Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Desso Debuts on Web
It's a fancy bells and whistles web page that arguably spins history in a way that most politicians would do to run a campaign. Lou Desso.com showed up recently on the Internet and while it's a professionally produced HTML wonder, there's still some self serving spin that does not conform to the facts.
Take his "issues" page for example. It's kind of hard to call yourself a fiscal conservative who helped produce a 2009 town budget that did not raise taxes when the town is looking at a quarter million dollar deficit in that budget. The real test for Desso, and it will be a difficult challenge, will come as he confronts the hard choices of layoffs as a needed tool to reduce that deficit, avoid a massive tax hike next year, and to restructure town hall to make it leaner in this tough economy.
We also note his claims on health insurance buyouts which were exposed to the town board by town Democrats and the FOIL law. No, Lou didn't ferret out the waste and while he is correct reforms are needed, he allowed a contractual employee to keep some$20 grand wrongfully paid in premiums on his behalf because he was improperly on the town insurance policy for some 4 years before he was exposed by a FOIL request. Desso has also done nothing to require the Town Supervisor to repay the town about $10 grand in insurance premiums he improperly took by placing himself on the policy. He voted to make the town comptroller to repay a buyout the Supervisor improperly gave him, while allowing another ineligible employee to keep their buyout check.
When you look at spending votes that helped create the fiscal crisis, you have to remember he voted to award a $40,000 no bid contract for a needless redo of the Comprehensive Plan. That's not how business work, it's how politicians work. He voted to hire another Conservative Party stalwart in town hall, but to his credit, he did decide against giving Mark Evers a $280% $42,000 pay raise he neither deserved nor was honest in seeking prior to the election.
But we have to give Lou a chance here. The fiscal crisis has yet to be fully addressed and the steps he might support to bring spending into line with revenues will define him in a way that he probably has yet to realize. And he has realized that his alliance with Mark Evers was a mistake, one in which he has a great deal of company on both sides of the political aisle.
So all things considered, its a good political website and we give it points for creativity and style. Substance however, remains as in most political campaigns, a view through the "looking glass". Things are not always exactly as they appear. Lou, we're going to link your page here on the Pipeline. Maybe someday your home page will come up first in a Google Search of "Lou Desso" instead of two entries from The North Greenbush Pipeline.
Posted by The North Greenbush Pipeline at 8:55 AM