Monday, April 30, 2012

Bernardo Attacks Out of Line

The recent attacks on Chairwoman Bernardo are so ridiculous that you have to wonder what peoples real motives are. First things first, I had to laugh when I read comments from Legislator Bob Aileo, this guy may be a senior legislator but he does not put in nearly the hours that Terry Bernardo puts in or his opponent Walter Frey used to put in when he was a legislator, Aileo proves elections sometimes can be popularity contests. And  no offense, Bob Ailio does not have the credibility to attack anyone let alone Chairwoman Bernardo; there are members of the public that have been to more legislative meetings than sitting Legislator Bob Ailio.

Putting all that aside, the firing of a legislative clerk and the hiring of a payroll director, all can be justified and fingers can be pointed about how previous administrations have done the same thing but it's bigger than that. Terry Bernardo is a real business person and unlike many politicos, she has a real set of core values and principals that she believes in. I say that with all sincerity, I know her well and I'm speaking from my heart, she is one the nicest, most competent and dedicated person I have ever met in local politics.

 Dave Donaldson is also a friend and fellow Democrat but he is another one whose comments I took acceptation with, here is an excerpt from the Freeman:

During his tenures Chairman Donaldson said, he fired only one county employee, Fawn Tantillo, a former county lawmaker who had resigned from the Legislature and was almost immediately appointed by then-Chairman Richard Gerentine, a Republican, to a position in county government. Tantillo is now Bernardo’s confidential secretary.

Donaldson said hiring and firing in the legislative offices was then a function of either the full Legislature or the Legislature’s clerk. 

That may be technically true but lets not kid ourselves that's not what happened, Dave Donaldson was calling the shots when he was the Chairman and so were all the previous Chairs before him (Don't forget when Donaldson was Chair, he was the CE0 of Ulster County, this was before the Executive form of government took place. ) Donaldson's comments are unfair and not an example of leadership.

When in your in a leadership position, especially the Chair of the legislature, you can never please everyone, there are 22 other members from all over the county, each that have different issues and constituent needs that need to be addressed. Disagreements come with the territory; You earn political capital, in order to spend it, to achieve big things. 

 Terry has every right to run her office in the best way she sees possible for the people of Ulster County, because at the end of the day, she is the one that is accountable if she does not achieve the ambitious legislative agenda that she has set forth. Terry accepts that responsibility, she deserves a chance to do her job. Not to be taken out for a walk every single week by her colleagues in the newspaper to score cheap political points.

My advise to Chairwoman Bernardo:  fight back.  You're Chair of the freaking legislature, take advantage of it, use your position as a bully pulpit, embarrass these legislators into doing the right thing, point out their not let them take advantage of you.   Also work with the County Executive Mike Hein, he too is top notch and believes in doing the best thing for the people of this county.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Respectfully Disagree

The Freeman put out an editorial today that I respectfully have a difference of opinion on. The editorial pretty much says that Mayor Gallo was unfairly picking on Hoffay's  speech for illegitimate reasons. Their point is this, why would the Mayor attack a speech that as Alderman Senor put it "something safe, that you can't get in trouble for".  After all Hoffay is talking about ethics, and open communication, but what he is not talking about is anything of substance which is what I think aggravated Hiz Honor.

We have seen the first four months of Gallo's administration, what we have is a Mayor that is passionate about making change in government and not afraid to ruffle some feathers to get things done. The public is behind Gallo, there is no question about that, just go on the streets and ask. They welcome change, they welcome results. What they don't welcome is more of the same. They don't want more committees and studies and great speeches that are all fluff, they want what Mayor Gallo is giving them: RESULTS.

Mayor Gallo is also correct to question the voodoo economics of using 1 million dollars of the fund balance money to balance the budget last year while the current council was up for reelection. That is something you can't do every year,  and it leaves Mayor Gallo with a one million dollar hole this budget cycle. Mayor Gallo will have to be the adult and make tough decisions. In short, the previous council had a party and Mayor Gallo is stuck with the hangover. Look in New Jersey, where Gov. Corzine used 1 billion dollars in stimulus money to put off raising Jersey transit, well, he was in an election used the entire stimulus in one year, even after being advised by President Obama not to, and now the new Governor has a huge mess to deal with...

Mayor Gallo has a right to be passionate and a right to be inpatient,  his mood represents the mood of most Kingstonians that have been patient for far too long and have sat year after year listening to city leaders give them speeches and make promises that they can't or wont deliver on. It's Enough! 


Wednesday, April 04, 2012

My Two Cents: Christie for GOP Veep

Now that Mitt Romney has wrapped up the Republican nomination for President the question is who will he choose for Vice President? Rick Santurum and Gingrich have no shot, actually Ron Paul has the best chance of being picked of the candidates remaining, which is great for Democrats.

If Mitt Romney wants to win, he needs to use his persuade Gov. Christie to join the ticket. The NJ Gov. is highly electable and has a high level of credibility and likeability that Romney lacks...

I'm voting for Obama no matter what but Gov. Christie on ticket would present a competitive race.