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Friday, February 27, 2009

Things To Do This Weekend In New York City & Roosevelt Island - Coney Island Circus, Wine Expo, Brazilian Orchids, Folk Songs, Black History & RI Tour

Image of Coney Island Circus Sideshow Fire Eater Donny V From NY Times

Looking for fun or interesting things to do on Roosevelt Island or in some other part of New York City this weekend? Here are some suggestions.

Tonight go on over to the Javits Center for the New York Wine Expo:
The New York Wine Expo is a three-day exposition catering to both the general public and the trade in the nation's hub. Don't miss this opportunity to sample over 600 wines from over 170 winemakers from around the globe in the Grand Tasting.

For Consumers
The Expo is open on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon allowing consumers to take a tasting tour around the world
On Saturday the Coney Island Circus Sideshow visits the Highline Ballroom.
They're here, they're real and they're alive at the CONEY ISLAND SIDESHOW…The last place in the USA where you can experience the thrill of a traditional ten-in-one circus sideshow.

Established by Coney Island, USA in 1985, where else would you find the world's first professional non-profit theatre dedicated to keeping alive the American sideshow? Billed as the only "ten-in-one" sideshow still in existence in North America (the term refers the number of acts that can be seen for a single price). The ten-in-one circus sideshow is another Coney Island gift to culture along with other Brooklyn beach inventions like the hot dog and the roller coaster.
On Sunday, head on up to the Bronx for the New York Botanical Garden's Brazilian Modern Orchid Show (Thru April 12).
Escape to a tropical paradise at The Orchid Show:
Brazilian Modern, featuring beautiful displays of thousands of orchids throughout the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory.

In its 7th year, brilliantly colored orchids and the lush tropical setting of a contemporary Brazilian garden await visitors. Miami-based landscape architect Raymond Jungles has created this contemporary Brazilian garden design, inspired by his mentor, Roberto Burle Marx , an icon of Brazilian design. The design features fountains, pools, and colorful mosaics combined with graceful palms, delicate orchids, bromeliads, and other native plants of Brazil.
On Roosevelt Island this weekend, the Farmers Market will be open as usual on Saturday as is Gallery RIVAA, the Roosevelt Island Visual Arts Association which is exhibiting the last weekend of Emergence, by Bogdan Borgovan. There will be a Black History Month celebration on Saturday at the Manhattan Park Theater Club as well as a free folk music concert at the Library Also, RIOC has produced a great self guided tour map (PDF File) of Roosevelt Island for any visitor or resident looking to stroll the Island and learn something more about it.

Good weekend transportation news. The MTA is reporting normal Roosevelt Island F Train subway service in both directions and RIOC is not reporting any Tram service advisories either.

Check out some other ideas on what to do in New York City this weekend from the NY Times Urban Eye, NY Post Weekend Calendar, Newyorkology and Free NYC.

New Roosevelt Island Water Spray Fountain For Tram Station Circle Coming Soon- But Can It Tell The Time?

Image of Kanazawa Japan Digital Water Fountain Clock from Craziest Gadgets

Roosevelt Island will soon be getting a new water spray fountain. Unfortunately, I doubt it will be anything like the Digital Water Fountain Clock pictured above located at Kanazawa Japan. According to Craziest Gadgets:
This is one of the coolest fountains I’ve ever seen- the station clock at Japan’s Kanazawa Station is actually a fountain. Each “pixel” in the digital style clock is a tiny little jet of water. The whole thing is computer controlled which allows for an infinite number of displays beyond just changing the time every minute.
In an effort to make the Roosevelt Island Tram Station area and adjacent entrance to the new Riverwalk buildings more attractive, RIOC will be installing a Water Fountain at the turnaround circle.



Any effort to make the Tram Station Circle more pleasing is certainly welcome but the Digital Water Fountain would be really cool!


You Tube Video of Kanazawa Digital Water Fountain Clock

There is an existing fountain in operation during the summer at Blackwell House and the Delacorte Geyser used to spray East River water just south of Southpoint Park.

UPDATE - 3/2 - I received the following message from the Hunter College Access RI folks:
I just came across your posting regarding the tram station circle. I am part of AccessRI and we happen to be looking into ways to improve the public spaces around the island and certainly the key transit nodes. Attached is a rendering that we came up with, feel free to post! Stay tuned as we begin to put together our exciting recommendations.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Counting Main Street Traffic For Columbia University's Roosevelt Island Transportation Study - Is Traffic Light Needed at Motorgate Intersection?


One of the Columbia University urban planning students participating in the Roosevelt Island Transportation Study was conducting a traffic count in front of the Motorgate ramp to the Roosevelt Island Bridge on a cold Tuesday afternoon. Last May, Roosevelt Island Public Safety Director Keith Guerra told me that the Department of Transportation was going to conduct a traffic study to determine if a street light was warranted for the Motorgate Ramp intersection. I don't know what happened with that DOT study but I am glad that the Columbia students are investigating the issue as part of the overall Roosevelt Island Transportation study.

More on the Columbia University Roosevelt Island Transportation Study from a RIOC press release published in the 1/17/09 Main Street WIRE:

"As Roosevelt Island residents know all too well, the community has evolved during the past 40 years from the much heralded and highly innovative ¡®new town in town' concept of the 1960's. Formative concepts such as a ¡®traffic-free' environment and battery-operated ¡®minibuses' have given way to practicalities, budget realities and a growing population. A fresh look is needed at the impact of present and future growth.

"The Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture's Urban Planning program will focus on recommendations to improve access within, to and from the Island by looking at all the various transportation modes. Improving pedestrian and bicycle access will be evaluated especially since an early aspect of the design of Roosevelt Island was to have an auto-free community. Journey to work access will be evaluated by looking at all available and potential modes: bus, tram, subway, vehicular circulation, potential ferry and even perhaps new and innovative approaches that are not yet even on the radar screen."

Folk Concert This Saturday Night at Roosevelt Island Public Library - Three Bearded Guys, Fuller, Katz & Leifer

Image of 2/21/09 Main Street WIRE article from Chris Fuller Music

Three local guys with a beard will be playing folk music Saturday night at the Roosevelt Island Public Library. According to RIOC:
Roosevelt Island Unplugged
When: Saturday, February 28, 2009, 5-7pm
Where: Roosevelt Island Public Library
Locals Chris Fuller, Matt Katz, and Howie Leifer trading songs at the library. Free show.
More on Chris Fuller in front of Renwick Ruins,


Matt Katz playing with Peter Yarrow


You Tube video of Peter Yarrow playing for Orphans International benefit

and Howie Leifer playing Ukulele at Southpoint Park.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Interested in Local Politics? Lenox Hill Democratic Club Recruiting Future Members - Free Food & Drinks

Image from living liberally.org and to my knowledge is not involved in this event

Assembly Member Micah Kellner sends the following message to anyone interested in getting more involved in the local community politics from a Democratic Party perspective.

Join me Thursday Night for the Lenox Hill Democratic Club's Membership Recruitment Event

One of the most common questions I get asked is what regular people can do to get more involved in local politics. There are lots of different ways to get involved, but most involve joining - joining your community board, your PTA, a block association, or your local political club. On the Upper East Side, the Lenox Hill Democratic Club has long been an important organization fighting for progressive politics and responsive government in our community.

If you’ve ever wanted to get more engaged in local politics, now is the time to get your feet wet. I hope you will join me at the Lenox Hill Democratic Club Membership Recruitment Event this Thursday, February 26th at Rathbone’s (1702 Second Avenue @ 88th Street) from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. I will be attending along with Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Comptroller William Thompson, Jr., Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, State Senators Liz Krueger and Jose Serrano, and Council Members Jessica Lappin and Dan Garodnick.

This is a great opportunity to talk politics and meet new people. All are welcome and there will be free food and drinks. To RSVP or if you have any questions, please email LHDCevents@ymail.com.

Get involved and be a part of change in 2009!

Learn More About Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 From The School's Parent Teacher Association - PTA Asked To Raise $100,000 For Teacher Development

Image of Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 From Geocities

Do you have a child attending Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 or are you considering doing so. In that case, the web page for the school's Parent Teacher Association should be of interest.
The PTA of PS/IS 217 is a non-profit corporation dedicated to enhancing the education of the students of the Roosevelt Island School. All parents of students enrolled in PS/IS 217 automatically become a member of the PTA.

At Roosevelt Island School, we are fortunate to have a combination of caring, concerned parents, and a group of dedicated teachers, staff and administration who instill in our children to excel not to settle.
The Roosevelt Island PTA is committed to assist in the education of all children. It is vital that we work together as a team to accomplish this goal. I urge all parents and teachers to attend PTA meetings. Your input is important and will always be welcomed. As parents, it is our obligation to keep ourselves informed and involved in the education of our children....
PS/IS 217 is described as a "Big City School with a small town feel." It's mission statement:
... PS/IS 217 is a unique community of Pre Kindergarten through Eighth Grade International learners in which all children are encouraged and supported to meet high academic standards, to meet and exceed their own personal goals, to become independent thinkers and develop a life long love of learning. We empower our diverse student body and recognize the strengths of each individual student. We understand and celebrate that all students learn differently. Through best practices in teaching and skillful planning, students are actively involved throughout the day in all subject areas working in partnerships, groups, and independently. Students are supported and challenged throughout the child-centered curriculum.
The PTA is being:
...asked by the school administration to raise an additional $100,000 next year to pay for professional development for our teachers.
The New York City Department of Education progress report grade for Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 for the 2007-08 school year was a C. According to the report:
  • This school's overall score for 2007-08 is 47.4
  • This score places the School in the 25 percentile of all K-8 schools Citywide–i.e., 25 percent of those schools scored lower than this school
  • This school did not meet its improvement target from last year
More information on Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 is available here.

There is a poll question on whether the school should establish a gifted and talented program for students on the right side column. To date, 102 votes are in favor of a G & T program and 21 votes are against.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Black History Month on Roosevelt Island

Black History Month Image from RIOC

Come Celebrate Black History Month On Saturday February 28 at the Manhattan Park Theater Club. From RIOC:
Black History Month Celebration
When :Saturday, February 28th 2-4pm
Where :Manhattan Park Theater Club located at 8 River Road
Live musical performances and entertainment, Arts and Crafts, food and activities for the kids.
More on Black History Month from History.com including an interactive timeline and videos from Bio.com.

Spiderman Movie Magic - Roosevelt Island Tram Station Goes Poof Courtesy of Green Goblin

Image of Spiderman on the Roosevelt Island Tram from Roosevelt Island 360

Watch how the Roosevelt Island Tram Station, miniaturized and reduced to 1/8th scale of its size, was blown up for the Spiderman movie.


You Tube video of Roosevelt Island Tram Station Spiderman Explosion
According to GMDFX:
SPIDERMAN 1 Miniature shoot in 2001, 1/8th scale model of Roosevelt Island tram station in New York.
Scene: chase sequence between the Green goblin and Spiderman
Event: Green Goblin launches a missile from his rocket sled, Spiderman evades, missile hits tram station
Resulting in a HUGE Explosion courtesy of Richard Helmer.

Roosevelt Island Public Safety Reports 2/16 Thru 2/24 - Profanity, Pinching, Kicking, Masked Egg Throwing, Shoplifting & $1.9 Million Renovation

Image of egg on face from Jewish Community News

RIOC is posting the most current Daily and December 2008 Monthly Roosevelt Island Public Safety Incident reports on their web site. Also, available is a breakdown of Roosevelt Island Public Safety incidents by location and category for the month of January 2009. Below are the Roosevelt Island Daily Public Safety Reports for February 16 - February 24, 2009. Incidents included:
  • Harassment - Profanity towards female (2/16)
  • Dispute over Motorgate garage fee (2/16)
  • Unauthorized apartment move out (2/16)
  • Assault - Pinched in Face (2/16)
  • Yelling and kicking door in hallway (2/17)
  • Masked Men threw eggs at Public Safety Department Window (2/17)
  • MTA Substation lock clipped (2/18)
  • United Nations ID Card reported lost (2/19)
  • Unlicensed driver made illegal U-turn (2/19)
  • Dispute over Cab Fare (2/19)
  • 2 males and 2 females arrested for illegally inside Southpoint Park (2/20) and
  • Gristedes shoplifting (2/22)
2/16/09-7:00 AM to 2/17/9-7:00 AM

Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Unsecured Premises- The Good Shepard Community Center. Search conducted. All in order. Premise locked and secured.
Harassment- 2 juveniles used profanity towards a female a few days ago. NYPD refused. Search for the juveniles with negative results.
Graffiti- In building. Search for the subject with negative results. UA notified.
Verbal Dispute- In Motorgate Garage over fee. PSD responded and male referred to the Manager. The vehicle left parked in the Garage.
Alarm Response- At the Post Office. PSD and Postal Police responded. Interior in order and alarm to be reset by Management.
Unauthorized Move out- Tenant notified by Door man that he needed permission from Management to move out. Tenant complied .
Lost Property- Bank Card secured in PSD.
Unsecured Premises- In building. UA notified.
Aided- Male stuck in the elevator of building. UA removed him and EMS refused. The elevator was put out of service.
Hazardous Condition-Wooden Couch left in the hallway. UA notified to remove it.
Power Failure- In apt. UA Super responded and will have electrician respond and do repairs.
Assault- Male pinched in the face by subject who fled. NYPD responded. EMS refused. Search for the subject made with negative results.

2/17/09-7:00 AM to 2/18-09-7:00 AM

Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Foul Odor- Tenant reported smell of possible illegal substance coming from the bathroom vent. Incident occurred previous night. Matter referred to UA and tenant to notify PSD when incident occurs to locate apt.
Harassment- Youths yelling and kicking door in the hallway the previous night. Youths then fled. NYPD report refused. PSD to monitor area.
Unsecured Premise-An apt door. PSD search apt and no one found. Apt in disarray.
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Faulty Alarm- At RY Management. PSD responded twice and in order. IH Super reset the alarm.
Noise Complaint- Loud music . Tenant complied with Public Safety and lowered the music.
Criminal Mischief- 3 Males with masks threw eggs at the PSD windows and fled. Search for the subjects conducted with negative results.

2/18/09-7:00 A.M to 2/19/09-7:00 AM

Investigation- Lock that leads to the MTA substation was clipped and another put on. RIOC lock replaced by PSD. Area secured.
Found Property- Brown wallet. It was secured in PSD.
Unsecured Premises- Storage room of a building. IH porter checked it.Door was secured.
Aided- An ill person was taken to the hospital by EMS.
Unsecured Premises- Good Shepard Community Center. Premises checked. All in order. It was locked and secured by PSD.

0700hrs 02/19/09-0700hrs 02/20/09

Unsecured Door- Resident reports to PSD Chapel open. Officers made search with negative results, door secured.
Unsecured Premises- PSD officers observed door ajar search made with negative results, door secured.
Lost Property- Male tenant reports lost UN ID card maybe on tram or RIOC bus search made with negative results.
Investigation- Tenant reports last night unknown subjects were knocking on door. Tenant observed two males. Search made with negative results.
Unlicenced Operator/ Disobey No-U-Turn- PSD officer observed motorist in violation vehicle stop. Driver summonsed. Vehicle released to licensed driver.
Public Urinating- PSD officer observed male subject front of chapel. Male escorted to PSD summons and released.
Disorderly Conduct- Cab driver and male subject entered PSD disputing fare, fare was paid to driver. Subject became disorderly, summonsed and released.

0700 hrs. Friday February 20th 2009 - 0700 hrs. Saturday February 21st 2009.
Aided - PSD Officer responded to tenant having stomach pain. EMS requested. Aided transported to hospital, apt. secured by tenant.
Aided - PSD Officer responded to tenant having high blood pressure, Upon FDNY on scene, transported Aided to hospital. Apt. Secured by tenant.
Aggravated Harassment - PSD Officer responded to apt. Tenant stated male knocked on door at appx. 1645 hrs and threatened to beat up her son. Ongoing feud between Carter family and them.
Aided - PSD Officer observed FDNY/EMS going to apt. Tenant reported taken some medicine. Transported to hospital. apt. secured by tenant.
Criminal Mischief - PSD Officer observed male subject forcing South Gate open. Sgt. on scene, notified Five Star electric corp. employee reports gate operating normal.
Arrest - PSD Officer observed 2 male subjects and 2 female subjects inside south point park. all four subjects escorted to PSD office, Summonsed and released.
Criminal mischief - PSD Officer observed damage to RMP windshield. Search made for subjects with negative results.
Aided - Resident entered PSD office with an intoxicated male. EMS notified. Emt on scene transported male to hospital.

2/21/09-7:00 AM to 2/22/09-7:00 AM
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Threats/ Aggravated Harassment- Search for the juvenile subject yielded negative results. Complainant has an order of protection. PSD went to subject's mother apt to advise that juvenile not go to complainant apt. NYPD refused.
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Criminal Mischief- Male pulled open Southgate. PSD responded and it was not damaged. Male was warned and admonished.
Unlawful Possession of Marijuana/Trespass/Open container Alcohol- 4 Subjects arrested by PSD.
Aided- an ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.

2/22/09-7:00 AM to 2/23/09-7:00 AM
Found Property- An Identification card. The card was secured at PSD.
Investigation- Unknown person knocked on tenant's door twice and left
Search made with negative results.
Shop Lifting- At Gristedes Super Market. NYPD refused. Trespassing notice issued to subject.

2/23/09-7:00 AM to 2/24/09-7:00 AM
Smoke Condition- Tenant burnt food in apt. PSD and UA responded.
No injuries or property damage.
Aided- Tenant fell in apt. Home attendant assisted aided up. No injuries and EMS refused.
Water Leak- Tenant not home. PSD and UA responded. UA made repairs and locked and secured the apt.
Aided- An ill person was taken to the Hospital by EMS.
Aided- Female fell in apt. UA provided access. EMS responded. EMS transport was refused. No injuries.
Aided- Male fell from wheel chair. 999 Male assisted him up. No injuries. He was with his Home attendant. EMS refused.
Investigation- Female reported that her friend was a possibly missing. PSD responded. Later friend called and stated she was on her way home.

On another Public Safety Department matter, the approximately $1.9 million renovation and construction of the Public Safety Department was approved during the 2/19 RIOC Board meeting. The web cast of the Board members discussing this issue is available here at about the 26 minute mark.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Report From RIRA President on Eastwood Electricity Submetering, RIOC Budget, PS/IS 217, Public Purpose Funds and Red Bus

2/8 RIRA Town Hall Meeting with RIRA President Farance & RIOC Directors Kalkin and Shinozaki

RIRA President Frank Farance sends the following report to Roosevelt Island residents. This message was also published as the RIRA column in the 2/21/09 Main Street WIRE (PDF File). Mr. Farance addresses issues on the proposed Eastwood/Roosevelt Landings Submetering, RIOC Budget Analysis, PS/IS 217, Public Purpose Funds and the Red Bus.
1. Temporary relief for Roosevelt Landings (Eastwood) residents on submetering. Two weeks ago, Roosevelt Landings residents filled the RIRA Common Council meeting and requested RIRA to take action. I thank Assemblymen Kellner and his staff, RIRA Housing Committee Co-Chairs Lynn Strong-Shinozaki and Joyce Mincheff, Roosevelt Landings Residents Association Chair Joyce Mincheff, and fellow RL Common Councilers Helen Chrivas and Russell Fields. On Friday, February 6, Lynn and I visited Urban American offices to deliver a clear message: (1) the issue isn't submetering per se, but raising housing costs, (2) a typical 2-bedroom apartment uses approximately $500 in energy costs, yet the subsidy is only $100-$200 which makes this, effectively, and increase in housing costs, (3) Rand Engineering did a study at Island House (similar construction as RL) and estimated only 10% energy reduction for submetering, (4) heaters need to have thermostats (who would manually adjust your heat for energy efficiency while you sleep?), and most importantly (5) the residents of Roosevelt Island, not just Eastwood, will not stand for these unconscionable increases. Hopefully, temporary stay ordered by the PSC will evolve into a permanent solution.

2. RIOC Budget Analysis Committee. The committee includes Matthew Katz (former RIRA President), Steve Marcus (former RIRA President), Geof Kerr (RIRA Auditor), Margie Smith (Chair of RIRA Government Relations Committee) and is co-chaired by myself and Russell Fields (RIRA Treasurer). As a reminder, RIOC doesn't want to do financial planning for more than 5 years, they're spending is large ($72 million in capital improvements over the next 5 years), and their cash balance will be low (in relative terms) for supporting the maintenance of the Island through 2068 — we might run out of money in 10 to 20 years. We have met twice with RIOC. We have not yet received the financial information we requested, such as Excel spreadsheets (to explore the basis for decision-making), database dump, and other supporting documents. I've attached E-mail correspondence. RIOC President Steve Shane says: (1) RIOC expects to spend about $5-8 million annually on capital improvements, (2) Island maintenance averages about $3-4 million a year and there is no need for more details because we can't predict when a piece of infrastructure will break, (3) if there is some extraordinary confluence of maintenance costs, we'll ask the City and State for financial help. Honestly, that's not a financial plan — that's flying by the seat of your pants and wishful thinking for City and State funding. It is clear that we won't have the $72 million to spend next time it in the next 10, 15, or 25 years. It is possible to plan better but RIOC chooses not to (RIOC Board member Michael Shinozaki agrees). If you look at all the financial disasters in our present economy and their causes, such as Optimistic Planning for Sunny Days and Short-Range Myopia Because The Disaster Will Strike After I'm Gone, you'll find them right here on Roosevelt Island. What to do? I spoke with Assemblymen Kellner's office and they suggested: (1) asking RIOC board members to insist upon a longer perspective before approving the current budget (directors: you have a fiduciary responsibility!), (2) contacting the State Comptrollers office, the Governor's budget office, and/or the Inspector General.

3. PS/IS 217 Principal to Address RIRA Common Council. Mandana Beckman is planning on addressing the March 4 RIRA Common Council meeting. We look forward to productive collaboration between PS/IS 217 and RIRA.

4. Public Purpose Grants. We received 8 grant applications. Steve Marcus is heading the RIRA subcommittee to review the applications. RIRA expects to make recommendations to RIOC on March 4 and RIOC has this agenda item on its March 26 board meeting.

5. Red bus service still poor. As many of us point out, having a GPS or a bus stop status sign doesn't make the buses run better. For example, on Tuesday night, the bus arrives at Good Shepherd at 7:43 PM (later than what the GPS system reports), which is just enough time to miss the 7:45 tram, which adds another 15 minutes to travel time. When we arrive at the tram, there are three buses (see picture): the 7:45 tram is unloading into the first bus, the second bus will wait another 15 minutes, and our bus will wait 30 minutes. Translated: two buses are sitting idle not servicing other riders on the Island, thus we wait a long while for buses. The GPS system doesn't help, only RIOC management can help (but continues to refuse).
Also, below are Mr. Farance's remarks made to the RIOC Board during the Town Hall portion of the 2/19 RIOC Board of Directors meeting concerning RIOC's financial and budgetary process.
Hello, I'm Frank Farance, President of RIRA

Today, I'd like to express several concerns about financial matters about RIOC.

RIRA has strong concerns about the financial viability of RIOC and we've formed a subcommittee to provide this kind of analysis. So far our concerns are not yet resolved. We have requested information, including spreadsheets, supporting financial data, etc., which RIOC said it will provide, yet we have not yet received the information in a timely manner. Continually, we see a lack of appropriate methodology. For example, RIOC refuses to commit to long-term financial planning for capital projects ... RIOC's methodology is "we're spending about $3-4 million, who can predict when a pipe will break, so why plan?". Based upon that reasoning, the profession of actuaries would not exist. Likewise, DHCR wouldn't be asking for 10-20 year budgets from Mitchell-Lama buildings, which include similar kinds of infrastructure with the same kind of risk -- who can tell exactly which year a 15-year elevator will break, but it is properly budgeted in a long term plan. If this kind of planning is mandated for DHCR, why does RIOC pretend such planning is impossible?

Today, RIOC announced a $20 million budgetary mistake. Could this be a direct result of RIOC's lack of financial methodology? RIOC CFO Steve Chironis says that your budget is comprise of a dozen of individual files -- not a single linked file. This kind of methodology would not pass an Excel 101 class and would not pass muster for any financial office. Had RIOC been more cooperative on sharing data in appropriate financial data formats (not PDF), these kinds of mistakes might have been identified a week after the budget had been released, not a month and a half later. What other mistakes exist? Again, RIOC still has not provided the financial information in a timely manner.

So now RIOC is off by 50% in its cash projections. Your spending $72 million in the next 5-year cycle, you'll be left with $19 million in the bank. What happens in 20 to 25 years when you have to spent $72 million again ... and again in the 20 to 25 years after that?

If you look at all the financial disasters in our present economy and their causes, such as Optimistic Planning for Sunny Days and Short-Range Myopia Because The Disaster Will Strike After I'm Gone, you'll find them right here on Roosevelt Island.

Remember, RIOC staff **chooses** not to use accepted financial planning methodology and rationalizes this by saying "the State of New York does not require it". Directors, how do you square this with your fiduciary responsibility. New York State, why do you find this acceptable?

Assemblymen Kellner's office has two suggestions:

Suggestion #1: Asking RIOC board members to insist upon informing yourself with longer perspective before approving the current budget.

Suggestion #2: Contacting the State Comptrollers office, the Governor's budget office, and/or the Inspector General.

Today, I hope the RIOC board members immediately act upon suggestion #1. And I hope RIOC immediately provides RIRA with the financial information.

Thank you.
The web cast of the Board of Directors meeting is available here, but the Town Hall portion of the evening is not web cast.

Resident Creates Roosevelt Island Google Search Engine - Every RI Question Can Now Be Answered?



All of your Roosevelt Island questions may now be more easily answered, well maybe not all but many, because Roosevelt Island resident Vini Fortuna has created a Roosevelt Island Google Search engine. Vini writes:
I'm writing to let you know that I've created a Google Custom Search Engine for Roosevelt Island.

It seems really useful for Roosevelt Island residents. You should give it a try. Some interesting queries are: [submetering], [soccer field], [dance], [cats].

You may restrict your results to Blogs only, RIOC only or The Wire only, but it usually searches many more sites. The search engine is also easily embeddable in any page.

While I'm here, I thought I might enjoy this panoramic photo I've found.
That is a cool photo. It is by artist Joergen Geerds who has done quite a bit of work from Roosevelt Island and has been the subject of several posts.