Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Espada's Defense- My Accountants Said it Was Legal

Here is one we found on a Daily News Site titled

"Ex-Sen. Pedro Espada's Defense: My Accountants Said That Petting Zoo Was Totally Fine"

 Celeste Katz of the daily news writes "Espada claims expenses charged to a janitorial company the feds say he controlled - including pony rides and a petting zoo for a family member's birthday party, home repairs and a down payment on a Bentley - were all approved by accountants". 

The article goes on to say that the feds are looking back to 2001 in Soundview Health Centers financial records. You can access the article at this link and see for yourself.


Today, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and the New York Yankees co-hosted the inaugural “Borough President’s Cup” Little League Championship. The game featured a match-up between the Little League Raiders and the Rolando Paulino Little League, who competed for the title in a game at Yankee Stadium.

The Little League Raiders won the game, defeating the Rolando Paulino Little League 9-7 in extra innings.

To compete for the “Borough President’s Cup,” players for each Little League had to meet a set of requirements unrelated to their performance on the field. Those included a B-average in school, 90 percent or greater school attendance and a demonstrated commitment to community service.
 BP Diaz with little league Raiders presenting BP's Cup to the winner.

“This game is not about showcasing the best athletes in the Bronx, but those students who represent the best of our borough overall: good students who have shown us that they want to make the Bronx a better place,” said Borough President Diaz. “What better way to reward them then to give them a chance to walk in the footsteps of Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and all the Yankee greats.”

“The Little League Raiders would like to thank Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and his staff for an outstanding job on putting together the Borough President’s Cup.   It is our pleasure to participate in this tournament. We are very excited to have the opportunity to play the championship game at Yankee Stadium. We would like to thank Mr. Brian Smith, SVP, Corporate/Community Relations and Mr. Rocky Halsey and staff of the New York Yankees organization for allowing us this opportunity. It makes us proud to say that we are from the Bronx,” said Peggy Guzman, director of the Little League Raiders.

“Thank you, Borough President Diaz and the New York Yankees, for this opportunity. The dreams of our players, to play at Yankee Stadium, have become a reality.  This moment will make a difference in the lives of these very promising young people, and we will never forget this game,” said Rolando Paulino, commissioner of the Rolando Paulino Little League.

The “Borough President’s Cup” will be an annual event.

September 11th Tenth Anniversary: The Bronx Remembers


Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
The Supreme Court of Bronx County

Cordially invite you to join them and the Bronx community  
as they pay homage to our families, friends and neighbors  
 who perished on September 11, 2001.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
12:00-2:00 PM

Lou Gehrig Plaza
161st Street, between Grand Concourse & Walton Avenue
Bronx, New York

In partnership with
Bronx Tourism Council 
Sponsored by 
Kramer Dillof Livingston & Moore, Esqs.
John C. Dearie, Esq.
Louis Rose, M.D.  
 Trolman Glaser & Lichtman, Esqs.
Plumbers & Gasfitters Local Union No. 1

For Information and to confirm your attendance
please call:  718-590-3522


Upcoming Event:Townhall Meeting On Public Safety in Northern Manhattan

New York City Councilmember
Ydanis Rodriguez
10th Council District
New York State Senator
Adriano Espaillat
31st Senate District
New York State Assemblymember
Guillermo Linares
72nd Assembly District
Invite You To Attend A Townhall Meeting
On Public Safety And Meet
The New Commanding Officer of the 34th Precinct
Deputy Inspector Barry Buzzetti
Co-Sponsored by:
U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel, State Assemblymember Herman D. Farrell Jr.,
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer,
City Councilmember Robert Jackson, Community Board 12, Manhattan,
New York City Parks & Recreation,
Isabella Geriatric Center and the 34th Precinct Community Council

 Date: Thursday, September 1, 2011 /  Time: 7:00pm -9:00pm
Place:   Isabella (Auditorium)
515 Audubon Avenue (On the Corner of W 190th St & Audubon Ave)

Representatives of the New York County District Attorney’s Office will be Present
Please call 917-521-2616 for further information. 


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Triple Shooting in West Farms: Elected Officials Respond

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
“It saddens me how some people have no regard for human life.  Yesterday, a shooting occurred while families and young children were enjoying a beautiful evening on E. 181st and Daly Ave.  This time three people were shot: 20-year old, Ricky Rodriquez, two-year old Patience Boyd and six-year old Jayla Rodriquez. While Ricky and Jayla are in stable condition, Patience remains in critical condition, and may lose her life to a thug’s bullet.
“We cannot afford to lose life after life to senseless gun violence, and even though we have come so far we still have more work to do. My office will continue to work to take illegal guns off of our streets by speaking directly to youth, working to promote gun buyback programs and through our ‘Peace in our Streets’ campaign, which speaks directly to Bronx residents on the need to report illegal guns.  It hurts me greatly that young children cannot simply go outside and play on a nice summer day without fear of being struck down by a stray bullet,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

Senator Reverend Diaz, Councilmember Joel Rivera and Community Leader Luis Sepulveda Outraged Over Shooting of Bronx Children
New  York  State  Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz (D-Bronx), Councilmember Joel Rivera  and  Community Leader  Luis Sepulveda will hold a press conference with  other  activists  on  Wednesday,  August  31, 2011 at 11:30 AM on the corner  of  East  181st  Street  and  Daly  Avenue  in The Bronx to express community outrage over gun violence.

Senator  Reverend Diaz stated:  “The random gun violence that took place on Monday  night  has struck down a 20-year old man along with two of our most vulnerable  citizens – a 2-year old girl and a 5-year old girl.  We hope to offer  some  comfort and compassion for the families and neighbors of those who  were shot, and to also offer comfort for parents in our community who are  afraid that their children may be at the wrong place at the wrong time when some criminal feels free to wreak havoc.  We will remain vigilant with our communities so they can live in safe and healthy neighborhoods.”

Mr.  Sepulveda  stated: “Although we are relieved that a suspect for Monday night’s  shooting has been identified, crime is prevalent in the West Farms community and it can not be tolerated.  How can it be that inside the walls of the Bronx Zoo – which is only one block away from this shooting – is one of  the safest areas of New York State, but outside of those walls crime is rampant?   We will continue to stand with our community and demand that the same  levels  of  safety  and protection that are afforded to guests of the Bronx   Zoo are also provided to Bronx residents who live nearby and should not live in fear.”

For further information, please contact Luis Sepulveda at (347) 582-8173.

CB 8 Public Hearing Sept 8th Re: Ice Skating Rink CANCELLED

5676 Riverdale Avenue, Suite 100 • Bronx, New York 10471-2194
Telephone: 718-884-3959 • Fax: 718-796-2763

Honorable Ruben Diaz, Jr.
Bronx Borough President
                               Chairperson      Robert Fanuzzi
                              District Manager     Nicole M. Stent




      DATE:    Thursday, September 8th, 2011

                   TIME:            7:30 p.m.

      PLACE:           Riverdale YM/YWHA  
                                  5625 Arlington Avenue, Social Hall
                                      Bronx, NY 10471

    SUBECT:        Proposed Ice Skating Rink in
                Van Cortlandt Park


Anyone wishing to speak may sign up at the door at time of hearing

We ask that you read our column 100 PERCENT this Thursday September 1st in the Bronx News or Parkchester News, for our comments. You can also view the column online at The Bronx News Website
clicking on the Bedford Park link on the left. You can also go directly to the column here and scroll down to this weeks column of 100 PERCENT.



Monday, August 29, 2011


Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. announced today that Dr. Diane Ravitch, widely considered to be the preeminent education expert in the United States, will offer the keynote address at the first-ever “Bronx Education Summit: From Cradle to Career,” to be held on Saturday, October 15, 2011, from 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM at Lehman College.

Dr. Ravitch is Research Professor of Education at New York University and a historian of education. In addition, she is a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. Her most recent book, The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education (2010), is a critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller.

“The goal of our education summit is to bring together the best minds in education, from all sides of the issues, to put forward a clear vision for the future of education in the Bronx. With that in mind, we are extremely grateful that none other than Diane Ravitch, one of the most important voices in the national debate on education, is coming to the Bronx to participate in this historic event,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

The topic of Dr. Ravitch’s address will be "Improving Education for the Children of the Bronx." Dr. Ravitch’s complete biography and curriculum vitae can be found at
All educational stakeholders are invited to attend the Summit, including parents, teachers, students, and policy makers. 
The day will begin with greetings from Borough President Diaz, Dr. Pedro Noguera of New York University, and Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott of the New York City Department of Education, followed by Dr. Ravitch’s keynote address.  After the morning workshop, the summit will host eight breakout sessions covering a variety of topics, such as special education, English Language Learners, and parent involvement. 
The event concludes with a VIP Policy Panel composed of some of the city’s most influential educational figures, including Ernest Logan president, Council of School Supervisors and Administrators; Monica Major, Bronx representative to the Panel for Educational Policy; James Merriman chief executive officer, New York City Charter School Center; Michael Mulgrew, president, United Federation of Teachers; Dr. Betty Rosa, New York Board of Regents, and Shael Suransky, deputy chancellor, New York City Department of Education.
 Throughout the day, participants can visit tables staffed by employees of dozens of educational and social service organizations to learn more about the resources available to parents, students, and teachers in the Bronx and citywide. 
The “Bronx Education Summit: From Cradle to Career,” is only the first step in creating a new education agenda for the Bronx.  A number of follow-up activities are being planned in conjunction with the summit to continue these important conversations about improving educational outcomes for all Bronx students. 
For more information about the Bronx Education Summit or to register, please visit or call 718-590-6116


Senator Jeffrey D. Klein, (D-Bronx/Westchester), announced that singer Tony Orlando's free summer concert will still be going on as planned.
Klein said the concert, which is part of his Summertime Symphonies series, was especially important in the aftermath of Irene.
This was a scary and stressful weekend for many in the greater Bronx and Westchester area,” Senator Klein said. “I'm proud to have Tony Orlando come to our community and I am looking forward to this free, family friendly, and lighthearted concert.”

WHEN: 7 p.m. Tuesday, August 30, 2011
WHERE: Loreto Park (between Haight & Tomlinson Aves.)
                 Morris Park, Bronx, NY.
                 (Rain Location: P.S. 105 725 Brady Ave., Bronx)
The Bronx Council of the Arts and Arts Westchester are also co-sponsoring these Summertime Symphonies.
Tony Orlando, the winner of three American Music Awards and a People's Choice Award, is best known for his hits, “Knock Three Times,” “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” and “Sweet Gypsy Rose.”

Could Speaker Quinn Be Bloomberg's Choice to Replace Him in 2013

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, an independent, and the City Council speaker, Christine C. Quinn, a Democrat, on an East River ferry in June. Their spokesmen say that she has not asked for an endorsement and that the mayor has not promised one.

It is the worst-kept secret in City Hall. Michael R. Bloomberg has told almost everyone who asks — but only privately, so far — that he hopes the City Council speaker, Christine C. Quinn, will succeed him as mayor in 2013.

While Mr. Bloomberg brings unprecedented personal resources to his political agenda, few other New York City mayors have succeeded in anointing a successor.
Mr. Bloomberg, in fact, was the only mayoral candidate in recent memory for whom an endorsement by the incumbent proved instrumental, even if it was a begrudging, last-minute nudge from Rudolph W. Giuliani.
Mr. Bloomberg, an independent, has refrained from specifying an heir publicly, since he seems to prefer to keep Ms. Quinn, a Democrat, and other prospective candidates as compliant as possible in the two years remaining before the next mayoral election.
Jamie McShane, a spokesman for Ms. Quinn, said, “She has never asked for nor has he offered his support.”
A spokesman for Mr. Bloomberg said the same.
Still, the mayor has made it plain in private conversations with other politicians and civic leaders that he prefers the City Council speaker.
“There’s no question in my mind that of all the candidates, he sees Chris Quinn as far better for the city of New York,” said former Mayor Edward I. Koch, who has spoken to Mr. Bloomberg about the race to succeed him.
A mayor is typically well situated to place a potential successor in the spotlight. “He can arrange events, he can promote her for the next two and a half years, he can make her the ‘vice mayor’ so people will think she’s the No. 2 person in city government, which, to some extent, she is,” said Henry J. Stern, a Koch confidant and the director of New York Civic, a government watchdog.
On Saturday, he trotted out Ms. Quinn, who unlike his commissioners has no operational authority, during a Hurricane Irene update at the city’s emergency command center, introducing her as the “great” Council speaker.
How much clout would Mr. Bloomberg’s endorsement carry? According to a New York Times/CBS News poll released earlier this month, his approval rating has sunk to a six-year low, and nearly as many Democrats disapprove of his performance as approve.
And while self-financed candidates can spend whatever they want to on a mayoral campaign (Mr. Bloomberg spent a total of about $250 million in three elections), they can give no more than $4,950 to someone else in the 2013 campaign.
Mr. Bloomberg, however, could wield enormous influence as a fund-raiser (his approval ratings are highest among New Yorkers who make more than $100,000), although Ms. Quinn has already raised close to the public financing system’s spending limit for a Democratic mayoral primary.
“You cannot anoint; you can influence; you can impact,” Mr. Koch said. “It is not an overriding endorsement that assures you of success.”
Most of Mr. Bloomberg’s predecessors in the 20th century were ill situated to anoint a successor because their parties’ nominees were chosen by party leaders with their own agendas or were challenged in Democratic primaries.
In addition, many mayors were so unpopular by the end of their terms that they wielded little influence.
Legend has it that in 1945, during the era of ethnically balanced tickets, Democratic leaders supporting William O’Dwyer chose his running mate for City Council president by searching the index of the Green Book, the official city directory, for the longest Italian name they could find. Five years later, their designee, Vincent R. Impellitteri, became mayor when Mr. O’Dwyer resigned.
Nearly two decades earlier, Mayor James J. Walker succeeded in appointing his predecessor, John F. Hylan — not as mayor again, but to a judgeship, accompanied by a backhanded compliment. Naming Mr. Hylan a judge in Children’s Court, Mr. Walker declared, “The appointment of Judge Hylan means that the children can now be tried by their peer.”
In 2001, Mr. Giuliani’s belated endorsement of Mr. Bloomberg was generally considered crucial.
“When Rudy put his arm around Mike, literally, that was the campaign,” David Garth, a media consultant who brokered the deal, once recalled about their embrace on the steps of City Hall.
The television advertisement featuring the endorsement was taped in a suite at the Waldorf-Astoria that had been decorated to look like Mr. Giuliani’s old office in City Hall.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


(Along with our comment at the end)


“Now that the worst of this crisis is behind us, I would like to thank Mayor Bloomberg, Governor Cuomo, the City’s Office of Emergency Management and all City agencies for their hard work keeping my staff and all Bronxites informed about this storm, its effects and how to stay safe. This administration clearly learned from this past winter’s blizzard, and we are grateful to them for their strong response to Hurricane Irene. During the coming days my office will work with OEM and other agencies, as well as Con Edison, to help Bronxites clean up in the aftermath of this storm. I urge all Bronxites to stay safe, be mindful of their surroundings, and not to hesitate to report storm-related issues to my office or 311,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
·         The Office of the Bronx Borough President can be reached at (718) 590-3500.
·         911 should only be used for EMERGENCY calls. For all other issues, such as reporting fallen trees and branches, call 311
·         To report downed power lines, power outages and other electrical issues, call (800) 75-CONED. Con Edison’s power outage map can be found at
·         Updated, borough-specific information on the storm and its aftermath will be shared at or on Twitter @rubendiazjr
·         Property damage can be reported through

We however must add that we saw a huge downed tree sitting on power lines and a pole with a large transformer on it with wind gusts still going on, and called 311. We could not get through, but on our second attempt were transferred through the voice mail system to Con Ed whose voice mail after a few transfers and long wait then came on to say call back later.  We then called 911 thinking this was now an emergency, and were told to call 311. 
We can only say that you have some ******* system Mayor Bloomberg, and if anyone gets hurt we will bear witness to it.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Senator Klein Secures, Delivers, Supplies In Preparation for Hurricane Irene


 The supplies, which included sandbags to help hold back potential flood waters, as well as sleeping bags and water, were donated by Bronx and Westchester businesses. In preparation for Hurricane Irene, State Senator Jeffrey D. Klein, (D-Bronx/ Westchester), secured and today delivered much needed supplies to vulnerable communities and organizations throughout his district.
These supplies will help our communities and our first responders weather this storm and protect our friends and neighbors,” Senator Klein said. “I thank the businesses who have generously donated these much-needed supplies that will help prepare us for Hurricane Irene.”
Among the donated items:
  • 75 sandbags from Van Nest Hardware and the Home Depot;
  • 21 sleeping bags from Modell's Sporting Goods and Eastern Mountain Sports;
  • 30 one-gallon jugs of water from the Home Depot.
Senator Klein and his staff delivered the supplies to:
  • Providence Rest, a 200-bed senior care and rehabilitation facility in Country Club;
  • Pilot Cove, a senior facility in City Island;
  • The Pelham Manor Fire Dept. in Pelham, Westchester County;
  • The Edgewater Park Volunteer Fire Department;
  • The Silver Beach Co-Operative in Throggs Neck;
  • The Jeanne Jugan Residence in Throggs Neck;
  • The Schuyler Hill Civic Association.
     Senator Jeff Klein is second from left with helpers and a sandbag to be placed behind them to secure the area before Hurricane Irene hits.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Klein Praises EPA Decision to Drop Costly & Unnecessary Reservoir Project

Senator Jeffrey D. Klein, (D-Bronx-Westchester), hailed the federal Environmental Protection Agency's recent decision to drop its mandate that a $1.6 billion cement dome be constructed over the Hillview Reservoir in Yonkers.

In dropping the mandate for the dome's, the EPA said the situation is now under review. Senator Klein is opposed this rate-payer funded project, which, in an Aug. 19 letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, he called costly and redundant.

This is a victory for New York City ratepayers, Yonkers residents, and for common sense,” Senator Klein said. “This project cost too much and would have placed even more strain on residents who have already had to deal with skyrocketing water bills. I look forward to working with Senator Schumer and our other federal and local representatives to find a new solution that addresses everyone's concerns.”

The project would have increased water bills by an estimated 3 percent. Senator Klein also said that the justification for the project is questionable.

The EPA had sought to build the dome over the 90-acre reservoir in order to stop pathogens from entering the water system, which serves more than 9 million residents daily. The agency pointed to data showing some 3,500 cases of cryptosporidiosis, a microbe that generally causes mild stomach pain, but can be life threatening to people with compromised immune systems.

However, the city's Department of Environmental Conservation recently released a report finding an average of only 100 cases of cryptosporidiosis per year – most of which are not related to drinking water.
The city is also in the process of building the Catskill-Delaware Water Ultraviolet Distinction Facility in Westchester County. This facility will use ultraviolet light to purify water, killing pathogens that cause cryptosporidiosis and other illnesses. This project makes the concrete dome redundant. 

Espada Wins Court Decision to Keep Medicaid Eligibility

Former New York State Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada, Jr. won a major round this afternoon in his effort to maintain Medicaid eligibility for the Soundview Health Care network.

A judge in State Supreme Court sided with Espada's attorney's who argued that the denial of Medicaid coverage was unfair and unconstitutional. Espada had said that former Attorney General and now Governor Andrew Cuomo had a vendetta out for him, and the poor people that patronize Soundview would be hurt if it lost its medicaid eligibility.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Councilman Koppell Calls Handling of Disclosure of Toxic Chemical at Bronx New School Egregious 
Requests Expeditious Response to Parent Concerns 
Demands Inspection of Other DOE Leased Space In District

In a letter to Chancellor Dennis Walcott, Council Member Oliver Koppell called the way in which the Department of Education handled the disclosure of the dangerous levels of trichloroethylene at the Bronx New School (PS 51) egregious and totally unacceptable. “The sixth month delay in informing parents of the hazardous level of the toxic chemical in the school, has created anger and distrust among the parents about the integrity and transparency of the DOE, as well as concerns about their children’s health,” he said.  
 Koppell urged the Chancellor to respond expeditiously to the parents’ medical concerns and issues with respect to the school’s relocation, including reassurance about the new school’s environmental safety.  Koppell also said the DOE must take steps to help safeguard the health of those who may have been exposed to TCE.  He advocated instituting a number of steps including making a list of past and present students and providing them with up-to-date information on a regular basis about new developments concerning the health effects of exposure to trichloroethylene, as well as providing medical screening and surveillance for those exposed to the chemical, as deemed appropriate by environmental and occupational health professionals.
 Koppell stressed that parents must be given clear and specific information about bus schedules and routes, and a streamlined process for those who wish to transfer to another school.   
   Calls for Testing Other DOE Leased Space in District
 Koppell called for immediate testing for TCE prior to the opening of school at two other schools in his district, the Bronx Dance Academy and the High School of American Studies, which are located in leased space and have not undergone environmental  testing.  He requested that the test results be shared with the parents.
Koppell concluded by calling on the Chancellor to, “revise the DOE’s environmental testing policy for leased space in order to prevent students and teachers from being exposed to the same dangerous environmental conditions as were found at the Bronx New School.  

Wednesday, August 24, 2011



Request for Proposals Issued for the Approximately 80,000-Square-Foot Site As Part of City Effort To Strengthen Existing Retail Corridor and Catalyze Job Creation and Economic Development in the Bronx

New York City, August 24, 2011 – New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) today announced that it is seeking a developer for the purchase and redevelopment of an approximately 80,000-square-foot site in the Kingsbridge/Riverdale section of the Bronx The City-owned site which is centrally located on 230th Street between Broadway and the Major Deegan Expressway, is one of the last significantly-sized, primarily vacant and developable sites along the Broadway retail corridor, and its development will further the City’s goals of economic investment and job creation in the Bronx and across the City.

“The Broadway Plaza site possesses enormous potential for developers and its redevelopment will provide a major economic boost to an already thriving retail and commercial corridor,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky.  “We are confident that the site will attract significant private sector interest, thereby creating good jobs and strengthening the economic future of the Bronx.”

“This site has great potential, and its development will give a major boost to not only Kingsbridge, but to the neighboring communities of Riverdale and Marble Hill as well as the entire Bronx,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “I thank the New York City Economic Development Corporation for moving so quickly to issue this new RFP, and look forward to the positive redevelopment of this property.”

“I am looking forward to the further revitalization of West 230th Street and the employment opportunities that would benefit the community,” said Councilmember Oliver Koppell.

"For many years I have advocated for commercial development at this site,” said Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz. “West 230th Street and Broadway is centrally located in Kingsbridge and will draw shoppers from Marble Hill, Riverdale, Kingsbridge Heights, and beyond. I am confident that development at this location will be a major shot in the arm for the entire community."

“The Broadway Plaza project lies on a vital commercial corridor in Community Board 8 and is a prime spot for new retail development,” said Community board 8 Chair Robert Fanuzzi. “We look forward to working with EDC to bring the very best retailers to our community.”

The Broadway Plaza site is located one block from the 231st Street stop on the 1 train, near numerous bus lines, and immediately off the 231st street exit on the Major Deegan Expressway, making it easily accessible to residents of the Kingsbridge/Riverdale neighborhoods, as well as those in surrounding areas. Broadway, to the north and south of the site, already has a variety of retail uses, including restaurants, major grocery stores and national clothing stores, as well as with a mixture of smaller stores and service providers. A 5 acre parcel on Broadway between 237th and 238th Streets was recently sold, from Brynwood Partners to a venture between Metropolitan Realty Associates and Angelo, Gordon & Co., and plans are currently underway for an approximately 162,000 square foot shopping center that is anticipated to include BJ’s Wholesale Club as the anchor tenant. The area has also attracted new residential developments such as the Sycamore Court Apartments, a 12-story ground-up condo development on Corlear Avenue and 231st Street, three blocks away from the sites.

The Request for Proposals (RFP) is designed to achieve number of goals to advance the City’s economic development strategy for the borough and across the City.  Goals include: generating a development that complements and enhances local neighborhood businesses; creating a financially feasible and economically viable project; generating tax revenue for the City through the sale of the property; and expanding and preserving quality jobs for local residents through participation in HireNYC, a free program that connects the City's workforce development services to economic development projects, and maximizes permanent employment opportunities for the City’s local and disadvantaged residents.

Projects that aim to achieve a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating of at least Silver will also be prioritized. LEED, developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), promotes sustainable building and development practices through a rating system that recognizes projects that implement strategies for better environmental and health performance.

To obtain a copy of the complete RFP, visit  Responses are due by October 24, 2011 at 4 p.m.

New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City’s primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC’s mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City’s competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City’s many opportunities. Find us on Facebook to learn more about NYCEDC projects and initiatives.

800 Non Teaching Positions to be Cut by DOE at School Level

  It is reported that 800 positions such as parent coordinators, school aides, and other non teaching staff positions will be cut from the DOE at the school level. 700 of the 800 positions will come from DC  37 school staff. The other 100 will probably come from the DOE headquarters at the Tweed Courthouse. 

  DC 37 head Lillian Roberts said that she has not received any notice of the cuts, and hopes that not one of her union's school staffers will be let go. It was DC 37 in the last mayors race that endorsed Mayor Bloombergs opponent former Comptroller Bill Thompson.


Today, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz announced that his office will conduct the borough’s first-ever “well-being and quality of life” survey, which will measure the opinions of Bronx residents and those who work in the Bronx on a variety of issues that impact their communities.

The survey, which will be conducted online, asks respondents to rate their communities in a number of areas, from crime and education to fresh food availability and civic activity. The survey will remain open until October 31, 2011. Following the completion of the survey, one individual will be chosen at random to have brunch with Borough President Diaz.

“It is important that Bronxites participate in this survey and let my office hear from them on the specific issues that face our neighborhoods. We are ‘One Bronx,’ and this survey will help us discover what problems are shared by different neighborhoods, so that we may develop common solutions to them. The goal of this survey is to build upon newly-released Census data to perform a comprehensive, inclusive, and thorough assessment of where we are as a borough and where we want to go. I hope that as many Bronxites as possible will take a few minutes to fill out this survey and join us in that effort,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

The results of this survey will be compiled by the borough president’s office, and a report based on its outcome will be issued by the office at a later date.

The survey is available at the following link:

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

5.9 Magnitude Earthquake Rocks East Coast

   An earthquake centered in Virginia was felt all along the east coast from Rhode Island to Atlanta Georgia. The quake measured 5.9 on the Richter Scale was the largest one to hit the east coast (which is not know for its earthquakes) in almost one hundred years. There was slight damage as you got further away from the epicenter, with buildings being evacuated here in New York City. Most damage was done to single family homes in Virginia, and there was minor damage to buildings in Washington D.C. 

   After schocks are expected, and there was no warnings of any possible tsunami. This all comes before this weekends category 3 "Hurricane Irene" expected to make landfall somewhere on the east coast.

Letter to Chancellor Walcott From BP Diaz Re: P.S. 51 Contamination

Dennis Walcott
Department of Education
Tweed Courthouse
52 Chambers Street
New York, NY 10007

RE: P.S. 51 TCE Contaminations and Relocation

Dear Chancellor Walcott:

Thank you for sending representatives from the School Construction Authority, Department of Health, and Department of Education to meet with my staff on August 14, 2011, and discuss the Bronx New School – P.S. 51 TCE findings. We appreciate their efforts to make the best of what has been a difficult situation for all involved.  To that end, we are less than three weeks from the start of the new school year and the Department of Education has yet to publish the TCE test reports, sign the lease on the alternate facility, disseminate the new school location to all parents or announce new bus routes and pick-up schedules. In addition, the DOE has not set a date for the school open house, which my office requested at the August 14, 2011, and was publicly promised at the parents meeting on August 18, 2011, nor has the DOE provided a streamlined process for parents who wish to transfer to their zoned school. 

I applaud your leadership in enhancing the protocols for environmental review of city leased properties which identified the TCE.  However, we still have significant work ahead, the source of the TCE contamination at 3200 Jerome Avenue has yet to be identified. Consequently, we have no way of knowing when the contamination started, nor whether there were conditions that may have caused fluctuations in the level of TCE exposure.  Without that information, we cannot properly assess the health risks to students, teachers, administrators and other staff over the last 20 years in which the building had been in operation as a public school facility. 

Moreover, while the DOE has communicated its willingness and desire to help the parents through this transition, it has not articulated any deadlines or dates as to when these deliverables will be received.  I respectfully request the DOE execute on the following promises no later than August 26, 2011:

  • Publish on your website the list and schedule of bus routes that have been drawn.
·         Release copies of all environmental testing, reports and data from both P.S. 51 and the new facility at St. Martin of Tours, located at 695 East182nd St, Bronx, NY 10457.
·         Release an inventory of the light fixtures at both the new and old facility verifying they have been tested and are free of PCBs.
·         Schedule a date for the open house at the new school facility.
  • Schedule dates for separate meetings with Department of Health and State Department of Health to discuss the health concerns of both parents and staff members.
  • Announce a plan for how parents will be notified of the open house and bus routes.  Mailing a letter by itself will not be sufficient, parents should receive follow up communications via email and phone to confirm they received the information and answer any questions.
  • Schedule direct enrollment sessions for parent seeking information on transfer opportunities and other logistical and operational questions in regards to the start of the school year.

Lastly, our office is actively working to disseminate information on this issue to parents and impacted residents as it is released. We are fully prepared to assist in helping families through this transition and I ask that you keep my staff fully informed of developments in a timely fashion. Should you have questions or issues of concern, please feel free to contact Ray Sanchez, Director of Policy for my office, at 718-590-2645 or

Ruben Diaz Jr.
Bronx Borough President