In addition to the hotly contested 2011 Mayoral race in Mount Vernon there is a race for the 13th district county legislator race that appears to be heating up. The incumbent, Lyndon Williams, in is his second term. This time he faces a potential challenge for the Democratic nomination from former First Deputy Commissioner of Social Services, Diane Atkins. Atkins is also President of the Mount Vernon chapter of the Westchester Black Woman’s Political Caucus.
|County Legislator Lyndon Williams|
Lyndon Williams, a legislator with ambitious plans is seeking his third term in office. Lyndon Williams is an attorney and a certified public accountant. Lyndon Williams has made several campaign promises to City of Mount Vernon voters of which none can seen in the physical form. One of these promises is the rebuilding of Memorial Field. Legislator Williams has publicly blamed the Comptroller and City Council for intentionally delaying the project. Mount Vernon Exposed™® has learned that the delay of the project is due to incomplete and inadequate architectural drawings. For example, the visitors section of the stadium did not contain any public restrooms.
Mount Vernon Exposed™® could not find a bio on Ms. Atkins. Many people interviewed by Mount Vernon Exposed™® laughed at the fact that Atkins is considering a run for County Legislator. “Shouldn’t she be in jail?” said one district leader who asked to remain anonymous. The district leader was referring to recent news articles regarding abuse of taxpayer funds and misconduct on the part of Atkins. In the February 25, 2010 issue of the Westchester Guardian, Diane Atkins was exposed for her excessive criminal abuse of Westchester taxpayer dollars. It was reported that Atkins repeatedly overrode the findings of persons deemed to be ineligible and made them eligible for social services benefits. It is unknown how long Atkins ran this scam and unclear how much money Westchester County taxpayers were bilked out of. Some people interviewed by Mount Vernon Exposed™® put the figure somewhere around $10M.
Taxpayers even allegedly funded $4K for her niece to move to South Carolina. Friends of the Atkins regime also were allegedly handsomely rewarded via lucrative child care subsidies. Serapher Conn Halevi, a long time pal of Atkins receives child care subsidies amounting to the tens of thousands of dollars each and every month. Naomi Halevi, the daughter of Serapher Halevi received section 8 even though she had a house recorded in her name worth approximately $1M. It is unclear if Atkins approved her section 8 subsidy. This act of taxpayer fraud was reported in The Journal News. The Journal News reported that Federal Investigators appeared in Mount Vernon city hall the next day after the story ran to retrieve documents relating to the fraud.
Serapher Conn Halevi’s other son, Nashon, was hired at Social Services while Atkins was 1st Deputy Commissioner. Atkins came under scrutiny when The Journal News reported that Mr. Halevi received $162,000 in private vendor fees from the Department of Social Services for his work as a real estate broker while she was 1st Deputy Commissioner. Mr. Halevi received $15,000 while he was employed for the Department of Social Services.
Atkins retired in 2010 after 41 years of drinking from the public water fountain. Her pension is estimated to be around $120K per year. Her lavish retirement party was even attended by Westchester District Attorney Janet DiFiore.
Today, Ms. Atkins is employed at Levister Towers as an assistant property manager where she is still in contact with her former employer, the Department of Social Services. Recently, Ms. Atkins was stopped from entering an employee entrance by Gene Buttinelli at 100 E. First Street in Mount Vernon. Ms. Buttinelli, an employee, told Ms. Atkins that she would have to use the main entrance just like everyone else.
Official's Son Got DSS Broker Fees, Some While Working for County