Friday, July 9, 2010

Hannon's Victory, Village's Loss

We've seen the hubris. And now we're seeing the scandals - David R. Gergen"

Fire Starter read with some interest the story in today's Press & Sun Bulletin regarding the recent Appellate Division decision regarding the selection of hearing officers in discipline cases and the elimination of the assistant chief position. The Village attorney hailed this as a "gratifying victory" that will save the village money. Fire Starter is confident that this has been gratifying to his bank account but is unsure of the savings. Mayor Hannon argued on News Team 34 that selecting hearing officers without input from the union will "save money". What was not explained was how this would save money.

The village has apparently spent tens of thousands of dollars to avoid having an arbitrator interpretate the union's contract and reach a decision regarding these issues. What is unclear is why the Hannon thinks he would have received a different conclusion had it gone through the less costly and more expeditious arbitration.

To Fire Starter, this all appears to be about ego and hubris. Arbitration would have been low profile. (Has the press ever reported on an arbitration?) Hannon needs headlines regardless of the cost to taxpayers.

So Hannon got a win. But did the taxpayers?

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