Monday, April 30, 2007

That’s the Ticket

It’s easy to be all for ethics in government, especially if you can get your tickets fixed at City Hall.

Troy Third District Councilman Pete Ryan joined members of the Working Families Party before a recent City Council meeting demanding the resignations of various city officials. Ryan said he was shocked, shocked about allegations lodged against some top GOPers.

Ryan’s shock didn’t prevent him from approaching at least one, maybe more, city officials, to ask for special treatment for a parking ticket he had received and a ticket a friend received. The request for the ticket fix made its way to the City Corporation counsel who cried “foul” and informed Ryan by letter that he had no intention of providing the special treatment sought by the Democratic councilman.

The Corp Counsel also dashed off a letter to the District Attorney asking for an investigation into the alleged ticket fix by Ryan. The DA’s office is believed to be taking the request seriously.

Just as serious are the allegations against Ryan. It could be determined Ryan improperly used his office to receive a benefit for himself and a friend. He allegedly made the improper request in City Hall, meaning city resources were improperly utilized. This kind of conduct has resulted in town judges, including some from Rensselaer County, being sanctioned and removed. County Dems are already facing three separate investigations by a special prosecutor, and have to be wondering if a fourth is on the way.

Conroy Conundrum

Right out of the box, the “Jimmy” Conroy campaign for mayor has been taking some hard raps. Every story on Conroy’s campaign has mentioned the HUD scandal in which Conroy’s brother received a $27,000 federal loan from a program administered by the city when Conroy was deputy mayor. And that “Jimmy” ran for mayor in Schenectady. So much for Troy Dem Chairman Frank “Frankie” LaPosta’s attempt to portray “Jimmy” as “tremendously qualified”; it’s more like tremendously hobbled by the past. And the word on the street is at least two Dem district leaders have come forward to voice their big worries about the vortex the Conroy campaign is about to drag the city ticket down, down, down.

Those two district leaders also are known to have stated their strong dissatisfaction about County Dem Chair Tom Wade’s inability to attract candidates for county-wide elections. Dems have no candidate for Sheriff, an unknown for DA and a candidate for Troy mayor who was at the center or involved in most of ethical controversies during the Pattison years. The weakness at the top has led to big trouble for the Dems in getting good candidates for City Council and local offices across the county for the 2007 contests.

Baloney to Get Sliced?

Word has reached us that a former employee or two of Frank LaPosta may be stepping forward to discuss their time spent in the employ of the current Troy Dem chairman. And what they have to say might be interesting. Stay tuned.

Prime Cuts

Fundraiser frantics…Along with not being able to attract a solid slate of candidates and having to settle on “Jimmy” Conroy to run for Troy mayor, Dems are scratching their heads about their difficulty attracting a crowd for their spring fundraiser. After subtracting comps, Dems barely registered more than 100 paying customers for their fundraiser in Troy in April. And this is with a new Democrat governor in place just across the river. Dem insiders are worried about the lack of fundraising success, as the GOP still has a commanding edge in fundraising. Dems have also been instructed to call the Record’s Sound-off to talk about how many Republicans supposedly showed up for the event; they better hope some GOPers show up so the room isn’t so empty next time. Waving a pink flag…Stung by revelations that top Dems were giving thumbs-down to having a candidate for mayor who was gay, party leaders have apparently directed that at least one candidate for City Council in Troy be gay. You have no rights, and remain silent…The hot-tempered Dem would-be boss is still trying to cover his tracks after some seriously strong-arming of some Dem employees? Careful, careful, that sounds like obstruction of justice. And his antics aren’t being received too well by party big shots on the state and federal levels, as word spreads. Garage days revisited part two…Still no resolution to the case involved Dirty Dan Ashley and his failure to obtain a building permit as required. Dirty Dan and CB obviously have Fennelly, Sabo, Michaels and Mihalko in line. But don’t expect the silence to continue.