From left: Sherry Chachkin (Councilwoman), Christina Mauriello Nash (fiancée), Carl Chipman (Supervisor) and Brian Drabkin (Councilman) waiting for their turn to be interviewed during the Two-Party Conference, conducted on February 17, 2015 in the New York State Division of Human Rights office in Albany.
So, where is Tony Spano? Well, he is in the conference room with
Lisa DiCocco – HRSI
Manuela Michailescu – Complainant
Mary Lou Christiana – Attorney for Respondent, Town of Rochester
answering a few questions…
Interview of Town of Rochester Councilman Antonino Spano:
(with my two cents in the narrow column)
Q: How long have you been on the board?
Mr. Spano: This will be my second term, so it’ll be six years.
Huh? After winning 4-year terms in 2005, 2009 and 2013, this is Spano’s third term, so he has ten years of continuous service, without counting the time he served on the Town Board as an appointee.
Either Tony Spano – a police officer! – intentionally made a false statement (told a lie, in plain English), or his memory is defective. Neither explanation reflects much credit upon our longest serving current Town Board member.
I doubt that Spano forgot how many years he served on the Town Board, but I’m sure that he would like to forget some eight-year old events: On January 24, 2007 he “interrogated” Manuela Michailescu during an infamous executive session interview for the Historic Preservation Commission. Yes, he was part of the small-minded Town Board which – according to the Case Summary from Town of Hurley’s Small Claims Court, Case #07050035 – “attacked Ms. Michailescu with the porn pictures.”
This is what Carl Chipman had to say at the time, in a Letter to the Editor:
“The actions of Supervisor Pam Duke, Councilman Miller, Councilman Gray, and Councilman Spano are reprehensible. The harsh treatment and exposure to pornography of an innocent member of our community by these elected officials must not be tolerated. Their actions lack the most basic respect of individual rights and standards of ethical behavior. I urge each and everyone of you to attend the Town Board meeting scheduled for Thursday, February 1 and call for their resignations. The rights of all citizens of our town must be respected and protected regardless of gender, political affiliation, national origin, ethnic or racial background, religious preference, or sexual orientation. The time has come for the distorted nightmarish reality they have created in the Town of Rochester to end.”
Q: What is your political affiliation?
Mr. Spano: We are not members of the same political party.
Q: Do you have any knowledge of the derogatory blog comments made about Ms. Michailescu?
Mr. Spano: I don’t have any knowledge of any comments or any blog.
Is that so? No knowledge of any blog? Then, how does Antonino explain the fact that one of his fellow Town Board members told me – at least three times! – that Spano reads this blog? Wait, I know how he’s going to explain it: “I don’t have any knowledge of any Tavi Cilenti.”
Q: When did the board vacancy happen?
Mr. Spano: In August 2014. I was on the Board at the time and a voting member.
Q: Were you involved in that decision?
Mr. Spano: I voted for Cindy Fornino. Cindy just represented what I was looking for in a board member to serve in the community.
Q: Please describe the process by which this vacancy was filled.
Mr. Spano: There were three interviews conducted all together. The board did not have to interview anyone; the supervisor recommended it and we followed his recommendation.
Q: Why wasn’t Ms. Michailescu not selected?
Mr. Spano: She didn’t have the qualities that myself as a board member was looking for. It had nothing to do with her being Romanian-born. There were never any issues between us; we were on the board together for a little while.
- Let’s see…
Accusing Manuela of being behind the Internet pornography? Not an issue!
Resenting Manuela for answering firefighters’ plea for help when Spano – the Liaison to the Fire Districts – couldn’t be bothered to attend meetings at the firehouse? Not an issue!
Arrogantly referring to Manuela Michailescu’s full four-year term on the Town Board as a little while? Priceless!
(To be continued)
– Jon Dogar-Marinesco