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December 2009

New York Times Report on Toxic Waters: United Water of New Rochelle

December 18, 2009 - 02:26

images.jpegThe New York Times has an incredible, comprehensive report on the toxicity levels of water throughout the United States:

Examine whether contaminants in your water supply met two standards: the legal limits established by the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the typically stricter health guidelines. The data was collected by an advocacy organization, the Environmental Working Group, who shared it with The Times.

They have an entire section on United Water of New Rochelle:

Environmental Working Group*: United Water of New Rochelle
*SOURCE: New York Department of Health- Bureau of Public Water Supply Protection

New York Times: United Water of New Rochelle

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS)

HEY NEW ROCHELLE!!! Ray Rice Wants Your Help: Vote Him into the NFL Pro Bowl Today

December 17, 2009 - 15:20

rayrice-probowl.jpg

Ray Rice is asking for your help. You can vote him into the NFL Pro Bowl here.

The Associated Press has a great story on Ray Rice: Rice puts up big numbers, ego remains intact

Rice is certainly deserving. 5th in the AFC in yards rushing and ranks 2nd in yards per carry and leads the entire NFL in pass receptions for a running back. In just his second year he has become one of the elite running backs in the NFL.

Vote Now!.

Journal News Says New Rochelle School Cafeterias Cleaning Up

December 17, 2009 - 15:06

The Journal News has a local version of the cafeteria story which ran on the front page of USA TODAY which also mentions New Rochelle.

The New Rochelle and Katonah-Lewisboro districts, which had the most number of unacceptable ratings in 2008, have reduced their serious health code violations to one each so far this year. The violations occurred at Ward Elementary School in New Rochelle, where inspectors found pizza not warm enough and tuna salad at 60 degrees Fahrenheit, 15 degrees warmer than it should be, and at Lewisboro Elementary School in South Salem, where they found shredded cheese at 54 degrees.

Rest assured that the district will rush to take credit for "fixing" the problem they created but have never publicly acknowledged. This goes to the heart of the problem with the district's mentality. They never want to admit a problem, take responsibility for it, take ownership of it, make themselves accountable and then work to get positive results and turn things around. Instead they want to suppress "bad news" and broadcast "happy news". The question is whether the school board should function as a PR agency or an elected, deliberative body. So far it appears to be the former.

Just a Reminder , Your School Taxes Are Just Around The Corner

December 17, 2009 - 05:45
1 comments

In a few months , we'll be hearing from our old friends at the board of ed as they pass the hat to squeeze us dry . Are you doing any better this year than last ? Does the raise the district gave themselves have any context now ? Did Martian Daly do the right thing for the taxpayers or for his own ? They vote for their own raises behind locked doors and the city council is laying off firemen and cops . Patterson is pulling more money out of the schools . Costs (including the full year kindergarten) have gone up and Quinn can't turn the lights off fast enough to offset the increases . The district want's to hire lawyers to "review" YOUR tax certioaries , yet they won't hire a financial analyst to evaluate the impacts of the economic climate they exist in . Will Organisciak choke on his own lies , will Quinn ever feel remorse for the mistreatment of the public trust , will Martian Daly be exposed for the true damage he does to our city (it's not his city - he could care less) , will Polow return to lucidity , will Jeff Hastie grow a backbone ? It could happen , right? Merry Christmas !

Apparently Bramson DID Sell Out...Just Follow the Money

December 17, 2009 - 04:41

Another contributor previously wrote about campaign contributions. They provided a link to the state campaign lists . It makes for interesting reading . You can see why there wasn't any action on Procopio , the procopio family consistently donates to the campaign of the mayor . I couldn't find Capelli or Apicella but I'm sure there's a link somewhere . Most disturbing is the $5,000 rom Forest Citys Ratner family for the mayorial campaign . A family from Cleveland decides to support a mayorial candidate only to later come before the mayor as a developer . Remember , the city had to pick Forest City from a list of 6 developers who submitted concepts . So , long before the selection process began , the Forest City group was positioning themselves with pre selection discussions with Noam Bramson . Why else would a family from Cleveland find it in their hearts to support New Rochelle ? The whole thing stinks backroom dealings.

Got a better explanation ? Let's hear it.

Follow the money .

New Rochelle Board of Education Releases Long Missing "Enclosures" to NYSED Documents from August 2008

December 17, 2009 - 00:00
1 comments

I am sure readers are having a hard time following this matter regarding my son's New York State Regents Examination in Chemistry back in 2007. It is not actually that complicated -- the teacher cheated on my son's test in order to flunk him and when she was caught the district circled the wagons to protect the teacher and the administrators covering for her -- but the district has sought to make it as complicated as possible by withholding documents, making false statements and lying at every turn. So, something simple has been made complicated which suits the district's purpose.

The problem for the district is that I have records that clearly indicate significant failures by the district to follow protocol for the grading of my sons' test and provide ample evidence that my son's teacher deliberately mis-reported his score on the test in order to fail him in her class because she was angry that the district had proposed to allow my son to get an alternative grade in Chemistry after I filed a complaint with New York State regarding her failure to provide accommodations for my son she was required by law to provide (e.g., allowing him to choose his own seat, letting him finish in-class assignments after class, etc.). The district has done everything in its power to lie about this, cover it up and use pressure tactics on me and my family to shut me up.

Bramson, Strome, Council Members...SOLD OUT?...ON THE TAKE? You Decide...

December 16, 2009 - 18:56
3 comments

The Fire Department of New Rochelle fell victim to City Hall’s massive blow in the form of Layoffs. The Fire Department of New Rochelle had to layoff six (6) firefighters, the equivalent to one fire house. City Manager Chuck Strome, Mayer Bramson and the majority of City Council all agreed to SACRAFICE THE SAFETY OF NEW ROCHELLE RESIDENTS by moving forward with this layoff, while they themselves sit pretty collecting full time salaries for part time work. Last week Bramson and the majority of City Council members voted yes to raise property taxes and reduce city services personnel.

This amazes me how they can justify raising property taxes over 5% and cut services at the same time. They never even took into consideration cutting their salaries, which none of them deserve. Bramson earns over $86,000 as our PART-TIME mayor and our PART-TIME city council members earn over $35,000. These amounts are only salary. They also spend hundreds of thousands of taxpayer money on unnecessary expenses such as travel, dinning, official vehicles, fuel, etc…

USA TODAY Highlights Failed Cafeteria Health Inspections at New Rochelle Schools, Quotes Famous Local Blogger

December 16, 2009 - 16:29
1 comments

8993BDF4-E698-4A43-97C0-644637071FF7.jpgOK. Well not "famous" exactly but I am a local blogger! In either case, I am quoted in the article.

USATODAY: 26,500 school cafeterias lack required inspections

Inspections in the New Rochelle School District in New York last year, for example, revealed problems at several schools — safety issues that should have been "shocking and eye-opening" to parents, says Robert Cox, who has two children attending school in the district At some schools, inspectors found severely dented food cans, a potential botulism risk.

Cox, managing editor of a blog devoted to town news, says the failures worry him. "It's not like we're demanding four-star meals," he says. "Let's just not have botulism."

Same-sex Marriage Continues to be Dis...

December 15, 2009 - 22:40


Same-sex Marriage Continues to be Discussed


In the December ll issue of the Sound Report an article, "Same-sex marriage defeat hits home," reported that State Senator Suzi Oppenheimer claimed although her office was deluged by calls telling her not to vote for this, she voted for same-sex marriage as a "basic matter of civil rights." 

     

In the same issue a letter by James Jackson (below) appeared:

 

Marriage is Between a Man and a Woman
Senator Suzi Oppenheimer's religious faith view that a vote on gay marriage would "repair the world" has a hollow ring to it.  The New York State Catholic Conference stated the bipartisan vote against gay marriage in the New York State Senate acknowledged that gay marriage is not discriminatory.  Instead the vote reinforced the concept that Americans understand that marriage is between a man and a woman.  Many religions stand firm on this belief which the Bible reinforces.
 
Oppenheimer's view that gay marriage is a civil rights issue has also been criticized.  Huckabee defined civil rights in a broad way such as the right to be employed but he felt the concept of gay marriage redefines an established institution in our society.
 
Senator Diaz, one the the eight Democrats who opposed gay marriage, pointed out that in the few states where gay marriage has be

New Rochelle Firefighter Layoffs Today; City Council May Vote on LeCount Place MOU Extension on 12/21

December 15, 2009 - 16:51
6 comments

The word has been going around that six firefighters are being fired today. So far I have nothing official so if someone has details please post them here in the comments.

New Rochelle City Manager Chuck Strome said today on WVOX that the City Council may vote on the LeCount Place MOU Extension on December 21st. The vote would not be called unless Chuck and Mayor Bramson believed they had the votes to pass the extension.

So, it looks like Christmas presents for Capelli and lumps of coal for the New Rochelle Fire Department.

UPDATE: Byron Gray, President of Local 273, the firefighter's union, has confirmed that pink slips did go out today. The reason they went out today is that by law the City must give 2 weeks notice of layoffs and the City wanted to cut six positions by the end of the calendar year.

Gray is unhappy, telling Talk of the Sound "they took our negotiated raises out of the budget to bring the tax rate down and put the decision on us." The rank and file will have to vote on whether to agree to some sort of raise deferral or a headcount reduction. The dilemma for the firefighters union is that there is no guarantee that there will be no layoffs if they agree to defer their raises.

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