Friday, February 22, 2013

Problems Continue To Mount For Roosevelt Island's Child School Legacy High School - They Give Back Lease For 504 Main Street Art Center After Executive Director Sal Ferrera Resigns And Large Staff Layoffs

Image of 504 Main Street

Reported earlier this month of large staff layoffs at Roosevelt Island's Child School Legacy High School followed by the resignation of its Executive Director Sal Ferrera.

One of Mr. Ferrera's pet projects was developing a Child School Arts Center and Auditorium on the second floor of 504 Main Street with approximately 7 thousand square feet of space (the first floor of the 504 will be location for new Roosevelt Island NY Public Library). The Child School secured a lease from Main Street Master Leaseholder Hudson Related but I learned today from Hudson Related Principal David Kramer that the Child School gave back the lease for 504 Main Street after Mr. Ferrera's resignation.

Mr. Ferrera also resigned his position as Board Director of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC). His controversial appointment by NY State Governor Andrew Cuomo generated outrage by many Roosevelt Island residents.

At the time of his appointment in June 2011, Mr. Ferrera said:
... his reason for wanting to join the RIOC Board was to better integrate the Child School/Legacy High School with the Roosevelt Island community for the benefit of all. He believes that the projects he hopes to initiate at the Child School, such as an Art Center at 504 Main Street, an equestrian center and a boat house will improve the lives for all Roosevelt Island stakeholders....
At the end of Mr. Ferrera's time as a RIOC Director, no Child School Arts Center, no boat house (conflict of interest charges raised in this instance for which Mr. Ferrera later apologized) and no equestrian center.

What does Mr. Ferrera's appointment to the RIOC Board by Governor Cuomo say about the relative merits of Roosevelt Island residents selection of RIOC Board members as opposed to political cronyism appointments by Mr. Cuomo?

I wonder how Governor Cuomo's powerful Secretary Larry Schwartz would answer that question?

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