I want to share something with you that I just received minutes ago from a colleague.
It reworks the RFP for the Armory and I will quote the exact language... "The City of New Rochelle invites qualified development teams, cultural and civic associations, colleges and universities, non-profit and for profit entities to submit proposals for the adaptive reuse of the former Armory located at 260-70 E. Main Street, New Rochelle, N.Y."
The contact person is Suzanne Reider, Senior Project Manager, Department of Development.
I will not repeat my oft-delivered point that the best resource would be a committee of local and experienced citizens headed up by Ron Tocci, former State Assemblyman. I am urging Tocci take his proposal throughout the City, to every Synagogue, Church, Association, etc. to indicate that his team has a multi-usage scheme that would both form a lead into Echo Bay and our sorely needed commercial development to ease the tax burden.
I can recall many recent cants by the Administration citing resistance to this neglected propery, then its need to develop revenue for it to be considered at all.
Yet this RFP invites non-profits, colleges and universaries to bid... citing either an blatant lack of common sense, commitment to the community, or perhaps, enmity held by Noam Bramson in terms of the unbundling of Echo Bay and his dislike, likely shared, of Ron Tocci.
My problem is that it seems like a open invitation for Monroe College to continue their acquisition of valuable property and now, likely, unless addressed, their acquisition of the Armory to advance their adventurous athletic programs and goals. Perhaps the social engineers among you ought to take a close look at both the considerable amount of real estate acquired here as well as what a Monroe education winds up costing people, most of color, in terms of debt and the difficulty of obtaining jobs in a depressed economy.
NO, you paragons of social virtue why don't you look at the large campaign contributions paid to a ceremonial mayor, democratic council members and the democratic party itself.
Look at ask yourself, why is Marc Jerome the head man here for Monroe in charge of the BID. I allege, repeat allege, that this is an excellent springboard to control the land zoning and property acquisition through being in the best position to do this and by flying under the radar. YOu won't even see mention of him in Talk of the Sound to speak of, but perhaps someone close to the Armory team will fill in some absolute numbers to that regard. This is a clever man who, while not doing anythng evil or underhanded, is stripping you of your ability to get a return on your investment and permits crime to flourish, taxes to rise, taxes to transmogrify into fees and, while the City burns, the Council tunes up the fiddle.
Matt, I am going to acknowledge in advance, that I am a man of spiritual conviction, an adherent of Jesus Christ, a student of my historical underpinnings through the majesty of the Jewish tradition so I say, live with it.
Not you community. Christians cannot put away their heads and hearts when Good Friday passes anymore than Jews can abandon justice and righteousness at the close of Yom Kippur.
What has just transpired is securlarly wrong vis a vis both the City Charter in terms of roles, responsibilities and relationships and the 1996 Comprehensive Plan, especially Section III-1 where the primary focus re: land use and community values lies with restoring and rebuidling our business district.
I need to scold you... what the hell is wrong with you; advocates of the administration or foes alike? Do you really think that your equity value will even remain steady-state at a complete failure to avoid a proper business district that recoups lost property to non-profits, Monroe and the dolllars stores?
Are you comfortable in a situation where all of the city government is housed in 515 North Avenue like Fort Apache in the South Bronx during the troubling sevenites? Can you understand that the City Charter has not been amended so our mayor is ceremonial but has all of the power of a strong mayor. Don't you remember voting against a strong mayor referendum twice in the past twenty or so years?
Do you really want to pay a full salary and benefit package totaling over @250,000 to both a mayor operating imperially, imperiously and out of Charter bounds and a City Manager? Where Noam good enough to recognize the opporunity to restore some dignity to the Non-North side by not standing in the way of the Tocci team, we would have had the beginning of a rebirth.
Council members if you give Jerome the project, you are morally and professionally stained. You are the true oversight and policy people making almost one-third of the cermonial mayors' salary. Do you really give a damn about justice and reformation.
Jesus did and if uncomfortable with this, think secular Jesus. I do not apologize for following the greatest philosophical leader of all times.
He said, (sic) "Love thy Lord thy God with all of your might and "Love thy neighbor as thyself." There is more, but your neighbor is not a hollow man nor should your responsbility end at the end of the aformentioned atonement evenings. It is a daily responsibility.
I call for Noam Bramson, Al Tarantino, Jared Rice, Shari Rackman, Louis Trangucci, Ivar Hyden, and Barry Fertel to think beyond the ideological, the checkbook, and the politics displayed for years by council members who were too mesmerized, lazy or plain self-interested to ignore what our Consitution in New Rochelle says and that is our City Charter.
I usually get about 400 or 500 reads tops on my long postings with few comments. So I will comment and then end this.... I accuse all of you as well as myself of being a community that has forgotten to unite, to hold its elected official to higher standards, to conventiently or ignorantly failing to see the clear relationships among events. You are damn well your brothers' keepers, and you really need to love thy neighbors, all of your neighbors.
Noam, brilliant as he is, has little appetite for a "return to the future." He is, like many others here, throughout our nation and the world, a dinosaur. Politics change or your children will continue to learn that the lines we walk are rarely straight.
We need more Killorans, the young women who recently were honored at City Hall, and yes, certainily Ray Rices.
Sorry for the length, but I am breathing fire and declaring war and will take no prisoners. I will be compassionate, forgiving but back in my future, I was Mister G. and I return.