February 24, 2010

Demler Needs A Reality Check

It's been a heck of a week for former Wheatfield Supervisor Tim Demler. First the Buffalo News carries a story about Demler, through the town, providing cell phones to members of his family. Demler attempted to rationalize the giving of the phones to his friends and family by stating that the town actually made money by handing out the phones. Do you think he actually believes the bullshit that he spews?

WGRZ then picked up the piece. Demler once again attempts to defend the practice of giving town cell phones to his friends and family, but at least this time admits that "it was a bad judgment call". Ya think?

To top it off, WIVB had a story about buried ammunition in the backyards of homeowners in Wheatfield. It seems that about 11 years ago, ammunition, some of it still live, was buried in the yards of some town residents, and the DEC is now investigating this. Demler refused to comment on this one, so we'll add a little insight. Around 1999, the town bought tons of dirt to be used to fill in certain easements around the town. Instead, Demler directed town workers to place the dirt in planters and such around the town.

Problem was, the town ran out of the dirt that was supposed to fill in low spots. So Tim made a deal with a contractor who could provide low-cost dirt to the town. Demler never asked where the dirt came from. Turns out that this dirt was actually excavated from the property owned by a former ammunition manufacturer in the county. And it was loaded with live ammunition.

Now, since the dirt has made its way into the neighborhoods around town, Wheatfield has a problem on its hands.

It will be interesting to see if the DEC investigators are able to pull the history together. Knowing Demler, he likely made sure that any and all records of the transactions have disappeared.

What's sadly comical is that Demler continues to act like all of this is someone else's fault. He goes on TV with that smug little smile that he uses to seduce married women, thinking that it will make him believable. Even Monday, after the reports of the cell phone abuse started to come to light, Demler posted the following on his Facebook page: "Another GREAT day on the radio--12:15 1340 AM, (everyday). Good ratings ! Today is my Tracy's birthday--Nice dinner & lots of fun and thank you to Channel 2, Truthful story & exposure of the MORONS running our party & running our town---into the ground! Only 2 years of Cliffe & Helwig & New Taxes, I Hear there is some trouble coming for a certain attorney and some councilmen & missing water money? Stay Tuned!!"

I'm not what Channel 2 piece he saw, but the one I watched did not show him in a positive light - not by a long shot.

Considering that he is currently under investigation by the District Attorney, Attorney General, Comptroller and now the DEC, maybe it's time he learn the word "responsibility". He can go around claiming that all of this is politically motivated, but at some point, it all comes back to him and the way he conducted himself during his 14 years in office. The sooner he realizes this, the sooner he'll come to grips with what his future holds.


Niagara Prognosticator said...

Your comments about Demler are right on! However, to excuse the Town Board/Attorney as innocent by-standers or somehow not responsible or worse, as saviors, is absurd. To begin with, what did they expect? Demler was elected despite having 10s of thousands of dollars on judgment and tax liens against his name. Helwig, Retzlaff and O'Toole supported this character despite that fact.

Moreover, in one report, Larry ("Holier than Thou" ) Helwig's wife reportedly had a Town cell phone.

Employees, residents and political opponents have been trying to get traction on Demler's mischief from day one of his tenure. Early on it was about directing contracts to his friends, reports of quid pro quos and directing Town business to his own company through third parties. The first thing Demler did was buy imprinted cups, pens, etc. at Town expense. Items that he just happened to deal in. Also not specifically authorized by the TB, but approved as part of the bills presented portion of the meeting. Sound familiar from the last campaign?

All these questions were raised at Town Board meetings through the years but nothing was done. Blind eyes, deaf ears prevailed.

Under Demler the Town payroll rose continuously. Perhaps because for the first time the designated Deputy Supervisor (Retzlaff) was given a stipend for this largely do-nothing position? Or perhaps its the $5000 payment to Kenneth for the easement through his property (probably the highest amount ever paid to improve a vacant property with sanitary sewers)

Or how about the favorable assessments for some tied into the Supervisor. The most famous was the Golf Dome's assessment was kept artificially low for some time after its collapse was repaired. The Town Board made fully aware, but did nothing. BTW, Retlaff's brother was the assessor. There were rumors of other such favorable treatments.

Or how about the Highway Superintendent using excess black to to pave private property? This was excused as Mr. Kroening making an innocent mistake? However, when Don Mante was retiring, the Republican Town Board dragged the Democratic candidate's name through the mud accusing him of using Town blacktop to repair his own driveway. When receipts were produced to prove otherwise, no apologizes were offered to Mr. Fingerlow.

So I for one look forward to Demler's comeback attempt. I'm sure he'll continue to use the underhanded and dirty tactics that he used to get himself elected as he bites the hand that fed him over the years. Should provide for some much needed cleansing!

The Avenger said...

I think NP is on to something. Though Demler clearly was the bad actor here and the fish rots from the head down, the fact is everyone stinks in this. This reminds me of Lewiston a few years back when constant infighting and incompetence led to the destruction of the GOP that took multiple election cycles to undo. The Democrats have a real chance to takeover Wheatfield if the GOP doesn't put the whole lot out to pasture.

Rocketboy said...

Come on, in Demler's defense (at least on his radio show), other people have done worse, so we should ignore anything and everything he did wrong.

(Yes, that is what he said, and yes, I'm stunned that's his defense.)