Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Roosevelt Island Residents Invited To NYPD 114 Precinct Sector David Neighborhood Coordination Officers Safety Summit May 25 At Queens Astoria Library

Roosevelt Island is part of the NYPD 114 Precinct Sector David. On Thursday, May 25, the NYPD 114 precinct is hosting a Sector David Neighborhood Coordination Officers (NCO) Safety Summit at the Queens Library in Astoria, 37-44 21 Street from 7-8:30 PM.

Roosevelt Island residents are encouraged to attend the NCO Safety Summit. NYPD's 114 Precinct Sector David coverage includes Astoria Park South to Queens Plaza North from the West Side of 21 Street to Main Street on Roosevelt Island.

Image From Astoria Post

According to the NYPD 114 Precinct web site:
Neighborhood Coordination Officers, or NCOs, are your local problem solvers. They spend all their working hours within the confines of their assigned sectors, actively engaging with local community members and residents. They get to know the neighborhood, its people, and its problems extremely well....

NYPD 114 Precinct Sergeant Brian Andruszkiewicz adds:
The 114 Precinct Neighborhood Coordination Officers have set up a safety meeting to discuss some community concerns and some ideas that you have to make your community a safer place.
NYPD 114 Precinct Deputy Inspector Peter Fortune

 reported in this April 13 post:
... The 114th Precinct went to the new module of community based policing in October 2016. This module of policing is broken down into Steady Sector Officer's, Neighborhood Coordination Officer's (NCO's) and response auto's.

Roosevelt Island is zoned in Sector David (sectors are defined zones within a command) and has two (2) permanent NCO's assigned to cover that sector.

Steady sectors are given several hours a tour "off-patrol" time, meaning they attend community based meetings, conduct community outreach, or whatever else specific to their sector needs to be addressed. The NCO's are tasked with coordinating with the residents in their sector, such as; attending community based meetings, identifying specific community issues, formulating solutions to those problems, just to name a few....

... Roosevelt Island not only has two (2) Officers or NCO's assigned, they now have steady sector cops patrolling the area as well. This means the same cops patrolling the Island on a regular basis... This allows for stronger relationships between my officers and the residents of Roosevelt Island....

... The NYPD 114 precinct NCO office # 718-626-2708

NCO's assigned to Roosevelt Island:

PO Keith Matthes (

PO Joseph Esposito (
Deputy Inspector Fortune encourages Roosevelt Island residents to get to know the NCO's assigned to our community and let them know about specific problems and issues.

Many of the issues concerning Queens residents of Sector David are different than those on Roosevelt Island. Officers Matthes and Esposito plan on attending a future Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee meeting to hear our specific concerns.

New Roosevelt Island Park & Picnic Benches/BBQ Grills/ Water Fountains, Youth Center Roof Replacement, RISA Funding & Board Member Appointment Letter On Agenda Of RIOC Directors Meeting May 25 - Public Comment Period Too

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors will meet tomorrow evening, May 25 at the Cultural Center (548 Main Street).

 Image Of RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting

Prior to the start of the RIOC Board meeting, there will be a public comment period. Sign up here to speak at the meeting.

Among the items on the RIOC Board meeting Agenda are:
  • Roosevelt Island Youth Center Roof Replacement,
  • New Water Fountains, Park Benches, BBQ Grills & Picnic Tables,
  • Roosevelt Island Seniors Association Funding and
  • Letter To NY State on new Board Member recruitment.
Below is the full Agenda:





5:30 P.M.[1]

I. Call to Order

II. Roll Call

III. Approval of Minutes

1. April 20, 2017 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)

IV. Old Business

V. New Business

1. Authorization to Enter into Contract for Roof Replacement at the Roosevelt Island Youth Center (Board Action Required – Materials to Follow)

2. Ratification of Contract with Regimental Contracting, LLC. for Purchase and Installation of Water Fountains, Park Benches, Barbeque Grills, and Picnic Tables at Roosevelt Island Parks (Board Action Required)

3. Authorization of Expenditure of Funds for Roosevelt Island Senior Association (Board Action Required)

4. Approval of the Governance Committee Letter to New York State Center for Recruitment And Public Service on Assisting with Board Member Appointments (Board Action Required)

5. President’s Report

6. Committee Reports

a. Audit Committee

b. Governance Committee

c. Operations Advisory Committee

d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee

7. Public Safety Report

VI. Adjournment

[1] The RIOC Board Meeting will commence following a public comment period. The public comment period is not part of the meeting.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Hey RIOC, Please Mow Grass Inside Roosevelt Island Octagon Dog Run Asks Resident

According to the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse:

RIRA Youth & Education Committee Asks A Roosevelt Island Moment Of Silence For Manchester England Concert Terrorism Victims

A message from Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Child, Youth & Education Ad Hoc Committee Co-Chairs Adib Mansour & Anne Heskel:
RIRA’s Children, Youth & Education Committee asks everyone to take a moment of silence for the ruthless targeting of the children and youth around the globe and in particular, the concert goers in Manchester England. We are saddened by this event and pray for an end to violence against the youth.

With Love,

Roosevelt Island Disabled Association Monthly Flea Market May 27, Come Browse & See Bargains - Tables Available To Rent Too

Wendy Hersh reports:

The Roosevelt Island Disabled Association will be running a flea market once a month at Good Shepherd Church plaza from May 27th to September...Renting tables now

For more information, please email.

You can also contact Pilar or Lisa at the RI Senior Center Carter Burden Network (546 Main Street)

Monday, May 22, 2017

No Roosevelt Island F Train Subway Service To Manhattan Late Night Monday To Friday May 22-26

According to the MTA:

F Coney Island-bound trains run via the E from Roosevelt Av to 5 Av/53 St Late Nights, 9:45 PM to 5 AM, Mon to Fri, May 22 - 26

Trains resume regular service at 47-50 Sts.

No Coney Island-bound service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St and 57 St.

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) adds:
The MTA has issued a weeknight service advisory, No Manhattan bound F train service from 9:45PM to 5AM, each night from Monday, May 22 through Friday, May 26, 2017.

Please plan your travel accordingly and visit or call 511 for more information. For electronic updates on F Train service, sign up for MTA Alerts at

Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 Courtyard Garbage Creates 5 Star Hotel For Hundreds Of Rats Charges Activist With NYC Rat Academy Training - NYC Department Of Health To Investigate Says Council Member Kallos' Office

According to Roosevelt Island activist Frank Farance, Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 courtyard has become a:


Mr Farance's description is from his comment to this April 28 post which included statement from a 4 River Road Tenant Tipster that:
PS/IS 217 doesn't put their garbage in containers and it's a playground for rats...
Responding to my inquiry about the the courtyard garbage and rats, PS/IS 217 Principal Mandana Beckman replied:
... Despite raising concerns with the NY Department of Sanitation, 217 has been advised by the Sanitation Department that 217 is not permitted to use dumpsters and the Sanitation Department from Queens does not always come to remove the school's garbage on the scheduled days.

We look forward to working with the community to improve the situation. We also look forward to working with our PTA, students, parents and members of the community to replant and rebuild this Spring.
Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 PTA President Erin Olavesen adds:
217 is following the protocol of the Department of Sanitation. We have tried without success to have them consider an alternative such as a small dumpster. I know you have looped Ben Kallos in and the PTA and administration are also interested in seeing if he can help.

The DOE has come out to inspect the area and we are waiting to see what solutions are possible in creating a safe, clean egress.
As a mom, I absolutely understand the concerns with the rat situation behind the school. But it is something the school is proactively working to address. The Department of Education was out a few days ago in fact to assess the situation. (It wasn't possible to access all of the burrows until the roots of the removed trees were ground down, which was just recently completed.)

Additionally, the sanitation company that the DOE uses for our school does not permit the school to place its trash in plastic bins or to place a gate around it. The school is required to leave it in bags.

It's frustrating waiting for the wheels of the DOE system to turn. If anyone has specific questions or concerns, or has suggestions for solving these issue more quickly, I welcome you to contact me directly.
On May 18, 4 River Road Tipster Tenant reported:
I just watched a 217 kitchen worker throw 2 bags of food waste right on top of the rat trash pile just a few feet away from their cafeteria- a couple people from the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) came by to look at the alley and the rats...
A few hours later 4 River Road Tipster Tenant followed up:
Rira people were out looking at it, but after they left I saw the worker throw 2 more fresh bags of cafeteria garbage on to the pile.
Interesting- the trash is gone now! THere were at least 6 bags of it around noon...
Today, Mr Farance shares these photos taken yesterday (Sunday May 21) at the PS/IS 217 courtyard and reports:
PS/IS 217, Principal Mandana Beckman, PTA Allow More Vermin: Mosquitoes (Zika/West Nile?), Pigeons, Ants, and Bigger Rat Colonies.

More dumping food garbage, more rats ripping into bags,

very big ant problem,

pigeons found a new home, and rat colony appears to go further back to the plants on the west side of school (promenade).

I think the fly/mosquito problem is yet another health hazard.

The walls are swarming with young flies/mosquitoes. Given the food, moist soil, and standing water/liquids, the school might be a good breeding ground for flies/mosquitoes. (As a CERT member, I did Zika/West-Nile training last year, these are the kinds of conditions they asked us to report.)

- Does PS/IS 217 dump open garbage? Yes.
- Is this something the Principal can do something about? Yes, e.g., don't dump open garbage on top of the rat colonies, but it in the garbage area.
- Is this something the PTA can do something about? Yes, it can report the problem, it can complain to the principal.

Obviously, if these trivial solutions are not being done to reduce the hazard, the Principal/PTA doesn't care, or is ineffectual. Merchants on Roosevelt Island have been more responsible than PS/IS 217.

There's open food garbage left out for two days, that is rat infested, and now we have flies, mosquitoes, ants, and pigeons. Nothing you can do about that? Baloney!

And how do you feel about your neighbors in 2-4 River Road having to live with your garbage? How to you feel about potential Zika virus breeding ground and pregnant mothers?
Mr. Farance adds:
Recently, I did my Rat Academy training (yes, that's what it is called) on waste/rodent management as taught by NYC Department of Health (DoHMH) and Department of Sanitation (DSNY)....
RIRA's Island Services Committee Chair Aaron Hamburger writes today:
We are actively working on the problem. We've notified both the Dept. of Sanitation and the Board of Health and hope they will inspect the site soon. As you know, any trash outside, by New York City regulations, must be put in containers or bins that are tightly closed to prevent rats from getting to the waste food.

We also have a meeting with RIOC's President this Friday and are trying to get a meeting with PS 217's Principal.
NYC Council Member Ben Kallos' staff advises today that the NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene:
...has just informed us that they are in the process of scheduling a walkthrough to see conditions.
Manhattan Community Board 8 program CB 8 Speaks recently interviewed Caroline Bragdon, Director of Neighborhood Intervention - NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene's Bureau of Veterinary & Pest Control on the Rat Academy.

Watch below. At the 24 minute 30 second mark, a discussion of what schools can do to properly remove garbage and control rat infestation.

Some supporters of PS/IS 217 have objected to Mr. Farance publicly reporting on the rat problem in the PS/IS 217 courtyard. For instance, one supporter asks Mr. Farance:
Why do you need to scare new families who intend to have their children there next year?! I have one child there and I will have my other child starting in the next school year....

I simply love the school! My child is very happy there, the teachers are amazing and I had the opportunity to meet other families and make new friends!

Rats?! We live in NYC!!! We see rats everywhere! Subway, streets , everywhere! If you go for a walk on Roosevelt Island you definitely see rats! Do you think they do not exist in other schools?! Yes, they do!

Regarding the PTA, Erin is doing her best and as she mentioned here, they are doing their best to solve the situation!

Please do not put more ashes into the fire....
My view is that without Mr. Farance calling attention to this issue, nothing would get done to solve the problem, or it would take much longer to be addressed.

More at April 28 post comments. 

UPDATE 5/23 -According to the 4 River Road Tenant Tipster this morning:
Clearly there's food waste from breakfast on some of these bags

Why is it taking 217/the city agencies so long to address this?
Roosevelt Island Public Safety was issuing tickets to cars parked in the PS/IS 217 Courtyard this morning. 4 River Road Tenant Tipster adds:
I saw a PSD person out there this am and they also just drove down that alley which rarely happens.

They are NYPD parking tickets- it looks like many were issued- multiple cars, some double parked...
By this afternoon the Courtyard was cleaned up.

UPDATE 7:50 PM - At 6:30 PM, the courtyard looked like this.

Nathan Franks Hot Dog Vendor Kiosk Sets Up Shop At The Roosevelt Island Tram -Come Get Your Chilli Dogs And Cheesy Fries

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reported yesterday:

A Nathans Franks Food Vendor Kiosk showed up

at the Roosevelt Island Tram Plaza yesterday selling a variety of Hot Dogs and Fries with your choice of Chilli, Cheese, Saurerkraut and more. The Nathans Franks Kiosk was very popular with tourists getting off the Tram.

Take a look at the menu below.

The Nathan Franks vendor said he plans to be a regular on Roosevelt Island, returning every day.

I suggested that the Nathan Franks Kiosk move next to the subway across from Starbucks

where the other Food Trucks park on Roosevelt Island

so that residents can enjoy Chilli Dogs at the East River Pier

outdoor tables

and chairs.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Roosevelt Island Bike Caravan On A Beautiful Sunday In May

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports:

Here comes the Bicycle Caravan down Main Street.