Supervisor: school board president is a ‘bully’ and must be confronted

Nobody likes a bully. It’s especially unfortunate when the bully turns out to be the president of the board of education. What sort of example is this for our children?

When I was running for election, Mr. [George] Heidcamp was my “best buddy.” He even nominated me at the Conservative caucus!

Read Heidcamp’s December letter about Myers “Ignorance or incompetence?”

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Then on the eve of my inauguration 12/31/11, the emails from him started to arrive. At first, friendly notes wishing me good luck; requests for information, then he tried to influence me to take his side in a dispute with his neighbor. He took photos and video surveillance of his neighbors without their consent, and sent them via email to myself other board members, the police department, town attorney and anyone else he could interest to view them. He began stopping by my office without appointments, taping conversations with me, and when I couldn’t meet with him or give him the information he wanted, he became belligerent. I noticed he looked unkempt and uncomfortable and asked if he was all right. He barged in the office and yelled at me and my secretary. He pressed charges against his neighbor and I was subpoenaed to testify in a court case. The emails he sent to me were also subpoenaed and entered into the case record. There were 168 emails in a 4 ½ month period. The accusations Mr. Heidcamp made against his neighbor were unfounded and the court case was dismissed.

Mr. Heidcamp stayed up late at night making accusations and sending emails to me at 3 a.m. The contacts from Mr. Heidcamp increased to a heated level of demand that disrupted the function of my office. When I attempted to set limits with him, the contacts increased in intensity and frequency. Mr. Heidcamp reminded me that he had supported my nomination at the Conservative caucus and that I owed him a level of deference. When I attempted to ignore his calls and emails – he drove by the office to see if my car was parked outside and called employees working in the building to see if I was in my office. One day he dropped by the office and reminded me he been a detective, and that he was now going to “open up an investigation on me.” He began showing up in my neighborhood, walking around and talking to people. I felt stalked.

It was then that I contacted the chief of police & the town attorney. I asked them to let him know that his contacts were inappropriate and disruptive to the function of the supervisor’s office and town government. He was directed to immediately cease his disruptive behavior or face charges of aggravated harassment.

I haven’t personally heard from Mr. Heidcamp for 6 months. The word I’m hearing through the grapevine is that he’d like to run for town supervisor, and he plans on regularly putting letters in the paper to stir up public discontent with my work.

Sadly, this is his mode of operation. He has done this to numerous others in our community, and hurt many people, by twisting facts, making unsubstantiated accusations, pressing charges that are dismissed in court because evidence is lacking, making personnel complaints, exhausting office time of public employees by making excessive freedom of information requests, pushing people to the point of tears, or behaving badly, or defensively – then pressing charges. This is how he works.

The public should take note and observe what he does next.

Is this the type of man you want as president of the Saugerties Central School District Board of Education? Is this the type of environment we want to foster in Saugerties?

I declare that bullying will not be tolerated in Saugerties. Why does Heidcamp think it’s okay to behave this way?

Mr. Heidcamp recently submitted a request for records. He asked to review the confidential payment records of people receiving public assistance in Saugerties.

This information is protected by federal law. He sent his request as an email, and refused to even come in to the office to fill out a FOIL form or even sign his name to the records request. I denied his request for this private protected financial information. It is my duty to protect citizen’s right to privacy, especially those that are most vulnerable among us.

Change your behavior Mr. Heidcamp, and please focus on doing a good job as our school board president.

We missed seeing Mr. Heidcamp at the parent informational meeting last Monday night that superintendent of schools held regarding enhancing school safety. What are you doing to protect our children?

We also didn’t see any comments in the newspaper from him explaining exactly why the Saugerties School District is facing a two million dollar deficit this year. School taxes are the biggest chunk of the taxes we pay. How did the school budget get so out of control? What are you doing about this? Why weren’t anticipated expenses properly budgeted?

Why are high school drop-out rates so high? What are you doing to help students finish high school?

Why is Mr. Heidcamp spending time bullying others and neglecting the job he’s elected to do?

Kelly Myers
Saugerties town supervisor

 

OTHER LETTERS THIS WEEK

 

The “Fix” was in

The entire process of voting in New York is rife with obstacles legislated [intentionally] by partisan politicians. Just look at the flawed redistricting which pitted George Amedore, R-Rotterdam against Duanesburg Democrat Cecilia Tkaczyk. Hell, look at the 46th district. It snakes along the old GOP industrial city of Amsterdam in Montgomery County all the way through Albany, to just outside Poughkeepsie. That’s more than 100 miles in distance!

To throw out a ballot due to a technicality is fair if the intent of the voter can be proven ingenuous or criminal. In this case, there are two intelligent women who are both election inspectors and whose votes are being thrown out due to an arbitrary deadline. An intentional trip-wire set by politicians trying to game the system to their favor.

This election is way too close not to challenge another politician’s (a.k.a Supreme Court Justice Guy Tomlinson of Montgomery County) arbitrary decision to throw out votes.

DISCLOSURE: I’ve known Lanny Walter for over 10 years. We’ve disagreed on numerous occasions, though in this case Lanny has chosen a “Good Fight.” If successful his hard work and perseverance will benefit all voters regardless of party-affiliation.

David Radovanovic
Saugerties

 

Thank you

The Saugerties Area Council of Churches would like to express its heartfelt thanks to the community for once again providing overwhelming support of our Christmas Toy Store mission project. Our 21st year was a record breaker! Parents came and shopped for Christmas for their 352 children! If it weren’t for the continued support that we receive each year, from businesses, community groups, and individuals, this would not be possible. Thanks also to the numerous volunteers who donated their time in order to make Christmas happy for the children of our neighbors. May God bless you all in the New Year!

Sue Andersen
Chairman Saugerties Area Council of Churches

 

There are 10 comments

  1. Jennifer Farley

    Great letter Kelly. I don’t know your issue but bullying is a very serious problem right now. It’s become dangerous.

  2. anynomous reader

    Thanks for showing us Heidicamp’s true colors Kelly. You are a courageous woman. He sure is a bully! I have heard similar stories about other people he has targeted. At the board meetings you can tell in his demeanor that he is a bully. I would like to see nothing more than to have him ousted from the board and have someone who indeed is pro children and pro education replace him. We have had enough!

  3. Anonymous

    BRAVO KELLY!

    I have only been a resident of Saugerties for 10 years but it was amazing to me how a man with little to no schooling could be on the school board, let alone lead it. I watched as George ran a renowned school superintendent out of Saugerties; a superintendent who was awarded accolades for resolving disputes between school boards and administration. It is time that Saugerties see the man they have been voting for in his true color! He would ramble on about the spending waste in the township while he sat home “disabled” collecting full (tax free) pay from his police job. It is time that we elect people that are running for the right reason and not to fulfill personal vendettas.

    1. Anonymous

      The necessity of being “Anonymous” is this: Saugerties is a very small town. Some people “in power” in our town, as the one in the attached article, are vindictive. Those of us with children in the public schools don’t want to be targets or worse, set our children up to be targets. The point, Mr. Radovanovic, is that we still have valid opinions to share. You don’t have to read them if you don’t want to.
      By the way, I checked four different sources and on none of them did the word “nothing” come up as a synonym to anonymous.

  4. Matt Gleason

    “What do you think?” I think both of them should combine their energy and go after our state leadership for a bigger share of New York State Lottery money! The money that was supposed to be for education!

  5. Lee

    I find it appalling that a man who never even graduated High School acts as liaison to the towns education. The man has failed the school district for years, but the people of Saugerties want nothing to do with the local politics. Instead of playing small down popularity contests, the general Saugerteesian public needs to wake up and take part.

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