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After delay, Greene County legislators vote to spend $28.8 million on building

Nov 22, 2023 1:03 am

Andrea Macko reports in Porcupine Soup that after a delay, a special meeting, and opposition from five legislators, Greene County agreed to spend $28.8 million on a new building for judges and lawyers next to the county courthouse in Catskill. Republicans Thomas Hobart, Matthew Luvera, Jay Lucas, Michael Bulich, and Democrat Harry Lennon all voted against the spending. Hobart delayed the vote from last week's original meeting. He objects to New York's Office of Court Administration being included in the building he says is meant for Greene County use. Hobart said, “I believe there are things that haven’t been brought forth… I want to see justification of the space we want utilized [for the district attorney and public defender] and possibly leave the whole Court Administration out, not building this entire building.” The special meeting was not held for the public under democratic standards of transparency. Instead, legislators met secretly for 25 minutes in executive session and then voted. The public could not comment, nor learn why the legislators were acting the way they were. All they saw was a seven-to-five vote in favor of spending the taxpayer money. The funds will be spent on contractors from outside Greene County. The building will be 16,000-square-foot with three stories, including a ground level parking garage.

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