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The Terrible-Tempered Mr. Brennan

November 19, 2006

Download this video clip of “The Terrible-Tempered Mr. Brennan” to your video iPod (how to guide).


Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Well, Rick.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “Hear me out. Because its not that—”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “If Ann can get the number, why can’t the treasurer Rick?

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “Because you really need to take a look at the entire bill and its not that clear cut what the expenses—”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Excuse me. Mr. Herbek, if a Trustee can come up with these numbers, why can’t the treasurer? This makes no sense what you’re saying sir.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “Well, if you’d give me a chance, I’ll explain it. Can I have a chance to explain it? You need to take a look at, you know, the billing hours and its not that crystal clear what charges are related to what types of legal services are being provided. Its very easy to look at the monthly bill and give you a total. Its not that clear to go back six months and say x-number of hours were related to negotiations. Its not that easy.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Well, Ann seems to have those numbers available every month.

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “Well you could have those numbers available too.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Well, I’m asking the treasurer Rick. That’s his job. I’m not the treasurer.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “But what I’m saying, what I’m saying is—”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “I’m asking the village staff to do that sir.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “What I’m saying is that its not that clear. It can’t be done—”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Well let’s try to bring it in to focus as the treasurer, I would want those numbers available. Let’s try to bring that into focus. Can you do that Abe?”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “What he can do—”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Hey, excuse me Rick. I’m asking Abe. Abe can you do that?”

Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt: “Okay. Gentelman, gentle, gent— [inaudible].”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “I’m sorry. I have the ah, ah the opportunity to answer.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “I’m asking Abe, Rick.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “Well, I’m the village manager here Trustee Brennan. And I’m what I’m saying to you is that its not that clear cut. We can provide you with copies of the bills. But its not that easy to take the bills and say x-number of hours were related to negotiations. Its not.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “Well you know what? I appreciate your concerns but I think we should just spend a little extra time and find out what those numbers are and we’ll see how ease ‘em it is.”

Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt: [Inaudible]

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “I’ll tell you what? We’ll provide you with copies of the bills.”

Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt: “The next worksession we’ll pull out the next, the last, if we can have the—.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “I would like the report from the treasurer on what those costs are dating back on when we started negotiations to this point and moving forward.”

Village Manager Rick Herbek: “He can provide you with copies of the bills. But, if you are asking him to analyze the components of those bills, I don’t think that’s fair.”

Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt: “Okay, the we can solve this. When the attorneys send in their bills, they can specify in their bill what the ah, the ah, portions of the bill are towards. And that way its on the bill so we can—.”

Trustee Thomas Brennan: “And can’t we retro back and ask the attorneys what portion of that bill was for negotiations? It seems pretty simple Rick. You’re making a mountain out of a molehill. What part of that for for those costs were part of the negotiations? I’d like to know as a Trustee of the village just what those numbers are. And, I think I have a right to ask for them.”

On November 19, 2006 4:31 PM, weewill said:

Trustee Brennan appears to have begun his campaign for re-election early. Typically political grand standing and politicking doesn’t begin until sometime toward the middle of January.

I like Tom; he’s usually a nice guy, but his public criticism of the Village Manager and Treasurer at a televised Village Board meeting was out of line. Such an exchange belonged in either the Manager or Treasurer’s private office. It served no purpose from the dais except to embarrass and denigrate hard working employees. It was a lame attempt to puff himself up at the expense of others. I would remind Trustee Brennan, the Village Manager and Treasurer work for the residents of Croton. They are not subordinate to him.

Just as Trustee Gallelli does, all Trustees are responsbible for analyzing the many in-depth reports prepared by the two major executives of village government. It’s a responsibility of the job. If one is unable to understand the information supplied, I’m certain either the manager, treasurer (or Trustee Gallelli) will be glad to explain them.

Village Board Meetings are to conduct village business. They are not to be used to puff up individual re-election campaigns. Tom’s transparent attempt to make himself look important and “in charge” was unsuccessful. It made him look inexperienced and pompous.

Not a nice picture!


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