Thomas Cooney was selected by the Luzerne County Judges to replace former Commissioner and admitted criminal Greg Skrepenak. Mr. Cooney has an impressive resume that you read at here. He has a BA from Kings College and a MBA from the Univ. of Scranton. He heads up the A&E Group that does business with many private, non-profits and government organizations.
He is not new to public service. He was past chairman of the county’s home rule Government Study Commission in 1974, served as a Laflin Zoning Board member from 1977 through 2000 and has been a Jenkins Township Planning Commission member since 2000.
A&E has had many government contracts over the years that are listed on it's website
TL: A&E is currently working on several government projects, including a bridge design for Luzerne County and a construction project at Luzerne County Community College.
Cooney said there will be no conflict of interest because A&E will finish these projects but will not seek any new work in county government while he fills the remainder of Skrepenak’s term through 2011. Cooney said he will stay out of any decisions involving the company’s existing county work.
He also told the judges he is “winding down” at A&E and will be a full-time county commissioner.
Cooney is a bit of a surprise selection as I expected the judges to pick a past politico or go the other way with an outsider. His experience as a government contractor and public service seem to be a good mix but with all the allegations of pay to play it's hard to trust anyone.
Let's give him a chance.
3 hours ago
5 mins in a Corbett was already going negative. the biggest problem in the area is political corruption, the second biggest?: the negativity from our local talk radio. a bunch of never beens and one almost has been. i would like to see any of them actually show some conviction and run for office. yeah right
There are plenty of reasons to go negative dont blame corbett this valley is full of whores
My concern centered on the contents of this article.
Not knowing the guy this article leaves some questions.
A similar no-bid contract was awarded at the college to former Pittston Area School Board member Anthony Rostock in December 2007, when Precept, as the construction manager, hired Rostock’s company, AJ Consulting, to oversee the planting of trees, plants and shrubbery at the training center.
Rostock had served on the Pittston Area board for 16 years before losing a reelection bid in 2005. He had also worked for many years at the Luzerne Intermediate Unit.
In November 2008, when The Times Leader asked about Rostock’s hiring at LCCC, Leary said the move was based on the recommendation of Precept and the project’s architect, A&E Group.
The hiring was approved by the college’s executive committee, which at the time included Scarantino and former Pittston School Board member August Piazza, who also served as Wyoming Valley West School District Superintendent, retiring in 2006.
The college did not seek requests for proposals for the work Rostock did. Invoices showed Rostock was paid $30,037 for 400.5 hours of work billed at $75 per hour.
Attempts to reach Rostock Thursday failed.
Rostock can be directly tied to Precept. At a May 5, 2008 Dallas School Board work session, Precept and three other companies made a pitch for work related to construction of the new high school. Among those representing Precept were Rostock and Sam Marranca.
Marranca also runs SamCar Group LTD. That fact came out during the dust up about Precept at LCCC, when A&E Group President Thomas Cooney rebutted claims that his company had recommended Precept as construction manager for the Safety Institute project.
Cooney said he had was unable to check the qualifications of Precept because it was too new, having been formed in 2007, so he checked the reputation of Robert Higdon, who was partnered with Samuel Marranca in Precept and who had been involved in another company called Premium Builders. Cooney said he was also asked to check the qualifications of SamCar Group LTD, a construction management firm owned by Marranca.
Cooney said SamCar had done work for the Luzerne County Transportation Authority, Pittston Area School District and Hazleton Area School District.
Precept and Samcar seem to involve controversy at times that should not be part of such an appointment.
More on Precept and Samcar
Just making the point that out of 68 candidates wasn't there someone with no connection to Luzerne County's contracting world. Isn't that how this all started, a contract to construct a juvenile detention center?
The judges ducked their responsibility and showwed no character in the entire process. It may look like they went the extra mile to be credible but all they did was hide from kaing a solid decision. There were several who could have been selected and went to work today without needing to be "brought up to speed." This is a joke and I could not be more disapointed in the judges if I tried. Lupus hasn't a clue, PPO, and Musto just want to move on Chester is happy as long as he and his staff have an office in January leabing Burke, Augello and Mundy showed no backbone and whose only concern was to avoid Corbett and that didn't happen. Cooney may very well have an impressive resume but the history of his county work leave us right where we were, same ole same ole!
I'm wondering how much Cooney and his partners gave to judicial candidates over the years? Too bad Augello's finance reports as well as the others are not on line. I just wonder????????????
a doherty deceit link mcgruff?
might as well post something from the Weekly World News because they both have the same amount of credibility. the is the same sight that accuses doherty of causing murders and suicides. come on you can do better than source from a site run by a bitter old man and his convicted fellon wife
if jesus christ got the appointment on these 2 days before christmas corbett and the bunch of ya would go negative. give the guy a chance before you crucify him. o wait, because all you numbnuts talk radio hosts, bloggers and callers/posters can all do so much better
McGruff is nothing more than a frustrated Republican. read his blog, Barletta can do no wrong. unless you read news articles and then you see he is a bad mayor.
and all this in the spirit of Xmas.
5:19, Life goes on but to treat this with kid gloves because it is Christmas is exactly what the gang in robes was hoping for. They got us again and you have you head in the sand. It's a shame that we can't have a recall on judges. Burke is lucky this didn't happen a month earlier or he would be car pooling it with PPO to the employment office. Bu Burke is a moral man so I'm sure he will do the right thing and resign. Lupus had better find a good location and keeps his law books, he is going to need them. Augello and Mundy are old guard so they can take the heat but the shame in on them. They disappointed a lot of people who stood by them and thought they would do the right thing. Oh well.
To answer McGruff's question, I'm beginning to think that Luzerne County has a lot in common with much of Arkansas...i.e., everyone is somehow related (the only difference being that here it's business, as opposed to genetics).
i wouldn't be to sure about the gentics thing.
A sight worth commenting on. I stood looking at the people standing in front of the jury room and as I looked up, the first two that caught my eye was Trini standing with Wil Toole in deep conversation. The first thing that I thought of is that those two guys could set the county on the right track. Trini has the political know how and thr court house experience to handle the politics and Toole could be the official answerman. Take Toole's management ability and Trini's political ability and they would be unstopable. That's not my wish team, that's my dream team. The only problem is that when I mentioned that to a buddy, he told me that they never really got along so the first fence that needs mending is their own and then the world is their oyster. As the Kid from Brooklyn says, Thank aboud it.
4:29, I have to agree that the two of them would make a good team but how do you keep them together? Will somebody explain to me what the judges were thinking? How could they insult these two men? Why didn't they bring them to round two and let them walk away saving face. This was a terrible insult to two men who have proven abilities. This only shows how weak our court is and makes what happened easily understood. These men did not have the intestinal fortitude to confront the two bad judges so they just turned their heads and kept a blind eye. I guess they where robes to cover their lack of balls.
what is this obsession with Toole. Many people in Pittston remember his time running the city with not so fine memories. He has done a great job re-writing. Thankfully most voters, if not bloggers and commenters, remember the facts.
Anon 2:59PM the link was to the article by Michael Buffer 6/10/2008, not the board that contained it. I think the Citizen's Voice is credible. I'm perplexed by the Doherty deceit link comment but sobeit.
As to Anon 9:46PM here is my response-
Stephen, adding your blog to my blog roll. Your comment has more than merit.
Didn't Allen Bellas also work for the A&E Group at one point in time???
Toole doesn't need to rewrite history, history speaks for itself and when it needs help, all it need do is speak with people who worked in the city under Toole and the answers are plain. Other than one obsessed blogger, the truth will always be the truth.
Taxes were at 28 milles when he left and when Lombardo left they were at 48 and while Keating was still in control, taxes trippled and this year, another 20% added on. The Pittston Pool was operating, all parks were like brand new, every road was paved, all equipment was in super condition, the police dept was double its current size, cty hall was open 24/7 and on and on. No, Toole does not have to rewrite history, he needs only to stop the West Side bullshit and the Lombardo gang from distorting the truth. Now Mr Smart Ass, take anyone of these facts and disprove them. Good luck. By the way, before you ask, I am not Wil Toole but I am a very strong supporter and I now the facts.
As Wil Toole ever won an election?
Wil Toole needs to understand that the people of Luzerne County dont want him in their government at all. just go away and stop harrassing everyone with the I, Me, Mine attitude.
Must kill you that Mr Toole is as good as you know he is. :)
Get over it with the Toole subject it's over...he didn't get picked. luzerne county will never change until the feds force them to. all the judges need to go, it's business as usual and they take all of us as idiots. they only care about themselves and their own, not about doing the right thing and making things right. i'll bet cooney will vote for higher taxes, since he owes the judges who don't want to part with their cronie help. so to hell with the taxpayers and keep the high paying yes men who keep quiet. it will never change until someone forces them to.
no answer on has will toole ever won an election. the answer tells a lot.
Joe, er, I mean Anon 11;12. I asked Wil about this and he advised me that he faced tough opposition in his neighborhood fight for Democrat Committeeman, also as Pittston City Democrat Chairman and of course, Third District Democrat Chairman. It seems to me that he won some very impressive elections, especially considering the people he defeated. You should also list the fact that he was elected President of the County union AFSCME Local 1398 which had approximately 700 members. As for campaigns he chaired, he never lost an election. The election that the Lombardo people won was chaired by a professional campaign manager, not Wil. That was the decision of the money people who backed the Walsh administration and the city officials. Wil also orchestrated the campaign that Joe Keating beat Mike Lombardo's candidate Phil Campenni. You must remember that campaign, it was run by a local blogger and followed the foot steps of the Walsh Campaign. The only difference was that on that occasion, Wil called the shots and conducted a brilliant campaign strategy making Keating the new Mayor. Wil then orchestrated the Move for Luddy Fleming to withdraw from the last city election which made Jason Klush the winner over Keating. Gee, the more I go on, the more impressed I am with Wil's political savvy. So all in all, Wil has done pretty well with his political career. Wil wasn't interested in replying to you but I was able to get the information I just posted. Now, do you have the balls to step up and make your record public? I doubt it and your reluctance speaks even louder.
Wil actually thought of Luddy Fleming dropping out of the race and allowing Klush to win. That 1 fact is so impressive that if it was true than klush should have a sit down with Wil and give him Doubledip Mortimers job. Flemming the poorest candidate to ever enter a race was outed by Joe Keating in a dirty flyer mailed to all voters three days before the election. Once Jason K entered thew race with the help of Jim Zarra, Joe Valenti and Mike Lombardo(ex Mayor it was all over for Keating and the Quitter Fleming. Klush wanted nothing to do with Flemming running mates Best and Alfino because he made a deal with Cherkaouskas and Lombardo II, who were Keating people that stabbed him. Best won , droppedv out to stay on in another position and tried to have his son put on the ballot. Cherkaouskas, Lombardo, and his family, flemming and others saw to it Best was scorched on Corbett and Cherkaouskas was appointed. What a Bunch of Rats Pittston has in that sewer.
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