Recent comments

  • Second New Rochelle Superintendent Search Input Session Takes Place at ALMS   14 weeks 1 day ago
  • Superintendent Search Input Sessions Get Off to Rocky Start at Isaac Young   14 weeks 2 days ago

    So the robo call reached the Spanish-speaking parents around 610pm for the 700pm mtg. Is there an apology in order Mr Lacher?

  • Iona College Announces North Avenue Development Initiatives - Acquisition of Mirage Diner, Cannone's Pizza   14 weeks 2 days ago

    New Rochelle Wings It While Iona College Plots and Plans the future of North Avenue Corridor!

    Demonstrating support for North Avenue development, Iona College announced several North Avenue initiatives including land acquisitions, roadway improvements and a storefront enhancement program. Where is the Demonstration for support from The City of New Rochelle or are we relying on the Iona Plan?

    With the recent activity of Iona College acquiring North Avenue properties it looks like Iona College has set their New Master Plan into action. I think done right this can be a big step towards cleaning up and changing the dynamic of the North Avenue Corridor. However, this vision for the North Avenue Corridor must be a vision agreed upon by The City of New Rochelle, residents, neighbors, taxpayers and then Iona College. Not the other way around. There must be true input and communication not a perceived notion of the same. We saw what happened with Forest City Ratner’s Echo Bay Project. We cannot repeat the secrecy of the past Joint Community-College Planning Commission which was formed back in September 2011.

    What is prompting the development? The press release has stated, since President Nyre's arrival, the College has engaged in a series of community meetings with neighbors and elected officials resulting in renewed support from the College and City of New Rochelle to develop North Avenue.

    Iona College and The City of New Rochelle keep saying that the “Neighborhood Associations and the College are meeting on these things. That is not correct. Does anyone know of any meetings that involved input and true conversation from the neighborhood associations and the neighbors? Iona College hosted an open forum on Monday night 10/7/13. Part of their Campus Master Planning meetings, everyone was invited to learn about the ideas and offer input. This was more about output. I have attended focus groups and planning meetings, I saw none of that during this gathering. No real exchange of ideas and conversation with follow up and dialogue, just we will take note of it comments.

    During the Neighborhood Forum (meeting), nothing was mentioned about any plans as we were told they were only working on the master plan. The elaborate plans, impression and renderings that were shown were only that, Images of ideas and not fact, so we were told. The neighbors questioned the fact that the renderings contained views of several parts of The North Avenue Corridor only to be told that did not mean anything, they were only thoughts and drawings of the way the area could look with Iona College’s input, Another example of being shown what will be done and not asked for an opinion that would be taken seriously.

    They speak of The Joint Planning Committee. The Committee members WERE “expected to refrain from talking to the other members of their neighborhood associations” It was part of the preconditions of the committee that was announced back in September 2011. They may have their own spin on it enough to say that, but it is not correct.

    I spoke about the this exact point to The City Council on 7/10/12 about the problem of representatives not being able to speak about the process to their association members. Council member Tarintino even spoke of the disconnect at the 7/17/12 Council Meeting questioning the issue.

    Iona College and City of New Rochelle on the Road Again!
    By Bob McCaffrey on Sun, 07/01/2012
    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/iona-college-and-city-new-rochell...

    Panel member: Iona dorm is 'too much'
    Councilman disagrees, says proposal is 'a great outcome'
    12:09 AM, Nov. 26, 2012

    http://www.lohud.com/article/20121126/NEWS02/311260040/Panel-member-Iona...

    Iona says dorm planning process was not secretive
    27 November 2012
    http://soundshore.lohudblogs.com/2012/11/27/iona-says-dorm-planning-proc...

    The City Of New Rochelle and Iona College Get Poor Grades, Must Show More Effort and Results in Their Work! By Bob McCaffrey on Thu, 11/29/2012
    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/city-new-rochelle-and-iona-colleg...

    A Big Disconnect, I would be happier if I saw the finished Master Plan from Iona College and The City of New Rochelle’s input to those plans. There could/should be a presentation of the final Master Plan presented by the college and The City of New Rochelle together. As we saw that night, no members of council attended the Neighborhood Forum (meeting). We are facing the exact same planning issues raised in the 1996 Comprehensive Plan.

    Under Planning Issues section in the 1996 Comprehensive Plan:
    Over the past ten to 15 years, Iona College has expanded its student population and its physical campus into the adjacent residential neighborhoods east and west of North Avenue. It renovated a public school for college use, built a dormitory, improved its outdoor athletic field adding permanent seating and acquired properties in adjacent residential neighborhoods for college use. While its population has contracted and stabilized, neighboring communities are still impacted by competition for limited on-street parking spaces. Planned improvements to the campus identified several years ago, such as an expanded library, have the potential to create further tensions with the surrounding neighborhood.

    New Rochelle has had a detailed Comprehensive Plan since 1996 yet we never hear any references to that plan. The only visions and ideas we have seen over the last several years are those of Iona College, Monroe College, Forest City Ratner and the many other developers who have built in The City of New Rochelle on the backs of The New Rochelle Taxpayers. Most do not even come close to the 1996 Comprehensive Plan. We have also seen a major amount of time and money lost by the flawed processes used during the Forest City Echo Bay debacle and others. Something must change and New Rochelle must start to take control of the development and planning process. But first, you need a plan and follow it.

    The closest thing we had as a way of input was something called “EnvisioNR” (“Envision New Rochelle”); this Comprehensive Plan process was developed for the public to have an opportunity to weigh in on important issues. There was a series of meetings held city-wide in June 2012 and on October 3 2012. These meetings were very poorly facilitated at the time. Future meetings were to be planned. I have not seen or heard much about this project except for the few e-mails I got when someone suggested more bike lanes for the umpteenth time. As a matter of fact, Eleanor Sharpe Planning Director for The City of New Rochelle at the time who was the facilitator of EnvisioNR is no longer working for The City of New Rochelle.

    This is not just about Iona College and the dorms. It is about the processes the colleges and developers use along with The City of New Rochelle. The City of New Rochelle has a bad habit of spot zoning and not looking out for the interests of the citizens and neighbors of the many projects they approve. We need to get it right so that the changes benefit all. It can and should be done, but not under the same guidelines and practices. We currently have Luiz Aragon, The New Commissioner of Development for the City of New Rochelle. See what he has to offer. New Rochelle needs to create a neutral group of citizens from all the different Neighborhood Associations. Representation from each district with no ties to any of the past hand selected and biased committee’s with the same predictable outcomes.

    I agree with what Luiz Aragon Commissioner of Development for the City of New Rochelle who said that “adding residential facilities and commercial uses on North Avenue and supporting physical improvements to existing properties will be important initial steps in the revitalization of the North Avenue corridor.” But The City of New Rochelle must maintain control of this process and follow it carefully.

    New Rochelle we have an opportunity to do something good here with a collaborative effort from everyone that has a stake in the North Avenue Corridor, Iona College, Landlords, Store owners, the students, potential customers and most importantly the resident taxpayers of New Rochelle. Take the time to plan and get it right for the sake of the future of New Rochelle.

    “Common Sense for the Common Good”

  • Talk of the Sound's Overly Aggressive SPAM Filter Fixed?   14 weeks 2 days ago

    Testing the filters with an homage to my friend, Monty

  • Talk of the Sound's Overly Aggressive SPAM Filter Fixed?   14 weeks 2 days ago

    I hope this is fixed quickly.

  • Fascinating Dialect Quiz from NY Times based on Harvard Linguist   15 weeks 5 days ago

    Well it seems to have targeted my area fairly well. It identified New York, Yonkers and Jersey City. I hail from The Bronx, and as much as I like to think it is a unique place all its own, it is New York City. I guess my forty two years living here in New Rochelle explain how Yonkers got into the mix. As for Jersey City, I can only assume many NYC residents have moved there and influenced their dialect.

  • Fascinating Dialect Quiz from NY Times based on Harvard Linguist   15 weeks 6 days ago

    It told me my dialect was similar to Newark, Patterson, Jersey City, Philadelphia.

    I was born and raised in New Rochelle.

    My Mom was born and raised in the Bronx, My Mom's parents were born and raised in Manhattan. My maternal Grandfather's paternal ancestors moved to NYC in the 1830's from the UK.

    My Dad was born in Philadelphia, lived in Atlantic City until 7 and then New Rochelle, my Dad's parents were born in Ukraine (Tsarist Russia), but that Grandfather moved to Philadelphia when 2 and learned English there, while that Grandmother moved from Ukraine to Philadelphia when 14 and learned English there. My father and his parents moved to New Rochelle in 1927, when my father was 7 and my Grandparents were in their 20's.

    All in all, the Dialect Quiz was relatviely accurate in my case, at least with the Philadelphia connection. But there is no reason it should connect me with Northern NJ, and should have connected me with the Bronx or Westchester (of which the Bronx was part of until 1898).

    I had one issue with the quiz, where I think it got it wrong. The quiz was unable to distinguish that a Parkway in NY and NJ is not the same as an Interstate such as NY's Thruways and Expressways or NJ's Turnpikes. That was a trick question with no clear answer if you lived in our region.

  • @TalkoftheSound Twinterview: 5 Tweets with Westchester County BOL's @JimMaisano   16 weeks 5 days ago

    Interesting Twinterview!

  • School Budget Input Forums and Budget Review Sessions Set to Begin in January   17 weeks 1 day ago

    What is the sense of these public guidance sessions.

    In the last two budget seasons, we had a bunch of dedicated people spent many hours of their time to go through the budget and to make recommendations.

    The first CAC had lists of detailed points and as far as we know very few to none of these recommendations were acted upon.

    Last years CAC had a more general approach, based on numbers they received at the very last moment at some point in...what... late January... which were not even actual numbers but only budgeted numbers.

    As someone that has consistently fought for change in waste management and the gross waste of money in that department, I am discouraged. Past experience shows clearly, that even though public input is sought it is not truly considered.

    So I am asking, what is the sense?

  • Jared Rice Dismisses Talk of the Sound Reporting   17 weeks 2 days ago

    Absolutely. The proof that TOTS stories are not filled with lies is the fact that the City has not filed a defamation suit against Bob Cox. Guaranteed, if Bob said something that was blatantly false, the City would be all over him like ugly on an ape.

    Bob Cox is making sure the City can't play it's usual sweep it under rug games and they despise him for that. They wish he would go away so they can go back to sugar coating everything.

  • Jared Rice Dismisses Talk of the Sound Reporting   17 weeks 2 days ago

    For the most part New Rochelle officials don't dispute TOS story's but they are almost always in Sweep under the rug mode as they prefer to pretend that our City and Local Government is Rosy.
    It's the same reason Lou Trangucci was forced to take Favang's story to a higher source because in the interest of Damage Control and protection they would have just had him resign and hope our citizens were none the wiser.
    The overwhelming Stories Cox publishes and reports are the truth and are not sanitized by Strome who is the under the rug sweeper of the Century patrolling our fair city as City Manager of Damage Control.
    Without Cox and his stories which I believe are key we would have business as usual, Echo Bay, Executive Bramson and a whole lot more dirty dealings in this town. Of Course Jared Rice is going to call it Political, of course he is going to call it lies.
    When he looks in the mirror in the morning he knows the deal. He is looking for his ladder up so he can fatten up his wallet with a Judgeship or whatever his political so call pull brings. My advice is do what is right for your constituents and the City first and the other stuff will come for good reason.
    In the mean time we need to keep the pressure up on boss tweed and the Tammany hall they have created.

  • Jared Rice Dismisses Talk of the Sound Reporting   17 weeks 3 days ago

    It's funny, but of all the articles Talk of the Sound has run, none have been disputed by New Rochelle officials. You would think that if the articles are false, then the City would post facts to show otherwise.

    Moreover, what is stated on Talk of the Sound is free speech as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. As such, if City officials don't like, tough. The people have a right to vent their concerns.

  • NEWRO RUMOR MILL: 2014 Promises Lots of Changes in New Rochelle   17 weeks 5 days ago

    It makes a lot of sense that Bramson would step down. In fact, he would probably make a very good college professor and would probably earn a better living. I wish him luck if in fact he chooses that route.

    As far as Barry Fertel is concerned, all I can say is good ridden. As long as I don't have to appear before him in court, he has my blessings.

    Jared Rice as mayor? Perhaps as an interim mayor but he could easily be defeated by Al Tarantino. I just don't believe Jared Rice has the backbone to lead the city.

    Now for the big question, who will replace Domenic Procopio? The Civil Service Commission is long in need of an overhaul and someone with the capability to initiate positive changes to the Commission needs to be in charge. Procopio is just taking up space. I say replace him with Reverend Leak or Margaret Chadwick.

  • NEWRO RUMOR MILL: 2014 Promises Lots of Changes in New Rochelle   17 weeks 6 days ago

    Bob,

    Disarray or the dysfunctional step child, our government has been like this for some time!

    I don’t know what you are talking about, could bring significant changes to New Rochelle? Has thrown New Rochelle Democrats into disarray, It is not just the Democrats. What New Rochelle has seen as to the state of New Rochelle City Hall over the last several years has every hint of already being in much disarray. But you have to admit there is a problem before you fix it and no one has every accepted the fact that things were not right in New Rochelle for a very long time. Let’s see what the next State of the City Address has to offer for 2014.

    With that said, We have already seen several high level positions turnover involving some very good employees and also some not so good employees here in New Rochelle. We will surely miss the good employees that left and to the others that resigned in disgrace of corruption, don’t let the jail cell door hit you on the ass. For those that don’t want to give The City of New Rochelle 100%, than it may be time to move on.

    As I said, we have lost some good employees; one of the good ones that got away was Corporate Council Kathleen Gill. Kathleen Gill’s announcement if there was one, was lost in the uproar about Forest City Ratner Echo Bay vote. I am sure that not many people know that New Rochelle just recently lost the services of The City of New Rochelle’s Corporate Council Kathleen Gill this month as she moved on to another position with Iona College. I have to say, during all of my dealings with Kathleen Gill, she was always very professional and pleasant. I wish her well in her new position at Iona College. Kathleen Gill was hired in 1995 as the Assistant Corporation Counsel, 1997 was appointed Deputy Corporation Counsel and was appointed Corporation Counsel in November 2009. Good Luck Kathleen!

    Another valuable employee we lost was back in September of 2012 when New Rochelle Development Commissioner Michael Freimuth had all of a sudden resigned to run The Capitol Region Development Authority in Connecticut.

    New Rochelle Development Commissioner Resigns
    By Robert Cox on Fri, 09/21/2012

    New Rochelle Development Commissioner Michael Freimuth has resigned, according to sources inside City Hall.
    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/new-rochelle-development-commissi...

    This new opportunity in Connecticut just happened to come up right as we saw Development Commissioner Michael Freimuth become more and more frustrated while dealing with Mayor Bramson, The City Council and all the craziness of what was taking place at the time with regard to The New Rochelle Armory and other things. It seemed to me that he had finally had enough of the flawed policies and practices used in New Rochelle that we all have spoken about one time or another when development was involved. You could see the frustration in his face during the last meeting when The Mayor and The City Council voted to approve the Good Profit Groups Proposal for the development rights for The New Rochelle Armory. Another prior blunder for New Rochelle because as we all know, Good Profit Group eventually failed. A new RFI was done for the area under the current Development Commissioner Luiz C. Aragon who started February 11, 2013. Let’s see where that gets us under the current setting at City Hall.

    Like Corporate Council Kathleen Gill, Development Commissioner Michael Freimuth was highly regarded in New Rochelle by those that worked with him and many of the local residents as well. To me he always carried himself as very professional and I am sure that had a lot to do with why he left.

    It is not just the fact that we stuck to the Forest City Ratner people to long that has delayed true growth and change, it is the fact that so much corruption and lies were not seen or even looked for by any honest member of City Staff or The City Council for that matter. I think thanks have to go to Talk of the Sound, many individual citizens that didn’t give up and the coming together of many parts of New Rochelle like United Citizens for a Better New Rochelle. We now have the facts and support needed to clean out the closets and work towards a much cleaner environment at City Hall for the future of New Rochelle.

    The City New Rochelle has lost or fired several other employees for one reason or another over the last few years. Here is a sampling of a few employees that we lost that were not so professional and not so good for New Rochelle:

    1a) Former DPW Commissioner Jeffrey Coleman resigned unexpectedly in July 2010; just days after investigators from the DA's office visited the New Rochelle DPW City Yard at 224 East Main Street.

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/westchester-county-district-attor...

    1b) Jeffrey Coleman, New Rochelle DPW Commissioner Resigns, Leaving Effective August 31st
    By Robert Cox on Thu, 07/22/2010

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/jeffrey-coleman-new-rochelle-dpw-...

    2a) Westchester County District Attorney Focuses Entirely on Fevang; New Rochelle Plans to Fire DPW Fleet Manager Upon Indictment
    By Robert Cox on Sun, 06/19/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/westchester-county-district-attor...

    2b) Former New Rochelle DPW Fleet Manager Richard Fevang Pleads Guilty, Sentencing in January
    By Robert Cox on Wed, 09/28/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/former-new-rochelle-dpw-fleet-man...

    2c) Former New Rochelle DPW Fleet Manager Sentenced to 5 Years’ Probation
    By Robert Cox on Wed, 01/11/2012

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/former-new-rochelle-dpw-fleet-man...

    3a) As Westchester County District Attorney Indictments Loom, New Rochelle Fires Deputy DPW Commissioner Joseph Cotroneo - UPDATED
    By Robert Cox on Fri, 06/17/2011

    The City of New Rochelle today fired Deputy DPW Deputy Commissioner - Operations Joseph Cotroneo

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/westchester-county-district-attor...

    3b) As Westchester County District Attorney Indictments Loom, New Rochelle Fires Deputy DPW Commissioner Joseph Cotroneo - UPDATED
    By Robert Cox on Fri, 06/17/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/westchester-county-district-attor...

    4) Tino D'Abruzzo, a building inspector for the City of New Rochelle Unexpectedly Resigns in July 2011.

    New Rochelle Building Inspector "Unexpectedly Resigns" Following Allegations of Extortion, Soliciting Bribes by Robert Cox on Fri, 07/15/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/new-rochelle-building-inspector-u...

    5a) How Municipal Corruption Works in New Rochelle: A Case Study from the New Rochelle Board of Education's Painter-Working Foreman Position
    By Robert Cox on Tue, 06/28/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/how-municipal-corruption-works-ne...

    5b) How Municipal Corruption Works in New Rochelle: A Case Study from the New Rochelle Board of Education's Painter-Working Foreman
    By Robert Cox on Mon, 08/15/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/how-municipal-corruption-works-ne...

    5c) How Municipal Corruption Works in New Rochelle: A Case Study from the New Rochelle Board of Education's Painter-Working Foreman Part III
    By Robert Cox on Thu, 08/25/2011

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/content/how-municipal-corruption-works-ne...

    I won’t even attempt to get any further into the employees from The New Rochelle School District that lost their jobs due to arrests or other improprieties as that list is too long and continues to grow at an alarming rate. If you are looking for something to read on a snowy day go to the section at Talk of the Sound called “Pigs at the Trough”, Articles about government waste and unnecessary or questionable spending. All of this content is not funny. It speaks to the sad state The City of New Rochelle is in.

    http://www.newrochelletalk.com/category/talk-sound-categories/hot-topics...

    I am hoping that the changes we saw on The New Rochelle City Council lately will begin to correct the course of business for New Rochelle and signal a new beginning not only for The New Rochelle Water Front but for all of New Rochelle. With the approaching New Year comes a chance for a new direction towards a better brighter future for all of New Rochelle. If everyone shows as much interest and fortitude as they did with Forest City Echo Bay there is nothing left to do but change and change we must New Rochelle.

  • Why is City of New Rochelle Stonewalling on Army Corps of Engineers Report?   18 weeks 1 day ago

    It is clear that the City is "stonewalling" because they don't have a clue as to what it will cost to clean up Echo Bay or who will pay for it. As such, they are trying slip by development plans for Echo Bay without including the cleanup costs in the proposal. They will then deal with this after the fact and pass the costs off to the taxpayer.

    Furthermore, I fail to see the need to develop Echo Bay anytime soon. What happened to revitalizing downtown and bringing retail to NR? Personally, I believe we need to get retail into New Roc.

  • Why is City of New Rochelle Stonewalling on Army Corps of Engineers Report?   18 weeks 3 days ago

    Ken,

    To me this is the worst thing I have yet uncovered in New Rochelle -- and that is saying a lot since I uncovered a child rapist at Isaac Young Middle School.

    It is the worst because some City officials have know for more than 7 years that there are dangerously high levels of toxic metals in Echo Bay -- 3 to 7 times NYDEC "threshold levels" and withheld that information from residents.

    I am reliably informed that Development Commissioner Luiz Aragon told residents at a neighborhood meeting that Echo Bay was so clean that people could go clamming there.

    I suppose if clams could actually live with all the oil and toxic chemicals you could go clamming there -- if your goal was to get mercury poisoning.

    When you are willing to let the residents of your town become seriously, perhaps terminally ill, in order to flog a real estate deal, you have hit rock bottom.

    I do not say this sort of thing often but anyone who knew about this report and failed to disclose it should resign (if elected) or be fired (f employed) and those persons should be permanently barred from holding any position of trust in our city government -- appointed, elected or otherwise.

    The City Council has it in their power to formally investigate this matter.

    If they don't I will find someone who will.

  • Why is City of New Rochelle Stonewalling on Army Corps of Engineers Report?   18 weeks 3 days ago

    Seems Boss Tweed Still does exist in New Rochelle City Hall. Maybe we have a few Boss Tweed's running this like a small family business.
    7th Largest City in the State of NY and nobody is doing the Perp Walk in Shackles?

  • Public Hearings for December 10th and 17lth   18 weeks 4 days ago

    The hydrant proposal to chenge United Water's billing from the city to individual users of the wagter has already passed the legislature with no provision on how United Water will bill individual users of their water. In my opinion, Council should not approve this legislation unless they include a statemenlt that they will not accept this change unless United Water (in writing) states the method they will use to distribute this fee will be by usage.

    Strome suggested residents send this request to the New York Public Service Commission which needs to approve this change. He also suggested contacting state legislators who approved the legislation.

    It should lalso be noted that United Water is running an advertisement in the Journal News today requesting a rate increase of 30% which they claim a net increase of 23% will result.

  • New Rochelle Schools Issue Statement on Decision Not to Evacuate High School After Threat   19 weeks 1 day ago

    Back in August the district put out a statement including a timeline regarding the asbestos exposure incident that was riddled with inconsistencies. Upon hearing it read at a school board meeting, I stated then that the timeline would not stand up to scrutiny. It did not. The district was forced to issue a retraction. The retraction statement was also flawed, which I pointed out, and yet another retraction was issued.

    The district's response to my reporting on the asbestos at Davis, and the ensuing coverup, was largely a David Lacher production. Davis is the President of the Board of Education and fancies himself as some sort of clever communications strategist who prides himself on his imagined ability to trick people through cleverly worded statements decided to deceive by mixing some truth with lies and a lot of leaving out pertinent information.

    Mr. Lacher similarly crafted the district's response to a damning finding from the U.S. Department of Justice regarding the district's failure to evacuate 2 wheel-chair bound students during a fire-related evacuation in January. In that response, he tried to make it sound like the DOJ was offering advice on how to improve safety measures at the school when, in fact, the DOJ was offering the district a last chance to explain itself before brining charges against the district.

    This week, in response to the 2 known threats and evacuations at NRHS, Mr. Lacher was at it again. Not telling the public nor even fellow board members of a third threat that very morning in which NRHS was not evacuated.

    Now we have a statement in which the District (and Lacher's fingerprints are all over this too) lays the entire mess at the feet of the New Rochelle Police Department.

    Anyone familiar at all with the disdain that exists between the two parties and Mr. Carroll's finely-tuned political instincts would know that the idea that Patrick Carroll would take on the responsibility and liability for becoming the decider of whether or not to evacuate one of our public schools is absurd.

    I have my difference with Mr. Carroll but we share views on the poor security situation in the New Rochelle schools. A published an interview with Mr. Carroll in which he called for NRPD to take over ALL of the security in the schools. An idea flatly rejected by school officials.

    At the end of the day there are records.

    There will be records of when the NRPD was called to the NRHS on Tuesday. There will be records of who responded. There will be lots of other records.

    I am highly confident that the records will not support the statement put out last night by the district -- that the district consulted with NRPD and based on their decision not to evacuate NRHS on direction from NRPD.

    We will want to know a few things:

    1. When did the threatening call come in to NRHS?
    2. When was the call first heard at NRYS"
    3. What did Principal Richardson do upon hearing the threat?
    4. What conversations took place among school officials?
    5. When was NRPD contacted?
    6. Who in NRPD communicated with CSDNR?
    7. Who told CSDNR that NRPD recommended not evacuated, when, where?

    This information will come out. This information will not match up with the statement issued by CSDNR.

    Beyond that, there is the new safety protocols embedded in this statement.

    After much fanfare, the district finally, after a decade of failing to comply with the NY SAFE Law, created safety teams, safety plans, held hearings, hired consultants, received recommendations, formerly adopted plans and teams and filed the results with New York State as required under SAVE.

    Those plans do not include the sequence described in the latest statement where decisions to evacuate a school building will now involve calls to the District's Central Office and the NPRD and some sort of joint decision making.

    The entire point of safety plans is for rapid, rote decision making to minimize delays where seconds count -- fire, bomb, active-shooter, etc.

    Recall that the entire motivation for the district over this past year was the Sandy Hook tragedy.

    Adam Lanza killed 26 students and staff in less than 10 minutes.

    By the time a principal gets people from Central Office and NRPD on the phone (and note this latest incident occurred at about 7 am when Central Office is closed) and they discuss and evaluate and weigh the pros and cons, the event could well be over with catastrophic results.

  • Structure Fire Guts 2 Floors of House in New Rochelle   19 weeks 2 days ago

    Just want to remind people that ladder 12 has there ladder up to the top of the house. Reminder that the city was thinking about closing this ladder company down. Thank god there are no plans in this years budget to do that.

  • New Rochelle High School Threatened for Third Time But No Evacuation   19 weeks 2 days ago

    NSA knows when you pick your nose and talk on the phone and NRPD cannot determine where these phone calls are coming from.
    One would think in this day and age NRPD detectives would have been all over the call the first time the school was evacuated.

  • New Rochelle High School Threatened for Third Time But No Evacuation   19 weeks 2 days ago

    The answer to your question: "Which member of the school board wants to face the parent and explain that "we thought it was a prank""

    Not that he wants something bad to happen but he is the one orchestrating all of this -- as is almost always the case with this sort of thing.

    Not only did Mr. Lacher decide to NOT to evacuate the school and not to tell parents and staff about that decision but now I am hearing that fellow board members were not told either

    My son is at NRHS. I am certain I did not put Mr. Lacher in charge of deciding what sort of risks my child should be exposed to because he does not like unflattering news coverage

    What is being circulated now by the school district as an excuse is that they were only doing what they were told by the "experts" at NRPD.

    Absurd!

    Anyone familiar with the disdain that the district has shown towards NRPD (and believe it is well-known about our police department) over the years can only laugh at the notion that all of sudden the school district is placing security decisions in the hands of the NRPD.

    First, the safety plans do not say "in case of emergency, call NRPD and ask them what to do".

    Second, my NRPD sources tell me that they WERE asked by school officials to take over the responsibility for deciding when to evacuate the schools and FLATLY REFUSED.

    What is really going on here is that the district does not want to keep evacuating the schools AND they do not want to be responsible for that so they are seeking to lay the blame on someone else...in this case, NRPD.

    Readers may recall that Patrick Carroll proposed earlier this year in an interview I did with him that NRPD take over ALL security for the schools and that was dismissed out of hand by school officials.

    It irks me that this is the same district that for many years had NO safety plans and then post-Sandy Hook went to great lengths to put on a show about hiring a security consulting firm and even posting their supposedly-confidential building-level safety plan on their web site (lunacy!) to show people what a great job they were doing then made a big show of appointing people to safety committees and adopting plans and hiring a new safety person (Ellen Garcia for about $70,000; in other words firing a teacher but hiring her).

    So all that dog and pony show goes on all spring and what do we get?

    Within about 4 months Lacher becomes President of the Board of Education, starts big-footing everyone and effectively makes the protocols and procedures OPTIONAL.

    You see my point on that?

    The whole point of a safety plan and training on that plan is that it becomes a ROTE PROCEDURE where everyone knows what to do.

    Now there is DOUBT.

    The next incident confronting a building leader in NR will now require that person to ponder...should I pull the fire alarm? should I call the police? maybe I should call central office? Maybe I should call the Police Commissioner? What will David Lacher say if I pull the alarm and it turns out to be a prank. Maybe I should wait.

    The clock is ticking.

    Adam Lanza killed 26 people in about 10 minutes at Sandy Hook.

    If the district was FINALLY motivated to put in place safety teams and security plans because of Sandy Hook then surely they understand that every minute matters.

  • New Rochelle High School Threatened for Third Time But No Evacuation   19 weeks 3 days ago

    How thin is the line when predicting future behavior? Suddenly someone wakes up and decides to threaten a group of people over the course of a week or two (assuming it's the same person). If it's for attention, how does the fact that no one will know who it is unless/until they are caught satisfy this need? What happens when the satisfaction of evacuating the school is removed from the equation? Do they become incensed from being ignored and up the stakes? Prankster, antisocial personality disorder, psychopath, where on the spectrum does this behavior land and who is actually doing the evaluation of this individual? A callous and persistent disregard for social norms and rules shouldn't be taken lightly when we're putting a student body on the betting table. Plus, every time our first responders rush to a situation there's a risk factor.
    Certainly I'm glad the decision isn't up to me, however, I like to think I would follow a safety protocol and not bend the rule for convenience or whatever the thought process seems to be in this situation. Follow the plan because at some point the "prankster " will be caught or he/she will stop. The other potential scenario's aren't worth the risk. Which member of the school board wants to face the parent and explain that "we thought it was a prank"

  • New Rochelle High School Threatened for Third Time But No Evacuation   19 weeks 3 days ago

    As this has now happened for a third time, I would hope that our local authorities and the school system have alerted the FBI and/or Homeland Security to investigate what amount to terroristic threats against our high school (this should have happened after the 2nd event). A strong message needs to be sent that these threats, which are now being treated as pranks by an "attention seeking individual", will not be tolerated.

    The flaw with treating this as a prank (after the third call) is that it gives a recipe for disaster to someone who may really want to cause harm. For example, a person calls in two threats that they know are false, with the intention of causing harm on the third since they think the school won't take it seriously after repeated attempts.

    I'm not saying the school is incorrect for not evacuating again if they have evidence to believe its the same person (school days have already been severely interrupted). However, a message needs to be delivered to the public that these threats will not be tolerated and the investigation along with severe consequences for committing this act should be made absolutely clear.

    We hope someone from the school district will detail the steps being taken to discourage this type of behavior.

  • New Rochelle Tree Lighting Happens Thursday At 6pm   19 weeks 3 days ago

    And we love SANTA!!!