* Stanton strikes out with fundraising debacle > Local City Council candidate Andrew Cohen has raised more than $66,000 since announcing his intention to run for citywide office. The latest campaign disclosure report shows Cohen's fundraising total, collected in less than 80 days, already exceeds what rival Cliff Stanton has managed to rack up in an entire year.
|Police seized this impressive haul from a group of armed|
robbers during a sting DEA operation.
* Neighborhood watch not sanctioned by NYPD > City Council candidate Cliff Stanton has yet to register his neighborhood watch program with the New York Police Department--two months after members began patrolling the streets. Commanding officer of the 50th Precinct Deputy Inspector Kevin Burke said officials do not recognize Stanton's 4 Wheels for Good Neighborhood Watch group because it is not officially registered with the NYPD's Block Watcher program.
* Obama names Riverdalian Jack Lew as new Treasury Secretary > President Barack Obama has nominated Riverdale resident and longtime Washington insider Jacob "Jack" Lew to be the next treasury secretary. Lew, who currently serves as White Housec chief of staff, was formally announced as Obama's preferred pick during a press conference on January 10. If confirmed by the Senate, Lew will succeed Timothy F. Geithner, who is stepping down from the high-pressure post at the end of January.
* Political club in odd early endorsement > One of the city's most prominent political clubs has been accused of operating against its founding principles after announcing it would consider endorsements for the City Council District 11 race this week. The Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club is scheduled to hold an endorsement meeting and will hear from candidates vying for the open Council seat on Wednesday, January 16--eight months before the scheduled Democratic Primary.
* Dr Ruth documented by the BBC > A film screening and talk by Dr. Ruth Westheimer at the Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale last week commanded such a large turnout that more and more chairs had to be brought into the sizable social hall to accommodate the ever-growing audience before the program could begin. Westheimer's unusual life story is now chronicled as one segment of a 12-part documentary series called "Extraordinary Women," produuced by the British Broadcasting Company.
* Palisade Avenue retaining wall project nears completion > It may not be as charming, but the new Palisade Avenue retaining wall will do a more reliable job than the 75-year-old masonry structure it just replaced. The city started inspecting the nearly 700 retaining wall it owns since a privately owned wall collapsed on the Henry Hudson Parkway in 2005. Those in the worst condition got first priority for repair or replacement by the Department of Design and Construction.
* Co-op tax break likely to be voted this month > A cote to retain the cooperative and condominium tax abatement, which expired in June 2012, will likely take place in the very near future. "The restoration of this important abatement is a priority of mine and I will fight to have it put through," Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz said. "We should be voting by the end of the month."
* Safety now a local issue > Shaken by recent robberies and violence close to home, locals flocked to the 50th Precinct's monthly community council meeting last week to ask for some visible police presence in what used to be a crime-free neighborhood.
And, in the Bronx Press:
* Residents demand more from elected officials during redistricting hearing > Residents in Pelham Parkway North and the Parkside Housing Projects are sick of being ignored by the 11th City Council District. During a public hearing held last Wednesday by the NYC Redistricting Commission at Hostos Community College, Bronx residents voiced their opinions on the newly drawn district lines. Though most grievances brought up at the hearing involved the South Bronx, residents of a tiny piece of Pelham Parkway North and Parkside Housing Projects have their reservations with the redistricting as well.
* DOT unveils further details for Webster Avenue Select Bus Service > An updated select bus service plan along Webster Avenue was debuted at an open house hosted by the Department of Transportation and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority at the NYC Business Solutions Center last week.
* City looks to close more schools > The Department of Education has placed nine more schools on the chopping block, bringing the total to 26 schools, including Herbert H. Lehman High School, slated for closure. The newest additions include three elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school and three K-8 schools.
* Bronxites united with Newtown shooting victims > A Christmas tree was the backdrop as a few dozen Bronxites stood on the courthouse steps, omurning the senseless massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, and demanding an end to the carnage caused by gun violence--right here in New York City's five boroughs.