Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Sam Talarico

Earlier today I posted this post:

The News Sentinel ran a GREAT editorial today. Please read it:

http://www.fortwayne.com/mld/fortwayne/16794298.htm

OK, so it may not be great; however, it is mine...

I will be generating a list of questions to ask the City about the financing. What would you like for me to ask?

Mike Sylvester

Our current Republican City Councilman, Sam Talarico Jr, has this to say:
NOTE, Sam Talarico sent me an email from his law office email account and verified that he did in fact post this comment!
(Mikes comments are in red following Sam's)

Mike,

I fully support your right to review all of the numbers with the Richard Administration.
Thank goodness...

All citizens should get their questions answered whether it be in public meetings like the one on March 8th or in invidual meetings.
We certainly agree on this one. Does it disturb you that our Mayor could not answer any of the three questions I asked him about the financing for this project Sam?

I am trying to figure out, however, what expertise you have to be the "community analyzer" of all the finance issues relating to this project. The fact that you are a tax accountant does not make you an expert on all aspects of development and municipal financing. It seems a little over-reaching for you to be holding yourself out as the community's auditor.
Sam you are showing more then a little arrogance with this comment. I have NEVER held myself out to be an expert on Governmental financing. I am an accountant, a small business owner, and a taxpayer. I am also a journeyman electrician, spent six years as an electronic technician, and four years as the Maintenance Manager at a local factory. I may be looking at this project from a different perspective then you do. I think I am qualified to look at a Financial Plan and determine if it makes sense...

In your opinion are ANY of the current City Councilman who will vote on this project qualified to vote on the project?

Surely if you think that I am not qualified to ask basic questions about the project you might think that some of our nine current City Councilman may be even less qualified then I to analyze the project AND then to vote on it?

I read a GREAT letter to the editor in the newspaper from local business owner Tom Current supporting the project. The Currents grew up right around the corner from me in Walden. Do you think he was qualified to write the letter to the editor he wrote in support of the project?

Are any of the business owners in Fort Wayne qualified to look at the plan?

Is the only person qualified to look at the plan a Governmental Finance specialist?

I do however, hope that the Richard Administration sets down with you and other citizens to answer questions whether it be in individual meetings or further group meetings like the one on March 8th.Sam T.
Me to...

I have to say that I find Sam's comment to be fairly typical of many politicians and elected officials. They seem to think that we need to be taken care of and are not competent enough to understand what is best for us.

Sam please feel free to come to the meeting and explain anything to me that I am too feeble to comprehend... I am sure that as a City Councilman you will be able to hold my hand and help me understand the complexities of Governmental financing that apparently the general population is to un-educated to understand...

I need to stop posting or I am going to go on a rant and say some very un-charitable things...

Mike Sylvester

7 comments:

trying2hide said...

What the heck? Who does he think he is? Elected officials are supposed to be questioned? Moreover they are to find out what the people they represent want and then act upon that NOT push through what they want and shove it down the throats of the citizens!

Mike Kole said...

Too many elected officials come to believe that only they are suited to plan such weighty matters as community finance. Hogwash. The average person, CPA or not, should be able to understand a budget. When it gets to be so complex that only the select few can understand it, the thing has become too complex to be of any service to the people anyhow. At that point, it only serves those bureaucrats interested in creating empire and preserving empire.

You would have thought that with the general lack of interest in community politics, your desire to review the books should be a welcomed thing.

Tim Zank said...

Mike, you did an outstanding job of getting the point accross without resorting to anger.

Well Done Sir!

Anonymous said...

Guys, did you happen to notice that I did not say I was an expert either? Mike has been asking for business plans, and other information which he has every right to have. My only point is that it is possible that his analysis of such plans may not be the definitive analysis on such matters.

Mike has asked some good questions and I visit this site because he frequently has a good take on some of these issues. I have forwarded several of his questions on to the administration for follow up in the past.

Mr. Trying2Hide, I have been questioned to no end on this project and I have followed up on every letter, phone call and even the letters to the editor. Nobody can acuse me of not responding to their questions. What about the constitutens who want this project to proceed? Why is it only considered listening if it means agreeing with your side of the argument?

Sam T.

Stan Matuska said...

Good for you Mike! I'm sure the city doesn't care for citizens poking around their proposals, but guess what - the elected officals are representing the population of Fort Wayne, not themselves. We have a right to know. This also has a strange way of keeping our elected officials honest!

I am curious though why Sam calls you the "community's auditor". Did you ever call yourself that?

Let's face it, they probably assume that you ARE smart enough to understand the proposal...and that's what bothers them!!!

If everything's on the up and up, then what's the personal attack all about?

LP Mike Sylvester said...

Stan:

The only person ever to refer to me as a "Community Auditor" is Sam Talarico...

I have NEVER audited anything in my life.

I certainly will NOT be auditing, reviewing, or compliing the financial statements associated with this project...

I just want some answers...

Mike Sylvester

Anonymous said...

In fairness to Sam:

1. He has, I think, been as responsive as any elected official to questions on this project. It is a damn shame that citizens have to go to extraordinary lengths to obtain even basic information about this project, but I find no reason to lay that criticism primarily at Sam's feet. The City administration seems to be the culpable party.

2. Internet or e-mail communications have a tendancy to engender hard feelings to a greater degree than intended and in ways that would never happen if we were speaking face-to-face. In a failed effort to be witty, I slammed Sam a lot harder than I intended in a post on the FWO board a week or two ago. Sam and I do not know each other well, but I can't recall a harsh word or personal rebuke between us. I'm sure the same words would not have slipped out of my mouth had I been speaking with him directly, rather than playing internet pundit.

I applaud Mike's effort to obtain more information, particularly since I know he will share the facts he discovers as well as his opinion concerning them. His opinion may or may not be accepted by me, but facts will be welcome.

Mark Garvin