The John Pace dismissal isn’t exactly what it appears to be. Nothing is, really, as most of us know.
Why Pace was dismissed by Chief Financial Officer Richard Fortucci is, among other things, the most talked about recent event at city hall.
Pace was the mayor’s main guy at city hall, so his loss is her loss, and she feels it.
But even these two who were supposed to be friends and comrades in arms in the post Clancy world at city hall were often at odds as the end came near.
City hall people who claim to know say that Pace quite often badgered the mayor near the end. Screaming matches are what the events are being called by those who heard them.
“You’re the worst mayor I can remember,” Pace allegedly screamed at the mayor a few weeks back. He was incapable of holding inside his rage at her lack of leadership and support.
Pace was fired by Fortucci because he basically was found to have his hand inside the cookie jar, admitted it, and then blamed Fortucci.
This is how it goes for people like Pace who deny everything, admit nothing and blame everything on someone else.
City hall people say that the Pace demise was preceded by the resignation of the mayor’s chief ally, Claire Cavanagh.
Cavanagh’s resignation wasn’t due to sickness or to seeking new avenues in her life. She loved her job and mainly, her job was running the city in the virtual absence of the mayor.
In end or when the end came near, she couldn’t take the guff from those looking for the mayor and asking her: “Where is she?”
She could only answer, and did many times, “Don’t worry, the mayor is going to get to it.”
Mind you, Cavanagh was loyal to the mayor. But she was worn down by her experience being the de facto mayor.
It is an impossible task to please the legion of people who want to meet with the mayor or who need something done.
Cavanagh was tired of being punched everyday by those seeking the mayor.
Today, without Pace and Cavanagh, the Lynn city ship of state is afloat without a rudder and inside the mayor’s office, city hall people say, there is no one in charge with the mayor not there.
“Who is running the ship is the biggest question at city hall,” said a high ranking city hall official who wished to remain unnamed.
He said no one knows who’s in charge.
He went on to say that Chip Clancy might not have been everything to everyone. “But he had a vision and a work ethic. He shut the nursing homes. He got rid of the overhead powerlines. He built a new police station. What can she point to?”
He said there is visible paranoia inside the mayor’s office when she is there, let alone the lack of leadership when she is not.
“She is a weak mayor,” he said. “She’s not a bridge builder. With Pace and Cavanagh gone, she’s a woman alone at city hall.”