|Martin A. Prince
Community Boards represent you and a hope for a better community. Community Board #10 serves the communities of City Island, Co-op City, Country Club, Eastchester Bay, Edgewater Park, Ferry Point, Locust Point, Pelham Bay, Schuylerville, Silver Beach, Spencer Estates, Throggs Neck, Westchester Square and Zerega. Community Board #10 has seven standing committees focusing on economic development, health and human services, housing and zoning, municipal services, parks and recreation, planning and budget, and youth services. The District Office is located at 3165 East Tremont Avenue, Bronx, NY 10461, telephone # 718-892-1161, fax # 718-863-6860, email firstname.lastname@example.org. The hours are Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. The Office is available to assist community residents either in person, phone, or by email. Request for Assistance form may be downloaded and sent to our office.
NEWS FROM BRONX COMMUNITY BOARD #10
Contact Bronx Community Board #10 at 718-892-1161
Bronx Community Board #10 was privileged to have the Commissioner of the New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) visit with us on December 9, 2015. The Commissioner heads up an agency that is responsible for, among other things, the coordinated response by all of the City’s first responders like the FDNY and Police, as well as others, when there is a man made or natural threat to our City. The Commissioner provided the Board with an overview of the very important work of his agency, which includes a robust education effort to educate New Yorkers on the value of emergency preparedness. The Commissioner cited the importance of everyone having a plan of exit from their homes, the possession of Go Bags, (bags that contain vital papers, a supply of medication, water, a change of clothes, some nutrition bars and food for your pets, as well as any medication that they may need, and a spare phone). The agency is particularly concerned about hurricanes and their affect upon New York City. It has published a booklet explaining the nature of hurricanes, what to do when a hurricane warning is issued and provides information on evacuation plans through their “Ready New York” guides.
The existence of the “Ready New York” guides and the agency’s operations have particular relevance to the residents of the water bound communities within Bronx Community Board #10. The agency utilizes the services of volunteer Community Emergency Response Teams or CERTs. Anyone interested in becoming a CERT Team member can contact the website “Join CERT.” These teams are made up of volunteers from the community, who receive extensive training by the OEM on how to be of assistance to first responders when disaster strikes. The agency also maintains the New York City Citizen Corps, which is made up of civic and community leaders, who also receive extensive training from the agency on disaster management. Once trained, it is their job to educate the members of their respective communities on the issues surrounding emergency management. Those interested can visit the website “NYC Citizen Corps.”
The most important message to come out of the Commissioner’s visit is for people to be aware of the very real issues associated with emergency preparedness: assemble an evacuation plan for your home, choose a meeting point for you and your family and friends to go to, if separated; pack a “Go Bag” and pay attention to a notice of evacuation, if it is issued.
Bronx Community Board #10, by State Law is charged with the responsibility of reviewing liquor licenses. The actual approval of those licenses comes from the New York State Liquor Authority or the SLA. This is the governmental agency that grants the licenses and takes sanctions against the owner when necessary, which could include the revocation or suspension of the license. The Board, through its Economic Development Committee communicates a series of best management practices in the form of stipulations for the bars and restaurants. The stipulations are a part of an establishment’s license and must be adhered to. Each bar owner is given a copy and asked to sign it. Once signed, it becomes part of their license and they have to live up to the standards contained within the stipulations. The points within the stipulations contain such requirements as not using a promoter; about not serving people who are inebriated; limiting noise; providing security; respecting private property and the community in which the establishment operates; among others. Additionally, the Board has each owner attend Archdiocesan Drug and Alcohol Prevention Program (ADAPP) training, which teaches the best management practices listed above. The dual requirements of having signed stipulations and attendance at the ADAPP classes are designed to have the bar owners know that there are community standards that they must respect, in order to operate a liquor dispensing establishment.
Before any license is approved or rejected, the owner must appear before the Economic Development Committee and speak with its members. When they come to the Committee they are asked questions about the bar’s history, informed of any neighborhood concerns with respect to their establishment and if the Committee receives the proper assurances that they will act as responsible corporate citizens, the Committee drafts a Resolution supporting the application. The Resolution is then forwarded to the full Board for subsequent approval, which states that the Board is not opposing the extension of a liquor license or a renewal of one to the establishment in question. If the Committee and Board oppose a license, the SLA is notified. However, we are advisory only and the SLA makes the ultimate decision. Any and all enforcement functions against a bar are conducted by the NYPD and the SLA.
As stewards of the communities within Bronx Community Board #10, the Board wants to ensure that we have a safe and desirable community in which to reside, a community where businesses and residents can live in a decent environment, free from undue noise and anti-social activities. To this end, we sought to change our stipulations for bars and having received the community’s input, for which we are grateful, we have embarked upon a series of changes to our operating methods regarding the review of liquor licenses. These include improvements in our record keeping; a strengthening of the stipulations with respect to security and noise issues; greater communication with the SLA on Board action with respect to licensing and improved follow-up with licensed establishments on their compliance with the stipulations. We are confident that our efforts will result in an improved environment for all.
Mayor de Blasio and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection recently announced that low income homeowners, seniors and the disabled across the City will receive a credit on their water and sewer charges of $115.89 on their next bill, through “The Home Water Assistance Program.” This is an expansion of last year’s program where 12,500 clients of the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) received credits. This years’ program will see the extension of a credit to those receiving the Senior Citizen Rental Increase Exemption (SCRIE). The homeowner does not have to do anything to receive the credit. DEP is working with its colleague agencies at the Human Resources Administration and Department of Finance to identify clients of HEAP and SCRIE.
The City of New York has adopted a new program to help those who may benefit from the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption Program (SCRIE) and the Disabled Rent Increase Exemption Program (DRIE). These programs have been combined, and the City is calling its new program the “NYC Rent Freeze Program.” This program helps seniors aged 62 and over and those challenged by disabilities to stay in their homes by freezing their rent. Please note, only qualifying disabilities apply in this instance. Under this program property tax credits cover the difference between the actual rent and the amount that the tenant pays for the frozen rent. The basic qualifications for the SCRIE component of the program are as follows: an applicant must be 62 years of age, be the head of the household, have a combined income for all members of the household of $50,000.00 or less and spend 1/3 of your income on rent. For the DRIE component of the program, the basic qualifications are that the applicant be 18 years of age, be named on the lease, have a combined income of $50,000 or less, spend 1/3 of your income on rent. Additionally, you must have been awarded SSI, SSDI, Veterans disability pension and Disability related Medicaid. Interested parties can contact 311 for additional information.
The New York State Department of Labor provides job counseling, resume enhancement and placement assistance for free, in the Board’s District Office, located at 3165 E. Tremont Avenue on a bi-weekly basis. The representative is here every other Wednesday. Please call ahead for an appointment at 718-892-1161.
Project Renewal, Cancer Services Program of the Bronx and the Community Board are the sponsors of a Mobile Mammography Program, which offers free mammography services to eligible, uninsured women over 40 years of age, who have not had a mammogram in the past year. For those with insurance, all insurance plans are accepted and co-payments and deductibles are waived. An appointment is necessary, so please call 1-800-564-6868. The mammogram van will be in front of the Board office at 3165 E. Tremont Avenue on Monday, January 25, 2016. Service will start at 10:00 AM.
Many of us are truly fortunate in having four legged friends; please remember to clean up after your dog. It is very important for the health of your dog and your neighbors. Besides, there is a $250.00 fine for failing to clean up after your pet and violating the pooper-scooper law. The Board has forwarded locations which need to be cleaned to the Department of Sanitation.
Bronx Community Board #10 is available to assist you with your concerns. Please feel free to contact us at 718-892-1161 or BX10@cb.nyc.gov. Please feel free to visit our office at 3165 E. Tremont Avenue or our website at www.nyc.gov/bronxcb10. We are open five days a week between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM.