April 2009

Organisciak To Journal News "No Pay Cuts, No Job Cuts" But Will Turn Out the Lights

April 17, 2009 - 16:53

CA5080FE-E2E5-4C85-A766-DEBDF304713D.jpgThe Journal News has more school district propaganda up today, courtesy of our old pal Aman Ali. It's Richard Organiciak and John Quinn making the same old tired arguments they have been making for the past month at budget meetings, arguments that even the normally docile school board has rejected.

The only news in the piece is Organisciak's assertion that all salaries will go up and no staff will be let go.

"Everything is tied into ongoing negotiations right now," Organisciak said. "We're negotiating all our contracts with the board and our teachers as a part of a big package. You can't make changes to one without making changes to the other, and vice versa."

The district is working on renewing a contract with its teachers union set to expire in June. Organisciak said the district doesn't anticipate implementing any salary freezes or layoffs next year.

My favorite line is from John Quinn.

SoNo Rockwells Downtown

April 17, 2009 - 15:00

A Rockwellian downtown, the newspaper writes..about Peekskill’s Main Street...trying to create that effect...we have that’s here in New Rochelle where Norman Rockwell walked daily - on our Main Street in SoNoNewRo...his paintings and prints align the walls of the 591 Main Street ReStore...the old Bloomingdale’s building, today’s Davenport Lofts,  stir with successful business people who have amazing Four Freedom pictures and blown up photos of days of old...taking a walk on Main Street, one sees the architecture that today’s famous developers could never recreate, only die for...Bacon of Lincoln Memorial fame, designed the Chase Bank on Lawton and Main Street...the ceilings have to be at least 45 feet high..amazing...

So come to where a real Rockwellian Main Street exists - Rockwell lived here for 30 years...having safe, walkable main streets and Rockwell themes that resound across the country...they are only trying to recreate what Rockwell painted daily, SoNoNewRo Main Street in New Rochelle.

Learn more at SoNo NewRo Online

Attention ! There's No Need to Vote in New Rochelle

April 16, 2009 - 19:44

That's right my friends. I've spoken to the board of ed folks and they assure me there's no need to bother yourself by comming out and voting. Besides, they told me it will be raining that day, so no need to go out and get all wet and everything. They have the only votes they need right now and if any of you regular citizens actually vote, well, you'll just upset the balance they have built. Just give them what they ask for and everything will be allright. Trust me. I know that people on this site have been reporting that the board has been careless with their spending, but afterall, it is their money ,right. I mean, we give it to them. When you give someone a gift, you don't tell them how they should use it right? And how about that D.Polow lady. She told me she NEEDS to spend more money. Wow, I gotta tell you, I love to hand money over to people who ignore me. (just ask my ex-wife:). Cocky, arrogant blowhards like her are usually right, like Madeoff, Paulson, Geightner, Spitzer,Bush, they've all done well, right? Anyhow, I ask you to think about the board for a change and stop thinking about your insignificant self or where you'll get money to pay your bills. Just give them what they ask for and they'll leave us alone. There's just to much talk about these issues,afterall, they obviously know more than you or I about what we can afford. Right?

New Rochelle Schools Cry Poor While Rolling Out New "Laptops for Everyone" Program

April 16, 2009 - 16:24

dellnetbook.jpgChristmas came early for 110 fifth graders at Jefferson Elementary School courtesy of Santa Claus New Rochelle taxpayers. After weeks of claiming that this year's school budget is a "maintenance program" that keeps spending flat (by increasing it by $8,000,000), the City School District of New Rochelle has begun rolling out an OFF-BUDGET program to provide 110 brand new Dell Inspiron Mini laptops to every fifth grader for free. Talk about a good way to buy some school budget votes with taxpayer money! The sounds like about 200 votes right there from some very contented parents.

Somehow, with a budget supposedly cut to the bone, the district has now managed to come up with $39,000 to purchase 110 laptops for every 5th grader at Jefferson Elementary School and has plans to expand the program to every public elementary school in the City. For 1,000 elementary school students this program will end up costing somewhere between $300,000 and $500,000.

My Life in New Rochelle: Tom Roberts

April 15, 2009 - 18:49

Hello my name is Tom Roberts and I have been a resident of New Rochelle, NY for the past 43 years. My father Dr. Donald Roberts was the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church at 50 Pintard Avenue from 1966 to 1984. Currently he lives in Pelham with my mother. No matter where I have been in life or where I have lived I have always felt that New Rochelle was always my home. Living at the manse next to the church we always felt that we were in the middle of all the action in New Rochelle. There were always different community leaders stopping by to see my father. My dad worked with different groups and community organizers to help start July-o- Rama on David’s Island in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s we worked to unify the North Avenue Presbyterian church with the First Presbyterian Church at 50 Pintard Avenue. Both of my parents fed the homeless, started support groups and were real community leaders. New Rochelle was a great city to grow up in during the 1980’s. I worked on the fishing boat Klondike VII and VIII with Pete Pearson and also Lifeguarded at Hudson Park. Over the Years I have worked part time with Janet Guarasci and Nina Shawn-Gainor in the socialization programs for developmentally disabled through the New Rochelle Parks and Recreation Department.

New Rochelle Tea Party Today 5 PM at New Rochelle Marina

April 15, 2009 - 14:15

The Teaparty craze that's been sweeping the nation is coming to New Rochelle today at 5 PM. The event will be held at the On the Waterfront restaurant located at 2 Pelham Road in New Rochelle (directly adjoining the New Rochelle Marina). The event will run from 5 PM to 7 PM. There will be a special “Open-Mic” session for all citizens who want to be heard.

View 2009 Tea Parties in a larger map

An Interview with "Save Our Armory" Co-Chair Peter Parente

April 15, 2009 - 07:38

peter_vfw007.jpgAn interview with Peter Parente, co-chair of the Save Our Armory Committee. Parente has a long personal history with the New Rochelle Naval Armory which, in part, explains his deep passion for his leadership role in the effort to preserve the Armory from the predations of real estate developers and short-sighted politicians.

1. Q.Why did you decide take on the job of Co-chair of the Save Our Armory (SOA) Committee?
    A. I am personally connected to it.  When I was 6, 7 and 8 years old I was a sea cadet there.  I also feel very strongly about my service in the military and serving the country.  Most veterans feel that way when speaking about serving in the military. I was in  this Armory for 8 years in the Marine Corps Reserve and left for Desert Storm from this Armory in l990.  The Armory means a lot to me personally.  The Armory could be used as a memorial for the 300 who have given the ultimate sacrifice of their life for our country.
2. Q. What are some of the major accomplishments of the Save Our Armory Committee?

Have you been to these venues lately?

April 15, 2009 - 05:25

The Westchester Veterans Adaptive Center
The New Rochelle Center for the Performing Arts
The New Rochelle Youth Sports Olympic Games
The New Rochelle Regional Songwriters Symposium
The New Rochelle War Veterans Interpretive Center
The New Rochelle "Go Green" Building and Technology Trade Show
The New Rochelle Center for Opera
The New Rochelle Business and Trade Exposition
The Norman Rockwell "Hometown History" Exhibit
The "New Rochelle - Rich in History" Our Place in History and Culture Through the Years Exhibit
The New Rochelle Children's Outreach Weekend
The New Rochelle Regional Gymnastics Invitational
The New Rochelle Center for Sustainable Design

Each and every one of these venues would end with the same three words - At The Armory - if only there was the commitment to do so. That is ALL that is needed to start, everything else can be worked out. That is how a vision is transformed into reality. That is how all great projects become a success. It is the clarity of that vision that will provide the path to solving the issues

Why Talk of the Sound is Not Going Away

April 14, 2009 - 14:53


Some people - especially the apparatchiks in the New Rochelle School District and various government officials in New Rochelle - have expressed some surprise that Talk of the Sound has been so successful since its launch last summer. We are now getting about 8-10,000 readers a month (and growing) and have a Google Page Rank of 4 (out of 10) which makes Talk of the Sound the #1 New Rochelle hyper-local news site on the Internet and one of the most widely read "New Rochelle" web sites period (e.g., the City's own web site has a Google Page Rank of 5 and the School District's web site is a "4").

Believe it or not Talk of the Sound is a side project for me. Most of my time is spent running an organization called the Media Bloggers Association which has, as its primary mission, to provide legal support services to bloggers. We have defended bloggers in cases involving The New York Times, Associated Press, the State of Maine, Oprah Winfrey and hundreds of others.