GOODBYE, BUD. Council Dismisses Nicoletti, DPW COMMISSIONER FOR 30 YEARS. NICOLETTI WATCHES. 4 WHO VOTED TO DISMISS DO NOT SAY A WORD ABOUT HIS 30 YEARS OF SERVICE

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Former Commissioner of Public Works, “Bud” Nicoletti talking with citizens and Peter Katz (right) of WHITE PLAINS WEEK,on his dismissal Wednesday evening.

WPCNR COMMON COUNCIL CHRONICLE-EXAMINER. bY JOHN F. BAILEY, MAY 27, 2015 UPDATED 11:45 A.M. E.D.T.

COMMISSIONER JOSEPH “BUD” NICOLETTI, JR. WAS REMOVED AS COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC WORKS THIS EVENING BY THE WHITE PLAINS COMMON COUNCIL IN A SPECIAL MEETING THAT LASTED ABOUT 6 MINUTES.

MR. NICOLETTI ATTENDED AND WATCHED HIS OWN DISMISSAL HAPPEN BEFORE HIS EYES.

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Bud Nicoletti enters his own firing. Mr. Nicoletti is in the center of the photo, in his trademark double-breasted blazer.

MR. NICOLETTI UNEXPECTEDLY SHOWED UP ABOUT 20 MINUTES AFTER NINE.

HE WAS GIVEN AN OVATION BY A CROWD OF APPROXIMATELY 60 PERSONS. AND SHOOK HANDS ALL AROUND BEFORE HIS DENOUEMENT UNFOLDED.

AFTERWARDS HE TOLD WPCNR’S JOHN BAILEY HE WAS TOLD THERE WOULD BE A THE MEETING TONIGHT TO REMOVE HIM FROM OFFICE   AT 12 NOON wEDNESDAY.

HE SAID HE HAD NO INKLING HE WAS ABOUT TO BE REMOVED. HE SAID THAT A FEW MEMBERS OF THE COMMON COUNCIL HAD EXPRESSED DISMAY THAT SOME PROJECTS HAD NOT BEEN COMPLETED, AND MAYBE THAT HAD SOMETHING TO DO WITH IT.

COUNCILWOMAN MILAGROS LECUONA AND COUNCILMAN DENNIS KROLIAN EACH EXPRESSED SHOCK ON HEARING THEY WERE ASKED TO VOTE ON DISMISSING NICOLETTI–AND EMPHASIZED THAT THEY HAD HEARD OF NO IMPROPRIETY OR REASONS WHY HE SHOULD BE REMOVED. THEY VOTED AGAINST HIS REMOVAL.

COUNCILMAN JOHN KIRKPATRICK, COUNCILMAN JOHN MARTIN, COUNCILWOMAN BETH SMAYDA AND NEW COUNCILWOMAN NADINE HUNT-ROBINSON VOTED TO OUST MR. NICOLETTI.

NONE OF THE COUNCILPERSONS VOTING TO REMOVE MADE ANY COMMENTS AS TO WHY THEY DID SO WHEN ASKED BY THE MAYOR IF THEY HAD ANY COMMENT.

MAYOR TOM ROACH’S “YES” VOTE WAS DROWNED OUT BY THE UPROAR OF SHOCK FROM THE CROWD AND UPON REVIEW OF THE WPCNR TAPE RECORDING OF THE PROCEEDINGS, HE DID VOTE  ’YES” AT FIRST BELIEVEDBY THIS REPORTER TO BE AN  ”ABSTAIN,”. HE  JOINED IN THE OUSTER.

THE MAYOR ALONE  REMARKED  ON MR. NICOLETTI’S OVER 30 YEARS EXPERIENCE WITH THE CITY,

NICOLETTI SAID HE IS TAKING RETIREMENT AND ACCUMULATED VACATION TIME AS HE LEAVES THE CITY EMPLOY EFFECTIVE AS OF 9:36 PM WEDNESDAY EVENING.

WHEN THE VOTE WAS TAKEN. THE CROWD BURST INTO AN UPROAR, SAYING THIS IS “A DISGRACE, A DISGRACE.”

MR. NICOLETTI IS THE SECOND COMMISSIONER TO BE REMOVED BY THE ROACH ADMINISTRATION IN FIVE MONTHS. THE FIRST WAS MR. ROACH’S FIRST COMMISSIONER HIRE, FORMER PLANNING COMMISSIONER ELIZABETH CHETENY.

THE COMMISSIONER OF PLANNING ELIZABETH CHETENY WAS REMOVED IN MID JANUARY, WHICH WAS EXPLAINED BY THE MAYOR, AS  ”WE WANTED TO GO IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION.”

IT TOOK THE COUNCIL 7 MINUTES TO DISMISS A PERSON WHO HAS GAINED RECOGNITION FOR HIS EXPERTISE. STATEWIDE

HE  IS RENOWNED FOR HIS ABILITY TO REMOVE SNOW THE MOST EFFICIENTLY OF ANY OTHER MUNICIPALITY IN THE COUNTY AND HAS FOUGHT TO DO THINGS RIGHT, MOST NOTABLY REFUSING TO APPROVE THE ORIGINAL RITZ CARLTON SEWAGE MANAGEMENT PLAN BECAUSE HE THOUGHT THE CITY MAIN STREET SEWER COULD NOT HANDLE THE OVERFLOW. BECAUSE MR. NICOLETTI WOULD NOT SIGN OFF ON THAT RITZ PLAN, THE BUILDER OF THE HOTEL WAS FORCED TO BUILD A SEPARATE BYPASS, DUBBED BY THIS REPORTER, “THE NICOLETTI BYPASS.”

NICOLETTI IS RENOWNED FOR HIS “NICOLETTITINI” mixture he treats roads with in anticipation of a snowstorm, that enables the streets to be plowed more effectively.

HE HAS BROUGHT ONE-ARM GARBAGE TRUCKS TO THE CITY THAT EXECUTE MORE EFFICIENT USE OF DPW PERSONNEL.

HE HAS BROUGHT LED, ENERGY SAVING LIGHT TO CITY STREETS AND GARAGES.

THE COMMON COUNCIL MEMBERS LEFT THE CHAMBERS QUICKLY AND DID NOT LINGER TO BE INTERVIEWED.

THE MAYOR’S OFFICE DID NOT ANSWER THE BUZZER OF THE MAYOR’S OFFICE DOOR, WHEN THIS REPORTER ATTEMPTED TO GET THEIR COMMENTS ON THE NICOLETTI DECISION.

IT THE COUNCIL 7 MINUTES TO REMOVE A MAN, WITH NO WORD OF PRAISE OR THANKS FROM THE 4 WHO VOTED TO REMOVE HIM — A MAN WHO HAS BEEN COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC WORKS FOR 30 YEARS, HAVING BEEN APPOINTED TO THE POSITION BY MAYOR ALFRED DEL VECCHIO IN 1985.

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COUNCIL TO CONSIDER REMOVING JOSEPH NICOLETTI AS HEAD OF PUBLIC WORKS TONIGHT, 9:30 P.M.

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WPCNR COMMON COUNCIL CHRONICLE-EXAMINER. FROM THE CITY CLERK. MAY 27, 2015:

THE CITY CLERK HAS  ISSUED A PUBLIC NOTICEAS OF 2:45 P.M. TODAY ANNOUNCING A SPECIAL MEETING AT 9;30 THIS EVENING TO REMOVE LONGTIME COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC WORKS JOSEPH NICOLETTI UNDER THE AUSPICES OF SECTION 20 OF THE CITY CHARTER.

THE MEETING IS SCHEDULED FOR 9:30 PM AT CITY HALL

THE PRESENT COMMISSIONER, JOSEPH NICOLETTI HAS BEEN COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC WORKS SINCE THE MID-1970s.

THE CITY CLERK OFFICE  HAS CONFIRMED TO WPCNR THE SCHEDULING OF THE MEETING IS “FOR REAL.”

WPCNR has been told some members of the Common Council were not aware the possibility of imminent dismissal was affoot until about 2:45 PM the time of the Special Meeting notification

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Final DOWNTOWN MUSIC AT THE GRACE (CHURCH) TODAY 12:10–FREE CLASSICAL REFRESHMENT! GILDA LYONS COMPOSER AND VOCALIST PERFORMS WITH DARON HAGEN

Wednesday, May 27, 12:10 PM

Gilda Lyons, a composer and vocalist who is a fierce advocate of contemporary music, has commissioned and premiered new works by dozens of composers.

Of her performance in Daron Hagen’s “Shining Brow” (Buffalo Philharmonic/Falletta) (Naxos) David Shengold of Opera, UK writes “Gilda Lyons’s clear soprano compels admiration.”

She is joined at the piano by Daron Hagen, one of America’s most prominent, prolific, and respected composers. All eight of his major operas are currently in production or revival throughout the U.S., Europe, or Asia. In collaboration with the Phoenix Concerts,the program includes music of Blitzstein, Brel, Hagen, Lyons, Sondheim and Weill. A Downtown Music debut. Free Admission

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TOP FIFA SOCCER EXECS YELLOW-CARDED ON CHARGES OF RACKETEERING, CONSPIRACY, CORRUPTION.

WPCNR FBI WIRE. From the Federal Bureau of Investigation. May 27, 2015 :

A 47-count indictment was unsealed early this morning in federal court in Brooklyn charging 14 defendants with racketeering, wire fraud, and money laundering conspiracies, among other offenses, in connection with the defendants’ participation in a 24-year scheme to enrich themselves through the corruption of international soccer. The guilty pleas of four individual defendants and two corporate defendants were also unsealed today.

The defendants charged in the indictment include high-ranking officials of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the organization responsible for the regulation and promotion of soccer worldwide, as well as leading officials of other soccer governing bodies that operate under the FIFA umbrella. The defendants Jeffrey Webb and Jack Warner—the current and former presidents CONCACAF, the continental confederation under FIFA headquartered in the United States—are among the soccer officials charged with racketeering and bribery offenses. The defendants also include U.S. and South American sports marketing executives who are alleged to have systematically paid and agreed to pay well over $150 million in bribes and kickbacks to obtain lucrative media and marketing rights to international soccer tournaments.

The charges were announced by Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch; Kelly T. Currie, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; James B. Comey, Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); Diego W. Rodriguez, Assistant Director-in-Charge, FBI, New York Field Office; Richard Weber, Chief, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation; and Special Agent in Charge Erick Martinez, IRS Criminal Investigation, Los Angeles Field Office.

Also earlier this morning, Swiss authorities in Zurich arrested seven of the defendants charged in the indictment, the defendants Jeffrey Webb, Eduardo Li, Julio Rocha, Costas Takkas, Eugenio Figueredo, Rafael Esquivel, and José Maria Marin, at the request of the United States.1

The guilty pleas of the four individual and two corporate defendants that were also unsealed today include the guilty pleas of Charles Blazer, the long-serving former general secretary of CONCACAF and former U.S. representative on the FIFA executive committee; José Hawilla, the owner and founder of the Traffic Group, a multinational sports marketing conglomerate headquartered in Brazil; and two of Hawilla’s companies, Traffic Sports International, Inc. and Traffic Sports USA, Inc., which is based in Florida.

“The indictment alleges corruption that is rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted both abroad and here in the United States,” said Attorney General Lynch. “It spans at least two generations of soccer officials who, as alleged, have abused their positions of trust to acquire millions of dollars in bribes and kickbacks. And it has profoundly harmed a multitude of victims, from the youth leagues and developing countries that should benefit from the revenue generated by the commercial rights these organizations hold, to the fans at home and throughout the world whose support for the game makes those rights valuable. Today’s action makes clear that this Department of Justice intends to end any such corrupt practices, to root out misconduct, and to bring wrongdoers to justice—and we look forward to continuing to work with other countries in this effort.” Attorney General Lynch extended her grateful appreciation to the authorities of the government of Switzerland, as well as several other international partners, for their outstanding assistance in this investigation.

“Today’s announcement should send a message that enough is enough. After decades of what the indictment alleges to be brazen corruption, organized international soccer needs a new start—a new chance for its governing institutions to provide honest oversight and support of a sport that is beloved across the world, increasingly so here in the United States. Let me be clear: this indictment is not the final chapter in our investigation,” stated Acting United States Attorney Currie. Mr. Currie extended his thanks to the agents, analysts, and other investigative personnel with the FBI New York Eurasian Joint Organized Crime Squad and the IRS Criminal Investigation Los Angeles Field Office, as well as their colleagues abroad, for their tremendous effort in this case.

“As charged in the indictment, the defendants fostered a culture of corruption and greed that created an uneven playing field for the biggest sport in the world. Undisclosed and illegal payments, kickbacks, and bribes became a way of doing business at FIFA. I want to commend the investigators and prosecutors around the world who have pursued this case so diligently, for so many years,” said FBI Director Comey.

“When leaders in an organization resort to cheating the very members that they are supposed to represent, they must be held accountable,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Chief Weber. “Corruption, tax evasion, and money laundering are certainly not the cornerstones of any successful business. Whether you call it soccer or football, the fans, players, and sponsors around the world who love this game should not have to worry about officials corrupting their sport. This case isn’t about soccer, it is about fairness and following the law. IRS CI will continue to investigate financial crimes and follow the money wherever it may lead around the world, leveling the playing field for those who obey the law.”

The charges in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The Enterprise

FIFA is composed of 209 member associations, each representing organized soccer in a particular nation or territory, including the United States and four of its overseas territories. FIFA also recognizes six continental confederations that assist it in governing soccer in different regions of the world. The U.S. Soccer Federation is one of 41 member associations of the confederation known as CONCACAF, which has been headquartered in the United States throughout the period charged in the indictment. The South American confederation, called CONMEBOL, is also a focus of the indictment.

As alleged in the indictment, FIFA and its six continental confederations, together with affiliated regional federations, national member associations, and sports marketing companies, constitute an enterprise of legal entities associated in fact for purposes of the federal racketeering laws. The principal—and entirely legitimate—purpose of the enterprise is to regulate and promote the sport of soccer worldwide.

As alleged in the indictment, one key way the enterprise derives revenue is to commercialize the media and marketing rights associated with soccer events and tournaments. The organizing entity that owns those rights—as FIFA and CONCACAF do with respect to the World Cup and the Gold Cup, their respective flagship tournaments—sells them to sports marketing companies, often through multi-year contracts covering multiple editions of the tournaments. The sports marketing companies, in turn, sell the rights downstream to TV and radio broadcast networks, major corporate sponsors, and other sub-licensees who want to broadcast the matches or promote their brands. The revenue generated from these contracts is substantial: according to FIFA, 70% of its $5.7 billion in total revenues between 2011 and 2014 was attributable to the sale of TV and marketing rights to the 2014 World Cup.

The Racketeering Conspiracy

The indictment alleges that, between 1991 and the present, the defendants and their co-conspirators corrupted the enterprise by engaging in various criminal activities, including fraud, bribery, and money laundering. Two generations of soccer officials abused their positions of trust for personal gain, frequently through an alliance with unscrupulous sports marketing executives who shut out competitors and kept highly lucrative contracts for themselves through the systematic payment of bribes and kickbacks. All told, the soccer officials are charged with conspiring to solicit and receive well over $150 million in bribes and kickbacks in exchange for their official support of the sports marketing executives who agreed to make the unlawful payments.

Most of the schemes alleged in the indictment relate to the solicitation and receipt of bribes and kickbacks by soccer officials from sports marketing executives in connection with the commercialization of the media and marketing rights associated with various soccer matches and tournaments, including FIFA World Cup qualifiers in the CONCACAF region, the CONCACAF Gold Cup, the CONCACAF Champions League, the jointly organized CONMEBOL/CONCACAF Copa América Centenario, the CONMEBOL Copa América, the CONMEBOL Copa Libertadores, and the Copa do Brasil, which is organized by the Brazilian national soccer federation (CBF). Other alleged schemes relate to the payment and receipt of bribes and kickbacks in connection with the sponsorship of CBF by a major U.S. sportswear company, the selection of the host country for the 2010 World Cup, and the 2011 FIFA presidential election.

The Indicted Defendants

As set forth in the indictment, the defendants and their co-conspirators fall generally into three categories: soccer officials acting in a fiduciary capacity within FIFA and one or more of its constituent organizations; sports media and marketing company executives; and businessmen, bankers, and other trusted intermediaries who laundered illicit payments.

Nine of the defendants were FIFA officials by operation of the FIFA statutes, as well as officials of one or more other bodies:

  • Jeffrey Webb: Current FIFA vice president and executive committee member, CONCACAF president, Caribbean Football Union (CFU) executive committee member, and Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) president.
  • Eduardo Li: Current FIFA executive committee member-elect, CONCACAF executive committee member, and Costa Rican soccer federation (FEDEFUT) president.
  • Julio Rocha: Current FIFA development officer. Former Central American Football Union (UNCAF) president and Nicaraguan soccer federation (FENIFUT) president.
  • Costas Takkas: Current attaché to the CONCACAF president. Former CIFA general secretary.
  • Jack Warner: Former FIFA vice president and executive committee member, CONCACAF president, CFU president, and Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) special adviser.
  • Eugenio Figueredo: Current FIFA vice president and executive committee member. Former CONMEBOL president and Uruguayan soccer federation (AUF) president.
  • Rafael Esquivel: Current CONMEBOL executive committee member and Venezuelan soccer federation (FVF) president.
  • José Maria Marin: Current member of the FIFA organizing committee for the Olympic football tournaments. Former CBF president.
  • Nicolás Leoz: Former FIFA executive committee member and CONMEBOL president.

Four of the defendants were sports marketing executives:

  • Alejandro Burzaco: Controlling principal of Torneos y Competencias S.A., a sports marketing business based in Argentina, and its affiliates.
  • Aaron Davidson: President of Traffic Sports USA, Inc. (Traffic USA).
  • Hugo and Mariano Jinkis: Controlling principals of Full Play Group S.A., a sports marketing business based in Argentina, and its affiliates.

And one of the defendants was in the broadcasting business but allegedly served as an intermediary to facilitate illicit payments between sports marketing executives and soccer officials:

  • José Margulies: Controlling principal of Valente Corp. and Somerton Ltd.

The Convicted Individuals and Corporations

The following individuals and corporations previously pled guilty under seal:

On July 15, 2013, the defendant Daryll Warner, son of defendant Jack Warner and a former FIFA development officer, waived indictment and pled guilty to a two-count information charging him with wire fraud and the structuring of financial transactions.

On October 25, 2013, the defendant Daryan Warner, son of defendant Jack Warner and a businessman, waived indictment and pled guilty to a three-count information charging him with wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, and the structuring of financial transactions. Daryan Warner forfeited over $1.1 million around the time of his plea and has agreed to pay a second forfeiture money judgment at the time of sentencing.

On November 25, 2013, the defendant Charles Blazer, the former CONCACAF general secretary and a former FIFA executive committee member, waived indictment and pled guilty to a 10-count information charging him with racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, income tax evasion, and failure to file a Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). Blazer forfeited over $1.9 million at the time of his plea and has agreed to pay a second amount to be determined at the time of sentencing.

On December 12, 2014, the defendant José Hawilla, the owner and founder of the Traffic Group, the Brazilian sports marketing conglomerate, waived indictment and pled guilty to a four-count information charging him with racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, and obstruction of justice. Hawilla also agreed to forfeit over $151 million, $25 million of which was paid at the time of his plea.

On May 14, 2015, the defendants Traffic Sports USA, Inc. and Traffic Sports International, Inc. pled guilty to wire fraud conspiracy.

All money forfeited by the defendants is being held in reserve to ensure its availability to satisfy any order of restitution entered at sentencing for the benefit of any individuals or entities that qualify as victims of the defendants’ crimes under federal law.

The indictment unsealed today has been assigned to the Honorable Raymond J. Dearie, United States District Judge for the Eastern District of New York.

The indicted and convicted individual defendants face maximum terms of incarceration of 20 years for the RICO conspiracy, wire fraud conspiracy, wire fraud, money laundering conspiracy, money laundering, and obstruction of justice charges. In addition, the defendant Eugenio Figueredo faces a maximum term of incarceration of 10 years for a charge of naturalization fraud and could have his U.S. citizenship revoked. He also faces a maximum term of incarceration of five years for each tax charge. The defendant Charles Blazer faces a maximum term of incarceration of 10 years for the FBAR charge and five years for the tax evasion charges; and the defendants Daryan and Daryll Warner face maximum terms of incarceration of 10 years for structuring financial transactions to evade currency reporting requirements. Each individual defendant also faces mandatory restitution, forfeiture, and a fine. By the terms of their plea agreements, the corporate defendants face fines of $500,000 and one year of probation.

The government’s investigation is ongoing.

The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Evan M. Norris, Amanda Hector, Darren A. LaVerne, Samuel P. Nitze, Keith D. Edelman, and Brian D. Morris, with assistance provided by the Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs and Organized Crime and Gang Section.

The Indicted Defendants:

  • ALEJANDRO BURZACO
  • Age: 50
  • Nationality: Argentina
  • AARON DAVIDSON
  • Age: 44
  • Nationality: USA
  • RAFAEL ESQUIVEL
  • Age: 68
  • Nationality: Venezuela
  • EUGENIO FIGUEREDO
  • Age: 83
  • Nationality: USA, Uruguay
  • HUGO JINKIS
  • Age: 70
  • Nationality: Argentina
  • MARIANO JINKIS
  • Age: 40
  • Nationality: Argentina
  • NICOLÁS LEOZ
  • Age: 86
  • Nationality: Paraguay
  • EDUARDO LI
  • Age: 56
  • Nationality: Costa Rica
  • JOSÉ MARGULIES, also known as José Lazaro
  • Age: 75
  • Nationality: Brazil
  • JOSÉ MARIA MARIN
  • Age: 83
  • Nationality: Brazil
  • JULIO ROCHA
  • Age: 64
  • Nationality: Nicaragua
  • COSTAS TAKKAS
  • Age: 58
  • Nationality: United Kingdom
  • JACK WARNER
  • Age: 72
  • Nationality: Trinidad and Tobago
  • JEFFREY WEBB
  • Age: 50
  • Nationality: Cayman Islands

The Convicted Defendants:

  • CHARLES BLAZER
  • Age: 70
  • Nationality: USA
  • JOSÉ HAWILLA
  • Age: 71
  • Nationality: Brazil
  • DARYAN WARNER
  • Age: 46
  • Nationality: Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada
  • DARYLL WARNER
  • Age: 40
  • Nationality: USA, Trinidad and Tobago
  • TRAFFIC SPORTS INTERNATIONAL, INC.
  • Registered: British Virgin Islands
  • TRAFFIC SPORTS USA, INC.
  • Registered: USA

E.D.N.Y. Docket Numbers:

  • United States v. Daryll Warner, 13 Cr. 402 (WFK)
  • United States v. Daryan Warner, 13 Cr. 584 (WFK)
  • United States v. Charles Blazer, 13 Cr. 602 (RJD)
  • United States v. José Hawilla, 14 Cr. 609 (RJD)
  • United States v. Traffic Sports International, Inc., 14 Cr. 609 (RJD)
  • United States v. Traffic Sports USA, Inc., 14 Cr. 609 (RJD)
  • United States v. Jeffrey Webb et al., 15 Cr. 252 (RJD)

1 Also this morning, a search warrant is being executed at CONCACAF headquarters in Miami, Florida.

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New Rochelle, Eastchester, Bronxville, Tuckahoe, Town and Village of Pelham, Pelham Manor advised to boil water Wednesday—DEPT OF HEALTH. 150,000 AFFECTED

NYC DEP MAINTENANCE TRIGGERS BOIL WATER ADVISORY

7 Sound Shore Communities Advised to Boil Water Wednesday, May 27 from 10 a.m. to Midnight

 

A boil water advisory has been issued by the Westchester County Department of Health for the following municipalities served by the United Water Rate District #1 and will remain in effect on Wednesday, May 27 from 10 a.m. through midnight.  Approximately 150,000 people are in the affected areas as follows:

  • City of New Rochelle
  • Town of Eastchester
  • Village of Bronxville
  • Village of Tuckahoe
  • Town of Pelham
  • Village of Pelham
  • Village of Pelham Manor

The boil water advisory is being issued as a precautionary measure while New York City Department of Environmental Protection performs scheduled maintenance of its chlorination system resulting in inadequate disinfection of water provided to United Water Rate District #1.

A boil water advisory means that residents in the affected area must boil all tap water at a rolling boil for a minimum of one minute prior to drinking it or using it to prepare food, wash dishes by hand or brush teeth. Restaurants, delis, bodegas and all food service establishments in the affected area also must boil water before serving it or using it to prepare food. Residents also can use bottled water as an alternative to boiling.

The advisory does not extend to bathing, clothes washing or the use of a dishwasher.

Updates to the boil water advisory will be provided by the Health Department as needed. For more information, residents should contact United Water Rate District #1 at 914-632-6900 or visit their website at www.unitedwater.com/newrochelle.

For more information on health topics, like us at facebook.com/wchealthdept, follow us on Twitter @wchealthdept, or call the county Health Department at (914) 813-5000.

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Remembering the Candlelight Walk: Why the Good Must Fight Against The Worst of Human Nature

WPCNR MILESTONES. By John F. Bailey .Reprinted from WPCNR of September 16, 2001:

As I write this introduction, it is almost 14 years when unbelievably, a lone plane struck the first World Trade Center Tower on a morning of bright clear sunny sky.

Every year we remember the day the Towers Fell and today we remember our war dead on Memorial Day. But, if anything, the Fall of the Towers and the regret and melancholy of Memorial Day say a lot of why there will always have to be those willing to fight against wrong.

My wife watched the towers fall from her office in midtown, a sight she will never forget.

On the Sunday night of September 16, 2001, White Plains held an impromptu memorial Candlelight Walk that attracted thousands. I covered that event and this reminiscence written that night tells just a little of how The Day the Towers Fell affected all of America that black day when oily smoke filled the Manhattan sky and thousands perished before our eyes, helpless to do anything to stop it.

Here is the reprint of The Candlelight Walk report 

They carried flags, “thank you signs,” and lit candles. They came from all races, ranks and religions to walk, remember and celebrate what it means to be an American and prayed for America’s future on the White Plains Candlelight Walk Sunday night Police estimated a crowd approaching 8,000 persons gathered at the White Plains Railroad Station and marched shoulder to shoulder, Black to White, Hispanic to Hassidim, Italian to Jew, Arab-to-Asian, Old-and-Young, American-to-American in a solemn, uplifting remembrance and rededication to America’s future.

The White Plains Candlelight Walk staggered city officials with the streaming turnout filling the broad Main Street boulevard with ranks of 30 to 40 persons shoulder-to-shoulder all the way from the City Hall steps to Bank Street.
By 7:15 PM the parking lot below the clock tower at the railroad station was filled, and still they came. Every race, every creed. Neighbors greeting each other. Shaking hands. Some carried signs. Some carried flags. Some brought their own candles, but they came. They walked. Pushed strollers. Children did not cry or misbehave. Persons said “Excuse me,” and smiled at each other. They knew this was important.

They lit each others’ candles. At 7:35 PM they began to walk slowly south on Bank Street filling the broad cross street with quiet, orderly, confident humanity. For such a large crowd, they were serious and stalwart.

Some carried signs reading “Thank You White Plains Bravest and Finest,” and “Thank you Fire and Police.” They sang impromptu versions of “My Country ‘Tis of Thee,” and “The Star-Spangled Banner,” waving their flags. Their spirits were steady. Their pride high. No fear. Their love of country and fellow Americans was glowing.

The city stops for a remembrance

As dusk stole velvetly over the streets with an orange sun receding to the West, traffic on Hamilton Avenue stopped for this long, solemn, slow freight train of White Plains citizens. They took 30 minutes to reach City Hall, and still, from this reporter’s vantage, reached back to Bank Street.

There was no honking of horns from stopped autombiles. No animosity. Motorists recognized something special: thousands of tentative, yet determined steps of America on the way back were being taken.

The City Clergy in a remarkable ceremony

At the City Hall steps, with Main Street jammed with humanity, a quiet, respectful crowd drew close to the old neo-classic columned brick façade. They waved flags, their candles in their hands glowed like they do at a Meadowlands concert.

Mayor Joseph Delfino welcomed the multitudes thanking all for coming, thanking the White Plains firemen and policemen for their efforts the past week, but his remarks were hard to hear. Somehow you did not have to hear them. Everyone understood what he was saying. Everyone felt it, too. I did.The Mayor was surrounded by a host of the White Plains clergy from many churches behind him. The men and women of the cloth had assembled at his call to present an ecumenical service of remembrance and prayer for the victims of the World Trade Center disaster. There was a chorale group and ensemble. But, I cannot tell you who they are at this point. But it did not matter. We were all one person that night. One heart. One mind. America has not been that way for a long time these fourteen years as partisanship and ideology have taken over the public discourse and the political agenda.

The message you heard even if you could not hear it

There were no news releases or media briefs at this Candlelight Walk gathering. No text of the Mayor’s remarks was handed out. He did not make many. It was not that kind of event. It was regretfully special. You did not need to know who was offering the prayers, rabbi or priest, minister or pastor.

The different prayers and appropriate hymns rose on the cool early autumn night echoing skyward, warming hearts, and somehow fit splendidly meaningfully together. The White Plains clergy, in this reporter’s opinion, should do this more often under pleasanter circumstances. It was very special and so right.

The impromptu public address system could not be heard clearly beyond 100 feet. However, the people of White Plains listened and soaked in the spirit of the sweetly sung entreaties to The Almighty, with no catcalls, no disrespect, dedication and silent endorsement of the message. Children did not cry.

A moving sequence

The most moving sequence of the service occurred when each Man and Woman of God voiced a prayerful sentiment and the ensemble sang “Lord, listen to your children praying.” It was a White Plains “Moment to Remember.”

The service concluded with the throng singing “We Shall Overcome.” After several moving choruses with the multitude of citizens swaying together, the final stanza which goes “We Shall Stand Together,” closed the old 60s protest song with a roll of applause and cheers.

The Mayor rallies the crowd

Mayor Delfino came to the podium. With clergy, councilpersons, and congresspersons to his right and left, spoke proudly and earnestly to the crowd:

“Never would I have believed that we’d have such a turnout. I am overwhelmed, this is truly the greatest community in America,” and went on to thank all the city’s clergy for coming together for the service, saying that “God would get us through.”

The Mayor said that there was a Remembrance Book in the City Hall rotunda, which would be placed in the White Plains Public Library for all to sign. The Mayor announced this because not all of the thousands could march into the rotunda to sign it that evening, which brought one of the few laughs of the night.

Everyone leaves with a sense of a job to be done

The remarkable evening of remembrance and renewal closed with a rousing singing of “God Bless America,” with outstanding voices from the steps of City Hall, helping the citizens out with the second and third verses.

The crowd slowly dispersed.

They returned to cars, parents pushing strollers, couples arms over shoulders. Old city and county political rivals often adversaries, shook hands on the City Hall steps.

Some young persons in their 20s stood in front of the fenced off E J Conroy Drive, and, impromptu, shouted “USA,USA!” Then they changed what they were chanting. They crossed their hearts and began to recite, in unison: “The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag,” getting every word right with dignity and dedication.

You should have been there.

In retrospect as we remember and regret the war dead today, we should remember there are times when you have to take up arms to stop a menace threatening your way of life. The key word is threatening.

When fighting becomes an instrument of foreign policy by choice is when the decision to fight becomes muddled and not too clear.  The decision to go to war, refuse to go to war, or wait and see is difficult and how far to take the fight requires rationality, a clear objective and motivations that are not guided politically. I repeat not guided by political advantage.

The day the towers fell. Pearl Harbor. The sinking of the Luisitania. The sinking of the Maine. The firing on Fort Sumter. The Battle of Bunker Hill. They were all defining moments when our way of life was threatened.

The decision to fight sometimes isn’t  very clear. Other times when it is unclear it becomes perhaps the greatest regret on all Memorial Days. Deaths spent in vain.

Memorial Day: It is a day that remembers the price of the decisions to fight, good and bad, and should caution those with the power to wage war to weigh  carefully how to do it, how long to fight, and establish  a clear objective.

 

 

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The ALL AMERICAN COOKOUT — a TRADITION, TOO.

WPCNR  THE GRILLING LIFE. By The American Grillman. Reprinted from The CitizeNetReporter Archives. July 5, 2008: 

Monday is  the come home day of another Memorial Day Weekend in White Plains, coming home for that Memorial Day picnic. After Monday’s Memorial Day Parade starting at 10 AM in downtown White Plains tomorrow,  it is time to usher in summer officially.

Thanks to the chimney charcoal starter and its glowing orange coals, the backyard American barbeque DNA macho in the amateur chef is once again the equal of the overpriced steak cooked indoors at any restaurant.

Steak was raised outside, it was born to be cooked outside, and the barbequed steak on orange charcoal’s glow puts the Cartier- priced steakhouse in its place!

In this griller’s opinion, ourdoor grilling proves once again to be the equal and superior to the overpriced artificial-tasting steak that sleek decor and atmosphere cannot duplicate backyard orgins. The economy may be a press secretary’s fantasy, your home price declining, your taxes going up,  but remember,  even the hobo can grill!

To do real steak right , you have to do it outside on charcoal.

The instinct of generations of the American backyard barbeque tradition passed up from  the cave, enjoyed at Valley Forge, bit into by cowboys  around chuck wagons on the prairie and up from the Southland  barbeque inbred and passed on from American father to American son – cutting across nationality and station – gives you real steak – not $100 technology  enhanced cuts. Flaming charcoal makes steak a living thing in your mouth!

I think America can pull itself out of this temporary hiccup in the American economy and “anything-but-the-issues-politics”. as long as the American grilling tradition is handed down, the pioneer “can-do” spirit lives!

Why pay $100 for a  steak dinner unless your company or your political contributor  is paying for it, when you can tap your inner griller and say I can cook steak better?  The difference is the air, the smoke, the way marinade just drips down into the coals and gets into the meat. It’s chemistry!  Fire and flame and meat become one in a mystical, before time experience.

What is it about the American Grillman that’s so special that his or hers backyard cuts beat the insider  professionals’ inflation-friendly ostentatious steaks?

It’s the unique chemistry of being American and charcoal flame.  You’re not really part of America unless you’re grillin” like an American.

And on Independence Day Weekend coming up, it’s not really chillin’ on July 4 unless you’re grillin’.

There’s just something about the searing intensity of glowing charcoal combining mystically with the testosterone and instinctual synergy between red meat and the dedicated outdoor griller –  it beats in taste, juiciness and texture the contrived technology of the most expensive restaurant equipment.

No matter how tasty the megabuck meat is in the swank sticker shock steak palaces, there’s always that articificialness packaged taste that marks the indoor steak. The butteryness. The soft crust of the black topped surface of the indoor steak just does not have the nubile grizzled roughhewn flamed yield of the outdoor one-on-one grilled steak that fights your bicuspids every cillemeter.It is like a showgirl seen from a distance who looks older the closer you get.

Only one whose money is easily parted would pay $50 and up for a buttery indoor steak dinner when you can do it yourself in the backyard even in 20 degree weather even in the rain – the steaks done to perfection with the juices sealed  in.

The chimney starter – the secret to the hot start. No more charcoal fluid needed. Take a copy of The Journal News and scrunch up the news section or the sports section in the bottom of the Chimney Starter. (Experience shows that copies of the Journal News – any Gannett paper – burn better than the New York Times which is very slow-starting)

Pour in a helping of those ultimate black beauties, Kingsford charcoal briquettes into the chimney top. Fifteen minutes before the wife has the sides ready, take a wooden match to the aperatures in the base of the starter and light up the edges of the newsprint. Within 10-15 minutes you’ve got coals a firey orange red. You’re ready to outcook the pros.

Eat Your Heart Out, Mr. or Ms. Professional Food Designer and Celebrity Chef!  After the Griller’s wife has marinated the meat –  these Stop and Shop trimmed New York Strips sizzling in the caressing deep searing heat of glowing orange briquettes – 3 minutes a side and deft turning and surgical rareness checks – the seasoned grillista simply has a feel for the meat – passed genetically down from generations of American grillers. The combination of cauldron, flavored steel grill rods coated in the char of former grillings, and perfect licking flames create the branded grillmarks that deliver the natural taste of the backyard steak – impossible to achieve for any price in the tehnologically nuanced, high tech steam tables of today.  No one can do a great cut like you can, Mr. America!

FEEL THE BURN!

As any redblooded American Grillman will tell you when doing a steak – you can’t deliver a steak by manual or instructions. You have to feel the meat. Feel it cook. You just know its time.

Every cut is not the same. The American Grillman becomes one with the meat. With eye and knowledge of the hue of red – you just  know  by instinct when she’s done. Cooking is slowed down by moving the meats to the side off the heat to keep the American beauties warm

With the wife’s deft presentation, sweet potato fries, corn pudding, fresh beans and mushrooms without the sog of infrared glare, the Grillman’s natural art relegates the indoor steak out of the taste sweepstakes.

Gentlemen, start your grils and   fire up to get that taste of summer you cannot get in any indoor steakhouse no matter how much you pay.

And–gas grills, are you kidding me?

Only charcoal does it the American Way!

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ORIGINS OF MEMORIAL DAY– A CIVIL WAR LEGACY

WPCNR STARS AND STRIPES. Contributed by Carl Albanese. Originally published  by WPCNR May 30, 2011:

Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

“Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.” — General Logan – May 5, 1868

We need to remember with sincere respect those who paid the price for our freedoms; we need to keep in sacred remembrance those who died serving their country. We need to never let them be forgotten. However, over the years the original meaning and spirit of Memorial Day has faded from the public consciousness.

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day.

There is also evidence that organized women’s groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, “Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping” by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication “To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead” (Source: Duke University’s Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920).

While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it’s difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860′s tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in Gen Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868.

It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states.

The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war).

It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 – 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis’ birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.

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