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Sanitary district problems deeper than Sandy
(Page 5 of 5)
Herald File Photo
The Oceanside Sanitary District 7 headquarters on Mott Street in Oceanside.

One woman with “close ties to the sanitary district” and who asked not to be identified because of a fear of retribution said this week, “not only have things not changed, but they have gotten worse.” She charged that workers have not received a new contract or raises in three years, while supervisors such as Scarlata continue to receive raises and that the union that represents the workers, Local 854 of the Teamsters Union, has done nothing to help the workers.

“Men who have worked for decades for the district and who work 28 to 35 hours a week earn $35,000 a year,” she said. “They get no breaks during the day and have to work in stifling hot trucks because the supervisors took the air conditioners out of the trucks to save money on fuel, while the supervisors all got new, air-conditions pick-up trucks. At the same time, Scarlata earns “a six-figure salary” and foreman earn nearly $100,000.”

After attempting for a week to speak with Jerome Cline, the district’s attorney, the Herald filed a freedom of information request seeking a copy of the district’s budget, a list of commissioners and copies of all consultant contracts that the district has with outsider, On Thursday, July 11, Cline did fax a two-page budget summary and the names of the five commissioners to the Herald. The sanitary district serves 13,000 households in Oceanside and small portions of Baldwin and East Rockaway. It also serves 950 commercial businesses and has an annual budget of about $8.65 million.

Sanitary Board members are paid $7,500 a year and receive medical benefits, according to Hempstead Town officials. The average homeowner pays about $600 in district taxes.


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Instead of spending time re-reporting on an audit report from over four years ago, it would be much appreciated if the Herald would cover the countless number of community events that occur every week.

Thursday, July 18, 2013 | Report this

As far as the part of your story that is not a mere rehashing of the comptroller's report from 4 years ago, it would be prudent to not rely on "anonymous" sources. If would be great if you could confirm that this source does not stand to gain any economic benefit, whether personal or through a family member, from the comments on the worker's pay. If the person does stand to gain economically, I would imagine that it would be proper protocol to disclose any such personal benefit.

Friday, July 19, 2013 | Report this

How does one read this article and arrive at the conclusion that the problem lies not with a system in which these transgressions have occurred, but in those who pointed out that they occurred? The greed and self-interest of the Sanitation District's leadership has been sufficiently proven. Your accusations against a whistleblower, however, require some kind of validation or evidence in order to be taken seriously or even casually investigated.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013 | Report this

The sanitation responded to Superstorm Sandy in a way that was practical and appropriate. There was no way for anyone to have predicted the destruction this storm would cause the after effects it would have on garbage removal. Oceanside sanitation was absolutely fantastic on my block and went above and beyond what we ever expected. I am shocked whenever I see people reporting about the terrible job they did in the aftermath of the storm. They couldn't collect a half of block's worth of garbage without the trucks filling up. Yes, it took a long time for the collections, but given the circumstances that should have been expected.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013 | Report this

DA Rice should start an investigation into the corruption. Heads and pensions should roll starting at the top.

Another waste of tax payer money for a special district that does nothing special.

Looks like the commission gave them carte blanche to do whatever they want.

I'm sure nothing has changed in 4 years.

Thursday, July 25, 2013 | Report this
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