Friday, December 28, 2012

King Louie Appoints Himself Back on Beverly Council Plus New Updates

King Five Finger Discount Louie Bombshells Just keep on Coming for Beverly City

"City Council appointment draws controversy in Beverly

By Jeannie O'Sullivan Staff writer | Posted: Thursday, December 27, 2012 9:19 pm
BEVERLY — A City Council member who lost his next term in the contested Democratic primary election in June will still be on dais in January.
Council President Luis Crespo was appointed Thursday night to fill the seat vacated by Brian Perkins, who has resigned with three years left on his term.
The motion to appoint Crespo was made by Councilwoman Barbara Kelly, seconded by Councilman Hal Robertson and blasted by Councilman Robert Thibault.
“Outrageous” is how Thibault described the action.
“The voters of this town have made it clear. They’re asking for a clean break from the past and move it forward. This is simply a maneuvering tactic that’s just unconscionable,” he said.
Frequently challenged during meetings by Thibault, Crespo has also been a target of criticism from meeting attendees who decry the city's financial difficulties and employee lawsuits.
Crespo didn't comment about his reappointment during the meeting and didn't immediately return a phone call afterward.
The legality of Crespo voting during the roll call came into question. City attorney Albert Marmero said after the meeting that state law mandates that elected officials recuse themselves from voting on matters that would net them a financial benefit.
“In this case, there is no salary so it’s a bit of a gray area,” Marmero said.
Crespo, Kelly and Robertson are finishing terms after losing the primary Lawrence Carlbon, Robert Bancroft and Robert Lowden, a slate of former public officials and volunteers who ran as "The Original Beverly Democrats."
Crespo had waged an unsuccessful write-in campaign during the general election in November.
To fill Perkins' seat, the city’s Democratic Committee had submitted the names of Crespo, Robertson, and former council member Scott Williams for consideration. Appointed council members sit until the next election, when they must be voted in to continue service.
Perkins' letter was not read aloud during the meeting.
Before the vote to appoint Crespo, Robertson said he respectfully withdrew his name from consideration. “I’ve had enough,” he said.
Williams, who was also at the meeting, offered well wishes to the new and outgoing members."

It appears that the letter of resignation from Brian Perkins was discussed in Executive Session at last nights Council meeting as well as the letter from the Beverly Democratic Committee that recommended three names to replace Perkins. This needs to be looked into because if this action was not listed on the meeting agenda or in the resolution for holding a closed executive meeting, then the council is in violation of the OPRA law. 
This action by council needs to be verified by any of the council members that were part of the executive session held last night so that the violation of the law can be dealt with. This illegal action may even cancel the unconscionable act taken by the outgoing council last night.
King Louie's actions during the past as a public official and in his personal life, has brought numerous lawsuits and embarrassments to the residents of Beverly City. This is why he lost in the Democratic Primary as well as in the 2012 General Election as an Independent Candidate for Council. The Beverly Voters sent a message loud and clear that they want the King off of Council!

Stay tuned for more and Happy New Year,

The Edgewater Park Reporters

More King Louie Shoes Fall in Beverly
Story in 1/2/13 BCT

Beverly must pay $35,538 for overtime lawsuit

By Jeannie O'Sullivan Staff writer
 Sunday, December 30, 2012

BEVERLY — A Public Works Department employee has won a $35,538 judgment against the city in a lawsuit over overtime pay.
The City Council last week passed a resolution to pay $7,156 to Public Works Supervisor Daniel Schoen Sr. and $28,382 to his attorney, Thomas Barron of Moorestown. According to the payment schedule, Schoen was to have gotten his money by Monday. Barron was to receive $10,000 by Monday and the rest in monthly installments by March 31.
City Attorney Albert Marmero said that although Schoen, a current employee, is the department’s supervisor, much of his work is labor, which by law warrants overtime.
“There’s a federal law that requires overtime for all employees unless you’re an executive employee. Despite what your title is, if the bulk of your day is done doing labor, you’re considered a laborer. So he won the overtime he was claiming,” Marmero said.
The money took awhile in coming, according to Barron. When reached for comment, he said Superior Court Judge Susan Claypoole had heard the case in late July in Mount Holly.
"It was a struggle to get paid," he said.
Legal fees for the city's 2012 budget had risen by $100,000 since the previous year. At the time the $2.9 million budget was adopted in June, Council President Luis Crespo had said the Burlington County Joint Insurance Fund raised the city’s deductible as a penalty because the city’s previous fund commissioner failed to follow certain required directives.
In addition to retainer fees from attorneys and the overtime pay lawsuit, other legal costs included a $75,000 settlement for a former clerk-administrator who filed a harassment lawsuit against the municipality in January 2011, although it did not admit any liability in the case. City officials agreed to that settlement in April.