Posted by: Dawn Powell | December 22, 2011

Town Board – 12/14/11

Bob’s hysterical historical last meeting of 2011 – December 14, 2011

 When the holiday stress gets to you, Bob-O has provided great comic relief.  Just turn on the beginning or the end of the Town Board meeting.  Really, it’s great.  Bob explains to you (completely deadpan) how appointing one of his boys is the apolitical thing for the board to do.  Let’s keep politics out of this, but give me my Republican majority on the board.  He says it a few times, a few ways.  “I’m gonna put aside party issues.” “Let’s take the politics out of this.”  I’m not being political.  I wish we didn’t have politics.  It’s hysterical.  He even tried a little holiday guilt.  It’s what the voters would want.  Nah…it’s what Bob wants.

 We don’t really know what the voters would want.  The circumstances have now changed.  There was a “failure to elect,” like when a motion fails, it fails.  This failed, and now we should do something new.

 Bob C. sang for his supper and quoted Ed Koch, “The voters have spoken, and now the people must suffer.”  Something about the “vagaries of election law.”  It didn’t seem so vague to me.   He said,“It’s not about me.”  No, then why not just step aside?

 To make it even funnier, there were a few choreographed Republicans in sheeps’ clothing to reiterate the point.  We should all do what Bob wants.  There was no disclosure.  They didn’t say that they were on the Republican committee, or that they were Bob-O supporters, and that protecting the status quo was the point.

 Dan Ricci made a rare appearance, and pontificated about choosing one of the two Republicans who ran, or him, that is Dan, whichever came first.  Now that wouldn’t be a political choice, would it?

 The ever charming Republican, Dario Gristina, with all that land off Barger Street, where he wanted to put a solar farm on the north facing slopes – he thinks that everyone should do what Bob wants.  I am wondering these days if that $150K gift from the state for hydroponics is for Dario.  Is Hudson Valley Produce Farms, formed in April of this year, his corporation?  For an acre greenhouse on that beautiful hill and the steep road? Or ten of them on 10 acres.  Hmmmmm……

 Were their comments scripted and rehearsed or just the result of an email discussion?  FOIL those emails! 

 There wasn’t equal time for Democrats or other people.  There never is.   But SamO added his two cents.  He thinks they should do what the county did, and appoint someone who “has experience” and will not run in November.  I think that appointing Paul as CE without a possibility of running was quite political.  Perhaps SamO wants Priscilla?  He didn’t say.

 Bob thinks that the choice should be made between his two choices with a coin toss.  Perhaps he was the anonymous source for the lohud coin toss rumor.  Bob C. suggested paint ball at Dawn.  Another prominent resident suggested a duel.  Bill Zutt was going to talk to them in the backroom about why he believes that the position should be filled with one of Bob’s boys, in yet another improperly announced executive session about some unspecified litigation.  Just who are we suing?

 Okay, Bob-O, I’ll take you at your word.  Do the apolitical thing, and choose either Patty or me!  It would certainly be exciting.  Otherwise it will seem like a political machination, albeit smoothly delivered.  Or choose Sam D!  He has experience.

 Leaving the vacancy until the voters decide does not mean a stalemate.  It means working with the other board members.  Bob-O, for his many positive qualities, does not do much of that, but perhaps he can learn.

 A good place to start working with others would be to advertise the positions open for the reorganization meeting in January.  Of course, it is a bit late.  And we could, of course, start posting all job openings on the website, and have a real process for employment. 

 So the openings for volunteer positions:  Every year, there is one position open for the Planning Board, Zoning Board, Ethics Board, Parks and Rec Commission, Board of Assessment Review as well as the ad hocs on the Planning and Zoning Boards, and all Chairs.  In addition, Bob-O doesn’t do so well with volunteerism, so there are lots of openings. There has been no ad hoc on the zoning board for a long time, no full compliment for the Board of Assessment Review.  There is room on the arts commission, on the conservation commission, on the architectural review board. There are plenty of volunteer opportunities if you are interested.  Send a letter of intent to the board members if you are.

 Regarding Lake Peekskill, the community center roof is going to cost $13,900.  They asked several contractors for prices.  I’m pretty sure that’s not the same as going out to bid.  The LP district pays for that, although none of the events held there are for LP residents, and none of the other groups who use the center bother to kick in any revenue.  It’s a lousy deal for the community.  The lake is being lowered now and no one is sure why.  Ted says he does not understand the CSLAP reports on the lake testing.  We would be happy to explain them to you.

 And in the same theme of not going out to bid, they are going to pay for an emergency repair at the highway garage without bids.  They hired 2 new men.

 The Town Board has appointed Larry Cobb as Highway Superintendent at the work session and authorized paying him at this meeting, but he is not being sworn in until after the 1st, and it is a public office,…… huh? Isn’t the swearing in supposed to come before payment with a public office?

 SamO says the county is going to auction the property at the sensitive juncture of the Oscawana and Peekskill Hollow Creek in May.  Will there be restrictions, or will we be in the same mess $1million later?  Will we be surprised by the buyer? Someone asked me what was the difference between that parcel and the Ingersoll house.  I don’t have an answer.

 The TB passed a cost of living increase for the children’s center employees.  They hired personnel for Parks and Rec without reading any of it publicly.  They renewed a BAN (loan) for highway department equipment for $143k.

 They talked about the Nathan property the wetlands and cemetery.  We have been through this before.  There’s a whole body of law that covers cemeteries.

 Bob assured Wendy that he will find a place for solar panels.

 They have the dam emergency plans for Roaring Brook and Lake Peekskill.  The town owns the LP dam, but they will shaft the district for the fee.  They probably already have. 

 They will pay $300/month for a water operator for Mill Ponds.

 Tom Lannon explained how to sign in to the NY Alert system at  Jackie is going to help people do it at the senior center and the library.  Well played politics and public service, unlike the vacancy politicking.

 Adopt cats.  Buy bagels.  Save sea turtles.



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