Sunday, June 16, 2019


The following letter was published in this week’s issue of the Gazette.

To the Editor:

Trustee Olver has made it clear that he favors the rhetorical device of the “straw man argument,” as several of his recent letters to this paper have employed this strategy, including his letter last week. Instead of addressing the actual points made by a critic, Trustee Olver prefers to make up a fictionalized version of a critic’s statements that he can then attack. It’s not honest, but it can be convincing and it’s certainly easier than dealing with the facts.

Trustee Olver says that as an attorney, I should know how to “time” my FOIL requests so that I can receive timely responses, and scolds me for insinuating some kind of malfeasance by the Village Clerk in response to my “rush” FOIL request. The FOIL request in question, which sought the public release of documents from the “Municipal Place Gateway and North Riverside Neighborhood Zoning Working Group” was submitted to the village on March 22, 2019, which was the day after the evening meeting on March 21 when this group’s existence was revealed to the public. I suppose I could have whipped out my phone while sitting in the Harmon Firehouse to compose my FOIL request that very evening, but to do so seemed both rude and unlikely to prompt any faster response than sending my request the next business day.

What, exactly, was wrong with my “timing” of my FOIL request, Trustee Olver?

I have now been waiting almost three months for documents that Trustee Olver, Trustee Gallelli and Trustee Simmons have stated will show no plans and no discussions about plans to rezone the North Riverside area. As I asked in my earlier letter, if these statements by our public officials are true, then why is the village taking more than three months to decide whether to even make these documents public, and why will they not release any of them until after the only scheduled public meeting on the rezoning issue?



  1. Ask the Village Clerk! She's responsible for FOILs...both acceptance and rejection! There are rules regarding the time to respond and appeal to the Village Board. There is also a NYS official in Albany who helps to interpret the rules but his interpretation is used by the Board of Trustees and there is no appeal once he renders a decision. A higher level of appeal is needed!

    1. In response to Roseann Schuyler’s efforts over the past 3 months, the village has now released documents regarding the Zoning Working Group. Croton United is processing the 66+ megabytes of files and will soon post them so that all residents can read them. In the meantime, below are plans for the development of the Katz property from a handout for a Zoning Working Group meeting on February 21, 2019. We assume the colored drawing is the preferred design and the other three are alternatives with different building and parking area layouts. TYPE THIS LINK INTO YOUR BROWSER TO SEE THE MAPs/drawings at present