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Home Events At $300K, Rye Families Have Hit the Skids – Washington Post

At $300K, Rye Families Have Hit the Skids – Washington Post

Wash post 300K logo According to the Washington Post, you have hit the skids. If you are one of the unfortunate in Rye making only $300,000 a year, The Washington Post has profiled you in a piece they ran Sunday entitled “Squeaking by on $300,000”.

Wash post 300K 1 The article makes Rye residents looks like a bunch of rich cry babies and has generated over 900 reader comments on the Washington Post web site.

The "Rye in crisis" view was provided by profiling someone who lives in Harrison. The article profiles Laura Steins, a Harrison Huskie, divorcée, mother of three and someone who seems devoid of any self-awareness who seems to spend most of her time in Rye:

"…The sandwiches at Patisserie Salzburg are still wrapped in wax paper and tied in pink ribbon. The pool at the Apawamis Club is open for the season. At Fong's Hand Laundry, the pressed shirts are still folded into brown paper and knotted with twine.

The decline is found in the fine print.

On the bulletin board at the YMCA in Rye, for example, where nannies and maids who've been let go look for new employment.

On the wait list at the $7,000-a-year nursery school at Rye Presbyterian Church, where only 30 names hover instead of the usual 300.

On the sleepy crime blotter of the Rye Police Department, which shows an increase in neighbor and domestic tensions.

"You have a guy who was at the top of his game on Wall Street," explains Police Commissioner William Connors. "For the first time, he gets up in the morning and he has no place to go." He hears a neighbor using a loud leaf blower at 7 in the morning and calls the police to complain.

Wash post 300K 2 When Wall Street crashed, so did this community. A 44-minute train ride separates the financial kingdom from this emerald suburb; the ties are so close that most people here cite the collapse of Bear Stearns in March 2008 as the start of the recession, not long unemployment lines or GM's bailout. More than a year later, as the economy shows signs of recovery, the damage is still evident. The herds of beige trench coats on the train platforms in Harrison and Rye remain thin and culled. The billions of dollars lost in investments are still gone.

Yet for all of the lives shaken, few are willing to talk about it. More than three-dozen people interviewed for this article would not allow their names or identifying details to be used.

Laura Steins doesn't mind saying that she is barely squeaking by on $300,000 a year. She lives in a place where the boom years of Wall Street pushed the standard of living to astonishing heights. Where fifth-graders shop at a store called Lester's that sells $114 tween-size True Religion jeans. Where a cup of fresh spinach and carrot juice called the Iron Maiden costs $7.95.

By local standards, Steins occupies the lower rung of affluence — the rung where every dollar now matters."

Steins' nanny, who is also interviewed, reports working for a few Rye area families: "They belonged to the Manursing Island Club and Coveleigh Club and the American Yacht Club. Steins merely belongs to the Shenorock Shore Club, and without a cabana."

No cabana, what's the world coming too? Really, this is the focus? Really?

And for the record, I have never eaten a sandwich with a pink ribbon.

What do you think about this Washington Post article? Leave a comment below.


  1. Not only has Rye and westchester in general been hit with a nasty recession we have also been hurt by an individual who is willing to spend vast sums of money to further his own selfish land grabbing schemes.
    This carpetbagger is knee deep in our politics. Tearing down our community with his lawsuits and personal attacks on all of our governmental department and officials.

  2. Linus:

    I agree with you 100%. Steve Otis needs to go. Anyone who is willing to spend vast sums of money to further his own selfish land grabbing schemes has no place in Rye.

    The fact that Otis is spending our money to do it only makes it worse.

  3. SoundBounder,
    Very well said. The usual cry babies whining on myrye.
    When will you and the rest of the RAY HATERS take sides from a positive?
    You goof balls are the biggest cry babies Rye has to offer. Get over it and move on already, in other words…………. SHUT UP!!! Your constant criticism is getting real old and we are all tired of listening to your crap!!!

  4. Ryepie,

    We should only wish this was written by the WSJ (Wall Street Journal).

    Then likely some balance and believability would have been injected. The Washington Post like the New York Times leans progressive and thus is attracted to stereotypes to build their message. Where is someone from Rye – maybe someone even born and raised here – featured in the piece? Nowhere – that’s where.

    I’ve lived and worked in D.C. (and at the Post) and can assure you that they have just the same “story stereotypes” in Georgetown or many of the leafy D.C. beltway commuter towns. Why pick a Harrison mom to paint Rye if you’re writing for The Washington Post? Something is missing here about how this thing was originated. I believe someone well connected in Washington wanted Rye – specifically Rye – served out in a bad light

  5. Linus,
    I think the paranoia episodes are starting to settle in your brain, you are seeing and hearing Ray Tartaglione when he is not even around or blogging. Don’t let Paul Shew find out you talking like that, he might call the crisis team on you! Wait till you see the new Floatiemobile with the bowl on the roof along with Myerson’s and Otis’s pictures on the sides! Sweet, real sweet!!!

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

  6. Sorry wrong thread you may want to read this one about how the Soundkeeper called for testing of Hen Island and our environmentally friendly mayor Steve Otis ignored him. I hear the Hen Island board of directors are getting scared and are asking the residents if they would install composting septic systems? Maybe Ray was right after all. Don’t forget to read the article about the Soundkeeper.

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

  7. And, don’t forget to read the posts where Ray admits that he illegally expanded his septic system instead of putting in a composting toilet. Here it is again in case you missed it:

    “I had the system flow tested about ten years ago during the reconstruction of my cottage. I was curious as to how these systems worked for so long without ever being emptied like conventional systems. When I opened it I found out why. It was just a 55 gallon drum with holes punched in the sides, sewage seeping into the ground and probably the aquifer below. Believing that this problem was exclusive to my cottage, I had it repaired at my expense. I added a few septic fields and connected them to the tank. ”
    Posted by: Ray Tartaglione | January 03, 2009 at 09:27 AM

    The described work required both a City of Rye wetlands permit and a Westchester County Department of Health septic permit. Ray Tartaglione obtained neither and expanded the system illegally.

  8. opps –
    require a septic tank that must be pumped periodically to remove the solid waste . To the best of my knowledge, he has never had any septic tank pumped and the waste disposed of. This is just another one of the “Big Lies” that he tells. I can’t remember who the poster was regarding his attempt at a land grab, but that poster is right on the money. No, he won’t attempt a buyout, but he WILL force people off the island by making it absurdly expensive. The idea of a sewer and electrical line through Greenhaven has been kicked around before. Just the cost of underwater cable would be in the millions. Would every house on the island be required to hook up to the sewer line ? A force main would be needed to pump the effluent up the hill to a connection in Greenhaven. No problem. Get everyone to pay for it and force people off. This is a very dangerous man. Financial and human costs mean nothing to him. He would even bring himself down. Take it from someone who knows.

  9. One more thing. My first post on this forum dealt with emminent domain. Some governmental agency (State, County, City) should condemn the whole damn Island, remove ALL structures and have the island become a passive recreational asset. If Tartaglione keeps up his antics, this just might happen. One thorn in the side of government removed.

  10. Everyone has their own level of poverty. This woman is doing everything she can to keep what she has worked so hard for. Why are you judging her? Isn’t everyone doing the same thing? What does it matter if it’s with a 300k income or a 50k income?

    I currently work in an office that the owner’s main goal this year is to preserve all jobs. And in doing so we have all taken a cut in pay. This woman is doing the same thing — keeping her nanny and other household employees (preserving jobs). Isn’t that commendable?

  11. Well, here is my opinion: How old is her youngest child? Does she really need a Nanny? If these children are off to school everyday, a full-time Nanny is NOT needed. If she really needs to keep the house, then drop membership to “the club”. There are soooo many ways to cut spending in order to keep the house. Another thing, the house is located in Harrison (hence the low taxes) but she has a Rye PO. The best of both worlds, huh?

  12. Ya know, I just can’t wrap my head around this whole thing.
    Let’s see, added to that $300,000 salary is another $75,000 (tax free) she gets for child support. Has she cut back on the horseback riding lessons, dancing lessons, piano lessons, sleep away camp all summer long? I highly doubt it.


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