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$50 Million Lawsuit Filed Against Village

July 26, 2005

Greentree Realty LLC and Metro Enviro LLC have formally filed a lawsuit against the Village of Croton-on-Hudson. Specifically, Greentree Realty LLC alledges that their property rights are being impaired by the Village and together with Metro Enviro LLC, seek $50 million plus interest in unspecified damages.

At the Village Board meeting, held on Monday, July 25, 2005 at 8:00 PM, Village Manager Richard F. Herbek read a statement addressing this new lawsuit and the Metro Enviro closure order imposed on July 23, 2005 by the Village Board of Trustees. The audio clip follows...

The regularly scheduled meeting ended after 50 minutes and adjourned to an executive session with professional staff members and Village Attorney Marianne Stecich.

Download the MP3 for use with an iPod (3 minutes, 27 seconds). Full text here.

On July 27, 2005 11:52 AM, Devil's Advocate said:

I can’t mince words here because this has been a source of frustration for me and many others for years now. The republican majority, however good intentioned they may be, are simply in over their heads when it comes to Metro-Enviro. The village will continue to be outspent and outmanuevered by Metro-Enviro\Allied for years.

What do you think will happen next if this lawsuit is unsuccessful? I can tell you. They will bankrupt the company on paper and the Bankruptcy court will allow them to operate indefinately to protect their debtors. There is no winning this one if winning is defined by closing them down.

Negotiate now while you have maximum leverage. Soak them for community development dollars, charitable contributions and in-kind donations. Have them build parks, help develop the waterfront, sponsor children and senior programs, etc. Don’t be fools!

I do not want to foot the tax bill for this frivilous and futile strategy. Wake up republicans! Get a grip on reality and listen to my advice before it is too late.

On July 26, 2005 3:03 PM, waffels said:

Dave…. I too have lived in this village my whole life and I remember the village of the past with regards to politics as being a wonderful open place to speak your mind and agree to disagree. Deb McCarthy and John Sarcone started the negative ball rolling. They were the poster children for “Freshman Republicans”. Whatever it takes to get in you do it. Attack and accuse good, caring hard working people of horrible things and acts against this village. Not just disagreeing but attacking. Scare people into thinking these good people are destroying this village. I remember when people used to proudly display election signs on their lawns now it’s all about “us” and “them”. It’s not nice anymore and these nice people didn’t make it that way.

You forget how Georgianna, Bob, Sam Watkins, Leo all got abused and accused on a weekly basis by the same loud mouth narcisists wasting eveyones time about the same thing which was disguised as concern for the village. Debbie and John screaming week after week about Metro Enviro accusing Bob and the Democratic trustees of horrible things, poisoning our kids. The heat, fear and accusations were always turned up around election time. This is not small town politics. These are good people. This village you so love would not be what is if not for the work of all of them especially Bob Elliot.

Greg Schmidt, and Tom Brennan are very nice people and Jim Steinberg seem to be the same I don’t know him. The problem is their politics are mean. They attack and accuse really good people of really horrible things and don’t stop their croonies from doing the same. There is no room for this in a small town. You should know and feel that also. Small town politics can be fun and productive. What goes on here is not fun and in the long run far from productive.

On July 26, 2005 2:22 PM, David Tuttle said:

Dear Mrs. Smith,

It was not my intention to credit “payman” and “schmoo” with single handedly “dividing a village and creating an unhealthy relationship between residents”, I was simply using their recent comments as examples. There are many people on both sides of this argument, as well as many other village affairs, who are using the same tone and tactics, fighting fire with fire, as thier “opponents”, this is hypocritical in my humble opinion.

This overall tone and behavior is poison and a disease that has spread throughout this village in the past ten years which must be eradicated for good of all residents.

I am sorry, but I happen to disagree with you on the “tag name” issue. I think in the age of e-mail, instant messeging and blogs people say things that they would’nt say to someone personally. But I certainly respect your opinion on this issue.

I have fought many battles and have been on many sides of issues which have affected Croton, however I have never done so at the expense of others, if I have in the heat of the moment, I have always apologized directly to those I may have offended and publicly when necessary.

I have always been able to “agree to disagree” and respect others opinions, I was hoping ALL who saw my comments might consider the same.

Perhaps I am a naive towney who wishes that we could have it the way I remember, where we all regardless of our affilations and opinions got along.

I can only dream.


On July 26, 2005 1:10 PM, Mrs. Smith said:


I certainly agree with you that it takes much more energy to be positive than to be negative, however, suggesting that it is “payman” and “schmoo” who are “dividing a village and creating a unhealthy relationship between residents” is just plain wrong - that all started years ago when people like Deb McCarthy and Ms. Cudequest stood up and personally impugned the motives of board members and anyone else who had the temerity to speak out about Metro Enviro with an opinion that did not match theirs. This is a subject which is complex and where the previous board relied on advice from lawyers and professionals to do the right thing, and they did as can be seen by the verdict of the court of appeals. It was not an easy choice to make I am sure, it would have been much easier to go with the flow.

Not knowing who shmoo and payman are, I suspect they are people who have felt the lash of the tongues of people who did not want M/E in town and who are happy to be able to have their say and not fear personal verbal retribution, which is hurtful to families and the village alike. If you check other blogs, you will see that many people use tag names, and in Croton, if you happen to disagree with the loud and verbally offensive group who do most of the letter writing and board speaking, it is wise not to reveal your identity to protect your family from blistering personal attacks - I know, I have been there.

On July 26, 2005 12:43 PM, David Tuttle said:

I have been logging onto Crotonblog since it’s inception, I find it to be a great resource and entertaining reading. I have also read many of the comments posted to the blog regarding a mirad of issues, but have never added my comments in the past. This afternoon, after reading the comments posted regarding Metro Enviro I felt compelled to register and comment.

Let me be frank, what’s up with you people? specifically “payman” and “schmoo235”. You really need to grow up. And who are you and why do you appear to be afraid to reveal your identities? You spew the same kind of garbage and personally attack other “commentors”, while at the same time using simalar tactics. What do you think you are accomplishing? I can tell you what you are doing in my opinion, dividing a village and creating a unhealthy relationship between residents.

What ever happened to the phrase “Love they Neighbor” It seems to be a thing of the past. Well you know what, I remember the past having lived in this village my whole life, and this caustic behavior never exsisted. If people in this village had a gripe with someone, they dealt with it face to face, “like a man” if you will, not hiding behind some screen name or ranting on in the Gazette.

I apologize for babbling, however, I am disgusted with this behavior, there is nothing costructive or positive about this, for anyone, including yourselves.

Grow up. You can respect others opinions, even though they don’t agree with you, and still walk down the street and say “Hello”. I do it, it’s not that hard.

payman, schmoo and all other’s with Crotonblog screen names reveal yourselves, what are you afraid of?

Finally I would like to say that I hear plenty from people who have a lot to say about how this village could improve but very few who run during village elections, so put your money where your mouth is and run for village office or participate in the many committees and boards that are constently begging for candidates to fill vacancies. I am sure your enthusiasm and commitment could be put to some positve use.

It takes alot more effort to be negative than postive, this is one of the greatest lessons I have learned in life, so I thought I would share this with all of you.

I love this village, warts and all, with all my heart and I pray (dare I say this) that we can all just get along someday.


On July 26, 2005 11:44 AM, waffels said:

It looks like the new “Freshman Republican” board members will now see what it’s like to be responsible for their constituents pockets. Their campaign cry of “We will not negotiate” must be ringing in their ears right about now. This new lawsuit by the owners and operators of the ME site is serious business and for them not to see this coming is absolutely incompetent. They better sit up straight and pay attention because it’s really going to hit the fan now and they better be ready. $50 million is quite a bit of money and to defend against something this size is going to cost plenty. The past board was following the advice of council and professionals, not our “village advocate” Maria Cudaquest, and looking at all options. “Negotiating” with Metro Enviro for a $750 thousand dollar annual payment to the village is looking pretty good now. Ms. Cudaquest needs to go away. Her obnoxious show each week at the board meetings and her rediculously long written sermons all over town need to stop. She and her fear spewing posse need to shut their mouths and go back to work or whatever it is they do. Enough, we are looking at a big problem and our new majority is sitting front and center. I hope they are ready.

On July 26, 2005 8:36 AM, SSmith said:

i wonder how utterly stupid ms. cudequest reveling in her “victory” feels now? i also wonder if it was very smart for the newly elected board to take such an openly hostile stance towards metro enviro during their campaign in early 2005? remember the catchy phrase “we will NEVER negeotiate”????

what a bunch of rookies!! all of you. none of you have one grain of business acumen and now it will cost us tremendously. congrats. can’t you see the sale signs popping up all over town if we lose this thing, people can barely afford their taxes now according to mr. rooney… ms. cudequest’s “longtime whatever”.

how much will it cost this village to defend this latest lawsuit?? HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS MORE. EASILY.

i know that i for one do not want my taxes to skyrocket because we settle out of court or worse lose in court to these guys. i am very sure many in our village will feel this way. I GUESS WE’LL SEE IF OUR NEW HOTSHOT LAWYERS ARE WORTH THEIR SALT.

how much has metro enviro cost us already?? and for what?? have we proven that there has been anything harmful to the village going into the transfer station ever? have we ever had any real concrete science on this issue beyond the ramblings of unqualified private citizens pontificating their own interpretations of things???

has this saga ever been about anything more then a few loud mouths in town wanting to hear themselves talk?

it is clear to me that our board is in way over their heads now. good luck, fellas.

the only winner here is metro enviro no matter how you look at it.

once again well done to all you “victors” keep spewing your empty words in savemor and shoprite and wherever else you think you are so important.



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