Time is short for me this morning but on the general topic of the Parish v Waste Management, we previously chronicled certain events here with a couple of background posts here and here. Yesterday, Paul Rioux at the Times Picayune broke a story on a recent legal pleading filed in the NOLA federal courts on the suit which IMHO also represents the latest bit of blowback from the very recent FBI raid of the offices of the River Birch landfill and reportedly River Birch President Fred Heebe’s home on St Charles Avenue. Here is an excerpt of Paul’s story:
Unidentified Jefferson Parish officials allegedly had secret deals in recent years to divert trash bound for the parish dump in Waggaman to the private River Birch landfill next door, according to the firm that operates the parish dump.
Waste Management made the explosive accusation in its response to a parish lawsuit seeking to sever the company’s contract so the parish can close its dump and enact a 25-year, $160 million contract to send garbage to River Birch, a deal being investigated by federal authorities who recently raided River Birch’s headquarters.
Secret deals? You betcha there are. The question is which deals do Waste Management know about and how does that relate to the ones the Feds are digging into? This is where it gets good as I can now properly introduce the Slabbed Nation to Deano Bonano, a young man who shaves every morning with Hanlon’s Razor and whose professional existence inside Jefferson Parish Government personifies the Peter Principle.
Deano, the son of legendary NOLA area boxing trainer Les Bonano, is one of the Chief Administrative Assistant’s to the Parish President who has managed to completely fuck up several areas of Parish Government including the fire department and more recently the (non)Performing Arts Center. He exudes incompetence but is also invariably the blunt force instrument of choice for certain distasteful jobs, including a special role running whistleblower Anne Marie Vandenweghe out of the Yenni Building back in February. The event, which we dubbed the Tuesday Night Massacre, removed Ms Vandenweghe from the subpoena process including the many Federal subpoenas that flooded the Yenni Building early this year.
I suspect being a good public records expert like Ms Vandenweghe means not only being able to locate the salient documents but also tracking the end results of the public records request and subpoenas or in other words you gotta know where to find stuff and track what you’ve given out. Such job would no doubt be considered mundane by many folks as the devil is in the details in such task and I feel safe in saying a person with a bull in a china shop mentality would be the last person a decent manager would involve in the process.
Bonano is a west bank guy as is former Louisiana House Speaker turned State Senator John Alario aka Big Dog, who we believe played a pivotal role in installing Steve Theriot aka Little pup via the bums rush as interim Parish President following Aaron Broussard’s resignation early this year. We believe that Theriot’s charge was to protect Alario’s interests in the River Birch landfill. When the Feds and their subpoenas began to hit close to home who did Theriot turn to for muscle? Deano Bonano of course.
So enter Anne Marie Vandenweghe, who arrived at work back in February to find her office trashed and computer gone before being sent home without cause by Theriot, who both duped and lied to the media on the matter. Problem solved for Alario and the gang at River Birch right? Only if you didn’t care about what had been previously given out. The problem with that facet of this continuing story reared its ugly head with the recent raid on River Birch.
So now on one side is Waste Management defending their contract with the Parish and the Feds on the other with a treasure trove of information with the lawyer previously in charge of this area saying that Public Records Requests involving the River Birch landfill contain disparities. Sometimes incompetence trumps unquestioned loyalty bred from the unbridled pursuit of self-interest. I think the gang in the Parish Attorney’s Office has found that out.
The problem with lying is keeping the lies straight. With all the whoppers that have come from the Parish involving the landfill even the brightest (though twisted) minds in the Parish attorney’s office can’t put this humpty dumpty back together again. In that sense many of them are now exposed.