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Croton Republicans Selling Fear this Election Season

February 25, 2007

Crotonblog: Letters to the Editor, Croton-on-Hudson, New York 10520
I watched video of a variety of speakers at the February 5, Village Trustee meeting and I am saddened and alarmed at how similar in campaign and policy styles our local Republican Party is to the national Republican Party. What I saw was the selection of a single, emotionally charged issue, being sold to the public through fear of not acting quickly and forcefully, with scurrilous charges against their opponents, such as “on the take,” and the course of action that has to be used quickly is the high risk, all or nothing approach with no clear statement of a fall back position if we lose, or a financing plan to deal with appeals if we win.

I like being risk averse and judicious. I believe we witness headlines daily of what happens when actions aren’t thought through to their conclusions with long term planning for both best case and worst case scenarios. Nobody likes having this transfer station in our backyard. I guess it will be in someone’s.

But I like the idea of trying to negotiate an agreement with clear, verifiable environmental standards; with provisions of termination if those standards are violated. I thought that was the way Metro Enviro was closed. And we always have that last “let’s go to war” option available if all else fails. In addition, I, for one, would like to hear discussions of other ideas and initiatives that could benefit or adversely affect our community.

— Gary Shaw

On February 25, 2007 10:33 AM, waffels said:

There is never much mention of what was operating at this site for 20(?)+- years before Bob Elliot, Georgianna Grant, Ann Gallelli and all the other responsible public officials took the responsible approach to remedy a very messy and expensive problem at the time. There was a Mt. of debris from just below the current gate to beyond what is now the main recycling building. A huge conveyor was used to carry trucks off loaded material to the top of the pile and men would be pick through, recyling out the different recycelable items. This operation was going on for decades without any questions. The company operating at the time went bankrupt for whatever reason and the village was faced with a massive, very costly clean-up of the site. The then village board which included Bob Elliot as mayor, Georgianna Grant as one of the trustees. and Ann Galleli on the planning board I believe, found a responsible solution to a very bad situation. A new owner was found, the site was made state of the art with very strict requirements to operate and the village made money. All was well. I wish someone had pictures of the operation at that time to show the difference. Then along comes Ms. Deb McCarthy, John Sarcone and their senior republican party members and the fear campaign begins. Finger pointing, misinformation, accusations, “smear tactics” and the rest is history. The timing of these “freshman republicans” coincided with the Newt Gingrich “take em however you can” mentality that rocked Washington. These two pounded the podium week after week spreading fears of toxic dust, overburdened roads, kick backs to politicians, organized crime seeping into our community. It worked. Deb got elected on a the “fear ticket”, John moved on and this topic has been the republican battle cry for every election to this date. Karta recycling just 3-4 miles to the north is 10 times the size of Metro Enviro with huge dust clouds rising daily. They have been cited countless times by state and local enviormental agencys for violations. They are a huge republican supporter, including Deb and Johns campaigns in the past and there is never a mention of it’s possible impact to our community. The railroad is a massive operation, sending hundreds of trucks out into Croton each day, Diesel exhaust rising 24/7 from idling engines, oil spills, garbage, noise you name it. Never a mention of its impact on our village. Too many working class local voters maybe. This whole thing is a disturbing, political issue. It wastes time and money and good people who live here and care about this village get beat-up every week by a small obnoxious republican minority. This topic has been worn out and ironically the loud, obnoxious opposition to what the current responsible majority is doing has put us in the position we are today. Leo, Charlie and Ann, stay the course, do the right thing.

On February 25, 2007 9:22 AM, weewill said:

You are absolutely correct, Gary. That’s exactly how Metro Enviro was closed.

Forty-two conditions for strict compliance were carefully planned and “negotiated” before issuing the special permit. We were wisely advised by some of the best legal minds available that to “just say no” would not bode well for any eventual win in court should we ever have to “go to war”. The onus was upon the operators. Adherence to restrictions and regulations meant they could operate. Violations meant we would close them down. We laid a solid paper trail for control and they betrayed their agreement. The rest is history and we closed them down!

Greentree, NIR, BSOR and a seemingly endless line of deep-pocketed trash operators can apply for whatever permits they want. We are obliged to consider all applications without prejudice.

Obviously we need to achieve responsible control over whatever eventually winds up there. That requires exploration, discussions and negotiations.

Just saying NO won’t hold up in a court of law.

Georgianna Grant


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