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Sweden Town Council Distorts the Truth at Town Meeting

60 Clinton Street in Brockport
60 Clinton Street in Brockport
60 Clinton Street in Brockport

Some very strange things happened at last night’s at the Sweden Town Council meeting.

Immediately after the Pledge of Allegiance, Supervisor Rob Carges made an incredibly weak statement trying to deny that the Sweden Town Board had violated New York State’s Open Meeting law at their last meeting.

Even though this violation of the law has been clearly documented by the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, and even though the story has been picked up by other media outlets including a TV station in Buffalo, Carges had the chutzpah to say it never happened.

Rob Carges is a nice guy, but last night he sounded like a first class fool.

Carges made a fool of himself. It’s as simple as that. Since Carges is such a nice guy, you have to ask yourself, who is giving him the advice to say such stupid things?

Carges has a budding scandal on his hands and he refuses to even consider that there are consequences to breaking the law.

Truth hurts. Maybe not as much as jumping on a bicycle with a seat missing, but it hurts.
Leslie Nielsen

Sweden Town Council Meetings are usually empty. But last night the West Conference Room (town court room) was packed.

Sixteen (16) people spoke in favor of granting the 521-m tax exemption for the historic 60 Clinton Street property. No one spoke up against it.

When one town taxpayer called the Town Council to task for violating NYS law and for publically stating incorrect information about the 421-m tax exemption, Supervisor Carges rudely interrupted the taxpayer four different times, in a vain attempt to stifle the taxpayer’s constitutional right to voice his opinion to the Town Council.

That is almost always a sign that the politician has something to hide.

But the low point of the night was when council member Danielle Windus –Cook read a letter from a local college landlord, who does not have the greatest reputation for maintaining his rental properties.

Council woman Cook’s presentation was so bad, that after the meeting, one taxpayer described her as Danielle Loser-Cook.

The nickname will almost certainly stick, because after Council woman Cook read the letter from a less than reputable college landlord, she read an error-filled statement of her own about why she opposes the 421-M tax exemption for the 60 Clinton Street property.

For example, Cook inaccurately stated that the tax exemption would cost taxpayers money, when exactly the opposite is true.

The 60 Clinton Street property is currently tax-exempt because it is owned by the Greater Brockport Development Corporation, but the moment that the O’Connell Organization takes control of the property it goes back on the tax rolls.

That means the Town of Sweden’s tax revenues will immediately go up if the 421-m tax exemption passes. Sweden residents have to wonder why Cook doesn’t understand that.

Cook either failed to do her homework, or she was deliberately trying to deceive the taxpayers.

Then, in an amazingly crass display of impudence, Cook tried to support her claim by reading off a list of people who had revitalized properties in Brockport without the 421-m tax exemption. Virtually all of the people mentioned by Cook have publically expressed their support for the 421-M exemption for 60 Clinton Street.

But like Carges, Cook didn’t want to be confused by the facts.

Maybe that’s why she just earned the nickname Loser-Cook.