Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Obviously the thought of Casey, who bears a striking resemblance to Sophia Petrillo from the Golden Girls, shuffling around town trying to collect 1,000 signatures in one day, was too humorous for Koorey to pass up. This stupid bet had the virtue of being amusing until a couple of councilors took it a bit too seriously and made the goal 1,000 signatures at all cost! It wasn’t Pat alone anymore; nope Ray manned his post at Stop and Shop collecting signatures from patrons who were probably relieved all he wanted was a signature and not some money or a ride somewhere. The two of them collected 900 signatures, so Team Pat also had a handful of other volunteers collecting signatures so they could reach the goal! So it was no longer just Pat and it doesn’t even seem like was just one day. She told the Herald she did it all on Monday but apparently was going around getting signatures the day before!
What did this prove?
Um.. that at least 1,000 people in a city of 90,000 want a casino. Big shock! Did anybody doubt that you could get 1,000 signatures? THE CHALLENGE was to do it herself in ONE day.
Um... that Pat didn’t understand the terms of her own bet because she is the one who boasted that SHE (alone) could get 1,000 signatures in one day. What other things does Pat say that really doesn’t understand?
That Ray Mitchell is the smarter of the two. While Pat went around for hours going door to door Ray went to where a bunch of people were. Maybe if Pat had simply gone to Wal Mart on Black Friday she could have gotten these signatures all by her lonesome?
That if you’re a City Councilor and you’re going to stand in front of a store for a few hours maybe you should get a red kettle and collect some money and really do something that will benefit all these people you say need help. I now DARE both these councilors to do just that. I’m sure the Salvation Army would be grateful for their time and assistance.
That you can totally waste the time of TWO elected officials simply by DARING THEM to do something! THIS is fantastic and I am going to make it a point to DARE Will Flanagan to lick a flagpole on a freezing cold day. I might even see if I can get Joe Camara to lick his own elbow or Brian Bigelow to run around downtown in his undershorts. Oh, skip that last one.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Our operating budget is made possible through an agreement between the City of Taunton and Comcast, providing us with 2% of their net cable revenues. This corporation is overseen by a five member Board of Directors, which is responsible for setting studio policy, and the overall finances of T.C.A.M.Our Executive Director is in charge of the day to day operation of our studio, and determines our programming schedule, the use of our studio and equipment, and all other issues relating to the programs you view on T.C.A.M.http://www.tcamtv.com/
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Flanagan's current fantasy plans for a casino in Fall River were knocked down, yet another peg*, today when Governor Deval Patrick, in an interview with the Boston Globe, stated that he has no intention to put casinos on his agenda this term.
*Hurdles to casino-topia
1) Casino Gaming in MA is illegal
2) Taxpayer 10 lawsuit
3) Open bidding law violations
4) Referendum vote of Fall River residents
5) Legislature needs to select Fall River as the region's location for a casino,
over Taunton, New Bedford, etc.
6) Funding for a casino needs to come through despite the horrible gaming economy
7) Governor has no plans to work on legalizing casino gambling this term
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Consider the fact that Torres justified his increased salary with the notion that he was losing money by giving up his private practice. Then imagine my surprise when I read an article out of Wareham recently which evidenced the fact that, 10 months into his contract with Fall River, Torres was still working side jobs:
Pretty sneaky of Torres and Flanagan considering the fact that the City Council approved Torres' increased salary based on the premise that Torres was eliminating his private practice to, presumably, focus all of his efforts on the matters of Fall River. This is clearly not the case.
"A report on the forensic audit of town computers, which has been in progress for nearly a year and a half, is once again delayed. Town Administrator Mark Andrews and the Board of Selectmen had been told that special counsel, the Law Offices of Steven A. Torres, would be prepared to present the results of the audit on Sept. 28 or October 5."
I think Torres is already overextended in his capacities as co-mayor of Fall River. I kid, I kid........... However, there have been many occasions where I have read in the Herald News, or heard at city council meetings that Corporation Counsel hadn't completed some task requested of them. Also, Torres went before the city council to get approval for another $45,000 budgeted so he could hire another attorney for the office - I certainly hope the addition of a new attorney wasn't to free up time for Torres to moonlight
Thursday, September 16, 2010
I have heard several people supporting Bigelow, and even defending his crime by saying it is a minor crime, a victimless crime, there are worse crimes to worry about, this crime should be decriminalized, etc. I cannot agree with those arguments. Bigelow committed a crime. He attempted to fund a criminal activity that operates in the shadows of our neighborhoods.... A criminal activity that funds the purchase of illegal drugs and makes drug dealers rich in our community. It is particularly inexcusable for an elected official who is charged with bettering our city.
In my opinion, Brian Bigelow was never an effective councilor to begin with; starting at that low point, he has only gotten worse. In the past week Bigelow missed the Arts United meeting, which he is supposed to attend in his role as City Council arts liason. He then missed last night's finance committee meeting. In the meetings he has attended since his arrest and subsequent plea to the crime, he only gave input one time.
As a reminder, Bigelow voted against allowing strip clubs in Fall River because of the harm he alleged they would do to our neighborhoods. What kind of hypocrite liar votes against allowing partially nude people in completely private facilities yet contributes to public nakedness, and publicly visible oral sex for money?
In light of everything I just said, and as a disgruntled voter in Fall River, I am demanding Brian Bigelow's resignation from the city council. I have a strong group of voters supporting me on this demand. If Bigelow does not resign by this time next week, we will begin the recall process whereby he can be ousted from office.
Who's with us?!
Friday, September 10, 2010
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Thanks Skoorey for filming it!
Excellent analysis by Puck which I ripped from the comment section -
OMG. What a joke. First, the Chair hadn't even read the contract(s), then asks for 30 seconds to do so. 30 seconds??? But, he decides after that thorough review that Jobs for FR, i.e. FROED,--for no given reason--deserves the contract. FROED wants more money per month than CRES-RI, while CRES-RI asks for a lower monthly fee, but includes a 2.5% commission for real estate transactions. The RDA members' vote to award the contract to FROED and then negotiate the monthly fee with FROED. But they never considered awarding it to CRES-RI and then negotiating the real estate commission with them. Why solicit proposals in the first place if you can change the terms of them after the fact? Doing so means that neither proposal was set in stone and that either one could be revised after it was selected for award. That makes no sense at all.
Worse still, the Chair said the RDA doesn't even know if it has enough money to pay for the services they want FROED to provide.
And since when is one of the bidders--in the person of Ken Fiola--allowed to walk in on the award conference? Why wasn't the other bidder there as well? Were they invited?
Nothing about this theater of the absurd should surprise me, but I foolishly hoped these vaunted leaders would at least be better actors and present the illusion that this was a fair, well-considered award. Duh. My bad.
Stephanie, thank you for recording this. It's people like you, Shamrock, Lefty and a few others that keep my long-strained hope alive that someday this city's potential will stop being squandered by selfish, feeble-minded fools.
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Consider this quote from RDA attorney, Peter Bogle, regarding FROED's past bids for the RA staffing contract "FROED was the only qualified respondent on proposals to staff the RA for past contracts. Its staff management includes accounting, clerical support, marketing and negotiating on behalf of the Redevelopment Authority." So where does the RA/city advertise this opening? I did not see an advertisement on the city website, the Central register, the Herald News....google...... A friend of mine was able to find an ad in a publication I had never heard of and that now escapes me.
If the RA truly wanted to replace FROED, they would have advertised the opening with more than a trivial amount of effort. Somehow, despite the clear lack of publicity for the opening, a competing bid was submitted against FROED. I have little detail on the submission but I do know the RA is voting on it Wednesday at 9:15am.
FROED is just plain terrible and I don't think any competing organization could do a worse job. However, realistically, is the RA ever going to replace FROED? The Mayor sits on FROED along with some highfalutin Fall River residents and business people who, while some may not live in Fall River, probably enjoy the perks of a FROED board of directors position (*read: loans): This is not easily let go.
Anyhooo, I urge anyone who can make it to the RA meeting on Wednesday at 9:15am (presumably at government center) to attend. Express your concern the FROED has 32 (founded in 1978) years to improve Fall River and has not. We can't afford to continue paying Ken Fiola $170,000 a year to loan our tax money to his board members, let buildings sit and rot, and give TIF agreements to chain doughnut stores and gas stations.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
The Y currently has 13 units with up to 4 people each for a max of 52 residents (48 are currently in there). The Y proposal is for 42, 1 person units. This means the Y is decreasing the number of low income residents there.
The Wampanoag Mill project has 97 NEW low income, multi person units. The Y project is decreasing low income units by 10....how can the administration say that they are against MORE low income housing downtown...this is less, and basic math.
Will Flanagan opted to support a large low income project by a company that has made millions on low income housing developments in this city. Will Flanagan pulled the funding from the non-profit organization where I learned to swim, that offers housing to the homeless, that has been an amazing community partner.
Facts about the Y project:
The neighborhood association supports it
They don't allow overnight guests
No alcohol is allowed
Cori checks are done
Money was also going to be used to install sprinklers in the building
Money was also allocated for handicap accessibility improvements
Sunday, August 8, 2010
“I would not want a strip club in any neighborhood,” Bigelow said to cheers.
Click here for article
But its ok to buy a hooker in someone elses neighborhood?
RESIGN NOW DEUCE. If you do not, your scrutiny in the public eye will only get worse.
Monday, August 2, 2010
No need to read the following articles, these recent headlines pretty much say it all:
Connecticut slots revenue down at Foxwoods, Mohegan Sun 7/15/2010
Twin Rivers files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy 6/23/09
Casino layoffs destined to affect Norwich 10/30/2008
Atlantic City Casino Revenue Declines For 22nd Consecutive Month In June 7/12/2010
Analysts: Weakness in Gaming Industry Continues 7/28/2010
Layoffs at casino in Bethlehem: Less than a year after a grand opening that rivaled the glitz and glamour of a Las Vegas revue, Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem is laying off 80 employees. 5/1/2010
200 plus layoffs for President Casino gambling boat 4/22/2010
Slipping into Bankruptcy? Foxwoods Struggles With Debt as Gaming Revenue Slumps 9/3/09
Saturday, July 31, 2010
A few months ago I read an article in the Providence Journal titled something like "City Councilors Arrested by FBI on Bribery Charges." I clicked on the article hoping it wasn't Fall River but with a suspicion that it was. It was not Fall River, it was North Providence so that was a bit of a relief.
The ProJo article told the tale of 3 North Providence city council members and a developer by the name of Richard Baccari. The councilors agreed to change zoning laws for Baccari's development in exchange for $25,000.
Having recently been implicated in a $25,000 bribery scheme, any sensible government officials would probably hesitate to deal with Baccari. But not our dear FROED/Ken Fiola/RDA/Mayor Flanagan. They have proposed to build the UMass biopark on land Baccari owns in Freetown.
Last year, it was brought to my attention that the offramps being built to the biopark originally had a different plan. For some reason unknown to me, the plans for the offramp were changed so that they would run directly through Baccari's land in Freetown. And, that Baccari could potentially make alot of money as a result of the new plan for the offramps. I thought nothing of it at the time because the biopark was coming along as planned. In retrospect, the offramp plan changes certainly seem suspicious.
How convenient for this private developer Baccari, recently implicated in a government bribery scheme, that he could potentially make a ton of money with FROED's (and Will Flanagan too) help.
"Flanagan acknowledged business talks with the company’s Richard Baccari, the company’s president and CEO." Fall River Herald News July 23, 2010
"Baccari's relationships have always drawn the attention of law enforcement" Channel 10 I-team investigates
Friday, July 9, 2010
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
I think this quote from Tim McCoy, in support of Assad's raise, sums up the egregiousness of the raise pretty well, "...he is a guy that has spent several hours in negotiations during the past couple of months."
I am additionally frustrated because, on the city side of things, co-mayors Torres and Flanagan are about to add ANOTHER attorney to the legal department. I distinctly remember Flanagan selling the city a bill of goods that included cutting the costs of the "overpriced" legal department under the Correia administration. The city clearly survived all these years on one full time attorney and 2 part time attorneys....why do we now need 3 full times and a part time? On this subject, the law department proposes to pay the new Assistant Corporation Counsel $47,000 for a full time job. How does that reconcile with the $77,500 for the part time Assad?
These people are in the "public service" sector.....I always thought that meant they served the public, but it seems like it is the other way around.
Monday, June 21, 2010
“If the state gives a commercial license to another casino operator, we won’t pay the state a cent when we build a casino in Southeastern Massachusetts once expanded gaming is approved,” said Cedric Cromwell. “We will destroy the competition because we won’t pay licensing fees or taxes and we will provide a great player experience with more wins.”
Extorting the state with a threat he can never follow through on seems like such a bad idea. I am pretty sure with these remarks, Cedric Cromwell just bumped the Fall River Casino plans to the bottom of the list.
Mayor Flanagan and Counselor Torres, please rethink this.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
On the heels of a 2 million dollar debacle in the City Collector's office, City Administrator Shawn Cadime is still horribly unknowledgeable about the systems in the Collector's office. At the last City Council meeting, Councilor Mike Lund explained a simple, safe, and efficient, method of check depositing that he uses at his own business. The method sounded like a great idea. In the following clip, Shawn Cadime explains to Mike Lund why we cannot and are not using a system like the one Lund described.
Not only did Cadime have no clue about what was going on in the Collector's office, he clearly made up a story as to why the office could not use the system Lund recommended. At a time when particular attention was need in the Collector's office, the City Administrator had no idea. I cannot say this enough....AGAIN - 2 million dollars was just found laying around the office and, it is obvious from this clip, Cadime didn't do any follow up. At least Treasurer Grab was paying attention.
Friday, June 18, 2010
This afternoon, the Senate introduced a casino bill and it gives no preference to indian casino plans. This means Fall River will not have any advantage in the race to get a permit. This means we are now in direct competition with numerous other cities and towns vying for the 1 coveted permit for the region (the region is norfolk, bristol, plymouth, nantucket, dukes and barnstable counties). New Bedford is one of these cities. And lets be honest, they have their $hit together over there much more than Fall River does; governmentally, economically, planning wise, and in the area of economic development.
The recent decisions by Mayor Flanagan and Atty Torres to forego the BioPark and gamble on the slight chance of getting a casino are capricious and will likely have a detrimental impact on our city long after they are voted out of office.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Fall River was told that the Bio Park was going to save them (prior to the Green Park and Casino saving them).
This week last year, an inexperienced Mayoral candidate named Will Flanagan began campaigning on a promise to bring a Green Park to Fall River instead of a Bio Park. You can read all about Flanagan's promises for a Green Park on his website here.....well you could if his promises hadn't mysteriously turned into 3 pages of blank document...which is pretty much as substantive as anything else he said during his campaign.
Luckily, the Herald News isn't into erasing campaign promises and still has this article on Flanagan's Green Park. Here is my favorite part:
(Gambling on the mind much??) Flanagan sounded so committed to a Green Park but, not surprisingly, I haven't heard a thing about it since he used it to get into office. This is probably because he broke his promise for a Green Park and is expeditiously pursuing bringing a casino (with a water park) to Fall River.
“I am very concerned that the Correia administration is taking a risky gamble on biotechnology, as mayor of this city I would not gamble with our city’s economy. Green jobs are secure for today’s economy and as well as tomorrow’s economy. I will work with our various governmental agencies, our business community, and our unions to ensure that this Green Industrial Park will become reality,” Flanagan said.
I am not necessarily opposed to the idea of any of the aforementioned projects, however, I am opposed to rushed, poorly thought out projects (casino) and false promises made to get into office. The fact that, a mere several months ago, Flanagan was absolutely confident that the Green Park was going to be the answer to Fall River's economic problems, indicates to me that the Casino plan is rushed and not well thought out, like many of his campaign promises.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Thousands of dollars that could have been in the bank earning interest were/are just sitting in envelopes in an increasing pile at the Collector's Office. Their job is to collect and deposit payments....what exactly was the entire office doing, if not this?
How could this go on for two months before anyone noticed or addressed the issue? Leo Pelletier had to point it out at the council meeting on Tuesday. The Collector's Office is notoriously and chronically incompetent (see the time my house almost got taken away because of the Collector's Office). This situation will be particularly egregious if anyone is getting late notices for bills while their payment is sitting on someone's desk in the Collector's Office.
The Collector's Office needs to be overhauled, and if not fired, taught how to open a freaking envelope and deposit a check in the bank.
*Somewhat related story. A relative of mine called the Collector's Office a few weeks ago He was trying to pay his water bill online but the city bill pay service kept telling him that the bill number didn't exist. The Collector's Office employee told him that they could not help him because they don't have internet and that the supervisor was out of the office so she couldn't help either. They clearly don't want our money!
Sunday, April 18, 2010
10. MSA: Providence-New Bedford-Fall River, RI-MA
Net Population Change, 2006-2009: -0.20%
Per Capita Gross Domestic Product: $42,696.66
Change in New Building Permits, February 2007-February 2010: -83.18%
Change in Unemployment, January 2007-January 2010: 122.95%
Change in New Jobs Added, February 2007 - February 2010: -9.37%
Change in Median Home Price from Market Peak: -17%
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Well....seems like the teachers were justly cautious of this program considering that, pursuant to the terms of Race to the Top, every teacher at Central Falls High School was just fired:
CNN: All Teachers Fired at Rhode Island High School
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Flanagan is doing the same things for which he (and I) criticized Bob Correia!
A job for political hack Perry Long "accused of allegations"......ridiculous
Aside from the thieving, Long doesn't even live in a Fall River neighborhood yet got the job of neighborhood outreach coordinator!
Steve Torres's contract...ridiculous
The contract shouldn't be longer than Flanagan's tenure, which will be 2 years. Further, he should NOT be allowed to practice law outside of his contract with Fall River. He should NOT get extra money to attend meetings...wtf?!
We just got sued over strip clubs and Flanagan's response is "bring it on"?!....ridiculous
Update: I need to add Brad Kilby to the list of people I am mad that I have to agree with.
Despite recent spikes in violent crime, an absent police chief, and nearly 1/3 of our police force laid off, an article in today's the Herald News says:
He (Flanagan) seemed to reject Kilby’s claim public safety is in crisis.
“Who’s claiming we’re in crisis mode? What’s his statistics to show that?” Flanagan said.
“I’m looking forward to Brad Kilby’s campaign for mayor,” he also quipped.
Really? No crisis? That isn't what Flanagan was saying two months ago when he was trying to get elected. Residents are being robbed and injured by criminals and Flanagan's response makes light of the situation. I suppose it is better than his response to the strip club lawsuit "Bring it on."
It did not take long for the almighty power of the Fall River Mayor throne to overcome Flanagan, "Flanagan said he’d provide the council with financial information and the city administrator to answer questions. “But the council needs to recognize,” he said, “that the mayor is the appointing authority.”
Yes, the mayor is the king of all, and we need to recognize that!
Sunday, February 7, 2010
On 11/4/2003, the Roman Catholic Diocese granted 440 Bradford Avenue to Espirito Santo Museum Foundation Inc., c/o Fernando Garcia, for $1.00.
The deed to the property contains a reverter clause that transfers the property back to the Diocese "if the premises cease to be used as a museum within five years from the date hereof (2003), title of the premises shall revert to the grantor" OR "if the premises ceased to be used as a museum at any time, title to the premises shall revert to the grantor." Clearly 5 years have passed and there is no museum on the site.
On 3/24/2009, Bishop Coleman gave his approval to Espirito to raze the church and that is a shame. His approval was premised on the belief that Espirito had a study done which determined the church was unsuitable to house a museum. There was no mention anywhere of the building being structurally unsound in 2003 when Espirito was granted the property. Did Espirito let the church fall into a state of disrepair so that they may now tear down the historic building?
Of further curiosity is the fact that Espirito Santo Museum Foundation didn't have enough money to pay taxes on the church property: How is it that an organization which recently had a city lien placed on the property for owing nearly $11,000 in 2008 taxes, is economically capable of building a new structure? I doubt they can.
In the end I am afraid the city will have an empty lot where a beautiful, historic building once stood.
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
2009 - $7,045 (why the increase? )
2008 - $1,000
2007 - $2,500
Shenanigans with campaign expenditures are not surprising for a politician who uses her campaign donations to pay for her nearly $1,000 a month Cadillac. So it should come as no surprise that Menard's expensive "computer work" is done by her son-in-law, married to her daughter, Jennifer Menard. They even own a house together in Fall River, listed on the Fall River property website.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Meet your Massachusetts Governor's Council
By CHRIS FARAONE January 14, 2009 Boston Phoenix
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Saturday, January 2, 2010
Bob's Purported Accomplishments:
1) Completion of independent audit by the State Auditor’s office and Financial Management Review by the Department of Revenue
The audit did nothing for us but waste our money on telling us things that the perceptive politician would already know
2) The city now has a new back-up system and the firewall in place providing an adequate level of security for the city’s vital data
INCREDIBLE! Bob made the city computers as safe as my laptop! Congratulations on installing Avast!
3) Unveiling of FREE initiative
I believe he means the unveiling of PLANS for the FREE initiative. I would be much more impressed with ANY steps towards implementation.
4) The creation of the Restaurant Loop
Aren't there only one and a half new restaurants (Bella and Sky)?
5) The Fall River Children’s Christmas Parade
The Christmas Parade is a long standing Fall River event. Bob, allegedly, donated some of his uneeded campaign warchest to the event and that is an accomplishment?
6) Maintenance of core city services amidst worst economy in past 80 years
7) Launching of automated trash and single stream recycling pilot program to over 3,000 houses Did Bob add this to be funny? Some yard waste hasn't been picked up in 2 months, recycling hasn't been picked up in weeks...this is a joke right?
8) Creation of Fall River government channel
I would respect Bob a bit more if he could actually recognize failure.