"I dote on his very absence." - William Shakespeare
Dennis Hannon is still missing. He has not been seen in Johnson City for several months. He is reportedly still drawing his Village funded paycheck and taxpayer funded state pension. But he is not currently residing in New York State. He has not performed the work of Village Mayor in four to five months yet is happily collecting his pay check. This may have many names but it clearly is theft.
Despite Hannon's absence, his presence is still felt. Many spineless lawmakers cower at the thought that Hannon may someday return. On Tuesday, the Village Board voted to appeal the Rauschmeier case to the court of appeals. In so doing, they continue to commit village resources to the petty vindictive prosecution of a absentee mayor. They also allow the back pay bill to mount. Only one Board member, Bruce King, saw the folly of continuing down this road. King argued that they would be better off getting work for the money they will owe this fire fighter. The others just fell in line behind the absent tyrant.
In the meantime, other Village business continues to stack up. The Joint Sewage Board is fielding bids for demolition of the damaged portions of the sewage treatment plant. Bids ran from $200,000 to over $800,000. Where will this money come from? And what is Hannon doing to plan for it?
The tab for Hannon's bargain with the police union will also be coming due in several months. What is Hannon doing to plan for this? Will there be borrowing? Will the Village need to exceed the tax cap?
And what about the sweetheart intermunicipal agreements for Joint Fire Administrator Hrustich and Police Chief Zikuski. Will the village board hold Hannon to account for this? Will they vote to rescind these sweetheart deals and send these two clowns packing back to their municipalities of origin?
The Village seems frozen in place while Hannon extends his absence week by week. It is time for the board to force Hannon to return or resign. And if he returns, most of the board members will need to find their spines and remember that they do not work for Dennis Hannon, they work for the residents of Johnson City. And if they forget this, the voters will remind them on election day.
In the meantime, if anyone wishes to visit Mayor Hannon at his "southern village hall", we have a photograph of his Ocala, Florida home.
Drop in anythime! I am sure he will be as glad to see you!
Editor's Note: Fire Starter has repeatedly tried to reach Mayor Hannon at his home on North Broad Street only to find his phone disconnected. Does this sound like someone who is interested in the future of the Village?