Volume 76, Number 16 | September 6 - 12, 2006

Scoopy’s Notebook

Proof of endorsement: Closing in on primary day, Arthur Schwartz tells us he now has some heavy hitters — namely Mark Green and Fernando Ferrer — backing him for Democratic state committee against Larry Moss. Just in case Assemblymember Deborah Glick is thinking of calling his bluff again — as happened with Schwartz’s earlier claim of being endorsed by Comptroller Bill Thompson — Schwartz played us an answering machine message of Green telling him, “This is a member of the Schwartz team — where do I volunteer?” and noting that Village Reform Democratic Club was backing both of them. “I had a fundraiser tonight and Mark Green was my featured speaker,” Schwartz said on Tuesday. “Call Phil Mouquinho of Community Board 2. I had the fundraiser at his restaurant. Phil was there. I raised over $15,000.” Topping it all off, Schwartz is now trying to pull together Green and Ferrer — who waged a bitter mayoral primary in 2001 — for a photo-op with him. And, according to an e-mail from Freddy on Monday that Schwartz forwarded to us, Ferrer is game: “Would you have a problem being in a photo with me and Mark Green?” Schwartz e-mailed Ferrer, to which Ferrer responded, “Of course I don’t mind taking pictures with anyone who is helping you.” We’ll believe it when we see the photo, we guess.

Talking trash: Community Board 2 will hold a public hearing on the city’s plan for a marine waste-transfer station for recyclables on Gansevoort Peninsula on Wed. Sept. 13 at 7 p.m. at the Village Community School at 272 W. 10th St., between Greenwich and Washington Sts. According to Schwartz, chairperson of the board’s Parks and Waterfront Committee, Council Speaker Christine Quinn, or whoever she wants to designate, will present the plan, which Quinn supports. Then, Assemblymember Glick, State Senator Tom Duane and Congressmember Jerrold Nadler or their representatives will respond. There will also be a presentation at the meeting on removing recyclable waste by rail — via either W. 30th or 59th Sts. — probably to be given by Friends of Hudson River Park.

Reveal all: Jonathan Greenberg reports that the city on Tuesday filed its appeal to his lawsuit against the Parks Department’s Washington Square Park renovation plan. Greenberg was able to get a copy of the 44-page appeal and he read us what he considers one of the city’s most damning statements in it: “Neither the precise decrease in the size of the central plaza nor the degree of maximum water pressure in the park’s restored fountain jets was a material part of the comprehensive plan.” Scoffed Greenberg, “So, decreasing the plaza’s size and transforming the park’s historic space into a viewing fountain is not material?” Daniel Alterman of the firm Alterman and Boop, representing Greenberg and the suit’s three other plaintiffs, also expressed dismay at the city’s appeal. He had urged the city, instead, to submit the plan for a fresh review by Community Board 2, as State Supreme Court Justice Emily Jane Goodman advised in her ruling in July when she issued an injunction blocking the project on the grounds C.B. 2 had not been presented with essential facts. “They have decided to hide behind the mantle of secrecy,” Alterman said. But they might not be able to hide much longer. Greenberg told us that in addition to the plaintiffs’ preparing a response to the city’s appeal, he plans to file a Freedom of Information Act Law request, as well an Article 78 lawsuit, to force the Parks Department to release information about the project that it has been unwilling to divulge. He said they want to see documentation and correspondence about the plan — specifically from New York University to the Parks Department. “Particularly Michael Haberman in ’03, ’04, ’05 when he was co-chairperson of the Washington Square Task Force,” said Greenberg of N.Y.U.’s former director of government and community relations. “We can’t compel N.Y.U., but we can compel the Parks Department [to release information]. N.Y.U. says it has no position on the redesign; we’d like to see whether there’s any correspondence that reflects them lobbying for any specific design, such as bringing the center to street-level grade.” Greenberg says they’re also asking for the all the documentation that Parks gave Councilmember Alan Gerson before he decided to support funds for the project in the latest budget. “We’re requesting it,” Greenberg said, “we’re not suing Gerson at this stage.”

Taking a beating: Two well-known East Village fixtures, Jim “Mosaic Man” Power and L.E.S. Jewels, were in a bad way last week after they each got seriously worked over. Power said he was trying to help a friend who was being harassed by some bargoers when he ended up being viciously kicked 40 to 50 times. Meanwhile, Jewels was at a punk concert in Philadelphia and was trying to use his cane to break up a fight, when police attacked him, splitting open his brow and leaving welts on his neck. Power says he might leave the East Village for good, despite the fact that his lightpole mosaic trail is still incomplete. Jewels responded by writing an antipolice slogan on his yellow rain slicker that he was wearing in the drizzle on Saturday night.

FEVA hostage crisis: In the fallout from the cancellation of this year’s HOWL! Festival of East Village Arts, James Romberger wants to know why the paintings he did for last year’s FEVA benefit at Capitale are still “being held hostage” by David Leslie, FEVA’s original artistic director, who organized the fundraiser. Greg Fuchs, FEVA’s program director, added in an e-mail that Leslie “was responsible” for the benefit “which actually lost $90,000,” and called on us to “investigate.” “And he has kept possession of all of the unsold artwork from that event, without the consent of the artist or FEVA,” Fuchs added, calling Leslie a “disgruntled” FEVA member. Leslie, who now refers to FEVA as “GRIEVA,” admits he is holding Romberger’s paintings “hostage.” Should someone be calling Jesse Jackson? Also, e-mails have been flying around saying that, despite FEVA founder Phil Hartman’s and executive director Joe Pupello’s telling The Villager two weeks ago that FEVA incorporated as a 501c3 nonprofit two months earlier, this status may not have taken effect. But Fuchs e-mailed us a rather official-looking May 31, 2006, letter from the U.S. Treasury Department, indicating that FEVA is in fact a 501c3 with all that goes with it.

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