RANTS  &  RAVES  2018























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    Why Mahoney lost Mahoney's election
    Last Monday, on Election Day Eve, some supporters of incumbent PA Rep Matt Dowling of the 51st legislative district -- some with tears in their eyes -- prayed and tried to do everything
    imaginably possible to  change some minds and swing some votes of some Democrat supporters of opponent Tim Mahoney to Dowling.  Read More.
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    DA too busy to apologize to crime victim he inconvenienced
    RANTS that a victim of a crime in early 2018 needlessly missed work for the fifth time again and drove another 35 miles for nothing because of the sheer chaos and
    disorganization in the district attorney's office in Fayette County. Read More.
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    "Quotes Of The Day" on the status of the 2018 voter registration fraud complaint investigation... not to be confused
    with the 2012 grand jury and sealed presentment believed to be about voter fraud.  

    "What is astonishing is that a record was not provided within the five-day time frame for a response.  Ms. Revak and DA Bower work in the same building.  The
    recusal/transmittal records would be very brief records which likely are no longer than one or two pages in length -- if the records even exist at the present time.

    And that's the rub, isn't it?

    Why hasn't a district attorney (prone to holding press conferences) held a press conference to publicly announce the referral of this important voter registration matter
    to the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General?"
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    Election Day: real nail biter to the end
    RAVES to area voters for making today one of the most exciting, nail biting local election nights on record in Fayette County. Rants&Raves extends congratulations to
    the incumbents who held on to their seats, in some cases, against horribly run smear campaigns to oust them.

    We also hope that the losers who ran nasty campaigns learned a very valuable lesson.

    We hope, too, that those who ran fair campaigns and lost, come back around again in the future -- i.e., preferably, please, with different campaign managers and financial
    backers with integrity who would not sell even their own mothers.


    Most importantly, though, RAVES of hope that the newly re-elected officials we have continue to concentrate as a collective force to behave professionally and attract
    industry. Fayette County can't lose more population and young families.

    Though voters chose only state officials today, voters chimed in here throughout the day to say that they are quite sick and tired, too, of the lone female county
    commish being intentionally left out of the loop of some county business. Those males, voters today warned, could also face elimination, regardless of party affiliation,
    in the next race, if they didn't get today's message loud and clear.


    Fay's kids shouldn't have to leave their hometowns or drive 90 minutes away to work to adequately support their families without government aid.

    Nor should our kids, who can survive financially in Fayette County with adequately paying jobs, have to be ashamed at times of Fayette County's corruption. It really
    isn't this way everywhere, as too many who somehow ended up in Fay from other areas always point out in exclamation.



    That we still have a sitting judge, cited for having a record number of shameful prosecutorial misconduct cases against him, on the county payroll, he -- especially with
    yesterday's court ruling to try to hijack today's state legislative race -- added a few more pages to the county's corruption history book that desperately needs, but can't
    get, a total re-write.    

    In short, he needs to go, to spare Fay any additional embarrassment.

    Election Day is history. The people have spoken. Amen. (6 Nov 18)



    In this heated 51st district???
    Ballot scanner left unsupervised at Fay precinct?
    RANTS this election night that some controversy in Fayette County exists about a paper ballot scanner and table being unsupervised at a precinct. Rants&Raves
    forwarded this information to the county election board and bureau director.

    RAVES of hope that this was one isolated instance, where an honest voter complained that she could have scanned the ballot herself and voted more than once if she
    wanted to do so.

    RAVES because she considered that others before and after her voting in her situation might not be so honest. (6 Nov 18)

    Joe, mighty Houserockers drown out tv news report at Lamb watch party
    RAVES of smiles tonight, watching a televised report around 9 PM, from the Connor Lamb return watch party, as reporters on live tv foolishly try to talk over Joe
    Grushecky and the mighty, almighty Houserockers, one of the loudest rocking bands ever to rattle bar windows, playing in the background... and just giving up in utter
    frustration and walking away from the camera.  


    As citizens write Obama to cancel Mahoney campaign $ over voter fraud cover up
    Solomon denies Dowling's emergency injunction based on fake document
    Incumbent PA Rep Matt Dowling's emergency court  injunction to stop false campaigning claims by opponent Tim Mahoney in the 51st state legislative district, was
    rejected today, in part, because the judge, like his buds, can't distinguish between reality and make believe.

    Solomon ruled that the hypothetical, proposed 2017 business plan that listed Dowling in charge of a not yet purchased business is the same in his kangaroo court as any
    actual-to-God real plan that established, already operational businesses have.

    The judge also ruled that it's too late on Election Eve to rule on an emergency junction request. Dowling, of course, filed the paperwork last week, only to have Judge
    Steve Leskenin continue the case to a later date and hand it over to another judge, Solomon, a cousin of Mahoney's lawyers. (5 Nov 18)


    Why?
    Mahoney removed statement of fact from web



          Whispers of corruption: fears of home bombings replace
    fears of losing, not getting jobs among Fay's politically obligated
    RANTS to all of those who want to whisper away the hours, about how bad corruption is in Fayette County, Pa., but still not have the balls to do one damn thing about it
    to change for their kids and grandchildren. Read More.


    Fay vocational training for disabled just plain sucks
    RANTS that regional job developers, through vocational rehabilitation services for the disabled, are unable after two months to locate a single Fayette County business
    or non-profit willing to allow a high functioning young man with Autism a location for a mere 20-hour vocational assessment to determine if he's trainable and
    employable. Read More.



    "Quotes Of The Day" from Tim Mahoney and that most dreadful, shamefully putrid Richard Ringer video, viewed at Rants&Raves'
    request by professionals and semi-professionals in law enforcement, mental health, meteorology, newspaper political commentary, dance choreography, contact physical
    sports, as well as a few hundred prison guards, nurses, disc jockeys, sales reps, pharmaceutical salesmen for companies contributing to political campaigns, musicians,
    and a bunch of just regular eat-sleep-work folks who reply to invitations... to editorialize feedback to avoid the appearance of bias. Read More.
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    Keedy's take on Warner's Taco Bell, vending machine reimbursements
    RANTS that in Rants&Raves' elusive search of recent weeks for one current state lawmaker out there, who take no per-diems, no actual travel cost reimbursements and
    no state-paid vehicle, we kept coming up empty handed. Read More.
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    Citizen buys airtime to shame bully political mud slingers
    RAVES to fed up citizen Linda Messmer of Indiana, who bought radio airtime to produce her own ad, telling politicians to can the negative, mean-spitied ads that harm
    the next generation. The ads, she said, teaches kids how to be bullies and wrong ways to get what they want.
    Station WVIG welcomed Messmer to produce her paid 30-second radio spot which will run through Tuesday.

    Her ad, which can be heard by clicking onto this link, states that she is sick and tired of being bombarded with the negative campaigns where weak candidates talk not
    of their visions but only of personal issues with opponents. The ad started to be aired this week.

    RAVES to Messmer for caring how the negative mud slinging affects the next generation and for the national news services for running her story. (2 Nov 18)

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    "Quotes Of The Day"
    "So Rich Bower never made the referral to Shapiro to investigate the Fayette Democrats violated voter registration policy offering a chance to win a prize to stay at
    Tim's condo overnight to anyone registering to vote Dem? So Leskenin knows election day is 4 days away and sent the lawyers home from an emergency
    injunction hearing to write briefs? So these crazy Democrat women in Vermont stripped naked for photos with ballots covering their breasts and genitals to
    encourage Democrats to vote for Democrats in their "Grab Them By The Ballot" promotion?"
    Pete, reading online at the diner, shaking his head and giving a recap to his wife

    "Affirmative on all, apparently."
    "You are...um... Republicans, I imagine."
    A new waitress, asking Pete and his wife as she poured another coffee

    "No. We're registered Democrats...just highly embarrassed Democrats at this time ."
    Pete



    Dowling vs Mahoney
    Judge stalls emergency injunction
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note that Fayette County Judge Steve Leskenin, who sealed the last voter fraud grand jury reports eons ago and won't release them,
    today opted to delay an emergency injunction request from incumbent PA Rep Matt Dowling to halt what he believes is a political smear campaign by challenger Tim
    Mahoney.

    Leskenin today took no action, other than to direct the case to the court of a judge, who's a cousin of lawyers representing Mahoney. Mahoney previously wrote on his
    social media account, "...there’s no denying the truth about his involvement in this corrupt funeral home operation. Listen and learn."

    Mahoney referred to the former Steven Kezmarsky Funeral Home, where Dowling worked in a few positions since he was a teen parking cars. Kezmarsky earlier this
    year was charged with stealing $500,000 from 100 seniors purchasing pre-paid funerals. Nobody else was implicated or charged.



    Given that the state attorney general rode into town to join the county district attorney to announce the arrest of the former funeral home director, and given the amount
    of time, energy and man power the state attorney general and local investigators gave the matter prior to the big media blitz arrest press conference, Mahoney's
    obsession to tie Dowling to the crimes there is one of the lowest political mud slinging in recent Fay history.

    Shame on Leskenin for not addressing at least that piece of the matter today. He shouldn't have needed both sides to submit briefs to ship over to Mahoney's lawyers'
    cousin judge to conclude that Mahoney has no proof that Dowling was aware of Kezmarksy's theft of $500,000.

    To continue the matter to next week or stall it till after the polls close is an injustice to Dowling and an insult to the state attorney general's office investigators who did
    not suspect or charge Dowling or Mahoney's friend, Bill Gerke, Uniontown School Board and airport authority member and treasurer for Democrat Mahoney's
    Republicans For Tim Mahoney campaign committee, said to be an investor with Kezmarsky, with any crime. (1 Nov 18)


    Email to Mahoney
    To get a better understanding of why Tim Mahoney focuses on opponent Matt Dowling's former roles at the "corrupt" funeral home, when Dowling nor Bill Gerke was
    ever charged with Steven Kezmarsky, this email was sent to Mahoney earlier.

    Good evening, Tim, Could you please be kind enough to explain something to me. How can you seriously try to imply that Matt knew Steven was stealing money when your
    own good friend, Bill Gerke, was an investor with Steven and obviously was unaware of any money being pocketed instead of being added as revenue on legit books? Your
    Bill never cruised the books?

    Any input which you may have will be appreciated.

    Please don't have a friend contact me for you, as you did when you had your pal contact me to call Ethan Smith. I didn't know your friend. Googled him. He was on the
    outstanding warrants list that the paper used to publish. That scared the hell out of me, long enough to get the gun and remember the castle doctrine. Not telling you this to
    be a smart ass, either. Just being honest.



    Why no referral to AG yet in Fairgate matters?

    RANTS that Fayette County District Attorney Rich Bower, who has not attended a Prison Board meeting in 9 months, has not yet found time to refer to the state attorney
    general the Fairgate complaints involving voter registration violations.

    Bower told Rants&Raves some 49 days ago that he soon would refer the matter to the state attorney general. This, too, now is nearly three months since he told the Trib
    that he already had recused himself from the cases, when, in fact, he had not done so.

    RANTS that our district attorney, undoubtedly a busy man, had time to pose for political ads recently, but not enough time yet to complete a simple referral to his
    friend, the state attorney general, this many months later.



    RANTS that those who squeak the loudest about bringing integrity and economical growth to Fayette County kiss and make up and join together at the hip to keep the
    corrupt image of Fay Nam more alive in 2018 than frigging ever. (1 Nov 18)


    Squirrel Hill mass hate shooting
    RANTS for the senseless slaughter of innocents in the name of hate. The area of Pittsburgh known as Squirrel Hill, an hour drive when visiting friends there, feels much
    closer in distance today. It's as though we're all right there with them. We know that our hearts are definitely there.

    RANTS that, as initial relief is felt hearing certain long-time friends in that community are safe, a special new sadness is felt hearing names of some of the deceased
    released by family or friends before sunset. That two developmentally disabled brothers were killed together in their beloved place of worship seems additionally sad.

    This column offers heartfelt sympathies to all of the families and friends, but a special note for the brave mother of the two brothers who insisted that agencies provide
    kosher group homes for those of the Jewish faith.

    That mother's heartbreak of losing two such special, sweet and gentle children today because of their religious practice must be overwhelming. For that reason, please
    keep Cecil and David's mother in your prayers today. (27 Oct 18)


    Fay Co Prison voters?
    RANTS that, as of yet, no preparations have been made for pre-trial detainees at the Fayette County Prison to vote in the upcoming election. This follows requests from
    the primary election last spring and other elections for a few years, when those absentee ballots were requested but not delivered to the prison.

    Whether it's the responsibility of a jail official to obtain the forms or the county election bureau to get the forms over to the prison is for county leaders to finally quit
    passing the buck and demand be done in compliance with the law.

    RANTS with the lawsuits in the air about prisoner rights violations, lets hope ballots finally make it over to the prison for this election. (26 Oct 18)  



    Judge rules trash political mailings must stop, correction must follow
    RAVES to a PA judge who ruled today that misleading political mailings must stop and senders must re-send a truthful follow up mailing admitting the earlier trashings
    were lies, as per a Chester County media outlet, The Daily Local.

    RAVES, too, that the judge also ordered the group responsible to spend some time attempting to round up all of the mailed untrue cards out there.


    RAVES to the West Chester judge for stopping the untrue crap involving an incumbent over state legislative per-diems, of all things.

    RAVES of hope that the court intervention in Chester County might send up red flags to locals mailing their own type of fake news packaged as truth to fool voters. Lets
    hope it ends here before a candidate or incumbent has to file court papers to force it to end. (25 Oct 18))


    Mahoney, Gerard slam opponents online without proof
    RANTS that some local candidates for state office have never talked once on the campaign trail about their dream legislation which they anxiously await introducing to
    write new laws or change existing laws to cut through state BS and right the wrongs. Read More.

    Hark! Fay-Penn has a good idea
    RAVES for a great idea long, long overdue.

    RAVES that Fay Penn, the county's elite think tank gurus responsible for thick brush growing rampant at an abandoned industrial park, is bringing its purse to help
    provide vocational training and jobs for Brownsville area high school age kids who don't want to relocate to earn a good living or stay local and work three jobs to break
    even.

    As per heraldstandard.com's "Fay Penn discuss projects, declining work force," Heartland Fabrications, a former barge making company, now building bridge
    infrastructure, will offer a high school work training program so that graduates can step right into those 30-120 new welding positions the company anticipates needing
    to fill.

    RAVES that something is being tried for the kids whose futures do not include military or college. RAVES of hope that more things are being done locally so that it's Fay
    that gets the next GE factory or other large facility for those without higher education. (22 Oct 18)

    _
    Mahoney trashes Dowling with false "facts"
    RANTS that the fact checker over at the Tim Mahoney campaign office must have dozed off at the wheel and sent its candidate off recklessly and foolishly to social
    media to write untrue information about the incumbent state house repre51st District, Matt Dowling.

    RANTS that there are so much meaningful topics in the region to seriously address -- i.e., unemployment, poverty, drug abuse, community development -- yet we have
    candidate Mahoney nit picking over the type of auto his opposition drives and posting completely false accusations about Dowling.





    RANTS because some afraid to debate publicly never seem to be short on words elsewhere. (17 Oct 18)   


    Cease and Desist letter to Mahoney
    Per Diem confirmation letter from state
    Mahoney social media post


    Solicitor gives $50 off court fines for voter registration
    RAVES of sincere appreciation to God that the following happened not in Fayette County, PA, but in South Fulton, Georgia. And, yes, she's a Democrat.
    That said, RANTS to a city solicitor in South Fulton, GA, who offered criminal court defendants $50 off their citation sum if they registered to vote or confirmed their
    registration to her.

    RANTS that the solicitor there then took to social media to promote the voter registration drive for $50 off a defendant's fines and court costs.  


    RANTS because whether it's $50 off criminal court costs or a chance to win a gun purse, a night at a resort, or dinner out, it's all the same, as per the article, "This sure
    looks like a felony to me."



    Why hasn't Vicites recused self?
    Why do Vicites, Lohr ignore citizen's election complaint?
    RANTS that a majority of the county Election Board refuses to add a citizen's month-old complaint to the board's meeting agenda for discussion when it meets in a few
    days about another matter.

    At a prior hearing of the county election board and voter registration commission, citizen Rob Frasconi told the officials of his intention to file a complaint with the
    Fayette County Election Bureau.


    As per Frasconi's blog, Fayette Searchlight, "The complaint alleges election fraud and perjuries against ex-State Rep. and current 51st Legislative District Democrat
    Nominee Timothy S. Mahoney, non-investigation of the Third Referral of the Fayette County Election Board passed unanimously on May 24, 2012, and potential crimes
    regarding the sealed Fifth Presentment of Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2."


    Since Commissioner Vince Vicites accepted a political contribution from Mahoney, why hasn't Vicites automatically recused himself in this matter?

    Why isn't Lohr insisting that Vicites recuse himself or --  at least -- agreeing with Commissioner Angela Zimmerlink that the matter deserves to be placed on the election
    board meeting agenda for possible action from the election board?

    Two to one, they could still do the right thing, without Vicites' approval, or in spite of him.

    If there's a foot of snow later, presume one of them, or both of them, did the right thing. (16 Oct 18)

    Carson's new suit: can the county courthouse
    drama, Sansone cases get any weirder than this?
    RANTS, because when you think it can't possibly get any weirder Read More.

    In case of asthmatic inhaler perhaps walked too slowly to inmate
    OOR asks senior lawyers to decide Fay's denial to view
    RTK prison surveillance video
    RAVES that the Pennsylvania Office of Open Records has called in its senior legal minds to decide Rants&Raves' appeal of Fayette County's denial to allow the viewing
    of prison surveillance video of an inmate in medical distress, bleeding from the mouth, while his asthma inhaler, reportedly, was too slowly walked to him.  Read more.

    DA: MIA for 7 months from county prison board meetings
    RANTS that Fayette County District Attorney Rich Bower apparently is way too busy to attend county prison board meetings now for 7 months. Bower, the county
    controller, sheriff, the three county commissioners and Fayette County Judge Steve Leskinen comprise the county prison board.

    While Bower and Leskinen apparently had business two days ago -- sealing an affidavit of probable cause in a Vanderbilt murder case -- it is unknown why Bower was
    again absent from yesterday's prison board meeting.  


    RAVES of hope that the DA is keeping up on the prison matters and, somehow, staying in the loop and contributing ideas.

    Yeah, we know they've all probably had too much forced bonding time together in the past year, in Pittsburgh legal meetings over prison death and civil rights law suits.

    But a no-show for seven consecutive monthly prison board meetings? Not even one instance of him running in late and leaving a prison board meeting early since
    February?


    RANTS that Fay's DA apparently is too busy for him to actively perform in his role on the county prison board, a seat which county code requires him to hold. His
    insights into any patterns or new issues, which only he as lead county criminal prosecutor may encounter, is valuable to the other prison board members at this time.

    RANTS that he's just way too busy. Reading draft meeting minutes later isn't the same. (27 Sept 18)
      

    Thursday's recommended read: Fayette Searchlight, "60 Days vs. 45 Months: Sealed Affidavit Will Not Remain Sealed As Long As Fifth Presentment"

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    "Quote Of The Day"
    "(She) died slowly overnight in an unmonitored jail cell, deliberately ignored and neglected while screaming in pain and increasingly unable to breathe..."
    A heartbreaking exert from a court complaint, written by Attorney Stephen Stallings, representing the estate of a former Fayette County Prison inmate, who
    died in 2015 after being taken to Uniontown Hospital and back to the prison, which resulted in an out of court settlement for $400,000 for the woman's family;
    An exert from a wrongful death lawsuit, which prison sources previously told Rants&Raves resulted after prison staff fell asleep and another staff tried to cover
    for the asleep staff




    Weak PFA behind Wednesday's mass shooting in Masontown
    RAVES that a small town policeman was able to take his shot to stop a mass shooting at the district magistrate's office before it got any worse.

    In the aftermath of Wednesday's shooting in the Masontown magistrate's office, Fayette County District Attorney Rich Bower was heard trying to rationalize to WPXI
    television viewers why the shooter was allowed to keep ownership of his weapons when his wife requested his weapons be removed under a protection from abuse
    order due to his homicidal threats to shoot her.

    Because both parties and their lawyers agreed to the man being allowed to keep his weapons, Bower told the media.


    RANTS that those four and Fayette County Judge Joseph M. George, Jr. agreed to write such a loosely written protection from abuse order, whether this mass shooting
    occurred or not.   

    But that it did occur, however, leaves us with a major weakness in the security link that goes beyond having no metal detectors and searches at the doors to the
    magisterial courts. RANTS to a breakdown in common sense behind the writing of this particular PFA. (21 Sept 18)



    Another Broken Record "Quote Of The Day," causing a rapid rise in reader neck injuries, from so many shaking their heads in disbelief,
    as well as a few reported cases of accompanying shoulder pain and trauma, from those also extending their arms in disbelief, asking why  

    "Please take notice that Plaintiff hereby appeals the Court’s Memorandum Opinion and Order of Court dated August 21, 2018, denying Plaintiff’s motion for leave to file a
    Second Amended Complaint and granting Defendants’ motions to dismiss the amended Complaint."
    Case 2:18-cv-00087-JFC, Document 55, Filed 09/19/18, Joey's Auto Repair & Body, filing final appeal allowed by law, as 30-day limit wound down for Joey Cellurale and
    his businesses to appeal last month's civil court's loss, still trying again to sue the county, a county commissioner and the Cellurale neighbors, as filed yesterday in U.S.
    District Court

    "If this weren't so sad, it might even be funny!"
    Public opinion, for the most part




    Ditto for the formal written complaint filed afterwards!
    Papers, radio mum on complaint to unsealed grand jury presentment

    RANTS that it has been nine days and neither area newspaper nor local radio station covering the September 10th reconvened Voter Registration Commission and
    Fayette County Election Board hearings noted to their readers and listeners that a citizen spoke of the need for Fayette County to open the still sealed -- and seemingly
    forgotten about Fifth Presentment of Grand Jury No. 2.  

    Rob Frasconi told those gathered that he was filing the complaint with the election bureau immediately after he left the hearing and did so. The Fifth Presentment was
    sealed by Judge Steve P. Leskinen.


    While Frasconi publishes the positively fine blog, "Fayette Searchlight," he has not blogged about  filing with the county election bureau after speaking at the public
    hearing nine days ago.

    For all the background on Franconi's complaint and all of the incredible investigative pieces of local government that he and Fayette Searchlight stun us, please click on
    the link above  (19 Sept 18)



    DA: Expect recusal, referral to AG in Fairgate investigations
    next week
    Fayette County District Attorney Richard Bower told Rants&Raves on Thursday that he plans next week to recuse himself from the investigation into a voter registration
    prize drawing held by the Fayette Democratic Party.

    At this time, Bower said he anticipates soon receiving the referral from the county's Voter Registration Commission asking for an investigation and the transcript of the
    commission's hearing four days ago. He then will refer the matter to the state attorney general for investigation.

    "I  have talked with Mark Rowan, Esquire, about when I will receive the referral letter and transcript of the hearing," Bower said, adding was told next week.

    Bower indicated that he intends to send all the materials to the attorney general to investigate the matters at that time.


    Reportedly, Bower previously told the Trib in mid-August that he had recused himself from investigating the matter. He was quoted in the media last week that he had
    already referred one of the two Fairgate matters to the attorney general.

    After the PA GOP filed a complaint about the Fayette Democratic Party's voter registration booth and prize contest drawing, the Dems filed filed complaint a few weeks
    later alleging that Dave Show, a former county GOP chairman, sold tickets -- perhaps illegal tickets -- a couple tables away from the county GOP candidate table.  


    ...oh, and then there's what else Mahoney said Monday
    At the hearing four days ago held by the county's voter registration and election boards, candidate and former state legislator Tim Mahoney told the board that proceeds
    from Show's raffle tickets, printed as a social organization's fund raiser, actually funded the county Republican Party committee.

    No, it wasn't said while Mahoney was under oath to testify and was said later during the final public comment before the hearing adjourned, but it was said publicly and
    in the presence of the attentive PA GOP lawyer.

    Mahoney's  shocking comments deserve investigation by the attorney general as well.  (14 Sept 18)


    The broken record "Quote Of The Day" from Pittsburgh print media about Fay

    "Fayette County continued to have the highest poverty rate and lowest income levels in the metropolitan area..."
    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Census data show region's income levels up but poverty improvement stalling," a piece summarizing stats and data from seven regional
    counties, data and stats that haven't changed for the positive in more than half a century...the only change, being the slip from Fay's long-time status as the region's
    second poorest county to being the region's poorest

    "If we're tired of hearing Fayette County has the highest poverty rate and the lowest income levels in seven regional counties, how can some elected officials be so
    happy about the PG's mass readership hearing Fay's rankings again that the officials post the story proudly?"
    Pete, in email from a Kentucky diner  


    What? No recusal?
    Bower donated to Mahoney, now heads investigation against him
    RANTS that Fayette County District Attorney Richard Bower has not recused himself from the Fairgate investigation since Bower contributed to the political campaign of
    someone he's investigating, as per 2016 campaign expense reports filed by former state legislator and current candidate Tim Mahoney.

    Bower donated to Mahoney's campaign less than two years ago.

    Mahoney testified at Monday's hearing of the county voter registration commission and election board that the county Democratic committee headquarters were housed
    until very recently in his own real estate leasing office and that his is the resort condo offered in the drawing for an overnight complimentary stay.

    Mahoney also identified a mystery man as his personal lawyer, who apparently misled three different election bureau employees on three trips to the bureau dropping
    off voter registrations, by saying the 16 registrations completed at the Dem fair booth were not part of any organized registration drive.


    While the district attorney was not present during the voter registration and election board hearing yesterday, he was present in spirit, as Bower's political sign was
    captured in this photograph of the Dems' fair booth that were presented as evidence to the commission. Until very recently, as well, Bower was listed as a paid sponsor
    of a weekly AM talk radio show, as heard at this link.  

    RANTS that Bower hasn't recused himself. Mahoney and Fay citizens deserve an unbiased, fair investigation of Fairgate. That won't happen with a friend and campaign
    contributor leading the way. (11 Sept 18)



    Fairgate: investigation underway or about to snowed over?
    RANTS that the Fayette County Voter Registration Commission had no choice but to refer the matter of the Fay Democratic Party's voter registration prize giveaway at
    the county fair for investigation to the district attorney.

    RANTS, too, that George Rattay, the chairman of the county Dem party, took the Fifth so many times, refusing to answer any questions about who got and hung the prize
    giveaway contest signs and who bought or donated prizes that were to be awarded.

    Before adjourning, the commission today also agreed to issue subpoenas to obtain the following information from the county Dem party committee:
    a list of all voter registrations collected during the fair registration drive; any registrations not yet submitted from the fair drive; a list of all persons who volunteered at
    the fair booth; the two duplicate signs that hung at the fair booth listing the prizes; the 2018 financial expense report for the political party group; the group's bylaws;
    minutes of 2018 party committee meeting minutes; address of Tim Mahoney's personal lawyer said to have dropped off fair registrations to the election bureau; drop
    cards completed to enter contestants into the drawing and the very box itself used to hold the completed entry forms.

    During testimony and statements made at today's hearing, conflicting information was heard about the status of the voter registrations completed at the fair. While
    Rattay and candidate Mahoney said the registrations were taken to the election bureau, Election Bureau Director Larry Blosser stated that the registrations in question
    were not submitted.

    However, it was later learned that Mahoney's personal lawyer, said not to be affiliated with the county political committee, reportedly dropped off the fair registrations,
    and, as per Blosser, told three county employees the registrations were not part of a registration drive.

    As a result, the bureau did not accordingly code the registrations as they normally do for those taken in through a formal registration drive.  


    In regard to the other complaint before the county voter registration and election board today -- i.e., the Dem party's complaint that a former GOP county chair, sitting a
    few tables away from the county GOP fair table, sold tickets for a rod and gun club drawing possibly without proper permit for small games of chance -- the commission
    dismissed the claim, saying the complaint does not fall within its jurisdiction.

    Instead, the Dems, after being given a break to brain storm to come up with some specific applicable section of the Election Code which they felt was violated and
    coming back empty handed, were told they can file complaints with the county treasurer, the state police or district attorney. The commission also left them an option to
    refile with the election board if the Dems can come up with a specific section of election or election registration law that's applicable to their complaint.

    Rattay said the Dems complaint already was sent to several investigating entities when he submitted the complaint on August 16 to the Election Bureau. (10 Sept 18))


    Charleroi got GE; fickle Fay gets another chain restaurant
    RAVES, of course, that Uniontown is getting a new chain restaurant, as per social media posts from Fayette County Commissioner Vince Vicites. The fickle tastes of the
    public often comes in a slow motion wave of big hurrahs, as we all remember when first we heard back then that there's a Red Lobster coming, then an Olive Garden
    coming. Now a steakhouse.

    RANTS, though, that Fay isn't attracting the big companies in, with decent paying entry-level jobs for average citizens without higher education that won't require their
    families to exist only with food stamps and other dependence on government and public funds for insurances, as the restaurant chains normally do.

    While nearby Charleroi, for instance, got General Electric to move in a few years ago, Fayette County residents working there are pleased that the plant is providing
    them with the means to support their families.

    Inevitably, those employees plan to relocate closer to work in Washington County if the future continues to be as bright with GE as they now believe it will be.

    RANTS that politicians too often depend on the big hurrahs of fickle restaurant goers to get votes, when they should have been vigilantly pursuing the corporations
    which pay a fair wage to their workers. Fay residents shouldn't have to depend on Charleroi, Washington, Westmoreland or Allegheny County officials to bring them real
    jobs that make people want to buy homes, raise their families here and remain in Fay. (8 Sept 18))

    Peduto: It's 'Norman Nardini Day' in Pittsburgh
    RAVES that the official blacksheep of the Pittsburgh music family, Norman Nardini, gets his due today, after Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto formally declared today as
    Norman Nardini Day. No kidding!

    The honor pays homage to Norman for his 50 years writing, making, producing, thinking, eating and sleeping music. An all day music festival is underway today, starting
    at 2 PM, at the Syria Shrine in Harmerville, to honor his dedication to Pittsburgh music.

    Last our paths crossed, he was still playing his usual bar gigs, but had been volunteering his time in dementia units playing piano and singing standard tunes. He wasn't
    opening up for Aerosmith, ZZ Top or any of the others he used to open for, but he was genuinely happy reaching minds with music who may have not remembered
    anything else from their past 50 years.

    Today's show also features Bill Toms and others. Tickets are available at the event.

    Rants&Raves is assured the event is under cover in the event of rain. So please go, raise a beverage to toast Norman to thank him for all the music, all the laughs and all
    of the great stories over all the years.

    Also said to be joining in will be Sean McDowell of WDVE fame, just back to work from his cardiac emergency and surgery.

    RAVES again to Peduto for officially recognizing the blacksheep and giving him his redemption. (8 Sept 18)

    Fairgate: Election Board hearings come Monday
    Election board hearings into whether election law was violated at political party events at the county fair are scheduled on Monday, September 10, starting at 9 a.m., as
    per an announcement on the county' Election Bureau's official webpage.

    As per the agenda posted online, the board will hear the complaint filed by the PA GOP early last month, that election code was violated with the county Democrat's
    prize giveaway signs at the county fair booth's voter registration drive, pictured to the right.



    While the Dems' ignorance of -- or deliberate defiance of -- election code seemed to amuse major media news outlets, as one by one they carried the story in print, on
    radio, on satellite radio, on television, on network television, not one Fay Dem incumbent or candidate working or visiting the booth afterwards thought anything wrong
    had happened.

    When the election board convened on August 20, 2018, to address the GOP complaint about the county Dem party's contest open to anyone who registered to vote at
    the fair booth or changed his party to Democrat, two commissioners, or two-thirds of the county election board, recused themselves.

    Meanwhile, that same morning, the county Dems filed a complaint with local authorities, alleging that a former county GOP chair sold tickets to a rod and gun club
    drawing at a table nearby an official GOP table. That complaint, as per the agenda for Monday's hearing, will be heard after the GOP's complaint. (7 Sept 18)


    "Quotes Of The Day" on the delivery of news
    "How long did it take for the Herald Standard to publish when the zoning suit was filed against Zimmerlink and the Krisses?
    Pete, asking, yesterday at the diner

    "Same day"
    Me, in response

    How long did it take the Herald Standard to publish when the suit was thrown out of court?"
    Pete, wanting to know

    "Six days"
    Me

    "How long did the Courier take last January to report Zimmerlink and the Krisses were being sued?"
    Pete

    "Six days"
    Me

    "How long did the Courier take to report the suit was dismissed?"
    Pete, asking away

    "Eleven days"
    Me, answering while googling papers for details

    "Sounds about right!"
    Pete


    Blog: Official Oppression used to stop Mahoney-Cavanagh election fraud investigation
    RANTS reading Fayette Searchlight's latest piece, "Bower Decision on 3rd Referral Mimics Heneks' Non-Investigation, Part II," that mentions a blog editor receiving an
    unannounced home visit in West Virginia from the Pennsylvania State Police transporting a PA state employee of the PA Attorney General's office, to hand deliver a
    cease and desist order to the Not Enough Said blog editor, ordering her to stop calling every 4 to 6 weeks asking for an update into the investigation into Fayette
    election issues.

    Please click on the above purple link to Fayette Searchlight for more mouth dropping information. (1 Sept 18)

    Over new business park at Mt. Macrina
    Mahoney b slaps Dem gov, Dem commish to get in weak jab at GOP opponent
    RANTS of confusion today reading Tim Mahoney's latest letter to the editor, trying to understand either his misunderstanding of the situation, or his deliberate bitch slap
    of a Dem governor, Dem county commission chairman and past Dem officials, to take a cheap shot at the Republican who beat him in the last election and two other
    area first-term, GOP state lawmakers.

    Mahoney said he didn't want to brag, but he still tried, by reminding us -- as though we could ever forget -- that he once obtained a $1.5 million state grant, "with the
    governor’s help, to assist job creation at Argon-Boeing in the Fairchance Business Park.

    "That’s three times the $500,000 announced this year for expansion of a similar business park near Mt. Macrina, for which some credited the entire local legislative
    delegation," Mahoney wrote in one up mode to the paper.

    Mahoney said he thinks that "voters need to look at a candidate’s track record of delivering for the people he or she represents."


    Respectfully, we ask, what is Mahoney talking about and who is he talking about? Whose track record? Vicites'? That is whose baby the professional park appeared to
    be, as per comments made to Rants&Raves that big announcement day by a state legislator.



    The bottom line is that Mahoney's whining about Republicans being in legislative offices in 2018 when the grant from a Democratic governor was announced reeks of
    sour grapes from his 2016 loss at the polls and that the decision to release the $500,000 didn't come before his 2016 defeat. The grant was said to be in the works for a
    few years, likely before Mahoney lost re-election in 2016.


    In mid-August, when the papers carried the big story of the $500,000 grant for the development of a new business park in Uniontown through the pending acquisition of
    220 acres of land from the religious order at Mount Saint Macrina, State Rep Matt Dowling, PA-51, told Rants&Raves, "This new proposed park was one of the top
    legislative priorities for the county commissioners. We were told the majority of this park’s use would be medical. There was bipartisan support with Commissioner
    Vicities requesting the park and the governor supporting the project."

    That comment didn't sound as though Dowling seemed to be stealing or trying to steal Vicites' thunder, right? Only Mahoney seemed to see it that way with his 'I'll one
    up you" boast.



    With the bad blood, of course, between Mahoney and Dowling, it's understandable that Mahoney is biased. RANTS, however, that Mahoney must have missed those
    social media updates from his good pal, Vicites, taking credit for acquiring the grant to get the business park project moving.

    "This past June, I arranged a meeting with the State Department of Community and Economic Development Officials to discuss obtaining Redevelopment Capital
    Assistance Funding to complete the final phase of our Fayette County Business Park on Route 40," Vicites wrote on social media.

    As a result, Vicites wrote on August 17 on social media, "This week the County and the Redevelopment Authority obtained 1/2 Million dollars from the Commonwealth of
    Pennsylvania to start the final phase of the project at Mt Saint Macrina."




    That Mahoney compared the types of grants that the Uniontown project will receive to the $1.5 million of public funds that he secured specifically for Boeing and smugly
    concluded there's no comparison of his level of greatness to the puny $500,000 grant that Vicites helped get, is all so disappointing to read and unfortunate for Fayette
    County. It's never a good day when fellow Democrats with fragile egos have to one up each another just to take an ego jab at a Republican.



    What Mahoney's letter to the editor does not include is the fact that campaign donations affiliated with Boeing officials and the company's Policical Action Committee
    (PAC) still make their way to Mahoney's campaign to help him regain his legislative seat. There's not just one company donation. There's the company donation, the
    PAC donation, the landlord's donation, the landlord's retired Boeing pal and cycles of ongoing donations year-round.

    There is much added incentive, in other words, for Mahoney to sniff out big grants to help specific, individual companies which contribute through multiple sources to
    his very own political campaign.

    Perhaps it's the only way he knows to attract industry. (31 Aug 18))


    Dismissed: Cellurale vs The Usual Suspects
    Editor's note: Yesterday, U.S. District Court threw out a civil case filed by the owner of Joe's Auto Repair and Body Shop and On-Par Turf, Joe Cellurale, against the
    county, County Commissioner Angela Zimmerlink, and Terry and Diane Kriss, the Cellurales' neighbors.

    Cellurale alleged in his suit filed earlier this year that the commissioner used her position to influence county zoning office decisions and impose zoning violations
    against him, resulting from supposed complaints from his neighbors. This was the third lawsuit filed over zoning issues on those same properties against the county
    over the years.  


    RANTS that a lawyer so familiar with the Fay political climate could encourage a citizen to pay to file a suit, alleging that the black sheep of Fay politics, known not to do
    or owe political favors, could have such powerful influence over an entire department of county employees -- to speak nothing of a large zoning hearing board
    comprised largely of political appointments by some who would oppose Zimmerlink if she said white is white or two plus two is four.

    Cellurale has 30 days to appeal the federal court's call on this zoning matter. (22 Aug 18)



    Meanwhile, this about the zoning case, never mentioned again since 2016?
    Readers here recall two years ago, the director of the county zoning office stated publicly that former commissioners Al Ambrosini and Vince Zapotosky stopped her
    from issuing fines and violations to Cellurale in the case.

    About a week later, Ambrosini denied the statement made by the zoning office director to heraldstandard.com, in "Ambrosini denies allegations of interference in Kriss,
    Cellurale zoning issue."

    Other than that instance against Ambrosini and Zapotosky, reportedly, stopping the zoning office to enforce a cease and desist order to one of the Cellurale businesses,
    no other claims were ever stated about any county officials interfering with county business for a political favor or support.


    "Quote Of The Day"  on all -- or how very little -- it takes in Fay to say in public to get attacked            leaving a public meeting

    "As the secretary pro temp of the Green Party of Fayette County, I urge (the Election Board) to dismiss the complaint by the Democrats against the Fayette GOP..."
    Kathryn Jones, to today's Election Board, at its meeting to discuss the PA GOP complaint against the Fayette County Democratic Party giving prize contest chances
    with voter registrations;

    Jones, later saying nothing to any of the county Democratic party office holders, candidates or campaign directors outside, but receiving a verbal shout out dis from
    the second in command at the county Dem party office, mayor of Newell and former head of the county's crime/victim/witness director, Ms. Niki Todaro, who hurled
    personal insults at Jones leaving the building, so inappropriately, about Jones' adult son.

    "I'm proud of you! ... I'm proud of you!... I'm proud of you!"
    Tim Mahoney, candidate for state representative/former 51st District representative, beaming gleefully with happiness, smiling, laughing, saying to Todaro as she
    got into a car to leave the parking lot, after Todaro, a key county Democratic party office holder, outside after a county meeting, threw jaw-dropping, personal
    daggers at Jones, a political  opponent, who had the integrity to speak publicly inside




    2014 voter fraud lessons forgotten?

    RANTS that some snicker at the silliness of the complaints alleging possible elections violations that two political party leaders have leveled against one another in
    recent Fay weeks.

    Forget that they often then are speechless, suddenly without snicker, usually looking downward at this point, when asked why then did the story of the Fay Dem fair
    booth prize contest give away air on televisions during network news in Los Angeles?  Read more.


    On his radio talk show, Show ignores, but not completely, Dem complaint against him
    Dave Show, former Fayette GOP chairman and current party committee man, vaguely eluded to something being up that he wasn't going to discuss at the start of his AM
    talk radio show Thursday and went into his interview with his scheduled guest.
    Only, Show ended up commenting before introducing his guest that he wasn't going to engage in discussion about some "hair pulling and eye rolling contest."
    He was, of course, referring to the complaints filed against him by the county Democratic Party chairman. Show went on then the following day to tell a local paper that
    he sold gun raffle tickets for a different group, but not for the GOP political party.
    The complaint filed today against Show and the county GOP by the county Democratic Party chairman will be addressed by the state attorney general. (17 Aug 18)


    Dowling responds to Dem's complaint of gaming violation at GOP county fair tables

    PA Rep  Matt Dowling of the 51st District weighed in to Rants&Raves today on the complaint filed by the Fayette County Democratic Party chairman against the County
    GOP for possible state gaming violations and PA Ethics violations.

    On Thursday, the Dems alleged that tickets were sold at the county GOP table at the fair for gun raffles by non-existent groups or real groups without legal permits. At
    one point, the complaint from the Democratic party chairman stated that the selling of gun raffle tickets appeared to be an illegal raffle promoted by Mr. Show," referring
    to Dave Show, former Republican county chairman and current party committee man.  


    Dowling disagreed this afternoon to any claim that gun raffle tickets were sold at his table.

    "The tickets being sold were being sold two tents from where the GOP was housing my campaign promotional supplies, under the banner of the Fayette Patriots," he
    said.

    His understanding, Dowling said, was "that the ticket was being put off by a local gun club and not the GOP."



    The county election board is scheduled to meet later in the month to hear the Democrats' complaint, and is scheduled to meet in three days, on Monday, August 20,
    2018, at 9 AM, to hear the complaint from the county GOP filed last week against the Dem's county fair booth which entered anyone who registered to vote or changed
    party registrations into prize drawings.  



    Searchlight's spot on take on anonymous attack of jail reform activist
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but another strong push to read "Anonymous Legal "Guru" Botches Law Interpretation in Shellhammer Case," from Fayette Searchlight.

    Shellhammer, as readers here know, is charged in a self-defense shooting case and held without bond in the Fayette County Prison. He is also known for his video
    recordings of county commissioner and prison board meetings under the nic "Chuck U. Farley." He is also the son of county citizen jail reform advocates, Kathryn and
    Bill Jones. The above link is to Searchlight's reaction to a poison pen letter that Mrs. Jones received that left, in Searchlight's opinion, doubt that he is being rightfully
    charged and held incarcerated.


    Prior to his arrest for homicide, the man, who supposedly went in shooting a man who supposedly immediately spun, fell and died, sustained significant physical
    injuries. Shellhammer's written account of the shooting is chilling and a difficult read knowing the outcome. RANTS that Masontown police and the DA seem to be the
    only ones who read along, put themselves in Shellhammer's shoes and fail to recognize that there is absolutely no other way out of this attack unless I pull my gun out
    and shoot before I'm killed.

    Nobody enters a room shooting a man who died almost instantly and staggers out with a beaten up face, broken jaw, pounding head concussion and injured shoulder.
    Shellhammer shot as a last resort. RANTS that he was ever charged with homicide with no convincing evidence and a case against him which, to date, includes the key
    witness and police changing stories from the time of arrest through giving testimony against him at his kangaroo court arraignment.

    RAVES of hope that the county district attorney really knows what he's doing in this case, because it doesn't seem as though reason and logic applied here. Certainly,
    it's tragic that someone, charged not long before with selling heroin, chose to brutally attack Shellhammer and died, but we're awfully glad Shellhammer shot and is still
    here.


    Please read Searchlight's take on the harassment that Shellhammer's mother received by mail.  (17 Aug 18)
    ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


    Timeline disputes Cardinal's 30-year-old zero tolerance claim
    Everson mayor 3x caught, didn't charge priest in cemetery with kids
    RANTS that an area mayor and police force that caught a former Catholic priest parked three different times with three different boys in a cemetery at night did not
    criminally charge the priest.

    Instead, as per the grand jury report on child sexual abuse by the commonwealth's priests released this week, the mayor of Everson chose to meet with church leaders
    in the Greensburg Dioceses over then Father Joe Sredzinski i's actions in the cemetery.

    While the mayor of Everson tried to get the priest removed from the Everson parish, the mayor wasted his first chance, then a second opportunity to stop the abuse by
    charging the priest. RANTS that at least two more kids were abused and didn't have to be, until the mayor at least took some kind of action by meeting with the diocese
    to remove the priest from Everson.

    From the attorney general's news conference and released grand jury report, this Everson mention was especially heartbreaking because the cemetery abuses were
    rare occasion when someone outside the church's chain of command knew about the abuses. Witnessed by a town mayor and police on three separate occasions over
    what seems to be a six-year-period with no criminal charges filed is horrible. The grand jury report stated the abuse started in 1991 in Everson and ended not through
    criminal prosecution of the priest, but only after he transferred from Everson in 1999.

    It's inexcusable for a mayor or the police not to file criminal charges when the mayor and police witness first hand the crimes being committed against children. By the
    early 1990s when this happened, there already was increased awareness in the public of designated mandated reporting. Surely, the police and mayor should have
    charged the priest. They were the witnesses. That was half the battle of preparing that kind of case for trial. There was no worry that a witness would cave from pressure
    or intimidation or out of feelings for the accused.    

    This priest who couldn't stay out of the Everson cemetery at night with young boys from his church, as per the report, went on to serve at a few other churches for 16
    more years. Sredzinski's case contradicts Cardinal Wuerl's statements this week that no offenses against children went unpunished by the church diocese for the past
    30 years.

    The diocese of Greensburg, as per the Grand Jury report, knew in 1991 about the mayor's concerns in the cemetery. Sredzinski served in Everson in Everson through
    1999 and went to other churches  in the diocese to lead parishes for another 16 years. He also served as chaplain at State Correctional Institute in Greensburg and
    nursing homes in Greensburg in addition to pastoral assignments in Jeanette and hosted a religious radio program ,“That You May Believe.’’

    The Grand Jury report states that he continued to serve as a priest in the diocese through 2007 even though the diocese had full knowledge of what he did in the
    cemetery on at least three nights in the 1990s in Everson, caught each time by the mayor and police.  

    While the report stated that he was removed from the priesthood, his obituary and feature story on heraldstandard.com three years ago, called him Father and contained
    accolades from a bishop and his nun biological sister. RANTS that the diocese let that happen.

    Note: The above discussed former priest was first introduced to Rants&Raves readers in a below piece, "Evil Wilma, Republic priests share space in Hell together." (17
    Aug 18)


    Fay Dems counter-file complaint against Fay GOP for gun raffle
    The county Democratic party head filed a formal complaint today that a former Republican county party chairman/GOP committee man sold tickets to an illegal gun raffle
    at the county fair.

    As per the complaint, the former GOP chairman sold "illegal raffle tickets in violation of the Local Option Small Games of Chance Act, and, perhaps, The Election Code."

    No signs announcing a raffle are visible in the accompanying blurry photos and no party connection wording is seen on the photos attached to the complaint.

    Written by George Rattay, the complaint and accompanying photographs were delivered to the county election bureau office by a current state office candidate/former
    state representative Tim Mahoney. He later said on AM talk radio today that the complaint was sent to several different agencies or entities to investigate.

    The complaint asks for an investigation to determine whether Dave Show, former GOP chairman/GOP committee man, sold tickets for a legitimate non-profit
    organization named on the tickets or his own personal benefit, or whether the gun raffle, indeed, was authorized by the county GOP committee.

    Email was sent to the state and county GOP party chairs for comment. (16 Aug 18)



    Evil Wilma, Republic priests share space in Hell together
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but an incredibly sad mention that out there are a former elementary schoolmate and scores of other victims of the sickest, most putrid kind
    of organized ring of child sexual predators, in the priests that we as kids fully trusted.

    Back then, as per dates when the sexual abuse seemed to start in Republic in the long-awaited Grand Jury report released yesterday, little kids in that neighborhood
    parish and school were barely over nightmares of two young boys being murdered a few years earlier, their 7 and 10-year-old bodies found in Evil Wilma Eperjesi's Main
    Street refrigerator, after disappearing while playing.

    RANTS that Evil Wilma wasn't the only thing about that parish and school that would traumatize kids so horribly. It's just that none of us ever dreamed that Evil Wilma
    and Fathers Henry, Oris and Joe would come to share the same space in Hell together for their unspeakable crimes against children. (15 Aug 18)



    Fay Election Board to meet, no hearing announced
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note that a notice announcing a meeting of the Fayette County Election Board (August 20, 2018, at 9 AM, in the Pubic Safety Building),
    is posted on the county's website.   

    As per the notice, the board will discuss a Bullskin Township polling location at an elementary school and the complaint, now known as Fairgate, that Democratic party
    leaders violated election code in their booth at the county fair, by enticing voters to register or change parties to be entered into prize contests. (14 Aug 18)


    More on the Democratic Party booth at the county fair
    While the first order of business should be a simple acknowledgement of a possible change in polling location, the second order of business for the Fayette County
    Election Board next week may be too far out of the range of comfort for the election board.

    Photographs that started to be sent to Rants&Raves in late July taken at the county fair do bear the images of Vince Vicites, county chairman, county election board
    member and county Democratic committee man, as well as some current Democratic row officers and Democratic candidates in county and state Democratic races.
    Read More.


    Tourists note Dunbar industrial park still without tenants
    RANTS that tourists in Fayette, returning after a few years, noticed and commented tonight at a nearby restaurant that the industrial park in Dunbar Township still has no
    tenants and industry.

    "They held the opening over two years ago when we were here," Mr. New York said, with Mrs. New York commenting that she remembered being very happy to hear at
    that time at least one thousand jobs would come to Fay. She recalled being elated hearing the industrial park was expected to rake in $50 million dollars annually into
    local economy when she read the newspaper after the 2016 opening ceremony of speeches from area dignitaries.

    "What happened? Why isn't that land developed? The road is in. The utilities (for 11 tenants) and infrastructure are in, right?" she reasoned in asking.

    "Not even one tenant yet!" she exclaimed, with her spouse shaking his head in unison with her over the unsold lots. Not one tenant, she noticed.

    RANTS that area officials seem to have forgotten about the industrial park in Dunbar Township. Why is that? (13 Aug 18)



    "Quotes Of The Day" on a forgotten grand jury presentment collecting dust
    "If (Michael) Cavanagh was the subject of the sealed Fifth Presentment, why was the presentment never unsealed and the case prosecuted?  Was it to cover up the non-
    investigation of the Third Referral against (Tim) Mahoney?  Even if Cavanagh was not the subject, again, why has the Fifth Presentment remained sealed for 44 months?

    As Fayette Countians paid for that county investigating grand jury, the citizens of this county deserve answers from current Fayette County District Attorney Richard E.
    Bower on why he has not asked Judge Steve P. Leskinen to unseal the Fifth Presentment and why no formal charges ever resulted from it.  More directly, Judge Steve
    P. Leskinen must be held to account for the lengthy sealing of the Fifth Presentment.
    Fayette Searchlight, from, "Sealed Fifth Presentment Reaches 44 Months," a must read


    Specialized courts keep proving 2013 jail planners wrong
    RAVES to the fact that specialized courts are working in Fay to help reduce county prison recidivism and improve the quality of life to its participants.

    Today's heraldstandard.com feature, "Fayette County Problem-Solving Courts reducing recidivism and increasing treatment," looks at the value of the specialized
    courts to help veterans and those suffering from mental illness and drug and alcohol issues turn their lives around without future arrest.

    RAVES that these specialized courts are getting positive feature. Specialized courts, after all, were said to be of no value to keep jail census down by 2013 county prison
    developers who were a few million dollar waste of public money.

    Today's data, however, continues to prove that the 2013 county prison developers and their county ad hoc work groups missed the boat by a long shot projecting
    snowballing annual increases in incarcerations, when, in fact, they were so wrong. (13 Aug 18)



    Code officer: New Connellsvile hotel has "major code violations"

    RANTS that during an inspection to approve a permit for the installation of a fence that was already installed around a retention pond, a Connellsville code and zoning
    officer reported to the local planning commission this week that the Cobblestone Hotel has "major code violations" and that the authority should table granting approval
    for now.  

    As per heraldstandard.com's "Code violations delay Connellsville hotel’s permit approval," the zoning and code officer did not publicly list any other types of specific
    violations, but commented they were significant and that "it wasn't something simple like peeling paint."


    Connellsville's Act 90, implemented by city council two months ago, allows the planning commission to deny permits in cases where owners owe back taxes or have
    outstanding code violations.

    "Rejection of an application would require the applicant to put the property back to its regular state -- or take the fence down," the article continued.

    Dismantling the fence, as shown in this link, however, reportedly, would result in the loss of property insurance and the issuance of violations from the Department of
    Environmental Protection.


    RANTS that the day to day operations of a private business, built in part with some public funds to help the local economy and community development to create jobs
    and regional economic growth, remains so problem-ridden.

    Readers here are well aware of the legal suits brought by some investors against other investors, including a former county commissioner, over an unspecified amount
    of profits some owners feel they are owed. In their as of yet unresolved civil lawsuit, those plaintiffs alleged that other investors pressured the group to use funds for
    reasons other than the agreed upon expenses.  

    RANTS that the lack of following legal codes and regulations has left the troubled hotel in more trouble at a time when the area needs jobs and economic growth so
    badly.  (12 Aug 18)




    "Quote Of The Day" he said, after 15 years in office and umpteen campaigns, way long enough to have read, learned election code regs
    that prohibit gifts or prizes to entice voters

    "Big crowd at the Fayette County Fair last night! Democrat booth has been really busy registering new Democrats in Fayette County!"
    Fayette County Commission Chairman and Democrat Committee man Vince Vicites, writing on social media on July 29, as seen in a saved copy of his quickly
    deleted social media posts, saved, as shown in this link,  to the social media page of the Republican Party of Fayette County


    Fayette Searchlight blog resumes publication


    Also, for in depth background information on other Mahoney-related issues, please dig into the archieves of the old Not Enough Said blog, formerly written by a second
    writer/editor and the Searchlight editor.     

    No matter which candidates voters chose in upcoming elections, RAVES that Searchlight and the former NES site offer information that gives citizens "warts and all"
    details to make an informed decision at the polls.


    RAVES to Fayette Searchlight for the new read over today's morning coffee. (10 Aug 18)


    Will Vicites recuse self?
    Will Election Board convene hearing about voter registration complaint?
    Although the state's county election boards ultimately are to schedule hearings when allegations of voter irregularities are made, there has been no word yet whether
    Fay's election board will convene a hearing to talk about the drive at the Dem party booth at the county fair to register new Democrats to vote in the fall general election.

    But, as per a Bullskin area poll worker, the election board still hasn't advertised a meeting or hearing to change a polling location, so we shouldn't hold our breath
    waiting. The election board is comprised of the three county commissioners, who were asked for comment.

    Mixed are reactions coming in since this story first appeared in the Trib. That the story drew so much negative attention across major news outlets because voters were
    enticed to register to vote or change their party to Democrat with chances to win prizes.

    Even if not one person took the Dems up on their offer at the fair booth to register, the Election Board needs to convene to address the issue. Either dismiss it or
    address it through the criminal courts.


    After all, if state officials bothered to write election regulations not allowing gifts or money exchanged for votes and voter registrations and penalties for violations,
    shouldn't the election board seriously address the complaint?

    To the outside world, which sees photographs on social media posted by one elected official posing at the fair booth with the readable signs around him with three
    candidates in the fall election, what happened is significant.

    What's worse than having the world's main media outlets calling a county political party committee chairman for comment, as what happened with the Fay Dem
    committee chair? How about the same big guys calling back prison board members or a district attorney to ask why the board did not convene a hearing when the photo
    of the signage at the fair booth speaks as truth?

    It happened. Nobody knows yet how many people -- could be zero or many -- registered through the Dem fair booth the days it operated the contest. But it happened.
    Politicians with decades in office who should thoroughly know election law hung around that booth oblivious to election code. It happened.



    RAVES of hope that county officials address the state GOP complaint before the stupidity of the local party becomes topic thrown out at a future presidential news
    conference or rally. Given that our beautiful mountain area finally got a few real shots in recent months at exposure for tourism in articles by a popular political writer
    from CNN, the D.C. Examiner and NY Post, who also appears on Sunday political news shows, RAVES of hope that no Fay officials try to make light of it.

    RAVES of hope, too, that Fay Commish Vince Vicites recuses himself, if the election board on which he sits convenes a hearing. He himself posed for photos at the fair
    with the sign clearly visible in backdrop in photographs he published on social media.

    RANTS that with all his years in office, he did not know better. He apparently helped create the situation that he should not be allowed to judge as one of three election
    board members -- that is, if the election board is smart enough to convene a hearing. (9 Aug 18)


    "Quotes Of The Day"
    "Fayette County Democratic chairman George Rattay says when his group learned it might not be legal to link the giveaway with voter registration it was expanded to
    let anyone sign up who stopped by their booth, then they canceled the giveaway altogether."
    The Associated Press, as quoted directly from the news wire service's reporting on the unlawful election shenanigans at a Fayette County Fair political booth
    last week that caught the attention of the AP, Fox News, MSN and other large news organizations amazed that the locals claim ignorance of election codes for
    holding the contest

    "So the AP story alone was shared in 1,300 newspapers and broadcasters?"
    Dave, this afternoon at west coast diner, asking by phone how the story about the local Dems ended up on his satellite radio broadcast, which gets news from
    the AP Radio Network  



    As Dem party cancels resort prize
    Photo of county fair election registration prize giveaways
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note for clarification about the below item.

    The question mark that ran yesterday at the end of the below blue banner is officially removed, as it no longer is a question of whether the booth and its Dem operators
    and hangerson violated the law, but a statement of fact that elections law indeed was violated.

    As per a letter dated today, from the state GOP chair, to Larry Blosser, county elections bureau director, the giveaway over politics is confirmed. A photographed sign
    posted at the Fay Democrat Party booth at the county fair clearly contains wording that those who register to vote or change parties to become Democrats were entered
    for chances to win a Steelers gift basket and a conceal and carry purse for the armed gal on the go, with a grand prize of a weekend stay at Nemacolin Woodlands and
    dinner and a bottle of champagne from the Stone House Restaurant.

    RANTS for the ignorance of the law or the arrogance and genuine disrespect of the law from decades-long politicians who were fixtures at the booth all week and did not
    shut down the unlawful contest. That action alone speaks volumes about the integrity of those who want to serve us in office. (8 Aug 18)


    Fay Dem fair booth violates elections law with giveaways
    RANTS that corruption or alleged corruption in Fayette County elections raised its ugly head tonight, as per the Trib's, "Republicans charge Democrats with skulduggery
    at the Fayette County Fair."

    As per the article and formal press release from the state party, the state Republican Chairman contends that "members working its registration table at the fair offered
    prizes such as Pittsburgh Steelers gear and a trip to Nemacolin Woodlands to entice fair-goers to register as Democrats or, worse yet, change their registration to
    Democrat."

    Given that election law strongly prohibits the offering and giving of money or goods in exchange for someone registering to vote or changing one's political party, the
    state GOP chair asked the district attorney and Fay elections board members to investigate whether or not Pittsburgh Steeler Terrible Towels and trips to the area resort
    were illegally offered to entice unregistered residents or Republicans to register as Fay Dems.

    RANTS that this type of bad press keeps kicking Fay's butt reputation-wise across the state, as the Trib piece on its state reporting page found its way online tonight. (7
    Aug 18)


    "Quote Of The Day"
    "Yeah, but I bet today those jail officials and prison board members scrambled to watch jail video of the inmate suicide attempt!"
    Pete, earlier today at the diner, commenting on the ambulances outside the Fay County Prison mid-day, after an inmate attempted suicide by hanging

    RTK appeal filed with OOR to view video
    Did Prison Board view this surveillance video, talk with inmates?
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note that an appeal was filed today at Rants&Raves to the PA Office of Open Records, as the County of Fayette denied a Right To
    Know request to view county prison surveillance video of a specific cell area of an inmate bleeding from the mouth during an asthma attack. The inmate experienced
    medical distress following the use of pepper spray to subdue another inmate removed and taken by four guards to the basement.

    Written consent for the viewing of the video was obtained from the inmate in medical distress bleeding from the mouth from the asthma attack brought on by breathing
    all of the pepper spray in the air.

    On July 16, Rants&Raves filed the RTK to view the video. We asked prison board members to allow the viewing and come watch, too. They were informed that first day
    of the RTK, that the inmate would allow the viewing with a written release.

    In the County's formal denial to Rants&Raves to view the prison surveillance video -- received quickly by County standards, in just three business days later, too -- the
    Answer stated that prison management staff viewed surveillance video of an incident occurring on July 13, 2018, between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 noon in
    which pepper spray had been released in the environment.  

    "The review of the video surveillance confirmed that prison Corrections staff handled all events related to this incident appropriately and professionally," as per the RTK
    Answer.



    Did prison management who watched the video talk to inmates or other staff about whether the guard made his way as quickly or slowly as possible to get the inmate
    bleeding from the mouth in an asthmatic crisis his medication inhaler?

    Did prison board members ask prison management to talk to inmates?

    Did prison board members talk to inmates directly to ask if they heard others raising their voices asking the guard to hurry with the inhaler medication?



    Perhaps this latest RTK should have included the disclaimer that Rants&Raves was not digging for details about the incident that prompted the pepper spraying of that
    other inmate and whether or not a guard who was ordered legally to stay away from him had violated that order out of stupidity or just for kicks. That particular inmate,
    we trust, knows how to effectively self advocate and does not need external advocacy.



    In denying the recent RTK, the County is correct in one area of thinking, given that in recent years lawyers have smuggled in drugs to their clients in booking areas.

    Contraband is a serious matter that nobody here at this column takes lightly. In a way, yes, it's almost laughable, given the number of times this editor once made
    emergency mental health assessments of inmates from right outside their cells. In this day and age, it's almost understandable to say it's OK to deny entrance even to
    someone at Rants&Raves, who represented the county for years in county mental health courts and had access to this county's youngest murderers for those prison
    assessments.


    These days, anyone can smuggle in or try to. Look at how many of the prison's own staff and contracted staff have carried in bags of pills and were caught!

    But they knew, had to deep down know, that this editor would've agreed to be put in a straight jacket with no access to use my arms or hands to watch that video.

    Given that nearly every person who has ever worked at or out of the prison, nearly every person ever incarcerated there and anyone watched those scary prison
    propaganda videos all know the layout of the joint, the County's RTK Answer just took too goofy of a tangent saying that allowing a civilian in to view a video of the cell
    area constitutes a safety risk.


    Oh, please! The longer the RTK Answer went, the more difficult it was to keep separate the two different inmate incidents that day.

    The longer the long RTK Answer became, the more likely it seemed that the first incident of the inmate being pepper sprayed, reportedly, for asking that the guard
    ordered formally to avoid him comply, will probably be a bigger problem for county officials down the road than some inmate bleeding from the mouth who eventually
    got his medication inhaler before the pepper spray killed him.  (6 Aug 18)



    Inmates get 2 extra hours per week for Skype psychiatrist appointments
    RANTS that the Fay Prison Board took only one ity bity, baby step forward today, yet some officials still broke arms their arms patting themselves on the back, by
    doubling Skype video psychiatric appointment time, for up to 100-200 or more inmates, from two measly hours weekly, to four almost as measly hours per week.

    Big frigging woop, when you have inmates with severe mental health problems, well known for decades to community mental health programs, sitting in turtle suits, in
    a dimly lit basement county jail cell covered in sections with smeared and caked feces.    


    Where, o just where, in private practice would a group of 100 or more patients be limited to two, three or four hours per week -- or about 16 16 hours per month -- for all
    of them via Skype to talk with their psychiatrists prescribing their psych medications?


    Where in private practice -- except possibly doctors from 1940s era snake pit psychiatric hospital units -- would any reputable doctor even be willing to be involved in
    any operation to cover 100 patients via Skype, in just eight hours per month and perform medication management and after only 24 mere quarterly work hours, to write
    about 500 heavy duty psychiatric prescriptions,  135 doses of the heroin detox Buprenorphine, 2,070 doses of the opioid Acetaminophen with Codeine, and 1,620 doses
    of various muscle relaxers?



    In the real world, that all just might be called insurance fraud, no?

    At the least, the sad situation at the Fay County Prison is one, that even improved with a few more hours each week of direct contact Skype video psychiatrists, still
    reeks of benign neglect of the chronically mentally ill decompensating and doing nothing but decompensating incarcerated.

     

    The doubling of the two hours to four weekly hours of Skype availability for inmates to chat with their psychiatrists and for the psychiatrists to see the inmates cost
    about an additional $20,000 annually.

    As previously stated, the gesture to double the amount of time to four hours per week for Skype psychiatric appointments for inmates with mental illness is only a small
    baby step taken in the right direction, but nothing really of significance to rave about.

    Not when mentally ill inmates scream for hours, oblivious to any efforts to redirect them to calm and get hosed down with cold water by frustrated and/or sadistic paid
    staff who are not reprimanded, fired, reassigned or charged with assault. (2 Aug 18)



    Fay inmate files misconduct complaint against attorney
    to the Disciplinary Board of PA Supreme Court
    RANTS that it had to come to this.

    As per copies of documents and information sent to Rants&Raves, an inmate at the Fayette County Prison filed a formal misconduct complaint with the Disciplinary
    Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania because the Fayette County Public Defender Office has ignored his four written requests since June and multiple prison
    communication form requests to his attorney to file a few motions in his criminal case.

    Equally negligent, in his complaint is the Public Defenders Office for not investigating information that he provided and not obtaining Discovery evidence that the
    defendant requested for his defense.


    Filing formal complaints with the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, apparently, is the only option for those accused of crimes pining in jail,
    wanting and receiving no contact from their Public Defender legal defense attorney to request bond or file motions.  

    As per the copies of the four letters and the formal complaint dated July 23, 2018, the inmate reported problems receiving feedback and contact to prepare for trial. His
    family previously reported problems the problems to the county prison board and county officials.

    The Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, however, now is asked to intervene due to misconduct which the inmate feels has happened in his case.
    Readers here know that the Fayette County Public Defenders Office, without consequence, too often misses court ordered deadlines to prepare indigent inmates with
    legal representation for trial.




    RANTS that the complaint had to be filed.

    Bigger RANTS, too, because this complaint started what likely will be a flood of additional defendants filing with the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of
    Pennsylvania over their public defender attorneys seeming also to have disappeared from the face of the earth.

    RANTS because Fay really did not need this added drama that must end. (1 Aug 18)  



    Oils, pills and cream users banned
    Westmoreland Housing Authority to evict medical marijuana users

    RANTS, after all of the time, effort and frustration of lobbying state officials to get medical marijuana oil available to help kids with cluster seizures -- especially followed
    by all of the sheer joy when incapacitating seizures decreased to nil with a type of reversing cure that became magically available -- some residents of Westmoreland
    County Housing Authority are being forced to relocate or stop using the medical marijuana oils, creams or pills because marijuana is still illegal in the commonwealth.


    RANTS because the law and the exceptions divide right versus wrong so cruelly. How could any parent of a child who received an almost instant medical cure like that
    ever want to stop the medication to keep a roof over the family's head in Westmoreland?

    RAVES of hope that the decision to evict non complying residents who use prescribed oils, pills or creams from state licensed dispensaries is reversed.

    In a day when no state driving, housing or weapon ownership restrictions exist for methadone and other anti-opioid narcotic users, the authority's stand on cleaning
    house of oil, pill and cream users of medical marijuana seems nothing but asinine. (18 Jul 18)






    Editor's Note: While starting to write this below piece, news came of a pepper spraying at the county prison of an inmate. During that episode where the inmate was
    hauled from his cell by 4 guards to go back to the basement, an asthmatic inmate this late morning was observed by inmates on the floor, coughing blood in need of his
    emergency medical inhaler. The incapacitated ill inmate on the floor, reportedly, was taunted by a guard who may be shown on prison video taking too long to get the
    inhaler to the inmate. A Right To Know request is made to view any such video in existence.

    Deliberate indifference: Fay Prison lawsuit
    response to 3 women suing
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note to take a note of this next piece of information for recall after some deliberately indifferent county row officers facing re-election
    next year have put the county in incredible debt of about $50 million or more for a new county prison.  Read more.



    No fine way to inflate prison population numbers
    Fay Public Defender fails again to prepare for court  

    RANTS today that another Fayette County Public Defender held up the courts once again and delayed another homicide trial date by not meeting for three months with
    the defendant. Since the defendant is jailed without bond, it's not as though the county paid public defender couldn't locate the man for goodness sakes.

    When today's case came before a county judge this morning for a pre-trial motions hearing and the defendant said he had not met for three months with his county
    public defender lawyer, the judge ordered the attorney to meet at lunch with the defendant and return together to an afternoon court.

    However, lunch wasn't enough time to prepare adequately and another continuance for another couple weeks was scheduled.



    In late April, the Rants&Raves piece below, "Public Defender Office: thumbing noses at court order deadlines," featured a different case, one in which the county
    prosecution intends to seek the death penalty. That case also involved an easily reachable defendant held without bond in the county prison.



    RANTS that no county official, no county human resource officer, no county commission board, no Fay anything can force the lead public defender and his office staff to
    meet court deadlines to get with their defendants to prepare for court.

    Nobody can force the office to meet deadlines? Really? Why must the only option be to file complaints with the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of
    Pennsylvania? The County of Fayette writes those paychecks, after all.  


    RAVES of hope that the next judge in the same situation decides it's really time to end the nonsense by jailing the attorney for contempt of court and ordering him to
    close quarters in the same cell to prepare his client for trial. (12 Jul 18)   


                                                                                           "Quote Of The Day"
    "The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as
    the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with
    pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more."
    John Adams, in a letter to his wife, written on the third of July, the day after the Second Continental Congress voted to approve the legal separation of the Thirteen
    Colonies from Great Britain and a day prior to the Declaration of Independence was edited and approved on the fourth day of July that year; Adams, along with
    Thomas Jefferson, the only 2 signers of the Declaration to go on to become president, both died on July 4, 1826. James Monroe became the third president in a row
    to die on the holiday, in 1831.


    Sweet news, in midst of protests, chaos, heartbreak
    RAVES to reading good, happy feature stories in the news, such as, "Marine brings home bombing-sniffing dog he served with," in today's Trib. It's a sweet piece about
    a former marine who recently went through a mountain of red tape to adopt his former military side-kick, a bomb sniffing side-kick, a bomb sniffing pooch ready to retire
    at age nine years.

    O.K., so the military stopped writing back for a while to the former marine about one day adopting the pooch, and his state senator helped pull strings for the vet. No
    RANTS for that.  


    Man and pooch served together in Afghanistan sniffing out improvised explosive devices until five years ago, when the former marine was honorably discharged and
    the pooch continued on in active duty with a new military assignment.

    In the meantime, the former marine even got a tattoo of the pooch's name and paw print on his calf. Maybe a bit much, but we cut some slack here. Not too many of us
    can say our lives literally depended on our dog keeping us alive.  

    RAVES for good news, such as this, though. A vet and his military dog reunited outside of Afghanistan to pal around.

    RANTS, though, that housemates pining for a pooch conveniently leave sweet, heartwarming stories such as this open on the browser to bait the undecided vote -- i.e.,
    the doesn't-want-to-walk-a-dog-in-two-feet-of-snow vote -- still on the fence. (2 Jul 18)

    Armed man put into holding cell
    RANTS of the scary kind, reading heraldstandard.com* and learning that two constables didn't notice, but gathered up, drove to the magistrates and put an armed man
    inside a holding cell, on a bench warrant for unpaid child support.
    and later verbally threaten a state trooper, called in after constables noticed the gun "with three rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber," as per the paper's
    story.

    RANTS because as bad as it was, it could have been much worse, perhaps fatal, for he might have been able to get four shots off, from inside the cell or even from
    inside the county constable car.

    RAVES, though, that he never went for his gun. (27 Jun 18)

    * "Uniontown man charged with having a gun at magistrate."



    Never mind the real civil rights violations
    ACLU, PA Law Project sue Fay over prison conditions
    RANTS that the ACLU and the PA Law Project spent over two years interviewing inmates at the Fayette County Prison and this is the best suit they could come up with
    against the county for conditions at the downtown lock up?

    Never mind that inmates don't always get their mail or that they experience delays getting mail sent. Never mind that they don't have access to complaint forms. Never
    mind that severely mentally ill inmates too often are kept in turtle suits in general population. Never mind some cannot have private meetings with clergy.  

    Never mind the basement lighting is dark and some cells are lined with dried, caked feces. Never mind that a disabled inmate was hosed by staff who was not
    terminated. Never mind another only decompensated further in the basement, eating his own waste, when no outpatient or inpatient mental health staff who ever
    worked with him in past decades ever knew him to do such a thing.  

    Never mind all the absolutely horrible things wrong with the county prison due to county and staff negligence. A new building cannot fix those kinds of problems.


    RANTS that the ACLU and the PA Law Project's colossal waste of time, energy and pro-bona legal services with this suit seem only to benefit the union and those
    pushing for new digs and nothing more.

    No doubt, they will be laughed right out of court whining about the old building and nothing but the old building. The new roof installed last year keeps the rain water out
    and the sewage catches installed stop items stuffed in toilets and sinks from entering the main sewage system.



    What the suit isn't saying, however, is that some inmates contribute to sewage messes on the floors by using the toilet repeatedly without flushing. Most guards refuse
    to flush those along the way and refuse to remove items causing the blockage in the sewage "catches" when maintenance is not working.



    RANTS that this suit is the best that the ACLU and the PA Law Project came up with after two years of interviewing inmates. They should have just stayed home. (27 Jun
    18)


    Fay RTK: glass in prison food "noncriminal" investigation
    RANTS that an internal investigation of a May 8 claim by four men incarcerated at the Fayette County Prison -- that three received dinner meals containing shreds of
    glass  -- is described in a Right To Know answer received yesterday by Uniontown citizens as a "noncriminal investigation." Read more.


    Allegheny issues bench warrant for Conn
    man jailed in fatal Fay heroin delivery
    RANTS that the 23-year-old man jailed six days ago for fatal heroin delivery to a friend made bail after an arrest earlier this month in Allegheny County for possession of
    drugs and driving drugged.

    While the Connellsville man began his first full day incarcerated in the Fayette County Prison last Thursday, Allegheny County issued a bench warrant in his name,
    following, of course, a no-show appearance at his scheduled noon hearing that day on drug charges filed by warrant in his name, following, of course, a no-show
    appearance at his scheduled noon hearing that day on drug charges filed by the North Versailles Police on June 1.



    RANTS, as we said, that he had no problem making bail the day after he was charged earlier this month in Allegheny County and that he spent days right up to his
    scheduled Allegheny court appearance actively pursuing drugs for himself and others home in Fayette.

    Big, big RANTS, my dears. (26 Jun 18)



    "Quotes Of The Day" of a judge ranting the prison board,
    & words from heartbroken parents burying a son from overdose

    "If I were... on the board (Fayette County Prison Board), I definitely would be asking questions and have the inmates interviewed."
    Fayette County Judge, off the courthouse bench for the day and on social media, chatting with a friend about claims from 4 men that some inmates received
    shards of glass in their county prison dinner meals on "B" range on May 8, that nobody spoke with any of them and nobody reviewed prison surveillance video
    to confirm or disprove inmate allegations

    "T's parents ask only that prayers be offered for their son, for all addicts suffering from this horrific disease, and for all the family and friends who care for their
    addicts, as the journey is long and hard."
    Obituary of a young man up the street, who left rehab one day before fatally overdosing on heroin purchased from a friend, now charged in the death


    Fourth, said to have witnessed tainted meal county denies happened
    Three in FCP on May 8: Yes, we got glass shards in our dinner
    Three men currently incarcerated at the Fayette County Prison and one former inmate, released recently to resume his life and job, have said that three of them
    received shards of glass in their prison dinner meals on May 8. The fourth man said he witnessed the three unknowingly reacting to having glass in their mouths as they
    started to chew. Read more.



    Westmoreland offers $1,800 shot to county jail inmates at release
    RAVES that Westmoreland County officials are developing a program to provide, as a parting gift to addicts being released from jail, a free dose of Vivitrol, a monthly
    injection to block a person from having drug cravings and from getting high.

    Volunteers who opt in also will receive ten counseling sessions the first four weeks after release from jail through the injection program sponsor, that county's
    Drug&Alcohol Commission.


    RANTS that this one monthly shot is so pricey. $1,800. This is some undertaking for the former Fay warden now in charge of Westmoreland County Prison. Last month,
    Warden John Walton took in 48 inmates addicted to heroin and another 159 who required detox from other opioids, cocaine, other drugs and alcohol.

    The free dose of Vivitrol, a non-addictive, non-narcotic drug, would be followed with monthly shots of it, likely paid for by medical





    Nooooooooooooooooobody???
    Nobody viewed video in investigation of glass in prison food
    RANTS that the Fayette County Prison Board, in its investigation of food spiked with glass on May 8, did not require somebody to view surveillance video of dinner time
    in Range "B", to see whether three specifically named inmates did or did not receive shards of glass in the food. One, supposedly, had glass in his mouth. None were
    said to be injured, and all, reportedly, received replacement meals some forty minutes later.

    A Right To Know request sent to the county to ask if anyone actually cared to view the video, was answered today. No.

    Additionally, another Right To Know asking to schedule to view the county prison surveillance video from May 8, from a 50-minute span was denied. As per the county's
    Right To Know answer, fresh off the email inbox:

    "Video surveillance images captured on the Prison's closed circuit camera system (CCTV) recycles or loops over themselves approximately every 15 to 20
    calendar days, thereby erasing and writing over footage previously captured.  

    "Given that, any surveillance footage captured on May 8, 2018, on the B-Range inmate housing unit is no longer available for review.  

    "A search on the CCTV system as part of the review of your Right to Know request confirmed that no video exists for the time period and housing location
    specified.  Accordingly, your request to view 50 minutes of B-Range inmate housing unit video from May 8, 2018, is denied because no such video is available."


    Last week, Melissa Melewsky, Media Law Counsel for the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association, told Rants&Raves that the county could or might not grant a request to
    view prison surveillance video.

    "You should file a formal, written RTKL request for the video," she said. Similar requests, she said, have been denied in other cases, "including decisions from the OOR
    (Office of Open Records)."

    Melewsky said, however, it was worth pursuing with a RTK request, since "it is the agency’s duty to provide a legal basis, if they deny access."

    After all, she said, "They can also grant access under the RTKL."


    A few days prior to the accusation that shards of glass were sent in food to a cell block of inmates in protective custody, largely charged with offenses against children,
    an inmate with severe mental illness was hosed by a corrections officer when the inmate screamed for an hour and would not stop. The corrections officer was not
    terminated.  

    Nonetheless, back to the RTK request to view the prison video...  can we see a show of hands  -- or hand -- of anyone who fully believes that Rants&Raves really would
    have been allowed to view this specific video, if the video were still available?  (18 Jun 18)



    Subutex detox for some, Codeine detox for most?
    Fay pays zip for meds for inmates housed outside county
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note that another Right To Know answer was received today, clarifying that all of the tons of medications listed below on June 13
    purchased from Pechin's Pharmacy for the first quarter of 2018 were prescribed for "for the medical needs of in-house inmates."

    Fay "neither purchases nor provides pharmaceuticals for its inmates who are being housed by other counties.  It is the responsibility of those counties who house our
    inmates to provide any pharmaceuticals necessary to meet their medical need," as per the RTK.

    As per the piece published here five days ago, of the total 1,095 prescriptions that the county bought for inmates for the first quarter of 2018:
  • 487 were for psychiatric medications
  • 4 were for 135 doses of Buprenorphine, a generic Suboxin used to detox from heroin and opioids
  • 24 were for 2,070 doses of the opioid Acetaminophen with Codeine3
  • 33 were for 1,620 doses of various muscle relaxers  
  • 547 were for medical health care (diabetes, cardiac, skin, respiratory, antibiotics, some medical supplies such as pregnancy kits, support hose, nail clippers,
    etc)


    Readers here recall that medications typically prescribed by Methadone Clinics were banned from the county prison by the former warden, who resigned in late 2017.
    The prison board at that time let the issue alone.

    Rants&Raves continues to receive comments from former inmates at the county prison who say that they were receiving treatment and were compliant with treatment
    at methadone clinics prior to arrest and incarceration, but did not receive Methadone, Suboxin, Subutex or any form of Buprenorphine that they claim they requested.
    (18 Jun 18)


    No excuses now
    Sunshine Law beefed up, demands 24-hour advance, agenda posting
    RAVES to PA Rep Jim Christiana, 15th District, for introducing now passed legislation, House Bill No. 1531, that will force Fayette County to forget the excuses, force
    itself to do its duty, to ensure that complete public meeting agendas be posted on the county website no less than 24 hours prior to a meeting.

    Additionally, the new, passed legislation also mandates that each and every item to be discussed or voted on at any public meeting be listed on  that posted agenda on
    the county's website no less than 24 hours prior to the meeting. This revised Sunshine Law piece defines emergency and last minute exceptions to the rule.

    RAVES that full, detailed agendas of all public meetings must be posted one full day ahead of time on a public website, if the public entity has one, or at a public agency
    for public review.


    RAVES to Christiana and his sponsored bill for accomplishing something that county leaders just could not -- or would not -- get accomplished. Can a blogger declare a
    county holiday? (15 Jun 18)

             

    $25K quarterly county jail pharmacy tab
    Suboxon detox for some, Codeine detox for most?

    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note of sincere thanks and appreciation to the four physician assistants, seven psychiatric nurses and two addiction treatment
    professionals who reviewed a long list of all medications prescribed at the Fayette County Prison during the first quarter of 2018.  Read more.



    Karen Sharpe: RIP

    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a most respectful pause to ask readers to remember the life and contributions of the late Karen Sharpe of Brownsville.

    In addition to all of her personal career accomplishments and role as wife and mom, Karen very bravely penned a letter to the editor of the Herald Standard four years
    ago to stop the purchase of the flood zone property at 32 Iowa Street for a womens' temporary prison.

    Karen's letter packed a wallop that disproved false claims by former county commissioners, a downtown business owner and engineers that the building's main and
    upper floors never flooded. Karen's letter also forced the local paper to stop pretending that archive pictures of the past flooding did not exist and to write the truth for a
    change.

    Karen's letter kicked butt and kicked the lies to the curb with her factual, first person, historical account of all of the numerous floods in the building where she once
    worked for the state. Her letter to the ed was a powerful tool that helped take down the lies and stupidity of corrupt government and the media which promoted the
    propaganda.

    That Karen endured the loss of her adult daughter two months before her own life ended is absolutely heartbreaking. No parent should have to endure that kind of loss.
    Never.


    Please say a prayer for Karen's husband, family and friends, as she and her daughter are remembered in a memorial Mass on Saturday, June 16, at 1 PM at The Historic
    Church of St. Peter 300 Shaffner Avenue Brownsville.

    May everyone reading her letter to the editor again become inspired to follow suit writing factual letters of their own when local government propaganda is packaged
    and published as real news. (14 Jun 18)


    Missing from store shelves and menus

    RANTS that some area supermarkets and restaurants have ditched their healthier food options to the curb, as though there's no need for customers to want to try to
    follow low-fat or low-sugar diets.

    RANTS that area Walmarts carry less and less sugar-free or no sugar added food items (cake mixes, frosting, cookies, ice cream) and less and less fat-free or low-fat
    items (gravies). RANTS that Giant Eagle pitched its entire Pillsbury sugar-free muffin and bread mixes, but a half of a RAVE that Martin's and Walmart at least still stock
    the sugar-free brownie mix.

    RANTS, too, that earlier this year Long John Silvers stopped offering its baked cod meal over rice and green beans, and that KFC threw away its tasty rotisserie chicken
    choice to limit customers to selecting its regular high-fat, fried chicken or top shelf, extra fat, extra crispy blend known to have as much fat, calories and cholesterol as a
    chunk of fried liver.  (2 Jun 18)


    2018 lightning bugs
    RAVES for the sweet excitement that the first seasonal sighting of lightning bugs in the field still brings each year. Forget what the calendar says. Forget the season.

    RAVES that the lightning bugs are back and it really is safe now to push the snow shovels waaaaaaaaay to the back of the shed.

    RAVES, it really is summer when the lightning bugs return to Fay. (30 May 18)



    Over $40K raised for start-up costs for homeless vet housing  
    RAVES to hear that a new, 90-day, transitional housing option, designed to help homeless veterans regain their independence, will be available soon in Uniontown.

    Veterans who will live in the Lincoln Street home will be required to take care of it and look for a job or other benefits to sustain themselves. They will have computer
    access to aid in job searches and applications.

    RAVES that over $40,000 of private funds or goods were donated for the home expected to house up to six or eight residents.

    This type of community support is wonderful, with the cause receiving a donated kitchen from Lowe's, a heating system from Whitby, Inc., electrical installation from
    Miller Electric and electrical wiring from Cardello Lighting.

    Also, the Jacobs Lutheran Church in Masontown collected donations to support the project, and Genesis House is helping with the home's exterior. (27 May 18)


    FCPB: no glass served with May 8 dinner
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note that the Fayette County Prison Board reportedly investigated and found complaints to be "unfounded" from some county prison
    inmates earlier this month that shards of glass were found in food on a few dinner meal trays.

    On May 8, three inmates, known to be in a prison "protective custody area," accused of crimes against children, reportedly, were intentionally targeted with meals laced
    with pieces of glass shreds.  The meals were said to have been delivered by inmate kitchen helpers.

    Two days later, board members were asked to comment. Reportedly, an investigation was conducted under the direction of the county sheriff.

    This investigation is said to have shown no proof to support the allegations that the shards of glass were found, that three replacement meals were ordered and
    received and that at least one inmate was said to have had ground glass in his mouth discovered before he swallowed. (24 May 18)


    Fay EMS draws kuddos, raves, respect
    RAVES today that Fayette Emergency Medical Services (EMS) medical technicians, paramedics and chief were recognized in honor for the quality, professional service
    they provide us, during this 44th annual observance of national EMS Week.  

    On an average across the state, an ambulance is said to be dispatched to respond to emergency medical calls every two seconds. Those calls could take them speeding
    off to a horrible accident on the highways, a fire with injuries, gun shot victims, one medical crisis after another, drug overdoses or trips to wait for a coroner when the
    911 calls aren't made in time.

    RAVES that Fay's EMS workers work so tirelessly to assist us as quickly as humanly possible. With so many ambulance companies closing across the country over the
    years due to financial reasons, the EMS providers deserve to be paid, even a minimal trip fee, when they are called to assist someone with insurance and end up
    treating but not transporting someone to a hospital.  


    RANTS for the sometimes heartache reasons we have to call 911 for EMS help.

    RANTS for the sometimes heartache reasons we have to call 911 for EMS help. RAVES, though, that when we must, we in Fay in response have what a regional medical
    powerhouse, UPMC, calls the "perfect" EMS model for others to copy, coming to assist. (23 May 18)  


    "Quotes Of The Day"  of a counter-productive attempt to justify institutional staff bullying, hosing

    "Hey, you don't know s***!"
    Familiar stranger, today at the diner, directing his comment this a-way, quickly explaining that his relative and friend county prison correction not problems before,
    but have cruel peers who egg on the mental health inmates to escalate to more physical violence, spit in retaliation retaliation and injure others and themselves."

    And without pausing, he went right into:

    "I don't know the guy who wet that mental health inmate with a hose to stop him from screaming, but it's not his fault he hosed the guy to shut him up. Those other
    prisoners bullying the poor guy into a scream fit for an hour drove the guard to get the hose."
    Familiar stranger, seemingly out of breath

    "He should have hosed them then."
    Moi, presenting an alternate outcome that one should imagine should have happened, instead of the inmate with part of his brain missing being hosed, if we follow
    the Familiar Stranger's logic



    Let the clergy in, for God's sake!
    RANTS that in these past five stagnant months since Fayette County Commissioners Vince Vicites and Dave Lohr gathered 50 of the areas religious leaders to help
    solve Fay's social problems and extended an invitation to the religious leaders to tour the county prison, inmates at the Fayette County Prison who requested spiritual
    visits with their clergy, reportedly, have not received them. Read more.



    How will Fay answer the next time a disabled inmate is hosed?
    A tale of two kinds of prison guards
    RAVES to some of the corrections officers at the county prison for being good, decent people who wouldn't hurt a fly. Read more.




    Write in votes for sale?
    RANTS to voting in the next election voting machine lane to someone who loudly exclaims from her voting machine that she doesn't know which names she's
    supposed to be writing in on her ballot and doesn't know where or in which race she's to electronically write them. This exact scenario played out at the Bullskin District
    1 voting polls this morning.

    RANTS when candidates are that desperate to win that they round up such uninformed "voters" to write in names without at least a proper tutorial on how to appear to
    be on the up and up.   (15 May 18)


    RIP: Jeraldine Mazza\
    RAVES of respect and appreciation for the life and memory of the late Jeraldine Mazza, who passed away at home, on Mother's Day, at age 88.

    Jerry and her late husband, Ralph Mazza, were well known attendees of public meetings for decades, always watching the spending, hirings, firings and day-to-day
    business and sometimes shenanigans of county government and some other public-funded entities.

    Neither Mazza was intimidated to speak his and her mind, even when county guards were summoned to remove them from the room for their comments that made a
    few different gavel pounders over the years too uncomfortably angry or just too plain scared to allow them to keep speaking.



    For their demanding that right to speak and question government's spending of public money, we all owe Jerry and Ralph big time. Rants&Raves extends the deepest
    sympathies to the Mazza family and Jerry's friends for their loss.

    Hers is a giggle these ears won't ever forget. (15 May 18)


    To discuss personnel matter May 14
    Fay Co Prison Board sets special meeting
    The Fayette County Prison Board of Directors will hold a special meeting at 2:30 PM, on Monday, May 14, at the commissioners conference room of the Fayette County
    Courthouse, "for the purpose of addressing a personnel matter." (10 May 18)



    Complaint forms said to be withheld
    Fay Co Prison Menu: Tuesday's Chipped beef & glass
    RANTS that meals two days ago served on dinner trays to at least three inmates at the Fayette County Prison, reportedly, contained shreds of glass.

    One source told Rants&Raves today that one man in the "B Range" bit down on the glass while eating his prepared tray meal. No one is believed to have been seriously
    injured.


    Replacement dinner meal trays without glass for the three affected inmates, reportedly, took some 45 minutes to round up, as per the prison source.

    Following the alleged glass contaminated food incident Tuesday, the three inmates also are said to have complained to guards and requested prison "red letter"
    complaint forms to complete, for written record of their complaints.

    These complaint forms for inmates to record concerns and complaints and seek action, reportedly, were not made available to the inmates, as required by regulations,
    to be available.


    It is unknown if the three inmates, known to be in a protective custody area, accused of crimes against children, were intentionally targeted with meals laced with glass
    for their specific charges. It also is unknown at this time if meals to any other prison range or area were affected.

    Prison board members were asked to comment earlier today. The matter is said to be "under investigation." (10 May 18)


    Fay Prison Board investigating yesterday's hosing attack
    Editor's Note: While an inmate with a chunk of his cerebellum missing from his brain was taken yesterday to the city police station, he, reportedly, assumed
    responsibility for his bloody nose 13 days ago, for "acting stupid" and aggressively with guards, as per the city cop who interviewed him.

    In a written statement forwarded to Rants&Raves, the city cop said the inmate sustained a bloody nose while "being subdued while attacking a guard" on April 19.

    Consequently, the city cop wrote that the inmate's bloody nose last month "doesn't constitute an assault."


    Of the same mental health inmate with a chunk of his cerebellum missing, the city cop added that the inmate "made no report to me of an assault (hosing) that occurred
    yesterday" when they met at the police station around 3 PM.  





    RANTS if the investigation of the hosing yesterday of the inmate that the county prison board and jail administrators are said to be conducting fails to include viewing
    video of the alleged hosing, the inmate having his hands held and being calmed by a caring deputy warden and given dry clothes and bedding.  

    When at least one of them sees the hosing and the aftermath with the deputy warden on video, RAVES of hope that it is shared with the city police and someone
    advocates for even the PIA inmate with serious mental health issues and a chunk of his brain missing.   (2 May 18)


    Shut it down!
    Fay Co Prison guard shamelessly turns hose on mentally ill inmate
    Neither a RANT nor a RAVE, but a note of a most upsetting and disgusting type, from a most trusted source or two at the Fayette County Prison, that a corrections officer
    at the county prison today turned a cold water hose on a mentally ill inmate with half a cerebellum.

    Witnesses state today that the inmate had been "acting up" all day before the corrections officer removed the hose from the wall and turned on the water to spray the
    inmate with cold water.  

    Afterwards, a deputy warden came down and held the mentally ill inmate's hands to try to calm and soothe him. The deputy warden reportedly got the man dry clothes
    and a new cot mattress.

    Witnesses state that an another inmate commented to the deputy warden that it's illegal to house mentally ill inmates within the prison's general population. Where else
    can we keep them, the deputy warden reportedly replied.



    RANTS if the corrections officer involved is not held accountable. RAVES of hope that we don't hear a lame excuse that he lacked the proper training or was
    overwhelmed by the continual acting out.

    Maybe after the lumps in our throats are gone, we'll feel empathy for the corrections officer with the hose, but not today. (1 May 18)


    April 2018 Rants&Raves
    March 2018 Rants&Raves
    January-Feb 2018 Rants&Raves
584 days... with no court date set yet, since the County filed in Court of
Common Pleas to set aside this column's last 2 of 3 successful state Office of Open
Records appeals to obtain information that the County denied under the Right To
Know Law.

Could it be that no county judge wants to set aside a state OOR decision? Could it be
no judge wants to have to ask why the County gave sworn affidavits to the OOR that
the information didn't exist, although previously obtained RTK answers proved that
the County did have the information? Could it be no judge wants to open that can of
Perjury Worms?

Could it be that the County parked the matter in "legal" limbo by filing to set aside
the OOR rulings until this column likewise files to dismiss the County's cowardly
filed petition?  

Could it be all of the above? jt
    "At the fair, I did not participate in promoting or handling the raffle,"
    Vince Vicites, Fayette County Commissioner and member of the
    Election Board, told the Election Board and public gathered at the
    August 20th meeting . Vicites, as shown above working the fair booth,
    but not actively participating in promoting or handling the raffle,
    oblivious to the fact that his mere presence under the raffle sign there
    is promoting the raffle.
674 days... since
Rants&Raves was denied
under Right To Know
request to obtain records of
county contracting rates
and the spending of public
funds