Happy Friday y’all!!! Lots of good stuff to point out to you today, so let’s get started!
Adam Umak, proprietor of Frederick County Fact Check, had an excellent LTE in the paper this morning. Make sure you take a look at it. We cannot let Senator Hough and Delegate Afzali get away with this thinly veiled attack on our County Executive!
Speaking of our CE, in today’s Political Notes we were made aware of a Town Hall meeting next week. So, if you’ve got anything to say, get your behind over to Winchester Hall at 7 p.m. this upcoming Thursday.
Now for your end of the week comic relief. Kirby weighs in on the dueling ethics bills presented to the Maryland General Assembly this week:
Let this quote sink in folks:
“Never notified any land owners and then claims she knew nothing of the plan after the excrement hit the oscillating wind chime.”
That is our new favorite Kirby quote! Man oh man, you can’t make this stuff up! Have a great weekend!
First half of the meeting clocked in at just under an hour! Billy really had a lot of trouble tonight. Did his usual idocracy, abstaining on agendas and voting against minutes. He had a lot of trouble during his questioning of the finance people during the reassignment of bond talk. First, his gotcha question about Montevue/Citizens backfired. Then he misunderstood the dates of the bond repayment. Finally, he wanted an explanation on why the County Executive would have the power to buy and sell bonds. After some very good reasons, mainly boiled down to the fact that the CE can move more quickly in volatile bond markets, he capitulated and the motion was passed 7-0. It’s become more and more evident that Billy just can’t keep up!
Tony is rescinding his dueling tasting room bill…for now. He complained about how the County Executive wouldn’t tell him what she had in her bill. In fact, he had many, many words for the County Executive:
“It would be nice if the Executive would work with this council member”.
Huh, we remember a few weeks back when an email landed in the ole Yokel inbox. We were made aware that Tony was having a meeting with local winery and distillers. And guess who was not invited?! Anyone else from the county! In fact, we were told that when a county staff meeting caught wind of this “secret” meeting they were shut out! So, Tony can act the victim all he wants, but he hasn’t exactly been open with his bill either.
Billy ends this discussion by yelling that Bud could rescind the County Executive’s bill, but everyone ignores him. Which may be the best strategy.
Small business real property tax bill is passed 7-0. Not before Billy pipes up though! He just wants to let us all know that this bill should be for ALL small business owners regardless of how large they are and shouldn’t include any wage requirements. Well, we remember, from readings one and two, that these requirements were necessary because of Maryland law. Now, if we remember hearing that fact, shouldn’t Billy? I mean really. Stay tuned for our report on the Urbana public hearing.
LOOONG agenda tonight! With this much on the the docket there’s little chance of emerging unscathed. You must really use your best judgment on which parts to follow or you are in extreme danger of sounding like Kirby does when he’s beating his dead horses all over the Facebook. Grab your agenda, click on over to Frederick’s best reality TV station, and get ready for your local government in action!
Every time Billy says YES before speaking, an annoying little habit he possesses, slam back your favorite shot. Think of this as free drink time!
All the budget adjustments, agenda and minute approvals and approval of County Executive appointments have become all so, YAWN!, boring to us. Just let your eyes glaze over a bit as Billy refuses to approve the minutes. Remember people, he’s bravely taking a stand against something nothing!
Finance hero Lori Depies is asking for the council to reauthorize some bonds. She’s always so brave and calm in having to mire through the nonsense that is Shrelauter. If they give her any grief, ask any irrelevant questions or use this as an attempt to grandstand slam back a couple of Bad Hombres. They were the ones Trump was speaking of, right?
We have four first readings of bills and what in Zeus’ daylight is this?
We appear to have dueling tasting room bills!!! Who will win the showdown, tis too early to tell. Knock back a couple of Dueling Banjos in honor of the show that will be laid before us. But hey, at least Tony is introducing some bills which is a lot more than we can say for the bookends.
Third and final reading on the Small Business Real Property Tax Credit. We’ve discussed, during readings one and two, how our friendly businessmen should be all on board with this. We predict not, since it’s their job to obstruct, not make things better. When this predictability ensues sip on your Slap In The Face. You know you want to!
Break Time! If it isn’t close to 7:00, Billy will complain and moan and nobody will care! Just smile at his childish antics and have a sip or two of your Raging Bitch.
At 7:00 we reconvene for the Urbana Rezoning application. We talked a little of this when it came up at last week’s workshop. We predict we will see lots of friends of the Yokel up at the podium this evening. This is probably going to be a long hearing, so pace yourself with your favorite bottle of wine.
Council member comments AKA Where everything goes to hell in a hand-basket! Let’s take a look into our crystal balls and see if we can make some predictions:
Kirby will dead horse beat the issue of Jessica and Jerry voting on the budget.
Kirby will say Jan’s unethical because she wasn’t on board with Hough’s unvetted, last- minute ethics bill. He’ll pull out some donations that Jan received that “proves” she’s a criminal. But hey, don’t forget what we found.
Billy wants to have a whole entire workshop on why he can’t Skype into closed meetings.
Someone will say Jan is grabbing all the land up.
M.C. and Jessica will be forced to use their time to real time fact check Shrelauter.
The entity known as Shrelauter frequently displays their ignorance of basic government functions. The election of Trump has not helped matters in our neck of the woods, as it has seemed to embolden the ignorance and pettiness of these two. While we thought #KirbyDelauter reached the apex of his ignorance with his tear-drop flow chart, it appears he’s still on his ascent up the Mountain O’Stupidity.
In yesterday’s Frederick News Post there was a story about the Monocacy River management plan. Now, without any evidence mind you, we are SURE that Kirby did not read this plan. He’s been lashing out at it from the start, and it’s only in the recommendation stage. You would think from his reaction the County Executive is “land grabbing” in order to build some waterfront mansions for herself and her cronies. But, nah it’s an effort to save the Monocacy from becoming a polluted mess. From what we’ve seen, it’s mostly an effort to plant more trees.
Well, Kirby, who was once an avid opponent of Executive Orders especially when they came from Obama or had anything to do with with ethics, is all of the sudden in favor of them. Check out this quote from yesterday’s story:
“Issue the Executive Order on Monday. I’ll be waiting for the announcement. If you choose not to issue it, it tells everyone you are behind this bogus plan to strip property rights, just as you have done for over 20 years,” Delauter wrote in an email to the county executive on Saturday.
Nice guy, isn’t he? There seems to be a pattern emerging among these folks. For the better part of four years Kirby and his ilk have been bemoaning the tyranny of the E.O. Now, that their guy is in, or when it suits their purposes, well you know it’s all different now.
As you can imagine Jan had a reply to Kirby barking orders at her. And man was it awesome:
“Kirby, Please stop misinforming people and do your homework,” Gardner wrote. “As I advised you previously, I do not have the authority to issue an executive order to stop the work of the River Board. The Monocacy River Scenic Advisory Board is created under state law. The Secretary of Natural Resources administers the program. Because this is a State program, I do not have any authority to stop or end the work of the River Board.”
Can’t you just hear the exasperation in the County Executive’s words? We cannot imagine having to put up with this on a day-to-day basis. So this guy doesn’t understand that a county official cannot disband a state mandated board? Apparently, from her quote, she’s had to tell him that on more than one occasion! Does he understand how any of this works? Don’t answer that. His suggestion to shut down the board is also eerily similar to the Federal social media blackout that we are seeing with those agencies most aligned with the sciences. Is that what Kirby thinks he’s going to do up here? Shut down the science when he doesn’t agree with it and/or doesn’t (can’t) comprehend it? Kirby, you need to stop these knee jerk reactions to everything and learn how to do your job. If that is not a thing you can do, please step aside so someone else can run in 2018.
This morning’s Political Notes is chock full of good information. First off, Governor Hogan is commanding each school system come before the next Public Works meeting to beg for school construction money! If the school districts dare not appear then screw all the students in your district! Hogan said if they do not appear “..they won’t be getting any money”. Even though lawmakers and school officials have asked for this annual “Beg-A-Thon” to stop the governor is going to continue to make you grovel before his divine presence.
Here’s how State Treasurer Nancy Kopp has characterized these meetings:
Kopp said she agreed with her colleagues about the board’s ultimate authority to approve the school construction funds, but also said the Beg-a-Thon has turned into a “political barrage” and “bullying” in recent years.
Sounds great! Next up in the column is Kirby. At the last council meeting Kirby tried to characterize Jan as some greedy land confiscator. He had a whole list of offenses Jan had committed against the poor citizens of Frederick County. However, he appears to have exaggerated those claims. On the accusation that Jan gobbled up all the land along Route 15 the County Executive had this to say:
She said the 2001 rezoning action was at the Frederick County Planning Commission, and though she was the county commissioners’ liaison to the board, she was at another political event when the U.S. 15 rezonings were voted on. That move by her colleagues on the planning commission ultimately had unintended consequences and was rolled back, she said.
Huh. Well, Kirby can’t be right all the time can he? The new recommendations (that’s right recommendations not a law or Executive Order) concerning the Monocacy River and water buffer zones is what has gotten Kirby all in a pinch. The Monocacy Scenic River Citizens Advisory Board has recommended that properties along the river have a protected water buffer of 300-500 feet. You know to prevent the Monocacy from becoming a simmering cess pool of chemicals and pollutants. Some potentially affected landowners are understandably upset. Nobody likes having to part with their property. And when they have to they should be justly compensated. We need to protect our waterways, even when it upsets some. All interested parties should lay their arguments before the government and said evidence should be weighed with the public good as the ultimate goal. In case you want to read up on the science of what water buffers do here is an informative joint study by Virginia Tech and Virginia State University. We need good, educated discussion with a result that is fair as possible to all parties involved. Not knee jerk statements like this, from someone whose only goal it seems is to be outraged about everything all the time:
“Environmentalism is the new socialism. You know, if you want to take something, just call it environmental. Just call it somehow environmental and everyone’s got to bow down and give up all their rights for that. It’s ridiculous,” Delauter said.
Happy New Year fans of the Yokel!!! We sincerely hope that you had a wonderful holiday season! This afternoon, we will see the first council meeting of 2017. Will Shrelauter turn over a new leaf? Unlikely things will go well since we ended 2016 with Kirby Facebooking some pretty cray cray allegations concerning M.C. There’s also been some disturbances in the force whispering to us that Kirby may actually write some legislation this year. We suppose that anything is possible! Grab your agenda, warm up that feed to FCGTV and watch your local government in action!! Do remember, these games are only for fun, we need all our Yokels alive and well to vote in the 2018 council election!
We start out with public comment. Predicting that no one will show at this first meeting of the new year, but you never know!!! Then we are out of the usual order of things with a public hearing concerning some amendments to the Spring water and sewage plan. If Kirby takes this time to grandstand about returning people’s money who were forced to purchase environmentally sound septic systems slam back a Creamsicle Fizz , allowing the bubbles to transport you to a land far, far away.
Quite a few budget transfers on the agenda. If these go smoothly, hooray! If not, mix up some Angry by the Fire. Can we take this for another two years?
Second reading of the bill to establish a small business real property tax credit. We’ve spoken before how this should be something right down Shrelauter’s alley. But, oh contrarian gods of yore! Those pesky Democrats and minions of the County Executive are behind this! How will this play out? If with predictable mantantrums, have yourself a Pint of Mad Out of It!
One more shot of public comments until we reach the point where what could go wrong will go wrong: council member comments.
There’s little chance, with such a long break, that there won’t be things to SAY. This is probably a good time to calm down and take a few deep breaths. Maybe grab a nice fruit smoothie, or some calming Ginger Ale or take some Tums or Rolaids. Anything to protect your stomach from what is sure to be some aggravating nonsense.
This morning’s Political News is chock full of good info. First of all, over the weekend, your Lady Yokels were alerted to the fact that Delegate Kathy Afzali shut the doors during the beginning part of the Delegation’s public hearing. When County Executive Gardner arrived at Winchester Hall and saw about 50 people outside the closed doors, she let them in. By that time, it appears, the part of the meeting Delegate Afzali didn’t want out in the open was over. What was the secret part of the meeting about you ask? It was to select a Chairperson and Vice Chairperson for the Frederick County Delegation. Typically, this is a Republican and a Democrat and one delegate and one senator. This time, however, two Republican delegates were chosen. The paper quoted Delegate Karen Lewis Young’s reaction:
“I think the public should have seen what transpired before that meeting. Because that election was determined in advance,” Lewis Young said. “And there were several arguments that the minority brought forward that should have been public.”
Those arguments included an appeal that the delegation’s leadership has a tradition of being bipartisan (one Democrat, one Republican) and bicameral (one senator, one delegate), neither of which will continue for the 2017 session.
Delegate Afzali says that if she gave the security guard the impression that the public was to be locked out it was just a “misunderstanding.”
Secondly, the Political Notes alerts us to what we knew all along. Billy’s sexual harassment claim was found to be “without merit.” Just like him!!!
Seriously Billy, you need to turn over a new leaf in 2017. Find something constructive to do on the council. Stop being rude,stop grandstanding, start reading and do the job you were elected to do! Now that you won’t be distracted by the election or the central committee you have lots of time to improve yourself! The citizens of Frederick County deserve better.
We apologize for the lateness. The feed on the night of the meeting was just awful and it took your busy Yokel ladies a day to watch and digest the latest edition of our local government in action.
Right out of the gate, Kirby wants to pull one of the budget transfers. He wants a list of all (except Sheriff vehicles because he knows that everything is on the up and up there) county vehicles that need to be replaced. He was given a list of 58 vehicles but apparently that’s not sufficient. Local budget hero Rick Harcum, explains to the council that he is asking for this transfer because his department accidentally put the money in the wrong column. It really doesn’t have to do with the purchase of any vehicles. There is some discussion as to whether or not this transfer can wait two weeks, to which the county employees say no it would really back them up. Kirby still will not relent on pulling the amendment. M.C. points out that these vehicles were already approved when they passed the budget in May so exactly what’s the point here? It’s only a transfer that was inadvertently put in the wrong column to buy vehicles that were already approved to be bought! So Kirby:
All transfers pass 4-3. All vote to approve minutes, except for the Lone Idiot. New Parks Director approved 7-0. And then the League of Women Voters is in the house y’all! The league representative makes a very nice presentation about the process of selecting people to sit on the Ethics Commission. Surprisingly Kirby sits quietly and they are all approved!
Clean Energy Program for Commercial Properties is approved 7-0. Now the upside of waiting a few days to report on the meeting is we get to bring you things like this:
Look at the list of people he tagged! Now no where in this article is Jan taking credit for this bill. Since her name was mentioned it gives Billy license to carry on in the fashion he is accustomed to. He does know that private citizens cannot introduce legislation, right?
Public hearing on two changes to sewer lines. Passed.
The one public commenter, who spoke at the beginning and end of the meeting, is concerned about curbs and sidewalks in Urbana.
Council Member comments. Kirby stays quiet. Jerry asks citizens to become members of county commissions. It’s a great way to affect public policy. Like we always say here at the Yokel, local government is very responsive to the public and is a great place to make a difference.
Silence from Tony and then it’s time for Billy to get some of the attention back on himself. Still believes it would be a great idea to get a People’s Court up and running here in Frederick County. So apparently someone else up there also does not understand the function of his job. If you have not seen the movie Idiocracy, you really need to take a look because we are more than certain that his People’s Court would look just like this scene from the movie:
He then decides to list all of the offices that we voted on in the election last week. Doesn’t congratulate the winners of any of the other offices he mentions (That’s right because those offices will all be occupied by Democrats!) but takes the time to congratulate Trump. Ends his inane statements with: “Looking forward to draining the swamp.”
Jessica, M.C. and Bud all end their comments with a positive note.There’s talk of SOAR (Supporting Older Adults through Resources), donating to the food bank, the homeless problem in Frederick and the Frederick County Veteran’s treatment court. Next meeting will take place on December 6.
Hello faithful readers, we hope you had a very Happy Halloween. In this last week leading up to the election, we thought y’all could use some comic relief. An alert Facebook reader sent this down the ole Yokel line today:
Can you imagine if he were our County Executive! We know, Halloween is over and we shouldn’t be scaring you any longer. I think we are oh so glad and relieved that we managed to sidestep having our very own John Leopold in Frederick. We’ve also been made aware that some of the more…how shall we say…”sophisticated” among us have advocated writing Blaine’s name in for the BOE race. Because sure! What better role model for our kids and school system than that guy! How many sex scandals until you are ineligible for the school board? We forget.
Hopefully you are all recovered from your Halloween celebrations and ready to tune into your favorite reality show. There’s a goodly amount on the agenda and we are oh so sure that Billy is going to find himself on the wrong side of some issues ce soir. It’s only one week until the General Election and the closer we get the more unhinged Shrelauter becomes. So do try to remember this game isn’t meant to be taken for reals. Even though we understand the urge to drink away the idiocracy.
As always the night begins with public comment and budget adjustments. We are too bored by Billy’s ever changing nays and abstains to even a look up a drink for this portion.
Next we have a County Executive appointment, if Kirby accuses Jan of having a private chauffeur (something he did on Facebook this week ) slam back a Ms. Daisy, since that’s who she was accused of behaving like. (And of course, it isn’t true. She just happened to be in a car as a passenger. The horror!)
Roger Wilson is in the house to present the final legislative package for the 2017 session. Flipping through the pages, we don’t see too many Shrelauter suggestions. Wonder why that is? Nevertheless, there’s lots of good stuff so take a look! When Kirby objects to something have a Mad Russian, since we hear Kirby’s a great admirer of Putin.
It’s time to vote on the Noise Ordinance. Billy wanted some “unreasonable amendments” according to the High Sheriff, so we may hear some grumblings from that corner. When he cries over not be allowing to shriek loudly through the streets sip on your Screaming Banana Banshee.
We’ve written here and there about human trafficking. Billy was against having a work shop on this issue because there are groups for human trafficking.
However, more intelligent heads prevailed, and tonight there is a public hearing on this issue. If either one of our least favorite council members say anything stupid, save up your money so you can drink some Unicorn Tears.
Council will go into closed session, to which Billy will object, and then reconvene at 7:00.
There’s a second reading on a bill to create a program for clean energy for commercial properties. If we hear any talk at all about how global warming isn’t a thing, set up some shots of Kahula Earthquakes and slam away!
We end, as always, with public and council member comments. Let’s hope for the best. Don’t forget, if you haven’t voted already, please do so on the 8th. We are sure we will be reporting on some of our elected official’s reactions on the 9th! Sure of it!