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D.C. Columnist’s Great Idea Makes Me Think of Trump’s Bronx Golf Course

15 Dec

Washington Post columnist Catherine Rampell has a good idea — apply the controversial, but very legal, policy of eminent domain to Donald Trump, who loves it to death, at Trump Tower in Manhattan, where a clogged security site is already sucking millions of police protection cash from the city. Through eminent domain, the city would have to pay Trump for the building before they dismiss him from the site. But, in her column, Rampell explains how it’s well worth it.

Made me think of the Bronx golf course Trump currently runs. He doesn’t own the property, so eminent domain isn’t applicable. But the city could end its contract with him, as welcome2thebronx.com sought last year in a petition effort after Trump said that Mexico is: “sending people that have lots of problems, and they are bringing those problems to us. They’re bringing drugs, and bringing crime, and their rapists.”

That’s when Trump even lost the support of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., who decided to boycott the site. “When he speaks out against Muslims, when he speaks out against Mexicans and Latinos, that to me is anti-Bronx,” Diaz said, as reported in dnainfo.com. “That’s the reason why I boycotted the golf course.”

 

 

 

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Who, and What, You’re Voting For in Bronx and Beyond

2 Nov

Wnyc.org has a great site listing who and what you’re going to be voting for this coming Tuesday, Nov. 8.

The city itself has its own detailed site.

Pass this along. The more who know about these links the merrier.

City Limits Highlights 40 Years of Critical Reporting

3 Feb

City Limits is 40 years old this year. For most of its life thus far it was a hand-held magazine, but for a couple of years now it’s been a website with the same critical coverage of urban policies that affect all New Yorkers and their neighborhoods.

Celebrating its impressive anniversary (how many nonprofit publications are around for four decades?) City Limits highlights a story from each of those 40 years (including my piece -part of a series produced by Tom Robbins and his excellent students at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism – about a boy’s death following a fire in a disastrous Bronx building long-ignored by its landlord.)

What City Limits also has up and running are essays by many of its former editors including Robbins, Alyssa Katz and Doug Turetsky. (Bronx and Norwood neighborhood resident Jarrett Murphy is the current editor who made this whole lookback happen.)

Take a read and pass it on. It’s good for everyone to know more about where we were and focus on what policies still need focus and change.

 

DEP Needs to Do Its Job Clearing Jerome Park Reservoir Sidewalk

25 Jan

Those of us who live around the Jerome Park Reservoir probably know that most of that 2-mile-long public sidewalk has not been dug out after the historic snowstorm. It’s the city’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) that’s responsible for that, not the Parks Department, which is doing a great job clearing the paths at Fort Independence Park which is also adjacent to the reservoir.

DSC_0092

As the photo above shows, salt has been put down near that park’s entrance (by NYC Parks Dept. just to help access to their the park they’re responsible for I’m guessing), but that can only help a bit considering the snow’s height and since 2/3 of the reservoir is inaccessible to local residents and workers.

I called 311 but was on hold for a very long time thanks to the snowstorm. So I went on 311’s website and app but the complaint choices were not helpful in this situation. I then went to DEP’s website and made the following complaint to DEP Commissioner Emily Lloyd. If you share this concern I suggest you do the same. I’ll let you know if I get a response.

Hi Comm. Lloyd,
While the snow has been removed from Fort Independence Park in CB8/Bronx, it has not been removed from the public sidewalks around the Jerome Park Reservoir (other than at Lehman College, which probably did the work itself for student and staff access). This is DEP’s job as far as I know. It is a critical sidewalk to clear as it’s the way so many people walk to work, school, home, etc. The way it is, people are more likely to fall or walk in the street, which is also very dangerous of course. If you or someone on staff can let me know when DEP will be coming to clear sidewalk surround the reservoir. I would appreciate it. Thank you very much.
Jordan Moss

Oh, while I’m at it, here’s the excellent job Parks Dept. workers already did at Fort Independence Park (also know to many locals as Pigeon Park).

DSC_0036

Parks Dept. workers cleared the Fort Independence Park pathway this morning.           Photos by Jordan Moss

 

 

 

A Bronx NYCHA Mess for All to See

15 Dec
nycha mess on Heath Ave

What should be a parking lot at Fort Independence Houses in Kingsbridge Heights is now a virtual dumping ground that NYCHA is ignoring.         Photo by Jordan Moss

For months NYCHA (New York City Housing Authority) has ignored this enormous mess at at Fort Independence Houses in Kingsbridge Heights. It’s essentially an unused parking lot on Heath Avenue that has been filled with all kinds of garbage over the last several months.

This shouldn’t be a costly fix. NYCHA should just be paying attention to land that it owns and is responsible for.

If you know of similar problems at other Bronx NYCHA sites and can send Bronx Matters photos, we’d be happy to spread the word and hopefully get NYCHA on its toes. Just email bronxmatters@gmail.com.

 

Reservoir Tour in Bronx Postponed

1 Oct

Following is a press release from the City’s Department of Environmental Protection about the postponement of this weekend’s tour of the Jerome Park Reservoir. It will take place in November instead.

GUIDED TOURS AND LIMITED ACCESS RECREATION AT JEROME PARK RESERVOIR POSTPONED DUE TO THE THREAT OF INCLEMENT WEATHER
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced that due to the potential for inclement weather this weekend, the special guided tours and limited access recreation planned at Jerome Park Reservoir have been postponed until the weekend of November 14th and 15th.  As was originally planned, there will be two ticketed tours on each day, followed by a non-ticketed opportunity for the public to walk or jog around the 2-mile perimeter of the Reservoir.  Entry will be through a Gate House located on the west side of Goulden Avenue, just south of 205th Street and phones, bags and cameras will not be permitted on the Reservoir grounds.  There will be an opportunity to check phones, but visitors should not bring bags or cameras.  All individuals who had registered for the tours scheduled for October 3rd and 4th will be contacted by DEP and given the first opportunity for tickets to the November 14th and 15th tours.  To the extent any tickets remain after that, DEP will make them available on a first-come, first-served basis.  More information will be made available about any remaining tickets on the DEP website and Facebook page.

Saturday, November 14th:
Guided Tours (tickets required)
10:00am – 11:00am
11:00am – 12:00pm

Limited Access Recreation (tickets not required)
12:30pm – 2:30pm

Sunday, November 15th:
Guided Tours (tickets required)
10:00am – 11:00am
11:00am – 12:00pm

Limited Access Recreation (tickets not required)
12:30pm – 2:30pm

The Bronx’s Perenially Padlocked Jerome Park Reservoir Open This Weekend!

29 Sep

It may not sound like a big deal if you don’t have live relatively close to the Jerome Park Reservoir. But residents of Kingsbridge Heights, Bedford Park, Norwood, Van Cortlandt Village, etc. have not been able to see the reservoir close-up in what is essentially their neighborhood backyard. Until now. The DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) is opening up the fence this weekend. There are no plans for future accessibility. But as long-time reservoir activist Anne Marie Garti states in the following email she just sent around, the only way you’re possibly going to get more accessibility is if you show up this weekend. She also points out that the southern section of the reservoir (which makes up its vast majority) is empty right now, as it was for many years before this year. I agree with her that it must be filled before we all show up. Here’s all the info from Ms. Garti:

The NYC DEP will be opening the Jerome Park Reservoir to the public this coming Saturday and Sunday, October 3rd and 4th.  This is a pilot to gauge public sentiment. If you want the reservoir opened regularly, you should show up!

Anyone can come to walk or run around the reservoir between 12:30 – 2:30 pm

You must use the entrance just south of 205th Street (near the Bronx HS of Science and Gatehouse 5), on the west side of Goulden Ave.

“Phones, bags and cameras will not be permitted on the tour. We will provide an opportunity to check phones, however please do not bring any bags or cameras. Please ensure you wear closed toe shoes. All participants will be required to sign a liability waiver before being admitted.”

http://nycwater.tumblr.com/post/129652145158/if-you-will-be-joining-us-at-jerome-park-reservoir

For some reason, the DEP has decided to drain the 60+ acre south basin. If the agency doesn’t want to be accused of sabotaging this rare event, we suggest that water be put in there before Saturday!

Tours will be held in the morning. However, no more  tickets are available.
https://jerome-park-reservoir-tour.eventbrite.com

We hope to see you there on Saturday and Sunday between 12:30 – 2:30 pm.
West side of Goulden Avenue, south of 205th Street (across the street from Bronx Science)
Anne Marie