18 March 2007

Peekskill City Councilwoman Mary Foster's Trouble Telling the Truth

It's amazing the lengths that people will go to in order to stir up trouble. Take, for instance, Peekskill City Councilwoman Mary F. Foster. She had to do a bit of digging to come up with this one, and I'm sure that the good citizens of the City of Peekskill would rather their representatives make better use of their time than attempt to stir up trouble over something so petty. Here's the scoop:

It seems that Peekskill City Councilwoman Mary Foster has had a bit of a conniption over a new blog about the City of Peekskill by one of its former councilmembers, Bill Schmidt, even before he has made his first topic-centric post. You see, Bill's friend Andy Bazzo, who posted about Bill starting his blog on the Lower Hudson Forums (aka, LoHud, which is sponsored by The Journal News), received an e-mail from Ms. Foster. Here is the email that she sent to Bill's friend, Andy:

From: "mary f foster" maryfoster7990@msn.com
To: Andy Bazzo
Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2007 16:34:54 -0400
Subject: FW: posted on LoHud today: Bill Schmidt starts a new
blog

Andy,

At least you have the sense to refer to Bill as a former council person. Bill’s website calls Bill a council member and a council liaison. Perhaps he’d like to correct that before his site is live. He can certainly refer to himself as a member of the Peekskill IDA Board, since the mayor appointed him to that in December 2006. If his site continues to say council member since 1998, someone will post to it that he was fired from that position in November 2005.

mary



Now, it appears that Ms. Foster's eyes have gotten a bit crossed reading her spreadsheets, because the web page she refers to as being inaccurate is actually partly under her control: it is one page of the official web site of the City of Peekskill Common Council. Apparently, Ms. Foster is unaware that when she clicks on a link from a blog (or, in this case, she actually went into Bill's profile, as he doesn't link to this page from his bog at all from what I have read), it can take her to a completely different web site.

Of course, had she bothered to look at the address bar in her browser, she would have realized that this page is, in fact, hosted by the City of Peekskill -- not by Bill's Blog -- and, as Bill no longer is on the council (which, by the way, his blog makes absolutely picture perfect clear) he has absolutely no control, whatsoever, as to what the City of Peekskill web site publishes. Conversely, Ms. Foster, who currently sits on the council, has control over such content. I would also like to point out that the web page in question is the top search result in Google when searching for "Bill Schmidt Peekskill" so this page appears quite frequently throughout the net.

So, you see, not only is Ms. Foster conniving and sneaky, as instead of bringing this issue up with Bill directly (his contact information is on the his BlogSpot profile page, which actually is where he links to the page hosted by the City of Peekskill), but she apparently is so scared of him that she feels it necessary to disguise her own oversight and ineptitude as foolishly petty untruths.

Further, on Ms. Foster's own council page, which she updated as recently as January 2007 to advise that she retired from Deloitte & Touche LLP, she lists herself as being on the council since 2005, although she was not inaugurated until 2006. In fact, Bill served on the council through December 31, 2005 in the seat she now occupies, so it puzzles me how both she and Bill could have served in the same seat, at the same time. Additionally, a little birdie has told me that the "mayoral appointment" of Bill Schmidt to the city's IDA, that she refers to in her email to Andy, was actually a city council resolution, of which she voted in favor.

Apparently, it is Ms. Foster who is untruthful about her public service record and the actions she partakes on the Peekskill council.

I feel quite sorry for the citizens of Peekskill, especially if she will (as the scuttlebutt advises me) be running for mayor. With people like Ms. Foster running the big-four accounting firms, it's no wonder they've been getting into so much trouble over the past few years.