Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Soft Costs = Taxpayer Funded Campaign Contributions

John Bury has a follow-up to the solar panel program being peddled by the Union County Improvement Authority which can be viewed here.  Bury is a numbers guy and it's his opinion that the plan makes absolutely no fiscal sense.  I agree.

When the UCIA informed Cranford that its library qualfied for the program, Cranford had a laundry list of pertinent questions, some of which Bury asked here.  From watching the video, it appears that the UCIA offered Cranford no projected savings or other information which would allow Cranford to make an informed decision at the time it sought Cranford's participation.

So far, the County has already spent close to a quarter of a million dollars and the project hasn't even gotten off the ground.  Those moneys go to the UCIA'S darling law firm, DeCotiis Fitzpatrick, and others who make substantial campaign donations to the Union County Dem. Machine.  Here's what  Mary Jane Cooper, New Jersey’s first Inspector General, had to say about the DeCotiis law firm, during her investigation of the failed Encap project:  "EnCap and its attorney, the Teaneck-based DeCotiis firm, misled the state about key elements of the project."

That's a troubling finding in my view.

Would you like to know what the DeCotiis law firm does for its money?  The County Watchers wanted to know and this is the response it received from the UCIA. 

At the last council meeting where council voted to go along with this program, Linden Mayor Gerbounka stated that aside from soft costs, such as attorney fees, participation in the program is free.  It's been reported that the $45 million debt to be incurred to fund this program will be guaranteed by the taxpayers.  It is unknown if there will be any reward to the taxpayers that would justify this significant risk.

What is known is that, ironically, Linden taxpayers end up paying large fees to the DeCotiis law firm and others who make large campaign donations to the Union County Democratic Party, the very party that the majority of Linden voters are trying to rid themselves of. 

What a racket.


Anonymous said...

I disagree regarding your comment that Linden voters are trying to rid themselves of the Democratic party. We're trying, and succeeding, in ridding ourselves of the corrupt JTG-era Democratic politicians.

There's a new breed of Democrat coming into Linden, one that cares more about doing what's right for the citizens regardless of the party spearheading individual efforts.

NFS said...

@Anon 9:33

I should have said the "Union County Dem. Machine" or the "Regular Union County Democratic Party".