Clockwise from top left: Theresa Scavo, Igor Oberman, Chaim Deutsch, Ari Kagan
It’s a crowded race to replace term-limited Councilman Michael Nelson of the 48th District, which, come next year, will represent almost all of Sheepshead Bay.
But, so far, it’s been quiet as the campaigns are just gearing up. But a good indicator of a campaign’s strength and public support is their fundraising, and yesterday the candidates submitted their finance disclosure forms to the Campaign Finance Board, revealing their fundraising success – or struggles – and giving a better idea of who’s in it to win it.
The race for Michael Nelson’s term-limited 48th District Council seat is heating up. Politicker reported that former State Senator David Storobin officially kicked off his campaign by registering as a candidate after losing his Senate seat to redistricting last year.
Storobin has been endorsed by the Conservative Party and he told Sheepshead Bites that he has already met with GOP County officials to seek their endorsement.
Storobin would be the only announced Republican so far in a crowded race that also includes District Leader Ari Kagan, Community Board 15 Chair Theresa Scavo, Nelson aide Chaim Deutsch, and attorneys Igor Oberman, Michael Treybich, and Natraj Bhushan.
Community Board 15 Chairperson Theresa Scavo became the second candidate to officially announce a bid to replace term-limited City Councilman Michael Nelson this year, touting her lifetime residency in the neighborhood and her seven-year-long tenure as the Board’s chairperson.
“Because of my work at Community Board 15, I am able to hear the problems that are being faced day after day by our neighbors,” Scavo said during her remarks before the Highway Democratic Club at Mirage Diner (717 Kings Highway) last Thursday. “To solve these problems, no matter where you live, we need leadership, we need a vision and we need a commitment from someone who cares.”
Earlier this week, we ran a summary of a New York Post story claiming that State Senator David Storobin doled out salary hikes to staffers just after losing his election bid for the Super Jewish district. Storobin, who came to office in June only to see his district drawn out of existence by redistricting, will be out of a job come January 1, and the story alleges that the local pol was rewarding his supporters after the electoral defeat. Storobin sent the following unsolicited letter to Sheepshead Bites:
On December 16, Candice Giove of the New York Post ran a story that your blog picked up which claimed that I “lavish raises on staffers.” The journalist purposely ran an article with false information after it was explained to her because she did not want to allow facts to get in the way of her doing a story.
Pinny Ringel got a pay raise because he was promoted to the position of the Chief of Staff after the previous one was fired. Since I only took office on June 4, I did not know who was good and who was bad. As a result, several people got fired and several others promoted. But the net result for the taxpayer was the payroll actually going down!
If you look at the amount of money spent by the New York State Senators since the day I took office, I spent a smaller percentage of the staffing budget I was allotted than anyone else, saving taxpayer money.
After a defeat, losing legislators typically “try to get as much money as they can to their friends and supporters,” an Albany insider said. Lawmakers’ taxpayer-funded staffing budgets begin at $350,000 but can increase.
Raises over 10 percent annually are considered “questionable,” the insider said.
“Its an old Albany game of ‘take as much as you can,’ ” he added. “This is the time when no real work is going on, especially for someone not coming back.”
Most of the hikes arrived in paychecks a day after the Nov. 6 general election.
… Storobin defended his raises, saying his office is operating with fewer people.
“I didn’t know who was good or bad. I fired some people,” he said, adding that the others took on more work. “With more significant assignments came a greater reward.”
Pinchas Ringel, his chief of staff, worked “ungodly hours” running the office, Storobin said. “This is not the role he used to play when he got started,” he added.
The report did not contain any specifics about the amount of the pay raises.
Medical equipment! (Source: Stanford Medical History Center/Flick)
The following is a press release from the offices of State Senator David Storobin:
State Senator David Storobin (R-Brooklyn) announced that his district office in cooperation with FEMA, Project Chernobl and Dr. Igor Branovan will be helping doctors and other medical professionals get free medical equipment and furniture that has been generously donated.
The deadline to register is Tuesday, December 18, 2012.
Anyone interested may call Victoria Spodek at (718) 743-8610 or stop by our office during business hours at 2201 Avenue U.
State Senator David Storobin is offering free legal services today, Wednesday, December 12, for his constituents affected by Superstorm Sandy.
The service is being offered by the Brooklyn Volunteer Lawyers Project, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and their attorneys will be present at Storobin’s district office to assist with Sandy related matters. The consultations available are provided in multiple languages including Russian.
Those interested in booking an appointment can call Vicky at (718) 743-8610. Walk-ins are also welcome.
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
10 am – 2 pm
District office of NY State Senator David Storobin
2201 Avenue U
Brooklyn, NY 11229
If you are in need of some pro-bono legal aid for issues resulting from the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, head down to the Kings Bay Y on 3495 Nostrand Avenue today between 5:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
A team of lawyers will be on hand to answer questions and offer advice on unemployment insurance, FEMA, and repairs and any other Superstorm Sandy legal questions you could think of.
The event is being put together by the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project, State Senator David Storobin, Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein, and the Kings Bay Y.
Appointments can be made over the phone with Lora at (718) 648-7703, ext. 227. Walk-ins are also encouraged. Make sure to come prepared with any and all relevant documents you may have questions on as well.
Councilman Michael Nelson’s chief of staff wrote to inform us that they’ve returned to their office, following flooding that made them vacate to Senator David Storobin’s office.
Chief of Staff Debbie Miller-Weiss writes:
Our district office at 1605 Voorhies Avenue now has power, telephone service and internet access. We are very pleased to report that our office will be open beginning tomorrow. Moreover, we are deeply grateful to NYS Senator Storobin for having welcomed us into his office during this crisis – allowing us to interact more directly and efficiently with our constituents, giving us full use of his desks, computers, phones, copier, scanner, fax machine, among other things.
You can reach the councilman at 1605 Voorhies Avenue, 1st Floor, or by calling (718) 368-9176. You can also e-mail email@example.com,
Mr. Storobin, who lost to Democrat Simcha Felder by a 2-to-1 margin, said he would most likely run in the district currently represented by term-limited Councilman Michael Nelson, D-Brooklyn. It has a substantial Russian-American population, which represents his base of support and is fairly Republican-friendly. (The district will be redrawn to an unknown extent for the 2013 election.)
“I’ve had a million dollars spent on me this year by my campaigns, the Senate Republicans and PACs, so I have a lot of name recognition,” Mr. Storobin added.
… Another likely candidate for Mr. Nelson’s council seat is Ari Kagan, a former Assembly candidate and Democrat. Mr. Kagan is likewise Russian-American. Mr. Storobin, however, said he hoped that multiple Russian-American candidates would not run in the same race, and said that as a Democrat, Mr. Kagan has multiple districts from which to choose.