Thursday, January 27, 2022

Former Roosevelt Island Resident David Kapell Resigns From RIOC Board Shortly After NY State Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright Urged Him To Do So - Seawright And Senator Jose Serrano Introduce Legislation Requiring RI Residents On RIOC Board Who Move Off The Island To Resign

On January 24 I asked: 

... Will former Roosevelt Island resident Dave Kapell still be a member of the RIOC Board for the January 27 meeting? Stay tuned....

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) announced today via Twitter that Mr. Kappel resigned as a member of the RIOC Board of Directors:

According to the RIOC Twitter announcement: 

It has been a privilege to have served with you all for these past three years. But new professional obligations will prevent me from effectively executing my duties to RIOC, said Kapell.

Mr Kapell's resignation follows the January 10 introduction of legislation by NY State Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright and State Senator Jose Serrano to, among other provisions:

... Clarify the residency requirement for certain public appointments to the board of directors of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation and stipulate for their immediate resignation from the board upon the termination of such residency; 

Provide for the appointment of a successor within 60 days when a board vacancy occurs within an unexpired term;...

Mr Kapell's resignation also comes three days after Ms Seawright called for the resignation of RIOC Board members who are no longer residents of Roosevelt Island. According to Ms Seawright:

The purpose and the spirit of the legislation I am proposing with Senator Serrano is to ensure that a majority of the board members are residents of Roosevelt Island. Any resident serving on the board who moves off the Island should step down and allow a qualified resident to serve.

As reported last October 20:

... Roosevelt Island democratic representation suffered another setback yesterday when 1 of two Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Directors who are no longer Roosevelt Island residents, David Kapell, chose to remain on the Board with the apparent approval, or indifference, of Governor Hochul and RIOC.

RIOC announced yesterday:

Jeffrey Escobar is tendering his resignation from the Board of Directors of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation due to his change in residency. Confirmed by the Senate on June 20, 2019, Mr. Escobar held one of five public member board seats designated for Roosevelt Island residents. RIOC truly appreciates Mr. Escobar’s service and contributions to the RIOC Board of Directors and the Roosevelt Island community. His presence and input will be greatly missed. 

David Kapell remains a duly appointed member of the Board of Directors of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation. Confirmed by the Senate on June 20, 2019, Mr. Kapell holds one of the two public member board seats that do not carry a residency requirement. RIOC’s board and the community as a whole benefit from Mr. Kapell’s dedication to Roosevelt Island and we thank him for his continued service.

Both Mr Kapell and Mr Escobar moved from Roosevelt Island about a year ago yet remained on the RIOC Board until Mr Escobar's resignation yesterday....

On January 7, I asked RIOC:

Is Dave Kapell still a member of the RIOC Board of Directors?

His name was not called by RIOC General Counsel Gretchen Robinson during the December 29 RIOC Board Of Directors meeting Roll Call.

My understanding is that all Directors of the Board have their names called during Roll Call whether they are present or not....

RIOC Public Information Officer Amy Smith replied January 13:

Yes, Mr. Kapell is still on our board of directors.
A RIOC Board meeting scheduled for today was cancelled Tuesday, January 25.

More info about RIOC Board governance and Roosevelt Island residency requirements for RIOC Board members at this prior article.