“Last week brought another FBI raid in town, with another round of accusations that federal monies had been misappropriated by those affiliated with the Orthodox Jewish community. Ongoing tension over zoning regulations, or lack thereof, builds. The distrust continues in the East Ramapo school district, where years of mismanagement by an Orthodox-dominated board have brought efforts to install a state monitor to provide oversight. Tensions have run high in town for a while now, and it’s only getting worse. Some leaders in the Orthodox community cite East Ramapo critics as spewing anti-Semitism; some town residents find instances of probes, like Wednesday’s raids, as proof of rampant corruption among all people of a certain group. Neither passes the smell test. [Read more…]
Google Street View of 9 Zeissner Lane, Spring Valley
Walter Booker was released without bail. The homeowner, Rabbi Jacob Goldman, is also facing charges.
“Spring Valley’s chief building inspector and a businessman were arrested Thursday in a corruption investigation that alleges the inspector gave the man false certificates of occupancy for the man’s Zeissner Lane home.That false certificate allowed the businessman to get sizeable tax exemptions and otherwise profit from day-care centers run from the property, prosecutors charge. [Read more…]
The convictions of two of the Three Men in a Room by Federal Prosecutor Preet Bharara took less than two weeks. Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos was found guilty last week on all eight counts on which he was charged, and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver preceded him on November 30 when he was found guilty of the seven federal corruption charges and expelled from the Assembly. [Read more…]
“New York received a D- in a national report released Monday for its transparency and accountability, ranking it 30th in the nation as part of a so-called State Integrity Investigation. New York, which is mired in the corruption cases of its two former legislative leaders, was tied for the 30th lowest ranking with Florida. Beset by corruption, backroom deals and voter scorn, New York received a score of 61, a D-, placing it in a tie for 30th place nationwide, the group’s report said. The report, based on an assessment the group does nationwide, found that New York ranked last in the U.S. for its state budgeting “ which has long been criticized for being controlled by the governor and the two legislative leaders behind closed doors, known as the “three men in a room.” Complete Journal story here.