It appears Dolan was also in on the cash grab along with Robert Van Campen. He also accepted $1500 form LaRovere Insurance Agency, the insurance agency that just happens to handle our City's lucrative General Liability Policy. http://1oxm8e2d5iwu1w9m62295bjk.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/CFR-Dolan-130122.pdf
From the Office of Campaign and Political Finance
Commonwealth of Massachusetts, municipal campaigns:
A political committee may not solicit or receive a
contribution on behalf of a candidate who is a public
employee if the contributor has an interest in any particular
matter in which the employee participates or which is the
subject of his official responsibility.
Hold on - I truly can't stand Dolan, but perhaps the "contribution" went to to his "reelection committee" and not to him personally. Sleazy and low rent, yes. An ethics violation? I don't know about that. Sounds like "politics as usual" to me, as sleazy as that is. The Van Campen "contribution" could have also been a similar deal, from his run for the Everett Mayor position.
Having said that, an "ethical" candidate would have refused or returned such a "contribution" as a matter of good judgement, because it immediately raises questions of impropriety.
It's all about political patronage with RD and his ilk (there's that word again).
Let the Ethics Commission sort out what is kosher and what is not. RD will be downing the Maalox meanwhile, which is just as it should be.
I work in another school district, and I attended a meeting this morning that involved teacher leaders and administrators from several surrounding towns (not even very close in proximity to Melrose). During the meeting Melrose was cited several times to point out what "not to do" with regard to dealing with SPED students and their parents. Taymore was specifically named by one member of the group. I guess she is known far and wide for her "best practices" when dealing with families. Oh yeah, and the Civil Rights violation was also discussed. Melrose sure is famous for their school system. Wish it was for other reasons.
Here's something for all the people overpaying for real estate in Melrose. What do you think is going to happen to your value when this kind of stuff gets more and more circulation? Pretty soon not even the cabal of lying realtors is going to be able to cover it up like they have been all along. The whole house of cards will come tumbling down. Now consider the added, and likely soon to be realized "market correction". When the Fed starts talking about raising interest rates, it's time to be wary. Remember 2007-2008?
You ain't seen anything yet - wait til the school committee vote to give her a raise tonight! All except CKK - the only one with ethics and moral fortitude.
Did you see the fireworks tonight at school committee? Carrie K asked some basic questions of J Piccone the business manager regarding the $34,000 in legal invoices over the last two months. Some of these invoices are being paid out of other accounts. Apparently, Carrie's basic questions about how one of the legal invoices related to Toshiba Phones was too much for Dolan and he accused Carrie of accusing Jay Piccone of improper accounting shennanegins. Ironically, Carrie said nor insinuated anything of the sort. However, just the fact that Dolan brought it up himself and denied it was happening suggests that there IS something shady going on here. You have to admire Carrie for so effortlessly manipulating Dolan, Thorpe and Driscoll to the point where they basically implicate themselves. It is quite entertaining to see these clowns scurrying around like cockroaches when the lights get turned on.[:)s]
Yeah, that was pretty amazing. Well Toshiba is the same thing as paying the attorney isn't it? Say what? These guys are just over the top crazed in their stupidity and arrogance. But it's obvious they are also running very very scared. Three attorneys and a consultant for their "special" impromptu 6:00 pre-meeting? Really? Don't you think that was overkill even for this bunch of jacka$$es? And what exactly are we going to get stuck paying for this little bit of silly trickery? Do they really think we are all that stupid that we can't see right through their patented BS? This was a clear case of their running scared, they know they've $hit the bed, and now they are going to roll out their fleet of idiotic script-mumbling "experts" to show how very very Right they are and how very very Wrong their favorite object of hatred is. Well, not so much. And then there's Don C sounding like a casebook example of a bloviating blowhard, talking about the "one member" who just won't get with their program and answers only to her 2500 constituents. How very subtle and politically refined of him.
Last the public knew it was this school committee (most of it at least) defending a superintendent who had released the names and private information of 220 charter school children, because they obviously care so very much about protecting student confidentiality. When their favorite hate object has asked about legal bills and who's accessing them, I don't recall any of the documents in the media pieces about her public records requests having anything whatsoever to do with her wanting confidential student or teacher information. Quite the contrary. She just wants to understand why the money is being moved around willy-nilly and so much of it (and clearly she's right that it is), and why legal bills are being listed under Toshiba like tonight, and who on the committee or in administration is the "client." As she said in the Globe (as is every American's right, by the way, "Norms" be da*ned), she and they are the client, and as such, they are entitled to full disclosure about how our taxpayer money is being spent. End of story. All those lawyers seem to have forgotten who pays the bills. They also couldn't seem to get all their facts straight either, despite all their bloviating. And RVC looks like the complete vacant nothing that he is. Good for our own representative for standing up to them and defining what dignity and integrity really is. What a $hitstorm! Silver lining is that they are showing more and more of their true ugly colors and not doing themselves any favor whatsoever from a PR point of view. Let's hope the two SC candidates sitting there (for the first time anyone has seen them all year, despite their claims to be So Very Interested in the district education system) took notes about what real class is and what it isn't. They need some Edna's and Filbert's to go with their blasted Norms! Just so ridiculous.
No surprise to see Dolan behave like that. He knows that the bottom line is that he owns this, and since he's such a little punk his only response when he's caught with his fingers in the cookie jar is to go all nasty. That's the real Rob Dolan, our very own "education expert". It's actually laughable, really, or it would be if it weren't so sad and disgusting. They think everyone is so dumb that no one will notice, when for anyone with half a brain it's a giant red flag. Thank God for Carrie.
There were quite a few very "special" moments last night, including the superintendent's canned OCR statement about how there is "zero tolerance" for racism in Melrose. Yup. That just takes care of it.
And they approved a superintendent raise! Dolan stated the need for this as if it came down from Margaret's angels directly that they had to do this. Apparently $180,000 wasn't enough for this specimen of superintendent exemplariness. In August it was the business mismanager's turn for his new contract. Just wow.
So they want the citizens of Melrose to pay more $$$$ for schools and they approved another raise for CT. I will not even consider supporting an override. Money being used for lawsuits etc. The more you make for the last 3 years before retirement raises your pension. I cannot support this. If the schools are in dire need of money then she should refuse her raise!
Dolan's holy pay grid (created individually for each of his Exemplary administrators)
What a scam
And what about those 3 attorneys and consultant at that irregular 6:00 meeting (only caught part of it, but it was all very stagey and strange)? They so desperately claim the district needs money and then they hire all of those people just so they can try and prop themselves up with all the bad press they've got and so that they can beat up on CKK. First, they weren't successful because only when Ms. K showed up for the regular meeting did anything become real, with substantial questions about real things, including calling out the chair's bullying by referencing the district policy on bullying (good for her!). They showed what lousy hiring our district continues to do. No surprise that the SPED attorney (who bragged about representing the district for 25 years) would be happy to take some more thousands of our taxpayer cash to sit there and make more errors that give him more billable hours. They did such a bang-up job on that civil rights issue (or issues) after all.
Read the garbage the chair is putting out there on the district meeting thing IQM2 about the superintendent summary evaluation. It's really hard to believe the gall of that mayor/committee.
I was actually stunned, although I probably shouldn't have been, to hear DC so transparently attack CKK. The jist of his comment seems to have been that SC members should "get with the program" and be 100% supportive, regardless of whether the SC was mismanaging the budget or employees were violating the civil rights of students. You want to know why the schools are in such a deplorable state? You don't have to go much further than that. When the agenda is less about improving the system and more about covering the SC's and Superintendent's rear end, this is the kind of idiotic scenario you wind up with. He should be ashamed of himself, but of course, he's just following the course laid out by that vicious phony calling the shots.
"employees were violating the civil rights of students"
employees breaking some of the most sacred laws of America, allowed to stay employed by the superintendent, advised by that crack team of attorneys who won't reveal who in administration is hiring them over and over again, sanctioned by the School committee and backing their "right" to violate basic American tenets of representation, supported by the unquestioning parents of mostly very young children (also the backbone of the pro-override cabal)
That's actually an easy question - because admitting she's so bad would also mean admitting they made a mistake in hiring her, and that's something they are loathe to do, especially Dolan, who thinks he's incapable of error. Giving her another raise is just another way of maintaining that mindset.
Apparently the school department operates with a different set of rules than the city side. On the city side, when you want to spend money from one line item on an expense from another line, you must go before the aldermen and request a transfer subject to their approval. Not so with the school department, where such approval appears to not only be not necessary, but not desirable. I found the Mayor's rather vehement assertion that there was no "hanky panky" going on pretty amusing.
So I'll be charitable - given current operating conditions, perhaps there is nothing improper in what they did, but that's not the point. The point is that the money never gets put into the right line item, so it creates the illusion that there is less being spent on legal that is actually being spent. How is an independent observer supposed to know that the Toshiba expense item is actually a legal expense item? All CKK did was attempt to point that out, and all the Mayor did was to highlight the point. It's a terrible accounting practice, which is why the city side doesn't do it.
I don't find anything that comes out of the Mayor's mouth amusing. The disrespect and derision directed at CKK for no other reason that she disagrees with them is largely the result of their taking their cues from him. In his world view, anyone who questions or disagrees with him is "the enemy" or a "hater". He has no understanding of the concept of loyal opposition. He is hateful, narrow-minded punk.
And here's a word of advice for DC: It's better to remain silent an be thought an idiot than to open your mouth and confirm it.
One final fun fact - in the 2013 election, some guy named Blanks got 27% of the total vote. The next highest candidate got about 15%.
Didn't DC get the 27% allotted to him - there were blank - correct?
Hopefully for next year, the School Committee Members Mayor Dolan, Kristen Thorpe, Margaret Driscoll, Don Constantine, Jessica Dugan and Chris Casatelli will actually provide some facts to support their stellar ratings for Superintendent Taymore. Thank you Carrie K. for providing data and facts to support your rating which actually reflects reality.
What is wrong with these parents who continue to accept the cr@p being fed to them by the SC? Seriously, some of the biggest looney-lefty, self-proclaimed "progressives", who wear their "tolerance" and "commitment" to minorities like a badge for all to see, are the same parents who are defending the SC and this Civil Rights violation. I got into a pretty heated argument with a group of them yesterday, asking them how they could defend such a cover-up. How could they support a system that just ignored the student and supported the racist teacher? They are nothing but a group of hypocrites. It is fine to be "progressive" when they don"t really have to back it up with actions. But when it is a choice between doing what is right or doing what will help them sleep at night (dreaming of the imaginary perfect school system they would like to believe they pay for), they will always choose the latter. Sickening.
Yes, unfortunately it is the pretend-progressives here who are vehemently and blindly supporting this bunch of power-abusing fascists. The local dems masquerade as real democrats when in fact the conduct of many (maybe even most) of the politicians and those they are supporting may as well be any variety of corrupt thuggish officials in the worst regimes. Watch that video from Tuesday night with that kangaroo court of bad attorneys and "expert" if you have any remaining delusions about the kind of "leadership" these pretend-progressives are so fanatically defending:
Where is the outrage? Why was not a single person there for public comment to defend the students from these monsters?
Let's face it - most parents don't want to take the time, or have the time, or plain don't want to fight the system - part of it is fear of retribution against their kids - and of course we know that this goes on from parent reports on this message board.
The great idiot and buffoon of the SC, dumb-dumb, sycophant Don, says, in the last 6PM meeting that the only reason they have to tolerate the only honest member of the SC, CKK, is because so few people vote for in the SC race and she (not naming her but of course we all know he is referring to - the only honest member, CKK) has a group of citizens who always vote for her. Hey Don - we might say that about you too!
The comment above from Don the Dum-Dum and about Don the sycophant is 100% right. The problem with most on the school committee is that they think they are smarter than everyone else. Don talking for the first time in recent memory at a meeting and then spewing that garbage about CKK just goes to show what a tool he is for the Mayor and his posse. Any independent thinking ever go on in there Don?
Those "questions" to the panel cost us the taxpayers thousands of dollars I bet. It was all a farce to make veiled attacks on CKK. The criticism that CKK isn't a team player with them and just wants to make trouble is outrageous considering their team is racist, condescending, self-centered, egotistical, and has absolutely zero interest in taking care of the students and 100% interest in exchanging political favors and lining their own pockets. Thank goodness CKK is not a team player with them.
The part about how the chair should be the servant of the people instead of master was classic. That Chair Thorpe was not interested at all in serving the citizens. She reduced public comment to 5 minutes, was incredibly rude to people speaking ("FINISH UP), along with an attitude that would be inappropriate on a US Supreme Court justice much less some petty pathetic bureaucrat in Melrose. Then she moved public comment to the end of the meeting. She also had a fit when CKK allowed public questions at the Budget meeting and during the meeting after the speakers were finished. Some public servant. She has also yelled and belittled citizens who speak. Shameful.
The only good news is that Thorpe and Don are not running again for re-election. It is only MD delusional enough to think she is worthy of that seat.
Seriously? Is this for sure? Are you sure they didn't file at the last minute on Friday?
Please don't raise my hopes - but is it true that Thorp & Don are NOT running? Probably because they finally realize that it is best to leave than stay around when all these discrimination law suits "hit the fan". Nice going Thorp & Don - you have contributed greatly to the demise of a previous good school system - what a negative legacy they leave behind.
Sorry, maybe they did it at one minute before the close of business Friday. But last Friday the Melrose Weekly News had on page 1 "One SC incumbent In Race So Far."
So the superintendent (upon advice from the city's crack legal team) thinks it's legitimate to thumb her nose at the Secretary of State's Office by refusing to provide the documents they told her to provide, and then to try and charge Ms. Kourkoumelis over $7,600 for access to some of the redacted junk mail she would no doubt provide, just to add insult to injury. And there are at least 3 federal Office of Civil Rights investigations now ongoing, along with who knows how many grievances, Special Education lawsuits, and other legal actions against the district and city. Astounding.
And we as taxpayers should TRUST these officials with more of our hard-earned money exactly WHY? So that they can give themselves more "pots of money for administrative raises" (that was exactly the wording in the School Committee agenda this summer!!!!) Incredible, absolutely mind-blowingly incredible.
"Invest" in the school district indeed!!! No thank you. I'd rather write a check to Whitey! At least there was no pretense about who was strongarming and what it bought! "Investment" my arse! Put all the cute pictures of little kids out there you want, "Yes"-crazies, but there's no amount of perfume that disguises this Skunk Cabbage![:|][:|][:|][:-?][:|]