Corruption By Peekskill Dems To Prevent Primary Exposed

No Primary

One thing about the Democratic Party political machine, especially the one in Peekskill, is that they do not like to be challenged. They like being in control and selecting the candidates they want to run for office – those who will obey their orders and do what they are told. So, when the two Democratic registered candidates on the Peekskill United slate filed petitions to run as Democrats, the Peekskill Democratic Party knew they could not let that happen. They could not let Luis Segarra or Robert Sullivan create a primary – their inferior, hand-picked Dem Party candidates would likely lose. So, they set to work to have the challengers’ petitions disqualified through the Board of Elections ‘objection to petitions’ process.

Another focus of the Peekskill Democratic Party has been to bring national politics to the local level. Their personal attacks, unethical, and criminal behavior have been epic in recent years but now they have taken a page directly out of the DNC playbook. Working closely with the party leadership in the Board of Elections and the Westchester County Democratic Party Chairman, and with help from a Dem-friendly county judge, they are pulling the same inside fix that was directed at Bernie Sanders last year. Just like the DNC, the Peekskill Dems are stacking the deck against any and all challengers registered within the party.

The facts: the Democratic Commissioner of the Board of Elections and the Westchester Democratic Party Chairman are the same person. The county judge hearing the case grew up alongside that chairman in Mount Vernon. Oh, and Peekskill Democratic Party operative and Mike Morey protégé, Tj Rogers, works in the Board of Elections and helped ‘review’ this petition challenge! Get the picture?

It just so happens that two of the candidates from the Peekskill United slate running for common council are registered Democrats. A refreshing and interesting development, right? A political campaign based on uniting people locally and not beholden to a political machine? Not as far as the Peekskill Democrats are concerned. Why? Aren’t they for everyone working together across party lines for the betterment of their community? Actually, no, they are not interested in any such thing.

A previous post at InsidePEEK explained that the two Peekskill United candidates wished to give the registered Democratic voters a choice in the election. It is their right as Americans to do that and it is something that should be applauded – regular citizens wanting to get involved in their community. It’s called a ‘Primary’ and they happen all the time. It’s part of the democratic process but not in Peekskill Democratic Party politics – and nobody better try! Just ask Peekskill United candidates Luis Segarra and Robert Sullivan.

Primary Wiki

Once the Peekskill Democrats discovered that Segarra and Sullivan were circulating petitions to challenge the candidates hand-picked by the party, they panicked. The Peekskill Democratic Party put into motion a plan that comes naturally to them – a process of cheating, lying and manipulating the public – and, as we explained, they have a lot of help.

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/peekskill-democrats-to-have-a-real-choice-with-september-primary/

By the way, Segarra and Sullivan were not the only ones looking to create a Democratic Primary. Yup, there were two others unhappy about the ‘chosen’ slate. Mike Kane, a Democratic District Leader and someone who has run for office in the past was completely looked over – and he wasn’t happy about it. We mentioned in a previous post that we were informed he was visibly upset at a council meeting this Spring and we surmised it was because of inner-party squabbles. Come to find out, he discovered he would not be selected to run for the council. He immediately announced he was seeking a Primary. He collected signatures and even obtained the endorsement of the Working Families Party, so he was going to be on the ballot no matter what. Then, a funny thing happened on the road to the Board of Elections – Kane’s petitions were never handed in. On top of that, he “declined” the Working Families Endorsement. So, what happened? Word is Morey and Rigger got directly involved to stop him – and made him a promise to take care of him in the future. We will have to wait and see what that turns out to be. Kane is a die-hard party hack so it wasn’t easy to back him down. The other person attempting a Primary was a resident of Bohlmann Towers who didn’t get very far with her petitions before she was stopped.

Once the threat from inside the party was extinguished, Morey and Rigger had to find a way to stop Segarra and Sullivan, who had over a hundred more signatures than is required to create the Primary. The only thing the Democratic Party could do was work inside the Board of Elections with their cohorts and find bogus ways to disqualify enough signatures to drop them below the required number. The problem was, there were plenty of valid signatures. Unfazed, the Dems went to work and challenged enough signatures to disqualify – they knew their friends in the BOE would rule in their favor. The Peekskill United candidates were forced to go to court and challenge the BOE ruling.

They quickly discovered that the fix was in there too! Bernie Sandered again! To understand how impossible it had become – the judge ruled that 60 signatures would remain invalid because they were obtained by a college student who wasn’t registered as was claimed by the Peekskill Dems and the Democratic BOE Commissioner. That sounds fair except the Peekskill United legal team produced the proof that the college student WAS REGISTERED and that the petitions should then be valid. Certified BOE documents were presented as proof but the judge ruled them irrelevant. Why? Because the Peekskill United candidates were only 28 signatures short of the minimum number required so if the 60 were allowed to be valid then a Primary would take place – the Democratic Party couldn’t let that happen.

Fooling and deceiving voters is always the priority for the Peekskill Democrats in each and every election. They are very good at it. Just imagine how great Peekskill could be if they decided to put all of their planning and energy into doing honest and positive things. How great would it be if they stopped the partisan antics and worked together with colleagues? Ok, time to snap out of it, that is never going to happen in Peekskill. How foolish of us to even think of such things.

So, what happens now? InsidePEEK has been informed that the Peekskill United candidates are outraged over this miscarriage of justice and plan to seek relief in the appellate division. We understand this court resides in Brooklyn – so hopefully justice will prevail there. Stay tuned.

Peekskill Dem Judge Loehr Sets Violent Criminals Free Without Bail!

Noodle_Loehr.jpg

Thanks to the Peekskill Democratic City Council Majority, the City of Peekskill has become a more dangerous place – especially against Hispanics. We at InsidePEEK predicted this very outcome when the unqualified City Judges were appointed.

The latest outrageous act by Judge Melissa Loehr is the last straw!

We clearly showed how Loehr was appointed due to her and her father’s political connection to the Democratic Party. She was chosen over much more qualified candidates and has a close personal connection to Councilman Noodle.

Related Posts:

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/peekskill-dems-corruption-spreads-to-associate-judge-selection/

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/peekskill-council-democrats-continue-unethical-ways-with-associate-judge-selection/

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/02/peekskill-judge-melissa-loehr-caught-in-ethics-code-violation/

On Sunday July 16, 2017 three Peekskill residents (who are friends of the Democratic members of the City Council) committed egregious hate crimes against two Hispanic males on Orchard Street. The victims were robbed and beaten. One was beaten so badly with a baseball bat that his skull was fractured and his eye socket and wrist were broken! He is clinging to life in the hospital. These same three thugs are suspected of committing a similar crime just two days earlier that sent another Hispanic male to the hospital in critical condition.

So, what did Judge Loehr do when the Westchester DA requested a $25,000 bail be set for these criminals? She simply released two of them on their own recognizance (ROR)! No bail and not even an appearance ticket! She immediately put them back out on the street. The third suspect had a separate domestic violence charge pending so Loehr reduced the $30,000 bail requested by the DA to a mere $2000.

Suspects

These are the three suspects set free without bail by Judge Melissa Loehr.

This was all Mayor Catalina and Councilman Torres could take – they are upset and vow to take action to stop further erosion of the law in Peekskill. The hard-working members of the Peekskill Police and other law enforcement put their lives on the line every day and strive to remove these types of criminals from the streets of the City – then the judges turn around and immediately release them to commit more crime. It has to stop.

Councilman Torres, a former court officer and liaison to the police department made the following public statement following the incident:

“This weekend our city was beset with a rash of the most deplorable violence one can encounter. Regardless of who we are, we all have a sense of safety when we are running about our daily lives. For two in our Latino community, this sense of safety was destroyed. Senseless hatred of a group of three men shattered the peaceful lives of two men and their families. One is physically OK and overcoming a forceful robbery. The other is clinging to his life after being targeted and hit in the head with, I’m told, a baseball bat. Yes, a baseball bat to the head for no apparent reason.

Our police did what we expect of them. They investigated and made arrests and put forth three men to face our criminal justice system. We should all feel safe, right? Well, no, we can’t feel safe. A liberal judge decided to play politics with your safety, and released all three of these accused violent offenders. They are now amongst us instead of safely in a facility where they can’t harm anyone until they answer for their crimes.

Unfortunately, this is standard practice for Judge Loehr. Everyone is released with no regard for our families safety. This is a direct result of the Peekskill Democratic Party picking Judge Loehr as a political favor instead of another Democrat judge who even Republicans agreed was best suited for the position.”

You would think that this horrible incident would bring sympathy and concern by council members Rainey, Talbot and McKenzie – nothing can be further from the truth. When the incident was discussed at the Monday July 17th Council meeting, the Democratic council members seemed more suspect of the police than anything else. McKenzie thought Loehr’s action were just fine! Rainey and Talbot did not seem concerned at all about the victims.

They are obviously attempting to cover for their friends – especially Loehr.

Wait, there is more!

Seems Judge Loehr has recently violated a very important rule for judges related to politics – they are not permitted to attend political fundraisers or show any blatant affiliation to political events. Just a week before the attack on July 7th, Democratic City Council candidate Ramon Fernandez held a fundraiser at 420 Simpson Place in Peekskill. Guess who showed up to the event alongside Councilman Noodle – yup, Judge Melissa Loehr! Thanks to one of our readers we were provided the proof via the photograph below.

Loehr_Noodle

Peekskill City Councilman and mayor candidate Andre Noodle Noo Rainey and Peekskill City Court Associate Judge Melissa Loehr attend a political fundraiser together on July 7th in Peekskill.

So, when Noodle said in the July 17th council meeting that he “will speak with the judge” we are sure he will. He probably does that a lot.

Speaking of candidate Fernandez and his fellow Hispanic council candidate, Vanessa Agudelo – why are they so silent? Why is council candidate Colin Smith actually on social media defending Loehr and the criminals?! Outrageous. Looks like they have fallen in line with the Democratic Party bosses and put politics before the people – even before their own community. Disgraceful but not surprising.

It is time to clean up Peekskill. Loehr (and Judge Johnson for that matter) should resign and allow law and order to resume in Peekskill. Putting Fernandez, Agudelo and Smith in office will further degrade Peekskill. Although Councilman Noodle will unfortunately remain on the council when he loses his election for mayor, Peekskill has an opportunity to right the ship and elect members to work with Mayor Catalina to do the right thing for all citizens of Peekskill.

Peekskill Dem Party Slate – Beware!

Dem Slate Beware

Last week the Peekskill Democratic Party announced their slate of candidates for this year’s election – and it is not good for Peekskill. In fact, it is downright scary. Unless, of course, your views include making Peekskill a Sanctuary City, bashing Israel, police, firefighters and the United States of America – and support socialism, communism and are against the rule of law.

Make no mistake – this is not your mother’s Democratic Party any more. The radical liberal alt-left has fully arrived in Peekskill – and they want full power.

During this past week we did some research of the new candidates and sifted through the many emails we received offering information and comments. We have a lot more to do but here is what we found so far:

Andre “Noodle Noo” Rainey for mayor. We know, it always causes a laugh or chuckle to see that someone with such a nickname is running for office. It is embarrassing enough that he barely won a council seat just under two years ago and now thinks he can be mayor. We have written about Noodle before and there is much more to come out regarding his legal issues but we’ll leave that alone for now and move on to the council candidates – where even more serious issues lie.

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2017/01/24/noo-news-arrest-warrant-issued/

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/paglias-thanksgiving-eve-brawl-in-peekskill/

Vanessa Agudelo, candidate for council, is probably the least known of the slate but is probably the one with the most disturbing background.  She proudly calls herself a “Community Organizer,” which is troubling enough but she has been a fixture at many protests and has been very active in the Anti-Israel movement. She is all about causing unrest and protecting those who break laws, disturb the public and taunt law enforcement. A troubling choice.

Ramon Fernandez, candidate for council, is relatively new to Peekskill and works as a taxi driver in the city. He ran unsuccessfully for school board in the past. Ironically, the Peekskill Democratic Party worked against him in that election, which makes us wonder why he would get involved with them now. Perhaps it is their common wish and goal to make Peekskill a Sanctuary City. Fernandez has, “almost overnight” (as one of our readers described him), gone from a mild-mannered taxi driver to a belligerent, nasty, and hypersensitive person. He has been appearing at council meetings just to bash and fight with the mayor – and to get noticed for the election of course. He is obviously being coached but he is also picking up the undesirable traits of his trainers. Not a good sign.

The third, and most puzzling candidate for common council is Colin Smith. Yes, the same Colin Smith who thought he was chosen to be the City’s Associate Judge but was passed over by the Dems for Melissa Loehr (see link to post about this below). He was upset and embarrassed to be publicly humiliated in such a way – and by his supposed friends. Now, as one of our readers stated, he is “being played” by the Democrats because he is such a ‘party first’ guy. “Like good Democrats are trained to do,” stated our reader, “Colin has put politics over doing the right thing and even over his own reputation.” Boy, that is true party loyalty! We at InsidePEEK are still asking – why? Why would someone let themselves be so embarrassed and then join those who embarrassed him? Sure, they gave him the City’s Hearing Officer job as a consolation but it is nothing like being a judge. And by the way, why has he not resigned that position now that he is a political candidate? He should be required to step down immediately due to the conflict it causes. God help any Republican or Dem Party enemy who goes before him with a ticket.

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/peekskill-council-democrats-continue-unethical-ways-with-associate-judge-selection/

Colin’s candidacy especially poses a huge issue for the school district (he is a member of the Peekskill Board of Education) – and they are not happy about it. Some connected to the district have informed us of the concern of administrative staff and even some of Colin’s fellow board members. It opens up ALL the controversy, malfeasance, corruption and poor student performance that has plagued the district while Colin has been a board member. InsidePEEK has received numerous submissions outlining the district trouble that Colin has been involved with – some we read about previously in the press and some we haven’t. We were told there is much more to come so we will wait and gather the facts. Even now there is a serious investigation by the DA’s office that Colin will have to answer for. We will bring it all to you during the campaign.

In an earlier post, we predicted who some of the candidates would be. We were correct about Noodle but obviously wrong about McGowan – well, kind of. McGowan had every intention of running but backed out once she realized InsidePEEK had the information regarding her Grove Street transactions and issues with an entity she has financial ties to – Stella the trolley. We also were informed that another candidate wanted to run for council, Michael Kane. He was rejected by the party and he was not happy about it. In fact, he was seen being openly angry and arguing with party leaders in public. Mary Foster also wanted to get back in the good graces of the party but was told that there was “no way” the party would support her. So, she will be used or “played” to borrow one of our reader’s terms, to raise money. In fact, we were informed that she is planning a fundraiser at her Peekskill home soon.

As of the publishing of this post the Peekskill GOP has not yet made their slate public. We know from recent articles that Mayor Catalina has indicated he and Councilman Joe Torres are running for re-election and Councilman Vesce is not. That leaves two open spots for new candidates to fill. We will highlight the GOP slate once it is announced.

Other races this year include the county-wide elections for County Executive, County Clerk and County Legislators. We know that present County Executive Astorino, Clerk Idoni and Legislators representing our area, Testa and Borgia are running for re-election. The County Dems have chosen State Senator George Latimer to run against Astorino but he may have a primary challenge from County Legislator Ken Jenkins. Once we have all the races sorted out with announced candidates on both sides, InsidePEEK will give our take on each.

InsidePEEK has also received inquiries regarding the races in the Town of Cortlandt. We have not decided whether we will report on those races as of now. One of our contributing members is from Cortlandt Manor and is urging us to do so, as are many Cortlandt residents. Tell us what YOU think.

From all indications so far, it seems that this election season will be a doozy. Please send us any and all information you feel will be helpful in our coverage. Remember – all submissions are strictly confidential.

McKenzie Property Tax Scandal Exposed, Doesn’t Pay and Hides Facts from Public

McKenzie Taxes.jpg

We thought we already knew why Vivian McKenzie couldn’t run for mayor – there were too many issues she didn’t want to become public. At least we thought we knew all the reasons – you’re not going to believe what we discovered!

Before we dive into the latest scandal there is a question we at InsidePEEK have been asking ourselves – what is it with these Peekskill Democrats? Why does the illegal, unethical and malfeasant behavior persist? Why do they think they can get away with such behavior? We refer to a comment by one of our readers who posed the same question – “They have been allowed to get away with things for too long. They had full control and hid everything.”

McKenzie has been in hot water before. She should have been forced to resign over her illegal exposure of a city employee by sharing a confidential email with the press. Thanks to having the majority on the council and friends in high places she got away with it – and that’s the problem. Being protected by equally unethical and power hungry ‘friends’ has emboldened McKenzie, Claxton, Rainey, Talbot and others to put themselves over the constituents they represent.

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/02/09/mckenzie-forwarded-emails-to-political-operative-violated-employee-confidentiality/

This time McKenzie has gone too far – and she has a newly exposed friend who helped her.

InsidePEEK has learned that Councilwoman Vivian McKenzie owns 3 properties in Peekskill. One is her 979 Main Street business, Kathleen’s Tea Room, and also 2 homes (McKenzie was recently overheard admitting one of the homes is in her sister’s name but really owned by her). People are allowed to own real estate, we at InsidePEEK realize that. BUT – the owners are required to pay the taxes on that real estate – even council members. McKenzie doesn’t seem to think so.

Last fall the City of Peekskill conducted an “In-REM” sale of property. The process is basically a seizing of property that has been delinquent in paying property taxes for at least two years. The law allows the City to follow a specific legal process to take title to the property so it can be sold with the City recouping its lost tax revenue.

It just so happens that McKenzie’s Main Street commercial property turned up on the “In-REM” list for not paying taxes – or did it?

InsidePEEK has discovered that although McKenzie’s property was on the ‘internal list’ it never made the list distributed to the council and the public. Normally, the entire list of delinquent properties is discussed by the council and staff to determine which, if any, properties were legally able to be retained by their owners through a process of paying back the taxes in arrears by a prescribed date by law. Somehow, McKenzie’s property that should have been listed wasn’t. Why? How?

It turns out McKenzie had her friend, City Comptroller Ann Scaglione, remove her property from the list before it was made public! We at InsidePEEK are not sure if that is illegal, but we are sure it is unethical. But that is not the whole story.

Bridgewater-header

How could this agreement happen without three members of the council knowing? Was the down payment made?

Scaglione, without the Republican council members’ knowledge, made a private agreement with McKenzie. The issue of making such an agreement may or may not have been done according to the specific legal process, but it was not done according to the city’s established process, nor by the ethical standards of treating a council member as every other citizen would be treated. Did the City Corporation Council need to approve the agreement? Did she even know of the agreement? It is a legal document but there is no signature by the Corporation Council on the document. We find that odd in this day and age, especially for a municipality. The City’s lawyer should have initiated the document. On top of that – did the City Manager know? Did he approve such a deal? We hope Mayor Catalina will be able to obtain all the facts and expose the entire scandal and the employees involved. The Democrats once again abused their power in office to take care of one of their own. Remember, Scaglione was hired by Foster and the all Democrat council to help deceive the public on the City finances. And speaking of City finances – it is rumored that Scaglione was telling fellow staff that she is looking for another job to get out before those deceptions come to light. More on that we get the details.

Bridgewater-signatures

Why didn’t the Corporation Council sign this agreement? Did she even know about it? Did the City Manager know? Is it legal?

That is all bad enough but it is not the full story!

InsidePEEK has obtained a copy of the City’s agreement with “VG Bridgewater Inc.” (the legal name of McKenzie’s holdings). In the agreement, McKenzie agrees to pay the City back over two years for a total of over $24,000 in unpaid taxes – does everybody in this position get this type of agreement? We are not sure about that.

Wait, there is still more!

InsidePEEK has also obtained a copy of the pay schedule to the City. At least they did that much. It contains a shocking revelation – McKenzie may have defaulted on her November 2016 payment! She has one payment left at the end of May. Will she pay it on time?

Bridgewater-PaymentsHL.jpg

Did McKenzie default on her agreement and get away with it? How can we believe the payments were not only made according to the agreement but whether they were ever made at all?

Here is the final, and maybe the most disturbing thing in this whole sorted story – while in default herself and side-stepping the disclosure process, McKenzie publicly never said anything while she voted to seize fellow citizen’s property for not paying property taxes. How could she do that in good conscience? She hid her own circumstance while willingly not affording others the same benefits she used for herself. A most shameful act. This raises another question – was her vote a serious conflict of interest? Does it open up the City for a legal challenge by those who lost their homes and disqualify the vote? We do not know but perhaps we will learn soon.

A side note regarding McKenzie is the excessive garbage throughout the downtown. It is unsightly, dangerous and embarrassing for the city. McKenzie has berated members of the public over it and continuously complains about it. All while she remains the worst culprit of the problem! The garbage in front of her business is troubling. InsidePEEK was sent photos by one of our readers who pointed out her hypocrisy on the issue. Does she have an illegal apartment above her business? The explosion of these apartments has happened in the downtown ever since the zoning change two years ago. The honest businesses downtown are suffering because of business owners like McKenzie and the misinformed and destructive policy decisions made by her and her fellow Democratic council members.

The bigger question is what can be done with McKenzie? Is there a legal process to have her removed from office once and for all? She has become a liability for the City and her political party. Her business is suffering from her actions along with her nasty demeanor and treatment of the public at meetings. She should resign and move on to take care of her business and family. But then again, if she leaves office how could she continue to protect herself from the law? A difficult situation indeed.

A Peek at the 2017 Peekskill Local Election… and Water Meters

Water Meters

The weather may be saying otherwise, but Spring has come to Peekskill and in an election year for local offices that means politics becomes a major focus. This will be the first local election since we launched InsidePEEK so we are looking forward to bringing the tidbits and facts not covered by the media – and we will do so right up until Election Day.

Let’s begin by looking at the local offices up for election in 2017. On the Republican side, Mayor Catalina is in his second 2-year term and has already announced he is running for a third. Councilmen Joe Torres and Vincent “Boo” Vesce are completing their first 4-year terms. So far, Torres has expressed he is running for re-election while Vesce has remained non-committal on his plans. Drew Claxton is the only Democrat whose term is ending this year and she has also remained non-committal on her plans but we have received numerous messages that she will not be seeking re-election. This is significant since that would mean that the entire Democratic slate would consist of new candidates. We use the word ‘new’ very loosely, as you will soon understand.

Through multiple sources InsidePEEK has learned that the Peekskill Democrats are having a tough time finding candidates. It seems their illegal and unethical ways have made many people wary of getting involved. That leaves them with having to look back at past failed candidates and office holders.

Let’s look at what we have discovered so far:

Conventional political wisdom is to have a sitting council person (whose term is not up for election) to run for mayor. That way, if they lose, they don’t lose their council seat – we have been told it is considered “a safe seat.” That leaves the Dems three choices for a mayoral candidate; McKenzie, Rainey or Talbot – all bad candidates for various reasons. Early on, the choice by both the party and herself was McKenzie but she has realized too many unethical moves and with the probability of sensitive information becoming public during a campaign, she has backed out. Because of Talbot’s cluelessness and lack of knowledge of everyday issues, the party never considered her. For example, a recent council meeting was cancelled because she was going to have to preside over it due to Claxton and Catalina’s absence. The Democrats were petrified she would screw things up so they had the meeting cancelled. Safe politics for them, bad government for Peekskill citizens.

That leaves only one option – Andre Noodle Noo Rainey. It looks like he will be the Democratic Party nominee for mayor. Be prepared to see and hear a lot from him soon. He spends most of his time in the Kiley Center with children but sooner or later he will have to address adult issues if he wants to run for mayor. He is also going to have to answer for his questionable actions. A number of readers have reached out to us claiming they will be coming forward with information, photos and even legal documents (such as Restraining Orders) if he decides to run. InsidePEEK will bring any and all credible and factual evidence forward at the appropriate time.

Well, if the prospects for mayor aren’t bad enough for the Peekskill Democrats just look at who will be running this year for common council! At the top of the list is former failed council member Marybeth McGowan. Multiple sources have made it clear she is running and she has been showing up to meetings and events for the last month or two as she attempts to get herself known to the public again. She lost her election four years ago and wants revenge. Plus, as with most of the Democrats in office, she needs her position back to help circumvent the city laws and codes for her trolley business. She was able to pull some strings as a councilwoman to get a new home for herself and the trolley but she needs more. So, being in office will give her the leverage to get the trolley hired for more city-related events. More on that soon.

The Dems are also looking to rehash another failed former council member – Andy Torres. They feel, as with McGowan, that Andy was caught up in the anti-Mary Foster wave four years ago. They need a Latino candidate and like that Andy doesn’t ask questions and just votes the way they tell him to. Like McGowan, he will have to defend the votes he took in the past that devastated the financial stability of the city and wasted $11 million in reserves.

Let’s also look at the latest debacle caused by the all-Democratic Foster Administration (which includes Claxton, McGowan and Andy Torres) – THE NEW WATER METERS!

In their infinite wisdom, the Foster Administration decided to make every homeowner replace their water meters with new technology. Fair enough, but they failed to do the research required to do it properly to the BENEFIT of the homeowner instead of to their DETRIMENT. Now, as the Foster-Claxton-McGowan-McKenzie-Torres plan is being implemented, homeowner’s water bills are blowing up into the thousands of dollars! Why? Because while replacing existing meters the city is discovering that the remote electronic read-out connected to the meter is inaccurate. They claim the interior meter reads correctly but the attached remote outdoor meter (the one the city reads to determine billing) is inaccurate. Many if not most of these meters (which were installed by the city) have been in place for decades. The Democrats solution? Make every homeowner pay the difference! That’s right – go back as many years as possible to calculate the discrepancy and unfairly bill the homeowner – which in some cases runs into the thousands of dollars! They are also making condo owners pay for the meter itself!

Mayor Catalina and the two Republican Councilman, Joe Torres and Vincent Vesce think it is unfair and unacceptable to bill homeowners for a mistake made by the city – especially to go back decades. It is not the homeowners fault that the city installed supposedly inaccurate remote meters. Catalina, Joe Torres and Vesce are demanding that the council vote to prevent the unfair back-billing and move forward with the new meters with more accurate readings for the future. InsidePEEK agrees with this approach and urges the Democratic Council members to support Catalina’s proposal.

The water meter issue is just one of many failed and unvetted ideas that the Democratic Council Majority have put in place over their years in power. It is hard to believe that bringing back the same failed candidates will help them in the election. They already have a huge challenge proposing Peekskill have a Mayor Noodle.

Is it possible they even bring back Mary Foster? We have been told she can be seen daily in every coffee house from Croton to the new Kurzhal’s in Peekskill. She makes the rounds, with her usual coffee cup in hand, going as unrecognized by the average resident as she was while in office. Nah, they couldn’t be THAT desperate.

Peekskill Democratic Majority’s Latest Target – The Volunteer Firefighters

dems-hate-fd

The Peekskill Democrats are at it again. It has been well documented over the last decade by actions, policies and public comments that the members of the Peekskill Democratic Party, especially those in public office, have utter contempt for local law enforcement. They treat the police as the enemy, and have gone so far as to appoint their friends as local justices just to prevent criminal convictions and fines imposed on their friends and family. InsidePEEK has reported on this pattern repeatedly over the previous year – most recently for their vote against accepting a donation of a new drone for the Police Department.

Now they are setting their sights on one of Peekskill’s most respected and VITAL organizations, the Peekskill Volunteer Firefighters. InsidePEEK has been barraged with emails regarding the attempt by the Democratic majority on the Common Council to oust the Peekskill Fire Chief, who has been dedicated firefighter for decades from a respected long-time Peekskill family. They claim it is a conflict for the Chief to continue because his son is becoming a member of the career firefighting staff. InsidePEEK has discovered that the Democratic Council Majority told the City Manager to demand the Chief’s resignation or the son cannot be hired for a career position. Why do this?

Come to find out Drew Claxton and Kathie Talbot were part of the Council during the Mary Foster administration that created a convoluted and poorly thought out nepotism policy. It has been the goal of Foster, Claxton and the Democrats to find a way to get rid of the volunteer firefighting force and they see this as an opportunity to make that happen. The new firehouse was the original vehicle to fade out the volunteers but that has taken too long to come about so this opportunity presents itself for them to take advantage of.

Their grand plan may have backfired on them in a big way.

Social media has been on fire since the Chief’s resignation came to light a few days ago. The general public is outraged about this issue, and rightfully so. InsidePEEK has received a record number of comments from our readers over this and they clearly show the backlash about to be brought against the Democratic Majority. InsidePEEK predicts they will not succeed in their attempt to have the Chief resign. Especially since it has been shown the policy as written does not apply in this specific case. The Chief is elected by the members of the department and has no direct supervision or influence over his son as a career firefighter.

It seems strange what Claxton, McKenzie, Noodle Rainey and Talbot see as a professional “conflict” requiring someone’s resignation from their elected post.

Hmmm, let’s look back over this past year: Claxton, McKenzie, Noodle Rainey and Talbot got caught holding an illegal meeting and taking an illegal vote to pass an illegal budget, they lose in court and violate the City Charter – did anyone resign? Nope.

Claxton got caught committing serious fiscal improprieties, illegally obtains grant funding for a building she owns and is the personal residence of her son, does not pay the money back when caught, admits she improperly signed the documents to obtain the ill-gotten funds – did she resign? Nope.

McKenzie gets caught red-handed sharing confidential emails regarding a Personnel issue, thus illegally exposing an employee to the press. The employee is humiliated in public and found to not have committed what McKenzie accused him of, violating his constitutional rights to due process and privacy – did she resign? Nope.

Noodle Rainey is discovered to have an outstanding warrant against him from an upstate New York town/college for purposely not paying a restaurant bill and fleeing the area. Once made public, Noodle’s Democratic Party “friends” went to the location and made a deal to pay the money owed and a fine to satisfy the authorities – did he resign? Nope.

These are just a few of the violations made by these elected officials who found no need to follow the ethics or criminal laws of the city –but – they want a sitting Volunteer Fire Chief to resign his position (with just 18 months left to serve) over the hiring of his son – who has earned the career position through taking a test and graduating from the fire academy. He has commendably accomplished this on his own. His father had nothing to do with his hiring and will not be directly supervising him in his job.

InsidePEEK agrees with Mayor Catalina who is upset over this situation and is calling on the Common Council members to vote to keep the Chief in place. Councilman Torres and Vesce support allowing the Chief to finish his term. Only one Democrat on the Council will be needed to make that happen. Only one Democrat will be needed to have the guts to go against their party and do the right thing for Peekskill. We’ll see if Claxton even shows up for the meeting. She misses so many and always seems to miss meetings where ‘controversial’ votes are required. Maybe she and her Democratic colleagues will be shamed enough to agree to let the chief stay.

According to a number of our readers – if the Chief is ultimately forced to resign, then the volunteer firefighting force is prepared to turn in their gear and walk away. That will be a very dangerous and expensive scenario for the citizens of Peekskill.

Peekskill Judge Melissa Loehr Caught In Ethics Code Violation

loher-at-bench

Well, that didn’t take long. InsidePEEK has been informed of a serious violation of ethics by Peekskill’s new Associate Judge Melissa Loehr. We have been reporting on the unethical and partisan manner in which both Peekskill judges have been selected and the reasons for their selection – protection for their family and friends and political advancement of careers. How right we were!

Recently, Loehr’s daughter was scheduled to appear in the Town of Cortlandt Court on three occasions – she never showed up. When she was finally forced to appear before Judge McCarthy, she was charged with a routine $300 bail for release. We leave out her name and infraction because this story is not about that – it is about what happened next.

Upon discovering her daughter’s situation, Judge Loehr did what all judges know is inappropriate, unethical and a serious violation of the judicial code of conduct – she called the Cortlandt Court to seek special favor for her daughter! She first called as the mother and asked for the name of the presiding judge for her daughter’s case and was upset that bail was set for her daughter. She didn’t like the explanation she received about her daughter’s situation and then asked “do you know who I am” and identified herself as a Peekskill City Court Judge – all in an authoritarian tone as to scare and intimidate the court clerk. Loehr’s daughter must have known this would happen – she acted in a defiant and disrespectful way toward the judge during her hearing. She knew mommy would be ‘taking care of it’ for her. It didn’t work and now has backfired.

This story has been corroborated and verified by court personnel.

It is disturbing enough to have judges who are ultra-partisan but to have judges who blatantly disregard ethics and law to show favoritism to family, and in such an open way, is unacceptable.

Unless a defendant is a member of the Peekskill Democratic Party, a friend or family of a member, or a potential voter for Democratic candidates – you have little chance of fair treatment in the Peekskill City Court. There have been many cases – too numerous to mention – where the Peekskill judge waived fines that were required or, in some cases, even counseled the defendant from the bench on how to avoid a guilty charge and/or penalty!

If you are ever scheduled to appear in front of either of the two Peekskill City Court Judges and are not ‘connected’ as described above – request a change in venue or you may surely regret it.

The situation at the Peekskill City Court is not good for the City of Peekskill. It is embarrassing for the city and makes a mockery of the judicial system and NY court oversight. How can whoever is in charge of the Judicial District allow this behavior to continue? We know Judge Johnson has been reprimanded for his negative treatment of court employees and has been the source of over $200,000 in lost fine fees. Now Judge Loehr has shown the same pattern in just her first month on the bench!

We at InsidePEEK think it is time for a higher authority to intervene and clean up the Peekskill City Court. The Mike Morey, Drew Claxton, Mary Foster, Vivian McKenzie, Marybeth McGowan, Andy Torres, Kathie Talbot, Darrin Rigger, Andre Noodle Rainey political cabal damage must be repaired – for the sake of the citizens of Peekskill. Johnson and Loehr must go.

Related Posts:

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/11/16/peekskill-council-democrats-continue-unethical-ways-with-associate-judge-selection/

https://insidepeekblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/peekskill-dems-corruption-spreads-to-associate-judge-selection/

Noo News -Arrest Warrant Issued

having-a-bad-day

There is a well-known saying, ‘people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.’ It can also be a wise bit of advice – just ask Councilman Andre Noodle Noo Rainey in Peekskill.

Rainey has readily adopted the all too familiar tactics of the Peekskill Democratic Party – to personally attack anyone they do not agree with and to do so is such an organized and extremely vicious manner. Rainey has recently launched a slanderous and vile social media tirade against a community member that Mayor Catalina nominated for a position on a local board. InsidePEEK has received multiple examples of these posts by a few of our readers. This local resident has a record of community outreach and has personally helped many residents in need. According to one reader – this person is even a relative of Rainey’s! Political power, real or perceived, can cause someone to feel superior and untouchable, causing serious miscalculations and missteps. This is precisely what has happened to Rainey. He feels he is above criticism and scrutiny for his own actions – and even above the law!

InsidePEEK has learned that Rainey is avoiding arrest for an outstanding warrant against him for a theft he committed in Morrisville, NY (Madison County) just east of Syracuse. Thanks to a ‘courtesy card’ given to him by a policeman friend, Rainey was able to avoid arrest for this outstanding warrant when pulled over recently for speeding upstate. When the attending officer searched Rainey’s name in the police database the outstanding warrant information showed up. Thanks to the officer’s loyalty to the ‘courtesy card’ he allowed Rainey to leave – but refused to return the card. So, Rainey’s ‘stay out of jail’ security is gone. It is now just a matter of time until he is picked up.

When Mayor Catalina learned of this unlawful behavior and arrest warrant, he called on Rainey to do the right thing and resign gracefully before the City Charter must be imposed to remove him. There is also Rainey’s Las Vegas history (yet to be exposed) that forced him to move to Peekskill in the first place.

It has been suggested that Rainey’s inexperience and child-like thinking has enabled him to be manipulated and used to carry out the Democratic party’s agenda. One reader even referred to Rainey as “a tool of the democrats to carry out controversial and destructive attacks against their enemies while shielding themselves from blame.”  If this is true, then he truly has been used by the Peekskill Democratic Party leaders and council colleagues.

This adds another notch to the long list of disturbing and illegal activity by members the Peekskill Democratic Party. A list that Jacob Marley would call “ponderous in length” and growing. Now that it is 2017, a local election year, how will the Democrats defend these illegal and unethical acts? We are told that McKenzie has recently decided against running for mayor due to her and her family’s history. Who will be their candidate for mayor then?  Paglia or Talbot as has been suggested? InsidePEEK has learned that desperation is starting to impact the Peekskill Dems and the party may need to rely on former failed candidates to run for office again due to the lack of viable and/or willing candidates. We will find out soon.

Peekskill Dems’ Corruption Spreads To Associate Judge Selection

HereComesTheJudge

While most of us are enjoying summer vacations, the Peekskill Democratic Party majority on the Common Council looks to quietly advance their acts of deviance and pander. What better time to fly under the radar? Especially with the continued exposure of Drew Claxton and Vivian McKenzie’s corruption and unethical behavior.

The latest ruse has to do with the selection of a new Associate Judge for Peekskill. A few years ago the all Democratic Council under Mary Foster chose to throw out a long-time successful and admired sitting judge who was approaching the end of his career in order to appoint a totally unqualified person to the seat. Why? Because they had political payoff to give one of their major operatives throughout their campaigns; a person who was not qualified for the position but who had obtained hundreds of signatures on candidate petitions for them and attended public meetings to openly support the Democratic candidates. He ran for council in 2011 but had to withdraw. He even became a news headline in 2013 for picking a fight with a member of the public! (see article and video below) As the saying goes when speaking about these Democrats – only in Peekskill.

Read the Lohud article here:
http://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/westchester/2013/12/09/peekskill-lawyer-involved-in-near-brawl-at-center-of-judgeship-tussle-videos-/3931289/

Watch the video of the meeting:

Well, they are about to do it again! Yup, they have a hand-picked replacement for Associate Judge that will be appointed in September. Michael Morey and Darrin Rigger have directed the council majority to pick Melissa Loehr for judge. Why? Because the ‘Democratic Party’ says so. The directive has come down from above.

The problem is, one of their own wants the job – and he has made it very clear he wants the job. Colin Smith is a local lawyer and serves as a member of the Peekskill School Board. He is a Peekskill native and graduated from Peekskill High School. He has been an open and active supporter of the Peekskill Democratic Party and especially helpful to Noodle Noo during his campaign (yes, as we have pointed out before, there is a councilman named Noodle –remember, only in Peekskill).

The other problem is there have been over 20 applicants for the position. Some are very qualified for the job – but that doesn’t matter. Each member of the council was asked to pick their top 5 choices as a means to make it look like there was actually a process being used. It is laughable since all the Democratic Council members selected Loehr as one of their 5 but some did not have Colin Smith on their list. Get the picture? The Democrats are masters at masking their pre-determined outcomes by hiding behind whatever “committee” or “procedure” or “charrette” sounds good to them – remember the Paramount Committee we exposed in a previous post?

So, who is this Melissa Loehr and why would the Peekskill Democrats pick her over one of their own – and over much more qualified candidates? That is, why other than being ordered to by Morey and Rigger? Thanks to a few of our readers supplying us information and with a little research of our own, we discovered a few things about Ms. Loehr. She moved to Peekskill from Putnam Valley and has donated numerous times to the Peekskill Democratic Party and individual local Democratic candidates. She is a Public Defender of the Legal Aid Society who works out of the Bronx and was recently appointed by the Democratic majority to the City of Peekskill’s Ethics Board. She refused to answer Mayor Catalina’s questions during her ethics board interview and her conflicts are numerous and troubling.

Read Mayor Catalina’s comments in the Peekskill Post article:
http://www.peekskillpost.net/catalina-says-democrats-will-push-unqualified-appointee-fill-judgeship/

It probably doesn’t hurt that Loehr’s father is a NYS Supreme Court Judge. He is formally a Westchester County Court Judge, Civil Service Commissioner of Yonkers and was Mayor of Yonkers in the early 1980’s.

InsidePEEK will be paying attention and watching what happens in early September when the Peekskill Council votes on a new Associate Judge. We urge all residents to watch closely too. It should be entertaining to say the least – well, it won’t be for Mr. Smith. That is, unless one of the Democratic Council members breaks ranks and does the right thing.

 

Peekskill Democratic Party in Chaos

Dems in Chaos

Things are not going well behind the scenes with the Peekskill Democratic Party these days. There seems to be a lot of finger pointing and confusion on how to deal with with the ongoing corruption investigations and exposed ties to The Preservation Company.

Adding to the chaos was the resignation of their long-time chairwoman, Marina Ciotti. From what we have been told by InsidePEEK readers close to the Democratic Party, one even a former member, is that there is an inner struggle on staying loyal to a leader, no matter what wrongdoing was committed (as they usually do), or is it time to do what is best for the party and cut ties with the person and rebuild the party’s image. Ciotti wanted to cut ties with the corruption and move forward. She felt she had taken enough bullets over the years for the party and didn’t want to continue on the current path of destruction. She was at odds with Claxton and Morey and it became too much to deal with – so she quit. This left pseudo-chairman Morey with a problem. How was he to find someone to continue running the party in the mold he created and willing to be controlled by him? More on that later.

Another issue to contend with is Drew Claxton’s replacement when she steps down. Oh yes, she will step down. Word has it that Morey and Claxton are looking for the best time and method for her to bow out gracefully. InsidePEEK believes it will be impossible for it to be done gracefully – that time has passed. Her arrogance continues and is grating on everyone’s nerves and causing too much negative focus on the City, so her leaving office will be met with cheers – from both sides of the aisle. One thought is they could wait for that early morning knock at the door from the law enforcement. That would give them the most time for her to attend meetings and maintain the majority. They have loose ends to tie up before there is a stalemated council. They have already started doing this with their recent Ethics Board appointee. We know, it sounds like an oxymoronic statement to talk about the sitting Dems voting on an ethics board appointment but it happened. More on that in a future post.

No, Claxton and Morey know the best time to leave will be sooner rather than later. They know more revelations of her activities are on the way so they may regret waiting too long. Claxton has recently made public she has health concerns that are requiring attention. While it is unfortunate that she has serious health concerns, Morey is not one to let a tragedy or any situation go to waste. It is one of his signatures. So, expect Claxton to step down in the not too distant future for health reasons. It is a perfect cover for the true reason and one that can gain that graceful exit they are looking for – or at least as close as they can get to one.

So what happens next? Will a replacement get appointed or will a Special Election take place this November? InsidePEEK predicts neither will happen. There will remain 3 Democrats and 3 Republicans on the Common Council – a stalemate for sure. Theoretically, it may be possible for a compromise candidate to emerge that would gain the 4 votes needed for appointment but it is unlikely. One of our readers suggested that new member Andre ‘Noodle Noo’ Rainey may do the right thing and participate in a fair process that would produce a viable replacement. Based on what we have determined so far, InsidePEEK doesn’t believe Rainey would set himself apart from the party pressure. He was considered an independent person at first, whose lack of experience would be an asset for putting people ahead of party. That has not been the case. He has fallen in under Morey’s system and has let himself be steered awry by a certain restaurant owner who has financially controlled Rainey’s every thought and decision.

So what is the Democrats’ plan? InsidePEEK has been informed by very reliable sources that they hope to cause a Special Election this fall. Just as InsidePEEK predicted in an earlier post, this is a Presidential election year and would provide a local voter turnout favorable to the Democrats, something they cannot do on local election years. It also must be a woman candidate since Hillary Clinton will most likely be the Presidential nominee. Conventional wisdom by our readers is that Marybeth McGowan is the obvious pick since she is all of a sudden showing up to meetings. It is possible, but InsidePEEK wonders about this. We realize this may indeed come true but we question why then didn’t she run this past fall? She narrowly lost the previous election so it is likely she wants to redeem herself and her ego. Then again, InsidePEEK was informed she didn’t run because of a multitude of issues connected to a business she is involved in. This, even before the Claxton corruption story broke. So, now she may have concerns that her own questionable actions could become public. Running for office with a party that has been exposed from top to bottom as being involved in illegal activity is not a good framework to run for office in. Especially since McGowan was part of that same governmental body that was in power while these activities were taking place. There is also the Mary Foster connection, a definite political albatross.

InsidePEEK is told another candidate lurks in the wings waiting for her chance to emerge. We will unmask her soon enough once we fully obtain more information about her background. What we have been told so far is not good so we need more time to corroborate and verify. There is time since InsidePEEK believes there will be no agreement among the deadlocked council to approve a local election. So she won’t be needed for another year.

Getting back to the pressing issue that faced the Democratic Party in Peekskill – a new chairperson. Morey was challenged to find someone who was politically ambitious but willing to take his direction. He has found that person – and it is bad news for Peekskill. InsidePEEK readers who are connected to or were previously part of the local party described how Morey, and then later on Rigger, transformed the Democratic Party into a negative, partisan only and lack of progress party that changed Peekskill politics in a negative way – possibly forever. One of our readers wrote, “… we used to hold elections and even when they would get contentious, we could always come together afterward and move forward. Morey changed that.” Morey has made his living entirely in the political arena. He trained in Washington DC and brought those tactics to Peekskill. He only wanted to make a name for himself and move up the political ladder. He has done that – but at what cost to those around him and the City of Peekskill?

Finally, he has found someone in his own mirror image, a protégé who will continue in his style. His name is Terence ‘TJ’ Rogers, a 40-year-old political operative and employee of the Westchester County Board of Elections. He is not from this area and came here through his work for Congressmen John Hall. So here we go again. Get ready for more of the same.

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