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Topic: Celeste bell- Should she stay or should she go?
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

I had a continuing argument with County Commissioner John Northrup yesterday. He was criticizing Curtis for having wanted to fire Corporation Counsel Celeste Bell. The Mike Killbreath Show reported Bell had gone to the FBI with allegations against Curtis. When Curtis was absent at a County Commission meeting, the remaining 8 commissioners made her permanent. She had been interim for over a year. Fear of a whistleblower lawsuit?

I had told Northrup at least twice that Bell had conflicts-of-interest in the lawsuits against Gleason and Cherry. That as Corporation Counsel she had to decline suing one part of the county against the other. I brought up the Appeals Court decision that the City Attorney Trachelle Young was required to hire equal representation for both the Mayor and Council. Northrup got so angry initially that he was almost spitting when he asserted Bell represented the Commissioners only because "they hired her".

Yesterday he was in a mood to argue. He brought up Pfeiffer as a Republican turned Democrat. Then he brought up Curtis and showed disbelief urtis had wanted to fire Bell. When I said they should have, he played his arrogant little game of "prove it to my satisfaction." Translated, that means a bunch of details that will never meet his satisfaction.

I should have told him he was a DINO. He claims to be a Democrat, but his politics are Republican to me. My friends laughed at me when I first said this and were surprised I did not know.

I have been sick for a week so I yelled at him. If I was uncivil for refusing to get nto another pointless argument with him, so be it. Who wants to argue with someone who voted to violate the county purchasing policy and pass a no-bid $100,000 plus contract with Phil Shaltz because he knew the proposal had the votes? I guess he believes you support the majority whether the majority is right or wrong.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:04 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

OPEN CASE REGISTER OF ACTIONS 08/06/14 PAGE 1
13-100962-CL JUDGE SHELTON FILE 08/08/13
GENESEE COUNTY

P 001 GLEASON,JOHN,J VS D 001 GENESEE COUNTY,STATE OF MI,
1101 BEACH ST RM 138 900 S SAGINAW ST
FLINT MI 48502 FLINT MI 48502
ATY:SMITH,MATTHEW T ATY:BELL,CELESTE D.
P-46754 517-318-3037 P-41453 810-257-3050
SERVICE/ANS 09/12/13 ANS

IP001 GORDON,GARY,P
ATY:GORDON,GARY P., 10/23/13
P-26290 517-374-9133

IP002 HANSELMAN,JASON,T
ATY:HANSELMAN,JASON 10/23/13
P-61813 517-374-9181

Actions, Judgments, Case Notes
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Num Date Judge Chg/Pty Event Description/Comments
---- -------- ---------- ------- ---------------------------------------------
1 08/08/13 FULLERTON SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT FILED
RECEIPT# 00387021 AMT $150.00
2 08/09/13 COMPLAINT & PETITION FOR
APPOINTMENT & PAYMENT OF
COUNSEL FILED
5 08/14/13 SHELTON D 001 RETURN OF SERVICE
OF SUMMONS & COMPLAINT BY
ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF SERVICE
FILED ON 8/29/13.
10 08/21/13 D 001 RETURN OF SERVICE
OF SUMMONS FILED 9/4/13
(BY PERSONAL SERVICE ON ARCHIE
BAILEY, TONY BROWN, MARK
YOUNG, JOHN NORTHRUP, OMAR
SIMS, BRENDA CLACK, PEGGE
ADAMS, TED HENRY AND JAMES
CURTIS)
3 08/27/13 CASE REASSIGNMENT
FROM: FULLERTON,JUDITH ANNE,
TO: SHELTON,DONALD E.,
4 ORDER OF DISQUALIFICATION/
REASSIGNMENT FILED

11 09/12/13 D 001 ANSWER FILED
ATTORNEY: P-41453 BELL
DEFT/RESPONDENT COUNTY OF
GENESEE'S ANSWER TO PLTF/
PETITIONER'S COMPLAINT/
PETITION FOR APPOINTMENT &
PAYMENT OF COUNSEL WITH
PROOF OF SERVICE UPON ATTY'S
OF RECORD BY MAIL ON
9/12/13 FILED



18 10/23/13 APPEARANCE OF ATTY GORDON AND
ATTY HANSELMAN OF CO-COUNSEL
FOR DEFT FILED
PROOF OF SERVICE 10/23/13 ON
PLTF ATTY FILED
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:12 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Northrup hung his argument on the fact that the county hired other attorneys. Check the dates- Bell waited six weeks and is still the attorney of record.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:14 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Complaints filed with state against Genesee County's ...


www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2014/07/complaints_filed_to...

Jul 02, 2014 After four recall hearings by county officials, Gaines ... especially a judge," Melki said. Bell and Barkey both ... Melki, a former Genesee County ...
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:39 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Complaints filed with state against Genesee County's attorney, chief probate judge following recall hearings

Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com By Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com
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on July 02, 2014 at 7:50 AM, updated July 02, 2014 at 7:51 AM


FLINT, MI After four recall hearings by county officials, Gaines Township Supervisor Chuck Melki said he is frustrated with the way County Interim Corporation Counsel Celeste Bell and Chief Probate Judge Jennie Barkey handled the hearings.

Melki filed complaints against Bell with the State Attorney Grievance Commission and against Barkey with the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission.

"There are double standards and attorneys should know better, especially a judge," Melki said.

Bell and Barkey both said they had heard nothing about the complaints and could not comment.

Melki pointed out three separate issues in letters sent to the commissions.

The first claim is that the first hearing was scheduled for 7:30 a.m. on Dec. 4, before the county building had opened, Melki said. Because the offices were locked, he was unable to get into the building until several minutes late for the hearing.

The second is that Barkey recused herself during a recall hearing against Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell, citing a friendship.


Melki, a former Genesee County police officer, said he's worked with Barkey before, including in the courthouse and wonders why she didn't recuse herself during his hearings.

The final complaint Melki has is against Bell and Barkey from a hearing on Feb. 13, when petitioner Jason Ling accidentally circled the designator of Gaines as a "city" instead of "township. During the hearing, Bell advised the commission that the language could be changed after the hearing to identify it as a township and Barkey was the only member of the Genesee County Elections commission who voted that the language was "clear and factual."

Barkey sits on the commission with County Clerk John Gleason and Treasurer Deb Cherry.

Because of the confusion during the Feb. 13 hearing, Gleason told his staff in the elections division that petitions would not be modified after being submitted.

Barkey previously said that she was happy the petition ended up rejected.

"Based on what (Bell) was telling me, I thought the language in the petition was clear and factual," she said. "The good thing is it didn't pass. So there is no harm, no foul."

"Somebody has to hold these people accountable," Melki said.

Robert Edick, deputy administrator for the State Attorney Grievance Commission, said he couldn't comment on any specific investigation but explained the investigation of any complaint is multifaceted.

First, an attorney reviews it to make sure there are sufficient details about misconduct. If enough evidence is found, a copy of material received is sent to the attorney for them to answer.

After the letter, and possibly more investigation, a memo is prepared for nine members of the commission to determine if any further action should take place, Edick said.

Depending on the ruling by the commission, a hearing panel of three volunteer attorneys could decide a punishment, with hearings "conducted the same way a non-jury trial would be in a civil case," Edick said.

For judges, the process is similar, with a review, investigation, disposition of grievances, and hearings.



gainesresident
Jul 2, 2014
Melki just wants accountability. He always has. Why would we expect that to change now? Shouldn't our judges, attorneys, politicians be held to a higher standard? At least to the same standard that they want to hold us to?? The rules are the rules - they can't be changed half way through the game.


Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com

Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com
Jul 2, 2014

The issue of the difference between striking city and township on a recall petition and what it means in Genesee County is discussed more here:

http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2014/02/county_clerk_no_election_emplo.html
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:52 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

quote:

"The final complaint Melki has is against Bell and Barkey from a hearing on Feb. 13, when petitioner Jason Ling accidentally circled the designator of Gaines as a "city" instead of "township. During the hearing, Bell advised the commission that the language could be changed after the hearing to identify it as a township and Barkey was the only member of the Genesee County Elections commission who voted that the language was "clear and factual."

Barkey sits on the commission with County Clerk John Gleason and Treasurer Deb Cherry.

Because of the confusion during the Feb. 13 hearing, Gleason told his staff in the elections division that petitions would not be modified after being submitted.

Barkey previously said that she was happy the petition ended up rejected.

"Based on what (Bell) was telling me, I thought the language in the petition was clear and factual," she said. "The good thing is it didn't pass. So there is no harm, no foul."

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:54 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Genesee County officials tighten rules on recall petitions

Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com By Eric Dresden | edresden@mlive.com
on February 24, 2014 at 10:00 AM, updated February 24, 2014 at 10:05 AM



FLINT, MI -- Those writing recall petitions will have to cross their t's and dot their i's carefully if they want county officials to give it the go ahead.


After confusion about if the wrong name of a municipality could cause a recall petition to be rejected, Genesee County Clerk John Gleason told the elections division to make sure that petitions should not be modified after being submitted.

"When the sponsor of a recall effort files petition language for the purpose of scheduling a clarity/factual hearing our office will accept the filing as submitted," Gleason said in a letter to the elections division staff dated Feb. 18. "Under no circumstance should any employee of the Genesee County Clerk's Office change or otherwise modify a recall petition as submitted."

Gleason said the hope is to create a fair process for a recall.

The subject was a topic of discussion on Feb. 13, during a recall hearing for Gaines Township Supervisor Chuck Melki. The petition, filed by resident Jason Ling, struck out the designator of township, thereby identifying Gaines as a city.

Celeste Bell, interim corporation counsel for the county, advised the elections commission that the language could be changed after the hearing to identify Gaines as a township.

Chief Probate Judge Jennie Barkey, one of three voting members of the commission, voted that the language was clear and factual for the recall. Gleason and County Treasurer Deb Cherry, the other voting members disagreed, saying the petition was not factual because Melki is not the supervisor of the city of Gaines.


Because of the possibility of Melki winning an appeal against the recall ruling if it had been ruled "clear and factual," Barkey said she's happy the petition was rejected.

"Based on what (Bell) was telling me, I thought the language in the petition was clear and factual," she said. "The good thing is it didn't pass. So there is no harm, no foul."

Bell was unavailable for comment.

"If we accept it after correcting it, there is justification to say that we helped with that recall," he said.

Gleason said county employees should be making sure they are careful about what decisions they make.

In December, Circuit Court Judge Joseph Farah halted a recall against County Commissioner Pegge Adams after ruling that the petition did not meet state requirements that it be clear and factual.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:59 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Divided Genesee County commission approves $100,000 ...


www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2014/03/divided_genesee_county...

Mar 19, 2014 The Genesee County Board ... a company owned by Flint businessman Phil Shaltz, ... County Interim Corporation Counsel Celeste Bell said a county
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:04 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Divided Genesee County commission approves $100,000 consultant contract

Ron Fonger | rfonger1@mlive.com By Ron Fonger | rfonger1@mlive.com
on March 19, 2014 at 5:50 PM


GENESEE COUNTY, MI -- The county Board of Commissioners is spending $100,000 on a consultant they hope will save them millions after the company's work is done.

A divided commission gave final approval Wednesaday, March 19, to a no-bid contract for HSS LLC, a company owned by Flint businessman Phil Shaltz, which offered to evaluate the county's purchasing and procurement process and make recommendations aimed at it more efficient.

Shaltz and county officials said last week that the system for buying products and services is broken, ignored by some department heads, and far less efficient than it could be.

Two commissioners -- Ted Henry, D-Clayton Twp., and Pegge Adams, D-Richfield Twp. -- voted against the contract, saying their colleagues were ignoring their own policies for soliciting requests for proposals from contractors.

"It bothers me that we have someone come up (and make the proposal with) no timeline defined on what has to be done or completed (when)," Henry said.

Commissioners are at a time of transition in terms of their Purchasing Department following the death of former director Eric Hopson.

"I expect the consultant to come back to us with a timeline" for achieving certain objectives, said Commissioner Archie Bailey, D-Flushing. "It's expensive, but it's a healthy (process to go through). I would bet in the end, we will be able to save a significant amount of money."

HHS made its pitch for evaluating the county's procurement process over a six-month period following a presentation by a representative of the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce last week.

The chamber official said there were opportunities for the county to save money by developing a purchasing system that could be shared by other cities, townships and public agencies.

Shaltz, a well-known civic and business leader in the county, is the president and chief executive officer of Shaltz Automation, a managing partner for a number of downtown Flint restaurants and Uptown Developments, founder of the nonprofit Flint Diaper Bank and a member of the Hurley Board of Managers.

He formed HSS in 1998. The company's clients include General Motors.

"I feel comfortable with where we are" after approving the contract with HSS, said Commissioner Brenda Clack, D-Flint. "There is opposition that comes when people don't understand the process and what's going on."

Board Chairman Jamie Curtis has said the proposal from HSS came after years of talks about potential shared services for local communities -- discussions that began in 2011 when former Lt. Gov. John Cherry and former Flint emergency manager Michael Brown led a study called "Future Genesee" that identified potential areas of cooperation and consolidation.

County Interim Corporation Counsel Celeste Bell said a county attorney drafted a new professional services contract with HSS since last week because a four-page proposal from the company was "light on details" and because county attorneys were not consulted in drafting it.

As the initial proposal did, the new agreement provides for HSS to be paid $19,250 per month if it continues to work on the county project for more than six months.


Ron Fonger can be reached at 810-347-9963. You can also follow him on Twitter @ronfonger or subscribe on Facebook.


Sparty77
Mar 20, 2014


Did the commission follow the county's own procurement policy?
We're other bids sought?
We're specifications written to detail services desired?

To let a firm set the criteria for the job is absurd.

This smells like the one-yearcontracts awarded two years ago to the head of veteran services and six others, with no bids sought, for one year. The one year deal has turned into a three year deal.

Wonder if this consultant hired this week will recommend seeking bids on contracts like the gift he was given?

Perhaps corporation council should examine, along with prosecutor, whether the commission failed to follow its own procurement policy?

And they might ask if the county is participating in the state's collaborative purchasing program?

This certainly look suspicious and doesn't pass the smell test.


homeward
Mar 19, 2014

Now they re acting like Flint City Council, whose relative needs a job and how much is being kicked back?

hoghiker
Mar 19, 2014

OK, I'm pragmatic. I think it's stupid to pay a consultant and a Purchasing Department head. Just hire a Head that already knows what to do, someone with common sense and a track record in purchasing. However this is government, common sense isn't prevalent or understood. They voted to hire the consultant.

What the County Commission does with the study is the key. The consultant can't make changes, only recommendations. If we pay for enlightenment, we should embrace enlightenment.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:12 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

"County Interim Corporation Counsel Celeste Bell said a county attorney drafted a new professional services contract with HSS since last week because a four-page proposal from the company was "light on details" and because county attorneys were not consulted in drafting it. "

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I was told by county officials that the changes were only cosmetic and made to follow standard county format. Probably why Omar Sims said perhaps Shaltz would explain the contract after they voted to approve it.

Did Bell offer any advice to the commissioners about the legality of violating county purchasing policy? Why didn't she speak up?
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:18 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Flint Talk Forums View topic - Do genesee County ...


www.flinttalk.com/viewtopic.php?t=11438&start=15

Topic: Do genesee County commissioners care about the law? Goto page Previous 1, ...
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 5:20 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

STATE OF MICHIGAN IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR THE


media.mlive.com/newsnow_impact/other/Genesee%20County%20response.pdf

STATE OF MICHIGAN . IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR THE COUNTY OF GENESEE . CASE NO. 13-100962-CL Hon. Donald E. Shelton Plaintiff/Petitioner, JOHN J. GLEASON, GENESEE COUNTY
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 7:59 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Paragraph 9
Respondent admits that, as stated in Bell's e-mail of July 7, 2013 , a conflict exists that would preclude the office o Corporation Counsel to represent his office in an action against Genesee County.


Bell also admitted that her office is required by law to defend Gleason's offices.
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:13 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Flint Talk Forums View topic - County corruption claims ...


www.flinttalk.com/viewtopic.php?p=73956

FAQ Search Memberlist Register Profile Flint Talk RSS: Home O pen Chat Political Talk Flint Journal Political Jokes The ...
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:23 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

PDF]
STATE OF MICHIGAN IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR THE


media.mlive.com/newsnow_impact/other/Genesee%20County%20response.pdf

STATE OF MICHIGAN . IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR THE COUNTY OF GENESEE . CASE NO. 13-100962-CL Hon. Donald E. Shelton Plaintiff/Petitioner, JOHN J. GLEASON, GENESEE COUNTY
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