Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Blaber News Persons of the Year: Mike Hein and Jim Quigley

Mike P. Hein

Jim Quigley

This year we have two persons of the year, it really was a tough choice and I could not pick between the two. We had a lot of worthy contenders : Don Williams, a life long resident of Ulster County former DA who recently won a 10 year term to be the next county court Judge; James Gilpatric who saw his life dream come true as well in November finally winning a well deserved spot in the NYS Supreme Court; but there are two that stand out Mike Hein and Jim Quigley.

Mike Hein has shown that he can do the job of Executive and he's been tough when neccisary but very fair. Mike's first year has been full of accomplishments and some shortfalls....we will have a full fair and balanced on Hein's first year as Executive and we are incredible proud, as Mike would say, for Hein to be one of our person of the year.

Jim Quigley came out of no where last year and came an eye lash from being Ulster County Comptroller, stayed involved and in a two year period single handily broke the Democratic stronghold in Ulster County. It is no coincidence his boy Fred Wadnola is chair, Jim Quigley may not be the chair of the County Republican party but make not mistake about it, he's the boss. It's good to be Jim Quigley these days and we are honored to name him one of our persons of the year.

A full layout next week will profile both Mike Hein and Jim Quigley, Happy Holidays and God Bless!!!



A recent Blaber News polls shows Ulster Comptroller Elliott Auerbach the top rated elected official in Ulster County!!!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Gotta Love the Gov.

Patterson Takes Shot at Disfunctional Legislature

According to the New York Post's Cindy Adams, at a fundraiser on Wednesday night the governor joked about the dismal situation in Albany with a little toilet humor:

The two of us share an ongoing slightly unclassy joke dealing with his first night ever sleeping in Albany's Executive Mansion bedroom where, in the middle of the night, the day-old Gov. couldn't find the john. So at this party I whispered for fun: "Have you peed yet tonight?" and he whispered back: "No, because I'm waiting to do it when the Legislature is under me."

Friday, December 11, 2009

We Forgot Holly

Please retake our county wide poll as we forgot to include in the mix Ulster County DA Holly Carnright, thus making the poll inaccurate.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Pinheads and Patriots!

It's been a while but here is the return of Pinheads and Patriots! Pinheads and Patriots will again be a weekly feature on the blog :)

The very beautiful and talented Elin Woods recently left her husband golf superstar Tiger Woods after it was reported Mr. Woods had been cheating on her with multiple women, I think the count is now at six. It takes a strong woman to do that, especially someone married to such a high profile guy. It was reported Mr. Woods was offering Elin, 60 million dollars for her to stand by his side and she choose morals over money, Elin who is a success in her own right did the right thing and is a patriot.

On the pinhead front Rich Cahill, is at it again, critisizing the Mayor and the City Council on the recently past budget but offering no viable solutions to make things better. Sure we can talk about cutting taxes, doing away with the homestead/non-homestead tax rate all while increasing the work force but how do you do that Mr. Cahill? How can you be against layoffs but still expect a tax decrease? I am not advocating for layoffs or returning to a flat tax rate, simply pointing out the hypocracy of Richard Cahill. You can't have both Mr.Cahill.

Surly we have a mayor that leaves a lot to be desired but to his credit he has made real reform and his efforts to increase the city reserves to enable us to borrow at a lower rate, will help us in the big financial picture. Also cutting out wasteful spending like the 50k line items for the fourth of July celebration and having the businesses step up and pay for it also is commendable. Cahill's attacks on the Mayor and city council are ridiculous and he of course is a pinhead!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Hein's Budget Approved!!!!

The Mike Hein budget was approved tonight, the budget modifications made by the vindictive Ways and Means committee all failed.

Pretty much the reader digest version of tonight's events was this, the GOP wanted to get rid of a position in the Executive's administration and the Dem's refused to cut the position. The GOP in retaliation rejected the Dems proposed cuts to the budget and adopted Hein's budget in it's entirety.

Kind of ironic...no?

It will be so interesting to see how the new legislature works with Mike Hein because it's clear that the guys in there now have no clue! We're talking about both the Dems and the Republicans.

I'm glad Mike Hein's budget was passed, some of the cuts that came out of the ways and means committee were scary, like 90k out of the Comptroller's budget, basically handicapping Comptroller Auerbach from doing his job in what is clearly an underfunded department to begin with.

Here you have a legislature that is trying to undercut it's own Democrat Comptroller..it's sick, some Dem legislators that will remain nameless apparently have woken up and realized that they don't have power anymore and as they say misery loves company.

So I hate to say it but Kudos to a dysfunctional legislature that got it right by default this time!

Mike Hein and Elliott Auerbach continue to get it right all the time and lead by example for the people of Ulster County. While the 33 legislators just squabble and play politics like kids in a sand box. They need to all wise up and move out of the way and let team Hein/Auerbach do the job that the majority of Ulster County elected them to do.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Bruno Found Guilty

A jury in Albany, N.Y., has convicted former state Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno of committing two felony crimes while in office.

The complicated verdict, delivered Dec. 7 at 4:17 p.m., also acquits Bruno of five other accusations of mail and wire fraud. On an additional count, the jury remained deadlocked and could not reach unanimous agreement.

Bruno, 80, faces a maximum $250,000 fine and up to 20 years in prison for each count he was convicted on.

Sentencing has been set for March 31, 2010.

Bruno’s attorneys are preparing an appeal, which would delay the start of any sentence for months and months. Bruno’s attorneys have 36 days to appeal.

The verdict ended the first round of the high-profile criminal trial of Bruno. The 12-person jury, made of seven women and five men, deliberated for almost seven full days before delivering their verdict.

Federal prosecutors accused Bruno, an iconic politician from Brunswick, of intentionally and illegally covering up his outside business consulting activities while in office. Federal prosecutors say Bruno devised and carried out a scheme to hide his business dealings—which often included people or companies who had business before the state—by withholding information on annual disclosure reports that legislators must file with the state.

Bruno made $3.2 million through his consulting work over a 12-year period.

“We established at this trial that Bruno exploited his office by concealing the nature and source of substantial payments that he received from parties that benefited from his official actions and the resulting conflicts of interest,” said acting U.S. Attorney Andrew Baxter, who runs the Albany division of the U.S. Attorney’s office.

By law, state legislators are part-time workers, enabling them to hold outside employment if they want.

Bruno has consistently maintained his innocence, saying he broke no laws. He did not testify at his trial.

“It goes without saying I’m very, very disappointed with the verdict I just heard,” Bruno said outside U.S. District Court in downtown Albany, clearly stung by the jury’s decision.

“The legal process is going to continue, and in my mind and in my heart, it’s not over until it’s over—and it’s far from over,” Bruno added, before stepping into a vehicle driven by Kay Stafford, who is Bruno’s boss at CMA Consulting Services in Latham.

Three years ago, Bruno confirmed an ongoing FBI investigation into his outside business activities. He retired from the Senate in June 2008. He was indicted in January 2009.

Bruno was found guilty on a count of fraud involving 11 mailings of checks in 2004, sent by companies connected with Loudonville businessman Jared Abbruzzese to Bruno’s firm, Capital Business Consultants.

Prosecutors said Bruno performed little to no work for the money, meaning that the payments should have been reported as gifts on Bruno’s annual financial disclosure reports.

Bruno was also found guilty on a count of fraud involving a racehorse partnership with Abbruzzese. It included Abbruzzese paying Bruno $80,000 for what prosecutors described as a nearly worthless racehorse; Abbruzzese testified he bought the horse for that price to compensate Bruno for money he was supposed to get in a consulting contract with one of his companies.

Still, the jury acquitted Bruno of two other counts involving work allegedly performed for other businesses Abbruzzese was connected with.

In all, Abbruzzese paid Bruno $440,000 from 2004-06 for work allegedly performed for at least four companies. Earlier in the decade, Bruno steered $500,000 of state grants to Troy firm Evident Technologies Inc., which Abbruzzese financed and chaired.

The jury also acquitted Bruno of any counts connected with McGinn Smith & Co Inc., an Albany brokerage firm that employed Bruno part-time from 1994-2006.