Friday, June 3, 2016

Agata and McClure are sounding an awful lot like Henry Lee Lucas

That is they sound like a serial confessor.

Chris Bragg of the Times Union has written several stories about Todd Howe's name being scrubbed from the JCOPE website.  Initially overpaid and under talented JJOKE PR flack Walt McClueless was quoted as saying that it is impossible to retroactively scrub a name from JJOKE filings and that he would not comment on if JJOKE staffers could do the scrubbing.  When combined with Bragg's assertion that Howe's name was on filings and then wasn't it made it look like JJOKE staff was complicit or caused Howe's name to be scrubbed from the filings.  Having my own experience with JJOKE staffers unilaterally changing public filings I certainly could believe it was possible BUT

I happened to have seen The Howe name on reports publicly available on the JJOKE website that showed the powerhouse (but not technically proficient at compliance) lobbying firm of Whiteman, Osterman and Hannah had filed additional lobbyist termination reports for Howe on May 5.  So I knew that Bragg just didn't know where to look, so I told him.  And I explained that the public registration he is able to view is only the most recent amendment and that it is done by the online filing system automatically with no JJOKE involvement (a weakness in the system well known to anyone that actually has used the system - which explains why Walt McClueless tried to confess to an ethical violation JJOKE did not commit  BUT

Bragg is positive that Howe's name was on bimonthly reports for the January/February period for Whiteman client Crouse Hospital but no longer are.  HMMMMM  If that is true there is only one way that can happen.  Whiteman Osterman and Hannah would have had to file an amendment to their bimonthly reports for the January/February period for Whiteman client Crouse Hospital removing Todd Howe as an additional lobbyist for that time period.  That is an affirmative act it does not happen as a result of a computer glitch or system weakness like the registration forms.  AND it has to be approved by JJOKE staff.  That approval routinely takes weeks and or months as I have complained about before in this blog.  The only way it gets done this quickly is thru active intervention by JJOKE staff.  They have to know about it and act upon it.  Which would generate the legitimate question of who told them to do so and why.  Preet? a minor point but a bigger issue I think you are already exploring.  That should be another $300000 in legal fees for JJOKE.

If that bimonthly amendment was filed by Whiteman and approved by JJOKE the public would only see what we now see and the prior lobbying activity by Howe would be scrubbed from the public disclosure record.  BUT

JJOKE internal work flow would still show the who the what and the when.  AND

An intrepid reporter could prove it by FOILING the original filings and all amendments and/or the corresponding LR, LRA, LBR and LBRA numbers.

Knowing this I told Bragg to call Agata before he wrote his followup story.  I also told Agata Bragg would be asking that question.  Now I didn't provide either one the knowledge I just provided above.  After all I'm not a JJOKE consultant for the Times Union in fact I don't respect them or like the reporters that work there especially Casey "cut and paste" Seiler.  And I don't work for JJOKE hell I couldn't even get an interview for the job Agata got so let them figure it out for themselves.  And I wanted to see what Agata would do.  He did not disappoint.  Much like Walt McClueless he did a pretty good impersonation of Henry Lee Lucas and gave Bragg a no comment to the question of why was Howe's name scrubbed. 

It has left me baffled why JJOKE did not just explain what happened, take responsibility for a flaw in the on line system and state that they are investigating why Howe wasn't registered as a lobbyist, why Whiteman is being investigating for amending it's filings to remove Howe and for good measure why they are investigating Percoco for a revolving door violation.  Unless of course they are ignoring all those issues because unlike Henry Lee Lucas they are GUILTY.

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