Thursday, January 07, 2010


With the coming of a new year, comes a list of promises from the governing bodies throughout the country. Ulster County was no different. This past Wednesday night, January 6th, the ceremonies that welcomed the 16th induction of the Ulster County Legislature took place. Yours truly was right in the middle of it all.

Transparency and bipartisanship were the themes we heard throughout the evening. Small steps were made in that effort during the last two sessions, but apparently, not enough. Mind you, the Democrats took control in 2006 just as the Charter Revision was taking place, combined with the fact that they hadn't held control of the Legislature for decades before then. Now, during the last class of "Fiddlers 33" the Republicans get to steer the last bloated ship to dock.

As you see above, Chairman Wadnola was chosen unanimously and the audience got to hear some humorous banter during our first organizational session. Parting wishes were offered to those leaving the body as well as Congrats to those joining.

During one odd exchange, the Democratic caucus took the initiative to reinstate the original language describing the Mission Statement of the Committee Chaired by Terry Bernardo. Racing through the agenda, we fully expected to hear someone from the majority motion to amend the watered down version on the floor, but there was silence. So, Legislators Provenzano, Zimet, Parete and Donaldson had a one party conversation with the new chairman regarding protocol with the result of unanimous vote to reinstate the original language. Congrats Terry!

Chairman Wadnola called on lawmakers from both sides of the political aisle to put aside their partisan differences and work together “in a real bipartisan effort” to do what must be done for the county’s residents. I think the Democrats made that impression on day one.

Now, as a County Legislator, I join the chorus of members who claim the Legislature must assert itself as a separate but equal branch of a government. Many of my colleagues have been in office long enough to still feel the former duties in their routine. I, having just come from the Common Council, join them knowing the separation of the two branches quite well. Lets see where this takes me and the 16th Legislature as we head into 2010.


Anonymous said...

i think you did a good job at analyzing the evening.

i hope that you will consider running for County Executive and assert yourself this year as a Legislator!

Anonymous said...

Great start- not to often anyyone gets a chance to photo the world legendary political newsreporter- Time for bipartenship until it bites you. Fiddlers 33- super synonym for this legistive body. Now on to the business at hand- to govern and reduce taxes- the easy road is to expand tourism and tell the world about Ulster with its flagship of Kingston being the road to discover our history. County Executive Hein is right in establishing additional advertising in the Metropolitan area. Within minutes of the most historic section of the US, a short ride from West Point, Purple Heart Museum along with some incredible historic churches- cemetaries. waterways etc- hopefully the City will catch the spirit and move us into the next decade.
Good luck to the 16th UC Legislature Class of 2010,

Anonymous said...

Looks like legislator Len Bernardo is going to take a punch at ol' big head Maloney.

Anonymous said...

Len Bernardo is not a legislator. Why are there so many misinformed people interested in politics?

bf said...

Thanks for the great photo of my three Legislators i worked so hard to get elected, Ronkjr, Terrizzi & Hayes-
( see - Noonan had a very good attendance record which just proves attendance is no measure of a good legislator Glad that idjit is gone )

good folks & smart,

You looked very dapper, too, Mike, nice suit - ya never stopped smiling all evening,,

Go Get 'Em, brother,


Anonymous said...

8:35 -- Sure he isn't, Legislator Len Bernardo (I-Accord).

Anonymous said...

Vote your conscience Mike, don't become part of the pack. It is essential that there be a strong system of checks and balances within the UC government. We depend on you to be a leader for transparent, progressive government.

Anonymous said...

Transparent - the word most often misused by Mike Hein.