When the kids aren’t playing nice in the sandbox

You change towns of course!

Republicans in Rochester will love this one. You may recall how Terry Bernardo, former Legislator (defeated in 2013 by Lynn Archer, D-Accord, in District 21) and former Legislature Chairwoman, was not nominated by her fellow Rochester Republicans last year but instead faced challenger John Dawson in a primary, which Bernardo handily won. I think it is safe to say that many on the Rochester Republican committee did not support Bernardo and it certainly looks like the Town Committee has weakened in the Bernardo duo’s aftermath.

Rochester, once a solid and active Republican town, has been divided – even among Republicans – and many long time members resigned last year both from the Committee and the Republican Club. Few members remain according to the committee list I received from the Board of Elections per my FOIL request, which shows that only six of ten committee seats are filled. Bernardo’s name did not appear as one who carried petitions this year to serve on the Rochester Republican Committee and presumably she bailed from the hot kitchen.

But there is something interesting to note on the committee list. Terry Bernardo did carry a petition, but not where you think. Take a look at district 3 in this Town. Sandbox Antics GOP Filed Petitions 2014

So the moral of the story is when the sand is flying around the sandbox change your neighborhood and go play with the other kids.

There still is that minor little issue of Bernardo, a Republican State Committee member, carrying a petition for Kevin Cahill, a Democrat. Umm hello? Roger? Kevin? Anybody? Please advise.

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Cahill: Man of the people

Of course he is a man of the people. What else would you call a guy who is supported primarily by special interests?

Hold on Cahill fans – let me say it for you – oh, Robin, you’re just mad because Cahill beat you when you tried to challenge him in 2008. Oh that’s what it is. I’m just mad. Puhleeze!

So the man of the people has filed a required Campaign Finance disclosure report (due in July) with the NYS Board of Elections.

Let me break it down for you.

Contributions of $63,630 for the period.

Individuals contributed $4,230 or 6.6%.

Corporate and Other Monetary contributions totaled a whopping $59,400 or…drum roll please…93.3%. Most of that money came from the insurance industry, but big labor, LLCs, and healthcare related PACs also contributed.

Now why would Cahill receive money from the insurance industry you ask. Because he serves as Chair of the Assembly Committee on Insurance. Light bulb!

Just in case you don’t trust my word the contribution schedules from his July filing can be viewed here. Cahill, Kevin Contributions July 2014 filing

No worries. I’m sure there’ll be an annual hot dog party coming up so he can collect a bit of cash from his ardent supporters. Now for the question - is Cahill representing the people of Ulster County or is he representing the insurance industry? If money talks, I’d say we have the answer.

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Birthday Gala

Bday cake image

Last night I attended a birthday celebration for County Executive Mike Hein. I’ve attended this event over the last few years and as a registered member of that illustrious Independence Party (which I joined just to irritate certain unnamed people) and as a person not active in politics (big wink) I am free to attend any event I choose. Since I am a supporter and fan of Mike Hein, a Democrat, I choose to attend this fundraiser.

My guess is about 150 people were in attendance at Wiltwyck Golf Club including some political folks, business people and a good mix of others. I saw a few Ulster County Legislators including Hector Rodriguez, Jeanette Provenzano, Peter Loughran and I have to give credit to Legislator Chris Allen, who introduced himself to me. You may recall that I poked a bit of fun at newcomer Allen following his speech on his first night on the job, but I think he’s figured a few things out since then. We had an interesting conversation nonetheless and he probably got more of an earful from me than he bargained for, but hey, that’s what happens when you start talking politics and government with me.

Susan Zimet, Town of New Paltz Supervisor and primary challenger to Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, was in attendance and I also spotted Sean Eldridge who, for some unknown reason, was not inclined to introduce himself. I saw old friends – yes, I do have friends who are Democrats – and said a few words to many people I haven’t seen in a while.

As anybody in politics knows these events are necessary and some show up just to be seen while others are true supporters. The best part of the evening was something a bit different. A real testament to the County Executive were words spoken by his key staff people including Chief of Staff Adele Reiter, County Attorney Bea Havranek, Deputy County Executive Ken Crannell, and Deputy County Executive Bob Sudlow, each of whom gave a brief speech. While they may have prepared their words in advance, they were their words. We’ve all been to business meetings, conferences and functions where the obligatory pat on the back speeches take place, but this wasn’t that at all. Heartfelt in their respect and admiration for Mike and the work he does, it was refreshing, sincere and great to witness. Bob Sudlow, a man of few words with a dry humor, was especially funny.

It is no accident that a smart, professional group of people are on Mike’s staff working for the betterment of Ulster County. It’s nice to see people who are really passionate about their work and who genuinely respect and admire their boss. Thanks to all of them for all that they do and a very happy birthday to Mike Hein.


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Disloyalty chimes should be ringing!

Somebody call the GOP disloyalty police because we’ve got a real winner here. What’s that you say? Terry Bernardo, former Legislator, former Legislature Chairwoman and also a member of the Ulster County Republican Committee representing the Town of Rochester, carried a petition this year for the Independence Party on behalf of her pal and cohort Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, a Democrat. I wonder how Kevin Roberts, Ulster County Legislator and Republican candidate for the 103rd Assembly District, feels about this.

I received via FOIL request the attached copy of a designating petition.  Bernardo, Terry IND petition for Cahill 2014

Now I sure hope somebody is going to call Joe Roberti, Jr., Saugerties GOP Chair, a Bernardo pal and initiator of several disloyalty charge filings against committeemen, because I’m sure he’ll be outraged at this disgraceful display of disloyalty.

Where’s GOP Chairman Roger Rascoe?

How about the Rochester Republican Committee who should be getting ready to throw Terry out on her ear as soon as she gets confirmed at the primary for another term as a Committeemen, assuming she filed petitions?

It should delight all Republicans from Ulster County to know that Terry Bernardo also represents them on the New York Republican State Committee, only one of two people from Ulster County to serve in that capacity. If you’re not outraged, you should be.

If I remember correctly Terry spoke frequently about how she and her husband, County Chair of the Faux Party known as the Independence Party, are separate entities and she has been and always will be a Republican. Can somebody please explain to poor Terry that GOP Committeemen don’t carry petitions for Democrats on any line? Unbelievable.

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DiFalco for NY Senate 46?

Now this takes the cake. If I didn’t see it with my own eyes, I wouldn’t believe it.

Joe DiFalco, former Republican, current Independence Party member and City of Kingston Independence Party Chair appointed by Len Bernardo (who has no real authority to do so), apparently has an interest in running for State Senate in the 46th district – a seat currently held by Cecilia Tkaczyk.

Senate 46 DiFalco petitions 2014

Since DiFalco only carried petitions to get his name on the ballot on the Independence Party line this move is obviously an attempt to deny the I line to George Amedore, a Republican. Can anybody say - axe to grind?

And so the Independence Party shenanigans continue and for once I can’t blame it on Len Bernardo. Unbelievable.

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What? Is that a DOT truck?

You bet it is. I saw this truck parked just off  Route 44/55 (Vineyard Avenue in Highland between Tillson and Van Wagner Road) earlier this morning.

DOT truck 44-55 20140711_081739

If you missed my previous post about the impending collapse of Route 44/55 in Highland, you can read it here http://wp.me/p25OdJ-1ad.

Apparently making a little noise works and just in case they think they’re going to patch the wall up again and not really fix the problem, keep those cards and letters coming.

Call your representatives in Albany and let them know about this dangerous situation and that you demand it to be fixed now. Not in 2015 or whenever they get around to it.

Remember it’s an election year!

State Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk – District Office (845) 338-3810 or via email to tkaczyk@nysenate.gov

Assemblyman Frank Skartados – District Office (845) 562-0888 or via email to skartados@assembly.state.ny.us

Maybe the road will actually get fixed before someone gets hurt.

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She’s still in

Word on the street is that Susan Zimet (D-New Paltz), current Town of New Paltz Supervisor, filed her designating petitions in Albany to continue her primary challenge against Assemblyman Kevin Cahill (D-Kingston) in the 103rd Assembly District covering most of Ulster County and the Towns of Red Hook and Rhinebeck in Dutchess.

Despite losing the nomination at the Democratic nominating convention (as if that means anything to the regular voter), Zimet apparently is forging ahead to the September 9th primary where, outside of petition challenges, her name will appear on the ballot to challenge Cahill in a Democratic primary. It should be fun to watch Zimet remind Cahill how ineffective he has been during his tenure.

Meanwhile, Ulster County Legislator Kevin Roberts (R-Plattekill) also filed his designating petitions in Albany yesterday. Word is that Cahill had not filed his petitions as of yesterday afternoon. Petitions for State races are due in Albany today (7/10/14).

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