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Hudson’s Boss Hogg?

To the Editor:

Even those of us who have grown accustomed to the antics of Hudson Mayor Rick Scalera are scandalized by his profane, childish, nasty, and homophobic comments in your report on the latest Hudson election scandal [Newsfront, Aug. 21].

Hudson residents aren’t that shocked anymore when Mayor Scalera uses words like “ass” and “crap” with reporters. It isn’t out of character for our mayor to be proud of being “devious” and “hurting [his opponent’s] feelings.”

It comes as no surprise when this divisive and reckless mayor makes not-so-veiled references to the sexual orientation of some of his critics.

And we aren’t surprised that Mayor Scalera has no respect for the law, or understanding of the concept of intellectual property.

But all that said, as a fulltime Hudson resident and taxpayer, I must correct two bold lies spread by the mayor in your useful exposé of his latest outrages.

1. Mayor Scalera pretends to be indignant that his opponent, Linda Mussmann, and the rest of her “reform” slate did not come to him on bended knee, asking for his endorsement. Anyone who knows Hudson politics knows this would have been a complete waste of time. Indeed, the one local candidate (Colum Riley) who was not part of Scalera’s good-ol’-boy network, but did reach out to the mayor about running as a Democrat, was passed over as expected.

2. Mayor Scalera ends with the outright lie that “no other candidate has put in their name for the mayor’s race.” In fact, former Mayor Ken Cranna did file nearly 200 signatures to run against Scalera—but was legally challenged and knocked out, much as Scalera is now trying to do to Mussmann.

Mussmann will give Scalera the run of his life this fall. The immediate question many Hudson residents have is, who is paying for all of Scalera’s complex legal maneuvers and TV ads? The sources of his funding don’t appear in his campaign finance filing, but it is widely assumed that St. Lawrence Cement has a big hand in these shenanigans.

Sam Pratt

To the Editor:

In an article from the Register Star dated Aug. 18, 2003, Mayor Scalera was asked by the reporter, “Are you sorry you did this?” (referring to taking over the Bottom Line Party nomination).

“No, I just wanted to make a point,” said Scalera.

Americans, especially those in the City of Hudson, can only hope that the judge who handles this matter will also “make a point,” and dole out the appropriate penalties as stated in S17-122 New York State Election Laws; any person who:

“Pays or agrees to pay money or other valuable consideration to any person for his services in canvassing for or otherwise procuring the signatures of voters to a petition for the designation of a candidate or candidates for party nomination or for election to a party position to be voted for at a primary election, or to a petition for opportunity to ballot at a primary election, or to an independent nominating petition for public office, is guilty of a misdemeanor.”

Although Scalera emphatically denies any knowledge of people being paid to collect signatures, affidavits have been presented to the board of elections stating that “someone” paid someone to collect signatures. That “someone” needs to be penalized, and not with just a slap on the wrist.

The mayor in the same article states he “will not lose any sleep” if he loses the Bottom Line Party’s nomination. Well the Mayor may not lose any sleep—but once again the taxpayers will lose, for it is taxpayer dollars that will now have to pay for the judicial process in deciding who will be the winner in Scalera’s “little game of revenge.”

And what of the logo of the Bottom Line Party? Scalera is quoted in Metroland as stating:

“The house seems to be more important to Linda because her girlfriend drew it. Quite frankly, anybody in elementary grade could’ve drawn it. It was special to them, and it don’t mean anything to me.”

Coming from Scalera, this statement does not surprise me, for what does a “house” represent?

In this particular instance the logo depicts a home, not a house. For most of us, a home represents warmth, security, love, concern. A home is part of a community. Judging from Scalera’s actions over the past few weeks, it is easy to see how he misunderstood what that “home” represents.

(On another note—any elementary-grade student could have put together a proper sentence rather than, “It don’t mean anything to me.”)

I am not a resident of Hudson, so one must wonder why would I even bother to take the time to write this letter to the editor. Two reasons:

1. Because Scalera’s actions and attitude, (“It was meant to be devious” was a quote by Scalera from the Metroland article on his reason behind his actions) are a slap in the face to every American that believes that they can have and do have a choice, a voice, and a vote that could make a difference. Americans expect, and rightly so, that our elected officials be truthful and follow the rules.

2. Linda Mussmann is my friend, and in my humble opinion you will not find a better person to help the people of Hudson run their city. (That’s right, Linda Mussmann believes that the people of Hudson should be involved in running their city.)

I end this letter with one thought—if this is the sort of action that Scalera takes against a political rival, who in his own words has stated “is no threat” to his re-election as mayor, then what sort of “devious” plot would he be willing to implement against a council member or other city member that disagreed with him on an issue? (The name Jayme LaHut comes to mind.) Now that, people, is a scary thought!

M. Sanchez

Metroland welcomes typed, double-spaced letters (computer printouts OK), addressed to the editor. Or you may e-mail them to: Metroland reserves the right to edit letters for length; 300 words is the preferred maximum. You must include your name, address and day and evening telephone numbers. We will not publish letters that cannot be verified, nor those that are illegible, irresponsible or factually inaccurate.

Send to:
Letters, Metroland, 4 Central Ave.,
4th Floor, Albany, NY 12210
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