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For the latest news, see the St. Paul's Sentinel Newsletter

News Stories:
July 11, 2006 - Court Ruling Reveals Trustees' Deception
June 6, 2006 - Committee to Save St. Paul's Conducts Tour
May 17, 2006 - Lawsuit Uncovers Shameless Deception by Village Officials
January 12, 2006 - What's Behind the St. Paul's Private Development Plan?

St. Paul's Lawsuit Uncovers Shameless Deception by Village Officials
May 17, 2006

To Our Fellow Residents:

The December 15 Presentation Was a Charade
The continuing saga over the future fate of St. Paul’s took a strange twist recently, when the Village obtained a temporary injunction that prohibits us from disclosing documentary evidence of outrageous acts of public deception. As part of our lawsuit challenging the Village’s plan to illegally market the sale of St. Paul’s without state legislative approval, our attorneys obtained a series of documents from the Village’s consultant, K. Backus, which included an appraisal report (in December they said publicly they didn’t know the value of the property), a private presentation made to the Board in November (with an intended plan very different from the one presented publicly), and a group of emails that immediately preceded the public presentation made in December. These emails clearly show that certain officials intentionally concealed critical information from the public. We had these documents in our possession for nearly 3 weeks before the Village realized that they contained information that was extremely embarrassing to them.

The Village Tries to Cover Its Tracks
The Village then went back to court and obtained the temporary injunction by claiming, remarkably, that its effort to sell St. Paul’s might be compromised if developers learned the contents of these documents, even though the Village hired the consultant specifically to provide recommendations from a developer’s perspective. In legal papers, our attorneys are seeking to vacate the temporary injunction. The public has an overriding interest in knowing the details of the consultants’ reports, their recommendations, and the Village’s actual development plans. The Board, in contrast, wants to keep them secret precisely because they know the information is politically embarrassing and would provoke an adverse public reaction.

What Are They Hiding?
Although we have been effectively muzzled and cannot disclose the content of these documents at this time, the public has a right to know that the Village is concealing some very important facts respecting the feasibility (or lack thereof) of the planned condominium development they presented in public, the current market value of the property, and the true opinion of their paid consultant concerning the size, height and bulk of likely new and additional construction they never showed us. Of course, look for them now to make the preposterous claim that they were hiding this information from developers, not the public!

Bait-and-Switch Tactics
This act of concealment is particularly troubling since our elected officials are ostensibly representing the residents of our Village. Regrettably, as part of a classic "bait and switch," some on the Board are attempting to persuade us to go along with, under false pretenses, a plan for the site that is a charade for much more extensive development that they’ll tell us about later. In this context, the consultants are merely paid accomplices in an outrageous deception by the Board that will ultimately benefit some private developer. In the end, the residents will be the losers.

Speak Up. Get Involved.
As law abiding citizens, we really cannot comment on these facts any further, but we urge concerned residents to continue to ask pointed questions of our Village officials (representatives is hardly appropriate), and to demand a fuller explanation of the development plan that the Village is currently marketing to the development community.

Committee to Save St. Paul's / P.O. Box 7642 / Garden City, New York 11530-0731
©2006 Committee to Save St. Paul's