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Saturday, September 24, 2022
Home Government Schubert: Two Hours of "Interrogation"; Doubts Shew's Sincerity

Schubert: Two Hours of “Interrogation”; Doubts Shew’s Sincerity

DSC08582 Schubert at Open Mic (PHOTO: Bob Schubert) Rye resident Bob Schubert and his supporters came out swinging at the city council meeting tonight after City Manager Paul Shew sent Westchester county mental health experts to Schubert's home last week in an apparent attempt to discredit the 86 year old.

Schubert, a constant at the open mic portion of council meetings, has asked Rye to take responsibility for the loss of water on his property, alleging violation of wetland code by a neighbor. The city has refused to become involved.

DSC08691 Paul Shew Schubert thanked Shew although he said he "doubted his sincerity" in sending the mental health experts to his home. After two hours of "interrogation" (by the mental health experts) Schubert reported he was given a "clean bill of health". He then turned to pressing the case of having water restored to his wetland garden.

DSC08601 Sis D'Angelo w sign (PHOTO: Sis D'Angelo with sign supporting Schubert) Five others spoke in support of Schubert including Ellen “Sis” D’Angelo, a member of the 2008 Westchester County Senior Hall of Fame. "You should all be ashamed of yourselves," said D'Angelo, addressing the council. During a second turn at the podium, she demanded City Manager Shew apologize for his actions (sending mental health experts to Schubert's home). In response, Shew stated he was "pleased to hear Mr. Schubert had a favorable experience" and then demurred saying any more, citing Mr. Schubert's privacy. 

In discussing the actual wetland issue at hand, Councilman Joe Sack said "it almost seems like groundhog day" and "it has devolved into a blame game". Sack suggested that the city, without changing its original ruling, take another look and see if a resolution can be had by approaching the neighbors. Mayor Steve Otis said "a new attempt can be made".


  1. There was no need for Shew to apologize. The Rye City Council should have fired him already. What a disgrace that they allow this senior abuser, carpetbagger to still walk amongst us.

    It appears obvious to me that the Rye City Council fully supports Shew’s unconscionable acts against Mr. Schubert as well as those committed against other Rye residents and employees. They are only empowering Shew to continue in his ways.

    Councilman Sack is to be commended for his real compassion and for his wanting to help resolve Mr. Schubert’s problem. Councilman Sack forced Shew to take steps to try and resolve Mr. Schuberts issue.

    Of course Otis had to taint Councilman Sack’s goodwill by saying this had already been attempted. If Otis is telling the truth, any attempt was probably clouded by Shew attempting to cover his own butt rather than resolving the issue.

    If Shew is still employed here after today, he should be forced to attend any and all meetings.

    Why do we need a $200,000 a year City Manager who it seems to me has a $150,000 assistant City Manager doing all the work. Fire Shew, make Mr. Pickup the City Manager at $200,000 a year, don’t hire an Assistant because he has a work ethic and doesn’t need one and save $150,000 a year for taxpayers.

  2. Setting aside the politics, here are some additional engineering points:

    Official topographical maps for Milton Point at Rye City Hall show approximately 8 to 10 acres of upland property sloping in various gradations towards the Schubert property. Property zoning in this area is one acre residential and multiple owners thus resolve their water runoff into the Schubert pond. These property owners take this service for granted as well they should as maps from the 1800’s show this to be the natural state of the land.

    An integral part of this large neighborhood drainage field is the property owned by the neighbor who installed a large totally new drywell. This neighbor’s property slopes sharply inward at many of its boundaries serving to concentrate and channel surface and subsurface water in their backyard from other neighbors into the Schubert pond.

    This property has had standing water issues since the home was built 40 years ago and at various dates subsurface piping was installed in the backyard to direct this water off of the lawn and into underground plumbing directly to the Schubert property.

    In 2006, installation of this large new drywell corresponded with an almost immediate diminution of the daily flow of water into the Schubert pond. It’s important to repeat that no drywell of any kind existed in this location prior to this new installation because, at various times, City officials have mischaracterized this construction as a “repair.” Use of the term repair is reserved for the work done on something existing to bring it back to a previous state. This drywell is all new, and huge.

  3. Here is the bottom line on Bob Schubert’s wetland issue. One of Rye’s most precious wetlands have dried up after a drywell was installed on a neighboring property of the Schubert’s. Whether or not a permit was needed is the issue the mayor and the council would like everyone to believe. The permit issue doesn’t make a difference. The work that was done caused a wetland to dry up. The City of Rye under section 195 of the city wetland law states that the city has the authority to require the homeowner that installed the drywell to restore the wetland to its original condition. Maybe that means that the homeowner install a smaller drywell to enable both parties to achieve their goal or maybe the whole project has to be returned to its original condition. Mayor Otis and the council refuse to have the homeowner restore the wetlands to its original condition. The City hides behind Rhetoric regarding permits. No one has the right to destroy anyone else’s property or in this case wetlands. The City should be protecting the wetland. Not to mention Mr. Shubert. The wetland should be restored to its original condition. I believe Mr. Shew’s attempt to have Mr. Schubert committed to the medical center for evaluation is just another way to make this problem disappear, hoping that Mr. Schubert would become fearful, discouraged and intimidated. If he was so concerned about Mr. Schubert why didn’t he call the police, Emergency Medical Services, or Mr. Schubert’s wife? The Rye police have no record of any call to the Schubert’s residence that day. After all he is the city manager and should be familiar with protocol.What they failed to realize is that the same determination and courage he used in the forties on the shores of Okinawa, Mr. Schubert is using on the steps of Rye City Hall. I for one of many applaud Mr. Schubert in his quest and denounce Mr. Shew for his actions to intimidate a WWII veteran and a senior citizen.

    Ray Tartaglione

  4. Dear Mayor Otis and Rye City Council Members,

    After listening to your rhetoric for over two hours last night at the City Council meeting and for the last two years regarding Bob Shubert’s Wetlands, I am very disturbed to report the following: I have attached a link below to an article published in the Rye Record just today. The article includes comments from Chantal Detlefs, Rye’s former City Naturalist. It includes statements such as “I can’t believe the Schubert controversy is still ongoing. In my opinion, the neighbor’s building project would have been subject to the wetlands and watercourse review process by the Planning Commission. When I got to see the plans, after the fact, it was clearly not a ‘replacement-in-kind’ as the City has maintained, as there was no dry well on the Magnolia Place property.” Detlef’s statement continues to report; in a meeting with City staff after Mr. Schubert first contacted the City, Detlefs said, “I expressed concern that the City made an error.”
    It is unfortunate that Rye City Mayor Otis and the entire City council have just lost all credibility not only with the Schubert issue, but with many of the building, safety and environmental issues before them presently and in the past. The statement “I expressed concern that the City made an error”, speaks volumes in that it evidences that the City once again was aware of the truth and chose to hide it from the public. Not only did the City choose to hide the truth from the public, they took it upon themselves to try to intimidate and harass a senior citizen and WWII veteran. This terrible injustice should be rectified immediately and without hesitation. We at HEAL the HARBOR support Bob Schubert and his tireless efforts for helping to expose environmental injustice. Unfortunately, and embarrassingly, this time it was a municipality controlled by a mayor and a council that either are dishonest or have not done their due diligence. I have a hard time believing the latter considering similar facts in regards to Hen Island are also being covered up today.

    Ray Tartaglione
    Executive Director
    Bringing attention to Environmental Injustice
    “One Harbor at a Time”

  5. Well, I can not agree more with every single comment that has been written here against the City in its intirety! I would like to thank Chantel Detlefs for his/her honesty & forthcoming. Mr.Shew should have been working under you not above you. I watched that entire meeting on cable & all I could think about was when there would be a “PUBLIC APOLOGY”!!! An apology will not change what has already taken place but it would show some integrity on Mr.Shew’s behalf. But then again only real people APOLOGY & ADMITT WRONG DOING!!!
    When will Mr.Pratt stop whining about his tenure of volunteer services. WHOOPDYDO FOR HIM! He & Otis both took “EXCEPTION to residents statements on there lack of compassion. In my eyes,that is just another smoke screen. I wonder what they consider compassion! ANYONE SEE ANY CHANGES ON MIDLAND AVE. YET???
    The smartest council members in the room Wednesday were the ones w/no comments & Mr.Sack. They certainly were not WHINING or defending COMPASSION! Maybe that is because they know the difference!

  6. I love living in Rye.

    I am very concerned that when a citizen continues to plead his case to the City Council for justice that the City Manager calls for his sanity to be evaluated.

    Didn’t we get an apology from Mayor Otis and the Council last year to a citizen last year who had been saying that Harrison was filling in its wetlands and flooding his Rye property? Should every citizen expect that he be treated with such disregard by Shrew and the Council just to continuing their efforts for truth and justice?

    I understand that the City Manager does a very nice job according to praise he recieves from Mayor Otis in the newspapers. But I must say I have attended a number of Council meetings and have been concerned with the smug attitude that Mr. Shrew and some Council members have shown the general public. I give some leeway to the unpaid Council members. But to Mr. Shrew, AS LONG AS YOU ARE BEING PAID – PLEASE PRETEND TO CARE.

  7. Mr Pickup;
    9th Commandment;You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

    You shall not spread a false report. You shall not join hands with a wicked man to be a malicious witness. You shall not fall in with the many to do evil, nor shall you bear witness in a lawsuit, siding with the many, so as to pervert justice, nor shall you be partial to a poor man in his lawsuit.
    Robert W. Schubert April 21, 1923-January 5, 2012

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