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JUNE 23 - JUNE 30, 2015

Council Candidate Laible's Relationship with Dyster Must Be Transparently Disclosed

By Anna Howard

JUNE 30, 2015

Will this be the Dyster super-majority on the council? That depends on two, or, possibly, three things: 1. Mayor Paul Dyster getting elected. 2. Alicia Laible (third from left) getting elected. 3. Laible not following her cohorts, Kristen Grandinetti, (left) Andy Touma (middle) and Charles Walker (right) in voting to enable the extravagant spending habits of Dyster which has led the city, in spite of having a sum of casino cash no city this size in America ever had at its disposal, to the brink of bankruptcy.

Council candidate Alicia Laible's Niagara Gazette guest view of June 19, titled, "Focusing on communication - not just talk" did the opposite of what the headline declared: she practiced empty political talk not genuine communication.

A rose is a rose is a rose and a guest view containing murky thoughts and gooey platitudes about "communication" and "community based budgeting" is still a poorly constructed article designed to make the voter feel good while delivering not one whit of honest recommendations as to how the city's mismanaged finances can be repaired.

She talked about how "communication" is needed to get the job of governance done...but never explained how she'll do that communicating.

She talked about the need for "transparency" while never explaining how she'll bring transparency to the Dyster administration she admires but an administration that's as transparent as a dark heart.

And, this being the 21st Century, candidate Laible talks about "using a mix of technology and face-to-face meetings in our neighborhoods."

She caps off this technology gibberish by referring to the need for using "a CitiStat system to track all expenses and projects."

Apparently candidate Laible didn't get the memo: The Dyster administration and the mayor's council majority of Charles Walker, Andrew Touma and Kristen Grandinetti, have blown through $8 million in casino cash since 2013.

The painful truth that Laible never addresses is that the average eighth grade student, armed with a Dollar Store solar powered calculator, could have done a better job of "tracking all expenses and projects" than the mayor, his controller, and Laible's council majority political allies.

If the would-be councilwoman wants to preach transparency and honest communication she's going to have to do better than her recent guest view by walking the walk.

She's going to have to come transparently clean and weigh-in on the waste and fiscal mismanagement of Paul Dyster's two terms. If she fails to do that then she's going to be identified as the Dyster sycophant her past reveals her to be.

Does Ms. Laible actually believe that a computer program run in cooperation with the state - CitiStat - is a substitute for responsible money management?

She wants to "make the budget process and casino spending plan a 12 month conversation" and never mentions that her favorite mayor, Paul Dyster, violated the city charter by holding the 2015 proposed "budget" in his desk for 37 days last year, a trick that stopped "conversation" dead in its tracks.

She never mentions that her favorite mayor has refused, time and again, to adopt a transparent casino revenue spending plan and that his administration operates in secret when it comes to planning casino cash expenditures. The facts are this, Alicia Laible has been a prominent member of the Dyster administration support team with other key members of that team including: Mrs. Paul (Becky) Dyster, Ida Massaro, Kristen Grandinetti and Lisa Vitello.

Together this group has controlled the City Democratic Committee for the past seven years.

Make no mistake Alicia Laible's planned ascendancy to the city council is part of the administration's long-range plans to control all city government and all city spending.

In the final analysis her talk of citizen input and community based budgeting is not only misleading, it's meaningless. The reality is that 80% of the city's budget is spent on personnel with the majority of that 80% spent on public safety.

The remaining 20% of the budget includes all other day-to-day expenses.

So, at the end of the day what does she propose for cuts or elimination, and how does she imagine she's going to close the $7,6 million deficit?

The reality is that her favorite mayor has spent and spent and spent...on a train station, a courthouse, an ice pavilion, a trash plan, a parking study, a shuttered Underground Railroad interpretive center, legal consultants, engineering consultants, bloated salaries, overtime, stipends, park work the residents didn't want, deficient paving, and much more.

Alicia Laible is going to have to think more clearly, be transparent, and stop using the same political "buzzwords" and "political rhetoric" she accuses others of using if she hopes to sit in the council chair Paul Dyster desires for her. Maybe over the course of her council campaign she'll make the rounds of the talk shows and transparently update the voters on her plans for the city's future.

Her first, last and best stop should be the Vince Anello WJJL radio show - with its growing audience - where she can expect to get fair but tough questioning. If she appears, Anello, a former mayor, and former council member, with a sound understanding of the budget process, will offer her the opportunity to prove whether or not her platitudes will lead her to being transparent or merely invisible.





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