Tag Archives: Legislator Doug Malone

County highway employee disciplined for computer pornography

by Carol Thompson

Oswego County Administrator Phil Church confirmed that an employee of the county highway department has been disciplined for viewing pornography on the county computer while at work.

During Thursday’s meeting, Legislator Doug Malone asked if there were any new developments with the investigation.

As first reported in The Valley News, employees of the highway department raised allegations that one of their coworkers was spending hours each day on the computer viewing erotic pictures and videos while receiving overtime pay.

Following the story, new allegations surfaced that other county highway employees were viewing pornography while at work at the county airport and the county sign shop.

Church said the first matter had been handled and disciplinary action has been taken.

“The fist complaint has been investigated and handled and proper discipline has been carried out,” Church responded to Malone.

The second complaint, Church noted, has been referred to the district attorney.

Church said he was not going to comment in public or to the press any further about the matter so as not to impede the investigation.

To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Employees allege coworker viewed pornography at work

by Carol Thompson

Several employees of the Oswego County Highway Department have alleged that a co-worker has been using the county computer to view pornographic pictures and videos for approximately two years while on taxpayer time.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, four employees, all whistleblowers, said they have witnessed the employee viewing the x-rated material on many occasions on a computer at the county’s Parish highway garage.

Additionally, they allege that while their coworker spent much time on the computer looking at pictures and watching videos, the coworker also racked up overtime hours each week.

The employees further allege that they brought their concerns to management to no avail, so they turned to a legislator for help in bringing it to an end.

Legislator Doug Malone said he was contacted, and after speaking with the employees, requested Oswego County District Attorney Gregory Oakes look into the matter.

The computer was removed from the premises a few weeks ago, the employees allege, although they are not aware of where it went once it left. The employees claim that Highway Superintendent Kurt Ospelt removed the computer.

Malone said Oakes told him the computer was removed and rather than be examined by the county’s IT Department, it was sent out for inspection.

Malone said that Oakes telephoned him and advised him that pornography was found in the computer, but because it wasn’t child pornography, there would be no criminal charges.

To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Telecommunications audit sparks debate

Telecommunicationsby Carol Thompson

An audit of telephone bills sparked a debate during the Dec. 13 meeting of the Oswego County Legislature.

Legislators considered a contract with a company that will audit the bills and take a percentage of the savings found.

“The firm will receive a percentage of any recovered overpayments,” Legislator Terry Wilbur said.

Legislator Doug Malone asked if he was correct in his assumption that the company will receive 25 percent of the refund and 20 percent of any future saving

Wilbur said 25 percent will go back to the firm.

“They’re going to save our county money,” he said. “They’re going to receive 20 percent of our savings for the next 18 months.”

Wilbur noted that all phone records will be audited.

Malone asked County Attorney Richard Mitchell if the contract was reasonable.

Mitchell said he did not know enough about the proposal but similar proposals are set up so that there is no charge to the county if no cost savings are found.

To read the rest of the story, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397


Legislators approve electronic monitoring of offenders

electronic monitoringby Carol Thompson

The Oswego County Legislature voted Thursday to allow the Probation Department to use a GPS tracking system and electronic bracelets to monitor criminals who are awaiting court action.

The system is expected to help alleviate jail overcrowding by providing around-the-clock tracking of offenders in their homes.

A contract with Sentinel Offender Services would cost the county an estimated $4 to $9 a day per offender. The probation department would initially lease 10 units and expand capacity as the need arises. The program would be funded through bail fees and existing alternatives to incarceration funds.

Oswego County Probation Director Deborah Meyer worked with Sheriff Reuel “Moe” Todd to seek alternatives to incarceration. Legislator Jake Mulcahey commended them for the work they did to provide a solution to the jail overcrowding.

The cost of boarding prisoners in facilities outside Oswego County has exceeded $1 million since the beginning of 2012.

A number of officers within the sheriff’s department have begun training and testing the equipment.

In a related matter, the legislature approved the purchase of nine cars for the sheriff’s department, reduced from a request for 12 at a cost of $234,000.

Legislator Doug Malone said he had a problem with the purchase of the cars because the legislature approved new cars for the sheriff earlier this year.

To read the rest of the story, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397

Democrats irked over redistricting

by Carol Thompson

The Oswego County Legislature’s minority caucus is not pleased with the proposed legislative restricting plan that sharply divides some town.

“My district looks like a dragon’s tail,” Legislator Doug Malone, who represents the Town of Oswego, said Wednesday.

Under the proposed plan, the town will be represented by five legislators.

Cost is also a factor that has the ire of Democrats. The Board of Elections will need to have one voting district in the new district proposed for the City of Oswego’s legislative district 16, which will serve 38 registered voters, the Democrats said.

The college district will be split under the new plan, creating two voting districts for approximately 100 voters.

“We are trying to cut the budget by $3 million to avoid a property tax increase and here we go adding to the budget,” Minority Leader Mike Kunzwiler said.

Each new district will require a location, personnel and ballots, all at an additional cost.

Legislator Jake Mulcahey’s legislative district 16 has been changed and he has lost a large portion of a heavily populated Republican area — one he carried in the last election.

Legislator Dan Farfaglia, who represents the City of Fulton and under the proposed plan will sprawl into the Town of Oswego, offered a plan that he worked on himself.

The redistricting committee, comprised of only one Democrat, refused to entertain Farfaglia’s proposal.

To read the rest of the story, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397


County considers splitting committee

by Carol Thompson

During Monday’s meeting of the Oswego County Legislature’s Strategic Planning and Government Committee, it was decided that the Department of Social Services should be removed from the blanket of the Health and Human Services Committee and placed under its own jurisdictional committee.

Legislator Doug Malone has been pushing the idea to separate the Social Services Department and make it fall under a separate committee all year.

He had the support of Legislator Jim Karasek and while both lawmakers are pleased that it is going to be done, both agreed it is too late in the year to initiate it.

Until next year, when new committees are formed, the Health and Human Services Committee will remain status quo, Karasek said.

With the 2013 budget process about to begin, splitting the committee up at this time would be too difficult.

To read the rest of the story, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397

Malone might lose his county legislative district

by Carol Thompson

Oswego County Legislator Doug Malone may have to face off against his cousin if his house isn’t put back into his district.

When the new legislative district maps were drawn, Malone was removed from the 20th District, where his house is located.

When the new maps were distributed last week, it was stated that no legislators were removed from the district they represent.

“I know they’re going to fix it,” Malone said, adding that he has yet to have any official confirmation.

The new maps, which are tentative, do include Malone’s business in his current district. His house, however, was put in the district of his relative, Legislator Terry Wilbur.

Districts 1 and 5 remained unchanged. The remaining 23 districts were changed — some minor and some substantially.

While some legislators are pleased with their new boundaries, some are not sure about the new lines. Legislator Morris Sorbello lost a portion of the Town of Granby and gained a section of the Town of Hannibal. He said he has mixed feelings about the new District 23.

Legislator Amy Tresidder, who represents District 16, will cross the Oswego River under the new map, bringing her into a part of the east side of the city. She said she too was unsure of the new lines.

 To read the rest of the story, pick up a copy of the Valley News at our office or at one of several locations throughout the City. For Subscriptions call 598-6397.

Pre-meeting e-mail irks Democrats

by Carol Thompson

An e-mail, sent to Republican members of the Oswego County Legislature on the eve of a controversial vote has stirred the ire of the Democrat’s.

As the legislature was considering the award of a contract to Info Quick Solutions, Inc. of Liverpool to provide data imaging services to the office of the County Clerk, GOP legislator’s received a message from Legislature Clerk Wendy Falls on Wednesday.

“If anyone has any critical concerns in regard to the IQS resolution that will be presented to the legislature tomorrow please contact Majority Leader John Proud… or Majority Whip Linda Lockwood… .” The telephone numbers were included in the message.

When asked if the message was intended to poll legislators, Lockwood said “Not really, we’re just getting the feel of the crowd,” she said. When asked if that wasn’t essentially polling, Lockwood said no one was telling the legislators how to vote.

Legislator Doug Malone said in his opinion, the message sounded like polling, something that is not legal under state law.

“If they have critical questions why wouldn’t they be answered by the county attorney or county administrator,” he said. County Administrator Phil Church handled the RFP process autonomously. Legislators had no involvement, and purchasing director Fred Maxon had limited involvement.

As for the message coming from Falls, Malone said, “She works for all of us and we are just as equal as they (Republicans) are.”

Malone added that he does not understand the hard push by the GOP to award the contract to IQS, the company that submitted among the highest cost and had the lowest review score.

“They are doing more to give this contract to IQS than they did to get rid of Don Morey,” he said. Morey was the previous county highway superintendent who was publicly terminated in 2006 despite large public support.

To read the rest of the story, subscribe to The Valley News by calling 315-598-6397