March 2010

Term Limits for City Council Proposed by Councilman St. Paul

March 19, 2010 - 13:07

There is always something interesting at New Rochelle city council meetings and the March 16th meeting was no exception. I watched it on channel 27 (Fios). It may even be available online nowadays.

Richard St. Paul brought up three proposals that generated a rousing discussion: term limits for council people; selecting IDA members based on district, rather than at large; and increasing the city emergency reserves from its current $300K amount.

Almost immediately Councilman Fertel actively challenged the ideas. The mayor didn’t like any of the ideas. Others chimed in on either side.

They will discuss these points again next week. What are your inclinations on term limits or the IDA appointments? New blood brings new ideas. It was refreshing for me to watch St. Paul speak. I know it must have been difficult for him, but I applaud his efforts to shake up the status quo. I think more members of the community should be included in the decisions made.

Other items brought up were that the apartments on Lawn Avenue have basement apartments that are only zoned for senior citizens. The owners want that restriction lifted. I thought no basement apartments were allowed in New Rochelle at all.

Downtown parking changes were discussed briefly. Why not disallow overnight parking in city lots? I don't think they are meant for residential use, are they?


March 19, 2010 - 12:16

A early morning police chase 3:50am ended in a tanker truck flipped on it's side in pelham manor.New Rochelle police were chasing a stolen vechile on Boston post road into pelham manor when the driver lost control of the stolen vechile and cutt off a fully loaded tanker truck with gasoline.The trucks own gas tank ruptrued with only a minor spill . The suspect got away and ran on foot into the pelham manor neghiborhood off post road as of 4:25am police were still searching for him.

New Rochelle Schools Transportation Manager Arrested for Drunk Driving, Drugs Found in Vehicle

March 18, 2010 - 15:04

Dianna Wessel.jpgDianna Wessel, 35, of 7 Davenport Road in New Rochelle was arrested last night and charged by New Rochelle police with Driving While Intoxicated. Wessel is the head of transportation services for the City School District of New Rochelle.

According to sources with knowledge of the arrest, a search of the vehicle Wessel was driving turned up marijuana. The police report shows the vehicle was impounded. Under New York State law, the vehicle may be forfeited to authorities.

Sources who were on the scene at the time of the arrest say Wessell had struck three parked vehicles before her vehicle rolled over landing on the roof. Wessell exited the vehicle on her own with no significant injuries. No one else was injured. Based on the extent of the damage witnesses speculated that Wessel must have been driving at a high rate of speed prior to losing control of the vehicle.

The incident occurred just before midnight on St. Patrick's Day, just four blocks from Wessel's resIdence.

Is Mayor Bramson Abusing the Reverse 911 Service for Political Purposes?

March 18, 2010 - 00:42

Mayor.gifSometimes someone somewhere has to point out something everyone somewhat suspects but no one wants to say. So, I will say it.

There is a point at which the Reverse 911 service is no longer the most efficient way to communicate vital information to those who need it and beyond that is another point at which the continued use of a broadcast system to communicate with a tiny fraction of the public is no longer about emergency response and everything about politics.

In his most recent robo-call, Mayor Bramson closed with an apology:

Lastly, I would like to apologize for the frequency of our automated calls. We recognize that these messages are intrusive for those who have full electrical service, but we have no other means of communicating quickly with residents who need information, and we ask for your understanding.

Storm Message 5 - 1,100 Remain without Power, Dry Ice Still Available

March 18, 2010 - 00:28

Another message from Mayor Bramson.

This is Mayor Noam Bramson with an update on emergency storm response for March 17th.

Con Ed has now restored power for roughly 5,400 homes and expects to restore power for an additional 1,100 by the end of the day, leaving about a thousand residents still without service.

If you are among those still without power, it is important that you notify Con Ed by calling 1-800-75-CONED or by logging on to You should do this even if you have previously registered your outage, because as power is restored in large neighborhoods, Con Ed may not automatically be aware of small clusters of homes or single homes within those same neighborhoods that have secondary or tertiary line damage. Registering your address again can help ensure that you are scheduled for repair.

Dry Ice is still available at 90 Beaufort Place behind City Hall. Our senior help line remains open at 235-2363. Other inquiries can be directed to the New Rochelle Emergency Operations Center at 654-2212.

Lastly, I would like to apologize for the frequency of our automated calls.

Plea Deal in Death of New Rochelle Resident Amy Taylor, Louis Nardella, Jr. Sentenced 2-6 Years For Vehicular Manslaughter

March 17, 2010 - 23:18

Louis Nardella, Jr..jpgWestchester County DA released the following statement:


Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced today that Louis Nardella, Jr. (DOB 2/10/84) of 95 Beaumont Circle, Yonkers, New York, pled guilty to the entire indictment that charged him with:

· three counts of Vehicular Manslaughter in the Second Degree, class “D” Felonies,
· two counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree, class “B” Felonies,
· one count of Tampering with Physical Evidence, a class “E” Felony,
· two counts of Driving While Intoxicated, class “A” Misdemeanors,
· one count of Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs, a class “A” Misdemeanor,
· one count of Reckless Driving, a class “A” Misdemeanor,
· and various violations of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law.

Free Concert Featuring Central State University Chorus at Shiloh Baptist Church New Rochelle

March 17, 2010 - 17:37

Central State University Chorus2.jpg

Central State University Chorus.jpgOn Tuesday , March 23Rd at 7 PM there will be a concert to raised funds on behalf of Central State University. A free will offering will be taken. Checks should be made payable to Shiloh Baptist Church c/o Central State University. All donations are tax deductible.You may also donate via our website

For Information Call (914) 636-7440

DeQuincy M. Hentz, Pastor

President Obama said the best way to wage war against poverty is to have a good education. Let's win the war ! Support Shiloh's fundraising efforts for Central State University @

TONIGHT: School Budget Meeting Will Review Teacher Salaries and Benefits

March 16, 2010 - 17:19


Budget cut increased from $3.65mm (-1.56) to $5.0 mm (-1.80) resulting in 35 lay-offs due to news last week of additional cuts in NYS funding. This is in addition to 25 retirements filed, 10-15 more expected plus not filling 10-12 civil service positions.

Korostoff and Massimo going back and forth, line by line through budget starting on page 38.

Tonight is the night when the bulk of school district spending is reviewed. Areas of the budget to covered are salaries and benefits and pensions for Elementary Education, Secondary Education, Pupil Services, Medical, Guidance and Special Education.

Costs related to staff account for about 70% of the total budget.

I would encourage residents to take a good long look at this chart to get an understanding of the disconnect between the proposed budget and the budget adjusted for home values.


As mentioned at the February 11th Budget Input session, it took the district 5 years to get into this mess, it is going to take 5 years to get out of it.