The needler in the haystack.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Charlotte blinks, spends Union County Dem money in web attack on OPRA activist


DeFilippo website alleges OPRA activist has cost County money.
Plainfield Today readers will find it of interest that Union County Dem chairperson Charlotte DeFilippo has blinked, using money from the county Democratic coffers to mount a website attacking Tina Renna, head of the Union County Watchdog Association.

In a county where the Democratic machine controls the Freeholder board and all countywide elected offices, Renna and her organization have been on the guard against waste, fraud, abuse and secrecy in the conduct of the county's business.

No friend of openness in government, as Plainfielders can well attest, DeFilippo used party money to pony up a shrill website badmouthing Renna.

One would think Democratic Party money would be used to fund contested elections where there were Republican opponents, wouldn't one.

But this is Union County.

I became aware of the situation when a second story appeared in the Ledger concerning the new Union County website. It had originally been announced in an October 1 piece (see here), seemingly based on a County press release puffing the new website as more user-friendly and informative.

Yesterday, the Ledger ran a second story (see here), in which Renna is quoted as pointing out that the website cost $135,000, and this in a time of financial difficulties and layoffs.

Renna posted on the CountyWatchers blog (see here) a nod to DeFilippo for validating the group's importance in the Union County political mix.

Today, John Bury, an OpEd columnist for the Ledger and a contributor to CountyWatchers, posted background information (see here), including that 'county operatives' set up a YouTube site on May 5 after creating the anti-Renna website on May 4.

De Filippo alleges Renna and CountyWatchers have cost the County $500,000 'in staff hours and paperwork', but fails to mention the numbers of times the courts have upheld CountyWatchers OPRA lawsuits.

Not to mention attorney's fees awarded to CountyWatchers and against the County.

The costs to the County can be traced directly to DeFilippo and the Dem operatives desire to operate in secrecy.

Why else would DeFilippo be so vexed unless CountyWatchers was hitting a nerve?


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7 comments:

Bob said...

When will the freeloaders who work for the county and the rip-off artists in the Democratic Party start working for the people in Union County instead of themselves. I was a Democrat for most of my adult life, but last year changed to Unaffiliated, because I am ashamed of the Democrats and Republicans in this state. Let's kick all of them out and make them work for their money. Shame on you Charlotte.

Anonymous said...

Dan,

You fail to mention how many times Renna and her group have been successful with the OPRA reports.

Instead of floating information, how about you try some responsible investigative reporting for a change?

Thanks

A.W.

Anonymous said...

to AW-as i have heard, the answer to the number of times that the watchdogs were successful in the law suits against the county is: all of the times. Dan did not need to report that bit of good news nor did he have a flaw in his report.

Blackdog said...

If there were an on-line database with all the government documents and transcripts that occur during normal business of running the government for whoever might click on . . . then there would be no need for Opra . . . nobody would have to find the files or make copies or even God forbid do a little honest work.

Anonymous said...

Bob,

In short, you are a nut-bag.

Anonymous said...

What website costs $150000? That's ridiculous!

Rob said...

In response to anonymous question of what website costs $150,000 ???
- ANYTHING dealing with politics in NJ involves the usual flow of excess money...to make sure it's done right. Nothing on the cheap could be right when dealing with other peoples money. As always, NJ Politicians..doing their part to make NY Politicians look good!
GO UNION COUNTY DEMOCRATS!!!!