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Shake-Up Of Mass. Probation Dept. Ordered

BOSTON (CBS/AP) – Massachusetts highest court ordered a massive shake-up of the state’s probation department after an independent review revealed what the justices described as a system of “abuse and corruption” in hiring practices.

WBZ-TV Karen Anderson reports from Boston.

 

Gov. Deval Patrick said a report alleging “abuse and corruption” at the Massachusetts Probation Department bolsters his argument that the agency should be combined with the parole board and brought under the control of the governor’s office.

Gov. Deval Patrick talked about the probation probe Thursday afternoon.

WBZ Political Analyst Jon Keller reports from the State House.

 

An independent review of the department ordered by the Supreme Judicial Court portrayed a vast patronage system where individuals recommended by lawmakers were given jobs and the department’s budget continued to grow.

Political roundtable discussion on the Probation Dept. Report.

Patrick said he’d known for some time that the Probation Department was a “rogue agency” and that if it had been under executive branch control it would have received more scrutiny.

During the past three fiscal years, Patrick has vetoed more than $18 million from the Probation Department.  The Legislature restored $7 million of those vetoes.

Read: Full Report Of Independent Counsel
Read: Full Story On Probation Investigation

During an interview with WBZ News Radio on Friday, Mass. Attorney General Martha Coakley talked about the possibility of criminal charges being filed in the wake of the Probation Department report.

WBZ News Radio’s Jon MacLean talks with AG Martha Coakley

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments

One Comment

  1. mikey says:

    The Massachusetts Probation Department should be on probation.

  2. Overextended says:

    Since its corrupt and bloated is there any talk of a big budget cut for years of waste build up? like 50%

  3. Cynic says:

    Corruption In the State Government?….Say it isn’t so !!!!I’M SHOCKED….IAre you sure that this is the Massachusetts Government you are takling about? I thought all the corruption In Mass ended when they caught the guys that stole the Loam from the underground garage at the Boston Common.Next you’ll be telling us that the Speaker lied about re-districting.

  4. Bruce says:

    Put the system under the Governor’s control….Then he can hire his “own” hacks

  5. Paul Cooper says:

    WOW, Our culture of corruption has finally been brought into the light.
    How many years have radio and print commentators been talking about this?
    I’ve known of state corruption since shortly after I moved here in 1983.
    No secrets here folks. Nothing to look at, move along now… move along.
    Patrick on TV doing his best “I don’t know nothing about anything” impersonation.
    Now that the light is on, everybody’s now going to run for cover. It’s just too bad this kind of investigation isn’t done from the TOP down. Then I “might” begin to trust my state government again.

  6. BLACKBEAR says:

    WHAT A REACTION BY THE GOV. TO KELLERS QUESTION ABOUT A CULTURE OF CORRUPTION ON THE HILL. DESPITE THE ELECTIONS IN OTHERS STATES, WE CONTINUE TO REELECT PEOPLE LIKE JOHN TEIRNEY AND BARNEY FRANK, BOTH OF WHOM ACTUALLY DISPLAYED “ATTITUDES” AND ACTED INSULTED THAT THEY WERE CHALLENGED. IT WILL BE INTERESTING TO SEE WHAT COMES OUT OF THIS PROBATION DEPT. PROBE, OTHER THAN HAVING IT FALL UNDER THE GOV. POWER. GREAT!! VOTERS, CITIZENS, GRASS ROOTS PEOPLE; SOMEBODY PLEASE START INITIATING SOME KIND OF SUBSTATIAL CHANGE TO OUR POLITICAL CLIMATE. WE THE PEOPLE ARE ULTIMATELY RESPONSIBLE. WE TALK, WE COMPLAIN, BUT NEVER EXCECUTE ANYTHING OR ANYONE. IT JUST GOES ON AND ON!!

  7. Jack says:

    this shouldn’t shock anyone, I work for the state and I watched our civil service system erode. Massachusetts once had pride in its equal oppotunity employment status by giving exams and hireing those highest on the list. Now they only give exams for public safety possitions. I have to say your reporters are correct your hired for who you know not what you know. look at other departments like revenue, eot, mental health and etc.

  8. jaygee says:

    This could be the same headline for many of the state’s departments where political patronage runs rampant. Why do you think that candidates running for office spend so much money to get elected and have no problem getting people to help them? They are all looking for something. Common sense, common honesty and common decency makes most of us ineligble for publicv office in Massachusetts.

  9. Mitch says:

    This is only the tip of the corruption iceberg in MA politics. This filters all the way down to the local governments. For one thing unions + politicians + corruption. How in the world do you think the almost all of them got re-elected?

    1. Mitch says:

      that should be unions + politicians = corruption

  10. Oversight says:

    The witch-hunt was to fire O’Brien by Chief Justice Margaret H. Marshall, it was personal. There was in house fighting over the probation’s department’s drug testing that the judge wanted to happen for probation department employees. O’Brien had no money in the budget to pay for it and the judge wanted to put O’Brien in jail for not following that court order, that was ridiculous. The judge was creating a condition in the department of no trust. A bad work environment. The Globe was feed the story first sell papers to get Jack fired by Marshall. The special council, Paul Ware Jr. never asked Marshall if she recommend anyone for a position at the probation department. The list O’Brien had never made it in its entirety into the report. Please read the Appendix in the report on the Globe site and see the list of some of the people who recommended people for jobs. There are many and there are many of them. This is how it was done.
    Both republicans and democrats both recommended people for jobs in the probation department.

    The Judge who started this witch-hunt of the probation department who was not questioned by Paul Ware about anyone she recommended for a job in a government position. hard to believe. She selected Ware. She is stepping down as Judge from the bench for personal reasons. This was a personal vendetta against O’Brien. That judge according to some information I gathered had recommend hire es to the probation department. This was not reported in the study. All departments of the State government have been doing this forever. This was personal. It also was not released until after the election on purpose. I am not condoning this practice. NO ONE SHOULD BE FIRED. NEW LEGISLATIVE POLICIES SHOULD BE PUT IN PLACE TO NEVER AGAIN RECOMMEND ANYONE FOR A JOB.

  11. Mitch says:

    So corruption lives on. We have one group of corrupt politicians and justices tattling on the other corrupt politicians and justices because somebody got ticked off at someone else? All of ’em get paid the big bucks with big benies and pensions after 4 years. They get and give favors while kicking the taxpayer off the cliff. Too bad no one will be held accountable. That’s MASSachusetts for ya.

    Now look what happened to CT after all the people who wanted to avoid MA taxes moved there. MA is spreading like a cancer. It’s another crime MA politicians should be held accountable for.

    1. CancerfromIRS says:

      Same thing is going on in the federal government – at IRS, the hiring manager runs around shouting “no old farts will be hired” and “no white males.” Then he forces the probationary older workers out of their POD’s to get his daughter hired. Territory manager brings in his brother-in-law (recently fired from 2 outside jobs) and gets him a promotion to manager in a year. The daughter’s previous job was at a library, and she bumps off 2 CPA/MBA’s with 20 years experience. One of the victims was not even probationary, yet misclassified as such in order to deny all due process rights. Government corruption is so out of control, and good people are being victimized while incompetent cronies gain even more power.

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