The Unwanted Return of Nancy Naples

8 Oct
Joel Giambra, Erie County Executive

Bad Memories are bad

Imagine the nerve of a millionaire begging you to send money to fund another millionaire’s vanity campaign.

Now imagine the millionaire doing the begging is the elected official who was charged with being the people’s fiscal watchdog in the run-up to, and during the green/red budget crisis of aught-four.  Now imagine that the millionaire begging you to send a few pennies to her friend, the other millionaire, has the audacity to insult Albany “insiders” when she herself is the consummate insider.

Nancy Naples was appointed by Governor George Pataki to become the DMV Commissioner in 2006.  It doesn’t really get any more Albany insider-y than that.  Now?  Now she’s an appointed member of the Amtrak Board of Directors, thanks to George W. Bush.

Next time, Ms. Naples – who, along with Joel Giambra, came to personify the epic fail of the budget crisis; who left office in 2005 after it was revealed that she had failed to pay her property taxes, and had funneled county work to a campaign donor – should keep her megacarat ring at home when asking Buffalo’s Joe and Jane Blow to send “emergency” money to a guy with $150 million in the bank.

11 Responses to “The Unwanted Return of Nancy Naples”

  1. Ward October 8, 2010 at 11:08 am #

    It’s always enlightening to hear you articulate just what was wrong with Joel Giambra presenting the budget options in terms of “Red” and “Green” (or “greed” as you inexplicably typo).

    Can you pls do it again for us, so we can understand how Nancy Naples was evil or non-feasant in her involvement with that? (As always, revisionist history will not be appreciated or accorded any points.) Thx.

    • russ October 31, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

      How she and every erie county legislator at that time didn’t know what state the budget was in is beyond believing..what about the tobbaco money.What about checks and balances?how on earth did she let the county executive let us get into this position.One simple look at our revenue and expenditures should of sent off air raid sirens.These guy robbed peter to pay then,their friends and families.800 million dollars in 4 years with nothing,NOTHING, to show for it.Instead of cutting waste fraud and develop fiscal measures to balance our budget these blundering officials hurt us not just then but for decades..

  2. Starbuck October 8, 2010 at 3:31 pm #

    In #3 above under Related Posts, here’s what you blogged 5 years ago about the county budget crisis:

    Naples was right
    Posted 5 years ago by Alan Bedenko. Talk About It

    Apparently, $118 million is the magic number. Naples said it was $113.5 million.
    Giambra reported from cloudcuckooland that it was $60-75 million.
    Will Hevesi call for a control board?
    Will Giambra resign?
    Inquiring minds want to know.

    But now today, she “came to personify the epic fail of the budget crisis”. What changed?

    • Marc Odien October 8, 2010 at 11:49 pm #


      The Republican Naples, a one-time state motor-vehicles commissioner, resigned as comptroller in 2005 amid a county fiscal crisis following a Buffalo News investigative report that found she was “steering 80 percent of the county’s bond business to one politically wired underwriter.”

      Read more:

    • Alan Bedenko October 9, 2010 at 6:32 am #

      Just because Naples was closer to the actual figure representing the deficit (although still 4.5 million short) than Joel Giambra, doesn’t mean she was totally competent during the runup to the fiscal crisis. My post had only to do with that one specific thing – she was more right than Giambra.

      The fact remains that she was allied closely with Giambra and didn’t even come close to ringing the alarm bells loudly enough about Giambra’s tax-cut-spend-the-same ways, and his reliance on tobacco money and other one-shots to keep the budget seemingly balanced before.

      Nancy Naples also personifies how important it is to have an independent and aggressive comptroller, and not one who kowtows to the administration. hth.

  3. Rastamick October 8, 2010 at 4:07 pm #

    I always liked the little Buffalos Top 500 trophy or whatever the hell it said affixed to the rear of her luxury whip. Don’t you untouchables know enough to send your milk money to the Brahmin who deserve it ? Effing nauseating. Isnt it great how these people move around in the ether ? I am enjoying your fire these days AB !!

  4. Ward October 9, 2010 at 10:56 am #

    Which means we should elect a Republican NYS Comptroller to keep the Cuomo administration in check, right?
    Go ahead, Alan–I need to see you say it.

  5. Hapklein October 10, 2010 at 6:45 am #

    But the show was everything.

    I watched that ad unfold and it was complete with our old Buffalo insider the very slick Nancy Naples, gimlet eyes, intensity and flashy dress and jewelry to assure us that her fellow millionaire insider needed our financial help to accomplish their mission.

    It did remind me of the Giambra/GW era and all the sleek dances that the true insiders play on our graves.

    By the time it is done I can’t wait to see what other horrors this campaign will develop and just can’t wait for that debate. Now that will truly be the show of shows.

    Perhaps we can achieve legalized marijuana as one result so it won’t be all hilarity.

  6. Bbill October 10, 2010 at 12:40 pm #

    Some perspective:

  7. Starbuck October 10, 2010 at 7:08 pm #

    Meh. Doesn’t help. Comptroller “alarm bells” at any level of govt are seldom acted on. Look at what DiNapoli said in recent years. The governor and legislature just ignore. It’s very common.

    If “She was the only one issuing letters year after year, warning a fiscal meltdown was on the horizon.” as Hevesi said, that moves Naples down the blame list.

    It sounds far fetched or naive to believe Giambra, Marinelli, et al, would proactively have done significant layoffs and tax hikes earlier instead of one-shots if only Naples yelled louder. Re. who “personified” the fiasco with Giambra, isn’t majority leader Marinelli a much better choice? Didn’t she and her majority keep voting to make Giambra’s budgets law, while at least Naples warned they’d cause big problems? hth more.

  8. Hank October 11, 2010 at 11:52 am #

    I think all are in agreement that Buffalo Pols over the last 55 years have left much to desire, even the few Republicans that actually manage to get elected. So why be surprised at what any one of them says? Don’t get that.

    hapklein however, is on to something. CA figured out that last year they prosecuted 60K citizens for simple possession of pot. A staggering number that need public defenders, and tie up the court’s time, which we all know is money too. Now if they fined 60,000 citizens 100.00 they would be six million to the black instead of the millions they spend on prosecuting and incarcerating and paying for legal counsel for these people. It’s just economics. When a state is flat on their ass, time to do something to bring in the bread. Best case scenario is to remove the organized crime element and the fine and market it legally in state licenced facilities—-NY has licensed liquor stores, NC has state run liquor stores. Alcohol companies would hate the competiton, but neither are they willing to bail out the state.

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