Thursday, February 14, 2008

APPELLATE DIVISION REVERSES TAXTER RIDGE CASE

Yesterday the Appellate Division reversed the Taxter Ridge case which Bob Bernstein brought. The court upheld the Finneran Law and made it very clear that parks and recreation facilities are the obligations of the unincorporated area. We are bound by the decision.
I would have been satisfied with any decision that the court made. I thought that it was important and fair that everyone have their day in court, and since the villages weren’t included in the complaint I thought that they had the right to have an appeal in which they could take part.
We now have some work to do to repair some of the problems that the case has brought about, and we will have better communications between the town and the villages to make that happen. With the new spirit on the Town Board, and the goodwill of our residents, I know that we can do this.

162 comments:

Anonymous said...

The opinion of the Appellate Division clearly recognizes that Berstein wasn't interested in the fair application of the law - "For obvious financial reasons, the petitioner is not asking that the Finneran Law be enforced." He was only out to illegally shift taxes from himself to others who by law, shouldn't have to pay these taxes. Greedy lawyers are the reasons that all lawyers have a bad reputation.

Anonymous said...

In pursuit of his egocentric power play, Bernstein has now done enormous harm to the town. He was wrong, and obviously so. he has cost the town enormous legal fees. He has turned friends into enemies and neighbor against neighbor. He is probably responsible for the defeat of Eddie Mae Barnes and Steve Bass. he has deceived the public with his hateful accusations. He is a smart lawyer and he must have known all along that he would lose, but that didn't stop him.

I hope that he crawls into a hole and that we don't see him again.

Anonymous said...

So the appeals court said that the town violated the law by buying Taxter Ridge with the condition that it be open to everyone, and that Bernstein is a wise guy who is trying to get something he isn't entitled to instead of trying to get what he is entitled to.

Isn't that what the villages have been saying right along?

hal samis said...

Don't touch that tuner, you're listening to Greenburgh's very own blog station, all night ANON, "98" on the dial.
In the studio tonight spinning all your favorites is 'hal samis said...'
There's something here for everyone tonight...wherever you live!

It's Good News Week
Hit the Road, Jack
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Running On Empty
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Dancing in the Street
Sorry Seems To Be the Hardest Word
What's Going On
Separation Blues
Bridge Over Troubled Water
Whose Garden Is It
When Doves Cry
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It's My Party
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Pushing Too Hard
Will It Go Round in Circles
Sweet Talking Guy
Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye
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What Did You Learn In School Today
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Mr. Big Stuff
Come Together
Make the World Go Away
Don't Nobody Bring Me No Bad News
I Will Survive

If I missed one of your faves, you're welcome to post your own picks, or dedicatations. Just write c/o this blog.

Anonymous said...

Hal you missed one for sure
Living in the Town of Greenburgh
"I Want To Be Sedated"

serious governing needed said...

the purchase of taxter ridge had really very little to do with conferring a benefit on the town. it was essentially a gift to the irvington school district.

actions have consequences and repercussions. the town board is now faced with rebating serious money back to the villages who paid for taxter ridge while the appeal was processed, unincorporated greenburgh faces further tax increases for a park that is inaccessible and hard to find on top of the massive increase they just received.

the decision is likely to stir up moves in edgemont to secede by forming its own village.

unless the town board starts to get serious about governing, and the amateur hour ends, the purchase of taxter will go down in history as feiner's folly.

Anonymous said...

Ano 7:14 am

Sounds like Spongpants Bob is up early this morning with his secessionist's threats. I assume Fort Sumter will be stormed by the forces of O'Shea, McNally, and Super Bob!

Of course, again we, the whole Town, and the villages, have become the victim of this destructive action fostered on us by this legal beagle. Maybe, he has learned his lesson. Maybe this defeat, along with the scorn of almost everyone, but his immediate family will make an impact on his character. (One doubts that!)

It will be interesting to see his next act in front of the Town Board. It will be enlightening to hear his next series of dire warnings, and pontifications.

This puppet master, who has been pulling the strings of his claque of merrie mischief makers is probably not through yet. But maybe this chapter is the not as Churchill said, "the end of the beginning, but, in reality, the beginnng of the end." Maybe after a couple of more embarrassments he like the Ground Hog, who has seen his ominous shadow, will start to crawl back in his hole.

But of course, the Dromore Road "shoe" is yet to drop, and when it does; maybe, disgrace, indictment, disbarment and even more will follow. This could be next!

Spongie is looking a bit more worn, with a bit less hair, a bit more haggard, a bit rounder, a bit more gravitationally challenged and maybe this is nature's way of telling him to get on with his private life and stop tampering with everyone else's.

rip said...

yesterday was the st. valentine's day massacre of the town of greenburgh.

a town divided cannot stand.

the town as we know it is dead.

humpty dumpty cannot put it back together again.

Anonymous said...

RIP you are wrong. The town was divided while Bernstein was tearing it apart. Now there is a chance to come together again.

did bernstein win? said...

appearances can be deceptive.
one might think bernstein lost. but he may actually have won. there is a bigger lawsuit he filed that has been on hold pending the decision on taxter.

unlike taxter, many other town parks and facilites are open to all but paid for by only unincorporated. unlike taxter, there was no state or county partner in their acquisition so as to justify part town taxation.

feiner's muted response to the decision shows he realizes the pandora's box is wide open in greenburgh.

hold on to your seats. its gonna be a bumpy ride.

clueless town board said...

a chance? if you lived in the villages, why would you want to now pay for something you dont have to?

mediation of this dispute was attempted and failed miserably.

the current town board is clueless how to address the budget problems between the town and the villages.

the best example of how dysfunctional the town board is on the issue is juettner, a village resident, being the town board liasion to the greenburgh library and the parks dept even though she has no financial interest in either. thats crazy.

Anonymous said...

Dear 6:14,

You mean there's no place like Ramone.

hal samis said...

hal samis, obviously

hal samis said...

Round 1: Villages by a TKO

There is no getting around the fact that the Judges did not appreciate Mr. Bernstein's greatness. Hence the award of costs.

And there is no getting around what Mr. Bernstein's earlier aggressive demands to negotiate a settlement really signaled.

Clearly he was aware of the cards he held, even after buying a wild card. The Court also felt that in a game with aces used only as high cards, Mr. Bernstein's hand actually held none. Meanwhile the Villages sat with a full house, aces over kings.

But to Unincorporated residents, the Town's victory came as a result of holding the Pyrrus cards. The kings represent a lesser card value than aces but still essential to making a near unbeatable hand; hence the binding result, the Pyrrhic victory.

Round 2: Clock is still running
The Bernstein public relations answering machine has been re-programmed to say: 'that which doesn't kill me, makes me stronger'. And, those who have witnessed his omniscience before, are not surprised to see that he again assures us that he can make water into wine. Round
1's water was not water under the brige but really a rare and complex vintage bordeaux that is grown only on the sunny slopes of the ridges rising on both sides of Central Avenue.

However, these grapes must be allowed to ripen and then ferment. A lengthy process which leads directly to the foment stage. Thus while we are waiting to see if 2004 and 2005 were indeed good vintages, the venerable winemakers of Edgemont have put out warnings that the harvest may be too small for export and thus there will be only enough for Edgemont customers.

This message is intended to strike fear and terror into the hearts of the non-Edgemont portion of Unincorporated. No more wine from Edgemont; the rest of you make do with vin ordinaire. Vat could be worse?

Meanwhile the Chief of Police has been requested to investigate the theft of several cases of wine which was stored in Edgemont cellars.

Anonymous said...

To Hal or the others:
I am an unincorporated homeowner. Please put aside the schaudenfreude over Bernstein's defeat for a moment and explain, clearly and succintly why this decision is a good thing for me.

taken for a ride said...

dear unincorporated - your question is more appropriately addressd to the following who voted to appeal the original taxter decsion:

1. supervisor feiner
2. diana juettner
3. francis sheehan

perhaps their answer will be annexed to your new and improved tax bill.

new and improved said...

new, improved and increased tax bill that is.

Anonymous said...

“Did Bernstein Win” (probably Bernstein himself) who wrote at 9:52 is trying to spin Bernstein’s devastating loss into an appearance of a win. No sane person believes that, even Bernstein, who is dishonest but not insane. Reading that decision is instructive. The appeals court even crapped all over Bernstein.

The appeals court said that the Finneran law requires that all costs of a town park must be paid for by the B budget. The court talked about the town’s violation of the Finneran law by contracting away the residency restriction for Taxter Ridge. That would be even stronger when the town merely allowed non-residents to use other town parks as a matter of town policy. The 1982 Finneran law applies to all parks, playgrounds and recreational facilities heretofore or hereafter created, and that means every park, playground and recreational facility.

Bernstein is not fooling himself. He knows how to read. He is trying to fool us, as he has fooled us for many years, and done us great harm. Let’s not let him play games with our heads any longer. The parks dispute is over and we now have to learn to deal with our problems. Let’s keep Bernstein away so that we can deal with them honestly and realistically.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:35 pm

Right on brother. you've nailed the right carcass to the correct barn door. Taxter Ridge was purchased with State, County and money from the unincorporated area, plain and simple. Is that still a mystery? The Board understood the cost and the tax burden at the time, so be it. There were two elections since then and the rationale for the purchase was explained in detail.

The amount of taxes to "Brilliant"
Bob was never the issue. The suit was done to create a fissure in the Town of Greenburgh. Our super lawyer wanted to divide the Town. He stated that because Feiner was continually popular with the electorate he would work to have the villages secede, along with Edgemont so that Greenburgh was reduced to a meaningless entity, and that Feiner would be governing a remaining area with no form or substance.

Pleaese understand that the $3 million cost pales against the incredible costs of Central Seven. No one likes taxes, but I do not see them going down anywhere.

I suggest that we find out who Bernstein is really working for and what his true goals are?

Anonymous said...

The civic associations of Edgemont wanted more green space not thinking that the end will be on the unicorporated areas tax rolls alone.
You got what you wanted.
It's just like you wanted all the parkland on Ridge rd.
Why?
All that property could have been to better use to bring in revenue.
Do you understand what you are doing to all the residents in your area.
You have stopped so much construction arround Greenburgh because you don't want the schools to be overcrowded.
Come on you have only triggered one mess after another.
TZhe residents are tired of paying for parkland that we do not use.
Tell me Madelon ,Bernstein,McNally and Prizer do you use these parks.
Why did you fight so hard to give the town of Irvington this gift as to not to have development on Taxter rd.
Maybe if you kept your mouth shut what has happened could have been avoided.
Bernstein is not the only one to blame we have to blame each and every civic representative.

Anonymous said...

New Jersey is putting up windmill farms to help the residents with electricity.
This parcel of land on Taxter rd. is the best place to put these windmills up.
I will be calling the Governors office to see what their take would be on such a plan.

Anonymous said...

taken for a ride said...
dear unincorporated - your question is more appropriately addressd to the following who voted to appeal the original taxter decsion:

1. supervisor feiner
2. diana juettner
3. francis sheehan

perhaps their answer will be annexed to your new and improved tax bill.

2/15/2008 12:23 PM

A couple of points about this post. Feiner, Juettner and Sheehan did not vote to appeal the original taxter decision, Bernstein did when the court first threw the case out. Although Bernstein got the case reinstated, the trial court (as made clear by this week's appellate decision) got the law wrong. The above poster is apparently suggesting that the three council members (actually all five council members consented to the appeal)are to blame because they wanted the court to consider whether or not the Finneran Law applied. Had the council members failed to appeal, nothing would have stopped the residents living in the villages to challenge the law (that was wrongly applied by the trial court) anew. So, ultimately the same result would have occurred. Bernstein would have lost.

And the only reason the tax bill will go up, is because after losing the last round, the council increased the tax bill for the village residents to comply with the trial court decision. Don't blame the council members for getting a determination as to the proper law and adhering to it.

Anonymous said...

The people who are angry at the Town Board for agreeing to appeal the original, and wrong, decision should be ashamed of themselves. They are saying it is OK to be illegal as long as the illegality helps them. What an example they are setting.

Anonymous said...

Request for clarification: How much money will Bernstein have to pay the town? The court awarded the town some court costs. Will Bernstein's check go the A budget or the B budget? When does the town collect?

Anonymous said...

The court costs are intended to reimburse the town for its expenses, such as printing the record of the case, the briefs, etc. Thus tha costs that the town gets should go to the same fund that paid out the expenses.

How much? Not enough to make up for the damage that Bernstein did to the town.

Anonymous said...

Does Bernstein have to reimburse the A budget which includes the villages? How ironic!

Anonymous said...

It isn't ironic if the A budget paid out the expenses of the town in the lawsuit. No matter how much Bernstein has to pay back in court costs, it won't cover the actual expenses that the A budget incurred, which includes the salaries of the town lawyers who worked on the case and were paid from the A budget.

But I'd be happy if Bernstein had to pay the costs to a charity not of his choosing.

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much this lawsuit cost the taxpayers to defend. The money could have gone for so many better purposes.

read carefully - bernstein is partially right said...

Although the Finneran Law clearly requires the Town to deny access to the park to residents of the noncontributing villages, the Town has chosen not to do so. The reason for the Town's decision in this regard is readily apparent: two-thirds of the cost of acquiring the park came from county and state funds - funds which would not have been available if access to the park were restricted to residents of the unincorporated area of the Town in accordance with the Finneran Law. Thus, instead of burdening the taxpayers of the unincorporated area in the amount of $10.9 million for a restricted park, the Town has chosen to require that they pay one-third of that amount for an unrestricted park.


the above indicates that taxter may be a unique situation. any other parks or facilities where there is no state or county partner and which are open to al residents must be paid for town wide.

Wishful thinking said...

Oh wishful thinker who thinks Bernstein is partially right, you read the wrong words in the decision. The words about Taxter Ridge being paid for by the town for only one-third of its cost was to tell Bernstein that he is playing games.

The reason given by the court for the total reversal is the third section of the Finneran law which says that no village can be taxed for a town park unless that village has passed a resolution by its Village Board to be in the town's park system, subject to a permissive referendum.

No village has passed such a resolution and so no toen park can be taxed to the villages. That is why Bernsein's second lawsuit will fail.

Bernstein should stop pretending that he has won. He has lost in the most embarrassing way.

hal samis said...

Dear read carefully, read this:

Has ANYONE FROM ANYWHERE been to Taxter Ridge Park since its acquisition?

Although I don't mean to sidetrack discussion regarding the lawsuit, I would like bloggers to consider that no one can use this park.

I've made the trip to the entrance and you do so only by knowing where it is in advance. There are no signs proudly directing you. Indeed, if ever the park were opened, the residents on the quiet side street, Sheldon Avenue (turn off Broadway just before the 287 entrance) would be the first to erect barricades shielding their street from "statewide" invasion.

As the Town currently has no money set aside for the purpose of opening the park and there is a long laundry list of more urgent matters waiting in line before the next double digit tax increase, the park isn't going to open for many, many years hence so the residents on Sheldon need not be concerned.

But, let's also consider that the purchase of Taxter Ridge -- for whatever reasons cited -- was not just the failing of the Town Board but also a gang of three which has successfully managed to disassociate themselves from the purchase and its legal fallout.

Let's not forget or recast history that Tom Abinanti, Lois Bronz and Richard Brodsky voted for this white elephant too. And that residents of New York State and that residents of Westchester County join with the residents of Greenburgh in paying taxes on something that there is clearly no intention to ever be made available for resident enjoyment --as if its use were ever the purpose.

One might even say that a resident of unincorporated is paying for this pleasure three times: town, county and state taxation.

But let me single out Mr. Abinanti because he is the most adept at dodging the aftermath bullet.

I had made the effort to attend the County Board of Legislators meetings and spoke against the purchase. What I argued was that if acquiring the park was so vital to the County, at least THEY should be diligent enough to insure that residents throughout the County could use it. Whereas at least one Greenburgh resident, Danny Gold, could walk to the park, it would be near impossible for anyone from beyond Greenburgh to walk there. Thus, there should be a provision that mandated the completion of parking as a prerequisite for the financial participation of the County.

Think outside of the Greenburgh box for the moment and consider that County Legislators are responsible for spending County dollars and should have the interest of all its widely stationed residents at heart.

Furthermore, I cautioned Mr. Abinanti that the seller was a convicted felon and that for the County to do business, especially a business transaction providing the Reverand Moon with millions of County dollars, that the County should be especially mindful of proper due diligence. Nobler than Caesar as the standard.

Such heed would best be exhibited by insisting on an updated appraisal to reflect downward changes in the value of the parcel being purchased. This had to do with the intervening passage of local Greenburgh laws which devalued the property by as much as 40%. I'm talking about the steep slopes and wetlands laws and if anything, one of the reasons given for the purchase of the property was to insure the survival of the existing wetlands and their residing vegetation, wildlife, aviary and insect species. The parcel itself being located on a ridge, one would liely expect to find ample steep slopes located therein.

No one but the County would pay as much as had been contracted for because of the limited use remaining as well as the difficulties in gaining access to the property.
Location, location, location; it was not.

The contract was conditioned upon successful funding being obtained by the votes of the three partners: the Town, the County, the State. Failure to obtain funding from any of the parties was cause to void the contract without penalty.

The appraisal the County relied upon was at least two years old and did not reflect the lessened value from Greenburgh's new statutes.

Mr. Abinanti did not return my subsequent phone calls regarding this matter and I was only successful in reitering this argument by tracking him down at the monthly Dems meeting in Ardsley.

And as the record shows, none of these concerns made it to the floor of the Legislature.

Here's the sad, reality point. We are adults; we know that politics and politians, for good or worse, have their pressure points. In a rational moment, one may allow that the Greenburgh Town Board was under considerable pressure from a well-mounted campaign by Mr. Gold and Company seeking to make their own real estate more valuable and their school taxes less -- and under such pressure sometimes manure happens. Clouding the issue were the populist issues of preserving greenspace, saving the lives of frogs and gnats and purifying the air yada yada yada. Then too was the participation of what appeared impressive, The Trust for Public Land, which is only a fancy sounding name for real estate brokers who spend their non-profit profits entirely on high salaries, expensive brochures and well appointed offices.

But here's the sticking point. Under what pressure was the County (Abinanti and Bronz) or the State (Brodsky) to act on behalf of all their diverse and widespread constituents and commit their tax dollars to such an imprudent purchase. Whereas there might be those arguments paving the way for local Greenburgh response, there was absolutely no need for the County or the State to participate in the purchase, especially for the County which was not flush with excess dollars at the time or after.

And it is also true that their financial responsibility ended with the purchase funding whereas Greenburgh's burden continues forever -- for structuring this part of the transaction, the Town Board cannot be excused.

So consider this just a brief respite in the A and B argument.
But when it gets around again to discussing legal costs born by the Town in defending and appeals, you should also be aware of Mr. Abinanti's role in another Town legal expense, the recently decided Orchard Hill/Kathwood Road case -- appearing elsewhere on this blog. The Courts ruled in favor of the developers and against the Town. Mr. Abinanti lives on Kathwood, just a few doors away. More Town cash into the trash.

As Jerry Seinfeld might say, 'what is it about these lawyers and litigation...'

feiner and juettner fail again said...

feiner and juettner should have insisted that the purchase of taxter be put to a vote. they failed to do so.

taxter was, is and will remain a huge boondoggle.

juettner and feiner are up for re-election in 2009.

both should be given their exit but especially juettner who voted to untax herself by consenting to the appeal.

bernstein rules now apply said...

these comments that bernstein lost are farcical. bernstein established the principle that taxpayers have standng to challenge actions by the town board. no longer can feiner say to someone - try and sue me.

bernstein also brought to light the inequities in the a vs. b budget.

as a result, every program is now evaluated in terms of who will pay for it. another bernstein success.

there probably will not be any more foolish purchases like taxter because of bernstein.

further, unincorporated greenburgh now knows who is for them and who is against them visavis townwide taxation.

in fact, the theodore young budget was almost moved to the A budget because of bernstein. the appellate division decision may now mandate that.

that budget is far larger than the bill for taxter.

Bernstein cost us dearly said...

Bernstein thinks that by using lower case letters he can hide his identity. I doesn't work. 2:59 is surely Bernstein, and no matter how hard he tries he can't hide his failure and his humiliation.

Bernstein's sole victory was that he overcame the judicial decision that at first ruled him out. But he wasn't saved from having that same judge's decision to put Taxter Ridge into the A budget reversed. And that is the bottom line. Two bad decisions by the same judge, both reversed.

Bernstein did indeed bring to light the inequities in the A and B budgets. The villages now know how much of the unincorporated area's expenses are in the A budget, for which the villages pay but get no services. Unincorporated area residents may pay a big price for the education that Bernstein gave the villages. Taxter Ridge may be small potatos compared to what we may lose if the villages push back hard. The fact that every program is now evaluated for A and B purposes has resulted in practically no programs being started because of the threats that Bernstein always made. That never used to happen. We used to charge the A budget for programs and the villages never knew about it. No more. Some success for Bernstein.

The villages also know who is for them and who is against them. That is why Eddie Mae Barnes and Steve Bass, who supported Bernstein, were voted out of office, mainly by village voters. It is nice that Bernstein takes comfort from his success.

I read the court decision and it does not support Bernstein's notion that it mandates the TDYCC budget being moved to the A budget. It looks to me that it supports the TCYCC budget remaining in the B budget, and if Bernstein says otherwise he should tell us where in the opinion it says otherwise. That is more of his delusion and his need to look like anything but the defeated trouble-maker that he is.

We are going to pay a big price for Bernstein's "success."

Anonymous said...

I read the decision and to me it indicates that both Veteran and TDYCC should only be open to Unincorporated residents. Lets implement that immediately and cut budgets. We can not afford these taxes.

Anonymous said...

What influence did Gold have on the State;County and Town governments.

bernstein still a force said...

outside of feiner , bersnstein is the most well known person in greenburgh!

juettner after nearly two decades in office is still a cipher.

Anonymous said...

4:17 PM you must learn how to read. The decision says nothing about Veteran Park having to be open to non-residents of unincorporated Greenburgh. It also says nothing about the TDYCC. What it says is that the Finneran Law is the law, that it prevents village residents from being taxed for town parks and that the town should not permit non-residents of unincorporated Greenburgh from using town parks unless they have been paid for with federal money.

From what I heard Veteran Park was not paid for with federal money but TDYCC was paid for with federal money. If that is right, TDYCC has to be open to everybody in and out of Greenburgh and Veteran Park can, and must, be kept restricted to residents of unincorporated Greenburgh.

Seems fairly straight-forward.

Seems to me that the only thing thst the town can legally implement is to close any access by non-residents of unincorporated Greenburgh to Veteran park and all other parks and recreation facilities that haven't been financed with federal money.

So what implementation is 4:17 suggesting that is legal?

Anonymous said...

So Mr. Know it all, at 5:35, does that mean the firefighters, volunteers and handicapped will no longer have access to Veterans? I dont think so.

Anonymous said...

And so Mr. Know it all, is the Town going to restrict village teams from using playing fields? you are ridiculous

Anonymous said...

It mattters not whether one looks to this decision as a win or a loss. The important matter is the characterization of Bernstein by the appellate judges. Clearly they stated in Americanese and not legalese, Bernstein was not interested in following the law (Finneran) because it did not suit his pocketbook. Being called a shyster in a blog is one thing, being called one in an appellate decision is immortalized in perpetuity.

It also matters that Bernstein does not represent Edgemont. Neither do McNally, O'shea or any other person living in Greenburgh who speaks up at Board meetings or is quoted in the local press.
Bernstein lives in the Edgemont school district. That's it. He speaks for himself and maybe for the ECC- which, too, does not legitimately represent upwards of 8,000 people who live in the Edgemont section of Greenburgh. So, using a giant size brush to tar everyone and anyone who lives in Edgemont for the opnions of Bernstein and anyone else is wrong. I don't hear condemnations of Fairview because of the over-the-top rantings of Cora Cary; or the condemnation of North Greenburgh because of what Ella Preiser or Lorrin Brown(autistic menderings) say, notwithstanding the negatives attributed to them personally, but not to the area they live in. On occasion, Bill Greenawalt speaks at the Board meetings. He lives in Hartsdale. I can't recall any anti-Hartsdale sentiment leveled at Hartsdle because he may have said things which which people disagreed with.

So why Edgemont? Please let us know.

As to the Edgemont formation of a village, casting the balance of the unincorporated areas asunder and leaving Feiner to rule over a tiger with no teeth and one that lives on NutriSystems, not to worry. Bernstein doesn't control the process and what he wants matters little. Because the balance of the 8,000 or so people who live in Edgemont and incur the wrath of the balance of the unincorporated are the ones who will opt for village status or not. And, my assessment is most of them don't read the local papers and don't know Bernstein from a hole in the wall, and as if not more importantly don't want a village.

So get off Edgemont's back. If you want to hit on Bernstein, say what you will but leave his address out of it.

Regardig the prescient person who wants to put wind genarating apparatus in Taxter Ridge park, he should find out that the acreage is dedicated parkland and can not be used for anything else. In order to change the status, changes have to be made in Albany. And if that happens,a snow ball starting at the top of Mt. Everest and coming downhill fast will cause less damage. The far reaching ramifications would be devestating.

It's interesting to note the effects of this court decision on our bloggers. It seems, on total, Bernstein can't lose for losing.

Irrespective of how things turn out, there is no doubt, Bernstein's credibility is shot; his standard of ethics is nonexistant and his propensity to praise himself via an assortment of postings using the Anonymous( to protect the guilty, no doubt) doesn't confuse anyone.

I know America loves a winner, however, even if Bernstein II wins, Bernstein's rep in marked in indelible ink.

Edgemont people put their pantson one leg at a time, don't walk on water and, you may not believe this, work two jobs to pay their horrendous taxes.

Anonymous said...

To the blogger who called me Mr. Know It All, yes, it's true, if you read the opinion volunteer firemen can't legally use Veteran Park and village treams can't legally use Veteran Park. I am not ridiculous, you just can't seem to read.

Now do I think the town is going to enforce these restrictions, no I don't think so and I don't mind that a bit. I am sure that nobody else will mind either, though you can never be sure.

The big point is that the laws need to be looked at to make them realistic.

Anonymous said...

Bernstein cost edgemont residents tons of money. Our taxes are going up because he forced the town to devote resources and tax dollars defending the town against a lawsuit that had no merit. Bernstein claims he speaks for Edgemont. When was the last time Bernstein called an Edgemont community meeting to vote on whether he should proceed with his lawsuits? Most Edgemont residents disapprove of Bernsteins tactics, lawsuits and divisiveness.

Bernstein is finished said...

Bernstein II isn't going to win. it is going to be dismissed because the law that is explained by the appeals court decision in Bernstein I applies to all the town's parks because they are all covered by the Finneran Law. Don't believe Bernstein's posturing. He is trying to salvage his reputation, which is impossible. He is headed for further embarrassment. Serves him right.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Know it all,

that is exactly my point, the town will make no effot to enforce these rules.

Anonymous said...

But what if we have another Bernstein who will sue the town unless it enforces the rules? We do have angry nuts in town, you know.

Anonymous said...

To Bernstein is finished,

I dont understand you -- if the Finnerman law applies to all, then village residents cant use??

town board unprepared said...

feiner had months to craft a response in the event taxter was overturned. instead of clear thinking, we get obama like platitudes.

i guess feiner rues the day he met danny gold and was suckered into the morass that is taxter ridge.

since its not an election year dont expect to hear anything from the rest of the board either, especially the mute, diana juettner.

want ads said...

classified post by diana juettner

wanted to purchase - directions to taxter ridge

classfied post by village residents of greenburgh

wanted - taxter ridge tax rebate with interest

Bernstein is finished said...

To Anon 8:33. I will try to answer your question as best as I understand it.

It seems like the Finneran Law applies to parks and recreation facilities in the unincorporated area. It says that only the unincorporated area pays for them and only the unincorporated area can use them. There is one exception, which is for parks that got federal grants because when the federal government contributes money then everybody must be able to use it. I guess it is because everybody pays federal taxes from which the grants come. That is why Bernstein will also lose his second lawsuit because the same rules apply to the parks and facilities that are in the second lawsuit. The court said that just because the town violates the Finneran law by letting outsiders in that doesn't allow the town to tax the villages.

Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

So will his next lawsuit be to get all the Village residents out of other parks.

Bernstein is finished said...

Ask him, not me.

Anonymous said...

The court sent Bernstein a clear message: If he continues to file lawsuits against the town, the courts will slam him with additional court costs, after he loses. I'm looking forward to seeing Bernstein write the check to the town, to pay for the legal costs of his unsuccessful lawsuit.

hal samis said...

Dear "Bernstein rules",

You are a paean in the posterior.

"Bernstein established the principle that taxpayers have standing..."

I knew that Mr. Bernstein has a recidivist view of events, but really, did he invent Article 78?
Perhaps it should now be referred to as "78, the Bernstein article"?

If anything, Bernstein made it far more unlikely that other citizens will want to enjoy the same notoriety and expense, time and effort to vent their frustration or get their way; whatever the precipitating circumstances may be.

To a "confidant" I have liked Bernstein's raison d'etre to Citizen Kane's "Rosebud" moment.
Other bloggers have from time raised the issue of whether a failed effort on behalf of a client, perhaps one in real estate, was the sled in the fire.
As Bernstein has relentlessly persisted; perhaps in retrospect Feiner's, at the time appearing ill advised questioning in public whom Bernstein's clients were, looks more perspicacios every day.

But there is also another side to Bernstein's making the world safe--for Bernstein; that side being when a Town Board feels convinced that it is following the correct legal stand, that it will spare no expense in pursuit of that path.

Bernstein is "responsible" for this too.

Just because Bernstein told everyone from the beginning that his version was the one true version; that puffery is now exposed and disarmed. Certainly it took a very long time to evaluate what he called a lay-up
outcome and years and dollars later, it turns out that he missed his free throws.

Now he is repeating the process and trying to salvage his tarnished reputation by telling the troops: hold on, I've got another foul shot and this one I can't miss. In the meanwhile, your share of the costs is...

We'll see. Free-throws can be very costly.

But there is a far more important issue involved; one which I laid the groundwork for in my "longish" post on Abananti, Bronz and Brodsky.

That is: how do citizens get their point of view, their demands, their pet peeves, their needs etc. heard and acted upon.

Lawyers like to defer to law and are well-positioned to do so. See Sunday's New York Times real estate section (read and tossed) on page 2? recites husband and wife lawyers intimidating their co-op neighbor over a secondhand smoke issue.

But despite Mr. Bernstein's claim that he has parted the waters to allow anyone with a grievance to follow his path to Court, that method seldom garners success except for those cases elsewhere where naive citizens, who don't know "Bob from Adam" were victorious.

It turns out that using
supercalifragilisticexpialidocious is the not the jargon of superlawyers but of chimney sweeps.

Thus I want to return to the accomplishments of Danny Gold. A blogger today at 4:41 asked how did Danny Gold influence the County, the State and the Town?

And this is what I want to write about. Clearly Mr. Gold and I are not close friends but we do share a tennis playing relative. What I do have for Mr. Gold is not friendship but respect, a commodity I once had for Mr. Bernstein. What Mr. Gold accomplished was similarly monumental: it accomplished his singular purpose and it didn't necessitate a long and expensive rite of writs delivered to Court. Danny achieved his goal the old fashioned way: bringing pressure to bear upon those with votes. Of course, it may have helped that some of his talking points (motherhood, apple pie) were easily endorseable by those who are elected to office.

As an aside, if I had the time I would heed to his playbook and follow in his footsteps to get the Library Board of Trustees removed.

What Mr. Gold accomplished as the public face of East Irvington (unlike Bernstein's vain2x attempt to positioned himself as the driver of the Edgemont bus) by actually demonstrating support from his community.

Mr. Gold was (perhaps still is) the head of his neighborhood stand-alone civic association. While apparently still in its salad days and not yet having formed its own hierarchy/umbrella (read Edgemont Community Council, ECC), he represented grass roots democracy at its highest sense of purpose and achievement. He actually had his people stand tall alongside him -- a visual memento in its purest, undiluted form.

Nationally/state/county we have delegates, we have senators and congressmen, we have legislators etc. who represent us. However, we are aware that they have been elected not just to vote as though each of them had polled to vote what the highest number of respondents insisted; we elect them to think on their own.

But at the grassroot level, the civic association, we don't need leaders to think for us, we are our own voice.

The oftentime reality is that at a local civic association there are seldom any interested residents who attend these meetings. Edgemont takes this reality and kicks it up a notch by borrowing the letterhead of these civic associations which have scant attendance and having these civic associations send their "representative" to their Council.

What it all ends up as, in this boiling over "crock" pot, is that the same handful of people now claim to represent a population of 7,000 or more disinterested citizens.

And it simply ain't so. What makes it even more of a bag of wind is that Edgemont is really a School District and one would expect that this common purpose would bring out more citizens to be involved in the neighborhood associations, not those dues payers whose "membership" is taken to mean interest apart from school topics. Thus, using the duality of role to personal advantage, Mr. Bernstein, and his predecessors, have attempted to parlay representing school interest into matters more far-reaching.

The reality is the opposite.
The reality is that no matter how many disguises or roles that Bernstein assumes, what remains his only legacy is that he shall be forever remembered (at least for longer than everyone's "15 minutes") as the living heir to Pandora.

And this brings us to the difference between Danny Gold and Bob Bernstein. Danny won; Bob lost. Danny didn't wake up each day to inhale "mirror, mirror on the wall" while Bob turned the narcissus machine's volume up to max.

Danny rallied the troops. When Danny came to Town Hall, it was not just him and a few trusted aides, he came with his entire community and then some (the some being anyone they could recruit to the common goal -- be they "farmer or cowman". They came bearing flyers, brochures, petitions and buttons. They engaged you, they were together and they worked as few other civic associations do: they stated their case and they did so backed with a physical legion of supporters. Danny did as Bob preaches but Bob does not do himself: Danny didn't just say that the people are behind him; he brought the people with him. Now I say this singling out Danny but there were others in active roles; not names too numerous to mention, but others.

When Bernstein comes to Town Hall he has for support maybe four or five fellow members of the ECC who assure us that they represent Edgemont. Not very convincingly.

Now I don't want to typify the following as a racial or income issue or otherwise and although I pride myself on my written word, I simply can't find a more political way to say this other than listing "publics" which have appeared at Town Hall (filling the room and spilling out to the lobby) to "show" rather than "tell".

Greenburgh Health Center
Union Baptist Church
Housing Authority
Young Community Center
The Greenburgh Public Library

These efforts have not always succeeded but they register on the meter as bonafide. Even if citizens were recruited; they individually made the trek to the podium.

"Edgemont" complains and complains but they are too preoccupied to take the effort other than to pay dues to a lobby, the ECC, which then says that their few represent the 7,000+ population. Statistically, their numbers on a national election or referendum would be significant but not for local issues that affect residents directly. Thus, the implied and stated banner that the ECC unfurls is bogus.

So, in closing, if I were to start a new campaign and could recruit troops, the first person I would seek to share the reins with is Danny Gold if here were willing. He is not in the newspaper every day; he is not involved with every issue or proposed Town Board resolution; he does not preach come to me if you want it done right. What he does, he does quietly, effectively and mostly behind the scenes.

I'm not switching sides on Taxter Ridge; I'm just expressing my respect for a job well done, albeit a selfish and self-serving job which succeeded. A job that I suspect Ayn Rand would also accept after getting beyond the purchase for the good of the people nonsense; it was a crusade that kept their school taxes down, raised the value of their homes and kept potential development at bay. And it dsitributed the cost of this across the backs of taxpayers: state, county and now, just unincorporated residents.

However, the game was played fairly and in plain sight. Bob's game is to carry a big s_ _ t, casebook law, and package himself as first, last and only.

Those rooms on Elba are still available.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget the 12 million dollar lawsuit brought forth because of Bernstein & McNally and their ability to get Sheehan to do their bidding.

Anonymous said...

Forget Bernstein,

What is going on with the sewer districts audit. Why has the Town been so quiet about this one??

hal samis said...

Dear 7:46,
How can you forget Bernstein, the man who went to Court to win, mid-stream generously offered the Town his golden "opportunity" to settle and upon losing, is saying that his defeat is really a good thing for Bernstein.

Does anyone know if there are any openings on the Prussian Army's Provost Marshall staff?

But your sewer concern is noted, more so since Bernstein stock went down the toilet.

Anonymous said...

Hal,

As a puppet of Pauls, we all see that Pauls request for town-village cooperation is not true in spirit. If so, Paul would ask you to tone down the retoric.

People all over town are concerned about future litigation which may limit use of town facilities. Maybe you dont use any, but others do,

Hal, about some cooperation, before facility are limited.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 9:37, if you read today's Journal News you will see that Feiner is proposeing town-village cooperation to tweak the laws so as to allow a use of town facilities. In the same article Bernstein is singing the same old out-of-tune song about more litigation and fights over who pays for what. In short, he wil continue to sow discord.

Direct your criticism at Bernstein, where it belongs.

Anonymous said...

Let's take a poll. According to yesterday's blogger at 5:17, Feiner is the best known person in Greenburgh and Bernstein is #2( in recognition, not as descriptive of you know it all what.) I rather doubt that Bernstein is the second most recogized person in all of Greenburgh.So why not ask the supervisor to conduct a telephone poll: "who in your opinion is the most recognizable person in Greenburgh?"
The runner up, as with mostevents, will receive the "Anonymity Award."

What is clearly unnecessary, is a poll to determine if Juettner is a cipher(zero). She has also been a "sypher," syphening out money from out meager town treasury, for cipher work.

Anonymous said...

How can Feiner "tweak" the laws? These are state laws?

hal samis said...

Dear anon @ 9:37 (Geppetto),

The puppet of Paul would not be criticizing the presumed starting point of Bernstein's provocation.
That would be the purchase of Taxter Ridge.

And, like the are you a dumb democrat question, the assumption does not make the conclusion.

Hence, were I a puppet and Paul asked me to tone it down and I did,
that would prove that I am a puppet.

Or, if I were a puppet and I didn't tone it down, that would prove that Paul didn't ask to.

Or, I were not a puppet and I didn't tone it down that would prove that I don't follow the requests of anonymous either.

But more important, I am not the party pooper who is bringing the litigation. If you are concerned about the survival of any Greenburgh "facilities", then you need to contact Mr. Bernstein c/o
"top of the world".

Anonymous said...

To Anon 11:06, read the Journal News. Feiner said that he would contact state legislators in order to tweak the laws.

Anonymous said...

"then you need to contact Mr. Bernstein c/o "top of the world".

OR DOWN IN THE DUMPS

Anonymous said...

In the meantime, should handicapped and volunteers start looking for another pool for the summer???

Anonymous said...

Since the traffico n the Tapan zee Bridge is getting to be more than anticipated Taxter Rd should be the exiting point of the tunnel from Rockland to Westchester.
This is the best solution to put this land to good use.
The way it is at the moment it is of no use to humans who pay dearly for nothing.
The tunnel has been proposed so many times and since the land belongs to the state,county and town where else can one find a better set-up.

Anonymous said...

Heah, that sounds like a great idea for Taxter Ridge, it is close to 287, and wouldnt the state have to buy out our share of the land??? Someone call Spano.

bernstein bashing pretty stupid said...

what is all this nonsense about bernstein doing damage to the town?

bernstein did what every american taxpayer has the right to do - challenge a government action in court

ostensiblt men and women from our country are being blown apart or killed for this right over in iraqistan

in fact, bernstein exposed what everyone knows is true - the town of greenburgh is largely a fiction

I'm happy here said...

I wonder whether the people who write on this blog actually live in Greenburgh. None of my neighbors have the complaints that I read about. None of them heard of someone named Bernstein. They seem genuinely happy and satified to be living in Greenburgh. So am I.

What's wrong with us?

Anonymous said...

Bernstein has every right to litigate. He also has to accept responsibility and pay up once the court orders him to reimburse the town for legal expenses. It's going to get very expensive for him.

Anonymous said...

I think the idea is fantastic .We need a new method of travel from Rockland to Westchester.
Because this land is of no use to the public let's face it the state can take it over for a tunnel.
Close to 287 and all the other means of travel throughout Westchester and all the roads to to the boroughs.
Yes this should be considered by the agency that is in charge of the bridge
The entrance and exit will not affect anyone pluse there would be no impact to the school.
Whom must we get in touch to explain what we think should be done with this property.
At the same time maybe Greenburgh would get some tax relief..

Anonymous said...

6:03, Are you an attorney? I think only official court costs are reimbursed, not legal fees.

ed krauss said...

This blog is supersaturated with Taxter Ridge. The cost to acquire. The place where the acquisition cost should come from. The annual cost to maintain it. The effect it has and will have on our taxes. The deification of Danny Gold who slickly and without fanfare bamboozled the Town Board to buy it. The tax savings to the Irvington school district tax payers. The personal gain for Gold and his neighbors re the value of their homes. The stupidity of the state, the county and most of all the five, then members of the Greenburgh Town Board, who passed a steep slopes law (which rendered nearly 50% of the Taxter propery unbuildable) yet did not see fit to REASSESS the property and ended up paying $10.9 million instead of $5+million.The rise and fall of the villages vs. the unincorporated residents. The perfidy existing in Town Hall and on the Town Board. The decisions to act, not in the best interest of the electorate but in the best interest of screwing the Supervisor, and on the other hand the Supervior acting in a way to gain the most votes possible...even if it was contra the interst of the community. The fall from grace of Bob Bernstein. The restoration of a status quo among the villages vis-a-vis the unincorporatd.The tax savings for the unincorporated because Taxter was charged to the "A" budget in the first year, and the bitching of the same unincorporated residents because they(including me, damn it) had to return their savings(but had use of it for one year interest-free.)The new site for the Tappan Zee tunnel exit-even though there are no plans underway to build a $multi-billion tunnel. An "ideal" location for a wind mill farm to generate energy even though the plot is dedicated park land, AND you couldn't generate enough energy to power Town hall for a year if you used all 200 acres for this task, and all theparkland in the town.

But one salient question remains: Where is Taxter Ridge, how do you find it/get there, and when you do,are there any safari guides to show you the way through the wilderness.

I'm as "green" conscious as the next guy. I drink"Sierra," don't buy fur coats,cross at the green and not in between, voted for Al Gore and don't look with jaundiced(that's yellow) eyes at global warming.

But Taxter Ridge is the "Green Elephant" of Greenburgh with no extricating possible.The library construction project is all screwed up thanks to a Cecil B. DeMille cast of characters. No matter what we do from this point forward( after last Wednesday's Town Board Meeting) I'm convinced( listening to the doubletalk I was getting as putative answers to my legitamate questions)there is no way in HADES we will get a $19.8 million library. We'll get a completed library but more like a $12-14 million structure at a cost of $19.8,and sad to say, all concerned will be happy enough to get it.Me,I'll(I am already)be sick to my stomach with the portent of being raped from within.We sent Dracula to guard the blood bank. We had a board too busy to take a personal interest in the single largest capital project in the history of this town. We had a library board of know-nothing dilettantes who not only couldn't act positively but were obstructionist when anyone-especially Hal Samis- tried to point out questionable actions.So, we'll end up with cheap carpeting instead of slate, a fraction of the size of the auditorium we voted for, who knows what kind of glass(cheaper, of course) and if the information I asked for is forthcoming,I could tell you more.

BUT, we will end up with a building. A useable library. Not the one we bonded,but who will know the difference. And on opening day, there will be all smiles from the cast of characters most directly responsible for giving us this Armani priced suit with off-the-rack tailoring and material.It seems to me that nobody in charge cares. Scratch that. NOBODY CARES!

But there wll be a library. As to Thaxter Ridge, there will be 200 useless acres of dubious park land no one can use no less find. And if they do there will be no parking lot to park;no trails to walk;no rest rooms; no water to drink. Only a tax burden to bear with nothing to show for it.

If anyone takes credit for Taxter, he or she should be discredited,every time they open their mouth. If anyone takes credit for the library they should be made to answer some hard questions. If no answeres are forthcoming, they should just SHUT UP.

The "greening"of Greenburgh makes one resident turn RED. And the temerity of the intellectual elite who said, "if you vote against the library referendum, you are against educating our children" makesme turn blue. We voted for it, despite their rediculous extension of "logic." We put the ball in their hand, and they dropped it before the whistle even blew.

Shame on us, all of us for allowing our hard earned dollars to be managed by such TOTAL incompetence- elected, employed and volunteered.

ostensibly said...

ostensibly that is.

now if you live in unicorporated greenburgh you have taxation but no representation

feiner and juettner pander at every chance to the villages where the votes are

enemy is us said...

well said ed
now what?

Anonymous said...

Too bad all the residents of the unincorporated area of Greenburgh
did not listen to Samis on the library ,and all the others on Taxter Rd.
Gold and the town board gave us a real screwing.
It pays to have friends in good places.
Well now we are stuck with a library that will be not be built accordings to the original specs,
and a parcel of land that is of no use to any of the residents.
Yes some one suggested a tunnel connecting Rockland to Westchester that will be a great plan.
I do hope that some of the county legislators read this blog so they can look into the tunnel which will be a good connection to all the highways.
Krauss may I say to you thank you also for all your knowledgeable insight of the wrong doings of the previous board that has given us much grief.
Krauss you together with Samis were poopooed so many times for your comments.
Now many look back and wonder what could be done to change the wrongs to right.
You can never say die because someone will come up with a remedy
to help out with the tax burden for a few years to come.
The two of you are very smart and we all know that you will find a solution.
You can see that I'm buttering both of you up to give us some help.

It's our fault said...

7:45 does it again. No matter what the issue is, he and his ilk blame it on pandering to the villages. What BS.

Did the entire Town Board buy Taxter Ridge to pander to the villages? Of course not. The villages were not involved at all. The Town Board caved in to Danny Gold, and he lives in unincorporated Greenburgh.

Did the villages have anything to do with the library fiasco? Of course not. The Town Board voted it and the referendum didn't include village voters.

Did the Town Board pander to the villages when it appointed department heads who are, shall we say, competence challenged? I don't think so.

Did the Town Board consult with, much less pander to the villages when it let the TDYCC run into the difficulties that plague that place? No, definitely no.

Need I go on?

The villages didn't know anything about what was happening in Greenburgh and they just voted along with the candidates chosen by the Greenburgh Democratic Committee, and I remind you that the last village resident who was endorsed was Diana Juettner, and that was sixteen years ago. And she is hardly considered a friend by the villages.

So face up to your probelms like an adult and quit excusing yourself by pointing fingers at the villages. Ed Krauss has it right. As Pogo said "We have met the enemy and he is us."

If you must point fingers, do it at those so-called leaders like Bernetin, Preiser, McNally, Cora Carey who don't have Greenburgh at heart, but only their personal interests and their quests for power. And none of them come from a village.

Anonymous said...

Bernstein was looking out for all the tax payers in the unicorporated areas.
He lost but his lost has made us understand that one can disagree
with the government all the way to the courts.
Boy isn"t America great.
Now we have to fight for that property to be used to benefit all the people of the state,
Some one talked about a tunnel which I think is a fantastic idea.
Paul you and the board voted for it's purchase now be good people and see what you could do to unload your share or come up with the comments mentioned about the tunnel.
The bridge will take some of the traffic into Tarrytown and the tunnel will take the rest ending in Irvington being close to all roads.

Anonymous said...

bernstein wasn't looking out for greenburgh residents. he was looking to create chaos. He almost succeeded.

Anonymous said...

Congrats to Ed Krauss, for smearing everyone. For my money he's more confusing than anyone. You were out of the loop for a long period of time. Wow were things much better...!

Anonymous said...

Krauss was out of the loop for a long time, but I say "Welcome back."

It is always good to have a thinking person, even if one disagrees with him from time to time (as I have). Having a thoughtful person is much better than having the angry paranoiacs who accuse and accuse and accuse.

ed krauss said...

9:28, Since I confse you, let me edify you. Instead of generalizations, ask me specific questions, and I will answer them in order to help you to understand.

As to the good folks who ask, where do we go from here, I offer you the game plan used by Danny Gold. Come to each and every town board meeting and demand answers to the questions about the library and the original spcifications with which the construction manager used to arrive at the $19.8 million figure voted on. If we're not getting what we voted for-and that does notonly include a $19.8 million structure, it includes walls, floors, floor covering, windows and by type and square footage, furniture, computers and other equipment- by quantity and type and any and every specification on which the successful bidders bid.

If we're not getting that, the project is a fraud and the powers that be who are in charge of this should be made to answer. That includes the architect who designed and speced the job, the construction manager who should be overseeing, the project, the town board liaison who's job it is to report to the town board, the town board itself, the liaison to the library board, and of course the library board itself.

If you don't get what you pay for in your own purchasing, i.e. you order a 42" HD plasma 1080 Sharp tv for $1,300 and you get a 42" HD ready lcd without 1080 resolution Vizio tv, I'm sue you would not accept it. Not only because it is nt what you ordered, but you find out you could buy for half the price you paid.

The same thing applies to the library.

Put their feet to the fire. If lesser quality items were substituted to keep "on budget," who approved the change in quality? If it was the architect, who signed off on the down grade? If no one in authority did, take it out of his remuneration. If he has a carte blache to do whatever he chooses without authorization, let's find out why.

It's not THEIR library, it's OUR library, we pay for it and pay dearly for it.

Let's nottake BS answers. We need to get straight answers, and ask until we get them.

Brig yourself and everyone you can muster to the town board meeting. Ask questions. If not enough people care, the "perps" will get away with this library robbery. And, let's not let this happen ever again. We have a court house and the police station on the near futre agenda.

Hope this helps. But it won'twork if it remains on the blog. It has to be implemented, and quickly.

Oh yes, 9:28, because I don't attend board meetings, doesn't mean "I'm out of the loop." And when I was at board meetings in the past, I don't ever remember seeing you there.

Maybe you can get on board and help all of us ge what we bargained for...and not at bargain prices.

It's lat and m one finger that types, istired s you will forgive me if I don't proof this posting.

Anonymous said...

What did Bernstein accomplishment? Zippo. Nada. Nothing. He forced the town to spend significant dollars and time defending themselves against lawsuits that have no merit.

juettner must go said...

one person is central to the failure that is the library and the fiasco that is taxter ridge - diana juettner, liasion from the town board to the library and greenburgh parks and recreation.

this term needs to be her last.

run samis run.

Anonymous said...

If Krauss was out of the loop [which he was not]means diddleswat.
He is back in full force to fight for many of the residents .
Why is it that so many things have gone wrong under the old board.
Could it be possible they too thought that they could get away with wrong doings.
We have never had so many audits as we have up to today.
The court should have had the state comptrollers office investigate what is wrong with their books.
By the way if there is a vacant office at town hall it should be given to the state comptrollers office since they will be back for more illegal findings.

Anonymous said...

The solution for Taxter RD. being a tunnel conecting Rockland with Westchester is a great idea.
Paul you will come out as a hero,for the residents of the state that use the bridge every day .
Convince the state that this is the only way to use that wasteland,and of course will bring in some revenue.

Anonymous said...

Hip hip horray,another way to get back and forth without backups.
A tunnel will be fantastic for the dead parcel on Taxter Rd.
What are you waiting for Paul to make this suggestion to the state.

Anonymous said...

I hate to throw water on such a fascinating idea as a tunnel under Taxter Ridge, but wouldn't such a tunnel first have to go through and under the villages of Tarrytown or Irvington, or both of them? Would it have to go under hundreds of houses, if not more?

Please somebody, answer this.

ed krauss said...

Blaming the old board and the chief court clerk for the plethora of audits, as well as reserving blame for "audits to be named later,"forgets naming the Town's auditers. For many, all too many, years, Bennett Kielsen has been the auditer for the town as well as some of the villages along with many municipalities in Westchester, including the county itself.

They, by their cerification of our books, gave those "records" the final "blessing." They didn't raise a red flag when they found the court- which was "running" $1-2 million annually in revenue collected, did not have a balanced, reconciled check book. If you get away with that at home because you're too busy or too lazy to balance your check book monthly, that's your business. However, if you had an auditing firm who audited and cerified your finances, you couldn't get away with it. BECAUSE a good auditing firm wouldn't let you.
Well it's been years since the check book for the court was balanced and nary a peep or a warning fron our outside CPA firm.

When the town board approved giving $650,000/year for 10 years to the Valhalla School District, $100,000/year for 10 years to the Fairview fire district, and $100,000/year for 10 years, at first, to the Mayfair-Knollwood Home Owners' Association-and when they found out that it was illegal, "deposited it in a phantom account" with no mention of it in the Town's financials, Bennett-Kielsen STILL certified the books with no mention of this irregularity.

I don't know if what they did was OK by CPA standards, or if it was reportable to the grievance committee of the Accountants association, if one exists, but to me that should be grounds for immediate dismissal.

They put their stamp of approval on sloppy, incompetant or even illegal behavior.

One lies, the other swears to it.

We have alot of trouble here in Greenburgh city and it's spelled M-i-s-m-a-n-a-g-e-m-e-n-t...with a capital MIS.

hal samis said...

Dear 10:46,

One can throw water under or over a bridge, damn it, but not a tunnel.

Think about something called right-of-way and imagine a tunnel running parallel to the bridge entering Westchester underground from Rockland by continuing under the right-of-way and emerging within Taxter Ridge which abuts 287almost from its western boundary to Taxter Road, the corner being occupied by an office building complex.

Going west, the entry could be by access under 287 to join up with the portal located entirely within Taxter Ridge.

As far as I can recall, from memory, no homes would be lost but there is a way to check this out, at least for the informality of this blog.

And had I thought about this before I posted, I would have looked first but you are free to do so also: go to google or microsoft maps/aerials and check it out.

town ethics in the toilet said...

didnt feiner take plenty of cash contributions from bennet kielson

what a disgrace
ed - ypu helped put feiner and juettner in office - how do we get rid of them?

Anonymous said...

From the New York State Campaign Finance site (although it may not go all the way back to 1997 as it indicates in the case of local races)

Contributions to Friends of Paul Feiner - $1,050

Contributions to Friends of Steve Bass - $250

The complete list:

FRIENDS OF ANDY SPANO 18,000.00
WESTCHESTER REPUBLICAN COUNTY COMMITTEE 11,150.00
FRIENDS OF PHILIP AMICONE 7,000.00
WESTCHESTER COUNTY DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE 7,000.00
ERNIE DAVIS FOR MAYOR 3,500.00
LESNICK LEADERSHIP PAC 2,500.00
FRIENDS OF TIM IDONI 2,150.00
DEMOCRATIC CITY COMMITTEE OF NEW ROCHELLE 2,100.00
CLINTON YOUNG FOR MAYOR 2,000.00
FRIENDS OF MAUREEN WALKER 1,900.00
YONKERS REPUBLICAN CITY COMMITTEE 1,800.00
DEMOCRATIC MAJORITY ACTION COMMITTEE 1,500.00
FRIENDS OF LIAM MCLAUGHLIN 1,500.00
ROBERTSON FOR MAYOR 1,500.00
YORKTOWN DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE 1,200.00
FRIENDS OF PAUL FEINER 1,050.00
BRAMSON FOR MAYOR 1,000.00
YONKERS DEMOCRATIC CITY COMMITTEE 1,000.00
EASTCHESTER REPUBLICAN TOWN COMMITTEE 825.00
FRIENDS OF ROSEMARIE PANIO 750.00
RYE TOWN DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE 750.00
FRIENDS OF JIM MAISANO 550.00
FRIENDS OF MAYOR JOSEPH DELFINO 550.00
ELECT DENNIS ROBERTSON 500.00
FRIENDS TO ELECT ANDREA STEWART-COUSINS 500.00
LESNICK FOR CITY COUNCIL PRESIDENT 500.00
FRIENDS OF KEN JENKINS 448.00
FRIENDS OF BILL RYAN 340.00
FRIENDS OF LORETTA J. HOTTINGER 300.00
JANET DIFIORE FOR DISTRICT ATTORNEY 300.00
FRIENDS OF ABINANTI 250.00
FRIENDS OF BERNICE SPRECKMAN 250.00
FRIENDS OF STEVE BASS 250.00
FRIENDS OF VITO PINTO 250.00
WILLIAMS FOR COUNTY LEGISLATOR 250.00
FRIENDS OF DENNIS POWER 200.00
FRIENDS OF LINDA COOPER 200.00
PEOPLE FOR COLAVITA 200.00
COMMITTEE TO ELECT DEE BARBATO 198.00
COMMITTEE TO RE-ELECT NICHOLAS J. BIANCO 160.00
GREENBURGH DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE VICTORY FUND 150.00
FRIENDS OF LISA COPELAND 100.00
COMMITTEE TO RE-ELECT TOWN JUSTICE ROBERT J. PONZINI 75.00

Anonymous said...

Thank you Hal in clarifying Taxter Rd.which is available by the state to commission the department in charge to build a tunnel.
This is the perfect spot to help all the residents of the state.

ed krauss said...

4:08, you are correct. I helped Paul once, but that was it.

Regarding Juettner, I single handedly pushed the Executive committee of the Greenburgh Democratic party to have her replace Tom Abinanti on the town Board. It only took me four weeks to find out what a terrible mistake I made. She is without question:" what you see (there's rarely anything to hear) is what you get...ZERO! What is surprising is that it took 16 years for others to find out. I guess that old saw,(cleaned up in case women and youngsters are reading this) If you have nothing intelligent to say, keep your mouth shut and no one will know. Open it up and the whole world will know you have nothing to say."

I'm sorry for the "Juettner sin" I have committed, unfortunatly,In Greenburgh, it only takes once. Because, once in office you stay in office- last election not withstanding.

How do you get rid of Paul and Jeuttner? (a) Come up with viable candidates. Paul is an incredible campaigner despite all his "warts and pimples" A candidate like Bill Greenawalt (who by the way was submarined by the speechless Juettner and the man she submarined four years prior, but teamed up with to become an integral part of Bill's loss.)

As far as Juettner is concerned,the task is infinitely easier...get someone who can breathe.

After you get the candidates, work hard to get them elected.

Paul is a worthy "champion," so a party hack, a rubber stamp, a person without vision or a platform devoid of substance and full of "promises," will not do it.

Or, maybe he'll get tired of staying up until midnight seven days a week, waiting for someone to call his home/cell phone, retire to a warmer climate and spent quality time with his wife and daughter.Then a new "reality tv" show will be launched:" 10,000 Seek Greenburgh Supervisor's Position...tape at 11:00, Midnidght,and every hour on the hour."

I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me for Jeuttner, and the one (political) transgression with Paul.

P.S. Whoever did the research on Bennett Kielsen's political contribtions, thank you. But you left out contributions to minor party candidates and village candidates. Just kidding. Thank you.

Paul Feiner said...

I read the comments about the town's auditors. Please be advised that I have always advocated competitive bidding. Early in my tenure different auditors bid and obtained the contract from the town. However, the two companies who were granted the contracts found that they lost money from the town and they refused to re-bid. When our current contract with Bennett Kielson expires I will support re-bidding. I will also support having our citizens budget committee interview competing companies, reach out to different audit firms and make recommendations.

Anonymous said...

I think the Council should immediately pass a resolution forbidding all council members from taking contributions from Kielson. Waht is so hard about that???

Anonymous said...

I am not sure what "dog in this fight" Krauss has, but he has a big mouth that is often wrong. His self-importance is almost as laughable as his appearances in front of the Board. All over the County, characters like this clown throw their inconoclastic bombast out, and like the proverbial dung thrown against the barn wall, some sticks. So what! He's like the tout at the track. Once in a while he's right! What has he contributed? Zero! He has floated from one group of critics to the next, trying to find a home for his noxious comments. Run for office or please shut up!

Cut from one of his "brilliant diatribes!"

"The deification of Danny Gold who slickly and without fanfare bamboozled the Town Board to buy it. The tax savings to the Irvington school district tax payers. The personal gain for Gold and his neighbors re the value of their homes." More Kraussisms

What else is new? People and neighborhoods lobby for self-interest all the time! What have you lobbied for, and with all of your "wind" what have YOU accomplished?

Speaking of "Wind." from the wind tunnel of Ed Krauss! More Kraussims

"An "ideal" location for a wind mill farm to generate energy even though the plot is dedicated park land, AND you couldn't generate enough energy to power Town hall for a year if you used all 200 acres for this task, and all theparkland in the town."

(Now he's an expert on "wind." He should be with all that hot air he's blown!)

Recently there was article in the JN about one of our northern towns and their frustration with similar "wind-making" characters. This so-called "king maker" struts to the floor, as he singles out his particular issue and then basks in his phony notariety. Get a life you fraud. If we need a clown like Krauss to set our town straight then heaven help us.

"Regarding Juettner, I single handedly pushed the Executive committee of the Greenburgh Democratic party to have her replace Tom Abinanti on the town Board. It only took me four weeks to find out what a terrible mistake I made. She is without question:" what you see (there's rarely anything to hear) is what you get...ZERO! What is surprising is that it took 16 years for others to find out. I guess that old saw,(cleaned up in case women and youngsters are reading this) If you have nothing intelligent to say, keep your mouth shut and no one will know. Open it up and the whole world will know you have nothing to say."

I'm sorry for the "Juettner sin" I have committed, unfortunatly,In Greenburgh, it only takes once. Because, once in office you stay in office- last election not withstanding."

More Kraussims! His only mistake? What about that rug?

Well most of us are sorry for the noise pollution that comes from this local "joke".

More of the Kraussisms!

"I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me for Jeuttner, and the one (political) transgression with Paul."

I am sure anyone could forgive you for this one "so-called" mistakes, but for the hundreds of hours of blowhard remarks and mistakes made over the years? No your forgiveness must come from a higher power!

But, of course, it is a free country, and on this blog and at the Town Board we will have to endure this comic figure, I assume once again!

Anonymous said...

I just opened the blog and saw what 9:26 wrote.

Now you al can understand why some of us don't want to sign our names! There is too much of this vicious personal attacking. There is no need for it in order to make a point.

poor greenburgh said...

how do you get rid of a zero like juettner? term limits.

juettner is a disaster.

ed - what is your penalty for subjecting the town to the likes of her?

Anonymous said...

At least Krauss signs his name, but ever really look what he signs. I don't know him, but I have seen his act on cable and he should shut it down...

Does his attacks on Juettner smack of good taste? He supported her? Wow!

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:36-

Don't be so faint-hearted. Others sign their names and take some criticim and heat at times. The bottom line is that it is never an even fight when tangling with a polecat.

It means very little to EK when it comes to fair play. He's been obnoxious when he was on the Greenburgh Dem. Committee and he shows his crudeness on this blog often. He jumps from side to side, trying to make alliances of convenience, and has one consistancy, his craving for influence and power. Now that he is back to attending the meetings of the Town Board the community will be exposed to his new chapter regarding the "Theater of the Absurd."

By the way don't worry about EK, he thrives on this. It makes him feel important.

juettner must be defeated said...

what has juettner done that merits her being in office 18 years?

her stewardship of the library has been a disaster. she voted for the westhelp giveaway of millions, the foolish purchase of taxter ridge, the appeal of the taxter case, and the supported the building of that hideous wall on central avenue. she presided over the town being caught underinsured.

again, how does she benefit the town?

ed krauss said...

WOW, 9:26 AM.You must have had a bitter childhood to have so much venom in you. I guess you were weened on lemons. I guess I hit a nerve with you and some of the other anonymous heros who followed you. It's difficult to tell since you are anonymous whether you attacked me in the past, but yours is the most venomous to date, which leads me to conclude that the my last posting is the one that set you off. As to your fellow travellers, all I can say is the flack is heaviest when you're over the target.

Please feel free to vent because as one of your followers said I thrive on negativity...whether that is an accurate assessment or not.

Be well and may the force be with you.

questions for ed krauss said...

questions for ed krauss
is there such a thing as the town of greenburgh or is it just a legal fiction?

can a town exist that taxes its citizens differently for the same services it provides?

in light of the taxter decision, what should taxpayers in unincorporated do if they cannot move?

hal samis said...

There are many events in life that are deemed worthy of celebrating.

For example, when someone becomes a father. it is customary for him to celebrate the event by handing out cigars.

So to Mr. Bernstein if he is out there reading: since the Appellate Court decision, which according to The Book of Bob, was really your victory, where are the cigars?

However elsewhere in today's news, there is a job opening which just became available and it is one to which you are well suited and even might want to consider seriously. Like your recent "victory", it too entails handing out cigars. And as an additional inducement to signing on, there is no pesky Finneran law to cause you provocation while the position also comes with the perk that you have the right to create all the new laws you want, tailored just to your specifications. This should ultimately be viewed as a timesaver and free you from the responsibility of having to cite passages or interpretations which are "unique" or "unwritten".

There's just one unanswered question remaining on the application: Are you willing to relocate to Havana?

Anonymous said...

...Take up a squatter's hut on Taxter Ridge. The amount of taxes that represent the purchase are quite small. If that forces you to move out, then you must really be worrying about the library and the assorted litigation intitiated by the rotund one from Edgemont!!!

Anonymous said...

Bernie the Attorney, the uncrowned king of Edgemontania, aka King Zog II, must be working on his next legal gymnastics. Maybe he should sue Hal Samis for being too truthful about his chicanery. Maybe he should sue EK over his lisp. Maybe he should sue Sir Francis the Drake over his new attitutude of public conciliation. Or maybe he should sue the medical examinier over Diane J, and find out whether she is really sleeping or dead.

juettner said...

its official - she is brain dead and has been for years.

court decision quite flawed said...

the appellate divsion's decision is plainly wrong.

finneran only applies to parks that are restricted in use to unincorporated thats why they are only billed to unincorporated.

taxter is a horse of a different color. its open to everyone by law. it cannot be restricted in use and nothing could change that.

the court also overlooked the fact that the town board is elected by village residents. that the town board then entered into an agreement to allow taxter to be open to everyone made it quite fair that the entire town pay for the amenity. if the villages didnt like that, their remedy was at the ballot box.

it cannot be legal for a town to charge some taxpayers for services it provides others at no charge. it cannot be legal for the town to yell finneran with one hand on the taxation issue but look the other way on the use issue.

the portion of the court decision that said it was ok to tax unincorporated only because they got a 2/3rds contribtution from other sources is meaningless. the villages got the same benefit but dont have to pay their fair share of the cost. and if the cost had been 50 million - it would still be ok to pass on the 1/3rd cost only to unincorporated? close scrutiny shows how illogical the court decision is.

the appellate division failed a crucial test - to protect the minority taxpayers of the town who now have taxation without representation.

this is the consequence of a villages first policy.

feiner leaves us hanging said...

feiner said there is work to be done to bring the town together.

such as?

good start said...

a good start would be hire hal samis or to encourage him to challenge juettner in 2009.

Herb Rosenberg said...

1:06, who is certainly Bob Bernstein (or one of his close allies), is still fighting his lost battle.

There cannot be a clearer decision than the Appellate Division decision. Bernstein's criticism of the decision is ridiculous. What Bernstein is really saying is that he doesn't like the Finneran Law and thinks it is unfair.

People can certainly have that view and be honest and sincere about it. I think that if they read the background of the Finneran Law (via its extensive legislative history)they will come to understand that it was enacted to cure a real imbalance in the town/village budgeting method. Bernstein has read this history (it is in the litigation record) but he doesn't acknowledge that. Nor does he acknowledge that there are numerous imbalances in the budgeting laws and many of them give the unincorporated area a decided benefit at the expense of the villages. And he certainly does not acknowldege that if one can read the English language it is obvious that the Appellate Division decision was inevitable and is correct. The decision confirms that the Finneran Law means what it says, not what Bernstein says it means.

It is up to the public that he has misled for so many years to tell him that he has been exposed and that he has no further credibility. It is time to solve problems, not create them.

bernstein stopped feiner said...

herb rosenberg cant respond to the logical and factual errors of the app div.

instead, and as can be expected, he attacks attacks bernstein personally.

too bad herb, who is joined at the hip with feiner, cant say what everyone knows - taxter ridge was a foolish purchase, one that will rattle the town more than anything bernstein did.

thanks to bernstein, there will be no more taxters for feiner to waste our money on.

herb Rosenberg said...

No matter how often Bernstein repeats it nobody (probably even himself) will believe that the Appellate Division decision had logical or factual errors. It was clear and persuasive from beginning to end, and most persuasive in the sections in which it all but described Bernstein as an opportunist.

Bernstein equates a correct description of what he has done and is still doing as a personal attack. There is still a small group which believes him, I guess, but most people now know better.

I am not joined at the hip with anyone, much less Feiner, and I do agree with many that the Taxter Ridge purchase was a mistake. I hope that makes Bernstein feel vindicated.

Anonymous said...

to Court Decision Quite Flawed-- You should go to law school! The Appellate division is made up of real lawyers, not want-a-be lawyers or judges who hide behind the name anonymous

question for herb r said...

at last - bernstein and rosenberg agree

either way the app div was bamboozled into believing that finneran applied to taxter

now question for rosenberg - if the young center has no state and county partner , and is open to all town residents, why is it paid for by unincorporated greenburgh?

court lacked real world experience said...

correction - the app div is made up of an assortment of professional law clerks who knew a state senator

few of them practiced law for any length of time

many are ex politicians

here is the law career of the author of the opinion

justice spolzino

as you can see - his background practically dictated the result

Private Practice of Law (1987-2001)
Partner, Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker LLP;
Banks, Curran, Keefe & Spolzino, LLP; Keegan & Spolzino, P.C.;
Singleton, Keegan & Spolzino, P.C.; Solo Practitioner

Lobbyist/Government Relations Consultant (1998-2001)
Westchester County Board of Legislators

Assistant Counsel (1997)
New York State Senator Nicholas A. Spano, 35th Senate District

Village Attorney (1988-1995)
Village/Town of Mount Kisco, New York

Deputy Village Attorney & Town Prosecutor (1987-1988)
Village/Town of Mount Kisco, New York

Confidential Law Secretary (1985-1986)
Hon. Leon D. Lazer, Associate Justice, Appellate Division, Second Dept.

Confidential Law Secretary (1984-1985)
Hon. Kenneth H. Lange, Judge of the County Court, Westchester County

Appellate Court Attorney (1983-1984)
Second Judicial Department

Herb Rosenberg said...

I really wonder about the 6:53 blogger who seems to seriously say that "the app div was bamboozled into believing that finneran applied to taxter." Is the blogger capable of reading English? No, Bernstein and I don't agree on the appellate court's ruling -- he tries to diminish it with his terribly superior analysys that has been rejected and is dead wrong, and I say that the court got it exactly right.

As for the question put to me, it requires a longer answer than this short blog posting, but I'll try. The Community Center was financed by various agencies of the federal government, and is therefore exempt from the residency rsstriction of Finneran. These federal agencies may have required the Community Center to be open to all, on the ground that the financing was based on federal funds that were contributed to by the entire country. And it is paid for by unincorporated because the Finneran Law says so. If that seems unfair to you -- and I can understand why you think so -- consider that the villages have facilities which are open to all and they are paid for only by the respective villages. There is much more to this, but as I said, there is room only for a short answer.

another question for mr r said...

dear mr r

can you give 3 examples of village facilites open to all but paid for only by the villages

as for the young center i suggest you read the town code - its described as a town facility for the town's lower income residents.

i mean this constructively as you clearly know alot of he inss and outs of these town village issues

Anonymous said...

Dear Another Question For Mr. R:

How about the Village of Ardsley? Both of its parks are open to all. The Ardsley Little League practically takes over McDowell Park in the spring and 60% of the children / participants are not from the Village. Ashford Park? Have you ever been there? Try going and asking the visitors where they live. Won't you be surprised to find many from a Scarsdale PO (unincorporated Greenburgh) in the park. How about the Ardsley library? For years, this facility has been a net provider of services to unincorporated Greenburgh. Check the usage data.

Get real. I can't speak for all of the Villages, but get with it.

Herb Rosenberg said...

Dear Questioner at 7:24 PM.

While I don't want to get into an extended colloquy, I will answer your question and then hopefully be able to end it.

There are more then three facilities in the villages that are open to non-residents. In Hastings every single park is open to all, and there are several. In Dobbs Ferry the very large Djuring estate parkland is open to all and there may be more that I should know but can't think of right now. In Irvington one of their two magnificent riverfront parks is open to all (the other must remain closed because of the restrictions imposed by the person who bequeathed the property to Irvington). In Ardsley there are several parks and sports facilities that are open but I don't know their names. Tarrytown has some parks and facilities that are open to all but I can't identify them by name. The only village that I don't know anything about on that score is Elmsford. The mayors of the villages can give you more specific names and locations.

As for the Young Community Center, it is true that the Town Code mandates its town-wide use. I don't think that the Code specifies "lower income residents" but I haven't looked at the Town Code recently. It is true that when the Center applied for a federal HUD grant in the 1980's, it described itself as a "recreation center" for the Fairview and Elmsford area and it received a large grant because the population it expected to serve was in greater need than other communities in Greenburgh. Since underlying your question is the constant issue of where the costs are allocated it is worth pointing out that the appellate decision made it clear that the Finneran Law would override any local law. None of this should be read as anything but praise for the mission and work of the Community Center.

I hope that this answers your questions.

hal samis said...

Let's see if we can make some order here -- without getting into the actual issues.

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because if you don't like the judges' decision, you can say it doesn't count. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because if you don't like the judges' decision, you can say that the judges are inexperienced. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because if you don't like the judges' decision, you can say that it took them too long to make up their minds. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because if you don't like the judges' decision, you can take the case to a higher Court. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because if you don't like the judges' decision, you can reject it because it even though unanimous, only 50,000 Frenchmen can't be wrong. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because it sets a bad precedent for a Higher Court to overrule a Lower Court. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because the plaintiff urged the Town Board not to waste the Town's money by lodging an Appeal. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because the Court failed to heed the plaintiff's arguments. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because they think they know more than a superlawyer. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because they don't get emails from the plaintiff's private email account and thus make the stupid mistakes that only the plaintiff's address book recognize. True or False?

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because the judges too have a villages first policy. True or False?

And pay particular regard to this question:

The Appeals Court is not a valid part of the Judicial system because regarding the Judge who wrote the opinion, his background
"practically dictated the result".
True or False?

If anything, this is an equal opportunity blog for anonymice; even sitting Judges can get their robes soiled by those without names. I wonder if the plaintiff agrees with the criticism of the Court's credentials.

If he does, I suspect that there are more proper avenues for him to express his concerns, such avenues which where only vehicles bearing valid and visible license plates are permitted to drive.

is young center illegally funded? said...

here is what the town code says about the young community center:

§ 500-3. Department established; Commissioner; divisions; rules and regulations.
A. There is hereby created a Department of Community Resources which shall administer the programs and services conducted at the Community Resource Center (commonly known as the "Fairview-Greenburgh Community Center") and Yosemite Park. The Department shall provide social, health and recreational services and programs to Town residents. The Department shall give priority to programs and activities designed to alleviate the effects of poverty and cultural deprivation and services that promote individual improvement and self-sufficiency.


it appears to be a tonw park without any restrictions on who can use it - ergo - why isnt it paid for by the whole town?

info and question about ardsley parks said...

ashford park was built with federal funds, so it must be open to everyone.

as for mcdowell - does anyone know if the little league pays for any of its upkeep?

regarding veteran park - 4 of the 20 acres are in ardsley village but no taxes are paid on the land. so ardsley already subsidizes the park.

Anonymous said...

Ano6:13 says that Ashford park was built with federal funds, so it must be open to everyone.

Yes, and several parks in Greenburgh and the Community Center were built (or bought) with federal funds, so they must be open to everyone.

That's what happens when tax money is used. Nothing to cry about.

Anonymous said...

Appellate court was wrong in making
a reversal to the Taxter Rd parcel.
Did they realize that it was a parcel that had no beginning and no end.That it was purchased by a group as a favor to a friend
This land will be of no use to anyone in the State,county or Greenburgh.
The three legislative boards should check this out to see what could be done to this land .
Not only did the unincorporated area pay for this parcel in their taxes but every resident of Westchester and NEW York State pays for it also.
We in Greenburgh know where it is ;what condition it is in ;what does this park offer a big back yard for Gold and no development---
but to those outside of Greenburgh are left in the dark as to all the above.
Don't you think that an investigation shoud be initiated by those outside Greenburgh who pay for this in their taxes?
Our Governors office is always ready to investigate cases like this..
Favors like this purchase to make a friend happy should not be allowed.
Now is the time for all good men to get together.
Bernstein lost one case but an investigation by the state will make things seem brighter.
This parcel was purchase with the knowledge of the old Albany administration.
Things are different now and a lot of wrong doings need investigations.

hal samis said...

Federal and State Grants:

A gift horse in need of dentistry?

Free money or an expensive lunch?

Webb Field/Presser Park
Thanks to accepting FEMA funding and Ms. Lowy's largesse, let's not read any new complaints about who is using the field.

Greenburgh Public Library
Thanks to Mr. Brodsky, the WLS rules, regarding who can use or obtain Library cards, can now get out of the front seat and take a seat in the trunk.

Greenburgh Nature Center
Any federal or state funds here?
If so, maybe fee tiers need to be revisited.

And what about School Districts?
Federal, State money? Anyone up for sending their kid to a better school?

It is getting more confusing.

"They say we're going to have a revolution..."

The arguments could spread around the nation and even affect the positions of Presidential candidates.

The threats facing Greenburgh are enough to make the "Alice's Restaurant movement" pale in comparison.

Did Bob forget to bring the 24 8x11glossy, color photographs? Or were the appeal judges blind?

Maybe the Town government should just shut down and await the next
Court decision.

"Before the next teardrop falls"

Anonymous said...

BTW, I'm guessing that Bernstein could appeal the Appellate Div's reversal to the Court of Appeals in Albany. Anyone here an expert in New York Practice know if I'm wrong?

part town taxation is suspect said...

you are not wrong. notwithstanding what rosenberg opines, the decision is appealable.

in fact, if it were so clear cut, the court would have decided it very quickly. it took over a year and the court itself was troubled by the constitutionality of finneran.

no one knows what the court of appeals will do, but it is has to be troubled by a town that violates the law on one hand and seeks to enforce it with the other.

part town taxation where the majority of the taxpayers get a free ride just doesnt pass the smell test. at least the lower court saw it that way.

thats why there is another layer of appellate review.

Anonymous said...

Remember when those now saying that Bernstein should appeal were demanding that the Town Board should not appeal the lower court ruling in favor of Bernstein. How the worm turns.

My experts tell me that Bernstein can only appeal to the Court of Appeals with the permission of the court, and the court rarely gives permission and then only in cases which have state-wide importance.

As bloated Bernstein's ego is, his case is of no importance outside of Greenburgh, so don't bet too much money that Bernstein will be given permission to appeal. That is assuming that he wants another embarrassment when he is turned down.

hal samis said...

Dear 12:24,

Only Bernstein said it was clear cut.

And since the Court DID take such a long time, then one would assume that finally reaching clarity, their opinion would mean more, not less. To everyone but those sharing Mr. Bernstein's den.

But where does, "the Court has to be troubled by a town..." come from if not from Mr. Bernstein?

If the Court WERE troubled, THEY would say so instead of you doing it for them.

The classic example of this is the oft used, "if wishes were horses then bloggers would write".

Anonymous said...

2;34What makes you say that this is only a Greenburgh affair.
Have you forgotten that the County and State contributed to this purchase which means the entire state is involved.

Anonymous said...

Yes, 4:26, there is a tooth fairy.

a real lawyer reports said...

dear friend - i might suggest your friends look at section 5601 (b) which governs appeals as of right to the court of appeals.

hint - if the app div decided the case on a constitutional issue, there is direct right of appeal to the court of appeals. as usual there are some exceptions.

the unequal taxation of a minority of a town's taxpayers is something the court of appeals may take an interest in coupled with the fact that the town itself concedes it is violating finneran on the use issue.

legal rules said...

section 5601 of the civil practice law and rules that is

Anonymous said...

Dear real lawyer can the case be opened to look at maybe some fraud took place by the parties who voted for this purchase.
This parcel had a lower appraisal than was paid for.
How can an appraisel jump from one amount to two and a half times higher .It smelled at that time and now it smells all the more.

Anonymous said...

A real lawyer says that if the app div decided the case on a constitutional issue, there is direct right of appeal to the court of appeals.

Maybe I am not educated enough, but as I read the app div decision it looks like they made it on the basis that the Finneran law required the result they reached. They didn't decide it on a constitutional issue. They told Bernstein that his constitutional argument was out of line.

I don't think that anytime someone throws out a constitutional argument that this persin can appeal to the court of appeals as a matter of right.

Am I missing something?

hal samis said...

I doubt Bernstein needs online legal help in deciding whether to go another round.

Anonymous said...

Bernstein needs lots of help.

He has shown that despite his huffing and puffing, he doesn't know the law and he needs a good lawyer.

He has shown that he badly needs psychological help and I hope he gets it.

Anonymous said...

God forgive me, but I have to say, what a bunch of self-serving jerks on this particular blog. Probably all real estate developers who want to turn Greenburgh into the Bronx, strip- mine the Town bare, and go to home to their multi acre mansions in Greenwich!

look in the mirror said...

so your answer is for the town to purchase a huge park which no one can find with no parking and then charge only the residents of unincorporated greenburgh for its upkeep all the time allowing anyone from the villages to us it without charge.

lets add that the park was purchased without an up to date appraisal in order to take into account the town's steep slopes and wetlands law.

now - thats what i call a self serving jerk

Anonymous said...

look in the mirror is the self serving jerk. What comes out of him is not the wisdom of buying Taxter Ridge, which is questionable, but his anti-village bias. First he says that nobody can find it and then he says that the villages can use it without charge.

Jerk, nobody can use it. And it is a town park which the law requires be charged to the unincorporated part of Greenburgh.

So either talk sense or do us a favor and keep quiet.

stop silly name calling said...

a village is using it - its called irvington. by getting it "preserved" the taxpayers of irvington saved themselves millions of potential increases in schools and other services if the parcel was developed.

the purchase of taxter should have been voted on by the entire town or at least unincorporated as to whether they would agree to pay the full bill for its upkeep.

finneran has two strands - a tax on unincorporated only provided only unincorporated can use it.

the town is violating finneran but the court looked the other way on the use issue by saying it was not before them. this was absurd as the grant from the county and the state required full access.

taxter is outside the scheme envisioned by finneran, something the court of appeals may have to weigh in on.

Anonymous said...

The 2:13 blogger has to be Bernstein because he keeps on repeating the Bernstein nonsense even though it has been categorically rejected by the appeals court.

No, it is not true that, as he says, "finneran has two strands - a tax on unincorporated only provided only unincorporated can use it." Finneran doesn't have any "provided" in it. It says that town parks must be charged to the unincorporated area unless the villages adopt a resolution asking to opt in to the Greenburgh park syatem, no ifs,ands, or provideds in it. No matter how often Bernstein tries to make it into an "if" situation, it just ain't so. The appeals court said that it is not optional for the town to violate the law and then tax the villages.

Buying Taxter Ridge may not have been a good idea, but get over it, Bernstein. It's done and the law says where the tax has to go.

And neither the villagers nor the residents of unincorporated will ever set foot in it. Only mosquitos and deer.

part town taxation still wrong said...

something is wrong here. taxter is not a town park. its a state, county and town funded park.

only if you incorrectly view it simply as a town park do you fall into the trap of finneran.

what is also wrong is that the town is violating finneran with no consequences and at the expense of a minority of its taxpayers. the only reason you tax only unincorporated is because only unincorporated can use it.

there is a quid pro quo and the appellate court decided to just let the town hide behind the veil that the villages didnt opt in. the villages did opt in by electing the town board who bought into a park open to everyone.

like another blogger said, the judges are basically law clerks who knew a state senator.

at least everyone agrees on one thing - taxter was a mistake.

lets hope juettner is held accountable for her role in this fiasco.

overtaxed in hartsdale said...

why didnt the town board put taxter to a vote. the library was put to a vote. unincorporated had a choice with the library. now all we have are tax bills for a useless park.

feiner and juettner failed us on this one big time.

Anonymous said...

1:26 is Bernstein again. But Bernstein has struck out.

Strike 1 -- Feiner's reelection

Strike 2 -- the defeat of Steve Bass and Eddie Mae Barnes

Strike 3 -- the Taxter Ridge reversal

Bernstein is still arguing with the umpire about that last strike, but we know that arguing with the umpire never wins.

Yer out!

wrong again said...

lol - 1:26 (actually 1:46) is not bernstein.

hey - it aint over till the fat lady sings.

an earlier blogger made several good points - bernstein stopped feiner and juettner from engaging in more taxter ridgelike foolishness.

juettner will be up for re-election in 2009. its not gonna be easy for her.

town ignores residents said...

feiner says we need better communication with the villages. what bs. the town board has ignored the residents of unincorporated by purchasing taxter without a vote, failing to oversee the library fiasco and constructing a hideous wall in front of presser park. (the mural behind it is equally horrendous).

When was the last time dpw replaced the fading and damaged and useless signs all along east hartsdale and other places in the town.

congrats paul and company for making greenburgh one of the ugliest places in the county and the town with a most dysfuntional government.

oops said...

oops - dysfunctional.

Anonymous said...

Today's N.Y. Law Journal, the bible of the legal community, featured as the Decision of the Day, the Appellate Division's reversal of Taxter Ridge.

Su superlawyer has been humiliated before the entire legal community.

Good.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:08

Now Greenburgh is one of the ugliest places on earth? Huh! Taxter Ridge is the greatest mistake since the Maginot Line? This whole dialogue is surreal. Ms. Juettner may have to go in 2009, but that has little to do with her being tired on the job, or unable to communicate coherently. She definately aligned herself with Feiner's unpopular critics and Suzanne Berger in the last two election cycles. Therefore she has friends nowhere. Wherein Barnes had no discerible verve, and Bass was the stealth stand-in for Brodsky, they were beaten when the right issues were exposed.

With regards to Taxter Ridge, does anyone out there believe that this will ever be an issue in any upcoming election? Get real!

Once this case is finally adjudicated, it will be quickly forgotten, unless his Rotundness tries to resurrect it legally. He's stubborn and a hater, but not that stupid. Therefore when the case is put to rest, other issues will come to the forefront. For sure Taxter Ridge is not breaking the Greenburgh piggy-bank and, as it has been said on this blog before; quality of life issues still count. Obviously Irvington cared enough to press for this buffer. Well if one looks carefully back into the record, many parks have been preserved as buffer areas, and there are powerful "green" and "open-space" adherents who fight tooth and nail for these parks.

The bottom line for the taxpayers of Greenburgh is to develop commercial space where zoned. That's the answer, plain and simple.

So, I assume that after this posting is put to bed, and El Rotundo gives up his Man of LaMancha quest, new issues will occupy the wags of Greenburgh.

Anonymous said...

There are many people in Greenburgh who should hang their heads in shame,that being the old town board.
You should have never voted to purchase Taxter Rd. property just to please a friend of the boss.
The friend being Gold .
Shame shame on all of you.
You have taken a stance that the residents of the unincorporated area are peeons.
Yes Bernstein lost in the courts
but he has made many of us see how not to trust those in office who should represent the people.
With Taxter Rd. you all represented Gold and company and turned your back on those who objected to the purchase.
You bought this property for more money than it was worth without an appraisal.Tell me was that legal.
If you say yes then you all cannot be trusted with anything else that comes in front of you that states it's for the benefit of the whole town.

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:36

What pious claptrap. Who the hell are you to pontificate over this issue? You write like this purchase marked the end of civilization. What silliness. Get a life. The property existed since antiquity and there is nothing inately wrong with parks, green space, open land, call it what you wish. It is rough, hilly terrain, and given enough incentives somebody could have made it worse.

Development must be orderly and planned for the commonweal. Your conclusions are political and down right overplayed. get over it. The town is not going broke on Taxter Ridge or anything else. I would worry a lot more over the growth in the cost of basic services, the expensive unproductive school systems and County government. Most school systems today are bankrupt. They are a black hole of spending, but under our old way of thinking they are still critical. Central 7 is a money pit that is not doing its job. Why? Many reasons you all know. Edgemont is a money pit, as Scarsdale, Rye, Bronxille and many other upscale schools. They do their job, no cheaper than MV, Peekskill, Central 7 or the Yonker's system, but they have a better socio-economic cushion. They have a better support system. But no one should deceive themselves over their own problems. They have many!

The bottom line is stop the faux "croc" tears over Taxter Ridge. It is what it is. Every park has a vested neighborhood interest, wake up! Every park serves a small area of concern. They all have inherent costs, and that burden is shared by many.

The survivial in this new economy is tenuous for many Westchester communities. The operating expenses are too high, especially when revenue streams dry up. What's going to happen to the towns and villages that have little or no sales tax revenues? They'll continue to force people out with higher and higher property taxes, do tell! Just understand that people move from Scarsdale to White Plains every day, and that is why White Plain's town houses have gone through the roof! Almost no one can afford to live in Scarsdale once their children are educated. Read the papers!

This, or any other government, is a mirror of the people. In this cycle the public showed it was happy with Feiner, who bucked the convention of the party, which has done little to contribute to the economic mindset of this region. What did Berger have to offer? What has she done as party leader? Where is she today? She should be removed forthwith and her whole executive board should resign, they are an abject failure. The sychophants of the party, like Barnes, Bass and Williams went down to defeat! Hurrah!

Did anyone ever dwell on Williams's arrogance and cavalier attitude of entitlement. She hardly worked, was surly and was too long at what she didn't do. Bass had no clue! She was never challenged and when she was, she had nothing to say. She had raised no money, was bankrupt and completely dependent on her cypher of a running mate, Steve Bass, a political hack. He had never been challenged and like Juettner was an appointed, not an elected office holder. Bass is on the payroll of the Democratic leadership of the County, and had the audacity to believe that he should be considered for higher office. What a joke! When he started measuring the curtains for Abinanti's office his real character was exposed. he is a nobody, a loser, a phony and contributed almost nothing in his six years, except a vote on Darfur, and political manipulating with his friend Sheehan. He was the stealth appointee by the party to erode Feiner's base of support. That he did well. He seduced Weinberg and Juettner on the library. They were sick of the party pressure and the diatribes from critics like Sheehan, the Council of Neighborhood mob, Bernstein, and others, so they started to attack their former patron, Paul Feiner. Barnes, without a real clue, went along with whatever the majority wanted.

So let's look to the future, let's look for reform, let's look to restructure our debt, to work hard to bring commerce back to Central Avenue and 9A and other commercial zones. Let's create incentives to make the business climate comfortable for growth. Without business and commerce this region will whither, or we will just drift into a 3rd World reality of very rich and very poor. It could happen here!

no right to live here said...

question. why do people feel they have a right to live somewhere forever?

this is a ridiculous notion. sure it would be nice but there is no right to such a luxury.

if you cannot afford to live here, why should i subsidize that fact?

no right to live here said...

question. why do people feel they have a right to live somewhere forever?

this is a ridiculous notion. sure it would be nice but there is no right to such a luxury.

if you cannot afford to live here, why should i subsidize that fact?

Peter Swiderski said...

I recognize there is a lot of passion over the latest Taxter Ridge decision. Clearly, we Village residents who have been paying attention are pleased with the outcome. But we also recognize there is plenty of work to do.

We seek to return to a quieter time, where there was less rancor and less division. In our over-a-century of coexistance, there has never been a time where tensions were as high as they have been these last few years. The outcome of the case, in large part, addresses the source of some of those tensions. For me, that is my biggest satisfaction with the outcome of this case: it provides us with a chance to move on to a happier time.

We would like to see the Town Board and the Villages work cooperatively together. We welcome calls by the Board to work together to address issues of mutual interest and concern, and we ourselves have recently issued such a request as well. The Villages have no interest in conflict, no interest in "sticking it" to Unincorporated, and no interest in unnecessarily dividing this town. Greenburgh is a wonderful town. The entire Town boasts of so many advantages, so many resources, and so many good and decent people that the precise fact of where an individual lives in the Town matters less than the fact we enjoy it together, today and in the future. We'll certainly work towards the goal of ensuring is stays that way, for all of us.

enjoying a freebie said...

yeah. so long as we dont have to pay for parks like taxter ridge.

and anyway, we have 55% of the votes so as the saying goes - majority rules!


everyone agrees taxter was mistake. will the villages join in an appeal to get rid of it?

Anonymous said...

"Enjoying a freebie"

Don't you pay attention to what has just been written? Taxter Ridge is here as a park, get over it. If your share of that park cost is bankrupting you, get a job! The cost is a tiny fraction of your overall tax bite, and stop whining. I assume that you have something else on your mind that you are masking. If you don't you are a moron and a bore! Get a life and work on a few more issues!

taxter should be appealed said...

no - the morons in this town are the town board members who approved the purchase of taxter ridge.

i hope bernstein tries to take this stupid decision to albany.

Anonymous said...

that We were screwed royally by Gold and our famous board.
This is not a park this is a dump not fit for humans.
We know the cost is small to each home owner it's the principal that we were dupped into believing something that wasn't.
It was a favor granted to a friend of a board member.
If this happened then what else has been done for friends that we are paying for.
Things can change to the betterment of that property when the state and the county have another friend that wants that property for a golf course and condos.
You have heard the saying MONEY TALKS AND BS WALKS.

Anonymous said...

We are running out of space to dump garbage. here on Thaxter Rd. we could start dumping garbage to fill in the land for future use.
We would not have to pay fees for dumping but we can charge other municipalities .
We could fill and make money at the same time.
The way things are now the property is of no use to anyone but to help Gold and his neighbors .
Another thing look at how much money we could save on gasoline since dumping will be so close.