Beacon Hill Follies
The commonwealth is sinking deeper and deeper into a sea of red ink, tax talk is heavy in the air even though people are being laid off left, right and sideways. And there's the ever-present stench of the Big Dig debt hanging heavy in the air.
Despite all of this, you guys see fit to go with business as usual -- the kind of business that inflames the body politic in good times -- spending public cash on raises and new jobs for friends and supporters.
The legislative leaders past and present are easier to understand. DeMasi was walking out the door, pushed actually, and he was taking care of his friends. The repercussions, if any, hardly hold a candle to all the other stuff piled up on his ethics plate and Sal is loyal to his people.
DeLeo can mentally justify raises for staff taking on new responsibilities.
But Patrick, placing a political loyalist in a $175,000 public job that has been vacant for 12 years -- a job that carries that salary despite only being an "assistant director"? At the same time you are pushing for a 19-cent a gallon jump in the gasoline tax?
Where did you leave your brains? Here's the Globe:
Governor Deval Patrick, who campaigned on a platform to fight business as usual on Beacon Hill, has given one of his earliest political supporters a $175,000-a-year job as an assistant director at a state bonding authority, a position that had sat vacant for more than a dozen years.That was the kinder, gentler version, compared to the Herald:
Outrage is sweeping Beacon Hill after Gov. Deval Patrick quietly slipped a $175,000 plum job to a political pal while squeezing taxpayers to pay more for less from the debt-ridden state government.Toss in your Transportation Secretary Jim Aloisi mocking Senate President Therese Murray's insistence on reform before revenues and I'd say your chances of getting a tax increase anytime soon is about equal to Bernie Madoff paying back the $50 billion.
Asking citizens to fork over 19 cents more per gallon at the gas pump while bracing for cuts of cops and teachers, Patrick awarded supporter Marian Walsh the pricey plum as assistant executive director of the state’s Health and Educational Facilities Authority.
No offense to Marian Walsh, who had a solid record in the Senate and always led with her conscience -- until she also displayed an unbelievable tin ear.
But the buck does stop (or start) with Patrick. And the reality is this piece of political folly makes the drapes and the car and the book contract seem minor.
I bet Treasurer Timmie stopped licking his own self-inflicted wounds long enough to chortle.