APPROVED SUMMARY OF HHOC MEETING: February 25, 2008


The meeting took place at the Hebrew Tabernacle and got under way at about 7:20 p.m.

People attending: Julia Attaway, Michael Augenblick, Marcella Calabi, Mike Fitelson, Joseph Lentini, William McBurney, Tina Molinari, Joanne Powell, Raquel Retif, Elizabeth Ritter, Simone Song, Ruddy Thompson. 
Buildings represented:  187 Pinehurst, 255 Cabrini, 350 Cabrini, 720-730 Ft. Washington, Bennett Condominium, Castle Village, Overlook Towers
Guest buildings, neighborhood organizations and businesses present: Elected Officials represented: Berkshire Bank, Senator Schneiderman, Simone Song Properties, Thompson Development Group
The sign-in sheet may be incomplete. Contact secretary@hhoc.org if you are aware of anyone who is missing.

The Meeting Summary from the previous meeting was reviewed and edited.

Artists Unite Live has a series of concerts coming up on the first Thursdays of March, April and May, 7:30-9:30, $10. The concerts will feature NYC-based contemporary jazz composers and will include a conversation with the composer and a post-concert reception, Next event in the series will be March 6 at KB Gallery, 875 W. 181st. St. 212-543-2393

“First Thursday Stroll” is a recurring “moveable feast” event happening on the first Thursday of every month, sponsored by the Manhattan Times and NoMAA (= Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance) with assistance from the Wash Hghts-Inwood Chamber of Commerce. They begin at 7 p.m., are different every month, and provide a stroll through different interesting venues in Washington Heights with tastings, demonstrations, etc. March 6 will meet at Jennifer Ouellette shop which is a recent arrival to the neighborhood featuring hats and accessories (corner of 181st and Cabrini at 854 West 181st St.), and proceed to KB Gallery for the jazz concert mentioned above. Who ever thought we’d see the day when we had a hat shop and an art gallery that hosts live jazz, and on the same block at that!!
Watch for it: the May “First Thursday” will be an expanded event involving much of 181st Street.
Information about “First Thursdays” can be found in the Manhattan Times the week before. If you want to receive an email notice of this and other events you can sign up for “Bizz’n’Buzz” notices at manhattantimesnews.com

Berkshire Bank, responding to suggestions made by HHOC,  has devised a new product which is free checking and refunds of up to $10/month in ATM fees from other banks if you sign up for online banking. Offer extended to March. 210 Pinehurst 212-568-0013

There’s a petition to get a new Farmer's Market at Bennett Park. Clearly there are complex logistics to be solved to make this work (and to work well) but after much discussion at the meeting the general feeling was in favor and HHOC is supporting the idea. Here’s the petition: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/BennettFarmersMarket/?e

FYI (=Fresh Youth Initiatives) Annual Benefit event has been set for Thursday May 29th @ noon, $75, call 212-781-1113 (website is www.freshyouth.org but the invitation hasn’t been posted yet).

Roundtable:

Marcella brought up the matter of a comprehensive online calendar of events for the neighborhood. As was noted in the September meeting, many organizations including HHOC have attempted this but success is a function of the public developing the habit both to inform and to consult one central source. If the interested organizations collaborate rather than compete much duplication of effort could be avoided. Marcella offered HHOC and herself as a facilitator to bring together possible collaborators and see where the conversation leads. Mike F., who has been devoted to this project to date, agreed to pursue the idea with her.
Elizabeth informed us about the current step in the approval and planning of projects by City agencies, in the context of an immediately upcoming Community Board 12 meeting the next day. The agencies, having received requests and suggestions for things they should consider doing, give their responses in writing. This CB12 meeting was to review those responses and permit public comment. A number of the responses were pertinet to our neighborhood, and there was discussion of whether it would be possible for HHOC to send a representative. No-one was free to go in person but several agreed to write emails to the point person at the Board. The topics on which we had reason to comment included, for example, an MTA decision to simply refuse to consider requests to renovate the 181st St. subway station.

Henry reported on the last Community Council meeting of the 34th Precinct, at which car break-ins were again discussed. A number of the vandals have been caught but the system does not hold them for long, except in the case of one who in addition to smashing windows was in possession of a firearm. The police’s advice continues to be, don’t leave valuables in your car. GPS systems are a target.

There was discussion of the then-upcoming workshops hosted by REBNY (previously announced in the email before the meeting). The information being disseminated may be of use to local co-op owners, but keep in mind that it’s also a marketing event for REBNY. This is a membership organization of brokers, of which a few but not most of our loyal local brokers are not members.

The next meeting was set for March 31 and will be held at the Berkshire Bank. The meeting ended at 9:20 p.m.

 


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