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Smithtown Democrats Call for Ethics Investigation

Smithtown Town Hall. Credit Sara Walsh

Smithtown Democrats are calling for the town's ethics board to open an investigation based on findings of a Suffolk grand jury released earlier this month.

Newsday reports Smithtown Democratic Committee chairman Ed Maher, in a letter read before town board on Thursday, asked the town's ethics board to determine which officials may used a promised $40,000 tax break to pressure developers to illegally demolish the abestos-laced Nassau Suffolk Lumber and Supply Company.| read more ››

Bishop and Israel Announce $112,500 Federal Grant for Holbrook Fire District


Congressmen Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) and Steve Israel (D-Dix Hills) announced today that Holbrook Fire District has been awarded $112,500 in federal funding through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. The AFG award will allow Holbrook Fire District to purchase two new radio base stations to replace old and obsolete equipment, allowing for interoperability with several spectrums of frequencies and more effective coordination among local public safety agencies.| read more ››

Schaffer loans $200,000 to Suffolk Dems


Suffolk Democratic chairman Richard Schaffer has loaned the party $200,000 to pay withholding taxes for hundreds of paid canvassers who got out the vote for Steve Bellone's election as county executive in November.

Schaffer tapped personal savings for two no-interest loans -- $150,000 on Dec. 23 and another $50,000 on Jan. 9, the day before the $158,321 payment of the state and federal taxes. The loans were disclosed in the Suffolk Democratic Committee's Jan. 15 campaign finance report.

"I had $211,000 in savings," said Schaffer. "Now I have $11,000 left."

Schaffer said he only became aware of the potential tax liability when the party hired an expert to handle processing and payments for the 650 canvassers, who made calls and knocked on doors to get Democratic supporters to the polls.| read more ››