In politics, they say that you are entitled to your own opinions, but not your own set of facts. In light of the implication by City Council candidate Josh Nathan in his October 22, 2021 ad in The Rye Record, that Jana Seitz (his opponent in the race) joined Standard Amusements’ Advisory Board to promote Standard’s interests, we feel it is important to review the real facts of the relationship of the Advisory Board with Standard Amusements.
In 2018, Westchester County repudiated the Second Restated Playland Management Agreement of 2016, which had been negotiated by a bipartisan group of legislators. Standard Amusements, in response, filed a bankruptcy action in federal court in White Plains, because this allowed for a stay of attempts to nullify their contract. The federal court ultimately agreed with Standard Amusements and urged the parties to settle or have the original agreement reimposed on Westchester County.
Section 2-b(4) of the final negotiated agreement between Westchester and Standard Amusements was inserted to promote the Westchester County and Rye community’s interests. It requires Standard to form an advisory committee from local groups, such as the “Westchester County Historical Society, Save the Sound, City of Rye, Edith G. Read Wildlife Sanctuary, Rye Historical Society, Children’s Museum, Rye Town Park Commission, or similar groups.”
In Jana’s capacity as a trustee of Edith G. Read Sanctuary, her name was suggested to Standard by the Board of Legislators and the County Administration. As a result, Standard Amusements contacted Jana (as they did others) to comply with their agreement with Westchester County. She answered the call to volunteer and dedicated herself to understanding the perspectives of all those who would be affected by the terms of the agreement.
Jana Seitz, a private citizen, volunteered and took on the responsibility of ensuring that the terms of the agreement would be implemented in a careful and responsible manner, and that residents of the surrounding neighborhoods would be kept involved. It is to her credit that she recognized the importance of the trust that was placed in her integrity and effectiveness, and she should be praised, not denigrated, for her effort, time, and commitment to such an important issue in the Rye community.
- Elaine DiCostanzo and Jono Peters