Monday, February 18, 2013

The County's cheap housing plan


What a difference a year makes. When then County Comptroller Mark Poloncarz issued a scathing audit in 2012 on the county political appointees living almost rent free in houses within the County parks (including one in Wendt Beach). This is what he had to say...

Erie County Comptroller Mark Poloncarz produced a scathing report, indicating some properties were being rented to political appointees and county parks employees without public awareness.

Fast forward to 2013: Under Poloncarz leadership, the same properties are being rented to the same political appointees and same county parks employees without public awareness. Meet the new boss. He's the same as the old boss...

Poloncarz was clearly critical. But now, more than two years later, Mark Poloncarz is the County Executive and a new Parks Commissioner has been appointed. So who is renting the houses now?

A house at Ellicott Creek is still occupied by the secretary of the former parks commissioner. Jared Jackson is paying $550 a month plus utilities. True market value for a rental home like this is somewhere between $850 to $1,200 a month, according to veteran real estate agent with whom we consulted.

Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw is re-raising the issue, which may not seem like a big deal to some. It is, however, a big deal when you remember Poloncarz recently tried raising property taxes, claiming the county was broke. We're broke, yet we can rent these beautiful homes out to political appointees for less than half the market value? Give us a break Marky Mark.


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