The Wizard of Westside and his self-imposed stormwater information imbroglio.



(a) Drainage Board (Council Liaison) … Mr. Kochert stated that he is appointing Mr. Coffey to act as the council liaison to the drainage board.

Having spent vast portions of the preceding 40 months bemoaning a multi-faceted conspiracy that always prevents the “right information” from falling into their eager hands, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the current council president and his longtime associate in gleeful obstructionism would themselves be plotting revenge … but surely not scheming to avoid the stormwater information so readily proffered?

Verily, Slippery and the Wizard work in mysterious ways.

We’re told that Lame Duck Larry stands by his appointment even if the liaison himself continues to insist that absence makes the landscape drain more fondly. And why not? After all, when one’s governing philosophy involves the infinite repetition of the same act in the hope that someday the outcome will be different, little is to be expected — or gained.

Consider that following much opening night fanfare, the council’s smoking ban committee has all the appearance of being moribund, and tabled ordinances tower higher than the four columns on the front of the City-County Building, awaiting more resolutions calling for full investigations, criminal prosecutions and various other trog fodder and delaying tactics.

I imagine that in the end, helping your bilious pals to plant illegal political campaign yard signs is tiring work for community “leaders.”


From the Tribune: LETTERS: April 8, 2007.

Deatrick: What’s wrong with Coffey?

On behalf of the board of directors of the New Albany Stormwater Board, I wish to convey our appreciation to Councilman Jeff Gahan for initiating the release of the city council drainage fund to the New Albany Stormwater utility. I also wish to thank the six councilmen who voted to transfer the $54,000 to the utility and solve a prioritized list of identified drainage problems that have been brought to our attention from concerned citizens over the last five months of the Board’s operation.

Those councilmen are Jeff Gahan, Steve Price, Beverly Crump, Jack Messer, Kevin Zurschmiede and Bill Schmidt.

Unfortunately Council President Larry Kochert, whose project on Silver Street was identified as the highest priority, and city council liaison to the stormwater board, Dan Coffey, who has two identified projects in his district, both voted against this initiative.

What is most disheartening to me as board president are the actions of Mr. Coffey. As city council liaison, Mr. Coffey has not attended one board meeting since his appointment by the council to represent the council’s interests and work with the stormwater board. Instead he criticizes the choice we have made of management, EMC and in October at a stormwater board meeting states that we should ask for the drainage fund. Why the flip-flop of position, Mr. Coffey?

Since we have contracted with EMS, our operation has turned itself around and implemented scheduled preventive maintenance and been able to ascertain the true nature of the drainage problems and the capital improvement needs that this drainage fund will begin to address.

At least wisdom from the city council prevailed on this occasion and the citizens of New Albany will benefit rather than suffer from the politics that were obviously being played by Mr. Coffey and Mr. Kochert.

— Tim Deatrick, President – New Albany Stormwater Board

For an analysis of CM Coffey’s response, consult the Highwayman: Finally- A Word From the Coffey House.