From the NY Times:
Unrepaired sidewalks...expose the city to tens of millions of dollars in lawsuits and liability settlements.
But cash is tight. In the 2010 fiscal year, which starts in July, the amount originally allocated for the program in the city budget was only $1 million. Jesslyn Tiao Moser, a parks department spokeswoman, said on Wednesday that since the program began, $12 million has been spent to repair 4,703 sidewalks.
Meanwhile, Mr. Liu and Councilman Simcha Felder have said that allocating an additional $15 million could pay for the remaining sidewalks that need fixing.
There was, lately, encouraging news for the program: Mayor Bloomberg announced on March 30 that the tree program would get $3.7 million more in federal stimulus money in the coming year. Still, Mr. Liu said, more money will be necessary, because sidewalks will, unavoidably, keep cracking.
From the NY Post:
Neighbors of St. Bonaventure Catholic Church on 170th Street are wondering why workers tore out two sidewalk slabs to plant two new trees that block pedestrians' paths.
"Those two were planted in the wrong place," said Father Gordon Kusi, the church's pastor. But he said the Parks Department told him it had "no control" over the trees' placement.
When neighbor Mark Field asked the workers' supervisor why they were cutting up the sidewalk for the two trees, the supervisor checked a clipboard and answered: "Those are my orders."
"Obviously, the people who did that had just had a liquid lunch. It doesn't make sense," said City Councilman Leroy Comrie, a Democrat.