MAYOR JASMIN PULLS A SHOCKER

Spring Valley Mayor Noramie Jasmin pulled a risky political move against a critic of hers on the town board, playing live on WRCR radio an audio recording of him that he did not know she had.

The subject of her wrath was Trustee Anthony Leon, who voted down the village’s budget and harshly criticized the lawmakers for passing pay raises for the mayor and trustee positions. The mayor received an 8 percent raise, and has now upped her salary to $125,000 plus benefits, an increase of over $30,000 since she took office in 2009, and the trustees received a 20 percent raise.

Jasmin played a statement Leon had made at a meeting, in which he said he wanted to approximately double some or all trustee salaries, if they would be given more work and deal more with the public. Leon told the Rockland County Times that currently trustees do not do adequate work and do not prepare for meetings or meet enough with the public.

The mayor however portrayed Leon as being out of work and using the idea as a way to get full-employment.

It wasn’t clear where the tape of Leon came from, as it was edited to sound like something no politician would say in public. Some have questioned whether the comments were taped by Jasmin during executive session and Leon told the Rockland County this was possible. The Rockland County Times was unable to get in touch with Jasmin in time for print.

If it was taped secretly in executive session, would it be illegal to play it on the radio? Rockland County District Attorney Thomas Zugibe answered the question from the Rockland County Times; he said, no, he does not believe it would be a legal matter, but that it could be an internal administrative matter for the Spring Valley board.

Mayor Jasmin has received criticism for repeatedly raising her own salary. One of her first actions upon taking office in 2010 was to use taxpayer money to purchase a luxury SUV with all accessories valued at close to $60,000, for the mayor’s position. The previous mayor’s vehicle was around $20,000 in value.