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Common “Cents”: A Resident Looks at the Village of Ravena’s 2014-15 Budget…And Barfs!

25 Apr

 I know most folks don’t understand government’s budgets or even their own taxes, never mind the IRS! All we do know is that we are getting screwed, and screwed royally. Whether it’s the village or the RCS CSD, we’re getting screwed. Most of us hate or don’t much care for math so budgets and auditing is boring at best! 

Not in the Ravena Budget A Resident Reports

Not in the Ravena Budget
A Resident Reports

So I will try to break it down simple like, and relate the unbelievable incompetence and waste that we can plainly see in the Village of Ravena 2014 – 2015 budget. This incompetence and waste is simply mismanagement of your local tax dollars. Your money is being crazily mismanaged by a bunch of amateurs who know only one word: SPEND. So you can see the stupidity and wasteful costs!! Let’s forget about the Ravena Health & Fitness Center for a moment. Let’s look at some things we all understand such as, telephone expenses. We all have them and can understand them! Right?! I’m picking the phone bills in the Village of Ravena budget even the new board members can understand and should have questioned it themselves; they had 2 months ! But no. They just rubber – stamped the budget and that’s that. Same old, same old, monkey business as usual! A bunch of wingnuts at work.

RAVENA BUDGET: ABSOLUTELY IRRESPONSIBLE

Description       (VOR = Village of Ravena) Budget Line Amount  
V O R justice court 1110.41 $ 2,000.00  
V O R clerk treasure office 1325.41 $ 4,500.00  
V O R Mayor’s office 1210.11 $ 500.00  
Subtotal   $ 7,000.00  
These telephones are within 30 feet of each other in same building too!  
Moving along VOR public safety 3620.41 $ 1,500.00  
VOR Fitness Center (down stairs) 7180.41 $ 1,100.00  
Subtotal   $ 2,600.00  
Other VOR other buildings / services  
V O R Central Garage (highway) 1640.41 $ 1,000.00
V O R Fire department 3410.41 $ 3,800.00
V O R Recreational Complex (pool) 7140.41 $ 300.00
V O R Park grounds (Mosher) 7110.41 $ 425.00
Subtotal   $ 5,525.00
VOR water plant* 8330.41 $2,350.00  
Grand Total for VOR telephones $ 17,475.00  
*The Ravena Water Plant is a separate fund and tax account and you can’t co-mingle those expenditures with the Ravena village administration and services; however I’m adding that expense too:  
Are You in Phone Bill Shock?

Are You in Phone Bill Shock?

So there you have it. A “magic jack” costs $19.95. a year. You can’t help but wonder: Are they calling 1-900 sex talk or something like that, or are they just plain stupid. Are they on the phone for advice from state or federal officials all the time or explaining themselves after Times Union or local TV news scandals? The costs are way OFF THE MAP! Just look at the water plant budget for phones! Who can they possibly be calling for that kind of money? Or Mosher Park where’s that telephone located? In a tree under or under some rocks, maybe? Or the fire department? Doesn’t the Ravena Fire Department usually get incoming calls? But their budget is a whopping $ 3,800.00! Who are they calling for that kind of money? It’s a freakin’ village fire department for dang sake! You would think the court would be OK for around $2000.00 (the Ravena court’s got to go!) but the clerk’s and mayor’s office for $5,000.00 when do they get their work done? And we have to consider that you’re billed for outgoing calls…

Oops I forget those Times Union Quotes of village officials when they’re caught with their panties down: “I didn’t know”. The clerk’s office must have an open line for the past 30 years to the NYS Comptroller and NYS Department of State offices or the Committee on Open Government (so that Bob Freeman can tell them not to respond to F.O.I.L. demands for information. That’s “Open Government” in NYS!) Yeah, that would explain it! But out of hundreds of telephone carriers out there and all the different discount deals, we’d like to know which one is robbing us blind? Where/when did the bidding take place?

What I find odd is there’s no postage for the court clerk’s office and water and sewer funds but there’s $8,000.00 for the village clerks alone. But that’s another story.

Or look at office supplies in the budget: the village clerk is $2,000.00 and the Ravena Health & Fitness Center office supply budget is 5000.00! What in hell is Cathy Deluca doing with office supplies? Eating them? Again, these are questions for the Office of the NYS Comptroller’s Office examiners and auditors.

Good News for Cathy D. Bad News for Ravena Taxpayers

Good News for Cathy D.
Bad News for Ravena Taxpayers

The fitness center is another horror story in itself, $28,700.00 for equipment repairs? Is that repairs to the junk equipment Bruno, Warner and Deluca paid more than $40,000 to Bob Fisk? Used equipment that cost us more than $40,000.00, and now another $28,000 on top of that? But although the Ravena Health and Fitness Center doesn’t have members to justify its existence, and despite the fact that it’s costing Ravena taxpayers more that $105,000 a year and bringing in no revenues, Cathy Deluca has plenty of time to sit in front of her computer all day long and still collect her $30,900 a year plus full benefits. Now that’s responsible stewardship of public money, isn’t it?

But the one I love is Hospitalization general fund account # 9060.88, $ 417,219.00 alone. And/also the water fund acct# 9060.88 (Yes! It’s the same account!) but money is coming out of water fund in the additional amount of $44,880.00. Again this is only hospitalization benefits! And who’s getting these benefits for almost a half – million dollars? Is this Obamacare at work or just the local crooks?

Retirement, social security , workmen’s comp, unemployment insurance, disability insurance, vacation, holidays, sick time! It’s enough to make you barf! Then there’s another $400,000.00, give or take $ 50,000 depending on “overtime”. Maybe I should start a blog and post the vouchers as they come in. and explain how you and I are getting screwed as tax payers.

$8,000 for "Towels"?!?!

$8,000 for “Towels”?!?!

Also acct # 9189.80 located under hospitalizations is $8000 for towels. TOWELS!?! YES! TOWELS!!! Eight grand for TOWELS! In the retirement fund accts area?? Are those hidden costs??? To the Fitness Center??

$54,000.00 for street lights????? Ravena I guess never heard of this invention back in the 12th century it’s “very green”, it’s called solar powered street lights, they been around a very long time and will save a penny or two.

So much for common cents.

LASZLO POLYAK
Ravena Resident & Property Owner

Ravena's Got It To Burn

Ravena’s Got It To Burn

Editor’s Comment: What we’d like to see is this: We’d like to see Mr Polyak or someone else put together a comparison of the Ravena Village figures with those of the Town of Coeymans and the Town of New Baltimore. A comparison like that would really show the stupidity and the wastefulness and irresponsibility of the Ravena 2014-15 village budget!

One thing is very clear from Mr Polyak’s analysis: Residents, taxpayers must pay more attention to these local budgets and how they’re passed without adequate diligence on the part of local elected officials and without appropriate scrutiny of the line items by the public. Judging from Mr Polyak’s analysis, the waste of taxpayer money and fiscal irresponsibility and incompetence is scandalous. It’s almost comparable to the waste and fiscal irresponsibility of the RCS Central School District budget!

Mr Polyak’s original submission was edited for publication.

“Qui tacet consentire videtur ubi loqui debuit ac potuit.”
“Silence is admission when when the accused ought to have spoken and was able to.”

Special Notice: We make every effort to be truthful, complete, fair, and balanced on this blog; therefore, if you see anything that you know to be false or incorrect, or if you have additional information to clarify any issue, please let us know by e-mailing your information or by leaving a comment. It’s very important to us that we don’t fall into the same category as those whom this blog is intended to expose. Thank you very much in advance for your coöperation and assistance.
Graphics and Images Disclosure: Unless otherwise noted and credited, all graphics used in this article are the result of a Google image search, and at the time the images were collected and used in this article, no conspicuous or visible copyright notice or other proprietary mark was shown. Please communicate any claim or corrections to rcs.confidential@gmail.com All images are used in good faith for non-profit, public information and public service purposes.

 

 
6 Comments

Posted by on April 25, 2014 in Abuse of Public Office, Accountability, Albany, Andrew Vale, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, Bitter Bob (Ross), Bob Dorrance, Bob Freeman, Bob Knighten, Bob Ross, Catherine Deluca, Catherine M. Deluca, Cathy Deluca, Claude A. Wheeles, Coeymans, Coeymans Police Department, Coeymans Town Board, Coeymans Town Budget, Committee on Open Government, Corruption, David Wukitsch, Eleanor Luckacovic, Eleanor Oldham, Eric T. Schneiderman, FBI, FBI Criminal Information System, FBI Public Corruption Squad, George Langdon, Government, Harold Warner, Hudson Valley, Incompetence, Investigation, Irresponsibility, Joan Ross, Joel Coye, John Luckacovic, Josephine P. Dority née Biscone, Josie Biscone-Bruno, Keith Mahler, Ken Burns, Kris Biernacki, Kristine Biernacki, Lazlo Polyak, Mayor Bruno, Michael Biscone, Michael J. Biscone, Misconduct, Mismanagement, Monitoring, Moose Misuraca, Nancy Biscone-Warner, Nancy Warner, New Baltimore Town Budget, New York, New York State, New York State Association of Fire Chiefs, New York State Association of Fire Chiefs, NYS Assembly, NYS Senate, Office of the Attorney General, Pete Lopez, Ravena, Ravena Centennial Celebration, Ravena Coeymans Selkirk, Ravena Elections, Ravena Fitness Center, Ravena Health and Fitness Center, Ravena News Herald, Ravena Village Board, Ravena Village Budget, Responsibility, Robert Dorrance, Robert Fisk, Robert J. Freeman, Selkirk, Smalbany, Stephen Flach, Stupidity, Thomas E. Dolan, Times Union, Tom Dolan, Transparency, Village Council, Wild Spending, William Bailey, William Misuraca

 

6 responses to “Common “Cents”: A Resident Looks at the Village of Ravena’s 2014-15 Budget…And Barfs!

  1. RavenaJoker

    April 28, 2014 at 10:20 pm

    The telephone might include internet as well. Perhaps it’s not on a different line item if they are both from State Tel. As others have said, a review of the bills will make things clear in short order. In addition, Business fiber from State Tel (yes they laid fiber in the Villages of Ravena and Coxsackie) which is 10MB up and down is around $100 a month… so that would only be $1200 to $1800 for Internet for one building. That doesn’t come close to the kind of money spent in this budget… even including a service contract for the lines inside the building and I used to do that kind of stuff….

    I bet they have some antiquated T1 which they are paying 1990’s prices for and no one has bothered to question it…. Still would like to know how they spend nearly $30K on heating oil…. I would just move into a different building if that was the case….

    Like

     
    • RCS Confidential

      April 29, 2014 at 8:29 am

      Thanks RJ:

      The problem we are facing with outrageous waste such as that represented in the Village of Ravena budget passed by the newly elected Republican majority under mayor Misuraca is this: No one seemed to care to examine the budget, to study it except for one Ravena citizen, who had sense enough to look at one expenditure item, telephones, and cry out FOUL! Why do you think that is?

      First of all, we elect these dodos to be aware, to be cautious, to have vision, to catch things like this, NOT TO RUBBER STAMP THEIR PREDECESSORS’ DEPRAVITY AND STUPIDITY!!!
      The new Ravena Republican majority has let us down on this one, single major item! Telephones! We haven’t even started to look at the office supplies, the overtime, the double-dipping, the Ravena Health and Fitness Center (no members, just a place for Cathy Deluca to dump her bottom and play on the computer! and for Nancy Warner to have her morning workout conveniently nextdoor to her office!)

      Yes, RJ, telephones are a no-brainer. There are plenty of deals out there but first someone has to care and someone has to take charge and find out why such a small village has such an extraordinary need for such expensive service. Maybe phone logs or monitoring calls by an outside agency might be a start?

      And the heating bills? The Ravena village offices don’t even occupy a whole floor! And the Ravena Health and Fitness Center doesn’t pay rent or utilities; it’s $105,000 right down the river ($30,900 at least flowing into Cathy Deluca’s deep pockets plus the little extras and for WHAT?). And the village court?

      The whole budget is a confused mess of bullshit, to be very honest. A 12-year old could have done better.

      And YES! you’re right, you have dimwits and you get dimwit products. Sorry but that’s common knowledge.

      Now we have a bartender, a hairdresser and a board of elections employee running things…Sounds like the title of a cheap movie, doesn’t it?…Add that trio to BoBo Bailey and Witch Warner and what a stew we have in Ravena Village Hall!!!

      But give them a chance. They may still shine…or sink…taking the Village of Ravena with them.

      We’ve been saying since Day One: Consolidate the Village of Ravena with the Hamlet of Coeymans, put the Village of Ravena and the Town of Coeymans in one building (maybe the same building now occupied by the village of Ravena offices, share purchasing power and resources, Consolidate the town and village court (getting rid of Hal Warner and Dodo Dardiani for starts and putting some honest justices in their place!)ELIMINATE THE COEYMANS POLICE DEPARTMENT, get the Albany County Sheriff and/or the New York State Police to put in a satellite station in the village/town hall building.

      And GET A TELEPHONE AUDIT AND RATIONALIZE THE TELEPHONE SERVICES!!!

      The Editor

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  2. laszlo polyak

    April 27, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    These facts are the line items of the Village of Ravena 2014-15 budget; the Misuraca village council just passed that budget at their last meeting. You can go on line to the Ravena web site and see for yourself or get a free copy of the budget from the village office or the town office there’s a copy there, too. You can also demand to see any and all bills, vouchers, etc. and get copies if you wish. However please have some solutions or ideas to save money.

    Laszlo Polyak

    Like

     
    • RCS Confidential

      April 27, 2014 at 4:15 pm

      Thank you, Mr Polyak for your response to “Silent” and other Ravena taxpayers who are flocking to read your report.

      You may want to thank Mayor Bill Misuraca for his first screw job as mayor. We expected this sort of incompetence from the former Mummy-Mayor but now we have a bartender for mayor; if he ran his bar this way it’d never have lasted almost 100 years! It’s sure starting to look like we’ve got another one who’s going to use the “I didn’t know!” line on us.

      We’re going to be very interested in what Misuraca has to say about passing a budget with those sorts of discrepancies. We’re particularly interested in those towels and the $28,000 spent on equipment repairs for the Fitness Center!

      Another one is the manhole covers. But we think that that’s a disguise for money spent on butt plugs needed for when they pull their heads out of their asses.

      The Editor

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  3. Silent - BUT NOT FOR LONG

    April 26, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    I would like to meet with Laszlo at my desk with these fact…. print them, them confront the Village of Ravena Board on TV with this information in May. Should we wait for the Comptroller to act on this information, we will be bankrupt. There is no way these phone bills are real !!! Towels ???? where is there a justification for 8K ??? and where are they being used.

    Laz, lets meet take some time to open the Ravena Budget…..

    Like

     
    • RCS Confidential

      April 27, 2014 at 8:48 am

      Dear “Silent”:

      Please identify yourself with your contact details in confidentiality to rcs.confidential@gmail.com. We’ll pass your contact information on to Mr Polyak and ask him to contact you directly.

      Thanks again for your comment.
      The Editor

      Like

       

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