Saturday, January 23, 2016

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.'s State of the Borough Address

The Honorable Ruben Diaz Jr.
President, Borough of The Bronx

cordially invites you to
The State of The Borough Address
Thursday, February 18, 2016
11:30 a.m.
Cardinal Hayes High School
650 Grand Concourse
The Bronx
seating is limited
The Office of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
718-590-3500 |

Bronx Democratic County Committee Upcoming Events

Bronx Dems' Winter Reception
Thurs. 2/18/16 from 6:30 - 9:30pm
Michaelangelo's - 2477 Arthur Avenue, Bronx, NY

You are cordially invited to join Hon. Marcos A. Crespo & the Bronx Democratic County Committee for a Winter Reception.

To RSVP or for more information, please call347.281.9759 or email

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State of the 79th Assembly District Address
When: Sat. 1/30/16 at 4p
Where: Dreamyard - 1085 Washington Avenue The Bronx, NY
The Honorable Michael A. Blake cordially invites you to the State of the 79th Assembly District Address. 

RSVP by calling (718) 538-3829.
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BYD General Board Meeting: #Not62
When: Mon. 1/25/16 at 7p
Where: New Settlement Community Center - 1501 Jerome Ave, Bronx, NY
Join the Bronx Young Democrats as they take the #Not62 pledge & learn ways to develop a healthier mind & body.

For more information, please
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Free Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Alarm Giveaway
When: Wed. 1/27/16 from 2 - 5p
Where: AM Pichardo District Office - 2175C Jerome Ave, Bronx, NY

The Office of Assemblymember Victor M. Pichardo in partnership with the American Red Cross and the FDNY are giving away free smoke/carbon monoxide detectors. First come, first served. 

For more information call (718) 933-6909.
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Stonewall Democratic Club Presidential Endorsement Meeting
When: Wed. 1/27/16 from 8 - 9:30p

The SDNYC are hosting a presidential endorsement meeting to decide who Stonewallers will support in the 2016 presidential campaign! Representatives from Senator Bernie Sander's campaign and from Secretary Hillary Clinton's campaign will be in attendance.

Visit their Facebook page for more information.
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Free Health Care EnrollmentWhen:  Thurs. 1/28/16 from 3 - 7pmWhere: 940 E. Gun Hill Road, Bronx, NY
Join Council Member Andy King, MetroPlusHealth Plan, and LiveOn NY for free healthcare enrollment. Metro-Plus will provide free enrollment in low to no-cost health insurance. LiveOn NY will provide help with benefits such as Medicare, SCRIE, SNAP and other referrals.
For more information contact Andy King's office at (718) 684-5509
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New Leaders Council 2016 Gala
Thurs. 1/28/16 from 6:30 - 9:30pm
Atwood Kitchen & Bar Room -
986 2nd Ave (at 52nd St), NY, NY

Join the NLC NYC Advisory Board and friends on January 28th as they welcome a new class of 2016 Fellows and celebrate New Leaders Council's impact in NYC - with a keynote from Assemblywoman Diana Richardson!
For more information and to purchase tickets click here
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CM Gibson & the NYPL Mini College & Job Expo
Fri. 1/29/16 from 11am - 4pm
Morrisania NYPL Branch, 610 E. 169 St. Bronx, NY (corner of Franklin Ave.)

Council member Vanessa Gibson and the New York Public Library present the Mini College & Job Expo. Bring your resume and business attire. 

For a list of colleges and employers, please go to the Morrisania NYPL Branch website.

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In solidarity,
Hon. Marcos A. Crespo, Chair
The Bronx Democratic County Committee
1640 Eastchester Rd.

BLIZZARD UPDATE - Travel Ban - MTA Shutdown

  There has been a travel ban announced by Governor Cuomo for the New York City, Long Island, and Westchester County area to begin at 2:30 PM due to the heavy Snow continuing to come down. This means that drives must be off any roads unless it is an emergency, or risk being fined for ignoring the travel ban.

   The MTA has announced that all Metro North trains, Long Island Railroad, and above ground Subway lines will be shut down at 4 P.M. until further notice. Underground subway routes will be in operation until it becomes unable to do so. 

 NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio has said that over two feet of snow can be expected in the NYC area. This is expected to be one of the five worse storms in the history of the city.

MTA To Stop Bus Service in NYC Due To Blizzard

  With heavy snow falling up to one foot already in some nearby areas with more to come, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has declared a State of Emergency for the Metropolitan New York City area. The MTA will halt all bus and outside elevated subway service at NOON today due to the Blizzard. Service will be restored after the storm ends, and it is safe to have the buses and outside elevated subway lines resume service. Below ground subway service will not be interrupted. 

  People are asked not to be out or drive so that the roadways can be cleared. Additional help to clear the snow has been sent to the New York City area by Governor Cuomo from upstate regions. There are scattered blackouts on Long Island, Westchester County, and parts of New York City where power lines are above ground. Winds of up to 45 M.P.H. have been recorded, and are expected to continue or increase as the blizzard continues.

Friday, January 22, 2016

POSITION AVAILABLE: District Manager Bronx Community Board

There is an open position as the District Manager of a Bronx Community Board. 

Salary Range: Based on Experience

Duties and Responsibilities

Under direction of the Community Board, the District Manager:

 Directs the day-to-day operations of the Board office

 Supervises, evaluates, directs and motivates staff

 Assists the Board in the monitoring and evaluation of municipal services within the district 

 Responds to constituent concerns relating to services provided by municipal agencies within the district and reports those concerns to the Board

 Responds to information requests from the Board and the public in a timely fashion

 Maintains Community Board files and records in both paper and electronic form

 Works with the officers of the Board on its internal budget and payment processing 

 Works with Committee chairs and Board members to assist with various needs of the committees

 Makes policy and strategy recommendations to the Board including but not limited to capital and expense budget priority recommendations for New York City

 Responsible for updating the Board website

 Presides over monthly District Service Cabinet meetings, which includes establishing the agenda and creating and preparing reports to the Board

 Attends monthly Borough Service and Borough Board meetings

 Must be able to attend monthly Board meetings and selected committee meetings, which are normally scheduled in the evening, as well as other occasional evening and weekend events and meetings

 Takes minutes of selected monthly meetings

 Establishes and maintains a working relationship with local elected officials and their representatives, city agencies, nonprofit organizations, faith-based organizations, businesses and other community groups

 Must be a strong advocate for the Board’s views, as directed by the Board

 Must be able to work well with a diverse community

 Must be able to travel locally

 Performs other general and miscellaneous tasks to support the mission and work of the Board

1. Education and/or experience which is equivalent to “A”, “B” or “C” below:

A. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college and two years of full-time satisfactory experience in community work, public administration or planning or related fields, or public information or relations, of which one year must have been in a supervisory or administrative capacity; or

B. An associate degree from an accredited community college and four years of full-time satisfactory experience in community work, public administration or planning or related fields, or public information or relations, of which one year must have been in a supervisory or administrative capacity; or

C. A four year high school diploma or its educational equivalent and six years of full-time satisfactory experience in community work, public administration or related fields, or public information or relations, of which one year must have been in a supervisory or administrative capacity;

2. New York City residency required, unless employed by New York City for more than 2 years.

Important Skills

 Familiarity and experience with the Community Board and government 

 A history of strong managerial, organizational and supervisory skills

 Excellent oral and written communications skills

 Computer proficiency, including mastery of office and web based applications

 The ability to manage multiple projects and meet strict deadlines

 Cultural sensitivity and competency for a diverse population

To Apply

SUBMIT your cover letter and resume by United States Postal Service mail, postmarked no later than Friday, February 5, 2016.

Bronx Community Board 4 Search Committee

1650 Selwyn Avenue, Suite 11A

Bronx, New York 10457

Please do not call or visit the Community Board office regarding your application

 Residents of Bronx Community Board 4 and bilingual candidates are encouraged to apply

 This position is classified in the Non-competitive Class 

 For FLSA purposes, this position is Exempt

 This position offers a competitive fringe benefits package, including paid time off

The City of New York and Bronx Community Board 4 are Equal Opportunity Employers

Bronx Chamber of Commerce Informational Seminar & Networking Event Tue. Feb. 2nd

Attention Members, Real Estate Developers, Brokers and Bankers:
Seminar and Networking Event Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Program begins promptly at 10:00 AM
1200 Waters Place, 2nd Floor Conference Center
Bronx, NY 10461

RSVP to 

Space is limited

Seating is on first come first serve basis.

The Bronx Chamber of Commerce sponsors a wide range of programs and services to businesses ranging from large corporations, Cultural Institutions, Universities and Colleges, Hospitals and Medical Centers, and mid-sized to small companies. Patronize local Bronx businesses and strengthen our community! Companies do not need an office in the Bronx to be active members of the association. To join or for more information, please contact Josann Ferguson (718) 828-3900 or

I look forward to your active membership and meeting you at some of our upcoming networking events.
Nunzio Del Greco
President and CEO
Bronx Chamber of Commerce
"The Network for Business Success"
1200 Waters Place, Suite 106
Bronx, NY 10461

Rep. Engel on 43rd Anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Health Subcommittee, issued the following statement regarding the 43rd anniversary of Roe v. Wade:

“The 43 years since the Supreme Court’s landmark Roe v. Wade decision have ushered monumental progress towards improved health and control for women.

Before the Roe decision made abortion legal nationwide, the absence of safe opportunities to obtain abortions forced women to make harrowing choices about their bodies and futures. Too often, these circumstances put women’s lives in jeopardy. This was especially true for poor and minority women who lacked the means needed to find decent care. In 1965, unsafe abortions were responsible for nearly one-fifth of women’s pregnancy and childbirth-related deaths.

“Thankfully, the Supreme Court’s ruling prompted a dramatic drop in abortion-related deaths: roughly 40 women per million live births in 1970 to eight in 1976. According to the Guttmacher Institute, this improvement can be traced to the increased availability of safe, legal abortion services.

“Women’s ability to exercise autonomy over their bodies has also coincided with enhanced socioeconomic prospects. The Supreme Court noted in its 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey ruling that ‘[t]he ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives.’ In affirming women’s right to choose, the Court concurrently affirmed women’s right to determine their academic and professional futures.

“It is clear that Roe shepherded substantial progress for American women. However, myriad challenges remain. During this Congress, the House Majority has repeatedly attempted to constrain women’s right to choose. Concurrently, overly burdensome state laws have made it increasingly difficult for women to access abortion services and, this year, the Supreme Court’s decision on Whole Women’s Health v. Cole will determine the future of such laws.

“In the face of these challenges, we must remain energized and committed. Throughout my 27 years in Congress, I have been an unwavering champion of women’s reproductive health. As I have said before, I should not be making decisions about what is best for a woman and her body: she should, and her doctor should. I will continue working to protect women’s ability to make those decisions, and to protect the progress our country has made over the last 43 years.”


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  State Senator Jeff Klein, joined his colleagues in the Senate to confirm Westchester District Attorney Janet DiFiore as Chief Judge for the New York State Court of Appeals in the State Capitol on Thursday.

I have had the honor of knowing Judge DiFiore personally and have had the privilege of partnering with her on a number of criminal justice issues important to Westchester County throughout the years. As Westchester District Attorney, I worked with her to enhance her office by securing state funding for forensic advancement, as well as worked with her on ways to not only bring justice to the people, but to further reduce and prevent crime. Judge DiFiore has loyally served the public through many roles, and is well-known for her balanced approach to justice. I was proud to cast my vote in favor of her nomination as the leader of the New York State Court system,” said Senator Klein.



State Senator Gustavo Rivera Calls On New York City Housing Authority To Implement Immediate and Long Term Solutions To Unreliable Heating System at Claremont Houses; Will Partner with Safety Net Project of the Urban Justice Center to Take Legal Action on Behalf of Tenants

   On Thursday, January 14, State Senator Gustavo Rivera visited the senior buildings of Claremont Houses, a New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) development located at 1325 Franklin Avenue, after residents informed his office about the disruption of heat and hot water services at the building. T|R|This marks the second year that residents have been deprived of those essential services. Last February, the Senator visited the residents of Claremont Houses while they had to endure freezing temperatures when only one of the two boilers was operating.

In an effort to better understand the ongoing heating issues at Claremont Houses, State Senator Rivera has penned a letter to NYCHA's Chair, Shola Olatoye, inquiring about the immediate and long term solutions currently being explored and implemented by the Authority to both address the current heating issues and prevent the same situation from developing in the future.  
"It is unacceptable that the health of the residents of Claremont Houses has been continuously put at risk by the disruption of both heat and hot water services," said State Senator Gustavo Rivera. "It is my responsibility, as their representative, to hold NYCHA accountable. It is my hope that through this letter and our partnership with the Urban Justice Center, we will not only get clarification as to why the heating issues at the senior building of Claremont Houses have not been adequately addressed in a timely manner, but also to ensure that residents at this development have a reliable source of heat during this winter and those to come." 
State Senator Rivera has also partnered with the Safety Net Project of the Urban Justice Center, a New York City non-for-profit organization, to file an "HP Action" proceeding on behalf of the residents of 1325 Franklin Avenue. An "HP Action" is a legal proceeding that all tenants have at their disposal to request that the Housing Court require landlords to make necessary repairs and provide essential services that are not being properly supplied. Senator Rivera will serve as a signatory to an affidavit to verify the accounts that he heard and witnessed from the residents of Claremont Houses on the building's conditions.

"As we approach the coldest days of this winter season, it is unconscionable that senior residents of Claremont Houses are  forced  to choose between   heating their apartment with their oven or further exacerbating chronic medical conditions because of freezing temperatures" said Kamilla Sjodin, Esq. the new Director of Anti-Eviction Services at the Urban Justice Center's Safety Net Project.

View State Senator Gustavo Rivera's full letter to NYCHA Chair, Shola Olatoye here. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

17th City Council Special Election Update

   As of 12:01 AM January 20th, one minute after the deadline to file there are now 11 candidates who have filed petitions to run in the special election for the currently vacant 17th City Council seat. Inside City Hall did a report on the candidates last night interviewing some on camera. One of the candidates interviewed was Current Community Board #2 District Manager Rafael Salamanca. The interview however seemed to have taken place in the office of Community Board #2, and the room of the District Manager. If the interview did take place inside the Community Board #2 office, and in the room of the current District Manager Rafael Salamanca that would be using the Community Board #2 office and District Managers room for political gain. If that is indeed true then it would be a conflict of interest on the part of Community Board #2 District Manager Rafael Salamanca that I am sure that the New York City Conflict of Interest Board would want to know about. It appears there have been other community board district managers who have mixed politics and their position as a District Manager who were cited by the New York City Conflict of Interest Board, fined, and worse. This has happened in the Bronx, and one such incident was very recent. Shortly afterwards there was a new District Manager hired by that community board.  I am not accusing Mr. Salamanca of anything, but I have given the Community Board #2 office a Freedom of Information Letter requesting six different items that I am seeking to see or get information of. This FOIL request was given to the Community Board office on Monday January 19th addressed to the Chair of Community Board #2 Dr. Ian S. Amiritt. Since the information requested (that should have been in the community board office) was not available when I asked to see it, I may have to find other means of getting that information as I don't expect to see it before the special election that the District Manager of Community Board #2 Mr. Rafael Salamanca is involved in. Since the Bronx Democratic County organization is heavily involved in the Salamanca campaign, I wonder if the U.S. Attorney's office has not already started its investigation.    
  This morning Former Assemblyman turned journalist Michael Benjamin reported that candidates Carlton Curry and Helen Hines Foreman did not file certificates of acceptances, and should be ruled off the ballot by the Board of Elections at the petition hearings. Benjamin also reported that candidate Amanda Septimo's petition has a fatal flaw that will also invalidate her petition, because the word Democratic appears on it. 
   I have been told that there are two other candidates who will be thrown off the ballot, but the information has not been confirmed yet, so the names are not being printed. That would leave only 6 candidates, and that number could be reduced by one or more by the time the election rolls around. 
   More updates as they happen. 

News from Bronx BP Ruben Diaz Jr.

Borough President Diaz Denounces
Anti-Muslim Bias Attack in Parkchester

January 19, 2016: Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. talks with Mujibur Rahman, who was picking up his nine-year-old niece from the school when he was attacked for being dressed in traditional Muslim garb.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. was joined, on Tuesday, by Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda and members of the local Community to protest the Friday evening anti-Muslim attack on Bengali man dressed in traditional Muslim garb.
Bronx resident, Mujibur Rahman, 43, was picking up his nine-year-old niece from P.S. 119, when he was attacked by two masked teens, yelling "ISIS" -- in reference to the Islamic State group, leaving Rahman bloodied and bruised with swollen eye.
"The Bronx is one of the most diverse places in the world, and we celebrate that diversity every single day. Friday's hateful attack on a Muslim individual in Parkchester is in no way representative of the shared values of the people of this borough.
"An attack on one of us over race, religion, gender or sexual orientation is an attack on us all. The people of The Bronx are united in their condemnation of this abhorrent incident. My office will continue to work with the New York City Police Department and community leaders to bring the perpetrators to justice. We wish the victim of this attack a speedy recovery, and our thoughts are with him and his family during this difficult time," said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
Anyone with information about this attack can contact the NYPD's Crime Stoppers hotline at 800-577-TIPS.

BP Diaz Criticizes "Bag Fee" Legislation
Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. has issued a letter expressing his strong concerns about Intro 0209-2014, more commonly known as the "bag fee" legislation. While the legislation seeks to protect the environment, Borough President Diaz is concerned that it places that burden on low-income New Yorkers and seniors that are struggling to pay bills, and represents a regressive tax.
"The bill operates like a regressive tax, and will not yield the environmental goals the legislation hopes to achieve," said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. "Higher-income New Yorkers will not be motivated to change their behaviors through this proposed fee, and lower income New Yorkers will bear the brunt of this proposal. While the environmental goals of this legislation are laudable, the methods are flawed."
The complete letter can be read here:
Borough President Diaz noted that there are multiple alternatives to achieving environmentally-friendly ends without negatively impacting low-income individuals and families. He added that the City should explore public education campaigns, a free bag distribution program for low-income New Yorkers, better bag recycling programs and bans on some types of bags, among other proposals.
"More creative and less punitive options should be explored that would actually achieve the intended purpose as opposed to encumbering low-income people whose demanding lives make it challenging to bring cloth bags to run every errand, exposing them to this regressive, backdoor tax," wrote Borough President Diaz in his letter to Council Member Brad Lander, the chief sponsor of the legislation.