Paul J. Feiner

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Paul J. Feiner (born February 14, 1956) is an American politician from New York. He has been Town Supervisor (an elected office with a two-year term) of Greenburgh, New York in Westchester County since 1991.[1] He unsuccessfully ran for United States Congress twice.

Biography[edit]

Feiner graduated Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude from Fordham University and holds a law degree from St. John's Law School in New York. He is married to Sherrie Brown, an attorney; they have one daughter.

Feiner has been involved in politics since childhood: at age 12, he worked as a volunteer in the Congressional campaign of Ogden Reid; at 16, Feiner became Chair of the Teen Democrats of Westchester. He was elected in 1983 as a County Legislator in Westchester County,[2] and was first elected Town Supervisor of Greenburgh in 1991;[3] he has held that post ever since. In 1998 and 2000 Feiner ran unsuccessfully as the Democratic candidate for New York's 20th congressional district, losing to the long-time incumbent Congressman, Benjamin A. Gilman.[4][5]

Feiner's campaign website credits Feiner with introducing "Dial Democracy", whereby residents of Greenburgh can phone in questions and comments to Town Board meetings as they are in progress, televised live on the town's local Public-access television cable TV channels.[6] He maintains a blog for residents to comment on policy, events, and local issues,[7] and has a weekly radio show, "The Greenburgh Report" on WVOX.

Controversies[edit]

Fortress Bible Church[edit]

After a decade of litigation, Fortress Bible Church was awarded $6.5 million in damages from the town after "the courts found officials had acted in bad faith and illegitimately used the environmental review process as a way to block the church's proposal"..."to build a 500-seat chapel and school for 150 students" (Journal News).[8] "In a unanimous three-judge panel decision, Judge John Walker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit wrote that the Town Board violated the church's rights under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, the First Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution". (Daily Voice)[9]

Fairview Fire Department[edit]

The Fairview Fire Department is the largest of three fire districts within Greenburgh.[10] Although the department is independent of the town's government, Feiner has been publicly involved with it. Feiner has criticized the expense of fire services in the town and supported consolidation of fire districts to reduce costs, specifically pointing to multiple, highly-paid fire chiefs.[11][12]

In late March of 2014, as part of evidence given in an age discrimination lawsuit, anti-Semitic slurs directed at Feiner by Fire Chief Anthony LoGiudice surfaced. Feiner called LoGiudice's subsequent apology "a positive step but an insufficient one".[13][14] Six weeks later, Howard Reiss was announced as the new fire chief.[12]

Awards and recognition[edit]

  • 1982: Feiner named one of six national recipients of the Common Cause Public Service Achievement Award.[15]
  • 1997: C-SPAN profiled Feiner's Town Board Meetings in special report.[16]
  • 2001: Spotlight Westchester Magazine called Feiner "most interesting politician in Westchester" in its Best of Westchester 2001 issue.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Scharfenberg, David (26 June 2005). "The Problem With Greenburgh's Problem Solver". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Kolb, Elzy (July 2008). "Professional Nudge". Westchester Magazine. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  3. ^ Brenner, Elsa (29 March 1992). "From Gadfly To Supervisor, A Rocky Path For Feiner". New York Times. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  4. ^ Kelley, Tina (8 November 2000). "The 2000 Elections: The House; Democrat Captures Lazio's Long Island Seat". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  5. ^ West, Debra (5 June 1998). "Difficult Lesson in Fund-Raising". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  6. ^ "Town of Greenburgh - Meeting Schedules". Retrieved 19 January 2011. 
  7. ^ Feiner's blog
  8. ^ Greg Shillinglaw; Akiko Matsuda (17 May 2014). "Communities pay a high price when religious groups invoke land-use law". The Journal News. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  9. ^ Kramer, Samantha (25 September 2012). "Greenburgh Violated Church's Rights, Court Upholds". Greenburgh Daily Voice. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  10. ^ "Fairview Fire Department". Fairview Fire Department. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  11. ^ Feiner, Paul (2 May 2014). "FAIRVIEW FIRE DEPT APPOINTS NEW CHIEF...SON OF COMMISSIONER PROMOTED". Town of Greenburgh, NY. Town of Greenburgh, NY. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  12. ^ a b Craig, Jon (9 May 2014). "Greenburgh Up in Arms Over Secrecy, Nepotism, Hasty Pick of Fairview Fire Chief, Deputy Chief". The Examiner. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  13. ^ Berger, Joseph (28 March 2014). "Anti-Semitic Slur by a Westchester Fire Chief Stirs Controversy". The New York Times. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  14. ^ "Fairview fire chief should leave". The Journal News. 3 April 2014. Retrieved 17 December 2015. 
  15. ^ Hudson, Edward (11 April 1982). "Westchester Journal". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
  16. ^ "Tocqueville in Greenburgh". C-SPAN. 6 June 1997. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 

External links[edit]