Telling you what the Suffolk Times won't...

Friday, July 18, 2014

A Reader Writes.

I thought that a very condescending and demeaning post on Facebook by a recently announced candidate for Mayor deserved a rebuttal. It seemed to be directed at a few of us that disagreed on his opinion of the residency requirements for public office. Not being a member of Facebook to respond directly, I thought I would respond here for myself and the other six that read this blog.

There is a blog about Greenport politics? That all but 7 people in Greenport ignore...
I'm told there are four hundred and seventy five unique readers on the GreenportNews Blog, most of who acknowledge living either in the incorporated village or Greenport proper.

You seven people keep arguing among yourselves. 
Untrue, most all of the banter and comments are directed at a corrupt Village Government, people who comment here do it at Village Board meetings and on this blog, others like yourself do it from behind your bar. (I will say Billy Swiskey and myself do a fair amount of arguing among ourselves).

We will take it from here. We will fix the parking problem while you guys continue to argue about a Tall Ships festival from 2 years ago.
The past is prologue,  most people will admit that to solve a problem first you must identify and acknowledge it. Complaints and comments are not about tall ships or tall ship festivals, but about an administration that will say or do anything, even lie, to get what they want. The Mayor borrowed money from the taxpayers to fund the festival, and did not pay it back, the majority (not all, some were actually hurt) of merchants prospered, the taxpayers did not, they were stuck with the repayment of the uncollected monies to the general fund.

We will turn Village assets like Mitchell Park and the 3 municipal parking lots into seasonal cash cows while you continue to argue about the trustees health benefits. 
The public hearing on July 28, will bring to light just how the residents feel about Mitchell Park.
Municipal meters and cash cows was discussed and decided (rejected overwhelmingly), who is it now that is continuing to argue?
The projected seasonal income from those village wide municipal meters was $78,000, unearned part time trustee health insurance premiums cost the taxpayers $94,000 per year ($118,000 if the new Mayor decides to avail himself of the benefit). which endeavor is more cost effective toward saving the most money?

We will redo 3rd street and 5th street parks and bring them up to par with the way parks situated in one of Forbes Magazines Most Beautiful Places to Live, should look. 
A noble concern, as someone who lives on Sixth Street and has advocated for funds for that park and was rebuffed because of budget constraints, I would ask what you would cut to provide the money? But rest easy, while you are pondering where to get the money, the Winklers and other neighbors will do as they have always done and maintain that piece of the village and through their efforts have put it on par with other parks in the other most beautiful places to live.

Keep arguing about the Fire Boat. We will embrace its history and welcome it as a piece of our new waterfront culture and brand it as the great attraction that it is.
You're confused, the overwhelming majority of comments about the fireboat were positive, the arguing was between residents (for the most part) who wanted the fireboat to stay and a Village Board who was pandering to small group of special interest individuals led by a sitting trustee and one disgruntled fish boat captain who wanted the fireboat to leave. Once again you misrepresent the facts, you are transferring your dislike for the controversy started by the Village Board, to a group of people who actually advocated for your very position. If you attend a VB meeting instead of getting your information from other uninformed people you would have known this.

Hey you seven... Keep arguing about the electric debacle. We will see just how "GREEN" Greenport can become. Hey have you seen those panels on people's roofs all over the world...? Haven't seen any in the Village...
The electric company debacle is one of the biggest scandals to come out of Village hall in many, many years, and should not be swept aside because you are tired of hearing about it. Here's the short answer, we have a Five Million dollar upgrade that is two years overdue on a power plant that is still not operational, thirty years of debt heaped on to the shoulders of the taxpayers because of substandard design, mismanagement of funds and a Village Board and Mayor whose egos (but not their abilities) matched the scope of the project. In addition because of that mismanagement a twice yearly audit was ordered by the NYSPA for an additional cost to the taxpayers of $12K.
I would have thought a mayoral candidate would think that issue was at least mildly important, not of course to the level of dog parks and bike tails but important never the less.
As far as solar panels, I would ask why would a Village that is the electric business, derives a good portion of it's operating budget from that business, a business that provides jobs and a product to the residents at half the cost of the competition, has no net metering (for obvious reasons) to make a solar project viable, encourage people to actually spend more for their electric service by installing solar panels?

Keep hitting the same nail... Over and over again ...

To elicit productive and Village wide change to an unresponsive administration during their term of office, history has shown that is the proven method.

John Saladino
Greenport.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Priorities.

Village debt exceeding fourteen million dollars, code enforcement non existent or selective at best, trustee health care premium costs at ten percent of the tax base, a village clerk making up policy as she goes along, a village attorney without a clue, day care centers closing while David Nyce squanders Village funds, an electric plant that is still not operational, crumbling streets, out of control consultant fees and three statutory boards that are totally incompetent, and the declared non resident mayoral candidate thinks that a princess problem like dog parks and bike trails should be his kick off the campaign issue.
If someone is going to run for Mayor, they should at least be serious about it.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Paralysis By Analysis.

"The Greenport Planning Board tabled a vote to allow a taxi cab service to operate from the parking lot of a Greenport convenience store.

The operator of the store, called Layyah, was asked to submit more paperwork detailing the business to the board members before any vote on his application.


“We are ready to approve your application if this condition is met,” said member Bradley Burns.


Since Layyah’s management  already began operating the taxi service in February, the vote is — admittedly by board members — a formality.


Layyah began running a two-car taxi service from its existing business on the southeast corner of Front and Fourth streets in Greenport — before receiving any permits or permission from the village.


Building inspector Eileen Wingate,  said the village has no plans to reprimand owners."

We have two questions…
Using just this application (there are many, many more) as the example of their ineffectiveness and ineptitude, can there be a better argument for abolishing this current board?.
And,
Why is Eileen Wingate still employed in any capacity by this Village?

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Mitchell Park

In light of the recent decision by the Village Board to accept public comment on July 28th, we are once again soliciting comments from readers who would like to offer opinions about the future use of Mitchell Park.
Organizations, public and private because of it's location and visual appeal consider it a prime location for fundraising events.
Purest say there should be no commercial activity in the park, their logic being it was built with taxpayer money it should be for the exclusive use of the taxpayers.
Others take a more altruistic view, saying use should be expanded to include non profit organizations for fundraising events.
Yet still, another point of view is, it is a desirable asset the village has at it's disposal, it should be used to benefit  taxpayers by at least paying for itself and supplementing it's debt payments while still of course providing use by the public.
The Village Board did pass a resolution back in 2011 or 2012  mandating a use policy, it has been three years of hand sitting since that resolution, maybe this time they will actually do something to address the problem.
How do you feel, let us know below.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Thanksgiving and Christmas.

A resolution (6-2014-25) passed at Monday evening's VB meeting was reminiscent in a way of the tale of Thanksgiving and Christmas, (not the holidays but two geese named for them). For those that don't recall, one Thanksgiving a resident bought two live geese to be used for his families Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. At some point it was decided (by the residents children) the geese were pets and not food. The holidays came and went, the family was happy and we can only guess the geese were happy as well. The two geese lived on an expansive piece of waterfront property and all their needs were provided by the family that adopted them or by nature.
Enter the grinch…a neighbor who was also an official of the Village unfortunately was not happy. It seems this neighbor was used to certain unearned privileges on the neighbor who owned the geese property and when it was explained to him that the use of the property not his own, and his assumption of his right to use that property, would have to stop.
The official was livid, not being able to enact revenge as a next door neighbor, he instead used his position as a Village official to have the code enforcement officer issue a summons to his next door neighbor for having one to many (two geese and two dogs) domestic pets on the 2-3 acre property.
After the story came out the general consensus about the official was "really? he did that…what a nice guy*"
As to the resolution, Trustee Phillips used her position as a Trustee to have the equally vindictive Village Clerk research records to see if a rival fisherman who has been critical of her had provided the necessary amount of insurance in order to moor his boat at Greenport's railroad dock. It was discovered he didn't and by her resolution number 6-2014-25 he was issued a letter by the Village Attorney that his lease was vacated and he was ordered to leave.
In the minds of the attendees of that meeting we're sure the consensus was the same as the good people who heard the geese story 'Really, she did that?…what a nice person*"

*…At times the words "nice guy" and "nice person" can be used mutually for what is the generally accepted nickname for Richard.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

As Usual

As is the custom every month the Town of Southold website advertises that the Greenport Village Board meeting will be shown at three different times during the day, they also announce on channel 22 itself the different times during the day that the video can be seen. And as is the custom, it never is.
Mr. Russell the supervisor, Mr. Reisenberg the head of IT, and Clerk Nevelle, along with whoever in the Village is responsible for delivering the videotape have long ago decided that the residents of Greenport are simply not entitled to watch their elected officials doing their job. They have decided the airing of this videotape is just not a priority to them. They have decided that anything that puts the Mayor and Greenport Village Board in a bad light will not be shown.
Only after countless emails and telephone calls to the Supervisors office that days and sometimes weeks later does Mr. Russell give the OK to air the tape.

Monday, June 23, 2014

A Reader Writes.

Judged strictly on its value as entertainment, Monday night's Village Board meeting had to be…BEST MEETING EVER!!

John Saladino