(PHOTO: Meg Cameron)
Today we carry a letter from Rye resident Meg Cameron opposed to the Otis Thruway bill facilitating the sale of the state property to the private Rye Country Day School. Last week we carried a letter (in Q&A form) from Rye Mayor Josh Cohn, also in opposition. Former Mayor Joe Sack has also been opposed and he accused Otis back in September of playing "favorites with his rich friends".
Letter to MyRye.com: Thruway Bill's Benefit to Public is Illusory
by Rye resident Meg Cameron
Thank you to MyRye for hosting a lively dialog about Assemblyman Steve Otis’ Thruway bill. I’ll add my two cents. Hidden under a lot of blah, blah, blah, the truth is that Otis undermined our local elected officials to benefit an elite private school to which he has deep, extensive ties. He used his Assembly position to give RCDS a special deal on land owned by us, the public. He hid his actions from Rye City’s government, which was negotiating an agreement regarding that same land.
Otis says Rye’s young athletes will get to use the facilities. This is misleading. RCDS will build a turf field, track, parking lot, etc. for its students. Though it is supposed to share those facilities with the public, RCDS alone decides the shared use conditions. It could offer the space for rent only during the summer, when youth athletic groups don’t need it. It could charge rental fees ten times the going rate. Or a hundred. This bill is nothing but a sweetheart deal for Otis’ alma mater. Its toothless shared-use provision guarantees no meaningful benefit to anyone else.
Cameron is writing on this issue as a private citizen. She ran for Rye City Council in 2013 and currently heads the Rye Democratic Committee.