"Politics is show business for ugly people"
- James Carville


Last updated: April 19, 1999

I'm keeping an eye on you!
I'm keeping an eye on you!

On Lucchino
Submitted by Randy Rooney, Special GS99 Correspondent

The watchdog for Allegheny County taxpayers and their hard-earned tax dollars finally decides, after all these years, that maybe the county's inventory system is 'for crap'.

Frank Lucchino doesn't bother to come to that conclusion during the hundreds and hundreds of audits his office has done throughout County departments over the many years he's been feeding at the public trough as County Controller.

No....he becomes enlightened to all of this only a few months after he decides that he's had enough of one governmental job and wants to run for another - Judge of Common Pleas Court, no less.

Now Frank - hired and paid to keep an eye on things for us - has discovered that some things are, ah, misssing from..duh..some County departments.

Like Honest Abe's bed at South Park....really......never mind that it's been missing for over 30 years.......but hey!'s still news to - and publicity for - a guy who wants your vote to be Judge.

Ans how 'bout the lots and lots of reeeaallllly expensive 'stuff' at the Hartwood Mansion now 'discovered' missing?!

Apparently, "Frank's ranks" have been conducting an inquiry into the missing Mansion 'booty' that could only be described as the investigatory equivalent of "hide-and-don't-seek".

Oh yeah...there are some other items owned by the County that have recently been 'discovered' (there goes that word again) to be vastly undervalued by our good professsor Frank 'lyIdon'tgiveadamn'......never mind that some of these items are currently in use in County offices like they were purchased from your neighborhood Wal-Mart.

All this - all of this 'discovery' is just brandy news to poor lil Frank 'n beans.

That all this stuff is just.....ya know.................missing.

That all this stuff is just.....ya know.................reeallly valuable.

At least that's what that other 'pillar' of the community....that local bastion of truth and objectivity - the Pittsburgh Post Gazette - is telling all of us.

You know them - they're the guys who told us about the abuse of taxpayer money used on County cars and homes, and regaled us with the adventures of four-star General Joe Moses: All American Criminal, but never reeallly got around to telling us why our boy Frank didn't seem to know about any of it.

I guess they just forgot to ask.

Ya know what? Betcha they don't even know he's running for Judge............betcha?

But we still need a happy ending to this heartwarming story, and here it is:

Maybe we go ahead and elect frank to be Judge, then apoint him to serve on that County solution-to-end-all- solutions: the blue-ribbon panel.

Then Frank and Company can tackle an even bigger embarrassment to his legacy as Controller.

And that would be the wonderful, magical mess of 'change orders' - an abuse of the Commissioner's Office that Frank's been ignoring for years as County Controller at the weekly Thursday Commissioner meetings; a system of doing business where successful low-bidders of County projects routinely request and receive additional monies for 'unexpected, but necessary' changes to original work specifications that frank has never done anything to prevent or fix.

But, of course, change orders are just soooooo necessary because the few , large contractors who get the lion's share of the contracts are just soooooo very good at what they do - estimating costs aside - we could hardly wait to do it any other way, right frank? (go Tas-so .. go Tas-so)

Besides folks......Frank is just too busy trying to get elected.

Oh yeah....and he's still out there looking for all those missing lamps at Hartwood.


Out of the nearly 200 entries to the "Grant Street Careers Lost But Not Forgotten" quiz that was published on April 1st, nobody submitted a perfect entry.

The winning entry, with 34 out of 42 correct answers, was submitted by TheGabDude. Congratulations, Gab.

Here are the correct answers:

1. Rep. Jeff Habay (ii) Admissions Director at Pgh. Technical Inst
2. Rep. Harry Readshaw (n) Funeral Director
3. Rep. Ken Ruffing (g) Bread Truck Driver
4. Rep. Dave Mayernik (b/aa) Deputy Sheriff
5. Sen. Leonard Bodack (v) Aluminum Siding Salesman
6. State Treasurer Barbara Hafer (q) nurse
7. Commissioner Bob Cranmer (gg) Unemployed
8. Rep. Tom Petrone (p) Sal;esman for Calgon
9. Judge Raymond Novak (e) Priets
10. Congressman Bill Coyne (r) City Councilman
11. Councilman Michael Diven (hh) Seasonal Aide to County Commissioner Foerster
12. Judge Donald Machen (pp) Dentist
13. Deputy Mayor Sal Sirabella (oo) Labor Relations Specialist for County Maintenance Dept.
14. Controller Tom Flaherty (l /ee) Steelworker
15. Rep. Frank Dermody (k) Assistant District Attorney
16. Councilman Gene Ricciardi (i) Planner for County
17. Judge Kathleen Durkin (a) Teacher
18. Mayor Tom Murphy (y) Peace Corps Volunteer
19. Sen. Jay Costa (b/aa) Deputy Sheriff
20. Chief Justice John Flaherty (z) Instructor at CMU
21. Commissioner Mike Dawida (l /ee) Steelworker
22. Councilman Jim Ferlo (m/jj) Aide to City Controller
23. Judge Paul Lutty (x) Clerk in Clerk of Courts Office
24. Commissioner Larry Dunn (ll) Newspaper Reporter
25. Judge Bob Colville (s) Pittsburgh Police Officer
26. Rep. Frank Gigliotti (dd) Forman for City Public Works Dept.
27. County Manager Glenn Cannon (w) Paramedic
28. Councilwoman Valerie McDonald (d) Chemist
29. Judge Ralph Cappy (c) Public Defender
30. Sen. Jack Wagner (nn) Tavern Proprieter
31. Judge Jeffrey Manning (bb) Assistant U.S. Attorney
32. Governor Tom Ridge (u) Congressman
33. City Solicitor Jacqueline Morrow (j) Solicitor for Giant Eagle
34. Former Councilman Ben Woods (o) Sheet Metal Worker
35. Chief Magistrate William 'Jack' Simmons (mm) Aide to County Commmissioner Hafer
36. Coleen Vuono (h) Autopsy Technician
37. County Purchasing Director Vince LoBianco (t) Dry Cleaner
38. Jon Delano (cc) Aide to Congressman Doeg Walgren
39. Former Councilman Joe Cusick (f) Amateur Boxer
40. Cong. Ron Klink (ff) TV News Anchor/Reporter
41. Rep. Don Walko (m/jj) Aide to City Controller
42. Councilman Bob O'Connor (kk) Restauranteur


Other links of interest:
Skeleton Closet
Your Elected Officials
The Allegheny Institute for Public Policy
Green Tree Democratic Web Site
The Warroom