Saturday, April 9, 2016

OH, THIS IS SO GOOD!

What a week of Good News! Russ Wilson will "retire" at the end of June. (Much more on that still to come to light.) Former Fort Erie CAO, now the CAO for the region has quit!


Yes, it's official. Harry Schlange is once again moving to greener pastures. This time it's Brampton, the city that has gone through six CAOs in ten years. Good luck with that, Harry. It seems that Harry and Regional Chair Alan Caslin did not get along very well and that may be why Harry has moved on. According to an article in the Niagara Falls Review, regional councillors held a private meeting in January where there was a vote to give Caslin the authority to dismiss Schlange. That vote failed.

In addition to Schlange, former acting CAO from the Town of Fort Erie, Ron Tripp and former planner from Fort Erie, Rino Mostacci eventually found their way to the region. In fact, Schlange was hired by the town during Mayor Redekop's first administration, but he quit after a short while, went elsewhere and then came back. (CLUE: bad idea to take back someone who quit.)  All three of these former town employees, in my opinion, caused irreparable harm to the town. Schlange had problems working with certain members of council; Ron Tripp's  "state of the art" drainage plan for the Bernard Road Beach has pretty much destroyed it and Rino Mostacci championed the reprehensible Bay Beach Condo Project. 

The Burgoyne Bridge replacement project in St. Catharines seems to be at the centre of a lot of problems at the region. Way over the original budget, it is an example of bad policies and lack of transparency between staff and council. It also would appear that both Schlange and Ron Tripp, now a commissioner of public works, may be part of the problem. In addition, Rino Mostacci went to Markham after leaving Fort Erie and didn't last long there. Got right in the middle of a contentious issue regarding a new hockey arena. So, Rino returned to the region, like a bad penny. 


UPDATE: Interesting article in the BramptonGuardian regarding Harry Schlange's long history. Hello? He was an official with Nortel in Brampton (that went bankrupt in 2009) where he met Mo Lewis, once the Brampton city treasurer who is now the Commissioner of Niagara Region's Corporate Services. 

According to the article, "Lewis departed Brampton in 2013, just as heat turned up on former mayor Susan Fennell and senior staffers. Lewis is one of several former and current staffers at the heart of a $28.5 million lawsuit filed against the City by developer Inzola Group, which alleges it was unfairly disqualified in the bidding process on the $500 million Southwest Quardrant renewal plan."

So, Harry Schlange, former official with a now bankrupt company, came to Fort Erie to take a position as CAO; left shortly after to go to IBM and then came back and stayed on as CAO until 2011 when he left to go to Ottawa and then as the CAO of another community until he came back as CAO at the Niagara Region. He was instrumental in hiring of Mo Lewis. 

The circle keeps getting smaller and smaller, doesn't it? Too many co-incidences.

Except there are no co-incidences.

23 comments:

  1. I am one very, very happy person today, this mornings Niagara Review Saturday April 9 2016 stated that Harry Schlange has given his notice and will be gone end of May, a lot of people in Black Creek are happy,we blame him for being too cosy with the dark side of Fort Erie political landscape. not enforcing Town bylaws concerning illegal business, body shops in residential neighbourhoods. he did take along with him to Niagara Region, his partners in crime who trashed our lifestyle with divisive proposals , which may take an entire generation to heal. We still are putting together data to sue this Town, we still have an ax to grind.

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    1. I moved this over from the previous thread. It came in just as I was writing the article above. I remember that Harry Schlange was not helpful in the effort to save and restore the Point Abino Light Station. That's a deal breaker for me. Thank goodness that the previous council, especially the much-maligned Four, supported the restoration of this national treasure.

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  2. May all of the 3 amigos at the region will soon find jobs else where.

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    1. I still remember how upset some were when Schlange left. Some thought we were losing a great talent, along with Tripp and, of course Mostacci. Funny how they all ended up at the region. If they were so great and successful elsewhere, why did they take jobs at the region? Especially Schlange, who went to big old Ottawa and Mostacci who went to the much bigger city of Markham. I think the answer is quite apparent.

      During his stay in Fort Erie, the term "being Schlanged" became common. It referred to how Schlange could be careless with the truth in order to undercut someone he did not like. He used it liberally against The Four councillors and, when finally confronted for his ways, he bailed and left Fort Erie. Sounds like the same thing happened at the region.

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    2. At that time the term "salted and slanged" prevailed, with Heather as town lawyer. Glad those martin days are behind us!

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    3. Yeah, and isn't Heather Salter now working for the City of St. Catharines? They seem to hover around the Niagara area, don't they? I am hoping that Schlange never returns to the area, but I can't be certain. It seems he has people who back him, although he has burned a lot of bridges here. But so have Ron Tripp and Rino Mostacci and they're back.

      And there's also Sandy Annunziata, finally elected to something (regional councillor) and well on his way to higher glory. Another "son of" scenario like the failed Tim Hudak experiment. When will the voters ever wake up?

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  3. Sharon, Your facts on Sir Harry are right on, good riddance to a person who evaded doing his duty to Town Council and the Fort Erie taxpayers, Mayor Wayne Redekop who will never admit a mistake, backed this divisive CEO up to the very end. Bob Gale does not know Harry Schlange, or his antics, like the people of Fort Erie. I am so happy to see the back of this man.

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  4. CorruptionFighterApril 12, 2016 at 4:31 PM

    With the bridge 10's of millions over budget,Schlange and a few others should be shown the door head first,instead as is the case far too often these days,they continue to wreak havoc and draw sunshine list pay for very bad decisions that the average worker would be fired for many times over. I suppose when you're drawing that much pay, people just assume that there must be some hidden brilliance in their decisions. Sadly common sense is not very common round these parts.

    Who hires these people in the first place?????????????

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    1. Remember that Jim Thibert came to Fort Erie from "Up North" where he went to community college for photography and was involved in a multi-million college that failed and Looked like he fell off a truck when he arrived. He must have had some connections to get the job as he certainly wasn't qualified.

      You know, CF, it's a closed club and they take are of their own. Sometimes though, someone squeaks through and exposes them. Then, as they did to the Four Councillors, they went to town on them, recruiting wannabes who want to be members of the club to do their dirty work. Not very well hidden perks are awarded to themselves. (It used to be easy back in the early bingo days.)

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    2. In this town unless you can claim some connection to the loyalist wave of war displaced immigrants 200 years ago, you're out. So how did Jimmy Dirt Bag rise to his position of non qualified tax funded royalty is a question.

      An even bigger question is how he keeps his sunshine list job when he has done nothing but feather his own nest,help bring very questionable investors to the track(at least he took the credit for it) and insult the locals with his annual diatribe in council. Oh I forgot he pissed the OLG and McQuinty's Liberals right off making it easy to pull the plug on the slots.

      Millions of tax $$$$ down the toilet to keep an embarrassing blowhard in a lifestyle he has come to like and little else. Only in FE.......Maybe the new cub reporter for the Propaganda Times will do an expose on him but then this newbie has his head so far up the ol boy's bums he can't even find fault with the Ridgeway street light screw up even after the Town admitted blame. I believe his column will only promote the ol boy status quo which got this town it's title of top 10 highest unemployment in the province and keep King Jimmie busy collecting huge bucks for photo ops.

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  5. Ron Tripp wants to hope there is room in Brampton for him. As the lead on the Burgoyne Bridge Project he knows he is next on the hit list. Many times he has been on 610 CKTB trying to defend the project he is in charge of.He destroyed Bernard Beach with a messed up plan so how could he be expected to build a bridge. BYE BYE Ron.

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    1. Also Helen Chamberlain, former Fort Erie Treasurer went to the region in the finance department along with the embattled former treasurer of Brampton with is circling the drain, hoping that Schlange will save it. What a closed and incestuous place is the administration of the Niagara Region - where troubled bureaucrats go to re-invent themselves.

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  6. As much as I dislike both Tripp and Schlange I feel it is only fair to point out that neither one of those gentlemen were involved in the early stages of the construction for the Burgoyne Bridge. All the cost overruns faulty or missing engineering studies were done or not done prior to either coming to the Region.
    However, by default they have inherited the problems and it falls to them to a) fix the issues and b) take all necessary steps to ensure such failings never happen again.

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  7. CorruptionFighterApril 20, 2016 at 8:13 PM

    just ever so slightly off topic.....but one has to wonder how that 10 MILLION $$$$ lawsuit is going against the town or has it gone away quietly(having done it's job of swaying an infantile electorate), buying an election and ensuring certain insiders remain slurping away at the public trough..............

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  8. I said previously that Schlange and Tripp were not at the Region when the Burgoyne Bridge replacement project first got started and now they should be tasked with cleaning up the mess. Harry did some of that after the report came out identifying how a project of this size and magnitude was beyond the current staff of the Region.

    Now a forensic audit for work done during the time Tripp and Schlange were on the scene is being proposed. Those two are not the reason for the audit per say & Schlange has left of course. It's the cost going from $42 million to $92+ million. It will be interesting to see whether or not they were up to the task. Of course I have no way of knowing what will come out of the audit but I have a feeling Tripp will have his lunch handed to him (purely a biased opinion on my part) and Schlange posthumously as well.

    Tripp is the guy who rammed the engineering project at Bernard Beach down our throats then dismissed the flaws by claiming 'it's working just the way it was designed to work'. Never mind that it renders the beach unusable because of the washouts. He is the Director of Public Works for the Region & Burgoyne Bridge is part of his portfolio. Quite a leap in size & scope from Bernard Beach to the ninety-two million dollar Burgoyne Bridge

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  9. CorruptionFighterMay 2, 2016 at 6:56 PM

    not a whisper from anyone on the rezoning of the beach parking lots to high density residential that a decade or so ago was so hot a topic that the locals elected a wet behind the ears but zealous kid to represent them............

    Anyone out there or is it just time to roll over and take it up the buttocks from a near sighted, developer pandering town staff that isn't even capable of changing street lights properly.

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    1. view_from_the _beachMay 6, 2016 at 9:02 AM

      After YEARS of shouting by SO MANY against the "rape of Bay Beach" I suspect it's just as much exhaustion as anything else that prevails in regards to this latest plan.
      Plopping down some "high density" townhouses on the north properties (Erie Rd. at Schooley Rd.) in place of the existing parking lot and eliminating the south side lot at the Bay Beach entrance will cause havoc when the hot and heavy beach days are upon us.
      While supplementary parking is supposed to be provided for in the Erie Rd.lot behind the hill just watch what happens on the streets around the Bay Beach entrances once the existing lots are gone.
      And that's BY DESIGN.

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    2. CorruptionFighterMay 7, 2016 at 9:54 AM

      it's already havoc down there on a hot day....more parking is needed not less and you don't need a degree or study in anything to see that on a hot summer's day.

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  10. Also, the wetlands being eyed by developers while EDTC head encourages them even though there is plenty of land services and available for both residential and commercial development. The rape of Fort Erie continues unabated. Lots of people have simply given up. It is too costly, both financially or emotionally to fight for the people. Look what happened to me and The Four - and many others who are too scared to even talk about the harassment and damage done by the minions of the Old Boys Club.

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  11. Looks like the chamber maids and nut just follow pissaro. A 5 to 2 vote is just great, but a 4 to 3 vote was evil.

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  12. These elected types are not people that go to the (Bay) beach on a hot day. Or any other beach in the area. So the vote uses a parking lot to put up some breadbox. Totally out of character with the existing architecture in the area. Maybe someone should propose putting an apartment building next to Waynes house on Niagara Blvd. Would never get approved. Like some piss poor third world government the suits drop their turds into some quiet neighborhood, next time to be seen with some $hit eating smile on the front page of the "weakly" newspaper. For this, we pay how much??

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  13. CorruptionFighterMay 7, 2016 at 7:50 AM

    Tourism is the only thing this town has to offer now for employment.Let's face it, manufacturing jobs have all gone elsewhere. To destroy it's best asset(realized over 100 years ago but now conveniently forgotten),is not only very short sighted but criminal as the whole plan is only to fill a few well connected insiders bank accounts PERIOD!! And the local paper does nothing to expose this, in fact only promotes it as the TOFE is the biggest advertiser.

    Welcome to Fort Stupid where the locals cheer for their own demise aided by the press.

    PS. funny how all the anti beach websites are all shut down now the ol boys run the show again.Job complete, status quo returned to and money flows the "proper" way once again.

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  14. Wayne, Don and staff wanted a pavilion that kept the character of the village, it was Pessaro and his minions who voted for a metal pre-fab cheap alternative.

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