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9/25/06 Meeting Summary

People attending: Howard Aaron, Joaquin Alvarez, Julia Attaway, Mike Augenblick, Gail Chern-Thompson, Howard Dillon, Mark Katz, Mary Kim, Erica Lindenstraus, Doreen Mangam, Christine Molinari, Joanne Powell, Elizabeth Ritter, Kevin Sirois, Van Stone, Iris Walls, Mike Zamm

Buildings represented: 96 Arden, 255 Cabrini, 350 Cabrini, Castle Village, 17 Chittenden, Hudson View Gardens, 720/730 Fort Washington Ave, 900 W. 190th, 736 W 187th, 100 Overlook

CAMs present: Simone Song Realty, Stein-Perry Real Estate

Contact information noted: Community Board 12: 212-568-8500; 34th Precinct: 212-927-9711;  311

Minutes from the June meeting were approved.

Roundtable Discussion:

a) A question was raised about the role of managing agents in representing buildings at closings and supervising construction projects. For all but one of the buildings represented, managing agents attend closings; the agent receives a fee from the buyer +/or seller as part of the closing costs. Supervision of construction projects usually depends on the degree of involvement the board desires. Some buildings have board members attend job meetings, but the managing agent supervises the actual work.

b) 17 Chittenden is looking for recommendations for roofing companies. It was noted that all roofing work needs close supervision.

c) 900 W. 180th is looking for recommendations for landscaping and lawn maintenance. Lynn Torgeson is a local resident who landscaped the Trivium and handles 250 Cabrini. Complaints about pruning of city-owned trees should be directed to the Community Board and/or 311. The Parks Department offers classes that teach participants to prune trees themselves. The next session is Dec 11 at 6:30 p.m. at the Armory. To register, visit the Parks Dept web site. (www.nyc.gov/parks)

Welcome to new member buildings 738 W. 187th Street and 96 Arden

DYCD Contract: Elizabeth Ritter discussed the HHOC contract with the NYC Department of Youth & Community Development. This contract for $18K was designed to enable Councilman Jackson to disburse funds to groups in smaller amounts than the City’s contracting system’s minimum of $3.5K. The consensus was that the contract was a good thing, though it required substantial paperwork. If the Councilman wants to channel more than $20K through a similar contract next year, we will need to file a 990 form with the IRS and will need an accountant. It was agreed that the cost for this should be written into the contract budget, as well as compensation for the person administering the contract.

There was further discussion about whether or not the contract should include funding for renting out space for HHOC meetings. The consensus was that it is preferable to have member buildings host meetings, and that the budget should reflect the rental costs for 2-3 meetings as backup. Mary Kim graciously agreed to take on the task of inventorying available monthly meeting spaces, and to schedule locations for meetings during this year (assuming HHOC meets on the 3rd Monday of each month). Buildings that have meeting space available are asked to contact Mary via HHOC. Known meeting spaces are HVG, Castle Village, the lobby of 720/730, and the upcoming space at 900 W. 190th.

Bulletin Board on 187th Street: This bulletin board is for non-commercial use and community announcements. The smaller the announcement’s size the better, since space is limited. To submit items for posting, go to the back counter at Hilltop.

Paterno Trivium: Half of the endowment to maintain the Trivium in perpetuity has been raised. A campaign to raise the remainder is upcoming.

New Leaf Café: The seven-year lease for New Leaf is up in June. The site is currently in the RFP process. HHOC will send a letter of support for the renewal of New Leaf’s lease. Van Stone will draft it.

Mother Cabrini High School Walkathon: The group agreed to support the health and athletic program with a donation of $250.

Bennett Park Harvest Festival: The group agreed to support the Harvest Festival with a donation of $300.

<>10 Things Every Business Should Know: Did you know that the Department of Consumer Affairs licenses 55 different kinds of business in New York City? That a business must give you a receipt for any sale over $20? That prices have to be posted, and that scales must be positioned so that the customer can view weight information? For more information on these guidelines and other consumer information of interest, go to www.nyc.gov/dca.

HHOC Visibility: There was discussion of the need to increase public awareness of HHOC. Suggestions included posting highlights of achievements in the 187th Street bulletin board, an article in the Manhattan Times (Van Stone to follow up the Editor), and postcards to residents of non-member buildings.

Quality of Life issues: Arden Street has been having crime and drug-related problems, which include noise, violence and lighting issues. Recommendations included mobilizing and educating neighbors on how to complain effectively to the city. Repeated calls from a group of individuals to 311, the precinct, and Community Board are likely to see results.

Livery Cabs: Problems with livery cars such as illegal standing, improper turns, or extended use of parking meters should be reported to the Community Board 212-568-8500. The CB make recommendations to the TLC on renewal of licenses for livery cab companies. If there are no complaints on file, there’s no reason to turn down renewals. Similarly, a complaint to the base office of the car company often yields prompt results. Make sure you have the company name and the car number or TC plates. Indicate the date, time, and place the rule has been broken. Violations include idling more than three minutes, and sitting in a metered space for more than the posted time limit.

Tenant-Interim Lease Program: In light of recent coverage in the local paper on TIL buildings, there was some discussion as to what role HHOC might be able to play in working with new co-ops. TIL is a program in which rental buildings that have been abandoned by landlords are turned over to the tenants for back taxes, and become co-ops. The City provides technical assistance in the process. These buildings have no sponsor to help them smooth out the initial transition to ownership. The group agreed that this was a topic that required thinking time. Liz Ritter will provide more details on TIL at the next meeting. One preliminary suggestion was that HHOC could put together either seminars or a video.

YM/YWHA: The Nagle Avenue Y has received a planning grant to explore how to provide programs for Baby Boomers. They are looking for people ages 40-70 to participate in focus groups. For more information, contact Deborah Katznelson at the Y: 212-569-6200.

Missing Signs: For replacement of street signs, contact the Community Board. To get a new sign installed requires working with the appropriate agency. To get started on installing a new sign, call 311.

Announcements & Upcoming Events:

The meeting adjourned at 9:30. The next meeting was scheduled for 10/23, pending space availability.

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