Thursday, May 13, 2010
North Greenbush Ethics on National Display
We were surprised to learn that the North Greenbush Town Board has made it to a national organization's blog which deals with and promotes model ethics codes. The Washington DC based blog entitled "City Ethics.org", is nationally recognized as a forum for governmental ethics and is written by Robert Wechsier who is the Director of Research for the organization.
His review of the North Greenbush Town Board majority's effort to impose their "Democrat" on the minority party as well as their own majority party member is not flattering to Lou Desso and company. "Appearing partisan and unfair is the worst thing that can happen to an ethics board", concludes the author, who reviews several posts of the North Greenbush Pipeline in exposing the shenanigans of Desso and his majority.
His most damning conclusion is what we've been saying all along, that it destroys the integrity of any ethics board when one party thinks its ok to nominate all the members of such a board so long as they hold the required political registrations. In essence here, the majority party will be nominating all 3 board members in North Greenbush, making the board a tool of the majority party. We note that the Chairman must be the unanimous choice of the town board leaving him appearing as the only non partisan member of the board.
So we move to tonight's meeting when GOP Board member Lou Desso sponsor's a resolution to appoint the only Democrat on the town's Ethics Board while the Boards only real Democrat, the Town Supervisor is told she lacks the votes to make her appointment a reality and allow the Ethics Board to look at least somewhat balanced and objective. And yes, Al Spain's role in all of this is also examined in today's edition. Enjoy the notoriety boys and girls, you've made it to the big time.
You will also find a link to the town's ethics code on this site which is linked here.
One of the duties of a Town Supervisor is to create the agenda of each town board meeting. Some Supervisors have delegated that responsibility out while others have preserved it. It's our understanding that the most recent agenda for tonight's meeting was altered by the Town Clerk after it was completed by the Supervisor.
The order of some of the resolutions was changed, most notably one involving the appointment of the Democratic member of the Town Ethics Board. Now why the town clerk would play these games is any one's guess just as it is any one's guess why she won't respond properly to a simple FOIL request, preferring instead to answer with an evasive response designed to subvert a clear statutory responsibility.
We don't know why the town clerk plays these games but we will make sure she knows we know and now you know.
Posted by The North Greenbush Pipeline at 6:00 AM