RSS

Ravena & Risk – Taking: Is it really the role of municipal government?

05 Jul

In an article “New fitness center gaining ground,” published in the July 4, 2013, edition of the Ravena News Herald, Marlene McTigue manages again to sugar – coat an otherwise bitter pill. McTigue does this by irresponsibily reporting—a chronic fault of the Ravena News Herald—only the one side of a very suspect operation, the Ravena Health and FitnessCenter.

You can be beautiful,too!

You can be beautiful,too!

The Ravena Health and Fitness Center has been under scrutiny since the village of Ravena spent more than $40,000 on used fitness center equipment from an insider (Robert “Bob” Fisk) through insiders (village of Ravena mayor John T. Bruno, village trustee Nancy Biscone – Warner, and local opportunist Catherine M. “Cathy” Deluca, wife of Coeymans BoBo Cop, Gerald “Dirty – Hands Jerry” Deluca) in 2013.

Village of Ravena, Deluca: Risk-taking and Arrogance Finally Backfire!

Beginning-of-the-End

Is this the Long-Overdue Beginning of the End for the Bruno Empire, the Biscone Orgy, the Deluca Picnic at RCS Expense?

Not only was the $40,000 purchase of used equipment scandalous, the fact that the RCS Community Library was being raped by the village of Ravena, mainly by mayor John T. Bruno and boardmember Nancy Biscone – Warner, was even more embarrassing. And for what: a misconceived idea that the village of Ravena needed a fitness center..or rather, someone needed to be paid off or the path had to be cleared for some horrendous political move to benefit the Mafiosi in charge.

What McTigue, the village of Ravena, mayor John T. Bruno, board member Nancy Biscone – Warner, and Cathy Deluca and chubby – hubby Dirty – Hands Jerry don’t want anyone to know is that the entire idea is built on sand.

One of the most ridiculous statements made by Marlene McTigue in her misleading article is that the Ravena Health and FitnessCenter has “nearly 70 members.” That may seem like a lot in Bruno’s ghost town but look at it from the financial, the money point of view:

Just to break even, the fitness center would have to attract about 425 – 450 paying members

The village of Ravena has been stuffing the Ravena Health and FitnessCenter down locals’ throats for almost a year now. Ravena has invested tons of taxpayer money in the facility and has allocated $115,500 in the 2013 – 14 budget. So what do these “nearly 70 members,” really mean? Zilch!

Here’s why:

First of all, the village of Ravena hasn’t got the population to make the thing work. That’s obvious, since the last one—also “managed” by Cathy Deluca—failed. It went down in flames when member cancellations soared.

Just to break even, the fitness center would have to attract about 425 – 450 paying members; that means, Ravena and the surrounding area would have to attract at least 425 persons who would be willing to fork over between $250–300 a year to join the fitness center, which pales in comparison to other local chain centers with all the facilities like tanning, certified trainers, fitness programs, ultra – modern equipment, men’s and women’s changing rooms, showers, swimming pools, etc. The Ravena Health and FitnessCenter has none of these but membership is far more expensive than any of the major local clubs. So where are these 425 – 450 members going to come from in Ravena or Coeymans? Answer: They aren’t!

The Ravena Health and FitnessCenter is restricted to members over 18 years old.  But even so, the statistics don’t bode well for tiny operations like the Ravena one. Here are some national statistics from the fitness industry:

health club membership

Truth be told: Only 16% of the 16-64 age group belong to a health club or fitness center!

Some more fitness industry survey information may help you to understand why we feel your money is being wasted, literally stolen: Most people who think they want to join, do so but then don’t go and don’t pay…especially if the place isn’t super cool!

Just simple business research would have raised red flags for the fitness center but Ravena doesn't use hard facts.

Just simple business research would have raised red flags for the fitness center but Ravena doesn’t use hard facts.

But it’s not just the basic knowledge of the industry that Bruno, Warner, and Deluca lack. The real problem that taxpayers and members of the Ravena Health and FitnessCenter is even more sinister and insidious: The village of Ravena through mayor John T. Bruno, boardmember Nancy Biscone – Warner, Cathy Deluca, and others don’t know what they’re doing. We have received information based on disclosure made by the village of Ravena under the New York State Freedom of Information Law that the village of Ravena never did any studies to determine the need or survivability of a village health club. NONE! The village of Ravena never created a solid business plan establishing targets and goals for the fitness center. NONE! The village of Ravena back in mid – 2012 had already decided who was going to run things and didn’t bother to put the job of director out for competitive applications, instead they “appointedCathy Deluca to be the fitness center director at a salary of $30,000 a year.

When asked to produce any documents like diplomas, certificates, training, experience that would qualify Cathy Deluca for the position of fitness center director, the village of Ravena responded that they have no documents on file, that her qualifications were established by interview only. In other words: NONE! Nice.

It gets even worse because shortly after having appointed Cathy Deluca to the position of fitness center director, the village of Ravena filed an application for the creation of a new civil service job title for Deluca. Ravena filed the application on about April 5, 2013, days after having appointed Deluca at a village “organizational meeting. The Albany County Department of Civil Service approved the job title on about May 10, 2013. The problem is that the application was defective and didn’t include most of the justifications and documents required for approval! How did it get approved as a non – competitive, exempt job title when half the required documentation was never submitted. We know this because we have been provided information obtained from the village of Ravena that no other documents were attached to the application! There’s more than just a hint of illegality here, too!

Let's stop putting lipstick on pigs!

Let’s stop putting lipstick on pigs!

Here are just some of the deficiencies of the application:

The application asks for specific descriptions of the work and responsibilities, the Ravena says:

“Director will be responsible to provide residents with the opportunity to exercise & improve health in a community based facility. Must have strong interest & experience in health & fitness industry, as well as, an interest in wellbeing of the development of the community. 100 % responsible for day to day operations of center and supervision of all staff.”

The application asks for a description of typical work activities in “sufficient detail to form a clear word picture of the job” and instructs the applicant to “avoid general terms.” Ravena writes:

“Oversee day to day operations of fitness center to include, but not limited to: staffing, scheduling, training of staff, member orientation & evaluations. Avertising and publicity, AR / AP, monthly receipt and bank statement reconciliation. Monthly reports to village board, preparing center’s budget, weekly / monthly meetings with village board liaison. Set up computer programs, maintain & increase membership, search grants, work with local agencies (school, police, etc) to offer joint programs.”

It really gets good when we get to the section, “Full Performance  Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Personal Characteristics.” This is going to be really short because Ravena writes: “Knowledge of aerobic conditioning, strength training, flexibility & behavioral protocols.” Gibberish, purest double – talk, superior level bullshit!

The minimum qualifications are either: “Graduation form a New York State or regionally accredited college with a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Physiology, Recreation or closely related field; OR Four (4) years of experience in fitness programming, two (2) years of which shall have been in a supervisory capacity.” But no one seems to know anything about Deluca’s qualifications. The village of Ravena has no documents and says that she was hired based on information obtained at an “interview.”  An “interview”? That seems very unlikely.

There is also a special requirement: “Possession of a personal training certificate within 60 days of the appointment date.” There is NONE, according to the village of Ravena. So, basically, that nice cozy photo in McTigue’s article with Cathy Deluca showing Craig Youmans how to use the exercise equipment is really an ambulance-chasers dream: an apparently undocumented,  unqualified, uncertified, fraudulently appointed fitness center director “showing” a member how to use the fitness equipment! Hello! Lawsuits!

Guess who Deluca’s immediate supervisors are: Nancy Warner (trustee) and John Bruno (mayor). Surprising?

The “Requested Civil Service Jurisdictional Class” can be competitive, non – competitive, exempt or labor. Ravena checks off “exempt,” which includes “certain positions for which competitive or non-competitive examinations are deemed not to be practicable.” Seems that fitness center director would lend itself to examination, wouldn’t it? It does everywhere else…but not in Ravena! But then, Deluca would have to compete with qualified applicants, wouldn’t she?

old guy loser

But the exempt classification  requires that the applicant, village of Ravena, to justify the class. Here’s what the instructions on the form require: “If you request non – competitive, exempt or labor, state detailed reasons in a letter why competitive examination is impractical and attach it to this application.” According to Ravena, no documents accompanied the application.

Finally, the form requires that the applicant “[s]ubmit any other information not covered above. Items of particular interest include a description of a new program…, the nature of any increase in work load or change in organization which necessitates the creation of this new position.” We repeat: Ravena says nothing was attached to the application.

The application is signed and submitted by Ravena mayor John Bruno, mayor, on April 5, 2013, and approved by the Albany County Civil Service Director, Michael Cummings on May 10, 2013. Your tax dollars at work supporting crooks and incompetence.

So, there you have it. An application that should have been TRASHED because it is so deficient that it cannot be realistically considered to be a serious submission is approved by the Albany County Civil Service Department himself, Michael Cummings. Please tell me, Does anyone else smell a pack of rats here? Where’s accountability? Where’s transparency? Where’s integrity? We do know where the corruption is! That there’s fraud, graft, conspiracy, corruption, deceit at work here.

Back to Marlene McTigue’s misleading and untruthful article: McTigue, a member of the in-crowd, card-carrying Coeymanazi supporter, is very careful not to mention that even before the Ravena Health and Fitness Center opened its doors on Monday, June 3, 2013, Cathy Deluca had already caused the first Notice of Claim to be filed against the village of Ravena for her misconduct as fitness center director. A Notice of Claim is the first step to a lawsuit against the village of Ravena because Cathy Deluca could not keep her mouth shut and just be a good public employee. Ravena faces another lawsuit for employee misconduct and guess who pays?

The Answer? The Editor

The Answer?

We have information that another Notice of Claim is going to be served on the village of Ravena because Cathy Deluca allegedly falsely reported an incident to the Coeymans Police Department, causing the investigating officer to start an investigation, to interview witnesses, etc. because Deluca lied about the incident. That’s a misdemeanor under New York State Penal Law § 240.50. What’s more, it appears that Deluca may have  involved one of the fitness center employees who she supervises and controls to cooperate and corroborate her alleged false statements to the police and that means conspiracy, another misdemeanor under New York Penal Law § 105.00.

Wait a minute! Isn’t Cathy Deluca’s chubby-hubby Gerald “Dirty-Hands Jerry” Deluca, the shame of the Coeymans Police Department, a police investigator? Wouldn’t Cathy know about harassment, falsely reporting an incident, conspiracy? Don’t you think she’d call chubby-hubby Jerry for advice on what to do?  Maybe Cathy Deluca, John Bruno, Nancy Warner have become just a little too confident that they’ll get away with their dirty tricks forever, so now they don’t even care.

We understand that the village can be made liable for these alleged crimes, too, because the village of Ravena has waived its immunity by taking out insurance to cover some of these claims, although the alleged criminal misconduct may simply be dumped on Deluca’s and her accomplices’ laps by the village when the going gets too rough.

This is called moral hazard when discussing risk – taking, which is what Ravena and Deluca are doing at public expense. A moral hazard is a situation where a party, DELUCA and the RAVENA GANG, will have a tendency to take risks because the costs that could incur will not be felt by the party taking the risk, DELUCA and the RAVENA GANG. In other words, it is a tendency to be more willing to take a risk, knowing that the potential costs or burdens of taking such risk will be borne, in whole or in part, by others, YOU, TAXPAYERS and COMMUNITY. Public institutions created to protect citizens from risk create a moral hazard wherein the costs of risks are not borne by those who would engage in risky practices, DELUCA, BRUNO, WARNER. This relieves risk-takers from responsibility for their actions, which would otherwise act as a deterrent. Moral hazard arises because an individual or institution does not take the full consequences and responsibilities of its actions, and therefore has a tendency to act less carefully than it otherwise would, leaving another party, THE COMMUNITY, to hold some responsibility for the consequences of those actions.

Do you get it now?

The Editor

The Editor

“Qui tacet consentire videtur ubi loqui debuit ac potuit.”
“Silence is admission when when the accused ought to have spoken and was able to.”

Special Notice: We make every effort to be truthful, complete, fair, and balanced on this blog; therefore, if you see anything that you know to be false or incorrect, or if you have additional information to clarify any issue, please let us know by e-mailing your information or by leaving a comment. It’s very important to us that we don’t fall into the same category as those whom this blog is intended to expose. Thank you very much in advance for your coöperation and assistance!

 
6 Comments

Posted by on July 5, 2013 in Abuse of Public Office, Accountability, Albany, Albany County Civil Service Department, Albany County District Attorney, Albany County Executive, Albany County Sheriff Department, Albany County Supervisor, Andrew Holland, Andrew Stephen Holland, Bill Bailey, BULLSHIT, Capital District, Cathy Deluca, Cecilia Tkaczyk, Civil Right Violation, Coeymans, Coeymans Police Department, Coeymans Town Attorney, Conspiracy, Corruption, Daniel Contento, David Soares, DeLuca Public Affairs, Deluca-Warner Fitness Center, F.O.I.L., Falsely reporting an incident, FBI, FBI Criminal Information System, FBI Public Corruption Squad, Fitness Center, Formal Written Complaint, Fraud, Gerald Deluca, Government, Greene County, Gregory Darlington, Harassment, Indifference, Intimidation, Jerry "Dirty-Hands" Deluca, Jerry Deluca, Joe Neri, Joe Rotello, John T. Bruno, Joseph C Rotello, Josephine P. Dority née Biscone, Josie Biscone-Bruno, Kristine Biernacki, Lies, Making an apparently sworn false statement, Marlene McTigue, Martin Case, Marty Case, Mayor Bruno, Michael Biscone, Michael Cummings, Michael J. Biscone, Misconduct, Misdemeanor, Misuse of Public Office, Nancy Biscone-Warner, Nancy Warner, Napierski, Napierski & O'Connor, New Baltimore, New York, New York State, News Herald, Notice of Claim, NYS Assembly, NYS Senate, Office of the Attorney General, P. David Soares, Perp Patrol, Pete Lopez, Ravena, Ravena Coeymans Selkirk, Ravena Fitness Center, Ravena Health and Fitness Center, Ravena Village Attorney, Ravena Village Board, Retaliation, Robert Fisk, Rocco Persico, Selkirk, Stephen Flach, Thomas E. Dolan, Tom Dolan, Transparency, William "Bill" Bruno

 

6 responses to “Ravena & Risk – Taking: Is it really the role of municipal government?

  1. laszlo polyak

    July 11, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    My point was to all commentators (the blogger or editor can be as colorful or “vile” as s/he pleases) is: Don’t sink to their level. Always try to raise them to our level; however, some maggots have no use or value and should be fed to the birds. Sorry bird lovers

    The handicapped question part was about those of us with missing body parts (Is a brain a body part? (Sorry, mayor Bruno, nothing personal)). What’s in it for us? And/or what equipment can we use? (Rope around my neck doesn’t count as exercise equipment (Again, sorry mayor Bruno, nothing personal.)) Are there any adaptations for us or special use equipment? I know there are no handicap showers already……and second rate used equipment how do we physically challenged taxpayers enjoy our tax money the village has spent on a fitness center? Are they code compliant?

    Like

     
    • RCS Confidential

      July 11, 2013 at 7:15 pm

      Neither the Editor nor the Blogger, to our knowledge, condones vile commentary. Furthermore, we have no intention of degrading ourselves nor this blog to the base level of the Brunos, Delucas, Warrens, Biscones, and others. The whole point of this blog is to provide a forum for discussion and comment on issues of public interest and concern, and to awaken our reader public to delinquencies in this community. This is in the humble hope that at least a small portion of the community will get smart and do something to better their lives. Making and setting examples is part of this mission.

      Please leave the birds out of this fetid business. They are God’s innocent creatures placed here as evidence of the Divine presence and should be treated with love and respect. Maggots, especially of the human species, should not be part of their diet nor do I think they would accept such paltry fare. The carrion we have to offer isn’t even fit for buzzards, much less for doves and sparrows and swallows.

      Yes, the brain is a body part. Regrettably it wasn’t included in the standard equipment for Ravena elected officials or it was removed on defect recall at birth. Whatever the circumstances, those missing that particular body part tend to get elected to public office, apparently merely for the entertainment value of a dog-and-pony or clown act. Visit Ravena village hall to better appreciate what I mean.

      While we don’t want to give up information that we are planning to include in an upcoming article on the Ravena Heap and Fatness Center, you are quite correct when you make the point of what the RHFC offers physically challenged taxpayers and residents. The answer is obvious: NOTHING! In fact, we would advise anyone with any medical concern or physical challenge to take extreme care when considering using the facility. Our most recent information indicates that none of the employees are CPR certified or trained, no-one (at least according to information one correspondent has received from the village of Ravena) has any personal trainer certification, and the director’s credentials and qualifications are in question, unavailable and have not been submitted, not even to the Albany County Civil Service Department, who have been caught with their pants around their ankles–not an uncommon situation considering the staff of the RHFC. In other words, the Ravena Heap and Fatness Center is completely unqualified to provide services to the physically challenged.

      This raises the question of how on Earth did they finagle approval to be a Silver Sneakers site?!? We’re investigating that question, too.

      Just consider that if you are injured at the Ravena Health and Fitness Center and have signed their membership application–which is another problem for the village of Ravena–they don’t have insurance coverage to cover your injury or medical expenses; besides, you may have illegally signed away any recourse against them. Think about that.

      Thanks for your comment.

      The Editor

      Like

       
  2. Tina

    July 8, 2013 at 10:20 am

    Well…I just spoke w/Albany Civil Service and inquired about the illegal actions that seem to be running rampant (?) in Ravena/Coeymans and was told that they just, last week, received Cathy ‘the cow’ DeLuca’s application for employment at the ravena fatness center and was told that the application is still pending (awaiting a letter of exemption) and that the position is being handled as “Newly Created Title”…so I made them aware that I will, in approx. a month, be sending in a FOIA request on this matter and I was told to call back in approx. a month or a little less and the gentleman said he’ll let me know the status of this situation! Let’s see if we can nip this cheating town in the butt and hold everyone accountable for all the cheating, lies and stealing that Ravena Coeymans has gotten away with!!

    Like

     
    • RCS Confidential

      July 8, 2013 at 11:21 am

      Dear Tina:

      We just today received a response to one of our correspondents from the Albany County Civil Service (ACCS) department and we are providing that response to you via your gmail account. We are also copying you with our correspondent’s response to several Albany County offices regarding the response we received.

      The title of Fitness Center Director, as you will see in the ACCS department’s response is “competitive.” The application prepared by the village of Ravena for the position for Cathy Deluca clearly states that the position requested should be “exempt.” Ravena does not comply with the requirement that the request for “exempt” must be justified clearly and in detail. So, if Ravena did not send in the justification paperwork, how could the ACCS department have approved the postion to be exempt from the normal requirements to fill the position. Answer: Because Ravena and possibly the ACCS is crooked.

      Have a look at the response from the ACCS department and our correspondent’s reply.

      This may be a matter for the NYS level of the Civil Service Commission, the NYS Attorney General, the Office of the Comptroller and others, such as the media.

      More fireworks to come…and once we have our correspondent’s permission and conditions, we’ll be publishing the ACCS department’s responses.

      Thanks very much for your activism, Tina! We need more like you!

      The Editor

      Like

       
    • laszlo polyak

      July 11, 2013 at 8:01 am

      Her name is Cathy Deluca calling her “the cow ” is not nice , take the high road if we comment on here make our point . lets not act as two years old’s just because the other one did. If there are health and safety concerns ie showers etc then address them to the government body over seeing it too

      I wonder why /how/what my tax dollars will bring me? And to the rest of us who are disabled and cant currently use the Ravena fitness center but our taxes are spent to pay for it . How is it a benefit to us who are disabled ?

      Like

       
      • RCS Confidential

        July 11, 2013 at 8:37 am

        Thank you, Laszlo, for your comment.

        We all have our perceptions of the reality we live in; a fly perceives a turd as a meal, others find it an odorous nuisance. If one is perceived as a turd…or a cow…one should take a step back and reflect on why that is so and, if one finds the observation objectionable, perhaps some changes are in order. We on this blog do not advocate censoring other’s expression simply because of our own preferences or standards; that would chill the notion of free exchange of ideas, and the words to express those ideas, and we have enough of that in the RCS district with the likes of the Delucas, the Brunos, and the Biscones. Those are the ones you need to target.

        As for the lack of sanitation and amenities in the Ravena Health and Fitness Center they are a matter (1) for the village to correct, (2) for the county and state authorities to investigate (among other more filthy aspects of the Ravena Health and Fitness Center), and (3) for the potential members–and I do emphasize “potential” since there doesn’t seem to be anyone flocking or fighting to get in the place. Wonder why?

        As for accessibility, it is accessible to the handicapped. As to the legality of its formation and constitution, the so-called democratic process? No! The place is illegal and unlawful from the start. Bruno, Deluca, Warren should be facing criminal charges (Cathy Deluca is, actually, facing possible charges of falsely reporting an incident to law enforcement (What?!? Cathy Deluca lie?!?) and conspiracy) for what they’ve inflicted on this community.

        So start a letter writing campaign to the Attorney General, to the State Comptroller, to your friends at the FBI. But get credible people to join you and make a difference. And stop picking on our contributors for using a three-letter word to describe reality.

        The Editor

        Like

         

Please share your thoughts about this post.. Leave a comment here.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: