Public Watchdog.org

Time For A Transparent “Taste”

07.07.08

Like many Park Ridge residents, we look forward to the “Taste of Park Ridge” each summer.  Since its inception several years ago, it has added a welcome festive air to our community every summer. 

But recently a reader expressed surprise to have learned that “the Taste” is being run by a private not-for-profit corporation: Taste of Park Ridge NFP, which (according to the Illinois Secretary of State) was incorporated June 22, 2005. 

Interestingly enough, we could find no mention of any corporate status on the Taste’s website (www.tasteofparkridge.com), although such a status is suggested by the website’s listing of officers and directors [pdf]: Dave Iglow, president; Bob Dudycz, vice-president; Jim Bruno, treasurer; Albert Galus, secretary; and directors Dean Patras, Sandy Svizzero and Barb Tyksisnki. 

Also identified on the Taste’s website is a Taste “committee” [pdf], of which Dudycz is “chairman” and which includes corporate officers/directors Iglow, Bruno, Galus, Patras, Svizzero and Tyksinski, along with Carol Brown of the Park Ridge Police Dept., Mayor Howard Frimark, M. David Johnson of BDS Software, Park Ridge Economic Development Director Kim Uhlig, and John Warnimont of Activision Electric. 

One question raised by these corporate and committee structures that isn’t answered on the Taste website is a fundamental one: “Why was a private corporation formed to run an event that began (to the best of our recollection and research) as a venture run by the Chamber of Commerce with the City’s assistance?” 

That a private corporation would be formed to run an event like this is even more curious given that – as reported in last week’s Park Ridge Journal – Taste vice-president and committee chairman Bob Dudycz noted that: “Virtually all of the labor to run this event is by volunteers and community organizations,” such as the Park Ridge Police Department, the Park Ridge Fire Department, the Park Ridge Public Works Department, the City of Park Ridge Administrative Staff, the Park Ridge Library, the Park Ridge Park District, the Park Ridge Youth Campus, the Rotary Club, Kiwanis, and the Knights of Columbus. 

Another Dudycz comment reported in the Journal that got our attention is: “In past years, the Taste of Park Ridge board has contributed funds for college scholarships, and donated to local events and other worthy causes.”  Despite scouring the Taste website and Googling the Taste and the Taste corporation in various ways, we could find nothing about the identity of those scholarship recipients, the amounts awarded, the application process, the qualifications required for consideration, or exactly who makes the award decisions.  The same goes for the “local events” and the “other worthy causes” who allegedly benefitted from the Taste corporation’s largess.

While we are aware of no evidence that anything untoward is going on with the Taste, we can’t help but wonder why the people who appear to be in charge of it have kept so much of what they are doing secret – especially when so much of what they are doing is admittedly being accomplished primarily through the “volunteerism” of employees of the taxpayer-financed City and Park District governments, as well as of the taxpayers themselves.  The Taste corporation has its own website, so there is no excuse for not making all of this information readily available to the people who make the Taste a success year after year. 

We’ve repeatedly criticized the City and the other local governmental bodies for fostering the “Culture of Secrecy” with their closed session meetings, confidential memos and their spin-meisters masquerading as “public information officers.”  We think the same criticism should apply to the “Culture of Secrecy” being practiced by the Taste corporation, which is effectively acting as a quasi-public entity that derives the vast majority of its revenues and goodwill from its monopoly of what may be our largest civic event.

If there’s nothing to hide, people, then why all the secrecy? Since you already toot your own horn (deservedly so) in connection with the Taste event itself, why not tell the community the details about all these other things that you claim to do?

How about starting with letting all those Park Ridge families who help enrich the Taste corporation’s coffers each summer know exactly how their students can go about getting one of those scholarships? 

Update 7/10/08:

We regret that we failed to discover what appears to be the single reference to “Taste of Park Ridge NFP” – the corporation that took over the Taste event in 2005 – as easily as some of the Taste’s (corporation’s) apologists who finally directed us there yesterday. 

We made the silly mistake of expecting to find the Taste (corporation) identified on the “Home” page of the Taste (event) website when, instead, we should have realized that we needed to go to the “Canopies on Courtland” tab, then select the “contract” link, then read through the 19 references to “Taste of Park Ridge” or “Taste of Park Ridge Committee” in the “Application and Sponsorship Contract” [pdf] until we finally got to that single reference to “Taste of Park Ridge NFP” in the very last paragraph, under the “Indemnification” heading.  We can’t imagine why we didn’t think of looking there first! 

Which actually illustrates our point about the “Culture of Secrecy.”  If the average citizen needs even that much luck and/or effort to find such basic information about exactly who/what runs our community’s most prominent annual event, then somebody’s trying to hide it – just as the Taste (corporation or event) chose not to advertise its $1,000 contribution to Taste (corporation) vice-president and Taste (event) chairman Bob Dudyzc’s campaign fund, either.  Wonder why?

But we sure hope that Joe Baldi and those other Taste (corporation) apologists help us out by providing the answers to our other questions posed in yesterday’s “Time For A Transparent Taste – Part 2” – or at least tell us in which other obscure places on the Taste website we might find them. 

63 comments so far

Thank you PublicWatchdog. I had no clue about any of the claims about donations and scholarships being made by the Taste board. That is all very wonderful and I would hope the Taste board would begin to advertise those benefits to the community more.

I just wanted to take a moment to thank the volunteers on the Taste of Park Ridge officers/directors/committee members.

I can see by the company and business listings next to your names that you all have full time jobs that require your attention. I am sure that many of you face the same family time committments that I do.

Your willingness to commit your time and expertise is worthy of thanks from the entire community. I am relatively new to PR – this year will be the third “Taste” that I attend. If it is anything like the others, I look forward to a professionally run festival and a very good time – all as a result of your hard work (and many others).

While I am all for full disclosure, I see no intended secrecy here.

I feel like, for me, it is more appropriate to just say thank you.

These are fair questions that should be answered.

There is a decent amount of money changing hands and as citizens of this town, we should know where the money is ending up. Afterall, it is our street that is closed, our Park District, Fire Department, Police Department, and Public Works “volunteering” their time and effort.

If people are making a profit from this, then so be it…we just should know who and how much.

Now I know I’m not the only one who was wondering about this…thanks WatchDog!

Hmmm….

Watchdog you raise a good point. The numbers don’t seem to add up. Let’s assume the vendors get their money from the food they sell. The police and public works services are provided by the city. Garbage pickup is provided by Arc. The beer tent manning, the ticket sales and other manpower items are handled by volunteers. Where does all the money go from beer sales, advertising and vendor booth rentals?

I suppose some goes to the entertainment, but it’s not like The Rolling Stones are playing. Who insures the event and what is the cost? Who handles the promotion and what is the cost? It is a fun experience, but the City of Park Ridge provides a substantial amount of taxpayer funded services to the event. If all related expenses are above board, fair market and to non-related parties than there is nothing to say but to have a great time. But if the “non for profit” status applies because all the profits are paid to “friends”, then we may have a breach of public trust.

As the line from the Broadway play The Producers notes “a producer could actually make more money with a flop than with a hit”.

in·nu·en·do

1. an indirect intimation about a person or thing, esp. of a disparaging or a derogatory nature.

le·git·i·mate

1. according to law; lawful: the property’s legitimate owner.

2. in accordance with established rules, principles, or standards.

TO: Anonymous on 07.07.08 12:31 pm.

We hope you got the number of that turnip truck you just fell off. The following are among the 86,300 entries on Google for the search “embezzle volunteer charities” – time to wake up and smell the coffee, or you can just keep telling yourself “it can’t happen here”:

From: The Galesburg (Ill.) Register-Mail
Feb 14, 2008

The Galesburg Youth Cal Ripken Baseball League generated some major hot stove league talk last week. But instead of putting the finishing touches on the upcoming season, league officials were left to explain how $22,000 was found missing from its bank account.

On Feb. 5, the former treasurer of the GYCRBL was arrested and charged with stealing more than $22,000 from the organization’s bank account.

* * *

Stealing funds from a community organization is nothing new. Even worse, youth sport embezzlement occurs on a pretty frequent basis all around the country.

And in nearly every case, the skimming of funds traces back to lax financial oversight and accountability by a volunteer board of directors.
____________________

From: THE COLUMBUS (Ohio) Dispatch
Monday, April 9, 2007

A Reynoldsburg woman has been sent to prison for four years for stealing $173,000 from the Down Syndrome Association of Central Ohio.

In January, Jacqueline Van Almsick, 44, of 1742 Pickering Dr. pleaded guilty to one count of theft. She was the nonprofit agency’s volunteer treasurer and controlled a savings account that contained money from fund-raisers and donations.
____________________

From: San Diego Union-Tribune
January 1, 2006

Early last month, an American Red Cross volunteer in Dallas was charged with stealing debit cards the charity was issuing to victims of Hurricane Katrina.

In August, a former children’s cancer foundation volunteer in Denver was accused of embezzling $12,000 from that nonprofit organization.

This summer in San Diego, two volunteers for the annual gay-pride festival were forced to quit after being identified as registered sex offenders. And before recent reforms at the San Diego Food Bank, volunteers regularly took home bags of donations for their own use.

Those cases and others from across the country are drawing new attention to a growing problem confronting the nation’s charities: vetting volunteers.
____________________

From: The New York Times
March 29, 2008

The volunteer treasurer of the Madison County Humane Society in Indiana was charged this month with using $65,000 of the charity’s money to buy jewelry and makeup. In San Francisco, the chief financial officer of the Music Concourse Community Partnership was fired after he was accused of taking $3.6 million of the organization’s money to play the stock market.

Nonprofit leaders tend to shrug off such cases as evidence of “just a few bad apples.” But a new report, trying to identify the scope of such thefts for the first time, suggests otherwise.

The report, by four professors who specialize in nonprofit accounting, found that the typical theft from a charity was committed by a female employee with no criminal record who earned less than $50,000 a year and had worked for the nonprofit at least three years. The amount she stole was less than $40,000.

The most costly cases, the study found, involved male executives earning $100,000 to $149,000 a year. The thieves in such cases had typically been with the organization the longest.

Does Frimark sell Taste its dram shop or other insurance? Do any of the officers or directors receive compensation for their “volunteer” services? How come Taste of Park Ridge NFP is not listed on GuideStar? Sounds kinky to me.

Fred–I was wondering the same thing about GuideStar…I spent a while looking for them, and there was no record of their NFP.

Wonder why.

You have got to be kidding me. Until each of you would like to step up and do some real work on community projects and activities, keep your slander, libel, and defamation of character to yourself. Feel free to find a taste organizer this year and ask to serve on one of the many committees they must have. I am sure a year of intense volunteer work will let you see the light.

Park Ridge is a great town because of those who sacrifice for it. No town is perfect, but ours is as close as you can get. And no, I am not on any taste committee; however, I have served on many local volunteer committees. Nothing sucks the life out of volunteers like false, unfounded conjecture and negative rumors.

As far as the scholarships go….well I was curious as well…so I did a little digging and if you do the same you will find in the PR Herald/advocate exactly who got the scholarships last year and how they were awarded. Do your homework before ruining something great!

Also, perhaps the website does not have every ounce of transparency you would like because it too is created by VOLUNTEERS! I doubt they have time to sit around thinking of every little criticism that will come their way by people with nothing to add to our community but negativism. The point of a website is to attract business and customers, not to reveal the internal workings of a group of hard working, dedicated citizens. Again, if you really want to know, volunteer. Put some real elbow grease into a job other than typing unfounded, inflammatory crap.

Until you decide to help out in some positive way – and raising conjecture is not a positive activity until you actually have proof of the things you’re accusing others of doing – do the town and favor and stay home this year. Seeing as you don’t approve of the way it is run, do not attend; do not enjoy the food, do not enjoy the friendship, do not enjoy the music; and for every sake, do not continue your current behavior.

I know I will be lambasted for supporting the so called “Culture of Secrecy” each of you seem to believe exists. So be it. The conspiracy theorists among you will have a field day with this. Have fun with it, but stay home.

Anonymous on 07.08.08 9:59 am,

Why don’t you share the information you found in the Herald-Advocate?

See you at the Taste!

Hold the phone! The police, fire and PW dept employees don’t “volunteer” their time – they are paid according to their union contracts, which usually means time and a half, on the City payroll. Don’t know if it’s charged back to the fest, but I do know these employees don’t do anything for free!

I did my research on the scholarships in just few minutes..in fact I also found out why the Chamber decided, years ago, not to run the taste. I did my homework, but you people think your ENTITLED. You’re not. The information is all there. Stop being so lazy and go search the back issues of the PR papers. No wonder none of you volunteer, you’re lazy.

Anonymous on 07.08.08 10:55 am:

After reading your post I did my own Google searches (using terms like “Taste of Park Ridge” and variants, “scholarship,” etc.) and found nothing about any Taste scholarships, who won them, how much they were for, etc.  That fact, combined with your failure to provide any links to all that information you say you found so easily, leads me to believe you’re lying.

But what convinces me that you’re lying is that the Taste’s own website doesn’t contain that information. If self-promoters like Dudycz, Frimark, etc. aren’t posting that information on the Taste’s website, I’m betting that it doesn’t exist – or if it does, it’s being kept secret because the money’s going to some insider’s kid, like those Illinois State legislator scholarships do.

I also discovered that I can’t find the Taste’s financial reports anywhere, not on GuideStar or anywhere else (they should be on the Taste’s website, too). That and the scholarship thing, by themselves, are already way too much secrecy for me.   

In fact, the more I look into this, the more questionable the Taste corporation and its operators start looking.  And by the way, did you know that the Ill. Sec of State’s corporation website is reporting that Taste of Park Ridge NFP is currently NOT in “good standing”?  Wonder what that’s all about?

hoover, I checked the sec’y of state website and realized that the taste of park ridge nfp was formed just a few weeks after mayor frimark took office. how curious.

Riddle me this, Batman: Why would a semi-secret, not for profit (supposedly) corporation that runs an annual community festival where they take in huge amounts of CASH not report revenues, expenses or profits?

Anonymous on 07.08.08 10:55 am ….

Don’t be so quick to assume that no one posting here is not involved in this Community. I know you are sadly mistaken there.

And it is interesting to me to see you have the information but are unwilling to share.

One phone call to PR public library reference desk.

Inquiry–Taste scholarships in 2007.

Answer– Thursday, March 22, 2007 PR Herald/Advocate Page 28 under the heading scholarships.

Go look it up folks–It is right there.

One phone call to PR Public Library reference desk.

Inquiry–Taste of PR scholarships in 2007

Answer–Park Ridge Hearld Advocate: March 22, 2007– Thursday, Page 28 under the heading scholarships.

Really people–It is right there.

I don’t see any secrecy on behalf of Taste organizers. I see volunteers doing their best to make a nice event for the community.

If there is no secrecy than why not a full accounting of the revenue / expenses for the event?

Cannot be found through GOOGLE or via the Advocate’s website. Hmmmm…the Taste has its own website but if you want to find out about its scholarship program you have to go to the Park Ridge Library and read through the old newspapers (or have a librarian do it for you)?

But if that’s what you’ve already done, what’s the big secret? Why not tell us who the winner was, how much he/she won, who was on the selection committee, what are the criteria for applying, etc.?

Even though there are lawyers and former alderman involved in the group (CRG) that supposedly runs this site, the collective memory and legal analysis by this blog is stunningly absent.

The Taste of Park Ridge incorporated in 2005, partly at my suggestion, although I had nothing to do with setting up the organization. At that time, the Chamber was not willingly to do the Taste and some new organization was needed to be the recepient of City funding that had been provided the year before and was going to be continued again, with conditions imposed by the council at that time. Mark Anderson and Don Crampton might recall that we got an audit from the organization that had run the Taste the year before and it looked like the next year they would be able to pay back the city and generate enough money to continue without direct City subsidies.

The purpose of incorporating is to protect the organizers from catastrophic liability. If an unincorporated group runs an event, all of the participants in that group can be personally liable if anything happens and is not covered by insurance. A not for profit corporation is not a charity. Instead, it is a corporation but without shareholders and no dividends can be paid to members of the Corporation. It is usually run for a charitable, educational or other quasi public purpose (there is a list of 31 catagories of purposes in the Illinois General Not for Profit Act, which is available on the Secretary of State’s web site), and on its dissolution, any assets have to given to another similar NFP organization.

The NFP files tax returns, but, as I said, it is not a charity eligible for tax deductible contributions, so the reporting is not as extensive and that is why it does not show up on sites that track charities. I don’t believe a General Not for Profit corporation’s reports are records available to the public. Taste of Park Ridge is not in good standing, probably because it failed to file it’s most recent annual report. Someone scold Dave Igloo.

That does not mean that money taken in could not be used to pay salaries, expenses or, as noted, scholarships. If organizers are sloppy, it could be used for purposes not permitted in the Not for Profit Act. But that begs the question, too. The way it is set up now, the City does not provide a direct subsidy to the Taste. It’s operations are paid for from ticket sales and it provides entertainment for the citizens. It does not get any more or less City involvement than the South Park Merchants carnival or the Circus put on the the District 64 ELF Foundation. So why the parnoia? They aren’t using any money that isn’t earned by them by selling goods or services. Sometimes this blog is just looking for an excuse to trash some organization, especially one connected to the City or especially Mayor Frimark. I admit he is a tasty target, but I think this time your are off the mark.

So now I will sit back and wait for the ritual vilification usually meted out to those who dissent from the PubDog party line. Have a nice day. At least I sign my posts.

***moved***

sorry…..above posted in wrong place!

Here is the portion of the Advocate article about the Taste scholarships. I found it in the archive and had to pay $2.50, but it is worth it to stop some of the whining and accusations by some uninformed and unmotivated posters persist in.

SCHOLARSHIPS

The Taste of Park Ridge’s Board of Directors is sponsoring the first annual Park Ridge “A Taste of My Hometown” essay contest. This contest is open to all students enrolled at either Maine South High School or Maine East High School.

There will be a winner selected from each school, who will each receive a $1,000 scholarship.

In 500 words or less, essay participants are asked to describe what makes Park Ridge a community to be celebrated and to provide a “taste” of hometown Park Ridge.

All entries must be written in Microsoft Word and submitted electronically to the email address TOPRessay@tasteofparkridge.com. Submitted essays must have the subject line of the email read: TOPRessay (entrant’s name). The essay document must include the entrant’s name, phone, home address and student ID number in the top right corner of each page. Line spacing should be set at 1.5 and font must be 12 point.

The essay must adhere to the aforementioned requirements. Additionally, the essay will illustrate a command of strong writing skills, cohesion in development of ideas, and a concentrated focus on the central idea.

All submissions must be emailed by midnight on April 30, in order to be eligible. The winner will be announced before the July 12-14 Taste of Park Ridge event. Check the website for updates and winner announcements. Presentations will be made during opening festivities and during school award ceremonies.

The Essay Screening committee includes: David Iglow, president, Taste of Park Ridge Board of Directors, Albert Galus, secretary, Taste of Park Ridge Board of Directors, David Barker, principal, Maine East High School, David Claypool, principal, Maine South School, and a English Department faculty member from each school. The final decision will be made by the full Taste of Park Ridge board of directors.

For general information on the event, visit http://www.tasteofparkridge.com or call (847) 297-2510, Ext. 237.

One comment to Mr Baldi. As I have said here before, the questions brought up in this blog and PRU are mostly just questions and not in my mind vicious accusations. There seems to be a very defensive mindset on the part of some responders that volunteers shouldn’t be questioned, ever. Bullshit. The postings in the Park Ridge blogs raise questions that should be asked in the public arena. There are a lot of unasked and unanswered questions out there that people should ask and thinking people should discuss. Cui bono? Who beneifits? Don’t think for a minute that people are doing something for nothing. Some responders may be cynical; that’s our prerogative. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Oh, and Mr Baldi, thanks for identifying yourself, if that is your real name.

Baldi,

You’re an attorney, specifically a bankruptcy attorney, correct?

What I find “stunningly absent” from your post, besides a reasonable command of grammar and spelling one might expect an attorney to possess, is knowledge of what the Feds and the State require be filed by an NFP.

More will be provided on that when there is more time in the nice day I am having.

Enjoy your day.

Right on cue, Jeannie. At least you also sign your posts. And now you can enlighten us all as to the reporting requirements for a general not for profit corporation in the state of Illinois.

Cynic:

I understand what you are saying and maybe I am too “sensative” I agree with you that there is nothing wrong with asking questions. I do not know this for a fact but I would guess that if you called the appropriate “Taste” Volunteer with the questions that started this thread they would probably have been happy to answer them. Maybe I am wrong. Did anyone who posts here contact a taste board member and ask for information?

I first found the Public Watchdog and other PR blogs as a result of the PADS issue and they are now a part of my daily reading. I think they provide an invaluable service and I have learned a great deal. It is just that somethings these things seem to take on a life of there own. Maybe the mayor has a deal on the insurance….. why can’t we find the scholarhsip (apparently someone now found it)…..why no financial data?

It might be that they did not know. It might be that, as an earlier poster mentioned the website is done by a volunteer. I have worked for publicly traded companies with huge IT departments that could not get all the necessary product data on the website. It could be that this is a group of volunteers that is working hard and doing the best they can but has missed some things. Or it could be some of the theories posted here.

So to those who are all frothed up about this (I am not) why not call Bob at the phone number listed on the site and ask your question? I have only lived here a few years and even I have seen some of these people around town. It seems like some of you here have been around awhile and probably know one or several of these people. Why not just walk up and ask? It is not much more of a time committment then writing your theories on the board.

If the answer you get is crap, then come back and tell us about it.

Dear Cynic

It is my real name. Only a cynic would question someone who choses to call himself Baldi. And if I couldn’t stand the heat I wouldn’t post. Which I have in the past and will in the future.

I find these blogs useful as well, but I do sense a libertian anti-establishment bias which at times asks questions and poses issues that are red herrings. Discussing them is not productive.

Clearly there are those who “volunteer” who are motivated by self interests and personal agendas that are detrimental to the public good. Our Mayor has been accused of that on occasion, sometime rightly so. Many of the volunteers and public servants are genuinely interested in providing a good place to live in Park Ridge, a goal that all who subscribe to this blog should share.

As to the Taste volunteers, most are businessmen who want to increase local shopping opportunities or otherwise draw people to the uptown area. In the past the event has broken even or lost money. Under the current group, it may be making money and hopefully that will allow them to continue and use the excess for other civic projects.

I disagree with Jeannie that they are required to file the detailed reports and statements that a charity is required to submit to the Attorney General. After looking at the Attorney General’s web site, it looks like this group would not qualify as a charity, but rather some other civic organization that is not soliciting charitable donations and therefore is not required to register. As such, you won’t get much information about them unless you ask one of the members. As someone suggested, maybe that’s what we should do.

Have a nice day.

Joe,

I tried calling but you had left. I dont’t have the time to look, but what is the big deal. Just look at the Illinois Attorney General’s website. I’m sure the 990 is available there because all NFP’s must file one.

Oops sorry Joe missed the last post. I’m not so sure the “not soliciting charitable donations” gets you there. They had more than $4000 in assets and the their financial transactions are not available elsewhere (like a political campaign who’s info would be at the Illinois State Board of Elections. I think they do have to file.

Baldi,

I see JR has informed you of the filing requirements.

Now we can get back to the questions about where does the money go? If Taste~NFP (501 c 3? 501 c 4?) has filed a form 990 or E-postcard (new!) the record s/b open to public inspection.

So the Park Ridge Taste, according to Dudycz has contributed funds for college scholarships, and donated to local events and other worthy causes.

I’m guessing that Dudycz doesn’t need or want a college scholarship and he doesn’t strike me as being a local event, so I guess that means he thinks of himself as a worthy cause? That must be why Park Ridge Taste gave Friends of Bob Dudycz $1000 last year, not that there’s anything wrong with popping your board chairman $1000 into his political warchest, is there?

It’s been awhile since I helped organize a festival (never again) and although ToPR is small potatoes (although I really enjoy this one) relative to other towns. The costs likely go something like this….

Entertainment – is usually the biggest cost. It looks like they use Onesti….I can assure you Ron Onesti does not work for free. Based upon the acts playing my estimate would be $35K – $40K. That’s without a stage….PR’s is not too elaborate so I’dd add another $5K.

Tents and equipment for their vendors, ticket sales, business expo etc. would run about $12-$15K.

Porto potties, inflatable rides and other assorted goodies for the kids $5K

Tickets and promo….you’re looking at another $7-10K.

Charitable contributions…..events like this are a forum for civic organizations i.e. rotary. KOC etc to raise money for the donations they make to local people. Beside the indirect contributions a fest makes there are some towns that do a good job of supporting other local orgs. directly. I know I was at a Friday night concert sponsored by ToPR last year….I’m guessing that set them back $2-$3K or more, the scholarships (btw to some prior posters – they made a big deal about presenting those kids the checks on stage lastyr) were $2K, usually an org like this contributes to other locals like CoC (or officers??) etc….my guess (only guessing on this one) would be $8-$10K when all is said and done.

Remember this is a year round operation…..operating expenses typically come in around 25% – 30% of event costs.

Let’s take a look at cash in…..

I don’t remember the exact number published last year (by the way…if this is a private corp. they are not compelled to publish anything) however, it was around $200K. They take 10% off the top………$20K

Beer Sales for a small operation like PR’s you’re likely looking at $7 – $10K per day however, this event only runs 21/2 days (somebody should tell them to operate on Sunday as well)….estimate $30K

Sponsors….this used to be a great revenue source, unfortunately the current environment is not particularly good for fund raising as any of you who work for charitable organizations can attest. This is a tough one to nail down but based on what I see on their website my estimate would be around $30 – $40K

There’s usually misc forms of income i.e. unused tickets (although I saw jars for some charity collecting unused tix last year) which are relatively small.

I’m not right on….but am confident that I’m pretty close…..I’ll leave the arithmetic to you.

Costs are fixed…..income is not….one bad year of weather can really put a dent in organization like this.

see you at the taste

anon: 11:24:

Now you have my attention. May I ask where you got the information on the $1000 contribution?

Anon on 07.09.08 6:59 am:

We are not sure where Anonymous 7/8/08 @ 11:24 PM got his/her info, but that information appears on the Illinois State Board of Elections Campaign Disclosure website (which can be found at: http://www.elections.state.il.us/CampaignDisclosure/welcome.aspx ). We found it by looking up “Contributions” and using the search word “Taste.”

Argh!!!!!! Looks like I have to have a serving of crow for breakfast!

I am the one who suggested that all these comments without a call to a taste board member are inappropriate. While I still think a call is in order, I cannot bleieve this!!!! It took less then a day for varifiable information to come to lite that pisses me off.

I will leave the discussion about NFP’s and whether this is legal to the lawyers of which it appears there are plenty who frequent this blog. Quite frankly, I am sure it happens all the time. I really don’t care if it legal or not.

The Taste of Park recieves sponsorship dollars and volunteer time from a variety of organizations and people in PR who, I am sure, have a variety of political affiliations. It would appear that after it is all said and done there is some money left over. We know that some of this money went for scholarships which I am glad about. But for a decision to be made that some of the money be contributed to a political fund of anyone in ANY PARTY is just wrong.

I am not trying to demean the hard work ALL menbers of the Board of Directors and Committees as well as many not listed on the site have done. As a privious poster stated, this is a year round job and involves alot of work. But it seems to me this is about trust.

I am the one who has lamented the fact thses things seem to take a life of their own on the blogs. The reason this happens all comes down to trust. When I hear a state of the union address, or read a statement from the governer, or a senator or congressmen it becomes a completely different animal if I start from the perspective of “what game are they playing”, or “who is making money off of this” or ” are they makeing this decision for them of for me”.

Some might look at this is and say it is no big deal. Knowone got rich. $1000 is not going to make or break anything. But it is little decisions like this that contunie to errode the peoples trust in government.

This is not my impression of why the Taste of Park Ridge was created. This is not how it was advertised. This is not how any excess funds should be used.

As an aside, crow tastes better with a dash of tobasco.

anon 6:24

although i might challenge a couple of your estimates i think you are on the mark over all based on my past experiences.

you are prob an outsider so i’ll clue you in….this site is like watching a group of six yr old children play soccer….the ball moves a few feet then a group of kids huddle around it kicking wildly.

i doubt that most posters to this site are truly concerned with the information you put together….it doesnt fit their agenda.

clearly you can see the “ball” is now a contribution made to one of the officers.

i suspect this site is frequented by many frustrated ex politicians and insiders who gleefully look for any oppty to bash the current mayor (sometimes justifiably) who is on the committee for this organization.

the primary concern of this site does not appear to be to inform the public but rather to make them believe they are important again.

the fact that despite some very serious issues currently facing PR, pub dog has chosen this event to focus on is laughable and erodes its legitimacy and relevance.

Here you go from the Illinois Disclosure site…

Taste of Park Ridge NPC
43 S. Prospect
Park Ridge, IL 60068 $1,000.00
9/10/2007 Individual Contribution
Friends for Bob Dudycz

… and WTF???

Dudycz is listed as the Vice President of the Board of Directors and the Chairman of the Committee Members. Guess it pay to know one (or be one) of the high ranking members of the Taste committee.

Gotta ask, is this legal? At a minimum it sure seems unethical.

8:51 am…”make people feel like they are important again?” Is there something wrong with that? The people have always been important, but some elected officials do not treat them that way. It should not take a website to rectfy that problem, but if it helps, then more power to it.

Anonymous on 07.09.08 8:51 am –

One contribution to one insider usually means that there are a lot more that have escaped attention, because that kind of bad habit is hard to break. Like those articles about “volunteer” fraud prove, it’s rampant. And most of them probably started by taking even less than $1,000.

ald dave,

you are correct the people are important, i meant to say the ex insiders are trying to make themselves feel important. a poor choice of words on my part thanks for the correction and your hard work (if you are who i think you are).

nonetheless this is, as best i see it from prior postings, a private entity performing public service. i am a businessman and the public is not “entitled” to any information about my business. it appears that the same may hold here too, although admittedly i’m not an expert on this.

it seems to me that the fact that i spend $50 or $100 at the pancake house next week doesn’t “entitle” me to see the financials of the owner.

if this is in fact a private entity all the oliver stone wannabes on this site may as well focus on public issues. that would appear to be more in line with the stated purpose of pub dog anyway.

if however, the purpose of this site is to villify public figures which some posters do not like or have a grudge against – let’s call a spade a spade. pub dog should not wrap itself in the flag and say it is my protector….i’m beginning to think that’s all b.s. it’s my turn to be cynical.

those who want to take shots at dudycz or frimark may very well be the true threats to the taste. as a prior poster mentioned, nothing sucks the life out of a volunteer organization like a few frustrated, miserable & misguided individuals who are typically the last to volunteer but first to criticize.

my family looks forward to the taste each year. i hope the conspiracy theorists don’t mess up a good thing for the rest of us.

Questions are a good thing.

They help us to learn.

So after someone told me about this topic, I decided to look at the Taste website. I clicked on anything that was clickable. I found- on a page about the canopy on courtland- information they provide about anyone wanting to sponsor. I noticed in their contract language that they state that there is a committee and a NFP. I read through the whole thing because someone said it wasn’t on there, but I have learned as Mr. Baldi pointed out, the information is available, even if you have to dig a bit. So I looked for myself and found it. So, I guess you could say factually that it is mentioned on the site.

I also noticed in the list of things someone could sponsor there is a high school support package at $2000. If I remember correctly, didn’t baldi’s message say the 2 scholarships were $1,000 each last year. Maybe they didn’t have anyone sponsor it this year. I did notice when I clicked on the page that said high school outreach that it said “coming soon” I did notice the sponsorships for other things like music groups and kids rides mentioned and those are listed as things going on, so again, I am led to the conclusion that there probably wasn’t a sponsor for it this year. As one previous poster mentioned, the challenging economy may have dampened sponsors.

I was prompted to spend about a half hour looking through the website because my family enjoys it and many of my out of town relatives love to join us for the taste. the past few years have been really nice.

It just seems to me that while questions are always good–Didn’t the initiator of the post think to ask one of the people listed on the Taste website before they even posted. I mean these people have their names and business and there is even a picture (another one of the clickable things). It would seem a reasonable thing to do. That way, the initial poster could have provided some answers for us.

Unless, finding out information was not the real purpose.

Since asking questions is good–I have one that gives me concern.

Why would someone raise this topic the immediate week of the event, when they had all year and a previous two or three years (according to Baldi it was founded in 2005) to ask these questions?

The old saying goes that when you point a finger there are more pointing back at you.

I am not pointing any fingers. I am raising my hand in question to ask–If I can go on the taste website and find this info by clicking on it, , if previous posters could get the info at the public library, if Baldi could get info for a simple $2.50 why didn’t you?

Questions are a good thing.

Who ever runs this site should crawl back under the rock from where they came.

With all the real issues out there, with all the real problems in the world, this is the best you can come up with?!….half truths, unfounded accusations, and a will to ruin something that everyone enjoys.

Seriously, just because you have freedom of speech does mean you have to exercise it. It’s like heroin; just because it’s on the table in front of you does not mean it’s a good idea to use it. But once you do, you just can’t stop – even when it destroys everything good.

My guess is that the four or five posters out there are the typical vocal minority who love to see the Public Will bent to their whim. They are frustrated because they are miserable in their own skin and feel left out. If you feel so marginalized, then step up and volunteer.

I went to the website too. Guess what? There is a place to click so that you can volunteer! Imagine that! It is so secret that you have to actually go to the website, find the right link, and click on it…..oh that’s far too secret for me!!!!!! How dare they keep so many secrets from us!!!!!

You people are ridiculous.

Touchy touchy. Feeling threatened in some way?

Hey 12:49…I’m with you. I love the Taste, and I hope this does not bring it down. I sense it will not. I disagree with some posters who think this site should not ask the questions. While the Taste does operate as a private entity, there sure is alot of City involvement. I believe that makes it fair game for public scrutiny, but I agree that scrutiny should be fair.

yeah I’m threatened….by a bunch of conspiracy theory nut jobs bent on ruining a perfectly good time.

Take a middle road, a little taste of moderation, and we can continue to have a good time each summer with our families and friends.

Keep up the false talk and we will all be at the fest in Des Plaines or Arlington Heights. Won’t that be convenient?

Thank you for clarifying your position on the issues; as long as something is convenient for you then you’re willing to remain ignorant, and resent anyone asking questions, particularly difficult questions.

Adding:  I would still like to hear from questions/GWB, a.k.a. Sybil, about why he or she went from pseudo-diplomacy and affected calm questioner to a ranting lunatic just outside of an hour’s time span.

Thanks for the Update, ‘Dog. The nimrods ripping on you about not finding the corporation on the website must be Tasters or their tools. Too bad tehy have to screw around with a good community event. But I’ll be there tonight buying a few beers and making my contribution to the Dudycz campaign fund.

Alderman Dave,

to your post on the last thread 7/09 @ 3:02

Addressed to you because you are probably one of the few who might be interested in facts presented by a Taste insider.

I sense you are wrong in your assessment. I was already re-evaluating my role at the Taste. Like anything else it takes a great deal of energy to do it right. I have young children and invest a great deal of time in organizations they are involved in. I fear the witch hunt this site has fostered will cause others to do the same.

Several folks have questioned the integrity and mission of the ToPR organization. I will relate a story which may help you gain some insight into the organization and what we do.

I joined the Taste by accident. I wanted a table at the canopies on courtland for a Park Ridge hoemless organization I support – WINGS – homeless mothers and kids – check them out on Saturday at the Taste.

I was told by my friend Dave Iglow that he would make sure he got a table for them if I could volunteer for a day. I worked extremely hard, met some great people who like me were commited to doing community service work, and had fun.

Cui Bono???? (who benefits? in the words of the cynic) ME!!! It is a great way to meet people, grow my business by getting exposure and it is deeply gratifying to feel like you are making a positive difference.

Cui Bono???? The merchants. They need and deserve our support. Our primary objective is to put on an event that the community can have a safe, enjoyable time at while showcasing our town to outsiders we hope will come back to shop and dine here later.

Cui Bono??? Any local charity or community service group that is willing to donate volunteer hours is given a venue to increase awareness for their organization and/or raise funds.

I believe the combination of the weather and the nameless (monikers don’t count – cynic, alpha female…etc.) people calling for transparency (there’s irony for you)do in fact threaten the existence of this organization.

Since this corporation was formed due to an inability to successfully deliver a sustainable event previously….it stands to reason that the event itself is now in jeopardy.

More irony – Bob Dudycz was the person responsible for disclosing the revenue information of the event last year. Many have taken shots here at him but that is a FACT and one that easily researched.

We have previously discussed the level of disclosure as we too see merit in the sentiments you have expressed. While we have absolutely nothing to hide it is the existence of sites like this that actually make disclosure more difficult (still more irony).

The manner in which people conduct themselves in this forum leads some (including me) to believe that no matter what we do or how well we do it, there will be people who will try to pick it apart and find fault with it.

We are all volunteers. This is but one community service organization many of us serve on, in addition to trying to have a quality family life and make a living. We try to keep things simple so we can be most effective.

I realize we are in an election year and that those who oppose Howard (I’ll bet all 7 former aldermen are regular posters here – although only two have the gumption to use their real names) will take every opportunity to attack him. As a previous poster said let’s call a spade a spade. Unfortunately, those people are creating collateral damage.

As you know, I have sent several pointed letters to you, Howard and your peers in city council in relation to the PADS issue. While we do not see eye to eye on the issue he at least had the decency to spend several hours with me discussing the issues and alternatives.

Let’s talk about some of the Taste’s donations since after all this is a witch hunt.

BTW/ this information is out there although admitedly it requires a bit of work via (phone calls) to get.

2007 –

Park Ridge Fine Arts Society – $3500
Scholarships – $2000
PRPD Night Out – $800
PR COC – Community Stars – $1000
PR Winterfest – $900

There is more. Yes including $1000 a table at the retirement party for a person who has donated thousands of hours of his time to this and other civic organizations.

You may not like the decision but remember it was made by a group of people in a private organization trying to deliver something positive for the community.

By the way a poster on the previous thread was fairly accurate in his/her assessment of our expenses and revenue. It costs a hell of a lot of money to run this event. Our goal is to give back as much as we can to the community and the other organizations serving the community while adding to our cash on hand to survive a bad weather year like we may have here.

To echo the previous poster “costs are fixed – revenue is not”

I would ask that you put on your raincoats (if necessary) and come on out and have fun anyway. I would also ask that you seek out Dave Iglow, Bob Dudycz and any other Taste volunteer and thank them for the effort they put into this.

There are no salaries, insurance or other forms of direct or indirect payment to people who work on this event. Period.

If you choose to believe the worst and create demons no one can stop you.

Thank you, Mr. Bruno. I too am a WINGS supporter.

Aside from the rather remarkable leaps in logic you make from requests for transparency to “it is the existence of sites like this that actually make disclosure more difficult”, I’m wondering if you are in the habit of quoting yourself and then characterizing your own quotes as “fairly accurate”, not withstanding your personal gender identity confusion…

Thanks for writing Mr. Bruno. Not only do I appreciate the volunteers, I am one myself. I will be serving adult refreshment to the throng on Saturday afternoon. If you go back through this thread I think you’ll find that I have not accused anyone of anything. I don’t know the facts, which I think is one of the points some of the writers are trying to make. For my part, I am going to sit back and enjoy the Taste, and then once the dust has settled we can all have a civil discussion about what should happen down the road. Personally, I hope the Taste keeps getting bigger and better. I love it.

Mr. Bruno:

Thank you for your comment. We appreciate hearing from someone who actually has official standing with Taste (the corporation and the event).

We have said that we enjoy Taste (the event) and we support it. We also are grateful to the “volunteers” who help make it a reality.

But nothing in this world is sacrosanct, nor should it be – as those items we printed about the hundreds/thousands of frauds and embezzlements perpetrated by so-called “volunteers” (or the pedophile scandal in the Catholic Church) sadly demonstrate.

Your anecdote is interesting, but it’s pretty much just another one of those warm-and-fuzzies like the politicians regularly employ when they know their position can’t prevail on the basis of logic, reason and merit. We also note that you listed “grow [your] business by getting exposure” just behind “meet people” but ahead of “to feel like you are making a positive difference” when describing the “benefits” of your “volunteer” community service. Freudian slip?

The point of these Taste posts and, we assume, many of the comments, is that the average citizen shouldn’t have to do any “research” or “investigation,” or even have to place a telephone call, to find answers to all the questions we asked about Taste (the corporation and the event). Saying that the operators of Taste “have absolutely nothing to hide” is belied by the fact that virtually none of the basic information about which we inquired is available on the Taste website, a fairly sophisticated and interactive site that clearly has the capacity for such information. If you’re not posting it, then you’re hiding it. You can’t have it both ways.

So you can whine and wring your hands about how “no matter what we do or how well we do it, there will be people who will try to pick it apart and find fault with it,” which is another cheap politician trick. Or you can affect an attitude of smug high dudgeon and berate those who dare to raise any questions about what Taste (the corporation and event) is doing with the revenues it generates through the quasi-monopoly the City has given you.

If the Taste were totally transparent, there would be no reason for us to ask for transparency. But since it isn’t, we will continue to ask “What’s going on behind the scenes?” And if you, the Treasurer of Taste (the corporation), would spend as much time answering our questions as you are spending on alibis and accusations, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion. Tell the truth and you will have no problems with us – unless, of course, the truth shows wrongdoing.

Finally, if you want to call the questions we ask a “witch hunt,” that’s fine with us. That term has a long history of being employed by people like George Ryan, Scott Fawell, Tony Rezko, Robert Sorich, Conrad Black, Bernie Ebbers and others who claimed they were being falsely accused of abusing the public trust or their positions, only to eventually be proved wrong by a jury of their peers.

Can I ask a question? Who runs this website? I have looked at all the different tabs. I will grant you that I am not a “techno-wizard” so I may have missed something. I am sure there are some who have come here for a long time and mabye they know or it was shared in the past. As a new comer, I rely on whatever you choose to allow me to see.

Under about us I saw the organization and the principles – all of which I agree with but what are your names? I guess If I want that information I will have to make a few calls and do some more research.

By the way, I know that I post under anon so I am guilty of hypocricy -if your not posting it, your hiding it. Neither I nor you can have it both ways.

Anon on 07.11.08 @ 4:40 and 4:55 PM:

Sorry for the delay in replying, but we’ve been spending a lot of time over the past two days at the Taste (the event).

To answer your question: Ordinary citizens run this website, in the tradition of the political pamphleteers of the pre-Revolutionary American colonies such as Thomas Paine, James Otis, and the three authors of The Federalist who published under the pseudonym “Publius.”  We publish anonymously – and accept anonymous comments – because we believe in content being more important than source. 

And when in comes to hiding and disclosing information…yes, we can have it both ways.  Because unlike Taste (the corporation), we do not rely on the use of City property, City services or revenue from the public. That’s why Taste (the corporation) owes that same public the disclosure that it has so far refused to provide.  And the more Taste (the corporation) resists that disclosure, the more suspect it appears.

Even if it does put on an entertaining event.

Again, I very much enjoy your site and the other PR related blogs. As someone relatively new to the community, I have learned a great deal as a result of the posts I read here.

But I just want to make sure I understand this and, again, please tell me if I am missing something.

The Board/Committees of TPR have been operating for at least several years and, based on what I know, there has never been a complaint related to their business dealings let alone legal issues. They have filed what ever paper work related to NFP status etc ( I will leave this up to the lawyers to discuss).I will admitt that the donation mentioned on this site was in very bad judgement. If you go to their website there are not only pictures of every member but who they work and/or the business they own. There is also a contact phone number. In all the time preceeding the event this year not one person called to ask a question about something that troubled them. If you have been down at the taste they are all wearing orange shirts. Did anyone talk to them. They seem to be the hardest working group of “crooks” I have ever seen. The position taken by you and others is that the public should not have to call – this is a wonderful goal to work toward! I am all for it! But in the mean time is it so unreasonable for a citizen with a question to call the appropriate person to get an answer. Here is why nobody called. Nobody had an issue!!! Nobody even thought of it. You wrote the original post and follow up post and the rest of us jumped on it.

….. and in the mean time I get no glimps of what motivated you to write it in the first place. You talk about relationships between all the “players” in PR. I am VERY curious about where you fit in the puzzle – not that I would ever buy into a conspiricy theory.

I will close with this. Thomas Paine and the gang must have been busy as hell back in the day. If, at times, asking the public to be involved to get their question asnwered is somehow the offense you think it is then it happened all the time back then. I am no historian but I believe there is a big difference between saying you cannot have this information versus you have to call to get it.

Again, I thank you for the dialogue you create with this blog. I hope all who come have the same passion when it comes to state and national issues. If you think TPR is a problem, look at the federal government.

Have a good Sunday evening!

Anon on 07.12.08 @ 6:11 pm:

We’re glad to have contributed to your learning curve.

Who knows whether or not there have been complaints about the Taste (corporation or event)? A lack of complaints might simply reflect a lack of knowledge (based on a lack of disclosure) about how Taste (corporation) operates. If Taste (corporation) were doing a reasonable job of disclosing the details about its operations, the information about it’s $1,000 contribution to Dudycz’s campaign fund – which you yourself labled “in very bad judgement [sic] – would have appeared on the Taste website instead of on PublicWatchdog.

Sure, the average citizen could start calling up every person pictured or named on the Taste website and ask “Is everything on the up and up?” Or go to the Taste event and ask the same question of anybody in an orange shirt. But by that line of reasoning, Campbell’s could just list a phone number on every can instead of the incredients and let any customer who’s really interested call in to ask “What’s in this soup?” But that kind of non-disclosure doesn’t work for food, and it shouldn’t work for government and the “private” organizations that government works with.

We have never accused those associated with Taste (corporation or event) of being “crooks,” so that’s just an irrelevant red herring term. But just because they aren’t “croooks” doesn’t mean that they aren’t financialy benefitting from their involvement in Taste (corporation or event) even as they wrap themselves in the semi-saintly mantle of “volunteer.” Maybe THAT’s one reason why so many people “jumped on” the non-disclosure issue so eagerly.

We don’t begrudge anybody making money (even obscene amounts of money) off the citizens and taxpayers of Park Ridge – so long as it’s all above-board and fully disclosed. But when financial matters and personal relationships are not disclosed or even concealed, we have every reason to suspect that something isn’t quite right.

For example, realtor Owen Hayes II’s concealment of his personal ownership of the building on Busse Hwy. that he was trying (back in Spring 2004) to sell to the City for a new cop shop at a quick $200,000 profit made that deal look kinky, which is one reason why the City Council backed away from it when Hayes’ true involvement became known through a newspaper story.

And that’s why we also think the average citizen should know about the relationships between the so-called “players” in town. So we point out facts like Hayes’ “voluntary” $1,250 in contributions to Mayor Howard “Let’s Make A Deal” Frimark’s campaign fund in 2005, and Hayes’ “volunteer” service as 5th Ward Ald. Robert Ryan’s campaign treasurer in 2007, even if such facts don’t necessarily rise to the level of a “conspiracy.”

Finally, we suspect that if Tom Paine were alive today he’d also be wondering why a community organization with a fancy website running perhaps the premier community event of the year doesn’t put on that website its financials and all other relevant information about exactly who operates it and what tangible benefits – compensation, contracts, etc. – they may receive for all of that “volunteer” service they brag about.

Again, I very much enjoy your site and the other PR related blogs. As someone relatively new to the community, I have learned a great deal as a result of the posts I read here.

You’re welcome.

But I just want to make sure I understand this and, again, please tell me if I am missing something.

What you are “missing” is addressed below…

The Board/Committees of TPR have been operating for at least several years and, based on what I know, there has never been a complaint related to their business dealings let alone legal issues.

As far as anyone knows, there has never been a “complaint”, until now. The political contribution to the Dudycz political fund might just inspire some complaints, however informal those complaints might be.

They have filed what ever paper work related to NFP status etc ( I will leave this up to the lawyers to discuss).

How do you know that? There is no copy of that filing on their website, nor on Guidestar, nor any of the other NFP tracking services that have been checked. Why?

I will admitt that the donation mentioned on this site was in very bad judgement.

Are you “complaining” about that? It sounds as if you are “complaining” about that.

If you go to their website there are not only pictures of every member but who they work and/or the business they own.

So?

There is also a contact phone number.

So?

In all the time preceeding the event this year not one person called to ask a question about something that troubled them. If you have been down at the taste they are all wearing orange shirts. Did anyone talk to them. They seem to be the hardest working group of “crooks” I have ever seen.

Why are you referring to the orange-shirt-clad Taste volunteers as crooks? Even in quotes? That seems a bit of an extreme and defensive response to simple questions about, and requests for, transparency in accounting. Frankly, the City too should be accounting for the costs of what it provides to the Taste.

The position taken by you and others is that the public should not have to call – this is a wonderful goal to work toward!

Agreed. So why do you insist that those questions should have been posed in a phone conversation instead of a public forum? Further, it is now clear that at least one member of the Taste committee is well aware of some questions being asked. Do you think that Taste committee member has failed to communicate these issues to his fellow Taste committee members? Presumably and hopefully, the Taste committee will now, voluntarily, see to it that questions raised in the public forum are now addressed on their public website.

I am all for it! But in the mean time is it so unreasonable for a citizen with a question to call the appropriate person to get an answer.

See above.

Here is why nobody called. Nobody had an issue!!! Nobody even thought of it. You wrote the original post and follow up post and the rest of us jumped on it.

Remarkable claim! What “issues” people have in mind is probably not something you can reasonably claim to know, unless you are prepared to offer yourself up as a clairvoyant with special powers of mind-reading ability. Please excuse in advance the skepticism from those who might not readily believe that claim.

Because the questions posed here have not been posed before, publicly, does not mean they have not been thought of. Again, it seems prudent not to make sweeping claims about what is on the minds of men (and women) in the community.

….. and in the mean time I get no glimps of what motivated you to write it in the first place.

Such writing is generally referred to as “topical” and/or “current” regarding “topical” and/or “current” events.

You talk about relationships between all the “players” in PR. I am VERY curious about where you fit in the puzzle – not that I would ever buy into a conspiricy theory.

Such participation, as is being demonstrated by the authors and posters to this site, is generally referred to as “citizenship” in an open democracy. Do you generally object to such actions, or is it just that you object to such actions in relation to the Taste?

I will close with this. Thomas Paine and the gang must have been busy as hell back in the day. If, at times, asking the public to be involved to get their question asnwered is somehow the offense you think it is then it happened all the time back then. I am no historian but I believe there is a big difference between saying you cannot have this information versus you have to call to get it.

Aside from the bit of disjointed reasoning demonstrated by the above, again, open and honest discussion should be nothing to be defensive about, nor should phone calls be required. Simply offer a thorough accounting of the dealings of an NFP that relies heavily upon public resources.

Again, I thank you for the dialogue you create with this blog.

Again, you’re welcome.

I hope all who come have the same passion when it comes to state and national issues. If you think TPR is a problem, look at the federal government.

Because things seem worse at the State and Federal level, doesn’t mean that smaller local issues should go ignored. It might very well be that the only difference between the troubles at the State and Federal level vs. the local level is size, but that essentially the troubles are the same by nature. But one could construe from your statement that you are a firm believer in the adage “size does matter”.

Have a good Sunday evening!

Thank you.

I wont’ get into my feelings about this subject because it has gone back and forth enough and I agree with those calling out for information.

I do want to say thank you to the Watchdog and our other blogs for paying attention to things that most of us are too busy to always pay attention to. Your bringing issues to public light are a service to all of us. Thank you.

alpha female is a dog! Too funny.

Very nice site!



Leave a comment
Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>