OneLyons Appeal – Dismissed as moot

4th Dept Appeals Decision Bailey v Lyons

OneLyons has released the following press release to the media:  4th Dept Appeals Decision Bailey v Lyons PRESS RELEASE.

OneLyons is very disappointed in the decision, but have been affirmed by the overwhelming vote of the community that had the courage to speak up and vote twice!  As we noted, it is now up to the legislature and governor to fix the problems with this law and not defer heavily to the financial and political clout of NYCOM and entrenched politicians.

We encourage the community to monitor and stay engaged with both the town and village to make your voice heard during the remainder of the dissolution process.  The website is www.villageoflyons.com .  The Town has been holding meetings on Wednesday evenings and those meetings are completely open to the public.

Similar Petitions to Lyons case thrown out in Seneca Falls, In Lyons process moves forward with Town.

The Town of Lyons is looking for citizen engagement and attendance at it’s regular and work shop meetings.  Please consider your assistance to this process.

OneLyons observed with interest the Seneca Falls court case listed below.  The Judge in that case threw out the petitions for the exact same reasons OneLyons challenged here before Honorable John Nesbitt.  We look forward to reviewing the full case and commenting further later.

OneLyons pending Appeal before the Appellate 4th department is due Friday May 9, 2014 and will be updated when we have results to share.

http://www.fltimes.com/news/article_097383f6-d20b-11e3-b5ec-0019bb2963f4.html -

Judge voids Seneca Falls petitions calling for vote on town hall
project funds
By DAVID L. SHAW dshaw@fltimes.com | Posted: Friday, May 2, 2014 11:04 am
SENECA FALLS — Acting State Supreme Court Justice Patrick Falvey has thrown out the petitions calling for a referendum on the
Town Board’s decision to transfer $2.55 million so that it can pay for a new town building.
In Yates County Court Thursday, Falvey upheld two of the technical objections to the petitions listed in a complaint filed by Town
Board member Chad Sanderson.
Falvey explained that the flaws which made the petitions void, according to state election law and town law, were:
The wording of the preamble or heading of the petition did not include words that the signers attest that the addresses listed opposite
the signatures were accurate.
• The witnesses to the signatures did not attest that he or she physically observed the signers put their names and addresses on the
petition.
Arguing for Sanderson, who was not present, was attorney Steven Getman of Ovid. Getman said “active participation in government is
admirable, but you must follow the law to give the petitions power.”
He cited court cases to support the five reasons Sanderson said the petitions should be voided.
Petition drive organizers Joyce Brady and Susan Sauvageau appeared without an attorney. Sauvageau, with Brady’s consent, argued
against the objections and in favor of allowing the vote of 350 town resident to be meaningful.
“We feel the petitions clearly ask for voters to vote on this important matter,” Sauvageau said.
She told Falvey that she consulted town law and election law in preparing the petitions and failed to find any specific models or
guidelines for a referendum petition.
“I believe we substantially complied with the law. The addresses were opposite the signatures,” she said, arguing that they should not be
thrown out on technicalities when the meaning and intent was clear.5/2/2014 Judge voids Seneca Falls petitions calling for voteontownhall project funds – Finger Lakes Times: News
http://www.fltimes.com/news/article_097383f6-d20b-11e3-b5ec-0019bb2963f4.html?mode=print 2/2
Seneca Falls Town Attorney Patrick Morrell and Town Clerk Nicaletta Greer attended Thursday’s proceeding. Morrell took no specific
position on the objections or the petitions, speaking only to the issue of service of court papers on the town.
Afterward, Brady said the desire of 350 people to have input into the use of taxpayer money was being rejected by the ruling.
“These are technicalities a layman could not understand,” Sauvageau said, adding that an Albany-area attorney, Frank Hoare, may be
retained to file an appeal. “A lot of time and effort went into these petitions.
“It’s disappointing. There was a lot of interest and far more signatures than were required were obtained. It was a true bipartisan effort.”
Sauvageau said once the Town Board transfers money from a reserve fund to the general fund, voters won’t have a say in the use of that
money.
Brady and Sauvageau said the Town Board could do the right thing and schedule a referendum on its own, but both doubted that would
happen.
Getman said Sanderson spent his own money to save the town the cost of staging a permissive referendum.
“I see this as a win for the taxpayers of Seneca Falls,” Getman said. “The town has conducted this process in an open manner.”
While the board has decided to build a new town hall, officials continue working on the design. They have narrowed the locations to a
town-owned parcel on Ovid Street and the privately owned former Westcott Rule Co. at the corner of Spring and East Bayard streets.
The board says the $2.55 million it wants to transfer into the general fund will cover the cost of the building

Moving Lyons Forward!

Final Vote:  519 (60%) YES – UNITE / 353 (40%) NO

The voters of the Village of Lyons have voted a second time by a significant margin for the dissolution of the village government and unification of the Village with the Town of Lyons. It is now time for our Town and Village officials to work together for a coordinated and smooth transition for unification that will benefit our whole Lyons community by January 1, 2016.

OneLyons plans to stay engaged in this process and looks forward to serving the community in anyway we can. We would like to thank all of those who guided and supported us in this long process to bring tax relief and fairness to the Lyons community.

May God bless the efforts of all who seek and work for the health, vitality and prosperity of the whole Lyons community now and in future years.
– OneLyons

Initial Vote Results = 165 Vote Margin YES to dissolve.

We are cautiously optimistic about the initial results.  The initial results show 783 Ballots were cast with 474 Yes, 309 No.  That is a margin of 165 votes, or 61%.  There will be a hand count audit tomorrow by the Board of Elections, and an audit of the Absentee Ballots on Thursday.  We look forward to receiving the final results.  We believe this was an informed ballot, and we look forward to working with the Village and the Town in moving forward in this process.  A more formal press release will be released after the Absentee Ballots are counted and certified on Thursday.

As we move forward, we ask everyone to review our initial VISION STATEMENT and help us work to achieve that as we now come together to engage our Village and Town Officials to begin the process of dissolution and working to re-unite our community:

Our vision is to create a community where taxes are reasonable and fairly shared, restrictions on business development and personal property are reasonable and as minimal as possible, and the government that represents us is responsive to us and treats us equally and fairly. We believe that Lyons is a community that encompasses all of the village and town of Lyons.  Dissolving the village of Lyons will not result in the loss of our history, heritage, culture, or common beliefs.  The benefits of a unified government may better prepare our community to attract businesses and citizens to live here.  We will have one set of zoning rules, codes, and laws that are predictable and not overly burdonsome.  We will have a more equitable distribution of costs that will benefit everyone as they tend to be more involved in the process of government.  Our public services will be unified in purchasing and efficiency, thus eliminating waste that hurts those on fixed budgets.  Together, we can unite under one government and work to solve our issues.

Village of Lyons – $3 savings on a $50,000 home in 2014 versus $460 for dissolving…. and still losing 24 out of every 100 gallons of water purchased…

The Fingerlakes Times reported the Village plans to save taxpayers $0.06 per $1,000 assessment for 2014The dissolution plan calls for$9.21 per $1,000 savings starting in 2015 if we vote YES.  NYCOM told us 9/25/2012 that there is a guaranteed savings of $4.78 per $1,000 assessed because that’s the amount we subsidize the town taxpayers and would be removed.

For a $50,000 assessed home, the Village plans to save you $3 in 2014.  Dissolution would save you $460.50 starting in 2015.  The Alternatives to Dissolution pushed by the Village depend upon them following their promises and would save $87.

The Village of Lyons has released it’s required annual Water Report for 2013:  Village of Lyons Water Report for 2013       Results show we are still losing 24 per 100 gallons of water purchased, for a total calculated loss of 28,532,000 gallons in 2013.   If this was a residential or commercial customer in the village, the 1st 5,000 Gallons were covered in the basic charge, the rest would have cost $199,689.  The village doesn’t post what our cost to buy the water per gallon is, so can we assume that Lyons lost almost $200,000 in preventable loss due to our poor infrastructure in 2013?

The advertisements from the “Save Lyons” group remind taxpayers that we all know what our taxes will remain if we vote no….  we will be one of the highest taxed villages in the USA, and the highest in Wayne County.

Voting YES gives us a definite savings of close to $5 per $1,000 and a real chance to truly change our future and come together to address the issues in our community and make it a sustainable place to live and have business in.

 

If you could save $460 or $87, which would you choose? The solution is dissolution!!!!!

OneLyons 1st Mailer 20140001   – Our mailer we sent out.  Dissolution IS the Solution!

Why should individual property owners, residents, and tenants in the Village of Lyons consider a YES vote on March 18?  How much savings are we actually talking?  At the $9.21 per $1,000 savings projected by the Village of Lyons Board of Trustees in our current dissolution plan, a homeowner assessed at $50,000 would save $460 per year.  That’s the equivalent of 115 gallons of gasoline priced at $4 per gallon.  What else could that homeowner use that $ for?  Heating homes?  Groceries?  Rent or Mortgage?  Prescriptions?

Further, ask yourself if history supports the promises that the Village Board would follow through and save $1.74 per $1,000 by adopting the Alternatives to Dissolution?  The Alternatives to Dissolution would save taxpayers a whopping $87 per year for a $50,000 assessed home!

If this dissolution vote fails – what motivation would there be for the Village to change it’s behavior and push for efficiencies?  Why would they now start obeying the Open Meetings and Freedom of Information Laws?  Do you think the secrecy of Executive Sessions, Special Meetings, and Arbitrary Enforcement of Laws and Codes will change for the better if this dissolution vote fails?

OneLyons invites the community to educate themselves ahead of the planned vote on March 18.  Here is the dissolution plan originally adopted by the Lyons Village Board:

dissolution_plan of Village of Lyons 2014

Here’s the amendments they ultimately made to that original plan on November 4, 2013:     Village of Lyons Dissolution Plan 2014 Addendum

Here’s the original 2011 Savings and Consolidation Study performed by CGR which the Village ignored and led to the dissolution push.  Lyons – Final Report – Updated 12-23-11

http://www.empirecenter.org/AboutUs//EmpireIdeas/2014/02/empireideasstreamlining.cfm – Overview of how taxpayers and citizens can work with local governments to save $.

Please contact us on our webpage form if there’s more information you want but don’t see here!

Please consider a YES vote March 18 – Tell your friends and neighbors.  Remember to check out our other pages here for more information.

 

 

 

OneLyons Votes No on Appeal, commits to March 18 Ballot.

OneLyons has voted on whether to appeal Judge Nesbitt’s decision.  The group is distraught and conflicted about how the integrity of the process was compromised, and that the Court deferred greatly to the village government.  However, the group also felt strongly in the prinicple of the ballot and ultimately decided to leave this to the people of Lyons.  Time to send a message.  Vote March 18, 2014 from Noon-9pm at the Lyons VFW.

The group had deliberated over the last 3 days, a final tally was taken last night.  It was a difficult and tight vote that really caused some anguish within the group.  We are 100% unified in concern and dismay with the Village Government’s behavior and ethics during this and the Supreme Court’s uncompromising deference towards local governments.  Our research post court case revealed that because Town Law was modified in 2009, Acting Judge Nesbitt was correct in his ruling that our cited case law regarding the missing pre-amble did not qualify for GML 17-A.  However, we did discover that the strict compliance standards regarding witness statements, duplicate signatures, non-village resident’s signing, and people witnessing their own signatures were still valid reasons to overturn the petitions and overturn the Village Clerk’s certification.  We discovered that using only the strict grounds of standing law and case law 143 signatures would be overturned, and if we used the exact parameters the clerk used on our petition in August of 2012 then over 180 signatures would have been invalidated.

Thus, in our reviews of the Court’s decision we fail to understand how justice was achieved in this case and believe it falls back upon the people of Lyons to decide for themselves whether the process had integrity and the case was worthy.

The consensus among our group was that this fight is not just ours to carry forever and Appealing on principle may serve to alienate the very people this fight is actually for.  We felt a clear majority needed to affirm an Appeal, not just a simple majority.   We’re fighting for the taxpayers of Lyons and for transparent government ran with integrity.  For our group, the last stand will be March 18, 2014.  We now turn this over to the residents of the Village of Lyons to decide their futures.

Court Decision in – Court defers to Village, decides lack of evidence to overturn.

Late on Februrary 20, 2014 members of OneLyons received the Court Decision of Acting Supreme Court Judge John Nesbitt to our Article 78 Proceeding filed January 6, 2014.

ONELYONS press release Feb 21 2014

Nesbitt Decision Bailey,DeWolf vs Clerk and Board Feb 190001

More information to be posted in the coming weeks, stay tuned!  Thank you for your support, please consider your own letter to the editor.  Help us help you, educate your friends and neighbors and send them to this page for further information.

 

 

 

OneLyons affirms integrity of the process is critical – takes Village to Court again

<Updates below>

Read the actual text of GML 17A HERE: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/nycode/GMU/17-A/3

OneLyons Jan 4 2014 Petition Exhibits D E F G0001  ***Compare and contrast these two certifications, do you find a difference in how they were certified?   Is it reasonable to question bias and ethical conflict in interest as a possible cause?  Is it reasonable to challenge that different criteria was applied?***

Brief recap:  On December 18, 2013 ‘Save the Village of Lyons’ Representative Connie Rios submitted a petition with over 600 signatures to Village Clerk Denise Darcangelis.  On December 20, 2013 OneLyons Leader Jack Bailey learned of the petition, obtained a copy, and filed a Notice of Intent to dispute the validity of signatures on the second petition.  The Village Clerk, upon returning from Christmas Break on the morning of December 26, formally certified the petition at question.  On December 30, 2013 Jack Bailey and Andrew DeWolf of OneLyons submitted formal objections to the certification with 66 pages of exhibits explaining.  The Village of Lyons never responded to OneLyons, and instead informed the community via the media that they would speed up the process and get this to a vote, and the only method OneLyons retained to seek review of the validity of the petition was to take the Village to court again.  Further, the Village Clerk Denise Darcangelis REFUSED to provide a copy of the formal certification until Friday January 3, 2014 after the village set a special meeting to speed the process up.

On January 6, 2014 OneLyons moved via order to show cause and sought via Civil Practice Law and Rules Article 78 proceeding to have the court review the legality and validity of the petition submitted, whether there was any potential fraud involved, and whether the Village Clerk ethically and legally compromised her position and the certification process by using different standards of review for the 1st and 2nd petitions, as well as her having personally signed the 2nd petition.

On January 9, 2014 Supreme Court Judge John Nesbitt signed an Order to Show cause commanding petitioners and respondents to appear before him on January 14, 2014 at 1100hrs and be prepared to argue the validity of this case.

We will be scanning and uploading the actual legal copies in the next few days, until then go to our DETAILED INFORMATION page above, and all filings for both cases will be placed there for review.

<Update 1/10/2014>  The FingerLakes Times reports that the Village of Lyons held a Special Meeting last night, accepted the Certification of the Clerk, and set a referendum date of March 18.  This was after they were served with an Order to Show cause that they must appear to answer the OneLyons petition of January 4, 2014.

At all parts of this process, the Village has chosen their own behavior, including how they interact with the public and how they have chosen to speed this process up instead of let it play out to show they acted with integrity.  The behavior speaks volumes.

<Update 1/18/2014>  The final papers in the current case Bailey,DeWolf vs. Village of Lyons Board of Trustees and Village Clerk have been filed.  Our goal here is to protect a legal vote of the general electorate on November 6, 2012 from being overturned by what we believe is a fraudulent petition that is fraught with illegalities.  As we noted, and will illustrate to everyone shortly, the Village Clerk used two different sets of rules for certifying the petition she signed, versus ours.  Such is not how we expect our government to behave and continues to exemplify the behavior we’ve been railing against.  Our understanding is that Honorable Supreme Court Judge Nesbitt will have 30 days to decide the case and notify us of his decision.  Due to the volume of papers submitted and our limitation in scanning capabilities, we’ve been much slower in getting all of this scanned and up for review.  We will be working on uploading all papers from both sides to the special Court Case page under our detailed information page.   

 

Appellate Division declines to dismiss case, orders it to continue

Reply to appellate motion to dismiss for Dec2 2013

Appellate 4th Denial to dismiss 1208130001

OneLyons court case against the Village of Lyons cleared a major hurdle on December 6, 2013.  The Appellate Court ruled against the Village of Lyons and ordered the parties to prepare for Oral arguments.

In order to succeed and achieve this stunning threshold “win,” 5 of the 10 Appellate Judges ruled the case had enough merit to proceed forward for a full Appellate Court review, but that they would still consider arguments from the Village on why it should be dismissed on moot grounds.

OneLyons is pleased that the Court affirmed that there is merit in the case and that it should be heard by the full Appellate Court of 10 justices.  The case is scheduled for full review in April, with a decision expected in May 2014.

Review full case HERE:  http://www.onelyons.com/wordpress/?page_id=677