Yikes, Felicia, yikes! Jest when you think things in our little corner of the universe cain’t get any quirkier – using a polite term – a bomb hits that shatters the quiet we thought we had. Effen yew ain’t heard, the city has gone through another Finance Director. Yup, Scott Jackson, who jest last year was touted as the greatest thing since indoor plumbing took the job, he resigned effective exactly a year after taking the assignment.
Sammy Bluejay sez that the news of the resignation hit the Actors Colony like a lightning bolt – a bolt outta the blue – with people wonderin’ jest what was gonna happen next. Of course, the suddenness of the decision had the usual tongues wagging. Sammy sez that some o’ the usual suspecks were wondering effen Jackson got some heads-up from people he knows in Hartford. Remember, he was a member of the MARB for a time before he came into the job, and has a lotta connections.
Sooo, the wonder is effen things are gonna git dicey over the next little while, and he was told in order to save his reputation – not to mention his sanity – he might be better off looking for another situation in a place that is less explosive.
This kind o’ makes sense in a way. The MARB – the Municipal Accountability Review Board – is looking for the state not take our little burg outta Tier IV and put it completely under state control. Having no Finance Director to muck things up, and it being budget time and all, might give the panel jest the clear path it needs to put that plan into motion.
Whilst there are some who don’t think the state will go the entire way and put us into a sort of receivership, yew and I both know that things haven’t gone the way the board wants. It’s been more than five years since the MARB took over after Ed O’Brien’s administration bonded to get rid of our longstanding deficit. Herroner was faced with the MARB on the foist day that she came into office with nary a heads up from anyone.
Still, trying to change City Hall has been more than an uphill battle for the MARB, who sees opposition in all directions. As I told yew before, these are ladeez and gents to are not used to being stonewalled. They are CEO types who think all they hafta do is lift a finger and people will be more than happy to do what they want.
It’s gonna be interestin’ to see what transpires over the next little while. The budget is set to come out next week, and, of course, once it’s published the MARB will go over it the same way the City Council will go over. The only difference betwixt the two is the City Council may be able to make changes, but it’s the MARB that will make any final decisions.
Sammy sez that the city has hired an interim director of perty good caliber by all indications, but since when has that mattered? By my count we’ve had more Finance Directors in this town than I’ve had hot dinners in the last month! We’ll see. Effen this new person can effect change, all the better. But what usually happens is the culture of City Hall wears them all down.
On the heals of that is the ever-growing number of candidates for the mayoralty come the November election. Whilst there has been no indication that Herronner won’t run, the prevailing wisdom is that she is gonna be gone sooner rather than later. In fack, some are saying she’s already left the job mentally if not physically. Iva Lootey sez some of the party faithful are not happy with the on-again, off-again appearances and that effen she wants to leave the job, she should do so post haste. Even people who’ve stood by her are not happy with the present situation.
As yew know there is at least one candidate that has announced on the Democratic side, none other than Edward M. O’Brien, who wants to once again sit in the chair on the thoid floor. He made his announcement seeking the nod, and has “pulled papers” as they say in the business.
Iva made mention of the fack that some are wonderin’ effen Dorinda Borer is interested in the position, and there are some that say yes, and some that say no. Still there are others that ask why? Y’see the rep from the 115th has a good thing going at the Capitol. She was jest named a deputy speaker, which ain’t no small potatoes and has found her niche, some say.
Why would anyone want to leave that kind of power and prestige to run this burg? Foist of all the MARB, as was mentioned above, has been here for the better part of six years (it’ll be six years in December), and there don’t seem to be any off ramp off this highway for the time being. That means that there will be little power, with the MARB having all the control – politicians go into office to exercise some degree of power. With the MARB being here, and looking to take over via the state, the mayor will be more a figgerhead and less a leader. That might appeal to some, but not usually to the political-types. We shall see.
Over on the GOP side, there are at least two candidates at last glance that are announced with Steve Mullins becoming the second after Paige Weinstein made her announcement about three weeks ago. This ain’t Mullins’ foist rodeo when it comes to running on the GOP ticket. He was the lamb that was put to slaughter a few times over the year, when the GOP had no shot of winning. Weinstein, meanwhile, is an unknown quantity when in comes to things political in these parts.
Still to be heard from is Barry Lee Cohen, who ran last time on the GOP ticket and pert-near won the whole shebang. In fack, he only lost – officially – by about 30-plus votes in an election that had its own bit o’ drama. He and Mullins name recognition as Cohen and Mullins both keep their names before the public in various ways, both being involved in many organizations.
The sum and total is both parties may have multiple candidates come this go-round, and both may have primaries in September. That’s make the summer percolate a bit. We shall see.
Nelly Nuthatch came in and told me that work is proceeding on the new condos where Chick’s Restaurant used to be. The high-end townhouses saw work start about three weeks ago, and already foundations are put in and some other work has taken place at this writing. Probably by the time yew git this missive, the work will be further along.
Tennyrate, with the raising of the roadbed still on the docket for the spring, Nelly made mention of the fack that the use of Beach Street might be problematic once construction begins. It would be nice effen the city gives a heads-up on the matter in the weeks before the projeck begins, no?
Meanwhile, over at the former Haven site, the demolition crews are working double time to get the remaining buildings down after more than two years of inertia. Nelly was wonderin’ effen there are a few “prospects” in the pipeline, prompting the new verve. That could be. The Simon Group might have some prospective buyers lookin’ that the place, and that would be more than enuff reason to move quickly We shall see.
Finally, as we mentioned earlier the budget is set to be put out and will be in this publication for the perusal of the taxpayers. There has been little mention of the budget in a city where it is usually a winter sport. That gives one pause over why things would be soooo close to the vest. Again, there probably ain’t gonna be too many surprises – if any – and whatever is in the announced document will be subject to the imprimatur of the MARB. All in all it will be an interesting exercise – but for not the usual reasons.
With that bit o’ chatter, I’ll close this time till next, mitt luff und kizzez,