Volume 80, Number 28 | December 9 - 15, 2010
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Letters to the Editor

BID’s been well publicized

To The Editor:  
Re “In Chinatown, groups battle over a proposal for new BID” (news article, Dec. 2):

The Chinatown Partnership has a long and collaborative relationship with the Chinatown Working Group. One person claiming to speak for the C.W.G. claimed at a Community Board 3 meeting on Nov. 23 that the Partnership had not contacted the C.W.G. about efforts to form a Chinatown Business Improvement District.

That is just not the case. Several Partnership leaders serve on Working Group committees. We have held many C.W.G. Economic Committee meetings at the Partnership office over the last two years, and a Partnership leader arranged for the C.W.G. to conduct its larger meetings at the American Legion.

As part of the public outreach required by New York City as part of the BID approval process, we have mailed more than 50,000 pieces to people in the Chinatown community, held 27 public meetings, press presentations or presentations for local civic and business groups, and presented more than 1,000 minutes of radio or TV information. We have paid for 27 print media advertisements, and there have been 200 articles about the BID proposal in print media.

The proposed BID is an effort to bring everyone together, specifically, to keep Chinatown clean and litter free. Surveys conducted by several groups over the years have found sanitation is the top priority for people who live and work in this community. Community Boards 1, 2 and 3, which cover Chinatown, all list sanitation as a priority.

It’s that simple. A BID is the best way for everyone to come together and get the job done. The people of Chinatown just ask for the opportunity to let us help ourselves.
Deborah Chan
David S. Chen

Chan is chairperson and Chen is Finance Committee chairperson, respectively, Chinatown Partnership Local Development Corporation

Investigation is needed

To The Editor:
Re “Correcting some misperceptions post-St. Vincent’s” (talking point, by Christine Quinn, Jerrold Nadler, Tom Duane and Richard Gottfried, Nov. 25):

I agree with all you say, Christine, but what’s needed is a post-facto investigation on how St. Vincent’s Hospital came to be $1 billion in debt over such a long period of time. From all that I read, it had an antiquated billing system, and often did not even bother to bill. It was top-heavy in high-paid management, and become a revolving door for C.E.O.’s who left with overgenerous packages.

A lot of money was just thrown away as St. Vincent’s cash flow was cut. It didn’t help, too, that the Catholic Diocese prohibited any birth-control counseling or abortions. The people who could afford or desired those procedures simply went elsewhere. And there were the real estate developers perpetually circling like vultures over any vulnerable piece of real estate. I believe that St. Vincent’s property became more important financially than from a medical standpoint. Once again, the people were screwed by financial interests.

Lastly, our lovely mayor stood by and watched all this happen without raising a finger, as did the governor in Albany. Though, at that point, the financial condition was terminal like a metasticized cancer. So it goes. Keep up the good work in any case, Christine. It is appreciated by all.

I was born in St. Vinny’s in 1938, and my father in 1912, not to mention the list of other family members who crossed the hospital’s various entrances.
Jerry Mazza

Still haunted by Poe House

To The Editor:
Re “Theater rehab drama” (Scoopy’s Notebook, Dec. 2):

The reference to a “Poe House approach to preservation” is right on. Regarding the Poe House, New York University had agreed to restore the original facade, with the original bricks, and re-create “what the house would have looked like when Poe lived there.” And then as the new Law School building went up, N.Y.U. started backing down on what it had agreed to, one item at a time.

First, the stoop couldn’t be restored because the entrance had to be accessible to the handicapped — funny, because nobody uses the W. Third St. door.

Then, the original bricks couldn’t be used, so the facade ended up being made of a prefab brick panel, which isn’t even of the right design. The original bricks were laid in a Flemish bond pattern, as was common at the time the house was built in the 1830’s. But the faux-brick panel N.Y.U. installed is designed to resemble running bond. This experience alone illustrates just how far we can trust New York University’s promises!
Marilyn Stults

Hang it up, N.Y.U.

To The Editor:
Re “N.Y.U.’s towering blunder inspires us to fight on” (talking point, by Miriam Kaplan, Nov. 25):

It is time for N.Y.U. to put its expansionist plans to rest — not only for the real space, light, air and density issues, which are overwhelming — but also because N.Y.U.’s plans reflect misjudgment and a frightening lack of foresight, as Miriam Kaplan so eloquently expresses in her column.
Rhoma Mostel

Band shell would be golden

To The Editor:
Re “East Side, West Side, park improvements all around; It’s a green golden age” (Progress Report article, by Adrian Benepe, Nov. 18):

How about a new band shell for Tompkins Square Park?
John Penley

Analysis of ‘Tea’ swill

To The Editor:
Re “Tea Partier takes on Glick” (letter, by Eric Dondero, Dec. 2):

I would like to thank Mr. Dondero for his letter to the editor. If there is any doubt as to the intentions of the Tea Party group, Mr. Dondero’s letter clears it up nicely.

Mr. Dondero writes that “Tea Partiers did not say we don’t want government to touch our Medicare,” yet that is the verbatim quote from quite a few town hall meetings during this last year’s healthcare debate. These sort of over-the-top, totally outrageous quotes (death panels?) about health reform are on tape and have been played on cable news ad nauseam. Hard to imagine Mr. Dondero has missed them.

However, Mr. Dondero then surpasses this obviously false statement by making one that is simply flat-out stunning. He writes that they (Tea Partiers) want the government to “abolish” Medicare and Medicaid and privatize Social Security.

This coldhearted political agenda is plainly counterproductive, budget-busting and ignorant — but that misses the point. In reality, the Tea Party agenda is downright dangerous for American citizens who depend upon these facets of our government for their lifelines. Perhaps the yellow flags that Tea Partiers so proudly display at their rallies should read, “LET THEM EAT CAKE” instead of “DON’T TREAD ON ME.”

However, the most ironic of all of Mr. Dondero’s statements comes at the end of his letter. He writes that the U.S. should “fund defense against radical Islamic terrorists, run the post office, take care of the national parks, secure our borders and that’s about it.” Even though Mr. Dondero’s letter does not mention police departments, fire departments, the V.A., roads, bridges and so on, his unmistakably “socialist agenda” places him on the left side of his own group. By Tea Party standards, Mr. Dondero is really a red commie. Now that is ironic.

Thanks again for your letter, sir. You really made my day.
Lawrence White

E-mail letters, not longer than 250 words in length, to news@thevillager.com or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to The Villager, Letters to the Editor, 145 Sixth Ave., ground floor, NY, NY 10013. Please include phone number for confirmation purposes. The Villager reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. The Villager does not publish anonymous letters.




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