Wednesday, August 27, 2008

"Do You Know Who I Am"

Prior to the Keri Rodrigues story breaking in the Herald News, I was listening to Mike "Hurricane" Herren on WSAR recount his attempt at investigative reporting. He told his listeners that he went to the Regatta the day before to investigate the shooting that occurred early Saturday morning. He indicated that the Regatta is a dump, that the management is horrible, and the owner was uncooperative with Hurricane.

Manny, the even-keeled sounding owner of Tony's Shipwreck (the restaurant at the Regatta) called into the show to respectfully defend the Regatta and to address Herren's confrontational behavior towards the Regatta owner. According to Manny, Herren and the Regatta owner exchanged heated words and Herren said, "Do you know who I am?"

Fast forward to the Herald News article about Keri Rodrigues later that night: regarding Mike Herren -“He kept asking me if I knew who he was, and he was screaming at me,” said Rodrigues.

So to all of you out there who might be asked by Mike Herren if you know who he is (because apparently that is his modus operandi) prepared and memorize the picture immediately below so you can stroke his ego and avoid a fight by answering correctly.

Mike Herren
High School Basketball star 20 years ago

Not to be confused with:

Al Bundy
Scored 4 touchdowns in 1 game in high school football decades ago

Monday, August 25, 2008

Jumping the Gun

Bob and the ZBA
1/2008 - Building inspector denies a permit for the YMCA housing project
2/21/08 - Zoning Board unanimously rejects the special permit request for the YMCA housing project saying, "“the non-residentially zoned area would be adversely affected by such residential use.”
- YMCA requests the zoning board reconsider their propose project
3/13/08 - Despite Massachusetts General Laws stating that zoning boards may not reconsider a rejected permit for two years without “specific and material changes in the conditions upon which they are based,” A letter is faxed to the zoning board, from city hall, on city letterhead, arguably from Bob stating that zoning was denied in February but that reversal seemed imminent.
8/20/08 - Zoning board meeting is scheduled to rehear the YMCA project before the zoning ever waived its 2 year rule to allow the issue to be heard.

Bob and Home Rule Petition
7/17/08 - Correia errantly announces that Governor Patrick signed the fire chief Home Rule petition removing the chief from civil service before it happened.

Budget 2009
Bob jumps the gun planning the budget on the presumption that his CSO storm water fee increases will pass for revenue in the amount of $2.2 million

Bob nearly doubles Arthur Frank's salary in the budget before getting approval for the raise from the city council

City press releases announcing things that have not passed, as discussed by Kevin Aguiar:

Friday, August 22, 2008

Are We This Hard Up for Cash?

Advertisement on the city website:

City trolley available for private functions. 8-19-08 The City of Fall River, department of Community Maintenance, would like to announce the availability of trolley service for hire. The trolley is available for private functions 7 days a week, after 3:00pm Monday thru Friday and anytime during the weekends. The hourly rate will be $72.00 per hour during the weekdays and $85.00 per hour on the weekends. There will be a four-hour minimum rental time. This service will be provided as a first come first serve basis with a payment in full before the schedule event. For more information please contact Ken Pacheco at 508-324-2585.

Are we that hard up for cash that we need to get into the private transportation business? Won't this open the city up to unnecessary liability - especially if transporting people where alcohol is involved?

Does this availability of trolleys mean that Bob's only campaign brain child, restaurant row, isn't a go?

I can understand that there is probably a huge demand for trolley rentals that the city is just cashing in on. And who wouldn't want to rent this city trolley I spotted at the incinerator today:

You'll have to trust me that it is a trolley since this was as close as I could get.

Robert Correia's Rules of Order - updated

Earlier this year when Bob Correia joined this School Committee, the committee members had a discussion at their regular meeting about Robert's Rules of Order and agreed that they would use that source as guiding in their parliamentary procedures.

At a recent School Committee meeting, Kevin Aguiar tried to make an amendment to a motion using Robert's Rules of Order. Bob didn't appear to like this, as it would have delayed something he was trying to push through - this is when Bob decided to change the rules to use "tradition" rather than the previously agreed upon Robert's Rules of Order "because that is the prerogative of the chair." This is clear and egregious evidence that Bob changes the rules as he goes to favor his position.

Thirdmate at HMS Impossible posted a great blog discussing this topic in more detail

Monday, August 18, 2008

An Uncivil Union

Most churches and other religious organizations are 501(c)(3) tax exempt which means that the IRS prohibits them from engaging in candidate election advocacy. Violation of this regulation can result in the termination of their tax exempt status.

Given the multiple rumors I had heard that Linda Pereira was tailoring her political platform to make nice with the Catholic Church, I was disappointed, but not surprised to find this Pereira sign hanging at St. Michael's Church feast 2 weeks ago (also an O'Neil for Probate sign)

Perhaps it is a common practice that is overlooked, but it is still in violation of IRS regulations. Is supporting a racist "joke" telling, self preserving liar worth losing tax exempt status?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Correia on WSAR today

And in another puff interview by Mike "Hurricane" Herren on wsar today, Mayor Bob Correia made my day with his ignorant blabber.

In a discussion of CSO stormwater fees, with an example Bob offered of businesses that were previously paying $2,000 a year now having to pay $27,000 a year, Bob was nonchalant about the increase. Hurricane asked Bob if he had gotten any complaints from businesses about this increase and Bob said, "Only a few business owners have been opposed to it but the biggest ones that are getting hit the hardest have said 'I don't like it but it's fair' and they are shutting up about it"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Where is the runoff revenue going to come from when he runs all of the businesses out of town?

Bob Correia's Hiring Practices - UPDATED

If you care to suspend your disbelief and trust Bob Correia when he said, “I’ve known him (CDA Director Robert Laughlin) for over 45 years, but I haven’t had any direct interchange with him for the last 40,” it would really make you question his hiring thought process and procedures (or clear lack thereof). Hypothetically, why the &*%# would a newly elected mayor put someone whom he hadn't spoken to in 40 years in charge of his transition team (and then give a position as CDA director)?! Either Bob is lying and he had "direct interchange" with Robert Laughlin, the man he trusted enough to appoint coordinator of his mayoral transition team OR Mayor Correia isn't a liar and he is just haphazard with his hiring practices.

Correia recently appointed Shannon Lyonnais to the position of City Collector because he "heard she was bright and aggressive in her work ethic." Flattering compliment but what are her qualifications for this $69,130-$84,170 per year position? (A position/department that I personally know, needs extreme improvement) According to a Herald News article she has an Associates (2 year) degree from American International University, Chicago.

Where is American International University, Chicago? I am not ruling out the possibility that this a Herald News typo....but if it isn't, after extensive google searching, the college does not appear to exist.

So what are Bob's hiring practices?
Not surprisingly, the Herald News was wrong about the name of the college Ms. Lyonnais "attended." The name of the school was actually "American Intercontinental University Chicago, IL" according the the press release on the city website. American Intercontinental University, appears to be a predominantly internet based school where you can, "earn a degree fast." The Chicago location is the physical location for AIU's internet college programs.

Owned by the same business that started Gibbs College, AIU has been under scrutiny from the securities and exhange commission for their practices and programs. One anonymous professor stated: "If you can breathe and walk, you can get into the school." See more controversy on wikipedia.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Diagnosing Bob

Pretty much every time Bob Correia opens his mouth, I think "what is wrong with him!?" This is usually for a variety of reasons. I was reading about mental disorders the other day and had an oddly familiar feeling when I got to the section about 'Antisocial Personality Disorder.'

For fun I decided to compare the actions and words of Bob with the clinical symptoms for an Antisocial Personality Disorder Diagnosis.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV) diagnoses people as having an Antisocial Personality Disorder if they have at least 3 of the following:

1. Failure to conform to social norms;

I, fortunately, don't know him well enough to address this one so I can only imagine.

2. Deceitfulness, manipulativeness;

Deceit? Regarding the recent resignation/termination of CDA Director Robert Laughlin: "Asked specifically if there was a “cover up” about why he took this sudden action that was accompanied by a two-sentence press release, Correia said, “If there was a cover up going on, this never would have happened Herald News."

3. Impulsivity, failure to plan ahead;

Correia impulsively and errantly announces the signing of the fire chief home rule petition by the Governor Patrick without verifying his information for accuracy.

4. Irritability, aggressiveness;

It is subjective, but I think the argument could be made that Correia demanding the resignations of all department heads one day after he took office is aggressive (and perhaps a little irritable).

5. Reckless disregard for the safety of self or others;

Correia attempts to dump sludge and fly ash near the Fall River drinking water supply to save money

Correia increased Mayor's Office salaries in his 2009 budget but cut fire facilities, apparatus, and 16 fire positions (pg. 16 of the budget). Correia (pg. 16) said "Closing an apparatus, even for a day, means more risk to firefighters and neighborhoods."

6. Consistent irresponsibility;

SEE above in #5

7. Lack of remorse after having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from another person

After trampling all over the rights of the 9,000+ residents of Fall River that signed the fire chief referendum petition, Bob Correia errantly/prematurely announced that the governor had signed the bill into law. During this announcement on WSAR he crassly stated that the "band was waiting" for him outside for the celebration of his victory over the residents of Fall River.