Sunday, September 10, 2006

Developers Skirting Campaign Finance Rules

Because buying candidates for $4,000 apiece isn't enough, local developers have found ways to give more, virtually anonymously through various Limited Liability Corporations that they've set up. Some good investigative reporting by the Capital reveals that, at least, Phil Bissett (R), John Leopold (R), George Johnson (D), and Dennis Callahan (D) have been on the receiving end of this graft. Bissett, in particular, seems to have his hand in the kitty of those who gave so generously to sitting executive and willing pawn of the development community, Janet Owens.

Top among those are Ed St. John, purveyor of nearly all the squat, ugly commercial/industrial complexes you see popping up around the County (over 2 million square feet!) and assorted Sturbridge LLCs, run by the DeStefano family. I'll leave you with this ominous line from Mike DeStefano, president of Sturbridge Homes. :

"In our business, it's particularly important to make sure candidates understand the importance of homebuilding in this county."

Right, its importance to degrading existing residents' quality of life and draining the tax base, because people like you, Mr. DeStefano, have fought so hard against letting impact fees accurately reflect the cost of building new infrastructure to accommodate it.

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