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Leonard M. Kohen, Esq.

67 East 1ltt' Street #7O3 New York. NY 10003


(9 17)


Iulv 29.2013


Environmental Control Board Appeals Unit 66 John Street, 1Oth Floor New York, NY 10038


Environmental Control Board NOV 180554413

Dear Chief Judge, Environmental Control Board,

I found it astonishing that the City submitted an appellate brief in this matter and in how aggressively it is attempting to collect $50 (total penalty sum!) from me as a fine for running in the Hudson River Park on a weekend afternoon in February (which the City misstates as April).
The City's "appeal" - where it did not appear on the underlying hearing - warrants more than dismissal. The appeal lacks any factual and legal basis, is replete with calendaring errors, and s'Elrants dismissal and an award of attorneyfees for the following reasons: The City has not presented any evidence in support of its narrative in the brief: There is no stnorn affdavit or any record of first-hand sworn witness testimony to support the following funl portion of its submitted brief: I/Respondent "was observed running through Hudson R.iwr Park ("Park") adjacent to Laight and West Streets ("Location") .....[a]t that point in time, fu stion of Hudson River Park [sic] between Laight Street and North Moore Street, @passing the Location where the IO flssuing Officer] witnessed the Respondent, were fued at all times to the public."l It's "Statement of Facts" is signed only by alegal intern, and nt srcrn to (although his signature is sworn to on the affidavit of service on the next page), but cvcn if it were sporn, the legal intern does not claim to be reciting facts btrsed on firsthand bwldge. Morlover, the event in question did not occur on the date ["April 5"] that the City fucribes! (And as described through its legal intern who was never present at the scene!)


tinq fu Department's own records.


Tw dates when the city recites the events occurred are erroneous: The date of the tiolilion" was actually February 23,2013 and not April 5. April5 was the first hearing TPcrrrs date that was postponed to May l0 - this much should be verifiable by a check

| ufffod rdfirlly undr oa$ before the Administrative Law Judge that the section was not "closed to the Fth.- h th it was put$ barricaded in some parts and not in othen, that I did not cross a barrier to enter and th 1fuircd ft nmnerV@estrians within the Park and that no "closed" sigrs were visible-

(2) The City did hot attend the hearing and therefore, allowing it to assert its claims, including what it seems to present as "evidenca," for the first instance on "appeal" offends due process. The correct vehicle here (as in civil court procedure and apparently the remedy for individual respondents in these hearings) would have been to ask to vacate the order, however any such request to that end also should be denied for lack of merit.

It should be noted with some alarmthat there are likely other instances where the City has engaged in this sarne abusive practice - not appearing where an improperly charged respondent is present on the hearing date (and who gets the violation dismissed) only for the City to successfully contest it on "appeal." This practice in effect reinstates dead, defeated-on-themerits claims, where the "offenders" are unsuspecting persons who lack the legal training to respond to a notice ofappeal that lacks qny flppearance or return dates. This should be ofgreat concern to the Court, members of the State Bar and the public atlarge.
Thus in additional to denying the appeal, this Court in its discretion should award this Respondent - an experienced New York State attorney admitted in 2000 - the value of at least two hours of my time for the City's abusive conduct compelling me to spend several hours defending this meritless and insubstantial ($50!) claim.


Gonard M. Kohen, Esq.


CityofNew York
ne,parment of Parks & Recreation 830 Fiffh Avenue, 313 New York, NY 10065