David O’Neill

Whitehead & the PVA Office

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October 25, 2010

With all the excitement and energy surrounding the bigger races, it’s always good to pause and consider some of the smaller down-ticket races. So, when you head into the booth to vote for Jack Conway and Don Blevins and Jim Gray and after you’ve skipped over Ben Chandler… down the ticket you’ll find the PVA race.

Jay Whitehead is trying to unseat David O’Neill, the current Property Valuation Administrator who’s been endorsed by Lexington’s Realtors and the local Home Builders Association as well as the Herald-Leader’s editorial board. But enough about David, let’s take two seconds to get to know Jay Whitehead.

Whitehead used to work for Mayor Teresa Isaac. As such, TI’s supporting his campaign — all good and fine, they’re friends, friends stick together.

Whitehead’s got some other friends, too, and some of them aren’t so good and fine.

Jay Whitehead is running for office to lower taxes on Sports Utility Vehicles. SUVs guzzle gas and they cost a lot of money and since their well-to-do owners have already blown lots of money at the car dealership and the gas pump, they deserve a healthy tax break and Whitehead wants to give it to them.

Among those supporting Whitehead’s Gas Guzzling Campaign…

  • RENEE TRUE — The former PVA who employed her whole family on the public dime and sought to pay herself twice over with public funds is back and pushing Whitehead for the seat. After losing the primary she up and quit the Democratic Party just to show us all who was boss. The party has been barely functional ever since… I don’t know how any of us have continued on.
  • THE REPUBLICAN PARTY — It’s a partisan race and Whitehead’s trying to cut taxes for Suburban Attack Vehicles, so of course the Republican Party’s on board. Aside from Larry Forgy, Whitehead’s also seeing support from the Fayette County Republican Executive Committee and the Fatette County Republican Women’s Club.
  • WARREN ROGERS — Or more specifically, Warren’s wife. She’s thrown Whitehead some money. Warren, of course, is the maxed-out Newberry donor who heads up the KY Club for Growth, was instrumental in killing Teresa Isaac’s bid to buy the water company and then profited off KAWC’s ridiculous Newberry-supported pipeline plan as a contractor.
  • ED LANE – When he’s not cracking skulls on the city council on behalf of Jim Newberry or attempting to throw reporters out of Rand Paul press conferences, Ed Lane’s throwing moola at Jay Whitehead.

Also worth knowing, Jay is a fan of Dan Fogelerg and “The Lee Atwater Story.” His yard signs, as you may have noticed, are replicas of the old George W. Bush campaign logo — they are black with white lettering that says simply: “J FOR PVA.”

In honor of Jay Whitehead, can we all please take a moment, put on our mosh boots and our headbangin’ bandanas and collectively rock out for lower taxes on SUVs. If you don’t, Ed Lane’s going to bully you. So just hit play and let it take over.
And this one’s a classic. I know you’ll think it’s boring but it really starts rocking a couple minutes in and you don’t really “get” it if you skip the intro.

Herald-Leader endorses PVA David O’Neill over Jay Whithead

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October 20, 2010

Calling his job performance “impressive,” the Lexington Herald-Leader this morning endorsed current Fayette County PVA David O’Neill for election on November 2nd.

In interviews with the Editorial Board, his opponent, Republican Jay Whitehead, demonstrated an embarrassing lack of knowledge about the duties of the office, railing on about SUV taxes, despite the fact the tax rate on automobiles is actually prescribed based on figures from the National Automobile Dealers Association.

Whithead’s ignorance (or is it suburban pandering, circa… oh, 2004?) would be enough to throw the race to O’Neill even if Lexington’s current PVA wasn’t so darn good at his job:

In his 22 months as PVA, O’Neill has upgraded technology. He introduced aerial photography to improve assessments previously based on drive-by observations. He sold five of the offices’ 11 vehicles and plowed the savings into technological upgrades and spending cuts to help the city through its budget crunch.

O’Neill arrived in office with very useful experience, having managed Equibase, Thoroughbred racing’s official database.

Since becoming PVA, he has made the office more user friendly. He’s found and is still seeking better ways to inform senior citizens about homestead exemptions. He’s also met with scores of neighborhood groups to explain property valuation and how to challenge an assessment.

So, thanks for playing Jay Whitehead, and don’t quit your day job.

In other LHL endorsement news:

Teresa Isaac for Jay Whitehead as PVA?

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August 10, 2010

Goodness, what is this all about?

Considering the rumors about who a certain person is endorsing in the mayor’s race in exchange for a certain something, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that TI is stabbing Democrat David O’Neill in the back.

Or maybe TI was just impressed by the photos of Whitehead with Rand Paul and Chuck Colston (of Watergate fame) on his campaign’s Facebook page?

UPDATE: oh, and this is interesting:

“WROCK” is Women Republicans of Central Kentucky.

Remember Renee True?

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June 18, 2010

As if losing by 44 points in her PVA primary race to David O’Neill wasn’t enough, now there’s this:

FRANKFORT — The state Court of Appeals on Friday ruled that nearly a dozen property value administrators should face ethics charges for violating state ethics rules when they hired relatives to work in their offices.

In its opinion, the Court of Appeals ruled that PVAs — who assess property for tax purposes — are state employees. The court said that PVAs should come under the jurisdiction of the Executive Branch Ethics Commission, an ethics watchdog agency.

The commission charged 11 property value administrators — including former Fayette County PVA Renee True — with violating state ethics rules for hiring family members in 2008. The PVAs challenged the commission’s authority to bring the charges, saying they were elected county officials and were therefore not subject to ethics rules that apply to state executive branch employees.

Sure, this sounds bad, but nothing will be able to stop her political comeback next year when she runs for a statewide office. Renee shall rise again!

Double dip mailbag

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May 9, 2010

Looks like Lexington Democrats are getting some education about the True Family Business in their mailboxes.

Just take one dip and end it, Renee!

Herald Leader endorses David O’Neill for PVA

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May 4, 2010

The only sane choice these days, I say:

Rene True was elected Fayette County’s tax assessor in 1985. When he went to work for the state in 1992, his sound-alike wife, Renee (note the double “e”) True, was appointed to replace him.

During their years in office, the operation was a true family affair.Rene hired Renee to work in the office. She put her mother, aunt and, after a divorce, new husband on the payroll.

Renee True retired in January 2009 to get in under the deadline to benefit from generous state retirement incentives.

Before that, she was part of a legal fight establishing the right of county tax assessors to practice nepotism. The ruling, now under appeal, freed PVAs from the constraints of any official ethics code, state or local.

Renee True’s habit of hiring her kin became an embarrassment when then-Lt. Gov. Steve Henry tapped her as his gubernatorial running mate in 2007. She told a reporter that Rene True had hired her mother and that she (Renee True) was unaware that her mother had retired and been rehired.

She said this even though she (Renee True) would have been the one who rehired her. Renee True’s husband, William Harper, resigned as a real property supervisor in the Fayette PVA’s office shortly before she joined the Henry ticket.

So we have a retired elected official who’s most famous for nepotism hoping to collect a salary and a pension for the job that she gave up less than two years ago.

Add to that her current attempts to mislead the public into thinking she is the incumbent — in at least one flyer she identifies herself as Fayette County PVA — and you have compelling reasons to vote for the real incumbent: David O’Neill.

True’s shortcomings are not the best reason to vote for O’Neill, however. The best reason is the good work O’Neill has done in the last 16 months to modernize and professionalize the operation.

We won’t have poor Renee True to kick around anymore…

Renee Oxymoron fever sweeps Lexington

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May 3, 2010

At a neighborhood association forum on Friday night, David O’Neill presented the audience (Renee “True” also in attendence) with evidence that her campaign was engaging in fraud, sending out campaign lit that said she was the current Fayette County PVA. This confrontation of truth drove her to tears, and then she angrily confronted someone recording the event and demanded that they “give me my videotape”.

Um, wow.

Luckily, she shared the same lie/excuse with the Herald-Leader as the crowd that night. Enjoy:

True said she used the PVA title below her signature on a flyer inadvertently. “It was an oversight and was discovered after the brochures were delivered,” she said in an e-mail. “We then researched and found that it is common practice for candidates to use the title of the office they are running for.”

She called O’Neill’s objections “a campaign ploy. … Desperate people do desperate things.”

Yes, it was a total mistake! I mean, it’s accurate!

Also, lots of hot double-dipping action:

True, 48, acknowledges the lucrative retirement benefit played a role in her retirement but said she also wanted to spend more time with her four children.

Soooo, she wanted to get retirement benefits, continue getting her salary, and apparently play with her children instead of actually working? Takes guts to admit that, I suppose.

Also, the True’s look after the family:

She also pledged to abide by all ethical regulations. True was among 11 PVAs from around the state who were the target of a YEAR Executive Branch Ethics Commission investigation for employing relatives. True’s mother, Linda Taulbee, worked in the PVA office.

State conflict of interest rules prohibit public servants from hiring, promoting or supervising family members. But a Franklin Circuit Court judge ruled last year that the ethics commission did not have the authority to bring ethics charges against PVAs. The case is now before the state Court of Appeals.

True still chafes at the ethics investigation: “At the time I hired her she was the most qualified individual,” she said of her mother. “She worked an honest day for honest pay.”

Yes, Renee knows all about honesty. Just ask her.

UPDATE: Oh, and Sue Wiley is currently trashing her as a liar right now on the radio. Renee, you don’t even have the blue bloods on your side anymore!

Renee True is telling voters that she is still the PVA (UPDATE)

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April 29, 2010

Here’s what Renee True (former PVA who resigned in disgrace and is running again so she can get her double dip back on) is handing out in Lexington:

Renee True is NOT the Fayette County PVA, as her lit tries to say (she’s not shy when it comes to lying, either). She resigned midway through her term in a cloud of scandal, for nepotism and trying to draw a retirement pension while maintaining her job.

The current PVA is David O’Neill, who is an actual real Democrat wanting your vote on May 18th so we can keep Renee True(friend of Glenn Beck and Kent Ostrander) retired.

UPDATE: Here’s the back of the flyer that’s even worse. “Re-elect” Renee True. Also, she has high “ethics and integrity”. On some planet she does, I suppose…

Renee True is in the wrong primary

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April 28, 2010

Renee True’s concern troll (who’s very fond of the site) is very, very concerned about us writing how True gave money to homophobe Kent Ostrander’s anti-gay campaign, is tied up with the corrupt criminal Steve Henry, and is a big, big fan of Fox News and Glenn Beck. He/She is very concerned because he/she doesn’t know what this information has to do with the Fayette County PVA office that she is running for.

Here’s a better question for the concern troll: what in the world does someone like Renee True (friend of homophobes, Fox News and Glenn Beck) have to do with a Democratic primary in Fayette County?

That question kind of boggles the mind, doesn’t it?

Especially with an actual Democrat running against her to stay as our PVA. Another reminder to check out David O’Neill and his Facebook group. (David has 1,064 Facebook fans, to Renee’s 115, which is odd considering that Republicans are free to join her group too, unlike voting for her in the primary)

Renee True reports, you decide

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April 26, 2010

Check out who Renee True (a “Democrat” wanting your vote as Fayette County PVA on May 18th) is a big fan of on the Facebook machine:


But wait, maybe it’s sarcasm?



We, the People of this Republic, support the Fox News Channel and ALL the people who are employeed at that Network — we are in full search of the truth and NOT the mind-numbing tribble coming out of the “main line network news carriers”.

The White House is taking on Fox News AND Glenn Beck imparticular! Stand with us and let the liberals and radicals know that we will not be silenced by their bullying.

If you like Democrats who aren’t friends with bigots like Kent Ostrander and fans of Fox News and Glenn Beck, I advise you again to check out David O’Neill.




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