Saturday, November 10, 2012

Help From Canada to Get the Lights Back On

   It may have taken help from Canada to get all the power restored to the Bronx. Below is one of the trucks from Hydro Quebec that was seen on a Bronx Street. Click on the photo to enlarge it.

What to Do When The Only Muni Meter is Gone

That is not a car parked at a hydrant, but a car parked on Riverdale Avenue north of West 238th Street that has one Muni Meter for the entire area of parking. Across the street there is no metered parking, and the nearest Muni Meter is almost two blocks away past the #7 bus stop. As you can see in the next photo a tree fell from the neighboring Fieldston School and landed on top of the Muni Meter leaving only the base. It can now take over 5 minutes to get to the nearest Muni Meter for a parking slip, and return to your car at this location.
Fallen tree can be seen in the background that has been cut up to be carted away.

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Recyclables & Garbage Piling Up

   With the city in full recovery mode from Hurricane Sandy the Sanitation Department has stopped picking up recyclables and even garbage which is now piling up in some areas. We took visit to the Amalgamated houses on Orloff Avenue and on Gale Place to find such recyclables and trash bags piled high for pick up by the Department of Sanitation. Our visit was on Friday November 9th and you can see in the photos below what we found.

    On Gale Place we found recyclables on the right and garbage on the left sitting for over one week.

Here on  Orloff Avenue around the corner from Gale Place recyclables and garbage line the street on one side that was to much for one photo.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Recanvassing of the 46th State Senate Vote

    In what could be the deciding district in a 31 - 31 tie between New York State Senate Democrats and Republicans the winner may not be decided anytime soon. The recanvassing of the vote will begin on Tuesday November 13th since Monday is Veterans Day. Currently Democrat Ceclia Tkaczyk holds a 139 vote lead over Republican George Amedore, but that is not counting the absentee ballots that could change the outcome. 
    How long could it take to have an official winner in the 46th Senate District will be determined if Democrat Tkaczyk can get an equal number of absentee ballot votes to maintain her vote majority, or increase it beyond any court challenge. Typically in a race this close it could take weeks or even months until all means of challenges are exhausted through the Board of Elections and the courts.

     If Democrat Tkaczk wins it would mean that Democrats would have the majority in the State Senate barring another situation such as in 2008 with the case of the "Four Amigos". One by one however the Amigos were removed, lost their primary race, or were convicted of a felony in office, leaving only Bronx Senator Ruben Diaz Sr. as the "Lone Amigo" in the State Senate. Diaz Sr. was re-elected overwhelmingly  this past election. 

   The other headache for Democrats could be the Independent Democratic Conference led By Bronx/Westchester State Senator Jeff Klein. Klein has vowed to support Democrats, but not current Democratic Minority Leader John Sampson. Sampson was reported to have been involved in the Aqueduct Racino scandal on the first go round. 

     Things could get ugly in Albany, and very soon.



The following is an update of City Government’s Storm Response as of 5:00 PM on Thursday, November 8, 2012

Odd-Even Gasoline Purchasing System

            Mayor Bloomberg signed an emergency executive order today establishing an odd-even license plate system for gasoline purchases to reduce wait times and lines at gas stations. The temporary system will remain in effect from 6:00 AM on Friday until further notice and will operate as follows:

·         Vehicles with license plates ending in an even number purchase fuel on even numbered days.

·         Vehicles with license plates ending in an odd number purchase fuel on odd numbered days.

·         Vehicles with licenses plates ending in letters will be deemed as odd numbered plates and can make purchases on odd numbered days.

·         Commercial vehicles, emergency vehicles, buses and paratransit vehicles, Medical Doctor (MD) plates and vehicles licensed by the Taxi and limousine Commission are exempt.

·         The use of legal walk-up fuel containers by individuals is not affected by the executive order.

Response to Nor’easter

Outdoor construction work has resumed.

New York City parks, playgrounds and beaches remain closed and expect to open tomorrow after they have been inspected for safety.

Food, Water & Supply Distribution at City-Run Resource Sites

            These City-run food and water distribution sites are open in the hardest hit areas and staffed by City employees, volunteers, the Salvation Army and National Guard. Locations and hours:

            From Thursday, November 1 through Thursday, November 7, the following have been distributed:

·         More than 1.7 million meals
·         Nearly 426,000 bottles of water
·         110,000 blankets
·         1,198 cases of diapers
·         127 cases of baby wipes
·         670 cases of baby formula
·         8,212 units of new underwear (kids and adults)
·         3,840 thermal blankets
·         1,552 winter hats
·         389 scarves
·         2,486 socks
·         4,550 blankets
·         4,000 hand-warmers
·         3,564 D batteries
·         7,380 C batteries
·         285 cases of garbage bags
·         3,399 flashlights/lanterns
·         476 cases of toilet paper
·         837 cases of bleach
·         20,000 cases of Ziploc bags
·         6,000 masks
·         10,000 boxes of cleaning wipes
·         1,500 work gloves
·         878 bars of soap
·         140 cases of toothbrushes
·         750 units of toothpaste
·         584 bath towels

NYCHA Facilities

The City has assessed all NYCHA housing in Zone A and found no major long-term structural issues. All NYCHA buildings flooded in the storm have been pumped dry.

  • Yesterday, City-led action restored power for 1,174 residents in eight buildings, and heat and hot water restored for 1,658 residents in nine buildings.

  • Power: 402 buildings housing 79,200 lost power because of the storm; the City has restored power to 331 buildings housing 66,874.

  • Heat/Hot Water: 386 NYCHA buildings housing 77,000 people lost heat and hot water because of the storm; the City has restored heat and hot water to 272 buildings housing more than 55,000.

  • NYCHA has set up warming centers in Red Hook and additional warming centers are being established. NYCHA staff and volunteers have been providing blankets to residents who have not had heat or hot water restored.

Sanitation 24-Hour Debris Cleanup Continues

            Mayor Bloomberg directed the Department of Sanitation to adjust collections schedule so that 24-hour cleanup could continue in the hard-hit areas of Staten Island, Queens and Brooklyn.

Areas normally receiving three times a week collection may only receive two collections per week, while areas that receive two times per week collection may only receive one collection while the emergency debris removal work continues.

  • 728 pieces of sanitation equipment are working on debris removal, including 270 trucks, 234 mechanical broom, 114 front end loaders and 110 cut down dump trucks.

  • Sanitation crews have collected more than 225,000 tons of trash, debris and tree as a part of storm cleanup operations.

The heavily-impacted areas will continue to receive collection and debris removal around the clock. Curbside recycling is suspended until further notice.

Trees and Debris
  • The City has received 23,464 tree requests to date.

  • Of those requests, 14,551 were for trees down.

  • The City has addressed 7,369 of these emergency tree conditions and crews continue to work around the clock to address conditions.

More City Schools Open

            All City schools are open to students, and those students and staff who have been reassigned from buildings that sustained structural damage went to other school sites. Parents should continue to check the status of their schools by:

    • Clicking here for the school locator search or by going to
    • Call 311 or texting “nycschools” or ‘escuela’ to 877-877.

            The Department of Education has coordinated transportation options for families with children who have been reassigned to other school sites:

    1. Full reimbursement for any family of a K-8 student at a relocated school taking MTA/cab service to and from school.

    1. 55 cents per mile reimbursement for any family of a student at a relocated school who uses their own vehicles.

    1. Free metro-cards will be distributed to all high school students at relocated schools who do not already have one.

            The City has conducted extensive outreach to families, making 1.2 million robo-calls to parents; direct messages were sent from principals and parent coordinators to parents; full page advisories ran in three of New York City’s newspapers; text messages were sent to parents and families enrolled in the Department of Education’s texting program; and information was provided to television and radio outlets.

Air BNB Temporary Housing

            Air BNB, an on-line service that connects people seeking temporary housing with those who have unused space, has launched a new platform to link New Yorkers displaced by Hurricane Sandy to New Yorkers who want to offer free places to stay. Air BNB is providing with service at no fee, and information is available at      

Partnership with Local Food Trucks

            The Mayors Fund to Advance New York City has partnered with the NYC Food Truck Association, NYC Food Film Festival and local food trucks to coordinate hot food distribution at 21 sites in areas severely impacted by Hurricane Sandy in Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. The locations and hours are available here:

Shelter for Those without Heat

Cold weather in the city continues, increasing risk of hypothermia. Anyone who needs heat should find warm shelter, whether at City facilities or with a friend or relative.

Evacuation shelters remain open and as of Thursday morning, they were 2,743 evacuees and 812 staff. 

  • Those who are using generators in their homes to run their heat should be very careful to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by never using portable generators indoors, in garages or near open windows.

  • Early signs of hypothermia include uncontrollable shivering, confusion or sleepiness, slowed or slurred speech, stiffness in arms and legs, poor control over body movements and slow reaction.

Disaster Assistance Service Centers
            The City’s Human Resources Administration in cooperation with FEMA, operates six sites to provide information about applying for emergency social and economic benefits and to connect residents with recovery resources. They will be open from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM, seven days a week. The list of sites can be found here:

Mobile Medical Vans with Prescription Services

            The City has deployed vans staffed with primary care providers will be able to provide medical care and distribute commonly prescribed drugs at several of the City’s Disaster Assistance Service Centers, as well as two additional high-need areas. Volunteers are also going door-to-door to reach people who may have medical needs but remain in their homes without heat and power. The location and hours are available here:

Alternate Side Parking

  • Alternate Side Parking regulations will be suspended citywide through Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012, to facilitate storm recovery efforts.

  • Alternate Side Parking regulations are not in effect on Sunday, November 11, and will also be suspended for Veterans Day, Monday, November 12, as previously scheduled.

  • All other parking regulations remain in effect.

Volunteering, Donating and Giving Blood

  • To date, more than $32 million supporting Hurricane Sandy relief has come into the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City from more than 10,000 donors from around the country.

  • Cash donations to support these and other efforts can be made through the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. Learn more here:

  • Cash donations are preferable to in-kind donations because the logistics of collecting and distributing those supplies are complex.

  • Anyone wishing to make cash contributions can go to or call 311 for details.

  • Giving blood is incredibly helpful right now. For more information visit:

Odd/Even Gas Rationing in Effect

November 8, 2012


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today signed an emergency order to establish an odd-even license plate system for gasoline and diesel purchases to reduce wait times and lines at gas stations in the five boroughs. Hurricane Sandy caused significant flooding and damage to petroleum infrastructure throughout the tri-state region – causing refineries to shutdown, pumping stations to lose electricity and terminals in the region to close. Since then, the majority of the region’s pipeline and critical infrastructure has been restored and power has returned to Buckeye pipeline, a major interstate pipeline that serves New York City. As the region’s petroleum infrastructure continues to come back online, gradually increasing the supply of available gasoline, the City is implementing the odd-even system – starting 6:00 AM on Friday – to accelerate the recovery of the distribution network and ease disruptions and wait times for drivers attempting to fuel their vehicles. The Mayor made the announcement today at City Hall.
“Last week’s storm hit the fuel network hard – and knocked out critical infrastructure needed to distribute gasoline,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Even as the region’s petroleum infrastructure slowly returns to normal, the gasoline supply remains a real problem for thousands of New York drivers. Earlier today, I signed an emergency order to alternate the days that drivers can purchase gas, which is the best way to cut down the lines and help customers buy gas faster.”
The temporary odd-even system will remain in effect until further notice, and will operate as follows:
  • Vehicles with license plates ending in an even number or the number “0” can make purchases of motor fuel on even numbered days.
  • Vehicles with license plates ending in an odd number can make purchases of motor fuel on odd numbered days.
  • Vehicles with licenses plates ending in a letter or other character can make purchases on odd numbered days.
  • Commercial vehicles, emergency vehicles, buses and paratransit vehicles, Medical Doctor (MD) plates and vehicles licensed by the Taxi and Limousine Commission are exempt.
Following the storm, the City worked with the Coast Guard and the Port Authority to open up ports as quickly as possible, and unlocked more than 64,000 barrels of gasoline to increase the available supply. At the City’s urging, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano also issued a temporary blanket waiver of the Jones Act, to immediately permit additional oil tankers coming from the Gulf of Mexico to enter northeastern ports.
Earlier this week, NYPD officers were dispatched to all open gas stations in the five boroughs to maintain public safety, and police officers will remain deployed to ensure order. Violations of the emergency order are Class B misdemeanors. New Yorkers are encouraged to fuel up only when necessary and to use mass transit whenever possible.
A copy of the Mayor’s emergency order is available on

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Kid Cinema Fest Advisory

The 4th Annual Washington Heights Children & Young People's Film Festival's Opening Night Film
We are proud to announce that 

   The Academy Award® nominated animated film A CAT IN PARIS from directors Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol will be kicking of our 8-day films festival. A Cat in Paris is a fable-like journey of a young girl who must overcome her fears on a quest to find her father and save the world from destruction.  The film is a beautifully hand-drawn caper set in the shadow-drenched alleyways of Paris. 

Featuring the voices of Academy Award® winner Marcia Gay Harden (Mysti
c River), Academy Award® winner Angelica Huston (The Royal Tenenbaums) and Matthew Modine (Full Metal Jacket). 
Recommended for Ages 8+  
The film is rated PG for mild action and violence, and some thematic material. 
And the best of all, the film is in English and it's free for children and families! 

When: Saturday, November 10th, 2012, 5:30
Where: Columbia University Medical Center Alumni Hall, 650 W. 168th St. (Between Ft. Washington Ave and Broadway)
Subways: 1 and A trains to 168th St./M100 and Bx7 Buses to 168th St.

If you would like to attend, please RSVP at:

KidCinemaFest - The 4th Annual Washington Heights Children & Young People's Film Festival will take place November 10 - 17, 2012 at various venues.

For more information visit our website:

VETERAN'S - JOB FAIR! BY BRONX Chamber of Commerce

job fair vets

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

N Y State Senate Control "Up in The Air For Now"

   As of now it looks like the outcome of which party will have the majority number of State Senators is up in the air, or should we say tied with the newly created 46th District in which Democrat Cecella Tkaczk leads by 139 votes over the Republican opponent with thousands of "Absentee Ballots" to be counted.
   Control of the state senate may hinge on newly elected Brooklyn Democrat State Senator Simca Felder who has said that he will caucus with the Republican side. Should Democrats regain control of the State Senate, we look for the Independent Democratic Conference to gain even more power there. State Senator Jeff Klein (head of the IDC) has said that he will note vote for a Republican to be Majority Leader, but Klein has told me that he can not support current Democratic Minority Leader John Sampson. I look for Senator Klein to either be the new Majority Leader or be the person to put that new leader in, if the Democrats win the State Senate.

    It took the New York City Board of Elections months to determine the winner of a special election to replace disgraced former Brooklyn State Senator Carl Kruger. This time it looks like it is in the hands of the State Board of Elections, and we wonder just how long it will take to find out the winner of the 46th State Senate District.


Romney Concedes at 1 AM

President Barack Obama has won re-election as President of the United States.
Obama wound up with over 300 Electoral Votes and a majority of the unofficial popular vote.
270 electoral votes are needed to win a majoroty of the Electoral College (as it is known) to win the presidential election.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day 2012

   Election Day 2012 is certainly turning out to be very different from previous elections. Not only are there different voting machines from the presidential election four years ago, but many people are voting in different poll sites. There is also the added number of Hurricane Sandy displaced voters who have been allowed to cast their ballot for President and U.S. Senator at the nearest poll site. 

   Election Day 2012  started off cold, but the lines were long as soon as the polls opened. Turnout is much heavier than usual this year due to the Presidential election. Polls will shut down after the last person that was on line at the scheduled closing time is allowed to cast their ballots. It is expected that may take up to one hour after the scheduled closing tome. 

   Results will be posted as soon as they come in.


Monday, November 5, 2012

Governor Cuomo Announces Affidavit Ballot Voting

    During an update of the Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy Governor Coumo announced that people displaced by the hurricane will be able to go to any poll site where they may be and vote by affidavit ballot. An affidavit ballot is used when there is a question of a voters registration or no name appears in the voting book. Coumo when questioned said that this way anyone displaced will be able to vote for president and U.S.Senator. When it comes to a local election if the poll site is not in the voters district that vote for the local elected official will not be able to be counted. 
     Also during the update Governor Cuomo became heated when answering a question about notification and restoration of power and other services. He said that power companies have franchises that are reviewed by the state. He added that he was unhappy with the response by most power companies naming Con Edison. Cuomo stressed that there was no plan to deal with what happened, and that must change or the power companies will change.

Election day changes of poll sites For tomorrow


    The Board of Elections has moved poll sites andsetup new poll sites due to Hurricane Sandy.
Changes in the Bronx include the following=
* Locust Point Civic Hall, 4400 Locust Point Drive, Bronx, NY 10465
has been moved to: MTA Throggs Neck Parking Lot, 4260 Throggs Neck Expressway, Bronx, NY 10465
* PS 69 Journey Prep School, 560 Thieriot Avenue, Bronx, NY 10473
has been moved to: Archimedes Academy for Math, 456 White Plains Road Bronx, NY 10473
* Manhattan College Draddy Hall, 4513 Manhattan Coll Parkway, Bronx, NY 10471
has been moved to: Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, 3700 Henry Hudson Parkway, Bronx, NY 10463
Also If you voted at:
1920 McGraw Avenue 
2051 St. Raymond Avenue 
1591 Metropolitan Avenue
You may now have to vote at: 
1640 Bronxdale Avenue
There will be shuttle bus services available for those in need, courtesy of City Council Member Annabel Palma, and DJ Ambulette. These buses will provide transportation from the old polling sites and from Parkchester RAIN Senior Center, on the hour, beginning at 9AM until 8PM.
For more information, please contact:
Councilmember Palma's office: (718) 792-1140

Sunday, November 4, 2012

South Riverdale Little League Awards & Auction Night

    Due to Hurricane Sandy the South Riverdale Awards and Auction Night had to be moved from PS 24 to the College of Mount Saint Vincent Saturday night. Hundreds of  Little League baseball players from South Riverdale received awards for their hard play, and got to meet a real hometown New York Met player Mike Baxter. Baxter answered questions from the kids as their parents got to bid on some great sports items. 
    You may ask who is Mike Baxter, and what is his claim to fame? Mike Baxter grew up in Whitestone Queens a few miles away from the old Shea Stadium. It was his dream to play baseball, and to play for the Mets. Baxter was drafted in 2005 by the San Diego Padres, but played in their minor league system until he was called up on September 6, 2010. On July 22, 2011 Baxter was selected off waivers by the Mets. In 2010 and 2011 Baxter played in 31 games with 49 plate appearances for the Padres & Mets, and was granted free agency by the Mets on December 12, 2011. On December 16, 2011 Mike Baxter signed as a free agent with the Mets
     In 2012 Baxter played in 89 games with 211 plate appearances, hit 3 home runs, had 17 RBI's, and stole 5 bases. He played all three outfield positions making 81 put outs in 85 chances with only one error. Mike Baxter's claim to fame right now is that he made a diving catch to preserve Met pitcher Yohan Santana's no hitter June 1, 2012 (the first no hitter in Met history). In 2012 Met Pitcher Yohan Santana was paid 25 million dollars to pitch for the Mets. Not every baseball player makes millions of dollars to play, and Mike Baxter signed for a salary of $484,000.00 to play for the Mets through at least 2017. Baxter will be able to go to salary arbitration in 2014 should he prove to become a regular player. While Baxter said he prefers center field I don't see Baxter playing center field with Andre Torres the current Met center fielder, and Angel Pagan the former Met center fielder (who the Mets traded to San Francisco) now a free agent. 
     Mike Baxter in talking to the children in the audience stressed the iimportance of good team work and being a team player. After the auction was over Baxter stayed to talk some more and sign free autographs for those who also stayed. While he may not have been Derek Jeter or A-Rod, Mile Baxter looked as though he had as much excitement as those who were there to see him. 
    Registration for the 2013 SRLL season is underway and will continue through March of 2013. Last year there were almost 400 children (boys & girls), in different age groups up to 16 years of age in different divisions from T-ball to the senior league. The President of the South Riverdale Little League is Mr. Mike Farber who said that the league is also looking for more sponsors, as well as the many other volunteer positions that are needed. Mr. Farber can be contacted at , and you can visit the South Riverdale Little League at their website at for more information on the league.
    Below are some photos that were taken at the event

South Riverdal Little League players pose with their awards and respective division.   

More kids with their awards and respective divisions. Left - you see the girls Division.

Left - Even the elected officials were on hand. State Senator Jeff Klein & Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz.
Right - Mike Baxter speaking to the audience.

Baxter poses with Jack Buckley and Stavri Anopolus winners of special auction packages. 

After the event Baxter stayed to sign for the kids.

Baxter even posed with SRLL President Mike Farber and Board member Ken Katrzman.