Monday, August 31, 2009

Aspiring to cognitive dissonance

The Parking Authority’s ‘narrative’ presented to Council last week refers to the $100,000 five-year loan (which the Borough is being asked to guarantee) as a ‘short-term vehicle.’

Mr. Cassidy tells Council, in response to questions, that the Authority would want to pay off the loan as soon as possible.

Mr. Krack tells Council that the loan being negotiated (the terms are apparently not yet set) will be interest-only for a year and that possibly it will be interest-only for the entire five years, with a balloon principal payment at the end.

Krack and Cassidy can’t even get their stories straight. And will the Council notice?

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Unexcused absence

Conspicuously absent from the summary of the PASD forensic audit is any mention of what is being done to recover the misspent funds.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Ethics Forms -- the Evans way

The Parking Authority members should perhaps take a lesson from Planning Commission Member James E. Evans. He filed his Statement of Financial Interests on March 9, 2009, almost two months before the deadline.

Evans’ filing (item 10) states that he has no “direct or indirect sources of income.” Also, to item 13, requiring disclosure of “office, directorship or employment in any business” he writes “Managing Director of Non-Profit 501-3c” [sic].

According to records of the Pennsylvania Corporation Bureau, Evans is the President of two business corporations: Evans Management Group, Inc. and St. Peter’s Management Corporation, Inc. Both those companies’ addresses are 2 Emmett Street, Evans’ residence; the other listed officers are Evans’ family members. Neither of the companies is mentioned in Evans’ financial interests filing.

Publicly available non-profit filings of Federal Forms 990 for St. Peter’s Housing Development Corporation, Inc. and Church Housing Corp of Phoenixville show that in the years 2005–2007 they paid over $800,000 to St. Peter’s Management Corporation, Inc. Other filings show that Evans received a salary from that company.

Evans’ financial interest filing is for 2008, and the 990s for 2008 are not yet on line. So perhaps the management fee payments and Evans’ salary situation are different from those reported on the earlier 990s, though it seems that he was the President of the two for-profit companies in 2008.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Parking Authority Majority: We don't need no steenking ethics forms

The files of the Phoenixville Borough Secretary show that as of August 20th a majority of the five members of the Parking Authority (Messrs. Friday, Cummins, and Abbott) have failed to file their Statements of Financial Interest as required by Pennsylvania’s Ethics Law. And, not surprisingly, there is no filing for the Authority’s Director, Barry Cassidy. The filing deadline was May 1st.

The pertinent parts of the Ethics Act state:

65 Pa.C.S. §1104(d) Failure to file required statement.--No public official shall be allowed to take the oath of office or enter or continue upon his duties, nor shall he receive compensation from public funds, unless he has filed a statement of financial interests as required by this chapter.

65 Pa.C.S. §1109(b) Financial interests statement violation.--Any person who violates the provisions of section 1103(d) through (j), 1104 (relating to statement of financial interests required to be filed) or 1105(a) (relating to statement of financial interests) commits a misdemeanor and shall, upon conviction, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000 or to imprisonment for not more than one year, or both.

Something to think about as Borough Council moves to blindly guarantee the Authority’s borrowing.