Monday, April 30, 2012

Gas Leak Causes Greece Town Hall Evacuation


Spike for Auberger's circus tent blamed

Budget Hearing Tuesday @6:30PM


BUDGET ~ $199,074,055

Tax Rate Increase ~ 2.63%
or 
$23.38 per $1000 valuation

Estimated Tax Bill To Rise $72

on "average home" valued at $120,000*
Without exemptions

*The Greece Central School District is using a $100,000 home in their example, an unrealistic figure for most Greece taxpayers whose homes are on the tax rolls for MUCH more!
  
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Bus purchase proposition 
Cost not to exceed $1,865,000.
$370,000 from bus purchase reserve fund
The remaining cost would be spread out over five years. Local taxpayers’ share to average $49,975/year for 5 years.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If the budget is defeated the district may put the same or a revised budget up for a revote, or adopt a contingent budget. If a proposed budget is defeated twice by voters, the district must adopt a contingent budget, which prohibits spending in specific areas including community use of buildings, certain salary increases and new equipment purchases. Unlike prior years, under the new tax cap law, a district that adopts a contingent budget may not increase its current tax levy by any amount.   
  

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Greece Central Rents Little Theater

  
School Staff To See
Special Screening Of "Bully"

WHEC reports: The Greece Central School District has rented out the Little Theatre for its staff members to see a showing of the movie, "Bully." That showing is next Thursday May 3 at 4:00pm. The event was arranged by Athena Middle School Principal David Richardson. Greece school staff members who work with students in grades 3-12 have been invited to attend the screening. Richardson hopes seeing the movie as a team will reenforce the work that is occurring in in the Greece schools and also provide an opportunity for dialogue among Greece teachers about what they can do to help students.

SCATS ~~ This raises a lot of questions. Was there no place in town, like A-PAC, where this could be watched at less cost? Are ALL staff expected (i.e. required) to attend? Are we providing transportation to & from, too? What measure will be used to determine if the money spent had any positive payoff?
  

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Right Under Their Noses

  
Vandals cause $1500+ in damage to Barnard Park restrooms adjacent to Greece PD's 2nd Precinct (STORY )


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Greece Loses Vargas To RCSD Supt. Job

  
Rochester City School Board selects Bolgen Vargas for their Superintendent. Vargas was a guidance counselor in the Greece Central School District. (STORY )


SCATS ~~ Following two national searches for a new superintendent in Greece, we pick Babs who was essentially in our backyard all along. After a national search (or was it more than one?) the Rochester City Schools choose Bolgen Vargas, who was right under our nose all along. I can't help but wonder if this in any way highlights the ineptitude of the Greece School Board?
   

Spring Fever Hits Greece Streets

  
Stabbing: A victim was in a fight with four youths near Woodstone and Maiden lanes on April 14. The victim was stabbed four times and taken to Strong Memorial Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries on April 14.

Attempted arson: Someone threw a Molotov cocktail at a vehicle parked on Wood Run on April 13. The vehicle window was damaged.

SCATS ~~ I wonder what time of day or evening these events happened. Could the second incident have been shortly after school released? Were these teens or adults involved in the fight? Greece residents or from elsewhere? Why didn't this stabbing make the news earlier?
  

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Tale of Two Parole Hearings


How Much Influence Did Politics
Have On The Different Outcomes?
  
Back in November of 2011, former Greece Police Chief Merritt Rahn went before the Parole Board, apologized and appeared to be accepting responsibility for his actions that landed him in jail. The Parole Board denied him early release. So Merritt remains in jail for another year until this upcoming November, when another hearing will take place.

Last week, former Irondequoit police officer Chad Rahn (Merritt Rahn's son) went before the Parole Board, failed to apologize and appeared to not accept responsibility for his actions that landed him in jail. Despite this, the Parole Board is granting him an early release in August, blaming a lack of letters from the DA's Office and/or Judge in the case as the reason for their decision.

SCATS ~~ The ONLY SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCE between how these two cases were handled is that Merritt Rahn's hearing happened under former DA Mike Green's watch and Chad Rahn's happened under current DA Sandra Doorley's watch. Somebody REALLY doesn't like Merritt Rahn ... right Jack Auberger? ;)
   

Sunday, April 22, 2012

5 Candidates Seek 3 Greece BOE Seats


Ballot Position #1 ~~ Adam Crandall

 Greece Athena High School graduate.

Sales Manager for the college division of Ward’s Natural Science.

"I was prompted to run to provide leadership and oversight in the areas of fiscal responsibility and academic excellence.”





Ballot Position #2 ~~ Nicholas Giordano 

Arcadia High School graduate 2011.

Attends RIT and is a student assistant in RIT’s Office of the President.

"I want to be able to make sure that all current and future students in Greece have equal or improved opportunities that I had attending school; and I want to be part of implementing initiatives that will enable Greece students to be college and career ready.”


Ballot Position #3 ~~ Joe Grinnan  

Retired from Kodak; previously worked as senior auditor for the Inspector General’s Office in the U.S. Dept. of State; member of the Board of Education’s Audit Committee for 4 years.

“I believe that my understanding of policy development and oversight of business and management operations qualifies me for the Board of Education."


Ballot Position #4~~ Terry Melore 

Retired Arcadia High School business teacher; past PTA President;
Greece Youth Hall of Fame Committee member; Greece Education Foundation member.

"As a recent retiree, I am committed to stay involved in both my community and the school district; that is why I serve on several boards and still work with high school students. I am motivated to seek a seat on the school board as the district goes through the process of consolidating."


Julia VanOrman ~~ Ballot Position #5  

Seeks her third term on the Board of Education. She  is a Certified Asthma Educator AE-C; a member of the Greece Education Foundation Board of Directors.

"I ran and am running again because I love children and have advocated on their behalf for many years. I currently have two boys in our schools."

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Charles J. Zicari (1948 - 2012)

                   
Zicari, Charles J.

Palm City, FL: April 13, 2012. Charles is predeceased by his parents, James & Anne Zicari. He is survived by his siblings, Mary Ann Nazzaro, Jim (Bonnie) Zicari, Louis (Debbie) Zicari, Margaret (Peter) Ranalletta, Joe (Linda) Zicari; nieces & nephews, James Jr., Samantha Zicari, Jonathan, James Zicari, Joe (Brenda), Michael Ranalletta, Christopher, Stephen Zicari; great-nephews, Joey, Nico & Bryce Ranalletta; Godfather, Robert (Carol) Santangelo; Aunts, Josie Cimino, Angie Santangelo & Marilyn Zicari; many cousins & beloved friends. For more information about Charles, visit www.aliferemembered.com

Charles' visitation will be Friday 4-8 PM at the funeral home, 1411 Vintage Lane (between Rte 390 & Long Pond Rd). His Funeral Mass will be celebrated Saturday 9 AM at Our Mother of Sorrows Church, 5000 Mt. Read Blvd. Interment in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery.
 

Friday, April 20, 2012

Editorial: School Budget Vote Has Meaning

It is my hope for a renewed interest by those paying attention to the spending on public education. For far too long taxpayers have failed to participate in school budget votes. The biggest reason was that those in charge (school boards) paid no attention to the will of the voters (taxpayers) and approved contingency (austerity) budgets and increased taxes “without” voter approval. A true slap at democracy.
Thanks to our governor, we now have a property tax cap that forces districts to get voter (taxpayer) approval for a tax increase. Without voter approval a second vote must be held needing a 60 percent approval — otherwise NO increase will be allowed.

There are a few minor exceptions, but this new law goes along way to restoring the “respect for the vote” that has been so lacking by those we entrust to educate our kids. Some of the disrespect that has been shown to the owners (taxpayers) has been repaired. It is now up to us to participate and to be heard.
CHARLIE HUBBARD, Greece
   
SCATS ~~ Personally, I do NOT support this budget. The idea that closing THREE SCHOOLS "saves" barely $2.2 million is evidence that our BOE and administration are inept.
     

Thursday, April 19, 2012

GCSD Taxes To Rise 2.63% Despite 2% Cap


Anonymous said...

Scats, this is off the topic but I wanted to know if I heard it correctly. Channel 10 reported that the new GCSD budget will raise taxes 2.63%. I thought the NY tax cap was 2.00% or inflation, whichever is lower. Can someone in the know help me understand?    4/19/2012 7:57 AM


From WHEC-TV: "The nearly $200-million spending plan also includes a 2.63-percent tax increase and the purchase of 19 new buses."

Budget presentation tonight at
Apollo MS in the CAFETERIA @7PM

SCATS ~~ I'd ask about the impact of the PILOT & COMIDA tax breaks given to the Mall at Greece/Ridge. According to Scott Hoot, there was more than $90 million worth of assessments related to the mall removed from the tax rolls and there is a 1.5% net tax base DECREASE for the year! 

Thanks to our TOWN BOARD and SCHOOL BOARD, Greece voters get the additional burden of making up for these giveaways by paying more!
             

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Board Member Brown-Noses Boss


Why Is Doing The "Right Thing"
So Hard For This Group?

For the first time in recent memory, a single Greece schoolboard member voted "no" on a motion tonight. Usually, I'd be pleased to report that someone finally got a spine and did something for a greater cause. Not in this case though.

Sean McCabe decided to vote against the motion to rename several schools impacted by the School Consolidation plan. His stated reason: because his boss, Bud Phillips from the Greece Ridge Fire Dept. opposes the changes, fearing confusion on the part of public safety personnel.

This reasoning makes NO SENSE AT ALL. In reading through the documentation attached on BoardDocs, we learn that everyone else from the other three Greece fire districts to the Chief of Greece police to the 911 dispatchers concur that such changes can be made without causing any lapse in public safety for the school buildings, children or employees.

Instead of brown-nosing your boss, Sean McCabe, you should have shown some slight measure of class and abstained based upon a conflict of interest! That would have been the "right thing" to do.
   

HIGH ANXIETY ...


Greece Students Worry
Teachers Will Be Fired Over ELA Scores
 
Three days of NY State standardized tests for English Language Arts began today. In Greece, some parents are reporting their kids were extremely nervous & worried over the tests. Others say their kids have experienced stomach aches and other physical reactions when they were reminded the tests were this week. When asked why this was so, the youngsters told their parents they didn't want their teacher to get fired if they did poorly on the exam!

SCATS ~~ I wonder WHERE the kids got this idea from? Way to go Greece teachers!!
  

Monday, April 16, 2012

Special* BOE Meeting Tuesday, 6:30PM

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

AGENDA ITEMS of NOTE

School Consolidation Update

School Name Change Recommendations

Budget Recommendation

Budget Adoption

Approval of Property Tax Report Card

GASA MOA - Lead Principals

* BoardDocs inaccurately posts this as a "regular meeting" which can't be, since the "regular meeting" was held April 3rd.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Chief Todd To The Rescue


From The Greece Post, April, 12, 2012; pg. 5A

4:20 p.m. (on Thurs. April 5th) ~~ Donned my vest, put on a portable radio, called in-service and took calls for the next two hours. Picked up my son, Kevin, and showed him the town of Greece. This is quality time for us. During this time I : 
- Backed up Officer Dave Daurelio on Stone Rd. as he assisted an 80 -year-old male who was lost and wandering with his walker.
- Stopped a car driving recklessly on Stone Rd. at Dewey, crossing over the yellow lines. Driver had no license and was on parole. The driver was detached from the car and the matter was turned over to NYS Parole.
- Took a burglar alarm on Stone Rd. The business had been open minutes earlier, and they apparently left the front door ajar.


SCATS ~~ Seriously!? We're paying Todd about $140,000/year to be "back up" for another officer who helps an old man with his walker! Somewhere in here there's a joke about how many Greece police officers does it take to help an old man with his walker cross the road ... just  two, provided one is the Chief ;)
   

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Can We Blame Low Test Scores On Pink Slime?

  
According to today's D&C article about local school districts and their lunch programs, Greece Central Schools do in fact use some beef containing the dreaded pink slime that's been in recent headlines.

Maybe this is why the Greece Board of Education, the Supt. and District Office are so quick to blame everything on free and reduced lunches. Maybe they knew what the kids were eating all along ;)
  

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Will Kurt Neusatz Ever Stand Trial?

   
Would Auberger testify?
Can Auberger recall his role?
   
WHEC-TV reports:

Kurt Neusatz was deemed unfit to stand trial last year, but a status update is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. Police say Neusatz killed his mother, Monica, in September 2010 at their home on Old English Road.

Last February, a team of psychiatrists found Neusatz is not mentally competent to stand trial. Prosecutors say the decision doesn't mean he was mentally incompetent when the crime happened.

News10NBC is told if Neusatz's condition has improved, his trial could go forward. Right now he is being held at the Rochester Psychiatric Center.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Dewey Corridor Neighbors Meeting


Wed. April 11th, 7PM
Aldersgate Church
4115 Dewey Ave.

Bill Selke ~ Affordable Senior Housing


SCATS ~~ Shouldn't Auberger be giving this talk since he actually lives in a senior housing complex?
  

Should Slaughter Run Again Still?

  
Anonymous said...
I guess since there's a person posting here who doesn't want anyone to talk about Slaughter's disease on this thread, can you (SCATS) write another post about Louise's illness and how she's fallen twice and injured her self pretty badly in the last two month's? SCATS grants both sides a little leeway but I guess we have someone who REALLLY, REALLLY wants to chance the subject when Slaughter comes up.

Anyone here can keep talking about Jackie Auberger if they want (no one is stopping you!) but many of us also feel Slaughter has some obvious issues that will make it difficult for her to run her campaign and keep leading in her position.

It's not a democrat/republican issue. Heck, run Joe Morelle or Bob Duffy for the position. Slaughter should fulfill her current term but consider not running again. She did a fine job but it's time to move on to another chapter in life.

That's all I'm saying and it's a legitimate point, despite what that one person thinks.    4/09/2012 9:58 PM

SCATS ~~ I'm posting this topic by request, so please refrain from the name-calling, etc. if you want your comments posted.
 

Winning The SOC Lottery ...

  
Holding Winners &
District Office Accountable

At last week's Greece BOE meeting, some of the questions raised by this BLOG related to how the school-of-choice lottery was conducted were addressed. According to Carol Pallas, complaints were made by parents who didn't want their child's name or student ID number read aloud as a lottery "winner." Thus the change was made to a random number drawing that was then matched to a student. Of course, "winners' " names were kept quiet. But why would anyone care?

According to Pallas, it turns out that now that the lottery is over, many who "won" slots had no intention of allowing/wanting their child to attend a school-of-choice next fall. So District Office permits them to say "no thank you" after the fact, while others on the waiting lists are then contacted and told their number has come up.

SCATS ~~ This entire arrangement wastes time, keeps suspicions about the fairness of the lottery fresh, gives "winning" parents undeserved bragging rights and serves to cater to a group of indecisive but "involved" parents, falsely labeled as such. It's time to make these Greece parents accountable in the lottery process, instead of "protecting" them for bailing out after winning a slot. The way to do that is to tell everyone:
  • the lottery will draw the names of those who win openings and,
  • winners ARE EXPECTED TO ATTEND THAT SCHOOL in the fall, period.
   

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Recent Greece Crimes With Guns

  
Robbery: A Holyoke Street man arrived home and discovered two masked men with handguns inside his apartment on March 30. The men bound and gagged the victim and stole cash, video games and a 2004 Buick.

Shots fired: Unknown suspects inside a red Chevrolet Impala fired three shots from a .32 automatic handgun at the Knights of Columbus building at 431 Bonesteel St. during a birthday party on March 31.

SCATS ~~ I'm sure glad Chief Todd has it ALL under wraps ... er, I mean control. I'm sure these were "targeted" crimes. Nothing to worry about at all ;)
   

Saturday, April 07, 2012

GCSD Fails To Fix Failing School

  
Eliminating Apollo
Eliminates Problem!

NY State's Joint Intervention Team uncovers long list of district deficiencies ranging from poor curriculum to wasted instructional time & low student expectations. Despite this, Greece teachers still blame students and parents. (D&C story)

SCATS ~~ NOTHING to see here folks ... everything is wonderful inside the Greece Central Sports Dysfunction where education takes a backseat to covering their backsides ;)
 

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Is Auberger Healthy Enough To Continue Serving?

  
Anonymous said...

SCATS this is a bit off topic but there is a rumor around that our supervisor is again suffering from health problems. As you know he had a stent put in a few years back and now word has it that he is again suffering chest pains. Since he is our town supervisor his fitness to serve is an issue of concern for us. In fact fitness to serve is part of he job description, it a written town policy if I recall correctly.

Anyone have any solid knowledge about this that would elevate it above the status of rumor?

Over the years there have been various statements circulated to indicate that Auberger is not really in the best of health. So exactly what is the state of Auberger's health? Candidates for the presidency or other offices have to disclose health records. Greece citizens deserve to know if there is a problem.    4/03/2012    10:23 AM
   
SCATS ~~ My understanding is that Auberger missed the last Town Board meeting and the audience was told he was "excused" but not given a reason for his absence.
  

Monday, April 02, 2012

Who Will Track What's Moved?

  
Who Knows What GCSD Owns?

At the end of school in June, Odyssey at Hoover Drive, Kirk Rd. School & West Ridge Elementary School will be closing their doors and relocating their students to other facilities. To date, I'm aware of NO PUBLIC DISCUSSION related to the "how to" of these moves.

Lots of questions come to mind ... Will the district move things using vehicles and personnel employed here? Will any of it be contracted out? Will some items be sold? If so, what? When? Can I buy anything? Who is overseeing it all? How can we trust that they are doing what's in the best interests of the students, taxpayers and employees?

As far as I'm aware, Greece Central School District has absolutely NO IDEA what furniture, books, equipment, technology and supplies are currently in use at any of the three aforementioned schools. This means that nobody knows what might come up missing between the end of school in June and the opening of school in September. That's a long time for things to disappear in.

That list of items that need moving includes: athletic & gym equipment; science & lab equipment; AV equipment (TVs, DVD players, recording equipment); computers, smartboards, laptops, printers, copiers & other technology related equipment; telephones, microphones and other communications related equipment; desks, bookcases, chairs, tables, filing cabinets, storage cabinets and other furniture/furnishings; library books, textbooks, review books, reference materials; maps, globes and other instructional materials; office supplies, classroom supplies, janitorial supplies; cafeteria equipment; musical instruments, music stands, risers and other related equipment; medical equipment & supplies from the nurses' offices ... As you can clearly see, the list of things goes on and on and on.



WHO'S IN CHARGE OF MOVING IT ALL?
WHO WILL ENSURE NOTHING GETS LOST OR STOLEN?
WILL TAXPAYERS BE THE LOSERS AGAIN?
  

Sunday, April 01, 2012

BOE Meeting Tuesday, 6:30PM

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

AGENDA ITEMS of NOTE
School Consolidation Update
Preliminary Budget Recommendations
Quarterly Review of Professional Service Contracts
(We spent $32,200 to rent Lakeshore Hockey Rink)