Saturday, April 28, 2012

Will The County Stop The Madness?

Like most of The Paul’s illegal actions, this story is moving too fast for anyone’s good. ABG has previously posted that Greenburgh did not have the rights to repurpose the WestHelp property on the Westchester Community College campus in Valhalla. ABG believes The Paul’s desire to quickly do this is ultimately not up to him. He said he’d move quickly to have the Greenburgh Housing Authority rent the 108 affordable apartments if Westchester wouldn’t approve the plan for the Ferncliff Manor residential school for the developmentally disabled. Finally, the County has stopped The Paul’s rampant disregard for the law and his unabashed chicanery regarding what he wants – without a lawsuit.

It was premature for The Paul to enter into negotiations with Ferncliff Manor to build a residential school at the former WestHELP complex in Valhalla as there is a lease with the County still in effect! At stake is the existing 108 available apartments which can be utilized immediately for housing relief for people currently on a waiting list for housing. According to statements made by Greenburgh Housing Authority Chairman Bishop Wilbert Preston, there is a 200-person waiting list for people seeking housing in Greenburgh that cannot be placed for a lack of apartments. But The Paul's desire to have the GHA as a sub-tenant may also be illegal - which has never stopped the master of deflection with proceeding with a bad idea. Obviously, we could reduce the waiting list of people in need of housing by half just by utilizing the facility. It's a no-brainer!

If The Paul were a true proponent of affordable/subsidized/low-income/senior subsidized/veteran subsidized/special needs subsidized housing and Section 8 housing, why wouldn’t he have jumped at the opportunity to use what’s already there? In fact, why was there even any question as to what to do with these apartments once WestHelp closed? ABG is convinced it doesn’t fit his agenda for reelection. Nor does it bring in the money the Town desperately needs to pay off all the guilty verdicts against him and the Town. It’s apparent to many of us that The Paul is only interested in helping others with housing if and when it’s convenient for him or there’s a reporter nearby. He is plowing through the little open space left in the Unincorporated portions of the Town, giving his developer “friends” and “wannabe-friends” copious rule-bending access to Town resources. Homeowners struggle to just get by, and are stonewalled by most of these same Town resources or simply ignored by them.

Fortunately for those in Greenburgh, the County legislators, who have given their democratic colleague as pass thus far, are not fond of The Paul’s plan and have expressed resistance to The Paul’s proposal to raze the buildings and build a school. Changing the property from low income housing to a school during their own desegregation verdict debacle would be extremely unwise and counter-productive for at least two reasons. First, it would certainly send the wrong message and second, Astorino's own senior advisor and communications director Ned McCormack fought this as President of the Mayfair-Knollwood Civic Association. ABG is hopeful they may be slowing or putting a stop to The Paul’s maddening behavior. Like taking the keys from a drunken driver, so to speak, the County Legislators could be stopping more accidents/lawsuits from happening down the line. We can imagine the Stepford Board saying to each other with rapid head movements like chickens on speed, “What just happened? What does this mean? We went along with him like he told us. What’ll we do? Where is he? We need him! Daddy, daddy, we’re scared. Where are you?” Well, you get the idea…

Since the County Legislators are against The Paul’s demolition and change of venue plan, ABG is hopeful that the property will be used as intended: for much needed low cost housing. Regardless of the 20 year lease, ABG understands that the property has been reasonably maintained and in need of little. Greenburgh stands to lose an estimated $1.2 million if The Paul continues to leave the apartments vacant. It’s disturbing that the real motives of The Paul are being exposed toward the same people he purports to care about. Now that his promises to yet another developer are falling through, it’s become apparent he can no longer contain “those people” to Fairview proper. His old model is failing, just like his administration. 

It would be nice to see the County rein in our uncontrolled, inept and bungling supervisor from continuing this charade. It would also be nice to see the media investigate The Paul instead of printing and publishing his phony, fake, and fraudulent press releases and challenge his lies. They'd actually sell more if the public saw this. Perhaps they don’t have a large enough staff for all the work that might generate? Don't worry, we do. Still, we can only hope.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

For Rent: Another One Bites The Dust!

We recently deleted a comment from The Paul because everyone in the ABG office felt it was nothing more than blatant posturing by the supervisor and it didn’t relate to that post. ABG doesn’t mind The Paul submitting a comment, but believe all contributors should comment on the specific article they are submitting the comment for. This article is one that he might feel the need to comment on.

Standard & Poor has assigned the town it’s highest bond rating –AAA on April 20th. This was the gist of his comment early that we removed posted under our story about the Finneran Law. While it is always good to have an AAA rating, ABG thinks there are other issues more important to the Town that need be discussed.

One such issue is the Feiner-centric symptomatic closing of another retail giant. This time it is Barnes and Noble bookstore on Rt 119 in the Crossroads Shopping Center. At the other end of this shopping center sits the idled Waldbaums supermarket. When the supermarket was operational, former Town Councilwoman Sonya Brown held a meeting at the church across the street to discuss the impact it’s closing would have on the neighborhood. The Paul was not there as this was during his silent treatment period of Brown as he and his Stepford Board stopped all communications of any substance with her. Simply, he had had enough of Sonya’s independent thinking. We found her sincerity refreshing once she ceased drinking the Feiner kool-aid. However, since the damage was done, it was too late for her to rebound.

If you drive through this particular shopping center, there are many For Rent signs displayed. Drive through the Town and they can be found in abundance. The Paul will tout “his” latest success with the new H-Mart specialty market that recently replaced the abandoned Pathmark location, as though he had something to do with its arrival. Ironically, H-Mart is about to petition the Town for increased seating for their interior restaurants and ask for a variance relieving them of the legal requirement of providing a certain amount of parking per seats. They have overwhelmed the existing parking lot for their size establishment, spilling into other businesses allotted spaces, causing the existing businesses to suffer. It would be a grave disservice to these other businesses if the Board were to approve this request. And yet, we’re sure the request will be granted.

The Paul and the Stepfords have conspicuously remained silent over the scheduled closing of Morton Williams. The former Turco’s specialty market had become a mainstay in the area until Morton Williams purchased it. Regardless, it is still a viable store and location. Everyone knows that Morton Williams is really just another version of Shoprite. Shoprite, you’ll recall, recently opened on Central Avenue in Scarsdale amid the ballyhoo of The Paul, its new (low paying) jobs and is the answer to Greenburgh’s need for supermarkets. Forget that the Fairview section of the Town has been abandoned by both the supermarket industry, the Supervisor and his feckless Board.

How does this affect our bond rating? If you continue to hemorrhage businesses, which translate into rateables, or more commonly, taxable entities, your rating will eventually suffer. The Unincorporated residents of the Town receive their annual double-digit tax increases while The Paul enjoys his annual mismanagement of the Town by increasing taxes with the help of his Stepford Board. As he continues to overdevelop the Unincorporated areas of the Town into unneeded business offices and buildings or low/no income housing, the tax base throughout the Town steadily erodes.  Knowing this, it’s why The Paul is desperate to tout this one achievement at every possible opportunity.

Many of us desire a Greenburgh that maintains a balance, an even keel if you will. We desire a Greenburgh that appreciates green space throughout, not just in specific places. We desire a Greenburgh that applies the rules evenly and fairly to everyone, not allowing developers to build whatever they want, wherever they want. In fact, we desire a Greenburgh with fair representation for all. We can only hope.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Can We Repeal Feiner Instead?

The one thing The Paul does well is generate press. His most recent regurgitated blather was his reasoning to amend the Finneran Law. To recap a bit, the Finneran Law was enacted by the New York State legislature to protect the Unincorporated residents of Greenburgh. Why does The Paul seek to amend it? It stops him from doing what he wants while protecting the best interests of the Town’s residents. No surprise here. Someone stated that Villages within the Town have their elected officials to protect and serve their residents while the Unincorporated residents of Greenburgh have no one protecting their interests as The Paul and his Board run rampant through Town! Can anyone say Boss Tweed?

In order to ensure a lack of opposition against his plan to amend the Finneran law, The Paul and his Stepford Board scheduled a hearing for April 17th, a Tuesday evening. For the last “umpteen years”, the Council of Greenburgh Civic Associations has held their monthly meetings on the third Tuesday of the month. The Paul and his Board know that this meeting takes place religiously. This Tuesday night would prove no different. What was different was the people in attendance. Or, more importantly, not in attendance. It was a calculated risk that The Paul believed he could pull off. The Special Hearing for this amendment request found two stalwarts who were able to attend and wrangle 3 minutes each to speak against this travesty, mounting a valiant but futile attempt in the absence of other like minded and civic oriented residents.

At the last Town Board meeting, all of the Village Officials Committee members (mayors) signed a letter protesting this change by The Paul for this amendment. All but one of the leaders of the civic associations attending the CGCA meeting were against this change. The opposition is abundantly obvious and for obvious reasons. After everyone spoke, during the “regular” Town Board meeting, not the hearing, The Paul decided they would go ahead with petitioning the state legislators (Stewart-Cousins & Abinanti) to move forward with this. By the way, they also refused the suggestion for contracts the town enters into with private vendors be reviewed by the state comptroller's office for fairness. By ignoring this request, they’ve proved they are not interested in doing the right thing for the Town, the Unincorporated residents, or following the oath of office they swore to uphold!

The Paul has done as The Paul often does, and pulled dollar amounts out of his, ahem, hat, to make the argument for doing this shady deal. His claims that Sportime would pay $125k for the first year and could reap $270k in rent after ten years is only supposition and non-substantiative wishful thinking. Besides this minuscule amount of money to the Town, the overall returns for Sportime could prove to be huge if tennis ever sees a resurgence. But since the tennis playing public has been dwindling and nothing more than a minor sport, should we be entering this lengthy a contract and increasing our legal exposure? ABG thinks not.

During all of this, the operative buzzword and catchphrase of what Sportime will do for the Town has been infrastructure improvements to the Town’s neglected tennis courts. They promise to resurface five tennis courts, a basketball court and build two more tennis courts. We're waiting to hear why we need two more tennis courts when the existing ones are under-used and often sit empty? We’re waiting to hear why the Town hasn’t maintained the tennis courts even though monies are budgeted for them every year? We’re waiting to hear why the basketball courts have also been neglected? 

Finally, while The Paul and his Stepford’s insist on changing the Finneran law, entering into an inordinately long contractual agreement with a private company, accepting so little for prime real estate property in Westchester, and destroying the idea of moving our police station and courts to a new building at this location, we continue to wonder what the motivation is for The Paul? The tennis courts, et al, can easily and inexpensively be repaired. So the issue really can’t be about infrastructure. For all those employees and the smattering of residents who spoke at the Town Board meeting in favor of this under the guise of deplorable conditions, where have you been during all the other Town Board meetings and why weren't you equally vociferous about the sad state of the courts then?

The liabilities that The Paul and the Stepford’s are about to subject the Town’s Unincorporated residents to is staggering. The deal is just that, a deal - for Sportime. The Finneran law must stand. We should look to find a way to repeal The Paul from office. ABG urges everyone to reach out to The Paul and the Stepford Board and insist they stop! Stop with the Finneran Amendment and stop the deal with Sportime. It’s up to you. We can only hope.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Finneran: Unincorporated Protection To Be Eliminated

The Town’s Unincorporated residents have the Finneran Law. It was designed to protect their interests. The Village, also affected by the Finneran law, have Mayors and Village Boards to protect their interests. They do it regularly and very well. The Town’s Unincorporated residents aren't so lucky. We have The Paul and the Stepford Board. So how does the Finneran Law protect it’s residents? It protects us from our mayor and board, The Paul and his Stepford Board.

The NYS Finneran Law, which applies only to Greenburgh, mandates that Greenburgh tax only a portion of its residents, in the Town’s Unincorporated areas, for the purchasing, maintaining and operating costs of the Town’s recreation facilities and programs. BTW, there are two Town recreation departments. It’s been said that they are racially divided in addition to being excessively costly, duplicitous and nothing more that a vehicle for The Paul to create jobs in his good old boy network of vote getting campaigns! ABG agrees with this assessment.

The Paul and the Board are set to request the NYS legislature submit an amendment to the Finneran Law to allow a change that will officially change the law and give The Paul the ability to do what the law doesn't allow. He usually does this anyway and gets away with it. In fact, a lawsuit addressed this several years ago. An amendment is needed because the law also mandates that such recreational facilities and programs be restricted in use to only the Unincorporated area residents. The Paul wants to open up all Unincorporated recreational facilities to anyone and everyone, including Villages and non-Greenburgh residents. The only thing that stays the same is the Unincorporated residents will continually fund and maintain all of it. ABG believes this is just wrong!

The Paul tried to get a tennis bubble installed back in 2007 and the idea was met with resistance and was killed. Or, so we thought. In 2009, a New York state Supreme Court judge ruled that the Finneran Law does not allow the Town to enter into a contract with a private vendor that would permit residents in Greenburgh’s six villages and neighboring towns to get access to the tennis courts at Veteran Park.

Every few years, The Paul’s bad ideas resurface as either reconstituted plans or simply the same thing as before. This time the root of the Finneran Law change is to allow the Town to enter into an agreement with Sportime to erect the previously killed tennis bubble at Anthony Veteran Park. He hasn’t been able to do this before because of the Finneran Law, which was designed to protect the Unincorporated Town residents – mostly from Paul Feiner - prohibited it. But now that his “best bud”, NYS Assemblyman Tom Abinanti is in office in Albany, along with Andrea Stewart-Cousins, he has a sponsor to alter the law. ABG believes this amendment is a bad precedent and detrimental for the residents. In fact, all the Mayors of all the Villages submitted a letter to the Greenburgh Town Board, objecting to the request to change the law.

The Villages, most residents and even businesses are against this change. Why? The change in the law is not good for Greenburgh! What was The Paul’s reaction? He said he's going ahead with the request to change it anyway. Why? He won't verbalize it but he’ll get more votes from the Villages, whose taxes to Greenburgh amount to $70 per year,  not the yearly double-digit taxes the Unincorporated residents pay. The Finneran Law change is a bad idea. It was ultimately designed to protect the under-represented residents of the Unincorporated residents in the Town of Greenburgh. The law works! It protects us from our own worst enemy – The Paul! The New York state legislators should turn down this request and let the law stand. The Town Board will be voting on this on Tuesday. We know their vote is the proverbial governmental "done-deal". ABG urges everyone to reach out to the Board to try to stop this travesty. We can only hope.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Routine Payouts, More Done Deals

Last night’s Town Board meeting held no real surprises to the audience members. Having recovered from his routine bumbling, The Paul was right back to his tricks. The one exception was everyone involved with any participation in any type of tennis-related program for the Town was there to speak in favor of the Town’s purported cash cow from Sportime, that plan to install a bubble over the tennis courts. This plot has forced The Paul to lie to us again as to the money the Town will rake in hand over fist. One speaker commented that it would be a mere drop in the bucket as the certiorari payouts the Town must make, coupled with the guilty verdict payments totaled over $450,000 for this one meeting! He also stated it was unfortunate so many people would come out for a tennis bubble but not to address infrastructure, flooding, housing and budget issues.

The Edgemont Association had posted on their website that they were against any vote being taken during this vacation period as families will be away or unavailable as their children are out of school this week and celebrating the Easter/Passover holidays. The President of the Greenburgh Council of Civic Associations took her turn at the microphone to chastise those on the dais echoing the sentiment of not voting this evening due the holidays. But for The Paul and the Stepford Board this was just another nuisance vote they’d like to get off their plates.

Ending the residential leaf pickup by the Town’s vacuum trucks and forcing residents to bag their leaves for removal was another hot topic. We knew based on the Tuesday work session that the leaf bagging issue from the Town Board was a done-deal! One speaker even mentioned that. Another queried as to how much are we actually saving given the constant media barrage from The Paul and his minions? Others commented how their landscapers have informed them of the added cost to bag. And another added that just getting the leaves to the curb was a challenge to many seniors for physical reasons as well as financial ones. The overall theme, however, seem to focus on another eliminated service that affects the constituency while The Paul continues spending and giving away chunks of the Town, mostly to developers.

There was nothing on the Town agenda addressing anything with flooding. When the cameras were rolling, The Paul was everywhere waiting for a microphone and a reporter to say, “We’re rolling.” Now we see the pseudo concern and feigned interest he had toward his constituents for what it really was: a campaign gimmick!

We had been optimistic of newly elected Councilman Ken Jones, hoping he would be playing to a different drummer. Unfortunately, he must feel it’s easier to go along to get along. Ah, the taste of victory dished out by The Paul. During the work session, Jones questioned the amount of money being charged to gas stations for the newly created special occupancy permits for gas stations. This seems like a different kind of spot zoning – another signature ploy from The Paul. We assume this is part of the unspoken payoff to Cumberland Farms, who wants to redevelop the former Exxon station on Central Avenue. Never one to pass up an opportunity to increase a fee, add a tax or apply another costly indemnity to our businesses, The Paul and the Stepford Board have created another layer in the already congested arena of fees and taxes. Jones realized that this would be expensive at $2500 for each gas station and asked how the Town might be able to lessen the pain for them. Francis “Back Pocket” Sheehan then went into a lengthy diatribe about how the gas stations aren’t required to purchase the permit and that it’s “voluntary”. Jones nodded respectfully, acknowledging his allegiance to The Paul and let his concern die, as well as our glimmer of hope.

You can expect an urgent plea soon for an emergency replacement of the Library’s HVAC system. HVAC systems are usually designed to last about twenty years or so. With proper maintenance, they can even go longer. Greenburgh’s library is an award winning design. It’s HVAC system was not. It wasn’t mentioned at last night’s meeting but shouldn’t take too long to see the light of day. ABG isn’t surprised that the mostly glass structure requires more of both heating and air conditioning due to the necessary btu’s needed to treat the air respectively. And, since Presidents Carter and Ford’s pleas asking us to set our thermostats to 68° has long since passed, let’s just crank it up! They did. It’s why the system is cooked and in need of replacement. An award winning design indeed.

As the saying goes, the more things change, the more they stay the same. We hope Greenburgh will change. We can only hope.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Appeal Denied!

Unable to attend the Town Board’s work session, we watched it online. To say the Board’s guard appeared down would be an understatement. The agenda for the regular Board had numerous issues we’ve posted about before and some we haven’t. One we have posted about is Leafing Neighborhoods Alone:

The meeting opened with a discussion about ceasing residential leaf pickup by the Town’s vacuum trucks and forcing residents to bag their leaves for removal in bags. The Paul slipped, again opening his mouth and gave away how he intends to vote on the mulching issue, regardless of the public’s input. He said, “Once the local law is approved, uh, if the local law is approved, I want to reach out to landscapers about…” So, to all those residents who don’t feel appreciated, you may not want to waste your time by coming to Wednesday nights Town Board meeting as this is a done-deal! It’s what The Paul hopes for anyway.

He also mentioned that the Edgemont Association had posted on their website that they are against any vote being taken during the vacation period as many families may be away as their children are out of school this week and also celebrating Passover. The Paul felt that they should just vote on this as it’s been discussed since December. He offered numerous suggestions to be able to bring this vote to fruition, including special meetings – one of his typical tactics. With his obvious faux pas (we’re being generous), will it really matter what happens? It matters very much to us. But for The Paul and the Stepford Board this is just another nuisance vote they’d like to get off their plates.

Following the Town’s agenda brought us to the section we so look forward to at each meeting. Under the heading of Attorney, we get to see the certiorari challenges to the Town that the Town cannot refuse because The Paul and his Stepford Board choose to not execute a revaluation throughout the Town. It’s the one thing they can do to stop the monthly certiorari payments. The total amount we expect to see averages about $100k in unchallengeable refunds in each session. Scarily, this meeting’s certiorari payments will total $450, 571!

Also under the heading of Attorney, are the Town’s resolutions seeking legal representation for the Town as well as financial judgments against the Town. That total amounts to $33,871.76. Combined with the certiorari total for Wednesday evening expenditures, we will be spending $484,442.76. Wow! You can relax a bit, the same meeting has the Board asking Police Chief DeCarlo and Steffi Cabrias for a schedule for new amounts of parking and related violations fines to be implemented throughout the Town. Councilman Jones stated that these fines haven’t been increased in ten years. Well that’ll certainly help the Town keep above water.

Speaking of water, there is nothing on the Town agenda addressing anything being done with flooding. Each day as we drive to our office, we see more and more demolition work being done at 22 Tarrytown Road, the former Kings Inn/Westhab Inn. When the Fulton Gardens apartments asked the Town for preliminary approval to expand in height, The Paul and the Stepford Board insisted that they help address the neighborhood flooding, of which they too are victims. They agreed. Ironically, The Paul and the Stepford’s never required Westhab to do this. Why not? The Board instituted LEEDS compliance for all new buildings in the Town. Westhab didn’t need to comply. You see, this is a special project that The Paul wants, negating any requirements that others might have to comply with.

Ken Jones brought into the discussion fees, permits and licensing costs and how prohibitive they can be for people, in particular, homeowners. In the Interesting Comments Department, Thomas Madden stated that the fees are used to pay for the staff time to process the paperwork. Really? Isn’t that why we pay them a salary, to process the paperwork for the Town? The residents are apparently getting screwed twice. Once with yearly double-digit tax increases and second with permit/licensing fees. It’s great to live in Greenburgh.

One other great issue of the day is the HVAC system in the library, which already needs to be replaced! Usually you can expect an HVAC system to last about twenty or so years. At hand is a thirteen-page HVAC System Draft Report by OLA Consulting Engineers, PC. Evidently, a resident requested this 13-page report but was only given two pages of the document through a FOIL request. Dave Freed stated that the resident appealed this decision. He believes after checking with the state that a consultant is an extension of the Town department it is working with, making it an intra-agency document and not required to disclosure under FOIL. It seemed that Freed was straining to validate his decision. Town Clerk Belville chimed in to say the resident requesting this document was doing so on behalf of a civic association. So? Are there different standards for each? As usual, we find Belville’s comments unnecessary and intrusive. No one asked for her opinion or clarification on this. When the discussion became uncomfortable silence, The Paul rendered his decision. The result: appeal denied!

It’s getting harder and harder to live in the Town. Our under-imaginative Board and Supervisor are running out of hat tricks, shell games and finger-pointing. Even Jones seems stunned with the explanations being fed to him. Greenburgh desperately needs to change. We can only hope!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

He's Lying Again!

Most projects in Greenburgh take years before a shovel even touches the ground, but Supervisor Feiner wisked Westhab’s publicly funded, 4-story apartment building, squeezed onto a .7-acre piece of land, through the process in months! When it's a pet project of Feiner, all rules and regulations are summarily waived. When, not if, someone objects, he finds a way to either remove them from the equation or will deflect attention from himself to something else, such as a bridge or two percent tax cap.

This Westhab project will overwhelm the transitional space from light commercial to residential into the small residential neighborhood of Fulton Park. Supervisor Feiner promised them a senior assisted living facility if the homeless were ever to leave. Lie! Then he promised workforce housing for Greenburgh employees. Lie! The neighborhood favored workforce housing for Greenburgh employees but wanted it scaled to fit the property. The Paul said no, siding with Westhab, saying that it had to be big for it to be cost effective. One resident at one of the hearings, which are only a nuisance to Feiner and his projects, asked to see the final offering from Westhab so the community wouldn’t have to repeatedly waste their time coming to different meetings and hearings to see the newest plans. 

The neighborhood learned that Feiner repeatedly and routinely lied every step of the way! It turns out that this project wasn't for Greenburgh Municipal employees. In fact, it was not for anyone from Greenburgh, employees or not! All lies! He stated the project was needed there because it would be a convenient location for the residents to go to Central Avenue restaurants, the train station, bus stops. Originally, he had a different tune, one where these residents would walk to nearby supermarkets. Well, those are closed and now he’s touting workforce residents dining at Central Avenue restaurants, not about closed supermarkets or people needing food at home. How much spendable money do these residents have to use on recreational dining? 

In a recent press conference held by Feiner, he now states, “Something is going to be built here and I think this is the best option.” What? Are there new plans – or did he re-re-rezone the space for them yet again? He and the Town Board have routinely changed zoning and requirements most people could only dream of or read in a fictional novel about government deceit, greed and corruption.

Unable to rent these tiny apartments at market rates, Westhab will approach DSS and rent them to Section 8 recipients. When the public refuses to rent these overpriced, postage stamp sized apartments, they’ll be used to house parolees, addicts and worse. It’s a well paying business model for Westhab. It a sham for us and a shame for this neighborhood to be punished like this after tolerating the homeless there for over 25 years.

Fulton Park is still reeling from Tropical Storms Irene and Lee with no relief from Feiner and crew. They’ll see a permanent increase in flooding, traffic, noise, crime and gangs to a once beautiful little neighborhood. Crime and Section 8 housing go hand-in-hand. Think, North Memphis, TN.

More of Feiner’s lies equals more pain for another already neglected and suffering neighborhood! I wish them luck!

Guest Commentary submitted by Whitney P. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Kudos to Tarrytown

The Paul has never had any trouble contradicting himself or exhibiting chutzpah and here’s another example of it. Forbes Magazine listed Tarrytown as one of the nicest Villages in the US, and he brags that Tarrytown is in the Town of Greenburgh, as though that offers some type of cache for the Town. It doesn’t. The reality for Tarrytown exemplifies what they do extremely well. Conversely, it highlights how the Town of Greenburgh is being run into the ground by The Paul and his Stepford Board.

We quote: 
“I think that one of the reasons why Tarrytown achieved this distinction is because of good planning decisions over the years. The Tarrytown Village Board, Zoning Board, Planning Board and Conservation Advisory Board have insisted (over the years) on great planning and have made excellent land use decisions. These decisions have helped Tarrytown maintain its charm and unique qualities,” said The Paul. Everything he has said about what is right with Tarrytown’s leadership highlights what is wrong with Greenburgh. It’s amazing to all of us at ABG that The Paul can be so astute for a brief moment and in the next be such a dolt.

He and his Board are the reason our Town cannot be in the same league as Tarrytown. We aren’t even ranked number 80 on anybody’s list anymore. And that was so long ago, way before people started to recognize the Town’s decline. Tarrytown is rich in history and has capitalized on it. Greenburgh has little comparative historic heritage and capitalizes more on closing supermarkets and increasing subsidized housing. By the way, we’ve had some famous people living in the Town, such as actor Jack Cassidy and musician Cab Calloway. Other than that, we offer little.

Greenburgh has numerous parks that are quite enjoyable. He said that the restaurants in Tarrytown are outstanding. ABG agrees. In fact, when our office was in Tarrytown, we frequented them often. These do attract visitors and tourists, which also stimulates village businesses. He’s right about that. Greenburgh has some pretty good restaurants as well and an overabundance of fast foot eateries and convenience stores. Although, we seem to be losing gas stations and supermarkets at an alarming rate. While we have an inordinate amount of low-income housing that simply cannot sustain the restaurants and tourism as Tarrytown can, we do have affluent areas, such as where The Paul resides.

He acknowledged the article discussing the spectacular mansions in Tarrytown. Of course, the view of the Hudson River is spectacular. It’s spectacular now, until the current Tappan Zee bridge is turned into Feiner’s Folly, a low-income housing and high-line park requiring little or no maintenance to be funded by the Unincorporated Town’s residents. Then the view will feel like living under the elevated trains in the Bronx. Continuing, he states that Tarrytown’s restaurants are outstanding. We have some pretty outstanding restaurants too. Why not mention those? And, as the Stepford Board continues to find new and innovate ways to tax, fee and fine them, that should drive diners right into Tarrytown.

We congratulate Tarrytown on being named in Forbes, whether it is in the Town of Greenburgh or not and in spite of The Paul. We'd love to see Greenburgh listed again but are fearful we’ve dropped so low it will be difficult to resuscitate with this administration. We can only hope.