Throop’s struggles filling jobs pays off for councilwoman’s family

By   /  April 21, 2015  /  Ethics, Local Government, Local News, News, Pennsylvania, Power Abuse  /  No Comments

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When Throop ran into obstacles filling two borough jobs, Councilwoman Charlene Tomasovitch twice had a relative who was available and qualified, she said.

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Council nepotism leads to small town government, one big family

By   /  April 20, 2015  /  Ethics, Local Government, Local News, News, Pennsylvania, Power Abuse  /  No Comments

Photo from Throopboro.com

A PA Independent investigation found that family members of at least five of the seven Throop council persons have worked for the borough within the past five years.

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Federal court: no liability for PA judge who made up criminal charge

By   /  April 13, 2015  /  Accountability, First Amendment, judicial accountability, Judiciary, Local Government, Local News, News, Pennsylvania, Power Abuse  /  No Comments

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The 3rd Circuit told a Lawrence County woman last week that she is simply out of luck and can’t sue local officials, including a Common Pleas judge who made up a criminal charge. A judge has near-absolute civil immunity, even if the action “was in error, was done maliciously, or was in excess of his authority,” the court ruled. And so there’s no liability for a judge who seems to have created his own procedure to use electronic monitoring in civil cases, here to essentially play collection agency for an attorney.

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Slush fund? Santa Fe can’t account for $30 million in bond money

By   /  April 9, 2015  /  Accountability, Ethics, Finances, Local Government, New Mexico, News  /  No Comments

Photo by Brigette Russell

“We really have no idea if there was fraud or embezzlement,” Booth said. “We don’t know how many millions of feet of pipe came in and where it went. My feeling is a lot of stuff walked away, especially now that we know there were absolutely no controls.”

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As with many things in Texas, fracking fight goes big

By   /  April 8, 2015  /  Energy and Environment, Local Government, National, News, State Government, Texas  /  No Comments

AP file photo

The Texas Legislature is debating whether state regulations trump local restrictions on hydraulic fracturing.

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Fore! Cuts coming to Minnesota public golf courses

By   /  April 6, 2015  /  Local Government, Minnesota, News  /  No Comments

City of Buffalo/Wild Marsh Photo

Thirty-six municipalities in Minnesota are operating golf courses at a loss to taxpayers, according to the latest statewide figures are available from the Minnesota state auditor.

The 36 cities golf courses operating as enterprise funds — a fee-based city service — ran up deficits totaling more than $4.5 million. A third of those cities recorded losses of more than $100,000.

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