Tuesday, October 14, 2008

LERW: WHERES THE MONEY?



The Ulster County Legislature, at the urging of Administrator Mike Hein, voted almost unanimously to formally request a full investigation into the workings of Lower Esopus River Watch, back in 2006. So who voted against?

The office of Attorney General Andrew Cuomo finally filed the lawsuit they asked for, this past Friday.

According to a report by Paul Brooks from the Record, The state attorney general is suing former Ulster County official Rick Fritschler, saying he made more than $800,000 in "unsubstantiated" purchases, including $48,000 on meals for himself and others. You would think the former Chairman of the UC Legislature would notice right? Well the LERW dissolved shortly after the 2006 elections.

So, why Fritscher? He was the chairman of the UC Environmental Management Council at the time in question.

The Record reports: The county Legislature contacted Cuomo's office in January 2007, after a general audit of county finances raised questions about Fritschler and the environmental council. County Administrator Mike Hein directed the audit when he took the job in 2006. Two years later, like Government, AG Cuomo and staff finally announce the investigation.

These “Good Ol Boys” knew what they were doing, or so they thought. They concealed their dual board posts and quietly transferred assets from the taxpayers to the LERW. Our Money!

My question, with the Legislature dominated by the Republican Party for so long, and the close ties to our Republican State Senators, what level of involvement or complacency did Bonacic and Larkin have? These guys have been around enough to know where untraceable money is hiding and with a willing county leadership playing along, the access would be too easy.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

After watching the comet video, we should consider how much of this affects the big picture.
no-one likes the dark underbelly of politics and government, but it's what we've got. If Bonacic and Larkin skimmed off the top to keep quiet, thats just what you'd expect. Wheres the shock?

Anonymous said...

After this election cycle, Why doesn't Mike Hein direct an audit of the jail?
Im sure we could do the same Good Ol Boys justice with a review of our last findings.

Anonymous said...

Lisa Cutten uncovered this and lost her job as a result.

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much money it takes to flatter a State Senator?

Anonymous said...

thank you, 9:20, for being one of the few to realize this...yes, Lisa Cutten, as County Auditor, started to ask for documentation on the EMC and several other agencies who had contracts with UC. Though the others were forthcoming, only the EMC didn't and couldn't provide anything. It was deemed a witch hunt (by Rich Parete and Tracy Bartles), and Lisa was vilified for her diligence. What did Theresa LaPorte (or whatever her name was) do all those years as the Republican auditor? She obviously did nothing, which allowed for hundreds of thousands of wasted dollars (and that's what we know about). But, shame on Mike Hein for not giving Lisa credit for discovering this - if you notice, he took all the credit. Lisa has been vindicated - she was right all along...except if you ask Rich Parete who can still justify the embezzlement.

click on me said...
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click on me too! said...
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Anonymous said...

There is no real way to get this amount of funding back from those who made off with the funds when the LERW was disolved.
What we can do is follow the money and see where it leeds, either to the former leadership, their department heads or just to the State Officials who are still in office from that era. That means, Republican members of the UC Legislature and our remaining two State Senators who were in office while this fraud was taking place.

Anonymous said...

Why are you so concerned with Ulster County, comets etc. When the people you took an oath to represent are being ripped off by Gorsline and company?

Anonymous said...

Mike pay attention to city issues that you can make a difference on.

Thank you.

Mike Madsen said...

Hello 5:14...Some of the key players involved with this multi-million taxpayer dollar scam are still in office and represent US.

Where does that not have an influence in our lives here in Kingston? When Cuomo and company are done with the investigation and they hurd up a list of familiar names as participants, we will get to see just who is working for us and who is just out for themselves.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mike:

What legislators voted for the $58,000 grant to the Lower Esopus River Watch.

How could they send taxpayer money to a group that was under investigation by the AG? The County Attorney warned them not to.

Anonymous said...

Just like the jail the political crooks behind this will never get in any trouble. They are probably the same ones.