Monday, October 31, 2005

Trick Or Treat, Town Of Hempstead Style

HAPPY HALLOWEEN FROM HEMPSTEAD TOWN ~ WHERE FACT IS SCARIER THAN FICTION

GOTCHA! Sign Stealer Busted By Nassau County Cops
It happened Thursday night in the Merrick-Bellmore area. Under cover of darkness, the stealth stalker of political signage struck again, tearing down the Democratic placards; placing the signs in the back seat of his car -- a car plastered with bumper stickers bearing the names of Republican candidates.

Unbeknownst to this placard pilferer -- identified to The Community Alliance as a Town of Hempstead employee -- someone was not only watching, but was taking pictures as well. The Nassau County Police were called, and the sign stealer was cuffed and taken into custody. [Click here to read Sign Stealer Caught and to view photos, courtesy of our friends at Nassau GOP Watch.]

Was the sign thief acting on his own, or under orders from the top brass at GOP HQ? No word from Kate Murray, but we will make the presumption that, as with the Sanitary Districts and Water Districts, she would assert that the Town has "no control" over GOP loyalists who, in their zeal for party victory, steal Democrats' campaign signs!

The Community Alliance has learned that the sign stealer was released, the property owner of the premises from which the sign was taken avering that there was no permission given to post the sign in the first place.

So now this fella is back on the streets, just another good citizen roving the Town, removing campaign signs wherever they may appear.

As a relevant aside, in the City of New York, if a campaign sign is taken down or vandalized, there is a presumption that the opposing camp is responsible -- and there is a fine to be imposed of $1000 for EACH violation.

Ah, but that's the City of New York. Here in "the 6th borough," we're too civil to require such draconian measures.

Thank goodness for those invisible GOP signs. Guess we're the only ones who can see them -- not to mention those nasty slaps in the face of democracy, perpetrated on behalf of a desperate party by mindless goons who seek to silence the opposition by tearing down their posters!
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The Drek Is In The Mail!
The latest taxpayer funded mail piece – arriving in mail boxes last week - was sent by the Town Tax Receiver and coordinated with the Supervisor’s public relations department. The envelope reads, “An Urgent Message Regarding Your Tax Bill.”

More of the frightfest from Supervisor Murray and the Town of Hempstead Machine, hijacking taxpayer dollars for purely political purposes, and lying -- again -- about the reassessment, to boot. Kate, we expected no less. Don, we expected much more!

In October, you can always count on two things: The leaves will begin to change color and the Department of Assessment is going to be blamed for increases in school district property taxes.This year is no different.

According to Nassau County Assessor Harvey Levinson, this year’s “pass the blame” rhetoric once again ignores the fact that he, as assessor, does not set operating budgets, mail out tax bills or collect taxes. The assessor’s responsibility, by law, is to determine the fair market value of a home based on what a willing purchaser would pay for that home at a specific point in time.

While the property values have increased dramatically in Nassau County over the past few years, so have school district and municipal spending.Assessor Levinson indicated that this year’s 2005-06 school property tax bills will reflect the fact that 51.8% (154,719) will see school property tax reductions thanks in part to the amount of assessed value that has been added on to the county’s assessment roll for all classes of property. Forty-eight percent of homeowners (143,369) throughout the county will experience higher school property tax increases over the spending plans submitted to and approved by voters.

“The most significant aspect of annual assessment is the fact 18.2% or 54,459 of all homeowners who saw large assessment increases will actually see their school property tax obligation fall or remain the same in comparison to last year,” Assessor Levinson stated.

Contrary to the Hempstead Receiver of Taxes’ recent mailing, assessments that reflect the ever-rising real estate market values do not cause property taxes to increase. The amount of property taxes imposed on homeowners is a direct result of the amount of tax revenue that is needed by municipalities, special taxing districts and school districts to meet its operating expenses. Annual assessment estimates of the fair market value of residential properties, as well as the values that are assigned to the other three classes of properties, determine how much value there is in the district to tax. However, even if reassessment did not take place, the market value increases and class shifts still would be independently measured and determined by the NYS Office of Real Property Services for taxation purposes.

The Receiver deliberately overlooks (for obvious political purposes) the fact that market values reflected on the 2004-05 and 2005-06 assessment rolls were established by the former Republican assessor.Two weeks after assuming office in January 2004, Assessor Levinson asked Senate Deputy Majority Leader Dean Skelos and the State Assembly to enact legislation that would moderate school property tax increases through a multi-year phase-in. On June 4, 2004, Assessor Levinson sent a letter to Senator Skelos again advising him that almost every school district in Nassau County would experience significant property tax hikes in October of 2005 and stressed the need for legislation that would moderate these increases. Unfortunately, while Assessor Levinson’s legislative initiative passed almost unanimously in the Assembly, it was left to die in a Senate committee.

“If the Senate had joined their colleagues in the State Assembly in a bi-partisan manner and acted quickly when I first suggested it, homeowners who are now burdened with double-digit property tax increases on their October 2005 school tax bills would have seen their overall property tax burden phased in over a period of years,” concluded Assessor Levinson. “Until we, as elected officials at all levels of government, can work together and offer creative and real solutions to the property tax burden that is overwhelming families that struggle each day to make ends meet, taxpayers will be forced to listen to another year of the ‘blame game’.”

Yes, the tricks continue to be churned out by the Town Hall printing presses, and all at taxpayers' expense.

Hey, its YOUR Money!
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Cheney's Former Top Aide To Join TOH Staff
Kate Murray, Supervisor and majority owner of the Town of Hempstead, announced today that I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, the former Chief of Staff to Vice President, Dick Cheney, will replace current Chief of Staff, Ray Mineo, should Murray be elected for another term.

Libby was indicted on Friday by a federal Grand Jury for obstruction of justice, perjury, and making false statements to investigators.

“I thought we were getting LIDDY,” remarked Murray, referring to G. Gordon Liddy, a Nixon operative who coordinated the break-in at Watergate. “We’re okay with Libby, though,” Murray continued. “We need someone to fine tune those electric scooters the Town has. Who better than ‘The Scooter’ himself?”

Told that “The Scooter” was not Libby, but rather, former New York Yankee shortstop, Phil Rizzuto, Murray opined, “Oh well. I’m sure Libby is well qualified. We’ll find something for him to occupy his time with. Organizing my photo albums, perhaps.”

Until an office for Libby can be arranged for at Town Hall, Libby will work out of the Town’s Animal Shelter in Wantagh. “Hey, it’s a living,” said Libby. “And something tells me I should get used to being around cages. Just don’t ask me to ‘out’ anyone else…”

Mineo, who has served as Chief of Staff for most of the 100 year GOP reign at Town Hall, was contemplative on his pending retirement. "I could stay on payroll as a Committeeman," said Mineo. "Parks could always use another trainer. Or maybe I'll just rent out my basement, like the owners of every other house on the block in Elmont where I live. I'm already preparing the lawn signs - 'Another Illegal Landlord For Murray.'"

Meanwhile, Libby was looking forward with great anticipation to his new job in Hempstead Town. "My bags are packed," remarked Libby. "It'll be great to get out of Washington. Hey, there's a Passport Office at Town Hall, isn't there?"

If convicted on all counts, Libby faces 30 years in prison and $1.25 million in fines.
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The Community Alliance Bows To Commercial Pressures ~Will Promote New 'Town of Hempstead Mastercard'

Postage paid by the taxpayer for Kate’s Murraygrams: $453,400.

Estimated tax burden to residents for the Town’s Sanitary Districts to haul all this trash away: $20 million.

Tax dollars paid to put friends, family and cronies on the Town’s payroll: $36 million.

The look on Joe Mondello’s face when Kate Murray is voted out of office on November 8th: PRICELESS!

TOWN OF HEMPSTEAD MASTERCARD. SUPPORTING THE MACHINE IN AMERICA'S LARGEST TOWNSHIP. FOR THE TAXPAYER WHO ENJOYS PAYING THE WAY FOR GOP COMMITTEEMEN, PAYING MORE FOR TRASH COLLECTION THAN FOR POLICE PROTECTION, AND PAYING $700 FOR SANITARY DISTRICT COMMISSIONERS TO DINE AT MORTON'S STEAKHOUSE, THERE'S THE TOWN OF HEMPSTEAD MASTERCARD. FOR EVERYONE ELSE, THERE'S HARVEY LEVINSON!
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HAPPY HALLOWEEN. BE SAFE. WATCH FOR WITCHES, GHOULS, AND TRICK OR TREATERS MASQUERADING AS KATE MURRAY!

6 comments:

  1. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

    Looks like more of the same old TRICKS from our spooky friends at Hempstead Town Hall. No treats in store for us should the Murrayites win re-election.

    The Town already has our property tax dollars. Hold on to your UNICEF pennies, before they come for that, too! :-)

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  2. These blogs are PRICELESS! The folks who write this stuff have missed their calling. You should be syndicated.

    Hopefully, your material is reaching far and wide - if not to Hollywood, then at least to the e-mail boxes of every TOH resident.

    Wit aside, the wisdom of these "blogspots" is a must read for everyone who intends to vote on November 8th -- and for those who, for whatever reason, would opt not to.

    Whether you're a Democrat, Republican, Independent, or Right-to-Lifer, one can't help but "get it" as The Community Alliance pokes fun at local politics while exposing the dark side of government inaction. A real belly laugh and a superb lesson in civics.

    On second thought, forget about Hollywood for these bloggers. Give them jobs at Town Hall, where their talents would no doubt well serve all of us!

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  3. Is it really surprising to see that Republicans are stealing signs off other people's lawn's? It is absolutely pathetic that they feel they need to resort to these types of tactics. I had signs stolen off my lawn back in the 2004 elections. Not growing up on Long Island, I was disgusted by it but I have come to learn (quickly) that the Nassau Republicans have no problem resorting to intimidation and bullying. It appears to be an integral part of their campaign strategy.

    And the Republicans are supposed to be the law and order party?? Give me a huge freakin' break!!

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  4. To Regular Reader from East Meadow: Thanks for the kudos and kind words. They are much appreciated.

    We often wonder what it would be like if the ranks of officialdom were filled with more community advocates and fewer political hacks. After all, look at what the local activists do as community volunteers. Imagine how much they could get done (or at least try) if they were actually getting paid.

    Well, to our dismay, the phones are not ringing off the wall with offers from the County Exec or Town Supervisor to come on board and lend our talents to the greater community. We suppose they're busy right now.

    Still, operators are standing by, and community advocates, dedicated to improving our overall quality of life and to taking the "sub" out of suburb are waiting for the call.

    Meanwhile, we'll keep blogging, and you, we hope, will keep on reading -- not to mention thinking, questioning, voting and, yes, participating in the day-to-day of your community.

    Onward and upward!

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  5. They GOP tells us each year they will help clean and rebuild our communities. Today Election day as I drove down and back up Meacham ave in Elmont every phone pole was covered and I mean covered with GOP signs. In case most of you don't know it is against the law to post any signs on those poles. It looked like the GOP just trashed my town, good job! While we are at it how can we cut taxes without making changes? How can we advocate less taxes without consolidating the SanitarY Districts? How can we rid ourselves of the regressive school tax without talking about a progressive tax in which you pay on money you earn? We need people who will put these issues up front and not worry about patronage jobs. We need to elect Harvey Levinson and others to bring about the change we are talking about. With out change you can expect to hear and see the same complaints.Don't let lawn signs fool you, those people don't give a damn about you and me, they only care about their jobs and perks.

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  6. HARVEY LEVINSON IS GOING TO SAVE US???

    GIMME A BREAK

    OOOH AND I GUESS THE REPUBLICANS ARE THE ONLY ONES WHO PUT SIGNS UP WHERE THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED???

    JUST LIKE THE REPUBLICAN WHO THE DEMOCRATS HAD ARRESTED FOR REMOVING SIGNS????

    TOO BAD THEY DID'NT INFORM THE POLICE THAT HE HAD PERMISSION FROM THE PROPERTY OWNER TO REMOVE THE SIGNS SINCE HE DID'NT GIVE PERMISSION FOR THEM TO BE PUT THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE???

    MAYBE THE POLICE SHOULD HAVE ARRESTED THE DEMOCRAT INDIVIDUALS FOR FALSE STATEMENTS TO POLICE OFFICERS???

    LET'S STOP ALL THE RANTING WE WILL KNOW IN ABOUT 6 HOURS WHO THE PEOPLE WANT IN OFFICE!!!

    I ALREADY VOTED AND IT WAS NOT FOR THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY

    ANYONE THAT WATCHED THE CHANNEL 12 NEWS DEBATES SAW TOM SOUZZI "NOT" ANSWER THE QUESTIONS ASKED OF HIM!

    AND I ESPECIALLY LOVED THE REMARKS REGARDING CUTTIN TAXES - "SHOW ME HOW TO CUT THE TAXES AND I WILL" HMMM I THOUGHT THAT WAS HIS JOB, TO FIND WAYS TO SAVE US MONEY AND CUT OUT WASTEFUL SPENDING & LOWER TAXES???

    GUESS HE IS TOO BUSY PLANNING HIS CAMPAIGN FOR GOVERNOR?

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