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The Paper of Record for Greenwich Village, East Village, Lower East Side, Soho, Union Square, Chinatown and Noho, Since 1933

May 26, 2016 • $1.00 Volume 86 • Number 21

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Hawksteria or claws for concern? Park cops alert small-dog owners BY COLIN MIXSON

H

awksteria is swooping down on the Village. Village residents owning diminutive, toy pups are keeping one eye pointed skyward around Washington Square Park for fear of the red-tailed hawks that prowl the skies there in search of scrump-

tious, four-legged meals. The fresh rash of paranoia follows a recent red-tailed hawk attack upon a hapless Chihuahua on the Upper West Side earlier this month, and even Park Enforcement Patrol, or PEP, officers are raising a red-tailed alarm that locals should keep small dogs heeled, citing unreported atHAWKSTERIA continued on p. 14

B.O.E. blames its poll workers for chaotic presidential primary BY SARAH FERGUSON

A

ttention millennials: The New York City Board of Elections has a job for you. Under withering crossexamination by city councilmembers over its disastrous handling of the April 19 presidential primary, B.O.E. Executive Director Michael Ryan offered yet another rationale

for why New York’s election process is so blatantly bad. Our poll workers suck. Ryan said the city was in desperate need of a new, “younger” tech-savvy workforce to replace many of the older, party-appointed poll workers, some of whom, he conceded, had difficulty feeding ballots into printer maB.O.E. continued on p. 6

Night runners unite........page 43

PHOTO BY MILO HESS

The annual Dance Parade and Festival joyously salsaed and mamboed down Broadway to Tompkins Square Park on Saturday. See Pages 10 and 11 for more photos.

Prognosis for Beth Israel: New E. 13th mini-hospital BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

A

nswering mounting questions about the future of Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, on Wednesday, Mount Sinai Health System announced a $500 million investment to create a new “Mount Sinai Downtown” health network — the centerpiece of which will be a new, much smaller hospital on E. 13th St. The new Downtown network, a press release said, will “usher in a sweeping transformation of care delivery from river to river below 34th St.”

As has been rumored and reported over the past year, the current Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital — which occupies the full block of prime Gramercy real estate between E. 16th and E. 17th Sts. and First Ave. and Nathan D. Perlman Place — will eventually be sold, a P.R. spokesperson confirmed. In turn, the key feature of the new plan is a vastly scaled-down Mount Sinai Downtown Beth Israel Hospital to be built on the site of the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai — specifically, on the

site of its residents building, at 321 E. 13th St. The press release said the new hospital would be built at E. 14th St. and Second Ave. However, the spokesperson confirmed that the plan is for it to be built at the residents building site. The Eye and Ear Infirmary extends from E. 14th St. to E. 13th St. along Second Ave., with its north building located on E. 14th St. and its south building on E. 13th St. An Eye and Ear employee who spoke to The VillagHOSPITAL continued on p. 20

Twin towers are a huge pain on Jane................p. 4 Mark Lane, J.F.K. conspiracy theorist...............p. 18 www.TheVillager.com


Photo by Milo Hess Photos by Tequila Minsky

Novac Nour y, above, led the victor y jam as a Pompeii Center member played along on a tambourine.

everyone singing.” The center has two more years left on its lease, plus they just got the place painted. “I think we’d just like everyone to know we’re alive and thriving,” Gabin said. “We’re meeting our quota. A lot of people are coming in. We now have Karaoke Keyboard on Thursdays,” led by — guess who? — former disco icon Noury. For an “encore,” Noury told us he is planning to use his easement rights to create a “rainbow” spanning from his former Little W. 12th St. building, which was demolished by the city a few years back, to the High Line. We’re looking forward to that one, for sure! His building used to have a concrete platform extending to the old elevated rail tracks — hence, the easement.

Sleep now in the fiyah?

He’s the key(s):

The Our Lady of Pompeii Senior Center celebrated a twofer last week, marking the one-year anniversary of its hard-fought lease renewal for Our Lady of Pompeii Church’s basement, plus the 70th birthday of the legendary, oneand-only Arrow Keyboard Man — yes, Novac Noury. Noury noted the party was really to honor how he saved the senior center. Of course, state Senator Brad Hoylman and other local politicians did play...oh... a wee bit of a role, too. But Sandy Gabin, the center’s director, said, yes, Noury was instrumental — and, no, she’s not just saying that because he plays a mean organ. Really, it was his social-media chops. “We were on Facebook from Florida to Canada,” she said. “He did save us. He was on YouTube. He got

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“It’s worth the trip down the street!” 2

May 26,2016

Former East Villager rabble-rousing activist John Penley is planning to protest in Cleveland at the Republican National Convention. He and his fellow Donald Trump bashers are hoping to be entertained by a supergroup, Prophets of Rage, formed by guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine, the Post’s Page Six reports. Rage’s lead singer Zack de la Rocha has been replaced by old-school rappers B-Real of Cypress Hill and Chuck D of Public Enemy. Penley is trying to get a park permit to allow the protesters to camp out for four days. The former East Villager was arrested at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 2012 for crossing a police line, but was found not guilty. “We’re trying to do it the right way, getting permits. We don’t want violence,” Penley told Page Six. He added that the bigger protests this year will surely be in Philadelphia at the Democratic National Convention. “So many people are coming to Philadelphia, they’re going to shut the city down,” Penley told Page Six. “Only the radicals are going to

Trumpets — not Trump! Trumpet man W ynton Marsalis blew into P.S. 41 this past Sunday for a jazz concer t. He’s a parent at the Greenwich Village School.

Cleveland. The liberals are going to Philadelphia.”

He’s not waffling:

The Christopher St. Patrol’s president likes waffles — at least when they are in the Hudson River Park. David Poster, the head of the local volunteer anti-crime group, said the seasonal cafe that operated at the foot of the Christopher St. Pier during recent summers had a calming influence on that section of the waterfront park, which is a favorite stomping ground of L.G.B.T. youth. The previous operator has been replaced by Wafels & Dinges and Coffeed, and Poster expects it to have the same effect on the pier. Unfortunately, many of the L.G.B.T. kids may not be able to afford gourmet waffles, even without dinges (their tasty toppings).

Triangulation:

There’s a little more to the story — well, probably a lot more — to the naming imbroglio over the St. Vincent’s Triangle, which the city’s Parks Department recently officially dubbed the NYC AIDS Memorial Park at St. Vincent’s Triangle. That mouthful of a moniker may well have set the world record for longest park name. Basically, there apparently was a strong sentiment amid the leadership of the Community Board 2 Parks Committee that the little park should be named after the former St. Vincent’s Hospital, which stood across from the site for more than 160 years. In fact, both Rich Caccappolo and Susanna Aaron, the committee’s chairperson and vice chairperson, respectively, told us, in so many words, that — like many local community activists — they thought the park’s name should be something along the lines of St. Vincent’s Hospital Park — and that the AIDS Memorial, well, would simply be contained within the park. Yet the committee never got the chance to weigh in. Caccappolo said he put the issue on his committee’s agenda, but as soon as the meeting agenda was posted on the online C.B. 2 calendar, he was bombarded by e-mail letters from people advocating that it be called AIDS Memorial Park. “Within five minutes after we posted it, I got 100 letters,” he said. “They were all form letters. … Tobi told me to pull it down.” He was referring to Tobi Bergman, C.B. 2 chairperson. As The Villager recently reported, three local politicians — Corey Johnson, Brad Hoylman and Gale Brewer — in March, wrote to Mayor Bill de Blasio and Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver, emphatically urging that the park be named only for the AIDS memorial, which will occupy one-tenth of the park’s space. The mayor definitely was “part of the conversation” on the scoopy continued on p. 25 TheVillager.com


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May 26, 2016

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No way! C.B. 2 pans Jane tower plans Named best weekly newspaper in New York State in 2001, 2004 and 2005 by New York Press Association News Story, First Place, 2015 Editorial Page, First Place, 2015 Editorials, First Place, 2014 News Story, First Place, 2014 Overall Design Excellence, First Place, 2013 Best Column, First Place, 2012 Photographic Excellence, First Place, 2011 Spot News Coverage, First Place, 2010 Coverage of Environment, First Place, 2009

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The Villager (USPS 578930) ISSN 00426202 is published every week by NYC Community Media LLC, One Metrotech North, 10th floor Brooklyn, NY 11201 (212) 229-1890. Periodicals Postage paid at New York, N.Y. Annual subscription by mail in Manhattan and Brooklyn $29 ($35 elsewhere). Single copy price at office and newsstands is $1. The entire contents of newspaper, including advertising, are copyrighted and no part may be reproduced without the express permission of the publisher - © 2016 NYC Community Media LLC. PUBLISHER’S LIABILITY FOR ERROR

The Publisher shall not be liable for slight changes or typographical errors that do not lessen the value of an advertisement. The publisher’s liability for others errors or omissions in connection with an advertisement is strictly limited to publication of the advertisement in any subsequent issue. Published by NYC Community Media, LLC One Metrotech North 10th floor Brooklyn, NY 11201 Phone: (718) 260-2500 • Fax: (212) 229-2790 On-line: www.thevillager.com E-mail: news@thevillager.com © 2016 NYC Community Media, LLC

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May 26,2016

By Albert Amateau ommunity Board 2 last week heeded the protests of more than 100 Villagers and gave thumbs down on two residential projects at the opposite ends of Jane St. in the Greenwich Village Historic District. T he board voted unanimously at its May 19 meeting to recommend that the Landmarks Preser vation Commission deny per mission to developers to replace one- and two -stor y buildings at 11 Jane St., between Greenw ich Ave. and W. Fourth St., and at 85 - 89 Jane St., between Washington and Greenw ich Sts. Although community board recommendations are strictly advisory, the Landmarks Commission and other city agencies take them seriously. The project at 85-89 Jane St., intended as a single private residence, would raise the existing one- and twostory buildings to five stories and more than 40 feet in height along the street, plus add two narrow towers — one glass and 80 feet tall and the other concrete and 90 feet tall — on the rear of the site. The project would also alter the rear facade and remove a parapet from the east end of the building. The owner, identified only as 85 Jane Realty LLC, which traces back to Triad Professional Services, registered in Georgia, acquired the property for $20 million in 2012. The C.B. 2 resolution says the two towers, “would impose a stark selfreferenced intrusion on the intimate streetscape of this low-rise block… .” Especially disturbing, the resolution says, is the use of translucent glass in “the library tower, asserting a monolithic glow-in-the-dark presence on a quiet Village street.” The 40-foot street wall and the removal of the parapet would, “shift the architectural tone away from the Greenwich Village Historic District and suggests a contemporary take on a medieval fortress surrounding an

C

A rendering of the proposed design for 85 Jane St., featuring a tower sheathed in translucent glass. Community Board 2 was especially disturbed by the incongruous glass tower, saying it would be “a monolithic glow-in-the-dark presence on a quiet Village street.”

ivory tower,” the resolution adds. The community board recommended that the Landmarks Commission deny permission for the proposed towers, the raising of the street wall to 40 feet and the alteration of the rear facade. But the board recommended that the commission approve the restoration of the front facade. The existing two-story building at 85-87 Jane St. dates from 1892, when its original use was for a stable. It remained a stable at least until 1915. In 1923 it was converted to a garage, and later an ice-cream factory. By that time, the single-story 89 Jane St. was built as a garage. At a C.B. 2 Landmarks Committee hearing on May 12, about 100 neighbors showed up to oppose the project at 85-89 Jane St., including members of the Jane St. Block Association, the Greenwich Village Community Task Force and Preserve Jane St. Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, presented the society’s testimony on the project. Berman said the society appreciated the keeping of much of the facade of the existing building, but had serious concerns with the

two tall towers proposed for the northwest corner of the site. “The towers will overwhelm this and other buildings and be highly visible, not just on this block but from blocks away,” Berman said. At 11 Jane St., which is scheduled for a June 7 hearing by the Landmarks Commission, the owner, Minskoff Equities, wants to demolish the existing twostory parking garage and replace it with a new apartment building nearly 95 feet tall with at least six condo units. Minskoff acquired the property in 2014 for $26 million, according to a real estate Web site. The previous owner had proposed replacing the garage with a six-story building with 41 apartments, but the city Department of Buildings did not approve the plan. The proposed new building at 11 Jane St., which is located midblock, is grossly out of scale at 95 feet high with a 100-foot-long street frontage, according to the C.B. 2 resolution, and “would profoundly and irrevocably alter the character of the block,” the resolution says. The structure that it is proposed to replace is described in the resolution as “a handsome building”

and an archetype of early commercial garages in the neighborhood, several of which have been adapted to new uses. At a C.B. 2 Landmarks Committee hearing on May 16 — the board has two such committee meetings per month — more than 110 neighbors arrived to oppose the 11 Jane St. design, and petitions with another 100 signatures were submitted. In addition, more than 25 residents of Jane St. charged that the proposal showed a “flagrant disrespect for the character of Jane St.” Sarah Bean Apmann, director of research and preservation of G.V.S.H.P., delivered the society’s testimony on the 11 Jane St. project. The society acknowledged that while the Landmarks Commission would not save the garage structure, the new building should be reduced in scale. The ongoing replacement of low-scale buildings with much larger ones is changing the character of the West Village, G.V.S.H.P. stressed. “If buildings such as these are to be replaced, their replacements must, as much as possible, respect the scale, character and variety of the area and not skew it so uniformly in the direction of larger buildings and new designs,” G.V.S.H.P. said. TheVillager.com


2016 NYU Thom Fluellen Award Greenwich House 2016 NYU T.G. White Fund Awards

New York University salutes the 2016 recipients of the

NYU Community Fund and T.G. White Awards The NYU Community Fund has contributed over $2.8 million to thousands of local nonprofits since its inception in 1982, supporting organizations that improve the health and well-being of New York City. The majority of this money comes directly from NYU faculty and staff who donate funding through an annual employeebased charitable giving program. All administrative costs are absorbed by NYU, so 100% of every dollar donated goes directly to community organizations. Awardees are community organizations whose work addresses concerns such as at-risk youth, homelessness, hunger, literacy, economic independence, and services for those who are elderly, visually impaired, or living with health issues.

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A Fair Shake for Youth, Inc. A Place for Kids Andrew Glover Youth Program, Inc. Cornelia Connelly Center George Jackson Academy Grand Street Settlement Greenwich Village Youth Council Hamilton-Madison House Henry Street Settlement Hetrick-Martin Institute Jefferson Market Garden Lower East Side Girls Club Stuttering Association for the Young (SAY) The Door - A Center of Alternatives, Inc. University Settlement Society of New York, Inc. 2016 NYU Community Fund Awards Academy of Medical and Public Health Services Apex for Youth Artists Space Ascension Outreach Back on My Feet Bailey House Bowery Mission Bowery Residents’ Committee, Inc. Cabrini Immigrant Services of NYC Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES) Center for Employment Opportunities Children of Bellevue, Inc. Children’s Aid Society Church of St. Luke in the Fields City Parks Foundation Community Health Project, Inc. Community of St. Egidio USA Cooper Square Committee Covenant House New York Dances For A Variable Population Downtown Music Productions East End Temple Educational Alliance

Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center Gilda’s Club NYC Gina Gibney Dance Go Project, Inc. God’s Love We Deliver Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen - Church of Holy Apostles LEAP, Inc. d/b/a Brooklyn Workforce Innovations Legal Information for Families Today Mariners’ Temple Baptist Church Helping Hands Outreach Program Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals Nazareth Housing New Women New Yorkers New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project The New York Foundling Nicu’s Spoon Our Lady of Sorrows Peer Health Exchange Phoenix Theatre Ensemble Precious Dreams Foundation Project Ezra Project Renewal Reading Partners Rescuing Leftover Cuisine St. Anthony’s Seniors St. Joseph’s Soup Kitchen Tech Kids Unlimited Theater Breaking Through Barriers Corp. Third Street Music Settlement Underground Development Foundation /The Lowline University Community Social Service, Inc. Urban Justice Center - Peter Cicchino Youth Project Village Center for Care/VillageCare Village Temple Soup Kitchen Vision Urbana, Inc. Visions/Service for the Blind and Visually Impaired Visiting Neighbors, Inc. Visual AIDS Washington Square Association Music Fund Washington Square Park Conservancy Xavier Mission, Inc. Youth Represent, Inc.

May 26, 2016

5


B.O.E. blames poll workers for chaotic primary; B.O.E. continued from p. 1

chines on primary day. “Our poll worker population has to get younger,” Ryan said, noting that younger generations are “decidedly more energetic and more enthusiastic and more embracing of [new] technologies.” Not to mention the fact that 20 percent of the city’s poll workers didn’t bother to show up on election day, as Ryan disclosed to the incredulous councilmembers presiding over a two-hour budget hearing on Fri., May 13, at City Hall. “Recruitment is a really big deal,” Ryan said, returning to the theme frequently during his testimony. One might be tempted to accuse Ryan of throwing poll workers under the bus in an effort to distract from the board’s own lapses. As the chaos that unfolded across the city during the April 19 primary underscored, there’s plenty of ineptitude to go round. In his opening statement, Ryan dutifully fell on his sword over the faulty purge of some 117,000 voters from the Brooklyn rolls. “The board recognizes that the actions taken in Kings County should not have occurred,” Ryan stated, adding that he was “sorry” for engendering “public distrust” as a result. Under questioning by the City Council, Ryan claimed staffers in the Brooklyn borough office had botched an honest effort to clean up the rolls by removing 117,000 names. The aim was to scrub anyone ineligible — i.e. duplicates, people who moved, died, had a felony conviction, etc. Notices were sent warning all those who hadn’t voted since 2008, saying that they were at risk of losing their voting status. But Ryan said the Brooklyn office missed the important step of making sure voters

had been designated “inactive,” which happens when mail sent to their address is returned. Instead, anyone who didn’t respond to the notice was dropped. Ryan said he wanted to “dispel the myth” that all those purged were Democrats, as was initially reported. According to the board stats, of all those purged in Brooklyn, 25,000 were registered as Democrats, 12,000 were Republicans, and the rest were “blanks” — which is what the B.O.E. terms people who are unaffiliated, registered as independents or members of third parties. So most of those designated as invalid were shut out because New York has a closed primary that only allows you to vote if you are registered as Democrat or Republican. Nevertheless, Ryan said he was still mystified as to how this purge could have occurred over the last two years without his and the nine other commissioners on the board knowing. “Other than to say that they [the Brooklyn staff] made the decision on their own without input from executive management and/or the commissioners, there is no explanation,” Ryan told the Council. “They did it on their own. And they did it on their own with a misinterpretation of the procedures which are posted on our Web site and widely known.” It’s worth noting that Ryan’s predecessor, George Gonzalez, was himself purged from office in 2010 for  screwing up the ballot  for a special election in Queens, among other things. Thus far, the board has suspended without pay the Brooklyn chief clerk,  Diane Haslett-Rudiano, a Republican, along with Deputy Clerk Betty Ann Canizio, a Democrat. Both City Comptroller Scott Stringer and state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman have launched investigations of B.O.E.’s handling of the April 19 primary, and the City Council will be holding a special oversight hearing dedicated to the Brooklyn purge

N.Y.C. primary results missing from B.O.E. Web site for 36 hours BY SAR AH FERGUSON oting rights activists and members of the New York City Council are inquiring why the certified results of the April 19 presidential primary were missing from the city Board of Elections’ Web site for at least 36 hours before being reposted again on the afternoon of Thurs., April 19. The official results for the New York primary were certified and posted online on Fri., May 6. But on Tuesday  night May 17, voting rights activists, who have been monitoring the B.O.E. data closely, noted that the results for the presidential primary were no longer posted on the Web site. A screenshot taken from Tuesday night May 16 shows the Web page where the “Election Results Summary” is supposed to be posted. The page shows certified results for two categories: a  Feb. 23  special election for a City Council seat in the Bronx and the April 19 special election to fill Assembly seats in the 65th Assembly District on the Lower East Side (Sheldon Silver’s old seat); the 59th Assembly District in Brooklyn; and the 62nd Assembly District in Queens. But the results of the hotly contested April 19

V

Democratic presidential primary do not appear in that screenshot. All those results were taken offline without notice until last Thursday afternoon at around 1 p.m., when they reappeared again on the B.O.E. Web site without explanation. The New York City Board of Elections did not immediately respond to The Villager’s requests for comment. A spokesperson for Councilmember Ben Kallos, who chairs the Governmental Operations Committee, which has oversight over the B.O.E., said Kallos is looking into the matter. One source said the B.O.E. routinely recertifies the results of elections, as it did numerous times in 2012 and 2013 after Hurricane Sandy, when some ballots  from the presidential election that went missing were later accounted for. But  if that is the  case, a notice that the results have been changed and recertified should be posted. Another explanation could be routine maintenance, though 36 hours is a long time — especially when the B.O.E. is under investigation by the state Attorney General and New York City comptroller over its botched performance during the April 19 primary.

alone in June. Ryan insisted no one was specifically targeted and there was no deliberate effort to disenfranchise people, as some Bernie Sanders supporters have charged. Yet Ryan didn’t offer the councilmembers much help in parsing just how much of this mess is partisan, how much systemic incompetence, and how much due to the need to hire better staff and poll workers. Instead Ryan said he was “sorry” that the purge had helped fan the flames of conspiracists and groups now looking to sue the board for malfeasance. At one point, Ryan went so far as to blame a “preexisting narrative” advanced prior to the primary for helping stoke chaos on election day. “There was an otherwise political narrative that was being stoked going into the primary,” Ryan told the Council. “We added gas onto that fire and that is regrettable.” Ryan was referring to groups like Election Justice USA  that  went to court  to try and block the  certification of the April 19 results,  and which is now collecting evidence from people who feel they were improperly removed from the rolls or had their party status switched prior to the primary, making them ineligible. Election Justice is also offering to assist people seeking to challenge the rejection of their affidavit ballots. According to the certified results, some 121,056 affidavits were submitted citywide by voters turned away from the polls on April 19, but only 30,058 were deemed valid or “revived,” to use the parlance of the B.O.E. By law, people have only 20 days following the certification to file a court challenge if their affidavit ballot was rejected, so that deadline is May 26. At the hearing, councilmembers pressed Ryan for specifics on exactly what went down with the Brooklyn voter rolls. Of the 38,548 affidavits filed by voters in that borough, Ryan said only 9,153 people had their votes restored. When asked how many of those restored votes were from people included in the 117,000 purged from the Brooklyn rolls prior to the primary, Ryan said just 98. “I’m concerned than the number may not be correct,” reacted Brooklyn Councilmember Robert  Cornegy, who represents Bed Stuy and Crown Heights. “In my district alone, I was getting calls all day that entire day, and running around the district putting out fires.” Ryan insisted the board had gone out of its way to validate all the ballots it could. “We went through a very, very enhanced scrutiny of these affidavit ballots, the likes of which has not ever been done before,” he maintained. “The affidavits were double- and triple-checked,” added Ryan, who testified that he personally had gone through a stack of 176 affidavits, “and the paperwork for them was 10 inches high.” His remarks did little to assure Queens Councilmember Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, who chairs the Finance Committee. She asked Ryan whether he was ready to take up the offer by Mayor Bill de Blasio to approve $20 million more in funding to help the B.O.E. clean up its act. The money is contingent on the board agreeing to a series of reforms, including expanding poll worker training, increasing salaries, and sending e-mail and text notifications to voters to notify them of changes to poll site locations, election dates and voting hours. Earlier this month, the Council passed three bills B.O.E. continued on p. 7

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May 26,2016

TheVillager.com


Embattled board ‘not ready’ for critical reforms B.O.E. continued from p. 6

requiring the B.O.E. to take similar steps to improve voter transparency and provide online access to things like voting status and polling site changes. But Ryan fended off those efforts at reform, saying that with three more elections to host this year, including the congressional primary on June 28, the B.O.E. is just too hectic to make it happen in 2016. “Implementing sweeping, broad or otherwise systemic changes to any I.T. [information technology] things that we do during this year would be difficult,� Ryan stated. “Rather than come here and give lip service and say, ‘Sure, we’ll get it done,’ and then miss the mark, we just testified previously that we didn’t think we’d be able to accomplish this in 2016.� That answer didn’t sit well with Ferreras-Copeland. “Your whole purpose is to communicate with the voters. How can we not have mastered that after all these years?� she demanded. Pointing to the upcoming June 28  congressional primary, Ferreras-Copeland asked: “How can we be confident that you will be ready?� Ryan said the board had already begun to implement some upgrades on its own, such as the “utilization� of

Photo by Sarah Ferguson

Michael Ryan, executive director of the New York City Board of Elections, addresses repor ters at the May 13 City Council hearing on the massive irregularities involving voter registration that occurred during the April 19 presidential primar y.

computer “tablets� at all poll sites — though he conceded that not all poll workers understood how to use them. Councilmber Ben Kallos of the Upper East Side wondered if throwing more money at the B.O.E. is the answer. “Mayor de Blasio restored the B.O.E. budget to $123 million in 2016,� he

noted. “Is that enough, not only to run an election, but to not run it poorly?� Pointing to the high stakes this November, Kallos warned: “The presidential election is the Super Bowl of the elections. We can’t see the same problems as we’ve seen in the primary.� Kallos is an I.T. geek who prior to being elected to the Council designed

an online database called VoterSearch. org. He practically scoffed at Ryan for not being able to keep track of voting stats, and  asked why B.O.E. staffers and poll workers can’t be hired through public job postings under a “merit-based� system, instead of the current patronage mill we have now. Ryan said that currently, 40 percent of the B.O.E. workforce comes via referrals from either the Democrat and Republican party bosses. Changing that further, he said, would be up to the B.O.E. borough chiefs and board of commissioners to decide. But Ryan did think it was a good idea to raise the pay of poll workers from $200 a day to $300 a day, and to give poll site coordinators $400 a day for their 18 hours of service. He said the B.O.E. is already working with an outside consultant to overhaul poll worker training and improve voter outreach. The B.O.E. is planning a “media blitz,� with ads on subways and buses aimed at “driving voters not only to our Web site but to various social media sites which younger people seem to be availing themselves of more frequently,� Ryan said. “I think there is a direct correlation between the apparent voter apathy and the lack of interest or reduction of people willing to become poll workers,� he added.

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May 26, 2016

7


Soho ‘firetrap’ party space flouts vacate order By Michael Ossorguine nce upon a time, the bakery Once Upon a Tart was an endearing storefront to the residents of Sullivan St. in Soho, serving its delicacies in peace and quiet. But when its owner, Jerome Audureau, sold his business to new managers who were eyeing a liquor license, the relationship of the cafe to the block changed. Two years later, with noisy and illegal parties across the street confirming some residents’ worst fears, a manager is under increasing scrutiny from the community. Michael Stern is the new owner of the former tart shop space, which is now a seafood restaurant called Navy. He has been subletting a basement across the street, 138 Sullivan St., to an art company called Superchief Gallery, which is partnered with The Hub, an events-producing group. Masquerading as an art gallery in space zoned for that purpose, Superchief Gallery has been hosting weekly parties that feature dancing and live music since early January. Its grand opening on Jan. 2, advertised on its Web site, reportedly drew hundreds of people. “We got completely blown out on that one,” Christopher Bleuze-Carolan, founder of The Hub, said. Many had wondered if Stern, all along, had intended to create a party space at Once Upon a Tart, under the pretext of wanting to “keep it open.” “This gives us, if not concerns about his existing liquor license at Once Upon a Tart, at least justification for our fears that he did intend to create a party atmosphere on Sullivan St., and he wasn’t just taking over a simple little French pastry shop,” Sean Sweeney, the selfdescribed “caretaker of Soho,” said. Sweeney is the director of the local activist organization the Soho Alliance, which reacts to community issues such as these as they arise. A brochure for Superchief Gallery says, “Thanks to a generous grant from Mike Stern, The Hub was founded by Christopher Bleuze-Carolan.” BleuzeCarolan is a former Once Upon a Tart employee who has since been fired, according to Stern, for “outbursts” inside the tart shop regarding the joint venture across the street. According to Bleuze-Carolan, his original plan was a “video-game lounge,” but Stern quickly “forced” him to turn the operation into an event space. In response, Bleuze-Carolan brought Edward Zipco, an event organizer from Superchief Gallery, into the picture. Stern, meanwhile, reportedly decided he did not like the new direction the business was taking. According to Bleuze-Carolan, there is an amount of money, which he said is more than $17,000, sunk into a lease agreement with Stern that was never

O

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May 26,2016

The entrance to The Hub on Sullivan St. According to the Depar tment of Buildings, the space has no secondar y egress, making it “hazardous” for large par ties.

signed by the building’s landlord. There have been repeated calls to vacate from both Stern and the landlord. This has left The Hub and Superchief Gallery trapped in legal limbo, he said. For Zipco, these legal troubles are nothing new. His eclectic experimental art group was also kicked out of a Brooklyn space in 2013 for similar noise complaints. This bit of history was mentioned on the group’s event page for Superchief Gallery’s grand opening in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, on the art news site flavorpill.com. Zipco was unavailable for comment, saying he could not talk until he gets back in town. Stern denies supporting Superchief Gallery’s actions after his landlord rejected the lease contract. After breaking even, Stern withdrew himself from the business partnership, and made it clear that he would like to see them leave. He also contends that, “renting the space for events was a joint decision intended to be a temporary source of income.” Though Stern thinks “their hearts are in the right place,” he does not believe the raucous events hosted below the apartment he rents in the same building are fitting for Sullivan St. “They’re just sort of squatting there without any kind of rights,” Stern said. “I have two attorneys, and they want a minimum $5,000 retainer to get involved. We don’t have that kind of money.” Stern also expressed frustration that the 138 Sullivan St. co-op board and the residents on the rest of the block are all blaming him for the situation. “I literally saw Michael Stern come out of there yesterday,” said a concerned neighbor who wished to remain anonymous. “He doesn’t take responsibility for the mess he made, and I believe he actually quite likes the mess he

made.” “I have nothing to do with those guys,” Stern responded. “I want them out as badly as everybody else does.” Meanwhile, taking advantage of the lack of legal action against them, the gallery is using the tacit “carte blanche” to continue to host private parties, despite having no lease. In an e-mail to the neighborhood watchdog group South Village Neighbors, which was forwarded to The Villager, the above anonymous source described witnessing multiple instances of public urination on the staircase of the American Legion near the 138 Sullivan St. party space, lines of people waiting to enter the crowded basement, and hearing loud music while passing by. The parties also are reportedly havens for drug use, as documented by the organizer’s Instagram accounts, multiple neighbors and Stern. From the Instagram account @superchiefgallery, one can see videos and photos of huge parties hosted at the small Soho venue, with the crowd stretching from the basement where the DJ played out to the street, where lines of partygoers awaited entry. In addition, the basement — which is actually a subbasement, two floors below street level — does not meet city regulations regarding fire safety. There is no secondary means of egress, as in no fire escape — meaning any gatherings that take place there are potential firetraps. On March 27, the building was slapped with a “peremptory vacate order” for the space by the Department of Buildings, which is still in effect, according to the D.O.B Web site. Posted on the building’s facade, but later moved to outside the subbasement, the vacate notice states the reason for the order: “Cellar has been converted into a theatre with inadequate light, insufficient

ventilation, and no secondary means of egress. These hazardous conditions have therefore rendered the CELLAR unsafe to occupy.” “Not having a basement basically makes the space useless to people who want to run events,” Bleuze-Carolan said in an interview with The Villager. Bleuze-Carolan further claimed that he acts as a sort of security guard to keep events from getting “out-of-hand.” According to him, however, the subbasement currently is only being used for storage. However, an anonymous source provided fliers with May dates that advertise the subbasement for events. Bleuze-Carolan also claimed that their legal troubles have become so murky that he and his associates at The Hub once believed they were trapped in the gallery due to an issue where they would have been “breaking and entering” by exiting the building from the lower basement. He expressed regret that Stern’s landlord and the neighborhood are not happy with his activity, but added that he did not start The Hub to host events. “What I’m doing is trying to create a community of creators that don’t have to get pushed out to Bushwick,” Bleuze-Carolan maintained. When asked about the legality of their parties, Bleuze-Carolan characterized them as nonalcoholic events that are an extension of Superchief Gallery’s art exhibitions. Multiple sources have confirmed that alcohol has been seen just outside the venue during these happenings. “What I saw was people drinking out of glasses: It certainly did not look like a ‘bring your own beer’ event,” Micki McGee of South Village Neighbors said. “It looked like they were pouring.” “What makes this such a nice place to live is that it’s charming. It’s quiet,” McGee said. “A place like The Hub is creating a party space, and it’s very loud, and it’s not O.K.” Sweeney noted that, when he was younger, he worked at a similar venue in Soho, The Loft, which the Soho Alliance actually opposed in the 1970s on the grounds that it would “cause more nightclubs to come in.” “It’s an old ploy to call a space an art gallery in Soho, and then claim, ‘Oh, we’re just having cocktail receptions or artistic exhibitions with dancing,’” Sweeney added. “We’ve moved on from that. Soho is no longer a neighborhood of art galleries anymore, nor is it a neighborhood for nightclubs.” Superchief Gallery is planning more parties in the coming months. Given its operators’ plans, as of now, the Sullivan St. residents trying to restore the peace of their block will not be happy. While its operators hope to keep The Hub alive and eventually would like to take over the space, its future remains uncertain even to its owners. TheVillager.com


Staying in the Staying in the loop has never s s i m t been easier! n o D t n ’ o D ’ ! e u s s i e g aa ssiinnglle issue! Arch Arch ’nt ’nt yah yah glad glad to to be be reading reading your community newspaper?

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May 26, 2016

9


Photos by Milo Hess

They like to move it, move it! The 10th annual Dance Parade and Festival saw 10,000 dancers tap, boogie, waltz and disco down from 21st St. and Broadway to Tompkins Square Park on Saturday. In all, 81 glorious styles of dance were on display. The gyrating street confab attracted dancers from around the city and as far away as Japan for a multicultural, rhythm-infused magical display of human movement, art, music and color. This year’s theme, fittingly, was “Decade of Dance.” The grand marshals were Garth Fagan, the legendary cho-

10

May 26,2016

reographer of “The Lion King,” and hip hop dance pioneers Kwikstep and Rokafella. This year saw the parade’s ethnic flavor expand even farther with new dance styles from Haiti, Tibet and Taiwan, along the likes of an all-female Scottish dance troupe and Caribbean stilt dancers. After the parade, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., Tompkins Square Park was the setting for the DanceFest, with dance performances, workshops and lessons and social dancing.

TheVillager.com


TheVillager.com

May 26, 2016

11


Police Blotter onto the Crime Stoppers Web site, www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, or by texting them to 274637 (CRIMES) and then entering TIP577.

Fire felony

Mariana Domena-Molina is missing, according to police.

Missing E.V. Teen Police are seeking the public’s help in locating a missing teenager from the East Village’s Jacob Riis Houses. According to police, Mariana Domena-Molina, 13, of 118 Avenue D was last seen Mon., May 9, around 10 p.m. inside her building. She is described as 5 feet 6 inches tall, with brown eyes and black hair, and was last seen wearing a black shirt and blue pants. Anyone with information is asked to call the Police Department’s Crime Stoppers Hotline, at 800-577-TIPS. Tips can also be submitted by logging

A fire was allegedly intentionally started at an apartment at 3 Horatio St. early last Friday morning. At around 4 a.m. on May 20, fire marshals responded to an incendiary fire at a building of six occupied units, according to a police report. Three victims were sleeping in the building prior to the incident. A canvass was conducted and the police located the man who allegedly started the fire. Henry Hodges, 52, was arrested for felony arson. Police did not provide a motive for the incident.

Boat-robbery bust A large amount of money was stolen from Hornblower Cruises and Events, the party boat company, at 353 West St. at W. Houston St. on Wed., May 18. At 4 a.m., a man unlawfully entered the commercial building and removed more than $23,000 from an unlocked safe, police said. The man

was apprehended at the scene. A similar incident happened at this location in June 2015. Police arrested Daquan Wilson, 27 for felony burglary.

Very Incensed Patron A reveler at Up & Down nightclub at 244 W. 14th St. could not handle being barred from the V.I.P. section. On Fri., May 20, at around 2 a.m., a bouncer told a man multiple times that he could not enter a fenced-off location, police said. The man then pushed the bouncer and was placed under arrest. As the officers were arresting the pushy patron, he reportedly resisted by flailing his arms and tensing up so he could not be handcuffed. He then spit on the officers multiple times while being transported in a police car. He repeatedly kicked the rear passenger door of the vehicle, causing damages to the doorjamb and door valued at roughly $350. Lawrence J. Haynes, 27, was arrested for felony criminal mischief.

Prescription for arrest A man tried to purchase prescription medication from the CVS at 20 University Place using an official New York State prescription form, but it was not legit, police said. At 2 p.m. on

Tues., May 17, the store’s pharmacist alerted police that he witnessed a man using a prescription form from a medical practice but that it did not look kosher. The doctor from the practice, in turn, stated that he did not prescribe the medication to the man and that the signature on the piece of paper was not his. Hany Boutros, 37, was arrested for felony criminal possession of a forged instrument.

Now urine trouble A police officer observed a man urinating on the sidewalk in front of 62 Greenwich Ave. early Thursday morning, and was then threatened by the alleged urinator, police said. On May 19 at 1:30 a.m., the cop attempted to issue a summons but the man began engaging in threatening behavior. The man then followed the officer closely, less than a foot away, even after the officer repeatedly told him to stand back. The pissed-off alleged pee’er then pushed the officer’s chest and physically resisted arrest by tensing his arms and refusing to place his hands behind his back. Kristian Nivar, 30, was arrested for misdemeanor resisting arrest.

Emily Siegel and Lincoln Anderson

   

Please Join Us

for the 23rd Annual Meeting of the Village Alliance Tuesday, June 14th 5:00 - 6:30 PM Glucksman Ireland House One Washington Mews (at Fifth Avenue) RSVP Required 212.777.2173 info@villagealliance.org

 

    

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Great News for the Downtown Community!

Mount Sinai Announces $500 Million Investment to Create “Mount Sinai Downtown” Network New Mount Sinai Downtown Beth Israel Hospital on 14 th St. with inpatient beds & brand New Emergency Department Expanded & Upgraded Outpatient Services Convenient to Home & Work NEW YORK (May 25, 2016) – The Mount Sinai Health System today announced a plan for the sweeping transformation of Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, by investing over $500 million to create the new “Mount Sinai Downtown,” an expanded and unified network of state-of-the-art facilities stretching from the East River to the Hudson River below 34th Street. The Mount Sinai Downtown network will include a new Mount Sinai Downtown Beth Israel Hospital on 14th Street with inpatient beds plus a brand new state-of-the-art Emergency Department. The new ED will have observation beds and will be equipped to treat patients with heart attacks and strokes. An expanded and upgraded network of outpatient services, including expanded behavioral and mental health services, and physician practices will also be part of the Downtown network. Mount Sinai Beth Israel’s Emergency Department will remain open until the new ED is up and running.

The current Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital will remain open during this transformation and all services will be available throughout the Mount Sinai Health System. Patients will be able to continue to see the doctors they know and trust.

For additional updates and information, please visit our website: www.mountsinai.org/downtown

TheVillager.com

May 26, 2016

13


Hawksteria or claws for concern in the park? Hawksteria continued from p. 1

tacks on small dogs in the area, according to one resident. “I saw park police and I decided to ask if I should be worried,” said Siobhan Ogilvie, a Village resident and Yorkie owner. “I pointedly asked, ‘Have there been instances in the park this year where the hawks have gone after little dogs,’ and she said, ‘Yes, absolutely.’ I kept very alert and my dog on a tight leash just in case, but I am worried that others won’t.” But that account is far from official, and Sergeant Rivera, who supervises the park police in Washington Square Park, refuted the anonymous officer’s claims, saying that while hawk sightings are common, attacks on pets are not. “Yes, there has been a spotting of a hawk, but there have not been any incidents,” said Rivera. In fact, attacks by red-tailed hawks on small dogs are, despite this month’s Uptown incident, exceedingly rare, according to experts at New York City Audubon. “There actually are dozens of red-tailed hawks living in New York City. They’ve become a fairly common bird over the past 20 years and the reports of attacks on pets are very few,” said Todd Winston, a communications manager and research assistant with N.Y.C. Audubon and a “lifelong birder.” “I think a red-tailed hawk attack is very unlikely and not something people need to worry about,” he said. The first red-tailed hawk known to nest in New York City in the contemporary era was Pale Male, who has been roosting near Central Park since the 1990s. He and his mate, Lola, are the prime suspects responsible for spawning the dozens of such birds of prey that now call the five boroughs home. And in all that time, there have been three incidents of hawk attacks reported in the media, including the latest assault upon the Upper West Side pooch. Before that, a red-tailed hawk was suspected in the failed attack upon another four-legged Upper West Sider in 2011 — this time a cat named Eddie, who, according to a New York Daily News report, was saved by his own impressive girth, which, at 15 pounds, proved too much for the carnivorous creature to hoist. That article also made brief mention of a previous hawk attack on a Chihuahua in Bryant Park in 2003. The reason for the relative dearth of attacks upon pets is the fact that there is no shortage of small, furry critters to prey upon in New York City that are both smaller than even tiny dogs and cats, and which aren’t attached via leash to large bipedal mammals, according to Winston. “Most dogs like a Chihuahua are going to be on a leash anyway, and they’re going to be near a person,” Winston said. “Hawks have more to fear from people than people do from them.” The Parks Department does not have a formal program that alerts small-dog owners about hawks. But Urban Park Rangers and PEP officers, when aware of hawks nesting in specific parks, do alert dog owners as they can, according to a Parks spokesperson. Apparently, some small dog owners have been on alert for much longer. Ogilvie noted that she has a friend who lives on MacDougal Alley who has two 4-pound Havanese dogs that he used to let run off leash in the alley. But because of the warnings, she said, he stopped doing that eight years ago.

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May 26,2016

Villager photo illustration by Bill Egbert

Although this image, above, por trays small-dog owners’ — and small dogs’ — worst nightmare, it’s unlikely the hawks will attack the dogs with so many rats scurr ying around, plus with dog walkers near their dogs, according to an Audubon official.

Photo by Tequila Minsky

Photo by Brian Dube

Small dogs like this might be prey for Washington Square’s red-tailed hawks were there not so many rats and pigeons around, according to New York City Audubon.

A red-tailed hawk gorged on a pigeon on Washington Square Nor th in 2007. The hawks can live for more than 20 years and produce one to three young, called eyasses, each year. TheVillager.com


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May 26, 2016

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May 26, 2016

17


Mark Lane, 89, leading J.F.K. conspiracy theorist

OBITUARY By Mary Reinholz t’s often tempting to wonder what could have been when a flawed person of immense talent and energy passes on. So it  was with the demise of Mark Lane, the activist lawyer, author, conspiracy theorist and decades-long investigator into the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy and the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. Lane died May 10 in Charlottesville, Va., at age 89. He could have been a major political figure, like Bernie Sanders, say several  of his friends who  knew him as a  New York  left-wing Democrat back in the day. They include famed radical feminist Susan Brownmiller, a longtime West Village resident who began  a relationship with Lane some 15 years before she published her groundbreaking 1975 book on rape, “Against Our Will.” Another is Stanley Aronowitz, professor in the sociology Ph.D. program at the CUNY Graduate Center,  who became Lane’s volunteer campaign manager after Lane was elected to the New York State Assembly in 1960. Both assert that Lane’s career was derailed by political enemies shortly before he began his run for Congress in 1962 in the Democratic primary. Aronowitz spoke to The Villager shortly after Lane’s fatal heart attack at his home. He  characterized  him  as an ally of the Democratic Party’s reform movement that sought to break away from the Tammany Hall machine-style politics of Carmine de Sapio.  Aronowitz said that Lane, who  was arrested  June 8, 1961, in Jackson, Miss., after a “freedom ride” to protest Jim Crow travel laws in the segregated South,  was pressured out of running again for public office by the threat of exposure in a looming sex scandal. “He was a noted philanderer, which is not unusual for a politician, but he was more visible,”  Aronowitz said of Lane, who was then separated from  his  first wife, the noted Austrian  folk singer and actress Martha Schlamme. “He  got outed by a former girlfriend —  she was threatening to publicize pictures” taken of him having an assignation, Aronowitz continued during two  telephone conversations. “She was  put up to it by his enemies who wanted to shut him up. He was making a lot of trouble — mainly for Republicans. “Everybody in his campaign  knew about it,” Aronowitz added. “It wasn’t a secret. I talked to him about it. Of course, he was upset.  He was considering withdrawal  from the Assembly. He served out his term.” Lane then lost his 1962 bid for a congressional seat because of continuing fallout from “the oldest trick in the book,”

I

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May 26,2016

Mark Lane with Village author Susan Brownmiller, center, and Rose Rubin on Fire Island circa 1963.

according to a 1979 article on Lane by Mother Jones magazine. At the time of his involvement with Lane’s campaigns, Aronowitz was director of the union label department  at the Amalgamated Clothing Workers Union. He believes  Lane  had what it took to

‘There was no person on the scene like Mark.’ Susan Brownmiller

become a “national figure as a liberal Democrat.  He was not an ordinary liberal,” Aronowitz said. “He was like Bernie Sanders. He challenged the received wisdom.” Lane was also a muckraker who had grilled Republican Assembly Speaker Joseph Carlino for five hours over a bill that would  mandate  fallout shelters for New York’s  school system, and he called for his resignation. Lane argued that the bill was a conflict of interest: Carlino was on the board of directors of a swimming pool manufacturer that  had  a subsidiary

selling fallout shelters. Carlino survived Lane’s  challenge and the fallout shelter bill passed. But  by then Lane had made numerous  enemies,  apparently  including Governor Nelson Rockefeller.  Brownmiller, who worked as a volunteer on both of Lane’s campaigns, noted that the photos used to threaten him were “very compromising.” Brownmiller described Lane’s ex-girlfriend, whom she did not identify by name,  as a once-wealthy woman “who had run through her inheritance. She was  arrested for passing bad checks,” she said. The Mother Jones article claimed a suggestive photo of a man  who looked like Lane was reportedly sent by courier to selected reporters and politicians. Lane, the magazine said, questioned the authenticity of the photo, but rumors began. It was a tragic turn of events for a  rising  political star. “There  was no person on the scene like Mark,” Brownmiller said during interviews at her Jane St. penthouse apartment. She added that many progressives had eyed Lane as the “great white hope” against the  Democratic  establishment of the era. Others agree that Lane had been a vibrant presence in the city as a youthful pol whose district covered Yorkville and East Harlem. There he  had a law office representing poor blacks and Latinos38and

founded the East Harlem Reform Democratic Club. “He was very progressive,” recalled Sarah Kovner, a National Democratic Party Committee member who was active in the Village Independent Democrats club from 1958 to 1964. “He came out of Yorkville, which had many German tenants, and affordable housing was a big issue,” she said. “He was also very forceful for social justice issues, whether it was civil rights or tenant rights. He worked in East Harlem with District Leader Carlos Rios, who was also very progressive.” Kovner noted that the Democratic reform movement  was backed by Eleanor Roosevelt. “He was definitely part of it, part of something larger, but he was  very effective as a lone wolf,” she said. “He was also involved in labor issues. I remember when District 1199,” the hospital workers union, “was  striking. He organized the pickets. One funny story I remember was a picket line outside Manhattan Eye and Ear Hospital. Somebody takes my picture and it turned up in the Communist Daily Worker newspaper. Mark looked at it and said, ‘Show the photo to your mother and tell her it was from the New York Times.’ ” LANE continued on p. 38 TheVillager.com


Trees tower in P.B. vote BY SEAN EGAN jam-packed crowd filled the High Line’s 14th St. passage May 14 to learn which projects would share in $1 million in funds in Council District 3’s second participatory budgeting vote. Five out of 15 “P.B.� ballot items —nominated by and voted on by the public — will be fully funded. The announcement was the highlight of Councilmember Corey Johnson’s Second Annual West Side Summit, which also featured Johnson’s State of the District address. “Two thousand people from across the district participated, and came out and voted,� Johnson noted. This year’s lowest vote-getter, with 686 votes, was City Knoll Middle School, at 425 W. 33rd St., which will get $300,000 for its new library space. Number four, with 790 votes, was real-time rider information at bus stops, for which $100,000 will be earmarked. The electronic boards, Johnson noted, will be installed at “five key bus stops� in his Village / Chelsea / Hell’s Kitchen district, to be determined “in conjunction with the community boards and the Department of Transportation.� Next, with 813 votes, was $75,000 for new audio/visual equipment for P.S. 11, at 320 W. 21st St.

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Runner-up was the renovation of the HVAC system at the Muhlenberg Public Library, at 209 W. 23rd St. Though coming in second, with 858 votes, the library actually will receive the most cash, $500,000. Johnson praised the library as “a community treasure,� with the added value of being a designated cooling center. Showing that persistence pays, this was the second year it was on the ballot. “We’re ecstatic,� said Lateshe Lee, Muhlenberg’s manager. The top vote-getter, with 1,083 supporters, was new trees for District 3. Johnson said $100,000 will go toward planting “dozens and dozens and dozens� of trees throughout the district. He said his office would work with block associations, community boards and the public to determine the best spots for them. Finally, Johnson announced he would also devote $500,000 in capital funds to another ballot item: installing a new western staircase at DeWitt Clinton Park, between W. 52nd and W. 54th Sts. and 10th and 12th Aves. The current, blocked stairs have, he said, “created a wall over the West Side Highway.� The P.B. item the 75 Morton Community Alliance backed — a green roof for the new 75 Morton middle school — just missed the cut for fifth place by a few votes. However, 75 MCA still hopes the project will get funded.

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‘Mount Sinai Downtown’ plan would replace Hospital continued from p. 1

er last week, however, said staff there had been previously told that the infirmary’s south building was being eyed for a smaller-sized hospital — but that plan apparently was up in the air. Mount Sinai recently told staff living in the infirmary’s 14-story residents building on E. 13th St. that they would have to vacate by the end of August. In addition, a number of Beth Israel nurses had told The Villager two weeks ago that they were being told all the rebuilding plans were now totally off the table and that the plan was simply to close the hospital — and soon. Beth Israel’s Gilman Hall residence, which is currently being emptied, was reportedly being considered as a site for the new hospital, as well, at least until recently. This Tuesday, Crain’s reported that Gilman Hall has now been put on the market for $80 million. All proceeds from property sales are to be funneled back into the nonprofit Mount Sinai Health System. All the employees who spoke to the newspaper in the past two weeks had accurately predicted that a major announcement on the hospital and infirmary was imminent. Photos by Jonathan Alpeyrie

New emergency room The new hospital will include an emergency department, along with “greatly expanded primary, specialty, behavioral and outpatient services,” the press release said. “This E.D. will accept ambulances and be able to handle all emergencies, such as heart attack and stroke, on site. It will also include a pediatric E.D.,” the release continued. “Patients with the most complex conditions will be stabilized and transported to other hospitals in the Mount Sinai Health System.” That sounds a bit similar to the setup at Northwell’s Greenwich Village Lenox Health 24/7 stand-alone emergency department, which opened two years ago in the former St. Vincent’s O’Toole building, at W. 12th St. and Seventh Ave.; patients from G.V.L.H. needing higher-level care are transported by ambulance to full-service hospitals.

70 inpatient beds The smaller Mount Sinai Downtown Beth Israel Hospital is planned to have roughly 70 beds. “The new MSBI hospital’s inpatient beds may be increased in the event the community’s healthcare needs require additional capacity,” the release noted. Over all, it will be a four-year building plan — dubbed “a gradual transformation” — during which the existing hospital will remain open and its healthcare services will not be interrupted, the press release assured. “Patients will be able to continue to see the doctors they know and trust,” the release stated, though, again, adding, “The most complex cases and deliveries” will be treated at other hospitals in the Mount Sinai Health System network. Mount Sinai called the existing Gramercy hospital’s infrastructure “aging and outdated,” unable to meet the current needs of the “healthcare landscape.” The current hospital reportedly has more than 800 inpatient beds. “On average, less than 60 percent of the hos-

20

May 26,2016

Beth Israel’s Linksy Pavilion, at E. 16th St. and First Ave., is par t of one of Manhattan’s busiest healthcare hubs.

pital’s licensed beds are occupied, and patient volume at the financially troubled hospital has decreased by double digits since 2012,” the press release stated.

‘A healthcare revolution’ While 19 New York City hospitals — including St. Vincent’s and Cabrini, both in the Downtown area — have shut their doors since 2000, Mount Sinai Health System is choosing instead to “transform care delivery, in order to dramatically improve access, increase quality and preserve jobs,” the release stated. “Mount Sinai’s investment will create a revolutionary network of greatly expanded primary, specialty, behavioral and outpatient surgery services that will address the healthcare needs of today and the future.” According to the announced plan, the network will maintain three major outpatient facilities — including the existing Phillips Ambulatory Care Center, or PACC, on Union Square East — which all together have more than 35 operating and procedure rooms, plus a network of 16 physician practice locations with more than 600 doctors, attending to 1 million patient visits per year. The PACC — which is undergoing a renovation — will see its services expanded to include endoscopy (digestive tract scoping) and additional medical and surgical specialty services. By early next year, the PACC will also house an urgent-care center. As another Beth Israel Mount Sinai employee anonymously told The Villager two weeks ago, the new plan for Beth Israel does, however, include retaining the Bernstein Pavilion, on Nathan D. Perlman Place, just south of the main hospital block, as a mental-health outpatient and inpatient hub.

Eye and Ear enhanced Additionally, New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai will be “preserved and enhanced,”

the press release stated. Patients will be “better served” by the new health network, the release stated, noting that treatments under the new model will be done in the “most appropriate setting, whether in a traditional hospital bed, an outpatient practice, a state-of-the-art surgical facility, or even in the patient’s home.” Ultimately, the Mount Sinai Downtown network will be “one of the most innovative and accessible healthcare systems in the country,” the release assured.

‘Smaller is good’ Naturally putting a positive spin on the downsizing, Kenneth Davis, Mount Sinai Health System’s president and C.E.O., said the goal, simply put, is to keep people out of the hospital — which is why a smaller facility makes sense at this point. “For several years, we have been transforming the Mount Sinai Health System toward a new model of care, where we focus on keeping entire communities healthy and out of the hospital,” Davis said. “Mount Sinai Downtown is a dramatic next step that will enable us to improve access and increase quality by providing care for residents of Downtown Manhattan where they live and work.” Whereas St. Vincent’s, which closed in 2010, was the last remnant of the city’s once-sweeping Catholic hospital system, Beth Israel is part of a large healthcare system. In fact, Mount Sinai is the biggest private employer in New York City and hires, on average, about 2,000 people per year.

Impact on B.I. staff As for the current Mount Sinai Beth Israel employees, the nurses who recently spoke to The Villager said they are being told that the healthcare Hospital continued on p. 21 TheVillager.com


Beth Israel with smaller hospital on E. 13th Hospital continued from p. 20

giant will try to provide them jobs in its other hospitals and facilities. Although, with a shrunken hospital, one wonders if there will be some accompanying job shrinkage, as well. The healthcare system, the release said, is “committed to retraining and placing as many of the MSBI employees within the Mount Sinai Health System as possible. The few who cannot be placed will receive help finding alternate employment. All union employees affected by the transformation will be offered other union opportunities at equal pay. Additionally, as clinical programs are reconfigured, Mount Sinai will accommodate and place all potentially displaced physicians-in-training within one of its highly ranked programs.” George Gresham, president of 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, which represents more than 4,000 nurses and caregivers at Beth Israel Hospital, praised the agreement the union and health system hashed out regarding the new Downtown health network plan. “As the healthcare industry continues to shift to outpatient clinics and homecare, more and more hospital beds have been left empty and Beth Israel has struggled with substantial financial losses,” Gresham said. “The Mount Sinai Downtown plan recognizes that in order to transform our healthcare delivery system for the 21st century and provide high-quality services to the community, we must have good union jobs for those who deliver that care.”

Borough is ‘over-bedded’ To back up the planned radical reshaping of Beth Israel, the press release included some facts about the current dwindling state of hospitalbased care. In short, with the continued shift toward ambulatory and home care, there are currently “too many” inpatient beds, according to Mount Sinai, particularly in Manhattan where there are six beds per 1,000 people, in contrast to New York City and Westchester combined, where the ratio is 3 per 1,000 people. In fact, the rate of overall empty hospital beds in New York City has increased in recent years, even despite hospital closures. In 2012, for example, 25 percent of hospital beds were empty while in 2014, the number increased to 29 percent, according to the statistics provided. Meanwhile, the closure of St. Vincent’s actually has not resulted in the increased use of inpatient beds in Downtown Manhattan hospitals, according to Mount Sinai. In fact, since the closure of St. Vincent’s, the total average daily inpatient census of Bellevue, N.Y.U. Langone, New York-Presbyterian Lower Manhattan, Mount Sinai Beth Israel and New York Eye and Ear has declined, according to Mount Sinai. (No doubt, this trend has a great deal to do with current insurance models, which discourage hospital stays and aggressively promote ambulatory surgery as much as possible.) Mount Sinai has started outreach to local politicians and community leaders with the stated goal of “working closely with the community to share its plans” and to discuss implementation to guarantee a “smooth transition” for patients and staff. Additional updates and information about the rebuilding scheme will be posted on the Web site www.mountsinai.org/downtown. TheVillager.com

Beth Israel’s closure and rebuilding in a smaller form won’t result in the loss of its emergenc y room, hospital officials assure.

Political powwow Two representatives of local politicians, speaking earlier this week, told The Villager that there was, in fact, a meeting last Friday between a group of all the local electeds or, in some cases, their representatives and Mount Sinai Beth Israel officials. The sit-down reportedly lasted more than one hour. “They’re saying they’re not closing,” one pol’s chief of staff, who attended the meeting, told The Villager this Monday. “They’re reducing the size and the number of beds. They said they’ll know more by Thursday of this week; next week, they’ll know even more, and so on. But they haven’t made decisions on a lot of stuff. They’re saying they’re not closing — but that they need to change. They’re saying it’s going to be a ‘multi-year process, a fouryear process’ and no reduction in health services while this is going on. Now we want them to come back with specifics.” The press release issued Wednesday (not Thursday, as the politicians were apparently told), would appear to lay out those specifics. Whether Mount Sinai ultimately follows that road map, however, will remain to be seen. Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, chairperson of the Assembly’s Health Committee, for one, said he is taking Mount Sinai at their word at this point. “Beth Israel is not closing,” Gottfried said. “They are working on a multi-year plan that will keep an inpatient hospital with an emergency department on the property. There will be no service interruption as this is done.”

Many concerns remain However, in a letter to Mount Sinai C.E.O. Davis last week, the local politicians expressed serious concerns about either Beth Israel’s closing or downsizing.

“First, we are extremely concerned about any loss of emergency room services,” they wrote. “We’ve seen this story before citywide, and Manhattan has suffered in particular with the shuttering of St. Vincent’s Hospital in Greenwich Village. After the closure of St. Vincent’s, hospitals across the borough experienced a sharp rise in visits. The Daily News reported that Bellevue went from 8,000 to 10,000 monthly emergency room visits. “The same article reported that Beth Israel, N.Y.U. Langone and New York-Presbyterian / Lower Manhattan Hospital also saw significant increases in visits and wait times. “Wait times at many emergency rooms in Manhattan are already double the national and state averages,” the politicians noted, “while residential construction continues unabated and the borough’s population is growing. The loss of another emergency room could be catastrophic for our community.”

Commission check “We also continue to lose inpatient beds,” the politicians told Davis. “The closure of St. Vincent’s alone resulted in the loss of 400 in-patient beds. In 2006, the Commission on Health Care Facilities in the 21st Century proposed closing 328 inpatient beds at the former Cabrini Hospital based on the ability of hospitals like Beth Israel to pick up the slack. The commission believed that, ‘Cabrini’s patients readily could be absorbed by its coverage partners, including Beth Israel Petrie Division, Bellevue, N.Y.U. Tisch and Mount Sinai hospitals.’ Similarly, it recommended that Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital downsize all of its 150 beds — and that subsequently was done. “The commission did not, however, recommend any reduction of beds for Beth Israel. We cannot yet assess the magnitude of the impact that downHospital continued on p. 23 May 26, 2016

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Beth Israel will be rebuilt, but will it be enough? Hospital continued from p. 21

sizing or closing Beth Israel would have on other hospitals, or the negative impacts for the healthcare of all Manhattanites,” the politicians said.

‘Losing hospital services’ “We are concerned about Downtown hospital services more broadly,” the elected officials added. “In light of the growing population of our borough, we must carefully consider whether Manhattan would have enough hospital beds if we were to lose the beds at Beth Israel. More particularly, we want to ensure that the Downtown community retains the hospital services we need in the area. The loss of the Beth Israel NICU [neonatal intensive care unit] is instructive — while Mount Sinai may have felt comfortable with closing the facility at Beth Israel because it has other NICU’s in its system, this decision forces local parents to travel out of their area at a highly stressful and time-starved period in their lives.” In a statement issued on Wednesday after the announcement, Councilmember Rosie Mendez, whose district includes Beth Israel, indicated she is hopeful about the proposed plan. “While the building located on First Ave. and E. 16th St. will be closing at some future date, it is important to note that the institution and services that the community receives from Beth Is-

Photo by Jonathan Alpeyrie

Beth Israel ser ves a large Latino and A sian working-class population from the Lower East Side and Chinatown.

rael Mount Sinai Hospital will remain. BIMS will remain, but it will have a smaller campus that will include an emergency department with fewer inpatient beds and will continue to provide needed critical services with a new state-of-the-art facility. Equally important, BIMS has stated that exist-

d a l g h a y t Arch ’n r u o y g n i d a to be re ? r e p a p s w e n y t i n u m m co Don’t miss a single issue! ! r e g la il V e h T o t e ib r c Subs Call 646-452-2475

ing E.D. and critical-care services would not be interrupted. I am prepared to work with BIMS as it moves forward in its transformation, as well as working closely with with my colleagues and our communities as we ensure that quality services remain in place.”

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Missing and Hazard jam against gentrification By Sarah Ferguson

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ook out! Pete Missing is back in town and putting on shows — and murals! And unlike his ubiquitous upside-down-cocktail-glass graffiti, these are even sponsored murals!   On Saturday, Missing and co-conspirator Cyril Hazard performed a rhythmic and not-too-riotous metal jam at the First Street Green Art Park before the 60-foot stretch of mural they recently painted. Missing and Hazard—  two of the original members of the infamous noise band  Missing Foundation— performed with Lawry Zilmrah, an experimental instrument maker. Zilmrah played a contraption made out of a bicycle wheel miked to numerous pedal effects. He strummed the bike spokes with a violin bow, to jarring effect, as Missing bonged on a Native American drum and Hazard and bandmate Paul Saint Sauvage jammed on metal stuff.  The group performed against the backdrop of unending heavy construction on Houston St. —probably the only place Missing Foundation could put on a show without getting shut down for noise complaints.  Their mural, which is titled “Current Obstruction,” was sponsored by the East Village arts group  Fab NYC, in conjunction with the Green Art Park  (which is hosting its own fundraiser on May 31 at the park, with live-action painting from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.). Prior to performing, Missing gave a brief rant: “I live in Copenhagen,” he declared, gesturing to the high-rises cropping up around the East Village. “In Copenhagen, we have very low buildings. I grew up in the Bronx and the Lower East Side. We’re the creators, the creative people that was pushed out.”  Hazard, who speaks with a sexy French accent, was more diplomatique. “It was a very enjoyable experience to create in a place where life can be as beautiful as it can be expensive,” he told the crowd of MF fans and curious passersby who gathered in the park.  The mural was created as part of Fab NYC’s annual  LES History Month  celebration during the month of May. “It is fitting because behind it lies the Lower East Side I knew,” Hazard said. “It is important to get the record straight, so that when all things come full circle, you are left with a happy ending and a joyful beginning.” Now that’s pretty Zen for a MF show. 

scoopy continued from p. 2

park’s naming, we are told by a source. Asked if the political pressure had anything to do with his decision to toss the naming hot potato, Bergman skirted the question a bit. “C.B. 2 played a helpful role during the long and passionate consideration of the AIDS memorial and the park design,” he said. “I also think the chosen name is interesting in the way it embraces two different views that are both sincere and compatible, and I see no harm if some people call it AIDS Memorial Park and others St. Vincent’s Triangle. The compromise is a good one, and all’s well that ends well.” Bergman added, with a grin, that he still thinks “Triangle Square” would be a catchy name, too. Meanwhile, Caccappolo said, “I think the interesting point is that the naming decision has gone all the way to the TheVillager.com

Photos by Sarah Ferguson

Peter Missing, left, and C yril Hazard per formed a vintage metal jam at First Park last weekend. Back in the 1980s, Missing would lead large crowds of people in all-night metal jams in Tompkins Square Park — both for the pleasure of it and the hope that it would annoy the “gentrifiers” and drive them out of the neighborhood. He was par tly right, at least: The metal jams definitely were deafeningly raucous.

mayor. I think it’s always the Parks commissioner’s decision, but because there were strong opinions on either side it was elevated to the mayor. I think it went to the mayor before the commissioner made a decision. I think the mayor’s office made the decision. I don’t think Parks made it.” Actually, we think he’s right. When we first heard from a rep for one of the three pols who wrote the letter to the mayor and Silver, calling on them to name the park after the AIDS memorial, he initially said that the mayor would make the decision. Later, this same rep said the decision would be up to the Parks chief. Meanwhile, Trevor Stewart of the Protect the Village Historic District, noted — for what it’s worth — that the park is, in fact, currently listed on Google Maps as “St. Vincent’s Triangle Park.” Google Maps — prepare for a flurry of letters!

Affordable housing!

The city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development is now accepting applications for 29 new affordable housing units in Hudson Square, at 70 Charlton St. There are seven studios, with a rent of $833 a month, for one person, with an annual income requirement of from $29,898 to $38,100.

Two one-bedrooms will rent for $895, with income requirements for one person ranging from $32,058 to $38,100, and for two people from $32,058 to $43,500. Twenty two-bedrooms will rent for $1,082, with income requirements for two people pegged at from $38,503 to $43,500, for three people from $38,503 to $48,960 and for four people from $38,503 to $54,360. (Rent includes gas for cooking and heat.) Applications will be selected for review through a lottery process. If applicants appear to qualify, they will then be called in for an interview to continue the process of determining eligibility. The affordable units are being constructed through the city’s Inclusionary Housing Program and the 421-a Tax Incentive Program. (The developer got in before 421-a expired.) There is a preference for residents of Community Board 2, who will get 50 percent of the low-rent apartments. Tobi Bergman, C.B. 2 chairperson, said, “These new affordable housing units are a great opportunity for certain C.B. 2 residents.” People may apply online through NYC Housing Connect at www.nyc.gov/housingconnect, or can request an application by mail by writing to 70 Charlton, c/o Breaking Ground, P.O. Box 3620937, NY, NY 10129. May 26, 2016

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Go, dogs, go! Enjoy your new dog run!

Photos by Milo Hess

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ocal politicians joined dog owners in “raising the woof” and cutting the ribbon at the newly renovated Leroy St. Dog Run, just north of Pier 40, near W. Houston St., in Hudson River Park. Councilmember Corey Johnson provided the funds for the renovation. Sweeney, an English bulldog, was having a good time, but he wasn’t about to let go of his tennis ball. A Husky kept it cool while grabbing a drink in the fountain. Madelyn Wils, president of the Hudson River Park Trust, brought along her two little dogs, who were a handful, literally.

Letters to the editor The new colonizers

Déjà vu all over again

To The Editor: Re “Beth Israel to close soon: Nurses” (thevillager. com, May 12) and “Beth Israel on life support? Hospital is closing” (news article, May 19): Thanks to Lincoln Anderson for writing last week’s brave article about the possible sale of Beth Israel to developers who plan to build more housing for the already luxuriously housed; not for yuppies, as Clayton Patterson calls them in this follow-up article — but for the new global billionaire colonials who are driving out the current native Americans of New York City. The ghost of Roger Casement is beating on the door yet again.

To The Editor: Re “Beth Israel to close soon: Nurses” (thevillager. com, May 12): I worked at Long Island College Hospital when it closed and I can tell you that this is like déjà vu all over again. It sounds like there is more hush hush around this hospital closing and that they plan to do it more quickly than LICH, which put up a huge fight, as did St. Vincent’s. It just seems that there are so few hospitals and so many more people in the city. My dream was to move to the Village in my old age where I could get around easily and avail myself of services. I think I have to rethink this. Hospitals like LICH, St. Vincent’s and Beth Israel did cater to the working-class population. When LICH closed, many Brooklynites, in turn, went into the city to

Minerva Durham

Ira Blutreich

use the Beth Israel hospital and emergency room. Now what? I fear everyone with Obamacare will be forced to go to municipal hospitals and there will be less quality healthcare options for the working class. Margaret Humphreys

What are our pols doing? To The Editor: Re “Beth Israel to close soon: Nurses” (thevillager. com, May 12): First, congratulations to The Villager and Lincoln Anderson for a smashing job on what could well be the beginning of the end of Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital. Your online article last week elicited my comment that this was yet another real estate deal about to take precedence over the needs of the Lower Manhatten community one more time. This should not be another win for more luxury, highrise development that does not meet the needs of the millions of New Yorkers (and would-be New Yorkers) that make this city the wonderful, creative, exciting place it has been. Will our elected officials have the will, determination and know-how to keep the healthcare needs of this community in place? When is it time for the “electeds” to step in and let us patrons of Beth Iz (as it is known) stop this real estate deal? Gloria Sukenick

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May 26,2016

Can’t just close B.I. To The Editor: Re “Beth Israel to close soon: Nurses” (thevillager. letters continued on p. 28 TheVillager.com


AIDS Memorial supporters are the community, too

talking point By Keith Fox e “St. Vincent’s and AIDS: What’s in a (park) name” (news article, May 12): I’d like to share some insights regarding the public design process, the New York City AIDS Memorial and the naming of the park. I am the chairperson of the New York City AIDS Memorial organization and I both live and work in the neighborhood. It’s worth noting that throughout The Villager article, there are references to “community members” versus “supporters of the AIDS Memorial project,” as if they are two distinct and separate

R

The vast majority of our contributors and strongest supporters live in the Village.

groups. The vast majority of our contributors and strongest supporters live in the Village and are active members of the community.  We are parents, artists, business owners, and, yes, activists.  We represent a broad and diverse cross-section of the Village.  There will always be divergent opinions, especially regarding our shared public spaces, but we are equally invested in the community and the park. Your article also neglects to mention that our organization has raised more than $6 million to build and maintain the New York City AIDS Memorial. We have endowed a maintenance fund and continue to raise additional funds to create valuable public programming to highlight the community history we are dedicated to preserving. Our contribution to the park, surrounding neighborhood and broader community is substantial and enhances the park’s aesthetic and functionality.  The park itself was designed through a public process and there were ample opportunities to memorialize St. Vincent’s Hospital through the park’s design. The broadly supported final park design incorporates the five inlaid medallions. We have repeatedly expressed that we welcome additional historical signage in the park highlighting the role and history of St. Vincent’s Hospital TheVillager.com

Photos courtesy, NYC AIDS Memorial

The AIDS Memorial’s steel canopy structure is currently being created in Argentina.

and the Sisters of Charity. Our process for designing the New York City AIDS Memorial was equally open to the community. We worked closely with all stakeholders, including those quoted in your article, to fully integrate the memorial design with the park and neighborhood. Through three design meetings run by Community Board 2, we presented plans, took feedback, and ultimately presented a design that was approved by the community board, the Landmarks Preservation Commission and the Public Design Commission. We engaged the neighborhood, listened to concerns, modified our plans, and from that process created a memorial that enhances our neighborhood, improves the park and acknowledges

our mutual shared history of more than 100,000 New Yorkers, many from our neighborhood, who died of AIDS and the incredible activism that sprouted from our streets. Regarding the park’s name, we were asked to participate in a community board meeting that was abruptly canceled and never rescheduled. Like other public meetings, we had a strong point of view and were ready to actively engage in the process. However, the Parks Department commissioner ultimately names parks. After hearing from the community, public officials who are in close touch with their constituents and stakeholders, Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver named the park the New York City AIDS Memorial Park at St. Vincent’s Trian-

gle. We think it’s an appropriate name that acknowledges both histories. While St. Vincent’s Hospital is gone, there is still an opportunity to archive its history, contributions and legacy with the right commitment, funding and leadership from those in the neighborhood who have that desire.  The AIDS epidemic, unfortunately, lives on. Like St. Vincent’s, the AIDS Memorial will help save lives by teaching our history and through educational programming.  We look forward to enjoying, maintaining and celebrating our community park with everyone in the neighborhood.    Fox is chairperson, New York City AIDS Memorial May 26, 2016

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Letters to the editor Letters continued from p. 26

com, May 12): Nearly every hospital in America was built with federal funds. According to federal law under the Hill Burton Act of 1946, hospitals that are recipients of federal funds have two obligations: first, to provide an annual level of compliance for 20 years or until it is determined the hospital complied with its payback to the community; and, second, make good on a community-service assurance — for the life of the facility. In other words, hospitals cannot just shut their doors to the community they must serve. If the hospital board decides to close the hospital, they must first determine the impact the closure will have on the community. Typically, this is done with public hearings, usually held by the state or the federal government. In addition, the value of the hospital’s private, nonprofit status to the community must be determined, in order to convert the hospital from a private nonprofit to a private for-profit facility; to return this value to the state; and/or to determine the impact that the hospital’s closure will have. Kathleen Sterling

Triangle memorial too much To The Editor: Re “St. Vincent’s and AIDS: What’s in a (park) name” (news article, May 12) and “Love and hope flicker at the dawn of motion pictures” (arts article, May 12): In the May 12 issue of The Villager there are two references to the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. One of the  large round medallions embedded in the St. Vincent’s / AIDS Memorial Park memorializes the hospital’s treatment of injured victims of that tragic fire in 1911. Also, a review of the play “Evening” included reference to that centuryago tragedy. How can the proponents of a planned modern street art memorial claim that the fire and its victims are not remembered? It’s a tragedy that is remembered in movies, plays, books, documentaries, tour groups at the site of the fire, victims associations, foundations, every tourist booklet and pamphlet about the Village, the annual Triangle Fire memorial ceremony at the site and continuous press, coverage. All of this speaks to the commemoration of the 146 young lives lost in that long-ago horror. We do not need blazing steel plates wrapped around a landmarked building on a preserved street, with names of victims falling down from one to another to simulate falling bodies, as a remembrance. Clumsy, poor taste and insensitivity to family descendants of the victims and the community abound in this modern attempt to memorialize the historic tragedy. To complete the memorial that already exists, what is needed is an appropriate, large “honor roll,” with names and ages of the victims — who will never be forgotten. Please support the opposition to this proposed plan.  Mary Johnson

She’s truly a gift To The Editor: Re “Bingo! East Village woman hits the century mark” (news article, May 19): Thank you for writing about this wonderful centenarian. She is truly a gift from God. My partner Larry and

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May 26,2016

I flew in from the West Coast to celebrate with her and the family. Babchia Teklya, as she is called by her family, is an avid reader of books and Time magazine, as well as the daily Ukrainian newspaper and weekly. Her favorite phrase when I ask how she is doing is “I’m hanging in there.” Natalia Romana

Westbeth W.C. inequality To The Editor: Unlike in North Carolina, transgender people can use the bathrooms at Westbeth Corp., a.k.a. Westbeth Artists Housing. Unless, of course, they are in wheelchairs. No wheelchair-accessible public bathrooms exist at Westbeth. At this artists’ nonprofit, charitable trust-in-perpetuity community, no shared artists’ studio spaces exist for the mobility impaired. However, able-bodied transgenders do have access to the studios and bathrooms. Where is the equality for wheelchair users? Margie Rubin Rubin is a member, Disabled in Action

Gaia made him a new guy To The Editor: In reflecting upon The Villager’s monstrous revelations of the past winter about Adam Purple and seeking closure, how can we best integrate our nostalgic memories of him as a gentle wizard of the garden, a dedicated environmental activist and benign eccentric poet, with the need to face up to what would seem to have been the longhidden truth of his having been responsible for depraved deeds in a phase of his life before we met him?  One of the most striking facets of his story was that haunting and discomforting photo of Adam in his youth. It is clear that this story began with other monsters, and an earlier cycle of victimization.  This, then, was the story of a man who — like Lon Chaney’s character in the old “Wolfman” movies or Gollum in Tolkien’s tales — inherited a terrible curse, a curse whose nature is to make its victims into monsters. Adam’s tragic failing was that he lacked enough perspective to become aware of his derangement, that he did not seek help earlier; and that, combined with a culture in denial, this allowed the curse that had come to him as a child to do grievous damage to other lives, in turn, when parenthood placed children under his roof and in his care.   This is the story of a monster who did what most of us would find inconceivable, yet found a way to become a man again. It is also good to know, from the story of his children’s lives as adults, that such a curse can end and the cycle of life can go on untainted if people do get help. Adam Purple’s story shows the role that visionary experience and contact with nature can have as catalysts for human transformation. Gaian inspiration was able to fill that unbalanced, grotesquely contorted, wretched shell of a man with something insightful and noble. Gaia often finds a way to accomplish great works through flawed vehicles. Even if we are imperfect, we can still accomplish much. We can remember Adam Purple as a man who triumphed over a very dark past, the story of how one monster found a way to become a natural man again, while many others here remain nothing but monsters. The yin-

yang symbol at the garden’s center, representing cosmic balance, now seems that much more poignant when we know the magnitude of imbalance that had once raged in his soul. We have all come of age amidst a pathology-ridden culture. New York City has a lot of damaged people, and is in need of more such gardens.   Cary Robyn

Hey! What about us? To The Editor Re “A Salute to Union Square,” The Villager’s May 5 supplement about changes in the Union Square Park area: The area has certainly changed from when my father spoke on soapboxes in the park in the early 1920s, from when my mother took me shopping to the S. Klein department store on the square in the 1950s, from the early 1980s when my son played with his pre-K class in the pavilion building in the park and the Union Square Community Coalition was established to reverse the deterioration of the park and to help it return to its historic significance as one of the great open spaces in New York City. I mention U.S.C.C. because your Union Square Park supplement, while doing justice to others who are doing things to improve the park and the area around it, was remiss with regard to the contributions that U.S.C.C. has made to Union Square Park and the surrounding area. Yes, the supplement mentioned how long U.S.C.C. lobbied to get the Tammany Hall building landmarked, but there is a lot more to U.S.C.C. than that. Since its inception, U.S.C.C. has striven to improve the park experience for children and the community. U.S.C.C., along with others, was successful in doubling the existing playground space in the park. U.S.C.C. was also instrumental in getting buildings landmarked and protected to help create the nearby Ladies Mile Historic District and is continuing to play a major role regarding the preservation of historic buildings in the area. One issue that the U.S.C.C. has not been successful with and that your supplement mentioned without naming our organization is the Pavilion Market Cafe restaurant. U.S.C.C. continues to oppose the pavilion building being used as a restaurant because we believe that instead of privatizing it, this structure should be used as a neighborhood center-type facility with various public programs. When my son played in the pavilion, there was a sign posted that said, “For children and guardians only.” Successful examples of recent U.S.C.C.-sponsored activities were two events held in the pavilion during March. One was a performance by the Renaissance Street Singers performing 15th-century music. The other was a workshop on how to make decorated Ukrainian eggs. Unfortunately, the city will only allow public use of the pavilion during the colder months, from October to the end of March, because during the warmer months the space is occupied by the restaurant. U.S.C.C. will continue to pursue the goal of having the pavilion become a year-round community/neighborhood facility, just like Chinatown’s Columbus Park pavilion. On May 22, U.S.C.C. sponsored a free tour of Union Square Park by noted tour guide Joyce Gold. There will be more upcoming U.S.C.C.-sponsored events, Bill Borock Borock is treasurer, Union Square Community Coalition E-mail letters, not longer than 250 words in length, to news@thevillager.com or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to The Villager, Letters to the Editor, 1 Metrotech North, 10th floor, Brooklyn, NY, NY 11201. Please include phone number for confirmation purposes. The Villager reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. Anonymous letters will not be published. TheVillager.com


TheVillager.com

May 26, 2016

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May 26, 2016

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ACCOUNTING PROCEEDING FILE NO. 2013-4826/D CITATION THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK TO: Unknown Distributees, Attorney General of the State of New York, Anna Patriki, a/k/a Iouanna Patriki, Vassiliky Haramis, Catherine Rallis, Hariklia Delivasilis, Vicky Karakatsani, a/k/a Victoria Karakatsani, a/k/a Viktoria-Evangelia Karakatsani, Eleni Votsi, Panayiotis Psiroukis, a/k/a Panagiotis Psiroukis, Elizabeth Papoutsis, Hariklia Moularas, Peter Mourlaras, a/k/a Panayiotis Moularas, Arthur Halkas, Peter Halkas, a/k/a Panagiotis Halkas, Marianthy McCarthy, Verizon, Professional Claims Bureau, Inc., Rui Credit Services/Client-ConEdison, Heights 173, LLC. And to the heirs at law, next of kin and distributees of Helen Psiroukis, if living and if any of them be dead, to their heirs at law, next of kin, distributees, legatees, executors, administrators, assignees and successors in interest whose names and places of residence are unknown and cannot, after diligent inquiry, be ascertained by the petitioner herein; being the persons interested as creditors, legatees, devisees, beneficiaries, distributees, or otherwise in the estate of Helen Psiroukis, deceased, who at the time of her death was a resident of 609 West 173rd Street, New York, New York 10032. A petition having been duly filed by the Public Administrator of the County of New York, who maintains an office at 31 Chambers Street, Room 311, New York, New York 10007. YOU ARE HEREBY CITED TO SHOW CAUSE before the New York County Surrogate’s Court at 31 Chambers Street, New York, New York on June 24, 2016 at 9:30 A.M. in Room 503, why the following relief stated in the account of proceedings, a copy of the summary statement thereof being attached hereto, of the Public Administrator of the County of New York as administrator of the goods, chattels and credits of said deceased, should not be granted: (i) that her account be judicially settled; (ii) that a hearing be held to determine the identity of the distributees at which time proof pursuant to SCPA Section 2225 may be presented, or in the alternative, that the balance of the funds be deposited with the Commissioner of Finance of the City of New York for the benefit of the decedent’s unknown distributees; (iii) that the claim of Marianthy McCarthy for expenses paid in connection with the administration of decedent’s estate be allowed in the amount of $132.00 and rejected in the amount of $775.54; (iv) that the claims of Verizon in the amount of $226.75, Professional Claims Bureau, Inc. in the amount of $65.00, Rui Credit Services/Client-ConEdison in the amount of $396.00 and Heights 173, LLC in the amount of $2,376.30 be rejected for failure to file a claim in accordance with the provision of SCPA Section 1803(1); (v) that the Surrogate approve the reasonable amount of compensation as reported in Schedule C and C-1 of the account of proceedings to the attorney for the petitioner for legal services rendered to the petitioner herein; (vi) that the persons above mentioned and all necessary and proper persons be cited to show cause why such relief should not be granted; (vii) that an order be granted pursuant to SCPA Section 307 where required or directed; and (viii) for such other and further relief as the Court may deem just and proper. Dated, Attested and Sealed. April 26, 2016 (Seal) Hon. Nora S. Anderson, Surrogate. Diana Sanabria, Chief Clerk. Schram Graber & Opell P.C. Counsel to the Public Administrator, New York County 11 Park Place, Suite 615 New York, New York 10007 (212) 896-3310 Note: This citation is served upon you as required by law. You are not required to appear. If you fail to appear it will be assumed that you do not object to the relief requested. You have the right to have an attorney-at-law appear for you and you or your attorney may request a copy of the full account from the petitioner or petitioner’s attorney. Vil: 05/05 – 05/26/2016

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Memories of Mark Lane, attorney, conspiracist LANE continued from p. 18

Kovner said she could not remember why Lane stopped running for elected office at that time. But she noted that he dramatically “changed his focus” after President Kennedy was assassinated on Nov. 22, 1963, in Dallas. Lane fiercely challenged the 1964 Warren Commission Report’s finding that Lee Harvey Oswald was J.F.K.’s lone assassin. Kovner said the thesis of Lane’s 1966 bestselling book, “Rush to Judgment” — which suggests that Kennedy’s murder was the result of  a far-reaching  government conspiracy — had been “borne out,” in part, by findings of  the House Select Committee on Assassinations in 1979. The completed Warren Commission Report is scheduled for public release in 2017.  Lane was legal counsel for Oswald’s mother after her son was killed by Jack Ruby in the basement of the Dallas police station. Lane also testified before the Warren Commission and wrote some nine other books — four about the assassination — and spawned a cottage industry of conspiracy theorists and amateur detectives.  In addition, he produced a 1967 documentary, also called “Rush to Judgment,” and  wrote   a 1973  feature film, “Executive Action,” starring Burt Lancaster, with formerly blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, according to The New York Times. Along the way, Lane was briefly active in Vietnam Veterans  Against the War and the Winter Soldier investigation with the freshly radicalized actress Jane Fonda. He penned a hotly debated 1970  book, “Conversations With Americans,” alleging widespread atrocities by the U.S. military during the war  in Southeast Asia. Lane was frequently derided in the media for hyperbole and inaccuracies. In turn,  he both attacked and courted reporters. In 1974, he  joined  iconic civil liberties lawyer William Kunstler in successfully defending  Native American activists  Russell Means and Dennis Banks. The two had been arrested on federal charges  in  connection with the  takeover of the town of Wounded Knee, South Dakota, by 200 Ogala Lakota tribal members from the Pine Ridge Reservation and others involved in the American Indian Movement. Lane was born in the Bronx on Feb. 24, 1927, but grew up in Brooklyn, the middle child between a sister and a brother. He  served in Army intelligence after World War II in Vienna. He earned a law degree at Brooklyn Law School, where he first  made his name exposing mistreatment in a Long Island psychiatric facility, according to The Guardian.  His mother, Betty Lane, was a secretary. His father, Harry Lane, was an accountant who worked for a government entity similar to the I.R.S. that was responsible for the arrest of gangster Al Capone, said Steve Jaffe, a Los Angeles P.R. firm owner who worked with Lane on numerous civil and criminal cases since 1966. Clearly, Lane made a major impact

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May 26,2016

Photo by Mary Reinholz

Writer Susan Brownmiller, in her Jane St. apar tment, said Mark Lane was a big par t of her life for a number of years before she became a leading feminist.

among the people of his generation. Brownmiller announced his passing on her Facebook timeline, noting: “Mark was a crucial person in my life for a few years.” She added: “This was before feminism. My ambition was to latch myself to Mark’s career and be the Evita of Gracie Mansion.” Now 81, Brownmiller met Lane when she was in her late 20s working as a researcher for Newsweek  and living in a cold-water flat in the E. 50s. She had already signed up for liberal causes like the Congress for Racial Equality. Lane was the attorney for CORE Harlem. “I was drawn to Mark because of the housing issues in my building,” she said. “We had hot water but no heat. Mark had these great campaign posters up saying, ‘Show the Bosses.’ I could have gone to Yorkville where he had an office. But I went to East Harlem. Everybody there was gaga when he came in. And he won!” Eventually, she said, they become lovers after he made some overtures on a bus trip headed Upstate. “There was a lobbying effort for fair housing in Albany and I was on the bus when Mark suddenly sat down beside me,” she said. “He started this rap about how he wanted to be a vegetarian but just today he had a hamburger. That was his pickup line. I’m thinking, ‘This is a little wacky.’ But I was thrilled he sat next to me. Before that, I was just one of the people helping in his campaign.” Their relationship lasted three years. Brownmiller eventually came to believe that Lee Harvey Oswald killed Kennedy, even though she helped Lane write an article soon after Kennedy’s assassination,

titled, “Is Oswald Innocent? A Lawyer’s Brief,” that was  published in the farleft National Guardian in New York. She said their differences on who killed Kennedy was not the reason why she left Lane and the townhouse in Alphabet City they occasionally shared when he was gearing up for his run for Congress. “It just wasn’t a  good relationship for me,” she said. Full disclosure: This reporter first met Lane in Los Angeles in 1966 and covered his lecture at a San Fernando Valley college  on the J.F.K. assassination  for a suburban daily. He ridiculed the claim by the Warren Commission, which was established by Kennedy’s successor Lyndon Baines Johnson, that a single “magic bullet” had passed from the body of President Kennedy and then struck Texas Governor John Connally, who had been riding in the front seat of J.F.K.’s open limousine as it passed through Dealey Plaza in Dallas. Asked by one of the students if he believed Johnson was involved in Kennedys assassination, Lane replied deadpan: “There’s not a single shred of evidence to suggest that Johnson was part of a conspiracy to kill President Kennedy. Besides, what could possibly be his motivation?” The audience roared with laughter. The dark-haired and bespectacled Lane  and this cub reporter, at the time, struck up a conversation and became friends. He later introduced me to Jane Fonda in New York before we all headed out to a 1970 Black Panther convention in Washington, D.C. Lane lived on Capitol  Hill for 20 years,  said Steve Jaffe, Lane’s partner in Los Angeles.  Both Lane and  Jaffe  were deputized

by New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison in 1967 after Garrison charged a local businessman, Clay Shaw, with conspiring to murder President Kennedy. In less than an hour, a jury acquitted Clay in the case, which later became the subject of the 1991 Oliver Stone film “JFK.” “Garrison knew the case wouldn’t succeed,” Jaffe said last week. “He wanted a sworn record, a judicial ruling in a court of law, and he got it. The judge during the trial ruled that  the  Warren Commission [Report] was inadmissible because it was speculative and false,” he said. In 1978, Lane was hired by self-styled religious leader Jim Jones to represent his Peoples Temple in Jonestown, Guyana. A year later, after California Congressmember Leo J. Ryan was killed there by several of Jones’s paranoic followers, Jones and 900 of his cult members committed mass suicide by drinking cyanide-laced Kool Aid. Lane was able to escape into the jungle. During an interview with Lane in 1970, I asked him to define his political leanings. “I’m a radical who is trying to be a revolutionary,” he replied.  Aronowitz concurred with this description of a complicated man who became a towering figure in the 1960s counterculture. “He was a leftie liberal,” Aronowitz said. “I think he wanted to change the conversation.” Lane is survived by his third wife, the former Patricia Erdner; three daughters, Anne Marie Lane, Christina Bel and Vita O’Shea, and four grandchildren, according to The New York Times. TheVillager.com


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Park Games raise bar for fitness and fundraising

H

udson River Park’s Pier 26 in Tribeca was the place to be for athletic feats and doggie treats on Sat., May 21, as the second annual Hudson River Park Games brought adrenaline-pumping fun and fitness to the Lower West Side. Thousands of New Yorkers and visitors flocked to the waterfront to test their strength, endurance, speed, skill and agility — while enjoying a beautiful day outdoors. The fitness and games were for a good cause — keeping recreational programs going strong in the 4.5-mile-long Hudson River Park. Presented by the nonprofit Friends of Hudson River Park, the Games offer individuals and businesses an opportunity to support and drive awareness of Hudson River Park. The day-long event started bright and early as master of ceremonies Alex Mednick and former New York Liberty basketball player Kym Hampton welcomed participants and spectators and kicked off a day of festivities, free yoga and fitness classes, food and beverages along the majestic Hudson River. New Yorkers Christopher Knight and Lucy Clark claimed the men’s and women’s Master of the Pier titles after a ferocious fight to the finish in Fear the Pier, a timed obstacle course, including going through, up and over speed traps of tires, police sawhorse barrier hurdles, a school bus and a climbing wall, plus walking the

Pushing it to the limit was no obstacle for corporate teams and individual competitors at last weekend’s Hudson River Park Games.

plank, for a final “man overboard” finish. Both Knight and Clark conquered the course in less than one minute, Knight in 43 seconds and Clark in 59.9 seconds. Eli

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Guevara was close behind Knight at 45.7 seconds, while Laura Placentra finished in 100.3 seconds. In the team pentathlon competition, the Pink Shunami Saints won the 2016 Hudson River Park Cup, beating last year’s champs, Team Goldman Sachs. More than 25 teams, including ABNY, bari studio, BarkBox, Brookfield, Friends of Hudson River Park Playground Committee, Goldman Sachs, GreenOak, Latham & Watkins, MediaCom, Morgan Stanley, New York Cruise Line, Oxeon Partners, Palantir, PwC, SoulCycle, Verizon and two teams each from CitiBank, Mercer, Moore Capital and RBC, competed in back-to-back games of beach volleyball, kayak races, flag football, dodge ball and an obstacle relay. The top teams then summoned their strength for a grueling run on Fear the Pier. “No other park in our city facilitates as much organized play in one place. From soccer to baseball, to volleyball, running,

walking and fishing — Hudson River Park really is New York’s Park for Play,” said Gregory Boroff, executive director of Friends of Hudson River Park. “For us, the real goal is ensuring that our amazing park and its recreational, environmental and cultural programs are able to thrive and enrich the lives of New Yorkers and visitors to our city for years to come.” “Hudson River Park is so accessible and inviting that most New Yorkers are totally unaware it receives no public funding for operations and maintenance,” said Mike Novogratz, Friends of Hudson River Park board chairperson, who greeted participants and spectators at the team pentathlon closing ceremony. “We keep recreational programs going strong all year-round through private donations and fundraising initiatives like the Hudson River Park Games.” Sponsors for the 2016 Hudson River Park Games included BarkBox, NYC Social, glacéau vitaminwater and CitiBikeNYC.

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Run crews unite for quite a night of L.E.S. lore

sports

By Lincoln Anderson he NYC Run Crew’s Shakeout run rumbled through the Lower East Side last Thursday evening, in the process uniting the city’s divided run crews, while taking in some local spots of interest. The event was organized by local rapper and trainer Powermalu and Jessica Zapotechne a.k.a. Jessie Zapo, two prominent figures in the urban running community. The two met through BridgeRunners, the running crew that began more than 10 years ago and is recognized as the foundation of this style of running, which has spread far and wide. The events, which are very diverse, today draw participants from around the world. However, it was only recently that Powermalu and Zapo reconnected and began discussing the idea of uniting the top crews in the divided New York urban running community. “This is never easy when you have run crew egos involved,” Powermalu said. “Kind of reminiscent of the era of the gangs of the ’70s and ’80s, like the movie ‘The Warriors’ re-enacted.” But what seemed to be a difficult task proved to be so worth it. “For the first time ever,” he said, “we had 10-plus run crews, 150-plus runners merge together in solidarity through their passion of running for a 3-mile Shakeout run. “We reached out to the leaders of these run crews and pitched them the idea of doing a Shakeout run on the Lower East Side. Our objective is to unite these run crews and create a platform where we can share resources and support each other’s projects as one family.” The run started at Overthrow NY, at 9 Bleecker St., the former home of the Yippies, now home of the Overthrow New York underground boxing club. Dana Beal, a Yippie leader, drug-legalization activist and longtime former resident of No. 9, made a surprise appearance and spoke to the runners before they headed out. “He gave a history of 9 Bleecker and he also mentioned once being a runner himself and later using that endurance he gained from running to help him in his activism projects,” Powermalu noted. “We then made a stop over at legendary photographer/documentarian/artist Clayton Patterson’s place and got some more history about the ‘Pre-gentrified Lower East Side.’ “We then headed down Third St. and passed by the Hells Angels bike club, where a couple days before, Jessie and I had stopped by and were granted permission from a Hells Angels member to run by with our crew. “We made it back to Overthrow,

T

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Photos by Clayton Patterson

Powermalu, center, with long hair, and Jessica Zapo, to the left of him, and the rest of the Shakeout run in front of Clay ton Patterson’s Essex St. home and galler y.

Runners briefly paused to listen to Clay ton Patterson talk about the old-school Lower East Side.

where we enjoyed some fresh juices from Summers Juice and pizza from Rizzo’s Fine Pizza L.E.S. The Lower East Side was filled with positive vibes as the run crews took over the streets as one big family.” Zapo was right in stride with Powermalu in terms of run club unity. “The (un)common thread that holds us all together is running,” she said. “We are diverse. We are the same. We share an (un)common love of this sport, this life-

style, this culture.” Added Powermalu, “Let us overthrow the misconceptions, overthrow the lies, overthrow the myths, overthrow what divides. This community is unstoppable when we join forces together.” Patterson spoke to the runners for about 10 minutes, before they were off to their next stop. He told them a bit about the new book that he recently published with Jose “Cochise” Quiles, “The Street Gangs of the Lower East Side.”

“I would say that I find Power to be a very inspirational person,” Patterson offered. “He is one of the people who has advanced way beyond the Lower East Side — he is on MTV, is an actor, a screenwriter — but has still remained connected to the neighborhood. “He is a local person. He has empathy, understanding, appreciates people who grew up in the neighborhood. “He is also a trainer at Overthrow and is into health. His father was a boxer.” May 26, 2016

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