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Freeport School News
June 2003

Correction: The following story refers to a conversation between Dr. Cattano and Mr. Lisi. Mr. Lisi advised FNYN that the conversation regarding his wife’s FOIL request occurred in front of Dr. Cattano’s home, not after a school board meeting. Dr. Cattano said that he had a conversation with Mr. Lisi in front of his house, however, he denied Mr. Lisi's version of the story. Dated: June 3, 2003
The Cattano E-mail
June 2, 2003

Board VP Strikes Back • Squanders Public Money
Dares FNYN To Publish Delusional E-mail

by Stewart S Lilker

F
reeport School Board Vice President, Dr. Joe Cattano, aimed a mean spirited and venomous attack at FreeportNYNews.com Publisher, Stewart Lilker, who is also a candidate for school board. Cattano holds a doctorate in clinical social work and claims to focus his private practice on adolescent behavioral disorders. Cattano, who is known in some circles as Joey Soprano, both for his demeanor and attire, dared FNYN to publish his paranoid and delusional e-mail. 

It appears that the Cattano diatribe was spurred when he read Lilker's comments

 about the board's attendance at the National School Board Association's (NSBA) annual conference in San Francisco. Lilker said, "The school junkets, wherein the Board and the Superintendent squander the district's money, willy-nilly, is something a board member must guard the public against. 

The Cattano E-mail

Joe Cattano and Mike Raab.

Board junketeering by Cattano is nothing new. Last year, Cattano and his road buddy, Board member Michael Raab, headed off at public expense to New Orleans for fun and frolic. Cattano was instrumental in seeing that the public was never able to see his and Raab’s original receipts for this junket. When former Board member, Joyce Lisi, applied under the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL), to see Cattano and Raab's receipts, the district simply ignored her request. 

Sometime after Lisi first FOILed the receipts, Lisi's husband told FNYN, "Cattano approached me at one Board meeting and said, "'Tell your wife not to FOIL for my expense reports. Remember, you're a fellow Mason.'" 

Your reporter also applied for the receipts of Board members Cattano and Raab, as well as Superintendent Eversley. 

After it became clear that the District was ignoring the request, your reporter, at two different board meetings, asked Board President, Sunday Coward, and the Superintendent why he couldn’t get an answer. Coward ignored the question, Eversley said he would look into it and Cattano said nothing. 

When the receipts still didn't appear, a written appeal was directed to Superintendent Eversley. He ignored it. The original receipts were never produced.. 

This year, out of the public eye, in a district that is struggling to make ends meet, road buddies Cattano and Raab decided to bring new board member, Carman Pineyro along with them to San Francisco to the NSBA conference. 

NSBA's statistics show that only 17.5% of districts from the Northeast attended the conference in San Francisco. An examination of NSBA’s web site clearly shows that the majority of events, speeches and handouts are available over the Internet.

It appears that the only things Cattano and his road gang couldn't get by staying on Long Island were the food, booze and San Francisco air.
 

 

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