Friday, 21 October 2011 00:00
I’ve stood in line my whole life waiting my turn, and, I might add, I’ve met the nicest people in front and behind me waiting on line for their turn. It’s the way the world works, right? Every once in awhile someone would try to cut the line, sometimes using ingenious excuses, but no one on line with me liked this, and we usually saw through the excuse for what it was. Now there is a new ‘excuse’ to cut the line that the Buildings Department at the Town of North Hempstead apparently finds acceptable: an “Expediter.” I read with interest Pat Grace’s page 1, Oct. 6, article in the Manhasset Press about the government/corporate version of “cutting the line.” Need a permit from the Town of North Hempstead to improve your home or business, why wait your turn in line? For a $1,000 fee, in addition to the fee that the Town of North Hempstead charges in the first place to review your application for a building permit, you can have your application “cut the line” and be reviewed in just 10 days by an outside agent “qualified” by the Town! Never did like cutting, and don’t like it now. How many other back doors are there to Town Hall? Is there a directory? Can I get a copy? Is there an ‘expediter’ for ambulance calls, fire calls or when I need a Town public safety officer? How about a dog license, birth certificate, or marriage license? And does the ‘expediter’ have to pay a fee to the Town to get the “qualification”? Or share its $1,000 fee with the Town? And, by the way, what is the Town of North Hempstead’s tax-paid employee who is supposed to be reviewing my application within a ‘reasonable amount of time’ doing while the ‘expediter’ is expediting? Is this good government?