Sunday, December 06, 2009

APAR'S BLOG GROWS STRONGER

Dear Friends and E-Mail Buddies:

Don’t forget to check out my weekly editorial on "Let's Talk Politics". http://ncnlocal.com/politics/main.asp

Look for “Andy Bazzo’s Blog”

Issues Discussed in this weeks blog:
1)my commentary
2)a message from Yorktown Councilman Nick Bianco
3)a message from Bob Myers
4)What's happening at 12 Grapes N. Division Street, Peekskill
5)e-mail from reader Bob of Putnam County
6)a message from Westcheter County Executive-elect Rob Astorino
7)a message from Assemblyman Greg Ball
8)a message from the N.Y.S. Republicans
9)a message from Assemblywoman Galef
************My new In My Opinion column's topic of discussion in the NCN
************Atom Taxi Inc. Airport Service
************Contact me e-mail addresses
************Sites to link to for more information (to be a better voter)
************Cable shows to watch (to better inform)
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Dear Readers:

This week I would like to note the passing of the blog "The Peekskill Guardian". This was Peekskill's first dedicated blog to issues concerning only Peekskill. This was also the first blog to want my blog link on their site, and till this post, they were always listed on my "Sites To Link To". I will always be grateful to their desire to validate my works.

Over the course of their existence, we had our differences. The main one was they were anonymous. Their answer was fear of retaliation. I always discounted that as I have been posting since 2005, writing a column since 2007 and never experienced retaliation. Arguments, disagreements, yes, but never retaliation. In fact, it was because I was not anonymous, my posting were taken seriously by local politico's and print media. In fact it was because of this blog, I got my weekly column in the NCN.

I always felt when they started, back then, dealing with Peekskill School Board issues, is they were out of the shadows, they could have been more effective. Three issues that made the print media, my column and actual stories only occurred because I was able to secure documents on my own that which they must have already had. Had the Guardian been out of the shadows, they could have made an impact on the local school scene that might have affected positive changes on the board and for the students. The print media would have taken their concerns more seriously, they might be writing a column instead of me. It is truly sad that out of an unfounded fear, they became just a ghost with no form or substance, and in the end no influence.

It is my belief that when they entered in the local political scene and started with personal invective towards elected officials and members of the print media, they lost whatever credibility they might have achieved. Sure some of their videos were amusing, but in the end ineffective. They neither influenced the debate or had an effect on elections. Thus ends a blog that like a shooting star burned bright, but in the end burnt out.

Now on the other hand, NCN Publisher Bruce Apar has become an active blogger as of late. His blog listed on my "Sites to Link To": http://theblogcabin.com/homebase/bapar is a must for all readers of blogs. Lately he has been arguing in favor of a town administrator for Yorktown. His two recent posts "Under new management" and "Municipalitics" make a compelling case. However, and here is where "I beg to differ", he does not answer the argument of law makers hiding behind the city manager, and there by voters have no redress. The elected official is accountable to the voter, an appointed manager is not. This past election, Susan Siegel won because she made a winning argument that Don Peters was ineffectual. The voters made a change. That is the way it should be.

Yorktown in two years did not go to hell in a hand basket. Personally I thought Don deserved to have another term. He did not make that argument forcefully enough. He let Susan define him before he could define her. He also did not run with the same passion he had the first two times and it cost him. However he leaves Yorktown better than when he found it. Could he have done better? Will Susan do better? No matter the answer, the answer is not another layer of bureaucracy at an increase cost to the tax payer in salary, benefits and ever lasting pension, which we pay a manager to no longer manage.

Paying people not to work is what bankrupted the auto industry and is driving New York into bankruptcy. No Bruce, you are wrong on this issue. Keep blogging and I will keep reading and keeping my readers informed of your opinions
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A MESSAGE FROM YORKTOWN COUNCILMAN NICK BIANCO:
OPEN SPACE WILL ACTUALLY MINIMIZE TAXES IN THE LONG RUN
December 1, 2009


Tonight the Yorktown Town Board did authorize the Supervisor to sign a contract to purchase 200 acres of land on Stony St. aka known as Granite Knolls subject to a Phrase I Site Environmental Assessment. I fully support this endeavor and as liaison to the Open Space Committee has supported and been instrumental in overseeing this purchase from its inception. Tom Anderson of the Westchester Land Trust was instrumental in negotiating this purchase with the seller. All the members of the Open Space Committee deserve praise. This is an environmental sensitive piece of property. A designation of parkland and or conservation will be put on this property in order that we do not pay taxes on same.

This purchase will be paid off my bonds from the flat tax open space bond passed by the voters several years ago. This will put the acquisition of open space since I took office in 1996 to approximately 2400 acres. This is almost 4 square miles of property. This is equivalent to the property size of the Town of Eastchester.

Understandably, taxpayers are often concerned about the trade-off of preserving land – an increase in local tax bills from the removal of the property from the tax rolls – vs. the environmental and quality of life benefits of conservation. Interestingly, the tradeoff is more of a myth than reality. Have you noticed that in communities where they praise new development, the taxes never actually go down? Egg. White Plains, New Rochelle etc. It costs local governments more to provide services to these new developments than they pay in property taxes. In this case (Granite Knolls) the developer proposed in his DEIS to construct 125 homes. The amount of students generated from this development has been estimated to 1.8 per home. This would be 225 students to the school system which makes up 71% of our taxes. It takes approximately $23,300 to educate a student.
So it would cost the school district 5.24 million dollars a year every year and continue into perpetuity. Studies continue to show it costs local governments more to provide services to these new developments than they pay. They strain infrastructure, create increase traffic, more police etc.

It is with this in mind that I support this resolution.

Councilman Nick Bianco
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A MESSAGE FROM BOB MYERS:

The Sunday Eve. Jazz Jam at The Bean Runner Cafe is on hold for now. Folks: To have the quality of musicians that have joined me in hosting a Jazz jam we need a reasonable guarantee of pay. In order to have that we need to have enough audience [players and listeners] to pay for it. Bottom line; it did not happen often enough, so we are taking a break.

Ted Bitters and Drew Claxton are true supporters of jazz music and I urge you to do as I will and support the Friday and Saturday shows that continue at
The Bean Runner Cafe
201 S. Division St. (corner of Esther St.) Peekskill, NY 10566.
914-737-1701
www.beanrunnercafe.com for directions and schedule.

We are working on re-starting the jam in the future.
Thanks to all those who supported the jam in the past.

Peace, & music,
Bob
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WHAT'S HAPPENING AT 12 GRAPES, N. DIVISION STREET, PEEKSKILL

Mon, Dec 7, 8:00 - 10:00
The Westchester Swing Band
An 18-piece orchestra performing 40's Swing, Classic Show Tunes, Sinatra-style Music.
Reservations are recommended.
Fun is guaranteed.
**$5 Cover goes directly to the Band**

Next Week's Line-Up:
Wed, Dec 9, 8:00 - 10:30, Greg Aulden (Acoustic)
Thu, Dec 10, 8:30 - 11:30, Petey Hop Trio
featuring Petey Hop, Mani Cregan & Mishti Roy
Fri, Dec 11, 9:30 - 12:30, The Brothers of the Road Band
(Allman Bros Tribute) ~ $10 Cover
Special Guest: Yonrico Scott of The Derek Trucks Band
Sat, Dec 12, 9:30 - 12:30, Rhonda Denét Project (Soul/R&B)

LIVE GOSPEL ENSEMBLE
Sun, Dec 13, 2-5pm, The Mt. Olivet Baptist Church Ensemble
$25 per person for Buffet Luncheon & Live Gospel Music

For reservations, call 914-737-6624
or email rich@12grapes.com

Thanks again for joining in the fun at 12 Grapes. To see our menus, calendar of events and photo gallery, please visit 12grapes.com.
As always, thank you for your patronage and friendship.

Sincerely,
Rich & Jeannie Credidio
12 Grapes Music & Wine Bar
12 North Division Street, Peekskill, NY
(914) 737-6624
12grapes.com
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E-MAIL FROM READER BOB OF PUTNAM COUNTY:

http://www.dailyexpress.co.uk/posts/view/143573
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A MESSAGE FROM COUNTY EXECUTIVE ELECT ROB ASTORINO:
The Friends of Rob Astorino
Cordially invite you to attend a
Victory Party Nto Celebrate the Election of
Rob Astorino
Westchester County Executive-elect

Renaissance Westchester Hotel
80 West Red Oak Lane
West Harrison, New York

Thursday, December 10, 2009
Cocktail Reception 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

$250 per person
$1,000 per person ~ Event Supporter
$2,500 per person ~ Event Sponsor
R.S.V.P. or Inquiries:
Christina Sofia-Comer (914) 997-2009 or Info@RobAstorino.com
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A MESSAGE FROM ASSEMBLYMAN GREG BALL:

Our most recent poll of likely voters in NY State Senate District 40 affirms that Assemblyman Greg Ball has very strong support from voters in the areas that make up this Senate district. Having tested a number of key measures, the poll also suggests that Ball is the strongest district-wide candidate – when compared to the other top candidates from both sides of the political spectrum. Thus, this poll gives Ball an empirical basis for a host of good political options to choose from. Here is a short summary of the poll highlights:

In a hypothetical head-to-head GOP primary ballot test, Greg Ball (46%) defeats Vincent Leibell (41%) by a margin of five points among the subset of all GOP likely voters from the poll. Most impressive is Greg Ball’s ballot strength with voters in Putnam (+19), among men (+15) and among voters 45-54 years old (+29).

NY State Senate 40 – GOP Primary Ballot
Greg Ball 46%
Vincent Leibell 41%
Undecided 13%

In another hypothetical head-to-head GOP primary ballot test, Greg Ball (59%) defeats George Oros (16%), by a wide margin of forty-three points among the same subset of all GOP likely voters from the poll. What’s even more compelling is that Ball (48%) defeats Oros (22%) by fully twenty-six points among Westchester Republicans.

Finally, the poll also tested the name awareness level of Mike Kaplowitz. The poll found that Kaplowitz is barely on the public radar at this time, with just 22% who have formed any impression of him, and fully 77% who say they have never heard of this person. In fact, even in Kaplowitz’s home county, nearly two thirds of likely voters in Westchester (65%) say that that they do not recognize this name.
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A MESSAGE FROM THE N.Y.S. REPUBLICANS:
Dems expected to lose seats in West in 2010
Erin Kelly
Arizona Republic
http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/news/articles/2009/11/28/20091128dem-west1128.html

After making historic gains in the interior West in the past three elections, Democrats are bracing for expected losses in the region in 2010.

Declining support for Democrats among the West's crucial independent voters, combined with traditional losses for the president's party in a midterm election, will make next year especially tough for the party, political analysts say.

"The Democrats have to defend what they've won, and it's not going to be easy," said Eric Herzik, chairman of the political-science department at the University of Nevada-Reno.

The president's party has lost seats in Congress in every midterm election but three since 1865.

The Democrats most vulnerable to becoming victims of that historic trend are those who haven't been in office long and who hold seats wrested from Republicans in the past two or three elections, analysts say.

That describes about a dozen Democratic House members in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada and New Mexico.

Five of Arizona's eight representatives are Democrats, including freshman lawmaker Ann Kirkpatrick in the 1st District. Two are in their second terms: District 5's Harry Mitchell and District 8's Gabrielle Giffords.

"If you're a Democrat who won with less than 55 percent of the vote, the Republicans are going to be aiming for you," said Patrick Kenney, director of the School of Government, Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University. "And, in the Mountain West, the Republicans can find credible candidates and financing to mount a competitive race."

Democrats also are losing support among the independent voters who helped them make dramatic gains in the region from 2000 to 2008, when they took the governor's mansion from Republicans in five of the eight states and gained ground in Congress.

In 2008, the Democratic Party even held its presidential-nominating convention in Denver to capitalize on its momentum in the West.

But now, many independent voters are indicating that the change from eight years of Republican control to a Democratic administration may have cost too much money and brought too few results, analysts said.

"The centrists who voted for the Democrats are now looking at large deficits, a stimulus package with mixed results, and a health-care package with mixed support," Herzik said. "It could lead to some reversals of fortune for the Democrats, especially in a region that is leery of high spending and big government."

A Gallup Poll indicates that independents throughout the nation are leaning toward Republicans for Congress. The poll of nearly 900 registered voters from Nov. 5 to 8 had independents favoring a generic GOP candidate by 22 percentage points. The survey had an error rate of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

A separate CNN/Opinion Research poll taken Oct. 16-18 indicated that the West was the only region in the country where the Democrats' approval rating had slipped below 50 percent. Western voters gave Democrats an approval rating of 45 percent in the survey, which had an error rate of plus or minus 6.5 percentage points.

The Democrats' approval rating was 54 percent in the Northeast, 57 percent in the South, and 51 percent in the Midwest.

"I think Democrats have gotten a little off-message," said Andrew Myers, a Virginia-based pollster who is part of the research team for Project New West, a Democratic research-and-strategy company based in Denver.

"I know there's a sense that we've helped out Wall Street banks and some of the big manufacturing companies but haven't done much to help small business and regular people," Myers said. "I don't think that's true, but the problem is that regular people haven't really felt the changes yet. Unemployment is still high, and people are still tightening their belts."

Republicans are playing it smart by recruiting qualified candidates to run against incumbent Democrats in the West so that they are in position to pick up seats, analysts said. For example, the GOP recruited Colorado state Rep. Cory Gardner, minority whip of the Colorado House, to challenge freshman Democratic Rep. Betsy Markey in what is expected to be one of the hottest House races in the Mountain West.

"They (Republicans) need to stay away from polarizing social issues and stick to the economy," said Floyd Ciruli, an independent pollster based in Denver. "That's how the Democrats won."

To hold back the Republicans, Democrats need to do more to lower unemployment and deliver on their promise of health-care reform, political scientists said.

"If the Democrats roll into 2010 and unemployment is over 10 percent, that's not good for them," Herzik said. "That makes it harder to defend the stimulus spending, the bailout for big companies and the trillion-dollar deficit."

Democrats such as Myers take comfort in the West's changing demographics. Although acknowledging that they are likely to lose some seats next year, Democrats say the increasing number of Hispanic voters and the influx of young, well-educated people will give Democrats an advantage in the long run.

"The trends are with us," Myers said. "We may hit a speed bump next year, but it won't slow us down for long."
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Hall Not Even Trying to Hide Support for Tax Hikes
Democrats Slam Families and Businesses Once Again with Permanent Death Tax Extension

Washington- John Hall and his fellow Democrats have given up all attempts to hide their enamor with tax hikes, voting today to permanently extend the Death Tax and once again putting the screws to American families and small businesses (House Roll Call 929). Unwilling to prompt economic recovery by letting the Death Tax rate fall to zero in 2010, Hall and his colleagues instead voted to make the current rate and threshold permanent – hitting families with a permanent tax of up to 45 percent on any holdings over $3.5 million upon the holder’s death. The fact that these holdings were already taxed once is apparently lost on Hall and company, whose eagerness to get their hands on more taxpayer money knows no limits:

“Next year had been shaping up as a great year to get a big inheritance — no federal taxes on it. Congress, however, has other plans for the few wealthy heirs expecting a big boon. Uncle Sam may take a 45 percent cut after all.

“Under current law, the federal estate tax is scheduled to temporarily disappear next year before returning in 2011 at an even higher rate. But the House is expected to vote as early as Thursday on a bill that would permanently extend the current top rate of 45 percent on estates larger than $3.5 million.” (“Congress Scrambles to Extend Estate Tax,” Associated Press, 12/1/09)

“While New York families are struggling to stay above water, John Hall and his big-government allies in Washington can only think of new ways to get their hands on taxpayer money,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “With Democrats already taxing and spending the country into a mountain of debt, the last thing New York families need from John Hall during this jobless recovery is yet another tax that will stifle savings, blunt growth, and pinch small businesses. It’s time for Washington Democrats to abandon their anti-jobs agenda, but Hall and his party bosses continue to push their reckless spending scheme so they can dig deeper into American families’ pocketbooks in order to fund their endless string of government takeovers.”
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With Unemployment Still at Double Digits, New Yorkers Are Growing Tired of Asking John Hall: Where Are the Jobs?
Democrats’ Economic Policies Fail While Small Businesses are Ignored

Washington- After consecutive months of increasingly startling unemployment numbers, John Hall's stimulus is undoubtedly a failure. Since the passing of the Democrats’ trillion dollar stimulus, New Yorkers have seen the economy plummet and national unemployment reach double digits for the first time since 1983. Funding that was promised to go to small businesses – the engine of the economy – has been spent on the Democrats’ big-government policies. After continuously spewing false rhetoric and empty promises that the stimulus is working, John Hall and his party bosses are now forced to deal with the grim economic situation that they have created as national unemployment sits at 10 percent. And despite the first stimulus being a failure, Democrats are making plans for another massive stimulus bill. As national unemployment remains in double digits, New York families are stuck asking: Where are the jobs?

“The unemployment rate unexpectedly fell to 10 percent in November as employers cut the smallest number of jobs since the recession began. The better-than-expected job figures are a rare note of encouraging news for the labor market.

“Still, the respite may be temporary. Many economists expect the unemployment rate to climb into next year as the economy struggles to generate enough jobs for the 15.4 million people out of work.” (Christopher Rugaber, “Nov. jobless rate falls to 10 pct., 11K job cuts,” Associated Press, 12/4/09)

As Democrats continue to spend, the private sector is suffering under their big-government agenda:

“Private-sector firms in the U.S. eliminated 169,000 jobs in November, according to the ADP employment report released Wednesday…The private-sector has shed jobs for 22 months in a row.” (Rex Nutting, “Private-sector jobs fall 169,000 in November, ADP says,” MarketWatch, 12/02/2009)

“Economic confidence among America's small business owners plummeted in November, as more owners cited serious concerns about cash flow and saw economic conditions for their own businesses getting worse. The Discover Small Business Watch index fell 12 points in November to 76.5 from 88.5 in October.” (“Discover Small Business Watch,” Rasmussen Reports, 12/01/2009)

“Given John Hall's eagerness to appease his party bosses and waste taxpayer money, New York families can be assured that he is ready and willing to sign off on the next round of wasteful government spending disguised as ‘stimulus,’” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “Hall continues to push the same big-spending and anti-jobs agenda that has driven the economy into the ground. Apparently, already wasting billions of New York taxpayer dollars isn’t enough to satisfy his thirst for failed spending sprees that stifle economic growth. How much more will New York's economy have to suffer before Hall finally pushes policies that promote jobs rather than destroying them?”

Small Businesses Hit Hard in November; Morale Low:
52 percent of owners say they have experienced cash flow issues in the past 90 days, up from 44 percent in October.

53 percent of small business owners see conditions getting worse in the next six months, up from 43 percent in October; while 19 percent report that conditions are improving, a sharp decline from 29 percent in October; 23 percent see conditions as the same, and 5 percent weren't sure.

62 percent of small business owners rate the economy as poor, an increase from 55 percent in October; 30 percent rate it as fair, and 8 percent say it is good or excellent.

53 percent of small business owners think the overall economy is getting worse, up from 44 percent in October but still significantly lower than the 69 percent of owners who felt that way in February 2009, the last time the Watch index was this low. (“Discover Small Business Watch,” Rasmussen Reports, 12/01/2009)

With John Hall's latest tax hike, it’s once again clear that he’s more interested in funding a big-government spending spree in Washington than giving New York families and small businesses the economic freedom they need to jump start the nation’s economy. Will Hall ever take his foot off of the spending pedal, or will he continue to tax away American jobs – including his own?
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A MESSAGE FROM ASSEMBLYWOMAN SANDRA GALEF:
Assemblywoman Sandy Galef Hosts State Comptroller DiNapoli and Secretary of State Cortés-Vázquez to Announce Release of
New Shared Services Report on Tax Savings Impact
Press Conference Co-Hosted by Cortlandt Town Supervisor Linda Puglisi

This morning, Assemblywoman Sandy Galef hosted State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli and Secretary of State Lorraine A. Cortés-Vázquez at Cortlandt Town Hall, as the Comptroller rolled out his latest report on shared services prepared by his office’s Division of Local Government and School Accountability. According to the report, municipalities across New York could save $765 million dollars of taxpayer money through shared services.

The report, titled “Shared Services among New York ’s Local Governments: Best Practices and Tips for Success,” highlights examples of how municipalities and school districts are sharing and consolidating around the state. According to DiNapoli, consolidating central business office functions holds the most promise for savings because it is often easier to achieve than other consolidations. The report provides tips to local officials interested in exploring greater degrees of cooperation with other local governments, promotes further exploration of service delivery on a regional basis, and lists many resources available on these topics.

Also reintroduced was a revised and up-to-date copy of the Comptroller’s Local Government Management Guide which offers a blueprint for successfully introducing shared services and consolidation initiatives at the local level. Suggestions such as “Working collaboratively with all stakeholders, briefing newly elected officials, supporting the decision-making process with data, addressing “turf” issues, responding directly to challenges and avoiding over-dependence on grants,” are among many which the Comptroller’s office has compiled from their experience with successful shared services initiatives. Flow charts, stakeholder forms and a directory support the information contained in the body of the Guide.

“I am thrilled and so thankful that the Comptroller has released this useful report,” commented Assemblywoman Galef. “For some time now, I have been focusing on sharing services and consolidation in government and schools. Specifically, I formed the Shared Services Task Force of the 90th Assembly District to look deeply at some of the local issues involved so that taxpayers could understand the process for making changes. The Task Force has asked for just this type of information which the Comptroller’s report provides. The report details how much of a savings can potentially be realized with what often seems like only small steps at the local level. I would also like to recognize the support the Secretary of State has offered through her department for overseeing the process of securing local grants to study sharing. The success stories highlighted in the report will help inspire local taxpayers and act as a hands-on guide for local officials so they can continue to work on streamlining operations in our governments and schools.”

“Tax dollars are tight and families are struggling,” said DiNapoli. “Now more than ever we need to find ways to cut costs and lower property taxes. A good number of local governments are already saving millions of tax dollars by pooling their resources and eliminating duplication. But there are 3,175 local governments in New York State . All of these counties, cities, towns and villages, school districts and fire districts should use this report as a roadmap to save tax dollars without hurting the quality of services they deliver.”

New York Secretary of State Lorraine Cortes-Vazquez said: “I very much appreciate Comptroller DiNapoli’s partnership on this critically important issue. Under Governor Paterson’s leadership, through the Department of State’s Local Government Efficiency (LGE) grant program, local governments have projected a savings of $350 million dollars from a $40 million state investment in over 240 shared service projects. The LGE program has been one of the most successful programs in helping to improve local services while controlling property taxes. Now, more than ever, we must work together and support one another as we build a better, stronger future for New York .”

Galef added, “It is no coincidence that I hosted this press conference in the Town of Cortlandt with Supervisor Linda Puglisi. Linda has taken the lead on shared services and government consolidation using innovative strategies to make the Town of Cortlandt one of the most efficient in the state, and in so doing has contained costs, averaging zero percent tax rate increases for the last 19 years.”

Supervisor Puglisi’s said: "During our administration the Town of Cortlandt has been involved with many shared services programs that have benefited our community and saved our taxpayers millions of dollars over the years. A few examples include a police plan with Westchester County and NY State Police, a regional Joint Waterworks to meet a mandate to filter our water, a recycling coalition and a regional ALS/Paramedics Plan. I am pleased that shared services is a current topic because we must all work together to provide the needed services, however at all times we need to keep costs low. I look forward to reading the results of the study from the State Comptroller and thank Assemblywoman Sandy Galef who conducted many meetings on these important matters."

Other municipal officials from the area attended the press conference as did members of Galef’s Task Force on Shared Services. Following the press conference, staff from Comptroller DiNapoli and Secretary of State Cortés-Vázquez’s offices were on hand to answer specific questions about the reports as well as to discuss progress on local government efficiency incentives offered through the Department of State.

Some of the highlights contained in the report follow:

•Up to $580 million could be saved if counties, cities, towns, villages and school districts shared "back office" administrative functions;

•Up to $185 million could be saved if counties, cities, towns and villages increased their cooperative efforts in areas such as recreation, water, sewer and sanitation services;

•More potential savings may exist in programmatic areas such as public safety, capital construction, property assessment and health insurance;

•In 2008, 181 joint activities were reported around the state. Projects span a variety of areas including youth programs, water and sewer, refuse and garbage, planning and zoning, library, and transportation. By far, the most popular type of joint activity involved youth activities – more than 33 percent;

•Revenue that local governments have generated in providing a service to another municipality has increased by nearly 31 percent. In 2002 they collected $674 million, and by 2007 that figure jumped to $881 million;

•Five municipalities have initiated three separate police service consolidations (traditionally a difficult service to consolidate), with expectations of tens of millions in tax dollar savings, and another eight have received state grants to do a feasibility study;

•In addition to youth programs and public safety, municipalities are consolidating – or studying the possibility – in such areas as facilities, public works, justice courts, and health care;

•Savings often come when towns and villages merge their services or when counties assume services formerly provided by towns, villages and cities.
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Assemblymembers Galef, Paulin and Latimer Introduce Legislation Prohibiting Member Items in the 2010-2011 Budget
Bill Estimates Savings at $140-200 Million

(December 3, 2009) New York State Assembly Members Sandy Galef, Amy Paulin and George Latimer announced the introduction of their legislation which prohibits member items in the 2010-11 New York State Budget. Their announcement came at a press conference today at the headquarters for The Business Council of Westchester in White Plains. This proposal will save the state between $140 and $200 million. The three state legislators have heard from constituents on the need to implement cost-savings at the state level and have decided to take this important action.

The recent passage of the Deficit Reduction Plan included a twelve and a half percent cut in member items for the 2009-10 state budget. This new bill would go even further to eliminate member items entirely for the next fiscal year.


“I am happy that my colleagues are joining together to oppose discretionary spending as we deal with the unprecedented revenue deficit. Eliminating member items for the next state fiscal year shows that we can make the difficult yet necessary decisions to benefit New York’s future,” stated Assemblywoman Galef. “It is necessary for the legislature to lead again as families around New York State have cut back on purchases that are not vital for the well-being of their families. It is time for New York to take that same approach and lead by example. Sacrifice is needed for New York to come out of the recession and sustain a strong foundation for its future.”

Assemblywoman Paulin said, "We must act now to address New York State's growing budget deficit. Even if we can't pass this legislation, I will be rejecting member items next year. While I recognize the positive aspects of this funding we are in the midst of an unprecedented fiscal crisis and can no longer afford business as usual."

Assemblyman Latimer said, "Difficult times require difficult measures; it is clear that our focus must first be on funding essential state programs with our reduced revenues. Discretionary spending - however merited - must be eliminated in years of such great economic crisis."

“The Business Council of Westchester commends Assembly Members Sandy Galef, Amy Paulin and George Latimer for their sponsorship of legislation to prohibit member items in next year’s budget,” said Dr. Marsha Gordon, President and CEO of The Business Council of Westchester, the county’s largest business organization. “Given the current financial crisis the state faces, this is an excellent example of leadership by example.”
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ATOM TAXI INC. AIRPORT SERVICE:
Dear Readers:

This gives me a chance to plug my business ATOM TAXI INC. As you are planning your holiday or business or vacation travel? Instead of the headache of trying to find Airport parking, we do Airport Service to The Westchester County Airport(and ALL other airports) 24/7. Just call 1(914)879-6121 and my partner Tommy, will be glad to take you in our Airport Taxi. You will also be provided with a free copy of your local paper of record The North County News. If this is a business trip we also provide a professional receipt, just tell Tommy at the time of booking. The cost of a one-way trip to LaGuardia Airport the cost is Ninety dollars plus tolls. The cost to JFK and Newark Airports is one hundred-twenty-five dollars plus tolls. The tolls are $10.00 Westchester County Airport and Stewart cost $75.00. We do not take credit cards, sorry.
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E-MAIL ME WITH YOUR COMMENTS:
Dear Readers:

It has come to my attention the difficulty in posting a comment on this blog. If you wish to comment, e-mail me at the link posted below, putting "Manifesto Reader" in the subject matter, and I will "cut and Paste" your comments myself. If you DO NOT wish your comments posted, but just wish to communicate with me, please make your wishes known in the e-mail.

LINKS: atom_taxi@yahoo.com(as this a yahoo address make sure you put an underscore (-) between atom and taxi)

For immediate reply: atomtaxi@aol.com
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THIS WEEKS "IN MY OPINION COLUMN" IN THE NCN:
Dear Readers:

This week I discuss next years state legislature races. You can read my column on this topic exclusively on line(see link below)or in this weeks NORTH COUNTY NEWS on sale now. I am worth the seventy-five cents. Look for my column IN MY OPINION(page 10) in the editorial section. Better yet as this column is exclusive to the North County News on a regular basis and will be covering the local political scene, take out a subscription. Click on the North County News link NCNLocal.com and go to Subscribe. Between this blog and The North County News you will have all the information to make a vote based on substance.
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NEW REGULAR FEATURE:
FIVE QUESTIONS WITH:

Dear Readers:

Until my roledex runs out of names, I will be iterviewing local political officials every week. I will be asking them five questions. The objective is to bring to information you do not have. Another reason to spend 75 cents a week on your local paper.

THIS WEEKS SUBJECT: ASSEMBLYMAN GREG BALL
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SITES TO LINK TO:

LET'S TALK POLITICS: NCNlocal.com

ROB ASTORINO: www.robastorino.com

JOHN G. TESTA: www.johngtesta.com

ON TOPIC W/ JOHN TESTA: www.ontopicwithjt.com

CARS & US: www.doverracing.com

THE WINERY AT ST. GEORGE: http://www.TheWineryAtStGeorge.com

PLAN PUTNAM: planputnam@googlegroups.com/

BRUCE APAR'S NCN BLOG: http://theblogcabin.com/homebase/bapar

NORTH COUNTY NEWS:"http://northcountynews.com/

THE JOURNAL NEWS:http://thejournalnews.com/

PEEKSKILL DEMOCRATS:http://www.peekskilldems.com/"

PEEKSKILLREPUBLICANS:http://peekskillgop.com/

THE PEEKSILL NEWS:http://thepeekskillnews.blogspot.com/

PEEKSILL NEWS: http://peekskillnews.blogspot.com/

YORKTOWN WATCHDOG: www.yorktownopengov.org

PADAVANO FINE ARTS: Padovanofineart.com

ASSEMBLYMAN GREG BALL: http://www.ball4ny.com/

SUSAN SIEGEL: www.wakeupyorktown.com

TERRENCE MURPHY: http://www.vote4murphy.com/

PEEKSKILL BID: www.peekskillbid.com or
www.downtownpeekskill.com
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CABLE SHOWS TO WATCH:

YORKTOWN WATCHDOG: Every Friday at 9:30 PM & Wednesday at 4:30PM on channel 74
Hosted By: ED CIFFON (yOrktown and Putnam Valley only)

THE VOLPE REPORT: Thursadys at 8PM chanel 15 (Peek. and Cort.) chanel 74 at 6pm (York.& Put. Valley)
Hosted By: Domenic Volpe

THE ISSUES: Tuesaday at 9:PM chanel 74(Put. Vlly. & Ykt.) Peekskill Mondays at 8PM chanel 15
Hosted by; Sam Davis

ON TOPIC WITH JOHN TESTA: Thursdays at 9:30PM chanel 15 (Peekskill & Cortlant)
Tuesdays in Yorktown & Putnam Valley 9:30 chanel 74
Hosted by: John Testa

CARS & US: Fridays 10 PM chanel 15(Peek. & Cortlant) 74(York. & Put. Valley)
Hosted By: Dennis Tate

SPEAK OUT WITH SANDY GALEF: Yorktown chanel 74 Wednesdays at 7:30PM..Ossining/Peekskill chanel 15 Wednesdays at 8PM
Hosted by: Sandra Galef

DEAR SANDY: Yorktown chanel 74 Fridays 7:30PM...Ossining/Peeksill chanel 15 Fridays
9PM
Hosted by: Sandra Galef

DOWN THE MIDDLE: Yorktown chanel 74 wednesdays 8-9PM.
Hosted By: Mike Thomas & Bill Greenberg
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EDITOR'S NOTE:
All articles re-printed in this blog from the North County News are with the permission of Bruce Apar Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

12/06/09

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