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January 18, 2018 • $1.00 Volume 88 • Number 3
Brewer appoints Durst to Hudson River Park Trust directors board BY LINCOLN ANDERSON
hey say you can’t go home again — but that apparently doesn’t apply to Douglas Durst, who last week was appointed by the borough president to the board of directors of the Hudson River Park Trust. Durst was formerly a leading
light of the Hudson River Park, serving for years as chairperson and co-chairperson of the Friends of Hudson River Park, the park’s leading advocacy group. But, five years ago, the powerful real-estate developer had a falling-out with Madelyn Wils, DURST continued on p. 5
Johnson vows S.B.J.S.A. will ﬁnally have hearing, but ‘it’s not a silver bullet’ BY LINCOLN ANDERSON
n his first roundtable interview with NYC Community Media as the newly elected City Council speaker, Corey Johnson sat down in his office on Jan. 9 for a lively questionand-answer session with the editorial staffs of The Villager, Gay City News, Chelsea Now
and Manhattan Express. During the nearly one-hour interview, Johnson held forth on a range of pressing issues, from supporting small businesses and creating affordable housing, to congestion pricing and cyclist safety. His new office is actually a JOHNSON continued on p. 8
PHOTO BY Q. SAKAMAKI
On Mar tin Luther King Day, protesters in Times Square decried Donald Trump’s insulting comments about El Salvador, Haiti and African countries. Most at the rally were Haitians.
The big chill: ICE grabs immigrant-rights leader BY TEQUIL A MINSK Y
ctivist Ravi Ragbir, executive director of the New Sanctuary Coalition, reported Thursday at his appointed routine check-in date but was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. With ICE apparently wanting to remove him from his New York base ASAP, Ragbir was then flown down to a detention center in Miami, Flor-
Canada Goose silent rage......p. 23
ida, where he was reportedly set to be deported to Trinidad and Tobago. Hundreds of immigrant activists and members of faith communities rallied at Foley Square and then began a Jericho Walk — a silent vigil while walking around the federal immigration building at 26 Federal Plaza in solidarity with Ragbir. When it was announced that Ragbir was detained, they gathered with hands raised toward the
building and emitted a long, loud groan and then crossed to Foley Square for a rally. Speaking at the rally Jani Cauthen — whose former husband Jean Montrevil, the father of her children, was picked up near Far Rockaway by ICE on Wednesday — denounced this stepped-up ICE activity. Reverend Michah Bucey of Judson Memorial Church, Juan Carlos Ruiz of the New RAGBIR continued on p. 6
District leader decries ICE detentions ............. p. 15 Trying to get inside of stalkers’ minds ............. p. 16 www.TheVillager.com
GOTTA HARV GARODNICK’S SUPPORT: We still don’t know when the special election for the 74th Assembly District will be, but Harvey Epstein continues to rack up key endorsements in his bid to be the Democratic nominee. On Wednesday, Epstein won the support of former City Councilmember Dan Garodnick at a press conference outside Stuyvesant Town / Peter Cooper Village, home to more than 30,000 New Yorkers. The Assembly seat was vacated by Brian Kavanagh after he was elected to the state Senate to fill Daniel Squadron’s vacant seat. “I’ve known Harvey Epstein for years and have personally witnessed his leadership in fighting for tenants and seniors — especially his advocacy for Stuyvesant Town / Peter Cooper Village,” Garodnick said. “Not only was he responsible for supervising my office’s free tenant hotline over the past decade, but his work on the Rent Guidelines Board led to the historic twoyear rent freeze. It is important that we have elected officials who understand the community’s needs and the government process and I am confident that Harvey will be a real asset in Albany.” Returning the compliment, Epstein said, “Dan Garodnick has long been a champion for the middle class and a leader in the fight to protect affordable housing for countless New Yorkers. I am both proud and honored to have his support for the state Assembly. Dan is someone who has stood by our community while spearheading key legislation and initiatives as a member of the New York City Council. I look forward to continuing to work with him to preserve and expand affordable housing in our community.” Some had thought Garodnick would seek the Assembly seat himself, but clearly not. Earlier last year he had also explored the possibility of running for mayor. Epstein already has the backing of former Councilmember Rosie Mendez, Councilmember Ben Kallos, Assemblymembers Deborah Glick and Richard Gottfried, Democratic District Leader Anthony Feliciano and Democratic Party State Committeeman Michael Farrin. SIEGEL ON THE CASE: The Elizabeth Street Garden nonprofit organization recently announced that it has retained attorney Norman Siegel in its efforts to save the Little Italy green oasis from being redeveloped with an affordable senior housing project. E.S.G. was formed last year with the express intention of eventually suing the city to block the housing project. E.S.G. is now urging the city to rescind the request for proposals, or R.F.P., that recently resulted in a winning development team being announced for the site. The group that had previously programmed the garden, Friends of Elizabeth Street Garden, had refused to commit to being the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit, so E.S.G. seized control of the space. That said, Joseph Reiver, told us it’s time for everyone now to come together to fight off the city’s unwanted plan. 2
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Former Cit y Councilmember Daniel Garodnick, left, threw his suppor t behind Har vey Epstein for A ssembly this week.
E.S.G. is planning to reach out to all the area’s politicians, as well as F.E.S.G. “We believe that two divided fronts — or lawsuits — is weaker than one,” he said. “We’re going to be reaching out to them and trying to put together a strong legal case. The preliminary legal work is on the table. We’ve done a lot of research. I personally thought we were going to file much sooner, but I’m learning.” As for Siegel, Reiver said, “I really like Norman. He has a good understanding of everything surrounding the garden. Norman demonstrated that he has experience with elected officials and the city and he knows his way around gardens. A legal solution goes hand in hand with a political solution.” Siegel told us, “I’m honored to be retained by the Elizabeth Street Garden.” Regarding the struggle, he said, “I think that the larger issue is open spaces versus development. The issue here is the need to preserve open spaces in densely populated urban areas like Soho and Little Italy. We cannot be forced to choose between open space and affordable housing.” Siegel said it sounds to him like the garden’s supporters have a strong position and argument. “This is a good one because we’ve got at least half-a-dozen local elected officials — city, state, federal — in support of the garden,” he said. He said he will be reaching out to Terri Cude, the chairperson of Community Board 2, and of course F.E.S.G. “to try to form a common coalition.” “I’ve learned over the years that unity is essential,” Siegel said. The famed civil-rights attorney told us that, just the night before, he had just read The Villager’s May 4, 2017, editorial on the issue, “Must try suing,” in which we said we supported E.S.G. pushing to sue, and taking over the garden if that was required in order to do it, and said The Villager nailed it. “There are environmental issues, ULURP issues,” Siegel said, referring to the city’s seven-month-long
Uniform Land-Use Review Procedure — or public review — process. “All these things will dictate the litigation strategy. I need all the players to come together and have a common strategy. And if there are differences on how the garden should be managed in the future — and I know there are — we’ll never get there if the garden isn’t saved.” Siegel said he planned to reach out to everyone within 30 days before deciding on his next course of action. As for F.E.S.G., Jeannine Kiely, issued a statement, saying, “Friends of Elizabeth Street Garden has been actively consulting with attorneys and studying the legal situation for some time; and we have developed a strong case against the proposed development. Friends has a shared interest in preserving the garden and is eager to accomplish this in the best way possible. At this point, we have not yet spoken to Norman Siegel. Friends’ primary objective is to ensure that the garden is permanently saved as parkland and not destroyed for development when a viable alternative site can provide up to five times as much affordable senior housing.” Kiely was referring to the city-owned water-shaft lot at Hudson and Clarkson Sts. She also noted that the city’s claims that the winning R.F.P. design for the housing would preserve 7,600 square feet of open space from the current 20,000-square-foot garden is deceptive. “The city’s plan reduces open space to approximately 5,700 square feet by eliminating the entire Elizabeth St. side [of the garden], and inflates its open space figures 33 percent by including an indoor hallway and a building overhang. This falsely portrays the open space as a compromise rather than simply what is required under Special Little Italy District zoning.” She makes a very good point: To claim that a passageway underneath a building that leads to a garden is, in fact, equivalent to garden space is ridiculous! TheVillager.com
City must have a seat on the S.L.A., bill says BY REBECCA FIORE
ith a vacant seat on the State Liquor Authority board, state Senator Brad Hoylman has introduced a bill in the state Senate requiring at least one member of the board be a New York City resident. Hoylman penned a joint letter with Assemblymember Deborah Glick on Jan. 3 urging Governor Andrew Cuomo to appoint someone who lives in the five boroughs, since the city “has the largest concentration of S.L.A.-licensed businesses in New York State,” the letter reads. The S.L.A. has two commissioners and one chairperson, all appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state Senate. The current chairperson, appointed in June 2015, is Vincent Bradley, a native and resident of Ulster County, in Upstate New York. The sole current S.L.A. commissioner, Greeley Ford, was confirmed June 2016, and lives in Camden, just outside Syracuse. A spokesperson for the S.L.A. board noted that Chairperson Bradley previously lived and worked in New York City for well more than a decade and still owns an apartment in Manhattan. Hoylman’s bill was introduced in March 2017 — nearly seven months after S.L.A. Commissioner Kevin Kim, who served on Manhattan’s Community Board 5 from 2010 to 2011, stepped down after completing a two-year term. Terms are normally three years, but Kim was completing the previous commissioner’s term. When the time came, he chose not to be reappointed. Kim lived in Manhattan during his time on the S.L.A. board. “In general, we have never had a vacancy in recent years for this law. We never, in my memory, didn’t have a New York City representative,” Hoylman said. “So, it’s a double whammy for residents in our neighborhoods with an S.L.A. seat vacant. That’s a burden on the S.L.A. itself.” Hoylman said he believes having a commissioner from the city brings a better perspective to the unique problems that arise in neighborhoods with high concentrations of restaurants and bars. “The idea has been generated by the fact that more than half of the state’s 3,000plus license applications originated in New York City,” Hoylman said. “It makes sense that this very important authority have at least one city resident who understands our neighborhoods from a first-person perspective.” Glick said she feels Bradley hasn’t been as understanding as previous S.L.A. chairpersons. “The new chairperson seems quite indifferent to neighborhood concerns, and that’s why we would like to request a meeting, but also would like the governor to appoint someone who comes from New York City,” Glick said. TheVillager.com
She added that while the vacant seat would ideally be filled with someone from Manhattan, a person from a densely populated neighborhood in another borough would also be welcomed. She cited Williamsburg, Brooklyn, for example. Establishments apply for a liquor license and must give the local community board a 30-day notice. The board has the applicant fill out a stipulation form, including how big the place will be, the level of music, hours, whether there will be outdoor seating and so on. The board meets with the applicant, and encourages them to meet with appropriate block associations or co-op boards and tries to come up with an agreement, after which the board sends an advisory letter of recommendation or denial to the S.L.A. Diem Boyd, head of the Lower East Sider Dwellers, a community group focused on quality-of-life issues caused by the excessive number of bars in the so-called “Hell Square” neighborhood, said she has seen times when a community board votes No on a new establishment, but the S.L.A. grants a license anyway. “It’s almost like deaf ears at the S.L.A. right now,” she said. “Communities have their hands tied. They are being forced to approve licenses we know the S.L.A. won’t deny.” Boyd thinks Hoylman’s bill would “bring back balance to the board,” similar to when Kim was its commissioner. She noted that since Kim had community board experience in Manhattan, he knew what questions to ask prospective establishments. “He was a real asset,” she said. “Unfortunately, a lot of policies are made in Albany. A lot of the policies are made upstate. And there’s a deep impact Downstate in New York City. When you don’t live in New York, you don’t realize the impact of a license in a small neighborhood.” She said another bar in an already oversaturated area like Hell Square only adds to the Dwellers’ laundry list of problems between forcing residents to be holed up in their homes all night long, trying to avoid the noise, chaos on the streets and constant infestations of rats and trash. “The neighborhood is unlivable,” she said. “People are screaming, music is blasting out of clubs, and cars and taxis are honking. No one factors in what these problems are to the community. We need that voice for us.” Liquor license applicants, Hoylman noted, are often small business owners whose workers and families are “people trying to make it.” “There are more license holders than ever in New York City and that’s a good thing, generally speaking,” he said. “We have a vibrant local economy, as a result. For the most part, license holders respect their neighbors, but there’s a lot of work to be done. The commission should have its full members to make sure they can do the job.”
Free Tour of NYU’s Art Galleries in New York City Join NYU for a free tour of its open to the public art galleries in NYC! Date Wednesday, January 24 Time 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm Location Meet at Grey Art Gallery at 100 Washington Square East. Join NYU for a free tour of its open to the public art galleries in New York City! There will be four exhibitions included on the tour. Grey Art Gallery will give a tour of its two current exhibitions, which are The Beautiful Brain, which displays drawings of the brain created by the modern father of neuroscience Santiago Ramón y Cajal, and Baya: Woman of Algiers, the first North American exhibition of the self-taught Algerian artist Baya Mahieddine (1931 - 1998). The tour will also include the inaugural NYU All Alumni Exhibit at the Stovall Family Gallery at Kimmel Galleries, where the works of over 40 NYU alumni will be shown, along with Dream of Solentiname at 80WSE Gallery, which explores a key moment in the relationship between aesthetics and politics in Central America. This event is free and open to the public. An RSVP is required. To RSVP, call 212-9982400 or fill out the online form at bit.ly/2zO6L2o.
Baya, Femme et enfant en bleu (Woman and child in blue), 1947; Gouache on board, 22 3/4 x 17 7/8 in.; Collection Isabelle Maeght, Paris; © Photo Galerie Maeght, Paris.
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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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PHOTOS BY Q. SAKAMAKI
Not taking any s--- from Trump
n Martin Luther King Day, protesters in Times Square decried Donald Trump’s insulting comments about El Salvador, Haiti and African countries. Most at the rally were Haitians.
Member of the New York Member of the National Press Association Newspaper Association
The Villager (USPS 578930) ISSN 0042-6202 Copyright © 2017 by the NYC Community Media LLC is published weekly by NYC Community Media LLC, One Metrotech North, 10th ﬂoor Brooklyn, NY 11201. 52 times a year. Business and Editorial Ofﬁces: One Metrotech North, 10th ﬂoor Brooklyn, NY 11201. Accounting and Circulation Ofﬁces: NYC Community Media LLC, One Metrotech North, 10th ﬂoor Brooklyn, NY 11201. Call 718-260-2500 to subscribe. Periodicals postage prices is paid at Brooklyn, N.Y. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Villager, One Metrotech North, 10th ﬂoor, Brooklyn, NY 11201 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 - © 2017 NYC Community Media LLC. PUBLISHER’S LIABILITY FOR ERROR
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Brewer puts Durst on Hudson Park Trust’s board DURST continued from p. 1
the president of the Trust, and bolted, abruptly resigning from the Friends. Durst, the chairperson of the Durst Organization, had proposed a plan to refurbish the run-down Pier 40, at W. Houston St. But the Trust — the statecity authority that operates and is building the 4.5-mile-long park — rejected the idea, causing the rift. Not only did Durst have a parting of the ways with the Trust. More recently, he even helped sue the authority, ponying up funding for a lawsuit by members of The City Club of New York against Barry Diller’s glittering Pier 55 “fantasy island” entertainment pier, which is planned for off of W. 14th St. Although Durst had been rumored by park insiders to be financing the lawsuit, The Villager was the first to get him to admit on the record last year that he had, in fact, provided funding for it. The litigation, in fact, nearly sunk the ever-higher-priced project. But thanks to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s intervention, the Pier 55 dispute was resolved this past October, putting the plan back on track to move forward again. When Durst led the Friends, the group sued on the park’s behalf to get municipal uses — such as the Department of Sanitation garage on Gansevoort Peninsula — out of it. Under Durst, the Friends also reached a settlement with the operator of the W. 30th St. heliport to end tourist flights there. And it was Durst who, last year, personally noticed that the tourist flights had started up again, leading to the operator having to pay a $250,000 fine to the Trust. The borough president appoints three members to the Trust board, and the governor and mayor each appoint five. In a statement late last Friday afternoon announcing the appointment, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer said, “Mr. Durst brings invaluable talent and experience to the table and, as part of the board, will help the Hudson River Park Trust build truly world-class public spaces and amenities. I thank him for agreeing to serve, and look forward to seeing these waterfront spaces truly live up to their potential for all New Yorkers.” “I am honored to be joining the board of the Hudson River Park Trust,” Durst said in a statement. “I have been an advocate and supporter of the park for decades and I am tremendously grateful to the borough president for this opportunity to continue my service to one of New York’s great treasures and most important green spaces. I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Trust board and our partners in government at the city and state to finish the park.” Asked by The Villager what his goals are as a Trust board member, Durst responded, “Continue to provide transTheVillager.com
Developer Douglas Durst in One Byrant Park, one of the high-rise buildings his company constructed and owns, with a view of the Hudson River Park in the background.
parency and openness.” Asked if he would be able to work with Wils, he said, “Absolutely.” It was Tom Fox, who was one of the City Club plaintiffs against the Pier 55 plan, who tipped off the newspaper that Durst had been put on the Trust board. Fox was an early leader of the park and its planning as the first president of the Hudson River Park Conservancy, the Trust’s predecessor agency. “I think it’s long overdue,” Fox said approvingly of Durst’s being tapped for the Trust’s board. “He’s been working on this park — for what? — 20 years now? I think it’s good news for the park. He’s a man who’s willing to put his money where his mouth is. And he works hard. And he cares.” Apparently, though, the Trust isn’t quite as enthusiastic about the development. Asked about Durst’s appointment, a spokesperson said the authority would decline comment. Under the Hudson River Park Act of 1998, the borough president is supposed to appoint one member from each community board that contains the park — Boards 1, 2 and 4 — and to consult with the relevant board before doing so. Asked if Brewer had done it in this case, a spokesperson indicated she had not. On Monday, Andrew Goldston, Brewer’s spokesperson, said, “Borough President Brewer spoke with the chairperson of Community Board 4 today to discuss the appointment, and issued Mr. Durst’s formal appointment letter after that conversation. The announcement of this appointment Friday came a little earlier than it should have, and we regret the error.” Tobi Bergman, the previous chairperson of Community Board 2 and a longtime advocate for youth sports on Pier 40, was disappointed at Durst’s appointment to the Trust’s board. “If the community board was not consulted as mandated, that would be
discouraging,” he said. “But mostly it’s the choice itself that disappoints. When the act was written, everyone assumed the governor and mayor would pack the board with supporters who would vote obediently. The act allowed the borough president to appoint three members who would be park activist voices from the adjacent communities. That’s why community board consultation was mandated. No one expected or intended one of those voices would be of a captain of real estate.” In the effort to redevelop Pier 40 five years ago, Bergman and youth-sports advocates supported the idea of developing luxury residential towers at the pier to generate income to repair it — and even independently commissioned design renderings of what the towers would look like. Leading members of the Pier 40 Champions group, a coalition of the local youth leagues, decried Durst’s competing plan to repurpose the pier’s existing pier shed as office space for tech firms. Unlike Bergman, however, Arthur Schwartz, a former longtime chairperson of the C.B. 2 Parks and Waterfront Committee, said Durst — despite being a big-time developer, is a communityoriented person. “It’s funny to say this, but the Trust board has become a plaything for a lot of rich people with no connection to
the community,” Schwartz said. “Douglas Durst is a very wealthy guy but at least he has some notion of community involvement and input. When he ran Friends, it was built as an activist group, which balanced a board that was political. Once he left Friends, both bodies lost touch with the community.” Under the leadership of Douglas Durst and his cousin Jody Durst, the Durst Organization built the nation’s first sustainable skyscraper at 4 Times Square and the first LEED Platinumcertified high-rise office tower at One Bryant Park. Douglas Durst serves as a director of the Real Estate Board of New York, The New School, The Trust for Public Land and Project for Public Spaces. He is also involved in the theatrical arts and environmental activism. Another question is whether Durst will be a voting member of the board. Under the park act, the borough president designates two of her three appointees as voting members “on a rotating basis.” Brewer spokesperson Goldston said, “Per the Hudson River Park Trust law, the three members rotate as to who casts the two votes. Since Mr. Durst’s seat was previously vacant, the two existing members held both votes without rotating. Now that Mr. Durst is being appointed, the B.P.’s office will determine a rotation schedule.”
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VISIT PCRICHARD.COM FOR A STORE NEAREST YOU Januar y 18, 2018
Judson immigrant-rights activist held by ICE; RAGBIR continued from p. 1
Sanctuary Coalition and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer also spoke. The coalition is based at Judson, on Washington Square South. City Council Speaker Corey Johnson had entered the building with Ragbir, along with Ragbir’s wife and lawyer, and tried to reason with ICE agents but no avail. When he came back out, Johnson told Ragbir’s supporters that the activist had fainted and an ambulance had been called and was there, and that everyone should go there “now!” The faith leaders, politicians and others at the rally got to the ambulance as it was exiting the federal building. Demonstrators surrounded the ambulance as it inched along Duane St. and Broadway as the federal police officers roughly and forcefully tried to clear the street. Demonstrators, including Councilmember Jumaane Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez, blocked traffic and were arrested. There were a total of 18 arrests. Ragbir is a leader in the immigrantrights movement. He was awarded the 2017 Immigrant Excellence Award by the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, given to those who show “deep commitment to the enhancement of their community.” Reverend Kaji Dousa, the senior pastor of Park Avenue Christian Church, is co-chairperson of the New Sanctuary Coalition. “Ravi Ragbir means everything to this city,” Dousa said. Later that evening, hundreds — including Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer — rallied in support of Ragbir in front of ICE’s Varick St. Immigrant Detention Center, at W. Houston St. Upon his detention, Ragbir’s attorneys filed a lawsuit challenging ICE’s actions in federal court. On Wed., Jan. 17, federal immigration officials agreed to return Ragbir to the New York area, where he will remain detained pending the outcome of his legal case. Another hearing on the lawfulness of his detention is scheduled for the end of January. “The last five days have been a nightmare for me,” said Amy Gottlieb, Ragbir’s wife. “We will call for action in our places of worship, in the streets, and in the courts until we receive justice for Ravi, Jean and all others who face this inhumane system,” said Dousa, the New Sanctuary Coalition co-chairperson. “As people of faith, we must stand united against the targeting of our immigrant rights leaders.” On Monday, Martin Luther King RAGBIR continued on p. 7
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PHOTOS BY TEQUILA MINSKY
After they heard Ravi Ragbir had been detained by ICE, his suppor ters raised their hands outside Federal Plaza and let out a long, loud groan.
Council Speaker Corey Johnson told ever yone Ravi Ragbir had fainted inside Federal Plaza and was about to be taken away in an ambulance and that ever yone should go over to the ambulance “now!” Scores of protesters blocked the vehicle. TheVillager.com
Quickly ﬂown down to Miami, but brought back RAGBIR continued from p. 6
Day, the coalition held a Jericho Walk around Washington Square Park. They will be holding their weekly Jericho Walk at 26 Federal Plaza on Thurs. Jan. 18, at 11 a.m., and then at 201 Varick St., at 5 p.m., in support of justice for all immigrants, including Ragbir and Jean Montrevil, a founding coalition member who just days earlier was deported to Haiti. Ragbir has lived with the threat of deportation for nearly a decade, as the result of a 16-year-old conviction for wire fraud. He was placed into removal proceedings in 2006 and spent 22 months in immigration detention before being released in February 2008. The Daily News reported that he was granted permanent residency in 1994, but it was revoked after his conviction of wire fraud in 2000. He served a 30-month prison sentence. During immigration detention and since his release, Ragbir has worked to end the use of immigration detention, stop deportations and secure relief for countless individuals. Like Ragbir, Montrevil, who is from Haiti, had been permitted to live with his family in the U.S. pending his legal challenges to his case.
PHOTO BY Q. SAKAMAKI
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, holding the right side of the “Immigrantes” light sign, above, and others rallied outside the ICE Detention Center at 75 Varick St. Thursday evening in suppor t of detained immigrant-rights activist Ravi Ragbir, a leader of the New Sanctuar y Coalition of New York Cit y.
A suppor ter of Ravi Ragbir in Foley Square became emotional after the demonstrators heard that he had been detained by ICE. TheVillager.com
Jumaane Williams getting arrested on Broadway in front of Cit y Hall after blocking traffic in protest of Ravi Ragbir’s detention. Januar y 18, 2018
Johnson says S.B.J.S.A. will ﬁnally have hearing, JOHNSON continued from p. 1
bit smaller than one might imagine for the city’s No. 2 politician. It’s located to one side of the main rotunda, while the mayor’s office mirrors its position on the building’s other side. Johnson’s new digs were still sparsely furnished as of last week. He had hung one poster — an upthrust fist in the Gay Pride colors. “Yes, that’s my fist,” remarked Johnson, 35, who is openly gay and the Council’s first H.I.V.-positive speaker. Sitting off to the side on a table were some photos, including one of Johnson with former President Barack Obama. A pair of large snow boots stood on the floor by a window. It was less than a week after the “snow bomb.” The first question posed to Johnson was about the Small Business Jobs Survival Act. Does he support it? Will it get a hearing? “As I said during the speaker’s race and at the first speaker’s forum, I am committed to a hearing on the Small Business Jobs Survival Act,” he said. At the same time, he noted, he does not plan to run the City Council “with an iron fist,” and the members of the Council’s Small Business Committee will deliberate for themselves on the measure. “The body is not going to run based on what Corey Johnson wants. The body is going to be run by consensus,” he said.
PHOTO BY WILLIAM ALATRISTE / NYC COUNCIL
Council Speaker Corey Johnson speaking at a Cit y Hall press conference this week.
“And it’s not just about who the committee chairpersons are, but who the members are, the composition of the committee.”
Johnson, as speaker, appoints the committee’s chairpersons, plus all their members.
‘The small business loss we are seeing across the city is a crisis.’ Corey Johnson
All bills from the previous legislative session — including the S.B.J.S.A. — must now be reintroduced, and a primary sponsor assigned to each one. “I was one of the sponsors [in the last session] and I was proud to sponsor the Small Business Jobs Survival Act,” Johnson noted. At the same time, he said of the S.B.J.S.A., “I am supportive of a hearing. But I also think I am not sure that that bill is a silver bullet. The bill does a really important thing: It talks about mediation between landlords who are trying to drastically raise the rent — double, triple, quadruple, quintuple the rent — on small businesses. But I also
Januar y 18, 2018
want us to think in a holistic way about this. Are there things we can do to incentivize landlords — because not all landlords are bad — who want to actually keep a small business? Could we give a property tax abatement on the retail square footage of a building, where they would get a significant property-tax break, so long as they re-sign the lease for a certain amount of years at a low level?” Asked if he was referring to a bill recently introduced by Councilmember Brad Lander that would do just that, Johnson said, “Exactly.” However, that bill only encourages landlords with tax breaks — it does not require them to negotiate lease renewals, small business advocates not. “I believe in looking at a variety of things,” Johnson said. “I believe that the small business loss we are seeing in the Village, Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen and all across the city is a crisis. I want to reiterate, crisis. It’s probably the No. 1 issue that’s asked about to me locally, when I go to community boards and block associations and tenant associations and when I see random people on the street. So, I am fully committed for the Small Business Committee to have a hearing [on the S.B.J.S.A.], and looking at other possible solutions — not in replacement bills of the Small Business Jobs Survival Act, but what else can we do to tackle this issue in a meaningful way?” Asked about the mayor’s plan to shut down Rikers Island, Johnson said he supports the idea, as does a majority of the Council. He said in some cases, it would not be necessary to build brand-new prisons since existing buildings could be repurposed. He mentioned some of the courthouses, for example, in Councilmember Margaret Chin’s Lower Manhattan District 1. (As previously reported by The Villager, at a candidates night last May sponsored by the Downtown Democratic political clubs, Johnson was asked whether he supported closing Rikers, and answered that he did, and would even welcome a small jail somewhere in his District 3, which includes the Village, Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen. “I’m supportive of a borough-based facility in this district, as long as the community is on board with it and there is consultation,” he said then.) Asked how he would balance his new role as speaker and being the district’s representative, he vowed he won’t take his eye off the district. “I’m glad you asked that question,” he said, declaring, “I am not going to forget — and none of us who are in office should forget — who elected us and where we came from. So, my first obligation as an elected official is to my constituents — 170,000 people who live in my Council district. I’m going to be JOHNSON continued on p. 9 TheVillager.com
but ‘it’s not a silver bullet’ and looking at options JOHNSON continued from p. 8
a very regular presence at community board meetings, block association meetings, tenant association meetings and local events...so I can continue to interact with my wonderful constituents, so that I can continue to interact with them and hear about the issues that matter locally to them.” Brandishing a few sheets of paper with a list of what he called “50 different things I’m working on locally,” he rattled off “parks, schools, transportation issues, infrastructure projects, landmarking, land-use deals, subway upgrades that all affect the district. “I’m going to be the leader of this body,” he assured, “while at the same time not losing the focus on the district that I represent and the everyday needs of these incredible neighborhoods: West Soho, Hudson Square, Greenwich Village, the West Village, the Meatpacking District, Chelsea, Flatiron, Hell’s Kitchen, Clinton, a little bit of the Upper West Side, Columbus Circle, Times Square, Hudson Yards, the Theater District, the Garment District, Hudson Yards, the High Line, Penn Station, Moynihan Station, the Port Authority bus station, the Javits Center, the Whitney Museum, Sheridan Square — the list goes on. It’s a dynamic district. It’s a big district.” Although each Council district rep-
resents 170,000 people, Johnson noted, “The average daily population of this district is over 2 million people — so I face challenges that other councilmembers don’t have to deal with.” He said he has also hired additional people to work in his district office. “I’m not going to forget where I came from,” he promised. Housing issues are also at the top of constituents’ concerns, he said. He said the Council must continue to push legislation to protect tenants and ensure that the budget has enough funds allocated for tenant issues. Asked if certain land-use issues could be revisited now that Johnson is the new Council speaker — such as the New York University superblocks development plan that was approved several years ago or the Elizabeth St. Garden senior housing plan, which still has not been voted on yet, for example — Johnson indicated No. “I’m looking forward, not looking backward,” he said, bluntly. “Elizabeth St. Garden is not in my district. I have a huge amount of respect for Councilmember Chin. She’s a good colleague. I’ve worked very well with her. The land-use decisions here in the Council are some of the most fraught and controversial because of the impact it has on local neighborhoods across the city.” However, he said he wants to ensure
that the Council’s Land-Use Division is “more proactive and responsive to councilmember and communities at the beginning of the process,” referring to the seven-month-long ULURP (Uniform Land-Use Review Procedure). “No councilmember has a veto on a project in their district,” he noted, “but a lot of deference is paid, because, by and large, councilmembers are the ones who know their district the best. ... I’m going to pay a huge amount of deference to individual members when it comes to their districts. ... If you talk to all 50 other members, the best policy is to give a lot of deference to members when it comes to individual projects in their own districts.” On congestion pricing, Johnson said he supports tolling the East River bridges and the MoveNY plan to reduce tolls on other borough crossings “to create some equity there.” He also backs a surcharge on for-hire vehicles that would then be invested into mass transit. “The No. 1 thing we have to do as it relates to congestion and air quality and cyclist safety is to decrease and disincentivize cars from coming into Manhattan,” he said. “This is a holistic issue.” He said he hopes the state Senate takes action on congestion pricing, while he knows the Assembly and governor already support it. He said he has backed congestion pricing for years.
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“I’m not wedded to any specifics,” Johnson added, other than that he supports congestion pricing, in general, and creating transit equity in underserved boroughs, like Queens. In terms of cyclist safety, he said, “Even though not many constituents are fans of bike lanes — I hear it many times — I support these because people’s lives are on the line.” Two cyclists were killed by buses in Chelsea this past year, he noted. Yet, while committed to protecting cyclists’ safety, he stressed cyclists must not ride wildly. “That doesn’t mean cyclists shouldn’t obey the law,” he said. “They should obey traffic signals. They shouldn’t be riding on the sidewalk. They shouldn’t be going against traffic. They should ensure they aren’t hitting pedestrians. ... We need to continue to protect pedestrians and cyclists. “The motto goes: ‘Pedestrians first, cyclists second, vehicles last.’ That’s the order of priority for calming our streets and making our streets safe.” This article covers some of the issues discussed during the first half of NYC Community Media’s interview with Council Speaker Corey Johnson on Jan. 9. Next week, The Villager will report on some of the issues discussed during the interview’s second half.
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Januar y 18, 2018
Trying to ﬁnd a ‘Weiwei’ out of all this O n Martin Luther King Day, activists with the New Sanctuary Coalition, Judson Church members and supporters of leading coalition members Ravi Ragbir and Jean Montrevil did a prayerful Jericho Walk around and through Ai Weiwei’s “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors” sculpture in Washington Square Park. The public art project, which has installations citywide at hundreds of sites, is intended to make us think about the current Washington administration’s retreat from traditional American openness. Over the past week, Montrevil was deported to Haiti, while Ragbir was detained by immigration officials and flown down to Florida pending deportation, only to be returned to New York City for a resolution of his case.
PHOTOS BY TEQUILA MINSKY
Januar y 18, 2018
TOP DRIVER DISTRACTIONS Using mobile phones Leading the list of the top distractions behind the wheel are mobile phones. Phones now do more than just place calls, and drivers often cannot pull away from their phones, even when driving. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, studies have shown that driving performance is lowered and the level of distraction is higher for drivers who are heavily engaged in cell
phone conversations. The use of a hands-free device does not lower distraction levels. The percentage of vehicle crashes and nearcrashes attributed to dialing is nearly identical to the number associated with talking or listening.
Daydreaming Many people will admit to daydreaming behind the wheel or looking at a person or object outside of the car for too long. Per-
haps they’re checking out a house in a new neighborhood or thought they saw someone they knew on the street corner. It can be easy to veer into the direction your eyes are focused, causing an accident. In addition to trying to stay focused on the road, some drivers prefer the help of lane departure warning systems.
Eating Those who haven’t quite mastered walking and
chewing gum at the same time may want to avoid eating while driving. The majority of foods require a person’s hands to be taken off of the wheel and their eyes to be diverted from the road. Reaching in the back seat to share some French fries with the kids is also distracting. Try to eat meals before getting in the car. For those who must snack while en route, take a moment to pull over at
a rest area and spend 10 minutes snacking there before resuming the trip.
Reading Glancing at an advertisement, updating a Facebook status or reading a book are all activities that should be avoided when driving. Even pouring over a traffic map or consulting the digital display of a GPS system can be distracting.
Januar y 18, 2018
Arch ’nt yah glad to be reading your community newspaper?
s s i m t n o D g’e issue! a sin l Call ûõüĘöúôĘöùõú To Subscribe! 12
Januar y 18, 2018
POLICE BLOTTER Tag-team attack An officer was assaulted while trying to arrest two women on Tues., Jan. 9, at 8:10 p.m., in front of 70 University Place, near E. 11th St., police said. The 48-year-old officer tried to handcuff the first suspect but she flailed her arms and kicked her legs. While he was doing that, the second suspect jumped on his back and wrapped her arms around his neck. The second suspect also tensed her arms refusing to be handcuffed. Justina Concepcion, 28, and Denise Vargas, 35, were arrested for felony assault.
‘I got heat’ A 16-year-old was robbed on Fri., Dec. 29, at 6:30 p.m. in front of 200 W. 14th St., at the corner of Seventh Ave., according to police. Police said the teen went to the location to make an exchange of items with the suspect. The goods included a pair of whiteand-red shell-top Adidas sneakers, a white Samsung Galaxy G7 phone and cash, with a total value of $355. When the victim gave him the items, the suspect put them in his pocket and told him, “Keep it pushing, ’cause I got heat. ... If you keep talking, I’m going to shoot you.” The victim crossed the street, then looked back, and saw the suspect enter the subway station. Raquan McMillian, 15, was arrested on Tues., Jan. 9, for felony robbery.
Monkey business Police announced an arrest in an attack and robbery on Sun., Oct. 8, in front of the Brass Monkey bar, at 53 Little W. 12th St. In the incident last year, four males approached the victim, 21, after a verbal dispute and punched him multiple times, leaving him with a facial cut and swollen right eye. They took his cell phone before fleeing on foot. Surveillance photos were available to police. On Jan. 11, police reported that Cornell V. Morgan, 27, of the Bronx, was arrested around noon inside 223 W. 10th St., a residential building, in connection with the Oct. 8 incident, and charged with robbery.
Police said a woman’s purse was stolen inside the Grisly Pear pub, at 107 MacDougal St., on Sat., July 8, at 6:30 p.m. The victim, 28, told cops she was sitting at a table with her handbag on the back of her chair, but when she got up to use the bathroom, she saw her purse was open and her wallet, a $90 brown Fossil model, was missing from it. She had not seen or felt anyone near her. Michael Rosario, 44, was arrested Thurs., Jan. 11, for felony grand larceny.
Two armed hoods robbed a Lower East Side bodega on Sat., Jan. 13, around 10 p.m., police said. The gun-toting goons entered the LES Mini Mart & Grocery, at 127 Rivington St., between Norfolk and Essex Sts., and approached a 39-year-old employee, displaying their weapons. One of them walked behind the counter and removed about $600 cash from the Lottery register and numerous boxes of cigarettes. A third individual stayed outside and acted as a lookout. All three fled on foot eastbound on Rivington St. All three wore black hooded winter coats and black clothes and two wore black face masks. Anyone with information is asked to call the Police Department’s Crime Stoppers Hotline, at 800-577-TIPS, or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). Tips can also be submitted by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Web site, www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, or by texting them to 274637 (CRIMES) and then entering TIP577. All tips are confidential.
L train fatal
According to police, a woman had her iPhone 8 taken right out of her hand in front of 1 Fifth Ave. on Sun., Dec. 3, at 11:15 p.m. The suspect walked up to the 40-year-old victim, grabbed the phone away from her and tried to flee. But a bystander got the phone back from the suspect and returned it to the woman. Darryl Jones, 52, was charged Wed.,
A man was fatally struck by an L train at the Sixth Ave. / 14th St. station on Tuesday around 12:20 p.m., officials said, according to the Daily News. The victim died at the scene. Police did not immediately identify him.
Grisly wallet lift
Jan. 10, with felony grand larceny.
Tabia C. Robinson and Lincoln Anderson
Stop Stealing From Car Wash Workers! By Stuart Appelbaum, President Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, UFCW o worker should earn less than the minimum wage, ever. But in many low-wage industries, including car wash, where hundreds of workers are represented by the RWDSU, that’s what has been happening for years. For too long, the so-called “tip Credit” has allowed operators to pay workers well below the minimum wage. In a time when low-wage workers rely on every cent to provide for themselves and their families, tip credit provides employers with an outrageous license to steal. The tip credit is a part of New York State minimum wage law that allows industry operators to pay car wash workers a different, lower minimum wage. In theory, workers’ tips are supposed to make up the difference, and possibly more. And, if workers’ tips don’t raise the level of pay to at least the minimum wage, car wash employers are supposed to make up the difference in additional hourly wages. But tip credit does not work in the car wash environment. It’s a vehicle for wage theft and contributes to systemic underpayment of car wash workers – exactly what the car wash unionizing campaign and car wash workers have been ﬁghting against. Investigations have shown that employers don’t always make up the extra pay for workers when tips are short, and car wash workers don’t always receive the tips customers presume are going into their pockets. We shouldn’t be giving unscrupulous employers additional opportunities to underpay their workers, and that’s exactly what tip credit does in the car wash industry and many others. Tip credit has provided bad car wash operators with an abhorrent loophole that has left immigrant workers susceptible to wage theft. Car wash operators have been ﬁned and directed to make restitution for wage theft to the tune of millions of dollars. In many industries, Immigrant workers are particularly susceptible to tip credit-aided wage theft. Nail salon workers, deliverymen, car wash workers, restaurant workers; all are affected by wage theft, and all are affected by the tip credit loophole that makes it easier for employers to underpay them and even steal from them. It’s past time that the state of New York puts an end to tip credit and makes sure that no worker in the Empire State earns less than the minimum wage. New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has directed the Commissioner of Labor to schedule public hearings to evaluate the possibility of ending minimum wage tip credits in New York State. Ending tip credit would raise base pay for workers in a number of industries, and stop a loophole that has been responsible for countless instances of wage theft and contributed to holding entire communities back. The Governor’s announcement is an important next step in ensuring that 5,000 car wash workers in New York now have a chance to earn fair wages for their work, and that no worker in the Empire State is underpaid and impoverished.
www.rwdsu.org Januar y 18, 2018
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Book-nut’s paradise
ver since we have known him, two things have struck us about Corey Johnson: You should never underestimate his political ability, and he works extremely hard. Those qualities — his political acumen and ambition, plus his relentless pursuit of his goals — explain why he is the City Council’s new speaker. Frankly, Johnson’s being the Council’s leader represents a breath of fresh air and offers, potentially, a lot of hope for a better city more attuned to the needs of the people. We have just had 12 years of Council speakers who worked extremely closely — many would say, too closely — with mayors. Christine Quinn was speaker for eight years with Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Most notably, after having said she would not support extending term limits, she turned around and, doing Bloomberg’s bidding, got the Council to extend them legislatively. Voters didn’t forget and it hurt her in her run for mayor four years ago. Meanwhile, her successor, Melissa Mark-Viverito, was handpicked by Mayor Bill de Blasio and was his staunchest ally at City Hall. Johnson has stated he will be his own man and that the Council — which he vowed he won’t run “with an iron fist” — will be independent. One clear example is congestion pricing. Johnson said he supports the idea, though he isn’t sure exactly what form it would take. De Blasio, on the other hand, says he has never liked the concept. Meanwhile, Governor Andrew Cuomo has gotten onboard the traffic-easing scheme, stating, “Congestion pricing is an idea whose time has come.” For Manhattan, it’s long overdue. Also on transportation, Johnson says the city should help fund the subways. The mayor adamantly says, No. But, as Johnson correctly states, this is a problem that is impacting millions of New Yorkers — plus, he doesn’t have a feud with Cuomo clouding his judgment on this critical issue. On the small business crisis, Johnson says the Small Business Jobs Survival Act could be a solution, but that other initiatives and legislation might also work. He says the S.B.J.S.A. is not necessarily “the silver bullet.” Previous mayors and Council speakers have done their best to keep this longpending bill on the shelf. Everyone knows it has had support in the Council, though. If Johnson is truly an independent voice for small businesses, we’ll see some results for mom-and-pop shops. Also very important, Johnson has pledged, to his credit, not to take his eye off the needs of his own Village / Chelsea / Hell’s Kitchen district — even while it’s clear that he will be running for another office in four years when he is term-limited. People felt Quinn, in her mayoral ambitions, lost touch with the needs of her own constituents. Our sister paper, Gay City News, recently reported that Johnson, in his drive to be speaker, even courted the votes of two known Council homophobes. That probably wasn’t the narrative Johnson wanted out there. But it shows he is strategic and knows what means he must take to achieve his larger agenda. Politics isn’t always pretty. Over all, we are very encouraged by Johnson, our own homegrown councilmember, becoming speaker. And we think it augers well for the city’s future. Congratulations, Corey, and good luck!
Januar y 18, 2018
To The Editor: Re “Fred Bass, 89, built Strand into a world-famous brand” (news article, Jan. 11): I visited this amazing bookshop when visiting wonderful New York City in August 2015. Considering I was traveling back to New Zealand, I was conscious of too much weight in my luggage. However, the shop was so exciting inviting and just perfect for a book nut like me; I just couldn’t tear myself away and spent a couple of totally engrossing hours browsing and buying. Thank you, Strand Bookstore. You’ve left a wonderful legacy, Fred Bass, right across the world. Rest in peace. Jane Daniell
Gunning for a ﬁght To The Editor: Re “Pies and drugs and WikiLeaks” (Scoopy’s Notebook, Jan. 11): Regarding Roger Stone, people should check out the recent video he did with Alex Jones where they are firing high-powered assault weapons and talking about a civil war if Trump is removed from office. Your writeup here makes Stone seem like a sweet old pothead. But the reality is far from that. And anyone who follows the stuff he says and does on Alex Jones InfoWars knows the truth. This guy is a far-right armed activist who seems to want and promote an actual civil war in America over Trump.
would increase in value. Of course, a contract is a good idea. Good luck! Veronica Vera
Buy Blondes Today A bloated rat sits where Liberty once sat. How do you like that? Opioid addicts and racist fanatics guard their front porches with AR-15’s and tiki torches. The world is no longer our kin. If you don’t have white skin we won’t let you in. Our fathers fought for Justice but now you can’t trust us. We’ve lost our worth amongst every nation on Earth. Hauled forth by the lowliest of masses, this bespoke fat ass is the vicious joke that we all share, the lie that stains us, everywhere. Oh Lady, lift your lamp so we can see.
Suggestion for Zedd
Shed your Grace upon the World and me. Harry Pincus
To The Editor: Re “Zedd’ing for a showdown with Slim” (Scoopy’s Notebook, Dec. 21): Here’s a suggestion to Nick Zedd. Let the landlord advertise you as artist in residence. This could heighten the prestige of his building and he could charge more to new residents. You would retain your home rent-free, or at a considerable discount. His real estate
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Losing a loved one: Jahsiah’s Dad is ripped away
TALKING POINT BY KEEN BERGER
’m not worried about me,” said Jean Montrevil from his New Jersey prison cell. Barring a miracle, he will soon be in a Haitian jail. “I am worried about my children.” He is right to worry. His 14-year-old son, Jahsiah, has shut down, withdrawing from his French class at Brooklyn Tech — a class he loved. Jahsiah refused to leave home; his sleep is troubled. He checks all night for new signatures on his petition to “help to release my father from detainment before it is too late because no one should have to suffer the pain of losing a loved one to deportation.” It gathered 5,000 signatures in two days; he hopes that if it reaches 10,000, his dad might come back. Jean is 49 years old. He married a U.S. citizen, and fathered three children, now ages 18, 14 and 10. They were born long after his conviction in 1986 for cocaine possession with intent to sell, a crime for which he served 10 years in prison, then five years of parole. His green card was taken, making him deportable. His oldest daughter, a freshman in Mercy College, also has trouble concentrating. His youngest daughter spoke at a rally on Jan. 5, attended by Congressmember Jerrold Nadler, state Senator Brad Hoylman and Assemblymember Deborah Glick. Actually, the child did not speak: She came to the microphone, but no words came out. Tears on her cold cheeks — it was 15 degrees — were her message. Jean’s pending case before the Board of Immigration Appeals did not stop ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) from surrounding him on the sidewalk outside his home in Far Rockaway on Jan. 3, two weeks before he would next come to them, at 26 Federal Plaza, in Manhattan. For 20 years, Jean has appeared every time ICE demanded, even when he was shackled and had to check-in three times a week. For decades he paid taxes and obeyed the law. He is a vital, admired member of my church and a crucial support for his children, not only emotionally (they spent this New Year’s Eve together) but also financially — including paying some college costs for his oldest daughter. Why did ICE pick him up? Not for any crime. As Micah Bucey, minister of Judson Church said, “This case is crazy. There’s no reason for this person to be locked up. He always goes to his checkins.” The reason might be because Jean and Ravi Ragbir (also detained last week) TheVillager.com
Jahsiah Montrevil, 14, seen in an earlier photo with his father, Jean Montrevil, has depended on his dad all his life.
PHOTO BY TEQUILA MINSKY
District Leader Keen Berger ser ved as a legal obser ver — keeping an eye on police actions against protesters — last Thursday when Ravi Ragbir was detained by immigration officials at his scheduled check-in. Ragbir had gone in suspecting he might be detained.
are leaders in the New Sanctuary Coalition movement. Reverend Bucey also said, “The powers that be think they’ve chopped off two of our most important limbs this week, and they have — for now. But...countless loud and brave tendrils are already growing from these wounds.” I am with Jean. I am not worried about him or even about New Sanctuary. I am worried about the children. My profession is development psychology. I am a professor at Bronx Com-
munity College and I write textbooks, now bestsellers worldwide, in five languages. I know that, throughout all of human history, families are the reason homo sapiens thrived, in floods, fire and ice, while other species died. We are the only species to thrive on every continent; father protection is one reason. Families always care for each other. That is what my grandparents did. They were immigrants and proud Americans before any laws stopped their escape from poverty and persecution, settling where they could to raise a family. Before the past decade, has the United States ever ignored family bonds? Never for immigrants. Only for slaves. We still suffer from that. How bad is it, really, for a child to be without a parent? Very bad. Developmental psychologists know three examples well. In the early 20th century, if a child needed hospital care, parents were kept away because they might bring germs. But many sick children died, and survivors were emotionally impaired. Today, if your child is in the hospital, you stay by your child: Needless deaths taught us that. In England during World War II, a massive, well-intentioned campaign to save the children led to the evacuation of thousands of London children to the peaceful countryside, safe, without their parents. Some fathers and mothers, against government policy, kept their children in London. The daily bombs and fires did not faze the children if their parents were nearby; those sent to the quiet rural towns suffered for decades.
In the 1980s, Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausesçu forbade birth control and abortions, paying poor women for each birth. More than 100,000 children were abandoned to crowded, impersonal, state-run orphanages. In the two years after Ceausesçu was ousted and killed in 1989, thousands of those children were adopted by North Americans. Skinny infants gained weight and grew faster than other 1-year-olds; toddlers learned to walk, climb and run; older children began to talk in sentences. However, many became too friendly to strangers, or slow to learn, or depressed, angry, self-destructive. There is hope. The human spirit endures. The mother of Jean’s children is fiercely dedicated to them. She might succeed: Some of those British and Romanian children became well-functioning adults. The hospital doctors, the British parliament and even the Romanian orphanage caregivers did not intend to harm; they did not anticipate the consequences. But now every psychologist knows that depriving a child of a father he has loved is cruel and evil. Why don’t immigration authorities know that? Postcript: Jean Montrevil was deported to Haiti and has since done interviews with “Democracy Now!” among others. Berger is a professor in the Social Sciences Department, Bronx Community College; author of “The Developing Person Through the Lifespan” (first through 10th editions); and Greenwich Village Democratic district leader, 66th Assembly District, Part A Januar y 18, 2018
‘Distorted love,’ rage mix in minds of stalkers BY GER ARD FLYNN
ometime around July of last year, relations between school administrator Elizabeth Lee-Herman, 56, and ex-C.I.A. operative Vincent Verdi, 62, began to thaw, not that they were ever that warm in the first place. Verdi and Lee-Herman had found each other on the dating site Match.com, but reportedly within weeks she was willing to call it quits. Refusing to let go, the former Defense Department employee, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office alleges, “engaged in a course of conduct intended to “harass and annoy and alarm,” with the intention of causing “…such person to reasonably fear physical injury and serious physical injury.” This behavior is known, for short, as stalking, and was one of an estimated 7.5 million cases in this country annually, according to The National Center for Victims of Crime. Eighty-five percent of stalking cases involve someone the victim knows. “I know that she does not want to talk to me,” the former sniper told a police officer inside the Upper East Side’s 19th Precinct on the evening of Aug. 17. He was starting a new job as cyber-security strategist at Nielsen Media Research. “I will leave her alone,” he assured. “I am not trying to scare her.” But, nine days later, Verdi was back in handcuffs inside the same precinct. He again promised the arresting officer he would leave her alone. “I know that she does not want to have contact with me,” he said. “I will stay away from her block and I will not call her.” In early October, the popular mother of two college students came to George Davison, her boss at Grace Church High School, on Cooper Square, with news that she had filed a restraining order. Verdi’s mug shot was by now in the hands of school security personnel. “He knew Elizabeth rode a bike to work,” the assistant principal said, adding that Lee-Herman was not the first staff member there to be the victim of a stalker. It was just before 8 am on Nov. 1 at the Citi Bike rack across Fourth Ave. that the obsessed career military man confronted Lee-Herman — armed with a semiautomatic Ruger pistol. “I heard shots,” said a staff member at The Cooper Union across the street, pointing to the corner of the building by the bike rack where she had just dismounted. “I went out to investigate and they were outside,” he said. Verdi was still moving, after having turned the gun on himself. Lee-Herman, however, lay dead, shot in the stomach and chest at point-blank range. Initially listed in critical condition, Verdi today remains incarcerated at Rikers Island with a trial date set for Feb. 15 on five criminal counts, includ-
Januar y 18, 2018
Elizabeth Lee-Herman, an administrative assistant at the Grace Church School, was murdered by a stalker this past November.
ing second-degree murder. Lee-Herman’s loss, Davison told The Villager, has been tremendous. He described his former co-worker as “caring, loving, always cheerful. Everyone had a relationship with Elizabeth,” he said. “It was a shock to the system.” Though most people probably don’t know it, January is Stalking Awareness Month. Stalking is a nationwide phenomenon and Dr. Glen Skoler has spent much of his career studying its psychodynamics. Skoler declined to comment on the particulars of this case, but did offer some fascinating insights into the stalker’s mind. Understanding the mindset of the stalker can be a daunting task, given the possibility of a myriad of mental health factors. But the forensic psychologist said the troubled stalker wishes to “be linked to, and in control of” and even “part of the stalking victim.” Spotting the stalker is not easy, he noted, but often “there are warning signs in the person’s past psychosocial history.” Stalking cases resulting in murder are relatively rare — making up only about 2 percent of the total — though can “coalesce many troubled emotions,” he added. Control can play a role and, in the case of a murder or murder-suicide, the
stalker’s desire to unite in death can be a driving emotion. “What is so scary in some such cases is that the distortions of ‘love’ become merged with rage and the actual control and destruction of the beloved,” Skoler said. Ironically, the stalker’s conception of love, “in the most violent of cases,” lacks any of the attributes that any true love should have: empathy, compassion and a willingness to respect the other’s autonomy. In December, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced plans to remove firearms from those convicted of domestic violence, including when an order of protection is issued. But Skoler, the clinical and forensic psychologist, said barring gun ownership may not guarantee violence won’t happen. If Verdi does indeed plead insanity, he may find it hard to convince a grand jury. Prosecutors, Skoler said, can point to the methodological plan of following, stalking and intimidating a victim to argue for premeditation. Within less than a block of the scene of Lee-Herman’s murder, three out of four women who spoke to this reporter recalled being stalked. One of them, Marissa, a student at The Cooper Union, was remarkably calm consider-
ing her ordeal. She had not heard of the murder that had occurred several feet away, but vividly recalled her own terror, which started more than a year ago on a Midwestern college campus. She was living in a garden apartment with no bars on the window. She returned home one night, after months of suspecting she was being targeted by a predator. “Somebody was there, standing in the window looking at me,” she recalled in a quiet voice. She was not going crazy or hearing noises, she told herself. Somebody really was hanging around her window. Everyone she has since told about it, including the police, don’t think her stalking experience is a problem. It’s been a year since she saw the white man in black looking into her window, who then ran away, but it appears to have had a traumatic effect on her. She rarely is alone at that house, but when she is, the experience can be so disturbing “I get really freaked out and usually leave.” From 50 feet away, the man with the black beanie cap looked ordinary. “I don’t know how to describe him,” she said. “He looked really normal.” She had been back at the scene of the incident only a few days ago. To her horror, she “freaked out” and left her house. “My roommate and I were sitting in the living room and talking, and we heard somebody walking through the snow around the house, up to our window,” she remembered. “And you can hear it really clearly.” Her friend was going on a date and as a precautionary measure she asked him to check the perimeter. He came back with unsettling news. “He said he saw footprints, footprints around the window of our living room,” she recalled. “So, yeah, it’s kind of unresolved.” Marissa doesn’t know if it’s the same guy, but hopes it’s not. “It would make me feel better if it was random,” she said. “The thought that it’s like one person scares me even more.” Though she doesn’t want to live in fear, she said, “I’m always aware of the potential that somebody could be a stalker.” While it’s not so easy to spot a stalker, she said, there are early warning signs, such as when a romantic interest shows up at your house uninvited or does not take you seriously when you ask him to stop. Though many men are victims of stalkers, most are women. But why don’t women leave? Not to do so might enable the perpetrators, she said. She has been in situations where guys were not respecting her space. Her response, though, was firm: “You got to shut it down fast,” she said. TheVillager.com
Treasure Trove of ‘Trinkets’ Paul E Alexander’s musical has heart, sass, ass, and stroll BY SCOTT STIFFLER Ask if he’s a cop before getting into the car, don’t do anything until you’ve been paid, and contain your stroll to the Village side of the Meatpacking District — because the Chelsea precinct? “They will arrest a bitch in a minute.” That’s the job training dispensed by skilled and savvy leader of the pack Diva to juicy but naïve new girl Strawberry, as fellow ladies of the night Mistress Blondie (dominatrix fem top) and Janet (sex siren with real breasts) trade insults and swap war stories. Before long, the whole group is strutting their well-choreographed stuff, and out-bad-girling Donna Summer by singing “Walk, Walk The Night,” a salty/bittersweet take on the world’s oldest profession. Mary, Dorothy, Toto, whatever your street name is, one thing’s for sure: We’re not in 2018 anymore. It’s the 1990s, and this is the opening scene of Paul E Alexander’s “Trinkets” — an ultimately euphoric but often sobering musical that shines a well-lit, long-overdue spotlight on drag and transsexual prostitutes during an era of uneasy cultural visibility (after the vomit-inducing big reveal of “The Crying Game,” a decade until “RuPaul’s Drag Race” premiered, and quite a few years before the LGBT got its Q). “Bartending, whoring, or being performers. There weren’t many options,” Alexander noted of the musical’s core group of sex workers, whose search for a better life takes them from dangerous streets to welcoming clubs and back again (or, in a perfect world, off to Paris with Mr. Right). “They had this thing inside of them that society didn’t accept or acknowledge,” Alexander said. “There was a struggle: Should I remain how I look, or look how I feel?” That dilemma crystalizes in an exchange familiar to anyone whose parent has appeared, unexpectedly and uninvited, at their workplace. In this case, long-legged hooker Janet (an immaculately assembled Jay Knowles) is forced to defend both job and gender when mother (the diminutive, scene-stealing Sharon Niesp) arrives in a car determined to take her “son” home. Their Dorothy/Sophia dynamic is effectively played for laughs, until it comes to light that the family has been doing some TheVillager.com
Photo by Lola Flash
They work hard for the money: Blondie, Diva, and Janet bring down the house during several show-stopping production numbers.
ghosting. “When Grandma died and we were at the funeral,” Janet recalls, “you never once said to any of your friends there that I was your child… And when I saw the obituary listed every family member by name including all of her great grandchildren, and I was referred to as ‘other grandchild,’ that sealed it.” Here and throughout, Alexander’s ear for the authentic language and urgent cadence of those on the take, make, or defense is no accident: He based these characters, be they close to the bone or composites, on the people whose reallife gains and losses played out during his time spent as part of Jackie 60 — the legendary weekly party that redefined nightlife in the 1990s, pushing back hard against encroaching homogenization by embracing the full spectrum of human expression. Its introduction of spoken word and performance art into the dance and music mix made Jackie 60 more than a destination for debauchery (effectively weeding out those who only showed up for transgressive thrills). True to that spirit, Alexander pop-
ulates the titular club where much of “Trinkets” takes place with hookers both present (our four girls from the opening scene) and past (an ex-streetwalker who married money and owns the place), as well as muscular backup dancers, lithe go-go boys, no-nonsense drug dealers (of the cash-only and bathroom BJ variety), flat-broke johns, and jealous supermodels — plus a famous fashion designer in search of new adventures and nose candy. Broadly played with reckless air kisses and a not-of-this-earth accent by the howlingly funny Nora Burns, Bev Everly’s memorable entrance is based on a Jackie 60 velvet rope incident involving Donatella Versace, Kate Moss, and the tough-but-fair door policy of Kitty Boots (herself a famous London fashion designer who created Jackie 60 with Chi Chi Valenti and DJ Johnny Dynell; see mothernyc.com for the whole story). Jackie 60’s decade-long run came to an end on the very last day of the previous millennium, with cameras rolling throughout 1999 for a documentary that never materialized, further cementing
Alexander’s desire to use “Trinkets” as a means to explore aspects of that era. “At the time, living it, it was very magical, the good and the bad of it all,” he reflected. Another motivating factor: Like Diva (deliciously played with drizzles of sex, sympathy, and sass by multi-pageant title-holder and nightlife host Honey Davenport), Alexander saw the shifting landscape of his own chosen profession and decided to create new opportunities. Having parlayed his emcee and performance skills from the Jackie days into solo underground dance single success, Alexander gained international notoriety as part of the dance-pop trio The Ones (who scored a #1 Dance and #3 Pop hit with “Flawless”). “Ten years later, after The Ones slowed down” is where Alexander said he found himself, with decades of accumulated memories and stories to tell — which takes us to the present, the “Trinkets” project, and a casting coup whose story parallels his own experience. TRINKETS continued on p. 19 Januar y 18, 2018
Retro Perspective: Rev. Jen Forges Ahead by Looking Back The spirit of eccentricity she fought to salvage still shines BY REV. JEN MILLER I think it’s safe to say that the best thing about 2017 is that it’s over. Globally, it was a political and environmental disaster. Personally, 2017 was not exactly rainbows and unicorns, but more a mix of “upheaval” and “crushing depression,” which I’ve documented in past columns. Hence, I won’t rehash the details here. Instead, you can read all about them in my next book: “Straight Outta Bellevue.” Let’s just forget 2017 ever happened, burn our old calendars, and discuss why 2018 will be awesome. (It will probably suck too, but at least we’ll be able to legally dance in bars!) Rarely do I ever make New Year’s Resolutions. But after a year of stewing in the filth of my monkey pajamas, watching too much SpongeBob and bemoaning terrible life choices, I stared at the elf in the mirror and decided to make a change. Maybe I can’t fix the world, topple evil regimes, cure diseases or even bother to floss, but I can do one thing, which is make art. So that is precisely what I resolved to do — make the world less boring through art. Throughout my life, whenever I’ve been down, picking up a paintbrush or a pen and just trying to create something lifts my spirits. When I was a wee tot, my father, who taught me to paint, said, “When you make art, all your worries just drift away.” And, he was right. Being creative has done for me what no pharmaceutical has ever done. But even better than the act of creating art is sharing it, sometimes even selling it and making money, which one can then exchange for things! With this in mind, I determined to put on an art show, and not just any art show, but a Mid-Career Survey. Such “surveys” are normally given to more established artists who show in big galleries and museums, whereas I mostly showed my art in the former Troll Museum, which I was evicted from because I am a failure. I contacted a friend who is a curator at Museum of Modern Art, secretly hoping to get a show there, but that will likely only happen when I am dead. (Hopefully, death won’t happen for a long time, but when it does, I’ve requested that my skeleton be donated to the School of Visual Arts so that fledgling art stars can draw me in anatomy class and say, ‘I’m drawing Reverend Jen!”) My friend suggested I email some Lower East Side galleries, which I did, but no one wanted me. And then, out of the blue, I got a Facebook message from Martina Secondo Russo,
Januar y 18, 2018
Photo by Anne Sussman
Rev. Jen (left) with 2017 Miss Subways Pageant winner Lisa Levy.
who runs MF Gallery in Brooklyn, asking if I’d like to do a show there. I was elated, as MF Gallery is my FAVORITE gallery in NYC. Years ago, I got to perform there with the band GWAR at their first ever “Crack-A-Thon,” a benefit designed to alleviate the band’s crack debt. I can’t think of any other gallery cool enough to have hosted GWAR, a heavy metal band that was comprised of barbaric interplanetary warriors.
So, I leapt at the chance and told Martina, “Yes!” Because I am prone to hyperbole, I decided to call my art show “Reverend Jen: Best Mid-Career Survey Ever.” Maybe it wouldn’t be the best ever, but I would make it fun, as “fun” is an element too often missing in the art world these days. Growing up, I looked at pictures of Warhol’s Factory and thought that’s what New York City’s art world would be like: people in leop-
ard print coats and sunglasses, making weird movies and working together in a “scene.” In high school, I wore vintage clothes and oversized sunglasses. I also worked my ass off, painting. When I was 16, the cool kids in my high school responded to my behavior by painting the phrase “You are a Art Fag” in giant letters REV. JEN continued on p. 19 TheVillager.com
from lyrics written by Alexander over a decade ago), Aviance is â€œthe first one to arrive and pretty much the last one to leave, every single show. Heâ€™s taken the backstage role, helping the straight guys who are doing drag. Heâ€™s just been amazing.â€? (Avianceâ€™s presence as house mother has served the show well; the colorful 18-member cast varies in their degree of stage experience, but thereâ€™s not one dud in the charisma department.) Asked if the younger members of the cast fully fathom the challenges faced by LGBTQs two decades in the past, Alexander said, â€œI donâ€™t know if kids
can understand the limitations and the struggle. It took these pioneering souls to push forward in a time when it wasnâ€™t de rigueur. I hope they appreciate it now. But I donâ€™t know that they think about history as much as I might have. Thereâ€™s good aspects and bad aspects of that, because I feel they are who they are; very comfortable in their skins, having transformed at a young age. Whether they be drag queens or transsexuals or gay men, they are living their freedom.â€? Thereâ€™s one area, however, where Alexander doesnâ€™t mind playing the â€œback in my dayâ€? card: his uncompromising
placement of a power ballad to send the audience out on a high note. â€œIâ€™m Proud of Meâ€? has the emotionally exhausted but resolute Diva witnessing the convergence of several story arcs and staring down the prospect of her own future, declaring, â€œIâ€™m proud of me / And if no one else will show it / Iâ€™m the one that knows it / Iâ€™m proud of me.â€? â€œI just needed a song to sum it up,â€? Alexander said, â€œan â€˜And I am Telling Youâ€™-type number. Iâ€™ve seen so many shows [musicals] over the years, where itâ€™s all operatic. Thereâ€™s no song you want to sing from it. â€˜Wicked?â€™ The young queens you see performing these Broadway songs, if you donâ€™t know the story, you donâ€™t get the song. â€˜Aquarius,â€™ â€˜Let the Sun Shine In.â€™ These were songs you could play on the radio. I wanted everyone to walk home singing â€˜Iâ€™m Proud of Meâ€™ â€” to be uplifted, to look in the mirror and congratulate themselves. Thatâ€™s what we need to be doing.â€? â€œTrinketsâ€? runs 90 minutes, including a 15-minute intermission. Thurs. through Sun., 7pm, through Feb. 3 at the Gene Frankel Theatre (24 Bond St., btw. Bowery & Lafayette). Tickets: $40; $30 for students/seniors; 10 tickets for every performance, $20, cash sale available at the door only; no Jan. 25 performance. For reservations, visit genefrankeltheatre. com or call 917-841-7567.
Downtown was â€œdead.â€? Forced to contend with the lamest era in history, I vowed to keep weirdness alive, starting an open mic, sporting elf ears, making movies, and opening the aforementioned Troll Museum. This spirit of eccentricity that I have fought to salvage came alive at â€œBest MidCareer Survey Ever.â€? Friends who have collected my work over the years lent pieces to the gallery: elaborate paintings of kittens with third eyes and Chihuahuas
riding unicorns. Invigorated, I also made new work including â€œGirl (Also) with a Pearl Earring,â€? which features an attempted replica of Vermeerâ€™s â€œGirl with a Pearl Earringâ€? alongside my beloved, deceased Chihuahua, Reverend Jen Junior, also wearing a pearl earring. And, of course, there are Trolls on display! Despite freezing weather, the opening saw a capacity crowd along with performances by comedic songwriter Rob Paravonian and performance artist, Dylan Mars Greenberg. Performers Laruocco and the Stunt Doubles also made an appearance in grand matching
outfits. People danced as we projected my films onto the walls. It was the New York Iâ€™ve always wanted. And, if you missed the opening, there is more fun to be had. On Sat., Jan. 20 from 7-10pm at MF Gallery (213 Bond St., Brooklyn; mfgallery.net), there will be a â€œCreature Double Featureâ€? where Iâ€™ll be showing my films â€œSatan, Hold My Handâ€? and â€œWerewolf Bitches from Outer Space.â€? If you canâ€™t make that, the gallery is open by appointment only until Feb. 14. Call 917-446-8681 or email email@example.com to book one today! Donâ€™t miss out!
TRINKETS continued from p. 17
â€œThe music business has changed,â€? Alexander said, in a tone of clear understatement. â€œNo one is buying records like they used to, so we have that in common. What are we going to do now?â€? The other part of that â€œweâ€? is fashion designer and nightclub personality Kevin Aviance, whose bold bald look disrupted the drag queen paradigm back in the day and still turns heads (among his hits as a club/ dance musician, â€œDin Da Daâ€? peaked at #1 on Aug. 23, 1997 and spent 16 weeks on the charts; Billboard put him at 93 in their ranking of all-time most successful dance artists). Basically playing the role Alexander assumed at Jackie 60, Avianceâ€™s Mr. Pea is the emcee who presides over club Trinkets (â€œCome on in and see how it feels, â€™cause tonight youâ€™re in Hell in High Heels.â€?). The veteran entertainer claims the showâ€™s best-produced, executed, and choreographed number: the club-as-church anthem â€œBless This House.â€? â€œWe were rivals in the â€™90s,â€? Alexander said of Aviance. â€œHe was the one who inspired me to keep going and put out another song.â€? Multiple jitney rides en route to a gig on Fire Island one summer cemented their friendship. Now, having collaborated on â€œBless This Houseâ€? (Aviance co-produced with Uri Dalal,
REV. JEN continued from p. 18
on the street in front of my house. (I knew it was the cool kids because of the grammatical error.) The city of Silver Spring, Maryland had to gravel over the graffiti. I was delighted since it meant I was already the most famous artist on my block. Soon after, I made it to NYC to attend School of Visual Arts. But, I got here in 1990, shortly after Warhol died and Michael Musto announced that
Photo by Lola Flash
Kevin Aviance owns the stage as Mr. Pea, emcee at Trinkets.
Theater for the New City â€˘ 155 1st Avenue at E. 10th St. Reservations & Info (212) 254-1109 For more info, please visit www.theaterforthenewcity.net
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Laruocco and the Stunt Doubles performed at the Jan. 13 opening of Rev. Jenâ€™s MidCareer Survey (through Feb. 14 at MF Gallery).
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Januar y 18, 2018
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NOTICE OF FORMATION OF ALL FAMILY VENTURES, LLC Articles of Organization ďŹ led with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 10/04/17. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to
which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: ALL Family Ventures, LLC, 175 E. 96th St. Apt. 7E, New York, NY 10128. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 01/04 - 02/08/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION 241 WATER STREET HOLDINGS LLC Application for Authority ďŹ led with the Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 11/30/2017. OfďŹ ce location: NEW YORK County. LLC formed in Delaware on 8/24/2017. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against it may be served. The Post OfďŹ ce address to which the SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC served upon him/her is: New York Private Trust Company, Attn: William Duggan, 200 Bellevue Parkway Ste 500, Wilmington, DE 19809 State of Origin address of LLC is: 251 Little Falls Drive, Wilmington, DE 19808 CertiďŹ cate of LLC ďŹ led with Secretary of State of Delaware located at: 401 federal Street, Ste 4, Dover, DE 19901. Purpose: any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/28 - 02/01/2018 JS EVERGREEN LLC Arts. of Org. ďŹ led with the SSNY on 12/08/17. OfďŹ ce: New York County. SSNY designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the LLC, c/o Miwha Kim, 150 W. 56th Street, #5803, New York, NY 10019. Purpose: Any lawful purpose. Vil: 12/28 - 02/01/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF 501-503 LAFAYETTE LLC Arts. of Org. ďŹ led with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 12/13/17. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: c/o Maguire Capital Group, 452 Fifth Ave., 30th Fl.,
NY, NY 10018. Purpose: any lawful activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF SIMIA DEI, LLC Articles of Organization ďŹ led with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 06/26/15 OfďŹ ce location: Kings County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: SIMIA DEI, LLC, 506 FRANKLIN AVE, BROOKLYN, NY 11238. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF MRR HOLDINGS LLC Arts. of Org. ďŹ led with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 10/18/17. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to DLA Piper LLP (US), Attn: Robert Unger, Esq., 1251 Ave. of the Americas, NY, NY 10020. As amended by Cert. of Amendment ďŹ led with SSNY on 10/24/17, name changed to MRR DEVELOPMENT LLC. Purpose: Any lawful activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF QUALIFICATION OF LIFE BY ME, LLC Appl. for Auth. ďŹ led with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 12/08/17. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. LLC formed in Delaware (DE) on 10/31/17. Princ. ofďŹ ce of LLC: 434 N. Larchmont Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90004. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to c/o Corporation Service Co., 80 State St., Albany, NY 12207-2543. DE addr. of LLC: 1209 Orange St., Wilmington, DE 19801. Cert. of Form. ďŹ led with DE Secy. of State, Div. of Corps., John G. Townsend Bldg., 401
Federal St. - Ste. 4, Dover, DE 19901. Purpose: Any lawful activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF KARMA SEARCH LLC Articles of Organization ďŹ led with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 12/04/2017. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: 7014 13th Avenue, Suite 202, Brooklyn, NY 11228. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF HAWKEYE ADVISORS, LLC Articles of Organization ďŹ led with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 12/08/17. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: Hawkeye Advisors, LLC 60 Gramercy Park North apt 3cd, New York, NY 10010. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF KINGS PALACE NYC, LLC Articles of Organization ďŹ led with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 12/22/16. OfďŹ ce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: KINGS PALACE NYC, LLC, 43 CANAL STREET, NEW YORK, NY 10002. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018
PUBLIC NOTICE â€“ NY02810A T-Mobile Northeast, LLC is proposing to collocate antennas on a 74-foot building at 723 West 177 th Street, New York, New York County, NY. Public comments regarding the potential effects from this site on historic properties may be submitted within 30-days from the date of this publication to: Amanda Sabol â€“ CBRE, 70 West Red Oak Lane, White Plains, NY 10604, firstname.lastname@example.org or (914) 694-9600. Vil: 01/18/2018 TheVillager.com
NOTICE OF FORMATION OF PPOSS, LLC Articles of Organization ﬁled with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 12/19/17. Ofﬁce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: PPOSS LLC, 226 Front Street, New York, NY 10038. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/21 - 01/25/2018 NOTICE OF FORMATION OF DIGITAL INTERNET MARKETING HOLDINGS, LLC Articles of Organization ﬁled with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 11/30/17. Ofﬁce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: Digital Internet Marketing Holdings, LLC, 90 State Street Suite 700, Ofﬁce 40, Albany, NY 12207. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/14 - 01/18/2018 NOTICE OF QUALIFICATION OF G&K SERVICES CO., LLC An Application for Authority ﬁled with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 11/28/2017. Ofﬁce location: NY County. Principal business address: 6800 Cintas Blvd., Mason, OH 45040. LLC formed in Minnesota on 03/21/2017. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to: G&K Services Co., LLC, 6800 Cintas Blvd., Mason, OH 45040. Articles of Organization ﬁled with MN Secretary of State, 60 Empire Dr., Ste 100, St. Paul, MN 55103. Purpose: any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/14 - 01/18/2018 TheVillager.com
NOTICE OF FORMATION OF 1016 AMSTERDAM AVE, LLC Articles of Organization ﬁled with Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 11/22/17. Ofﬁce location: NY County. SSNY has been designated as an agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. The address to which SSNY shall mail a copy of any process against the LLC is to:1016 Amsterdam Ave LLC c/o Marjanne Motamedi, 22 West 15th Street, Apt 6F, New York, NY 10011. Purpose: To engage in any lawful act or activity. Vil: 12/14 - 01/18/2018
NOTICE OF FORMATION OF M & K NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL LLC Arts. of Org. ﬁled with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 11/22/17. Ofﬁce location: NY County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: c/o Mieko Tahara, 200 E. 61st St., Apt. 35C, NY, NY 10021. Purpose: any lawful activity. Vil: 12/14 - 01/18/2018
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that an on-premises license, #TBD, has been applied for by VYSK Inc dba TBD, to sell beer, wine, cider and liquor at retail, in an on-premises establishment, under the ABC law, for on-premises consumption at 174 Rivington Street, New York, NY 10002. Vil: 01/11 - 01/18/2018
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that a Liquor License, serial number 1307010, for beer, wine, and spirits has been applied for by the undersigned to permit the sale of beer, wine, and spirits at retail in a bar/tavern under the Alcoholic Beverages Control Law at Nordstrom Inc, located at 1775 Broadway, New York, NY, 10019, on premise consumption. Nordstrom Inc. Vil: 01/11 - 01/18/2018
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Januar y 18, 2018
Januar y 18, 2018
A woman held up a tablet showing a video of a coyote contor ting in pain as it vainly tried to get its leg free of of a steel-jawed trap. Some of the animals even tr y to gnaw off their own legs to save their lives.
Silent outrage at vigil outside Canada Goose BY LINCOLN ANDERSON
bout 200 to 250 animal-rights activists gathered in Washington Square Park in the freezing cold last Saturday afternoon, then marched over to the Canada Goose store, on Wooster St. in Soho, for a halfhour silent vigil. “We’re not here for selfies. Treat this like you would a wake,” one of their leaders, Leonardo Anguiano, announced at the start, before they went silent. Some of them carried illuminated letters on light boards that together spelled out “CANADA GOOSE KILLS.” Four of the protesters wore 50-inch flat-screen TV’s strapped across their chests. They displayed soundless videos of coyotes being trapped and killed to make the coats’ fur hood ruffs, or geese being “live-plucked” of their down feath-
ers to fill the pricey parkas. Others carried smaller tablets with similar videos. Silent vigils were a tactic the protesters adopted last year after their raucous, noisy demonstrations maddened block residents and drew the attention of police. Nathan Semmel, one of the committed vegans, said while Canada Goose pitches its coats as being made for extreme cold weather, they are really just expensive status symbols. “To see 200 of us there, in a silent vigil, none of us wearing animals, none of us suffering from frostbite,” he said, “it kind of tells you people are doing it for wealth and social status. The synthetics exist, and are getting more realistic. They’d be just as warm in them. Even if the Canada Goose coats could keep you warmer — I’m not saying they do — I don’t see how it could justify the
PHOTOS BY REBECCA WHITE
The animal-rights activists marching silently toward Canada Goose in Soho. TheVillager.com
brutality. “I think everybody knows, to have one of these, you have to shell out quite a bit of money,” he added of the jackets. “They see rock stars and celebrities wearing these coats. They want to live that life, to have that appearance of having wealth and fame.” Semmel said the protesters did not really engage anyone since it was a silent vigil, but that some shoppers exiting the store did laugh nervously upon being confronted with the activists’ gruesome signs and videos. While Semmel admitted the activists probably don’t have a realistic chance of shutting down the Canada Goose retail store, he said they have been making inroads with smaller shops that carry the company’s garments. Specifically, Blue & Cream, at 1 E. First St., has agreed to stop carrying
the coats, and the activists are currently in talks with Kith, at 337 Lafayette St., which also sells Canada Goose. “A store like Kith is really important,” Semmel said. “They’re a very famous brand in the streetwear world. For them to stop selling fur is really meaningful because that’s the younger generation you’re going to affect. I think it’s a more compassionate generation. I think they’re more aware of oppression. These animals don’t have the ability to fight back. It’s a form of oppression. An older generation is more set in their ways.” Canada Goose claims both its coyote fur and goose down are ethically and transparently sourced and collected under strict governmental regulations. The down is a byproduct of the poultry industry while the fur is from licensed North American trappers, the company says.
Looking a bit stunned, a Canada Goose coat owner walked the gauntlet between the silent vegan protesters, at left, and police guarding the Canada Goose store, at right. Januar y 18, 2018
They didnâ€™t treat me like patient #7265. They treated me like Anne.
My Mount Sinai is Mount Sinai Womenâ€™s Cancer Program . 325 West 15th Street
Januar y 18, 2018
Published on Jan 18, 2018