January 1, 2014 In a caucus meeting of the Democrats at the County Legislature held on December 17, Aron Wieder, D-Spring Valley, was officially selected as the Legislature's Democratic Majority Leader.
A remarkable choice when you consider that Wieder served as Vice President of the East Ramapo School Board that was, and is in the process of dismantling what had once been one of the best school districts in New York State.
As a result of his actions on the board, Wieder is currently, along with his other board members, subject to a class action lawsuit by hundreds of parents in East Ramapo, and also is the focus of an ongoing criminal investigation by New York's Attorney General concerning the sale of a public grammar school.
The assessor who was selected by Wieder's
board for this sale has already been arrested and charged.
Likewise, when Wieder
ran for the New York State Assembly, he
provided the same blank slate for the voters.
profile as checked by Project Vote Smart
, as Rockland County Legislator, continues to maintain anonymity.
If you go to the elected officials page and click on the pictures of the people in the County Legislature you will be taken to a page with that official's bio including, for most, education, experience, associations and interests.
Click on Aron Wieder's
photo and you get none of that-just press releases.
When Wieder was running for a seat on the Assembly, Steve White, a Spring Valley activist and founder of the Power of Ten, handed out the following brief broadside to voters who were not familiar with the candidate:
In the shadow of this legal mess, Wieder requested that the Board of Education separate him from the Board's law firm and vote to provide him with a different counsel in the matter.
Why Aron Wieder
needed a different, and much more expensive law firm from D.C. to represent his
interests in this investigation has not been explained.
For whatever reason, he
wanted no part of the D'Agostino law firm that he
brought to the district in an after-midnight vote.
Here is video of the vote to get Wieder his
own private counsel:
[East Ramapo Aron Wieder doesn't want Dagostino
who hired D'Agostino for the school district now doesn't want him.
Wieder is under investigation in the sale of the Hillcrest school by the NYS Attorney General.
The Appraiser of the school was arrested later in July.
What preceded this flight from D'Agostino was the single-minded effort by Wieder
to ram through the firing of the East Ramapo law firm
of 30+ years to bring in D'Agostino.
At the time of the vote, Wieder, then Vice President of the Board, waited for a meeting when President Nathan Rothschild was absent, and after a very long executive session, brought the board back in for a vote well past midnight.
Aron Wieder will not even mention the lawyer by name!
is named as a defendant in that lawsuit as well.
You can read the full text and see the complete list of principals on our archive on DocumentCloud. (This is the first filing-on the amended version many more names were added to the plaintiff's list.)
When Mr Wieder
left the school board, his
next career move was to accept the position as confidential personal assistant to a local mayor.
At the time of his
appointment by Noramie Jasmin, The Journal News headline characterized the hiring as "unusual."
was offered $45,000, and The Journal reporter quoted Steve White on his misgivings about "Wieder's
professional background and qualificiations.
Jasmin wouldn't elaborate on that, so the question was put to Aron Wieder
declined to comment about his
past employment experience and administrative qualifications."
In a conversation that we had with the Legislator, we did discover some qualifications that Mr. Wieder
admitted not having.
He doesn't have an advanced degree (MA or higher); he doesn't have a Bachelors degree or an Associates degree; and he offered no clarification on the question of whether he has an accredited high school diploma.
So, how radioactive is Aron Wieder
on today's political landscape?