Newly released emails between officials show what led to no-bid sanitation contract in South Blooming Grove

News 12 has obtained exclusive new details about what led to a controversial, no-bid sanitation contract in South Blooming Grove in a series of emails between town and village officials.

Blaise Gomez

Mar 26, 2024, 8:54 PM

Updated 61 days ago

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News 12 has obtained exclusive new details about what led to a controversial, no-bid sanitation contract in South Blooming Grove in a series of emails between town and village officials.
Village records show the $1 million, five-year deal was piggy-backed off the Town of Blooming Grove’s agreement with Mirangi, and emails obtained by News 12 between Town Supervisor Robert Jeroloman and village officials from 2022 show, for the first time, what led up to the separate contract.
Both sides were trying to negotiate a second pickup for the village under the town’s new contract but talks fell through. Things seemingly went haywire when village officials said they didn’t like the rate and were going to work on “a better contract” themselves to “make it happen” and were “ready to split up” from the town to “do this.”
South Blooming Grove ended up creating a separate sanitation district, and is now charging residents about $300 a year for the add-on service.
Jeroloman says villages can’t create their own districts without permission from the state and that Sen. James Skoufis and Assemblyman Brian Maher would have to sponsor South Blooming Grove’s request. Both state representatives say they were never asked to do so and News 12 has confirmed that the state comptroller’s office is now investigating how the contract was procured.
South Blooming Grove Mayor George Kalaj declined to be interviewed in-person and asked News 12 to email questions about the contract. He responded Tuesday evening. Kalaj was asked if residents would be refunded if the contract is determined by the state to have been improperly procured.
"The village will obviously follow legal advice as we always do," says Kalaj.
News 12 also asked about the number of village residents who requested a second pickup. Kalaj responded saying, "I'm not sure exactly. The village board as the elected body voted to add the additional pickup with a unanimous vote."


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