Permit me to expand on the hurried posting from last evening. If you're just tuning in, please read it first:
Does the CSX railroad "own" the 15th Street right of way?
The only speaker during non-agenda item public speaking time was our famously self-appointed “citizen’s advocate,” Ms. Bolovschak, who addressed the council (minus CMs Donnie Blevins and Jack Messer, who were absent, and Bev Crump, who had to leave on short notice).
Bolovschak, who serves as Minister of Railways in the troglodyte shadow cabinet, discussed her tirelessly free-lance efforts to bring CSX to heel for repairing the 15th Street corridor, to the tune of $1.8 million in necessary improvements. She stressed that such huge expenditure would not be borne solely by the railroad, and that the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) might be induced in cooperative funding in concert with a tithe from the city of New Albany.
All well and good so far.
She went on to say that the key to it all would be the city’s willingness to curb alley crossings of the tracks, presumably so all major streets would have appropriate signals. At this point, matters rapidly escalated into entertainment, as CM Kevin Zurschmiede asked, “Do you represent CSX?”
Bolovschak responded, “They asked me to come to the council. Why would you ask a question like that?”
The sparring then began in earnest, with Zurschmiede asking, in essence, who she was, why she was there and why she cared to be the conduit of information for absentee railroad executives, Bolovschak arguing the merits of safety for area residents and dismissing concerns over the alley curbs, and Zurschmiede aggressively insisting that he wants actual representatives of CSX to be in the room addressing the council.
Seeing as we now understand the origin of the suddenly confrontational Zurschmiede’s surprise counter-attack, i.e., the subsequent revelation that Sewer Board attorney Greg Fifer believes that CSX does not own the right-of-way after all, the display makes much more sense. Sewer Board members Zurschmiede and CM Larry Kochert (council president and wielder of the selective gavel) were only too glad to kneecap the unelected “advocate” with information, as yet ongoing and unverified, of which she was apparently entirely unaware.
Boy, those old-line Republicans really stick together when it comes to disciplining interlopers … but wait – Larry Kochert’s an old-time Democrat, not an old-line Republican.
Same difference, apparently.
Amid the presentation by the unelected citizen’s advocate and the most recent addition to the council, with the former sprinkling her self-referencing narrative with future Erika tag lines and the latter shaking frequent quasi-socialist fists at the railroad and issuing ultimatums, one extreme example of a Freudian slip came forth in all the grandeur that inflated egos are capable of mustering.
Zurschmiede asked Bolovschak to explain the point of it all, and she responded thusly: “If I pull this off … I mean, if we pull this off ... "
‘Nuff said, indeed.