(This was taken from my column "Riverdale Report" in the "Bronx News this past week)
It appears that current Community Board # 8 Chairman Robert Fanuzzi has lost not only control of CB 8, but also the support of a majority of the boards members. During the Economic Development Committee report an issue came up about the proposed street festival on Riverdale Avenue for the date of December 2nd. In discussing the festival the head of the committee made a motion for the approval and support of the full board of the street festival. An issue of an amendment to the motion came up where as the chairman of the board Mr. Fanuzzi ruled that the amendment was out of order. The ruling was then challenged by the Chair of the Law and Ethics Committee and put to a vote of the full board. The result of the full board vote was that the members voted to overrule Chairman Fanuzzi on his ruling, and things went downhill again for the second straight month. CB 8 Chairman Fanuzzi refused to recognize several board members and ruled them out of order when they tried to speak. Fanuzzi however did recognize one member who then made a motion to table the whole matter, which passed. Chairman Fanuzzi also allowed that same member to continue on with a tirade on another member without attempting to stop it or rule it out of order until the tirade was over.
In doing some research the Street Activity Permit process has changed as of December 2011, and apparently Fanuzzi was trying to push something through that he knew or should have known was wrong. In the past 125 signatures from the neighborhood had to be collected to show support for an event, and then the community board chair or District Manager could just sign off on these street permits. The permit process now needs review by the full community board. One would have to assume that since over 125 signatures were collected and presented at the Economic Development Committee meeting. CB 8 Chairman Fanuzzi must have wanted to keep this quiet since the Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corporation was involved in the application process, and announced 11th City Council candidate Cliff Stanton is the Treasurer of KRVDC. Since Riverdale Avenue is a major street and emergency route this should have been taken up in the Traffic and Transportation Committee.
This was the case last month when CB 8 Chairman Fanuzzi had appointed a Youth Committee Chair over the summer that was struck down when it finally became known that the agreement between Community Board 8 and the Department of Youth Services became voided in 1996 (over 12 years ago) when the Department of Youth Services was merged into the Department of Youth and Community Development that also deals with matters other than just youth issues. Fanuzzi had the board appoint a special committee of four members of his choosing (which included himself) to come up with an interim youth committee and by-law change.
Also made know by the Treasurer of Community Board 8 was the fact that Mayor Bloombergs proposed first round of budget cuts would leave CB 8 in a defect of several thousands of dollars over the allocations of two of the three council members who cover CB 8. With the budget cuts to other areas in their districts these two council members may also have to stop their generosity to CB 8.. Several years ago CB 8 had to let go of one of its excellent staffers in a budget cut since the current District Manager of CB 8 was hired at one of (if not the) highest pay scales in the city. The previous DM worked part time hours with additional staff members, and CB 8 may be forced to let go or cut back on the two remaining staff members or the District Manager of the board.
If you have any comments about this column or would like to have an event listed or covered in this column or on my blog at www.100percentbronx.blogspot.com you can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 718-644-4199 Mr. Robert Press.