Ehrbar: East Williston accusations are ‘false’

Paul Ehbar

I was quite disappointed while reading comments made by the East Williston Mayor and members of the East Williston Board at their last public meeting as described in the Williston Times. 

Reporting that the Williston Park Board of Trustees refused an offer by Senator Martins to mediate a settlement regarding the ongoing water rate dispute is completely false. 

This never happened! 

To bring the senator, a good friend to both villages into this discussion is outrageous, inappropriate and unconscionable! 

For the East Williston mayor and board too continually attack both me personally, and the Williston Park Village Board, serves no purpose, if East Williston is sincere about wanting to settle this issue. 

It appears that the East Williston board is running a public relations campaign with inaccurate comments and mischaracterizing statements in order to convince their constituents that they must build a water plant. 

All should be reminded that East Williston sued the Village of Williston Park on two occasions. 

Once for Williston Park not having a rate hearing/rate study and a second time because the Williston Park had a rate hearing/ study (ironic). 

The courts upheld the Willston Park position on the current rate yet the East Williston Board continues to question the approved, established rate.

A similar situation took place in a dispute over water rates between the Village of Plandome and Manhasset-Lakeville Water District. 

It is my understanding that once the court ruled in favor of the Manhasset-Lakeville rate, both entities accepted the ruling and have moved on.  

Manhasset-Lakeville does not provide any water related services to Plandome, just water at the court established rate. 

On the other hand, in order to bring closure, and with hopes of moving on, besides providing water to East Williston, the Williston Park Board has offered a number of water related services to East Williston. 

Even if the cost of building a water plant in East Williston meets projected costs, which seems unlikely, in the long run, their residents will be saddled with water rates far exceeding those currently being charged by Williston Park. 

If their plan comes to fruition it will quickly become obvious that operating a water plant requires ongoing costs and more effort than just turning on a spigot.

While the East Williston Board continues to indicate a willingness to negotiate, their comments and actions indicate otherwise. 

They have not yet responded in writing to a letter sent to them over six weeks ago. They have also been asked to provide an agenda for such a meeting and to date that has not happened.

It is time to stop the finger pointing and negative comments. 

This type of behavior only confuses the facts and has the potential of creating unnecessary animosity between the Villages, a disservice to all residents.

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Paul Ehbar

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