Monday, November 7, 2011

$1M missing from Newtown Creek settlement money

From the Times Ledger:

The state Department of Environmental Conservation pledged to dish out $7 million in green projects to compensate for the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment plant’s role in polluting the waterway of the same name, and the winning suggestions were announced Friday.

The state budgeted $75,000 for one of two projects at St. Saviour’s, which is a lot where a church used to sit but where a developer is currently building warehouses. The project is about 1 percent of the total allocation money. But the DEC put it near the bottom of a list of other, more expensive projects that must be completed first, which means the money might dry up before St. Saviour’s’ number is even called.

The money — which pales in comparison to projects like a $3 million boathouse in Brooklyn and a $2 million park in Dutch Kills — would be used by the city to begin legal proceedings to acquire the land where the park would be built, known as the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure.

On Sept. 30, a group of 13 Queens lawmakers sent a letter to the DEC asking to release the funds before the final projects were selected from a list of 22 suggestions on how to use the money.

“The release of the funding is imperative, since delaying the start of ULURP further threatens the acquisition and increases the cost of the project,” the letter said.

On Friday they saw that the money had been set aside, but might never be released at all.

A spokesman from the DEC said the state finalized the projects in the order they were ranked by the community.

“The state’s review did not change how the projects are ranked, but provides an opportunity for the development of projects on the secondary list should funds become available after the priority list is exhausted,” said a DEC spokesman.

But the final ranking put St. Saviour’s fourth, not its current seventh.

Ok, so not only is it easy to prove that the DEC did not do what it said it did, but here's a list of the projects:

City Parks Foundation EBP Approval Letter 10-25-11

If the settlement was for $7M and the projects on the list add up to $6M, then WHO POCKETED $1M THAT WAS SUPPOSED TO GO TO PARK PROJECTS IN COMMUNITIES SURROUNDING THE CREEK? Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, the great reformer, actually approved this? Governor Andrew Cuomo, another great reformer, thinks this action by his DEC is just fine?

Why is a boathouse that the City doesn't want, that will be encouraging access to a Creek so contaminated that it's a Superfund site, entitled to 43% of the funds?

Well, why do you think? Of course, it's another development scheme.

Adam Perlmutter, aka the Secretary/co-founder of Open Space of those "public-private partnerships" you've been hearing so much about...was the attorney for developer George Klein back in 2004-2005 during the Greenpoint-Williamsburg rezone.

Isn't it interesting that this development is moving forward after Dewey Thompson of OSA, a Brooklyn CB1 member, got the boathouse he has been lobbying so hard for?

So, some non-profit is going to get $3M to build a contaminated boathouse to attract more yuppies to not-yet-built towers along the shore, and Maspeth is not getting $75,000 for a new park even though there should be more than enough money left in the DEC kitty to cover it and the Greenpoint Monitor Museum project listed in the second phase.

This stinks worse than Newtown Creek at low tide after a rainstorm.

I predict that the electeds representing Maspeth are going to sit back and allow this to happen. No one will demand an investigation about the missing million dollars and no one will press for the rest of the funding to be released. After all, they have D's after their names on the ballots and are incumbents, so they don't have to work too hard to get re-elected in this town.


Anonymous said...

It's not "missing". The $1M comes directly off the top to fund DEC Project Management salaries, paper clips, lights, photocopiers, rent, etc. etc. etc. It's called overhead. There is no need to dig any deeper, plain and simple it's the cost of "doing business" with any government agency. If the feds provided 20 million for a project, DEC (or the agency involved) would likely take $3M or $4M of that to pay it's overhead. There's your Obama Stimulus.

Missing Foundation said...

Everyone associated with Newtown Creek projects have been walking around with a chip on their shoulders.

Even worse in their grasping acceptance of ice cream money to sustain the madness of developing perhaps the most polluted land in a major American city.

This property has been poisoned by 150 years of chemical and petroleum spills.

It will take a century of remediation. It will take billions of dollars to make it available to developers - money that should better be spent in job creation, education, health, et al.

To contemplate development, or even boating activities on this land is to subject countless 1000s to lethal health risks.

The whole thing is a monument to greed and stupidity.

Queens Crapper said...

This was not stimulus money. This is money from a settlement that resulted from the State suing the City for not having the sewage plant up and running within a reasonable time. The settlement was supposed to go toward projects in the Newtown Creek area.

Anonymous said...

Was Haggerty involved ?

Anonymous said...

Where's Captain Renault when we need him?

Missing Foundation said...

The $1M comes directly off the top to fund DEC Project Management salaries, paper clips, lights, photocopiers, rent, etc. etc. etc. It's called overhead.

$1M for paper clips, photocopiers .....


Anonymous said...

It's just chump change wired into the Ugland House based accounts of Mr. $1 a year.He's a whole lot more costly than you've been led to believe. And you were bought and paid for,like it or not. Haggerty is the tip of the tip of the iceberg of this corruption extravaganza. The silence of all those involved cannot be bought in perpetuity, and then, philanthropy be damned... God's gonna cut you down!

Fonso said...

As thick with corruption as lawyers in hell
Where are the Feds and the Governor ?

Anonymous said...

Rampant corruption - another day in NYC.

Anonymous said...

It's amazing how President Obama can be blamed for almost everything. I personally think he is doing a great job under the circumstances i.e. CONGRESS and I'm giving him 4 more years to finish the job.

Anonymous said...

Gov. Catamite of the 1% is up in Albany fretting abot how the locals wouldn't do his bidding,and figuring out how to expedite the wholesale turnover of our state to those who least need or deserve it.

Jerry Rotondi said...

Exactly what concrete steps is Elizabeth Crowley currently taking to ensure the creation of St. Saviour's Park some time before the century passes?

After all, "the buck" stops at her office door!

Uh---no need to continue smiling for the cameras Liz---the press conference is long over.

Meanwhile, back at the site, isn't the property owner continuing pouring his concrete despite DOB stop work orders?

Anonymous said...

Somebody's nest is getting feathered---for sure!

Hey, where are the gondolas in this beautiful vision of the Newtown Creek

"Oh solo mio"!

Or do you prefer,
"Che la luna...mezzo mare..."!

LOL....what a corrupt borough!