Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Bogage is Back

Ellen Bogage, erstwhile Director of Government and Community Affairs for Comcast of Montgomery County was saluted in this week's MC Gazette.

The big news? Bogage has become chair of the Committee for Montgomery. According to the article, the CfM is a coalition of county leaders from business, labor, education, civic and community organizations. One such member: Comcast.

What I found more interesting from reading the article - Ellen has formed her own consulting business. The only reported client: Comcast.

Could the Committee of Montgomery simply be a strategy to overpower the voice of citizens at county hearings? By organizing businesses and non-business associations, that would make a very powerful voice - even more powerful than the MC Chamber of Commerce (on which Ellen serves as Vice-Chair of Legislative Affairs) or the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce which had officers testify at Comcast hearings with pro-Comcast opinions while not revealing their affiliations with Comcast. As a visit to their website will reveal, Comcast is a major sponsor of the BCCCC.

As CfM Chair, Bogage is quoted saying that "We don't take a public position on an issue unless 85 percent of board members agree." That's a very high percentage, yes, but on the other hand, it leaves enough wiggle room that voices representing non-business concerns could be edged out. But that may not even be an issue since only the board participates in votes, not the full committee. It will be interesting to see the board - should it ever be made public (Google reports no website at this time) - and what percentage is incestuously related by Comcast business concerns.

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