Friday, December 25, 2009

NEW TAXES, NOT HEALTH CARE

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 Jim Roberts
3)what's happening at 12 Grapes, N. Division Street, Peekskill
4)a message from the Westchester GOP
5)a message from Westchester County Executive-elect Rob Astorino
6)a message from Assemblywoman Sandra Galef
************My new In My Opinion column's topic of discussion in the NCN
************Five Questions With...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:

Make no mistake. What the Senate voted on Christmas Eve was not, I repeat, was not health care reform. What was voted for was four years of new and expanded taxes with the promise of health care improvements in 2014. What was voted for was increased costs of doing business, that will result in no new hires, and in fact, especially here in New York, people losing their jobs. Thank you Senator's Schumer and Gillibrand.

The CBO has in fact stated that the Senate lied about the numbers. They are spending the same "savings twice, there by turning their announced $130 billion dollars savings into an actual $300 billion dollars increase in our deficit. This is fact, as arithmetic is not opinion. To think one can legislate away the laws of economics is absurd. To lay the responsibility of your health care on private business, then expect those same businesses to hire, let alone retain employees is no different then hoping a four leaf clover will bring you good luck. Pure fantasy.

There is a reason why a spouse of many years knows when their partner strays from their bed. No matter how one tries to hide it, the offending partner does start to act out of character. The aggrieved spouse instinctively picks up on it. The same holds true as our representatives in the Senate screw us. A 1AM vote on Sunday morning and a Christmas eve vote, the bribing and bragging about with our tax monies, in a successful effort to secure the 60 votes necessary. There is a new transparency. It is the transparency of hubris.

Majority leader Reid had the nerve to say before the above mentioned 1AM vote that as he speaks a child dies every thirty seconds for lack of health care. That is why the senators must vote in the dark of night while we sleep. Yet, no benefits start till 2014. So if what he says is true (and we know he lies like a rug), how many of those children will die every thirty seconds till 2014?

No this is not a health care bill, but a tax increase bill. If you really think the promises made by our elected officials in Washington will be kept, then you are too stupid to be allowed to vote. If you thought 2009 was bad, wait till 2010.
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A MESSAGE FROM JIM ROBERTS:
Andy -
You could run this for me -
thanks, Jim


Dear residents, businesspeople, visitors and friends of Peekskill: let me introduce you to PeekskillDaily.com, an Internet site that provides daily updates on the goings-on in our city.

PeekskillDaily.com isn't just a news source and effective way for advertisers, community groups and others to reach a broad cross section of the Peekskill community. It will also support our city by opening a new, important channel of communications.

My family has a long history in Peekskill and I have made it my home for several years now, learning about the many layers and threads that bind all the elements of Peekskill together. I want everyone to find something of interest every day on PeekskillDaily.com, and to feel it is their web site as much as mine.

Since launching the site on Monday, Dec. 14, 2009, I've had much feedback from visitors to the site - most of it positive and all of it useful as I refine and fine tune it. Please take the time to visit PeekskillDaily.com, tell others about it, and make it a regular part of your Internet reading every day.

Thank you now and in the future for your support,
Jim Roberts, editor and publisher
www.peekskilldaily.com
peekskilldaily@gmail.com
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WHAT'S HAPPENING AT 12 GRAPES N. DIVISION STREET, PEEKSKILL
NEW YEAR'S EVE AT 12 GRAPES
Whether you want a quiet, early dinner,
or a knock-yer-socks-off New Year's Eve... 12 Grapes is the place to be!

We'll have two seatings:
5:30 or 6:00pm Seating
Enjoy dinner from the 12 Grapes menu.
Entrée selections from $18 - $30
Plus, Chef Dan has some delicious specials planned.

8:30pm Seating
12 Grapes New Year's Eve Dance Party!
$100* per person includes:

Special Four-Course Prix Fixe Dinner
One Free Drink
3 hours of Live Music & Dancing from 10:00 pm - 1:00am
featuring Johnny Feds & da Bluez Boyz
and special guest vocalist, Tommy "Blues Buddha"

Party Favors & Noisemakers
A Glass of Prosecco (sparkling white wine) at 12:00
Our "12 Grapes at Midnight" Tradition
A Gift Bag to take home with our Good Wishes

Call for Reservations · 914-737-6624
for more info, visit 12grapes.com

*$100 Prix Fixe per person does not include tax and gratuity.
A $25 per person deposit is required for 8:30 dinner reservations.

Refundable if canceled within 48 hours.

New Year's Eve Four-Course Prix Fixe Menu
First Course
Choice of Soup or Salad

Appetizer Selections
Duck Confit Risotto
Pan-Seared Sea Scallops
Thyme-Marinated Boneless Quail
Mushroom Vol-au-vent ~ A Trio of Mushrooms in Puff Pastry

Entree Selections
Filet Mignon with Butter-Poached Prawns
Lamb Oso Buco
Potato-Encrusted Chilean Sea Bass
French Breast of Chicken with Five-herb Chardonnay Sauce
Vegetable Lasagna

Dessert
Chef's Selection of Assorted Pastries, Cookies & Home-Made Chocolate

They say eating 12 Grapes at midnight on New Year's Eve brings
12 months of good luck and prosperity.

Join us on New Year's Eve as we carry on the 12 Grapes tradition,
and ring in the New Year surrounded by
good friends... and great music!

Happy Holidays!
Rich & Jeannie
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A MESSAGE FROM THE WESTCHESTER GOP:
Save the Date
Chairman Doug Colety invites you to a
Westchester GOP Campaign School

Saturday, January 9, 2010
9:00 am – 1:00 pm
GOP Headquarters, 214 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains

Hear seminars on every subject from grassroots campaigning to fundraising!
Refreshments will be provided.
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A MESSAGE FROM WESTCHESTER COUNTY EXECUTIVE-ELECT ROB ASTORINO:
Dear Friends,

Thank you for everything you did during the campaign. Our election was a team effort and could not have happened without you.

We faced long odds but because of your commitment and hard work we did what only a few ever thought possible and what had never been done before in the history of Westchester: Campaign to victory over an incumbent County Executive.

You and all of our hundreds of volunteers were the force behind our success. You made phone calls, carried petitions, passed out literature, put up signs, and gave generously of your time to any and every task assigned. The result was your energy, expertise and enthusiasm provided the margin of victory on Election Night.

I am proud of the campaign we ran and our message of tax relief, efficient streamlined services and accountable government. Thanks to the support of so many Westchester residents like you, we delivered a much needed change for Westchester County.

When I am sworn in next month as your new County Executive, I will remember the faith and trust that Westchester has placed in me. I will work every day to keep that trust.

I can’t thank you enough for all of your help and look forward to continuing to work with you over the next four years.


Best wishes to you and your family for a Merry Christmas.

Sincerely,
Robert P. Astorino
County Executive-elect
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A MESSAGE FROM ASSEMBLYWOMAN SANDRA GALEF:
Assemblywoman Sandy Galef Announces New
Health Care Reforms to Help Consumers

(December 24, 2009) On January 1, 2010, new health care reforms to help consumers will go into effect. This new law (Chapter 237 of 2009) will further bolster protections, expand consumer access and guarantee timely payments to providers.

The law, sponsored by Assemblywoman Sandy Galef, will modify New York’s Managed Care Reform Act. This Act, enacted in 1996, instituted standards for all managed-care plans, standardized grievance and appeals procedures, and established requirements for providing all enrollees and potential employees with detailed descriptions of managed-care plan’s benefits and coverage. Additional protections were put in place in 2007.

The legislation, passed during the 2009 legislative session, supplements the previous efforts to protect consumers in four ways. First, the law ensures that patients have timely access to home care services upon discharge from the hospital by requiring insurers to approve services more quickly. Non-managed care policies will be required to offer grievance procedures, access to specialty care through referrals, and transitional care consistent with that offered through managed-care contacts. In addition, the appeals process will be simplified in instances for coverage of rare diseases. The law will also modify how insurers issue dividends and/or credits to policyholders when appropriate.

“Health insurers need restrictions so that New Yorkers can access their health care plans when needed the most. Often people may be left out in the cold when their health insurance plan doesn’t cover a rare disease or approve home care services quickly. We cannot let that tradition continue,” said Galef. “Consumers will be further protected from health insurance companies in these instances.”

In addition, this law will help health care providers. It ensures prompt processing and payment of health care claims and authorized the superintendent of insurance to issue regulations regarding electronic claims filing, requiring insurers to pay within 30 days for claims transmitted via the internet or e-mail and require providers to submit claims within 120 days of date of service. The law further requires that insurers inform them about any adverse reimbursement charges and allow them an opportunity to opt out of the contract. The measure also prohibits services provided in a participating medical facility from being deemed out-of-network because a provider was not a participating physician and authorized health plans and providers and hospitals to agree to alternative dispute resolutions if possible.

“This new law will ensure that health insurance companies will no longer be able to take advantage of consumers in these situations. This measure allows patients and providers to concentrate on personal health needs rather than bureaucracy and red tape. I will continue working in the Assembly to make sure that health insurers provide services and respond quickly to the needs of the citizens of New York,” concluded Galef.
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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

AT NCN: abazzo@ncnlocal.com
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THIS WEEKS "IN MY OPINION COLUMN" IN THE NCN:
Dear Readers:

This week I discuss why Yorktown does not need a town administrator. 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: PEEKSKILL COUNCILMAN ANDREW TORRES
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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 DAILY: peekskilldaily.com

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

PEEKSKILLREPUBLICANS:http://peekskillgop.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

12/25/09

Sunday, December 13, 2009

CLEANING OUT THE E-MAIL BOX BEFORE THE HOLIDAYS

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)what's happening at Graymoor, Garrison, n.y.

2)what's happening at 12 Grapes, N. Division Street, Peekskill

3)a message from Peekskill Democratic Chairman Darren Rigger

4)a message from the Andy Polay Quartet

5)a message from Westchester Legislator-elect John Testa

6)a message from Assemblyman Greg Ball

7)a message from the N.Y.S. Republicans
************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)*************************************************************************************
WHAT'S HAPPENING AT GRAYMOOR, GARRISON, N.Y.

SUN.Dec.13th at 4:00 PM
ADVENT VESPERS
The Rt. Rev. Mark S. Sisk, Bishop of New York, offers an Advent reflection. The service takes place in Little Flower Chapel; refreshments follow the service. All are welcome.

WED.Dec.16th at 7:30 PM
CHRISTMAS: It's Origins and Evolution
Lou Brunelli's power-point presentation spans ancient Rome to the present day; a good way to ease into the celebration of Christmas. The presentation will be given in the John XXIII Parlor after which the Christmas tree will be blessed. Refreshments will be served. All are welcome.

THU.Dec.24th at 10:00 PM
MASS IN THE NIGHT
The traditional Christmas Mass in the Night will be celebrated in Pilgrim Hall at 10:00 PM. Join the Graymoor Chorale and your neighbors and friends in a joyful celebration of Christ's birth. Refreshments follow the mass.
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WHAT'S HAPPENING AT 12 GRAPES, N. DIVISION STREET, PEEKSKILL:

New Year's Eve at 12 Grapes!
Thurs, Dec 31

6:00 pm Seating
Enjoy dinner from our 12 Grapes Menu

8:30 pm Seating
Special 4-Course
Prix Fixe Menu including
Filet Mignon with Prawns,
Potato Encrusted Halibut,
Duck Confit Risotto, Vegetable Lasagna,
and more ...

Dance the night away to 3 hours of Great Live Music withJohnny Feds & da Bluez Boyz
10:00 pm - 1:00 am

$100 Per Person
plus tax & tip
Includes
Champagne Toast and our exclusive
"12 Grapes at Midnight" Tradition.

Call 914-737-6624
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A MESSAGE FROM PEEKSKILL DEMOCRATIC CHAIRMAN DARREN RIGGER:

Hi Andy –

Great blog again this week. I was especially interested in reading the message from Greg Ball where he releases some polling data. As you may already know, NY State law dictates that when you release some polling data, you also have to make the entire poll and the cross tabulations available for public viewing. Often the contact information of the pollster and the full poll will be attached. I was wondering if the poll was attached with this message or if his full poll and cross tabulations were posted someplace where the public can view it – for example, as a PDF on the pollster’s website.

I am very interested in reading the entire poll now that he has released part of it. We can see how many full respondents participated – 100? 250? 1000? The more full respondents, the more accurate the poll and the lower margin of error. The cross tabulations allow us to see geographic and demographic information. From this we can see where Ball is more or less known ie: Putnam vs. Dutchess county. We can see how popular he is with men or women, blacks or latinos, seniors or young voters.

I find it fascinating that despite this poll being taken before Ball even announced his intention to run for State Senate that he claims to lead Vincent Leibell (a popular 15 year incumbent) by 5 percentage points.

Often in these types of polls, politicians will test negatives on themselves and others. Questions that test which “potential” problems may exist. For example questions like “If you thought Greg Ball once killed a goat for political gain, would that make you more likely or less likely to vote for him?” Interestingly, we will see if Ball tested negatives for his potential opponents George Oros and Vinnie Leibell.

Lastly, and most importantly, it is always interesting to see if any issue questions were polled. For most elected officials – these are truly the most important questions and the true purpose of the poll. I look forward to seeing which issues are on the minds of the voters. Taxes, jobs, healthcare? These are the questions that set the tone for the political debate that is sure to take place.

Sincerely,
Darren Rigger
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A MESSAGE FROM THE ANDY POLAY QUARTET:
Hello All,

I am excited to announce the next show- I'll have the Quartet at the Beanrunner in Peekskill. We'll be there this Saturday, 12/19, at 8:00PM. If you haven't seen us lately, you are in for a major surprise as of course, Rahn Burton will be on the keys, master of jazz and classical sax, Christopher Brellochs, will be on the sax's, the fantastic John Goldberg will be on the bass, and I'll be on the drums. Plus, we have some surprises in store.

I hope you'll join us in our little slice of Soho- the Beanrunner, as we play tunes from Monk, Miles, 'Trane, Herbie, and much more, including original material.

The Beanrunner is located at 201 S. Division St., at Esther St. in Peekskill. Reservations suggested. 914- 737-1701

Thanks!
Andy
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A MESSAGE FROM WESTCHESTER LEGISLATOR-ELECT JOHN TESTA:


Wishing you every happiness this holiday season and throughout the coming year.
John G. Testa, County Legislator-elect
----------------------
Save the date:

Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Victory Celebration for
County Legislator John G. Testa
with special guest:
County Executive Rob Astorino

Piazza Roma
Cortlandt Town Center, 3131 E. Main St.
Mohegan Lake, NY 10547
6-9 PM
more details to follow
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A MESSAGE FROM ASSEMBLYMAN GREG BALL:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 10, 2009
Contact: Chris Covucci, (845) 309-2654
BALL CALLS FOR TAX REVOLT: NO TAXES UNTIL MTA IS HELD RESPONSIBLE

In light of the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s (MTA) announcement this week that it is facing a $200 million budget shortfall, Assemblyman Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson), joining with local elected officials and business leaders, held a press conference to call for a formalized tax revolt to force a legal and political review of the agency’s mismanagement.

“The time for chatter is done, and I am willing to place my political career on the line to start a formalized tax revolt. We will replace pitchforks with online petitions, but the impact will be the same, and this gesture will be a wakeup call to the tax-and-spend crowd in Albany that we have reached our breaking point. Albany thinks folks in Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess are rolling in dough, and the only things we are rolling in are bills and debt. The people of the Hudson Valley are golden geese being squeezed by a legislature that is hopelessly addicted to spending. We’re asking all those affected by this unconscionable tax to contact my office as we take steps as a community in crisis to place our MTA payroll tax checks into an escrow account. If they want our money they’ll have to come and get it,” said Ball, who has pushed to hold the MTA accountable as the first to call for the independent forensic audit.

As part of the 2009-10 State Budget, a payroll tax was instituted for the MTA at a rate of .34 cents per $100 of payroll on all employers, including non-profits, in the MTA’s 12-county service area. The MTA began collecting the tax earlier this fall, after it accepted a $1.8 billion bailout through legislation that gives legislative leaders the authority to conduct independent audits of the MTA (A.8180/S.55451) beginning in 2009 and every two years thereafter. Pursuant to the legislation, the MTA contracted for an audit 45 days after they began collection of the payroll tax and the Comptroller has stated that he will begin looking at the MTA’s finances, but Ball and local taxpayers contend that a formalized tax revolt will force an accounting for the criminal liability in the mismanagement of billions in taxpayer dollars.

Additionally, while Hudson Valley employers struggle with the payroll tax, residents are being hit twice more, with an increase in MTA fares (up from $2 to $2.25) and the Governor’s plan to increase driver’s license and license plate fees for those who can not commute via mass transit. The first phase of this plan went into affect in September with increased driver’s license fees and the second half was slated to take affect in April 2010; however, despite his pledge to rescind the plan during last month’s state budget deficit negotiations, the new license plates are still being printed and the plan has not been formally removed.
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MEDIA ADVISORY***
MONDAY, DECEMBER 14th, 2009
BALL UNVEILS
PASS THE PLAN, ENFORCE THE LAW’ INITIATIVE TO FIGHT DWI

This summer, Assemblyman Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson) worked behind the scenes to bring together a responsible coalition in Putnam County to combat the serious and distinct issues of drunken driving and illegal hiring in Putnam County.

On Monday, Ball will unveil his grassroots campaign to fight DWI: “Pass the Plan: Enforce the Law” The initiative comes after conducting months of negotiations, summits and public meetings with federal, state, county, and local officials as well members of the public to address these issues. Each anti-DWI initiative will be explained in detail with the expectation they will be brought forward for consideration at various levels of government.

The details for next MONDAY’s event are as follows:
WHO:Assemblyman Greg Ball
County & local elected officials
Concerned residents of Putnam County

WHAT:Official unveiling of ‘Pass the Plan, Enforce the Law’

WHEN:MONDAY December 10th 10:30 a.m.

WHERE:In front of the South Side Grille
(in the Mahopac Plaza)
927 South Lake Blvd.
Mahopac, NY 10541

CONTACT:Assemblyman Ball’s District Office
(845) 279-5301
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A MESSAGE FROM THE NEW YORK STATE REPUBLICANS:
Government Lacks “Capacity” to Manage Hall's Government-Run Healthcare Plan
Democrats’ Healthcare Plan Destined for Failure as Dems Struggle to Find New Options in the Senate

Washington- As Democrats struggle to sell their so-called “public option,” it’s not yet clear that the government even has the capacity to handle this new bureaucratic monstrosity. John Hall helped Nancy Pelosi muscle through this government-run health plan, but a top expert has raised concerns that the proposal is simply too big and burdensome to be administered by an already-bloated federal government. The “public option” would be modeled after The Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP), which provides insurance coverage to more than eight million federal workers, including members of Congress and their dependents.

Similar to the public option plan that Hall supports, the Democrats’ new proposal would be regulated by legislation and overseen by a federal agency, the same way the federal employees’ coverage plan serves federal workers.

However, it seems that the government may lack the capacity to manage Hall's government-run healthcare plan:

“Former OPM Director Linda Springer told FederalNewsRadio it will literally take an act of Congress to pull that off. ‘I flat out think that OPM doesn't have the capacity to do this type of role,’ said Springer. ‘Furthermore, I don't believe that OPM has the statutory authority to do it as well. But on both those counts, I don't think it would be a good call….”’

“Even with a mission change, there's the question of the ability of the agency to get the work done.

“‘For anyone to think that OPM has the capacity, the staffing, or the mission to go beyond that, really, I think, shows a misunderstanding of the agency.’” (Linda Springer, “OPM not up to task of running public option health program,” Federal News Radio 1500 AM, 12/08/2009)

“As Democrats are scurrying to come up with new way to sell their government healthcare takeover, reports are confirming what we’ve known all along: Washington’s endless bureaucracy is incapable of managing a government-run healthcare program,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “Hall continues to bow to his party leaders as they swindle their budget-busting healthcare takeover with the latest piece of Nancy Pelosi’s reckless agenda and now it turns out that he is backing a proposal that the government cannot even deliver.”
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John Hall Supports Another Massive Democrat Spending Bill, Moving Deficit Further into the Red
Democrats Force through $1.1 Trillion in Spending and Earmarks on Backs of New York Families

Washington- Today, John Hall proved once again that he is nothing more than a Pelosi Puppet by helping his party bosses rush a $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill through Congress. The 1,088-page package contains over 5,000 earmarks to fund the Democrats’ reckless agenda, including provisions to transfer Guantanamo Bay detainees to the United States and provisions to allow taxpayer funded abortions and the legalization of marijuana in the District of Columbia. After recklessly and hastily supporting his party bosses’ big-spending habits, Hall has once again let New Yorkers down.


“The House Thursday passed a huge spending measure combining major spending boosts for domestic agencies and foreign aid with more than 5,000 back-home projects sought by lawmakers…The 1,088-page, $1.1 trillion measure would provide $447 billion in operating budgets for 10 Cabinet departments, awarding increases averaging almost 10 percent.”


“The bill caps a heated debate over Obama's order to close the Guantanamo Bay jail in Cuba. It would permit detainees held at Guantanamo to be transferred to the United States to stand trial but not to be released.” (“House passes $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill,” Associated Press, 12/10/2009)


“The package includes the bill providing federal funds for the District of Columbia. City leaders rejoiced this week after a House-Senate conference committee agreed to remove a handful of controversial, longstanding riders from the D.C. budget, including language that banned needle-exchange programs, medical marijuana use and local government-funded abortions. The bill also ends a ban on using federal funds "for domestic partnership registration and benefits." (Ben Pershing, “House approves massive spending bill, D.C. budget,” Washington Post, 12/10/2009)


While middle class families struggle and are forced to deal with double-digit unemployment, Democrats supported a two percent pay increase for federal employees.


“Federal workers would receive pay increases averaging 2 percent, with people in areas where it's expensive to live receiving slightly more.” (“House passes $1.1 trillion omnibus spending bill,” Associated Press, 12/10/2009)

“Middle class families across America have been forced to cut their budgets in these tough economic times, but that hasn’t stopped Democrats in Washington like John Hall to continue spending money that we simply don’t have,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “Somehow, Hall and his Democrat friends still haven’t received the message that it’s time to stop this reckless spending spree and time to start an economic recovery focused on real job creation.”
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John Hall Kills Plan to End TARP, Return Money to Taxpayers

New York Democrat Backs His Party’s Partisan Cash Grab, Paves the Way for Their Next Failed Spending Bill

Washington- John Hall voted today against a measure that would permanently end Washington’s unpopular bailout program and return all unused funds to their rightful owners – American taxpayers (House Roll Call 967). With Democrat leaders clamoring to get their hands on unused Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funds to pay for their second ‘stimulus’ bill, Hall paved the way for his party’s latest failed spending experiment:

“President Barack Obama and his advisers, looking for ways to boost job creation, are considering using money from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to help the economy as it emerges from a recession, he said. The idea of using money from the $700 billion financial bailout fund was endorsed yesterday by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat.”

“‘Investments that we have in jobs should be paid for by TARP funds,’ Pelosi said yesterday.” (Julianna Goldman, “Obama Won’t Seek Second Major Stimulus,” Bloomberg, 12/4/09)

“Handed the opportunity to end Washington’s ongoing bailout mentality and pay down a ballooning national debt, John Hall instead endorsed his party’s partisan cash grab in order to fund their next reckless spending binge,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “After touting multiple bailouts, failed spending sprees, and a government healthcare takeover, it’s clear that Democrats are on a quest to spend the country into bankruptcy. Hall and his party bosses’ big-spending policies are leading the country down a path toward fiscal insolvency. Hall's vote today only further highlights the fact that he is unwilling to pass up an opportunity to waste taxpayer money.”

With Democrats plotting their next wasteful ‘stimulus’ bill, New York taxpayers will have John Hall to thank for once again flushing their hard-earned money down the drain.
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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

AT NCN: abazzo@ncnlocal.com
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THIS WEEKS "IN MY OPINION COLUMN" IN THE NCN:
Dear Readers:

This week I discuss why business exists. 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: YORKTOWN COUNCILMAN-ELECT TERRENCE MURPHY
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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 DAILY: peekskilldaily.com

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

PEEKSKILLREPUBLICANS:http://peekskillgop.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

12/13/09

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