Monday, March 23, 2009

Update: Roscioli tells us why he's running

We noted here that Pleasant Prairie village trustee candidate John Roscioli failed in the more than two months since he became a candidate to articulate a clear (or even unclear) reason for his candidacy.

Tonight John (who has been reading here--yay!) updated his blog. Here's his stated rationale:

"I currently serve on the Recreation commission and the Tourism Board. While the past 25 years were incredible in Pleasant Prairie, the next 25 will be as well. Whether developing relationships with residents or KUSD, monitering the financial concerns of the residents, or keeping the Village about FAMILY, I am looking forward to furthering my commitment to you as a citizen in the Village of Pleasant Prairie. I feel my opponent has mis-stepped in his capacity as Trustee. I would never think of taking the FAMILY out of Prairie Family Days. I also wouldn't make the Village Board meetings my personal forum to air grievances against KUSD, WE Energies, or neighbors as my opponent did. Being a Trustee is about serving the greater good. I am willing to make those tough decisions honestly and fairly to residents."

That's it.


Villager said...

You can't make this stuff up, as Rush Limbaugh would say. Read this comment from Roscioli on his blog (attacking Clyde Allen):

"Financial expertise?'s not necessary. If you think a Trustee (any Trustee) is being deferred to rather than Piper Jaffray, other consultants chosen, Kathy Goessl and staff, or Mike are mistaken. No Trustee could replace these people, so a candidate should know that going in. Look to the Jan 8th special Board meeting minutes or the Feb 2nd minutes to see we have the right staff in place to deal with financial issues...Board members can (and should) ask questions, be cognizant of financial issues, and look to staff to help with the missing pieces. I am a financial consultant with Raymond James, so I've got independent experts at my disposal as well."

It almost sounds as if he's contradicting himself. It's true that KUSD has a so-called financial planner on the board and even so made the boner to invest in shady CDO's. Some of the board members laid some blame on Bill Johnston, the business manager, so maybe it's not always right to defer to staff.

I'm all for relying on village staff and there are many excellent people there. To say financial experience isn't necessary is simply nutso. Yes, not everyone has to have it, but when you have someone on a board who because of two decades of government finance experience is in a position to know whether the village staff is doing its job, that person becomes an asset. Selling stocks and bonds and being a municipal budget executive are very dissimilar skills.

I think Roscioli is a bowler...someone who builds himself up by knocking others down. A couple of weeks before the election he goes on attack so the voters don't have a full and fair chance to explore his own candidacy.

Maybe these two guys need to debate each other.

RAG said...


I like to think most intelligent voters tune out the static that rises in its intensity as election day grows nearer. That's why I was disapponted that John didn't have his ideas and issues formulated when he announced his candidacy.

Remember when Alex Tiahnybok and Jeff Laurer first ran for the board? They were the fodder for a last-minute mudslinging mailing which may very well have helped them get elected. A lot of people were turned off by the negative tone. It was totally unnecessary.

I suspect the lack of clarity in John's campaign resulted from his inexperience and will likely (or at least hopefully) improve in future campaigns. I read a suggestion someone made on his blog that he would have been a great school board candidate. I never gave that any thought but now that I have it's very plausible. But that and $4-5 will get you a coffee at Starbucks!

John Roscioli said...

Individual's motivations for candidacy should always be in the best interest of the constituents they serve. This isn't mudslinging, I'm not throwing his family under the bus. I'm also not interested in him being some "good old boy." We aren't friends on a personal level, but I supported Clyde's platform 2 years ago which I don't think was followed through on. If I were to call him short and ugly or disregard his Catholicism....that would be mudslinging. Have you seen my pictures? I married over my head, and got 2 beautiful kids.. but I'm really short and have 1 eyebrow. I was also raised Catholic and respect his beliefs. IT'S NOT PERSONAL! The fact I take issue with his Trustee decision making isn't a personal affront to the Village or a negative campaign.

Do I think Trustee Allen was 100% wrong in his decision making over the past 2 years? No. Did he make specifically poor decisions which provoked several neighborhoods encouraged my candidacy? Yes. Was I also encouraged by Board and staff to run for Trustee? Yes (including Trustee Serpe).

The fact is these assessment issues, Prairie Family Days suggestions, his use of the Board meetings are not for the better of the residents and Pleasant Prairie. It's nothing personal, it is a matter of record. He offered a debate, I said yes...he hasn't spoken to me regarding this since.

Villager said...

I guess I'll have to disagree with Roscioli. I went through board minutes (you can get them on the village web sites) and Clyde Allen explained his rationale for those who care to listen. Never saw him use the board as a forum for personal advancement. I think he's been watching out for taxpayers. He was right to blow the whistle on the school district fiasco and others should have, too. (There is a history of village involvement in KUSD dating back to the old joint school district days when the Somers and Pleasant Prairie town chairmen sat with the Kenosha City Council as the fiscal control board.)

Mud is mud and it's not confined to religious attacks, etc., which haven't been an issue in village politics.

Here's how inexperienced Roscioli is. He doesn't get that you don't always make friends when you make decisions.

The 9% interest rate Roscioli talks about on his blog has been at that level since 9% was a deal. To adjust it downward makes sense. Some folks might say it's Clyde looking out for homeownes and taxpayers.

RAG said...

I'm surprised channel 25 didn't do a candidate forum.

John Roscioli said...

Honestly, when you hear last night's'll understand what impact assessments could have on us as residents. Villager and Dick tout Clyde's financial expertise...I voted for him based on that as well. That said, he can't just know numbers as public policy dictates he understand more. His comments on assessments show he hasn't grasped that concept. To further exascerbate the situation, he didn't offer the same "deals" up when discussing 80th street assessments (which averaged around $30,000 vs. $3000 average in Carol Beach). WHY? It isn't, and anyone thinking otherwise has on rose-colored glasses. ALL RESIDENT'S SHOULD BE TREATED EQUALLY!

Even offering a competitive rate (in comparison to SECOND mortgages or HELOCC) is a liability to the rest of the taxpayers. Mike Pollocoff has repeated the need for the rate to stay above the market rate.

People ask for reasons a candidate's decision to run. For me, the issues discussed are valid and there isn't mud on my hands. Again, it's not personal.

I am all for a debate. Clyde brought it up a month or so ago, my response was "Sure Clyde, whatever you want to do." I am still waiting for that to take place. Dick, call channel 25 and we can choose a moderator. The Village hall sometime next week would be excellent!

RAG said...

I think it's up to the candidates and channel 25 or another civic group to work this out.

Anonymous said...

I looked for the minutes for the meetings on 80th street. I only found one meeting where assessments were discussed. Why would Roscioli beat Trustee Clyde up when he was absent from that meeting and the assessment passed 4-0? Maybe Clyde should have brought it up at the next meeting, I don't have an opinion either way. Isn't that what this whole interest rate is about, reduce everones interest rate to be the same? How is that treating others differently? That is consistency in my humble opinion. Roscioli is starting to sound like Alex Tianybok all over.

John Roscioli said...

I'd be willing to do the "forum" Clyde asked about. If he's still interested. My thoughts are he is having second thoughts about it!

Anonymous said...

Roscioli's quote:
"I currently serve on the Recreation commission and the Tourism Board."
Look at his productivity - In 2008 Roscioli's attendance for the Recreation Commission and Tourism Board it is under 50%. Roscioli clearly lacks dedication.

John Roscioli said...

Over the course of my serving on both commissions (Rec from Oct. 2008, and Tourism for the past 18 months or so) I missed 3 KACVB meetings due to family vacation and sick children. I've missed one Rec Commission meeting since my appointment in Oct. This is more along the lines of 85% or so, but we'll leave the math to the financial experts.

Trustee Allen missed 3 of the 28 Board meetings in 2008...what percentage is that? never mind...i can do math too. Most Trustees (except Yuhas, who I believe is at 100%) miss meetings. I seem to remember that Tiahnybok's criticism of being called petty by you same anonymous people when he was campaigning. As the saying goes, what is good for the goose.......

RAG said...

Chill out, folks. I almost deleted the preceding comments because the last two sentences are close to crossing the line.

Villager said...

I can easily see why there may be some hesitancy to debate. Roscioli entered the race in late December or early January. He didn't define himself or his issues until very recently. Without his positions having gone through any vetting because they weren't known, it would be crazy for an opponent to walk into a sandbag. How do you prepare to refute claims when you don't know where your opponent stands?

RAG said...

Villager makes a good point. Usually, debates are up to the candidates to agree to and arrange. Likewise usually candidates kick off their campaigns with some definition of who they are, why they are seeking office and what their issues are. You don't just walk into a debate without preparation. It may be a little late now but, as I said, this is something between the candidates.

Anonymous said...

I have to refute Roscioli's claim to being on the Convention and Visitors Board for 18 months or so. I believe he joined in March or April 2008. That is only one year. Missing 3 meetings out of 5 is not 85%. The claim that he only missed one meeting is questionable. He missed the December meeting and the November meeting because he states on an earlier positing that he missed the family days vote in November.
Fuzzy math or just plain making stuff up as he goes along. I hope Allen debates him, but I don't think anyone would attend.

John Roscioli said...

I have indeed served for a TOTAL of 18 months on 2 commissions. I've definitely attended all but 1 rec meeting (Nov 14th I believe) to this point. I also can't "prove" my attendance at Tourism (it's not taken or recorded). I know the 2/5 claimed by anonymous is ridiculous...but that is going to happen when people's factual arguments are disproven. So be it.

Fact is, I was appointed (by President Steinbrink and Mike Pollocoff) to the Rec Commission after serving with Mike Pollocoff on Tourism. I was, in fact, offered a choice of three Commissions and doubt the positions would have been offered if my efforts weren't worthy or my attendance poor. Or maybe you doubt Pollocoff's judgement? I sure don't.

RAG said...

C'mon everyone...let's try to keep it above the belt...or we'll give you all three demerits and make you spend an hour after school in detention,