Friday, March 13, 2009

Flophouse failure

From the NY Times:

Their two-family building on an ordinary block near Boston Road is a flophouse for the impoverished and addicted, for as many as 30 men who secure their food in padlocked cupboards and fight one another for the bathrooms, both of which are spotted with a brackish mold. In the upstairs bathroom, a sign informs the tenants, “Please don’t use this ‘sink’ for nothing.” The quotation marks are operative: the water doesn’t work.

A year ago, the flophouse was condemned after firefighters, responding to a call about smoke, reported its conditions to the city. But the men did not move out, as most of them had nowhere else to go. Instead, they filed a lawsuit contending that their rent had made them tenants and that they deserved protections, despite the violations of the fire code. Their rent, paid to “two ladies,” Mr. Guzman said, is $215 to $300 a month. Their suit against the city is on appeal.


Taxpayer said...

"A year ago, the flophouse was condemned after firefighters, responding to a call about smoke, reported its conditions to the city."

This is exactly why reading the NYT leaves a person less informed.

"... reported conditions to the city." How does anyone report anything to the "city"? Is the "city" a man or woman? How does a "city" listen to or read a report?

" ... the flophouse was condemned ..." By the "city"? By whom, then?

The report describes the filthy conditions, but fails to say who made the filth. Society? The "city"? The landlord? Oh, no! I must be stupid! The 30 men, all of whom need to be institutionalized live like slobs.

Why do we depend on DOB to fix anything? This is clearly a situation for the FDNY. They need to shut down and, if necessary, demolish this firetrap.

The FDNY needs to arrest the Commissar for failure to manage the DOB, but Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta has no balls. He would rather sit back and spin why these 30 men and a number of firefighters were trapped and killed in a fast moving fire in the middle of the night.

Illegal aliens, perhaps?

Anonymous said...

Of course the sad thing is that these people have to live somewhere. As far as the Fire Department goes, they have plenty on their plate already.

We have had streets tied up for blocks around when careless construction demolished nearby buildings, and then there are people like my landlord who think collapsing ceilings onto their tenants and painting the banisters with gasoline are good ideas.

Who do you call, the FDNY, DOB, HPD, DEP, Vallone, the Queens DA, the DHRC? All have been called in the case of my building yet evil goes rolling on.

I spent all of yesterday at the 114th Precinct after my landlord told Verizon to cut phone service to three "empty apartments under renovation" where stabilized and controlled tenants live. My neighbor was cited by police as a "disorderly group" when he confronted the repairmen with their unauthorized repairs and insisted that they restore the service illegally cut. Perhaps next time I will have no phone and my cellphone battery will be dead and me too.

Missing Foundation said...

I am certain that Pratt and Hunter will soon do a study about this decrying this condition. It will be the talk of the preservation community and media for months.

Community preservation people around the city will take a pause from their $1000/plate fund raisers for their own community to start a public eduction program to combat this abuse of the good people (note I did not say 'citizens') of our good city.

And finally, our good friends at ACORN will take a pause from shouting for thousands of new people for the brownfield abutting my back yard to demand legislation to end this abuse NOW!

LaSala My Ass said...

This room would be an upgrade for that stuttering dumbass attorney, Jake LaCrapa.