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Sep 21, 2011 11:32 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

2012 Southampton Town Budget Will Include Staff Cuts

Sep 21, 2011 11:57 AM

Staff reductions, as well as other personnel cost-cutting measures, are inevitable as Southampton Town leaders prepare to slash some $5 million in spending from next year’s budget, Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst said this week.

Ms. Throne-Holst, who is due to present a tentative budget on September 30, said she did not yet have final figures on how many positions would need to be cut, but said that her budget would include staff reductions. The supervisor said she’s looking at a “combination of things”—staff cuts could go hand in hand with other measures, like mandating furloughs for all town employees, meaning staff could be required to take a certain number of days or hours off from work without getting paid. Other options could include freezes in salary increases, step increases and longevity pay. Higher-paid veteran police officers might be forced to retire in favor of lower-paid entry-level officers.

“Am I going to present a balanced budget on the 30th? You bet,” she said on Tuesday. “Whatever it takes to get there, I’ll get there, because I’m not going to put out a budget that is not structurally balanced or has unreal revenue projections.”

One furlough day—during which all the town’s administrative and CSEA staff would be required to take an unpaid day off; public safety personnel, like police officers, would be excluded—would save the town $100,000, she noted, adding, “The beauty of furloughs is it would affect everyone equally.”

This year’s budget season is largely impacted by a new New York State-mandated 2-percent tax levy cap, which limits the amount the town can collect in property taxes. At the same time, though, town officials have argued that fixed and contractual costs, like health care and pension contributions, have skyrocketed. Earlier this year, town officials were estimating that they needed to cut somewhere between $4 million and $5 million from next year’s budget, but new figures from the state on pension contribution costs for police have gone up “astronomically,” Ms. Throne-Holst said, bringing the number up to the higher end of the estimate.

“You don’t want to be sitting in my seat right now, I can tell you that,” she said.

Ms. Throne-Holst said she’s already reached out to the town’s two largest unions—the Civil Service Employees Association and the Patrolman’s Benevolent Association—in an attempt to negotiate concessions. But those conversations have not yet resulted in any progress. “It’s hard to say at this point,” Ms. Throne-Holst said. “It certainly hasn’t gone as swimmingly as I hoped. But these are complicated discussions and, again, I think there’s an understanding that what we’re asking for isn’t unreasonable. We have no places to go except to cut staff.”

In order for discussions to move along with the CSEA, the town must first agree to extend the union’s current contract—which calls for 2-percent annual raises for all union members—for at least one additional year, through 2014, according to CSEA President Pete Collins. The contract is set to expire at the end of 2013.

According to Ms. Throne-Holst, the PBA has asked that anything that is given up in the current contract be deferred and paid out in the future. PBA President Tim O’Flaherty did not return a call seeking comment this week.

“All I’m telling you at this point in time is that until they tell me that they will extend our contract, I cannot—I cannot—open up the CSEA contract,” Ms. Collins said.

Both unions are asking for things that Ms. Throne-Holst said she doesn’t believe she or the Town Board will agree with. “I don’t think we can kick this can down the road for future tax bills,” she said.

Firm numbers on how many furlough days, or how many staff members could be cut, are hard to quantify at this point, Ms. Throne-Holst said, as much is in flux, and there are other factors at play that could tweak the numbers.

Ms. Throne-Holst said she is also considering taking advantage of a town law that allows the municipality to force police officers to retire if they have served 20 years or more in the department. “In other words, every year we have to look at the roster of police officers that have been here for more than 20 years and reappoint them to that post,” she said. “So we have the option of not doing that. In other words, writing them out of the budget.”

She said that 20 police officers currently would be subject to the forced retirement, and their salary savings alone would be in range of $3 million to $4 million—though she stressed that the town would not force all 20 officers to retire. She said the town could fill any of those positions with new, entry-level officers at a lower cost.

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"Ms. Throne-Holst said she is also considering taking advantage of a town law that allows the municipality to force police officers to retire if they have served 20 years or more in the department. “In other words, every year we have to look at the roster of police officers that have been here for more than 20 years and reappoint them to that post,” she said. “So we have the option of not doing that. In other words, writing them out of the budget.”

HHS - this must ...more
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 21, 11 12:36 PM
re:furloughs,

If the board thinks town employees can get the same job done in 4 days a week as in 5, then why aren't they doing that already?

By C Law (354), Water Mill on Sep 21, 11 1:38 PM
2 members liked this comment
Party's over?
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 21, 11 1:47 PM

This only proves that Highatsize was so impeccably on point all these years, in spite of the lies the innumerable PBA posters and their friends and relatives have been posting calling the HHS points pure lies in their attempts to continue the fiscal abuse by the PBA of taxpayers!

In time Truth like cream rises to the top!
By Obbservant (449), southampton on Sep 21, 11 2:32 PM
Except that in labor relations there is the concept of "Past Practice" where what has become the norm can overide the written details of a contract. How this is applied and adjudicated will be interesting, to say the least. I also wonder how firm the ground is that enables the Town to selectively decide which personnel will be eliminated while others in the same circumstances get to stay.
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 21, 11 2:58 PM

I have suddenly gained tremendous respect for ATH for finally turning her back on her past policies which seemingly refused to acknowledge the depth of the problem. She finally seems to mean business - FINALLY - instead of playing stupid small town politics.

I commend her new found epiphany to no-brainer fiscal imperatives and wish
the rest of the Town Board will follow suit! I am encouraged by the comments of Nuzzi to also address reality. So Town Board, stand up and be counted ...more
By Obbservant (449), southampton on Sep 21, 11 3:05 PM
1 member liked this comment
Is is just coincidence that ATH had this wonderful turnaround at the same moment that she got word of Linda Kabot's write-in campaign?
By SusieD (115), Southampton on Sep 21, 11 7:15 PM
I respectfully disagree. Only elected officials or managment (white collar workers) are elgible to have lifetime benefits after 10yrs of service. Everyone else employed by the town regardless of being in the unions lose their insurance once they are no longer employed by the town. After 30yrs of service town employees which are not elected officials or management are elgible to ask in writing if they may keep their insurance plan thru the town by paying for it themselves when they retire.
By NorthSeaNative (34), Southampton on Sep 21, 11 8:22 PM
Respect for ATH are you kidding. Now she wants to do layoffs in the police dept and rank and file employees. Her butt is on the line now that she has someone stepping up and running against her in this years election. If following the law by retiring police officers after 20 years would have saved the town 3-4 million why didn't she propose this for the past 2 years. It takes no brain matter on Anna's part to use all the cost cutting ideas that Linda Kabot tried to get passed. If those here remember, ...more
By reg rep (408), Southampton on Sep 22, 11 12:28 AM
3 members liked this comment
10 million for the department compensation budget.

I'm just sayin'...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 8:39 PM
Before we pat ATH on the back lets see her act on her words.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Sep 21, 11 3:59 PM
1 member liked this comment
I worked in the City of New York Office of Labor Relations for many years. Anything can be costed out and the union's consultants know that; oddly, I recall ATH saying at that appalling public hearing a few years back that the savings from having those 20+ years could not be calculated. Break out the Excel spreadsheet.
By North of Highway (280), Westhampton Beach on Sep 21, 11 7:28 PM
1 member liked this comment
Comparing NYC to SHT is apples to oranges. NYC OLR since its inception has never negotiated in good faith and takes pride in screwing its union workforce every chance it gets. Out here, we support our town workers and the town has negotiated fair contracts that pay a living wage.

By politcal pawn (121), Flanders on Sep 21, 11 9:41 PM
Yeah, a city mouse cost of living, in the "country".

Would that qualify as "extraneous"?
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 8:42 PM
How about we sell back all the Town Owned vehicles and make Town Officials drive there own and there own cell phones, pagers and beepers. Average vehicle is approx. 20k to 25k. You'll save on fuel for those vehicles to every year.
Cutting our Police force nomatter where it is you'll create Overtime to fill those needed spots on shifts.The men and women who protect us don't need to be touched. The ones who are awake while you are asleep with your families at night working crazy hours.
By 1640sWhaler (74), Sag Harbor/Easthampton on Sep 21, 11 8:55 PM
2 members liked this comment
1640 read the article again, (some of) the police officers that have 20 years in will be taken out of the budget and retired. Then, new younger officers will be hired at the lower salary, saving the town money according to the article.

I agree with you about the town cars, all personnel that have take home car's should have to give the car back and leave them parked in Hampton Bays or at Town Hall. What a waste of money giving take home car's to employees living in Brookhaven, E. Hampton ...more
By reg rep (408), Southampton on Sep 22, 11 10:25 AM
4 members liked this comment
Does anyone actually read their tax bills? I pay $10.00 more for my yearly police coverage, then I do for my hamlet's library fee. Wow. I pay $150.00 more for my fire district, man that seems so high.. Oh wait.. Pretty sure that's gonna seem like a bargain when, God forbid, my house catches on fire. We buy any new night clubs this month?
By mightycolemack (15), Hampton Bays on Sep 21, 11 9:21 PM
1 member liked this comment
I have a better idea...Why dont we ask the administrators to pay towards their medical benefits like the union employees do? After all, that would save a bundle of money.. Oh, did anyone know that the admins dont pay toward their benefits?
By dbnyeve (19), wading river on Sep 21, 11 10:41 PM
2 members liked this comment
Because of the extended horrible economy most local employers are at their lowest level of staff/employees in decades. as tough as this is, municipalities should take a lesson from private enterprise when it comes to taking measures to be more efficient with less. Doesn't help, but that's where we are today.
By kaluss45 (44), southampton on Sep 22, 11 5:51 AM
How about ALL town employees pay for their own nealth insurance and retirement? Refuse to negotiate with any union and hire employees based on performance, you know, the way it's done in the real world.
By bigfresh (4666), north sea on Sep 22, 11 7:14 AM
1 member liked this comment
Y'know, I almost clicked a "Like" on that one.

Then I remembered you don't live there either.

You could wish for a "real world" like that, but that doesn't make it so.

But then again, this world IS what "We" make of it. All of us.

"We" would most likely do well to remember that, each and every one.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 9:00 PM
It is heartening that ATH has finally taken cognizance of the 2000 lb. gorilla of p.d. patronage but this is only the beginning. Before any reforms can be implemented, the proposal to force retirement will have to be passed as a motion in a Town Council meeting packed with intimidating, uniformed, off-duty cops. Assuming passage, the STPD PBA will thereupon obtain an injunction preventing its enactment. Then will begin the legal process, years in length and costing possibly millions of dollars ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 22, 11 11:19 AM
3 members liked this comment
I'm sure that labor law requires granting paid time and an appropriate location for employees to change clothes if they are precluded from wearing their work clothes in public when not on duty. Are you really advocating such a change, or should there simply be selective enforcement of such prohibition?

Isn't it time that you revealed why you ar SO intimidated by off duty uniformed police and why, in your mind, they present such a "chilling effect"? I, for one, do not want to incur significant ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 22, 11 2:22 PM
Well said VOS.

In Addition, why *IS* it so "chilling" to you to see officers in their uniforms? They are here to protect and serve, and they do a damn good job of that in this Town (show me a legit lawsuit against the STPD that proves me otherwise in the last 10 years). Do you get intimidated if you attend a wedding and their is a member of the armed forces in their dress uniforms? Isn't that the same thing?

Your vision of how things will go down is a perfect reason NOT to go ...more
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 22, 11 8:00 PM

"In Addition, why *IS* it so "chilling" to you to see officers in their uniforms? They are here to protect and serve, and they do a damn good job of that in this Town."

You and VOS are obviously PBA cops or related since you totally don't see the obvious as citizens see things. You downplay your thuggish intimidation tactics against the Town Board when they don't see it your way such as your former bully President Pat Aube, on at least two occasions I witnessed in person as he shamelessly ...more
By Obbservant (449), southampton on Sep 22, 11 10:28 PM
I don't know "Nature" or anything about him. I am not a cop. I have never been a cop. I have no relatives who are cops. I have been a resident of Southampton Town for 35 years. I have attended Town Board meetings and watched them on television for years. I have never been arrested but have gotten a few traffic tickets. So, apparently you are not as Obbservant (sic) as you think you are.

Your characterization of past events is exaggerated to the point of ridicule and your statements ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 23, 11 3:28 AM
What a leap that is. So, because I said that officers are here to Protect and Serve and the apperance of an officer in uniform isn't threatning to me, automatically means I'm either a cop or related to a cop. Well, I'm not. In fact, I can't even give you the name of a cop in Southampton Town (or a subsequent village for that matter). If that were the case, I'd be throwing all sorts of numbers and facts at you - but I don't have access to that information because I'm not in that PBA world.

Your ...more
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 23, 11 11:10 AM
I guess we know who your're related to.
By concerned citizen (41), Hampton Bays on Sep 26, 11 4:04 PM
I disagree. Town workers should be getting paid double The burden should be put on small business owners who overcharge their customers and make money hand over fist and hire illegal cheap labor who they don't pay taxes on. Plus they get all the tax breaks. I am sick of it!
By prometheus (13), HB on Sep 22, 11 11:37 AM
1 member liked this comment
Could you clarify upon making that statement?

That seems like a pretty blanket statment...
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 9:19 PM
1 member liked this comment
How about you ask people that are over eighty to retire???
By local11968 (7), southampton on Sep 22, 11 4:57 PM
1 member liked this comment
I find this comment offensive. If an older person could afford to retire, I am sure they would! It saddens me when I see an older person forced to work because they have no choice.
By Mrs.Sea (268), Sag Harbor on Sep 23, 11 10:05 AM
1 member liked this comment
"...but I would like to see an analysis done". By who? How many companies are hired to do analysis in this town.
By Seethrough (1), Southampton on Sep 22, 11 5:59 PM
Time to move to a Defined Contribution post-retirement plan - none of this 75% of last 3 years salary, packed with OT.
By Funbeer (273), Southampton on Sep 22, 11 6:07 PM
I agree with prometheus, many of the town workers do deserve raises. They work so hard for peanuts. When there is a big storm outside and everyone is inside their warm homes you'll see town guys out plowing and shoveling in the mess. Small business is what ruining everything, if all that tax break money went into the town I bet there would be no budget problem at all. When are people gonna wake up and do something about these rip off artist small business owners! They should be the ones losing ...more
By Methastapholes (2), Sag Harbor on Sep 22, 11 6:12 PM
Plenty of people on line to take their full benefit peanut jobs. If they don't like it they should quit!!
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Sep 23, 11 9:14 PM
1 member liked this comment
Great minds think alike methastapholes! You know what its like in the real world!
By prometheus (13), HB on Sep 22, 11 7:57 PM
The problems with cops and the union is they just don't get it. Our economy is in a free fall, and they want raises still!. Half the cops in Southampton are related to someone on the force or town hall. You could get rid of everyone of them and have there positions filled by City cops for half the pay. This is a fact. We live in a low crime area so lets not hear about the risking of lthere lives. If they don't like the job QUIT. There are 30,000 applications of people waiting for there jobs. Who ...more
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Sep 22, 11 9:10 PM
1 member liked this comment
just an fyi for you, city cops have gotten some hefty increases as of late, and are making close to 100k.
By WESTEND (15), quogue on Sep 26, 11 1:20 AM
"the problem'' is not small business owners, cops, old people or any of that. and we the people should not be fighting each other, we should be fighting the problem. which, is mismanagement at the top, not at the bottom.
By kaluss45 (44), southampton on Sep 23, 11 7:17 AM
To Nature and VOS:

Thank you so much for correcting a fundamental misconception that I harbored about the STPD. I thought that ex-STPD cops retired at half-pay and that three-quarters pay retirement was reserved only for those who retire due to service-connected disabilities. I thought that that this rule was standard in all police jurisdictions. I should have been more observant. I should have known that a Town Council so submissive as to authorize the stupendous pay packages that ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 23, 11 1:58 PM
First, like you, I do not know the specifics of the retirement packages; we'll let others speak to that.

As to what you call "p.d. patronage" and extortion, I find THAT characterization repugnant and possibly libelous. These people are working under the terms of a legal contract; if the Town Board (not Council) chooses to ignore decades of past practice and pursue the folly of selective enforcement of certain terms of said contract they will be the party exposing all of us to great expense, ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 24, 11 1:50 AM
to VOS:

Patronage isn't necessarily illegal. Since you don't believe that the elected Town officials are superior to the p.d. in civil authority, it is no wonder that you are content with the current situation.

It's OK with me if cops wear their uniforms to and from work.

Your final paragraph alludes to the very reason that I and other democrats fear the presence of massed, uniformed, paramilitary troops at public meetings.

The only thing that you could have ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 24, 11 10:55 AM
Superior in civil authority is a far cry from "their superiors".

As the cops go to and from work in uniform would it be acceptable for them to get a haircut? Go to church? Buy groceries? Go to a Little League game? Get gas? Pick up their kids from school? Where does the line get drawn? Is it up to you to decide? I make no allusions in any paragraph - please tell us WHY uniformed peace officers frighten you so much. And how did that become something that is characteristic of democrats?

And ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 24, 11 11:28 AM
I think the short version is that showing up at a town meeting is cool.

Showing up in full-time duty "regalia"?

NOT COOL.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 8:44 PM
1 member liked this comment
That the members of a collective bargaining unit appear in uniform at public meetings don't not create fear in this democrat. While under the Taylor Law the members of police collective bargaining units may not strike they do not forgo their First Amendment Rights to free speech. Nor do I believe the wearing of the uniform constitutes "the presence of massed, uniformed, paramilitary troops." Were the members of the collective bargaining unit to be brandishing gas masks, carrying riot gear, uzi's, ...more
By NTiger (543), Southampton on Sep 24, 11 1:54 PM
2 members liked this comment
Then make sure they're family is cared for, should the worst happen.

But bleeding the people you are sworn to protect and serve dry, with the compensation you demand for it is inexscusable.

Average per capita income in this county is roughly 35k. Most of them take home easily THREE TIMES THAT, or more.

COME ON!!
Sep 25, 11 12:42 PM appended by Mr. Z
Sorry, "easily TWICE THAT, and some THREE TIMES THAT, or more."
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 25, 11 12:42 PM
1 member liked this comment
And, some sources cite per capita income in Suffolk County at 26.5k.

Which would make sense, considering the current economic conditions.

No raise for you. Step aside.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 25, 11 12:55 PM
to VOS:

Sorry that you misunderstood my use of the word "superior". I doubt that anyone else did. The concept of superior/subordinate is clear in government and in the police department and in the relationship between the two.

When the Town Code is amended to prevent cops from wearing their uniforms in public off-duty, it can be prefaced with the exception of a cop's travel directly from home or job to duty station and back with a further exception for acting if coming upon an ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 24, 11 2:45 PM
A wise man once opined:

"The dessication of a living language, is oft a fledgling sign of a society's demise."
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 24, 11 8:47 PM
Oh, stop! Talk about silliness? The town code is not going to be changed to restrict cops from wearing their uniforms. Fear of cops in uniform here does not pass the "reasonable man" test. There was no coercion in 2008, simply a show of solidarity. There has been no conspiracy. There is no Democratic party policy opposing cops in uniform anywhere (or NTiger didn't get the memo). You don't speak for anyone but yourself; If you have fears, they are yours alone. You won't tell us where your ...more
By VOS (1241), WHB on Sep 25, 11 12:30 AM
lolllllllllll great post
By WESTEND (15), quogue on Sep 26, 11 1:31 AM
I would have to agree with HHS to a degree.

Showing up at a town meeting to show solidarity is acceptable.

Showing up with your peacock feathers displayed, and inciting a fracas (it did) is quite different. They made it looking like a territorial pi$$ing contest, for cryin' out loud!

You want to represent yourselves to the community you protect and serve? Show some solidarity, and dress like them when you do. Otherwise, all you show is how to be divisive.
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 26, 11 11:27 PM
2 members liked this comment
HHS,
A) Cops do not retire at 3/4

B) Your math is off the charts. If your 6 200K cops retire, there is no more expense to the town. The town does not send retirement checks, nor does the town continue to contribute to the pension system once a cop , or any civil servant is retired.

C) Grow some and go to a town board meeting and express your concerns.
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Sep 24, 11 10:51 PM
to But I'm a blank!:

A) Address your observation to Nature. It is he who stated in an earlier post that cops retired at 75% of their working salary.

B) Once again, talk to Nature. My argument was based on the facts as he presented them.

C) Discourteous and, in this police jurisdiction, irrational.

to VOS:

You implied that I had been in trouble with the law and then said you hadn't attacked me personally. The latter statement, following the former, ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 25, 11 2:22 AM
A), You used his info as fact and amplified that info, not knowing its validity

B) Ditto

C) So the scene plays out like this?: HHS goes to a town board meeting, registers his complaints of the local PD, and gets "In the Heat of the Night" ( a la Rod Steiger) treatment? Take the tinfoil of your head.
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Sep 25, 11 11:39 PM
to ntiger...
So you are saying the PBA would be willing to pay a percentage of there health benefits? 25-50%? Or were you saying evbryone else in the town EXCEPT the cops? please clarify
By GoldenBoy (351), EastEnd on Sep 25, 11 9:38 AM
None of the above, Goldenboy, I simply posed the following question "What would the cost savings be if all current and retired Town employees had to pay 25 or 50 per cent of their health care premiums?"

As you can see my question pertained to all current and retired Town employees, with no exceptions.

I do not speak for the PBA or any other Town Bargaining Units. Just a simple question. What would the annual savings to the Town Taxpayers be if current and retired Town employees ...more
By NTiger (543), Southampton on Sep 25, 11 12:49 PM
Wow!

That would be just like what most of the people who pay their salary do.

WHAT A CONCEPT!!!
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 25, 11 1:00 PM
1 member liked this comment
Everyone should have to pay there own health benefits, Then people would see how inflated they are.
By They call me (2826), southampton on Sep 26, 11 7:38 PM
2 members liked this comment
Millions of dollars go towards preserving land. Isn't it time that people's livlihood was more important than satisfying treehuggers!
By Walt (292), Southampton on Sep 25, 11 6:13 PM
1 member liked this comment
I'll excuse your ignorance and give you the benefit of the doubt that you have simply been misinformed by others. The millions which are spent on purchasing open space comes from a 2% tax on the purchase of all residential homes within the Town (with an exemption for I believe the first $250,000 as well as a first time home buy exemption). The money collected through this tax can only be spent on purchases of land for community preservation purposes. (Just ask EH Town officials about that!). ...more
By Nature (2966), Hampton Bays on Sep 25, 11 8:12 PM
1 member liked this comment
to But I'm a blank!:

A) & B) Actually I used his information that I thought was wrong but was useful in calling attention to the stupendous compensation that the STPD receives. If my opponent in a debate holds up a turd and calls it a diamond, it is not my duty to alert him to its turdiness. That takes time and distracts readers from the case that I am trying to make. Additionally, in this instance, I don't know how the retirement of cops is funded. YOU seem to be saying that none ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Sep 26, 11 10:06 AM
You are indeed one sad individual.
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Sep 26, 11 10:52 AM
"I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men with a favourable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption, it is the other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. All power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority: still more when you ...more
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 26, 11 11:34 PM
If the Town Council is that easily intimidated by cops in uniform then maybe we should be concerned about their ability to do their jobs. I think the job of running the town requires a little more back bone.
By concerned citizen (41), Hampton Bays on Sep 26, 11 4:33 PM

Concerned Citizen: Right you are ma'm. Kabot showed unflinching backbone.
And look at what those PBA apes led by Pay Aube did to her.

The PBA has turned itself into a reckless, intimidating Praetorian Guard, that will mow down political opponents at Town Hall including altering election results to support their pet candidate ATH who gave in to them going as far asthe false arrest and jailing of a sitting Supervisor they relentlessly lambasted in Town Board meetings with the intimidating ...more
By Common Sense (56), Southampton on Sep 27, 11 9:46 AM
2 members liked this comment
I chose not to make that comparison, but I refrained.

Thanks for speaking out.

"Democracy is not a spectator sport."

~ Lotte E. Scharfman
By Mr. Z (11847), North Sea on Sep 27, 11 6:42 PM
Didnt know the PBA as you say had arresting powers. You'll be the first to dial 911 when someones laying the Smackdown on your candy a$$.
By 1640sWhaler (74), Sag Harbor/Easthampton on Oct 1, 11 3:52 AM
Thanks to Common Sense for pointing out the obvious. In these environs, we have a host of public "servants" and "volunteers" who have assumed unto themselves unseemly latitudes and exemption from rules applicable to others. Unfortunately, the "old boys' network", nepotism and political cronyism are alive and well.
By Rainfall (22), Hampton Bays on Sep 27, 11 8:47 PM
Yeah, wingnuts, let's fix the economy by cheering job cuts! YEAH!
By razza5351 (551), East Hampton on Sep 28, 11 11:31 AM
NTiger...please see my previous post near the top of the comment thread :-) ONLY elected officials and management recieve health benefits at no cost to them after 10yrs of service. General town employees DO NOT have paid health benefits once they leave the town (retired, layed off, quit or fired). After 30yrs of employment they may request in writing to keep their health benefit plan thru the town at their own 100% expense. Once you leave the town as a general worker you have 100% no health ...more
By NorthSeaNative (34), Southampton on Sep 29, 11 12:46 PM
I also believe that non-union and police do not contribute to there benefits. Maybe its time! The members of the csea union contribute 20%.(I think) Why wouldnt everyone? Please correct me if i am wrong.
By GoldenBoy (351), EastEnd on Sep 29, 11 1:59 PM
1 member liked this comment
L.B., less typing more painting you have less the 36 hours left!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By Local dad (51), North Sea on Sep 29, 11 5:38 PM
ath, see how much work your gonna get out of town employees after you tick them off... If the Town doesnt care about them and there duties to there families, why should they care about the Town?

I wonder if you call LIPA up and say, hey my job took a day of pay a week, I'm only paying you 80% of this months bill.... GOOD LUCK
By SHTownHB (75), Hampton Bays on Sep 29, 11 6:56 PM
well said
By WESTEND (15), quogue on Sep 30, 11 5:35 PM

Guys, guess what? The Town has had a fiscal crisis for three years with many services that had to be cut. It can't sustain maximum tax increases of 5% every which was happening, especially since a lot of taxpayers have been chronically syffering with the horrible economy.

NY State passed a law prohibiting tax increases of over 2%. Tax revenues have not been growing, and every year, they discover more accounting abominations by Heaney and Kagel who presided over the doublind of Town ...more
By Common Sense (56), Southampton on Sep 30, 11 9:35 PM
Common Sense, by Common Sense.
By kaluss45 (44), southampton on Oct 1, 11 6:12 AM
so elected part-time town board members can keep lifetime benefits for free after only serving two terms, but town employees who serve 20+ years are not entitled to their benefits? and fyi....police officers retire at 50% their pay, not 3/4 unless it is a line of duty injury and that goes for all departments, not just southampton. check with nys labor sites. max you can get for retirement at 30 yrs is 70% and that's usually bossess and above. there is a sliding scale for ALL civil service employees ...more
By butterfly (11), brookhaven on Sep 30, 11 10:30 PM
Dont worry there is not that much traffic this time of year anyway, 911 responses should still be on time, ill take my chances!
By GoldenBoy (351), EastEnd on Oct 1, 11 10:41 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Jimmy MacDoogan (43), Flanders on Oct 1, 11 11:21 AM