Legislator Sparaco Not Seeking Minority Leader Post

Legislator Carey says he is considering a run for the position


Rockland County Legislator Frank Sparaco (R-Valley Cottage) announced Thursday will not seek the post of minority leader of the Rockland County Legislature for the 2013 session. Sparaco, who was elected minority leader for the 2011 and 2012 sessions,said he can work more independently and in a bipartisan manner if he is not in that post. Legislator Christopher Carey, who is serving his first term, said he is interested in running.

"I am definitely interested so now I have to do the legwork to see if my colleagues will support me," said Carey of Bardonia.

The other four Republicans on the legislature are Ed Day of New City, Douglas Jobson of Stony Point, Patrick Moroney of Pearl River and John Murphy of Orangeburg.  Murphy is currently the deputy minority leader.

Moroney and Murphy both said they were not interested in running but thought Carey would be a good candidate. 

"I'm going to nominate Carey, Mr. Carey," said Murphy. "I think he is a remarkable young man with a bright future. He has a wonderful analytical mind."

Jobson said he was not pursuing the minority leader position.  Day said he and Carey have discussed their mutual interest in the position. Day held the post in 2008 and 2009 and noted that is traditional to rotate it among the Republican legislators every two years. The deputy minority leader is selected by the minority leader. 

Sparaco said he believed he could be more effective working independently.

“I want to work in a bipartisan fashion, as I recently did by reaching across the aisle to work with Legislators Schoenberger and Wolfe to eliminate the college chargebacks to the towns,” stated Legislator Sparaco. “It would be more difficult to do so as Minority Leader, but as an individual legislator, I can work with Democrats to solve Rockland’s problems and address the needs of my constituents.”

Sparaco listed his opposition of tax hikes and new taxes, some of which have been recently implemented, including:

  • Property tax increases of over 80 percent
  • Doubling the mortgage tax
  • Increasing the cell phone tax by 30 cents a month
  • Increasing the sales tax rate to 8.75 percent
  • Creating a four percent tax on all heating bills
  • Creating a “Transfer Tax” of thousands of dollars for home sales
  • Creating a vehicle registration tax
  • Creating a three percent hotel occupancy tax

Some of these taxes have been recently implemented such as the vehicle registration tax and heating bill tax.

Sparaco said, “I am proud of the record I have built during that time both as a legislator and as Minority Leader – a record of fighting taxes of all kinds, and promoting the ideas of fiscal responsibility during these difficult times.”

Mike Hirsch December 13, 2012 at 11:05 PM
A good candidate with a good organization can take his seat when he comes up for re-election. I would like to see Kristen Zebrowski make that happen.
John December 13, 2012 at 11:21 PM
Should be interesting to see what happens. Mike - Why would you like to see K. Zebrowski in that seat? How does she fare on the Clarkstown Taxpayer's Scorecard?
Michael Yularen December 14, 2012 at 12:37 AM
Leg. Sparaco: Always fighting to do what's right! Though it’s sad to see him leave his minority post, I know he'll keep up the good work. Its great that he's trying to bring in bipartisanship to the Legislature.
Brenda M December 14, 2012 at 12:39 AM
Mike: I'm unclear who is the "he" coming up for election that you speak about? Are you talking about Sparaco or Carey? Personally, I think it is a good thing that Sparaco is stepping down - I don't see that he has accomplished anything and in listening to him at Legislature meetings I find his comments to be shallow. It's easy to be against taxes and against fees etc but he doesn't state what he is for. There are no proposals from him for anything that the voter can buy into. Further, his patronage job with Ballard turned me off both him and Ballard. I think Ballard will lose when he runs for reelection next year because of this and I hope that gets Sparaco out of that position too. From what I understand from reading threads on Patch your colleague Sabatini said Sparaco worked to undercut him at the last election for Clarkstown supervisor. So if one Republican won't support another one who can anybody trust any more? In my opinion, it is clear nobody wants the minority leadership role. What power does anyone in that position have to do anything? I'm hoping the State comes in, declares bankruptcy, and starts over. I think that is what I heard Sabatini say at the last Legislature meeting was needed and it makes sense to me.
phil December 14, 2012 at 01:01 AM
Sparaco has done a great job against all odds The ones we should be hoping to get out of office are the ones who voted for all those taxes. Including republicans jobson murphy and moroney. Day and sparaco have had nothing to lead. No wonder hes giving it up.
sarah December 14, 2012 at 01:08 AM
Thanks for your leadership Mr Sparaco, I wish the rest of them would have listened to you. Keep up the fight.
brian December 14, 2012 at 01:16 AM
This could be a very bad sign. Sparaco seems to be getting closer to the Dems and distancing himself from the Rep. Not that i blame him with the bad company he has there but just think for 1 sec what happens to the rep party and candidates if they lose sparaco. Hes there strongest and their main work horse. Without his help almost all republicans in the county will have a hard time getting elected and if he actually worked against them it would be impossible. I see strange writing on the wall.
Watchdog December 14, 2012 at 02:05 AM
Lets see...Frankie is a Registered Republican but he works against the Republican and for the Democratic candidate for Clarkstown Supervisor, gets a $75,000 Part Time job from the same Democratic Supervisor he supported and now he does not want the Minority leader position because he wants to work with other Democrats? Is this guy for real?
Brenda M December 14, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Brian you said that "Without his help almost all republicans in the county will have a hard time getting elected and if he actually worked against them it would be impossible. I see strange writing on the wall." Is that why Republican Ballard gave him a patronage job according to the Journal News that was one of the most blatant in the annals of Clarkstown politics? If Sparaco worked against Ballard then Ballard could not be elected and so Ballard had no option? Is that what politics is reduced to in Rockland County? I too see "strange writing on the wall" as you put it. I don't think there are any legitimate parties in Rockland County any more since one party head cross endorses people in the other parties. It seems that there is a very dangerous situation developing here where a few people are completely controlling Rockland County politics. From what I read in the blogs four people are in total control of Rockland County. Am I wrong?
Mike Hirsch December 14, 2012 at 02:16 AM
Brenda, I was talking about Sparaco, who was nervous about not getting re-elected the last time around. Unfortunately, his opponent didn't run a very effective campaign. If Kirsten Zebrowski can find a good opponent who will run a good campaign, Sparaco could lose. Most people now see him for what he is. He took a $20,000/yr job from Ballard for $75,000. I'll bet his Independence Party doesn't even support Ed Day in his run for County Exec because Ed can't be bought. And yes, he did work against Sabatini.
was just watching the news..the secuirty workers at JFK are perhaps going to strike December 20..the airport has over 47 Million passengers flow thru their terminals..THE WORKERS WHERE ON TV SAYING THEY GET 8.00 a hour!!!!their net effect helps an airport of huge traffic work efficiently..then I have to read this article..and see the travesty of Ballard and the clarkstown board who have allowed this 75,000 part timer fiasco..what did one of those board member foam out of the mouth last wee?"we dont want to micro manager our people" wow 75,000 part timers are a micro thing??clowntown hurts every single taxpayer by allowing this attrocitie..we have our own fiscal cliff...
William Demarest (Editor) December 14, 2012 at 11:31 AM
I believe M.H. was referring to Kristen Zebrowski "making that happen" as head of the Democratic Party in Rockland County ... getting a good candidate for the post.
Michael N. Hull December 14, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Watchdog: According to the RCT, Sparaco, is a 'powerhouse' in the Independence party and had his mother-in-law placed in a position of leadership prior to imprisonment for illegal activities. http://www.rocklandtimes.com/2012/03/01/former-independence-party-chairwoman-sentenced-to-jail-time/ The RCT says he is a protege of Reda (Rockland GOP chair). Gromack created the position in the Highway Department for Ballard to hire Sparaco in the worst patronage appointment seen in Clarkstown in a long time. http://www.lohud.com/article/20120823/OPINION/308230035/Editorial-Clarkstown-puts-political-clout-before-all-else-hiring-Frank-Sparaco Nimick suggested that the Board eliminate the position that it created at Ballard's request. The Board declined. http://newcity.patch.com/blog_posts/not-shame-but-farce 'De facto' Gromack approved hiring Sparaco. Gromack approved hiring GOP Bronx chairman Savino to a patronage job in Clarkstown. Sparaco is friends with Savino who defended Sparaco's mother-in-law. Birds of a feather flock together! So is it a surprise that Sparaco wants to bridge parties? He will probably support Ballard (Republican) and Gromack (Democrat) for re-election next year and position himself to be Clarkstown's supervisor when Gromack steps down while Savino takes over from Reda when he goes. That is the future "Nightmare on Elm Street" or perhaps I should say "Maple Avenue".
Mary December 14, 2012 at 12:40 PM
Wasn't there a family member of Sparaco's who was convicted of forging signatures so that Sparaco would have enough to get him on the ballot? That was not right - in fact it is illegal and this family member received a sentence, I believe. I was disappointed with Ballard, too, for taking Sparaco on after this for a $75000 job and will not vote for Ballard next time around.
Michael N. Hull December 14, 2012 at 01:59 PM
Brenda: In my view Sparaco is in the process of bailing out of the County Legislature and moving into Clarkstown politics. That move has already begun with his part-time job under Ballard. I am of the opinion that Ballard's hiring of Sparaco was so out of character and his explanations have been so convoluted that maybe he had no choice in whom he gave that job to. Had he refused to hire Sparaco then Reda might have primaried Ballard to remove him. Frankly, I thought Ballard had very high credibility in the community and would have won any primary or election easily. But now that is all gone. They will throw Ballard under the bus anytime they wish. He has lost his independence. Hopefully Day can retain his independence and Borelli could retain his if he would. As to Carey moving to become the minority leader - I think that is a waste of his fine talents. Once the bond rating drops to junk status, which it surely must now do with this no-lay-off budget, then the State will have to step in and all the legislators may as well stay home.
Watchdog December 14, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Michael Seeing what has happened in Ramapo where BLOC voters control elections and in Clarkstown, where minority parties control elections, it may appear that we have now crossed the line where there has been a structural change in the way people are elected and taxpayers are represented. Taxpayers are no longer in control of their government. Leaders are elected by the collusive efforts of those who have their self interest, indeed group- self interest (Unions, BLOC) instead of the interest and well-being of taxpayers they represent. The free press, generally speaking, has been hoodwinked, letting themselves get locked into a position of not/under reporting or otherwise controlling their output to favor the self interested groups, instead of the average citizen. This is all very puzzling as it does appear to me to have changed the landscape of politics and elections to benefit those who with more wealth who can afford to pay these huge increases in taxes, a product of this structural change, instead of those in the lower brackets, that these collusive politicians and the press always claimed to represent.
Pat Godfrey December 14, 2012 at 04:06 PM
This is the state of Rockland politics. Both parties working together to vote in who they want and getting favors from each other(jobs, helping each other get elected even though they are on opposing parties). They are supposed to be on opposite sides but now they work with each other for both of their mutual benefit. To the detriment of the tax payers of Rockland county. I guess it's been like this for awhile. I never payed attention till recently, because they keep raising our taxes even though the tax payer doesn't have any more money to give. The question is are we going to get involved in the political process to change it. If not then things will stay the same. It took years to get in this predicament and will take time to get out of it.


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