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Thursday, August 11, 2022
Home Government Hydrologist to Schubert: You're All Dried Up

Hydrologist to Schubert: You’re All Dried Up

Kevin Phillips FPM Group on Schubert Pond

Our follow-up on this one is late, but last Wednesday, the (The) hydrologist hired by Rye City presented his findings in the Schubert pond affair. In short, Kevin J. Phillips, the hydrologist from FMP Group, told Schubert and the council that the Gates dry well, the center of three years of council meetings, did not dry up the Schubert pond. Where we all go from here, no one knows…

Theresa Juva at LoHud had the write-up:

"Kevin Phillips of FPM Group told a packed room and the City Council last night that a study of William Gates' property on Magnolia Place found no indication that flood-mitigation work there diverted water away from Bob Schubert's pond on Forest Avenue.

"Looking at it from a scientific standpoint, it doesn't appear that Mr. Gates has done anything to change the water balance into the pond," he said…

Phillips explained that based on the area's topography, it would be impossible for Gates' small dry well to divert water away from the natural stream into Schubert's pond…

"Over time, changes to the groundwater and surface-water regime play crazy tricks," Phillips told a contentious and impatient crowd, noting that "ponds are vulnerable to groundwater fluctuations."

Schubert was visibly frustrated during the presentation.

"They've never answered how a 15-year running pond – within two or three days of work on the Gates property – where the water went," Schubert said outside the meeting…

The engineer also offered several solutions to get Schubert's water back.

The ideas included creating a well on Schubert's property that could direct groundwater to the pit; snaking a pipeline from Gates' well to Schubert's pond; or letting runoff in from Forest Avenue.

Phillips also praised the care Schubert has shown it and noted that the pond is valuable in acting as a filter for water traveling into Long Island Sound."

54 COMMENTS

  1. Mechanically, it appears that a simple pipe connection to the neighbor’s drywell fixes everything. Quincy Dolan

    I find it hard to believe that people are suggesting piping the water from the drywell to Mr. Schubert’s pond. That’s against NYS environmental code. Who are these “environmentalists”? Haard to believe

    The ideas included creating a well on Schubert’s property that could direct groundwater to the pit; snaking a pipeline from Gates’ well to Schubert’s pond; or letting runoff in from Forest Avenue. MyRye paraphrasing the hydrology report

    I guess Haard to believe better not quit his day job. He is not cutting it as an expert with NYS codes.

  2. I watched this report and came to the conclusion that this guy’s only charge was to say the problem was not caused by the Gates.

    What kind of “expert” uses words like appear.

    “Looking at it from a scientific standpoint, it doesn’t appear that Mr. Gates has done anything to change the water balance into the pond,” he said…

    We paid this “expert” to give us an inconclusive explanation?

    This is the same “expert” that Otis says would be impartial because he does not work in Westcheter. Turns out that was a lie because Otis and Plunkett have used him at the Beaver Swamp fiasco.

    This “expert” has done nothing except add more doubt and bring more discredit upon Otis and the City Council while raising suspicions as to the involvement and motivations of at least Shew and Otis.

  3. In the prior “Schubert Waterworks” string a writer known unfortunately only as “Pigdog” put forth a straightforward set of Chapter 195 sections and violations regarding the Gates/Schubert conjoined wetland and watercourse. It’s long but good and I certainly commend it to Judge Carey for his consideration.

    In the post Pigdog did a ‘shout out’ to me as it appears he is familiar with my personal subsurface investigations performed on my land during my own wetlands permit process. I’ll copy over here for reader consideration some of the comments I made previously:

    “Thanks for the shout out in the long list of Chapter 195 sections and violations. You’ve done a good job at showing our readers what a real Wetlands and Watercourses examination might entail. My own permit process required close to 18 months of examination, multiple planning commission meetings and my retaining of an environmental consultant, law firm and subsurface engineer. And of course this process included the generation of a full core drilling profile of the sub surface topography of my property so that subsurface groundwater flow directions could be identified.

    Given that the Gates’s property has most publicly been identified as a surface and groundwater concentration field and wetland, it would be quite particular if such an examination were not to be conducted. I was curious as to how a hydrologist could claim the surface water flows would – with any certainty – approximate subsurface groundwater flows without the creation of a similar core drilling based subsurface profile. That would be like predicting that the entire bottom of the ocean floor is either flat or that it sloped in a particular way without actually sounding its depths. If my retained professionals could have successfully made a similar ‘scientific’ claim so that my expense of drilling could have been avoided I would have been grateful. They did try but the subsurface profile was required of me. I still have the core samples.

    Additionally, the Schubert hydrologist could not even produce the actual “as built” drawing of the Gates drainage construction for public review. This is the one that shows the pipe diameters installed and includes the curious reference of water going “to future.” He put up an ancient property drainage map instead and then made various assertions about what was there and not there.

    It appears likely that Mr. and Mrs. Gates saved a lot of time and money when the City Engineer in his sole discretion circumvented the existing city CCAC and Planning Commission wetland permit process. I can assure readers that this is not standard operating procedure in the City of Rye. And it looks like the former City Naturalist agrees in this regard.”

  4. Ted C,
    Did you know that George Mottarella and the Gates engineer are friends? The Gates engineer used to be the town engineer in Greenburg. Do you think that’s why Mottarella said the Gates didn’t need a permit? I am sure they saved a ton.

  5. It appears to me that Otis, Shew and Plunkett have been doing a full court press to cover this up from day 1 including possibly obstructing any possible real investigation into their own potential misconduct.

    Have Otis, Shew and Plunkett signed sworn affidavits yet as to what their involvement was in this matter from day 1? If not, WHY NOT????

    The rest of the Rye City Council doing nothing and closing their eyes to these matters will only make them implicit in all of this. They need to stand up and do the right thing now by calling for an investigation by the Attorney General.

  6. After viewing the presentation last Wednesday night, replete with insults thrown at inquiring Rye residents by the Ryegologist, does this Ryegologist’s report have any credibility?

    Why didn’t Rye hire a Proctologist? The proctologist would of had the same effect on the Rye taxpayers as the Ryegologist, taking it in the rear. The only difference is the Proctologist would have scientific and real answers instead of conjecture and speculation.

  7. Are the bloggers only willing to agree with a report if it supports Bob Schubert’s position? And attacking the hydrologist for not being ‘sure’ is uninformed. Science is never perfect. Yes, it seems darned curious that the pond dried up right when the Gates did the work. But the hydrologist can’t find a link. I know the groundwater patterns in my neighborhood have changed significantly in the 12 years I’ve lived in Rye, for unknown reasons. In my opinion, the City Council, after unreasonably stonewalling for years, finally gritted their teeth and checked it out. Nothin’. I feel sad for the Schuberts, but it’s time to MOVE ON.

  8. BeRationalPlease,

    It is so obvious that we keep beating a dead horse here but….. You have got to follow the Bouncing Ball. 15 YEARS OF UN INTERRUPTED WATER FLOW,NEW DRY WELL,3 DAYS LATER, NO WATER…..WHERE DID THE WATER GO????????????????????????? SPARE ME THE SCIENTIFIC BULL SHIT!!!
    SPIN IT ANY WAY YOU’D LIKE…JUST TELL ME WHERE THE WATER WENT!!!!!
    Just ask Scooter… after all Scooter A DUCK IS DUCK……..

  9. Be Rational:

    If you hired a hydrologist to tell you where the water went on your property, and the hydrologist gave you a report that he didn’t know where it went, but it didn’t go away because of neighbor X, would you pay the hydrologist?

    I hope not.

    It is obvious to me that the hydrologist was given the conclusion before he even started.

    This hydrologist has worked with Plunkett and Otis previously. Why would Otis outright lie and say he had no connections whatsoever?

  10. High,
    What if you were paying w/OPM…AKA..OTHERS PEOPLE MONEY?
    WOULD YOU GIVE A DAMN? AFTER ALL A DUCK IS A DUCK..RIGHT SCOOTER?

  11. Illegal Construction Activities in Dutchess County

    Net EPA Fines for Two Companies
    (New York, N.Y. – March 26, 2009) Wetlands are valuable resources that can’t be altered or filled for convenience sake, a lesson that two land owners in Dutchess County learned recently. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reached an agreement with Cogi, LLC and Quaker Hills, LLC to settle violations of wetlands rules under the federal Clean Water Act related to the illegal development of wetlands on their land in Pawling, N.Y.
    The companies filled and disrupted part of a large tract of wetlands, which help supply New York City’s drinking water. In the settlement, the two companies will pay a $50,000 fine, and create two acres of new wetlands and a new stream.

    “Wetlands help filter out contaminants, and even small sections are important, particularly in this case.
    __________________________________

    It’s too bad the city of Rye doesn’t take the same position against the Gates. Instead of spending all this money on BS we could have had some income.
    Great job Mayor Keep up the good work.

    One Down Two To Go

  12. FLMFAO!!!!! BUNCH OF MORONS!!!
    A DUCK IS A DUCK….. COULD ALMOST SEE THE DEAD LINES NOW!!!
    MAYOR AND COUNCIL ARE DEAD DUCKS!!

  13. NTOUCH –

    I’m afraid that you’re going off the deep end. Can you provide me with your name and address, and I’ll have the experts from the county loony bin come and pay you a visit. Please also include your insurance information.

    If it makes you feel more comfortable, I’ll ask them to wear duck costumes.

  14. The subject of hydrology has certainly brought out the worst in Rye. As the son of David wrote so long ago, “the perverse are hard to be corrected, and the number of fools is infinite.”

  15. Sure Scooter, as soon as I get your identity. I’ll save you the trouble,they’ve been here & determined I AM CERTIFIED! No health ins.-can’t afford it because my taxes keep rising to pay plunkett,city mngr. fees, & bogus trips from county health officials. Oh ya let’s not forget the costs of the
    HY LIE OGIST!

  16. Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.

    Albert Einstein

  17. Mayor Otis assured the public at the council meeting, where the scope for the examination and funding of the hydrologist was approved that the hydrologist would have no connection with Westchester County or the City of Rye. The Mayor’s statements here can be viewed on the internet at

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G20DhUzka0I

    We now know that this was not in fact true and that this hydrologist had previously worked directly for the City of Rye in the recent past. He was not therefore an independent expert for matters concerning the City of Rye.
    Anyone need any more proof that the mayor is full of Mr. Floatie?

    We could have paid for a lot of hay with that $3500.00, instead of wasting it on some full of Floatie hydrologist. This whole thing is a joke! Does the mayor think we are all jackasses or just me?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUDT-VsHDN4&NR=1

    Jack A. (Mr. Floatie’s ass-istant)

  18. Why is Otis resisting a full investigation into this matter? Could it be he has something to hide? He has already been caught in one lie related to the hiring of the Ryedrologist. How many more lies is Otis covering up?

    http://www.lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/200904010230/NEWS02/904010364

    Have you seen this video where Shew is asked directly two years ago about what Chantal had to say about the Schubert property. Shew refuses to answer publicly and says he will talk about it with the City Council privately instead. Well did Otis or any other Council member ask Shew after that meeting what was going or are they just stupid?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LV1I1MSIfUk&feature=channel_page

  19. Hey, it’s April Fools! Happy birthday to you, Jack A! Here’s a special birthday present from me to you – whatever Ray is paying you to clutter up this site with your stupid and inane comments, I’ll double it if you’ll take off that ridiculous headpiece and resume a normal life. Same deal goes for your stinky friend Mr. Floatie.

  20. Scooter,
    It’s a labor of love. We do it for free. The only fool here is you, for thinking you can buy me and Mr. Floatie. No wonder you support Mayor Otis. You two think alike! Happy April fool’s day! From a Jack- ass to a fool.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUDT-VsHDN4&NR=1

    I will be at an April fool’s party tonight. We would love to have you join us Scooter. You may even know a few of my friends below. If you can’t make the party and have a decent size lawn, we can leave you with some fertilizer supplied by Mr. Floatie. Give us your address and you will find it on the lawn in the morning when you awake.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mXsPMcRU78&feature=rec-HM-fresh+div

    Jack A. (Mr. Floatie’s ass-istant)

  21. Anyone ever wonder why the little puddle that Shubert had before he created a 20,000 gallon swamp wasn’t bigger to begin with? Why wasn’t the original puddle bigger if all the eye witnesses claim the water was flowing better than Niagra Falls on Shubert’s property? Maybe because it was never flowing that well and if Shubert would just close the orifices in his swamp, it would refill again.

  22. Axis of Evil:

    Perhaps Otis, Shew, Plunkett and the Rye City Council will be nice enough to hire someone to fill your orifices.

  23. The 2 comical parts of the last Council meeting were

    1. No-Show Joe scolding someone for using “invective” language. Keep in mind, this was only a month after Sack himself was calling for a Independent Counsel and using “investigation” language.

    2. Mr. Shubert showing his true colors and exhibiting his atitude of entitlement. He belittled his neighbor for exercising his property rights and not draining his property onto Shubert’s property. That tantrum was all you needed to see to make a pretty good conclusion on what is going on here.

  24. Jack A. Please deposit the free fertilizer on my lawn – it’s on Hen Island, the one with the mini-sewage treatment plant in the front lawn.

    Axis of Evil –

    You’ll enjoy reading the coverage on Sack in the Journal News. He continues to blast his colleagues and claims the engineer’s report will be used to say no further action is be needed. (By the way, I think the engineer’s report proves Chantal was wrong in her assessment).
    He still thinks an independent attorney is needed. Guess he owes some lawyer friends a favor or two!

  25. Hey Axis –

    “Why wasn’t the original puddle bigger if all the eye witnesses claim the water was flowing better than Niagra Falls on Shubert’s property?”

    Because, Axis, the historically strong water flows exited the Forest Avenue Swamp through the 24 inch culvert under Forest Avenue. If you review the requisite area maps from the late 1800’s you’ll see the land cut created by these flows extended back into colonial history. These cuts weren’t carved from garden hose volume – like we see post Gates construction – but volume that would fill the pond from zero to ‘top of sluice’ in 8 hours.

    Using 20,000 gallons for the pond as the various agencies have – that would be a 42 gallon per minute average flow. That’s a joke compared with what the City hydrologist just saw – what did he say -5 gallons per minute? Even if the ‘orifices’ in the sluice gate were closed and the pond eventually filled it will not have enough water flow to prevent stagnation. Schubert tried this already and the stink was even worse than the mud flat we have down there today.

    Here’s language from the 1984 State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) site inspection of the Schubert wetlands which along with the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the Rye City SEQRA committee determined

    “At present the wetland area consists of a steady flow of fresh water emerging locally in an area of rocks from what appears to be an underground spring rather than from neighborhood surface drainage as the proposal indicates. A spring origin is likely since outflow seems to be reasonably constant and unaffected by seasonal dryness.”

    This finding directly opposes the new City hydrologist’s current belief that the Schubert water problem is primarily one driven by surface water. Flows which were disrupted over a period of days in August 2006 – rather than the years or decades that the hydrologist mentioned.

    And please stop with the false narratives on the Gates’s. No one is belittling them. No one is accusing them of doing anything wrong. They appear to be victims of an engineering and construction error. I’m not aware that they’ve ever asserted a right to damage anyone else’s property. You and a select few other writers here seem to be putting those words in their mouth. As for your motives we are only left to guess.

  26. Chantal said she told Shew that a permit was needed.

    Did Shew tell this to Otis and the City Council?

    If he did then our Mayor, City Council and Corporation Counsel knowingly berated, ignored and embarrassed Mr. Schubert for more than two years.

    If he didn’t, then Shew intentionally covered this up.

    When Shew responded two years ago to a direct question at a Council meeting as to what Chantal told him, and Shew responded he did not want to discuss it publicly but privately with the Council, are we to believe our micromanaging Mayor and Council members did not inquire?

    If you believe that then I have a bridge on Central Avenue I would like to sell you. So far it’;s about $2,000,000 but that will probably go up if the engineers and City staff screw everything up again. Also, the bridge will probably won’t be available for another two years because of these same screw ups.

    The hydrologist did not look into the coverup, the circumstances surrounding the coverup and the possible criminal aspect of these circumstances. Otis waving his bought and paid for report and trying to cloak certain issues with Attorney/Client privilege to avoid a real investigation, will not work.

    The residents of Rye are smart enough to know that Otis, Cunningham, Pratt and Ball are done politically and thankfully they have absolutely no chance in November 2009.

  27. Don’t Vote:

    I hope Otis, Ball, Cunningham and Pratt do decide to run for re-election. If they don’t, who do you think is dumb enough to run this year, and to waste countless hours facing off against a giant turd and a jackass, all for no pay? As much as it amuses me to think of Mr. Floatie as Mayor, I’d rather have rational individuals who put issues in perspective when making choices, and who don’t cave in to special interests looking to promote their own agendas at great expense to all other taxpayers.

  28. Hey Scootsy:
    Did you not see my other post. There is a wetland on 3 Magnolia! The hydrologist confirmed that when he said that there are clay soils on the property. Clay soils = wetland indisputable fact!

    New drywell structure, fill, regrading, changing contours, …..all done on 3 magnolia and all are regulated activities that require a wetlands permit according to the city code Chapter 195….Indisputable fact.

    The Hydrology report confirms Chantal’s statement that the project should have gone through the wetlands permit process.

  29. Scootsy my co-masked friend,
    Can you tell me what “great expense to all other taxpayers” might you be talking about? If you are referring to Hen Island, I don’t think the taxpayers would absorb any expenses. Any cost incurred to install any system necessary to bring the illegal uses up to par, would and should be borne by the owners of the Island and the owners of the cottages. Would the city of Rye tax payers be responsible to bring your house or building lot up to code if it were not? Stop spewing your Bull Floatie scare tactics and talk from facts. Ray doesn’t have any agenda other than to have the laws enforced that have been negated for years. I like the idea of Mr. Floatie for mayor. That means I would be taking Shew’s place for 200 grand a year. You can buy a lot of hay with that. Come on Scooter let’s be friends and fix the problems? Me, you, Linus, and Axis of Evil, we can all work together, just like the clip below.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mXsPMcRU78&feature=rec-HM-fresh+div

    Jack A. (Mr. Floatie’s ass-istant)

  30. “At present the wetland area consists of a steady flow of fresh water emerging locally in an area of rocks from what appears to be an underground spring rather than from neighborhood surface drainage as the proposal indicates. A spring origin is likely since outflow seems to be reasonably constant and unaffected by seasonal dryness.”

    So how would a drywell, which controls surface water affect that? Thanks for proving my point.

  31. Scooter,
    What makes you think any other “dumb enough” or smart/capable enough would be “wasting countless hours”?
    If business is done honest & correct from the beginning it wouldn’t be considered “wasting countless hours”!!!… OR DO WE NEED TO HIRE A HYDROLOGIST TO GIVE YOU A SCIENTIFIC ANALYSIS???….SEEMS LIKE THAT IS THE ONLY REASONING YOUR WILLING TO EXCEPT. WHY IS IT OKAY FOR THE SCIENTIFIC REPORT TO OUT WEIGH ALL OF THE REAL FACTS THAT WERE ALREADY IN PLACE BEFORE IT FOR THE LAST 3 YEARS?

  32. Hey Axis,

    No-Show Joe is a joke. A complete amateur. It is my opinion that the exchange where Joe was complaining about the “hot language” was pre-planned and an attempt to try and distance himself from the Mr. Floatie cause. Rye is too smart for that. No-Show Joe has his nose so far up Mr. Floatie’s ass all you can see is the soles of his shoes.

  33. The biggest mistake Rye ever made was allowing a pond to be built in a wetlands. Now, private property owners can’t even protect their property without consulting with the environmaental terrorists ( Shubert supporters). IMO, Shubert himself demonstrated at the last Council meeting that he could care less about his neighbors rights as to where they choose to drain their water.

  34. Hey Environmental Disaster,

    WHo was the City Naturalist when this pond was approved? Were there core drilling samples taken before this swamp was approved? It is my belief, that the attention should be brought to focus on this swamp and it’s creation rather than how to continue it’s raping of the water resources in the area.

  35. Hey Axis –

    “So how would a drywell, which controls surface water affect that? Thanks for proving my point.”

    Which drywell are you referring to? Since the “as-built” provided by this hydrologist (exhibit 4.3) was apparently an ancient John Motley Morehead era schematic, we really don’t know what actually is purported to exist under the ground on that property. The Gates’s may have multiple new drywells and multiple new pipe runs and they wouldn’t even know it.

    If you know construction you know that given a week or two, a backhoe and crew, an excavation can get thru multiple subsurface strata. I’m not sure that happened but then no one seems to know what happened. That’s the problem. The water is gone, our neighborhood is a health hazard and the administration has spent the past 30+ months abusing and accusing this senior citizen who did nothing wrong.

    Disgraceful

  36. Environmental Disaster,
    “The Biggest Mistake Rye Ever Made” has nothing to do with wetlands! It’s 2/3 of what’s left from the 3 STOOGES!!!

  37. Scooter,
    “I’d rather have rational individuals who put issues in perspective when making choices, and who don’t cave in to special interests looking to promote their own agendas at great expense to all other taxpayers.”
    WELL I DO NOT HAVE A PERSONAL AGENDA & WHAT I PROMOTE IS OF NO “great expense to all other taxpayers”!!! AND FURTHERMORE – I HAVE NEVER ASKED ANYONE TO CAVE IN TO WHAT I AM PROMOTING!!! FOR THE RECORD WHEN JARRID’S ACCIDENT FIRST HAPPENED I THOUGHT WHAT I WAS APPROACHING WERE RATIONAL INDIVIDUALS ABLE TO PUT ISSUES INTO PERSPECTIVE WHEN MAKING CHOICES!!! EVIDENTLY NOT!!!

  38. ““At present the wetland area consists of a steady flow of fresh water emerging locally in an area of rocks from what appears to be an underground spring rather than from neighborhood surface drainage as the proposal indicates. A spring origin is likely since outflow seems to be reasonably constant and unaffected by seasonal dryness.””

    Tedc,

    Where are Shubert’s core samples? Is it possible that this statement above is false? Why are you not contemplating that possibility? The statement above is pure conjecture and the main logic on allowing the Schubert swamp to be expanded. There was no core samples taken proving this. Why are you not on Shubert’s back because of this? Why are people demanding Gates spend money on core samples in order to protect his property and giving Shubert a free ride? Who was the City Naturalist when Shubert’s permit was approved? And again, why isn’t there a fence around that attractive hazard beforea child drowns in that swamp?

  39. “our neighborhood is a health hazard and the administration has spent the past 30+ months abusing and accusing this senior citizen who did nothing wrong.”

    According to you. According to me he’s done mush wrong. Refusing to take responsibility for his own decision and fix the problem without bringing in the city is one area. Disregarding his neighbor’s rights to dispose of runoof where they please is another. Mr. Shubert exhubited a sense of entitlement the other night that I found hard to believe. Where is his sense of responsibilty in this mess? He’s the one that enlarged a 150 gallon puddle into a 20,000 gallon swamp and now everyone in the toen is required to feed it their runoff? Like I said, where are Shubert’s core samples proving the hydrological makeup of his property? Why didn’t the City Naturalist require this BEFORE Mr. SHubert built his swamp?

  40. Scooter
    Tracy Kay way the Naturalist when the Schubert’s pond was built. And the only thing the naturalist does is determine if the project may require a permit. It is then sent to the Planning Commission who approves the project so get off the naturalist crap and stop deflecting. Oh and by the way since the Schubert pond went through the correct process all the neighbors were notified and had a chance to express any concerns they have.

  41. Guess what folks? They’re baaak!

    Apparently our “acting” city attorney just went back to the well (or maybe it was a drywell) that her former boss used to reengage one of our most entertaining, intriguing and publicly condescending paid consultants – FPM Group. And this time FPM is being sent back to Beaver Swamp – where they’ve been tasked to find truth and environmental facts.

    Unbelievable. Did we learn nothing?

  42. Note to Mayor and City Council – A federal judge ruled last week that a prominent local client of the crack municipal legal team of Kevin Plunkett, Kristen Wilson and Darius Chafizadeh violated multiple federal and state laws by punitively using process to obstruct the construction of an otherwise completely legal church in the Town of Greenburgh.

    The judge pretty much threw the book at the town, its elected officials and lawyers and took the extraordinary step of ordering sanctions because “the record is replete with evidence regarding defendants’ intentional destruction of evidence and disregard for discovery obligations.”

    In-the-know readers will find multiple patterns and parallels with Mamaroneck’s infamous Westchester County Day School case which bled their taxpayers dry and – of course – to the so called legal advice we’ve all been told to stomach here in Rye in the Schubert Pond fiasco.

    See the article here –

    http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1202470575438&Court_NY_Towns_Opposition_to_Church_Violated_Federal_Law

    Wilson for Rye City Attorney? Really?

    Schubert claims without merit? Really?

    Environmentalist Pop Quiz! – Guess how much in legal fees Rye taxpayers have paid to date in – might I suggest – this wholly manufactured Schubert Pond litigation matter? And next, please guess how much it would have likely cost to restore the impacted ancient groundwater stream if the municipal errors here had been admitted and addressed?

  43. Ok so here are the answers to the below Environmentalist Pop Quiz –

    -To date the City of Rye has spent over $100,000 to deny Mr. Schubert his rights for protection under its own City code – Chapter 195 – Wetlands and Watercourses.

    -Two independent construction experts have estimated that the cost of repairing the damage to the ancient groundwater stream to be between $5000 and $10,000.

    And with the above as an example of our local municipal management skills, why should we not be surprised when the front page of The Journal News yesterday leads with a story such as this –

    ALBANY — Westchester County had the highest average municipal salaries in the state, with the typical government employee taking home nearly $70,000 in pay, according to a report by a conservative Albany think tank. The numbers from the Empire Center for New York State Policy also found that the City of Yonkers led the state with an average municipal salary of $71,659, while the CITY OF RYE, with 108 employees, RANKED SECOND to Yonkers among cities, with an average salary of $64,233.

    http://www.lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=20108270359

  44. Both are significant resource allocation problems for taxpayers. The new Pickup contract was a good first step but much more needs to be done. Case in point – where’s the promised new legal committee?

  45. Remember the repeated challenges to so called “independent selection” of the FPM Group and Kevin Phillips (pictured above) made to the previous Rye City Council? The questions included how did then city attorney Kevin Plunkett (instead of the city naturalist or engineer) come to source scientist Kevin Phillips and what criteria did Mr. Plunkett employ – other than FPM’s willingness to work on the Schubert/Gates wetland matter very cheap?

    What did this supposedly INDEPENDENT hydrology group – FPM – have going for it? Many other qualified INDEPENDENT hydrologists who had done NO prior work for Mr. Schubert OR The City of Rye were available and likely well known to both the city naturalist and the city engineer.

    The answers may now be found by a reading of the below aforementioned Greenburg vs. Fortress Bible Church order and opinion by Federal Judge Stephen C. Robinson. In it, in a series of pages between 53 and 109, the Judge apparently opines that Mr. Phillips and FPM abandoned their professional responsibilities when they did their report according to what the town officials desired. The town’s legal team was led by – no need to guess – Mr. Kevin Plunkett. Find the order and opinion documents by following the story link here –
    http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1202470575438&Court_NY_Towns_Opposition_to_Church_Violated_Federal_Law
    So if this fresh whopper of a multi million dollar municipal loss (including sanctions) by Greenburg is any indication of what might lie ahead for Rye, and last fall we elected a fresh majority slate of council members, and they promised change, where is that change and why are we still following the pattern of Greenburg?

  46. In my lifetime I’ve been aware of several instances here where a well regarded, well liked attorney has been involved in malfeasance and sent to jail. It’s always a tragedy for them, their family and a total shock to the social circles that had previously accepted and propelled them – while the professional connections they had grown and nurtured over the years do them absolutely no good. Their ambition and cleverness are suddenly seen in a very different light. I’m not sure anyone currently sitting on the city council was even here for the last one of these. Perhaps they might ask around.

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