Of course if you ask the right questions you might get answers that show that none of the Council members were intimidate by Pat Dalton’s threat.
Stratton out, Beggs In City Councilwoman Karen Stratton is stepping down from the committee guiding the investigation into the Straub-Condon controversy.
The reason? So she can feel free to talk to the investigator about the investigation.
“It’s simple. I got a notice from the investigator that I was on the list. The witness list,” Stratton says. “I didn’t realize I was. And so I thought about it and thought, I would like to participate as a witness.”
Stratton was one of two councilmembers who had voted against waiving privilege in order revealing what was said in executive session.
But she says she’ll answer every question if asked.
“I’ve given this a lot of thought,” Stratton says. “I’m going to answer the questions. If by answering the questions, if that means I have to divulge that, I will.”
I would love to be!
The appointment of Breean Beggs to replace Karen Stratton on the Committee overseeing the “Independent Investigation” into the Condon Administration was a good move on the City Council’s part for a number of reasons including his background and Karen Stratton’s conflict. She was quite right to resign from the Committee.
I would love to be a fly on the wall during their meetings, not only to see what information the Investigator has obtained but also to compare their meetings with the meetings I have been involved in during Joint Defense Agreements (JDAs). JDAs involve cases where there are a number of defendants in a large case each represented by their own lawyer who have a written agreement to work together in a common defense of the case. JDA meetings have a dynamic all of their own because you have a number of lawyers involved, often with some disagreement over the proper direction to go.
When I take a look at the actual City Council Investigation Committee I can’t help but believe their meetings will be a lot like the ones I have experienced.
Why? You might ask, well let me run it down.
Breean Beggs – Lawyer
Brian McClatchey – Lawyer
Laura McAloon – Lawyer
Kris Cappel – Lawyer (Investigator)
Need I say More??? 🙂 🙂
This SR story linked below gives a bit of a picture as to what is going on. Laura McAloon, a friend of Condon’s, was his appoint to the Committee. McAloon is kind of a Democrat but when it comes to loyalties…who knows? It looks like before the investigation even got off the ground she was far less concerned about getting to the truth than how much it might cost in lawsuits. It should be obvious to Ms. McAloon, then and now, that hell yes the Administration’s handling of a lot of things, including this, is going to cost US Big Time. Beyond that as a lawyer she should know that all of the Plaintiffs suing the City so far will do their own investigation and through their investigation and litigation discovery will have darn near everything anyway.
“According to Stuckart, Laura McAloon, who was appointed to the committee by Condon, asked the committee’s other members if the investigation should move forward because it likely would uncover actions by city officials that would lead to lawsuits.”
From a political standpoint I’m kind of waiting for Laura McAloon to resign from the Committee publically decrying it as a political witch-hunt. Wouldn’t that be fun and it adds an interesting dynamic to the Committee and the Investigation.
BACK TO YESTERDAY’S SR STORY:
“Karen Stratton, who said she resigned from the committee after she was asked to be interviewed by the investigator, Kris Cappel, to avoid an appearance of conflict.”
Of course we are missing the obvious follow-up question that should have been asked and reported if it was…” Did you provide a statement to Kris Cappel?”.
Even though you will probably get a response saying something like “I can’t tell you right now.” Non answers are sometimes answers…so you ask the question.
OKAY…my comment above was a lead-in to this story:
City Spokesman Brian Coddington said the process of the independent inquiry has been “further complicated” by Frank Straub’s lawsuit. Because of that active litigation, Coddington said some employees have sought more information about their participation requirements. That promoted an email from one of the employees on the list asking if they were required to participate, according to Coddington.
City officials said Asst. City attorney Erin Jacobson, who works with labor groups, relayed that participation is now voluntary. KHQ’s Hayley Guenthner asked Coddington what kind of impact this could have on the investigation.
“That’s unknown at this time,” said Brian Coddington. “We are still on the same timeline for the independent investigation.”
Good question by Hayley Guenthner, however the follow up to Coddington should have been…” Does this have anything to do with Mayor Condon’s power to compel statements from our public employees under Garrity v New Jersey?
As I mentioned in a recent Tweet I wondered how long it would take for Garrity to come into play.
Garrity is somewhat of a complex issue so I won’t go into any detail here, but will mention that as far as Erin Jacobson is concerned her name shows up all the time in Cop Union issues, but the Unions representing non-cops would be remiss not to bring Garrity forward.
Because this is NOT an “Administrative Investigation” rather an “Independent Investigation” my guess is that the Mayor has taken the position that he CAN NOT compel our employees to talk to the City Council’s Investigator, which IMO is true. However, the CC has the power to take statements and testimony under oath, so it will be interesting to see if that, and a lot of other things are actually done, or not done.
THERE IS A LOT OF EVIDENCE TO REVIEW AND A LOT OF QUESTIONS THE MAYOR MUST ANSWER!!!
The City Council’s Independent Investigation is supposed to be completed in April, as you know I have question the short timeline for the investigation, but maybe Kris Cappel works a lot faster than I did.
There are a lot of questions the Mayor should be answering and here is just one example.
Remember the big press conference announcing Straub’s “resignation” that hit the media on 9/22/2015?
Now take a look at these text messages between Straub and the Mayor.
I would love to ask the necessary questions about the meeting the text messages refer to on 9/21/2015.
Of course I would ask questions about the 10/15/2015 text too:
“10/15/2015 16:38 Send Sent draft with transition plan will call shortly.”
But you can develop your own!
One other thing that we should keep in mind, and as I have pointed out previously, when one looks at this situation as a whole, without question there is some evidence of possible criminal conduct, so it isn’t beyond the realm to think that some lawyers, including the Mayor’s, will advise their clients to take the Fifth. Now wouldn’t that be interesting?
I REPORT YOU DECIDE!!