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Democrats call for LDC reform

by Jane Flasch

Rochster, N.Y. -- Monroe County Democrats want to fast track legislation providing greater oversight of local development corporations, faulting the plan put forward by County Executive Maggie Brooks as "putting a band-aid on a bullet wound."

Minority Leader Carrie Andrews announced the eight reforms in response to last week's criminal indictment involving two LDC's and charging four people with a scheme that includes rigging bids and grand larceny. Among those arrested is Robert Wiesner, husband of Maggie Brooks.

"Getting out of this morass is going to cost the taxpayers of this county hundreds of thousands of dollars," said Legislator Paul Haney, (D) Rochester.

Democrats are seeking legislative approval for all LDC contracts including any amendments, and the selection of board members. They want two legislators to serve on each LDC board.

Other reforms include regular approval of LDC budgets and yearly audits. Finally, that all contracts be subject to competitive bidding.

"Most of these proposals are not new," said Andrews. "They are reforms we have been trying to implementbut have been repeatedly blocked by Republicans in the legislature."

Monroe County Republicans plan to address these issues in a news conference late Tuesday afternoon.

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Washington Times