GRUNIN OUT AS PEDA BOARD CHAIR; MICK CALLAHAN IN … HOSING DOWN THE PETULANT … ‘WEREWOLVES OF PITTSFIELD’ and OTHER LETTERS … plus … PEDA’s THURSTON SAYS ‘IT’S A DONE DEAL’ (BE NERVOUs, FOLKS. BE VERY NERVOUS)
By DAN VALENTI
PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary
ADD 1 FEB. 8, 2012
The Pittsfield Economic Development Authority met at the usual convenient time of 8 a.m. The most interesting aspect of the meetings is that — Voila! — Gary Grunin is out as the board’s chair. After a nationwide search, Mick Callahan, as good a GOB as there ever was, is in the chair. He led today’s meeting. Hmmm … we don’t recall getting the announcement of this. And we thought Mayor Dan Bianchi wanted transparency. What’s next? A political comeback for Angelo Stracuzzi?
The agenda from today’s meeting, which you can only find after a witch hunt on the city’s website (don’t bother looking on the PEDA site; that would be too logical) Lists:
* Executive Director’s Report — A sleepy overture meant to zap any living brain cells that might be working aomng the PEDA board.
* City Council Petition — Naturally, the agenda doesn’t provide any other information on the petition. They don’t want to start spoiling people, you know.
* Silver Lake Shoreline — WMECO transfer, Additional Property, EPA Amended PPA. Again, not another word of what this gobbledy gook means.
* Project Matrix — What project? What matrix? Project Blue Balls? Domi-matrix?
* Financial Report, Audit — This is where the Corydon Thurston reads fiction to the PEDA Board, a kind of bed time story to put them all to sleep. It ends, ” … all the money is where it should be, there was no evidence of graft, and they lived happily ever after.”
* Marketing Update, Web Site update, RFP for a full service ad agency — Marketing? Huh? You mean they engage in marketing the site? Web Site update: “It sucks.” Seeking bids for full-service ad company: There’s more of your money out the window.
* Meeting Calendar — NExt meeting scheduled for March 14, 2012. That is incorrect. There is another PEDA meeting scheduled for 8 a.m. Friday, Feb. 10.
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, WEDNESDAY, FEB. 8, 2012) — First, let’s us deal with some housekeeping. THE PLANET‘s first instinct when it comes to letting people have a say is to let it happen. We will always lean that way. Free discourse and rousing public debate is one of the finest safeguards of free institutions. Of course, free speech, while it is the right of public space, is not “free” in media forums. Free speech here, for example, is not a right but a privilege. We grant that privilege to those who can follow the most lenient of standards.
To the Meatheads and the Petulant: Take Your Business Elsewhere
Give us your honest views, move the discussion forward verbally and/or conceptually, and you will always have a place here, whether you agree or disagree with us. Try to derail the grand experiment by abusing the privilege, however, and you will either find yourself REDACTED or trashed. When we make our decisions, and when the Webmaster carries them out, do not appeal to this address. Your solution at that point is to get your own blog going and sell your bananas there. Anyone who has a problem with this can eat tough cookies baked fresh in Remo’s oven.
We present this info as a public service announcement to any meatheads our there who want to play the wise guy in the future. You will find yourself playing the dunce. Thank you. To the vast majority of those who visit this site (the 99.99999%), please, we beg your indulgence while we hose down the petulant.
Agree with us. Disagree with us. Argue our cause for sainthood or set us on fire as a hertic. Do anything you want to do, even laying on our blue suede shoes, but, ah ha, honey, further the discussion. Do not attempt to introduce the ignorance.
WEREWOLVES OF PITTSFIELD, A VIDEO AND OTHER LETTERS
We now dip into the mail bag again. We note that the Boring Broadsheet has yet, 61 days later (or is it 62?) to publish ONE letter, either way, on the Nilan-Moore Case. To the BB, the case doesn’t exist, except when the GOB tell it the case exists. If anyone wishes a barometer with which to judge the editorial integrity of the BB, this is it: Day 62 in Nilan-Moore, and NOT ONE LETTER.
Meanwhile here on THE PLANET, we get many cards and letters. Some are for our eyes only. Others are not suitable for publication. Yet even with that, we find a back log. Let’s try to whittle it down. We remind everyone that printing our “letter to the editor” does not necessarily imply agreement or endorsement of the positions stated or shown. The same goes for our comments section. To repeat a point made earlier, we passionately believe in allowing the most rousing free speech. Debate in the public square should be Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em and not for the feint of heart. You just don’t yell “fire” in a crowded theater.
Our first letter, “Werewolves of Pittsfield,” is in the form of a video satire by STANLEY THE STOOLEY. Stanley is one of the multitudinous STOOLEY tribe that has kept THE PLANET in information for at least a couple of decades, now. Stanley’s talents do not lie in words but images, as in this takeoff and sendup of District Attorney David Capeless and Company. Again, in presenting a point of view, THE PLANET is not implying agreement.
We present the link here:
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Peer Moore: ‘His Absence is Sorely Missed’
Comments: Dan, One thing that is missing in the online bio of Peter Moore is that he has been a member of National Ski Patrol for many years. Volunteering at the now defunct Brodie Mountain and currently at Bousquet, where his absence is sorely missed.
He is always willing to render aid to any hurt snowslider even when not officially on duty. He has often stayed with a patient until the on-duty folks arrive lending a hand in what ever capacity happens to be needed.
There was a period of a month or so a few years ago that it seemed every accident we responded to on my shift — there was Peter skiing on his own time with his kids (children and friends) comforting a patient until we arrived.
I cannot imagine Peter coming across an injuried party without stopping to help.
I wish that had been the case in December rather than him having to fend for himself. — HAL
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HAL, we thank you for this letter. This confirms everything we’ve heard about Peter Moore. Now this one.
Is This Excerpt from Massachusetts General Law Applicable to Nilan-Moore?
Below is an excerpt from the mass general laws that may be pertinent to the Nilan/Moore issue.
Note: paragraph “b”. I believe the clerk magistrate may have viloated the law by prohibiting the Moore’s access to the show cause hearing!
PART III COURTS, JUDICIAL OFFICERS AND PROCEEDINGS IN CIVIL CASES (Chapters 211 through 262)
TITLE IV CERTAIN WRITS AND PROCEEDINGS IN SPECIAL CASES
CHAPTER 258B RIGHTS OF VICTIMS AND WITNESSES OF CRIME
Section 3 Rights afforded victims, witnesses or family members.
Section 3. To provide victims a meaningful role in the criminal justice system, victims and witnesses of crime, or in the event the victim is deceased, the family members of the victim, shall be afforded the following basic and fundamental rights, to the greatest extent possible and subject to appropriation and to available resources, with priority for services to be provided to victims of crimes against the person and crimes where physical injury to a person results:
(a) for victims, to be informed by the prosecutor about the victim’s rights in the criminal process, including but not limited to the rights provided under this chapter. At the beginning of the criminal justice process, the prosecutor shall provide an explanation to the victim of how a case progresses through the criminal justice system, what the victim’s role is in the process, what the system may expect from the victim, why the system requires this, and, if the victim requests, the prosecutor shall periodically apprise the victim of significant developments in the case;
(b) for victims and family members, to be present at all court proceedings related to the offense committed against the victim, unless the victim or family member is to testify and the court determines that the person’s testimony would be materially affected by hearing other testimony at trial and orders the person to be excluded from the courtroom during certain other testimony. — DC
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Thank you, DC. We can’t say whether this would apply to the hearing undertaken by magistrate Nathan Byrnes. The hearing was a show-cause procedure and not a civil or criminal case. Perhaps one of our readers with a legal background could help out.
Contact BHS to Make an Announcement
I think you should contact the Health Systems and have them make an announcement on their web page with all the details. — A BHS Employee
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Since Peter Moore works there and is highly thought of by his colleagues, we hope this is the case. We would also invite BHS to contribute to the benefit for Peter.
The REAL Pittsfield Benefit for Peter Moore
WHEN: 12:30 to 5 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 26.
WHERE: Chameleon’s, 1350 East St., Pittsfield Mass. 01201
WHY: A show of support on behalf of the innocent victim of a careless and callous driver
Fiddling While Rome Burns
It’s appalling to report that while Peter Moore underwent his latest medical procedure this past Thursday, our erstwhile ‘Pinky Tuscadero’ is down in N’orleans celebrating Mardi Gras with her wealthy beau. —TS
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Capt. Moore Will Be Attending Fundraiser
Good Morning Dan:
Received your e-mail this morning and I am very pleased that your readers are planning a benefit for Peter. I plan on attending as I was able to obtain one of the last two tickets from Orlando to Hartford on Jet Blue. I look forward to meeting you and all the people of Berkshire County who have supported Peter through this very difficult time. Unfortunately, Susan will not be able to accompany me as she has a prior commitment for that weekend. Please keep my advised of event developments and of anything that I can do to help.
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Capt. Moore, we shall do that, and we look forward to welcoming you to Pittsfield. We are trying to show Peter, Robin, their children, you, Susan, and all your family and friends that Pittsfield cannot and should not be characterized by the actions of a tiny, tony handful of people who think they can live, work, and play outside the rules the rest of us have to, and do, obey. You will see the REAL Pittsfield, the one made up of good people who are at their wits end at how their city has been nearly run into the ground by that microscopic bacteria known as the GOB.
‘Thanks for Staying on This Story’
Comments: Thank you for staying on this story. The Nilan’s are not above the law like they think. I’m sure you know how people fear being outcast for speaking up.
My family has been indirectly involved in the “circle of power” for years. However I can honestly say that we have stayed clear of any favors and misdeeds. I have witnessed multiple events over the years of how who knows who sweep things up. Keep up your good work. My family no longer is around the area but I still hear the goings on. The pay to play is coming to an end. She has to be held responsible. Thank you. — JN
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FEAR WILL NOT RULE THE DAY
JN: Yes, we know how fear plays a large element in allowing the corrupt to keep their stranglehold over the city. Practically every interview we’ve done in connection with this case — that is, among those who even agree to talk to us — is done on the condition of anonymity. We understand.
That being said, people have to make the choices that are best for themselves. Our choice has always been simple: At the end of the day, we have to look ourselves in the mirror. We have to answer for the choices we make. We choose the truth. We choose transparency. We choose the philosophy of our cowboy hero, Roy Rogers: “If a little guy’s in the right and he keeps a comin’, you can’t stop him.”
And we can say, love us or hate us, that we have attached our name to every opinion we’ve issued over our long career as a print, broadcast, and cyber journalist.
There are other letters that will be run in due time. We invite all comments on any issue. Address them to this blog or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Unlike other mainstream media, here at THE PLANET, we value your ideas and input.
PEDA’s Thurston: ‘It’s a Done Deal” … Uh, Oh
On another note, we see where the remaining parcel of PEDA property has been turned over to the Authority by GE. This means, of course, that GE pays no taxes on the land. Smart move, eh? It also means that GE walks away after poisoning the property and a good chunk of the rest of the city, leaving Pittsfield with 100 years of Janitor-in-a-Drum strength industrial toxins.
Why is it that THE PLANET gets nervous anytime we hear a GOB like Corydon Thurston, PEDA executive director, say: “It’s a done deal.”
When Mayor Gerry Doyle said that about the city’s dealing with GE back in 1998, Pittsfield ended up with the consent agreement — a Swiss cheese document that essentially allowed GE to skip town, taking its jobs and leaving its poisons. GE gave the city $10 million and did some perfunctory cleanup of a spit of the Housatonic River. In exchange, Pittsfield got to keep:
* The five-foot layer of toxin at the bottom of Silver Lake. Under the consent agreement, this junk will not be removed. It simply will be capped with sand and allowed to leach into the groundwater, getting back into and re-poisoning the river. Our Right Honorable Good Friend councilor Melissa Mazzeo has pledged to fight this. We are awaiting an update on her progress. Still no word from Mayor Dan Bianchi on his plans.
* A huge underground water supply that has been rendered unusable for all time.
* Hill 78, a five-story high mountain of toxins within a pitching wedge of a grammar school.
* Unremediated PCBs scattered throughout the city, in unknown quantities and in unknown locations.
Thurston and the PEDA boys can talk about economic development all they want, but as long as Pittsfield remains content to leave well enough alone, no self-respecting capitalistic company will want to move to Pittsfield.
Dobro’s Story in BB Has Lots Between the Lines
In an article by our good friend Tony Dobrowolski of the BB, Thurston says, “Everything was in place. It was a matter of pushing the paper around.”
Dobro’s article also has this paragraph about the final 16 acres: “The … plot … has been proposed as the site of a 170,000-square-foot shopping complex that could bring 150 jobs to the city and reinvigorate the Morningside neighborhood.”
This is the sort of stuff a talented reporter like Tony is required to put into news stories to keep the bosses happy. We suspect Tony holds his nose all the way through. The BB bosses, in turn, know that the GOB will be happy. Pleases the GOB Bosses means EVERYTHING to the BB Brass. Saying the complex “could” bring a million jobs and turn Morningside in to Nirvana is the same as saying it “could not.”
Thurston said the property transfer will now allow PEDA to close “agreements that are appropriate.” He’s referring to Waterston Development‘s plan to put a Dollar Tree (that’s what the smart money is saying) on the site. Just what Pittsfield needs: More service jobs that do not pay a livable wage.
Oh yeah, and there’s this gem: “[Thurston] characterized PEDA’s negotiations with both Waterstone and Action Ambulance … as being in the ‘very early stages.'” Action Ambulance: That’s the company brought into Pittsfield with the help of Gerry Doyle. Nuff said, except that former Speaker of the House Sal DiMasi, who’s now serving time in federal prison, once took the floor of the House shilling for Action Ambulance.
Pittsfield needs Action Ambulance like they need more hit-and-run drivers. With County Ambulance and the great (and better trained) crew of the Pittsfield Fire Department, first responders always, the city’s needs would have been covered.
File it under “A” for “Another GOB Sweetherat Deal.”
THUS OUR MORNING MOVES ON. AH, OUR EYESIGHT IS PARCHED UP TO THE CINDERS, BUT THE SPIRITS SPEAK CHEERFULLY, THAT SO WE MAY AWAKEN THE COURAGE OF OUR FRIENDS.
“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”
LOVE TO ALL.