Former Greenburgh Asssitant High School Principal Sentenced to 1 to 3 years for Embezzling $794,865 from Teachers Union Fund

WPCNR WHITE PLAINS LAW JOURNAL. From the Office of the Westchester District Attorney. October 19, 2016:

Acting Westchester County District Attorney James A. McCarty announced Wednesday that


Frank Gluberman (DOB 08/16/47) of 47 Waters Edge, Congers, New York was sentenced today to one to three years in state prison after previously pleading guilty to:

  • one count of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class “C” Felony.

The defendant also paid full restitution to the victims in the amount of $794,865.19.

Gluberman was an the Assistant Principal at Woodlands High School in the Hamlet of Hartsdale and former Treasurer of the Greenburgh Teacher’s Federation (GTF) and the Greenburgh Teacher’s Welfare Fund.

The GTF Welfare Fund receives taxpayer money, which is negotiated by the GTF, to pay for benefits such as dental, optical and legal services for school teachers and administrators of the school district.

Over a period of seven years, from 2006 to 2013, the defendant wrote checks to himself from the Greenburgh Teacher’s Fund checking account and GTF Welfare Fund totaling $794,865.19.

The defendant forged the signature of the president of the GTF, as he needed dual signature authorization to make payments.

The checks written by the defendant were to himself, his two daughters, and to pay property taxes on two homes that he owns.

The larceny came to light when in September 2012, the defendant was promoted to Assistant Principal and had to relinquish his position as the treasurer of the union funds.

Greenburgh Police and the District Attorney’s office were contacted and initiated an investigation.



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WPCNR FBI WIRE. From the Southern District of New York. October 18, 2016:

Projects Included the Empire State Building, Brooklyn Navy Yard, Bronx Terminal Market, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and New York University

Early Monday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York (the Office) filed fraud charges in Brooklyn federal court against Plaza Construction LLC, successor to Plaza Construction Corp. (Plaza Construction), one of the largest construction firms in New York City.

Plaza Construction is charged with mail and wire fraud conspiracy for improperly billing its clients more than $2.2 million over a thirteen-year period for hours not worked and for inserting a hidden surcharge into its bills for the purpose of obtaining payments to offset administrative costs.

As a result, Plaza Construction has entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the Office in which it admitted to fraudulently overbilling clients and agreed to pay more than $9 million in restitution to victims, and forfeiture and penalties to the federal government.  The company has additionally instituted far-reaching corporate reforms designed to eliminate future problems and enforce best industry practices.

Today’s deferred prosecution agreement marks the fourth resolution by the Office aimed at rooting out fraud in the construction industry.

In April 2012, Lend Lease (US) Construction LMB Inc. (formerly Bovis Lend Lease LMB Inc.) was charged with defrauding its clients, entered into a deferred prosecution agreement, and paid $56 million in restitution and penalties for engaging in a ten-year overbilling scheme.

In May 2015, Hunter Roberts Construction Group, LLC entered into a non-prosecution agreement and agreed to pay more than $7 million in restitution and penalties for engaging in an eight-year fraudulent overbilling scheme.

In December 2015, Tishman Construction Corporation was charged with defrauding its clients, entered into a deferred prosecution agreement, and paid more than $20 million in restitution and penalties for engaging in a ten-year overbilling scheme.

The charges and disposition were announced by Robert L. Capers, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; Michael Nestor, Inspector General, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ); William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI); Carol Fortine Ochoa, Inspector General, General Services Administration (GSA), Office of Inspector General; Scott S. Dahl, Inspector General, U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Office of Inspector General; and Mark G. Peters, Commissioner, New York City Department of Investigation (DOI).

“For more than a decade, Plaza Construction overbilled its clients by charging them for unworked time and by fraudulently inserting a hidden surcharge to help offset its administrative costs.  By doing so, the company defrauded its clients and abused the trust placed in it to provide construction services at some of New York’s most storied sites.  Today’s criminal charges and resolution, the fourth resolution in this area, demonstrate our steadfast efforts in combating and eliminating fraud in New York City’s construction industry,” stated U.S. Attorney Capers.  Mr. Capers thanked the investigative agencies for their outstanding commitment and dedication over the course of this multi-year industry investigation.

“Plaza’s conduct that perpetuated an industry-wide fraud for more than a decade has come to an end.  Government contracting agencies, and private clients alike, deserve to be billed strictly for what they bargained for, not duped into overpaying for gratuitous or phantom services.  Responsible for overseeing one of the largest government contracting agencies in the region, the Port Authority Office of Inspector General will continue to uproot fraud and corruption within the area’s construction industry,” stated PANYNJ Inspector General Nestor.  Mr. Nestor thanked his law enforcement partners for their dedication and professionalism in investigating these practices.

“Fraudulent business practices put consumers, employees, and other industry competitors at a significant disadvantage.  Trust, once broken, is difficult to restore.  Companies, no matter how large or small, are reminded to exercise due diligence in alerting authorities about crimes of this nature.  We, along with our partners, take crimes of fraud seriously, and we will continue to seek justice to the full extent of the law,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney.

“Plaza Construction used deceitful practices to bilk the American taxpayers.  The GSA OIG is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to hold accountable contractors who defraud the United States,” said GSA Inspector General Ochoa.

“Plaza Construction defrauded their clients by charging them for work that was not performed and by charging them prohibited fees.  Today’s resolution holds Plaza accountable for their actions and deters those who would contemplate similar misconduct in the future.  We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to vigorously pursue fraud in the construction industry that has a negative impact on the American workforce,” stated DOL Inspector General Dahl.

DOI Commissioner Peters said, “These fraudulent overbilling schemes involved some of the highest profile construction projects in New York City, driving up costs, exploiting overtime, and siphoning millions of dollars in unearned, ill-gotten gains.  DOI will continue to work with its law enforcement partners to expose and stop this type of corruption, and ensure construction sites and companies are following the rules and operating lawfully.”

The Overbilling Scheme

As alleged in the felony information, Plaza Construction engaged in a fraudulent overbilling scheme that impacted a number of its projects for at least a thirteen-year period.  These projects included the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Bronx Terminal Market, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, New York University, and Empire State Building.

Plaza Construction’s role on construction projects was typically that of a construction manager, which often required it to supply workers from certain trade unions and to supervise the work done by subcontractors or trade contractors.  From at least 1999 through approximately February 2012, Plaza Construction submitted bills to clients, including government contracting and funding agencies, that contained numerous false statements and material misrepresentations and omissions.  From August 2004 through February 2012, Plaza Construction systemically inserted a hidden surcharge in its bills to clients that was specifically prohibited and secretly generated additional revenue to offset certain administrative costs.

Additionally, from at least 1999 until 2009, Plaza Construction also billed its clients for hours not worked by labor foremen from Local 79 Mason Tenders’ District Council of Greater New York and carried out this fraudulent overbilling by: (a) allowing labor foremen to be absent from work for major holidays and certain vacation days; (b) providing between five and seven hours of guaranteed overtime per day, whether worked or not, for a particular senior labor foreman; and (c) adding one to two hours of unworked or unnecessary “guaranteed” overtime per day to the time sheets for certain labor foremen.  In furtherance of this overbilling scheme, Plaza Construction completed and submitted time sheets to its clients as though the labor foremen had actually worked.

The Deferred Prosecution Agreement

Pursuant to the deferred prosecution agreement filed today, Plaza Construction accepted responsibility for its fraudulent billing practices and agreed to offer restitution to its clients in the amount of $2,226,270.19 and pay a penalty of $5,619,269.92 and forfeit $1,350,317.43 to the government over a two-year period.  In consideration of Plaza Construction’s remedial actions to date and its commitment to, among other actions: (a) accept and acknowledge responsibility for its conduct; (b) continue its cooperation; (c) make restitution available to victims; and (d) make the payment of forfeiture and a financial penalty to the government; the government agreed to defer the prosecution for a period of 24 months and to obtain an exclusion of time to allow Plaza Construction to demonstrate good conduct and compliance with the terms of this agreement.[1]  Plaza Construction’s remedial measures include the creation of the positions of General Counsel, Associate General Counsel and Compliance Director at the company; establishing a Compliance Committee; instituting annual training for all officers and non-union employees regarding its Code of Business Ethics; establishing an ethics hotline for employees to report ethics violations or concerns; and the revision of time sheet recording and client billing policies.

*          *          *

The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Business and Securities Fraud Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Whitman Knapp and Jonathan P. Lax are in charge of the prosecution, with assistance from Assistant United States Attorney Brian Morris of the Office’s Civil Division, which is responsible for the forfeiture of assets.

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15 Arrested For Drug Trafficking Through Music Company “Front”

WPCNR FBI WIRE. From the Southern District of New York. October 18, 2016:

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney fo the Southern District of New York, William F. Sweeney Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), George P. Beach II, the Superintendent of the New York State Police (“NYSP”), Adrian H. Anderson, Sheriff of Dutchess County, and Thomas Pape, Acting Chief of City of Poughkeepsie Police Department, Monday announced the unsealing of an indictment and a complaint charging 15 defendants with allegedly engaging in the distribution of cocaine throughout southern and central New York.  Twelve defendants were taken into custody today, and will be presented in White Plains federal court this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul E. Davison.  MALCOLM KINYON was previously arrested on the complaint, and DAVION McADAMS and ANTON MILLER remain at large.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said:  “The defendants charged today allegedly used a music company, ‘Outta They League,’ as a front to run their drug trafficking business.  These arrests take ‘Outta They League’ out of the business of drugs and violence.  We thank the FBI, the New York State Police, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York, and our many local law enforcement partners for their extraordinary partnership on this case.”

FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge William F. Sweeney said:  “The average drug dealer can’t peddle his wares on the street anymore without someone seeing it, so they’ve found ways to hide their drugs and money using legitimate businesses.  The one thing this group of defendants allegedly didn’t take into consideration, bank accounts don’t lie.  The bad guys may think they’re being smarter than law enforcement, but our Hudson Valley Safe Streets Task Force is made up of investigators and detectives who are skilled at finding all methods of criminals hiding their crimes.”

NYSP Superintendent George P. Beach II said:  “This investigation and the charges brought today against these 15 individuals are evidence of the commitment we share with our law enforcement partners in keeping  dangerous drugs off our streets. I commend the members of our Special Investigations Unit, the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for their outstanding efforts to shut down this dangerous drug trafficking operation.”

Dutchess County Sheriff Adrian H. Anderson said:  “Today was a great victory for law enforcement in Dutchess County and elsewhere by the taking of these allegedly dangerous individuals off of our streets. This country faces an ongoing drug epidemic, and being able to contribute towards ending that epidemic by helping remove some of those allegedly responsible is very gratifying. This is a perfect example of what can be achieved when Federal, State, and local law enforcement work together and I look forward to doing so again in the future.”

City of Poughkeepsie Acting Police Chief Thomas Pape said:  “We are grateful for the coordinated efforts of our partners in law enforcement in bringing a successful indictment against these individuals. Mr. Bharara has once again shown that criminal activity will not be tolerated and that he will successfully coordinate efforts between federal, State and local law enforcement agencies to arrest and prosecute those responsible for crimes committed in our communities.”

As alleged in the Indictment and Complaint unsealed today in White Plains federal court[1]:

“Outta They League,” or “OTL,” is a registered corporation that has engaged in the production of music, but in recent years has served primarily as a front used by its owner, MALCOLM KINYON, a/k/a “M.A.,” to facilitate wholesale cocaine transactions, and help launder the proceeds of those drug sales.

Those drug sales were made by KINYON and his associates, members of a criminal drug-trafficking organization that also called itself OTL.  Each month, OTL distributed multiple kilograms of cocaine in and around Poughkeepsie, New York, and to other locations in southern and central New York.  Individual OTL members and associates, including BRIAN BOWMAN, a/k/a “Pony,” AARON HARDY, ANDREW HARDY, NICHOLAS LEYVA, a/k/a “Stay High,” a/k/a “Stay,” DAVION McADAM, a/k/a “Goat,” DANTE McNAIR, a/k/a “Tay,” JAQUAN McNAIR, a/k/a “Quannie,” a/k/a “Drugs,” ANTON MILLER, a/k/a “Anton Singleton,” a/k/a “Nord,” DANIEL SPOTARDS, a/k/a “D,” VAUGHN STOKES, a/k/a “Qua,” and BRYAN WHITTLE, a/k/a “B,” a/k/a “Tall B,” obtained wholesale quantities of this cocaine typically on a consignment basis from OTL’s leader, KINYON.  These cocaine distributors would resell the cocaine they obtained from KINYON, and use the bulk of the proceeds from those sales to pay KINYON for the cocaine KINYON provided.  KINYON would then reinvest those proceeds in further supplies of cocaine, which he would again provide to the other OTL members and associates.

Despite the negligible amounts of income derived from music, a bank account maintained by OTL received in excess of one million dollars from between in or around June 2013 through in or around January 2016.

Most of the funds that passed through that account represented proceeds of narcotics transactions that were ultimately used to facilitate the purchase of additional quantities of cocaine for additional narcotics transactions.   Numerous OTL members and associates, including MALCOLM KINYON, a/k/a “M.A.,” ERIC ANTONMARCHI, a/k/a “Powerful,” a/k/a “P,” STAR BERMUDEZ, DERRICK ENSLEY, a/k/a “Dirk,” ANTON MILLER, a/k/a “Anton Singleton,” a/k/a “Nord,” and DANIEL SPOTARDS, a/k/a “D,” have made large cash deposits to the OTL Account.

In addition to trafficking narcotics, the OTL organization maintained discipline through the threatened use of violence.  OTL members and associates have been recorded discussing the use of violence, including the use of firearms and physical assaults, to ensure repayment for drug debts and to deter co-conspirators from providing information to law enforcement, among other purposes.  OTL’s leader, KINYON, is further charged with trafficking firearms purchased in Virginia and trafficked to New York for resale to OTL members and associates.

*                      *                     *

These arrests were coordinated with an investigation in the Northern District of New York, targeting Bloods gang members operating in and around Kingston, New York.  As a result of that investigation, 31 defendants were indicted for narcotics and other charges in five indictments also unsealed today in Albany federal court.  Many of these defendants were trafficking in cocaine and other drugs obtained from OTL.


[1] As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Indictment and the Complaint, and the description of the Indictment and the Complaint set forth herein, constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.

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What is the Role of Neighborhood Associations in City Planning? Council of Neighborhood Associations Examines this Issue Tuesday, 7:30 P.M.

Roundtable Discussion of the Role of WPCNA and the Neighborhoods in City PlanningThe October Meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 18, 2016 at 7:30 pm at Education House, 5 Homeside Lane, White Plains, NY. (Note this meeting is scheduled for the 3rd Tuesday to avoid a holiday conflict.)Prelude. At the last meeting we welcomed the new Stewart-Ross Neighborhood Association. At the top of this meeting, John Rossi will talk about re-activating the Ferris Avenue Neighborhood Association. He will also make a brief presentation about the White Plains Community Action Partnership (WPCAP), which addresses the issues surrounding poverty and the lack of services for the poor.

Roundtable Discussion. A common thread at WPCNA meetings has been an apparent lack of communication between the City and the neighborhoods regarding plans that affect the quality of life.

Many of the plans involve zoning variances, which led a speaker last month to opine “Zoning should not be a suggestion.”

At this meeting, we’d like to consider the role of WPCNA and the Neighborhoods in granting zoning variances and in comprehensive planning. Bring your gripes, bring your issues, and bring your thoughts about establishing channels of communication and mechanisms for sustainable, agreeable growth.

WPCNA Election News. The national election is on everyone’s mind, but Co-President Frances Jones says “Don’t forget the Election for a new WPCNA Board of Directors at our December Meeting.” Please let Fran know if you’d like to serve on the Nominating Committee. We need two volunteers. And get ready to throw your hat in the ring if you’d like to serve the greater White Plains community as a WPCNA Board Member.


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JESSICA O’DONOVAN being interviewed by Jim Benerofe on PEOPLE TO BE HEARD in 2013. Ms. O’Donovan, curriculum supertindent for the White Plains district has resigned effective December 31.

WPCNR SCHOOL DAYS. From the White Plains City School District. October 15, 2016.

Jessica O’Donovan, the Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction has tendered her resignation from her position effective in December.

Ms. O’Donovan told WPCNR she is leaving the Westchester area to relocate to North Carolina because her husband, an advertising executive, is accepting a new position in that state that she said presented a wonderful opportunity for him and their family.

Ms. O’Donovan leaves as the district is forming an English language learners reorganization to comply with the New York State Education Department requirement that the district must provide specialized instruction for such learners if they comprise more than 20% of a Class population.

Ms. O’Donovan has over the last 5-1/2 years organized and designed the White Plains district Dual Language program that is providing non-English Lanauage students with immersion in English while having half their lessons in Spanish, a program that the district touts as successful.

O’Donovan’s decision comes  within two weeks of  Howard W. Smith, formerly Superintendent of Schools of the Tarrytowns (a heavily latino school district) being hired through June to be Interim Superintendent while Superintendent of Schools Paul Fried is on leave due to an undisclosed condition.

The district has until January to comply with the State Rule 154 that requires specialized classes for English Language Learners.



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My comments on the Downtown W.P. Transit District 9/28/16 Public Meeting

 I thank all concerned for the opportunity to comment.

1)      I do not care if I see appealing buildings and store windows as I walk from the W.P. Railroad Station to the Downtown (Mamaroneck Ave. area). I do want smooth untripable sidewalks and safe crosswalks. I want enough light after dark. I want good signage. I want pure pedestrian crossings (where one can cross and no cars at all are entering the ped. crosswalk when it says “WALK”).

2)      I want the seasonal outdoor pleasant plantings to remain.

3)      Yes, I certainly also want wide, high-visibility crosswalks for pedestrians. Motorists should be able to understand the purpose of these special crosswalks.

4)      Please pre-test all new materials used on the ground for safety (remember the bad bricks all around the downtown).

5)      Do some research on what’s lately causing cement sidewalks to “shrink” around the edges. Poor-quality cement? Defective processes of applying the cement?

6)      Use special large “watch pedestrian” signs like those at City Place corner of Main St.

7)      Slanted parking at station is better than perpendicular. Takes less time.

8)      Don’t forget the handicapped who must park or be dropped off at the station.

9)      Regarding the proposed bus systems related to the new Tappan Zee bridge. Where are even more buses going to layover (wait to begin a route, so they’ll be timely)? Now they use Hamilton Ave., probably the W.P. bus station. This could be a problem. I saw a bus laying over on Cemetery Rd.

10) The police are not stopping bicyclists who ride on the sidewalks. Why?

Renee Cohen

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Ebersole Rink — “The Happy Rink” Opens Tonight with Teen Skate Full Public Schedule Saturday

IMG_7370Ebersole Ice Rink Skate School Programs Start Saturday

Tonight Friday, Ebersole Ice Rink opens with its traditional teen skate on Friday nights 8 to 10…and Public Sessions this weekend. Call the Recreation Department, 422-1336 for public schedules.

Session 1 begins October 14th. Group classes run in 6 week sessions. Classes are offered Friday afternoons, Saturdays & Sundays. Exact class times depend on age/level.

For questions, contact Jen Netrosio @
The City of White Plains Recreation & Parks Department is located at 85 Gedney Way in White Plains. (914) 422 – 1336.

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Spectacular $25 Million Ice Rink Park Planned for Kensico Dam Plaza


The layout of the proposed ice rink development at the Kensico Dam reflecting pool consists of a professional game rink surrounded by separate recreational areas at each end.




Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, with hockey players from Stepinac High School (above photo) flanking a painting of
the Kensico Dam Plaza reflecting pool water feature as it looked decades ago,  held a news conference Tuesday afternoon at the dam.
He announced a plan to build a professional ice rink and a double-ended recreational rink at the plaza.
The rinks would cover about 50,000 square feet of the below grade pool area. The cost could reach $25 million, which would include $4 million already allocated for repairs of the reflecting pool.
Additional money already allocated to the parks department would be used, along with money from a $300 million capital spending plan Astorino hopes the legislature will approve.
The project would be undertaken with the cooperation of the New York Rangers professional ice hockey team. Players Michael Grabner and Nick Holden were on hand at the news conference, along with former Ranger Adam Graves (left) who already is involved with a program which has offered clinics and ice skating lessons through the county’s Winter Wonderland program at the dam plaza.

In addition to the rink installation, the reflecting pool’s nine historic fountains, capable of shooting water 30 feet in the air, are being fully restored. The proposed hockey rink is regulation size (200 feet by 85 feet) and the ice track on the perimeter is 30-feet wide, accommodating two lanes. Approximately half of the 720-foot by 135-foot reflecting pool would be covered with ice.

The idea for the ice rink grew out of plans by Astorino, already approved by the Board of Legislators, to refurbish the reflecting pool at the foot of the dam, including the deteriorating fountains, which have been shut for 10 years.

As those plans were being designed, it became clear that if ever there was going to be a refrigerated rink at Kensico, the time to build it was now because the piping for the ice and the fountains should be built together.

“Operationally, financially, environmentally and practically, it makes sense to tie the skating rink and the reflecting pool fountains into the same project,” said Astorino.

On Friday, Astorino will unveil a proposed capital budget for 2017 of more than $300 million, which comes at a time when Westchester can take advantage of historically low interest rates and the best credit rating of any county in the state. About one third of the total, roughly $110 million, is dedicated for parks improvements.

“The Westchester County park system is one of the county’s best assets,” said Parks Commissioner Kathleen O’Connor. “Every dollar invested in our parks produces dividends year after year.”

The reflecting pool and rink initiative are part of ongoing improvements at Kensico. About $11 million is needed in 2017 to complete the project: $2.5 million to finish the work on the reflecting pool, $4.2 million for the ice rink and $4 million for a maintenance facility.

The economic impact of $300 million translates roughly into 3,000 jobs.


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