Friday, March 2, 2018

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. Celebrates Women's History Month

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. Invites you to celebrate St.Patrick's Day

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
Invites you to celebrate
Wednesday, March 14, 2018

5:30 PM
Rambling House, 4292 Katonah Ave, Bronx, NY.

Mistress of Ceremonies
Magee Hickey
Reporter, PIX 11 News

Bronx Chamber of Commerce Irish Heritage Celebration Luncheon

Honoring Six Distinguished Individuals for Their Contributions to our Borough

Bronx Chamber of Commerce - Bronx Business Awards 2018 Gala

The Bronx Version of the Academy Awards

You are cordially invited to attend
The Bronx Version of the Academy Awards

Wednesday, April 18, 2018, 5:30-10:30 pm
Marina del Rey Caterers, Bronx NY

The Bronx Chamber of Commerce 
Bronx Business Awards 2018 Annual Gala 


The Perez Family, Mastermind, Ltd.; Developer of the Year

Gino's Pastry Shop; Made in the Bronx Award of the Year

Bronx Community College; Institutional Member of the Year

Third Avenue BID; Non-Profit of the Year

D & J Ambulette Services, Inc.; Health Provider of the Year

E.A.T. w/ Culinary Professionals, Inc.; 
M/WBE Company of the Year

Portion of the 2018 Gala Proceeds to benefit
Special Olympics New York

Key Note Speaker
Rob Walsh, Former Commissioner of  NYC Dept. Small Business Services

Mistress Of Ceremonies
Jacqueline Catona Wayans 
TV Host & Producer, "Don't Give Up and Win"

To make reservations, advertise in the Gala Journal, and/or be a Sponsor to the 2018 Gala Celebration. Call Phil Cardone 718-828-3900 or e-mail

I look forward to seeing you at the excellent networking event!

Nunzio Del Greco
President and CEO
Bronx Chamber of Commerce
"You never know where your next big deal is going to come from"!

2nd Annual Bronx Series of the Five Boroughs Community Leaders Recognition Day


   It was an evening of getting to know some people, and just how they influence other people. The event was presented by the Las Maravillas Del Expo Inc., and the Bharratti Foundation. As you can see by the photo above this was a well attended event which was held at the Residence Inn at the Hutchinson Metro Center. 

  There were nineteen honorees in all Allison Santiago, Angela Laguer, Angie Rose, Antirison R. Ortiz, Colin Moseley, Daniel Porro, Edgar Luis Alvarez, Gene DeFrancis, Henry Pelayo, Irene Guanill-Elukowich, Jerome Gino Ragusa, Jorge Hernandez, Lisa Sorin, Nunzio Del Greco, Suzanne Gonzalez, Wendoli Rosario, and William Schievella. Awards and certificates were given to the honorees by Bishop David Maldonado Jr., Bharati S. Kemraj, and Nicholas Himidin Jr.

   It was a very nice event completed with dozens of delicious cannolis from Gino's Pastry Shop of  Little Italy in the Belmont section of the Bronx. Councilman Mark Gjonaj stopped by to talk a little about the importance of honoring those who work so hard for their communities. 

Above - Councilman Gjonaj congratulates Bharati and the honorees.
Below - Bronx Chamber Of Commerce President & CEO Nunzio Del Greco poses with Bishop David Maldonado, Community Board 9 Chair Nicholas Himidian, and Bharati Kemraj.

Above - Westchester Square Business Improvement District Executive Director Lisa Sorin is honored.
Below - Jerome The Cannoli King Gino Ragusa is honored.

Above - A photo of the honorees before the event began.
Below - A photo of the honorees with their certificates and Councilman Mark Gjonaj who brought along his choice to replace him in the special election, his former Chief of Staff and Bronx liason to Governor Andrew Cuomo Ms. Nathalia Fernandez. 

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Former NYPD Deputy Chief Pleads Guilty To Illegally Diverting Police Resources

  Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today the guilty plea of MICHAEL HARRINGTON for misapplying police resources while serving in the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) as, among other things, a Deputy Chief and former Executive Officer for the Chief of Department’s Office.  Specifically, HARRINGTON diverted those resources – including dispatching police officers and diverting land, sea, and air vehicles intended for the NYPD’s public service usage – for the personal benefit of Jeremy Reichberg, a private citizen, his friends, and their associates.  HARRINGTON pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Gregory H. Woods to misapplication and conversion of property belonging to a program or organization receiving federal funds.   

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said: “Michael Harrington, a former high-ranking officer in the NYPD, occupied powerful positions within the department, from which he controlled officers and resources meant to keep New York safe.  But as he admitted today, Harrington allowed those resources to be used for the benefit of well-connected private citizens.  We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to fight this type of corruption.”
Reichberg and an additional co-defendant, former NYPD Deputy Inspector James Grant, continue to face honest services fraud, bribery, and conspiracy charges related to an alleged scheme in which Reichberg and another individual provided luxurious benefits to high-ranking members of the NYPD, including Grant, so as to be able to call upon those members for police-related assistance for themselves and their associates as opportunities arose.  Reichberg and Grant are scheduled to go to trial before Judge Woods on April 30, 2018.
According to the Superseding Information, Indictment, and Complaint filed in this case, and statements made during the plea proceeding: 
HARRINGTON was previously an Inspector in Brooklyn North and, beginning around November 2013, the Executive Officer in the NYPD’s Chief of Department’s Office, which is responsible for overseeing all of the Department’s uniformed operations.  After November 2014, HARRINGTON was a Deputy Chief assigned to the NYPD’s Housing Bureau.  Between 2011 and June 2016, HARRINGTON diverted police resources for the benefit of Reichberg and his associates, including another individual, Jona Rechnitz, who has pled guilty and is now cooperating with the Government.  Among other things, HARRINGTON helped Reichberg and his associates get police escorts for non-police purposes, use a helicopter for a flyover at a private event, sent officers to resolve private, civil disputes, and secured the use of a police boat for private boat rides at another private event.
HARRINGTON, 52, of Staten Island, New York, pled guilty to one count of misapplication concerning a program receiving federal funds.  The charge carries a maximum term of 10 years in prison.  HARRINGTON is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Woods on June 11, 2018.  The maximum potential penalty is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Berman praised the investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York City Police Department, Internal Affairs Division.  

Doctor Pleads Guilty In Manhattan Federal Court To Scheme To Illegally Distribute Oxycodone

  Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that Dr. EMMANUEL LAMBRAKIS, a state licensed doctor, pled guilty today to writing medically unnecessary prescriptions for oxycodone.  LAMBRAKIS pled guilty earlier today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein, and will be sentenced before U.S. District Court Judge William H. Pauley III at a later date.

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “Dr. Emmanuel Lambrakis took a solemn oath to ‘first do no harm.’  Instead, as he admitted in federal court today, Lambrakis chose to write prescriptions for unnecessary, addictive, and possibly fatal opiates for his ‘patients.’  Today, this doctor who used his position as cover for what amounted to no more than a common drug dealing operation, faces serious prison time for his actions.”
According to allegations in a Complaint and other documents filed in federal court, as well as statements made in public court proceedings:
Oxycodone is a highly addictive, narcotic opioid that is used to treat severe and chronic pain conditions.  Oxycodone prescriptions are in high demand and have significant cash value to drug dealers.  In fact, oxycodone tablets can be resold on the street for thousands of dollars.  For example, 30-milligram oxycodone tablets have a current street value of approximately $20 to $30 per tablet in New York City, with street prices even higher in other parts of the country.  A single prescription for 120 30-milligram tablets of oxycodone can net an illicit distributor $2,400 in cash or more.
From at least approximately January 2011 until December 2016, LAMBRAKIS operated two medical clinics in Queens, New York, where LAMBRAKIS wrote numerous prescriptions for large quantities of oxycodone in exchange for cash payments.  LAMBRAKIS typically charged $150 in cash for “patient visits,” and these visits often involved numerous “patients” being seen by LAMBRAKIS at the same time in the same examination room.  During these “patient visits,” LAMBRAKIS would perform simple, perfunctory body manipulations (such as rotating the patient’s arm or leg) and engage in little or no conversation with the alleged “patient.”  Nonetheless, LAMBRAKIS would then cause the patient to receive a prescription for a large quantity of oxycodone, most often 120 30-milligram tablets or more.
Between January 2011 and the present, LAMBRAKIS wrote thousands of oxycodone prescriptions, resulting in the distribution of more than a million oxycodone tablets, which have a street value in the tens of millions of dollars.  On numerous occasions, LAMBRAKIS wrote 30 or more prescriptions for 30-milligram oxycodone pills in a single day.  As a result of LAMBRAKIS’s actions, it is estimated that LAMBRAKIS collected more than $2 million in fees from his “patients.”
LAMBRAKIS, 70, of Manhattan, pled guilty to one count of conspiring to distribute and possess with intent to distribute oxycodone.  This offense carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.  The maximum potential sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the DEA’s Tactical Diversion Squad, which is comprises agents and officers from the DEA, the NYPD, the New York State Police, Town of Orangetown Police Department, Rockland County Drug Task Force, Westchester County Police Department, and New York City Department of Investigation.  He also acknowledged the assistance of the Department of Health & Human Services, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the New York City Human Resources Administration, and the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

Cases From The Bronx District Attorney


Defendant Pleaded Guilty to Attempted Assault and Attempted Robbery

  Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark today announced that a Bronx man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for two 2016 attacks in which he knocked the victims unconscious and removed items of their clothing. In one attack, he broke the jaw of a 15-year old girl near Bronx Park. 

 District Attorney Clark said, “The defendant brutally beat a young girl who refused his sexual advances and a young woman who had willingly handed over her phone. He will now serve 15 years behind bars for these vicious attacks. The two survivors have bravely gone on with their lives, despite severe emotional and physical pain. We hope this sentence brings a measure of peace to them.” 

 District Attorney Clark said the defendant, Shaun Lewis, 28, of Lurting Avenue, was sentenced today to 15 years in prison followed by five years post-release supervision by Bronx Supreme Court Justice Ralph Fabrizio. He pleaded guilty on January 25, 2018 to Attempted Assault in the first-degree and Attempted Robbery in the second-degree. At the time of the attacks, the defendant was on parole for a robbery in which he beat a woman.

 According to the investigation, on the early morning of October 24, 2016, Lewis exposed himself to the teenage girl and demanded she “touch it” while in the vicinity of Bronx Park. When the girl refused, the defendant repeatedly struck her face, kicked her and choked her into unconsciousness. When she awoke her pants and underwear had been removed. He then grabbed her breast before she was able to flee.

 According to the investigation, on the night of April 21, 2016, on Wickham Avenue, Lewis approached a 33-year-old woman and demanded her cell phone. Upon handing over her phone, the woman asked the defendant to send the photos on her phone to her husband. The victim was knocked unconscious and awoke with her pants removed. She suffered bruising, swelling and extreme pain to her jaw.

Defendant Allegedly Assaulted Girls in Two of the Buildings Where He Worked

 Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark today announced that a Bronx man has been charged in two indictments with Predatory Sexual Assault Against A Child, second-degree Rape and other felony charges for sexually abusing a 5-year-old girl and a 14-year-old girl in buildings where he served as a superintendent. 

 District Attorney Clark said, “This defendant allegedly preyed on a girl for nearly three years, starting in 2009 when she was five years old, in the basement of her building. He also allegedly raped a 14-year-old girl last year in another building. We will bring justice for the victims of these horrendous crimes. He could face up to life in prison if he is convicted of the most serious charge.” 

 District Attorney Clark said the defendant, Angel Martinez, 63, of 1495 Morris Avenue, was charged in one indictment with Predatory Sexual Assault Against A Child, first-degree Course Of Sexual Conduct Against A Child, second-degree Course Of Sexual Conduct Against A Child, and Endangering The Welfare Of A Child. In the second indictment, he is charged with second-degree Rape, second-degree Criminal Sexual Act, third-degree Rape, third-degree Criminal Sexual Act and Endangering The Welfare Of A Child. He was arraigned before Bronx Supreme Court Justice George Villegas on February 13, 2018. Bail was continued and he is due back on May 22, 2018. He could face up to life in prison on the top count.

 According to the investigation, between August 19, 2009 and July 10, 2012, in the laundry room area of the basement of 1800 University Avenue, the defendant engaged in sexual intercourse and other acts of sexual conduct with a girl beginning when she was five years old.

 According to the investigation, on November 6, 2017, in 441 East 136th Street, the defendant engaged in sexual intercourse and other acts of sexual conduct with a 14-year-old girl.

 An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt.

 Anyone with information about other possible incidents is urged to call police at (212) 267-RAPE (7273).

Defendant Pleaded Guilty to Manslaughter

 Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark today announced that a Bronx man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for killing a teenage boy. 

  District Attorney Clark said, “The defendant ambushed and shot a 14-year-old, firing multiple times and then running away. For this senseless crime, he will spend 25 years behind bars. We will continue to pursue anyone who spreads fear through gun violence in the Bronx.” 

 District Attorney Clark said the defendant, Travis Bloch, 31, of 3463 Third Ave., was sentenced on Feb. 28, 2018 to 25 years in prison followed by 5 years of post-release supervision by Bronx Supreme Court Justice Steven Barrett. Bloch pleaded guilty to first degree Manslaughter on January 18, 2018. A co-defendant, Jeremiah Thomas, who also pleaded guilty to first-degree Manslaughter, was sentenced to 17 years in prison on Feb. 15, 2018.

 According to the investigation, on the morning of May 22, 2015, outside a building at 1181 Sheridan Avenue, the defendant repeatedly shot Christopher Duran, 14, as he was heading to school, causing his death.

NYPAN Endorses Jumaane Williams For NYS Lieutenant Governor

At a City Hall press conference this morning, the New York Progressive Action Network(NYPAN) announced their endorsement of the candidacy of New York City Council Member Jumaane D. Williams for the office of New York State Lieutenant Governor. NYPAN grew out of the Bernie Sanders New York campaign and now is composed of 32 statewide grassroots chapters composed of thousands of progressives of all stripes, and which also includes many affiliates among local unions, progressive Democratic clubs, and community organizations. 

"I am honroed to accept the endorsement of NYPAN," stated Council Member Williams. "I am proud to be one of the founding members of BPAN. NYPAN is new but progressiveness is not. There have been many people who have pushing the progressive movement forward for years. People like George Albro, Arthur Schwartz, Samelys Lopez, Eddie Kay and Ernest Skinner who have joined me here today in support of this campaign.

"I am running for Lieutenant Governor because unfortunately we have people in power now who act as progressives based on polls. However, true progressives don't act based on polls but rather based on doing what is right all the time. We don't need the type of leadership that cast their fingers to the political wind to determine a course of action. I have been speaking the same language for my entire career- we have to fight for rights of all people all the time. For reproductive rights. For immigrant rights. For fair housing rights."
"Jumaane is not just a part of the resistance to Trump, he is the face and symbol of that resistance," stated NYPAN co-chairperson George Albro. "And he is one of the very rare breed of Democrats who is not scared off by the Cuomo/Hochul horde of millions of campaign dollars collected almost exclusively from the 1% of corporate polluters, hedge fund billionaires and other rich special interests. It is so refreshing to back a candidate who is more an activist than a politician, who believes in something other than their own self interest, and who, like Bernie, will certainly mobilize thousands of enthusiasic voters to rally behind his candidacy".
NYPAN Treasurer & Counsel Arthur Schwartz added: "For too long NY has been run by insiders, who look the other way when politicians steal or make policy in return for campaign contributions. Jumaane is not an insider. With him in Albany we will have an ethical watchdog who will blow the whistle. And while he is doing that he will be fighting for the needs of New Yorkers who don't make big campaign contributions, to strengthen rent laws, enact single payer and put the millions we need into education."

"As a proud member of the New York Progressive Action Network," stated NYPAN Bronx chapter president Samelys Lopez. "And today I'm proud to endorse Jumaane Williams for Lieutenant Governor. Our People's Lieutenant Govenor. We need leaders like Jumaane who have the conviction and the moral courage to fight for social justice in all its forms. To fight for the soul of our Democratic values and re-envisioning a New York State government that puts the needs of all people first. Jumaane is the fighter we need and deserve in the state capitol- who believes in the power of activism and will effect real change from the grassroots level on up. To speak truth to power."

Council Member Williams, who is a member of BPAN (Brooklyn Chapter of NYPAN) and was a Bernie Sanders delegate to the 2016 Democratic National Convention, has been a unique progressive voice in New York State, having been a founder of the New York City Council's Progressive Caucus; an author of legislation ending the notorious and racist "stop and frisk" police policy; a fighter for civil and immigrant rights; and, main champion in securing tens of thousands of summer youth jobs, among many other accomplishments. He has engaged in civil disobedience numerous times, e.g., recently putting his body on the line to try to prevent the deportation of immigrants.

"We are the people who are going to save the Democratic Party," Council Member Williams added. "To make sure that Democrats live up to the progressive ideals we claim to espouse. And by doing so we're going to save our country from the hate and destructive policies that Donald Trump is pushing. I firmly believe that we need a People's Advocate in the office of the New York State Lieutenant Governor- someone to use the bully pulpit to work with the Governor when he is on the right course and someone to say the 'Emperor has no clothes" when he is wrong. It's time. Let's go."

PAID FOR BY JUMAANE 4 NY, P.O. Box 100323, Brooklyn, NY 11210

While we never received an answer from the Williams for Lieutenant Governor campaign as to why it was using an old City Council Campaign for this state campaign, we do see that the 'PAID FOR BY JUMANNE 2017' has been replaced with 'PAID FOR BY JUMANNE 4 NY', even though the post office box remains the same at the Brooklyn post office. 

Our question to Councilman Williams then would be, when did the council campaign pay the dues on this P. O. Box until, and since it is now a state campaign P.O. Box is City Council mail still going to said state P.O. Box?  

We also left the spelling errors in for the public to read. Honored is the correct way to spell the word not honroed, the third word in the second paragraph. Also Governor is the correct way to spell the word not Govenor in the second spelling of the word Governor in the statement by Ms. Samelys Lopez of the Bronx. 

In wake of NYCHA lead scandal, Senate passes IDC sponsored bills to create state Independent Monitor of NYCHA & to empower New York City Council with oversight power

Legislation is part of a comprehensive package announced by the Independent Democratic Conference to protect tenants

The New York State Senate on Wednesday passed legislation sponsored by Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester) that would give the New York City Council oversight of NYCHA and create an Office of the Independent Monitor to oversee operations at NYCHA.

Despite the overwhelming outcry for a state appointed monitor from advocates and NYCHA tenants, some members of the New York State Senate took a sharp stance against the measure opposed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

“NYCHA residents demand immediate action and state oversight to ensure NYCHA is held accountable for its actions. It’s clear that NYCHA, where every board member is appointed by the Mayor, is not capable of managing itself. The alternative to installing a state monitor, appointed by Governor Cuomo, is to appoint a federal monitor — putting this dire situation in the hands of Donald Trump, whose real estate mismanagement has led him to bankruptcy and whose HUD director spent $31,000 on a new dining room set for his office. It’s shameful that anyone would vote against a state Independent Monitor to step in. The IDC is ready to stand up for tenants and will fight to make sure they are protected,” said Senator Klein.

The Independent Democratic Conference released a bombshell report, “The New Flint,” on Monday, comparing the lead paint crisis facing 400,000 tenants who call NYCHA home to the lead water crisis that possibly impacted 100,000 residents of Flint, Michigan.

The conference also rolled out a comprehensive legislative package to address NYCHA’s mismanagement and fix deplorable conditions in the city’s largest affordable housing stock, including a state Independent Monitor and City Council oversight to increase transparency.

While legislation passed 47-12 to create the Office of the Independent Monitor within the Department of Homes and Community Renewal, Senators Brian Benjamin (D-Manhattan), Leroy Comrie (D-Queens), Marty Dilan (D-Brooklyn), Michael Gianaris (D-Queens), Brian Kavanagh (D-Manhattan/Brooklyn), Liz Krueger (D-Manhattan), Velmanette Montgomery (D-Brooklyn), Kevin Parker (D-Brooklyn), Roxanne Persaud (D-Brooklyn), Gustavo Rivera (D-Bronx), Sanders (D-Queens) and Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Queens) voted against it.

In June 2017, this measure passed unanimously.

The state-appointed Independent Monitor would  have the ability to review and have oversight of any NYCHA project and require corrective actions to remedy issues. The monitor would also be required to issue an annual report on actions that were taken and on the status of capital projects undertaken by the agency.

The Senate passed another piece of legislation, which was part of the IDC’s package, to give the New York City Council the power to review NYCHA operations in the same way that it currently is able to do with other city agencies. The City Council would also have the ability to pass their own legislation requiring NYCHA to produce reports on its operations. The Senate passed the bill 59-0.

The State Senate passed additional “The Senate passing two of the bills which we called for just mere days ago as measures to improve the lives of 400,000 NYCHA tenants is a testament of the dedication to our constituents. Most importantly, an independent monitor of NYCHA will ensure our residents suffering from mold and lead have another advocate on their side,” said Senator Diane Savino (D-Staten Island/Brooklyn).

“Considering the more than 400,000 people who live in NYCHA apartments and the falsification of lead inspection reports by NYCHA officials, it is entirely justified to compare the situation to that of Flint, Michigan. The inhabitants of NYCHA have a right to know when lead is found in their homes and the administration of NYCHA has a responsibility to comprehensively track and quickly deal with any lead problems. Lead poisoning is irreversible and lifelong, and we owe it to New York’s families to empower them to protect their children from the scourge of lead paint. I am proud that legislation to create real oversight at NYCHA has passed the State Senate and am committed to working with my colleagues in the Assembly to get these two important bills to the Governor's desk,” said Senator Marisol Alcantara (D-Manhattan).

“NYCHA’s serious failings demanded these steps towards increased transparency and increased accountability. As our ‘New Flint’ report explains, lead poisoning has lifelong consequences for children and families. In addition to solidarity with NYCHA residents, passage of these bills today demonstrates that we will take action to keep all our children safe,” said Senator Jesse Hamilton (D-Brooklyn).

“Our City cannot continue to put over 170,000 New York families living in NYCHA buildings in hazardous conditions and not answer to anybody. That is why I am proud to vote in favor of these pieces of legislation that will provide real solutions that will protect vulnerable New Yorkers,” said Senator Tony Avella (D-Queens).

“We need to work together to ensure NYCHA residents live in safe, decent conditions. The news about the lead paint exposure was terrifying. It is critical that we put all the necessary mechanisms in place to prevent this from ever happening again. I applaud my colleagues for their efforts, and it is my hope that the bills passing today, especially the one calling for an independent monitor at NYCHA buildings, become a reality soon,” said Senator Jose Peralta (D-Queens).
You can read The New Flint here:


  Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., in collaboration with the New York University Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, has developed a community survey questionnaire as a follow-up to the two previous meetings of the Bronx Tech Summit hosted at the Metropolitan College of New York Campus in The Hub.
The purpose of the survey is to gather information from the public on living and working in the South Bronx. Responses to this survey will help inform a report being prepared by a team of New York University urban planning graduate students on the tech industry in the Bronx. 
“If you live and work in the South Bronx, we want to hear from you,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “Technology plays a role in every sector of our borough. As we plan for the future expansion of tech in our borough and the creation of a tech hub, we want to ensure that those who live and work in this borough are guiding that conversation.”
A full link to the survey can be found at: The survey will be available until March 16, 2018.


  In a media availability today Mayor Bill de Blasio had the following to say about the hiring of a new public school chancellor, and the resignation of the new public schools chancellor.

 We had an extensive nationwide search as a lot of you reported when the announcement was made – a candidate who was very impressive and had done a lot of good work in Miami. I had offered Mr. Carvalho the job and Dean Fuleihan had follow-up conversations over a week ago and he had accepted.

We talked to him yesterday afternoon about formally putting the information out via the Politico article. We agreed on a phone call with Eric Phillips and I. I spoke to him again last night, I think it was around 8:00 pm and we discussed the next steps for his announcement here in New York City.

So you can imagine how surprised I was to get a phone call from him a few hours ago.

I’ve been doing this work a long, long time. I’ve hired a lot of great people. I’m very proud of the people who serve in this administration and a lot of people I’ve hired before that – never have had a situation like this before.

But look, we move forward. Our nationwide search has resumed. We have been immediately reaching out to candidates and will continue the search and we will have a new announcement soon as we continue the transition at the Department of Education so we can move forward.

I’m very confident in our school system. I’m confident in our teachers. I’m confident in our principals, all our educators, and all our staff. They have been outstanding and they will continue to be.

Let me also tell you, I spoke to the Chancellor. The Chancellor will be continuing her role until the end of March and I want to thank her, of course, for all she has done for this city and all she will continue to do.

So, the bottom line is what makes this school system great is our educators, our parents. Everyone who is a part of this school system will continue to do good work and we will have a new Chancellor soon.

Editor's Note:
The Mayor got a grilling from reporters on the subject of having to find another candidate to be public schools chancellor. He said that there would be one in place by the end of March, his original timetable. 

Let's see if this time the mayor can find a local educator such as the retired CUNY administrator who was mentioned at one time, instead of having to go out of town to find a new schools chancellor. 


  “Alberto Carvalho is a world-class educator with an unmatched track record of success. I am very confident that our extensive, national search has found New York City the best person to lead the nation’s largest school system into the future. I look forward to welcoming our new chancellor to New York City in the days ahead, and to working with him in the years ahead as we deepen achievement in our classrooms and build on the outstanding record of accomplishment that Chancellor Fariña has delivered for students and their families across the five boroughs.”

Bronx Chamber of Commerce Women of Distinction Luncheon

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Councilmember Rafael Salamanca, Jr. - Join us for upcoming Housing Resource Fairs

Councilman Mark Gjonaj - Upcoming Event: Community Safety Meeting


  Today, Rep. Adriano Espaillat issued the following statement to commemorate the 174th anniversary of the Independence of the Dominican Republic:

  "Founded in 1844, today marks the 174th anniversary of the Independence of the Dominican Republic, celebrated annually as Dominican Republic Independence Day,” said Rep. Espaillat. “In honor of founding fathers Juan Pablo Duarte, Ramón Matías Mella, Francisco del Rosario Sánchez and other patriots, Dominican communities established in New York and states around the country are hard-working communities, proud of our roots and of our heritage, and supportive of our families, especially as it pertains to the next generation of leaders and ensuring our youth have the opportunity to achieve in the future.

“As we celebrate Dominican Republic Independence Day, it is with great appreciation in large part to the Dominican community and the diversity of New York’s 13th congressional district, that I have the honor of being the first Dominican-American to serve in the United States Congress. I understand this great importance, and I am extremely grateful and humble for those who made it possible for this Dominican dreamer who came to America with his family at the age of 9 to reach his aspirations and follow my dreams. I vow to continue my fight and dedicate my work to ensuring that the more than 2,400 DREAMers in my district have the same opportunities to achieve a shot at the American Dream in a country as great as ours.”

News From Congressman Eliot Engel

Engel, House Dems Introduce Assault Weapons Ban of 2018

  Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a member of the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, joined more than 150 Democratic colleagues in introducing the Assault Weapons Ban of 2018, which would make it “unlawful for a person to import, sell, manufacture, transfer, or possess, in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce, a semiautomatic assault weapon.”

“As I have said many times before: the Second Amendment wasn’t written with semi-automatic weapons in mind. They are weapons of war and no fair-minded person would confuse regulating them with infringing on personal freedom,” Congressman Engel said. “It’s long past time Congress did something to stop this horrific gun violence, and there is no better place to start than getting these weapons of war off our streets.”

The Assault Weapons Ban will prohibit the sale, transfer, production, and importation of:
  • Semi-automatic rifles and handguns with a military-style feature that can accept a detachable magazine;
  • Semi-automatic rifles and handguns with a fixed magazine that can hold more than 10 rounds;
  • Semi-automatic shotguns with a military-style feature;
  • Any ammunition feeding device that can hold more than 10 rounds;
  • And 205 specifically-named and listed firearms.

As the frequency of mass shootings has increased in recent years, assault weapons have become the weapon of choice for these murderers. Assault weapons were used in attacks on Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida and the Route 91 Harvest music festival in Las Vegas. Shooters have also used assault weapons to commit mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School and a movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado. When an assault weapon or a high-capacity magazine is used in a shooting, the number of victims who are killed increases by 63%. There have been almost 8,300 incidents of gun violence so far in 2018. More than 2,200 Americans have lost their lives. More than 500 children have been killed or injured.

“I voted for the original assault weapons ban which unfortunately was allowed to lapse under President George W. Bush,” Engel said. “Now we can’t afford to waste another moment without fixing that mistake. This really shouldn’t be a partisan issue—how many more children have to die before the GOP decides to act? Banning assault weapons, universal background checks, limiting magazine capacities; these aren’t outlandish ideas. This stuff is commonsense and my colleagues across the aisle need to wake up and realize that. They work for the American people, not the NRA.”

Engel Statement on Net Neutrality Day of Action

  Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, issued the following statement:

“I applaud all the advocates who today are making their voices heard in support of net neutrality and I join them in expressing my dismay over the FCC’s continued push to destroy a free and open internet.

“Net neutrality is the principle that all data on the internet should be treated equally, regardless of its source, content, or destination.  It ensures that user choices are not limited by the preferences of internet service providers, and it allows companies to compete based on the merits of their offerings and not the size of their pocketbooks.

“The democratization of the internet should not be impeded. The FCC has failed the American people under Chairman Ajit Pai’s leadership, and thus it falls to Congress to undo the mess they have made. I am pleased to cosponsor legislation that would restore net neutrality now and for future generations, and I urge my colleagues on the right to join us in this fight.”