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November 4th, 2005

Scranton Times-Tribune: Throop squabbling now affects payday

BY JOSH BRODESKY STAFF WRITER

THROOP — Payday has become the latest cost of political squabbling in this tempestuous borough, as members of council’s majority and embattled manager and treasurer Robert Hegedus have failed to endorse payroll checks in a timely manner.

For years the borough has issued about 50 payroll checks on Thursdays, but last week they were issued a day late. It would have happened again this week if police Chief Neil Furiosi hadn’t brought the checks to Lourdesmont, where council Vice President Cindy Johnson works, and where she signed them at 2:30 p.m.

“Am I upset that our pay was not here? Yes,” Chief Furiosi said Thursday morning. “Do I depend on our weekly payday? Yes. Do I know why our pay is not here? The checks weren’t signed.”

Borough law requires paychecks to be signed by council president, the borough manager and treasurer. The council vice president can sign the checks as an alternate to the president. Since the beginning of the year, Ms. Johnson has endorsed payroll in the place of council President Daryl Menichetti, who recently tendered her resignation.

How the checks went unsigned the past two weeks is unclear. Mr. Hegedus claims council’s majority voting bloc is refusing to sign them to make him look bad. Ms. Menichetti claims Mr. Hegedus hid the checks from Ms. Johnson, who entered the Borough Building just before 10 p.m. Wednesday to endorse them.

“Where they were? I don’t know,” Ms. Menichetti said. “I believe he hid them.”

“I find that hysterical,” Mr. Hegedus said.

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