Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Airport Follies

“The truest characters of ignorance are vanity, and pride and arrogance.” -Samuel Butler

Well...King John the Ineffectual is at it again.  We recently detailed his one man war on skateboards which led to a police report.  Although there are still reports of skateboards in the Village, the perpetrators now wait until 10:00AM when Mayor Bertoni has completed his Village work for the day.  But let there be no mistake, Bertoni "owns the entire Village of Endicott".

While Bertoni is chasing skateboarders, the Village continues to deteriorate.  He has installed no-nothings and cronies as Village department heads.  One striking example of this is the manager of the "Tri-Cities Airport, Gerald Coprew.  This Village owned  airport used to generate income for the Village while providing an important and convenient portal for local industries like BAE and Lockheed Martin.  During Bertoni's reign, the airport has fallen into disrepair and under utilization.  Fire Starter has learned that:

  • Bertoni's pick as airport director spends most of his time in Virginia where he has a full time job and residence.  His "residence" within the Village is vacant most of the time.
  • Most airports such as Tri-Cities have a "beacon" which allows airplanes to locate and land at the strip.  For a number of months, Tri-Cities' beacon has been inoperative.
  • Several days after a recent snow storm, a local pilot sought to land at Tri-Cities only to learn that the runway was still not plowed.  He later learned that the  airport was closed.  But no one had informed the Federal Aviation Administration.  This breach of Federal law could have cost lives had someone needed to land and not realized the condition of the runways.
  • The airport has dedicated snow removal equipment provided by the Federal Government but it often goes unused due to the mismanagement of personnel.
  • Tenancy in the hangars is down sharply due to reduced service and a new policy which denies access to the hangars in the evenings.  This results in lost revenue to the Village.
  • Hangars have fallen into disrepair to the point that dividers between "stalls" have collapsed onto private planes resulting in thousands in damage.
  • When presented with an opportunity to generate revenue through Lockheed Martin, the village was unable to figure out away to accommodate the aerospace giant.  Lockheed sought to rent hangar space for model flight testing but this was apparently too complicated a proposition for the part time, absentee airport manager.
These are but a few of the follies being perpetuated by Bertoni and his cronies.  Have we not seen enough of Bertoni's nonsense?  He has time for threatening children, their families and Village employees but no time to manage the business of the Village.   All too often, cronyism has taken priority over quality public service.  Whether it is the over paid or underworked Joint Fire Administrator Hrustich or Bertoni's other family and friends in Village positions, feathering private nests has taken precedence over public services.

Now Fire Starter has learned that Bertoni plans to eliminate Emergency Medical Service currently provided by the Fire Department.  This, despite running thousands of calls annually and utilizing already existing fire department personnel!  The Fire Starter will have more on this latest scheme.
This all boils down to the arrogance of power.  The Village has become Bertoni's kingdom out of which he dispenses or withholds his favors.  Quality, life saving services are not part of the agenda.  Whether it is the airport, the fire department, public works or the police department, the only question is what is in it for King John the Pompous and his friends and family.  And shortly, Bertoni is expected to ask voters for another four years!

We survived Collela because he was a one-termer.  Can we really afford another four years of Bertoni's mismanagement and malfeasance?

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