Tempers flare over conflict of interest allegations
Mar 20, 2012 12:14 pm
Melanie Lekocevic reports in The Daily Mail on the recent clash between Coxsackie Mayor Mark Evans and former Deputy Mayor Greg Backus over questions surrounding land ownership and an alleged water deal to supply the proposed water park development on Route 9W. During a recent meeting of the Village Board, Backus revealed Evans' mother, Gina McGrath, owns one-third of the land upon which the park will sit. Evans confirmed the land is held in trust for McGrath, her brother and sister. Backus was under the impression the 103-acre parcel was owned by the IDA, "...as reported in the newspaper," he said. “Why was I misled and why was there no disclosure of who owns that property?” Backus said the mayor has a conflict of interest and should be excluded from any discussion of how water will be supplied to the park. Backus said Evans favors charging the developer a "bulk rate" for water. Backus opposed the idea, and was later shocked to learn Evans' family owned the property. Evans denied a deal was in place to provide water. He later told Lekocevic the issue is "...nothing." Tempers flared after the meeting -- Backus called the village "...a communist state;" and later Police Chief Donald Meier called Backus "an idiot." Read the full story in The Daily Mail.