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Smithtown Holds Off on Suing Garbage Carter

Town officials wait to see what criminal investigation of Jody Enterprises turns up before determining what, if any, action to take.

Smithtown town officials have decided to hold off on pursuing legal action against Jody Enterprises until they find out what county's criminal investigation turns up. 

John Zollo, the town's attorney, said the Town of Smithtown has postponed filing a lawsuit against the garbage carter whose two employees were arrested for allegedly running 

"We haven’t moved forward with the charges. We are waiting to see how the criminal case is resolved or how it ends up," Zollo said.

Smithtown town board voted authorize the town attorney to take legal action against Jody Enterprises and its surety, Platte River Insurance Company, back at their Sept. 4, 2012 board meeting.

However, Jody Enterprises continues to collect recyclables for the town more than six months after the initial arrests.

The Suffolk County District Attorney's office arrested Jody Enterprises employees William A. Stegemann, 55, of Lindenhurst, and Michael Dalessandro, 43, of East Patchogue, on felony charges of second-degree grand larceny in August 2012 for allegedly operating a recycling scheme in cooperation with West Babylon-based DeMatteo Salvage for a personal profit.

Suffolk investigators said Dalessandaro would drive a truck, picking up curbside recyclable cardboard and paper from Smithtown homeowners. He would then take the truck to DeMatteo Salvage in West Babylon - instead of delivering the truck to Town of Smithtown's municipal recycling facility off Old Northport Road in Kings Park - for a cash payout of $400 to $450.The Town of Smithtown would have been able to sell the same recyclables for $1,000 to $1,200 a load, depending on weight.

It is unclear how long this alleged scheme went on, according to the DA's office, which still is actively investigating.

Zollo said he is hopeful the county's criminal case may be drawing to a close, allowing Smithtown to take action.

"We are working on this right now, I would hope within 30 days to be able to do something," he said.

The town attorney would not detail what the town's next action will be.

Other Towns working with Jody Enterprises have been able to get out of their contracts with the dubious garbage collector.

In the Town of Babylon, Supervisor Rich Schaffer heldo ask Jody Enterprises why Babylon should move ahead with a 10-year contract with the carting firm after the arrests. Babylon officials rescinded the contract with Jody to hire , 2012.

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