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No Longer Mum, Croton Official Addresses Water Bill Scam

January 16, 2007

Instead of apologizing to village residents for the unethical behavior in sending phony water bills to 34 residents “to get their attention,” the Village Treasurer papered over the unfortunate incident with an attempt to justify it at the Village Board meeting on Tuesday evening, January 16, 2007. Reading from a prepared statement, Mr. Abraham Zambrano tried to show how effective the scam had been in causing residents to respond and sign up for water meter installation. He finally reached his monotoned crescendo with a rhetorical question that asked, “Could the village have handled these 34 cases differently?” And, acting as his own interrogator, he promptly answered by saying, “Absolutely.”

That’s it. Left unsaid was any information about what steps had been taken to prevent an unseemly incident like this from ever happening again. Did Village Manager Rick Herbek, who sat glumly throughout the reading of the statement, reprimand Mr. Zambrano for his unprofessional action—or was he a party to the whole sorry affair? Crotonblog is again compelled to address this question to Mayor Dr. Gregory Schmidt: “What’s up, Doc? Do you call this performance an acceptable apology to the residents who were victimized and upset by the scam?”

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