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July 31, 2012

The Brushback of C.Lorrey

by at 7:24 am.

Back in June,

It was interesting to see C.Lorrey pop his head up, like he did. In less than one news cycle he picked the LPD’s OT budget’s pocket (I support that cut, btw) and came up with the scoop on the parking whistleblower. This makes me nervous, but I’m the nervous type. Ever the affable guy, Lorrey may not be able to shuck and grin his way through such political mayhem. The long knives are being palmed, hidden from view. This is not a good time to be “Johnny on the spot.” Anyone who has ever seen Goodfellas knows, it is your friends that come for you. They come with smiles.

With just a few months under his belt, the freshman Councilor boldly stepped up, implementing campaign promises and pushing through some of the rhetorical fodder glomming up the dialogue in the Council Chamber. Lorrey pressed hard on several issues, including the facilities at the High School, the squabble over the soccer field sewer pipe and, more recently, the use of “other” city authorities to squelch the unruliness downtown.

For this, the Blog of Record has thrown a fastball, high and inside.

CITY COUNCILOR Marty Lorrey’s comments at meetings are often unpredictable, but Tuesday night he raised other councilors’ eyebrows with his statements on two major issues percolating in the city: the parking-kiosk theft and the city’s approach to violence in the downtown.

While most councilors have spent time criticizing Central Parking System over the theft of $37,000 in parking revenue and saying the management company’s contract should not be renewed, Lorrey said Tuesday one of his concerns is trying to help Central Parking employees keep their jobs if another company secures the contract.

Lorrey said the city should look into putting a provision in a contract with a new vendor that employees currently working in the city for Central Parking be hired.

“Many of these people live in the city, and I would like to see them have a shot at the jobs and to maintain their current employment,” Lorrey said.

Essentially, Lorrey was lobbying for a new private company to hire private employees if Central Parking’s contract is not renewed. Last we checked, that is out of a councilor’s jurisdiction.

Um … Lorrey is looking out for the little guy, here. Oh, my!

In government contracting, especially at the federal level, it is very common for contracts delivered locally to be run by a company from far away. The current parking contractor is not from Lowell or even Massachusetts. What Lorrey knows is that, should the contract change hands, it is normal for the new company to retain most, if not all of the workers. Most changes would occur at the management level. Except, now, this contract is under a cloud. Thus, good workers, who have done NOTHING wrong, may lose their bread and butter because a few loudmouths want to instigate a witch hunt.

Marty Lorrey is trying to protect real people from the collateral damage caused by dizzied nitwits proposing kneejerk solutions to an imagined boogeyman.

And for that, The Sun throws chin music.

7 Responses to “The Brushback of C.Lorrey”

  1. joe from Lowell Says:

    I don’t know if it’s right to attribute this to personal animus towards Lorrey.

    If there is one principle the Lowell Sun stands for these days, it is the belief that the government should never, ever do anything that might tie the hands of corporate management and ownership on behalf of the public.

  2. Mr. Lynne Says:

    “that is out of a councilor’s jurisdiction.”

    You could debate weather it’s wise or not, but provisions of a contract with the city are exactly within a councilor’s jurisdiction.

    Rephrase the question - if its not in the councilor’s jurisdiction, then who’s? If you say ‘nobody’ what you’re implying is that the idea is illegal. If so, fine - someone should show us exactly why and how it’s illegal. If it isn’t illegal it certain IS in someone’s jurisdiction. If not the council’s, who’s?

  3. JC Says:

    Not long ago, a city official apparently used his influence to have a particular person hired by the city’s private parking contractor. That hire turned out to be a thief. The city official was then unwilling or unable to discharge his sworn duty to protect the city. Are there other parking vendor employees hired at the behest of city or council officials? Do we care? Should we care? Is it proper for anyone to use his official position to influence the hiring by a private company doing business with the city? The chips will fall wherever they fall in terms of whether a new parking contractor is put into place. But new vendor or old, why should the city interfere with that company’s hiring and vetting process? I’d rather have a vendor who is free to hire whoever they want as long as they provide reliable, efficient, trustworthy services to the city. Why the desire to close our eyes and pretend that nothing has happened? Have we learned nothing?

  4. Joe S. Says:

    I like the idea of hiring local, but I think I come down on the side of JC on this one. And it may be premature to conclude that Central Parking is out of the picture for the next contract.

  5. Jack Says:

    I wouldn’t suggest the hiring prerogative be stripped away. I do think the current employees should get a preference. It would seem like the heads up play by any “new” contractor. The folks currently on staff know the ropes. Why start from scratch?

    Hopefully, C.Lorrey’s words will shush the naysayers that are stoking a witch hunt?

  6. Mr. Lynne Says:

    I’m not convinced on the wisdom of the idea (yet) but my bone to pick is that the Sun seemed to be making a legal declaration, not a judgment of opinion on wisdom. (If I’m wrong, what is meant then by ‘jurisdiction’?)

    Just to recall, what exactly was the company’s error here? Obviously they had a thief, but did the company tarry in dealing with it? Did they not fully compensate the city?

  7. C R Krieger Says:

    I agree with Joe S, who seconded JC’s comments.  And Mr Lynne points out that Central Parking had made up the theft; which was committed by someone a City Employee recommended to them.  And, I agree that a City Employee should not be recommending who to hire.  That makes it look too much like a personal services contract, which is not good.

    On another note, have I whined recently about a lack of “Print Preview” for comments?  On the other hand, the availability of “BLOCKQUOTE” is good.

    Regards  —  Cliff

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