Rockland’s Political Hypocrisy



Earlier this week County Legislator Frank Sparaco was charged with 38 felony counts for allegedly falsifying GOP petitions in his attempt to take over the Rockland County GOP.  His arrest followed a detailed article in Rockland Voice describing possible forgery and fraud in petitions filed with the Rockland County Board of Elections by Sparaco.

After his arraignment, senior county Democrats Stephanie Hausner and Theodore Van Nahl Collins issued statements which appeared in both the Journal News and New City Patch calling on Republican Sparaco to step down from his seat in the County Legislature.

“Frank Sparaco clearly deserves the benefit of the doubt in a court of law,” Hausner said. “However, his constituents deserve to be represented by a legislator who can focus on their needs rather than his upcoming trial. In light of the 40 charges he faces, Mr. Sparaco needs to step down“.

Collins stated:  “The 40-count indictment against Frank Sparaco is deeply disturbing, though not all that surprising in light of the sordid history of corruption on the part of his mother-in-law and former attorney. He should, obviously, resign from office immediately.”

Adlai E. Stevenson once remarked that hypocrites are the kind of politicians who would cut down a redwood tree, then mount the stump and make a speech about conservation. 

For years numerous Rockland County Democrats have genuflected to County Legislator Sparaco when he was a rising redwood in Rockland’s political thicket.  Now it is somewhat amazing that Democrats Hausner and Collins would mount Sparaco’s remaining stump to make a speech about politics in which they ask him to do them one final political favor in this time of his fall into Rockland County’s Byzantine political abyss.

Hausner and Collins would have us to believe they are concerned that the members of Sparaco’s district will not have a legislator who will be able to devote time to properly representing their views.  They suggest that Sparaco should immediately resign his seat in the Legislature so that they may fill it with a Democratic appointee.  Presumably that appointee will have plenty of time to assist Democrats Wolfe and Schoenberger in their continuing efforts to subvert the financial measures County Executive Ed Day was elected to take in returning Rockland County to fiscal sanity?

While I approve of Mr. Sparaco’s recent removal as a Town of Clarkstown employee, I would remind Hausner and Collins that his position as a County Legislator rests between him and the voters of his election district.  Those voters can certainly petition to recall him if they so wish and they will also have an opportunity to reject him as their representative at the polls in November 2015.  Being a County Legislator is a part-time job and Sparaco’s attorney will handle his criminal case. Further, any trial will likely not occur for months or even a year from now while the vote on County Executive Day’s budget proposal for the county comes in about three weeks; hence the sudden Democratic partisan rush!

It is derisive at best and disingenuous at worse for the Democrats of Rockland County to call for Legislator Sparaco to sacrifice himself on the altar of the their changing whims of self interest.  After all Sparaco put in Herculean efforts for their Party in a failed attempt to elect Democrat Legislator Ilan Schoenberger and later Democrat David Fried to the position of County Executive.  In doing so Sparaco hoped to save a multi-million dollar contract for Schoenberger’s $50,000 campaign donor, Richard Brega and his bus company’s employees.

One wonders with friends like these who Legislator Sparaco should now count along with me among his political enemies?

Collins says that because Mr. Sparaco’s mother-in-law and his former lawyer, Bronx GOP Chairman and convicted felon Jay Savino, had legal issues of their own Sparaco is unfit to serve his community.  Yet Collins fails to mention that his colleague, Councilwoman Hausner, voted to hire Mr. Savino as a Clarkstown patronage appointee despite saying that he came with “baggage” and she had concerns about his “character“.

At this year’s Independence Party ‘fundraiser and birthday bash’ for Sparaco held at Casa Mia on March 22, 2014 it was the Democrats who were predominantly in attendance.  Among the Democratic luminaries supporting Mr. Sparaco financially and hogging out on his birthday cake were Clarkstown Supervisor Gromack, Deputy Supervisor Lasker, Town Clerk Justin Sweet (winner of a illegal shotgun raffle), Legislator Ilan Schoenberger, Legislator Aney Paul, Ramapo Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence and Sheriff Falco.

Among the Republican luminaries who were absent we can name County Executive Day, Legislator Carey, and Councilman Hoehmann.

The Democrats’ call for Legislator Sparaco to step down is truthfully about only one thing – having a sufficient number of their own Party in the County Legislature that they can over-ride any Day veto and maintain Sheriff Falco’s ‘prancing patrol’.

Whatever one’s opinion might be of Frank Sparaco we all know that he will not support a tax increase above the 2% cap. The present budget presented by the County Executive adheres to the tax cap but the Democrats are still drinking the Brega and Falco ‘KoolAid‘ of broken contracts and bloated staff.

Day’s budget cuts the fat but the Democrats would love for Sparaco to step down so they can appoint another ‘Barry Kantrowitz’ to protect their veto following his defeat in the November 4th, 2014 election by Republican Lon Hofstein. Should they succeed with this ‘call of the hypocrites’ they could thus retain their wise-cracking fellow Democratic Sheriff and raise our taxes to support Brega’s immolating bus company.

A code of political honor might have required the ingrates of the Democratic Party to consider a political fundraiser for Sparaco’s mounting legal costs as he responds to the criminal charges he now faces.  But given that there is no honor among political thieves, Democratic or Republican, the former have opted to throw the latter under the wheels of a bus in an act of blatant political expediency.

[Picture Credit –]

About Michael N. Hull

Michael N. Hull has lived in Rockland County for 35 years where he writes articles on philosophy and political affairs. Hull has written over 300 articles for New City Patch and Rockland Voice. He is presently a senior editor of the Facebook page Clarkstown: What They Don't Want You To Know and a senior editor of Rockland Voice.

About the Author
Michael N. Hull has lived in Rockland County for 35 years where he writes articles on philosophy and political affairs. Hull has written over 300 articles for New City Patch and Rockland Voice. He is presently a senior editor of the Facebook page Clarkstown: What They Don't Want You To Know and a senior editor of Rockland Voice.

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