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Judge orders Nassau audit of N. Hempstead park, pool

North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman. (May 24, 2011)

North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman. (May 24, 2011) Photo Credit: David Pokress

A state court judge has ordered North Hempstead to comply with subpoenas from Nassau Comptroller George Maragos, ruling that the comptroller has the power to audit a town-run park district and pool.

Acting Supreme Court Justice Denise Sher denied Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman’s request to bar Maragos from auditing the Clinton G. Martin Park District and dismissed Kaiman’s lawsuit alleging the county comptroller was overstepping his authority.

Sher directed the town to comply with Maragos’ subpoena for park district records within 14 days of her order, issued June 17.

“The residents of this district have waited a long time for answers to questions relating to the taxes they pay to support the district and its operations,” Maragos said. “Now they can get some answers.”

But Kaiman, a Democrat, contends the audit is a “backdoor” attempt by Republican Maragos to audit the town during an election year. He said he will appeal the decision by Sher, also a Republican. “We respect Judge Sher’s process, but we disagree with the conclusion, and we think the law is pretty clear on this,” Kaiman said. “We will take it to the next level and try to get it addressed based on the law.”

Maragos’ chief deputy Frank Moroney, the North Hempstead Town Republican leader, ran unsuccessfully against Kaiman for supervisor in 2003. Maroney said he has not been involved in the audit.

Photo:  North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman

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