Saturday, December 26, 2009

JEFFERSON COUNTY MAYOR CONVICTED ON CORRUPTION AND FRAUD CHARGES OVER MULTI BILLION DOLLAR SEWER DEBT

You may recall a story I did over a year ago in July of 2008 about Jefferson County (Birmingham), Alabama and the comparison to our situation with MSD. You can read about it here: Louisville News and Politics: EPA Consent decree: Bankruptcy near for Jefferson County.

Over a year ago I brought attention to the serious nature of what MSD was doing to us with the enormous debt overhead and the EPA consent decree they entered into. I say THEY entered into it because we were never asked either way. We are forced to pay the MSD bill and no one ever asked any of us if we wanted to enter into a consent decree that we are forced to finance now.

The MSD debt in 2008 was approximately $2.8 Billion and expected to grow to over $4 Billion thanks to the EPA consent decree. With rate increases above 30% with literally no oversight whatsoever this became an immediate issue I got involved in since it seemed no one else was.

While Bud Shardein was bragging about how this consent decree plan was really saving us money, and touting how great it was for us all, our sister City and near identical twin Jefferson County, Alabama was and is on the brink of having the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

Jefferson County (Birmingham), Alabama is essentially a near identical twin to Louisville in that they have the same approximate number of people and the same issues we in Louisville face in regards to MSD and sewage problems.

MSD's own Bud Shardein has often cited Birmingham as one example of who we are following. And that is the problem.

We continue to follow other's lead instead of being the leader ourselves in every aspect of Louisville decision makers.

Think about all the messes we in Louisville have had to put up with. Quite frankly all of this leads directly to Abramson. Every appointee in literally every area of our lives he has put in place have turned up to be inept, incompetent, corrupt, I mean the list goes on and on.

Based on the evidence from Shardein's own words, the track record of Abramson appointees from Housing Director Kimberly Bunton to Metro Animal Services Director Gilles Melloche, and everything in between, we have been led down a path to near non existence by a one man mafioso named Jerry Abramson.

Should Bud Shardein stand alone in this fiasco? You be the judge. But remember not one finger in this town gets moved without Jerry pointing what direction it should move to. This story from Birmingham is a whopper.

Runoff set in Birmingham, Alabama, mayor race Reuters.

To summarize:

The election was triggered by the conviction in October of former mayor Larry Langford on corruption and fraud charges linked to a multibillion-dollar debt in Jefferson County, of which Birmingham stands at the center. The county is struggling to avoid what would be the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.........

Charges against Langford relate to his tenure as president of Jefferson County's commission earlier this decade when the county ran up huge debts as it refinanced a plan to upgrade its sewer system.

Many people have been calling for a complete accounting of MSD books and an audit by State Auditor Crit LuAllen. The seriousness of our own disaster looming can no longer be ignored in many eyes including mine.

If Jefferson County Alabama is the example we are following, and Bud Shardein has even used them as an example publicly, does it stand to wonder why so many questions need to be asked and answered?

Is this what they mean by Possibility City? Do we now advertise Louisville by saying there is a possibility that we are in serious danger of bankruptcy like our sister City Birmingham, Alabama? I don't think that is an ad campaign we can sell. Nor is this an area we can afford to ignore any longer without serious oversight.

In the coming weeks I will be releasing more detailed info on MSD's accounting practices,expenditures, and who is pocketing the money. Could it be Abramson and cronies?

Stay tuned to find out there is much more to follow.................

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Ed Springston

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