Rose Kennedy Conservancy probe; Ayla Brown sings for dad

Scott Brown pays his daughter to sing with campaign funds

   Scott's daughter Ayla singing at the July Fourth Esplanade concert. She should be singing in the Super Bowl instead of Xtina.

Ayla is so good she might convince even me to vote for her dad

By Walter Brooks

It's all over the media, from CNN, the New York Times, Fox News, to the Boston Globe and Herald, that Scott Brown's re-election campaign has paid his daughter Ayla Brown $9,500 for performing at three campaign events.

Ayla Brown also likes pickup trucks.
It's legal, but fattening, at least to Elizabeth Warren's popularity, because nepotism is never taken well by the electorate.

On the other hand

After hearing Christina Aguilera singing our national anthem at last year's Super Bowl, and cringing as Stephen Tyler screeched it two weeks ago, I just listened to Ayla singing it at the Boston Pops July Fourth concert in the video above, and I think Scott should let his daughter sing at every event.

Her voice and rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" was superb.

She'll bring chills up the coldest Democrat's back, and have liberals signing up to fight the Taliban.

What he did

The three paid events, listed as payments to Ambient Entertainment LLC, go back to December 2010 and include a pair of Christmas parties.

Brown's campaign manager Jim Barnett told the Globe that Ayla and her band were paid to avoid asking her fellow musicians to effectively endorse candidate Brown by volunteering at his official events.

The frugal Kennedy matriarch would be appalled at the waste

State Rep. questions spending $650,000 a year to pay 5 people for a 15 acre park

Rose Kennedy, the matriarch of the Kennedy Clan, died 16 years ago last month, and just last week the Kennedy Institute announced that her wish to her son Ted was for her beloved home in Hyannisport to be given to charity.

Now we learn that the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy, named in her honor, has perhaps become a typical Beacon Hill money pot for pols, at least according to a Republican State Rep. from Spencer.

Was it a "rash" decision?

Spencer is to Worcester what Buzzards Bay is to Cape Cod, and it the town where on April 25, 2007, it was discovered that a hazardous amount of sodium hydroxide (lye) was released into the town's water supply. Dozens of Spencerites received medical treatment for "burning sensations and skin rashes" which is not thought to be the reason for their local state rep's charges last week.

I question the need to pay 5 people over $650,000 collectively each year, not including bonuses, to manage a park that is only 15 acres.”
    - State Rep. Peter Durant
Peter Durant (R-Spencer) has called for an investigation into the public funding of the nonprofit Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway Conservancy.

As reported first in both the Boston Herald and Boston Globe, the Conservancy is responsible for oversight and management of the 15-acre public park linking the North End to Downtown Boston.  It has been reported that five executives of the Conservancy now make in excess of $100,000 annually, with hefty bonuses and vacation time also available.

“I question the need to pay 5 people over $650,000 collectively each year, not including bonuses, to manage a park that is only 15 acres.” Durant said. “I understand the economic benefit this park provides for North End businesses, and if it was a completely privately-funded entity, as was originally intended, the amount the Conservancy pays its personnel wouldn't be an issue."

"You can always tell a guy
 from Spencer - but you can't 
 tell him much."
The Spencer Republican went on to say, "The fact is that this organization, by its own admission, relies heavily on public funding and has the audacity to believe there should be no oversight or accountability of how the public's money is spent."

Durant added, "This is simply unacceptable.  The oversight alone of this parcel totals almost $45 thousand per acre and that does not include the salaries of the other 35 employees of the conservancy employed in the maintenance of the park.”

State Rep. Peter Durant
State House, Room 33,Boston, MA 02133
t: (617)-722-2060
e: [email protected]
or [email protected]
Representative Durant has been in touch with Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary Richard Davey as well as the chairs of the Joint Committee of Transportation requesting additional copies of the financial statements of the Rose Kennedy Conservancy.

When asked about the Spencer Rep., a prominent Dennis Democrat said, "You can always tell a guy from Spencer - but you can't tell him much."

It is hoped that if Rep. Durant succeeds in annoying at least a half dozen Democrats, his rash will disappear.

To read all the Politics Etc. column in chronological order click here.
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