The LuLac Edition #345, Nov. 9th, 2007
PHOTO INDEX: THE SCRANTON/WB YANKEES LOGO, STATE REPRESENTATIVE JOHN YUDICHAK, AND MY FRIEND "YANKEE FRANK/THE MICK MAN" SEATED IN THE CENTER OF A PRESS GAGGLE MEETING MICKEY MANTLE AT THE OLD STATION COMPLEX IN WILKES BARRE IN THE MID 80s.
NOW HE TELLS US!!!!
When Robert Cordaro and A.J. Munchak announcecd the big tax increase after being elected, I told my friend, "Yankee Frank, aka The Mick Man" that the Yankees would be the new triple A affiliate at our very nice ballpark in Moosic. He thought I was kidding, thinking I was leading him on a wild goose chase that was in actuality a prank on my part. Frank loves the Yankees, has since he was a kid. Mickey Mantle was his idol. He met him hundreds of times and even got Mantle to do a card show at the Coal Street arena. By the time Mantle died, he didn't know Frank by name but he sure as hell recognized him when Frank would come into his eating establishment in the city. The picture you see on this blog actually got into an HBO TV documentary. Ron Allen, Tommy Woods and numerous reporters were in that photo. The HBO folks cropped it to include only Frank and the Mick. So you can see how big a fan Frank is as far as the Yanks are concerned.
He said he wants the public to know about the plan because he fears the new Democratic commissioners want to renege on the deal.
Cordaro said a deal is already in place with the Yankees and Mandalay, their management team, to put a new stadium on this site where the current stadium sits, along with much more.
Lackawanna County Commissioner is concerned the Democratic commissioners will jeopardize plans for the new Yankee stadium.
"Mandalay and the New York Yankees have committed to developing a 20,000 square foot Yankees museum here. To put it in perspective, the new museum at Yankee Stadium is 6,000 square feet. They're also going to put a Yankee-themed hotel on this stadium site," Cordaro said.
The commissioner explained the deal like this: once the financing is in place and the county makes the commitment to build a new stadium, Mandalay and the Yankees exercise their option to buy the team. With the profits from the sale of the team, the county reinvests that money into the new stadium project, meaning no tax dollars are used. Then, Mandalay and the Yankees fulfill their part of the commitment by building the hotel, the museum and other commercial properties on the real estate.
Cordaro said he's coming out now with news of the deal because he fears the new Democratic majority will try to renegotiate what is already a done deal. Democrats Corey O'Brien and Mike Washo said negotiations with Mandalay are at a sensitive stage, and any comments on any project are premature.
Cordaro said the Yankees farm club left Columbus because of political problems there. He fears if this deal goes south the Bronx Bombers will wave goodbye to Lackawanna County too.
Three ethanol opponents today have won apparent victory in write-in campaigns for four-year terms: Stephanie Kulick, 414 votes; Kevin Diehl, 389; and Jim Matusinski, 387. They join Glen Nicolio, an incumbent who received 385 votes on the ballot and is also opposed to the plant.Anthony Spataro apparently won a write-in campaign for the two-year seat, with 363 votes. That would be enough to defeat the only candidate on the ballot for that seat, Bryan Rupp, who received 297 votes.
YUDICHAK AND HEALTH
A state lawmaker pushing for a new government office to aid insurance customers plans to scale back his proposal to focus on health insurance. But he still holds out ambitious hopes for what the office could achieve. If it is established, the office would become an independent voice in the often-rancorous debate about reforming the state's health-care system, said State Rep. John Yudichak, a Democrat who represents part of Luzerne County. Yudichak introduced legislation in April calling for an office ofconsumer advocate that would provide additional oversight of the insurance industry. The concept is based on the 31-year-old office representing consumers of electricity, natural gas and other public utilities.A consumer advocate for the insurance market would be able to challenge decisions taken by the Pennsylvania Department of Insurance on issues such as rates and mergers among carriers, Yudichak said. Similar legislation has passed the state House before, Yudichak said. But it has become bogged down in the Senate. He believes a narrower focus on health care could propel the bill to passage in both chambers."What we are seeing in Pennsylvania is the loss, the near-complete loss, of a competitive market in terms of health-care insurance," Yudichak said. "Due to the complexity of the health-care system, I believe we need a person in state government whose sole job is to understand that system."In addition to narrowing the focus, tweaks to the bill could move the home of the proposed advocate from the Attorney General's office to the Office of Consumer Advocate for utilities, Yudichak said. The proposed changes come in response to feedback on the original bill, Yudichak said. Health care insurance companies say there is oversight set in place already and that feedback was vigorously given at hearings in Harrisburg this past summer. On a personal note, Yudichak and his wife are the proud parents of twin girls. Poor guy, in a few years he better add a second bathroom. Best of health and well being to the kids.