December 24, 2007

Breaking News - O'Connor Resigns From County Leg

Niagara Times has learned that Niagara County Legislator Sean O'Connor (D-Niagara Falls) submitted his letter of resignation to Legislature Chairman Clyde Burmaster on Friday. Speculation had been running rampant that O'Connor would run for the 5th District seat, then vacate the position prior to his swearing in because of the resolution the Legislature passed earlier in the year that would have required all Legislators, including O'Connor, to pay 50% of their lifetime health insurance premiums.

Legislator Kimble tried unsuccessfully to reinstate lifetime health insurance benefits, at 100% taxpayer expense, for Legislators at the last meeting.

What has fueled further speculation of O'Connor's intent is the wording of his resignation letter. Apparently he stated that he is resigning from his "current term". Some believe that with the use of the wording "current term", O'Connor may have found a legal loophole in the resolution that may allow him to come back and be sworn in in January, while retaining the full lifetime health insurance benefit.

This situation may get more interesting very soon. Either way, we wish O'Connor the best and thank him for his years of service to the community.


Pete M said...

Well, we finally know where O'Connor's priorities are. Rather than serve the people of the 5th District, and pay 50% of his lifetime health insurance premiums, O'Connor is abandoning the people of his district in order to retain his 100% taxpayer subsidized lifetime health insurance. Sad.

pirate's code said...

I know little of Sean O'Connor. Met him only once and he seemed like an affable enough guy. But if what is true regarding a potential loophole, he should be ashamed. Here's hoping it's not, because I'd hate to harbor such ill thoughts of someone so close to Christmas.

Either way, the county legislature and the citizenry need to have a serious discussion about term limits.

pirate's code said...

Sorry, meant "if what you WRITE is true..."

Hitting the wassail bowl a little early, I guess.

sick & tired said...

Hurray for O'Connor. He's fighting back at the thinly veiled attempt by the Republicans to force him from office by stripping him of a benefit that he's EARNED with over 20 years of service.

Is it any coincidence that the only legislator that Updegrove's resolution affected was Mr. O'Connor?

Mal Needler is leaving office with 20 years and he's getting the lifetime benefit. Not to mention that he continues on the public payroll working for the NYS Power Authority and they appointed him to the NCCC board.

Cynical politics on the Republican side are answered by cynical politics from the Dems.

Who knew that O'Connor had BALLS??

Good for you Sean!!!

Larry S said...

Sick & Tired, maybe its politics, maybe its not. But, to say that anyone has EARNED lifetime health insurance at taxpayer expense is completely insane. Maybe that was a benefit that could be offered when health insurance premiums were $1,000/year. But with premiums approaching $12-15,000 per year, youre talking about costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars that WE will foot the bill for. NO ONE has earned such a right to blatantly waste MY tax dollars, and for you to say different shows your statement is nothing but politics.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone seen this in the Gazette or Buffalo News? If it happened Friday, I'd have thought they'd have had someone on it.

sick & tired said...

Someone puts their time in for something promised, however ill advised someone else might think the benefit, and the one who's put their time in has earned it.

Now, the County Legislature is free to pull the lifetime benefit from anyone without a contract, but they cannot choose one person, they have to eliminate it for all. So goodbye bennies for Mal and any other old time legislator who is still pulling down the benefit.

There is nothing stopping the legislature from doing this, except they'll hit many of their own friends and allies in the process.

Elimination of the benefit for all seems to me the fairer way than just targeting one legislator.

And yes, it is all politics.

Anonymous said...

Hey pirate code and larry. Blow me!!! You guys are shilling for the local GOP and everyone knows it!

Sweaterman said...

To anonymous: watch your mouth, if you have been paying attention to this website you would realize that there are good points being argued on this website.

A part time legislator does not deserve to have 100% lifetime health insurance to be paid for.

That is ridiculous.

However, I personally believe that all elected officials are unappreciated by the public in general. They are verbally attacked and abused on radio shows and the public comment period of meetings from NT to Lockport.

People should realize that for the most part these people work hard and truly care about the areas they represent.

Remember that the next time you attack an elected official.

GOP Shill said...

This whole thing of health insurance for part-time politicans is an outrage and both Dems and Reps should be ashamed. But is was a GOP Legislator, I think Aronow, who began the process of elimanting it.

As for politics....what, there's politics in county government. I'm shocked, absolutely shocked.

Anyone remember when the Dems suspened the rules when they were in the Majority on the last day to screw the incoming crew. You know what, they had the right to do it.

So, sick and tired, you want to be a dem shill go ahead. If Pirate's Code is shilling for the GOP (and as a regular reader of this board, I don't think he is though others clearly are) have at it.

Let's just not all act like a bunch of sanctimonious a--holes when we all know how the game is played.

And if friggin Sean O'Connor were so concerned about serving the public, he'd show up to a meeting once in a while and do his job. His ONLY purpose in the Leg is collect his benny's while he and Doreen run their business.

Sean's got 20-plus years in, name one thing he's done.

pirate's code said...

Dear Anonymous:

Blow me? Really? Haven't heard that one since high school, which was a long, long time ago. What's next? Up your nose with a rubber hose, Horshack?

In posts long ago I wrote that I lean conservative and, yes, I am a registered Republican. So, your profound revelation that I sometimes support GOP policy is less than shocking news.

I think if you go back over the history of this site, however, you will find that any vitriol or angst I have shared with readers has been more to the center. I try to be reasonable in my approach, but there are those issues that I just find so silly that it is hard not to be snarky. This particular issue is one of them. Legislation apparently aimed at one person is silly, and O'Connor's apparent reaction is equally silly.

But, if thinking that I am Niagara County's Karl Rove gives you a boner, well, you just go ahead and flog that little stiffy.

I view my politics as a smorgasbord -- I pick what I like and walk past the rest. If the result is that someone thinks I'm a shill, or conversely thinks I'm disloyal to the party, well, blow me.

Love & kisses,


Karl Marx said...

Sweater man and Pirate's Code. Those names are priceless. But I am sure those are the monikers you use when you go clubbing with the likes of Mark Foley and Larry Craig. You sound like sanctimonious NT school teacher in local politics of dubious moral character. In this country, pubic dissent is not equated with public abuse. It any someone speaks their mind why is that a bad thing. People who run for public office should realize that is part of an “open process”. Unfortunately these prima donnas don’t believe that they should be challenged. This is just plain wrong. Sweater man perhaps if you didn’t drink the cool aid you would know better.

pirate's code said...

Karl --

Um...what? Because I took someone to task for the oh-so-eloquent "blow're a shill" comment somehow makes me a homosexual? Public dissent does not equate to public abuse, but apparently that doesn't apply to you and your thinly veiled character assasination of at least one person you've never met (me) and two others (sweaterman and some unnamed NT school teacher).

Btw, Karl, it's Kool Aid, not cool aid. But, thanks for playing.

What do we have for the contestants, Johnny?

Anonymous said...

Sick and Tired(M. Bender)are you really that stupid? Needler gave up his position. He didnt want to, but was forced to so you tell me how this only effected Oconnor?? You cant because you dont know what the hell you are talking about