Archives for May 2016
Today, The Journal News is reporting that the auditing firm that has been annually checking St. Lawrence’s books for many years wants out. “Ramapo’s outside auditors say they are quitting their work for the town, apparently spooked by a federal indictment accusing Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence and others of “cooking the books” to make it appear the town was in healthy financial shape when it actually was hemorrhaging millions of dollars. PKF O’Connor Davies, one of the region’s biggest accounting firms, said it was dropping Ramapo — effective immediately — in an April 28 letter to St. Lawrence and Town Board members.” What is not addressed in the letter is O’Connor Davies’ possible complicity in allowing fraud to continue under their watch, despite being told of its existence by a whistleblower from within the town finance department. [Read more…]
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It was the second public meeting of the Ramapo Town Board since the arrests and filing of federal charges against the supervisor and three others in town government. At the first meeting, the public was not allowed to offer public comment. At this meeting, Wednesday May 11, they could, and they did.
The meeting hall was packed, and the overflow was escorted to another meeting room where a monitor was set up to show the proceedings. Ramapo police monitored the crowds in both areas. [Read more…]
“Ramapo’s embattled fire inspector faces demotion with a loss in salary and up to a 60-day suspension by the Town Board after he overlooked numerous fire and safety violations at four private schools that the state discovered during its own inspections.
The Ramapo Town Board is scheduled to vote Wednesday on the proposed resolution to disciplinary charges brought against Adam Peltz, a longtime town employee who also serves as a volunteer member of the Monsey Fire Department and its president. [Read more…]
Alan Simon will continue to be paid for his three judicial positions while he appeals the state Commission on Judicial Conduct’s decision to kick him off the bench, the state’s high court has ruled.
The Court of Appeals panel, led by Chief Justice Janet DiFiore, ruled Simon would be suspended with pay as justice for Spring Valley, Ramapo and Hillburn.
Read the complete Journal News story.
A decaying Yeshiva complex on Forshay Rd. has been shuttered due to unsafe building conditions, according to Ramapo Chief Building Inspector Anthony Mallia.
Building inspectors posted orders Thursday on all of the property’s structures deeming them unsafe and not to be occupied, effectively shutting down the troubled complex indefinitely, Mallia said Friday. [Read more…]
Ramapo’s ex-police chief, who had been the highest paid local public employee in the state, also ran a private security firm on the side, using town resources, a Journal News/lohud.com investigation has found.
Peter Brower, who raked in roughly $369,000 a year, used his Police Department secretary to prepare payroll for his private business, he testified in 2014. Brower also testified that he “possibly” used telephones in the Police Department for the job.
Asked by The Journal News whether he did a second job while working as police chief, Brower said, “That may or may not be so.”
When asked again, he said, “That may or may not be so, but is there anything illegal about that?” [Read more…]
U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a tweet: “Today’s stiff sentence is a just and fitting end to Sheldon Silver’s long career of corruption.”
Sheldon Silver’s ill-gotten riches deserve clawback: Journal News Editorial
“When sentencing Sheldon Silver for his wide-ranging corruption and kickback schemes, U.S. District Court Judge Valerie Caproni went for payback over punishment. She gave the former Assembly Speaker 12 years in prison, though he faced up to 27. Silver, though, has been ordered to forfeit more than $5 million and pay a $1.75 million fine. [Read more…]
“A bill seeking stricter oversight of private schools was introduced to the state Assembly Monday by Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee, D-Suffern.
The measure aims to ensure that private schools provide an education that is “substantially equivalent” to that of public schools in the same region, as required by law. [Read more…]