Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Lancaster resignation wrapup

New York Times:
For more than 200 years, the department has been plagued by allegations ranging from the dastardly to the absurd. Plumbing inspectors have been charged with taking bribes. Consultants have set up get-aways for influential councilmen. A deputy commissioner was once indicted for accepting an illegal gift of wine.

As the agency responsible for overseeing the roughly $12 billion in annual private construction in the city, the Buildings Department is clearly echt New York — at least as echt as the Police Department or the Fire Department, which, of course, have both had troubles of their own. What seems to distinguish Buildings from the others, though, is not the severity or frequency of the problems, experts say, but its ostensible invulnerability to reform.

Agency With a History of Graft and Corruption

Daily News:
The general consensus seems to be that the departure of Buildings Commissioner Patricia Lancaster today, while a welcome development in many corners, is hardly going to make a dent in the myriad of perceived problems at the beleaguered agency.

DOB Problems Just Begun

Gowanus Lounge:
On Monday, Mayor Bloomberg said ""I don’t think anybody should be fully satisfied with the Department of Buildings’ performance." The statement was disingenuous at best and self-servingly cynical at worst. The construction boom and DOB's laissez faire attitude have happened under Mr. Bloomberg's watch and the placement of the agency under former Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff's purview for most of his administration symbolized the back seat that regulating building took to encouraging development. The city's worst kept secret for much of the last six years has been the fact that DOB was expected not to interfere in major ways with development. If this meant looking the other way while safety, work hour and other regulations were violated with impunity, well, that was a small price for one of the biggest building booms in New York history.

GL Analysis: Patty Lancaster is Gone, Now What?

Lost New York:
That statement, the oft-quoted "I don’t think anybody should be fully satisfied with the Department of Buildings’ performance," was weasely, back-stabbing, scapegoating, political double-speak at its worst. It was bottom-of-the-barrel stuff and anyone who's a student of the political art would recognize it as such. You can bet as Lancaster watched Mayor Mike utter that line on television, she was muttering "son of a bitch" under her breath. Bloomberg was plenty satisfied the Lancaster and the DOB—it was doing exactly what he wanted it to do, with as little money as he chose to give it—until its corrupt performance began to impinge on his image as an infallible leader.

Lancaster, the Scapegoat

The Real Deal:
Robert LiMandri, the first deputy commissioner for operations at the city's Buildings Department will head the department on an interim basis now that commissioner Patricia Lancaster, has resigned.

LiMandri, an engineer, has worked at the department since 2002 and oversees its enforcement and forensic work. Bloomberg spokesperson Stu Loeser told The Real Deal that LiMandri will manage the department with the mayor's confidence.

LiMandri tapped as interim DOB head


Anonymous said...

LiMandri is a bigger joke than Lancaster. He spends more time attending to his hair transplant than he does assuring DOB even minimally functions.

LiMandri was the biggest hawker of those new, spiffy DOB uniforms that cost tax payers almost $400,000. That was after he thought spending six-figures in tax dollars for a consultant to design a new 'Buildings' logo was a swell idea. Yes, over 100 grand for one word. Really elicits public confidence, eh? And hey, this is the first time i've heard he's an engineer. True? I've heard him grumble at trade meetings about how he feels intimidated by all the real 'PE' engineers and licensed architects. Pathetic.

Bloomberg, please say you know DOB needs to be totally cleaned out, but need to find a REAL commissioner before you grab the broom. And as for Lancaster and Limandri, tell them to be careful the door doesn't hit them in the a** as they walk out.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

Good idea.

Everyone knows that many
construction projects are "mobbed up"
and that DOB inspectors are often
hooked up in lucrative bribe schemes!

Anonymous said...

Everyone knows that
cutting off the head of the mythical "Hydra" accomplishes nothing.

It quickly grows another !

From L to L.....
Lancaster to LiMandri....
it'll make no f-----g difference
until DOB gets an enema!

Anonymous said...

Gee, I see all these blogs complaining about the department.


Anyone want to call them and let Crappy know their response?

Anonymous said...

Our city council members have their place on the feeding chain.

They get their share of the bribe money, but in the form of campaign contributions.

Melinda Katz is the poster child!

Anonymous said...

Did someone use the words 'Melinda Katz' and 'child' in the same sentence?

Thats a queer statement.