the not have been

 

           24              comfortable and I would have spoke up.  To

 

           25              act and ignore rules because they benefit


 

 

                                                                     118

 

 

            1              certain individuals is just as bad, it's

 

            2              just as bad as ignoring them.

 

            3                      So is it okay for me to ignore

 

            4              everything that goes on here, to ignore the

 

            5              fact that someone wrote the rules and

 

            6              actually I felt bad, felt bad for the League

 

            7              of Women Voters.  I felt they were duped to

 

            8              be honest because they put their trust in

 

            9              someone.  They believed someone to say,

 

           10              these are the rules and you are to abide by

 

           11              them, but because I know in these chambers

 

           12              week after week rules are never kept, they

 

           13              can't be, it's a problem.  Why?  Because

 

           14              certain people cannot get their point across

 

           15              without knocking other people down, putting

 

           16              up facts that are not true, showing that

 

           17              they are not in support of anything that

 

           18              goes on in this city, not one thing.  I

 

           19              can't imagine being against everything.

 

           20                      I am here and I'm going to stay here

 

           21              to fight for the people who decide that they

 

           22              want to have small business in the city

 

           23              despite of what goes on in these chambers,

 

           24              in spite of the people who hate where they

 

           25              live.  I always wonder why you come here


 

 

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            1              week after week to just spew venom and

 

            2              decide that this is a productive event for

 

            3              you.  I know the people out there are smart.

 

            4              I know they see what goes on here.

 

            5                      Scripts are handed out like paper.

 

            6              People run off this podium, running in the

 

            7              back, having their conversations, it is

 

            8              amazing to me what goes on in these

 

            9              chambers.  It is wonderful, everyone sounds

 

           10              very, very well prepared when the teacher

 

           11              hands the student the answers and the

 

           12              questions everyone is always prepared.  That

 

           13              is not life.  That is not tolerated.  Why?

 

           14              And it's only to make one person look good.

 

           15              Notice, everyone here is chastised every

 

           16              week for four years, but one stands alone.

 

           17              One is always okay.

 

           18                      So now we get one person tonight who

 

           19              actually comes here because they actually

 

           20              like where they live, she believes in our

 

           21              city, she believes in us, she believes in

 

           22              small business, she believes in families,

 

           23              she believes in all of the things that maybe

 

           24              you don't believe in and what happens?  Is

 

           25              she entitled to the same free speech that


 

 

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            1              you cling onto every week?  Is it okay for

 

            2              her to sit and say what she wants to say, is

 

            3              that okay?  No, it's not, because if she

 

            4              doesn't agree with the 20 people in this

 

            5              audience she is wrong.

 

            6                      Guess what?  My hope is that most

 

            7              people don't agree with the 20 people in

 

            8              this audience.  My hope is that people see

 

            9              what actually goes on and the motives here

 

           10              and the intent, that is the problem.  To act

 

           11              and ignore it week after week then add your

 

           12              little sarcasm and your insinuations and

 

           13              innuendoes and your conspiracy theories and

 

           14              everything else, is it possible that every

 

           15              one is wrong who tries to work together?  Is

 

           16              that possible?  I'm going to say, no.

 

           17                      You don't have to like me, I don't

 

           18              have to like Mrs. Evans, she doesn't have to

 

           19              like me.  I don't have to like the mayor, I

 

           20              don't have to like the governor.  I don't

 

           21              have to like any elected officials, but what

 

           22              I have to do is my job which is to do what's

 

           23              best for Scranton to move us into a better

 

           24              place.

 

           25                      Saying "no" is a problem all the


 

 

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            1              time.  I disagree.  I am a rubber stamper.

 

            2              Do you know why?  Because I see the progress

 

            3              and I see the project from start to finish

 

            4              and I get to say what I believe and change

 

            5              and make ideas.  That's what coming together

 

            6              is all about.  I will state this from day

 

            7              one, Mrs. Gatelli and I were on total

 

            8              opposite ends of the spectrum from day one.

 

            9              Are we always?  Sometimes we still are.

 

           10              Many times we are, but her challenges make

 

           11              me a better councilwoman.  They make me step

 

           12              up and say, "You know what, she has an idea

 

           13              that's pretty good.  Mr. Courtright has an

 

           14              idea that's pretty good."

 

           15                      So now that challenges me to come to

 

           16              a better solution.  That's the problem in

 

           17              these chambers.  It's not about solutions.

 

           18              It's about constant complaining, constant

 

           19              bickering, complaining, and being someone

 

           20              who just wants to keep the venom going so

 

           21              that they can get what they want at the end.

 

           22              It's about special interests.

 

           23                      Remember, whether or not you like

 

           24              what goes on with our unions, it is still a

 

           25              special interest group.  They are here to


 

 

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            1              get what they want.  Do I agree that they

 

            2              are not -- we are an unsafe city?  It's

 

            3              amazing, this is the most amazing to me,

 

            4              when you say we are unsafe you are actually

 

            5              saying that the people who do their jobs are

 

            6              not doing the work.  Our policemen are

 

            7              wonderful.  They are doing their jobs.  They

 

            8              get the bad guys.  Every day they get the

 

            9              bad guys.  Is that something that's not

 

           10              acceptable to you?  No.  But to say that

 

           11              they are not, you know, crime is rampant you

 

           12              are acting like they are not doing their

 

           13              jobs.  It's a double standard.

 

           14                      Do I think that everyone should get

 

           15              paid billions of dollars for what they do?

 

           16              Absolutely.  Are they heroes in my eyes.

 

           17              Yes, I couldn't do what they do.  I couldn't

 

           18              do what the firemen do, but when they get up

 

           19              and complain every week about the fact that

 

           20              they have to pay for health care insurance,

 

           21              that they are paying $11 instead of five,

 

           22              when they complain that they haven't got a

 

           23              cost of living increase, but then their

 

           24              arbitration awards came in and it is more

 

           25              money, so when their figures are not correct


 

 

                                                                     123

 

 

            1              and they are complaining week after week

 

            2              that is the difference between the DPW

 

            3              union.  That is the difference between the

 

            4              other unions.  They are not here complaining

 

            5              every week acting like they got gypped off,

 

            6              you know, people are taking their money.

 

            7              That's the problem.

 

            8                      It's not that they don't have

 

            9              respect, it's the fact that they expect more

 

           10              and the taxpayers are the once who pay for

 

           11              it so there has to be a line drawn.  Are you

 

           12              a taxpayer, are you for protaxpayer or are

 

           13              you going to be someone who believes the

 

           14              unions should have everything they want?

 

           15              There is a line and it's a sad line, but

 

           16              it's reality.

 

           17                      The other day I was asked, I spoke

 

           18              at an event and I was asked about the wage

 

           19              tax.  If you honestly believe that there is

 

           20              not one elected official in this city who

 

           21              doesn't want to get rid of the wage tax you

 

           22              have to be kidding me.  Do you believe that

 

           23              we like the fact we are in recovery, that we

 

           24              like the fact that we have a wage tax that's

 

           25              so high?  Do you think we enjoy this?  No.


 

 

                                                                     124

 

 

            1              We work hard to make sure it's not there,

 

            2              but the money has to come from somewhere.

 

            3              Reality is reality.  If you keep dealing

 

            4              with nonreal reasons you are not going to

 

            5              find a solution.

 

            6                      Listen, I wish I was a size six

 

            7              every morning when I get up, but guess what,

 

            8              when I get up I know I'm not fitting in the

 

            9              size six pants.  Why?  Because it's reality.

 

           10              I can hope and dream all I want, but

 

           11              tomorrow morning it's going to be another

 

           12              day.  Size six, not going on.

 

           13                      I also want to talk a little bit

 

           14              about the scare tactics.  I'm sorry, this is

 

           15              going to be a long night, but you knew it

 

           16              was going to be, so -- I don't find it

 

           17              acceptable right now that we have firemen

 

           18              from out of this city going door to door

 

           19              trying to scare our citizens into believing

 

           20              that for some reason the rest of us don't

 

           21              care if they are safe or not, that if you

 

           22              have a sign in your yard that is not in line

 

           23              with what the firemen believe that you are

 

           24              not safe, that you are going to have a

 

           25              problem.  That's not acceptable to me.  I'm


 

 

                                                                     125

 

 

            1              a mother, I'm a daughter, I have friends,

 

            2              relatives, aunts, uncles, colleagues in this

 

            3              city.  To insinuate that anyone, whether

 

            4              it's myself, the mayor, any of us here, any

 

            5              elected official, any normal person wouldn't

 

            6              want to risk anyone's safety is an absurd

 

            7              thought, and I know the taxpayers are smart

 

            8              and they are not going to fall for that.

 

            9                      It is time, time to stop the fear as

 

           10              motive.  It is time to stop all of this hate

 

           11              and the perpetual, perpetual constant

 

           12              digging at other people and other elected

 

           13              officials for personal benefit.  I'm sorry,

 

           14              but I certainly don't want to see anyone put

 

           15              their faith in someone who works harder

 

           16              against than they do for the people who put

 

           17              them here.  That is a problem.  That is a

 

           18              major problem.

 

           19                      So I have to say I'm afraid.  I'm

 

           20              afraid some days after four years here.  I'm

 

           21              afraid that the people aren't going to see

 

           22              the truth.  I'm afraid that they are not

 

           23              going to see these scripted meetings and

 

           24              very well-produced and well-spoken people in

 

           25              the audience are still cronies.  They might


 

 

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            1              not be mine, but they are cronies.  Funny

 

            2              how isn't allowed to apply on the other

 

            3              hand, but it really does.

 

            4                      It is time for all talk and no show

 

            5              to stop, so I'm going to ask you at home to

 

            6              not fall into the trap of the fear mongers,

 

            7              to make sure we don't lose a step backwards

 

            8              in time, to assure that we keep on the path

 

            9              we are on.  You know yourself this is not a

 

           10              time where hate and division will bring

 

           11              anything but more hate and division.  I want

 

           12              the progress to continue that we have had in

 

           13              the past four years.  It might not be

 

           14              enough, it will never be enough, but we are

 

           15              on a good road and I want to stay on the

 

           16              path we are on and I will do it in spite of

 

           17              the people here who don't want to come along

 

           18              with us.

 

           19                      You can stay in your world of hate,

 

           20              you can stay bickering back and forth with

 

           21              each other and the constantly digging your

 

           22              own holes and running around with each other

 

           23              and not getting anywhere.  You can do that,

 

           24              it's okay, but the rest of us can't.  We

 

           25              can't afford to do that anymore.  Those


 

 

                                                                     127

 

 

            1              times are gone.

 

            2                      So when we come back in these

 

            3              chambers after this election it is time to

 

            4              move forward and time to come in with good

 

            5              ideas and happy, wonderful thoughts for our

 

            6              future and make us see and work together for

 

            7              what is better for the citizens of Scranton

 

            8              and for the taxpayers.  I will work for you,

 

            9              I promise I will work for you, and I will

 

           10              not give credit for credit is not due.  I do

 

           11              not want the type of behavior that happens

 

           12              in these chambers to run my city ever and I

 

           13              hope you are smart enough out there to see

 

           14              why it happens and know what the rest of us

 

           15              are here to do our job and not just say no

 

           16              and cast blame all the time.  Thank you.

 

           17                      MR. COURTRIGHT: I would just like to

 

           18              say each and every year I go to the Armed

 

           19              Forces Parade and I don't stand in one spot,

 

           20              I walk the route just to see how it is every

 

           21              year and I'm disappointed that more people

 

           22              don't show up.  I really ask that you come

 

           23              out and support that parade and our Armed

 

           24              Forces.  It's not that much time out of your

 

           25              day, and I think we need to show them the


 

 

                                                                     128

 

 

            1              support.  Each and every year, like I said,

 

            2              I'm disappointed in the showing, I think we

 

            3              need to have a much better showing.

 

            4                      The firepits, I don't know if I

 

            5              answered this, I think it was Mr. Spindler's

 

            6              question, I spoke with Marty Monahan about

 

            7              these so-called firepits or whatever that

 

            8              they are that you burn in the backyard, they

 

            9              need to have a screen on them and a device,

 

           10              I forget what he said they were, and if they

 

           11              don't they are illegal and it comes under

 

           12              the open burn ordinance, so those of you

 

           13              that aren't, Mr. Spindler, if you get the

 

           14              open burn ordinance from our office you will

 

           15              be able to find out if your neighbor is, in

 

           16              fact, in violation; and I believe, I spoke

 

           17              to him on the way in here so I wasn't able

 

           18              to write down everything he told me I told

 

           19              him I would get with him, I believe that the

 

           20              police officer is able to write a citation

 

           21              if you are in violation of the open burn

 

           22              ordinance.

 

           23                      And I'll be brief, it's been a long

 

           24              night, just one last thing and I'm not going

 

           25              to campaign so we all campaign in different


 

 

                                                                     129

 

 

            1              ways, but I think every one of us meet a lot

 

            2              of people when we are out there campaigning,

 

            3              and we end up in neighborhoods that we don't

 

            4              normally go in every day and so we see how

 

            5              different parts of the city and different

 

            6              people in the city live and what their

 

            7              problems are and they maybe different than

 

            8              our own neighborhood.

 

            9                      I think it's an education that every

 

           10              one in the city should have.  You campaign

 

           11              you learn about this city, and again, you

 

           12              learn things outside of your own

 

           13              neighborhood, we all have a tendency to be

 

           14              partial to our own neighborhood, that's just

 

           15              human nature, but my hats off to each and

 

           16              every candidate and each and every election

 

           17              that's runs.  It's not easy.  It's not as

 

           18              difficult on us as it is on our families and

 

           19              the people that depend on us, but I do hope

 

           20              that you go out and vote and you try to pick

 

           21              the person that you think will be best for

 

           22              the job, and I wish the best to everybody

 

           23              and everybody that's running because it's

 

           24              not easy.  It's a difficult and hard couple

 

           25              of months, and people ask me, you know, what


 

 

                                                                     130

 

 

            1              do you do it for.  I think everybody has a

 

            2              different reason, but I think most of us

 

            3              just want to serve the public, so best of

 

            4              luck to everybody.  We won't be here next

 

            5              week, but we'll be here the following week.

 

            6              Thank you.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF:  Very briefly,

 

            8              Mr. Sbaraglia brought up campaign spending

 

            9              and contributions and one thing that I

 

           10              thought for -- I thought for years is

 

           11              something that the State of Pennsylvania

 

           12              should consider is on a statewide basis

 

           13              having campaigns spending limits specific to

 

           14              each office.  It's probably never going to

 

           15              happen because people want to raise money

 

           16              for whatever reason, but campaign spending

 

           17              limits would alleviate a lot of the

 

           18              problems, hopefully maybe in the future it

 

           19              will be something that is looked into and

 

           20              perhaps enacted.

 

           21                      Also, Mr. Jackowitz, I don't want to

 

           22              say that some things shouldn't be

 

           23              investigated at the tax office, but I know

 

           24              the -- I don't know specifically when a

 

           25              separate solicitor was used by the single


 

 

                                                                     131

 

 

            1              tax office, but I think, if I'm not

 

            2              mistaken, it goes all the way back to when

 

            3              Mr. Walsh was tax collector that they hired

 

            4              a separate solicitor, so it's not a recent

 

            5              event.  I'm not saying it's right but --

 

            6                      MR. JACKOWITZ: It's the law.

 

            7                      MR. MCGOFF:  Again, I'm not

 

            8              saying -- it's not something that has just

 

            9              recently occurred.  I just, you know, it's

 

           10              something that has been going on.

 

           11                      And as far as the policemen in

 

           12              chambers, from the time that I took the

 

           13              presidency I was asked if I would continue

 

           14              to do that and I will provide the same

 

           15              answer, I believe that a policeman should be

 

           16              present at any public meeting.  It's not for

 

           17              intimidation, just as you have a policeman

 

           18              at a basketball game, you know, a concert,

 

           19              whatever, I think any public meeting should

 

           20              have a member of the police force present

 

           21              just in case something does occur and I will

 

           22              ask that we continue to do that as long as I

 

           23              am president.

 

           24                      And the very last thing, all of the

 

           25              fish in the pond did not die.  Some of them


 

 

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            1              did, but not all of them and, Mrs. Garvey.

 

            2                      MS. EVANS: Mr. McGoff, I just wanted

 

            3              to mention one thing to you because you

 

            4              addressed campaign finances reform

 

            5              initially, which I think is an excellent

 

            6              topic, I had tried myself to address that

 

            7              during a previous council and I ran into the

 

            8              problem you stated which is it has to be a

 

            9              change on the state level.  However, there

 

           10              are councils, I think Philadelphia might be

 

           11              one of them, that actually did enact their

 

           12              own legislation applying to their own city.

 

           13                      Now, will that hold weight according

 

           14              to state law, very likely not, but perhaps

 

           15              it can be something that even candidates

 

           16              would abide by voluntarily knowing that it's

 

           17              there, and so there would be that

 

           18              opportunity to, you know, set a level and

 

           19              see who will actually do the most beneficial

 

           20              thing because it certainly does I think go a

 

           21              long way to avoiding pay to play operations.

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF: I agree.  Mrs. Garvey.

 

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

 

           24              INTRODUCTION - AN ORDINANCE - AMENDING FILE

 

           25              OF COUNCIL NO. 123, 2007, ENTITLED, "AN


 

 

                                                                     133

 

 

            1              ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND OTHER

 

            2              APPROPRIATE OFFICIALS OF THE CITY OF

 

            3              SCRANTON TO TAKE ALL NECESSARY ACTIONS TO

 

            4              IMPLEMENT THE CONSOLIDATED SUBMISSION FOR

 

            5              COMMUNITY PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS

 

            6              (AS AMENDED) TO BE FUNDED UNDER THE

 

            7              COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT (CDBG)

 

            8              PROGRAM, HOME INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIP (HOME)

 

            9              PROGRAM AND EMERGENCY SHELTER GRANT (ESG)

 

           10              PROGRAM", BY AMENDING THE CONSOLIDATED PLAN

 

           11              AND THE 2008 ACTION PLAN TO INCLUDE NEW

 

           12              FUNDING UNDER TITLE XII OF THE FEDERAL

 

           13              AMERICAN RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT ACT OF

 

           14              2009 ("RECOVERY ACT") FOR THE HOMELESS

 

           15              PREVENTION AND RAPID RE-HOUSING PROGRAM

 

           16              (HPRP) AND THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK

 

           17              GRANT-RECOVERY (CDBG-R) THAT RESULTED FROM

 

           18              THE RECOVERY ACT.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF:  At this time I'll

 

           20              entertain a motion that Item 5-B be

 

           21              introduced into it's proper committee.

 

           22                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

 

           23                      MS. FANUCCI:  Second.

 

           24                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  All

 

           25              those in favor signify by saying aye.


 

 

                                                                     134

 

 

            1                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

            2                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.

 

            3                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

            4                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

            5                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

            6              ayes have it and so moved.

 

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

 

            8              A RESOLUTION - AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND

 

            9              OTHER APPROPRIATE CITY OFFICIALS TO EXECUTE

 

           10              AND ENTER INTO SUPPLEMENTAL REIMBURSEMENT

 

           11              AGREEMENT NO. 040809-F WITH THE COMMONWEALTH

 

           12              OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF

 

           13              TRANSPORTATION REGARDING THE LACKAWANNA

 

           14              AVENUE BRIDGE PROJECT FOR THE PURPOSE OF

 

           15              INCREASING THE CONSTRUCTION PHASE OF THE

 

           16              PROJECT DUE TO CONSTRUCTION COSTS OVER-RUNS.

 

           17                      MR. MCGOFF:  At this time I'll

 

           18              entertain a motion that Item 5-C be

 

           19              introduced into it's proper committee.

 

           20                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

 

           21                      MS. FANUCCI:  Second.

 

           22                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  All

 

           23              those in favor signify by saying aye.

 

           24                      MS. EVANS:  Aye.

 

           25                      MS. FANUCCI:  Aye.


 

 

                                                                     135

 

 

            1                      MS. GATELLI:  Aye.

 

            2                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Aye.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF:  Aye.  Opposed?  The

 

            4              ayes have it and so moved.

 

            5                      MS. GARVEY: SIXTH ORDER.  NO

 

            6              BUSINESS AT THIS TIME.  SEVENTH ORDER.  7-A.

 

            7              FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE COMMITTEE ON

 

            8              FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION - FILE OF COUNCIL NO.

 

            9              64, 2009 - AMENDING FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 49,

 

           10              2008, AN ORDINANCE "ENTITLED GENERAL CITY

 

           11              OPERATING BUDGET 2009" BY TRANSFERRING

 

           12              $25,000.00 FROM ACCOUNT NO.

 

           13              01.401.13090.4299 (NON DEPARTMENTAL

 

           14              OPERATING EXPENSES-CONTINGENCY) TO ACCOUNT

 

           15              NO. 01.040.00040.4190 (BUSINESS

 

           16              ADMINISTRATION  UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE) TO

 

           17              PROVIDE FUNDING TO COVER QUARTERLY PAYMENTS

 

           18              TO THE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND INDUSTRY.

 

           19                      MR. MCGOFF:  What is the

 

           20              recommendation of the Chair for the

 

           21              Committee on Finance?

 

           22                      MS. GATELLI:  As Chairperson for the

 

           23              Committee on Finance, I recommend final

 

           24              passage of Item 7-A.

 

           25                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.


 

 

                                                                     136

 

 

            1                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  Roll

 

            2              call, please?

 

            3                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Evans.

 

            4                      MS. EVANS:  Yes.

 

            5                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Gatelli.

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI:  Yes.

 

            7                      MR. COOLICAN:  Ms. Fanucci.

 

            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-A legally and lawfully adopted.

 

           14                      MS. GARVEY: 7-B. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

           15              BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION -

 

           16              FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 65, 2009 - CREATING AND

 

           17              ESTABLISHING SPECIAL CITY ACCOUNT NO.

 

           18              02.229592 ENTITLED "BILLY BARRETT PARK

 

           19              GRANTS" FOR THE RECEIPT AND DISBURSEMENT OF

 

           20              GRANT FUNDS FROM VARIOUS SOURCES INCLUDING

 

           21              BUT NOT LIMITED TO LACKAWANNA ENVIRONMENTAL

 

           22              CONSERVATION AND OUTDOOR RECREATION

 

           23              PARTNERSHIP ("LECOR"), DEPARTMENT OF

 

           24              ECONOMIC AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ("DCED")

 

           25              AND BOUNDLESS PLAYGROUND FOR


 

 

                                                                     137

 

 

            1              RENOVATION/REHABILITATION OF BILLY BARRETT

 

            2              PARK.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF:  What is the

 

            4              recommendation of the Chair for the

 

            5              Committee on Finance?

 

            6                      MS. GATELLI: As Chair for the

 

            7              Committee on Finance, I recommend final

 

            8              passage of Item 7-B.

 

            9                      MR. COURTRIGHT: Second.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF:  On the question?  Roll

 

           11              call, please?

 

           12                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Evans.

 

           13                      MS. EVANS:  Yes.

 

           14                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mrs. Gatelli.

 

           15                      MS. GATELLI:  Yes.

 

           16                      MR. COOLICAN:  Ms. Fanucci.

 

           17                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           18                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mr. Courtright.

 

           19                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

           20                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mr. McGoff.

 

           21                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare

 

           22              Item 7-B legally and lawfully adopted.

 

           23                      MS. GARVEY:  7-C. FOR CONSIDERATION

 

           24              - BY THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - FOR ADOPTION

 

           25              - FILE OF COUNCIL NO. 66, 2009 - CREATING


 

 

                                                                     138

 

 

            1              AND ESTABLISHING SPECIAL CITY ACCOUNT NO.

 

            2              02.229591 ENTITLED "JIMMY CONNORS PARK

 

            3              GRANTS" FOR THE RECEIPT AND DISBURSEMENT OF

 

            4              GRANT FUNDS FROM VARIOUS SOURCES, INCLUDING

 

            5              BUT NOT LIMITED TO, LACKAWANNA ENVIRONMENTAL

 

            6              CONSERVATION AND OUTDOOR RECREATION

 

            7              PARTNERSHIP ("LECOR"), DEPARTMENT OF

 

            8              ECONOMIC AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT ("DCED")

 

            9              AND BOUNDLESS PLAYGROUND FOR CONNORS PARK.

 

           10                      MR. MCGOFF:  What is the

 

           11              recommendation of the Chair for the

 

           12              Committee on Finance?

 

           13                      MS. GATELLI:  As Chair for the

 

           14              Committee on Finance, I recommend final

 

           15              passage of 7-C.

 

           16                      MR. COURTRIGHT: 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.

 

           22                      MS. GATELLI:  Yes.

 

           23                      MR. COOLICAN:  Ms. Fanucci.

 

           24                      MS. FANUCCI:  Yes.

 

           25                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mr. Courtright.


 

 

                                                                     139

 

 

            1                      MR. COURTRIGHT:  Yes.

 

            2                      MR. COOLICAN:  Mr. McGoff.

 

            3                      MR. MCGOFF:  Yes.  I hereby declare

 

            4              Item 7-Clegally and lawfully adopted.

 

            5                      MS. GATELLI: Motion to adjourn.

 

            6                      MR. MCGOFF: Before we adjourn, I

 

            7              would just announce that due to Election Day

 

            8              next week's meeting is cancelled and our

 

            9              next meeting will be May 26, and we shall

 

           10              adjourn.

 

           11                      MR. COURTRIGHT: So moved.

 

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            1                     C E R T I F I C A T E

 

            2

 

            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

 

            8   ability.

 

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                                    CATHENE S. NARDOZZI, RPR

           12                       OFFICIAL COURT REPORTER

 

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