Gloom and Loom at BBG

Gloom and Loom at BBG
Artist's rendering of proposed development along eastern perimeter of BBG

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Resolution Sent Back to ULURP Committee!

Interesting times at the February 24 CB9 meeting. MTOPP's court case is definitely having an effect on their behavior. Thirty-three of 36 board members in attendance, Laurie Cumbo showed but sat down and stayed down, reps of other elected officials including the Public Advocate, first appearance, lots of comm mtg minutes photocopied for distribution, really towing the line. There was an open mike and several people spoke several times and for more than 3 minutes, including Alicia Boyd and Tim Thomas. Alicia also gave out whistles and horns! Mine had Mickey Mouse. We made good use of them.

Comments were taken from the Board about aspects of the proposed operating and capital budget handouts, which were duly voted in. The papers displayed an appalling and ongoing disinterest in the sinful condition of the local public schools, a circumstance shamefully endemic throughout the city. As usual, the good stuff happened at the end.

Amid a furor, the resolution, surely written by Tim Thomas, was sent back to the ULURP Committee. That's a victory. Not one but three motions were made by members, some new, to start again, appalled at what they have seen. TT was gritting and grimacing, of course, But he agreed with Alicia (!) that it is a absolutely a disgrace how few times per year CB9 committees meet. It's no wonder nothing gets done.

No one can be confident that the 30+ ULURP applicants will be admitted to the committee soon enough to have an impact on the language of the resolution, but it seems not impossible. There's a conference in the judge's chambers this week and recognition of our applications will be one of our demands.

But here's the kicker. At the very very very end of the meeting, when almost everyone had gone, the rabbi who was the Board Chair before Dwayne stood up to the mic and started talking about some box full of official CB9 papers that went missing after some meeting. He seemed to suspect Jesse Hamilton's office for the vanishing. It was hard to hear him through the crosstalk, but he was basically questioning the "credibility" of Chairman Dwayne and loudly demanding an investigation. "No elected official should have access" to the Board's official papers, words to that effect.

Dwayne then asked if anyone in the auditorium wanted to respond to "this silliness" but since no one had been listening, and even I, who had been trying to listen, couldn't follow the thread, no one spoke. But it sounded positively incendiary. We'll see if it makes it into the minutes.

Did I mention that Dwayne also had a personal friend go 2+ minutes overtime to tell us how lucky we are to have such a man at the helm and that we need to show him some respect? A chant of "You gotta give some to get some," went up.