(Editor's Note: The following letter was sent to Westbury Village Justice Thomas Liotti and is printed here at the writer's request.)
As a taxpayer in Westbury Village, I am in disagreement with your recent ruling concerning 335 Princeton Street in Westbury.
You indicate in your ruling that the inspection for this property created a very serious unsafe condition whereby persons could have been injured. The very fact that two police officers were on the scene could prevent any such action. The fact is that there was no unusual disturbance caused by the inspection. I call this looking for a needle in a haystack when no needle exists.
Numerous surveillance observations were conducted. Autos parked at the property were traced. Persons coming and going to the property were observed over a period of time. It appears to me that the village did everything in their power to do everything properly. We have serious building code violations in the village and, if you tie our hands, we will not be left with any defenses.
These lawbreakers are not dumb. They have been told not to allow building inspectors entrance. I had a personal experience on my block at McKenna Road. There was an absentee landlord on my block who for 10 years violated the building codes. To my amazement, I found that he had only been fined once over the 10-year period. A building inspector told me that she had been denied entrance and she had difficulty obtaining a warrant. The village did not break down the door and violate peoples' rights as you allege could happen. You could not explain the reason for inaction for this period. The reason was you failed to take action. You can quote all the decisions in your arsenal, but you are still creating a ghetto and allowing people to break the law.
It is abundantly clear that you have been protecting the lawbreakers, not the law-abiding people who pay the bulk of the taxes. What about the right of law-abiding homeowners to have equal justice under the law. I do not feel that I have been treated fairly. Therefore, I will not support you on your next election and I will ask my friends in the community and family to do likewise.
If you haven't been to the Westbury Memorial Public Library recently, we hope you will do so soon. It is one of the jewels of our community and we continue to be impressed by the various offerings, not only of the wide selection of reading materials, but the CDs, DVDs and computer access which makes the library an outstanding learning center. To keep with its up-to-date material and sources is a challenge, so much there and available, so little time.
Kudos to Cathleen Towey, the director, and the staff for making the library such an inviting and enriching experience. And thank you to an appreciative library board for their support.