Monday, March 23, 2009

Dowd Accuses Ravenstahl of Pay-to-Play Politics

I'm covering a court story today, but keeping tabs on the mayor's race.

Below is the latest news release from the Dowd campaign -- a reaction to the PG's story over the weekend that examined political contributions and no-bid government contracts. I've e-mailed the manager of the Ravenstahl campaign, asking for any statement from the mayor or his team in response to the Dowd news release listed below:

Quoting the Dowd release......

"Wake-Up Call: Dowd Speaks out Against Pay-to-Play Politics"


James Fogarty
Dowd For Mayor

"After handing out coffee this morning to workers downtown urging them to "Wake up and smell the coffee on pay-to-play politics," Patrick Dowd made the following statement:"

"I am here today because the bells, the whistles, the alarms are going off. We have to wake up and smell the coffee: this mayor's administration is for sale and the citizens of Pittsburgh are being hurt."

"Yesterday, the Post Gazette gave us another blow-by-blow account of how this Mayor has made it lucrative for his contributors to do business with the city. If you connect the dots the story is very simple. The mayor has a million dollar campaign "war chest" because he is willing to give no-bid contacts and sweet deals to campaign contributors. This administration is for sale."

"This sort of governance hurts us all. Think of the businesses. They look at the city and say, "No way. I don't want to do business with them. No way. I don't want to locate in a city that operates like
that." When city government is for sale, businesses leave."

"The real losers here are the taxpayers. No-bid contracts cost the taxpayers ever time. When the mayor doesn't bid out a trash can contract, the taxpayers spent $1,000 a trash can when they could have paid far less. When the mayor doesn't bid out a ventilation system, the taxpayers pay almost a $1 million when they could have paid far less. When the mayor doesn't bid out a bond deal politically connected folks made $19 million in fees and the ratepayers of the Water Authority are put at huge risk."

"These are tough economic times and we cannot afford this type of behavior. No-bid contracts serve the politicians and cost the people."

"The mayor will say that the timing of the contributions is a "coincidence." Who is he kidding? Look at the city government. Look at the URA. Look at the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority. Then look at his million-dollar campaign "war chest." Connect the dots. This is no coincidence. Luke's administration is for sale."

"We have to wake up, smell the coffee and realize that the incompetence or worse of this administration is costing the taxpayers every day."

"We can't wait. We can't afford this. We have got to change how we do things in the city if we want to attract good business with good jobs. We have to change the way we do business in the city if we want to keep taxpayers here. We need leadership now."

Sent from my mobile device

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