In what is becoming a recurring theme, Village of Johnson City Mayor Dennis Hannon has lost again. Johnson City's "new sheriff" is rapidly becoming a "laughing stock".
Mayor Hannon, in his iron fisted attempt to bully Fire Marshal Robert Dempsey has been rebuffed yet again by the New York State Supreme Court. Supreme Court Justice Ferris Lebous ruled Friday that the Village must arbitrate with the fire fighters union regarding contract language pertaining to the selection of hearing officers. Of greater significance is the fact that the court ruled that during the time the Village has wasted trying to appoint their biased, toady hearing officer, Dempsey must be paid his full and regular salary. The Village's arguments were summarily rejected by the Supreme Court.
That brings the not working but being paid number to 7 fire fighters. All to satisfy Hannon's hubris. Someone needs to inform Mayor Hannon that Village law does not envision an imperial mayor. Village government is meant to be a cooperative venture between Village residents, leaders (not rulers) and employees.
It has become far too much to expect that Hannon would ever want to proceed with discipline (or for that matter any other case) before impartial judges. He prefers to rule by edict without question. He intimidates critics with threats to their financial security and livelihood. (See: Meaney, Dempsey, Potts). But every time Hannon appears before an impartial Judge, he loses.
But more importantly, the Village residents lose. How long will village residents be forced to underwrite Mayor Hannon's personal vendettas. How much Village money will be spent on showing everyone who the "boss" is? When will the Village board finally realize that this is accomplishing nothing for us residents?
There may be a new sheriff in town, but time after time, he appears to be shooting blanks.