Tuesday, March 25, 2008

They're at the Gates...

The race for the 30th Council District seat will be fast, furious and extremely interesting. The dynamics of a special election differ greatly than a general election and each candidate will have to work quickly to get their message out to the community, garner support and keep the skeletons bones from falling out of the closet. The latter may prove to be a daunting task for some of the hopefuls.

Let’s take a look at the top candidates:

Elizabeth Crowley
has decided to run again and has been accurately raising money to ensure that this time she wins. However, residents in their area question her experience and also her alleged association with felon Brian McLaughlin. When the story broke about McLaughlin, there were reports that Crowley and the disgraced former Assemblyman were more than just friends. Let us assume for a moment that this is untrue and that the relationship was strictly professional. It stills raises concern regarding her personal judgment because McLaughlin ran Crowley's failed 2001 council campaign, personally going door to door and urging residents to cast their vote for her. But Elizabeth Crowley, who was a former close ally of McLaughlin, recently threw her friend under the bus. “What he did turns my stomach. I want nothing to do with this. I have nothing to do with this," Ms. Crowley has also made some recent statements that aren’t sitting well with likely voters. When Crowley was asked about her thoughts regarding the many candidates seeking the seat, she stated, “I have so many established friends,” she said, “It will enable me to win by a larger victory.” I hope that Elizabeth Crowley is quickly educated by her advisors that it should be voters in the community and not “established friends” that should enable you to win the seat. Then, in a recent Queens Chronicle article she commented on her money raising prowess, “That’s one step I have over the other candidates.” Not sure what steps she is referring to but the statement definitely leaves you a bit bewildered and concerned. It might be that Elizabeth Crowley is not yet ready for elected office and it might be that the 30th Council district is not ready for her.

Tom Ognibene
was the former councilman for the 30th council district. Although he served his community well there are some concerns regarding some serious entanglements. In 2001, Ognibene was under investigation for his relationship with buildings consultant, Ronald Lattanzio. It was reported in the NY Times: Councilman's Actions Factor in Inquiry that in exchange for Ognibene’s assistance and political influence to help fix government variances, jobs and investigations in Lattanzio’s favor, the former councilman would receive entertainment, tickets, vacations, gifts, meals, campaign contributions, campaign activities and other services. Although no charges were brought Ognibene, his quest for a judgeship was squashed. In addition, there were reported shenanigans going on at Christ the King that included the sale of “questionable” memorabilia. Residents are also concerned about Ognibene’s health and ability to muster the strength for this special election. I think we can agree that Ognibene had his chance to represent the district; however, the 30th council district deserves a chance for new leadership.

Anthony Como has been with Senator Maltese for approximately 15 years and the Queens District Attorney’s office for 5 years. In addition, Como serves as the Republican Commissioner for the Queens County Board of Elections and he was elected to serve as the President of the New York City Board of Elections. According to his published bio, Mr. Como is affiliated with many civic and community organizations, he is a member of the board of directors of the Peter Cardella Senior Center, in Ridgewood Queens, Italian Charities of America, Christ The King Regional High School, and the Italian American Federal Credit Union, he also serves on the Executive Committee of the Queens County Republican Party and as Counsel to the Juniper Park Civic Association, and is also a member of the Middle Village Republican Club, Rego Hills Republican Club, Middle Village Property Owners Association, Glendale Property Owners Association, Glendale Civic Association, Middle Village/Maspeth Civic Association, COMET Civic Association, Inc., UNICO Organization of Queens County, Order Sons of Italy in America, Mario Lanza Lodge, Middle Village Queens, Inc., and Congress of Italian-Americans Organization, Inc. Como, however, appears to have had some problems with the Department of Buildings regarding the renovation of his home. The violations range from “failure to maintain adequate housekeeping” to “work with expired permit”. Currently, it looks like the stop work order has been lifted and plans submitted recently have been approved which will resolve the outstanding violations. (Thanks to Paul S. for his buildings expertise).

The Patriots will continue to follow this election closely.


Anonymous said...

When Ognibene ran for Mayor, he held fundraisers and received matching funds from NYC. He then proceeded to spend the next several weeks playing golf 2,3 and sometimes 4 days each week, mostly at Forest Park. I'm not sure if that is a new type of campaign strategy, trying to secure the golfers vote, but at least I know how he spent his campaign money.

Add to this, his campaign manager, Mike Michel, used the Christ the King pick up truck dozens of times to take construction debris from his residence, when he was having it renovated, to the Christ The King garbage dumpsters so he wouldn't have to spend his own money on waste removal.

Adding to all this, it is ALLEGED that Ognibene was instrumental in getting Bob Holden's wife a job in Governor Pataki's NYC office and in exchange Bob ALLEGEDLY returned the favor and gave Ognibene an all expenses paid vacation.

In the Land Of The Blind, the One Eyed Man is King.

Thomas said...

The 30th District needs some new blood and fresh ideas. Crowley and Ognibene are tainted and used goods.

Mike said...

Ognibene has more skeletons in the closet than the museum of natural history. Did you ever notice that he talks to himself while standing in the corner?

Anonymous said...

Elizabeth Crowley is useless and even more clueless.

Linda said...

The community can no longer endure anothe scandal ridden elected official. we all know that Crowley has McLaughlin and Ognibene has Lantanzio so there should be no question on who should get the vote

Anonymous said...


Instead of saying you will follow this election closely, why don't you say what you really mean: you are endorsing Como and will proceed to publish negative information about the other two candidates to get your guy elected.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

I can tell no one here lives near the Como McMansion. If he is elected, what will the neighbor turn into? There will be illegal McMansion all over. He is the biggest offender. If you walk past the front of the property, which is now the side, it is filthy. He does not care. Oh sorry he doeas care only about himself!