The Hezitorial: Autumnal Ploys in Yonkers to Continue Past the Winter Months BY Hezi Aris

eHezi Archives 18 Comments

EHezi_Hezitorial The blast of Arctic winds sent by our Canadian friends have lessened in their intensity so far this year. It is postulated by some that the flow of air known as the Westerlies would change course this year for possibly a few more years hence. While conjecture and speculation grip the mind on disparate levels and disciplines, there is certainty about us. It can be said in days gone by that the ferocity of winds and bone-chilling temperatures enveloped the City of Hills, blasting the city with such ferocity that one could believe they were living under a dance floor; the racket was so intense. Today, the on again, off again, timid assault of cold winds are tempered by moderate winds and warm, sunny skies. In the past, leaves would turn vibrant hues, rustling their gaudy colors before our eyes. Affording us a panoply of intensity to calm the heart and mind with the pleasure of the changing seasons. We learned quickly that Mother Nature ruled the roost. She ruled the pecking order at her pleasure. She remains the steward of the realm.

Mother Nature showed us the way, if only we looked. She gave examples from which we gleaned the “givens" in science, the balance she perfected, the changes she permitted, and so much more.
As the winds coursed their way about our tree lined streets in Yonkers, I came to note the majesty and stature of those trees. They swayed to the winds Mother Nature sent their way to alert them to the impending winter months ahead. But there was something different this year, or was it simply my now noticing. The trees were clinging to their leaves. No longer infused green with chlorophyll, they reflected the sun’s rays with shimmering facets of light that bounced off their crinkling embodiment. The trees seemed full to the eye, but upon closer inspection, one could recognize that not all branches were adorned by Mother Nature’s earrings. Some branches were empty of such beauty, though overall, one could imagine we were witnessing a summer day, with the temperate breezes washing and caressing each leaf and branch with the warmth that arrived from our southerly neighbors., allowing them to cleave to their summer ways.

The picture depicted above was the reality before me. No exaggeration. None. Was Mother Nature playing a trick on us?  Did Mother Nature not get the memo, you know, the one about the barren aspects of winter. Those multi-colored leaves should have long ago lost their grip from those tree limbs I saw gently swaying before me. The leaves should have already cascaded upon our lawns and streets to be thereafter collected in bio-degradable bags and taken to the landfill for decomposition to create new soil. That is Mother nature’s way.

What happened this year? Did Mother Nature take a page from the political world that plays tricks before us daily? Was this her way of saying, “The gig is up! I want you to know that I know that you know what I have been trying to impart to you all these years is the way things will go down.”

Mother Nature is a tough but fair task master of extraordinary panache and acumen. We have learned a great deal by watching her. Some of us are still in denial to the games afoot. Others are catching on. A few know!

The leaves clinging to the trees beyond their time are Mother Nature’s allegory. They expose the trickery of Yonkers politics as easily as one can open a can of sardines or anchovies, take your pick.
“Lame Duck” Mayor Amicone’s timetable for economic development has passed him by. Economic development  “deals” continue to be contracted with his blessings with “incentives” among “Friends and Family Network” developers who are not liquid. 

Land which Yonkers has allegedly stolen from the Colgate / Trevor family is moved forward for development with taxpayer incentives but title to the property has not been produced. 

Mayor Amicone was deemed personally liable for violating U.S. Constitution guarantees of “Freedom of the Press” to the tune of $8 million. Mayor Amicone continues to spend taxpayer funds to absolve him of his folly on the taxpayer’s back. Yonkers City Council President Chuck Lesnick and a majority of the Yonkers City Council plot to indemnify Mayor Amicone his hubris on the taxpayer’s back. 

Mayor Amicone instructed the Charter Revision Commission to establish protocol for succession to the Office of Mayor of the City of Yonkers due to his abdication, illness, or demise, that won approval on Election Day but was shepherded through a process that did not conform with the protocols demanded by the Yonkers City Charter or any other guideline. 

Inspector General Dan Schorr allegedly could not find the email evidence that Corporation Counsel demanded City Hall make notice of the August 2, 2010, meeting on August 3, 2010. So much for the investigative prowess of the Yonkers Inspector General. I.G. Schorr is still grappling with the Yonkers Federation of Teachers and the Yonkers Board of Education his right of purview over the books that speak to pension funds. His right of purview was challenged by the Yonkers BoE and the subsequent court ruling gives him that right. The cost for that win was over $1 million taxpayer money. Is Inspector General Schorr waiting out the clock? It seems so. His office must be dissolved. It is costing $500,000 per annum and produces nothing, nada, zilch, garnichts! Next.

There are many issues, including a budget that is not balanced now and will unlikely be made whole by Mayor Amicone’s recalcitrance to speak to union membership openly, as must they, to be deemed credible in the public’s eye.

The 800 pound gorilla in the room are the so-called potential candidates who may run for Mayor of Yonkers. What a waste of time. Or is it? City Hall is also waiting out the clock. The game plan is to await the bounty of Eid on November 16, 2010, then Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year. Then we can talk again about the mayoralty race. When will these games stop?

This is no laughing matter. Yonkers deserves more; much more. It is time to throw out the retreads. Yonkers needs a deliverer. Who will s/he be?

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eHeziThe Hezitorial: Autumnal Ploys in Yonkers to Continue Past the Winter Months BY Hezi Aris

Comments 18

  1. Hezi,
    What happened here?
    It has been over 1 year….
    What has Janet D done?
    Breaking News: Yonkers Attorney Soto Arraigned on Election Fraud Charges Regarding September’s Democratic Primary for Westchester County’s 17th Legislative District District
    White Plains, NY — Acid-tongued bloggers have advised that Yonkers lawyer Wilson Soto was arraigned this morning by the Westchester County District attorney’s Office on charges of election fraud. Documentation substantiating the veracity of this notice are herein.

  2. Its so funny that city hall seems so quiet these days. The workers there have no idea what is comming around the bend for this city. It is easy to tell. Moral is gone, everyone has a good clue as to who IT happens to next and WHY. The disguise this Mayor has portrayed for so long of all the developments, all the plans, all the basic BS he portrayed is DONE. Yonkers is burning underneath him and yet the people haven’t put his ass to the flame? by now, the hope is that the FEDS are all over him and his people and are going to run int here soon and reveal a new life for them all….kinda like Hoboken a year or 2 ago. Bye bye Dickhead! Hope you orange jumsuit fits over that giant ego you go Phil.

  3. I have not received a notice from anyone at the mayor’s office about a press conference. If it is true, despite all the years of hearing lies about my being on every email list, and I am likely to be, but I am also selectively deleted when it suits City Hall, I should hope that I may receive word of its happening throught another source. So far nothing. But the night is still young. And if I know about it with enough advance notice, I will be there. I have not spoken to anyone in City Hall for years and the information about City Hall has been clearer to decipher because of it.

  4. Hezi,
    Is the mayor having a press conference tomorrow morning, so that he can further demonstrate his total lack of leadership? He has given up complete pretense of even trying to manage the day to day operations of his office. The plan of hiding in his office, hoping it all goes away will not work. If he is unable or unwilling to do the job that he was elected to, then by all means please resign now. The man has surrounded himself with incompetants and amateurs. His time is short and the walls are closing in on him and his cohorts. I hear that tomorrow, he will be projecting his own failures and mismanagement onto the working men and women of this fine city. As one fine union man said to the mayor’s chief of staff, ” When the mayor grows a set of balls, have him call me”. Perfect line for a little man with no ability to govern Yonkers. His legacy has been etched in stone, it will take 20 years to recover from his total failure of governance.

  5. In repsonse to Murtagh’s union bashing with respect to the BOE I post the following column:
    De-Legitimizing Public Education
    Thursday 11 November 2010
    by: Marion Brady | The Washington Post | Op-Ed
    The quality of American education is going to get worse. Count on it. And contrary to the conventional wisdom, the main reason isn’t going to be the loss of funding accompanying economic hard times.
    Follow along and I’ll explain:
    Step One: Start with what was once a relatively simple educational system. (For me, it was a one-room school with 16 or so kids ranging in age from about 6 to 15, and a teacher who, it was taken for granted by the community, was a professional who knew what she was doing.)
    Step Two: Close the school, build a big one, buy school buses, open a district office, and hire administrators to tell teachers what they can and can’t do.
    Step Three: When problems with the new, more complicated system develop, expand the administrative pyramid, with each successive layer of authority knowing less about educating than the layer below it.
    Step Four: As problems escalate, expand the bureaucracy, moving decision-making ever higher up the pyramid until state and then federal politicians make all the important calls.
    Step Five: Give corporate America – the Gates, Broads, Waltons, etc. – control of the politicians who control the bureaucracy that controls the administrators who control the teachers.
    Step Six: Pay no attention as the rich who, enamored of market forces, in love with the idea of privatizing schools, and attracted by the half-trillion dollars a year America spends on education, use the media to destroy confidence in public education.
    Step Seven: As a confidence-destroying strategy, zero in on teachers. Say that they hate change and played a major role in the de-industrialization of America and the decline of the American Empire.
    Step Eight: As the de-professionalization of teaching and the down-grading of teachers progress, point to the resultant poor school performance as proof of the need for centralized control of education. So, what’s next?
    I don’t have a clue. But if I were forced to guess, I’d say that what’s next is whatever the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable – eyes fixed no farther than the next quarter’s profit – want to be next. They’ve been wildly successful thus far.
    It’s possible, of course, that education policy next year will be just another excuse for partisan warfare, with little or no change in the status quo. Or it may be that some small congressional caucus will stick a wrench so firmly in the legislative gears that the simplistic, reactionary education “reform” machine built by corporate America, sold to Congress, and showcased by non-educator-educators like Joel Klein and Michelle Rhee, will simply grind to a halt.
    What particularly grieves me is that, whatever happens, it won’t be a consequence of any real understanding of education. Neither will it cause the education establishment itself to take seriously what Erica Goldson said in her June valedictory speech at Coxsackie-Athens High School in New York:
    “We are so focused on a goal, whether it be passing a test, or graduating as first in the class. However, in this way, we do not really learn. We do whatever it takes to achieve our original objective.
    “Some of you may be thinking, “Well, if you pass a test, or become valedictorian, didn’t you learn something? Well, yes, you learned something, but not all that you could have. Perhaps, you only learned how to memorize names, places, and dates to later on forget in order to clear your mind for the next test. School is not all that it can be. Right now, it is a place for most people to determine that their goal is to get out as soon as possible.
    “I am now accomplishing that goal. I am graduating. I should look at this as a positive experience, especially being at the top of my class. However, in retrospect, I cannot say that I am any more intelligent than my peers. I can attest that I am only the best at doing what I am told and working the system.”
    And whatever happens next won’t support and encourage educators to get a spine. They need to scream bloody murder at stupid policy, reject inappropriate use of market forces, point out mainstream media educational naiveté, and demand that policymakers listen before serving up dysfunctional programs like No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top.
    And when they do so and are dismissed as self-serving whiners who don’t want to be held accountable, they should take to the streets in protest.

  6. Hezi makes an interesting point and that is there
    is a difference between verdict finding that an
    official violated someone’s rights during the course
    of their employment for example for which he would
    not be liable and a verdict such as this one where
    the judge made it clear that the mayor was acting
    outside the scope of his authority and that it
    was her belief that any judgment should not be paid
    by the taxpayers…now of course the legal fees may
    be a different story since going in to the trial there
    was no previous determination that the judgement would
    be a punitive one against the mayor personally so
    the legal fees are probably ok for the city to pay..
    and i would guess that in light of the 2200 in actual
    damages either this court or an appellate one would
    modify the amount of the verdict…8 million seems
    a little over the top and jury awards get modified
    all the time..but in my opinon whatever the final
    determination is the city cannot indemnify the mayor
    if the jdugement is a personal would be illegal
    and the council would if it chose to indemnify be
    subject to an article 78 by any yonkers resident
    to prevent it from using tax dollars to satisfy
    a personal judgement…the funny thing is that all
    of this did not have to go to a jury…had the mayor
    offered and apology to mr zherka and admitted he acted
    out of pique i am guessing that there may have been
    a settlement..avoiding the personal judgment because
    from the outset it was perfectly clear that the right
    of freedom of the press was totally stomped on by
    the mayor’s office and those advisors who counseled
    him to sieze the boxes should have been fired long
    ago…something about john peter zenger comes to mind

  7. The Fed will respond when they want to. I am not privy to their timeline. I can only say that the Feds continue to show interest in Mayor Amicone. The Fed have mentioned their dislike for him. They continue their investigation. 14 years is a long time. There is much to uncover. I trusts the Feds will do their utmost in conducting their investigation and further trust that their investigations will likely lead to more than rumor.
    Patience is the key to the “truth.” It may take longer than some like but it will not be anticlimactic when it is allegedly announced.
    I would be honored to be the first to repost such a happenstance were it to take place.
    I will patiently await that day.

  8. Believe what you like. The veracity of my reporting has proven itself correct; so have The Hezitorials been on target. Mr Lesnick has spoken to this subject in more than one occasion to my knowledge. Confirmation to that issue is credible from my sources. They don’t have an agenda, if that is your response. You know when the truth will come out, when the entire Yonkers City Council votes to allow Mayor Amicone to pay the $8 million he is personally liable for as noted by the judge. If what is said on the “street” is true, perhaps Mr Lesnick has wisened up. His protestations that he did not want to exonerate the mayor of the $8 million burden is a lie. Perhaps that is the tale he tells his adoring agenda driven insiders. I will await the vote. Truth is I win either way. I want the mayor to depart office destitute over his ineptitude because that is how he will have left Yonkers, in total shambles. The Lesnicks and Amicones of the world have permitted these senseless activities for years without a word. They have now included Inspector General Dan Schorr in their coverup schemes. Protest on the site all you like. When the vote is taken, Will Lesnick stand up for the mayor as he has throughout his term in office, like a good puppy dog, or will he stand up for Yonkers and demand Amicone pay the $8 million for the lawsuit he lost for trashing the U.S. Constitution as deemed by a jury of his peers.
    Lesnick is washed up. I thought I would write about him in the coming weeks. He is not mayoral material. He is a wishy washy do gooder that has accomplished nothing of value for Yonkers after all these years.
    Lesnick knows how to step before a camera, issue email blasts for which Yonkersites pay the fee. Perhaps not for the Constant Contact service but by the employees who spend time on this effort. Exactly like Mayor Amicone’s staff of people who work on elections and not for the Public Good.
    If this is what you want, Lesnick is your man.
    Protect the Mayor, the privilege will cost you dearly in increased taxed thanks to Chuck Lesnick promoting the mayor be exonerated by the Yonkers City Council.
    Even Corporation Counsel Mark Blanchard is promoting that the Yonkers City Council can and must indemnify the mayor. The unions, especially the police and fire dare say nothing because they too are insured by the City of Yonkers. What the Yonkers City Council has yet to recognize is that there is no problem in using a self-insured policy. there is only a problem when the Mayor of the City of Yonkers arrogantly trashes the U. S. Consititution and then attempts to hide behind the taxpayer’s wallet when Mayor Amicone knows full well, as verified by a jury of his peers, that Mayor Amicone exceeded the parameters of power permitted him as the Mayor of Yonkers. He was caught by his arrogance and is persoanlly liable. He has further spent over $1 million in legal fees defending himself. he lost. He now owes the city over $1 million in legal fees and $8 million more.
    Mayor Amicone has lost the trust of many people in Yonkers and failed himself. His grade is a “D.”
    Lesnick can not save him, nor should he. Anyone who votes to protect this mayor will have lost all future possibility for elected office. The Yonkers Tribune will remember no matter how many lies are written or heard.
    What you hear on the street is the response to my previous mention of this issue. Those that are clued in have known about this for weeks.
    You are hearing spin on the street.
    The Mayor has lost. No one is interested in his plots, lies or deals with the Family and Friends Network.
    If I am wrong, the Yonkers City Council will NOT indemnify Mayor Amicone his personal $8 million debt as judged by the court. The mayor will not abdicate his position as mayor. The Mayor will not take a position with Harris Beach. The mayor will produce the title to the property for which he has induced with taxpayer money through the IDA the Greystone Foundation to build on land disputed by the Colgate / Trevor family to be theirs. There is more the Yonkers City Council can do but they will not because they cannot. This is outright theft… that is my opinion.
    I’ll wait for the vote.

  9. Murtagh is using the Schorr investigation of the BOE to do more union bashing. Look at the contract between the BOE and the Teachers Welfare Fund. Does it put limitations on what the money can be spent on. If so, enforce it. If not, who cares if they spend it on cosmetic surgery or anything else. Murtagh criticizes Buffalo for allowing cosmetic surgery to be reimbursed when it may have been to replace a breast after a mastectomy. Who is he to criticize when the same plan allows for prescriptions for Viagra. Someone should cut his balls off and see how he likes it.

  10. Hezi: You continue to reference “Yonkers City Council President Chuck Lesnick and a majority of the Yonkers City Council plot to indemnify Mayor Amicone his hubris on the taxpayer’s back.” when if fact word on the street is just the opposite – Lesnick and a majority of the council are asserting that it is illegal for the City to pay punitive damages assessed against the Mayor. While I don’t expect Lesnick and the council majority to comment while the litigation is ongoing, you need to drop your baseless accusation from your repertoire until you have evidence one way or another.

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