Saturday, March 28, 2015

Scenes From A Snowy Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt Today - Kids, Bunnies, Eggs & Good Times

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Easter Egg Hunt

Image From Anamaria Sudarov

took place today at the Manhattan Park lawn with the Easter Bunny greeting kids
Image From Jacqueline Schott

of all ages

Image From Joceyln Lavallo

who filled their bags with tiny bunnies.

Image From Anamaria Sudarov

It was a cold and snowy Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt today but that didn't stop the fun.
Nick Turner shares this video of the Roosevelt Island Snowy Easter Egg Hunt and notes:
Roosevelt Island's 2015 Easter egg hunt gets an unwelcome guest: snow. A good day for pinwheels, though

RIRA worked with the Girl Scouts and other Roosevelt Island organizations to stage today's Easter Egg Hunt. RIRA's Social, Cultural & Educational Committee Chair Lynn Strong- Shinozaki shares this picture taken before the Easter Egg Hunt

Image From Lynn Strong-Shinozaki

and reports:
Getting ready with the Girl Scouts
More preparations for the Easter Egg Hunt at this previous post.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Good News - 7th Weekend Of Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan - Bad News, Possibly Crowded Tram Cabins As Yelp Recommends Riding The Tram As Thing To Do In NYC This Week

Good news. According to the MTA Weekender, there will be Roosevelt Island F train service

to and from Manhattan this weekend.

That's 7 weekends in a row.

Potentially bad news - Yelp recommends riding the Tram as thing to do this week in NYC. Hopefully, will not create long waits and crowded tram cabins.

If the cabins are crowded this weekend, please heed plea from the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse;

to move into the cabin.

RIOC Approves Agreement For Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance Use Of Roosevelt Island Cultural Center Space For Rest Of Year - Also Upcoming Construction Projects, New Con Ed High Pressure Gas Line & Community Volunteer Efforts

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors approved an agreement with the Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance (MST&DA)

Image Of MST&DA Cultural Center Entrance

for the use of the newly renovated Cultural Center space

Image Of Cultural Center Entrance

during last evening's March 26 Board meeting (full webcast of meeting here).

RIOC President Charlene Indelicato reported that the agreement is a non exclusive use of the theater space by MST&DA until the end of 2015 at which time a Request For Proposals (RFP) will be issued for the space. Ms Indelicato noted that the history of MST&DA will be considered in evaluating the Cultural Center RFP.

Here's what Ms. Indelicato said:

Ms Indelicato also reported on the Cultural Center fee schedule, upcoming construction projects from Cornell, Riverwalk Building 7 and new Con Ed High Pressure Gas line to be installed as well as community volunteer efforts.

RIOC Director Howard Polivy provided more info about the construction projects, including Con Ed Gas Line, and asked for community patience during the needed work.

RIOC Community Relations Specialist Erica Spencer-El added:
...last night the board approved a non-exclusive license agreement for use of portions of the Cultural Center (the theater, workshop and theater storage room) at no cost in exchange for MST&DA to operate and maintain the space. MST&DA will be required to pay the non-profit hourly rate (see below) for areas outside of the agreed license.
Ms. Spencer-El also provided the Cultural Center Fee Schedule below

and this list of organizations interested in using the Cultural Center Space:
1) Zalman Duchman,
2) Nina Lublin
3) RI Jewish Congregation
4) RI Explorers
5) Hope Church
6) Islamic Society of RI
7) Assembly member Seawright
8) RI Parents Network
9) Ashley Heart on behalf of a local Japanese group
10) Island Kids.
Here's the new Roosevelt Island Cultural Center Theater,

Dance floors

and dressing room.

More on the MST&DA agreement with RIOC at this previous post.

Brooklyn Organic Coffee & Tea Food Truck Coming To Roosevelt Island On Weekends, Serving Tea, Coffee, Salads, Oatmeals, Smoothies & Juices - Maybe Gourmet Meat Pies From Dub Pies Too?

Food trucks are coming back to Roosevelt Island. Well, at least one for now. The Brooklyn Organic Coffee & Tea Truck will be setting up shop weekends on Roosevelt Island starting tomorrow, Saturday March 28.

Image Of Brooklyn Organic Coffee & Tea Truck Last Wednesday Checking Out Roosevelt Island

Their menu includes organic coffee, tea, salads, oatmeals, smoothies, freshly squeezed juices and flavored lemonades.

I spoke to the Brooklyn Organic Food Truck owners last Wednesday who said they will be testing out locations near the Tram and Subway station and plan to be at the Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt event on Saturday by Manhattan Park.

As previously reported, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) is seeking Food Truck Operators to serve the East River Waterfront Pier area this summer.

 Outdoor Tables & Chairs At Waterfront Pier Last Summer

Brooklyn based Dub Pies

Image From Dub Pies

is interested in bringing their New Zealand/Australian gourmet meat pies to Roosevelt Island
Maybe this summer, Food Trucks on Roosevelt Island will be done right.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano Supports Earth Hour 2015 And Hosts Panel Discussion On Climate Change - Turn Off Lights And Non Essential Electronics For One Hour To Impact Climate Change

 Image From Earth Hour 2015

Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano reports on his resolution in support of Earth Hour 2015
and hosts a panel discussion:
... with Marcia Bystryn, President of New York League of Conservation Voters and Aurash Khawarzad, Policy Coordinator at WE ACT for Environmental Justice to discuss Earth Hour and issues surrounding climate change....

Represent NYC Episode 11: Earth Hour & Climate Change with NYS Senator José Serrano from Manhattan Neighborhood Network on Vimeo.

According to Earth Hour 2015:
The lights-off event

Earth Hour started in 2007 as a lights-off event to raise awareness about climate change. We have grown to engage more than 162 countries and territories worldwide. Earth Hour is on Saturday, 28 March 2015 at 8:30 pm local time.
Watch the lights go out last year.

Roosevelt Island Historical Society President Judy Berdy Honored At Women Of Distinction Awards By Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright - Ms. Berdy Urges Funding For Local Organizations By Hudson Related, Cornell And Other Real Estate Developers

Roosevelt Island Historical Society President Judy Berdy

Image Of Ms Berdy And Assembly Member Seawright From Lynn Strong-Shinozaki

was honored at the Women Of Distinction Awards ceremony hosted by NY State 76 District Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright .
According to this Press Release from Assembly Member Seawright's office:
In honor of Women’s History Month, Assembly Member Rebecca A. Seawright (D-Manhattan) hosted a Women of Distinction Awards ceremony to recognize the extraordinary women on the Upper East Side and Roosevelt Island. The awards ceremony was held at the Women’s History Celebration and ribbon cutting for the Community Office Grand Opening reception held at 1365 First Avenue on Friday, March 20th at 2pm. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, State Senator Jose Serrano, Council Member Ben Kallos and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer were in attendance to recognize the outstanding work of the local nominees and to welcome the new community office. Mrs. Brown entertained the crowd with a poetry reading.

“I applaud the achievements, leadership and noteworthy contributions of women in our community,” said Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright. “It is important to recognize the women who came before us like Julia Richman, the first Jewish principal, first woman to be appointed a District Superintendent and the namesake of a fabulous public high school in my district. We stand taller because we stand on the shoulders of the women who came before us and they deserve to be recognized. I am thrilled to honor the following Women of Distinction:

Judith E. Schneider

Patricia Saunders

Barbara Chocky

Yvonne Fitzner

Judith Berdy

Monica Iken-Murphy

Jill Eisner

Helaine Eisenberg

Betty Cooper Wallerstein

Winifred Cudjoe

Helene Goldfarb

Rebecca Ocampo”
During March 23 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Governance Committee meeting on Public Purpose Funds, Ms. Berdy explained the time consuming problems of obtaining NYC Council Discretionary Funds and advocated on behalf of local community organizations receiving needed funds from private developers. Ms Berdy made this plea:
... Go to the developers. Get them to donate to the community this year. they all are making lots of money. David Kramer is opening his rental office in 6 weeks... All of these people are making xxxxx good money and Cornell is screwing the community by not giving us a cent....

... If RIOC is stuck for a year, then I think it is time that everyone who has business on this Island, the big corporations, come up and help the community. Because without the community this is nothing. Every single organization was started by people who live on this Island and work on this Island and care about this Island....

... Get the xxxxx developers, get David Kramer. 100 Grand to Monadnock and Related is chicken feed. Get them to contribute....
Ms. Berdy also suggested putting a toll booth on Main Street to charge $100 per cement mixer.

Here's Ms. Berdy's full plea to the RIOC Governance Committee.

An audio web cast of the full March 23 RIOC Governance Committee meeting is here.

Roosevelt Island Main Street Theater, Garden Club And Zipcar Parking License Agreements On Agenda For RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting Today

 Image of Renovated Main Street Theater At Roosevelt Island Cultural Center

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Of Directors meet later today.

Image Of December 2014 RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting

A public comment session is held prior to the start of the meeting. Here is the Agenda:
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a Board of Directors meeting will be held on Thursday, March 26, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. at the Manhattan Park Community Center, 8 River Road, Roosevelt Island, New York, for the purpose of transacting such business as shall come before the Board.

I. Call to Order

II.Roll Call

III. Approval of Minutes

1. February 26, 2015 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)

IV. Old Business

V. New Business

1. Authorization to Ratify and Amend Contract with JFA Insurance Brokerage & Associates, Inc. and Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. for Insurance Brokerage Services (Board Action Required)

2. Authorization to Enter Into Insurance Binders for 2015-16 (Board Action Required)

3. Authorization to Enter Into License and Operating Agreement with the Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance (MSTDA) (Board Action Required)

4. Authorization to Ratify and Amend License Agreement with the Roosevelt Island Garden Club, LTD (RIGC) (Board Action Required)

5. Authorization to Ratify and Amend License Agreement with Riverwalk Landings, LLC for Zipcar Parking at Southtown (Board Action Required)

6. President’s Report

7. Committee Reports

a. Audit Committee

b. Governance Committee

c. Operations Advisory Committee

d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee

8. 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.
Below is an excerpt of the March 19 memo from RIOC President Charlene Indelicato to the RIOC Board in support of the license agreement with the Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance:
... As part of its Master Lease Agreement with the City of New York and its General Development Plan, RIOC’s mission is to develop a “comprehensive system of community facilities” which includes daycare centers for children on the Island, community rooms, and facilities for the elderly and youth, among other things. A comprehensive community also includes initiatives that better the lives of children and families through the creation of programs that enrich its members and yield a more vested, interested community-base.

One such facility is a performing arts theater that provides a source of recreation for the residents of Roosevelt Island. Much like a youth center nurtures children through activities and other learning experiences that greatly add to their growth in becoming responsible adults, a performing arts theater is an integral part of community relations because it offers interesting opportunities that bring its members together. Indeed, theater creates a core place for residents to interact and actively participate in theater productions. For these reasons, RIOC seeks an Island-based theater group to operate the performing arts theater, located at the Cultural Center.

Upon much consideration, The Main Street Theater and Dance Alliance (“MSTDA”) is the appropriate organization to fulfill that task. MSTDA is a community-based theater production group that has served the residents of Roosevelt Island for over thirty years. MSTDA is run by a professional staff, primarily of volunteers, who are also Roosevelt Island residents. MSTDA strives to enhance the community experience by creating high quality performance and dance training opportunities for all members of the Roosevelt Island community....
and the full memo.

RIOC License Agreement With Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance

Below is an excerpt of the March 26 memo from RIOC President Charlene Indelicato to the RIOC Board in support of the license agreement with the Roosevelt Island Garden Club:
... As part of its Mission Statement, RIOC’s mission is to “provide an appropriate level of services to develop and maintain public facilities, open spaces, and commercial facilities,” among other things. As part of its Master Lease with the City of New York, “Open Space Areas” shall be developed as parks. Accordingly, RIOC, in seeking an Island-based gardening group to operate the garden space at Octagon Park, wishes to extend the Permit for Limited Activities on Roosevelt Island License, Waiver of Liability and Indemnity Agreement, Revocable License Agreement, and the Waste Removal Letter Agreement (“The Agreements”) currently in effect with Roosevelt Island Garden Club (“RIGC”), to December 31, 2015.

In 1989, RIOC created a group, consisting of community organizations and Island residents, to develop a comprehensive plan for the landscaping of Octagon Park. In 1990, it was determined by this group that Octagon Park would “include ballfields, community gardens, open lawn areas and an ‘ecological park.’”

RIGC, founded by current and former members of the community in 1975, who had an interest in beautifying the Island, moved its gardens from the Commons Area to Octagon Park, once the development plan for that open space was formulated. RIGC has been operating its garden programs at Octagon Park for over twenty years and consists of Roosevelt Island residents.

Today, RIGC’s website states that its mission is to “manage a community garden in the manner that provides a rewarding and enjoyable gardening experience for its members.” RIGC strives to impart an appreciation for gardening among its members and the Roosevelt Island community and in so doing, manages over 132 gardening plots, including six plots designated for disabled members. Its responsibilities include: Managing the grounds, designating specified hours of operation, implementing waste removal procedures, and maintaining insurance coverage for its programs. RIGC also offers educational classes and workshops to its members and the community, as well as a composting program. And, having a good relationship with Green Thumb, RIGC has also taken advantage of Green Thumb’s gardening amenities, classes, and free supplies

To that end, RIOC wishes to extend the Agreements with RIGC that are due to expire on March 31, 2015, to December 31, 2015.....
and the full memo.

Below is March 11 memo from RIOC's Cyril Opperman to the RIOC Board and President in support of the Zipcar license agreement amendment:
At the June 2010 Board Meeting, the RIOC Board approved a one-year license agreement between the Corporation and the Riverwalk Landing LLC. The purpose of the license agreement was to provide three parking spaces for Zipcar vehicles at the Southtown location. The Zipcar venture proved to be successful on Roosevelt Island, so the original license was amended by the Board in June 2011 and in May 2012. The license was subsequently extended by the Board through May 2013. It was further extended through its current expiration date of April 30, 2015.
As noted, the current one-year Zipcar license expires on April 30, 2015. Therefore, RIOC would like to extend it on the following terms:
  • The number of Zipcar vehicles will remain the same – three (3)
  • The license fee will increase from $192 to $200
  • The license will be extended for an additional one-year period
I recommend the ratification and amendment of Zipcar license agreement with Riverwalk Landing LLC for Board approval on the terms set forth above.
UPDATE 9:15 PM - The RIOC Board of Directors approved Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance license agreement. The Garden Club and Zipcar motions were postponed for a future meeting.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

PS/IS 217 Green Roof And NY Public Library Technology For Hearing Impaired Among Roosevelt Island Projects Eligible For NYC Council Member Ben Kallos $1 Million Participatory Budget Funding

A Green Roof for Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 and technology for hearing impaired people at the Roosevelt Island NY Public Library branch were among the projects showcased last Sunday at the Roosevelt Island Participatory Budgeting Info Expo presented by NYC Council Member Ben Kallos.

I spoke with Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts Emily and Lilly at the Info Expo who described the proposed PS/IS 217 Green Roof.

Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 Principal Mandana Beckman adds:
In 2013, then Borough President Scott Stringer, awarded PS / IS 217 $35,000 for the School Construction Authority (SCA) to conduct a green roof feasibility report. The SCA met with school leadership and heard our wishes for 6,750 Sq. ft. of extended learning space for all curricula on our roof to serve K through 8th grade.

They considered structural work, safety, and design elements to include space for a green environmental science learning hub, an amphitheater for dance, art and theater and a place to explore renewable energy, and tech experiments. The SCA created a professional analysis and working budget and announced it is feasible for PS IS 217 to pursue funding for a green roof.

This was the first important step that allowed us to pursue funding. The SCA estimates $1.5 million and allows for two budget cycles to confirm funds which are historically a collaborative effort across city council and borough president.

In February 2015 we applied to Borough President Gale A. Brewer for capital funding, and now we are delighted that the Green Roof for PS / IS 217 made the Participatory Budget ballot for District 5 where city council member Ben Kallos allows his community to vote on projects important to them.

Only two projects from Roosevelt Island made the ballot so we invite every resident 16 years and older from District 5 to get out and vote. It is free to vote and with heavy competition from the Upper East Side and Midtown East projects more votes could help us make the green roof a reality and garner $500,000 for the project.
The other Roosevelt Island project eligible for Participatory Budget Funds will bring technology for hearing impaired people to the NY Public Library Roosevelt Island branch. Roosevelt Island resident Sharon Berman explains the project. (Sorry for the background noise in video).

Council Member Kallos
was at the Roosevelt Island Info Expo and provides more information about Participatory Budgeting and how to vote for your favorite project.

You can vote for up to 5 projects to be funded.

Here's the ballot with complete list of NYC Council District 5 eligible projects including
Green Roof for PS/IS 217 $500,000
Build a green roof for environmental education at PS/IS 217.
645 Main Street (Roosevelt Island) and

Study of Sight and Sound $35,000

Audio/Visual equipment with audio induction looping for the New York Public Library Roosevelt Island branch.
504 Main Street (Roosevelt Island)
Participatory Budget Funds Voting takes place:
WEEKDAYS, APRIL 13-17: District Office, 244 East 93rd St. 9 A.M. – 6 P.M.
WEEKENDS, APRIL 11-12 & 18-19: District Office, 244 East 93rd St. 12 P.M. – 4 P.M.

MONDAY, APRIL 13: PS/IS 217, 645 Main St., 7:30 A.M. - 10:30 A.M.
TUESDAY, APRIL 14: RI Senior Center, 546 Main St., 10 A.M. - 1 P.M.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 15: RI Public Library, 524 Main St., 3 P.M. – 7 P.M.
SATURDAY, APRIL 18: RI Historical Society, Visitor Kiosk, 11 A.M. - 5 P.M.
and these other locations.

More information available from Council Member Ben Kallos here.

RIRA Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt Saturday March 28 Starting At 10:30 AM - Event Requires Alot Of Preparation By RI Community Groups

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Easter Egg Hunt takes place this Saturday, March 28 at the Manhattan Park Lawn.

Image From RIRA

According to RIRA:
Family fun for Roosevelt Islanders. The Annual Easter Egg Hunt is for children ages Toddler to 8 years old and meets in Manhattan Park. Food and books for all. Fee is $5 per child and maximum $20 per family.
Online pre-registration ended last night. Registration is still available in person today only at PS/IS 217 from 2:45 PM to 4 PM by cash or check or at the event on Saturday by cash only.

RIRA's Social Cultural & Educational Committee Chair Lynn Strong-Shinozaki shares these pictures

and reports:
A lot goes into making a special day for everyone to enjoy.....
Beacon Kids egg stuffing,

Moms making sample bonnets,

Girl Scouts stuffing eggs,

Girl Scouts painting egg posters,

Octagon Basket donation,

Girl Scout Brownie Troop 3001 stuffing eggs

and making Boy Hats

Ms. Shinozaki adds:
The Roosevelt Island Egg Hunt Committee is the proud recipients of a gift of 500 books from Reading Reflections.

They are donating the books because they were so happy to see an early reading initiative that encourages children to be compassionate.
Some scenes from 2013 Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt.

More 2013 Roosevelt Island Easter Egg Hunt scenes here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

RIOC Governance Committee Discusses NY State Authorities Budget Office Policy Guidance And Distribution Of Roosevelt Island Public Purpose Funds - RIOC Tries To Thread Needle Between Complying With Law And Serving Roosevelt Island Community Needs

As reported yesterday the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Governance Committee met last evening to discuss the January 13, 2015 NY State Authorities Budget Office (ABO) Policy Guidance regarding:
... distribution by RIOC of Public Purpose Funds to Roosevelt Island non profit organizations.

In response to my question, RIOC Director Margie Smith answered that RIOC has not received any written instructions from the NY Governor's Office or ABO about the distribution of Public Purpose Funds but believes that the Roosevelt Island Youth Program will receive funding. RIOC President Charlene Indelicato added that RIYP will be funded by RIOC through the end of the year at which time RIOC will probably issue a Request For Proposals for Youth Services.

RIOC does not know if it will be able to distribute funds to Roosevelt Island organizations that have applied for 2015 Public Purpose Funds through the RIRA vetting process.

RIOC Directors discussed the possibility of alternative funding sources for Roosevelt Island non profits organizations including private groups such as Roosevelt Island building owners....
Here's video of the full meeting.

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

An audio web cast of the meeting from RIOC is here.

Roosevelt Island Bike New York Commuting Class Wednesday March 25 - Also, Roosevelt Island Bike NY Spring Kickoff Party, Upcoming Classes & Transportation Survey

Bike New York's Roosevelt Island Community Outreach Manager Caitlin Goodspeed reports:

Learn how to commute via bike! Bike New York will host a Bike Commuting 101 class at Sportspark Lounge on Wednesday, March 25th from 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm.

In this 1.5-hour presentation & discussion, we’ll go over picking the right bike, what to wear so you don’t arrive at work a sweaty mess, what kind of gear you’ll need to haul a change of clothes or ride at night, how and where to lock your bike, and much more.

For more information and to register, please email our Community Outreach Manager, Caitlin Goodspeed, at or call 212-870-2075.

Also at the end of this month we are launching our BuildingxBuilding Initiative, a series of presentations designed to introduce people to Bike New York and all of the wonderful opportunities that we have here on the island. Attendees will also learn important bike safety tips. Light refreshments will be served and along with some fun prizes! Residents should look for flyers in their residence buildings for more information.

We're also in the midst of planning our 2nd Annual Spring Kickoff Party which will happen at the Capobianco basketball court on Saturday, May 30, 2015. The pop-up bike shop will be back for the event along with the bike decorating station, free bike raffle, Bike Guard program, and more!

In addition to our normal schedule of classes at Sportspark and Capobianco basketball court, we've got some new classes on the horizon for kids and families. These classes have been designed to meet the needs of the Roosevelt Island community, a place where growing families are planting their roots.

Learn how to ride a bike before summer arrives! We have FREE bicycle education classes at Sportspark and Capobianco Field throughout the year. From learning how to ride a bike to becoming a confident city cyclist, we offer classes for people of all ages and skill levels. Please visit our website to register for classes and get more information.

Here are our upcoming classes on Roosevelt Island:

Wednesday, March 25: Bike Commuting 101, 6:30pm - 8pm (Sportspark Lounge)
Tuesday, March 31: Learn to Ride - Adults, 10am-12pm, 1pm-3pm (Sportspark Gym)
Sunday, April 12: Learn to Ride - Kids, 1pm - 3pm (Sportspark Outside BB Court)
Wednesday, April 22: Street Skills Class, 6:30pm - 8pm (Sportspark Lounge)
Saturday, May 9: Street Skills Ride, 10am - 1pm (Meet at Sportspark)
Sunday, May 17: Kids' Bicycling Basics, 10am - 1pm (Capobianco Field)
Saturday, May 30: Learn to Ride - Kids, 11am - 1pm (Capobianco Field)
Sunday, June 14: Learn to Ride - Kids, 10am - 12pm (Sportspark Outside BB Court)
Sunday, June 21: Kids' Bicycling Basics, 10am - 1pm (Capobianco Field)

We want to hear from you about transportation on Roosevelt Island! What changes do you want to see? Do you feel comfortable riding a bicycle on the island? Where would you like to see more bike racks? Please let us know what you think by taking our survey. It will take no more than 10 minutes and we would really appreciate it. To access the survey, please click here.
More information available at the Bike NY Roosevelt Island Blog or contact Community Manager Caitlin Goodspeed.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Roosevelt Island Women's Health Organization Celebrates International Women's History Month - Seminar On Spiritual And Financial Empowerment

The Roosevelt Island Women's Health Organization (RIWHO) sends the following invitation for its March 25 Monthly Seminar:


“A journey of overcoming illness, connection to a higher power, achieving financial freedom, through self- determination, and learning to live more productively and fulfilling”

PRECIOUS FOSTER And others Motivational speaker, entrepreneur, community resident

When: March 25, 2015
Where: 546 Main St. 12th fl.
Time: 6:30 p.m. doors open at 6:15

Healthy Refreshments served
De-stress with Meditation


Donations accepted!!!!

First Sign Of Roosevelt Island Spring - Subway Fruit Stand Vendor Returns Today After Winter Hiatus

A sure sign of spring is when the Roosevelt Island Subway Fruit Stand vendor returns from winter hiatus.

Good news - the Fruit Stand is back today next to the Duane Reade and F Subway Station.

Now, all we need is some warm weather.

RIOC Governance Committee Meeting Today On Distribution Of Roosevelt Island Public Purpose Funds - RIRA Passes Motion In Favor Of RIOC PPF Distribution Claiming Money Is Debt Owed To Community By RIOC, Not A State Grant

As previously reported, the annual distribution of approximately $100 Thousand in Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Purpose Funds

to Roosevelt Island non profit organizations has been jeopardized because of the New York State Authorities Budget Office (ABO) January 13, 2015 Policy Guidance Statement saying in part:
... State and local authorities, as defined by Section 2 of the Public Authorities Law, whether created as public benefit corporations or formed as not- for-profit corporations, have only those powers explicitly granted or necessarily implied by statute. Accordingly, state and local authorities may engage in only those activities and exercise those powers which are expressly authorized in law or which are incidental to performing their statutory purposes.

Authorities Budget Office Policy Guidance: This limitation applies to the power of a state or local authority to award its monies in the form of grants and loans to public or private interests. Such financial assistance is prohibited unless expressly authorized in statute....

... A state or local authority, unless otherwise empowered under the law, may not grant or loan its monies to public or private corporations, private businesses or interests, civic associations, charitable groups, educational institutions, not-for- profit corporations, or any other social, religious, fraternal or cultural organization....

... All state and local authorities which, as a matter of practice or policy, grant or loan their monies to such entities without specific legislative authorization are directed to immediately end such practice or policy so as to comply with applicable state law and the opinions of the State Attorney General and State Comptroller.
The RIOC Governance Committee is meeting today to discuss the issue of Roosevelt Island Public Purpose Funds in view of the ABO Policy Guidance. Here's the Agenda for today's Governance Committee meeting.
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Governance Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Monday, March 23, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.


Discussion of the Authorities Budget Office Guidance No 15-01 "Restrictions on Grants and Loans Made by Public Authorities"

Any Other Committee Business That May be Brought Before the Committee


The Open Meetings Law of the State of New York requires that all public bodies conduct meetings, convened for the purpose of officially conducting public business, in a manner open to attendance by the general public to observe and listen.
The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council discussed RIOC Public Purpose Funds during March 4 meeting. RIRA Governance Committee Chair Joyce Short asserted that RIOC Public Purpose Funds are:
... a debt, not a grant, to the community...
meaning that the ABO Policy Guidance prohibiting grants or loans does not apply to distribution of RIOC Public Purpose Funds to Roosevelt Island non profit organizations.

Ms. Short claimed that RIOC previously "squandered" Public Purpose funds originally provided by Manhattan Park as payments in lieu of taxes.

The Public Purpose Funds discussion begins at the 2 minute mark.

Following the discussion, RIRA passed a resolution in favor of RIOC continuing distribution of Public Purpose Funds.

UPDATE 10 PM - Below is a video except from RIOC Governance committee meeting discussion this evening regarding ABO Policy Guidance on distribution by RIOC of Public Purpose Funds to Roosevelt Island non profit organizations.

In response to my question, RIOC Director Margie Smith answered that RIOC has not received any written instructions from the NY Governor's Office or ABO about the distribution of Public Purpose Funds but believes that the Roosevelt Island Youth Program will receive funding. RIOC President Charlene Indelicato added that RIYP will be funded by RIOC through the end of the year at which time RIOC will probably issue a Request For Proposals for Youth Services.

RIOC does not know if it will be able to distribute funds to Roosevelt Island organizations that have applied for 2015 Public Purpose Funds through the RIRA vetting process.

RIOC Directors discussed the possibility of alternative funding sources for Roosevelt Island non profits organizations including private groups such as Roosevelt Island building owners.

Will have complete report and video soon.

UPDATE 3/24 Full video of Governance Committee meeting here.

Roosevelt Island Resident Sally Hamburger Appears On NPR's Sunday Word Puzzle Challenge - She Does Very Well

Janet Falk reports:
Roosevelt Island resident Sally Hamburger participated in the NPR puzzle broadcast on Sunday morning, March 22, at 8:40 am on WNYC.

Each week listeners are asked to solve a word challenge and a winner is selected to play a different word puzzle on the air.

Sally is a crossword puzzle enthusiast, so it was no surprise that she was one of 3,200 people who correctly solved the challenge.

Listen to how she did matching wits with Will Shortz and you can play along
The transcript is here.

UPDATE 11:30 - Roosevelt Island's NYC Council Member Ben Kallos adds:

Roosevelt Island Youth Program Career Center Information Seminar Presented by HANAC Today 6 PM - Resume Writing, Interview Coaching Job/Internship Search & More Mondays 6-8 PM

According to the Roosevelt Island Youth Program (RIYP):
The Roosevelt Island Youth Program is pleased to announce a new service for young professionals, as well as the younger generation helping them be prepared for the future.

The RIYP, in partnership with HANAC (Hellenic American Neighborhood Action Committee) will be holding an informational session on March 23rd at 6pm in the Youth Center to further explain the depth of services we are offering. HANAC’s Christine Suero will be preparing the youth on job trainings, resumé writing and helping students find internships and summer camp jobs.

Those interested can make an appointment with her every Monday between 6 and 8 at the Youth Center building (506 Main Street). We want to prepare our youth and young adults for a better future. Our motto is “Dare to be Great”!

Register here.