Wednesday, June 30, 2010

4 Men Charged With Sexually Assaulting Teen

  
Twin brothers & 2 other men between 22 & 24 plead not guilty to having sexual contact with a girl under the age of 15

STORY

SCATS ~~ I thought I had seen it all. I was wrong! Where the heck are this girl's parents?

WHEC-TV reports: A new study from the Partnership for a Drug-Free America shows that more than two-thirds of surveyed teen girls said they thought using drugs might help kids deal with problems at home. That's up from 61-percent of respondents in 2008.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Read the Schamerhorn Arbitration Decision

      
In the Matter of Arbitration Between
The Town of Greece
and CWA 1170 (Gold Badge Club)

37 page arbitration report

"While the Director's (Loszynski's) efforts to raise standards may be applauded, the relevant standards are those that prevailed two years ago."

SCATS ~~ So despite paying nearly $1 million for Loszynski's investigation, we now find that his conclusions don't hold up to the light of day. I wonder how many other areas covered by his "internal investigation" will crumble as time goes by. I wonder if there will be ANY value at all in the report he wrote.
 
To refresh your memory, here's the Settlement Agreement

Summarizes Schamerhorn' past actions
  

Why Postpone The Hunt For A Supt?

  
When the Greece BOE named an Acting and an Interim Supt. last week, I was left with a few questions.

First of all, why do we need to hire an "Acting Supt" at some special rate of pay to cover a couple of weeks of time? School is out for summer. A new interim Supt. will join DO shortly. Hiring someone for a couple of weeks is a lot like saying Achramovitch was so instrumental to the daily operation of the district that he couldn't take a vacation, and of course, we know that's NOT true!

Secondly, the D&C reported last week: "In May, the school board announced it was not satisfied with either of two finalists for the superintendent's job and would keep looking. That search is expected to begin in the fall." Why are we waiting until fall? Won't candidates who want a position already be settled into new jobs by then? Are we planning to keep an interim Supt. in place for the better part of a year, possibly longer? Aren't we limiting our options with this decision?

And last but not least, why do we need to provide up to 5 days of pay for Steve to transition-in someone to an interim position? O'Rourke has plenty of superintendent's experience in a variety of locations, including the Rochester 'burbs. Nadolinski has been in GCSD long enough to know where all of the skeletons are buried anyway. This sounds like some new precedent we're setting, but no one has explained the need. We didn't transition in Walts, Meg, Jo Kehoe or even Steve. Why are we spending money (potentially) on this now?

Monday, June 28, 2010

NY's Per Pupil Spending 67% Above National Average

  
Census Bureau statistics released today show that New York spent $17,173 per student for public education in 2007-08, more than any other state.

Read More

Arbitrator: Greece Erred In Schamerhorn Demotion

  
June 22nd ruling says Town of Greece erred in establishing an open-ended demotion to patrolman for Schamerhorn following his botching of the Nick Joseph accident investigation. Arbitrator orders town to restore Schamerhorn to a rank of sergeant a year after his demotion, which means he could be returned to his previous rank later this summer.

Schamerhorn's lapses are characterized as “neglect of duty and nonfeasance” that were “violations of Department rules regarding performance of duties” and not a deliberate attempt to cover-up, as the Town has contended.

STORY

SCATS ~~ BEWARE LADIES! If this cop ever pulls you over, call 911 and ask that they send out a Monroe County Sheriff's Deputy to handle the situation. He's known to enjoy roughing up women.
 
Anonymous said...

Here is what to watch for next:

The Town does NOT have to follow the arbitrators ruling if they don't want to in cases involoving police officers. They can stay with the demotion and have the officer file with a state court for a ruling....

Lets see what the Town does next.    6/28/2010 7:41 PM

Talk Heard Around The Water Cooler ...

  
Greece School Board member Sean McCabe aspires to be the next school board president. He wants the position to bolster his resume prior to running for the Greece Town Board and later as a candidate to become a State Representative. Too bad Sean (a Boily bunch puppet) may not have the five votes he will need to get his start into real politics ...

I Blame The Politicians ...

  
Greece Town Hall getting new $100,000 roof rated for high winds after just 13 yrs.

"We have had issues with the roof for a number of years, and it got to a point a few years ago that we did a cost/benefit analysis of what it cost us for annual repairs, and made the determination it was in the town's best interest to replace the roof." ~~ Kathryn Firkins, constituent services

STORY

SCATS ~~ Is it just the velocity of the wind or did the temperature of the wind contribute, too?
  

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Vote For Edward If ...

    
... If You Believe That " ... there is more that unites us than divides us despite our perceived differences."

VOTE

SCATS ~~ I don't usually get involved with such endeavors, but I made an exception after listening to Edward's message.
  

If You Missed Juror #9 Speak To NGN ...

   
... You Still Have TWO Options

1 - Listen/watch online: http://www.wgceca.com/COMMUNITYREPORT.html

2 - Watch it on TV Ch. 6 WGCE tomorrow night or July 5th at 7PM. Get out your rabbit ears, since this is NOT a cable station.

He talks about his experience as a juror on the Merritt Rahn Jury.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Newsweek's Ranking Doesn't Define Odyssey

"We buy the little plaque that says the number (we ranked) and really don't do much else with it ... We're not really competing for that ranking. That's not what we're going for. We're going for kids to be prepared for college or whatever the next step is." ~~ Sue Meier, principal of Greece Odyssey Academy, which ranked No. 106 on Newsweek's list.

STORY


SCATS ~~ So then, the parents who cry that we can't eliminate the "best performing school in the district" really don't have much of an argument given the school's principal's statements!
  

Friday, June 25, 2010

Starting Opposition To Triborough ...

   
Anonymous said...

This link gives a good clear explanation of the triborough amendment and why it should be repealed. Maybe we should find out if there is a grassroots effort to get this repealed since the school boards are not interested ; most of them were endorsed by teachers unions. Same goes for the state assembly and senate members. They are either democrats and backed by unions or republicans and don't know which way to vote until they get a reading from their astrologer. Here is the address. (If there is no one that has started opposition to triborough let's start it here)

http://www.stopthetaxshift.org/employee-relations/25-triborough-amendment

6/25/2010 6:50 PM

SCATS ~~ The political party doesn't really seem to mean much or matter, since most of the politicians around here are a bunch of disloyal party-flippers. I think all of them fear the unions, instead of fearing the rest of us who should vote them out of office for doing nothing about the status quo.
  

CA-POW Files Amended Lawsuit

   
Judge Siragusa Adjourns Proceedings In Walmart Case

STORY

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Greece Police Arrest Teens For Car Break-Ins

  

UPDATE ~~ GPD has arrested FIVE teens now, three of whom are being questioned by Gates Police also.
  
WHEC-TV reports: GPD arrested Richard Rawle, 18, of Gates, and Joseph Dentino, 18, of Greece and charged them with 6 counts of larceny & 1 count of grand larceny larcenies from vehicles in that neighborhood.

SCATS ~~ HOORAY!!!! Great work, Greece PD!!! Keep it up & do it again :)

Could we use these punks in dunk tanks at the Barnard Carnival this weekend???

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Did You Feel The Earth Move?

   
Preliminary Earthquake Report

Magnitude 5.5 -
ONTARIO-QUEBEC BORDER REGION, CANADA
2010 June 23 17:41:41 UTC

Our BOE Gives Lots Of Lip Service ...

  
But they do NOT follow through!

Recently, this FOIL request was sent to BOE Clerk Lynne Armstrong by former BOE Member Charlie Hubbard:

"A copy please of any written correspondence from the school board or administration on behalf of the school board to local state representatives in reference to their concern over the Triborough amendment or the Taylor law or reference to these laws negative impact on contract negotiations.

The time frame involved would be the last 4 years.
Thank you for your time and effort.

Charlie Hubbard"

The official response from the BOE Clerk back to Mr. Hubbard:

"Monday, June 21, 2010 11:24 AM
Subject: Re: FOIL request

Charlie

In response to your FOIL request 2010-012; no such documents exist.

A person denied access to a record may appeal within 30 days of the denial. Appeals should be addressed in writing to Deborah Hoeft, Appeals Officer, P.O. Box 300, North Greece, NY 14515-0300, 585-966-2343.

Lynne"

SCATS ~~ In summary, during the FOUR YEARS since the GTA contract "expired" our school district has done its share of p*ssing & moaning about Triborough & the Taylor Law, BUT they have DONE NOTHING!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

BOE Appoints Acting & Interim Supts

  
Did they have an open & posted meeting Monday night?

BOE Convenes Tuesday Meeting & Immediately Goes Into Exec. Session "to discuss the employment history of a particular person/s and events of the last 24 hours." ~~ Patrick Tydings, Circus Posse Prez.
  • BOE votes 9 to 0 to appoint Don Nadolinski Acting Supt. for July 1 to July 22, 2010
  • BOE votes 9 to 0 to appoint John R. O'Rourke Interim Supt. effective July 23, 2010
  • BOE votes 9 to 0 to pay an $800/day transitional stipend for up to 5 days to Steve Achramovitch, if needed.
"We met until the late hours last night ..." ~~ Pat Tydings

SCATS ~~ Where & when was last night's meeting posted?? It certainly was NOT on BoardDocs!

  • BOE moves self-evaluation to their retreat over the summer. 
  • BOE moved the discussion of GCSD & BOE goals to the July meeting.
  • BOE approves 3 yr. lease agreement (not to exceed $64,440/yr.) for Family Support Center at West Ridge School
SCATS ~~ Let's thank Roger Boily for this ongoing waste of $$. This resolution pretty much ensures that West Ridge will survive as a school for the next three years even if no one opts to attend it! I'm told that there are STILL only enough kids for two sections of Kindergarten in Sept. despite all of their best efforts to recruit more.

  • Last night our BOE agreed to move up their reorganizational meeting to July 6th @ 6:30PM at Olympia HS. 
SCATS ~~ Again, I ask where & when was this meeting posted that was held last night? Did the BOE vote on moving the July meeting date? What other business did they conduct last night??

Most Ridiculous Utterance ~~ "Coming up with new ideas at the last minute solves nothing!" ~~ Roger Boily's angry response to Gale O'Toole's suggestion that the money for the lease agreement might be better spent providing additional counseling services in other locations after hours.

SCATS ~~ Yes folks, you heard that right! New ideas are NOT appreciated, especially when they resolve a problem ;) Kudos to Gale O'Toole for trying to think outside the box, anyway!
 

Grand Jury Begins Hearing Evidence Against Chad Rahn

  
Rahn is suspended with pay from his job with Irondequoit PD pending investigation

WHEC-TV Story Details
  

Monday, June 21, 2010

Greece School Board's "Goals" ...

   
No wonder we're pulling up the rearend of the train in Monroe County! Here's the goals our BOE had for 2009-10:

1. The Greece Central School District Board of Education will have at least one training with New York State School Boards Association before the end of the 2009 calendar year.

2. The Greece Central School District Board of Education will work to encourage and recruit new community volunteers to serve on committees. The committee chairperson will keep track of the number of new volunteers and will report the number of new volunteers back to the Board at the end of the 2009 – 2010 school year.

3. The Greece Central School District Board of Education will be more diligent with items listed on the Follow Up List of Board business. Success of goal will be measure by the number of items on the list that are completed at the end of the 2009 – 2010 school year.

4. The Greece Central School District Board of Education will take part in a second selfevaluation at the end of the 2009 – 2010 school year and will discuss the results of the evaluation at a Board Retreat.

Adopted September 8, 2010
 
SCATS ~~ On Tuesday night, our BOE will self-evaluate their performance based upon these measures. Is it just me, or is this truly pathetic?
 

Who Wants To Be School Board President?

  
In 3 weeks, new Greece school board members will be sworn in and the board will hold their reorganizational meeting. New officers to serve as the school board president and vice president will be elected. Who wants to be president & VP of the Greece school board knowing that we have a plateful of problems to resolve? The choice could impact GCSD for many years to come!
  

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Take Out Your Frustration With BP Oil ...


Did DA Give DeFazio A Deal For His Testimony Against Rahn?

  
Remember Kenneth DeFazio, the convicted felon who claimed he stole Merritt Rahn's gun from the car parked in Rahn's driveway? Well, he's in trouble again, this time for sexually assaulting his girlfriend's son's sons.

A recent D&C article about his most recent run-in with the law states: "DeFazio was paroled from prison in April on a burglary conviction."

SCATS ~~ It was also in April that DeFazio testified against Rahn while wearing his prison garb and was brought into the court in shackles. Sounds like he was let go following his testimony ... I'm sure it was for "good behavior" on his part, right Mr. Green?
    

Saturday, June 19, 2010

BOE Plans Special Meeting

  
Tuesday, June 22, 2010 
6:30PM in the Olympia HS Library

Agenda Items Include:

  • Approval of Nagel Agreement (W/A) (Who the heck is Nagel?)
  • Approval of Family Support Center Lease (W/A) (Listen as the BOE gets suckered into a 3 yr. lease on this without knowing whether we will want to keep it OR if it pays off!)
  • Approval of Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI) Software (W/A)
  • Consent Decree Compliance (W/A)
  • New York State Retirement Incentive - Discussion (FINALLY!!!!! Other districts already did this)
  • Board of Education Self-Evaluation (Magnifiers & tweezers NOT included)
  • Board Goals - Discussion (Discussing them doesn't mean they will ever have any)
  • District Goals - Discussion (The PDF document on this does NOT work!)
SCATS ~~ Since there's no Exec. Session listed for the first time in many, many months, we can conclude that the BOE has decided to recycle some other district's has-been superintendent. The question is, when will they tell us who it is?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Chuck Male to Mr. Jeff McCann

  
Regarding Comments After The NGN Meeting


Mr. McCann,

You asked to speak to me last night after I spoke to the NGN Group, (not sure why you did not ask like everyone else was asking questions from the audience) but I did enjoy our chat. We met last night for the first time and I do feel you were sincere.

You brought up a couple of things for the purpose of giving me another view on some of my opinions on Mr.Auberger's "responses to questions from Mr. Parrinello" other than the "I Don't remember, don't recall ones".

I left the meeting with your comments on my mind and decided that I needed to find out how some of the other Jurors felt, (I am truly trying to be open and unbiased) when an explanation is being given to me.

So far I have contacted some and just want to let you know that your view is not flying so well with them either. Only 1 so far has had a different outlook than I did but your explanation for Mr. Auberger's response was pretty ridiculous to him as well.

Your explanation why Mr. Auberger said he did not know who was running the police department was because Rahn was still running the office, after all you claimed he only missied 2 full days of work from his accident on 12/5/99 thru most of the year of 2000. Then you claimed the Time Sheets proved that, well we all saw the same time sheets and we only saw Rahn's signature on the two before the accident. Some were stamped signatures of Rahns and many more had no signature or just Auberger's signature on them.

We do know that Rahn fell while hanging his X-Mas lights on his house and broke both of his wrist. We also know that at least one but possibly both wrist were compond fractures, (those require surger, pins, recovery, rehab and so on).

We also know that he had two cast on his arms down past his elbows making both of his hands stand up forward in the air during part of this disability period. With knowing this, you want me and the rest of the jurors to believe that he only missed 2 days of work and was running the GPD. Now that explanation is funny and ridiculous as well. Not sure he came up with that idea but I really go back to the drawing board if you want me to be convinced.

You also mentioned that you were going to check into the interviews that were heard as testimony. You said you never heard that some of the witnesses said that some of the responses to the interviewers questions were not what they said and in some cases said those were the interviewers comments.   6/18/2010 10:56 PM

(More Posted Inside)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

In 14 Days, We'll Have NO Supt.

   
Since the Greece BOE has failed to appoint an interim Supt. from in-house, I must assume they are planning to appoint some other district's has-been. Might I suggest that we take advantage of the fact that one of the three finalists from the last time we needed a Supt. has suddenly become available. It can't get any worse. And he was my choice when Steve was hired.

STORY about Ron DeCarli

Triple Homicide Suspect Accused In Prison Assault


WHEC-TV reports: Andrew Wright appeared in court today facing charges that he assaulted two federal officers at the Batavia Detention Center on May 15th.

Wright and two others are implicated in a triple homicide in Greece earlier this year.

Blogspot Errors ...

  
... Are causing problems where the number of comments cited on the BLOG don't match with the number of posts on the thread (inside). Also, there have been some other errors, like the one on the poll results (yesterday) which caused me to remove the poll to get the error message off the front page. Hopefully, they will resolve the issues soon ;)

The Answer Is ...

... Jeff McCann

He was the person Auberger sent to keep tabs on the Northgate Neighborhood meeting. No other town representatives bothered to attend, aside from Chief Todd and his men who were part of the program. They left before Chuck Male presented his views on the Rahn trial.
   

READ About Chuck Male's Visit With NGN

John Parrinello requests to have the judge set aside the Rahn trial verdict. Affronti to hear the case in early July.
  
 

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

When BP Spills Coffee ...

Some Things That Makes Odyssey Different


   
CLEARLY STATED EXPECTATIONS ...

The Odyssey Course Drop Policy ...
"Unless all parties are in agreement: parents, student, teacher, counselor, and the appropriate administrators (grade level, IB, principal), our expectation is students are making a one year commitment to their courses (or a one semester commitment for semester courses). This includes band, chorus, and orchestra."

Odyssey Clubs and Extra-Curricular Activities
"This brochure includes all the clubs and activities currently available. It is Odyssey’s goal for every student to be involved in at least one extracurricular activity. If you have an idea for a club or activity not currently offered, you can get one started. All you need is an adult advisor who can supervise all meetings and activities."

Anonymous said ...
... "I am not a VIP, just someone that got in early and benefited from the siblings rule. The minority ratio bothers me. The minorities I know at the school are upper-middle class. It seems like almost all of the parents I know there have college degrees themselves. Maybe that has something to do with Odyssey's success as well. These parents put a high value on education.    6/16/2010 10:42 AM

Anonymous said ...
You need to do some research into how the ranking is done. It is based on the percentage of students who take AP or IB exams. Two factors are at work here that make Odyssey hit this list year after year. 1. The overall school population is lower than the rest of the high schools in the district. Since AP/IB courses are typically taken only by 11th & 12th graders and a small number of accelerated 10th graders, you're talking about roughly 250 kids. 2. EVERY student is strongly encouraged to take at least 1 AP or IB course. Teachers and administrators tell the students and the parents they should challenge themselves and that they are there to help them succeed. And so, they do get a pretty good size group of kids who go for the exams.

6/16/2010 10:42 AM
SCATS ~~ And then there's the issue of students who MUST take an AP class they don't necessarily have an interest in. With block scheduling, staffing allocations and so few course choices due to the small size school, it may be the only class that fits their schedule. (Course Scheduling)

Completely Out-of-Touch, On The Fence & Political

Regarding the impact of the reconstruction of Ridge Rd. West on local businesses: "We don't keep statistics, but the gut feeling is that we're seeing more commercial activity along the Ridge now.  We saw some new development right after the construction project ended, but then when the recession hit things ground to a halt. Now there's definitely more activity ... there certainly was still an impact on businesses there, although it's hard to quantify if any closed because of the construction. If any were already struggling, then the construction didn't help. But since it's been completed I'm hearing from many that their business has gone up significantly, and that's indicative of the project's impact." ~~ Jody Perry ~ Exec. Dir. of the Greece Chamber of Commerce

D&C

SCATS ~~ There you have it! The C of C doesn't keep statistics! I guess that keeps them from having to deal with reality. I remember reading several articles about the negative impact that the reconstruction project had on quite a number of local businesses on Ridge Rd. In particular, one well known German clock/watch repairman stated he decided that reconstruction on Ridge Rd. was the final determinant for him to take an early "retirement."

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Closed, Clubby & Corrupt Town Board Meet Tonight, 6PM

  
No agenda has been posted on the Town's website ... what a surprise ;)

Odyssey Academy Ranks #106

  
YNN reports that Odyssey Academy is ranked #106 by Newsweek Magazine on its list of America's best high schools. According to Newsweek, only 6% of schools make the list. That's just over 1600 schools total.

SCATS ~~ Why don't any of Greece's other high schools ever make it onto this list of the 1600 top schools?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Will We Get An interim Supt. Tonight?

 
The BOE has an Exec. Session scheduled this evening. As a result, we might have a new interim Supt. very soon. Will they stay with an insider like Don Nadolinski, who seems to be the obvious choice? Or will they move to hire an outsider like when Jo Kehoe came onboard? What do YOU think?

Property Tax Caps, Triborough & Teacher Contracts

  
Anonymous said...

Did anyone see the D and C editorial about how we have problems in New York State and they could be solved by putting a cap on property tax. Before I read the end of the article there was the question of how the items like education would be paid for if property tax was capped. Would our state income tax be increased? Then in the 2nd last sentence the editor says that we have to repeal the triborough amendment that sustains present contracts and step increases.


Funny that this paper always endorses the liberal and spendthrift politicians who are backed by unions. The only recent exception was their cowardly act of not endorsing anyone for the last Greece town supervisor race.   6/14/2010 6:44 AM

District Offices Relocated For Summer

 
Asbestos removal & other work have resulted in Greece Central relocating their District Office staff to Kodak Park for the Summer. All phone numbers remain the same, but appointments are necessary to visit the offices due to security at Kodak.

STORY

SCATS ~~ Interpretation: Seeing the District Clerk just became a nightmare ;)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

By Request ...


   Budget & GTA Contract Discussion


I've been asked to continue the discussion about the budget, cuts made and related subjects on a new thread. I've also been asked to provide a place for people to comment on what parameters the school board should aim for in settling the teacher's contract. Since the two topics are so intricately tied together, here's a place to discuss both/either.

Friday, June 11, 2010

BOE's Next Secret* Meeting Is Tuesday

   
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Special Meeting, 5:30PM
LOCATION: Olympia HS - Room 153A


It is anticipated that the Board will go into an Exec. Session at 5:30PM to discuss the employment history of particular person(s).
SCATS ~~ Of course, the purpose of this next secret* meeting is to try to decide who to choose to be our Interim Supt. My suggestion is the same as last time: Sue Meier, principal of Odyssey Academy should be selected by the Greece school board to be our next interim Supt.

Let's give her the chance to work her magic all over Greece Central. It will be "for the kids" of course. It will help to settle the discussion over whether the results at her school are reproducible if the students aren't lottery winners. Consider it a "two-fer" ...

*The lights are on, but the doors are closed and the school board is whispering!
  

Triple Homicide Suspects Detained In Az

  
Three suspects are in custody, facing immigration & other charges

"We are not in a position to comment directly on specifics of the investigation as it remains an open investigation. However I will state that this investigation represents a model for inter-agency cooperation," he said. "Investigators from federal, state and local law enforcement agencies have been working tirelessly since March 9, and I can state with a high degree of confidence that based upon the professionalism and dedication shown by these investigators, we fully expect a successful resolution to this case. The town of Greece remains committed to providing all the tools and resources necessary to investigate a crime of this scope and magnitude." ~~ Chief Baxter, Greece PD

STORY

SCATS ~~ Looks like those controversial illegal immigrant laws in Arizona may have worked to our advantage!

Classless Parting Shots ...

  
At Tuesday evening's BOE meeting, "retiring" Supt. Steve Achramovitch used his comment time at the end of the long meeting to say his farewell to district colleagues.

First, he let us know his thoughts about his personal contribution to Greece Central: "We are much better off than we were 3+ years ago."

Say what?? You're joking, right Steve? Your contract was NOT renewed. We are saying goodbye largely because you did NOT produce results. Yes, I know the BOE allowed you to pretend and to say that you're "retiring," but the truth is, you've been "FIRED!"

Next, you noted how new board members would soon be seated and that the district would have a different superintendent, together giving us new leadership. OK, so far, so good. Then you fired another cannonball shot: "GTA should come forward with new leadership, too." 

OK, perhaps that was deserved, but it was more than a bit surprising coming from you at this point in time. As I recall, you were hired, because of your wonderful ability to negotiate contracts and handle the unions. Now, you're leaving almost 4 years later and you failed to negotiate a resolution with the teachers in that amount of time! Yes, I know you're close to a deal, very close, but like they say, close only counts with horse shoes and hand grenades. So, what does this tell us about YOUR negotiating talents, Steve?

And finally, perhaps the most classless, but telling shot of all was how you thanked by name board members Roger, Jeff, Sean and Anne-Marie for their support. Of course, I know you meant that they supported keeping you around for another 3-year stint under contract, whereas the other five board members said enough was enough (Thank you Mr. Tydings for finally joining the other four!). 

However, you do realize that these four helped sell you down the river on your West Ridge kindergarten elimination decision, right? And three of them did the same thing when you tried to be a leader and fired the drinking hockey coaches, remember that? In fact, Anne-Marie is only sitting on this board because of the hockey thugs ... er ... I mean boosters who put her there to ensure you didn't try to do the job you were hired to do ever again! But I digress ...

Yes, Steve, you will long be remembered for both of those times when you tried to be a leader. Too bad you didn't have the backbone to stand your ground and tell the school board that if they reversed your decision, which was made with the best interests of the students and community in mind, that you were resigning. Now that would be true leadership - taking a stand on doing the right thing based on principle, morals and even district policy and regulations.

Wow! I used the word "morals" in a sentence talking about a guy who is a well-seasoned story-teller, yet another reason for your "retirement." So, I guess it's time for me to say my farewell, too. For some reason, the only thing words that come to mind are: "Don't let the door hit ya, where the good Lord split ya!"

Bye Steve!!!
 

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Ooops ... We Almost Forgot ...



Monday June 7th ~
2 years since 
Nick Joseph crashed on 390 and
changed the course of
The Town of Greece
forever.
Without this tragic event, our PD would be unscathed.
Our Town's coffers would be $1,000,000 richer.
Our Supervisor would have his memory back.
Our cops would be free to coke up, get drunk and disrespect the laws they are sworn to uphold.
The D&C would have no stories of intrigue, politics, corruption, nepotism AND scandal to report, like the one they published today.
May we never forget that it takes "JUST ONE" to make the dominoes begin to tumble.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

"Secret Cuts" The BOE Made To Prevent Protest

  
During the process of developing the 2010-11 budget, the Greece BOE heard outrage from West Ridge parents once word of the proposed elimination of their kindergarten classes got around.

Following that ruckus, BOE member Gale O'Toole suggested during a board meeting that  BOE members communicate proposed cuts quietly to one another. BOE President Patrick Tydings "reminded" her that wasn't appropriate. However, it became obvious to me as the budget process continued that some cuts related to sports programs and specific HS electives weren't being mentioned by name within the board room and I assumed it was to prevent more outrage. It appears I was correct once again.

Today, The D&C reports that a sign carrying parent sat in silent protest at last night's BOE meeting. Parent Mary Alice Vara wielded a sign that read: "Don't Cut Freshman Football" and "vote for kids." Her son, an 8th grade pupil, learned during football camp Tuesday that there was no team for him to play on next year.

"No one knows about the teams being cut. They did a poor job communicating this."

In total, five high school baseball/softball teams and three freshman football teams have been eliminated, along with numerous HS electives.

SCATS ~~ Closed, clubby & corrupt strikes again in Greece, much to the chagrin of Ms. Vara. I know our BOE pride themselves with their "openess" but they aren't as open as they need to be. It's obvious these cuts were NOT communicated and I'm convinced that omission was intentional. I'll bet Ms. Vara thinks so, too.
  

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

BOE Meeting Highlights ...

  
GTA Comments ~~ Pres. Don Pallozzi failed to mention anything about moving towards a new contract which pretty much confirms the "deal" is ready to go!

Budget Adopted ~~ By a vote of 7 to 0 the BOE voted to adopt a $193.66 million contingency budget that will cost taxpayers $22.55/$1000 of assessed value.

Longridge & Odyssey School Improvement Plans ~~ Over 1.5 hrs of droning presentations that the BOE has no need to hear! Instead of falling asleep, I turned on the TV to watch several episodes of Billy the Exterminator. Did you know that brown widow spiders carry a bite similar to the black widow's?

Longridge School Reorganization Adopted! ~~ The BOE discovered that NO STUDY IS REQUIRED to reorganize a school! On a vote of 7 to 1, the BOE agreed to reorganize Longridge into two schools within a school  - one with a pre-K to grade 2 structure and the other with a grades 3 to 5 structure. The schools will have one principal each and share a VP. They will partner with Greece police and social support services to try to impact home environments. The additional cost is $8900. "The school board doesn't need to know every single detail about how this is going to work ... leave it to the professionals." ~~ Roger Boily

SCATS ~~ I hope Roger & the rest of the BOE remember how EASY IT IS to reorganize when it comes time to shut down West Ridge!

Supt. Achramovitch's goodbye included: "We are much better off than we were 3+ years ago."
   

Chad Rahn Under Investigation

  
Guess who his attorney is ;)

I-Team 10

UPDATED to add Greece Police Press Release 6/9/10
  

SCATS ~~ Who wants to bet that Uncle Auggie had to authorize, if not write, the press release for Chief Todd? Any takers?
 

District Recoups $190,000 In Overcharges

CIP related overcharges on 17 contracts by 10 different contractors is being returned to GCSD
  
"In financial times like these, we need to be using our dollars as efficiently as we can, and if there's any money owed to us we need to make sure we're getting it back." ~~ Julia VanOrman, Greece school board

"We're very happy to get this money back." ~~ Patrick Tydings, president Greece BOE

STORY

SCATS ~~ Please note: Julia does NOT mean to include any monies Steve Walts should return to GCSD. And Patrick has already spent the $190,000 (and even more!) on settling the new GTA contract ;)
   

Monday, June 07, 2010

Kudos To Greece Police! *

   

Alleged Thug #1                              Alleged Thug #2

They've finally managed to arrest two teen-aged street thugs for breaking into half a dozen vehicles (and at least one home)  in the early morning hours, saving the good citizens of Greece the trouble of having to shoot them themselves and wasting the taxpayers' hard earned money on a contrived trial! Both thugs were charged with one count of burglary, two counts of grand larceny, four counts of petit larceny and one count of criminal mischief.

STORY
   
*WARNING ~~ This BLOG contains strong opinion that you may find objectionable. Oh well ... (shrug)

Where In The World Is John Auberger ...

  
... He was pulling up the rear of the entourage along with Bill Reilich as they accompanied Rick Lazio & Greg Edwards on a tour of Optimation. (In the video)

SCATS ~~ Thanks for all of the hard work you do, John ;)
(I may never get my tongue back out from my cheek!)
  

The High Cost Of BOCES ...

  
Anonymous said...

Here's some real food for thought:
Derivative payrolls impact Greece budget.

Greece CSD subscribes to BOCES services. BOCES hires people and pays them to perform those services.

Looking at some of the salaries that they pay, one wonders if this is really a good value. What do you think?

http://tinyurl.com/23um9zg      6/07/2010 6:38 PM

SCATS ~~ Very interesting, 6:38PM. Especially so since first up on that list and paid the highest salary is one of the people GCSD enlisted to find us a new Supt. So far, she's failed to provide what the GTA ... er, I mean the BOE want!
  

Food For Thought ...

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Rahn May Sue Greece Up The Yin-Yang ...

  
... If Loszynski Report erroneously blames Rahn for unsupported allegations.

"I caution you to read that report very carefully because if there is one misstatement or unsupported innuendo, which is incorrect, I will not hesitate to advise my client to sue the town of Greece, you, and Loszynski ... It would be totally irrelevant and transparent in terms of them attempting to justify the million dollars that they spent to bring Merritt Rahn down,"  ~~ Rahn's attorney, John Parrinello

"We have promised residents that there would be a public report when everything was done." ~~ Jeff McCann, Deputy Supervisor

STORY

SCATS ~~ Where, oh where have Jack Auberger & "I Am Him" Firkins gone? Neither one ever comments any more. Maybe that memory problem is contagious ;)
 
  

Saturday, June 05, 2010

BOE Meeting Tuesday, 6:30PM

  
It is anticipated that the Board will go into an Exec. Session at 5:30PM to discuss collective bargaining (will GTA get their deal?), pending litigation & the employment history of particular person(s).

Agenda Highlights

Board Committee Reports
Budget Impact Committee
Transportation Committee
Audit Committee
Assets Initative Committee
MCSBA Committees

Supt's Reports
Budget Approval (Bend over, grab ankles ...)
Longridge Elementary School Report
School Improvement Plan Reports - Longridge and Odyssey (Odyssey needed "improvement"??)
EXCEL Project Update

Financial Oversight
Fund Balance Recommendation - Uses of Fund Balance
Family Support Center Lease Approval
Emergency Gas Purchase Agreement
Settlement of Rel Comm, Inc. Overpayment Claim

New Business
COMIDA Pilot
Board Procedures
Board Self-Evaluation (Pat on the back time?)
 

BOE To Adopt Contingent Budget Tuesday

  
BoardDocs isn't working as of this writing, so I can't access the proposed agenda for the upcoming BOE meeting. I do know that the BOE plans to vote to adopt the contingent budget Tuesday at their regular monthly business meeting. Here's a summary from the GCSD website of what that contingent budget looks like:

On Wednesday, May 26, the Board of Education decided against holding a revote following the May 18 budget defeat and instead will adopt a contingent budget. The Board majority felt the estimated cost of conducting a revote, $47,000, was too high.

Board members did, however, cut an additional $2,113,605 from the budget total rejected by voters in order to bring the tax rate increase to 3.93 %. Those cuts include:
  • Non-contingent items such as equipment purchases and capital work.
  • High school summer school transportation changes. (Students will be responsible for transportation to a common site from which they will be bused to summer school.)
  • Staffing cuts, including 3 administrators, 6 teaching positions, and 1.5 support staff members.
  • The elimination of the 4:30 p.m. late bus runs at secondary schools.
  • Capping legal expenses.
  • The reduction of baseball/softball and football teams at the secondary level.
The $193,269,666 contingent budget will be voted on at the June 8 Board meeting. If approved, the 2010-11 tax rate is expected to be $22.55 per $1,000 of assessed valuation.
  

Friday, June 04, 2010

Editorial: No second vote for Greece

  
I was more than a little disturbed by the actions of the Greece school board on 5-26-10 for 'not' allowing the community to vote on a revised budget.

The reason given was the cost of that vote given as $47,000 approx. $25,000 more than the regular vote due to time constraints.

Not allowing the community to have a voice should concern us all. Your tax increase will be over your objections via your vote in May.

The cost concern; contrast 'this' cost to that of the 'release time' contained in the board approved teachers contract (page 34) where taxpayers pay teachers to leave their teaching responsibilities to do 'union' business on the taxpayers dime. A cost of over $100,000 every year.

Our priorities need to be questioned.

Charlie Hubbard - Greece
581-0049
775-6015

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Juror #9 To Speak At NGN Meeting In June

 
Chuck Male plans to speak at The Northgate Neighborhood Group meeting slated for June 16th at 7PM. Mr. Male is somewhat better known (perhaps) as Juror #9 from the Merritt Rahn trial. The meeting will be held at:

Aldersgate United Methodist Church
4115 Dewey Ave.
  

What's Happened To The New GTA Contract?

  
Shortly before the vote on May 18th, the word from many sources was that GTA reached agreement with the Greece School District. In fact, had the budget been approved, GTA was to get their new deal ASAP. Of course, the budget went down in a huge defeat. Soon after, I learned GTA was still going to get a contract despite that. I'm quite confident a deal is ready to be voted on, but I have a lot of questions about it.
  1. Where is this "deal?"
  2. What's in it that makes it a good deal for anyone aside from union members?
  3. Where will the funds come from to settle a contract when we were eliminating programs & services for students because there was NO EXTRA $$ in the budget?
  4. After such a long stalemate, what makes this the right time to settle?

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Kudos To Chief Baxter ~ He Woke Up *

  
WHEC reports Chief Todd is confident arrests will be made as Greece police start looking at social-networking sites to find out who was fighting at the Youth Festival Monday night. They also want to determine if there are any links between the violence planned at Seabreeze, some incidents at the beach & the disruption at the mall.

"Just because we didn't make any arrests that night doesn't mean they're not going to be held to the letter of the law.” ~~ Chief Todd

* SCATS' BLOG from earlier today suggested Greece police make use of social-networking sites to help solve crimes ;)
  

How Safe Is Greece Ridge Mall?

  
Are we becoming the next Irondequoit mall?

In recent times, mall owners instituted a curfew to keep groups of teens from hanging out & causing trouble on weekends, especially in the movie theater and food court areas.

Now, the Festival For Youth has been shut down permanently.

YNN reports: Despite public opinion, police said this mall is a safe place to be. "Obviously the event yesterday isn't going to help the perception, but the reality is the crime at the mall is very low." ~~  Greece Police Capt. Steve Chatterton. "I don't go there a lot just because of the people that are there and the security that's around the mall. It's just not a fun place to be anymore." ~~ Arieal Brown, 20.

SCATS ~~ "Despite" public opinion??? What the heck does that mean? If people don't feel safe, then it isn't safe and people will stay away. I know many folks who no longer go to the mall in the evenings specifically because they do NOT feel safe. Telling them that the statistics don't support their feelings won't change their minds!

Wake Up & Smell The Coffee, Greece Police!

  
In recent weeks, various media reported that large crowds of youths gathered daily at the Liberty Pole in the city. Cameras were relocated to help authorities keep watch over the crowds that city police try to disperse quickly. With limited resources & manpower, that's not always possible.

Along with the warmer weather, it seems like the crowds that gathered downtown began congregating at Charlotte Beach about a week before the long Memorial Day holiday weekend. Large crowds in the parking lots on the weekends became unruly and police intervention was needed to get them to disperse. Business owners are complaining about the overall need for improved security in the area as an ongoing need.

On Memorial Day weekend, Seabreeze closed its doors on one of their biggest business days of the season. Rumors of a large planned fight are thought to be the root cause of the closing.

Monday night in Greece, some 200 teens to young 20-somethings appeared quickly at the Festival For Youth at Greece Ridge Mall. It was reported that they became loud, were pushing people in line, and that different groups seemed to be trying to antagonize each other into some sort of physical confrontation. The festival was shut down early ... and forever.

The message is clear: The thugs are now in charge, given power by those who don't want to say or do anything that's politically incorrect, so they choose to do nothing at all.  

Closing down an event is the easy way out. While I understand the need to be careful in how these incidents are handled, I do not agree that canceling events forever is the "right" decision. It's creating a certain "A Clockwork Orange" feeling regarding local law enforcement, or lack there of. 

What Greece police (and other PDs) need to begin to do is to tune-in and use the new media to their advantage. From Craigslist's Rants 'n Raves section to Facebook & MySpace to Twitter, large groups are able to organize and convene on short order. Moving Monday's location from Seabreeze to Greece (if that is what happened) is easy to do via social media outlets.

It's time our PD get up to speed in using these technologies to their advantage and for our safety. It's a crime prevention tool that doesn't cost a thing. It just requires the motivation to take back control. (Doing so might also require GPD to call in back-up help from Monroe County Sheriff's or other agencies in times of need. Sharing the limelight is OK, too.) Let's do it!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

It's Lights Out Forever For Selke's Festival

  
13WHAM News reported at 6PM that Bill Selke's Festival For Youth will no longer be an annual attraction at Greece Ridge Mall. The fights that caused the festival to close early yesterday have permanently ended the 20 year event.

GPD Shut Down Festival For Youth

  
13WHAM News reports that several fights broke out in the mall parking lot carnival. No arrests were made.

"There is security here and we have extra patrols here, but we're still outnumbered by several hundred people. You would hope cooler heads would prevail, but unfortunately that didn't happen. There was a situation where there were numerous people involved in several altercations, and we were forced to clear the property." ~~ Captain Patrick Phelan.

SCATS ~~ Why was no one arrested? Do we want to let them return & do it again next year? Between the Sea Breeze situation and this one, I get the distinct impression that the thugs are running things.