Thursday, December 6, 2012

This week's Riverdale Review and Bronx Press

Here are the stories in this week's issue (December 6 - December 12) of the Riverdale Review:

Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz demands Con Edison
bury power lines underground to prevent blackouts.
* After Sandy, pols urge Con Edison to bury power lines > Con Edison has vowed to meet with local residents to discuss the feasibility of running power lines underground--instead of overhead--to prevent future electrical outages. The Riverdale Review can reveal the utility provider has indicated it will hold a series of meetings with area residents in the coming weeks to explore the idea of burying cables. Con Edison officials agreed to meet with residents after Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz renewed his call to abolish overhead lines during a press conference in Spuyten Duyvil last Friday.
* Ari Hoffnung edges closer to possible City Council run > Riverdale resident and city deputy comptroller Ari Hoffnung is mulling a run for Councilman G. Oliver Koppell's seat in 2013 citywide elections. Koppell is currently serving his third and final term and must vacate office due to term limit rules. Hoffnung said he remains undecided about whether to jump into the much-anticipated City Council District 11 race but gave the strongest indication yet that his political aspirations were still alive.
 * George Gilbert, photographer, dies at 90 > George Gilbert, a noted photographer and former Fieldston Road resident, died last month at the age of 90. He was living at the Regency Park Assisted Living senior community in Portland, Oregon, near his daughter's home, when he succumbed to lymphoma.
* Honest commuter returns found laptop > The spirit of kindness is alive and well in Riverdale. Local resident Dana Charlton, an employee of the law firm Klein Zelman Rothermel, was on her way to work last Friday when she noticed something on top of the parking meter at the Riverdale Metr0-North station--a laptop and binder. Area commuters soon mobilized to reunite the laptop with its rightful owner.
* At VC Park, you still have to hold it in > The $1 million-plus project to renovate the comfort station and district headquarters in Van Cortlandt Park has been postponed indefinitely. Efforts to refurbish the single-story building, located on Broadway just north of West 242nd Street, were slated for completion this fall. But city officials now say the long-awaited project has been hit with another setback.
* Vinmont Park neglect hit by board > Local residents are mobilizing to establish a "Friends of Vinmont Park" group in a bid to assist city officials with parks maintenance. Community Board 8 is currently seeking volunteers and aims to have the group up and running by spring 2013.
* Sunday's South Riverdale street fair deemed a success despite iffy weather > The holidays came to Riverdale a little early this year. Hundreds turned out to the Riverdale Holiday Festival on Riverdale Avenue between West 236th and West 238th streets last Sunday. The festival featured holiday tunes, pony rides, a petting zoo, the Bronx Culture trolley and face painting.
* Engel gets funding to repair damaged roads > New York State has been granted $20 million in federal funding for the emergency repair of roads damaged by superstorm Sandy, Congressman Eliot Engel announced last Friday.
* Senior centers seek standards > The City Council is proposing that the state begin to regulate all agencies that provide social adult dat services, making Medicaid funding contingent upon compliance with state standards of care. Community Board 8 aging committee supports the Council's proposal and expressed concern at a recent hearing about the proliferation of for-profit facilities that might seek Medicare funding without meeting regulations set forth by the New York State Office for the Aging.

Also, in the Bronx Press:
* Bronx high schools improve on progress reports > Chancellor Dennis Walcott released progress reports for New York City high schools last week, and statistics show a slight uptick for the Bronx. The average letter grade for Bronx public high schools was a B, almost a full letter grade higher than last year. Out of the 116 schools in the Bronx, half received a B or C grade.
Officials unveil the newly-renovated office building
at 1775 Grand Concourse
* Renovated Grand Concourse office building opens for business > Local officials have unveiled the results of a $5 million facelift to a majestic multistory office building in the Bronx. Renovations to the 347,000-square-foot building at 1775 Grand Concourse were revealed during a ribbon-cutting ceremony last Thursday.
* Slain teen laid to rest > The young teenager who was mysteriously found dead in the hallway of a relative's home was laid to rest at St. Raymond's Cemetery on December 3. The body of Destiny Sanchez, 15, was discovered in the hallway of 632 Barretto Streets in the Hunts Point sections on November 23. Investigations are continuing, but police said the popular teen had been strangled.
* Bronx DA convicts unlicensed lawyer > A Bronx woman has been convicted for practicing law without a license. After less than a day of deliberating, the jury found Kehinde Jobi of 1407 Croyona Avenue guilty on two counts of grand larceny in the third degree, one count of grand larceny in the fourth degree and eight counts of judicially disbarred attorney practicing law. Jobi had been suspended in October 2008 for taking money from a victim with an indictment without permission. Despite the suspension, Jobi continued to represent herself as an attorney. A press release from Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson said Jobi stole more than $53,000 from 10 people.

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