Posted by: Dawn Powell | June 23, 2016

The Taxpayers’ Dime

I got a letter from the Town Supervisor’s office today.  It was a survey for the Lake Peekskill district about whether or not to pursue a 5 year septic maintenance  law.  While I have no objection to our town officials actually asking our opinion about issues, I am wondering if Sam O paid for this survey or the Lake Peekskill Civic Association.  The letter attached to the survey says that this topic came up in the last civic association meeting, and Sam O was wondering if there would be community support for this.  Mr. O religiously attends civic association meetings, while simultaneously neglecting the district.  The district is not the civic association and the civic association is not the district, and they cannot make decisions for each other, or expend funds for each other.  If this is a personal mission of Mr. O’s, or a project of the association, that is fine, but if my tax dollars were expended without discussion or approval, then that seems much like fraud to me. How much did this little letter cost us and who approved the expense?

Unfortunately, in order to see if this was discussed at the last town board meeting, I had to watch the last excruciating town board meeting.  It was not discussed.

As far as smoking in the park, I thought it had already been taken care of by state law and the Board of Health, but I am against it.  I do understand that Patty feels that it is an infringement of yet another legal civil liberty, but I do know people with breathing issues, as well as children, so I think it should not be allowed.  That, however, is not my point.  When Tom Carano got up to make his point, there was no need to make a remark about Patty Villanova.  You can just disagree with someone’s point.  The town board should always respond to gratuitous personal attacks.  Really unnecessary.

Sam O said that the community wants this and Steve said how would you know. Steve is right. These things seem to come from nothing, and none of them talks to the community.

Like the building in the town park –  $100k from this fund that just sits there?  Parks and Rec has money to burn, and it won’t cost you anything.  I’ve got a bridge to sell you.  There is no such fund that just sits there.  The taxpayers are paying for this.  And it is too much money to spend on something that only the commission wants.  Instead of spending $100k on the architect and even talking about a $2-3 million dollar building, ask the people what they want. Instead of spending vast sums because the commission wants to, tell the taxpayers the truth. Most of the community probably doesn’t know there is a parks and recreation commission. They are mentioned at the reorganization meeting, and their function in the town code is very different from their actual function. It is time for a change.

The contract with Catholic Charities that was glossed over is posted on the town website. When Sam O was running, he said that they needed to rethink the day camp, but when signing the contract, no one even mentioned the amount. The contract for the property for the summer camp is $77,390. Wendy says we do it every year, so I guess that’s it, we just keep going around in the same circle.

As for conflicts of interest, I think it was the Town of Greenburgh that passed a law that only one member of a family can work for the town. Let’s do that. Then, we’re done.

And the 3 minute thing, really? Vote on everything. Don’t ever tell us you don’t have to vote. There were 4 people in attendance at that meeting and you think you have to limit speech, and you, Sam, take up most of the time?


Responses

  1. Two points.

    Tom Carano also belittled Dan Vera at the meeting held to discuss changing the library’s funding arrangements. Makes me believe that Carano didn’t think his argument was persuasive, so he had to disparage Vera.

    Leading up to the election, Sam had a website (http://samoliverio.com) that described, in some detail, his political agenda. Soon after Sam was elected, the website became inactive. You can still view it via Wayback Machine (archived version). NOWHERE on that website will you find any mention of the need for a rec building or any of the other proposals he has advanced since taking office (and which he is now claiming he discussed during the campaign). On that website he does claim that he will not increase the tax burden on town residents.

    Whistling Willle

    • He’d better get started on that no tax increase part pretty soon. I bet a committee of you, me, Patty, and Dan could reduce them.

    • Item #4 – He says he believes in it. I am not sure what that means or how that factors in with low taxes, which he also says he believes in. And I don’t understand why the board approved a $100k expenditure on the basis of just about nothing. This whole bond anticipation note and continuous renewals seems like such a scam. Government loans are usually cheap and it makes sense to include borrowing in the financial planning, but let’s not pretend that none of this costs anything or that there is no impact upon the taxpayers. And I also don’t understand exactly what this building is for. It certainly isn’t for most of us.

  2. Postscript: Sam’s website (http://samoliverio.com) is again up and running. I will be interested in comparing the archived version with the current version to see whether there has been any post-election re-writing of history.

    Whistling Willie

    • Was #4 not in the old version as it is now?

  3. Very interesting. If you look at a pre-election version of Sam’s website (https://web.archive.org/web/20141104001653/http://www.samoliverio.com/) you see no mention of a rec center. If you look at the current version of the website (http://samoliverio.com), you do see his advocacy for a rec center.

    Whistling Willie

    • Okay, I am caught up now. Does he mean to be pretending that it was there all along? Thanks for keeping track of that.

  4. Forget about what Sam says- there used to be a saying around town, how can you tell when Sam is lying? When is lips are moving.

    This man is worse than Tendy and now his only claim to fame, that he is going to listen and talk to people, just went down the toilet.

    We are back to Gestapo-ville with the 3 minute speech limit and general clamp down on discussion.

    Everything is being done in the back room. Not one of the 4 a-holes on the board is good for anything that I can see, except taking up space in the room.

    I am so sick of having to fight for even the smallest concession that isn’t even a concession but just reasonably good customer service. Dawn is right about town employees. I am going to have to go back and pursue the issue of Kelly Howard, daughter of Sherry Howard, who has had a $12,000 a year “permanent” job for so many years. at the Historical Society museum. Since when is that a permanent job? Why isn’t there some kind of turn over like there used to be in years past? Why do we have to pay her damn salary anyway?

    I wonder if Sherry and other town employees are still on the board of the Historical Society so they can vote to keep Kelly. I was going to ask these questions but Sam shut me down. That is going to be the last time. I swear.

  5. Regarding the secretive and phantom like Parks & Rec Commission- I have some pages of their minutes regarding the expenditure of over a million dollars + for the new rec center. If you think the sky’s the limit TB members are delusional, Phil Keating & Co. are living in an alt universe completely. How is that maybe 3 people who meet secretly in a back room somewhere are making these kinds of DECISIONS?? WHO ELECTED THESE CREEPS ANYWAY? This is gross malfeasance and negligence on the part of the town board.

    WHEN ARE THE PEOPLE OF PUT VALLEY GOING TO PUT DOWN THEIR DEVICES AND WAKE THE HELL UP?? DO YOU ACTUALLY HAVE TO LOSE YOUR HOME BEFORE YOU GET THE IDEA THAT SOMETHING STINKS IN THIS TOWN?

  6. Under Tendy, in an attempt to minimize feedback from residents, the public comment portion of the Town Board meetings was moved to the end of the session. Thus, citizens were allowed to weigh in, but only after the Town Board had acted. Since the following day is a workday and since commenting was viewed as an exercise in futility, the number of people who participated dwindled to just a few.

    Now, in an attempt to minimize feedback even further, Oliverio wishes to limit comments to just three minutes. Plus, sarcastic comments from Mackay and interjected remarks from Oliverio take up some of that time.

    With the Town Board about to embark on a multi-million dollar spending spree for a rec center, it will be interesting to see whether there is any pushback from residents.

    Whistling Willie

  7. Willie-

    There will be no pushback from the residents, that I can assure you.

    They are too busy enjoying the beautiful summer weather and taking advantage of the little extra money they have in their pockets because they’re not paying heating bills. So life is good for the vast majority of PV residents.

    I think that in this entire town of 11,000 or so residents, there are probably not even 10% or 110 people who give a damn about local politics. If it is 5% or 55 people I would be shocked.

    People either do not care or they’re too afraid to say anything, especially if they have kids in the school district.

    We are now officially in the tax & spend whirlwind and there will be no stopping it. The school board and town board are composed of sleazy, incompetent, lazy, stupid individuals whose only concerned is the money they make and the power they have. There is not one of them who will stand up for what’s right. They have no morals or conscience. In order to get anything done, you have to have a majority on the board. That means 3 people on the TB who will vote together to do what is right. We are never going to see this again in our lifetime. The Frightful Five are working together in lockstep to tax us into oblivion. They don’t deny it or try to hide it. Political affiliation means nothing. They serve a higher god- the god of Power.

    On another note- here’s something else that really gets my goat. I know it’s pretty minor in the scheme of things, but I’m just sayin’- WHY DOES SUE SERINO HAVE TOP BILLING AT THE TOWN PARK? WHY IS HER LOUSY SIGN THE FIRST THING YOU SEE AT THE ENTRANCE TO THE FREAKIN’ PARK?? SEE, THIS IS WHAT I MEAN. THINK ABOUT IT. WE THE TAXPAYERS DON’T EVEN GET TOP BILLING. INSTEAD IT’S THE CRUMMY SENATOR.

    • Now that they have put the announcements back into the body of the meetings to ensure that viewers are numb before anything happens, I was thinking that they could bring back “on this day in history” and bore us completely. It is very effective.

      I don’t remember public comment being at the beginning of meetings, though I remember Patty suggesting it.

      Has Sue Serino started paying rent yet?

      • I thought The Senator got free rent courtesy of her own Huma Abedin, aka Jackie.

  8. I bet that if the proposed law was for pumpouts every 3 years, people wouldn’t go for it. That’s what happened in Roaring Brook. The majority didn’t want it until it was made for every 5 years. If it’s every 5 years, what’s the point? People will pay less attention to their septic tank until they are close tot he 5 year anniversary and that is just stupid.

    • I agree. 3 years takes so long to get a cumulative impact. Fred Lubnow said 2 years after the cycle, so 5 years to see a change. 5 years just seems to long to do much. But we won’t know what the result is anyway, because SO has invited some people to vote twice.

    • Not to worry. There is never any follow up or enforcement when it comes to things that really affect the lakes. The people who “work” at town hall are part of the privileged elite. They don’t have to do anything if they don’t feel like it. Many of them barely show up unless it’s to collect a paycheck. No reward for success, no penalty for failure. That’s the motto.

  9. How about a separate public forum to be held maybe 4 times a year, where the people can interact with the town board, no holds barred? Have it televised, of course, and have an agenda of topics to be discussed. Let the people have their say for a change without being constantly interrupted.


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