Friday, February 27, 2015

Greece Town Agrees To Settle Pignato Suits


The D&C reports: 
The Town of Greece has agreed to settle lawsuits from two women who alleged they were coerced into sex by former Greece Police Officer Gary Pignato.
The town board last week agreed to authorize settlements with the two women, meeting minutes show. The minutes did not state how much money the two women would receive under the settlements.
Supervisor Bill Reilich said the settlements will be covered by insurance. He declined to say how much the women will be paid.
"The settlement amount is not one taxpayer dollar," Reilich said.
A jury in 2009 convicted Pignato of coercing into sex one of the women who sued him. He later pleaded guilty to official misconduct and trespassing in the case involving the second woman.
Pignato was imprisoned until 2013, when he was released on parole.
The two women also sued the town and former Greece Police Chief Merritt Rahn, who was convicted of helping falsify a background check to get Pignato hired after Pignato was fired from the city police department.
The town last year sued its insurer, Lloyd's of London, after Lloyd's refused to cover the costs of the litigation. Lloyd's determined that Pignato was off-duty at the time of the alleged sexual assaults and was "not acting within the scope of [his] duties at the time."
Reilich declined to comment about the Lloyd's lawsuit.
Attorneys have been under a gag order with the lawsuit, which was being heard in Livingston County.
SCATS ~~ So then, Bill ... is it MORE than one taxpayer dollar ??

GPD Turns Over Holiday Inn Arson Case To DA


Grand Jury May Get Evidence

DA Sandra Doorley says there is a target of the investigation and sources tell News10NBC that target is current Ridge Road Fire Chief Harold "Bud" Phillips. 

Ridge Road Fire Chief Harold "Bud" Phillips

Leonard Nimoy Dead At Age 83

R.I.P.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

GCSD Gives "Superficial" Reasons For March Vote

Greece Post Letter to the Editor - 2/20/15

Here are a few excerpts and perspectives on the reply I received to my ‘open letter to the Board of Education’ (GP 1/29) asking for reasons for a special March vote. The 230 word reply is on the GCSD web site, “2015 Capital Vote Information/FAQ."

First, the Board reply makes no mention of, and therefore expresses no concern over, possible increased costs or reduced voter turnout... from holding a special vote.

Second, the reply says, ‘the projects [CIP and Stadium] were THROUGHLY REVIEWED by the Finance Committee’.

As a member of the Finance Committee, I disagree. The committee received only ‘sticker costs’ (total $43M) vs. fully-financed costs (total $61M). Also, State Aid for the Stadium now calculates as 23%- not 78% as widely publicized.

Lastly, the reply claims that ‘a separate vote limits confusion.’

Unlikely! Consider voter awareness of district FUND BALANCE - that magical source of ‘sweetener’ extracted from past budget surpluses. This totaled $29M last June, and will be updated for voters in May. But in March, voters may puzzle over why CIP project is sweetened by $5.2M and Stadium gets zero!

In summary, the Board reply offers no compelling reason to hold a special vote that benefits students or voters!

George Hubbard

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Lunch Special @ Odyssey Cafeteria 2/24/15

There's a larva in my lettuce !

TIME IS RUNNING OUT!



IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW WILL BE AWAY,  HOSPITALIZED ETC. ON MARCH 24th, YOU CAN STILL VOTE!

GET YOUR APPLICATION FOR AN 
RETURNED TO GREECE CENTRAL AT LEAST 7 DAYS BEFORE THE ELECTION!


TELL YOUR FRIENDS, NEIGHBORS, RELATIVES!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sunday, February 22, 2015

BOE Special Meeting, Tuesday @6:30PM


It is anticipated that the BOE will go into Exec. Session at 6:00PM to discuss collective negotiations pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service Law; the proposed acquisition, sale or lease of real property; & the employment history of a particular person.

View AGENDA on BoardDocs


Thursday, February 19, 2015

How Cold Is It?

Niagara Falls Drone View ...




Glen Iris Inn's Frozen Fountain @Letchworth State Park ...

http://www.whec.com

The High Cost Of Hiring Bus Drivers


We've noticed that the Greece Central School District has run either a full-page or half-page ad for hiring bus drivers in the Greece Post weekly going back at least to the late fall of 2014!

The cost of this ad campaign must be enormous! 

The payoff must be small, otherwise why continue running these ads?




www.gawker.com

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

As The Water Pipes Burst ...



Many Greece Schools Flooded!

No one realized the heat was out after Monday's power outage, so the pipes are bursting in the extreme cold!

Didn't something like this happen several years ago, too?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Dreams Of Mayberry Tough To Achieve


Anonymous said...

I tried to make an appointment to speak to Bill Reilich about some police matters and was refused. Nice way to treat a taxpayer. The Police Dept still is corrupt and has officers who believe they are above the law. What I would like to know is how can I find out about a certain police officers record as far as complaints filed against him.   
2/15/2015 7:41 PM

Friday, February 13, 2015

SCATS' FAQs On CIP Vote


Out-of-Town March 24th? 

You can still vote "NO"

GET YOUR ABSENTEE BALLOT HERE


Q. 1 - Why is GCSD holding a separate vote to approve three propositions in March, instead of combining it with the annual Budget Vote in May?

A. 1 - The "official" answer is because GCSD believes we are too stupid to understand the difference between the budget & the Capital Improvements Projects ... "Holding a separate vote limits confusion and supports clear communication."  The truthful answer is they are hoping too few will show up or know about a Special Vote (many senior citizens are away in March) to vote things down & keep them from getting EVERYTHING they seek!

Q. 2 - What is the annual cost to maintain the turf field, lights and Stadium?

A. 2 -  GCSD has no idea! They want you to believe obtaining a $2500 grooming machine is all that's needed for maintenance. They also claim it costs just $15/hour to have the lights on, but fail to estimate any total annual cost. If they fail to routinely sanitize the turf, they can keep costs low at the expense of the athletes ... "FieldTurf Scrub is formulated to remove bodily fluids (blood, vomit, etc.) from synthetic turf surfaces." They must work to prevent growth of weeds and moss, clean-up any oil spots as they occur and ensure that the turf be kept free from food, gum, sunflower seeds, glass, cigarettes, fireworks, driving stakes and any sharp objects that will risk damage to the field and injury to players, as well as  debris, leaves, paper and other windblown materials.


Q. 3 - What is the life expectancy of artificial turf? 

A. 3 - SCATS' research shows the industry "standard" is an 8 year warranty. GCSD claims they are requesting a 15 year warranty "to protect the taxpayer investment throughout the life of the bond."  Requesting it and actually obtaining it are two VERY DIFFERENT scenarios! We won't know the outcome of their "request" until long AFTER the vote!


Q. 4 - Is artificial turf safe? 

A. 4 - Literally dozens of studies (over 40) have been done due to the potential risks. The industry claims it is safe. However, there are numerous controversies and claims over whether or not turf fields cause everything from greater incidence of heat-related illnesses to spreading MRSA and other pathogens to causing cancer. The literature is filled with examples. Bottom line: Do you want YOUR KID to possibly risk his/her health by playing on crumb rubber that can be ingested, inhaled or become lodged in injured skin?

Q. 5 - Why is $415,000 in Proposition 1 targeted for playground renovations?

A. 5 - GCSD's answer is all over the map claiming age of equipment, the need to make equipment handi-capped accessible and reconfiguration of grade levels at schools as reasons. They still have NOT explained why the Pine Brook playground will cost $225,000 - as much as it costs to build a nice, new home! Over the last 25+ years, this is the FIRST TIME funds were specified for any playgrounds WHY IS THAT??
  
Q. 6 - What are the plans for the land GCSD wants to purchase?

A. 6 - They hope they can get us to approve buying the property now and then get us to approve construction of a bus wash facility and storage in the future. The pricetag for that project alone will be quite large, so they decided to NOT ask for it now. They didn't want to risk a resounding "NO" vote.
  
Q. 7 - Aren't many of the Capital Projects in Proposition 1 largely related to safety, accessibility, etc? In other words, aren't they urgent?

A. 6 - No, they are largely the "extras" leftover from the huge $100+ million "wish list" (as is the stadium proposal) created prior to the votes held  for the first & second CIP (Excel) projects voted on in recent years. This group of projects includes: $415,000 for playgrounds; $ 600,000 for storage buildings at several  schools; $ 3.3+ million for repaving/expanding/reconfiguring parking lots, bus loops, driveways, etc.

Q. 8 - I heard there was a large committee that met to decide the details of the $8.5 million stadium/turf field proposal. I also heard there was not even one voice of dissent on that committee. Is this true?

A. 8 - Yes, that is true. The committee had 28 members comprised of GCSD employees of various sorts (Admin. to athletic directors), parents involved in sports and a few "community members," including athletic supporters like Bill "Light Up Greece" Selke! There was not a single voice of dissent represented on the committee to address neighborhood or other community concerns.
  
Q. 9 - Is GCSD holding any informational meetings about these proposals?

A. 9 - Yes, they already held an illegal (not posted or advertised in advance - they did NOT want any outsiders attending.) BOE study session on the stadium project on Jan. 6th and two poorly advertised community meetings about the three Propositions and stadium proposals.
   

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Another Resident Questions Need For March Vote


SUSPICIONS MOUNT THAT GCSD 
WANTS TO AVOID SENIOR CITIZEN VOTE 

Letter To Editor
Greece Post
2/11/2015

By Bill Hueber
Regarding the upcoming Capital Improvement vote in March I have a few concerns. I personally don't remember having an extra vote in March. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to realize that turnout is critical to passing such votes. It also is a fact that seniors are less likely to come out and vote in winter like weather in March versus votes held in May. Also there are a number of seniors that go south for the winter and don't come back before April. Is it possible the board is attempting to improve their chances of success at the expense of disenfranchising some senior voters. I hope not, but I am suspicious. As for the 8 millions dollar field I would think you could put a turf field at each high school for that amount of money which would benefit all athletes equally. One of the arguments for the stadium is that they can hold sectional games. While technically true, it's no different than now as teams hold sectional games on grass every year. Greece could hold semis and finals on a new turf field but those games are played on neutral sites so they would not involve any Greece teams.
   

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Schools Ban Peanut Butter, But Not Measles*


"If my kid can't bring peanut butter to school, your kid shouldn't be able to bring measles*!"


* Or other preventable diseases

Is Greece Central Manipulating The Voters?



Tom Kackmeister said...
I submitted the following to the D and C as a letter to the editor:

The Greece school district plans a special spending vote in March. They have proposed a $35 million capital improvement spend and an $8.5 million stadium spend.

1. The snow birds go south for Feb and March so the school district schedules a vote in March regarding capital spending and a new sports stadium. This is an extra vote; there is also a budget vote in May. 

2. On Feb 2. I received a post card announcing these votes. The post card told us how to get an absentee ballot. Of course the snow birds have already left and of course the post office does not forward post cards. They are a clever group!

3. And now we learn the district schedules a "forum" to specifically discuss the stadium proposal. And per D and C the reporting (2-9- 2015) the district is particularly interested in talking with the "youth sports community". And they "may" also answer questions about the $35 million capital project. On Feb 9 we learn that forum meeting will be Feb 9.! 

Do they think they can force these projects on the community by manipulating who will be able to vote? Maybe, but do they think they can do that and also get the larger community to pass the operating budget in May? That might be a stretch.

I do not like being manipulate and I think there will be others with the same sentiment. 

I hope the district has second thoughts and change the dates for the vote to coincide with the operating budget vote. They should make that change and schedule community forums to discuss all spending proposals in April. If they respect the voters they may have better success on voting day.

Tom Kackmeister


Note re: M. M. McDermott's reporting: I would report the impact on taxes as follows: "The impact on local property taxes would be about ... However the impact on state taxes has not be reported". It seems to me that a reminder that state money is not free would be worthwhile. 
2/10/2015 4:58 AM

Monday, February 09, 2015

BOE Meeting Tuesday, 6:30PM



Yet another Exec. Session is planned at 5:30 pm to discuss collective negotiations pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service Law and the proposed acquisition, sale or lease of real property.


BOE Meeting Agenda

Thursday, February 05, 2015

Prepare For MUCH Higher Greece School Taxes


CAPITAL PROJECT VOTE ~~ MARCH 24, 2015


Proposition 1 ~~ would carry an estimated annual tax bill increase of 5 cents/$1,000 of assessed value each year for 15 years.

Proposition 2 ~~ would carry an estimated annual tax bill increase of 12 cents/$1,000 of assessed value each year for 15 years. It is important to note that the approval of Proposition 2 is contingent on the approval of Proposition 1.

Proposition 3 ~~ Land purchase at a cost not to exceed $207,450. "CHUMP CHANGE!" Why are we even voting on this???


Shhhh!!! Don't tell anyone, but there's a special meeting planned about the proposed stadium.

Details HERE


The combined cost* of Prop 1 & 2 on the average Greece home assessed at $125,000 will be an additional $21.25/yr. NOT including any impact by a propsed budget increase to be voted on in May!

* Prop 2 can ONLY PASS if Prop 1 passes
   
  

Sunday, February 01, 2015

Town Of Greece Wasting $$ ?


Earlier today, we were out doing errands in preparation for a snowstorm and the Super Bowl. While parked in the Aldi's Mt. Read Blvd. parking lot, I observed a giant, red Town of Greece plow/truck enter and salt a path through to Maiden Ln. at 12:53PM.

Since when does the Town of Greece provide such services to private businesses, plazas, etc?