Monday, October 27, 2008

Cohen & Gennaro Unlock Queens Pandora's Box

There were a lot of charges levied in da now infamous "Da Township of Manalapan vs Da Mosked Man" lawsuit, outside of da "it's da Mosked Man's fault." One of da well-hidden - hope nobody finds this out little nuggets from this lawsuit is how information is shared - or not shared - between members of da Manalapan Township Committee "ruling elite" and those left to apparently fend for themselves.

DaTruthSquad has discussed this situation at length. Da local Snoozepaper, not surprisingly, avoided this issue. However, they can't hide behind da pen of Back Page Barratta anymore.

It what is obviously a major affront to da "transparency" of da Queen's administration, and adds kerosene to da fire in da belief that this is nothing more than a political vendetta for a few politicians financed by taxpayers, Manalapan Deputy Mayor Susan Cohen and Committeeman Anthony Gennaro were forced to file their own briefs in court in da case that has garnered worldwide attention -- because -- they're being "kept in da dark" by da attorneys being paid-for with taxpayer dollars -- and da Township Committee Elite who won't apparently give them straight answers!

In addition, their briefs also opened up da Pandora's box about da crux of this case -- is it really legal malpractice, or a few political elitists trying to toss dirt on their political opponent at taxpayer expense?

ISSUE 1 - DA DEFENDANT GETS TO VOTE.

No, it's not da Mosked Man we're talking about. Committeeman and former mayor and alleged Manalapan and/or Freehold resident Andy Boy was named a 3rd party defendant in da lawsuit. Even though he's a defendant, he still gets to vote on this lawsuit and all taxpayer-funding issues. Cohen, meanwhile, who is da Deputy Mayor, was forced out of executive sessions because she a "friend" of da Mosked Man.

"In one of the first legal briefs he filed with the court regarding Manalapan's litigation against him, Moskovitz asserted that Cohen had been "ordered" out of a Township Committee executive (closed) session when the remaining members of the governing body and other municipal representatives were going to be discussing the township's litigation against him. At the time, when asked for comment on the claims contained in Moskovitz's legal brief, Cohen confirmed his assertions and said she left the room when the Moskovitz litigation was being discussed. She said it had been the consensus of the others present at the meeting that she was compromised because her relationship with Moskovitz was personal, in that they are friends, as well as clients of Moskovitz because Cohen's husband has and will continue to retain Moskovitz for certain business affairs. Speaking at that time, Cohen said, "was told I had to leave the room because there was a conflict of interest. I was told that by everybody. I wasn't arguing the point, so I left."

http://newstranscript.gmnews.com/news/2008/1022/front_page/003.html

ISSUE 2 - CONNECTING DA LEGAL DOTS.

Da crux of this issue actually goes back to 2001, when da Mosked Man, as a member of da Township Committee accused then-township attorney Norman Kauff of wrongdoing. Kauff would later leave his office before his term expired. Kauff - and you have to follow da bouncing counselor here -- is listed as "being "of counsel" to the firm of Daniel McCarthy, one of the attorneys involved in the Manalapan v. Moskovitz case." "Cohen states in her certification that when Kauff served as Manalapan's township attorney, Moskovitz "disclosed that Mr. Kauff was over billing the township and in 2001, Mr. Moskovitz exposed that Mr. Kauff was increasing his pension by being salaried as the township attorney. … Mr. Kauff is of counsel to the law firm of Rogut, McCarthy, Troy, whose partner, Daniel McCarthy, a major contributor to various campaigns in Manalapan, is the driving force for this lawsuit."

Note da words "major contributor to various campaigns in Manalapan."

Then you have McCarthy helping bring in David Weeks and his law firm. It only adds more questions to a lawsuit that seems to have "politics" written all over it.

ISSUE 3 - WHY ARE GENNARO & COHEN PURPOSELY BEING KEPT AWAY FROM INFORMATION?

Anyone who's hired anyone from a lawyer, to Joe da Plumber, to an accountant, or contractor knows if they don't return your phone calls, won't talk to you, or refuse to discuss things with you, you fire da bums. If, however, you're a town committeeperson, or even a Deputy Mayor, and people you pay with taxpayer money won't give you da time of day, that borders on criminal. That's exactly what Gennaro & Cohen are alleging. "Both Cohen and Gennaro state in their certifications that they took it upon themselves to submit the documents because they are both of the opinion that the attorneys who are litigating the malpractice action for Manalapan against Moskovitz are not keeping them (Cohen and Gennaro) informed of developments in the matter. They allege that they are deliberately being left out of the loop."

ISSUE 4 - IF YOU THINK IT COST TAXPAYERS A LOT NOW...

This is bombshell evidence --- If you think Manalapan's political elite didn't know taxpayers would be on da hook for $200,000 -- YES $200,000 -- you can thank former mayor Drew Shapiro for that. "In his certification, Gennaro, too, refers to Shapiro, citing an e-mail sent by Shapiro in which Gennaro says Shapiro claimed the cleanup of the contaminated soil could end up costing Manalapan $200,000, and that is why special counsel was asked to "review the file." The allusion is to the file regarding the township's purchase of the property under the terms of the contract drawn up by Moskovitz. Gennaro states in his certification that McCarthy had not notified the Township Committee of "the possible impact of the state tort claims act or Manalapan's local ordinance regarding Mr. Moskovitz's right of indemnification."

THIS MEANS THEY KNEW BACK IN EARLY 2007 - BEFORE THEY FILED DA LAWSUIT AGAINST THEIR POLITICAL RIVAL - THAT THEY COULD POTENTIALLY BE CHARGING TAXPAYERS $200,000 TO FIX WHAT WAS A $10,500 SOIL PROBLEM!!!!!

So, in effect, you have lawyers running amok, and according to da briefs filed by Gennaro & Cohen they're being paid taxpayer money but not informing da people guarding da taxpayer money. If this doesn't scream out for an investigation by ca county DA, Anne Milgram, or Chris Christie, nothing does.

DaTruth is, when you have sitting township committeepeople who admit they have to get their information from blogs, a California legal website, or a newspaper -- and not from their own lawyers & fellow members of their own Township Committee, then you can call that a number of things, collusion, unethical, and a number of other unflattering things, but in da end, since taxpayer money is funding this fiasco, it can also be called "FRAUD."

Here's what daTruthsquad would like to see:

1. DA NEW JERSEY BAR ASSOCIATION GET INVOLVED. If da lawyers under Manalapan employ aren't doing right by their clients, then these lawyers need to be sanctioned for their behavior.

2. DA MONMOUTH COUNTY PROSECUTOR GET INVOLVED. If it is discovered that taxpayer money is fueling a political vendetta, then that is fraud and Manalapan taxpayers should & must be reimbursed.

3. DA STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL OPEN AN INVESTIGATION. Using taxpayer money for political vendettas is fraud and could be treated as a crime. Much like Wayne Bryant, Sharpe James, and John Lynch - POLITICIANS MUST BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS! Those who perpetrated this act should be prosecuted to da fullest extent of da law. Da only way to truly find this out is to open up a state investigation.

4. DA FEDS SHOULD GET INVOLVED. Da Feds already know how to get to Manalapan. They were here for Frank Abate and his WMUA-gate. It's time they make a call on Town Hall and check records there.

5. IF ANY OF DA OTHER 4 SCENARIOS HAPPEN, THEN DA QUEEN & ANDY BOY SHOULD BE ASKED TO RESIGN, AND IF NOT, THEIR VOTING POWER ON ANY TAXPAYER-FUNDING MATTERS SHOULD BE TAKEN AWAY.

DaTruth is, what Gennaro & Cohen did may be unprecedented, it may prove there's something unethical going on in da Kingdom, and it definitely proves there's about as much transparancy in da Queen's administration as you'll find in a 500-foot thick cinderblock wall lined with 1,000 feet of steel. If this isn't resolved soon, and unless da Mosked Man isn't found guilty, then when he replies with his own lawsuits as anyone would expect, what taxpayers have spent thus far on Da Township of Manalapan vs Da Mosked Man will be pocket change compared with da settlement he will get.

And, daTruthSquad urges you to read da facts for yourself. Da Electionic Frontier Foundation has legal correspondence, A SLEW OF COURT RECORDS & DOCUMENTS, actual legal briefs filed by Manalapan's Legal Dream Team, and da first judge's outcome all available online for anyone to see -- AND YOU CAN'T SEE THAT ANYWHERE ELSE!

You need to see exactly what your elite politicians demand you pay for. Anf that's daTruth.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I saw this on another comment page. It really speaks to what has been written here on this blog. I had my doubts about Moskovitz, but not anymore. I think if this doesn't signal an investigation into Manalapan town hall, nothing will.

Roth_ Must_ Go said...
pay to play by RothMustGo, 10/27/08

In politics, pay to play refers to a system, akin to payola in the music industry, by which one pays (or must pay) money in order to become a player. The common denominator of all forms of pay to play is that one must pay to "get in the game," with the sports analogy frequently arising[1]

Star-Ledger

Monday, February 06, 2006

BY DIANE C. WALSH

In the summer of 2004, then-Gov. James E. McGreevey signed a package of legislation designed to curb "pay-to-play," the practice of government officials awarding contracts to loyal contributors.

McGreevey called the legislation the most comprehensive ethics reform in three decades, saying it would set "an unprecedented standard for disclosure and transparency and takes significant steps to reduce the influence of money in politics."

But a provision of the law that kicked in this year creates a loophole allowing local governments to award contracts to political contributors through what is called the "fair and open" process.

Critics say fair and open is a smokescreen that has local governments going through the motions of seeking bids, but in the end, lets them award contracts to political contributors.

In Monmouth County, Stuart Moskovitz said fair and open was a "sham" that led to his ouster this year as township attorney in Manalapan. The township chose to award the contract to a politically connected firm that contributed $2,000 to two Democratic candidates who won seats on the five-member township committee in November.

"It's misleading, worthless, a total misnomer," said Moskovitz, a registered Democrat, who was also the mayor of Manalapan in 2000. "The process is no process at all. This is feel-good legislation."

Moskovitz was one of six attorneys who answered the township's request for proposals this year through fair and open. He said he did not make contributions to candidates for township committee in the previous two years.

"My feeling is nobody should buy a position. You should hire because of talent."

At the annual reorganization in January, the committee awarded the contract for township attorney to James Kinneally, a partner in the New Brunswick-based firm Hoagland, Longo, Moran, Dunst & Doukas. KINNEALLY'S FIRM WAS THE ONLY ONE THAT MADE A CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTION to the newly elected committee members, Anthony Gennaro and MICHELLE ROTH. State records showed Hoagland, Longo donated $2,000 to the Democrats on the day before the election.

Alayne Shepler, township administrator in Manalapan, said Hoagland, Longo submitted the lowest hourly rate, $130, compared with $145 submitted by Moskovitz, who made $115,000 as township attorney last year.

But when the township committee discussed the contract in closed executive session, the officials agreed to pay Kinneally $145 an hour, according to Township Committeeman Joseph Locricchio, a Republican who voted against the contract.

"This is all a farce we are trying to pass onto the public," Locricchio said.

Who is the Largest Pay To Play Contributor? Find out tomorrow.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Anonymous said...

Yawn. The same old boring points regurgitated ad nauseum. No, the lawsuit against stew isn't going to stop; no, the mega mall isn't going to be built; no the R's aren't going to win next week. Whine all you want....it isn't going to accomplish anything.

Mal E. Practice said...

Since Roth will be elected due to the ineptness of the GOP leadership to get candidates who will fight Roth, the lawsuit will continue.

However, I agree with the Truth Squad. Unless there is an investigation done by either the state or fbi, that will be the only way to stop it. And after reading this, I believe an investigation into the use of taxpayer money for a political lawsuit is grounds for impeachment, or even arrest. IMHO.

Anonymous said...

MAL E. - Don't you think these lunkheads have either (a) tried to get investigators in, without success, or (b) have no leg to stand on to get them in? They said the same nonsense with Shapiro for years and there was no investigation. They complain about the lawsuit against Da mosked man, yet after more than a year the judge refuses to throw it out each time Moskovitz tries. They are just a bunch of whiners.

Anonymous said...

Funny.....Lucas and Cohen were good candidates. Green, Garcia, Locricchio, Nickie, Hall, Torregrossa....the Sarah Palin's of Manalapan. Pretty faces, a few sound bites, but nothing behind them.

Anonymous said...

When is McInerey going to clean house and throw out Butch and his people? Him, Steve, Heckler and Lippman are hurting the party. Rhoda looks like an elder statesman by comparison.

Wyatt Earp, MD said...

Kool Aid!

Kool Aid for sale!

Andy drinks it!

Anonymous said...

Have you forgotten how to spell your maiden name Kathleen? It's McEnery

Anonymous said...

Wow...lots of posts deleted. What is the lack of truth squad afraid of?

Anonymous said...

In court yesterday the judge called this case of Manalapan vs. Moskovitz a "Political Malay", Also told McCarthy that he is not the attorney on this case, so then why did McCarthy go to court? Why did he argue the case against the da truth squad demanding the identity of the bloggers?Is McCarthy billing for this case if he is not the attorney for it? What is so wrong with this picture? Are McCarthy's bills those that Gennaro and Cohen spoke about? Are these the bills Gennaro was denied? Now I understand even more why Cohen and Gennaro did what they did. Speaking of Gennaro he has a letter in todays Transcript. I think we all should be asking where is Chris Christie and the FBI?

Official says he was trying to act on behalf of taxpayers

There are times when you must step up to the plate and speak out, whether you are supported or not. In the case of Manalapan v. Moskovitz, this was one more instance when I did just that.

One of my primary responsibilities and concerns is how taxpayer dollars are spent. As part of our oath of office, we all swore to be fair and impartial, argue the issue, not the person. We understand that principle costs money, sometimes a lot of it.

Therefore, we always consider our options by negotiating prior to considering litigation. Why, there are no guarantees. I thought we, the Manalapan Township Committee, did just that.

However, later, I discovered that this case would be the exception to that rule.

How can anyone claim that our government is transparent and fiscally responsible when elected officials are denied access to legal documents, and legal counsel is allowed to function unmonitored?

This has become a case where several committee members have attempted to control how elected officials do their jobs. I was recently challenged when simply qualifying my vote on a "ratifying resolution" that retroactively attempts to rewrite history. In the end, the truth is the truth and it cannot be rewritten.

On behalf of the taxpayers of Manalapan, I believe that neither their interests nor mine were properly represented.

I provided (Superior Court) Judge Dennis O'Brien, and only Judge O'Brien, certain information I thought he needed to see. I decided that enough events had transpired and the time had come to defer to the judge, letting him decide whether or not the information I provided should be considered.

Acting reasonably, responsibly

and doing the right thing on behalf of the taxpayers go with the job. It is their interests I sought to protect.

Anthony Gennaro
Township Committeeman
Manalapan

Anonymous said...

I heard the judge denied Lucas' motion to dismiss the case Moskovitz brought against him for violation of first amendment rights saying that the complaint set out a complete and valid cause of action against Lucas. It sounds like when the dust completely settles on this joke of a litigation, it will be Lucas paying out the big bucks. I was told that when you are sued for violation of constitutional rights you can be forced to pay huge punitive damages AND attorneys fees. I think a lot of us are going to start enjoying this case. It's almost worth whatever Michelle is charging us in extra taxes to watch Lucas fry.