Posts Tagged ‘michael colantuono’

Snakes on a Dais

UPDATE: 02.22.2018: At last night’s City Council meeting, a statement was read regarding Council support of City Attorney Gary Geuss’s legal opinion against the Mayor’s veto power of executive staff contracts, supported by Attorney Michael Colantuono’s original legal opinion.  Colantuono will prepare an additional written statement for the unwashed masses (us) stating something to that effect within 7 days.

STATEMENT FROM THE COUNCIL: 

“By Majority vote, The Council supports the City Attorney as the sole legal authority under the Charter and we reject any suggestion that any other charter officer or elected official be permitted to obtain counsel at taxpayer’s expense. The majority of the City Council, excluding Councilmember Conder and Councilmember Perry, (Councilmember Adams was absent) reaffirms the statements of the City Attorney, during the February 6, 2018 Council Meeting, that the sole remedy for the Mayor, is to file a writ with the Superior Court. The Charter is plain, that the three Charter Officers report to, work for and take direction from The Council, not the Mayor. No one can have two bosses and work efficiently. We have asked outside Counsel to prepare a written version of his advice, suitable to be shared with the public within 7 days.”

ATTORNEY MICHAEL COLANTUONO RETAINED BY THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE AND WHO’S LEGAL OPINION OVER RODE MAYOR BAILEY’S VETO COMES INTO QUESTION.  We find in the following a monetary contribution to John Russo in 2006 when he was running for Assembly for $125.00 and a ‘payment in kind’ for $1,375.38.

Yep, I gave him a couple of bucks and some time, so what’s the big deal?  You have a problem with that?

What was that ‘non-monetary’ contribution of $1,374.38 to Russo’s Campaign?  Sandwiches? Legal Advice?  WE ALSO HAVE RIVERSIDE’S  LAW FIRM BEST, BEST & KRIEGER WHO APPARENTLY WERE CONTRIBUTORS OF $2,000.00 TO JOHN RUSSO’S 2006 ASSEMBLY CAMPAIGN!  MORE TO COME…

        

CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE

UPDATE: FEBRUARY 20, 2018: PRESS ENTERPRISE:  SPLIT RIVERSIDE CITY COUNCIL STANDS BY VIEW THAT MAYOR CAN’T VETO CITY MANAGER’S CONTRACT

Is TMC becoming relevant when it comes to sources for Press Enterprise articles?  That’s okay.. will you at least pay us the freelance rate?  Oop’s here it is in all it’s glory.. the Colantuono legal opinion on Mayor Bailey’s veto power. Colantuono cites City Charter Section 600 and Section 700.  His legal interpretation is that the Mayor cannot veto a Council decision on the employment of a charter officer.

                    

CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE OR CLICK THIS LINK FOR THE PDF VERSION

Councilman Mike Gardner, Ward 1,  said during the meeting that the veto issue was distracting the city from important business.  Love when I hear this..it couldn’t be the important business of the taxpaying residents having to deal with pot holes, uncut trees, drug houses, prostitution, shoot outs, burglaries, threats to neighbors, mail theft, theft in general, car break in’s, home break in’s,  inundation of homeless into our neighborhoods, etc. etc..

Will Mike Gardner’s unpopular votes in favor of Russo’s contract and against the Mayor’s power to veto sink his chances at County Board of Supervisors?  Magic 8-ball says…definitely maybe.

The question remains, what happens if the courts uphold Mayor Bailey’s Veto?  Will the Russo’s contract be rescinded? If it is, how those who pushed against Bailey fare in the future?  Those such as the City Council, City Attorney Gary Geuss and those that are subcontracted with the taxpayer’s monies to support a ‘legal opinion,’ such as the ‘high priced’ lawyer Michael Colantuono…. which incidentally, an attorney the Moreno’s went against in care of the taxpayers and won.  Let’s give credit where credit’s due…

According to the Press Enterprise, When Council members responded with their thoughts and some additional questions at Tuesday’s City Council, Geuss said city officials should not reply because neither Russo’s contract nor the veto was on the agenda. The state’s public meeting law, the Brown Act, limits what topics the council may discuss without putting it on the agenda in advance.  Because the Council neeeeeeeeever violates the Brown Act….laughing out loud.  Really Geuss?

Our Mayor, the proverbial hero, fighting for truth, justice and Riversidian way, preparing to dive from the seventh floor of City Hall to fight evil and protect the wallets and pocketbooks his people.

TMC, RATED RIVERSIDE REGIONAL COUNTIES MOST, “SCANDALOUS,” “NEGATIVE,” “WARPED,” “RAUNCHY,” “LOW CLASS,” “VISIONS OF GRANDEUR,” “FULL OF B.S.,” “REPREHENSIBLE,” “IGNORANT,” “MISGUIDED,” “BULLYISH,” “INDECENT,” “REPUGNANT,””IMMORAL,” “FILTHY,” “VILE,” “SICK,” “PERVERTED,” “DEFAMATORY,” “STUPID,” “PATHETIC,” “DESPICABLE,” “DISAPPOINTING,” “BELOW THE BELT,” “A NEW LOW,” “SHOCKING,” “OFFENSIVE,” “OBNOXIOUS,” “INAPPROPRIATE,” “HURTFUL,” “MEAN SPIRITED,” “DISTASTEFUL,” “EMBARRASSING,” HORIFFIC,” “SLANDEROUS” “FIT TO BE VIEWED FROM THE REAR” AND MEZZSPELLED, “MISSPELLED” AND “OPINIONATED” BLOG SITE! YES WE ADMIT WE OUR ALL OF THAT AND MORE, WHICH IN CURRENT TERMS IS KNOWN AS “UNPOLITICALLY CORRECT.” TEMPORARILY BLOCKED BY THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE AT PUBLIC ACCESS SITES WITHIN THE CITY, THEN UNBLOCKED. I GUESS YOU CANNOT DO THAT ACCORDING TO THE ACLU. RATED ONE STAR OUT OF FIVE IN TERMS OF COMMUNITY APPROVAL RATINGS.. … AGAIN, THANK YOU COMMUNITY OF RIVERSIDE AND THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE EMPLOYEE’S FOR YOUR SUPPORT! CONTACT US: thirtymilescorruption@hotmail.com

                    

CLICK ON ABOVE IMAGES TO VIEW RUTAN & TUCKER LEGAL OPINION GIVEN TO RIVERSIDE MAYOR RUSTY BAILEY

The following has yet to be thoroughly studied by TMC, but we present it here for your viewing pleasure:  the full legal opinion giving Mayor William Rusty Bailey the authority to veto an executive employment contract extension, such as the one passed by our City Council on Feb. 6, 2018, involving current City Manager John Russo.  The opinion is from Rutan & Tucker, L.L.C., who incidentally is also retained as the City’s law firm in other matters.  Exhibits to this legal opinion are as follows:

                                                          

CLICK ABOVE DOCUMENT IMAGES TO VIEW EXHIBITS

As of today, TMC is the only media source offering this full opinion to the public: we’ll let you decide its merits.

Of course, TMC must remind our readers that the reeeeeeal issue here is that when hustling Brad Hudson was City Manager he gave then Mayor Loveridge everything he ever wanted, including full access to staff.  Ditto ex-City Manager Scott Barber. John Russo came along and cut that access off from the Mayor’s office cold turkey.

And that is why Mayor’s Chief of Staff Cheryl-Marie Hansberger was at a recent Budget Engagement Commission Meeting a couple of weeks ago complaining about a lack of resources, and just-so-happened (wink) to also mention Russo’s contract extension and request more funding for the Mayor’s office.  At which point Rusty’s former Riverside Unified School District buddy colleague and deputy Superintendent Mike Fine picked up the ball and ran with it, mentioning how he knew the Mayor would never cause dissention in the ranks – it just wasn’t his style.  Team Russo, led by Assistant City Manager Natasha Fatale Marianna Marysheva, countered with, “I haven’t seen it!” referring to a divide between the Mayor’s office and the City Manager’s office.  But the rift between Mayor Bailey and City Manager Russo is evident, and IS personal, and that is the real story despite all the public statements to the contrary.

But that is not the story for today.  For we at TMC do not much care if Bailey rumbled, bumbled, or stumbled into the cockfight, as long as he’s on the right side.  After the Mayor’s veto the power struggle for control of City Hall really began in earnest, with both sides firing off volleys in what will surely be a donnybrook with only one side standing at the end.  City Attorney Gary Guess offers a summary of his legal opinion in the video above and now we give you the Mayor’s full legal opinion.  Only one can be right.  The Press Enterprise has had both legal opinions for weeks and as yet, has not published them…we at TMC can only imagine why!

So let’s talk about the City’s case for a second.  In December, after Bailey checked with Geuss to “confirm” that he had the power to veto Russo’s contract, Geuss asked attorney Michael Colantuono of Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley to weigh in with an “independent” opinion.  Colantuono offered that the mayor does not have that power.  “If the mayor could veto a contract for a charter officer, that officer would have an obvious incentive to take direction from the mayor and to seek his approval,” Colantuono wrote in a four-page analysis.  “That incentive is in tension with, if not fully inconsistent with, the Charter’s statement that charter officers ‘serve at the pleasure of the City Council.’”

Michael Colantuono, Esq.

Riverside City Attorney Gary Geuss still has yet to release Attorney Michael Colantuono’s opinion publicly that the Mayor cannot veto a executive staff member contract.  Geuss claims a conflict with Bailey’s use of the firm Rutan & Tucker on retainer with the City of Riverside, for using them for his legal opinion.  But is there another, perhaps larger conflict?  TMC has learned that back in 2006 Michael Colantuono contributed to John Russo’s State Assembly campaign in Northern California in an amount of $1,500?  Reminds us of the old adage: what a twisted tale we weave, when at first we try to deceive.  Yep, we may have trouble in River City!

UPDATE: FEBRUARY 17, 2018: PRESS ENTERPRISE: YEARS BEFORE VETOING RIVERSIDE CITY MANAGER’S CONTRACT, MAYOR VOTED FOR SIMILAR DEAL.

Is it possible to be a hypocrite and still correct at the same time?

TMC, RATED RIVERSIDE’S REGIONAL COUNTIES MOST, “NEGATIVE,” “RAUNCHY,” “LOW CLASS,” “VISIONS OF GRANDEUR,” “FULL OF B.S.,” “REPREHENSIBLE,” “IGNORANT,” “MISGUIDED,” “BULLYISH,” “FILTHY,” “VILE,” “SICK,” “PERVERTED,” “DEFAMATORY,” “STUPID,” “PATHETIC,” “DESPICABLE,” “DISAPPOINTING,” “BELOW THE BELT,” “A NEW LOW,” “SHOCKING,” “OFFENSIVE,” “OBNOXIOUS,” “INAPPROPRIATE,” “HURTFUL,” “MEAN SPIRITED,” “DISTASTEFUL,” “EMBARRASSING,” HORIFFIC,” “SLANDEROUS” “FIT TO BE VIEWED FROM THE REAR” AND MEZZSPELLED, “MISSPELLED” AND “OPINIONATED” BLOG SITE! YES WE ADMIT WE OUR ALL OF THAT AND MORE, WHICH IN CURRENT TERMS IS KNOWN AS “UNPOLITICALLY CORRECT.” TEMPORARILY BLOCKED BY THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE AT PUBLIC ACCESS SITES WITHIN THE CITY, THEN UNBLOCKED. I GUESS YOU CANNOT DO THAT ACCORDING TO THE ACLU. RATED ONE TWO ONE STAR OUT OF FIVE IN TERMS OF COMMUNITY APPROVAL RATINGS.. … AGAIN, THANK YOU COMMUNITY OF RIVERSIDE AND THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE EMPLOYEE’S FOR YOUR SUPPORT! CONTACT US: thirtymilescorruption@hotmail.com

Again “Drunk Daddy”, a.k.a. Girish Balachandran, RPU General Manager, is sinking the ship with the help of the unqualified, inept, and eternally conflicted City Council and Board of Public Utilities.  Again the public is asking, “Who is minding the store?”  The only ones minding the store are TMC and our small band of merrymen.  So what does this all mean to the ratepayers?  The City of Riverside continues to overcharge for utilities and re-direct monies to unrelated and illegal uses.

Lawsuit Against the City of Riverside Utility User Tax

TMC continues to ask, when is the ratepaying public going to wake up and hold these people accountable for years of theft?  After all…WE OWN IT!  We won’t hold our breath.

This new case filed October 16, 2017 contends that RPU (Riverside Public Utilities) violated Proposition 26 (the “Stop Hidden Taxes” amendment to the State Constitution).  The basis is that Riverside Municipal Code only authorizes UUT (Utility User Tax) charges, against charges for electricity, and that because UUT is applied against the GFT (General Fund Transfer) component of the rates, that portion is illegal.  In other words, part of the UUT is a tax calculated off a tax, which pays for non-electric utility intended purposes, and hence, is illegal under Proposition 26.

CITY OF NORCO CAN SLEEP WITH THE FISHES…IF OF COURSE, THEY HAD WATER…

It seems that “Drunk Daddy,” is on a roll these days, just having attempted to strong arm the City of Norco!  (“Strong Arm” being the exact words used by the Mayor of Norco at the Residents for Responsible Representation meeting on October 9th with regards to the Riverside Transmission Reliability Project.) Back in March 2017, Riverside’s Director of Riverside Public Utilities sent the following message to our fine neighbors to the West (see below).  “Since you have publicly objected to our new, ugly, overhead high power lines, we aren’t going to sell you any of our surplus water. Have a nice day!  Sincerely, Girish, RPU Kingpin.”

   

CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE

So now I guess we know why we can’t seem to sell any of our surplus water to anyone other than Western Munical Water District…at a deep discount of course…while at the same time RPU is proposing a 60% (over 5 years) water rate increase for some customers.

And again, let’s not forget there is currently an ongoing suit filed by Attorney Raychele Sterling against the City of Riverside with reference to overcharging the ratepayers in excess of $200 million by ripping off the electric utility to pay off a lawsuit in which the City ripped off the water utility…and down the rabbit hole we go Alice!!!

BLAST FROM THE PAST: PAPADAKIS RESTAURANT: WHAT HAPPENED THAT NIGHT OF MARCH 1, 2007 WHEN CITY ATTORNEY GREG PRIAMOS, COUNCILMAN STEVE ADAMS, CITY MANAGER BRAD HUDSON AND OTHERS SPENT $5,400.00 IN TAX PAYER MONIES TO HAVE DINNER?  More news on old friend Hudson soon to come…

PAPADAKISSPENDING

No man can get rich in politics unless he’s a crook. It cannot be done.  – Harry S. Truman, 33rd President of the United States

REMEMBERING “FAT’S DOMINO”: ANTOINE DOMINIQUE DOMINO JR. (February 26, 1928 – October 24, 2017)

TMC, RATED RIVERSIDE’S REGIONAL COUNTIES MOST, “NEGATIVE,” “RAUNCHY,” “LOW CLASS,” “VISIONS OF GRANDEUR,” “FULL OF B.S.,” “REPREHENSIBLE,” “IGNORANT,” “MISGUIDED,” “BULLYISH,” “FILTHY,” “VILE,” “SICK,” “PERVERTED,” “DEFAMATORY,” “STUPID,” “PATHETIC,” “DESPICABLE,” “DISAPPOINTING,” “BELOW THE BELT,” “A NEW LOW,” “SHOCKING,” “OFFENSIVE,” “OBNOXIOUS,” “INAPPROPRIATE,” “HURTFUL,” “MEAN SPIRITED,” “DISTASTEFUL,” “EMBARRASSING,” HORIFFIC,” “SLANDEROUS” “FIT TO BE VIEWED FROM THE REAR” AND MEZZSPELLED, “MISSPELLED” AND “OPINIONATED” BLOG SITE!  YES WE ADMIT WE OUR ALL OF THAT AND MORE, WHICH IN CURRENT TERMS IS KNOWN AS “UNPOLITICALLY CORRECT.”  TEMPORARILY BLOCKED BY THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE AT PUBLIC ACCESS SITES WITHIN THE CITY, THEN UNBLOCKED.  I GUESS YOU CANNOT DO THAT ACCORDING TO THE ACLU.  RATED ONE TWO ONE STAR OUT OF FIVE IN TERMS OF COMMUNITY APPROVAL RATINGS..  … AGAIN, THANK YOU COMMUNITY OF RIVERSIDE AND THE CITY OF RIVERSIDE EMPLOYEE’S FOR YOUR SUPPORT!  CONTACT US:  thirtymilescorruption@hotmail.com