City Manager Ed Augustus’ Office Defends Paying $1,500 For RBG’s Poetry Slam Vacation To Oakland

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The other day we wrote about the ridiculous $1,500 check that the city of Worcester wrote to Poetry Slam Inc, a Billerica agency which has NOT filed it’s 2014 paperwork, and acts as the Fiscal Agent for Robert Blackwell-Gibbs so he can fly to Oakland for a poetry rap battle on the taxpayer’s dime. It seemed like a pretty clear cut case of poor allocation of resources by our local government. Yet out of the woodworks appeared Tracy Novick to defend it, claiming the money was part of an arts grant, therefore it was OK that we were paying for a violent criminal to fly across the country for free.

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Anyway, Councilors Gary Rosen and Mike Gaffney, who apparently are the ONLY two people on the City Council looking out for the taxpayers, wrote to the City Manager demanding to know what was up with that check. Here is Rosen’s bad ass email:

Hi, Mr. Manager, I just want to let you know that several constituents in beautiful District 5 are outraged (yes, the correct word) that the city would provide any funds (even one’s from the state lottery and designated for promotion of the arts)  to support sending RGB to Oakland to participate in a poetry slam. They see RGB as a nasty and unscrupulous (even criminal) individual. They suggest that the money could be better spent on talented students, teams and others who plan to travel/perform and who contribute to Worcester in a positive way. Thanks,  Gary 

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LOL. I love how RBG is referred to as “RBG” in emails to the City Manager now. No need for full names. We all know who it’s referring to.

Gary Rosen doesn’t read Turtleboy Sports very much from what we’ve heard, and he’s generally not an “internet” guy, as he has no Facebook page, a bootleg website, and more than likely types using the hunt and peck method. So he’s finding out about RBG and all this Mosaic stuff about 7 or 8 months after everyone else, and he’s reacting the way we all did back in December. The Revolution spreads.

But he’s reacting EXACTLY how an elected official who represents the will of the people should react to such gross corruption. There’s a million and one different ways that money could’ve been spent on the arts. If could’ve gone to Burncoat’s underfunded music program, or paid for a concert at Elm Park that everyone could enjoy. But instead it went to three grown adults, one of which blocked two public ways and refuses to promise he won’t do it again in the future, so they could fly across the country and participate in a hobby. Because that’s all this is. It’s a fucking hobby for adults.


How can the City Manager’s officer justify this? Well, here’s the response from Worcester’s “Chief Development Officer” Mike Traynor:

From: Traynor, Michael E.
Sent: Friday, August 14, 2015 4:40 PM
To: cmworc
Subject: Poetry Slam, Inc.
Mr. Manager, The $1,500.00 check disbursed to Poetry Slam, Inc. on August 12, 2015 WAS NOT related to any poetry slam event in Oakland, California.

The Worcester Arts Council allocates funds received from the Massachusetts Cultural Commission on an annual basis. Each year WAC received applications for grants paid from that allocation (the 2016 grant application period began yesterday and closes October 15, 2015). The above payment relates to the 2015 grant awards, which were announced at an event at the Compass Lounge on May 7, 2015.

One of the 2015 grant recipients was the Seven Hills Poetry Slam Collective, submitted by Elizabeth Heath. In her application, it states that Poetry Slam, Inc. a 501c3 Non-Profit would serve as fiscal sponsor and agent (the applicant is not a legal entity so it would need a fiscal agent).

In its application, the Seven Hills Poetry Slam Collective identified its event as a poetry slam occurring the first Sunday of every month to be held at the Sahara Restaurant on Highland Street, Worcester. The poetry slams are open, public events; meaning anyone may participate. However, when applying for a grant, the applicant must demonstrate that it has a letter of commitment for the venue and, in this case, letters of commitment from poets who would participate.

Per the requirements of the grant program, any funded event must occur in the city and all disbursements are reimbursements. Thus, the $1,500.00 check that was issued to Poetry Slam, Inc. on Wednesday was for expenses previously incurred (e.g., payments to the poets, etc.) which would have been supported by receipts totaling $1,500.00.

Here is a link that describes the event for 7HillsSlam: http://www.poetryslam.com/slam/7hillsslam-worcester-ma

I further linked through to the actual website and read that the August 2nd event was called “Team Sendoff,” however as stated above, the WAC funds reimbursed for the actual poetry slam at the Sahara Restaurant that night. The city has no legal authority to tell 7Hills that it cannot fundraise for another event during the poetry slam. The grant funds support local poetry slams and a local poetry slam indeed took place on August 2nd, whatever else occurred is extraneous to the grant program and the city’s payment of the $1,500.00.

Please let me know if you have any further questions regarding this matter.


Michael E. Traynor, Esq.

Chief Development Officer

Executive Office of Economic Development

City Hall, Rm. 402

So let me get this straight. The $1,500 didn’t pay for RBG’s plane ticket, it paid for the “sendoff” for RBG at the Sahara Restaurant two weeks ago? Well then, why didn’t you just say so? That seems like a perfectly legitimate way for the government to distribute arts funding!!


Do you see the pattern here yet? A bunch of people form a “non-profit” end throw the word “Collective” in there to make it sound like it’s actually helping the community. But at the end of the day it’s just a special interests group that forms for the sole purpose of applying for government giveaway grants. It’s brilliant really, and it’s a shame it took a boy on a turtle for this stuff to become public.

For the record, Michael Traynor was handpicked by Ed Augustus for his position as “Executive Officer of Economic Development”:

“I am delighted to continue Worcester’s positive economic momentum by naming Mike Traynor as the city’s permanent chief development officer,” Mr. Augustus said in a statement. “Mike is a talented negotiator with a wealth of experience and strong relationships with all the key players in the region and I’m sure he’ll be a great success.”

Yea, he seems very talented to me. He writes checks to the first “non-profit” from Billerica that applies for a grant, regardless of whether or not they have filed as a business entity:

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Very talented stuff right there. So few people in our society possess these unique skills of dances with words. You can call it whatever you wanna call it, but the bottom line is the city of Worcester paid $1,500 out to an organization that funds RBG’s poetry hobby. Whether that paid for his drinks at the Sahara Restaurant or his trip to Oakland is irrelevant.

Hey, here’s an idea – why don’t grown men and women pay their own way for their hobby? I like to play softball, so I guess that means I should have the city pay for some new gloves and equipment for my slow pitch softball team.

Here’s the problem – we need to get rid of fiscal agents. In case you haven’t seen the pattern here, degenerates like RBG get all of their money from “non-profits” acting as “fiscal agents” because the city would never be dumb enough to write a check directly to them. It’s a scam. The money always ends up in the same place – in the pockets of the hippies.

Once Mike Gaffney is Mayor in five months let’s hope he proposes a motion to make fiscal agents a thing of the past. They are clearly nothing but fronts for scumbags who want to take money away from children. Ask the South High Football team. They had to beg for money on a GoFundMe for the basics this year. Luckily Turtleboy Nation came through and raised over $10K in 24 hours. Because SOMEONE in this city has to look out for the kids instead of the hippies, and it sure isn’t gonna be Joe Petty or Fast Eddy.

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47 Comment(s)
    August 17, 2015 at 9:38 am

    I’ll cough up 750 for a one way!

  • August 16, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    Please. Please, please? Pretty please? Stop calling RGB (Really Big Gut) a poet. This is poetry:

    “There is shadow under this red rock,
    (Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
    And I will show you something different from either
    Your shadow at morning striding behind you
    Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
    I will show you fear in a handful of dust.”

    T.S. Eliot
    “The Wasteland”

    This ain’t poetry:

    “I will spit on your mother and skull fuck your father
    while you look on and weep
    If I give you my home address would you promise to
    show up with a gun so I could legally gut and skin you?”

    Thank you.

    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 6:56 pm

      that’s gay

      • August 18, 2015 at 9:15 am

        ^^^Please don’t feed the Trolls.^^^

    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 6:57 pm

      and so are you

      • Nervous Nelly
        August 17, 2015 at 5:29 am

        And you are a perfect example of what this country is becoming; ignorant. You’re language is disgusting, your opinions don’t even make sense, and you’re making fun of people for voicing their opinions on the internet however, aren’t you doing the exact same thing? You are the worst type of hypocrite- a stupid one.

        • helterskelter
          August 17, 2015 at 12:52 pm

          you just summed up the posts in this blog! nerd

      • Worried in Worcester
        August 17, 2015 at 9:17 am

        You are a fool

  • nick
    August 16, 2015 at 7:54 am

    I believe we ought to form the TurtleBoy Collective. How much flowed from the 501c3 “fiscal agent” to Seven Hills Poetry Slam Collective and of that amount how was it spent and on what will be anyone’s guess. Since they “suggest” a donation between $10 to $20 at some of the 6 events they have had at the sahara this year it’s get’s murky. One thing that isn’t murky however is one of Slam’s Stated missions;

    Who organizes slams?
    Slams are typically organized by poets interested in cultivating poetry in their communities. The vast majority work on a volunteer basis, and the price of admission typically goes toward either keeping the show running or toward special projects, like funding a slam team’s trip to the annual National Poetry Slam.

    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 6:59 pm

      u jealous

      • nick
        August 17, 2015 at 7:52 am

        Sure am about trolls like you and lowlifes like rbg and wandas who scam the system while the rest of us work for a living.

        • helterskelter
          August 17, 2015 at 12:51 pm

          I have a full time job n I’m still laughing at yall for being butthurt

  • helterskelter
    August 16, 2015 at 7:50 am

    ‘I’m so butthurt by what other people do I need to write a blog about it’
    lil bitchboy

    • Wabbitt
      August 16, 2015 at 4:57 pm

      “I’m so butthurt about some disagreeing with me that I’m going to make passive aggressive comments on their blog.”

      • helterskelter
        August 16, 2015 at 6:10 pm

        lol exactly what this website is based upon, being sad and crying that other people have opinions LOL

      • helterskelter
        August 16, 2015 at 6:11 pm

        no passive aggressiveness here, turtle boy a lil bitch

      • helterskelter
        August 16, 2015 at 6:12 pm

        no passive aggressiveness here, turtle boy a straight up pussy

        • RJ
          August 16, 2015 at 7:02 pm

          Turtle boy is at least doing something. You? Defending a loser doing loser things on a blog that you, for some reason, consider beneath you. Who’s the bitch now?

          • helterskelter
            August 16, 2015 at 7:05 pm

            ain’t defending nobody but calling all yall interned needs basement boys LOL

          • helterskelter
            August 16, 2015 at 7:06 pm

            All turtle boy doin is jerkin himself

          • RJ
            August 16, 2015 at 7:09 pm

            It must be sad being you 🙁

            If you need to cry, you go ahead and you cry. I’ll cry with you.

          • helterskelter
            August 17, 2015 at 12:50 pm

            this whole blog is full crybabies n baby boys living with their mama

  • RJ
    August 16, 2015 at 6:34 am

    If this for “paying the poets for past work” then yeah, they’re absolutely funding his trip to Oakland. Why would you pay someone for something they’ll do for FREE? These guys just want a microphone and an audience. They’d perform at a daycare if someone would let them. We’re actually paying idiots to stand in front of other idiots and perform….slam poetry? This is what we, as a society, have been reduced to?

  • nick
    August 16, 2015 at 5:11 am

    speaking of a “pip” how does an organization as listed on the check register not even based in Worcester receive any monies? I’d like to think that there are equally deserving Worcester based cultural groups. Last annual meeting Unit C in lowell. Bahahaha…

    Federal Employer Identification Number: 001087837 (must be 9 digits)
    Filing for November 1, 2013
    In compliance with the requirements of Section 26A of Chapter one hundred and eighty (180) of the General Laws:
    1. Exact name of the corporation: POETRY SLAM, INC.
    2. Location of its principal office: No. and Street: 60 BILLERICA ST., UNIT C City or Town: LOWELL State: MA Zip: 01852 Country: USA
    3. DATE OF THE LAST ANNUAL MEETING: 08/16/2013 (mm/dd/yyyy) (if none leave blank)
    4. State the names and street addresses of all officers, including all the directors of the corporation, and the date on which the term of office of each expires:
    Title Individual Name First, Middle, Last, Suffix
    Address (no PO Box) Address, City or Town, State, Zip Code
    Expiration of Term




    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 7:00 pm

      jealousy the cousin of greed

      • TAXPAYER
        August 17, 2015 at 9:45 am

        You think that me wanting to know where my taxes go is jealousy? Really? That’s a quarter of my tax bill. Real Estate taxes are nearly $500 a month added on to my mortgage.

        • helterskelter
          August 17, 2015 at 12:48 pm

          cry baby

  • nick
    August 16, 2015 at 4:50 am

    So it’s really a smoke screen for Fast Eddy to nominate RBG as Worcester’s Poet Laureate? Seems even Fast Eddy at the Poetry Pop Up In aril began with a reading a poem of his choosing. I muse that it was, “I’m da city manager and you ain’t, and I got the money and I dictate. Plan e gave me da power and not those council hacks, Stick with Fast Eddy as I got cha back!”.

    After all The Poetry Pop-Up was sponsored by the city and the Worcester Cultural Coalition, in partnership with Worcester Public Schools, the Worcester County Poetry Association and the Seven Hills Poetry Slam Collective.

    Cultural Grant Requests for reimbursement must be accompanied by invoices, and/or canceled checks, receipts and/or contracts that document programming expenses as proposed and approved in the grant. I’ll bet this evaluation form for the $1500 must be a pip;
    1. Brief project description:
    2. Attach budget showing use of Worcester Arts Council grant funds:
    3. Attach any printed, web, or promotional piece listing Worcester Arts Council grant sponsorship:
    4. Describe results of the project; attach news articles evaluating the work:
    5. Describe how project or event enhanced the cultural life of the community:
    6. Describe any problems with the project and lessons learned for future improvement:
    7. List dates, titles, and amounts of previous grants from the Worcester Arts Council or Massachusetts Cultural Council:

  • P
    August 15, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    TBS, muckraker. Great journalism.

  • L
    August 15, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    PATHETIC to constantly see these scumbags make out.. This fool wreaks havoc with his bullshit road blocks & the city awards him.. RIDICULOUS.. TBS keep up the good work on saying it like it is.. TBS would be a great vp for trump

    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 7:01 pm

      u mad LOL

  • Maggie the Cat
    August 15, 2015 at 7:53 pm

    Maybe the airline is charging more based on RBG’s enormous weight or because he’ll take up two seats.. Or maybe, and I like this even better, the city is paying RBG to not come back!

    • Wabbitt
      August 15, 2015 at 8:48 pm

      A lagomorph can dream.

  • What the heck?
    August 15, 2015 at 7:46 pm

    Rather strange that the ever outspoken RBG and his gaggle of merry men have not spoken out in his defense!

  • Nervous Nelly
    August 15, 2015 at 7:45 pm

    It’s absolute insanity- true insanity. Where do we find out who the other recipients were???

  • Wabbitt
    August 15, 2015 at 7:10 pm

    So can I create a non-profit, not file any paperwork, and act as the fiscal agent? Then use the money to buy a new, state of the art gaming computer to play World of Warcraft on? Because that’s my hobby and apparently the city of Worcester is giving away free money now.

    Nope… wait… I forgot – I’m white! Let me just eat a big bowl of Privilege Flakes and magically conjure up the money!

    • A Guy
      August 15, 2015 at 8:08 pm

      That check would’ve bought a hundred months on WoW. And a magical hundred months it would be

      • Wabbitt
        August 15, 2015 at 8:47 pm

        115 months, since I’m on the plan where you pay every six months. So it works out to $12.99 a month.

        But yes, ordinarily you’d be right.

        • helterskelter
          August 16, 2015 at 7:03 pm

          guy grew up in his moms basement

  • Publius
    August 15, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    TBS seems to be only media doing investigative journalism

    • marco shark
      August 15, 2015 at 8:17 pm

      sam and lindsey from tng posted a lot of ice cream pics, come on!

  • danny
    August 15, 2015 at 6:57 pm


    • helterskelter
      August 16, 2015 at 7:02 pm

      cause it gets yall riled up

  • Steep Gage
    August 15, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    RBG; the poet laureate of Highland Street

  • Samuel Burnside
    August 15, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    $1,500???? How many beers can RBG drink? I mean, I know he’s a big boy, but $1,500?????

  • great googglymooggly
    August 15, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    LOL wut?

  • GoneWest
    August 15, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Yeah but the kibbi at Sahara is undeniable

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