The Dude is In

Melissa continues to conduct a civics class: part two.

Click above see to MZ take both Goff (and the show’s host) to school on "Get Wrong with Josh Pitiful"

Will post part two when it becomes available.

Josh, by the way:  someone from a public access show in the 1980s called me and says they still haven’t been paid for the work on your title block.

"Positive" Goff campaign finally decides to tepidly sling a little mud, forgets to check somewhat important thing!

SO!  Some brave soul over at Goff Campaign Headquarters decided it was time to try dip their toes in the water of Lake Nastytown:

This little nugget attempts to make an  inference against MZ that totally flies in the face of reality.

 Anyone who knows Melissa knows that when she grabs on to a cause or an issue, she digs in long and hard and is the last one ever to give up.  The only possible events this cheap shot could be meant to reference are MZ’s service on the East Haddam BoE and the MIddle School Conversion Committee.  So let’s unpack this and set the record straight:

  • The East Haddam Middle School conversion project is a political landmine that has been sitting undetonated for the last couple of years.  In point of fact, the MSCC completed their work and received the finished design for the project from Silver Petrucelli and submitted their recommendation to the Board of Selectmen, at which point their work was done.  Any action (or lack of action) after that point has nothing to do with the actions of the MSCC members.
  • MZ did resign from the East Haddam Board of Education, but did so for a very specific and important ethical reason.  I realize such nuance might be beyond the ken of some of our favorite old-timey East Hampton politicos, so I’ll explain: after consulting with BoE counsel, Melissa Ziobron resigned from the East Haddam Board of Education specifically to avoid conflict of interest in order that she could organize the Save Our School PAC. This in order to force the 4-8 Middle School building project to a successful second referendum so that the new Middle School could be built.

Oh, and while we’re throwing around inferences about things uncompleted, I guess when making this accusation against his opponent he forgot to check his own East Hampton property tax bills:

Post-hurricane, pre-election

Again, seriously?  At least this time East Hampton fared a little better than the surrounding towns.  Jeff Butler’s replacement, William Quinlan, seems a bit more on the ball than his predecessor. East Hampton is down to 7% and East Haddam is at 33% which is much better than last time during Irene/Snowmageddeon 2011. Hope everyone came through safe and sound and it won’t be too long before we all have electricity back.  The shoreline took the worst of it.

As noted in the previous post, the Ziobron/Goff Debate came out pretty much as expected.  Ziobron comported herself with obvious energy and intelligence on a broad range of issues. Not widely reported was some last minute meddling on behalf of William Devine from everyone’s least favorite former East Hampton Town Council Chairperson:

But according to sources, Devine declined a proffered invitation from Patch, citing unavailability due to work. Which more or less makes for a giant “WTF?!”  Why even bother asking if you’re just going to turn it down? EHRTC, if you are looking for credibility, this is not the way to go about it.  Just saying.

In the aftermath, Ziobron has picked up a couple of key endorsements.  This from the Chatham Party:

Members of the Chatham Party voted to support Melissa Ziobron, a Republican from East Haddam, based on her qualifications, experience and openness to engage with the Chatham Party, which holds majority on the East Hampton Town Council. Additionally, members expressed that Ziobron has been consistent in her message throughout the campaign by setting realistic goals about the economy, community and the environment that she can address as a freshman State Representative. Further still, members believe that Ziobron is better suited than her opponent for the office and will be more responsive to her constituents throughout the district.

And this morning, in the Norwich Bulletin:

In terms of pure energy, Ziobron wins. Although we found a number of issues where we disagreed with her, the energy and dedication she has demonstrated was far more appealing and impressive. We have no doubt that her commitment to serving the best interests of all citizens is sincere and serious.

Goff is equally dedicated by his years of service to the community. However, in our conversation with him we found that his knowledge of issues beyond that of local concerns not as well developed. As such on important issues of education, tax reform, state spending, and others, his responses were vague and priorities contingent on further study and review.

A closer reading of Goff’s recent record would be far less flattering, of course, but little reason at this point to drag out what many local voters already know so well. 

Debate Coverage

Goff said some people might view him through the lens of his years on the Town Council in East Hampton, a governing body that has seen its share of controversies in recent years. “The decisions that I made 100 percent were based on information and facts.”

More later.

Goff Campaign Donor William Devine might want his $5 back

Brenda Sullivan, HTNP:

Bill Devine, who served on the East Hampton Town Council during one of the most tumultuous periods in town politics said today (Oct. 22) that he has completed the necessary paperwork to be a write-in candidate for state representative for the 34th District this November.

Republican Devine failed to gain his party’s nomination this year. Instead, the party chose Melissa Ziobron of East Haddam.

Now, as we all know, our own local version of Homer Stokes belongs to “a certain organization.”  And isn’t it curious how, after months of silence, no public expression of interest after losing the nomination and the clear impression that the standard-bearer for the East Hampton Good Ol’ Boys/Republicrat clan is not doing so well against a very well organized moderate Republican, suddenly William Devine, East Hampton’s most retiring jeweler, has decided to stage a write-in campaign?

Your Dude’s prediction?  Devine will garner a number of votes equal to or less than the membership of East Hampton Candid. Oh and yes, Devine did really donate to the Goff campaign.

It’s on, apparently.

Not really news, but:

Ziobron/Goff debate will be taking place this Thursday, October 25 at 7pm at Nathan Hale Ray High School.  The event is being hosted by our local Patch. Might be interesting.

Of note:

Seems as if an inordinate number of Ziobron campaign signs have been subject to theft and vandalism.  More than 20 at last count.

Savvy readers of this blog will recall similar experiences from last year when Chatham Party signs were targeted.

Is this the act of mischievous, ill-behaved children or East Hampton DTC/RTC ‘Republicrat’ business-as-usual?

Sadly, I’m not sure there is a difference.

Candidate Forum Coverage

Wendy VIncent, East Hampton-Portland Patch:

Though Chris Goff, the Democrat running in the 34th House District, refused to take part in a debate last night in East Hampton, his opponent, Republican Melissa Ziobron, showed up and took questions from the public.

More here and with a letter of response from MZ here.

34th District Candidate Chris Goff will not be taking your questions!

I haz a sad.Yes.  The Chatham Party, who has no candidate of their own running for this seat (but has been obviously  supportive of Ms. Ziobron), was thoughtful enough to organize a candidate forum event for this coming October 11th at Sears Park.  And — zomg — guess who declined their invitation?  

That’s right, Mr. “I am hearing what is being said"  Chris Goff The same man whom, when nominated, was decried by Red McKinney as a squeaky-clean, goody two-shoes selfless public servant with “no baggage.” 

Excuse me.  Just threw up a little in my mouth.

Lest you haters out there  start screaming about conspiracies: the format of the forum was determined to be fair.  Candidates were offered 3 pre-approved questions and opportunities for closing statements. The Goff campaign citied an unwillingness to appear at a “partisan event” as their official excuse.  It certainly could’t be because of a schedule conflict: a check of his official campaign calendar show absolutely no events between now and the election. None.

Ziobron will still be appearing.

If Chris’ absence bothers you, be sure and let him know how you are feeling on his Facebook page and on the event page.  My guess is the following sums up Chris’ feelings about appearing before concerned East Hampton voters:

Has it really been 2 years?

Well, not precisely.  The official anniversary is this Friday.  Nonetheless:

And somehow I find it fitting that after all this time things have become so pleasantly quiet.  Oh, I am certain the haters are out there, lurking and seething as The Chatham Party majority pretty much delivers and accomplishes what they set out to do.

 By all accounts the new Town Manager has done an excellent job of settling into his duties while managing to deal parsimoniously with issues that in times past would have assuredly been blown out of proportion.  The only thing of real import lately was the sudden and inexplicable resignation of members of the Fire Commission, but with Campground Apparatchik  Mike B. no longer ginning folks up with his coverage on Patch, the commentary has shifted over almost entirely to either the presidential race or whose cat is the cutest.

And that’s totally fine with me.

Of course, there is one lingering issue:  the curious candidacy of Christopher Goff.  Chris has finally decided to start campaigning, and predictably he’s trotting out the typical empty electioneering rhetoric.  His website curiously invites us to “Ask Chris”, but of course I don’t expect inquiries that might be unflattering — especially anything that might reference his disastrous final term on the EHTC — to be answered publicly.  Certainly were I to “Ask Chris” a few questions I am sure he would never respond.  But I’ll offer a few here.  Perhaps some intrepid soul might bring these to his attention:

  • As an East Hampton Councilor, do you agree with the assessment of the state authorities that it was inappropriate and illegal for you and your other EH Councilors to discuss personnel issues regarding Police  Chief Matt Reimondo without his being present (as required by law)?
  • Would you agree that it seems illogical that former Town Manager Jeffery O’Keefe, who you supported, maintained his innocence regarding his motivation in the attempted firing of Chief Reimodo and charges of sexual harassment from town employees, yet ultimately resigned in disgrace and left the state to avoid prosecution?
  • Do you think it was a wise use of taxpayer resources to force changes to Ordinance 109 to referendum when it was clearly opposed by the majority of town residents?
  • Do you think it was good stewardship of taxpayer dollars to award a $170,000 severance package to a Town Manager who clearly should have been either placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation, or fired for cause?
  • Finally, considering how you and your fellow Councilors willfully defied your constituents and essentially drove town governance to a halt over petty grievances in your final term as Councilor, can you give me any reason whatsoever as to why any intelligent resident of this district should consider you worthy of their trust, much less their vote?

Just wondering.