ST/PCV residents mostly support East 20th Street ferry landing plan

Council Member Dan Garodnick speaks at the ST-PCV Tenants Association’s meeting on the planned East 20th Street ferry landing, as Susan Steinberg, Tenants Association president listens. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Council Member Dan Garodnick speaks at the ST-PCV Tenants Association’s meeting on the planned East 20th Street ferry landing, as Susan Steinberg, Tenants Association president listens. (Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The plan for an expansion of ferry service that will include a stop at Stuyvesant Cove Park has been met by mostly positive responses from Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village residents.

The community got to hear about the project last Thursday, when the ST-PCV Tenants Association hosted the Economic Development Corporation for a presentation.

At the event, the EDC reps responded to concerns from tenants about the potential for crowding — which the EDC doesn’t think will happen — and promised the new landing wouldn’t impact Stuyvesant Cove Park.

Last year, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in his State of the City address that Stuyvesant Cove at East 20th and Avenue C would be one of 20 new ferry landings for the five new routes that will soon be added to supplement the existing East River Ferry service.

Stuyvesant Cove will be a stop on the Lower East Side route, which originates in Long Island City and travels through Stuy Cove from East 34th Street on its way to a stop at Wall Street/Pier 11. The Rockaway, South Brooklyn and Astoria routes are planned for 2017 and the Soundview and Lower East Side routes are expected for 2018. Commuters from Stuyvesant Cove will be able to transfer to all of the other routes through either the East 34th Street or Wall Street stops.

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Letters to the Editor, Jan. 21

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Con Ed blocking Ave. C parking spots

Dear T&V,

I have a complaint about a parking situation currently happening on East 16th Street just south of Avenue C. This street is located between two properties belonging to Con Edison. The block has public parking spaces for about 15 cars as regulated by D.O.T. signage.

For the last couple of weeks, Con Ed has been placing cones in the street prohibiting people from parking there. (Except perhaps their own employees or contractors.) They even employ an outside agency of some sort to have someone stand there and tell people they can’t park there. There are no work order notices or temporary suspension indication on the street parking signs. There is no digging or other signs of work taking place. They have parked a large generator on the street for some time and they recently added a second one.

Recently I sought parking there around 5:45 p.m. and the street was empty. The cones were out and I was told there was no parking allowed. Forty-five minutes later, still looking for a spot, I found several passenger cars parked there with cones placed on top. They were okay to park there, I guess? Friends of Con Ed?

I am a resident of Stuyvesant Town who uses a car for work each day. Parking is difficult enough without Con Ed taking over a public thoroughfare without any apparent permits to do so. Is Con Ed just doing as they please because they can? Have they secured the proper authority to take over public parking? Why are there no postings of temporary work permits? Do they intend to “take over” this space permanently and further diminish the availability of street parking? This would lead to a host of other quality of life issues.

Thank you for your assistance in looking into this matter.

Name withheld, ST

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Police Watch: Police looking for mugger, foiled bank robbers

Mugging suspect

Mugging suspect

COPS LOOKING FOR MAN WHO MUGGED WOMAN IN EAST VILLAGE BUILDING
Police are looking for a man who robbed a woman in the elevator of her East Village building.
It was on Thursday, January 14 around 8:45 p.m. when the man confronted the woman in the elevator, simulated a gun and demanded her money. The victim, 27, turned over $150 in cash, which the mugger took and fled the scene.
Police didn’t release the victim’s exact address, but said the building was on East 12th Street and Third Avenue.
The suspect was last seen wearing a dark winter jacket and a dark winter hat.
Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at http://www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Robbery suspects

Robbery suspects

NYPD LOOKING FOR PAIR BEHIND FOILED BANK ROBBERY
Cops are asking the public’s assistance identifying two men wanted for trying to rob the M&T Bank located at 95 Madison Avenue. Police said the men approached a teller and demanded money last Thursday at 1 p.m. The teller refused and the suspects fled empty handed. There were no reported injuries.
The first suspect is a black male in his fifties, 5’8” tall, and the second suspect is a black male in his twenties, 5’7” tall. Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS. The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Website at nypdcrimestoppers.com or texting TIP577 and their tips to 274637 (CRIMES).

MAN ARRESTED FOR 6 TRAIN ‘GROPING’
Sixty-year-old Hector Collado was arrested for forcible touching in front of 38 East 29th Street on Wednesday at 9:19 a.m. Collado allegedly touched a 27-year-old woman inappropriately while she was on a downtown 6 train. The woman got off the train at East 28th Street and was speaking with a 911 dispatcher when she found two officers in an RMP at East 28th Street and Madison Avenue. One of the officers told the dispatcher that the victim was safely in their custody and they conducted a search of the area with her in the car. They drove about a block to East 29th Street where they saw a man fitting a description of the suspect and the victim immediately identified him.
The victim also said that when she told Collado she was going to call 911, he allegedly said, “You’re going to regret that.”
Collado was additionally charged with assault, menacing and harassment.

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Resident arrested for Stuy Town laundry room ‘groping’

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A Stuyvesant Town resident was arrested for forcible touching and sexual abuse in a Stuy Town laundry room in the early hours of last Friday morning.

Jason Wilner, 27, was arrested at 449 East 14th Street on January 15 at 1:41 a.m. after allegedly groping another resident while she was doing laundry.

The victim told police that she was folding her clothes in the building’s laundry room when Wilner approached her, put his right arm around her and allegedly grabbed her buttocks. She said that she told Wilner to stop but he allegedly continued to touch her and grabbed her buttocks at least two more times.

“The safety and security of our residents is a priority for management,” Senior Vice President of Global Public Affairs Paula Chirhart said regarding the incident. “Management and public safety are fully cooperating with the NYPD on this incident. We will not allow for any behavior that puts resident safety at risk.”

Wilner’s lawyer did not return a request for comment.

Opinion: A letter from a mom

By Former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

Last week, after the umpteenth rejection by Congress to pass any restrictions on the sale of guns, President Obama acted with an executive order to restrict online and gun show sales of weapons without a sufficient background check of the persons attempting to purchase firearms in this manner. Naturally he was immediately attacked by the National Rifle Association (NRA) and candidates seeking the support of the NRA.

Donald Trump, in his efforts to pander to the gun lobby this week even said that his “first” action as President would be to eliminate all “gun free zones,” in America including the ones near and on school grounds! Of all the outrageous remarks he has made as a candidate for President, that one is probably the saddest of all.

I have written much about efforts to enact sensible restrictions on the sale and possession of dangerous and deadly firearms. I have spoken about the culture of guns ingrained in the American experience. I have strenuously criticized Congress and candidates who look the other way in the face of mass murders with high powered assault weapons. I have trotted out statistics which show that since the assassination of President Kennedy with a mail ordered rifle, 1.5 million people have died at the hands of persons with guns. That is more deaths than all the American servicemen and women who died during all American wars spanning 240 years… combined! And still the politicians look the other way and pretend that the Second Amendment is inviolate and cannot be tampered with, even if a gun could propel a nuclear device. This is utter madness. These arguments fall on politicians ears drowned out by the sound of campaign cash and political endorsement by the NRA.

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Kips Bay teen missing

Jan21 Kyle Hoffmaier

Kyle Hoffmaier

UPDATE: Hoffmaier has been found.

Police are looking for a Kips Bay teen who has been missing since Friday, January 15.

Kyle Hoffmaier, 16, was last seen at his home at 305 East 24th Street and Second Avenue at around 11:30 p.m.

He is described as white with brown eyes, about 5 ft. 4 ins. tall and approximately 145 lbs. He was last seen wearing a grey polo shirt, khaki pants, a black leather jacket and blue sneakers.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit tips by logging onto nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Man arrested for fatal hit-and-run on FDR Drive

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police have arrested a man for allegedly leaving the scene after a hit-and-run on the FDR Drive that killed Anthony Pham, a 29-year-old San Francisco resident.

Mirsad Dzaferovic, 34, was collared on Saturday morning for the accident that occurred a day earlier, in the early morning, on the northbound side of the FDR near East 28th Street. The FDNY received a call around 12:35 a.m. and police responded to the scene at about 1:05 a.m.

When they got there, officers discovered Pham lying in the roadway with head trauma. Dzaferovic had allegedly left the scene without waiting for police and allegedly continued to drive north on the FDR. Pham was taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police tracked down Dzaferovic through vehicle parts, including a mirror and door handle with grey paint, that were scattered in the street close to the victim. A check on the serial number of the parts showed that they were from a Toyota Camry and police recovered a car matching that description that was also missing a side mirror and door handle that was registered to Dzaferovic.

The suspect allegedly told police that he was driving that car at the date, time and location of the crash.

A preliminary investigation found that the victim was either standing on the FDR or attempting to cross the highway when he was hit by the car, but no further information about how he got into the roadway was available.

Hoylman forum highlights lack of protection against ‘revenge porn’

State Senator Brad Hoylman (Photo courtesy of Senator Hoylman)

State Senator Brad Hoylman (Photo courtesy of Senator Hoylman)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

State Senator Brad Hoylman hosted a forum to promote awareness on intimate partner violence and nonconsensual pornography, commonly known as “revenge porn,” at the LGBT Center last Friday. The event was co-hosted by the Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence and co-sponsored by Assemblymember Deborah Glick, Congressman Jerrold Nadler, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Comptroller Scott Stringer and Public Advocate Letitia James.

Hoylman and other advocates at the event drew attention to the fact that there is no specific legislation in New York State that criminalizes the distribution of nonconsensual pornography.

“The truth is that the internet is not a safe place, particularly for women, people of color and LGBT individuals,” he said. “We can’t ask people to just forget about things because these are impacts that reverberate for the rest of your life. The fact that New York State has no law is truly shameful. No one should have to deal with this. It’s time for lawmakers to counter the growing threats.”

Holly Jacobs, the founder of the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative (CCRI) and a victim of nonconsensual pornography, said that the term “revenge porn” is actually a misnomer because the phrase implies that there is always a personal relationship, but not all of the videos and photos distributed are motivated by revenge.

“Some are motivated by money, others by internet notoriety because the material becomes currency among young males,” she said, citing an incident reported on by the New York Times last November in which high school students in Colorado traded and collected hundreds of naked photos of other students in a so-called sexting ring.

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Cops looking for man who mugged woman in East Village building

Jan21 Mugger

Surveillance photo of robbery suspect

Police are looking for a man who robbed a woman in the elevator of her East Village building.

It was on Thursday, January 14 around 8:45 p.m. when the man confronted the woman in the elevator, simulated a gun and demanded her money. The victim, 27, turned over $150 in cash, which the mugger took and fled the scene.

Police didn’t release the victim’s exact address, but said the building was on East 12th Street and Third Avenue.

The suspect was last seen wearing a dark winter jacket and a dark winter hat.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips and TIP577 to 274637 (CRIMES). All calls are strictly confidential.

Opinion: ‘Unconstitutional’ claims about SBJSA are real estate propaganda

Sept24 Associated

Stuyvesant Town’s Associated Supermarket is facing an uncertain future. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sung Soo Kim, President, Small Business Congress

Lawmakers claim proposed legislation will save mom and pop businesses. Small business advocates claim it’s a “Trojan Horse” created by the real estate lobby to keep status quo.  Who is right?

For over 30 years I have pleaded with local government to pass legislation protecting our hard working small business owners from profiteers, unscrupulous landlords and greedy speculators.  The past decades’ over-speculation in commercial real estate, bidding wars by franchises and banks and manipulation by warehousing storefronts, has wreaked havoc on the commercial rental market. Guided by big real estate campaign contributions, their friends at City Hall have remained silent and done nothing as the American Dream of our small business owners is being destroyed.

At first I was pleased to hear the commitments of Manhattan Borough President Brewer and Council Member Cornegy, to listen to the business owners and to pass legislation to save our businesses. Brewer said, “The mom-and-pop crisis has intensified with a fury.” CM Cornegy acknowledged numerous small and locally-owned businesses that many would describe as New York City institutions were forced to close or relocate as a result of exorbitant rent increases. Both lawmakers’ words sounded very encouraging and offered hope to small business owners who had become indentured servants to their landlords.

But upon analyzing their proposed solution to end this crisis and stop the closing of long established businesses, I have become saddened for the future of our struggling business owners. Their proposal is an insult to the desperate business owners whose survival depends upon fair and just treatment from government’s offering a real solution to end the crisis. The Brewer/Cornegy proposal is no solution in any way and would not save a single small business if passed into law. In fact, their proposal to extend the lease period for one year at 15 percent rent increase, allowing the business more time to find a new location, would, instead, actually help landlords and make the crisis much worse. Rent gouging and oppressive lease abuses are the root of this crisis and their solution addresses neither.

The rent gouging and oppressive lease abuses have been going on for many decades. Many business owners have already been forced to move several times. This gentrification tornado of greed has cut swaths of destruction across many neighborhoods and in every borough. There are no more “safe” locations to move to in NYC, because our government has done nothing to regulate the out of control rents. If a storefront is vacant on a busy main street, it’s because the long established business was forced to close when the landlord refused to accept a fair rent which would have allowed a reasonable profit for the business. I predict that if this weak Brewer/Cornegy proposal is passed, should a business want to stay in their neighborhood, the only choice is to go to another landlord and bid against other local businesses, making the crisis worse.

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Andrett Funeral Home leaves Gramercy for West Village

Andrett’s new home on Bleecker Street (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Andrett’s new home on Bleecker Street (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

After more than 60 years a block away from Stuyvesant Town, Andrett Funeral Home has relocated to another space on Bleecker Street that has been operating as a funeral home since 1925.

New owner Peter DeLuca, who has been running Greenwich Village Funeral Home and the Beth Abraham Memorial Chapel at the Bleecker Street address for about 40 years, took over operations for Andrett in mid-December and said that the business is still essentially the same as before, apart from the location. In addition to the business name, the phone number and website are the same as well.

DeLuca emphasized that he also wants to maintain connections with the community despite being farther away and some of the deep ties with the neighborhood lie in the thousands of pages of historical records that DeLuca said that the previous owners meticulously kept.

“I had to get a moving van just for those and we brought it all here,” he said. “They kept everything in perfect order. There are 62 years of records and service to that community.”

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Pooch population in ST/PCV now 1,200

Stuy Town canine Callie, owned by Bill Oddo

Stuy Town canine Callie, owned by Bill Oddo

By Sabina Mollot

The last time the owner of Stuyvesant Town deigned to provide the number of dogs that were living in the community was in 2012, when CWCapital revealed to Town & Village that it was close to 1,100.

At the time, T&V noted that the figure was likely to grow since management had just begun to crack down on unregistered pooches at that time.

And grow it did, with the population of pooches now at 1,200, according to Blackstone’s data.

Meanwhile, since announcing its takeover of ST/PCV, new owners Blackstone and Ivanhoe Cambridge have steadily been approached by tenants on numerous dog-related issues from lack of rule enforcement to the lack of an onsite dog run.

On Saturday, at a meet-and-greet event for tenants and the new general manager Rick Hayduk, one resident wearing an “I (Bone) NY” sweatshirt said she planned to put in a request for a dog run. (The shirt was a freebie at an event for dogs and their owners that was held in Stuyvesant Town last May, with other freebies including Stuy Town logo-covered dog poop bags.)

The resident, malti-poo owner Belinda Medina, said she’d even be satisfied with a dog run that’s open part-time and suggested using one of the property’s lesser used playgrounds.

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Cuomo: It’s time to close LLC Loophole

Kavanagh

Assembly man Brian Kavanagh has been pushing to close the LLC Loophole.

By Sabina Mollot

 

On Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo said it was time to close the infamous LLC Loophole.

It was while making his State of the State address that Cuomo said that as far as the LLC Loophole is concerned, “The time for debate has passed. I call on the legislature to close the LLC Loophole. Pass it and I will sign it the very same day.”

He went on to say how there was a time when legislators, at the end of the day at the Capitol, went home to work on their farms. But nowadays, the governor said, they leave for their law firms, which is a recipe for conflict. He then proposed adopting the Congressional system of limiting outside income for legislators. He also acknowledged that the current campaign finance system makes it impossible for a candidate without funds to get anywhere. “We should encourage new participation,” he said, and also went on to say taxpayer money should not be used to pay the pensions of legislators who’ve been convicted of crimes relating to their jobs.

“2015 was a tough year. It was an ugly year on many levels,” said Cuomo, no doubt in reference to the Dean Skelos and Sheldon Silver corruption cases.

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New GM promises improved service and more accessibility

Rick Hayduk (right), the new general manager of ST/PCV, speaks with tenants at a meet-and-greet event on Saturday. (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

Rick Hayduk (right), the new general manager of ST/PCV, speaks with tenants at a meet-and-greet event on Saturday. (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

The new general manager of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper, Rick Hayduk, has promised tenants that Blackstone is focused on improving services and communication and in particular, said the hiring of four new plumbers should end the two to three week wait times tenants have been experiencing for repairs.

Hayduk made the comments on Saturday at a meet and greet event that was held at the tents at Stuyvesant Town’s Playground 11.

Around 150 people, mainly seniors and other longterm tenants, attended the event, as did a couple of elected officials, State Senator Brad Hoylman and Council Member Dan Garodnick.

Rick Hayduk speaks at Saturday’s event.

Rick Hayduk speaks at Saturday’s event.

While at a podium in front of a Stuy Town logo-covered step-and-repeat, Hayduk discussed various tenant concerns, including the recent spike in plumbing repair delays. “Our standard is two to three days and that’s what you should expect,” he said.
Hayduk also said that a hotline for tenants that Blackstone had set up after the company bought the property has been transferred to his office.

“Go through normal channels, but if (a request) needs to escalate, we’re here for that,” Hayduk said. The number is (212) 655-9870.

He also encouraged tenants to slip him notes, gesturing to his pocket while saying that several neighbors had already done so.

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Letters to the Editor, Jan. 14

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

The business of politics

After the T&V editorial on the SBJSA ran last week in the print edition, many offered negative comments online about New York City Council Member Dan Garodnick.

I met him for the first time many years ago when he first ran. He was friendly and seemed quite intelligent and won.

But Mr. Garodnick does need money each time he runs – as do all politicians. He may have first been elected as an idealist. But, now he lives in the real world of politics. Often people in his position morph into self-serving pols who run on helping the regular folks and end up accepting money from people in the real estate industry. Remember that power corrupts and the more one gets the greater corruption.

I gave quite moderate contributions to Obama and Sanders – so modest, that when and if they were or are elected, they owe me nothing. But, certain industries via lobbyists don’t care about the idealism or lack of it when they support a pol. All they desire is to be able to have access and call them directly or via a surrogate to suggest legislation which is in their financial interests.

This is my hypothesis about the insulting comments concerning Dan on the T&V Blog. And, if true it represents just a microcosm of what continues to occur in this city’s apartment and business rents – higher and higher. This also is happening in most areas of this nation.

If you have TWC they are running an important documentary on NY1’s Ch. 1020: “The Vanishing City.” This represents a comprehensive and honest explanation of what’s going down and affecting all of us. See it!

David Chowes, PCV

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