Majority Leader Sabatino and Minority Leader Breen Submit Terms of Office Legislation

eHezi Archives 58 Comments

YONKERS, NY —  October 19, 2018 — The Majority and Minority leaders of the Yonkers City Council today, in a bipartisan announcement, said that they have introduced legislation to modify the City’s term limits law to make it consistent with the 12 year limitation that County Government recognizes.

“This legislation maintains term limits but authorizes a time period that is proving successful at the County level,” said Majority Leader Michael Sabatino.

“The 12 year limit provides a good mix between turnover and continuity,” said Council Minority Leader Michael Breen, “This City is in the midst of a revival, and I hear a great deal of concern about the need to keep that momentum going.”

Sabatino and Breen said they have received encouragement from a variety of people for their proposal, and noted it is favored not only by Mayor Mike Spano but are expecting a solid majority of the City Council.

“We are headed toward $3 billion in investment in housing, businesses and jobs in Yonkers,” said Sabatino, adding, “Most of it results from work that began six and seven years ago. We want the voters to have the opportunity to continue that momentum going into the next four years.”

During the past seven years the City’s waterfront and downtown have seen a major turnaround, with construction of approximately 4,000 units of housing completed or underway. Ten percent of all new multi-family construction is reserved for affordable housing thanks to the City’s recent housing ordinance. Several new parks have been opened, with more under construction. The City’s bond rating, once near junk status, is now “A” rated. Test scores in the City’s schools have improved, and the City is beginning the process of constructing new schools to handle the growing population.

Sabatino and Breen said they want the City Council to move forward with their proposal, and noted the public will have a chance to give its opinion at a public hearing.

“At the end of day the voters will continue to decide the future of the City,” said Breen, “This legislation reduces the restrictions on their choices, while still preserving the spirit of term limits.”



eHeziMajority Leader Sabatino and Minority Leader Breen Submit Terms of Office Legislation

Comments 58

  1. Modification of Terms of Office in a City is subject to Referendum.

    No wonder the incompetent and unqualified City Council and Administration, especially the Law Department, are trying to rush this through because there is a 45 day limit for a Petitiion to be filed with the City Clerk (hope Vinny doesn’t misplace it) to place the issue on the ballot for Referendum.

    You legal eagles out there take a look at the following:

    Maybe Khader, Meave Scott, her brother and the good minded citizens of the City should come together.

    They need approximately 3500 signatures of any registered voter in the City (10% of the votes cast in the last gubernatorial election in the City)

    No doubt in a Referendum, this proposal will go down in flames again.

  2. This was never voted on by the public. People should stop spreading lies. What was voted was overturning term limits not modifying. This makes perfect sense. I urge my council person Shanae Williams to support this amendment.

  3. Mike sabatino mike breene need to go too old. Enough mike Khader just trying to save face with tax payers cause he screwed us on budget. he will vote yes to many family members who need jobs.

  4. This legislation makes sense!

    Westchester 3 year term limits

    NYS no term limits

    Congress and senate no term limits

    Making yo let’s consitent with the County just makes sense.

    1. Should be term limits for all! Should eliminate county gov completely, what a waste of money. Congressional approval rating of 19%, but almost 96% are re elected, term limits definitely needed. Shows what controlling the purse strings really does. Last but not least, if the voters in Yonkers voted twice not to do away with term limits than how can a broken city council undo it.

  5. This will not be tolerated. People need to vote all who vote for this out of office next election, especially Spano, Breen and Sabitino who are legally now term limited. Anyone who tries to usurp the will of the people are un-American as they are taking away the rights of the people to choose their representatives. This infringes on our civil rights under the constitution. This is not the USSR, It’s not China, but these stoolies for SpaNO are making a mockery of themselves and our rights.

    He need to take the SopSpaNO’s out of local and state government. It pales by comparisons to the Sopranos.

  6. Wasn’t a fan of sabatino but I am now. This is an important vote to continue the progress that this city has made. You don’t take out a pitcher when he’s pitching well. Sabatino is showing leadership, taking a stance. You know have my vote.

  7. Why would we want to be more in line with Westchester county? We should be distancing ourselves from the county. We send them nearly half of our sales tax for some buses and a felony court. We don’t need the county and their legislators from communities that are nothing like Yonkers.

    We don’t need their longer term limits either.

  8. The Majority and Minority leaders both issued statements on one of the most important issues facing the future of Yonkers, and City Council President Mike Khader is nowhere to be seen or heard. So much for the maverick who was going to stand up to City Hall and fight for the best interests of “all of Yonkers.” The guy can’t even get out in front of his City Council colleagues and issue a press release. I guess Sabatino and Breen are running the show. How embarrassing.

  9. Even Spano’s diehard supporters know that, with only high school diploma and no real accomplishments to speak of aside from some slick PR BS about $3 billion in development (all of which has been underwritten by debt, give-aways and kick-backs), he has nowhere to go once he’s done as mayor of Yonkers. Extending term limits is a way of ensuring that he receives a paycheck for the next four years, and the seven dwarfs on the City Council will dutifully nod their heads in support because some (if not all) of them will benefit in one way or another. That’s politics – the politicians are looking out for their own best interests, which means salaries and pensions. That’s what they mean by bipartisan, i.e. “we on the city council work together to give ourselves more of your money for a longer time than initially agreed upon.” We get it. We’re not stupid.

    But to suggest that the City is doing well is fake news. Any city with a $90 million hole in its budget is failing. End of story. You’ve got a credit downgrade for the city, high taxes, failing schools, crumbling roads, underoccupied hotels and luxury developments, overpaid civil servants, no jobs or investment to speak of and no plan at all on how to plug a $90 million hole in the budget. I mean, really, what good is $3 billion in development when you can’t balance your own budget each year?

    1. If this stunt doesn’t pass, supposedly Spano will get Tim Idoni’s seat. A deal has to be made to take care of him and his family. More jobs at the County.

  10. I’m glad that the Council is willing to take a tough vote to do what is right. Yonkers is doing well and 8 years just isn’t enough time. The County doesn’t have a maximum of 8 years, the State doesn’t have any limits and it looks like Engel and Lowey will spend their last breathe holding office at the federal level.

    By the way I don’t work for the City, I live in Yonkers and I vote.

  11. It is so frustrating that some on this site stoop pretty low in their comments. Clearly I am a strong supporter of Mayor Spano and I support both councilman sabatino and merante who both are excellent and diligent electeds.
    Yonkers has never been in better shape. Clearly we continue to have financial issues like every other city of our size. The mayor and city council work together. They do not always agree but at the end they compromise. That is what the people of Yonkers want.

    The voters will have a choice next November——obviously I will be supporting Spano.

    In our democracy the people will decide. Let’s let them have that opportunity.

    And the answer is no—I do not work for the city…. I live here and love our town..

    Thank you hezi!

    1. Make no mistake about it, I love Yonkers too. But, I dislike the current state of affairs in our city and the fact that this Administration works like a dictatorship and the elected officials put self-service ahead of public service.

      The Mayor has mismanaged the city and its finances. There is zippo accountability and transparency. Since he took the helm, nepotism and patronage jobs are at an all-time high. How many Spanos and friends work in City Hall? How many family members of politicians have City jobs that were not open to the public? There are layers and layers of inefficiency and bureaucracy with 6 figure salaries in City Hall.

      12 years is too long!

      Yes, there has been development, but it’s mostly concentrated at the Waterfront and paid at a high price with HUGE and unnecessary incentives to developers. This practice continues today and we the taxpayers bear the burden of it.

      Don’t be fooled. This proposal to extend term limits is being done now because our Mayor and many of his political chums have no place to go after their current terms. So why not stay on and run again, effectively without opposition? Spano has a war chest that makes it almost impossible for any candidate to viably and successfully challenge him.

      Put the proposal to extend term limits on the ballot and let all the voters in Yonkers decide. It should NOT be left to the City Council, who are beneficiaries of any such extension. Put it on the ballot for a special election! That’s how democracy works, by the people and for the people.

  12. Yonkers once had a weak form of government that became a strong form of government for the betterment of the city thanks to Mayor Wasiscko.

    Now the city has an opportunity to strengthen that strong form of government by extending term limits to 3 terms.

    No brainer, extend to 3 terms and keep progress moving forward.

    Spano has been the best Mayor Yonkers has ever had, period.

    1. Omg! Yonkers City Hall, in all ways corrupt connected and colluded has spoken. Our council members tell us they have received feedback to extend term limits. Who from? Provide the numbers and documentation.

      Let’s be honest, you got zero feedback from the citizens, but from insiders!!! The only directive you have is from your master Spano. Need I remind you, CC members the people voted for you and will vote you out if you object to our will.

      It’s so clear you are all puppets! Just listen to the liar Sabatino, the dodger Breen, Merante the bumbling hypocrite, the noncommitted and undecided Rubbo and the out of touch, out of communication Khader. Corazon knows she better vote No as all her supporters will abandon her and Shanaee is cricket silent.

      All these seven CC members are a disgrace to Yonkers, a disgrace to democracy and an affirmation to government gone totally amuck! Vote them all out. Think about running for office yourself, or your son/daughter, neighbor, friend. Anyone with conviction and honesty can do better than this hapless and hopeless CC.

    2. Please, stop! Extend the nepotism, pay for play and developers gifts!!! All on the backs of the taxpayers. This Mike is an affront to every intelligent taxpayer in Yonkers! Your opinion of the Mayor is not what counts. Let the voters decide. This needs to go on the ballot, not in the hands of an impaired CC! Get a grip!

    3. You obviously work in city hall or are a beneficiary in some way. Otherwise, your assessment of the reality of CofY would be more realistic and rationale. You are totally disconnected, and not an unaffiliated homeowner and taxpayer. You can’t be serious about Another 4 years of debauchery!!! That’s insane!! Terms limits need to stay, especially in Yonkers!!

  13. I am in full support of this!! Spano for a third term! Yonkers is on the rise… and no one can deny the fact that Mayor Mike Spano has a lot to do with that. The Waterfront and Getty Square has come a long way, crime rates have lowered significantly and graduation rates have increased. I would love for Mayor Spano to be in office for another four years to finish the work he’s done. By all means Yonkers is NOT perfect but it has gotten so much better under Mayor Mike’s leadership.

  14. Development is happening everywhere! Bond rating I’d at its highest in 40 years. Sabatino and Spano actually did something with the Boyce Thompson property after years of policians just talking about it. You have my full support with this Michael Sabatino. I will be at the hearing to show my support.

    1. Listen to these lying, stammering CC politicians. Watch the videos on YV. Truth is in the telling. I will be at City Hall to express my outrage at this subversive attempt to undermine and hoodwink the voters. Spano and the other underserving hacks will not succeed!!! Your days are numbered.

  15. I support 3rd term , the mayor of Yonkers and the council have done an awesome job and they deserve another 4 years !!!! Keep Yonkers great !

  16. Hezi , please start a Facebook page so we can get more traffic to this site and also a donate button so we can start to donate to this site you you can start to get more exposure to this wonderful informative site.
    We also need to start a pac fund to stand up to all these council people who even consider voting for this. Please let’s make thi priority number one.

  17. What development?? Hotels all over town?? Three hotels alone on the top of Executive Blvd??
    Who’s coming here?? Are we hosting the Olympics next time?? These hotels will soon house
    undesirables with weekly section 8 vouchers.. And Spano wants a third term??

  18. Let’s look at reality. We have never seen development in our city like today. People are working….and actually we are finally seeing development on the waterfront. This mayor and the council should be congratulated for that.
    The pols in Washington should take a page out of this book. You are elected to serve and work together regardless of party and they are doing that.
    Nothing wrong with being constant with the county on term limits. Let the voters of Yonkers make the decision.

    1. The voters have already decided on this. It’s come up 3 separate times since 1994, once aborted and twice put out to vote. Now Yonkers wants to be consistent with County. What a crock! Nothing more than a ruse for Spano and incumbents to hang on and bleed the city coffers. If they want to be consistent with the County, make the terms two years like the County and vote all these CC suckers out come next election!

  19. Only in Yonkers can politicians talk about the city’s revival while ignoring last year’s multi-million dollar budget bailout from the State, annual tax increases across the board on residents, and next year’s projected $90 million budget deficit. You really have to ask yourselves what planet these people are living on to believe this horseshit that they’re peddling.

    1. Absolutely correct!! The city is in a mess and it will be worse next year. Where are they going to get the money for next years’s budget? They cut nothing from their budget or personnel (city & mayor’s family). They did NOTHING BUT TAXED US!!! Roads are horrible, city streets are filthy and the services are worse. Are you kidding. So another 4 years of a mayor and more of the above. I don’t get it. Wait, wait until all of these apartments are finished down by the waterfront. The infrastructure has not been improved below those apartments. Hundred of years of the same pipes and water & sewer system. What a mess that will be coming down in those areas. Does the Planning Board take this into consideration when they approve all of these buildings. The city will not and cannot handle those apartments using these facilities. Let the citizens vote on term limits. This city needs help and a strong mayor & new council people who keep their promises when they were elected.

  20. Are you kidding me?
    Another City Hall Screw the Taxpayer’s Wishes Special.
    The momentum of development…. LOL
    They get credit for being relentless bastards

    Hezi, please let us know when the public hearing will take place.

  21. Since they are intent on ramming it down the citizens throats, just remember to vote them out when their term is up, dont pass go dont collect no pension. Khader is a sellout, he should only serve one term. If development is so great why did they raise taxes 6.2%. Wait till next budget watch how they vote to raise taxes 8%. Vote all the bastards out!!!!

    1. Stop with Khader sellout BS. Did he make a statement ? Has he said he will supporting it? The only sell out is Sabatino,Breen and Merante and the Mayor. Sabatino is a liar and is a self serving politian. He will benefit from this and so does Breen and the mayor. The real question is why the f*uck would Merante ageee to this ? What was he promised or given ? Stick to the press release stop dragging other people into this without knowing where they stand or how they would.

      Hezi will all do respect to you and your site , but comments not related to article should be screened.

      1. Merrante: My first priority is helping seniors and stopping this tax madness. Mayor: Vote Yes, I’m raising taxes. Merrante: Yes!

        Mayor: I have nowhere to go, vote yes to extend term limits. Merrante: Yes!

        Merrante: I’m going to stand up to the Mayor and might challenge him in 2019.

        (Psssst… if you can barely beat a guy who didnt campaign and a kid who never ran for office, that’s no bueno)

  22. I think it’s great!!! I agree with term limits, however this does not overturn those limits. It just brings it in line with Westchester County. I don’t think any city across Westchester even has term limits.

    I also like my council person corazon and I like my mayor and would love to see both stay.

  23. “The 12 year limit provides a good mix between turnover and continuity,” said Council Minority Leader Michael Breen, “This City is in the midst of a revival, and I hear a great deal of concern about the need to keep that momentum going.” – Exactly what momentum? Schools are falling apart. You continue to increase property taxes. You keep giving developers tax breaks that pretty much screws us.

    Khader will never ever get my vote again! Fooled my once but you won’t fool me twice. Truly disgusting.

    1. There has really been a ton of development. Pay attention by the waterfront. All that development is money on the tax roll that helps support our city.

  24. Dear God, please wake us up from this nightmare. You were told twice by the voters in referendum that we did not want to rescind term limits. You don’t get your way, so you think its OK now to make the decision for us by bypassing our vote and leaving it up to the city council. This is a joke. By the way Breen and Sabatino, didn’t you tell Yonkers Times in March that even if you would consider extending term limits that it would be by a referendum and NOT by city council vote? Wow what hypocrites. Say one thing, and do another. They think we are all idiots! Wake up people! They work for US! Can’t wait to hear when the public hearing will be lol probably at a time when working men and women cannot attend. What a joke this is.

  25. Hezi, you wrote about this at least two years ago with nothing but denials from city hall. Elected officials in Yonkers do not seem to care about the public’s wishes, as evidenced by not one but two public ballot referendums/referenda. They send out their little press releases on a Friday evening, when people are paying little attention to the news. Their statements indicate that a pubic hearing will be held. While I served on the city council, I was always amazed by the fact that the public hearing was, most times, called for on the same evening of the vote. It made no difference since decisions were already made.

    1. I don’t live in Yonkers, but nearby, and follow the politics. Joan Gronowski is the only one that seems to be honest. She should run for Mayor. I have no idea what she does for a living but just seems to be honest and speaks her mind. Love ya Joan.

    2. Yonkers Voice just posted Khader is away and was not aware they were going to introduce this Legislation.
      Seems like this was done on purpose while he was away.

    3. Joan, too bad when Hezi predicted it two years ago a majority of the Council was different. However, I agree and find it interesting how Sabatino and Breen were not on board in 2012 when Lesnick wanted to do this, but now it’s a great idea?!?!

      Oh, and I hope Spano’s family can forgive him for trying to stay Mayor… although last year he was talking about being County Executive AND a State Senator.

      It’s getting hard to keep up…

    4. It really is amazing how Joan can be so “holier then thou” when she has used the system for personal gain herself. Joan – would you care to remind everyone how you got the final years of your NYS pension?

      1. Mr. Jennings,

        I am not sure I understand this question about the ‘final years of my pension’. I started working for the City of Yonkers in a number of tested civil service positions, being fired by John Spencer in 2000 for my political activities during my personal time. At that time, I had approximately 25 years in the Yonkers pension system. I became an elected official and, according to NYS law. Please provide more information for clarification of the issue you have with me. When I was fired, I sued the city and after six long years I won a lawsuit, the first round of appeals the city filed, and then their second and last appeal. I never looked for a settlement, which was offered. I took it to the jury in the hopes that politicians would think twice before retaliating against employees, businesses etc., but it was not the case. At least I tried. In the process I probably lost at least $200,000 in future earnings and pension payouts because I was fired when I was 50 years old – a single mother since my son was born, and, must assume I would have still been working at the city job I held at the time of my firing.

        Mr. Jennings, I neglected to add that I was a Tier 1 employee since I started working for the city in 1969. When I was fired I was 50 years old. Under my own initiative, I found employment in the private sector and did not depend upon handouts from the numerous politicians I had worked for on a volunteer basis through the years. I was eligible for retirement from government employ when I reached 55 years of age, when I believe I was working for IBM. I submitted my retirement and my official accrual in the retirement system ended. My pension is about $26,000 a year, Mr. Jennings, not exactly a king’s ransom and far from what it might have been had I not been fired. My time on the city council was not a part of the NYS pension system. I find it interesting that you attack me. I didn’t seek a second term in office let alone a third term and you accuse ME of milking the system?

        1. Why would you even entertain this moron? You have no one to answer to! A single parent and from what I can gather from the information of many you are one of the only ones that couldn’t be brought! It is a shame you left politics and I can personally tell you that NOW would be a good time to think about coming back! If this clown Spano gets his way we need a woman to put him in his place! I guarantee your numbers at the very least will worry the Spanclan! Please think about it! Citizens are fed up with greedy politicians and even more disgusted with the City Council which in theory is supposed to be their own entity! They are supposed to be separate for a reason! The minute that Rubbo accepted that job for his brother he sold us out! MErante I am waiting to hear if he is getting a job for his son or his daughters boyfriend who just graduated Stepinac with the Mayors son. Time will tell! Please consider our request Joan Gronowski!

          1. Thanks for your kind words. I hear you but I cannot pass up responding to people like Mr. ‘Jennings’ who make vague accusations about my character and employment history. I have asked him in my first response to be specific and he wrote again, with NO specifics. I am not afraid of people like him (or her since I have no idea if a real name was used) I responded in kind.

        2. Did you, or did you not, solicit and obtain City employment from Mayor Amicone for the sole purpose of your retirement? Whether your pension is $26,000 or $260,000 you wouldn’t have had one at all if it weren’t for a favor. That $26,000 could be used for a lot of things but it now goes to you instead. Be careful how you answer Joan, I obviously know the answer if I’m asking such a pointed question.

          As to why I’m asking, you have this holier than thou attitude yet your previous goal of pension padding doesn’t jive with your current position. Disingenuous and hypocritical at its best. No one likes a hypocrite, Joan.

          1. Mr. Jennings, I do hope that you are using your real name in your postings. You seem to know more about my employment history in the city of Yonkers than do I. Stop maligning my character and identify the job you state that I solicited and obtained from MAYOR AMICONE ‘for the purpose of my retirement’. Perhaps you can’t keep track of elected officials and their terms of office, and are also unable to compute the years I was employed by the city and the year my employment terminated. I will make it simple for you, Mr. ‘Jennings’.

            I commenced employment with the City of Yonkers in 1969. When I was fired in 2000 by Mayor Spencer I had about 25 years in the NYS Pension System AND MY PENSION ACCRUAL ENDED AT THAT POINT. At that point, I was 5 years from retirement age and I could not yet collect my pension. When I did reach age 55, I filed for my retirement and began collecting. Again, I was not working for the City of Yonkers at that time. Just how do you calculate that I would NOT have had a pension were it not for the job you claim I was given by Mayor Amicone. Again, my pension accumulation ended AFTER 25 YEARS OF BEING VESTED, when Mr. Amicone was not even mayor. When he did become mayor I was NOT on the city payroll and was working elsewhere. Again, man up and identify the job you have just stated that Mayor Amicone ‘gave’ me and the name of the position and the years in which I held that position. Further, explain to me why I needed him or anyone else to get me a pension when I already had 25 years in the NYS retirement system.

            I did not return to the Yonkers payrolls until I won the election for Yonkers City Council and took office on January 1, 2008. THIS SERVICE DID NOT AFFECT MY PENSION and, to beat a dead horse for your, Mr. ‘Jennings’, my pension accrual ended in July 2000, BEFORE AMICONE WAS MAYOR. No further City of Yonkers employment was sought or obtained by me. Again, I challenge you to tell me the job you think I was given by Mr. Amicone from the year 2000 on. Do you really think I needed him or anyone else for my pension?

    1. Observer you better go for an eye exam, the city is DECAYING you cant go into Ghetto square at nite. Have you taken a look at the east side of town, Crestwood lake apts are filled with welfare. Schools are brutal, taxes going up and drug dealers all over the west side.

      1. We are getting real development. You don’t notice everything being built on the waterfront? All that equals additional housing and increased tax revenue to support our city. It’s a long term vision. To make the city better for the long term. Most mayors don’t see past the 4-8 years they serve and hand the next mayor a heaping pile of problems. At least, this Mayor has a long term vision. I’ll give this guy another go for four years.

        1. If we had increased tax revenue from “all this development” then why did SpaNO and the Silly Council stiff us with a 6.2% tax increase?

          This is all one big joke that is on us. This move is just like when Barbado and McLaughlin were “grandfathered” in for 2 more years after the term limits referendum, when the people of Yonkers decided to limit these bastards to 2 terms only.

          Americans love to talk about democracy ad nauseam, when their is very little of it existing here. From local government to the presidential elections votes are given little or no choice. Look at Breen and Sabatino’s dictricts. They are always won by the same party. In Bfeen;s district Dems never even field a candidate (think no election) Ditto for Sabatino.

          If this is voted in they all should be sued personally. You took a pledge to serve whom? Yourselves.

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