Friday, October 17, 2008

Matawan’s End of Days?

Are we witnessing Matawan Borough’s final days? Despite (or perhaps because of) having the highest tax rate in Monmouth County, Matawan is on course for financial ruin. After raising the budget by 13%, the borough still had a $160,000 shortfall that may yet increase before the year has ended. Mayor Buccellato called for across-the-board cuts but got nothing. Instead, he was left crowing about the two hundred bucks Matawan saves each week by closing borough hall on Fridays. Matawan is too small to survive as an independent municipality.

As the following table demonstrates, Matawan’s bigger sister is nearly double the borough’s size in every respect but one – Aberdeen’s tax levy is only 20% higher.

 AberdeenMatawanAberdeen / Matawan
Area (sq. miles)5.452.26241%
Population188488969210%
Residential Units70763780187%
2006 Net Valuation 847,374,000 430,170,000 197%
Municipal Tax Levy7,829,3376,376,999123%

According to Monmouth County’s published overview and economic statistics, Aberdeen isn’t only larger, but its per household income (based upon the 2000 census) is also 7% higher. Aberdeen’s outlook is brighter as well because it has far more undeveloped areas – the area around the train station, Anchor Glass, and Aberdeen Forge.

Matawan’s municipal tax rate is about 55% higher than Aberdeen’s. Yet, Matawan has a police station in disrepair, a dilapidated courtroom, a shuttered water plant, a history of late payments to municipal workers and the school district, and an inability to fully maintain its roads and sewer.

As for Main Street, it’s time to give up the ghost. The area needs a rehabilitated Main Street but the borough council clearly lacks the political will to make it a reality. Two years ago, Councilman Mullaney had pinned his hopes on C-Town. “"It will prove to be the best thing that has happened to downtown Matawan in I don't know how many years," Councilman Mullaney said. "It's phenomenal; it will certainly start the revitalization of downtown Matawan . . . The people of Matawan will be pleased. Not should be - will be." Well, we know how that turned out.

Meanwhile, Governor Corzine is determined to close all municipalities with a population below 10,000 by slashing their state aid and pushing them to save money through shared services; not a single municipality can survive without state financing.

As for merging Matawan and Aberdeen, Mayor Sobel has one question – What’s in it for us? However you define “us”, it’s a fair question. I believe the math and politics of a merger strongly favor both municipalities but Matawan has never tried to persuade Aberdeen of the benefits.

So, what now? I’d advise Matawan to seek a “government bailout”; pursue state incentives to entice Aberdeen to merge with Matawan and then sell, sell, sell. Bypass the town council and speak directly to the people - Matawan and Aberdeen can achieve far more as a single town. Do I believe that is about to happen? No. More likely, the borough will continue to decline, possibly skirt bankruptcy, and ultimately be forced by the state to merge with another municipality.

Now is the best time for Matawan and Aberdeen to merge. Any way you look at it, it’s a good deal for the people of Matawan and Aberdeen. >>> Read more!

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

It is quite obvious that from the vast number of and monies spent on political signs for this years Matawan election, that major investments have been made by Scudeiri Enterpirses to ensure the outcome. All done to ensure the election goes the way Vic and his co-conspirators need it to.

You see theres money in them thar train tracks. And all of Vic's land (and others right Bud and Kevin) around the train station.

The rumors have run rampant for years that Matawan was on the balls of its ass years ago even before Clifton was sent to the Freeholder slot, as the fair haired boy.

Apparently the words BORROWED TIME befit the Matawan financial leaderships decisions. Just look at the BS of the supposed savings to the taxpayers on this Fridays off milarckey. Yes milarckey is a word. It is a word similar to that of political shenanigans.

Matawan's leadership has claimed that they saved $3,000.00 over the majority of the summer. Yet they did not tell anyone the AC was broken in the ON POSITION and would not shut off. What savings? More lies from leadership. Then again this is NEW JERSEY.

Election day is 20 days away.

So


Vote or shut the hell up.

Middlesex Jim

matawan advocate said...

Aberdeener, Matawan has approached Aberdeen about shared services. Councilman Mike Cannon has stated at Matawan's Borough Council meeting that Aberdeen, when asked, told him they are not interested. Therefore, has Mayor Sobel forgotten or never told about it?

Wonder what your readers think about all those big signs for Malley/Bunyon? Also their placing signs on Matawan Borough and Monmouth County properties. Spoke with the Monmouth County Board of Elections and was told no signs of any kind (much less political) are allowed on County property.

Matawan's Public Works employees have been removing the signs from municipal properties at taxpayer expense. Unless the Matawan Democratic Party is going to reimburse the Borough. Afterall, we are working with a huge deficit
Fat chance!

Thanks for enlightening readers of your Blog of the financial difficulties in Matawan.

Anonymous said...

We have enough problems in Aberdeen, do we need to join with Matawan? They are having a lot of money problems and the last thing we need is to join with them at this moment. If they straightened things up first than joining services may not be a bad idea, but not at this time. If we feel leadership is a problem in Aberdeen now, what would happene if we joined together?

Anonymous said...

Bad Finances (MB) + Corrupt Leadership (AT) = Disaster!

Anonymous said...

Merge with Aberdeen. What a great idea. Let's bring lawsuit laden and fiscally irresponsible Matawan together with Aberdeen so they can destroy our town as well.

Typical liberal Robin Hood response to a self-created problem.

Let Matawan keep raising their taxes while the politicians tout their four day work weeks. Maybe they can jump on the federal government's bailout train. I hear that Obama is selling discounted tickets in front of the old C-Town.

Aberdeener said...

Matawan Advocate,

Matawan did approach Aberdeen regarding shared services but the question remains - what's in it for us? Mayor Sobel simply said the council discussed it and determined it wasn't in our best interest. I have no idea what the details were but if Matawan really wants to promote shared services, they should publicize the proposals through the newspapers or their website. Otherwise, they're beholden to Aberdeen's political interests.

KennyCB said...

Lets see join Matawan and Aberdeen. what would that give the taxpayers?

Just more leaders with self serving corrupt puppet masters to gouge the taxpayers and bear no responsibility or accountability for anything they do.

Sounds like a done deal for New Jersey's political elite. As far as Cannon and Soble they are letting Kauff and Scudeiri pull all the strings. Right Norm? Right Vic.

F both of you!

U C Brother said...

NEWS FLASH NEWS FLASH

ARTICLE BY KEN AITKEN EXPOSING THE CME MONEY PIT HAS BEEN PUBLISHED IN THE ASBURY PARK PRESS.

WAY TO GO KEN.

I IMAGINE THAT MAYOR (ANYTHING FOR CME AND NORMAN KAUFF MY FURHER) WILL NOT LIKE SEEING HIS NAME IN PRINT.

TOO F'N BAD MAYOR DAVID SOBLE.

MAYOR SOBLE IF YOU CAN'T DO THE CRIME. BUT YOU WILL DO TIME DAVE.

STOP WHINING YOU CORRUPT POLITICIAN

Aberdeener said...

Here's the link to Ken's letter.

Nice job, Ken.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Ken! I appreciate all you try to do for our town.

Anonymous said...

Anything on the new manager in Aberdeen? Let us know.

Middlesex Jim

Aberdeener said...

I'm holding my tongue until I've had a chance to meet with him.

BillMatNtv said...

By the way a discussion last night at a dinner I went to honoring Jimmy Lauro turned to politics very quickly. A good majority of those at our table were anti-Obama for reasons many of us are probably feeling ourselves.

One man said outright he could not vote for a man named Obama after 911. Another man said he was for McCain for his war record. The young lady who was another mans date put seemed to put it into perspective for most at the table.

She said that no matter who wins, we lose. But then she said that Obama has less true managerial experience than Sarah Palin, who has been crucified by the press, which upset her as a woman. Then she said that if real hands on experience was the only prerequisite, Obama fails on that, as he has had little if any real experience and has danced around a lot of major legislation to stay middle of the road for this election.

She said we do not need middle of the road. We need someone with guts and ability. John McCain was her choice. She was about 21 or so. So if we all think kids today are unsure and wild this one young lady made a lot of sense and was passionate and involved.

Do not get me wrong everyone knows the number of people publicly supporting Obama will change when the switch gets pulled in that booth when the curtain closes. Whether that be right or wrong is on each of us.

Experience counts and Obama lacks it. McCain is an insider but Obama just doesn't get my vote.

Anonymous said...

Big article on the upcoming Matawan election and candidates in the Asbury Park Press Local section.

How can the incumbents have the nerve to say they want to continue to help lead Matawan. Is there not a HUGE deficit they were a part of allowing to happen? Once again NO ACCOUNTABILITY.

Malley and Bunyon want to lead us still. Lead us where into takeover by the State of NJ. No thanks.

I am voting for Brady and Urbano.

Middlesex Jim

We are all Patriotic said...

Billmatntv - I'll take Colin Powell's opinion regarding Obama, Biden, McCain, and Palin over the miopic table you sat with at the dinner.

Obama has the vision and as a constitutional law professor has the ability to lead this country.

The comparison of Palin to Obama is nonsense -- leading a town smaller than Matawan and two years in a position where she has abused her power as Governor. There is a clear reason that she is not allowed to do press conferences or interviews - she is empty away from a script. She is married to a true terrorist (husband was member of a successionist party that she spoke to earlier this year). One daughter demonstrates that abstinence fails as sex education - and her oldest son cut the brake lines on a school bus, causing him to be kicked out of college. Her choice by McCain as VP demonstrated his lack of judgement in critical decision making ability. This was his first test as commander in chief and McCain failed.

McCain is a war hero who has embarrassed his history as a somewhat independent thinker with blind ambition to be President. He has had multiple campaign themes, economic programs depending on the day of the week, doesn't learn from history, and he is the one who can't run a campaign, much less a country as great as ours.

I would have hoped that our country has moved beyond the thinking that would cause someone to think they could judge someone by their name, race, or religion.

Yes,
Obama is Black - I am not
Obama is a Christian - I am not
Obama is steady - McCain is not
Obama has judgement - McCain does not

As much as I think that McCain is not the right person to lead this country - I would respect and honor his presidency if he won. This is a truly great country.

Anonymous said...

Aberdeen 5K on Sunday. I suggest we all wear "just say NO to CME" tee shirts.

Anonymous said...

Let us get back to the point at hand. The merger of Aberdeen and Matawan. This merger may not work in its entirty. However a merger of emergency services would benfit both towns. Police, fire and ems in Matawan in Matawan is a joke. The police department is dispatched through the county so their response times are horrible and the county sometimes doesnt even know if the call in even in Matawan but it may have a similar street name. In Aberdeen everything is dispatched locally thus decreasing response time and the dispatchers actually know where they are sending their officers. The fire department has had a broken ariel for years now because the boro doesnt have the money to fix or replace it. Aberdeen has a tower ladder that is only about 6yrs old and responds into Matawan on a regular basis anyway. And the first aid is an even bigger joke although thats the one thing that actually seems to be better in Matawan than in Aberdeen. If you own a scanner and have ever listened during the day neither town has much luck getting a rig in service. By merging these services both towns would benifit form an increased number of responders responding to an incident.

Anonymous said...

The Ladies Auxillary for the Matawan First Aid Squad is having a Bus Trip to Trump Plaza, Atlantic City on Sunday, October 26, 2008. Donation is $25.00 and you receive $25.00 in coins, $5.00 food coupon. For information contact Theresa at 732 566 8643.
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

All you need to know about the Matawan council race could be learned from the first mail pieces both sides sent out.

Fitzsimmons and Urbano sent out a piece with some biographical information and information on their priorities on one side, and some hits on their opponents on the other side- all fact based, nothing hysterical (to be honest a little boring).

The subject of Malley and Bunyons first piece? More spending and borrowing. No biographical information. As incumbents, no list of accomplishments to run on. No mention of the half million dollar budget deficit. Just a naked appeal for votes on Union Street and Orchard Street by promising to pave their streets.

What else do you need to know?

Aberdeener said...

Given Matawan's financial situation, I think Aberdeen would be reluctant to do any significant shared services. What happens when Matawan fails to pay their bills on time?

Orchard Street Mike said...

Pave Orchard Street? I couldn't see paving Orchard unless they tie in everyone's sump pumps to some sort of drainage system. In the winter it's all ice here, especially right near Stillwell.

matawan advocate said...

Orchard St. Mike, The Council still doesn't have a bond for the Road Program in Matawan. Maser Consulting has received a $300,000+ no bid award that Malley & Bunyon both voted yes to along with the Council. But all the Parks are getting nice new signs.

Priorities Council members are amuck. We need new people on Council who will support Mayor Buccellato.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Aberdeener for your help with publicizing the First Aid Bus Trip.

Theresa Paltridge

Anonymous said...

Sorry for being off topic-but does anyone know why the bonfire was canceled at the high school?

KennyCB said...

One would think that it may have been canceled due to windy conditions. Perhaps the Fire Dept. was responsible to make the call. All be it a little late for many who showed up only to be disappointed. Better safe than sorry though.

The latest question for a school function is in regards to the game with Long Branch scheduled for Halloween night. What genius in the school district failed to look at a calendar for that one?

By the way I have to say the number of signs all over Matawan and Aberdeen maskes the backers for Malley and Bunyon seems VERY DESPERATE. And I live in Aberdeen and think that. Mullaney is running himself ragged putting all of theses signs up all over the place, and forget about whose property they are on and who they will owe for that favor. No conflict right Bud?

Perhaps Mullaney has the same consulting agreement that Vinny Vinci got in Aberdeen. Thick as thieves these scum.

Anonymous said...

Dr O'Malley sent out an e-mail that the bonfire was cancelled since the fire dept. didn't issue the permit.
If you register at the school website, and request alerts on particular issues, you'll receive whatever e-mail notifications you sign up for.

Anonymous said...

Just to clear something up. District #1 fire company didnt issues the permit not District #2. They are two seperate companies that make up the Aberdeen Township Fire Department. District #1's "retired" Fire Official refused to issue the permit from what I understand. For what reason I dont know because it was not particularly windy that night, at least not windy enough to cancel the bonfire.

BillMatNtv said...

SOMEBODY PLEASE GET BUD MULLANEY AND HIS ILLEGAL MEXICANS A MAP TO KNOW WHERE MATAWAN BEGINS AND ENDS.

HE MUST THINK MATAWAN HAS EXPANDED ITS SIZE AND BOUNDARIES ALONG WITH THE SIZE OF THE BUDGET DEFICIT THE MATAWAN TAXPAYERS NOW FACE DUE TO IGNORANT LEADERSHIP.

POLITICAL SIGNS DO NOT NEED TO BE ONM PROPERTIES IN SURROUNDING COMMUNITIES.

I AGREE WITH A PREVIOUS POST. THE NUMBER OF SIGNS MALLEY AND BUNYON AND THEIR ILLEGALS HAVE PUT UP AROUND TOWN DOES LOOKS EXTREMELY DESPERATE.

TWO WEEKS TO GO.

VOTE OR SHUT THE HELL UP!

Anonymous said...

The Ciaglia clan owns a house or two adjacent to the highschool and that Ciaglia plays poker with the District 1 official. He likes to limit the traffic in his back yard. Vinny is also a district 1 guy. Connect the dots.

Anonymous said...

Aberdeen avoids shared services because they don't want to answer anyone's questions.

Alyssa Passeggio said...

Joey,

The idea of merging Matawan and Aberdeen is an interesting one. Both towns have positives and negatives, although it is no secret that Aberdeen is more financially stable at this point.

An even bigger obstacle than the willingness to merge, would be the logistics.

A merger would include all town and borough officials, police departments, fire departments and first aid. There would have to be cuts made and some serious reorganization, which could be an argument for doing it.

However, the politics to sort that type of thing out would probably drag the process out so long it may be too late. Matawan would have to make concessions to get Aberdeen on board for such a venture, and they can’t really afford to give anything at this point.

KennyCB said...

Looking over the agenda for tonights Aberdeen Council Meeting when I paid my water bill today. I noticed that there is a vote tonight for the 20%, which is the administrative fee to handle the paperwork for COAH. Does that go out to bid? Or is it just like C.M.E.? C.M.E. who routinely gets 20% just to watch others do all of the work? $2,000,000.00 road program and C.M.E. gets $400,000.00.

Aint New Jersey GREAT?

How much does Norman get?

So many questions and once again tonight Mayor Sobel will not give anything close to the truth to any question posed by the public.

Right Dave?

U C Brother said...

How coincidental is the fact that Aberdeen gets a COAH contract approval from Norms council just when other towns all over New Jersey are fighting the mandated COAH numbers from the state.

We all have to ask ourselves is Norman Kauff pushing this just before he checks out? Oops, I mean cashes out. You have to know Kauff is probably at all of these COAH meetings counting his monies under the table and personally guiding the fee schedules right next to his mouthpiece Attorneys, who are of course so faithful and beholding to their Norman Kauff.

After all the world revolves around that old codger. Is it not also suspicious that Kauff and Coren refused to allow condos or townhouses on the exact same Ciffelli property on Hwy. 34 for years? And now not so mysteriously Kauff gets to cash in and feed his crew.

Now is it also not just sooooooo convenient that now when the COAH rules would just so happen to have to be used to satisfy Aberdeen's COAH obligations, Norm jumps out of moth balls to get his piece of the Ciffelli pie once again.

Ciaglia and Ciffelli are real buddy buddies with the Kauff master general. Kauff and Coren always gave Ciffelli and the other part of the family, The Ciaglias, everything they needed for their real estate ventures. For a price of course. Right Norm? A big price over the years we can be sure.

This whole thing stinks like the swine that Kauff is. If it walks like a swine? If it looks like a swine? And if it smells like a swine, it's Norman Kauff.

F U Norman we know what you are doing. Enjoy it while it lasts Norman. I will fight these houses at the end of my road you can be damn sure. Why are they not going in Freneau Norman? Not enough money to use Woodfield for COAH?

Somebody check and see if Kauff held the meeting tonight in the parking lot of town hall. Norman likes negotiating with developers in parking lots. Right Norman?

Appreciate any updates on the council meeting tonight. Fill us in. Thank you.

KennyCB said...

Great job U C! I wish you would have called me before you put the Norman stuff on yesterday. You see I went out to Freehold yesterday and looked up the Freneau property ownership we talked about. I found some interesting items at the tax and registrars office.

Congrats on the laptop by the way as obviously you are staying in touch while you are away.

Give me a call when you get back.

Anonymous said...

UC and Kenny go celebrate your love for each other in private! We don't care what you two do, I bet neither of you were at the meeting last night, but both will be crowing about it again today.

U C Brother&KennyCB said...

Anonymous. Please ask yourself if it is our CONSTITUTIONALLY PROTECTED RIGHT TO DO SO. You idiot.

Have a nice day and keep being anonymous. Your parents would be so proud of how you hide in the dark and criticize us, yet you protect the elected officials who are stealing from your family, friends and neighbors and making Aberdeen unaffordable for many.

This COAH bullshit is just another excuse to have all of Kauff's friends and co-conspirators gouge the public in another manner. Sure they will tell all of us that the COAH and N J and Federal Affordable Housing mandates must be adhered to.

But at what cost and at whose profiting? Answer that genius.

Aberdeener said...

Alyssa,

I agree with your take. Aberdeen won't merge unless Matawan offers something to sweeten the pot. Ideally, they should seek state assistance to help the merger. More likely, they'll wait until they're on the verge of bankruptcy and lose control to the state.

Anonymous said...

One side note: KennyCB and UC Brother are not the same as anonymous? I have seen UC Brother do this before- attack...


anyway - The bonfire is just another political muff up. The fire official was a complete jerk and wanted the maintainance guys there at that second and they were on the premises and that was no good enough for the fire official who LOOKED FOR A REASON to cancel it.....
Funny about the comment about who he is friends with. That Ciaglia guy is constantly bitching about what goes on at the HS. Take a look at those trees that line the fence facing his back yard - put there to shut him up and get this - in hopes they grow large enough to block out the NEW LIGHTS>.....

Oh my god....... and Halloween night is REALLY dumb for a game as well as any and all Saturday night games. Every other HS IN NEW JERSEY who play at nights - play on Fridays. This Halloween could be the exception. But not at Matawan who for some reason play on Saturdays. DUMB DUMB DUMB

Anonymous said...

Yes CB & UC are the same as anonymous. It just goes to show you that they are idiots.

U C Brother and Kenny CB said...

Yes we are all idiots. We who shine the light on corruption by our elected officials. We who show how our tax dollars go to feed the scum and bottom feeders f our society who claim to be our elected officials and who work on our behalf.

So if we are thought to be idiots for doing so. We am proud to be a concerned and vocal idiots.

Just keep criticizing us idiots, as you pay and pay and pay.

KensMomsHusbandsGirlfriendJim said...

I admire you in some ways Aberdeener. Clearly, you are an educated and well-rounded, albeit misguided, individual. Yet you must suffer migraine level pain sifting through much of the bumpkin chatter that is written on this blog.

I see now that you have decided to allow free advertisements for social events as part of the arena for improving our quality of life. That is great! Just let us know what the boundaries are just in case the resident gang members and molesters are looking for some free advertising.

NsectionJoe said...

I WANT TO SCREAM ONCE AGAIN OVER THE AUDIO PROBLEMS ON SCHOOL BOARD MEETING BROADCASTS

Why is it with a $56,000,000.00 plus school budget can we not get these geniuses to be able to record and broadcast a school board meeting properly???????????

I am trying to watch another broadcast tonight and once again the volume on my TV is pushed all the way up and still I cannot hear it. That as well as the poor pick-up of comments by all present on the school board as well as the people coming to speak at the microphone on varying subjects, is for the umpteenth time deplorable.

Someone who will read this from the school board or any school employees should explain. Please tell me why we cannot accomplish this one thing. It is not only insulting to the taxpayers, it is happening far too often, keeping us THE TAXPAYERS AND PARENTS from being properly informed once again.

Every play, musical, and sporting event seems to come off without a hitch. But the single most important informative broadcast presented on the school TV channel is once again and repeatedly not understandable.

With all of the money dumped into the audio and video department, one would think that a broadcast of this importance would not be the one so problematic on a constant basis. It is insulting.
Someone from the district needs to explain this one to me.

I will be calling Dr. O'Malley to register my dissatisfaction on this continual problem. With all of the layoffs happening all around us, perhaps we can get this problem solved and put someone in place that can get this problem solved once and for all, and take the proper steps to stop any such problem from ever happening again.

The public sends enough money to not be so ill informed or insulted over and over again.

atlantic ave said...

I am sorry but I have to admit that the post 2 above is absolutely hilarious!!!!!!!!! at least the name....

Aberdeener, I have to admit that I may not agree with everything, you do a great job in opening the eyes of those in your community. But, as I have read on here before, if no one shows up at BOE meetings and especially TOWN COUNCIL meetings, this is all for naught.

Who is up for election in the town council and BOE (both town) this upcoming year?

Aberdeener said...

From the school board - Barbato, Demarest, and Donaghue. In town council, it's Sobel, Perry, and Raymond.

I don't know yet who is running for re-election but I've got a good idea who probably won't.

As for NsectionJoe, the administration is aware of the sound problem and working on it. Unfortunately, I don't think they're aware that the software exists to increase the volume. I know because I've often had to pump up the volume in my professional life.

Maybe they could teach volume and sound controls in their TV class.

Anonymous said...

No, "Ken I love JD" and "U don't C this brother doing anything" are idiots because you cry and complain, but show up to neither the BOE or town council meetings. I hear you say how much you are doing, but crying on a blog gets nothing done. PS, if you think you are not anonymous you are really sad. What are we to take from those silly blogger names? Ken, there must be more than 1 of you in Cliffwood Beach and UC could be anyone? Give us a break and what light have you shined on us? The two of you have done nothing and I am sure will continue to do nothing.

Mr Know It All said...

I'm surprised that you Joey, as a Republican, would cry to other towns for help. That's a form of socialism. Bailouts always end up bad. What is really needed are people in the town's counsel that can get the job done.

Anonymous said...

The Merge - weather we like it or not or choose to believe it or not, the towns will eventually have to merge. The biggest expense we share is the School Tax Levy not the municipal or county tax.

If one municipality will be unable to pay its fare share of the school tax levy because the state has pull its aid, who do you think will have to pick it up? We are more intertwined than anyone is willing to admit. Hello....are we just going to continue to stick our heads in the sand and believe that the problem will go away or are we finally going to face the music and realize that "home rule" does not work in a world economy. What is needed are less municipal administrators, less manages, less red tape, less taxes, and finally more people willing to speak their minds and tell the politicians that they will no longer support their fat over padded budgets which rewards its employees fringe benefits that private sector workers no longer get because their employers can no longer afford it or they too will be out of business.

Anonymous said...

We also need to carry that same idea to the board of education and that bloated budget. The people need to stand up and tell them we will no longer support these unreasonable union demands in this economy, and not be silent like the last year in which the taxpayer lost again.