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Saturday, April 9, 2011

Cylvia is high-maintenance

The governor's concubine has cost the taxpayers $400K and counting over her company and its alleged contract scam with the shady Oregon Energy Department. The folks at the O are now painting the investigation as a waste of money. Really? If her friend who's a checker at Fred Meyer slipped some expensive stuff into her shopping cart and let her walk out the door without paying for it, should the police just let that go?

Here's the way it's supposed to work: On the criminal side, salaried government prosecutors and investigators assemble the case and bring it to a grand jury. On the civil side, salaried government employment lawyers handle the case and advise the supervisors whether or not to discipline the employees involved. The suspects retain and pay for their own lawyers unless and until they are disciplined or charged. Once they are disciplined or charged, they (or their union, if they have one) still need to come up with, and pay for, their own lawyers. If they're vindicated, maybe -- maybe -- they should be reimbursed for their attorney's fees.

If that doesn't work -- and admittedly, there are a lot of ways it could go wrong -- then the elected officials in the picture should be voted out of office at the next opportunity. It doesn't have to cost $400K, and the bad guys don't have to walk without consequences, to someone.

Sixty thousand dollars worth of alleged state contract favoritism for the governor's girlfriend is a big deal.

Comments (11)

A mid-life crisis girlfriend...with benefits like that.....all paid for by the taxpayers...where do I sign up?

I can't say I agree with the O's perspective on this. It seems to suggest the investigation was not worth the cost.

If that were true, few alleged financial crimes would, or could ever be investigated. This case carries even more weight of course, because the persons involved have connections to the highest level of Oregon government.

Not only do we have to be vigilant in keeping government officals honest, but it is equally important that public perception of government is one of trust. In that respect the investigation is a must, even if no wrongdoing is found.

Oh Jack, you are so old fashioned...I think maybe honesty, integrity, and transparency went out with George Washihngton....on second thought I just remembered reading "Washington's Expense Account" so perhaps these concepts have never existed in government at all.

As Cylvia herself said: "It's complicated..."

I am sure that we will be seeing more and more of this self serving cronyism, especially since both are rather hurting for money, and could be easily persuaded by a fist full of dollars.

If they were married, doesn't the law protect them from forced testimony against one another? Hope that does not come into play...

Cylvia...with a "C"...seems a bit contrived to me.

As Jack Roberts has pointed out, there is no evidence that Cylvia did anything wrong, or was even aware that the contract was being steered towards her company. If those who assume she must have known have additional evidence, please put it forward. It's hard to argue that Kroger's investigation was half-assed -- if anything, he's shown a propensity to use illegal/unethical tactics in the investigation of illegal/unethical behavior.

It appears that the motive behind hiring Ms. Hayes' firm was to bring at least some of the federal stimulus money from the proposed contract to Oregon as opposed to giving it all to a Seattle firm. The portion of the proposed contract to be handled by Ms. Hayes' firm was to conduct direct community-based research, a function the Seattle firm was not prepared or willing to handle. Inasmuch as her firm was the only Oregon firm who put in a bid, and her firm was uniquely qualified to fulfill a portion of the contract that the winning bidder wasn't able or willing to perform, it made sense to bring her firm on as a sub-contractor who would work under the contract awarded to the Seattle firm. All of this was entirely legal and done in an open and transparent manner.

The only suggestion that Mark Long, the acting director of the Department of Energy, improperly forced the Seattle firm to take on Ms. Hayes' firm came when Kroger's hatchet man Sean Riddell lied to a subordinate manager at the DOE, and coerced her into changing her statement. All of the other players, including the principals at the Seattle firm, insist that they were not forced to bring Ms. Hayes' firm onto the contract as a condition of it being granted.

Then, in an effort to justify his over the top, costly and ill-advised investigation, John Kroger insisted that Ms. Hayes pay back the 60K awarded to her firm. The big problem with proposing this course of action was the fact that Ms. Hayes' firm hadn't been paid anything at that point in time. In my opinion, the only public officials who should lose their jobs over this entire mess are John Kroger and his pit bull lieutenant Sean Riddell.

Riddell should have gone long ago imho. But I can't help but think this incident isn't an isolated, possibly justifiable, case of favortism, which is why Governor Re-run is trying so hard to make it go away.

Usual Kevin, you sure have spun the facts.

The $60,000 going to Cylvia was beyond the awarded, as you call it, "proposed contract". Thus an added cost to taxpayers, and far beyond your claim that the amount "was under the contract award to the Seattle firm". The Seattle's firm winning bid included all the requirements as outlined by the Energy Department without the addition of Cylvia. That shoots your analysis.

Secondly, you state that the Seattle firm "was not prepared or willing to handle" community based research. There is no evidence that the firm was not "prepared" or "willing". The firm does it all the time. And there is nothing in public record to support your claim.

Keep spinning.

"As Jack Roberts has pointed out, there is no evidence that Cylvia did anything wrong, or was even aware that the contract was being steered towards her company."

If Cylvia had one small grain of integrity, one would think she would've had the decency to remove herself from state business if she has personal relationship with someone well-connected like her boyfriend.

Second, if there is no evidence, why'd Ted get a judge to investigate it (albeit in typical Ted passive style.)

The biggest issue, is the idea of anyone like Cylvia getting a state contract (when she was the least qualified) really fails the smell test.

Otherwise, lets do nothing about and let Oregon continue to be the same pop stand its been since Neil was governor.

God, I wish we could get one politician in this state with a new idea besides the same old cronies.

lw I'm not making this stuff up. I found the information here at page 12: www.wweek.com/portland/file-73-.pdf

It is pretty clear that JW Beck acknowledged that Ms. Hayes' firm had a better capacity to do the data gathering aspect of the contract.

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