The Democratic candidates for Supervisor and Town Council reacted today to a stunning proposal by developers that would annex large sections of the Town of North Greenbush, some 48 taxable parcels, to Rensselaer. The court action comes on top of an earlier annexation of land to Rensselaer approved in a 3-2 vote by the Republican Majority which resulted in the loss of substantial tax revenue to our town. It also left the town with nothing in return as the “promised” 4 million dollars in State Aid disappeared with the land.
“The seriousness of this move cannot be understated”, said Supervisor candidate Mark Evers. It has become clear that development interests are financing the current town board majority’s campaign and now those interests are planning to further erode our tax base by taking some of the most valuable real estate in North Greenbush and DeFreestville and move it to Rensselaer where they apparently feel they can get the blank check they need to build whatever pleases them.
Town Board candidates Alan Michaels and Ernie Kern agreed and expressed their concern that the current Board Majority and town attorney are incapable of waging the vigorous legal opposition necessary to stop this land grab. Michaels noted that one of the developers involved in this court action, Oak Hill, LLC donated $2,500 to the so called Victory Committee which is funding the Town GOP campaign. The other party to the court action, the Gallogly brothers, are working with Nigro Development to build a large mall at the controversial 4 & 43 intersection. Nigro is listed on Board of Election records as having donated $900.00 to the GOP victory committee.
Michaels, an attorney, continued with his concern that the current Board Majority and their appointed town attorney, cannot be expected to take thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from these developers and then after years of promoting their plans while dividing our town government from its residents in DeFreestville, turn around and vigorously defend the town’s interests in court.
“It’s pretty clear there is a conflict of interest here and that North Greenbush needs a Town Attorney who hasn’t been spending the last two years fighting for these developers at public expense and now be expected to fight against these benefactors to the political campaign of the candidates whose votes keep her in her job”, stated Michaels. He noted that the current town attorney was directly involved in creating the scheme that attempted to deny people their voting rights in DeFreestville by setting up elaborate and illegal buffers around the illegally rezoned property at the 4 & 43 intersection that Nigro wants to develop with a mall. These buffers were struck down by a State Supreme Court Judge who also ruled the re-zoning by the GOP Majority to be illegal.