Friday, December 18, 2009

Enveloped

Only in the Spa City could the throwing of an envelope make headlines. In most municipalities, such an occurrence would be worth a laugh in at the water cooler; maybe some playful ribbing between co-workers.

Yet with the vitriol pumping through City Hall these days, the simple act of the city attorney chucking an envelope at the Public Works commissioner seems to have stirred the fetid pot of politics, leading some more rational thinkers to wonder whether a slow gas leak on Lake Avenue has diminished the thought processes in the seat of government enough that the common municipal worker has reverted to a kindergarten level of intellect.

The Daily Gazette chronicles the childish exchange between Joe Scala and Skip Scirocco in an article that really exemplifies why the city is in such dire straits. Fortunately for the city and its self-respecting residents, the article was relegated to the back section, allowing both to save a bit of face in what is the latest in a series of poor discord among government officials.

As the story goes, Scirocco showed up at the city attorney’s office shortly before the close of business Wednesday and dumped off the envelop containing 28 letters to be distributed to the various DPW employees being laid off. Scala promptly sent them back to the commissioner with a note saying that it wasn’t his job to distribute the letters. Scirocco, incensed by the refusal, promptly returned the envelope, claiming he figured it was a “human resources issue” that should be handled by the attorney, who works as part of the mayor’s office.

The equally incensed Scala followed Scirocco out of the office and then chucked the letters in his direction, striking him in the “back, neck and head,” according to the Gazette article. The two men then “exchanged words” and the whole incident somehow made its way into the news.

Now at this point, it should be noted that there are no mysteries over who is getting laid off in City Hall. This message has been made abundantly clear to all those involved. The letter is a mere legal formality that could have been tasked to just about anyone. Hell, the letters probably could have been included in each worker’s paycheck this week, absolving any need to throw them at anyone.

Not in Saratoga. Here, everything must be a fucking three-ring political circus; every word a scandal, every gesture, an ordeal; and now every envelop-chuck, a news story. Sadly, the chuck-heard-around-the-region is a news story, because it exemplifies the fetid state of local politics and personifies the type of thinking that dragged the city into financial ruin.

There is an ever-increasing willingness to pass the buck, if not to the other political party or administration, then to whoever seems to be conveniently located. In other words, it’s easier to chuck your problems onto someone else’s desk –or someone else’s head – instead of dealing with them and moving on.

Ironically, this is precisely the thinking that led to these employees getting laid off in the first place. None of this would have happened had the City Council spent within its means many moons ago. Instead, they chose to spend the windfall of VLT funding at the peak of the city’s modern golden age and push off any sort of fiscal responsibility onto the next administration.

Hopefully, these are things that dawn upon Scirocco and Scala as they open up the B-section of the Gazette Friday. Maybe it’s time to grow up and take responsibility, rather than acting like petulant children fighting over who has to wash the evening dishes.

111 Comments:

Anonymous DPW Public Relations said...

By Tatiana Zarnowski
Gazette Reporter
Scirocco alleges being hit with papers by Scala

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Impending layoffs of more than 40 city employees have shortened tempers in City Hall, resulting in an incident Wednesday afternoon in which one city official alleges he was hit in the back of the head with the layoff notices for his department.

Commissioner of Public Works Anthony “Skip” Scirocco said Thursday that City Attorney Joseph Scala flung a large envelope full of letters to 28 soon-to-be terminated employees at him in City Hall, hitting him in the back, neck and head.

The incident happened around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday at the top of the stairs outside the mayor’s office as Scirocco walked away from Scala after disagreeing with the city attorney over who should deliver the layoff letters.

Scala said he didn’t mean to hit Scirocco with the papers but rather to throw the envelope at the commissioner’s feet so he would pick it up. Scala apologized immediately afterward.

The affected employees already knew they were going to be laid off, but the letters are the official notification.

Scirocco said Thursday he didn’t feel comfortable handing out the letters because employees had legal questions that he couldn’t answer.

“I felt that this was a human resources issue,” Scirocco said. “He’s the acting human resource person for the city.

“I didn’t know what their rights were as far as the layoffs were concerned,” he said.

Scala said he has been serving “in a limited and interim capacity only” to help with legal issues related to personnel matters since the departure several months ago of Marcy Brydges.

He said there is no legal issue with distributing the letters.

“No one elected me to any office,” he said in a statement. “Commissioner Scirocco was elected to perform the duties of his office and ... tried to pass those duties off on me.”

Scala characterized Scirocco as refusing to talk about the issue when he returned the envelope, “calling over his shoulder as he left the office” and then “running away.”

Scala pursued Scirocco into the hallway to give the envelope back to him.

The two men exchanged words after the incident.

The hallway incident occurred after a round of “hot potato” with the layoff notices:

Scirocco said he delivered them to Scala’s secretary, Nancy Woodworth, at 4:15 p.m., and Woodworth brought them back down shortly afterward with a message from Scala that it was Scirocco’s responsibility.

Then Scirocco brought the envelope back upstairs, thrust it at Scala and left.

On Thursday, Scirocco got the letters back and started giving them to employees, a process that took two hours for four employees so far.

Scala said he understands why the issue is fraught with emotion.

“Many years ago, I was actually involved in a corporate downsizing at this time of year, so I have some idea of what an awful experience this is, especially during the holidays.”

10:40 AM  
Anonymous I already started drinking to celebrate Goodbye Ron Kim Day in Saratoga! said...

This City Hall incident follows in the very week of when our sitting Kommisar , the Grand Emperor Ronald Kim, supposedly went on a verbal and threatening tirade directed to a critic.

If we can believe the victim's own account of the happening, he was joined in that fray by Boy Prince Connolly, the defeated candidate for DPS commissioner, letting loose with his own profanity filled assault against the same individual. He must have gone to the Kim School of Public Relations.

Word is that a complaint was filed? Why is that not front page news? Is the PD denying it? Do we have a cover up? Where's the press?

Now we have this exchange at city Hall? What is not being reported is that the very same Ronald Kim threw himself into the mix here too, egging on one of the two.

Notice a trend here? Me too it's Ron Kim. This guy is showing signs of losing it. He just can't deal with the rejection by the city voters, I guess. I'm shcoked he didn't demand a recount. Someone watch this man. Very closely. Before an innocent bystander is injured.

Well, Connolly is already a non entity. Kim will be out of the way come Jan 1. All we have left is to figure out a way to unload that giant boil named Skippy.

Unitl then, I would recommend avoiding any trips to city hall in the near future. Your life is at risk.

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe someone should FOIL the camera footage that is in City Hall...

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Ghost(s) of past commissioners says:

Joe Scala apparently WAS doing his job. He is a professional and he apologized, like a pro, and it's over. It was an accident that wouldn't have happened if Skip just did what he was expected to do.

Skip needs to get out there among the troops and get a handle on the job that he was elected (twice) to do. It's a tough job, and it takes a tough guy to do it right.

1:50 PM  
Anonymous Fergal Scabill said...

Let's face it! All parties involved here are weasels in their own right. Skippy boy is a weasel. Scala, a weasel. Johnson is the biggest weasel! Change this friggin' form of government before it is too late! This form we have now is disfunctional and needs to be kicked to the curb.
We need tough people to make tough decisions and are as far from that as we have ever been. The general public can not allow blowhards like Gordon Boyd, Hank Kuczynski,Karen Klotz and Remega Foy to con them into believing this 5 headed monster we call a government is worth spit. The time is now to kick the tires on real change. Government reform. This is not the change that the Ron Kim's of the world are talking about either. No DFC agendas! Just a forward move to the future. For the good of all saratogians.

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO,
You couldn't have hit the proverbial "nail on the head" with this pathetic display of politics & responsibility.

The even funnier aspect of this story? It was ALL caught on video tape... Too bad there's no audio to accompany the "near lethal paper cut" Skippy almost suffered.

Not that it is news worthy (or even noteworthy), but comical, nonetheless. Seeing adults of "stature" (tongue in cheek) acting worse than a couple of prepubescent thugs.... I can't wait to see this on youtube!

2:40 PM  
Anonymous Skippy killed my dog! said...

Look at the photo.

The DPW is the First Line of Defense?

WTF?

A homeland security reference?

Are they really that stupid? Or they just think we are?

3:46 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

IF ONLY the "story" could remain childish and embarrassing. But as long as bitterness reigns supreme on City Hall's second floor, we're seeing more madness from vindictive Commissioner Kim.

From the Saratoga blog by Dennis Yusko of the Times Union--

"Kim, who was defeated by Mayor Scott Johnson in November, called on Scala to resign."

http://blog.timesunion.com/saratogaseen/no-one-wants-to-be-the-grinch/3346/

I shared a fine restaurant with the entire Kim family Thursday evening. Never in my life have I failed to thank a defeated office holder for their service. Never.

But something stopped me last night. There comes a time when moral bankruptcy brings disgrace to the entire community. Ron "Parting Shots" Kim is enough to make you lose your appetite.

Maybe I'll just send a letter.

-Kyle York
SaraTantrum Springs

4:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Scala is the City Attorney. Scirocco is the Public Works Commissioner and a member of the City Council. Under any rational interpretation, that means Scirocco works for the voters and Scala works for Scirocco.

It has never been acceptable for a subordinate to throw a pack of papers in his superior's face. Neither has it ever been acceptable for an attorney to toss papers into the face of his client. In fact, it's never been acceptable for a lawyer to act like a little baby.

It's time for Scala to resign as City Attorney. If he doesn't, it's time for Mayor Johnson to fire him. No matter what, it's time for the courts to take away Scala's license to practice law. Not only is he unqualified to be City Attorney, he's obviously unqualified to be an attorney at all.

Disgraceful.

5:53 PM  
Blogger Ben lives on said...

Excellent take on this, you have a away with words I could never hope to achieve but mark my words Kim will get his nose into this.You remember him the chief protocol office at the Library.The stickler for civility and decorum. Our Chief Law enforcement office the man making promotional decisions in Public Safety that will effect this City for twenty years.Yep that asshole.

7:00 PM  
Anonymous Dick Brooks said...

Skippy is a pussy. He doesn't have the balls to face his men. He always wants someone to do his dirty work for him.Kim still pulls his strings if Kim says press charge's I'll press charges.

7:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is pathetic. You hit the head with the mail Ho, by stating that conservative actions "many moons ago" could have provided this City with fewer traumas today. Instead of plowing ahead with unsecured funding, those administrators responsible for padding their department budget with staff and wasting the community's time on demands in the shadow of the well-forecast economic storm should understand that the crows have come home to roost. Furthermore, the demanding entitlement mentality pervasive by those, “doing time” is about as welcome right now as the guano from those birds.

It’s time for the ghosts of Christmas past to move on (hopefully with some dignity intact) and go gently into that good night.

3:36 AM  
Anonymous Milhouse said...

Sounds like two children in the sandbox. The idea of furthering this petty crap by pressing charges of some sort is ridiculous. They've wasted enough of OUR time with this already.

Here's what I think needs to be done:

Skippy needs to hand out the letters. It's his job.

If people have questions Skippy can't answer, he should refer them to Scala. It's Scala's job to answer them.

Johnson needs to fill the HR job. Scala clearly is not the guy for it.

We need to junk this antiquated stupid political system that puts elected officials in the position of managing people. We need career professionals doing that work. Skippy knows as much about managing people as Ron Kim knows about policework and fighting fires.

5:55 AM  
Blogger save the victoria pool society said...

"dyfunction junction" in the the hallowed halls of our fair city anyone?

6:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A lawyer acting like a spoiled child in City Hall - not in Saratoga!

6:54 AM  
Anonymous Certainly Not Tom McTygue said...

To the Irish fiddle player Fergal Scabill and 5:55am

You make the most sense here. Charter Change! The Buck here!

7:48 AM  
Blogger demroc said...

actually joe scala is the acting human resources guy, and the one who should've been handing out the letters.

but of course you need to overlook that fact, as well as some others. this was an envelope containing 28 envelopes, not a single piece of paper. given the sensitive pony tail act, i've seen some of the bloggers around here wear, regarding the comments on the internet, the comments saying this is no big deal somehow defies a lot of your logic.

for example, i've seen plenty of people get upset over simple comments on this and other blogs. john tighe has never been hit in the head with a stack of papers, yet, he still feels the need to go out and scorch these people on the internet. god only knows what he'd do if ron kim had actually done something to him, like say, hit him in the head with a stack of papers. the poor pussy can't even take getting yelled at by the guy.
kyle york is another prime example, he went down and wanted to press charges against somebody in dpw, because they might of made a threat. get actual violence and you'd think you'd get some kind of rebuke from him on this. you'd think he'd stand up to his principles and demand that this shit stop, that is unless it's from people that he supports. instead he finds a way to trash kim, when it isn't even on topic. do we actually think that the possible threat is worse than an actual physical attack?

According to the city's Policy and Personnel Manual, it is the city's human resource administrator's job to create termination letters, provide them to departing employees, conduct exit interviews and explain employee benefits.

But the city is enacting its cuts without a human resource administrator. Marcy Brydges resigned months ago, and Johnson had asked Scala to assume human resource and personnel duties. The City Charter mandates having a human resource director.

The same city manual also states that workplace harassment/violence shall be reported to the human resource director or a department head, both of whom were involved in Wednesday's tiff. "Conduct that constitutes violence will not be tolerated from any city employee," the manual states.
so the question is, why is it ok for the mayor office to not do their work? why is it ok for a subordinant to act this way when it was pointed out to them? is it because this is just a continuation of the mayor's nastiness in his department, and is that what makes it ok to aholes like york?


Read more: http://www.timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=879938&category=SARATOGA#ixzz0aAjJcbSv

1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only people who really lose out in all of this are the people who are the recipients of the "pink slips." Yes, they all "know" it's going to happen, but the office of the mayor and finance have yet to guide them on any of the process or answer any of their questions.
You all like to blame Ron Kim and Scirocco, but those two departments are where the layoffs are at - and no one in the office of the commissioner or mayor will return a call to answer any questions these two have, from their employees, about these layoffs. Questions that have been posed by the affected employees are not being answered because Ivins and Johnson refuse to work with, or even talk to, Skip and Ron. So not only are these employees being layed off, but all of their questions, concerns, and requests for guidance through all of this process is being ignored by the only people who can answer them - the mayor's office and finance office. That's the real disgrace.

3:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen horatio!

But lets ask this, if a clerk in Public Safety threw an envelop at the mayor would that person be fired? Probably, Why not Mr. Scala?

Your analysis of poor fiscal decisions by both parties and the dysfuntion of the current system is right on.

Home Depot- Wilton gets those taxes
County sales tax formula? Withdrawing cost the city how much?
No admission tax?
Relying on VLT monies?
No SPAC surcharges?
No Skidmore surcharge?
How much did we spend on the whole saratoga lake water source question?
ENCON fines were what again?
The steps for City Hall cost how much?
Hundreds of condos built while Anderson property and Beaver Pond housing all stay off the tax rolls.
Paying down the surplus for a 0% tax increase in 2008.
Where is the $2/beer tax on the drunken hordes?

Laying off cops and firemen, along with people who plow the snow and shovel the sidewalks.

Now the City Attorney is throwing envelops at one of the commissioners.

No wonder the rest of the capital region is laughing at us. We have ten new hotels in five years, a doubling of City Center space, NYRA expanding, RACINO, the only downtown worth a shit in the capital region, the only city in upstate NY growing population- and we're laying people off and in a fiscal tailspin.

What a joke.

4:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr York wants to be so involved with city politics maybe he should give all the employees their layoff letters

6:11 PM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

demroc,

"this was an envelope containing 28 envelopes, not a single piece of paper"

And your point? Come on. It's not like he got nailed with a five-pound rock. You sound as pathetic as the display in City Hall. There were two ways to distribute the letters, the right way and the wrong way. Both involved chose the wrong way. And two wrongs don't make a right.

8:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A leader makes sure their people get treated fairly and with dignity at all times.
The DPW leadership failed to do this by allowing office politics into the process by not working with employee relations to ensure the terms of the charter were met.

5:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let’s hear it now from the Peanut Gallery, you know those wankers who spend the other part of their days complaining that the government is broken. Let’s take a little closer look at your condition Bunky.

1. If we wanted to look at all those hirings to determine how wise they were the first place, we’d be questioning the authority of those in charge, be it an elected Department Manager or an omnipotent Administrator, remembering that we can only have a real direct chance to “throw the bum out” in the former.

2. While throwing spitballs at ‘your’ opposition, take a good look at the shenanigans of those you protect, partly through your associations and sometimes unfortunately through like minded myopic convictions.

3. Do we need an objective efficiency expert to evaluate municipal growth and size and management methodologies across all of our city departments?

4. Do we really feel connected to a City Hall whose electronic reception is a recording of “I’m away from my desk…” or worse, from an Administrator’s personal secretary who informs you that his/her highness doesn’t take appointments?

5. Do we need to hire consultants off the dole to do the rudimentary functions required of government because many in our workplace won’t get the jobs done in a timely or effective manner or have little incentive to “get it done”?

6. Do we need to publicly debate (beyond this election year) the dated concept of job security that often rewards “time in service” as an entitlement program -- with little attention given to performance, coupled with unyielding irresponsible demands?

7. Do we need to question the age-old idea that this city must grow and grow in order to survive (primarily to support its desired and demanded costly municipal services), eventually driving people away; while at the same time some would be clambering for affordability to provide housing for those who are then supposed to provide services. Our 'City in the Country' was truly that 100 years ago, but today we have to protect most, if not all of our surviving city openspace from becoming part of more bad land use.

Regarding ‘Enveloped’, the Commissioner should have simply given out the notices without attachments (stuff happens) and the City Attorney should question his sanity in his regrettably unprofessional, unsportsmanlike and immature (time-out) moment. As far as providing the media with more talks of frivolous lawsuits, it's time to call it a day and walk the dog; the Failure-o-Meter has been retired.

5:37 AM  
Blogger demroc said...

my point douchebag is it was heavier than what your claiming. see, you're such a pussy, you have to jump on someones ass because they disagree with you. i'm sure you'd be saying a lot worse if you're ass was hit in the head with one paper, let alone a couple of pounds of mail. you'd be crying just like tighe is crying about getting yelled at. christ you're crying because it's even a story. point proven thanks idiot.

7:02 AM  
Blogger demroc said...

stupid bastard, actually one chose the right way, one chose to not do his job and then threw papers at his boss. you're such a pathetic shill, no wonder tighe kisses your ass.

7:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The terms of the contracts are different when you are fired, or let go. Do I get any vacation time, or do I lose it, ect. The City has lost their HR person this summer and Joe Scala is the acting HR. and he works for all of the Dept. There are also Civil Service rules, Union Laws, and Human rights laws. I am sure that most Commissioners are not quailified to answers thosr questions. Now the City has a zero tolance to violence in the work place, which Joe Scala is part of. The question is, does Joe or anyone else has the right to do violence on another person. I have heard that Joe has thrown things at another person in City Hall. Can we afford to have it happen again.

7:45 AM  
Blogger The Fat Lady Sings said...

This whole incident is just a tip of the iceberg of total lack of respect in city hall. This is more like a reality show ratings grabber than your government at work. No matter what, one employee hitting another in the private sector would be grounds for immediate dismissal. The standards of city hall I guess are a lot lower than what the real world is about.

8:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welcome to OZ, gentlemen.

This city is led by a handful of little men with pathetically small assets.

Johnson, Skippy & the like make the mayoral staff of Emerald City look delightful in comparison.

Yes. Welcome to OZ, gentlemen.

"We represent the Lollipop Gin, the Lollipop Gin, the Lollipop Gin....."

9:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:37
Right on with #4.

"I'm away from my desk" was the worst thing a former mayor did to the phone system at City Hall -- where an operator may or may not answer the phone.
"Our menu has changed" should be replaced with "hey, thanks for calling, we may or may not pick up the phone, and we may or may not call you back".

No accountability by "employees" results in the employees being in charge, while being paid by tax dollars, and we idiots have been snookered into believing them.

9:35 AM  
Blogger Ben lives on said...

Demroc if you are worried the Commissioner Sirroco suffered a brain injury after a savage attack from a manila envelope I would suggest he have a thorough CAT scan but I'm afraid all that will confirm, what many of us have know for years that there is a considerable amount of empty space in Skippy's cranial cavity.

As far as my own case goes if the Chief Law enforcement officer of a city with the entire Police department at his bidding threatens someone I consider that a tangible threat. But in the end the arbitrator of such things are not you or me or the police but a Judge in a court of law and although I find the mechanics of the system painfully slow I am usually pleased with the outcome

12:06 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

demwreck-

Best cut back on Lewie Juice and return to reliable hormone replacement therapy. Hot flashes won't exactly help defend against a libel action.

I never "went down and wanted to press charges against somebody in dpw, because they might of made a threat." That's FACT.

The TOPIC here is envelopes and how Ron Kim turned them from Tragicomedy to TrailerTrash. The TOPIC here is incivility and Kim wrote the book. By all accounts, he had zero to do with the deadly paper passing... yet he alone demands retribution and a rolling head.

Your ramblings are always amusing. Stick with your DFC love letters. It's funny stuff. Libel isn't.

-Kyle York
Truth Matters

1:36 PM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

demroc,

Please, oh wise one, explain where I described the weight of the envelope. Go for it. You won't, because I never did. Not only did I not describe the envelope's dimensions, I didn't allude to its weight in any way shape or form. In fact, I would attest the picture of large, stuffed manila envelopes at the top of the post would allude quite the opposite.
Then there is this passage, which you clearly didn't read: "As the story goes, Scirocco showed up at the city attorney’s office shortly before the close of business Wednesday and dumped off the envelop containing 28 letters to be distributed to the various DPW employees being laid off."

Yeah. I described it as feather weight, eh?

That is unless, of course, you happen to have a 'thing' for Skip Scirocco, and want to parlay this whole bullshit incident into a gigantic scandal. As I always tell you, I don't have a horse in this race, and I never did. The fact that you now think I'm a shill for John Tighe and Kyle York is all the more amusing to me. However, it does suggest something that I have known for a long time: You DO have a stake in this game.

I can remember a time when you actually posted in a civil fashion here. Now you just spit ridiculous vitriol and lack any sort of vocabulary to write it with out resorting to words such as "pussy" or "douchebag" or whatever derogatory term may float across that fetid cesspool you call a brain. Funny thing is, you didn't think I was so bad until I started criticizing Val Keehn.

Hmmm...

Nevertheless, I reiterate my statement. You're just as pathetic as these two clowns now slugging it out in the press. Back to the pictures for a second, the bottom one is for you.

6:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO
That photo of the envelopes.....in the background I can see a light bulb without a shade.......it could start a fire....and depending on whether the firemen know you and where you live, there could be a s-l-o-w r-e-s-p-o-n-s-e, know what I mean?

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You Betor watch out,
You Betor not cry,
You Betor not pout,
I'm telling you why........

Come the New Year, the rules will change at the SSFD. (Did you think I was going to say "Santa Claus is coming to town?)

With a new chief, and a new asst.chief, and influence from the rabble-rouser Capt.Jack (the closer of station #2) there will be a new sheriff in town.

So you Betor watch out !!

It might not be the very first fire, maybe not even the second, but you can bet it is coming, and soon.

So you Betor watch out !!

Yes, I'm being careful not to say what I actually think is going to happen..but I hope and pray that cool heads prevail. If it happens on Capt Jack's shift, watch out.

Let's hope his guys don't follow his orders.

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Gamecock said...

Kyle York is a mook who sucks egg nog. You Ho-town are still a one sided clown who thinks anyone who doesn't agree is trash. It is time for you to realize that just because someone disagrees with you or Tighe, are not automatically aligned with Keehn or the DFC. Maybe some of us are just sick of the lies that are spread here and that other trash of Tighe.

1:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would agree with a previous post that this "throwing" of the materials in a work environment would not be tolerated anywhere. One might expect it from someone who was actually laid off and not the person (Joe Scala) selected to implement a layoff. Joe Scala is our city attorney who is "pinch hitting" for the HR position. The HR postion should have been filled when the previous employee left. We have over 300 full time employees with 6 or 7 labor contracts. A full time HR professional is essential. All the time...not a semi appointed postion some of the time.
Mr Scala should be terminated for what clearly is a legal matter and even more for a violation of professionalism and insubordination.
(The hallway in city hall where the incident occured has a camera running and the incident is captured on tape.)
Where do you draw the line?

At great expense to the taxpayer...All city hall employees have had workplace violence training this year and this is an example of the types of issues covered during the training. Are the rules different for those who wear a tie to work?
Private sector employers have the same standards to live by. This would have been handeled very swiftly and correctly.
All kidding aside...no employer, public or private can legally allow their employees to do this.
The Times Union article clearly pointed to the city's handbook and it states that the HR person has responsibilities in preparing and deliverying layoff programs. Mr. Scala is paid quite well by the taxpayer to complete all of his duties that are assigned to him...not just the ones he wants to do. He is at fault and there should be action.

I am sure this is the last thing that Mr Scirocco wants to do, but he must follow through and ask the city council to terminate Joe Scala.

We do not need anymore law suits.

2:59 PM  
Blogger demroc said...

hey, here's an idea, look in the thesaurus and come up with a different word for vitriol. the funniest thing is how you guys claim to be nice or something. that's such a crock of shit. i stopped posting civil because you guys don't make civil comments and really don't deserve the respect. you're opening statements says envelope. singular, only in saratoga can an ENVELOPE make headlines. no, of course you don't have a stake in it. you have more stake in it than a vanhelsing movie. and of course, there's tighe and york, right by your side. enjoy the vitriol. you seem to drink it up like a fine wine, but it's pretty obvious there isn't any room for much discussion, the three of you hate anyone that brought down tmac, and you work everyday against those. shill on boys.

5:52 PM  
Anonymous vitriol said said...

oh sorry,(sarcasm) those other 2 comments were meant for you personally, you posted them, so don't blame me. and my problem isn't that i love certain politicians, i'm just sick of your crass blog and the crap spewed by the other 2 clowns, to me that's far more pathetic. however, you aren't as bad as tighe and york in the latest bcs ranking. have a great vitriol of a day.

6:06 PM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

demroc,

You are a lazy fuck, I must admit. You can't open up a thesaurus to find another word for "pussy" or "douchebag" or...well, you get the point.

But why let these petty profanities bog our discourse down? We can do better, right? Let's try at least.

Thank you for pointing out my nearly omnipresent bias in using the word "envelope." I will point out that at least one daily newspaper picked up on my characterization of the namby-pamby envelope. The clearly-biased Times Union described it "an envelope of pink slips." Although, it should be noted they restrained their 'vitriol' for the fifth paragraph of their piece.

Definitely one-sided. You should write a letter to Rex Smith. Shills for McTygue, I bet. Call them on it. Maybe they'll make your 'BCS' rankings. Maybe right after USC.

On a more serious note, I do take pride in the recently disclosed fact that my 'crass blog' makes you sick. The thought of you spitting bile into your puffy squirrel cheeks leaves me atwitter with glee.

I'll keep writing. Thanks!

11:13 PM  
Blogger Ben lives on said...

Do you know what you've done. I hear they just added 500 names to their enemies list just to make sure they have you on it.9 days and counting till liberation.

6:27 AM  
Anonymous Hypnotize this said...

I hear Skippy is checking in at Four Winds today for post traumatic stress counseling.I hope the poor man can recover from this horrible attack.Last night I had nightmares of Manila colored men who were writing on me and then tried to shove my ass done a mail box.

6:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Horatio 11:13

Whoa Ho! Is that you? I’ve always enjoyed your well-conceived and written, mostly measured blog postings and usually civil responses because normally they do not sink to the level of the vile vitriol that can be found elsewhere. But then these are trying times and given the banter from all the usual suspects, I guess one’s patience can be tested.

Similarly, it has made me wonder what the Commissioner may have actually said or did prior to storming out of the City Attorney’s office? Was he counseled or instructed to return the envelope simply to provoke an exchange, or in these final few weeks of the year was this another unfortunate example of politics in the playpen? We will probably never know and those questions will probably never be asked of either gentleman.

For those who think that this action by the attorney rises to the level of resignation, don’t hold your breath. Should the Mayor comment on this? Should he appropriately scold the attorney for such conduct unbecoming a civil employee? Should the attorney apologize for this uncharacteristic behavior? I would say, probably. Better now that to have this collar hang around for another couple of years – like the now many infamous actions of our outgoing Commissioner. One thing we all know is that blogs take on a life of their own.

So for now, Happy Holidays, and looking forward to your New Year writings, while tolerating those addle-pated fops, who continually choose to languish within the genetic cesspools of their primeval language skills -- savagely writing comfortably from those odorous dung heaps they call their computer terminals.

6:42 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

6:42,

You're right. I don't know why I waste my time stooping to such a level. I've sparred too frequently with demroc, and I allow the poster to quickly draw the conversation into the sewer, much to my own chagrin.

Now, in an effort to elevate this discourse a bit, allow me to delve a little deeper into this envelope nonsense. First of all, I don't know how heavy these 28 'pink slips' are, but even if they were an ounce a piece(that's if they were written on parchment paper), I couldn't see the aggregate weight of the parcel being more than a couple of pounds. In as much, I don't see how such an action could possibly raise to the level of 'violence' as some state.

Simply put, this was a poor display by both sides and worthy of reprimand, certainly. Hell, I would even argue Scala should have a note placed in his file or on his record detailing the incident. Scirocco, unfortunately, is an elected official and not subject to any sort of warning system.

But to call for a guy's job after something like this is simply ludicrous. Some here have said this simple act would have prompted a termination in the private sector. Others have suggested Scala 'attacked one of his superiors.' Bullshit. Scala acted poorly toward a co-worker. His actions didn't rise to the level of violence, but he did show a degree of hostility somewhat akin to a shouting match.

Now, I really loathe to get into who's job it was to deliver the letters, since that argument really detracts from the whole point of this post, which is very straight forward: The city is in tough times and it's workers -elected officials included -need to buck up to get the job done.

Now there are plenty of other cogent arguments that can come of this fracas. The first being what does Joe Scala do in the attorney's office and is he really busy enough that he doesn't have time to deliver letters? Realize, Tony Izzo is getting paid to do the same job...Or why the letters weren't included with the paychecks? Hell, all the green sneakers out there would have been thrilled to save 28 envelopes(which I estimate would preserve at least one Adirondack sapling)...Or if the human resources position is one that can be lumped into another job detail...say...the deputy mayor's office...and if it can, why a resolution hasn't been passed directing as such? Or can the city's deputies, who have a supervisory role, serve as their respective department's human resources director?

But when we get into pissing matches about how fucking heavy the envelope was, or how hard it hit Scirocco or who's job it was to deliver them, we're really losing sight of the big picture, which is exactly why I lashed out at demroc, a poster who can always see through his omnipresent bias to call me biased, or a 'tmac' toady, or a John Tighe apologist, or any of the other meant-to-be-malicious derivatives that have graced these walls under that moniker.

Gamecock,

Do tell me about these 'lies.' Can you elaborate, or do you just want to toss out insults? Because I can do that all day. But as some other posters have recently suggested, it won't improve the level of our conversation.

Nevertheless, I do look forward to learning about my lies, almost as much as I yearn to hear from you again.

9:46 AM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

Gamecock-

Such BLASPHEMY will not stand! I do not now nor have I ever "sucked," slurped sipped or smoked any egg nog. Of greater relevance here, I have NEVER drank the local Kool-Aid.

As you savor your next sweetened sip, be VERY AFRAID of the ASSASSINS walking around town, the men and women of the nefarious "Postal Service"... each of them ARMED to the TEETH with giant sacks of deadly bright-colored Hallmark-caliber Weapons of Merry Destruction.

Duck DUCK Gamecock!!!...

-Kyle York
Nogless mook

10:32 AM  
Anonymous V-K Day is coming soon! said...

I'm buying the drinks to celebrate Kim's departure.

Who's joining me?

Any suggestions as to where?

11:40 AM  
Anonymous Gamecock said...

Ho,

I didn't directly mean you are spreading lies. It comes from many posters over the years that make things up and you post their comment. That's where the lies spread. Tighe being one of them along with Phil Diamond. Tighe's blog is is just trash from him to all that comment there. His entire blog is bogus.

2:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

we cannot afford any more lawsuits because that fool scala cannot win any. if he threw the slips at me he would have been eating the slips inside one by one

2:47 PM  
Anonymous welcome to the new world order. said...

Demroc is little more than a sophisticated rhetorician, inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity, and gifted with an egotistical imagination that can at all times command an interminable and inconsistent series of arguments to malign an opponent and to glorify himself. He reads Voltaire and Sartre while he rides in a City dump truck and see’s himself as a working man’s intellectual. His writing leave the impression of an army of pompous phrases moving over the landscape in search of an idea. No one will read his dribble but the hard core adherents of the DFC and those lost souls are beyond redemption anyway.

5:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous 2:47 PM: "if he threw the slips at me..."
You'd what ... file an anonymous complaint?

5:16 AM  
Anonymous Banned from the Saratogian said...

I hear everyone entering city hall will be searched for manila envelopes now.

5:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey AndyB if you served good food noone would complain about paying for parking on b'way, I'd do it in a sec for lilians, sperry's or OBI, but for steakums in ragu sauce i don't blame ya for bitchin about paid parking we don't like the menu.

4:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Andy, Why should we city tax payers supplement your broadway business while you live in Wilton.
Don't sing,bring it! Privatize this tough guy

4:47 PM  
Anonymous Gamecock said...

Newsflash! For The Retard Commenting on this blog. Brindisi's blows OBI,Sperry's and Lillians out of the water. Lillian's has sucked for years now. Sperry's hasn't been good since the brother Reg Qua sold it a few years back. OBI? Decent at times but has gone downhill.
Pennell's is still the best restaurant for the money in Saratoga and you don't have to pay to park.

4:02 AM  
Anonymous Tatiana Zarnowski said...

These raunchy, disgusting and hateful comments that people write against each other make me want to go jump off the 9P bridge to get away from it all. Not sure why I feel the need to read these blogs to stay on top of "news." It's not worth the depression it causes.

Maybe I'm naive (OK, I know I am), but why can't you all get along? You have so much in common, loving the city and all.

Happy holidays to everyone. Peace and joy to Saratoga Springs in the New Year, if you can.

My new year's resolution is to kick the habit of reading these damn comments.

7:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:31
4:47
4:02
What does Brindisi's haave to do with the envelope incident?
Am I missing something, or did you guys just take a left turn?

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never mentioned Brindisis,Gamecock ASSumed it was Brindisis

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

Tatiana-

You are not naive. You're one of our best reporter/writers because you have a passion and a respect for illuminating language. It's no mistake that this string began with your 20/20 clarity. I'm just sorry I'm too cheap to subscribe to your cyber-paper.

Thank you for every carefully-crafted word. And yes, Virginia, our City is more civil than our blogosphere. The spitballs mean little as long as you keep getting it write.

-Kyle York
End-of-the-Alphabet Fan Club

2:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saratoga is so full of itself that it's almost nice to hear the city officials here are as incompetent as in the rest of the state ... country. World.

10:13 PM  
Anonymous Sons of Vanguard said...

Tatiana

You can't stop...you just can't. Admit it!

My NY resolution is hoping a decent reporter emerges to uncover the links between the fascist wing of the city Dem party (aka the Keehniacs; aka DFC) and the NXIVM cult organization. And then has the guts to actually report it.

Know anyone....?

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

o you think that the people that are getting laid off are animals and that they shoulsn't have their questions answered. Do you think that it is fun to be laid off. We know that the Johnson, Ivens, and Frank are working with Tommy and Billy McTyuge, as if they haven't done enough to this City. Now it looks like Worth is working with them too. Foy and Rebis were with Worth while he was interveiwing for a Deputy. I never would have voted for them if I had known that, they are done as far as I am concerned.

12:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO,
Oh please!, challenge Ex-Com Kim's remarks.

He says we are in real danger, because of the Public Safety layoffs.

Is it true? Or should we panic?

Signed:
Concerned Senior Citizens
Handicapped Citizens
Firemen in Saratoga
Firemen in Wilton
Firemen in Milton
Firmen in Greenfield
Police Officers in Saratoga
Police Officers in Wilton
Police Officers in Milton
Firemen in Greenfield
Taxpayers in Saratoga
Ditto
Ditto
Ditto..............
Ditto....

3:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I understand that Rick Worth was interveiwing people for the Deputy's job that Miss Regina Foye and Lise Ribes were taking notes for Rick. I guess that that John Herrick has giving the reins of the Republcian Party to Tommy McTyuge. Wow.

5:23 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

We may be able to get Tatiana back as a visitor if we all demonstrate a wee bit of responsibility and pre-post spellcheck. With malice towards none and with charity for all, will all you wordsmiths PLEASE make a mental note that our Public Safety Commissioner-Elect is "Richard WIRTH," not Richard Worth.

-Kyle York
Happee Noo Yere!

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:23pm....GFYS,Herrick is in charge and skippy ain't,big skippy backed RON THE LOSER remember? Skippy knew money was tight a year and a half ago and did nothing about it,like eeverything else he does he thought it would go away... to bad for the men and women who are getting laid off,the fact is it could have and should have been prevented with proper management skills,the employees should have come first not two new trucks and overtime for certain union officials,you blame the council,why? SKIPPY IS TO BLAME,MANAGING WITH FEW IS HARD BUT NOT IMPOSSIBLE,for those of you who think it will get better soon,mmmmm...not on skippys'watch,no how no way,trains left.

5:23 AM  
Anonymous I Have Big Trucks said...

With Ronnie gone, who do I get to play footsies with under the council table?

8:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Herrick is in charge,yes he is. Skippy didn't back Ron. But he and Ron were Republican comm people back in the 90's. Ron did help him get elected Supervisor. Skip has not hired anyone since he has gotten elected. He has used money to pay for Tommy fines though.

4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:38 he hasn't hired anyone since he's been elected??mmmmmmmm I guess his son and a few relatives are not anyone....skippy did back ron kim against johnson that's a fact and so did his deputy pat design and his loud mouth wife,the fines were a result of disgrundled employees actions those too are facts,the csea is capable of almost anything when they need to get their man in,skippy can thank his union friends for those fines,looks like he paid them back with the layoffs....what did you expect,something different...oh REALLY!

4:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kyle York:

Don't worry about the correct spelling. It's DICKWORTH!

4:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all Skippy did support his team, though i don't think that they did him. Skippy has not hired any full time people since he has been elected. He has hired some part timers. One being his son, he has not hired any other family members, Oh his niece work at the Merry go round for 2 weeks, but that is part time. Sorry. Skippy did not have any thing to do with the layoffs, Ivens did the picking, and then let Skippy know about it. Pat and Bonnie can vote for any one they want, I think that there are some family problems there and that is a shame.

4:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Ivins does not pick who gets laid off in DPW,Skippys'uncontrolled spending decided that,I think it's about time skippy took responsibilty for what goes on in Public works....DON"T YOU>

3:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

since taking office he hired donna buckley and jay downning...remember two worthless positions.

8:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO
Did you notice that the Saratogian printed a quote about the fatal truck rollover on Rt. 9?
Lt.Rocco of the SSFD said that if the chemicals had leaked out, they could have polluted the Kaydeross Creek. As reported, the creek is about 1-1/2 miles away from the accident. Doesn't this statement indicate that the SSFD needs to be careful about what it feeds to the press. The newspaper didn't question the quote, but some readers did.

10:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doesn't raising the price of landfill bags from $3 to $4 by scirroco require city action?

11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, remember Jay, he worked for a week before going back to the park. So you mean you're pissing and moaning about one position, and that was a position that was already there. It was occupied by Dicky Bendon. You know, the guy who claimed that he worked a 25 hour day. After all he worked through lunch. Things were so much better than.

2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Donna Buckley came from Accounts Dept and Lisa left DPW and went to Accounts. Jay Dowing yes he did hire, he worked for 6 months, but that was Skips hire. Now all you have to do is foil DPW and you will see that Skippy has worked with less mpney then Tommy.

3:13 PM  
Anonymous Free at last (from the Ron Kim tyranny) said...

I havent been as happy in years when I was priviledged to see Ron Kim walking away with his head down.

A disgraced man, for sure.

8:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sayonara Honorable Kim, and thanks for the big let-down for your troops. You screwed-over the guys who thought you were wirth their votes.
That is, the PS people who might still live in town.

1:30 PM  
Anonymous Toothpick Bill said...

Yeah! Things were so much better then. Dickie Benton was Tommy's right hand hit man. He did all the dirty deeds and in return got free garbage service for his restaurant/bar. Also got all the equipment for his joint from the casino on us. He used to parade his buddies into the city garage to gas up their cars. Also on us. All he had to do is once in a while drop some dead fish on porches or bring some big gronks with him to intimate the political enemies. His old man was deputy under Tommy's Daddy and made a measily $10,000 per year. He was so good with his money he managed to acquire many properties. How did that happen? The apple didn't fall from the tree.

1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, The City Council, all of them voted on raising the price of the bags to $4.00.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Enquiring minds want to know said...

Demroc is sciroccos'son Mark,demroc is short for demrocco,

mark scirocco said...
funny, when other members of the council work in a bipartisan fashion they get accused of switching parties. also if true bipartisanship is what he seeks, why not get the current chairman?
Notice that he doesn’t capitalize just like demroc .problem shoved demroc is mark scirocco

2:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

jay downing worked for five months and was given 1 yr. LOA. Skip would have brought him back if the budget would have allowed him to. His position wasn't filled for the past 12 yr. it was another one of Skippy's pay backs for campainging for him.

2:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did Jay work a week.....or did he work 6 months? Why would somebody work for only that short time?

I guess Dick Bendon gave it 110% to be able to work a 25 hr day?

4:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

5:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So who made the decision to have Hon. Kim run for Mayor.

He could have had 2 more yrs as PS Com.

7:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In a TU story, Lewie Benton is quoted as saying that the layoffs should have been from the top, not the bottom.
Lewie knows that this is impossible because of union contract agreements. Seniority always prevails.
Lewie likes to spin yarns, likes to hear the sound of his own voice.
Where you going to land now, Lewie? There aren't any no-show jobs in the private sector, and there's no money for you in the budget either. Not even for your bride.

9:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm thinking it was Ron Kim's gargantuan ego that made him run for Mayor. Apparently, he drank enough of the Kool-Aid to actually believe his own press releases.....

7:40 AM  
Anonymous Psych Ward, Room 420 said...

Lay off poor Lew. He ain't quite right upstairs any more, you know?

He should have been sent far away right after his photo was in the Saratogian, dry-humping Val Keehn on the nite she got shit canned by the voters. I think she even got a little freaked out by it. Then Design got in on the action. It was creeepy.

They're all whack jobs, that's for certain. But very entertaining, in a twisted kind of way.

Val Keehn for Governor!

(because we could all use some laughs in 2010!)

7:58 AM  
Anonymous I Think I'm Gonna Hurl! said...

Here's the latest:

The Wacky Wing is set to push their new candidate as the best hope for the party's future.

That person's name? Get ready for this one...

EILEEN FINNERAN!

You heard it right here.

10:37 AM  
Anonymous marv albert said...

YESsssssssssssss!!!

11:57 AM  
Blogger Faulkner said...

Are you waiting for 100 comments or something. Me want post!

8:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The topic is envelopes and layoffs, right?

In today's Saratogian, the Union & Public Safety advocate Mr. Jerry Coyne has written a letter to admonish the Council for its 2010 Budget and more precisely, the layoffs that resulted in the Public Safety Department.

The Unions have created an atmosphere of specialized entitlement in this City that not only demands unacceptable inflationary pay increases when the economy is experiencing a deflation but can be accused of deliberately defining job responsibilities that counter those of the City and its Code which our elected officials take allegiance to uphold. We now have departments whose employees can not do jobs outside their union job descriptions. So, traffic lights stay out till the one employee returns from holiday and officers do not get out of their mobile office patrol cars because “it isn’t their job” to direct traffic. The contracts negotiated by the previous Commissioner did little to protect the public from what we are experiencing today. As the City and its people in all sectors of our community make efforts to cope financially with the loss of revenues, the Union shop could not imagine a reduction in salary increases that was negotiated at the same time ignoring the economic and financial storm that was heading our way. Shame on the Union for not sharing this load with the very people who have to pay the salaries of their members. Had they considered a reduction of the inflationary pay increases, those ‘little brothers and sisters’ that they like to stand up as the victims of an unfeeling community and its unresponsive Council, these jobs might have been saved.

Truth is, we have too many personnel in our departments. Jerry, Show me the study! Show me where it says that because the larger populated and more problematic cities like Glens Falls, Albany, Schenectady and Troy increase their ranks that we should? Should we really use Schenectady and Troy for Public Safety models anyway?

The “massive expansion” of the tax base is partly illusionary. Based on a state tax formula, the condos and the commercial constructions did little to effect a large increase in revenue. Do some research Jerry and check it out.

Its too bad that Mr. Coye doesn’t like the idea of a single community beach for a City with a its own Lake or kids playing basketball in their own community but to frighten us with a coming surge of crime that will soon plague our community is ridiculous. Can we feel safe in Wilton where County patrols suffice for protection? If we find that revenues are down during the first quarter, perhaps we’ll have to ask the Unions again for a little public support or else they’ll be another envelope.

3:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:45
Well said, and I must say that your comments are more than welcome, especially as compared to some drivel that is posted here.

Someone asked if i-Saratoga is waiting for 100 comments? I think our beloved HO advised all posters to be more intelligent with their postings, otherwise he wouldn't promise what could happen -- or not happen.

I hope your posting sets a new standard.

11:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem with Union shops is that they have outgrown their once universal and unchallenged public appeal. Once organized to protect the worker, today it has become problematic for a city to provide services without being held hostage by a Union who directs its workers to protest for more benefits or more potential union members. The symbolic union rat was not offensive when seen at intersections responding to non-union labor hiring. Yet today, we come to realize that the entitlements and pay scales of union labor, which have been bargained onward and upward by thoughtless and careless mediators, have created a business and construction value climate that cannot be tolerated any longer – the Rat becoming more a symbol of the unyielding, selfish behavior of now, the employee not the employer.

Saratoga Springs has department managers who are responsible to the residents who elected them to office. Each Commissioner swore to uphold the laws of the State, the City and the responsibilities required of their departments to do the City’s work. Union regulations that supercede public employee responsibilities and duties need to be addressed.

Since most employees have grown up in the present system and cannot see past what they have been instructed to expect, there will no doubt be a learning curve. We can't immediately blame the worker or the important work that they are required to do - we just need it all to become more efficient. Like yesterday's SUV on steroids, we've run out of gas.

The concept of growth and promotion without regard to the effective size of a department required by a community that must pay the salaries is ending. The creation of specialized work definitions to hire more specialists adding sometimes to the inefficient growing bureaucracy which at times has shown itself unable to perform effective perfunctory City tasks and obligations also needs review. Saratoga Springs is not a large city like those that were referenced by a previous blogger. If our government employees seek greater opportunities, then they should look towards the County, the State or the Federal government or one of those larger cities mentioned if the grass is truly greener there. It’s time for a reality check and some sharp pencils.

8:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Andrew Bernstein still with the Saratogian ? I don't see his pix on the Editorial lineup on page three.....

7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrews is the sports guy now.

12:01 PM  
Blogger Ben lives on said...

Ho I hope you weren't vacationing on in some nice Port-au-Prince hotel?

6:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a shame........

An 82 year old Saratoga Springs man, suffering from alzheimers disease, wandered away from home and is killed on the Northway.

Late at night (after 11 pm) and no one saw him walking the streets?

Is this a public safety issue? No patrol cars saw him? Sheriff, city police, troopers, park police, people on their cell phones, neighbors, family.....this is a tragedy.

2:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The shame of it is the 82 yr. old had a daughter who had a similar fate years ago at the age of 16. That was tragic as well. Hit on the arterial on a bike trying to cross to east ave.

7:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Way to politicize a tragedy 2:43.
No one can say whether a few more civil servants would have saved this poor man's life, in fact it is really just pot-stirring to even make the suggestion.

11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

11:56
A guy is 82, walking (in the dark) and some calls must have gone out to the public safety people, alerting them to the fact that the subject had alzheimers, is unaccounted for......

With all that information, and all those patrol cars out there cruising the streets (we hope) nobody noticed???

Politicize? Heck, I hope you would think I was WAKING UP some civil "servants" who are being paid some big bucks to be watching out for things like this.

You are aware that they are BEING PAID, right?

3:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please don’t take this sad tragedy and start talking of a public safety manpower issue. This disorientated man walked several miles very late at night onto the Northway (NYS territory) and it wasn’t anyone’s fault that he wasn’t seen. He was a fine man, always dressed smartly and wore a smile. Those who knew him will share their stories and those like some bloggers who didn’t and choose to inappropriately comment on his death as a means to make their point – please take it somewhere else or think before you write.

3:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:21
Before he ended up deceased on the Northway (NYS territory ....your words) he had to either hitch a ride, or walk our city streets, in the dark, passing many people, cars.
Was there an alert called in by the family?
Were emergency people looking for him?
I don't think this topic is inappropriate, I think maybe inquisitive. As you say, he walked "several miles, very late at night" and that is all the more reason for concern.

5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw one of saratoga's finest napping in a cruiser in the racing museum parking lot a couple of days ago.

Essential services my ass. empty suits.

6:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

nice try with the classless idiots politicising a terrible tragegidy, lose the classless phony blamegame and get back to the real issues. Fact #1- go to the comptrollers web site, 2 of the audits done most recently 1 for the 3 yr. period 04-07 show losses of 3million $ from misappropriated funds acknowledged by Ivins Fact#2 shows Mctygue abusing purchasing proceedures. Then consider What is cost of health Ins. for City from Adirondack Trust without bid from outside Ins sales. Who is on Board of dirtectors for AT, Who is City now paying for Gasoline on Weekends when City Garage is Closed. who did Ivins go to to get a short term loan for payments for upfront loans. Seems to me GOP is blaming unions while taking care of City Fathers. Please call for STATE audit. Does T.T.,Fatso tigho, Scooter, Ivins,Franck the blank really believe the citizens are this stupid. How many properties do Franck the Blank and Scooter own that they fail to show to the tax payers of this City. Who are the Board of Directors for The ATC that are making a huge profit off of the local taxpayers. Don't blame the unions HO, if you have a true set of balls look into these isssues and challange the $ not the unions

8:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:19 Thank you for your sincere helpful and compassionate comments. You must be a bitch at a wake.

2:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Annon 8:10 - whats your problem with spelling?do you realize how hardit is to read your stuff?Please hit spellcheck when you try to write nexttine.Fact#100-your people lost because they lost.The union's have crippled good city servicesand the entitlements are absurd. go find a job somewhere else instead of bleadinga city with all of yur selfserving interests.
Its not my job.

2:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:10, 2:31, 2:37
Forget the spellcheck, try hitting the braincheck button.

6:25 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

8:10,

If you've got some definitive info, please e-mail it to me. I've done cursory check on both Scott Johnson and John Franck to see what properties they own. It proved almost wholly unremarkable:

Johnson owns a single family residence at 70 Railroad Place and 140 Caroline street, which is his primary residence. There is also a "Scott T. Johnson" that owns a home on Apple Tree Lane. I'm doubting this is the same Scott T. Johnson that is mayor of the city, but I could be wrong.

On Franck, he owns a colonial on Rip Van Lane and a modest camp on Galawy Lake. Those are his only holdings in Saratoga County.

Now, it's possible these gentlemen own properties that are not in their own names. They could be deeded to a spouse or mother. But seeing as though this has already proven fruitless, I'll need you to hone your point before I dig any deeper. I'm more than willing to hold people to the fire. But I need a bit more than spurious accusations to do it.

On your other points, they're fairly broad ranging. Certainly, the city has a very robust relationship with Adirondack Trust, which obviously makes money off that relationship. But I don't think its as parasitic as you seem to be implying. Even if it is, at least the city's money is going to a local bank that keeps it in the region, instead of a huge multi-national chain that pisses it into the Cayman Isle.

On the tragic death of Ralph Earnst: There was NOTHING the police could have done about it, save for spotting him as he made his way onto the highway. This was a horrible incident that really couldn't have been prevented, since the widow firmly believed he would come back home and didn't alert police to his disappearance as she searched for him. All and all, this is a tragic end for a man tortured by what one of the most horrible diseases our elderly are subjected to. Condolences should be afforded to the family.

6:33 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

BTW...not in Haiti. And I apologize to my loyal readers for being so neglectful(CPS has called twice already, wondering who is the parent of this blog wandering cyberspace unaccompanied).

I'll be back with some new dirt this week. Hell, I've got three or four half-completed posts in the gun from this month alone...

6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO
We are glad that you have made an appearance.
Looking forward to your "new dirt."

8:33 AM  
Anonymous agphoto said...

you go, HO! new dirt, new dirt rahrahrah!

4:24 AM  

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