Friday, July 31, 2015

Judge Rules Against Gallo

I have not read the full decision yet, but the Judge ruled in favor of the Board of Elections.

I am surprised given the case law.  I am informed that Gallo will appeal.  Appellate Division has an expedited process for such cases.  I will report once there is a decision from them.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Evidence Is In.

All of the evidence and legal arguments in the Gallo petition case have been submitted.  A decision is expected early next week.

Also, there is a second petition law suit.  An action was filed against Mr. Rasmussen, the man who submitted petitions to run in a primary for the Workings Family Party line.  Once a decision is filed in that case, I will report that as well.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


The court appearance on Gallo's petitions was postponed because of court calendar issues.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Not Real Democrats? Really?

Steve Noble has released a press release and a posting on Facebook which alleges that Shayne Gallo is not a "real Democrat" because he is seeking the Conservative Party line.

Then, Noble attempts to explain what the Conservative Party and Democrat Party members believe in philosophically.  Let's take a look at this lunacy for a moment.

A Democrat who takes the Conservative line is not a real Democrat.  So, Sheriff Van Blarcum is not a real Democrat?  Lew Kirschner, a legendary Democrat politico who ran multiple times on the Conservative line, is not a real Democrat?  Former County Democrat Chair John Parete?  T.R. Gallo? Frank Dart?  John Dwyer?  How about Uncle Jim?  He ran for Alderman on the Conservative line for Alderman.

Allow me to educate you, Steve, on Republicans and Democrats.  Not all Republicans are conservative and not all Democrats are left wingers or liberals.  When you make a silly statement that seeking the Conservative line makes you not a "real Democrat", you insult conservative and moderate democrats.

If you said Shayne is not a far left liberal, that would be true. Shayne is a moderate to conservative Democrat.  However, to say he is not a democrat is plain nonsense.  Shayne comes from an old school, Democrat family with roots going back over 100 years.  T. Robert "Bobby" Gallo and his son, Thomas R. "TR" Gallo were definitely democrats. So is Shayne.

However, let's take a look for a moment at what you believe the philosophy of Democrats should be.  You said, “Democrats support more tax dollars going to welfare, food stamps, unemployment benefits and other programs designed to support people in need.”  Really?  Real Democrats think more money should be spent on welfare??  I guess Bill Clinton is not a real Democrat by your view.  He signed into law welfare reform.

I guess it also means that if anyone out there enrolled as a Democrat thinks that Social Services spending needs to controlled is not considered by Steve Noble to be a real Democrat.  I know a lot of Democrats who want more controls on spending.  I am not sure they know that Steve thinks they are not democrats.

According to Steve, if you do not support legalizing marijuana, you are not a Democrat.  I know a lot of democrats who do not support making pot legal.

I could go on, but the point is clear.  Steve Noble thought he was going to hurt Gallo, but he just lost a tremendous number of moderate and conservative democrats,  You still have Tom Hoffay's support.  If you have about $3.00 to go with that, you can get coffee at Starbucks.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Mayoral War Chests

The Daily Freeman reported that Mike Hein was a much larger war chest than Terry Bernardo.  However, no article has appeared discussing the Mayoral election in Kingston.  Certain loudmouths have been making accusations that candidate's fundraisers have been poorly attended or obtained little results.  No evidence has been offered to back up these claims.

So, since we just had the July Periodic reports filed with the Board of Elections, I thought I would share with you the current financial standing of all three candidates.  Let the evidence speak for itself.

Ron Polacco reports $2,065.89 on hand.  The overwhelming majority of his donations are from individuals and in small amounts.  So, while his cash on hand places him third and just behind Steve Noble,the fact that the donations are from numerous individuals is a very positive sign.

Steve Noble reports $3,655.28 on hand.  However, nearly 1/3 of his donations came from 5 people all of whom are known Gallo haters: Hoffay, Landi, Will, Dunn, and Martin.  Just from those 5, Noble received $1,185.00.  There are also several people who have appeared to donate several times.

This suggests that while Noble has more cash on hand than Polacco, his support may not be much more than a house of cards.  There appear to be more people donating to Polacco though the people supporting Noble seem to be fired up Anti-Gallocrats.

By the way, although a local blog proclaimed that Kevin Cahill "endorsed" Noble, there is no reported donation from the Assemblyman.  As I posted before, Kevin Cahill is too politically shrewd to make a formal endorsement in a city primary.

Finally, we come to Shayne Gallo.  Gallo has $11,486.88 on hand per BOE records.  This is more than double the combined war chests of both his opponents.  He also appears to have more labor support than Noble. Donations appear from Laborers Local 17, Operating Engineers Local 825, and HV Building Construction Trade Council.  Also Gallo was endorsed by CSEA and their check will come soon.  Having been endorsed for Mayor previously by CSEA and other unions, I know first hand that their endorsement brings money and support to a campaign.  In a Democrat primary, the support of unions is huge.

In summary, Gallo is well ahead on the question of campaign funds.  Polacco may not have a lot of money, but he does seem to have a number of supporters.  If the ticket in November ends up with 3 candidates, Polacco could well have a shot.

Noble appears to be in trouble.  His support seems largely based on Hoffay, Landi, Will, Dunn, and so forth.  While these Anti-Gallocrats are angry and fired up, it remains to be seen if Tom Hoffay and his feathers can carry Noble through the primary.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Conservative and Independence Petitions Off to Court

The Board of Elections disallowed petitions filed by Gallo and Provenzano for the Conservative and Independence lines.

My understanding is that this matter will be going to court for a decision.  I will be curious to see what the ruling will be.

Once the judge decides, I will announce the decision.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

CSEA Endorses Gallo

Normally, CSEA endorsing a democrat would not be big news.  However, when there is a democrat primary, it is.

CSEA chose Gallo over Noble.  This is a big hit against Noble.

Also -- stay tuned -- the city has lost big money because of Noble's errors on a grant.  I will break this story soon.


CSEA has also endorsed Jeanette Provenzano.  This is big news.  Jim Noble has always had CSEA support.  Not this time.

In a democrat primary, CSEA support goes a long way.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Major Embarrassment for City Democrat Leadership

It is very rare that party leadership dumps an incumbent.  When they do, they have to make sure they have a strong candidate who is willing to go to the mat.  As they say, you don't wound the King.

City Democrat Leadership are what I call "Anti-Gallocrats".  Thy hate Shayne Gallo and hate anyone who supports him or becomes his friend.  Their hatred is to the extreme.

This year, the leadership decided to get rid of incumbent Democrat Mayor Shayne Gallo, 7th Ward Alderwoman, Mary Ann Mills, and 2nd Ward Alderman Bran Seche.  So, they got former multi-term Alderman and Majority Leader Bill Reynolds out of moth bolls and gave him the nomination fr te 7th ward, gave an unknown person suggested by Tom Hoffay the 2nd Ward spot, and Steve Noble the Mayor's spot.

Meanwhile, Mary Ann Mills filed petitions for a Democrat primary and for the Independence and Conservative lines.  Seche carried petitions for the same 3.  So did Gallo.

All of a sudden, Bill Reynolds announces that he is withdrawing from the race citing personal and family obligations. Many wonder why he got out.  Some speculate that he expected Mills to just go away and run unopposed.  Others postulate that he could not get permission from his job to run.  Personally, I accept the reason Bill gave.  However, the Anti-Gallocrats are left with egg on their face.

The Anti-Gallocrats have a few options, though none are particularly palatable for them:

1)  The swallow their pride and endorse Mills.  Unlikely.  That would require them to accept someone with ties to Gallo.

2)  They leave it blank and allow Mills to win without Party Committee support.  Then, they will suck up after the election.  Foolish.  Mills is not stupid.  She will not be receptive to this.

3)  They find another candidate to take a beating.  It is not likely that someone would be stupid enough to get into a race against in an incumbent who has 2 lines guaranteed and run a primary.

No matter what they do,the Anti-Gallocrats are left with egg on their face.

It potentially gets much worse.  The grant scandal is a REAL problem for Steve Noble.  More and more damaging information keeps coming out.  The defense now is no longer that Steve is innocent.  Instead, the defense is that the focus was put on him because of politics.  They are calling it a witch hunt.

The term "witch hunt" in politics is used whenever the target of same cannot be defended on the facts or law.  So, the term "witch hunt" is used to attack the people making the accusations.  Now that it is becoming clear that Noble cannot be defended on the facts or the law, the attacks are going against the accusers.

Most importantly however, to paraphrase the late Tony Crespino, the public is not as stupid as politicos think they are.  People in the city realize that Steve Noble is way over his head.  He is not ready for prime time and is not ready for the big chair.  It begins to look like Gallo will win the democrat primary. Since Noble did not file for any party line, he will be off the ballot.

Seche will likely defeat Douglas Koop.  Nobody really knows the guy.

Should this happen, the Anti-Gallocrats will be completely humiliated.  Their entire political support dries up.  Then, next year, when it is time for petitions for committeemen, look for challenges against people like Hoffay, Landi, both Donaldsons (and the family members appointed to rig the convention), Blaber, Dunn, Will and so forth.  Most will find themselves voted off the committee.  A new chair will be appointed and the humiliation will be complete.

As I noted above, you do not wound the King.  If you do, the consequences are severe.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

What a showing.

Shayne Gallo turned in over 700 signatures for the Democrat line for Mayor.

With the city committee endorsing Noble and candidates and committeemen threatened with ramifications if they carried for him, Gallo had to get outside volunteers.

To get that many is impressive.  I guess rumors of his political demise were greatly exaggerated.

Also, petitions were turned in for the Conservative line by both Gallo and Polacco.  Barring challenges, there will be a primary.

I will report on the balance of the lines and petitions soon.

He did?

Got a phone call earlier from some politicos asking me what I thought about Kevin Cahill "endorsing" Steve Noble for Mayor.

Surprised, I asked when did he do that? There was a Freeman article where Kevin spoke about the Forsyth Park grant, but there was no formal endorsement.

I don't like Kevin, but I admit that he is a crafty politico.  He would not endorse a candidate in a Democrat primary and risk alienating voters.  That would be very stupid.  Kevin is not politically stupid.

So, having shown that Kevin did not formally endorse Noble, I asked them where they got such bad information.

Their answer?  Well, I think you can guess.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Challenging Day at Board of Elections

Multiple candidates filed petitions to run for County Executive in Ulster County.  According to the Board of Elections, all of the petitions have been challenged except those of Mike Hein.  The challenges come indirectly from the Hein campaign.

Why indirectly?  Well, most campaigns have their supporters file challenges in their own names.  This way, the candidate can smile for the camera and claim not to have been involved in the challenging.  Legally, challenging ALL of the petitions is permissible though it does give the impression of fear or concern to the public.  It remains to be seen if specific challenges will be filed.

So, who filed?

Mike Hein filed for the Democrat and Working Families line.  He has challenger for the Working Families (WFP)line.  Frederick Rasmussen III filed petitions to run for the WFP line.  Also, Hunter Downie filed petitions to run on the Green Party line.

I do not know much about either of these gentlemen, but I do know they are involved in some capacity (volunteer or otherwise) with the Catskill Mountain Railroad.

Terry Bernardo filed petitions for the Republican, Conservative, and Independence Party lines.

If all of the petitions get upheld, it creates some interesting scenarios.

First, a WFP primary.  Assuming Frederick Rasmussen III is an enrolled member of the WFP, then it will be a straight primary.  This could be problematic for Mr. Hein.  The WFP is a far left party.  Though Mike Hein has very strong support among Democrats, the same is not necessarily true among the WFP members.  Hein will be the favorite, but in a WFP primary, anything can happen.

If Mike wins the WFP primary, he will have 2 opponents: Bernardo on 3 lines and Downie on the Green Party line,  If he loses the WFP primary, add a 3rd opponent.  You can expect that Downie and Rasmussen (on Green and WFP respectively) will take far more votes from Mike Hein than Terry Bernardo.

Mike Hein is still the favorite.  He is a 2 term incumbent.  However, with the possibility of a well funded opponent with 2 other opponents drawing away left wing support, the advantage of incumbency is suddenly weakened.

Final analysis shows a possible unexpected barn burner for November.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Report Spells Trouble for Noble

The Kingston Times and the Daily Freeman both have online stories about a very damaging report concerning alleged malfeasance by Steve Noble in his capacity as a city employee.  Granted, the Freeman is downplaying it and omitted very important facts. 

A review of seven grants being worked on by Steve Noble has revealed some damaging lapses which, if not addressed, could leave the city taxpayers financially liable for substantial amounts of money.

Many of the concerns --which are set forth in a 10 page report-- deal with problems documenting time as a "match" for grant money.  As an example, Noble claimed 50% of his work time for 2 different grants.  This accounts for 100% of his time.  Yet, he then claims hundreds more hours for other grants.  Translation?  He double dipped his time.  An audit of these grants would be very  problematic.

It is a mathematical impossibility to have performed the work he has claimed on the grants.

There are other factual problems such as claiming projects are finished when they are not and so forth. 

The report contends that almost $350,000.00 could be lost due to these errors.

The defense from Noble?  He is claiming that he is being targeted because of politics.  For sake of argument, let's say that's true.  So what?  If you run for Mayor, you better expect to be attacked.  When I ran for Mayor, I was attacked for anything and everything I did.  Some of the attacks against me on the various blogs were obscene and despicable.  I never complained about it.  It is an unfortunate part of running for such an office.  You just have to grin and bear it.

However, even if the microscope is focused on Noble because he is running, it does not explain away his acts.  False claims on grant applications is a very serious allegation.  To just claim politics without addressing the merits strikes me as a very weak response.

Then, one of Noble's supporters said that if you look at ANY grant, there will be errors.  Really?  What a wonderful accusation to make.  Excuse Noble because all grant writers either lie or make mistakes??!!  Wow!!

Now, to spice it up even more, Assembly Kevin Cahill (no relation in blood or politics) is getting into the act.  He praised Steve Noble and said what a wonderful guy he is.  Of course, he was very careful to note that Noble had nothing to do with a grant that his office obtained.  Kevin will praise Noble, but he is not putting his tootsies into the fire.

So, why is Kevin getting involved?  Well, there are 2 reasons.  First, Kevin has had a feud with the Gallo family going back to when TR Gallo was Mayor.

Second, Tom Hoffay, the one who actually arranged the press release, works for Kevin.  As I have noted previously, the entire candidacy of Steve Noble is nothing but a power grab by Tom Hoffay and his flock of magpies. 

No question that Hoffay arranged to have Kevin enter the fray to try to give gravitas to Steve Noble.  Noble's campaign is hemorrhaging.  People around town are basically saying that Steve Noble is not capable of being Mayor.  I hear this from Democrats and Republicans alike.  People that are backing Noble are doing it because they want Gallo out not  because they want Noble in.  Just look at some of the other blogs.  Nothing but shots at Gallo.

By having Kevin talk well of Noble, it is hoped that people will think more of Noble.  This will not work.  The truth is that popularity is not something that can be shared or given.  Kevin Cahill is popular.  As far as I am concerned, he has fooled a great many people.  Regardless, he took 60% of the vote last time.  Numbers like that do not lie.  However, he cannot transfer his popularity to Steve Noble no matter how kindly he speaks of him.

Noble himself thinks that he will be in charge if elected Mayor.  I do not think he even realizes that he is being controlled like a marionette.  Steve Noble may very well be a nice guy.  I don't know him personally.  I know his uncle Jim and he is a very likable guy.  Whereas Jim is experienced in politics, Steve is not.  Steve is over his head big time and Hoffay, Chairman Donaldson, Aldermen Dunn and Will, former Alderman Landi, and so forth are using him to continue their vendetta against Shayne Gallo.

Ultimately, this entire matter could become very seriously very quickly.  If the allegations of false statements on grant applications are true, the Attorney General or District Attorney's Office could come a knocking.  Then, politics or no, someone will be in deep doo doo.

Stay tuned.

Friday, July 10, 2015

I am back

I took some time to mourn the passing of my oldest and dearest friend.  Her death caught me completely by surprise and devastated me.

I am back now.  Stay tuned for latest City Hall scandal.  Looks like Steve Noble is in it deep.