Monday, January 29, 2007

Special Election--Nite Time Update

How could Newsday possibly combine the Comptroller Selection Chaos and the 17th SD Special Election Craziness into one story??? Well they have with O'Connell, Weitzman Feud Over Audit ...........Maureen has been stalling her response to this audit for months.....with all kind of nonsense excuses.....and of course now the audit is political.......because she is going to look bad........ya think she is sweating this one out??? andy

"With a week left before the special election, Republican candidate Maureen O’Connell is feuding with Nassau Comptroller Howard Weitzman over the possible release of an audit that allegedly shines a negative light on O’Connell’s leadership at the county clerk’s office.
After many stops and starts over the past year, Weitzman, a Democrat who is vying to become the state comptroller, completed the audit on Jan. 12th. Following the usual protocol, Weitzman went to O’Connell for a response, but the clerk said her office would be unable to comment because one of her employees is on family leave through next month.
During an interview Friday O’Connell said Weitzman, who is supporting her opponent, Nassau Legis. Craig Johnson (D-Port Washington), is motivated by partisanship. She also noted that he was lobbying state lawmakers to back his bid for state comptroller.
“He’ll say and do anything to advance his career,” O’Connell said. “The release of … any comment from Howard is extremely political.”
The contents of the audit are unclear but sources familiar with it say it criticizes some of O’Connell’s management abilities.
Weitzman is one of three candidates for state comptroller that a three-person panel of former comptrollers forwarded to the state Legislature last week. Given the spotlight on him, sources say Weitzman has been even more sensitive to the possibility that the audit’s release could be perceived as a partisan shot at O’Connell.
Sources familiar with the audit said O’Connell has delayed the report for months by claiming that staffers in the clerk’s office were not available. But O’Connell said Weitzman’s requests to question members of her team would have shut down the office for periods.
O’Connell also touted her accomplishments in the office since she took over in January 2006. “I’ve turned an office around in 12 months that had accumulated a 15 year backlog,” she said. “We’ve brought the office into the 21st century and my staff has done a superb job.”
Allen Morrison, Weitzman’s spokesman, would not say whether Weitzman would release the audit without a response from O’Connell. “We gave a copy of the report to the clerk’s office to give them an opportunity to review the findings in keeping with our standard practice,” Morrison said."

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