As if the Fairfax County Professional Fire Fighters and Paramedics Association, IAFF Local 2068, didn’t have enough problems already, their newly minted president, Ron Kuley, appropriated a fire truck they apparently own for a joy ride or two during the recent Stanley Cup events.
He actually referred to the “opportunity” as a “damned if I do and damned if I don’t moment” but more on that later.
Members are curious and aggrieved that Kuley used the Local’s rig to attend game five and the victory parade with friends who have no connection to the Local.
He has refused to identify who those folks were despite repeated requests.
It is reported that when a member questioned him about it, Kuley said, “chill out that he can use it whenever he wants.”
The Stanley Cup Victory Parade joyride has a lasting effect–on that day, the engine was supposed to participate in a political rally in support of Alexandria City councilman Willie Bailey.
So, when Kuley had to make the labor leadership choice of either helping to elect a councilmember devoted to working families or joy riding in a parade, he chose the parade and made no apologies about it.
He has also worked to scuttle the conversation about his decision, practically begging people to not comment on Facebook and to either message him privately or show up at a meeting he would control.
Kuley said that, “I did inform will [sic] Bailey and Alex Local of this once in a lifetime opportunity” as if a parade trumps critical political action, proving that his sense of values and judgment aren’t suspect, but rather totally absent.
Yesterday, he engaged in a rambling Facebook post where he said, “This Engine 2068 is yours, if you have an event – take it, if you have a contact with Nats – make it happen and you get first right of refusal, if you want it for a neighborhood 4th of July parade and place your little league team on it – it’s yours.” And, “by all means if you want to use the fire engine… take it. ”
That is the reckless statement of somebody who has been caught with their hand deep in the cookie jar who then turns and says, “Hey guys, help yourself, too.”
The Local would do well to tighten up the requirements for the use of the rig rather than Kuley’s notion of the other way around.
Here you have, in the starkest terms, a perfect example of Kuley’s labor ethics and leadership skills.
He would rather throw over a fellow union member advocating for working families to preen in a parade.
He’s an embarrassment and much worse is yet to come.