Friday, July 7, 2017

Abinanti is the real problem in Greenburgh

This letter to the editor was originally published in the Scarsdale Inquirer, June 29, 2017 edition on page 6. We are posting it here with permission for those who do not receive the Inquirer and because it highlights the actions of Paul Feiner and Tom Abinanti. It is unedited by us. 

To the Editor:

Your editorial “A desperate man,” in the June 23 edition, about Paul Feiner’s attempt to use legislation to stop the Edgemont incorporation effort, was right on target.  There is nothing new about Feiner using devious and anti-democratic methods to get his way, and his self-righteous protestations have about as much credibility as Donald Trump’s tweets.

But Feiner is not the villain of this story.  The villain is Tom Abinanti, the assemblyman from hell.  He was the one who devised and suggested this legislation that would make village incorporation virtually impossible.

Abinanti has the habit of inserting himself into everything and screwing the residents when it suits his, or his friends’ purposes – in this case, Feiner’s purposes. 

Here are just two highlights. 

About 20 years ago one Town Court judge sued the other Town Court judge over the hiring of a junior clerk, and Tom Abinanti advised his friend, the suing judge, and drafted the complaint in the lawsuit, an act that humiliated the Town Court for several years.

A couple of years ago Abinanti proposed an Assembly bill that was an anti-vaxxer’s dream. It would have required schools to admit to the general school population children whose parents had refused to have their children vaccinated against smallpox and other diseases. Why?  Because Abinanti believes the disproven nonsense that vaccination causes autism.

There are other situations in which Abinanti meddled contrary to the residents’ interests, but space limitations do not permit more examples.

And Abinanti never stops.  He has stated that in the next legislative session he will try again to enact legislation that will destroy the right of residents to vote for self-governing villages.

The remedy?  Make certain that Abinanti is not endorsed for reelection next year, and if he does get on the ballot, organize to defeat him. 

Greenburgh is an enlightened community.  It deserves an assemblyman who listens to his constituents, and is responsive to their concerns.

Herbert Rosenberg
Dobbs Ferry


  1. Couldn't agree more. Abinanti is a menace and totally corrupt.

  2. I agree that Abinante should be put out to pasture come November but that isn't going to happen.

    What bothers me more is the policy of ABG to print this letter as though it was just what the staff was thinking but couldn't find better words of their own
    to use. While comments are allowed generally they are generated by the ABG editorial content. Does reprinting a letter to the editor (some other editor)
    signal a new feature on ABG, it's own "letters" section?

    As for the letter itself, this is a typical smear tactic by a former low level judge who has an ax to grind.
    Good judges form opinions based on evidence and facts. Was there any ulterior purpose served by a tale dated 20 years ago, a period so far back that apparently Mr. Rosenberg has forgotten either the judges' names or has intentionally omitted them. If the intent was to protect the innocent, then perhaps the tale should never have been brought up.

    As for the vaccination episode, that is indeed Mr. Abinanti's belief and he authored a bill -- a bill that was not passed so parents in New York can rest easy. But there is a big gap between introducing a Bill and passage and grown-ups recognize that every politician has a suitcase full of introduced Bills that never went anywhere -- Bills, that unlike the vaccination one, were introduced for personal profit not for personal belief. Perhaps Mr. Rosenberg will write another letter sometime about those who use the Legislative floor for more untoward purposes.

    As for Mr. Rosenberg's last attempt at crucifixion, perhaps he would constructively argue that if anyone is being deprived of the right to vote, it is the residents of unincorporated Greenburgh who do not live in Edgemont. Every registered voter gets to vote for the President; every registered voter gets to vote for the though these offices had some effect on the lives of those who live within the job's mandate to oversee. However, at the Town level, NYS Town Law turns a fabled blind eye to those whose future economic lifetimes will be determined by those seeking to cancel their ticket to ride and shift the financial burden onto those still stuck on the sinking ship Lollipop. Of course, the hatchet wielder would be Mr. Rosenberg who long ago moved out of his comfort zone in being a front line defender of Feiner to become what many other residents had long known, that the fearless leader was "very, very bad" using the words of a notorious fellow traveler on twitter. Oh, did I not point out that Mr. Rosenberg's perch is located safely within his own village so he, himself, has no skin in the game.

    I am truly troubled to have to point these things out since it would become too easy for readers to believe that I support either Mr. Feiner or Mr. Abinante, both of whom I regard as the Devil's messengers. However, true believers in Democracy recognize that everyone deserves a defense and I believe that these two, especially being repeat offenders, are entitled to a defense especially when being the targets of foul balls.

    So the great Legislative crime of 2017 apparently is introducing a Bill that again went down in flames. In raking over the spent coals, does Mr. Rosenberg hope to find some glowing embers that he can ignite?

    While personally I disagree with the EIC's version of reasons to incorporate and even more adamantly disagree with its ability to deliver a better Edgemont, either in concept or reality, I support their right to sell it. And clearly standing in their way is Feiner for a host or reasons, political and personal. In this milieu, apparently Mr. Rosenberg sees an opportunity to board this train as the vehicle to air his own payback. So, who were those two judges from 20 years ago and did only one judge have a friend?

    1. For many years I have refused to speak to Hal Samis and turned away from him, without an answer, on the numerous occasions when he tried to speak to me. No need to go into the reasons here, other to say that I regard his behavior as sociopathic (not a diagnosis, since I am not a physician). He seems to spend his waking hours looking for things to interfere with, and people to savage, usually without a basis. Her has genuinely earned his reputation as a miserable person who one best ignores.

      For my part, as many people know, I have always tried to keep Feiner and the Town Council honest -- that is, following the law, rather than flouting it. That is the ax I grind. Not an easy task, as Greenburghers know.

      I did not name the two judges in the episode I described because my telling that story was not about those judges, but about Abinanti’s behavior in that episode, which was disgusting. I could give more such instances, but the stories require too much context to put into a letter. The point of my letter was to discuss Abinanti’s record. I hope that voters take notice.

      As far as Samis is concerned, he continues to be a miserable person and I will continue to ignore him.

      Herb Rosenberg
      Dobbs Ferry

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  4. Hal,

    1. If ABG has permission to reprint an article, it is informative. You don't have to read it.

    2. Yes, Herb Rosenberg is a Village resident, but he is the ONLY one I know who has stood up a Town Council, and said a proposed development in Unincorporated was wrong. He said this with respect to the building in Fulton Park, that was large and needed a lot of variances.

    3. Abinanti's anti-vaccine proposal was particularly upsetting. He is over 70 and his son, in middle school, apparently is autistic or on the spectrum. By the time that Abinanti had introduced his legislation, the link between vaccines and autism had been discredited, but the link between older fathers and autism in children had been documented. Now, do I think this was known 10 years ago? No. Do I feel sympathetic for the Abinanti family? Yes. BUT for Tom to try to put other kids in danger over this is just not acceptable. He needs to face up to his child's issues, and his role.

    4. I do not think Edgemont could incorporate if the only issue were taxes. The Town's deaf ear to zoning and planning issues is not helping.

    1. 1. I didn't write that ABG had no permission. My comments are informative. You don't have to read them.

      2. There may be no requirement to live in Fulton Park to depress the NIMBY button but the building has been occupied and end of the world predictions have not come true. Still 39 sees a need to enhance Rosenberg's CV adding the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Rosenberg has switched sides after befriending Mr. Bernstein, after both were the best of enemies; Rosenberg is now most opposed to Feiner. But there's no escaping that Rosenberg, a Village resident, can say whatever he wants protected by village asylum and extradition. Given his persuasion points date back 20 and 10 years, I feel justified in reminding readers that once Rosenberg was known as "white lie" Rosenberg, an earned title referring to being truth-challenged in HIS support of HIS friend, Feiner.

      3. Albany vs. the Surgeon and Attorney Generals?...if Abinanti were successful, which he wasn't, which government would win in a showdown over vaccination? Whether Abinanti was right or wrong then has little to do with today's Edgemont issue. And while Abinanti put his name on a Bill he believed in, you apparently are not -- I've checked and there are no listings for anyone named 39.

      4) Funny that you’re concerned about a Town deaf ear to zoning and planning that upsets the self-appointed EIC. I've written about EIC deaf ears when asked about its zoning and planning issues. Assuming that EIC members would nominate themselves to serve on Edgemont Zoning and Planning Boards, it behooves the EIC to be transparent about how it would rule on Central Avenue devlopment. I suggest the EIC doesn't want to reveal this ahead of Referendum because they don’t want to invite challenge from those owning property there; nor does the EIC want now to upset owners of developable parcels elsewhere. The only zoning issue that the EIC has argued is Shelbourne which happens to be the NIMBY thorn du jour unhinging Mr. Sherwin, daddy of the EIC. And apparently just being an Edgemont resident won't satisfy the EIC or because there was always Edgemont representation on the Zoning and Planning Boards. So while voting records of the native board members may not jive with the unwritten EIC manifesto; to insiders’ relief these Edgemont board members haven't publicly opposed vaccination. I find it quixotic and quotable that the EIC, which cries foul in regard to endangered voting rights, chooses to ignore, for "convenience" sake, another linchpin of Democracy -- majority rule. If the EIC doesn't approve the output of these Boards despite representation, the only way it deals with the result is to: cry, stamp its feet; take back its ball; rush home and holler incorporate.

      5. This section should be blank because even though what it concerns came up before your interest being 1-4, you overlooked the tender spot when you felt your way around the elephant*. Weren't you curious as to the identities of the two judges cited by Rosenberg? Don't you want to know who's friends with whom?

      While Mr. Rosenberg asserts that Greenburgh is enlightened, HIS displeasure with Mr. Abinanti** seems to come down to a disagreement over title bestowed rights or, the instruction that what irks Rosenberg is also what irks every Abinanti constituent. Not unlike zoning which pleases the EIC is zoning pleasing to everyone in Edgemont...

      * see blind men and elephant
      **for the record, I too would relish the outcome were Mr. Abinanti be put to pasture come November graze alongside Mr. Rosenberg.

  5. Hal, Edgemont will be just like the other 6 villages. The voters will be aligned with the government. Right now, Paul and the Paulettes know they can get re-elected forever, by appeasing the villages and Fairview.