Friday, October 22, 2010

A is for Arrogant

Attorney Steve Torres, Fall River's full time corporation counsel has been moonlighting but he doesn't want you to know it.

The problem is the Standard Times ran a story yesterday morning that mentions that the town of Wareham is not happy with delays in receiving a computer audit report from Attorney Torres who is handling the matter as a special counsel. That story received mention yesterday afternoon on WSAR's The Alex Stylos Show and that's where the fireworks began.

Stylos told his audience that he came across the story in the Standard Times and after a little footwork confirmed that the Torres mentioned in the article is our very own corporation counsel.  Stylos and his co-host for the afternoon, former City Councilor Cathy Ann Viveiros remarked that Torres was hired as a full time corporation counsel and given a hefty raise to reflect his full time status. Stylos however also remarked that he really had no issue with Attorney Torres moonlighting. The two engaged in some slight banter that I took for as being tougue in check saying that if he WAS going to moonlight he should at least not show up on the front page of the newspaper, especially in a less than flattering light.

That's when the phone rang. Apparently the call came in on the 'hot line' and when Stylos picked up Attorney Steven Torres was on the other end. Apparently working more than one job does not keep him from being a dedicated listener. In 5 seconds it was clear that Attorney Torres did not like the fact that this was being discussed on air but he attempted to clarify the situation and set the record straight. If I understood it correctly, he was brought on as special counsel in Wareham before taking the Fall River job and that despite what the Standard Times article would suggest he was not the reason for the delay. He further went on to say that he felt this report could have been done in-house by the town but that they voted to hire him to oversee the effort.

At this point I'm thinking that this guy is WAY too insecure and that if he had ongoing jobs maybe he shouldn't have accepted a full time position but he explained the situation this will probably be a non-issue. If he had only hung up the phone.

Instead over the next several minutes Attorney Torres proceeded to RANT. He wasn't happy that this was brought up on the radio and said that Stylos could have simply contacted him first. Ah Ha! Stylos responded that he did call and sent emails, with no reply. Torres then went after Cathy Ann saying that she was attacking him as a way to get back at the Mayor for beating her in the last election! He threatened to lodge complaints and go to advertisers all for mentioning a story that was reported, not by WSAR, but by another news agency.

Lefty's View: With one phone call Attorney Torres has changed the story from should he be moonlighting to does this man have any sense of judgment or self-control! The arrogance and display of egotism was infuriating. Does this man really feel that he is beyond reproach, that he is infallible? Whether Attorney Torres likes it or not his actions as a public figure are fair game for public discussion. Certainly his working for Wareham while serving in a full time capacity in Fall River is worthy of at some dialogue. Mr. Torres needs to realize that when he calls in to the local radio station or talks with a reporter he does so as Fall River's corporation counsel and he should conduct himself in a manner worthy of that position. When he rants and raves on live radio he embarrasses not only himself but the people of Fall River. When he threatens to take action against the local radio station for discussing a completely truthful news report he tarnishes our ideal of freedom of speech and instead embraces the mentality of a police state.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing yesterday afternoon. Torres represents the City and its residents and he needs to act more appropriately. He seems to lose his cool very quickly.
Now this is not the first time we have seen him lose his cool. He has done it in the city council meetings, plus he even went after a resident at the July RDA meeting when she questioned a statement that he said to the RDA. When questioned he turned to this city resident and told her to basically shut up and put it on the blogs. Luckily there is video of this incident.
Maybe it’s time the Mayor disciplines Torres the same way he disciplined the Veterans agent.

Lefty said...

I would certainly urge the Mayor to consider a suspension. At the very least I think an apology is in order.

Doubt we'll see either.

Anonymous said...

not to mention this story was already on Shamrocks blog. The only one that won't touch the story is the Herald Flanagan News.

Anonymous said...

Maybe someone should file a complaint with the Ethics Board

Anonymous said...

Tune in to WSAR at 3 today... The interview will be replayed today.

Anonymous said...

J is for Jackass

I imagine his unethical behavior warrants a complaint with Board of Bar Overseers. As a governmental attorney, his threats against citizens exercising their freedom of speech was egregious and possibly actionable if he follows through with his threats.

It Said said...

Oh come on..

This is Steve being Steve..

Flanagan and Anne O'Neal Souza probably sat him down and slapped him on the wrist and told him to be good..

This is the same city where Leo Pellitier is an institution..it comes with the territory that is Fall River..

When Steve quiets down the audience of "progressives", the curious or the really f'ing bored at various City Council meetings, its funny..because you have a generation of people who talk back to the TV, or the movie theatre screen, or their computer monitor, and now think they can do it anywhere.

If anything, Torres helped make WSAR relevent, at least for a day..

Anonymous said...

Is that like Manny being Manny??

Anonymous said...

Can we trade him to Wareham?

Anonymous said...

The good of it was his threatening to have advertisers boycott that sham of a radio station. The bad of it was the rant made him seem over the top nuts and don't forget that this over the top nutso guy is the one that's really running the place. Yikes! Scary thought huh?

The only thing just as scary is thinking that CAV could be running the place. Chalk it up to a crappy crop of 2009 mayoral canddiates. Correia, Flanagan, CAV, Hague, Camara, let's be honest that none of them could run the place but those are the choices we were stuck with. The 2007 field of Whitty, Sullivan, Kilby, Poulin and even Alves was 110% better but none of those guys stepped up to the mayoral plate in 2009. It's all about timing guys and the strength of the mayoral field. My dog coulda beat out Bob Correia after his mayoral performance over 2 years.

Anonymous said...

Who is Lefty? Inquiring minds like Steve Torres would like to know.

Lefty said...

Steve being Steve does not excuse his behavior nor does the fact that it made for entertaining radio.

And I was not amused to have the Mayor brush this off as Attorney Torres is very passionate. You can be passionate without losing your self-control.

Who is Lefty? I'm an average citizen sharing his opinion. I believe the views I share here are fair and objective. If Mr. Torres or anyone else disagrees with something I've stated they can always comment on the post or even shoot me an email at: aviewfrombattleshipcove@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

be careful telling a loose cannon to "shoot" you an email !

Anonymous said...

Anyone tivo those council meetings? It would be fun to put together a medley of Torres' greatest rants. LOL

Skoorey said...

I do believe that not only does Steve Torres listen to WSAR, but he reads the comments section of the Herald News and makes some remarks there as well. In the most recent article on the "firing" of the Corporate Council's paralegal, there are some rather stark defenders of Mr. Torres. Take a peek and tell me what you think.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, but Attorney Steve Torres acted like a 2 year old at a toy story not getting what they wanted. He throws temper tantrums.

Grow up!

Concerned Resident said...

Torres is walking the line of ethics for his profession and has probably crossed it with his most recent stunt. He needs to have better control of his emotions and subsequent actions.

He is a government official who should probably take a peek at the 1st Amendment before he makes and more threats to WSAR.

I find it ironic that Torres's latest tantrum was induced by people questioning his moonlighting for Wareham because one of the purposes of the Wareham audit was to discover the identity of the bloggers in the town, who were critical of selectmen.

Anonymous said...

Rumor around Govt. Ctr. yesterday was that Flanagan actually urged Torres to call WSAR.....unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

Well history repeats itself. Mayor Torres is now trying to do what Wareham did and find out who the bloggers are that are criticizing the administration. Rumor has it that the Flanny camp is also lapping up screen names like a drunk lapping up booze so that he can get his own spin out there. Give him a little credit at least for being more tech savvy then Mayuh Correia.

Anonymous said...

There is a new pro flanagan anonymous "blogger" on facebook
Fallrivercitypride friending politicians.

paytonm1 said...

In today's Standard Times, here is the excuse Torres gave Wareham selectem for being late on the audit.

Does this mean that he is doing this work for Wareham from the 6th floor? Who was it that was out sick that prevented him from completing this audit?

Could this be the reason he wants to hire a "seasoned paralegal"? To work on his extra-curricular activities while supposedly working exclusively for the City of Fall River? Me thinks he'll hire someone who will keep his/her mouth shut.

I believe what anonomous said about the Flanny camp doing the same. Everything I have posted in the last week, even non-negative posts do not appear.

paytonm1 said...

I am terribly sorry, I wrote the last post and didn't insert the portion of the ST article. My apologies; here it is:

June 15, 2010: Selectmen authorize attorney Steven Torres to compile a report on the computer audit, a task that Town Administrator Mark Andrews said he expects will take several weeks.
Oct. 3, 2010: The selectmen's agenda says Torres will report his findings to the board, but the attorney e-mails Andrews earlier in the day to say that an illness in his office prevented him from completing the work.
Oct. 19, 2010: Torres' report again is on the selectmen's agenda, but he again informs Andrews the work is not complete. Selectmen give him until Oct. 22 to submit his report.
Oct. 22, 2010: Torres submits his report to Andrews.
Oct. 27, 2010: Report is released.

Anonymous said...

Was this in the FRHN ?? Flanagan News?

Anonymous said...

Are you kidding, they wouldn't do this story Southcoast Today did it:

Here are a few more highlights to the story:


Southcoast Today did it:
By Steve Decosta
sdecosta@s-t.com
October 28, 2010 12:00 AM

WAREHAM — A review of the audit of 67 town-owned computers begun 17 months ago shows that "the amount of time on non-work-related websites is excessive," attorney Steven Torres said after reporting his findings to selectmen Wednesday.

But many of the numbers he presented didn't seem to match his dire statement and at least one selectman expressed relief that the data showed less abuse than had been feared.

Selectmen launched the computer audit in May 2009, hiring Global Digital Forensics to copy and analyze the hard drives of 84 town-owned computers.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Torres was hired in June to assess GDF's findings.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"The results of the computer audit clearly show a pattern of usage by multiple users of town computers that violates the Internet use policy," Torres wrote in his report. He said he reviewed the drives to determine the amount of time spent on non-work-related websites for shopping, gaming or pornography and for the existence of inappropriate or sexually explicit images.

"There are clearly a lot of people spending a lot of time in places where they don't belong," Torres said, citing such sites as MySpace, Facebook, matchmaker.com, britneyspears.com and pokerroom.com.

The "executive summary" he
Torres, who serves as Fall River's corporation counsel, said he has presented his specific figures on abuse to Town Administrator Mark Andrews. "The town administrator has a full report, identifying by machine and individual the number of non-work-related sites we were able to identify that people had visited."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
While the selectmen never have said what they were looking for when ordering the computer audit last year, the minutes of a May 26 executive session, later ruled improper by the Plymouth County district attorney, listed six reasons, including the scope of blogging on an anti-selectmen website, the possibility of outside businesses being run on town computers and the possibility of double logs being kept by the Police Department.

The review did not address the issues of outside businesses or the police log. The Police Department computers had accessed Warehamobserver.com 200 times.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Selectmen authorized a $7,500 payment to Torres in June to compile a report based on GDF's findings, and his report has been delayed on several occasions. In addition to the payment authorized to Torres, the audit, which some critics have labeled a witch hunt, has cost the town more than $58,000.

Anonymous said...

Torres is the one spending time in the wrong places working for Warehem on Fall Rivers dime and time??

and paid 65k+ for the blogger witch hunt.

Anonymous said...

Lefty, you should blog about this, this is even more scary-

http://www.wickedlocal.com/newton/features/x1696240227/Newton-Mayor-Warren-seen-as-potential-Scott-Brown

According to this the Democrats are looking at 3 mayors in the state of MA as possible replacements for Scott Brown and Will Flanagan is one of them!

How can the Dems look at some of these mayors when they haven't even had any real accomplishments yet and maybe never will? Mayors Torres and Flanagan just lost the very 1st legal challenge to the casino issue. Whether you are for or against the casino to send a team of losers to the Senate would be bad for Massachusetts.