Tag Archives: mayor

From ICT website reader Stanley …

A) Why are you being so kind with Joe Petty?

Thanks goodness that you, Miss Tirella, are firmly putting the words down that describe that flaccid, impotent, puppet aka Joe Petty.

Mr. Petty says he wants to “continue the work of Jim McGovern and Tim Murray” all the time. First, this: it tells me that Petty lacks original ideas. Second, it tells me he is a lapdog for the “machine.” Third, it says he approves of all the work of Murray and McGovern.

So I guess balding Joe is OK with the secret, sleazy emails that Jim McGovern did behind closed doors for the St. Vincent Cancer center.

(BTW didja notice that Rushton was the other lapdog who called into Jordan Levy to smooth over the email fiasco on that deal the day after it hit the press? Thanks, Ricky. You’re another one)

b) Paul Giorgio — what else needs to be said about … (except we aren’t too sure Petty has a pulse)

c) The anti-Konnie conspirators

There is a large gang of anti-Konnie folks, starting with Tim Murray and Jordan Levy who hate this great lady.

They don’t even like to mention her name! They are seething. But she stands up to the sleazy deal makers and questions the facts that need to be questioned.

Here it is: Petty was the machine’s choice after Joe O’Brien backed out. And Rushton will be the next fall guy should Petty fail in this election.

Mayoral candidate Joe Petty’s campaign strategy?

By Rosalie Tirella

So this is it? Mayoral candidate Joseph (Joe) Petty’s strategy to keep Worcester’s mayoral seat in the mitt’s of the Rushton/Murray brigade?

A reliable source said political operative – and alleged pedophile – Paul Girgio could be seen racing around after Joe Petty at a public event. Hot on Joe’s heels Paul was! Well, well, so Joe Petty – the guy who says he’s got integrity – is taking advice from Giorgio, a guy who was taken to court by a man who said he was sexually assaulted by Giorgio as a kid. So Joe is listening to Paul Giorgio – a guy who was taken to court yet again for voting in the East Side of the city when he lived on the West Side of the city – just to keep his mitts in the Italian/political side of the city. A federal offense.

Thank God Joe Petty has hooked up with Paul Girorgio!

I wonder if it was Giorgio who gave Petty the “wise” advice to mail out election push cards to people like my mom – campaign “literature” that listed Joe Petty’s accomplishments (zero) like being pro-education and pro-neighborhoods. I don’t know a Worcester city councilor who is ANTI these issues. The truth is after watching Worcester City Council meetings for years, I have never ever ever heard/seen Petty get up and get passionate about Worcester neighborhoods or education. Mostly he just sat in his seat and stayed quiet. Voted for these issues but certainly never led on them.

Which, to me, signals: STAY A CITY COUNCILOR, JOE! You are an OK councilor but you don’t have the vision or leadership skills to Worcester’s mayor.

But Petty’s mailing (in which his lackluster city council record was burnished into a shiny piece of BS) revealed something more insidious: Petty was focusing on subtext when he “wrote” in his mailing that he would not be “polarizing,” would work with everybody, blah, blah, blah.

What Petty was really saying: his opponent was the above. Which Konnie Lukes, when she was mayor, proved NOT TO BE. She was NOT polarizing and she got along well with her peers on the council. She led a great council meeting – business got done in a timely, productive way – and in an atmosphere where everybody respected everybody else.

But let’s go to last night’s meeting. Lo and behold! City Councilor “pinhead” Ric Rushton had to roll out a birthday cake for Konnie last night – just to be ageist. Just to be an asshole.

Konnie should have thrown it into his dopey puss.

Really, do we want this crew back in the saddle again?

The switcher-oo! (OR: This is why no one votes in Worcester!)

By Rosalie Tirella

Why did just 9% of registered voters in Worcester go to the polls in the recent city preliminary election? Moves like this one: After Mayor Joe O’Brien announced he would not seek re-election, Worcester At Large City Councilor Joe Petty, one of the boys in the Murray/Rushton boys club – the boys club that has been running this town for years, decided – just hours later – to run for Mayor of Worcester.

Petty made his announcement in less than 24 hours!

Just like that! Amazing! Spectacular!

I bet Petty wasn’t planning on running for mayor of New England’s second largest city, had no pressing issues he wanted to champion, had no special vision of the Worcester that he wanted to realize. He simply got a phone call from the boys club and they said: Run, Joe, run! Run for mayor! KILL KONNIE LUKES! RUN AGAINST HER SO SHE WON’T BE WORCESTER MAYOR AGAIN! (Lukes was mayor prior to O’Brien) And Petty, the good soldier, said OK. No biggie.

What a cynical move – on Petty’s part and the Boys’ Club. What a cynical way to run your politics. What a crumby way to run a city or present yourself to the voters.

This is why no one votes in Worcester! What’s the point? voters ask themselves. It’s all pre-planned, pre-ordained.

Hell, Petty is a good egg, but he has zero charisma and has never displayed any kind of leadership on any city issue – and I have been watching our city council for years. Yes, he wants Verizon’s tax loopholes closed; yes, he wants our cable contract with Charter looked at very carefully. But that is all I remember Petty getting passionate – well, not exactly passionate about – but at least leading a discussion about at city council meetings.

Other than those few times, you don’t hear a peep from Petty on Tuesday nights (when the city council meets).

This is not necessarily a bad thing. Does the city of Worcester need another gas bag/blowhard city councilor a la City Counilor Phil Palmieri, who can blather on and on and on and on before his colleagues and TV cameras, reporters? I mean, Palmeiri can actually make his eyes well up (they are filled with crocodile tears, no doubt!) as he takes a stand for or against something! An academy award for Phil! (those melodramatic Italians!!!)

Then there’s District 3 Paul Clancy who – as the “dean” of the city council – feels obliged to get up on all Tuesday nights and put things in perspective (historical, social, psychological – you name it). Blah, blah, blah, blah.

Shuddup already, Paul!

But Petty is not an egomaniac like these guys. He actually speaks when he has something to say – when he wants to make a point. He usually follows the Rushton/boys club lead but sometimes he stakes his own ground.

Still, Petty’s performance/record as city councilor doesn’t indicate a mayor in waiting – a mayor just waiting to be born. Someone who is going to WOW this town.

Why is Joe Petty running for Worcester mayor then? Because he got a phone call from the Murray boys club. The club that has made Worcester politics/governement and the City of Worcester workforce so incestuous. And the club – lead by Tim Murray and Rick Rushton screamed: DON’T LET KONNIE LUKES BECOME MAYOR! THROW YOUR HAT INTO THE RING! WE WILL HAVE ALL OUR TROOPS BEHIND YOU!

And Petty, like the good “pol-bot” he is, said OK.

Not exactly the way folks want their mayor to “arrive.”

Realty check: Worcester loses when politics are “played” this way. New ideas don’t come to the fore. New people don’t bring their new perspectives. The same characters and ideas are recyled election “cycle,” after election cycle.

So why should voters vote for a person/system that has locked them out for years? It’s true. Most Worcesterites are locked out of good paying City of Worcester jobs (they all go to the city councilors’ pals and relatives), good Worcester careers (political and municipal – it’s who you know), good Worcester real estate deals, the inside track – on anything really. Their lives don’t change in big ways. The unions get fatter, our teachers get more high maintenance and tax payers foot the bill.

Voters are fed up! That is why they aren’t voting.

If Worcesterites know they are simply going to re-annoint the person – Petty – who has been annointed by the Power Club, they say: To Hell with it. I will stay home. It is always the same old same old in this town.

Being the mayor of Worcester is a great job! It is a great, important job that needs to be mulled over for years maybe, dreamed about for years, prayed for even. Not something to just say OK to just because you got a phone call telling you to run for mayor, just to keep another person – Konnie Lukes who truly wants to be and loved being our mayor – from holding the office. The position deserves a person who is serious about the job – and also wicked excited about it!

Joe O’Brien bows out of Worcester mayoral race

Worcester’s Joe O’Brien has decided not to run for mayor again. On Tuesday, September 20, city voters will still be able to vote for him – as City Counilor at Large.

Here is the letter (citing the reasons for his decision) O’Brien emailed to his supporters.

– R. Tirella


Dear Friends,

I am writing to inform you of my decision to not seek the office of Mayor. Instead I will only run for City Council At-Large.

This has not been an easy decision. I recognize that it will come as a surprise because I have already launched my Mayoral re-election campaign. But over the course of the last month I have come to realize that the pressures of running another campaign and then serving as Mayor for another two years would be too much for myself and my family at this time.

When I ran for Mayor two years ago I promised that I would be a full-time Mayor and I have kept this promise. In doing so, I created significant challenges for my family.

While I have been honored to the Mayor of this great city, I have struggled to balance the life of politician, husband, and new parent. My wife Lisa and I, in our mid forties, became parents for the first time of four year old twins from Ethiopia a couple of months after I took office. As everyone knows, while being a parent is joyful it is also a challenge. Our children need to have two parents who can commit themselves to their development and integration, particularly our son who has had some special challenges adapting. To do the job of Mayor right, the commitment required me to be out for many nights, weekends, and holidays. I don’t believe it is in the best interest of my family to do this for another two years. In addition, earning a part-time salary while serving as a full-time Mayor, in our form of government, has also created financial pressures that are not sustainable for our family at this time.

It has been a honor to serve the people of this great city as Mayor and it has been great to work with so many people to make s difference. Working with the City Manager, the City Council and our School Committee and administration we have accomplished a lot of great things, and undertaken some important initiatives. Today, two years after taking office, long planned construction projects are underway, our economy is growing, our city schools are improving and our neighborhoods are more stable. With extended office hours, neighborhood walks, the new Civic Academy, and almost daily visits to local community groups we have worked hard to engage the people of Worcester and bring a new sense of accountability to local government. The Mayor’s Task Force on Economic Development produced a host of recommendations, most of which have already been implemented. We launched a Mayors Small Business Roundtable, and my office has helped lead a community initiative to improve the academic experience of our Latino students. I am especially proud of the work we have done together with our Immigrant and Refugee Roundtable to help our new Americans become fully engaged in our community. And we spent many hours working to insure that our working people have a voice at the table and that as we have grown our economy we have insured that good jobs were created for the residents of Worcester.  

I am proud of this record and I hope that with your help I can continue to support these efforts as a City Councilor at Large. I plan on working with the new Mayor to insure that many of these efforts continue and I will still be on the front-lines when needed to help advance our shared agenda.

I want everyone to know, as I exit the Mayor’s office, that our city is blessed with outstanding leaders in our City Manager Mike O’Brien and our School Superintendent Dr. Melinda Boone. I have truly enjoyed working with them and I hope I will be able to continue to do so in the City Council.

Most of all I want to thank all of you for your friendship and support. I am truly blessed to have so many wonderful people who have helped with my campaigns and cared for me and my family. I could not have done it without countless people who have stepped forward to lend a hand and I will always be grateful that you helped me have the honor of serving the great people of this city.

I hope that we can continue to find ways to work together to make life better for the people of our city, state and nation. Some among us dislike politics, as if we could have good government without it. We disagree. For us politics is the way we turn citizenship into a verb. I hope we can continue to do our public work together.

Yours in friendship,


The Gong Show! (aka: last night’s Worcester City Council meeting!)

By Rosalie Tirella

Last night I sat before a little TV set mesmerized – absolutely mesmerized! – by all the whackiness that was flying around the august City Council chambers. You should have been their, folks! OR: You should have at least watched last night’s Worcester City Council meeting on your TV set! You could have sliced the rancor and the nuttiness with a meat cleaver! It was “Reno 911” Worcester style! What a gas, gas, gas!!!!

Here we go: Nutty Scene #1: Sam Rosario. Rosario, a duplicitous blowhard whom everyone in Worcester thinks is a duplicitous blowhard, is representing the liveries in their quest to become taxis. Sammy is a guy who once told political opponent Joe Cassella to step out of a three-way city council primary race because he (Cassella) had no chance of winning – it was really a race between him (Rosario) and the incumbent (dope Joff Smith). That was before Cassella trounced him and then went on to run against Smith in November and do fairly well – and seemingly (thank God!) put an end to Rosario’s political aspirations. Well, last night Sammy went bonkers. Continue reading The Gong Show! (aka: last night’s Worcester City Council meeting!)

Konnie Lukes is still mayor of Worcester …

By Rosalie Tirella

as far as I can see.


Because after watching this week’s Worcester City Council meeting, I still see the new mayor, Joe O’Brien, doiing or saying anything of interest. He hasn’t offered any intelligent thoughts on anything. I think, at this point, he’s just happy to be able to run the council meeting without fucking up. Like a big kid – happily heading the class while the real teacher (Konnie Lukes) is out of the class.

So, the guy is affable. Big deal! We need Konnie – or at lease her courage, ideas and articulate-ness.

For instance, this week Konnie came up with this: banning plastic bags. That’s right. No plastic bags for shoppers at Price Chopper, Shaw’s etc. Bring/buy a tote to the store. Save the planet. Continue reading Konnie Lukes is still mayor of Worcester …

Will things really change with Mayor Joe O’Brien at the helm? (he also heads our school committee)

By Rosalie Tirella

After reading all the pieces on Joe O’Brien’s inauguration day festivities (I wasn’t invited to the ball and InCity Times was emailed no public announcement about it to post in the paper so our readers could attend – unlike two years ago, when Konnie Lukes became mayor and I got ALL the info and a beautiful invitation to boot), I ask: Will things really change in Worcester with Joe at the helm? Will O’Brien really be any different from a pol who rewards his pals and punishes anyone who doesn’t agree with him? More important: Will things really change/improve in the Worcester Public Schools now that Mayor O’Brien says he wants to make the WPS system the best urban school system in America?

Actions speak louder than words, my momma always told me. This is what I have to go on so far: Continue reading Will things really change with Mayor Joe O’Brien at the helm? (he also heads our school committee)

Post-election analysis!

By Cheez Wiz

Plan E government makes it easy to blame others in leadership roles. Who’s gonna pay for the mess? The economy gets worse. And all we are hearing about from the political class lately is how Guy Glodis’ effort at state auditor brings with it a political domino play. Silly me, I actually thought the political class cared for us. But it seems more like they just want to get another shiny title and a bump in their state-funded retirement accounts. The police will get their salary bump because of that outdated Quinn Bill. Maybe the Worcester City Council members will be able to blame City Manager Mike O’Brien – even though the Council members were the main beneficiaries of the union funding.

The only bump the property owners of Worcester will get is in their property taxes.

Blaming Mike O’Brien might be the way to push Mike out and to give the Timmy-Jimmy-Joe alliance the “strong mayor” title that has been so elusive with a Plan E government. Continue reading Post-election analysis!

The Straight Dope

By Cheez Wiz

a) Did you hear that Scott Zoback is working for Harriett Chandler now? It’s a fact.

b) Makes sense the [T & G’s] Dianne Williamson could become a media flunky for the O’Brien-Murray-McGovern campaign.

c) The BEST thing about the story of the police union-cum-Virginia-“it’s my real hair, honest!”-Ryan: Those unionistas identified whom I would NOT vote for [election day]. It truly shows the magnificence of District 4 City Councilor Barbara Haller and Mayor Konnie Lukes, trying to keep law and order in these difficult financial times.

d) It showed that public safety does not equal higher salries for police. Police Chief Gary Gemme has lost the faith of taxpayers.

e) Why don’t we start a campaign to get all city employees (teachers, police, etc.) to live in this city for a minimum period of FIVE years upon hire? Continue reading The Straight Dope