Back in October of 2008, we blogged about Lewiston Supervisor Fred Newlin voting himself a 37% pay increase smack dab in the middle of the worst economic crisis our country has seen in decades, adding "families in our community are struggling, as they are across the country. A quarter of a million homes were foreclosed on last month. Corporations are laying of thousands of employees every day. People are going without health insurance because they can't afford it. Hourly workers are going without raises. The state of New York is looking at a multi-billion deficit next year, which is sure to trickle down to the counties and towns across the state. Seniors are worried about how they're going to pay their heating bills this winter."
Somebody else noticed too.
We received an email yesterday regarding the launch of a new website that is designed to address that same pay raise issue, http://www.37percent.info/. Despite just a brief look at this site, it's obvious that someone put a significant amount of time and effort into gathering the information contained on the site and putting it up.
It contains links to pages such as Newlin’s Hand in the Cookie Jar - Pattern of Greed, Newlin’s Salary Increase, How Does Newlin’s Salary Increase Compare to Others?, Mazierski Challenges Newlin, July Ad in the Sentinel as well as others discussing the Tax Increase for Town of Lewiston and the Bad Power Authority Deal for Lewiston.
But the site most definitely focuses on the fact that Newlin voted himself a 37% pay increase. The website also notes that "even more shockingly, within the same budget, a long-time coordinator of children’s programs at the Lewiston Library was cut."
As Newlin faces a stiff challenge from Katherine Mazierski (who organized the protest and picket at a NCDC fundraiser last year), this website is sure to be the political talk of the town in Lewiston. Mazierski and her supporters are obviously willing to put some serious effort and resources into this campaign.
This will certainly be one of the more interesting and entertaining local races to watch for the next four months. Stay tuned!