January 1994 NewYork's Urban Affairs News Magazine 52.

50
eitVLimits
TRAIN
1NRECK
HasNevvYork
bungled its
last chance
for rail freight?
Dancingand
drawing inthe
homelessshelters
Churchto Bronx
activists: Get lost!
Legacyof Fear inVVashingtonHeights
e i ~ V L i m i ~ s
Volume XIX Number 1
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2/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
That Time of Year
T
rue to holiday form, New Yorkers plumbed their reserves of
sympathy last month to help those less fortunate than themselves.
Organizations that work with the homeless were temporarily
flush with donations, and soup kitchens had more volunteers
than they knew what to do with.
But even in the shadow of the holidays, there were discussions of a
less innocuous sort going on-discussions that are becoming increas-
ingly frequent as people get more irritable about beggars on the street.
Mayor Giuliani took full advantage of the growing disaffection with
panhandlers during his election campaign. But so far, his tentative
proposals for dealing with them have serious contradictions.
On the one hand, he says he aims to get homeless panhandlers off the
streets. On the other, he says he intends to do whatever it takes in the
courts and the state legislature to scale back access to the city's shelters,
leaving them open on a long-term basis only to people taking part in
treatment programs for mental illness, drug abuse or other problems.
But as officials have learned in Philadelphia, making shelter contingent
on behavior and participation in programs leads directly to an increase
in the number of homeless people on the streets and in the subways (see
"Boomerang Policies," page 8). Indeed, two months ago, that city eased
up on its restrictive shelter policies because there were simply too many
people living on the street or in downtown subway concourses.
So which will it be? Last month, Wayne Barrett reported in the Village
Voice that when Giuliani met with the Coalition for the Homeless
during the mayoral campaign, he said he was considering having
panhandlers arrested and charged with assault, regardless of whether or
not they physically abused anyone. That's a quick solution to the
dilemma-and one that will last about as long as it takes to say, "Lawsuit."
Rather, the more intelligent answers are plain for all to see: housing,
with services available for those who need them; neighborhood-based
assistance for people about to lose their homes, such as eviction-
prevention teams, tenant organizers and police who know how to deal
with domestic violence; accessible health care, and so on.
Middle and upper class New Yorkers have access to these services-
lawyers, physicians, psychologists, drug counselors-when they need
them. Generally speaking, they also have the clout to fight the govern-
ment bureaucracy when they need to. The lowest income New Yorkers
have neither the clout nor the access, and that is why they sometimes
land on the streets. If we would only learn from experience that it is
cheaper and much more humane to offer access to services while people
are still in their homes than it is to dump them into shelters-or prison
cells-then we would have begun to solve our problems instead of just
exploiting them for political gain. 0
Cover design and illustration by Karen Kane.
r
,
.r •
TIlE NEW MAYOR
Boomerang Policies 8
Rudy Giuliani has touted Boston and Philly's tough homeless sheltel'
policies, but progress repol·ts from those cities indicate there may be
madness in the method. by Timothy Harris and Phyllis Ryan
VITAL STATISTICS
Unconventional Wisdom 10
It is the economy, stupid: a comprehensive survey of shelter intake
reports proves that economic trends, not drug addiction and mental
illness, are the principal cause of homelessness.
FEATURE
Stopping Freight Dead in its Tracks 16
How New York blew its chance for a piece of rail freight's future, or ... You
can't get a 20-foot-high train under a I5-foot bridge. by Steve Mitra
PROFILE
Dancing with Attitude 6
Art Start is tapping into New York's cultural scene to help homeless
children discover a world outside the shelters. by Fara Warner
PIPELINES
The Church on the Hill 12
Father Luis Barrios thought he was simply continuing St. Ann's long
tradition of activism in the South Bronx. The Episcopal diocese thought
otherwise. by Hanna Liebman
Road to Recovery? 22
Some say Communi-care health clinics are just what the doctor ordered
for inner city health needs. Others aren't so sure. by James Bradley
COMMENTARY
Cityview
Police, Fear and History
Book Review
Reality Check
DEPARTMENTS
Editorial
Briefs
Blood from a Stone
Vacate Order Ignored
Joining Hands
Bronx Activist Dies
2
4
4
5
5
25
by Moises Perez
27
by J.B. Springs III
Letters 28
Professional
Directory 30,31
Job Ads 31
8
12
16
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/3
11:';1"'11
BLOOD FROM
A STONE
The state is appealing a
preliminary injunction by the
State Supreme Court that would
protect people with extremely
low incomes from being forced
to make mandatory child sup-
port payments.
The action comes at a time
when federal and state welfare
reform initiatives are encourag-
ing officials to aggressively
pursue child support. As part of
the state's efforts to maximize
compliance with child support
rules, state and local govern-
ments have been pursuing very
poor parents and demanding
that they pay a minimum
monthly fee of $25.
The injunction, issued by
Justice Alice Schlesinger in the
case of Velazquez v. the State
of New York, a class action suit
filed by MFY Legal Services and
Nassau/Suffolk Law Services,
gives respondents in child sup-
port proceedings the opportu-
nity to prove they are unable to
pay the minimum and orders
that they be notified of that
right.
According to MFY attorney
John Castellano, the injunction
directly addresses the needs of
poor people, including those
who are receiving pul:llic assis-
tance or Supplemental Security
Income (SSI) benefits, and
whose income falls below the
federal poverty guidelines.
''We are looking to the
wrong source to fund child
support," Castellano says. ''The
poor can not be looked upon to
finance other folks."
Federal welfare reform rules
require states to pursue child
support from non-custodial
parents in order to receive
federal reimbursements. Advo-
cates suggest this is motivating
the state's vigor in obtaining
payments from the poor.
''The feds don't care if the
state collects or not," notes
Michelle Schreiber, an MFY
spokesperson. ''The state just
needs to show that they are
[pursuing absent parents], and
the easiest way to kick up those
numbers, the easiest targets,
are poor people who are
already in the system. It's
harder to discover the where-
abouts of a non-custodial father
who has money. But a poor
person who is in the system-
the state knows where he lives,
and it's easy to file a petition
against him."
MFY attorneys claim that
respondents are being threat-
ened and intimidated into mak-
ing payments they can't afford.
"People have received
collection notices with jail
threats," says Beth Anderson,
lead counsel on the case.
The city is backing the state's
appeal. ''We don't go after
these people," says an attorney
in the city's law department
who asked not to be identified.
"But ... some day they are going
to be off public assistance and
then we will be able to get some
money into the system." A final
decision is expected in the
spring. Daniel Strachman
City bulldozers tore up "Bushville," the Lower East Side shantytown at Avenue D
and East 4th Street, last month. Officials cited neighbors' complaints about
unsanitary conditions and drug dealing. The shanties were some of the Iongest-
lasting and most soIidly-constructed in Manhattan.
4/JANUARY 1994/ CITY UMITS
After a one-and-a-half year battle, tenants of a decrepit, city-owned building at
351 East 118th Street (above, left) finally moved into renovated apartments in
the building next door on November 23rd.
VACATE ORDER
IGNORED
One and a half years ago,
the city's Department of Housing
Preservation and Development
(HPD) posted a vacate order on
a collapsing, city-owned East
Harlem apartment building. Last
month, four families living there
finally moved out.
What happened between
July, 1992, and December,
1993, is a saga of bureaucratic
delays and disaffected tenants
who finally resorted to direct
community action to get new
homes in the neighborhood.
"It was blatant disregard for
the lives of our people," charges
Willie Flores of La Nueva
Alternativa, a project of Young
Lords, Inc., a new group that
has formed in East Harlem to
carry on the tradition of the
1960s and '70s organization of
the same name.
Floors inside 351 East 118th
Street were collapsing; exposed
beams had rotted through in the
basement and water was pour-
ing through the walls from leaky
plumbing when HPD inspectors
came to the building two sum-
mers ago. They ordered that the
tenants be relocated by August
10th, 1992.
According to an HPD
the tenants "were
offered alternative housing" in
other city-owned apartment
buildings, public housing or a
homeless shelter, "but they
refused." The residents say they
were awaiting HPD's approval
of federal Section 8 rental assis-
tance applications so they could
move into a newly renovated
building next door, where the
landlord had already desig-
nated apartments for them.
Unfortunately, they had incor-
rect information about the pro-
cedure and filed applications in
the wrong rental subsidy pro-
gram. They had to start over
again last fall.
By that time, the tenants had
already weathered one winter
with no heat or hot water and
were about to begin another. In
October, members of La Nueva
Alternativa attempted to con-
vince HPD officials to expedite
the approval for rental assis-
tance and get the families out of
the building, but were told it
would take another three to four
months.
So, on November 23rd, they
sent a videotape of the building
conditions to housing commis-
sioner Felice Michetti, along
with a threat of lawsuits and
publicity. Within three days,
HPD had moved the tenants into
their new apartments next door.
''We had exhausted the
collaborative mode and went
into an adversarial posture,"
says Nelson Antonio Denis, an
attorney with La Nueva
Alternativa. "It was the right
choice." Andrew White
-
JOINING HANDS
Activists in communities of
color fighting for environmental
justice in the Northeast will have
the opportunity to compore
notes and discuss strategies at a
conference on environmental
racism, to be held next summer
in Boston.
The conference will be spon-
sored by the Northeast Regional
Environmental Justice Network,
an emerging organization that
was started a year and a half
ago to connect grassroots
groups in 12 states from Maine
to Washington, D.C., and west
to Pennsylvania. While the
northeast regional network is
still in its formative stages, mem-
bers are busy organizing com-
munity groups based on the
model of the Southwest Network
for Environmental and Economic
Justice, a well-organized cooli-
tion of 70 community groups in
New Mexico, Arizona and
surrounding states. That group
has gained national recognition
in recent years, taking the
nation's mainstream environ-
mental groups to task for not
addressing issues important to
people of color.
Other regional networks
have also developed in the
years since the First National
People of Color Environmental
leadership Summit was held in
Washingtan, D.C. , in 1991 .
There is now an Asian/Pacific
Islanders Network covering
some areas of the west, Hawaii
and the Pacific islands, and an
Indigenous Environmental Net-
work that has united Native
American groups nationwide.
The Boston conference will
address coolition building and
organizing and include work-
shops on technical issues that
arise in the fight against envi -
ronmental racism, says Vernice
Miller, director of Environmental
Justice for the Natural Resources
Defense Council and member of
a 12-member coordinating
committee of the regional
group.
A local coolition, the New
York City Environmental Justice
Alliance (NYCEJA), is helping
set up the conference. NYCEJA
has been active for the past two
years in various struggles
throughout the city, including
opposition to the Brooklyn Navy
Yard incinerator.
"The reason we formed was
to make alliances, instead of
having different organizations
working towards tI1e same
thing," says Michelle DePass,
executive director of NYCEJA.
She says the coalition grew "out
of a sense of anger, out of a
sense of doing for the commu-
nity, out of a sense that no one
else is doing this, and we have
to."
NYCEJA has a seven-
member advisory board that
includes representatives from
West Harlem Environmental
Action and the South Bronx
Clean Air Coalition, as well as
lawyers, advocates and others
from groups like the New York
Public Interest Group. The
alliance meets on a monthly
bosis to share information and
resources. Organizations can
become members of NYCEJA
by attending its monthly
meetings. For more information,
call (212) 23A-5096.
Karen Carrillo
e'I:II"I';O
BRONX ACTIVIST
Pedro Cintron, a spirited
community activist who led the
residents of Melrose Commons
in their successful effort to take
control of the city's redevelop-
ment plan for the neighbor-
hood, died December 1 Ath after
a long illness. He was A5 years
old.
Cintron was president of Nos
Quedamos (We Stay), the
group of homeowners, tenants
and business people who re-
wrote the Melrose Commons
Urban Renewal Plan. The origi-
nal city plan would have dis-
placed hundreds of current
residents. But Nos Quedamos
stood up to city officials and
forced a revision last year. The
community's plan has since
been adopted by the deport-
ments of City Planning and
Housing Preservation and De-
velopment as their own.
"He must be recognized as
the aggressor that brought the
officials to the bargaining
table," says Carlos Padilla, a
close family friend and a mem-
ber of Nos Quedamos. "He let
them know, either come to the
Welfare rights advocates and low Income New Yorkers demollsbaled outside
Gcwemor Mario Cuomo's $l,OOO-a-plate campaign tundraiser last month. They
demanded that Cuomo increase public assistance benefits, whic:h have not
increased in three years and now stand at about 82 percent of the federal
poverty level.
bargaining table or there will be
a war between the community
and the administrative powers."
Cintron helped form the
group following public hearings
held by the Bronx Center Steer-
ing Committee during late 1992
and early 1993. The steering
committee, appointed by Bronx
Borough President Fernando
Ferrer, was seeking community
input and support for a number
of redevelopment projects in the
South Bronx. At one early hear-
ing, Cintron stood and spoke
with such force that other oppo-
nents of the city's Melrose Com-
mons plan smiled with excite-
ment.
"A friend of mine turned to
me and said, 'You'd better grab
this guy and hold him. This
mignt be the guy we need,' "
says Dolorinda lisante, a
founding member of the group.
In February of last year,
Cintron literally commandeered
another Bronx Center hearing.
From that point on, Nos
Quedamos dominated the plan-
ning process-and eventually
won the support of Ferrer.
"If it wasn't for him, a lot of
eyes would have remained shut
to what was going on in that
community," notes Richard
. Kahan, president of The Urban
Assembly and chair of the
Bronx Center Steering Commit-
tee. "He really took on the entire
establishment. He was fearless,
a person who could be very
aggressive in public. But he
was also willing to do the
unglamorous, non public work-
going door to door, making
sure everyone in the community
understood what was going on
and was port of the decision
making process. You don't
often find that combination in
one person."
"He represented that political
process to stop a plan the com-
munity didn't like and begin the
rebuifding" adds Sandra Colon,
a Nos Quedamos organizer. "It
was on his mind up to the very
last minutes. It was very impor-
tant to him. I visited him in the
hospital a few days before he
died, and his last words to me
were to continue the struggle. I'
Cintron was a Vietnam vet-
eran and a longtime activist. He
participated in the movement to
gain community control over
lincoln Hospital in the early
1970s, and worked with young
people in the neighborhood for
most of his adult life. Andrew
White and Jill Kirschenbaum
CITY UMlTS/JANUARY 1994/5
By Fara Warner
Dancing with Attitude
Art Start helps homeless children bring creativity
to the chaos of life in city shelters.
G
etting the undivided attention
of children at the Catherine
Street Shelter is never easy.
But a teacher's softly spoken
warning that today's Art Start class
will be canceled if participants can't
settle down is all it takes to quiet the
19 children gathered in a stuffy, make-
shift library on the shelter's second
floor.
Emily Nussdorfer, an actress and
performance artist, shepherds the
children into a circle for the first of
several games and exercises they will
dive into during the next hour. Each
child takes on the tricky task of shout-
ing his or her own name aloud and
then repeating the names of all the
kids who have gone before them. It is
a simple way to get to know one
another as they learn about the impor-
tance ofrespecting each other's turn.
For some, like Dan-el Padilla, a bois-
terous nine-year-old, it's a chance to
assert one's identity, so easily lost in
the facelessness that is a part of shelter
life.
Next, Nussdorfer instructs the kids,
ages six through 13, to get up and
glide through the room-sliding,
jumping and running across the
floor's scratched brown tiles. Her only
6/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
rule is that they may not careen into
one another-and that becomes part
of the game as they dance about, care-
fully avoiding collisions. Nussdorfer
then asks them to create shapes with
their bodies and hold their poses, as
four classmates pound out a rhythmic
beat on makeshift drums fashioned
from empty cans and jars.
"None of this is meant to make
them little artists, " Nussdorfer tells a
visitor to the class. "That is not the
point. The point is to get them stimu-
lated."
Only for Kids
Art Start, a three-year-old program
that brings artists and homeless chil-
dren together, was the brainchild of
Scott Rosenberg, a visual artist, and
photographer and teacher Tenesh
Webber. They met while taking part
in an art exhibit by and for homeless
people at the Goddard-Riverside Com-
munity Center on the Upper West
Side. "Other programs were devoted
to adults," Rosenberg says. "People
believe the kids get art in the schools.
But that's not necessarily true and we
wanted something that was only for
kids."
Today, Art Start is an all-volunteer
organization, not yet a full-fledged
nonprofit corporation, and receives
little funding except for in-kind con-
tributions from the city's Board of
Education, the Department of Home-
less Services and the Human
Resources Administration. Techni-
call y speaking, the program is a
project of the New York Foundation
for the Arts, an organization that helps
many small groups get off the ground
by serving as a nonprofit conduit for
any charitable contributions.
Currently, Art Start is run by
Rosenberg, Webber and four volun-
teers. Approximately 100 artists have
contributed their time and talents to
the program, and Rosenberg estimates
they have worked with more than
2,000 children since its inception.
The group has brought Joffrey
Ballet dancers Peter Narbutus and
Jennifer Polens, video artist Florence
Ormezzano and muralist Susan
Ortega, among others, to the Catherine
Street Shelter to teach their crafts to
children who have little access to
resources many New Yorkers take for
granted. Each of the classes usually
takes a field trip to a museum, a
theatre or another of the city's cul-
tural centers. Rosenberg believes the
opportunity to browse through the
bright galleries of the Museum of
Modern Art, for example, can change
the way a homeless child sees the
world. After visiting the museum, one
group of children created their own
masks.
Few Creature Comforts
One look around the Catherine
Street Shelter, just east of Chinatown,
is enough to explain why these artists
feel it is so important to work with
homeless children. It is a massive,
impersonal building, a former school-
house that was recently converted
from a barracks-style shelter into a
private-room facility with a hodge-
podge of tiny rooms, one to a family.
There are few creature comforts here,
save for some small black-and-white
televisions and the cheap cots that
pass for beds.
What is less obvious is the inher-
ent instability of shelter life and its
effect on the children who reside here.
Many are able to attend school only
sporadically, pulled out when their
families are transferred to another
shelter or kept out when a mother has
to spend a day dealing with the night-
marish city welfare, housing or health
bureaucracies and can't find a way to
get her child to class. Often families
in the shelter system pass through
several different facilities over a pe-
riod of many months before they fi-
nally find a permanent place to live.
That makes it difficult to keep a child
in a steady situation in school.
As a result, Art Start limits each of
its programs to six-week "semesters"
so that, at least for a little while, the
class can serve as a consistent ele-
ment in a homeless child's otherwise
confusing and unsettling life.
Rosenberg and Webber started
small, with a few classes at the East
Third Street Shelter put together with
the support of the Artists Who Care
program, operated by volunteers at
the city's Human Resources Admin-
istration. Art Start has since moved
to Catherine Street, and now runs
between 50 and 60 classes there each
year. Rosenberg and Webber plan to
return to the newly-renovated East
Third Street Shelter this month,
where they will work with homeless
pregnant teenagers.
A Little Imagination
On a cold November night, Emily
Nussdorfer is using dance and move-
ment techniques to bring a little imagi-
nation into the children's lives. The
doors to the library are closed, shut-
ting out the institutional world of the
shelter.
In the class, Nussdorfer strives not
only to teach her art form, but to help
encourage the children's socializing
skills. It's important not to run into
each other and to be willing to watch
as others create, she explains. Early
in the class the children are aggres-
sive, slamming into one another like
bumper cars. But as the minutes pass
the message sinks in and they begin
to calm down. Nussdorfer talks about
the idea of communicating with each
other through little performances, and
instructs them to use their bodies to
spell out the words, "Eye contact."
The game is meant to suggest that
this is a safe space for them, explains
Rosenberg. "It's a place where they
can make a connection without any
fear."
As a last exercise, each child picks
a movement and a sound they would
like to teach to someone else. Some
of them are obviously inspired by rap
music and hip-hop dance steps.
Others, like a young girl named
Melissa, imitate the grace of a jazz
dance. Whatever the movement, each
is duly admired by the others in the
room.
In the end, Nussdorfer asks them
what they have learned. Renata talks
about shapes and movement and
direction. Dan-el throws in, "Eye
contact." And Jesus, who has been
quiet for much of the class, quietly
adds, "Rules."
"It's different teaching each time,"
Nussdorfer says wearily when the
class is over, watching the last
children go back to their crowded
rooms at Catherine Street. "Tonight
"It's a place
where they can
make a connection
without any fear."
was definitely a struggle. But they
live in such a chaotic uncentered en-
vironment that it's hard for them to
settle down."
Smiling Faces
In the final week of the class, the
children will draw and write about
their Art Start experiences. Rosenberg
publishes a newsletter after each six-
week program is finished, giving the
children an additional forum for their
work.
In one ofthe newsletters, the chil-
dren were asked to draw "Life in New
York City Today." A picture on the
cover depicts children yelling "Help"
and the words "New York" embla-
zoned with scary teeth. Other pic-
tures show children wielding guns
and kids getting shot. But there are
happy images as well. In one news-
letter, there are drawings of children
doing jetes and dancing with attitude,
inspired by the performance classes
taught by the Joffrey Ballet dancers.
In these pictures, the children are
smiling.
It's not just the children who have
benefited from the Art Start experi-
ence. Nussdorfer says the class has
taught her about her own craft, as
well as how to teach it. "When I came
here, I had a curriculum, but [I've
learned] to be flexible. In that way,
I've learned from the children."
For Rosenberg, the children's
eagerness to come week after week
has been gratifying. He recalls that
when he began Art Start at the East
Third Street Shelter, he got to know
a couple of kids who came for a series
of classes and then dropped out of
sight. A few months later, they
showed up at Catherine Street: "They
came running down the hall, yelling,
'It's Art Start! ,,, he recalls. "They were
so happy." That's when Rosenberg
knew for certain the program was
hitting home.
Faro Warner is a reporter for
BrandWeek.
r-------------------------,
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CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/7
Boomerang Policies
The experiences of other cities show that Giuliani's
hard-line homeless proposals could come back to haunt him.
L
ike New York, cities all across the country have
been searching for ways to stem the flood of men,
women and children entering their homeless
shelters. Many have tried hard-line strategies akin
to those proposed during last year's mayoral
campaign by Rudolph Giuliani. But the
results of those strategies have not been as
beneficial as some promoters would have
New Yorkers believe.
"Some [cities], such as St. Louis and
Boston, have policies which include sub-
stantial restrictions and limitations for those
who need to enter or take advantage of the
services offered," read Giuliani's campaign
paper on homelessness. "Others, such as
Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., have
retreated from expansive and unrestricted
policies that have proved worthless in
coping with the problem."
Thus, the paper continued, New York's
approach is an anachronism and must be
reformed. The candidate proposed instituting new rules
such as requiring proof of homelessness, redirecting
funding toward programs for chronically homeless families
and individuals suffering from mental illness, drug addic-
tion, alcoholism, HIV and other health problems, and
instituting a 90-day limit on shelter for families not par-
ticipating in treatment programs.
"If the families know what the rules of the game are,
then they abide by the rules," Giuliani's senior policy
analyst, William Grinker, told City Limits
during the campaign. "If the rules are that
there's a limited right to shelter and then
you have to leave, then that's what people
will do," he continued. "It's the experience
in every other city in the country,"
Among the cities whose shelter policies
were lauded as models by Giuliani and
Grinker, Philadelphia and Boston were per-
haps the most frequently mentioned. In fact,
neither city has a shelter policy as restric-
tive or as successful as candidate Giuliani
contended. Quite the contrary. Massachu-
setts has seen an increase in the number of
people living in the shelters since new rules
were put in place a few years ago. And
Philadelphia, with a severe cutback in the
number of shelter beds, has had a dramatic increase in the
number of people living on the streets and in the subways.
City Limits asked writers in both cities to send us reports
on the status of the shelter policies there and the impact
those policies have had.
Prove It or Lose It
"When you keep setting up new and
higher hoops for people to jump
through for shelter, a certain number
just won't make it," says Leslie
Lawrence of the Massachusetts
Coalition for the Homeless. "People
ended up staying in dangerous situa-
tions, going back to abusive boyfriends
or literally staying on the street before
making it into the system."
BY TIMOTHY HARRIS
F
Our years have passed since the
Massachusetts Department of
Public Welfare instituted a "get-
tough" approach to sheltering the
homeless. Yet today, the number of
families living in the state's homeless
shelters is at an all-time high. And
advocates for the homeless have docu-
mented that many families remained
in crisis situations or on the street as a
direct result of the state' s policy
change.
In November , 1989, Michael
Dukakis was still governor and the
state's economy was in the middle of
a devastating decline. In an effort to
reduce the number of families enter-
ing the shelter system, his administra-
tion adopted a rigorous policy based
on the premise that every family seek-
a/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
ing shelter was not necessarily home-
less. Families that couldn't document
their homeless status were refused at
the door, and the number of new fami-
lies seeking shelter dropped quickly-
about 30 percent in the first month.
Since that time, families have had
to present official documents con-
firming their homeless status, in the
form of eviction notices, caseworker
reports or similar papers. For two
years, the policy had the impact the
government desired: the average
number offamilies in shelters steadily
decreased, from a high of 1,200 per
nightin 1989toalowof620inJanuary,
1991.
Advocates maintain these numbers
reflected a problem driven temporarily
underground rather than solved.
What has happened since 1991
bears out Lawrence's assessment. In
August of that year, the newly-elected
Republican governor, William Weld,
moved to tighten the state budget, in
part by gutting several emergency
assistance programs designed to pre-
vent homelessness. The state ceased
paying disaster relief benefits to people
who had been burned out of their
homes and eliminated a program that
paid the arrears on utility and fuel
payments for destitute families facing
the prospect of no heat or hot water.
Additionally, the state halted its policy
of helping homeless families get out
of the shelters by paying their first
month's rent and security deposit on
a new apartment.
The result? By early 1992, the shel-
ter system had become overwhelmed
with new families seeking shelter. The
number has more than doubled since
1991, with more than 1,300 families
staying in the state's shelters each
night, surpassing even the highest
numbers recorded by the state prior to
the implementation of the get-tough
approach.
Although the stiffer entry guide-
lines have led to some families being
refused a place in a shelter, Greater
Boston Legal Services and the Massa-
chusetts Coalition for the Homeless
have been helping families obtain the
specific documentation they need to
comply with the state guidelines. They
have also been documenting instances
of families refused entry, and are pre-
paring lawsuits charging the Weld
administration with ignoring the state
law that establishes a right to shelter
for homeless families .
Still, Massachusetts policy might
be considered liberal compared to
some of Rudolph Giuliani's propos-
als. For example, there are no length-
of-stay limits placed upon families or
individuals in the shelters. And while
some state funding is targeted to
shelters providing special services,
these are offered in addition to other
less service-intensive alternatives and
tHelr use is entirely voluntary.
Timothy Harris is a Boston organizer
and a founder of Spare Change, a
newspaper written and sold by home-
less men and women.
Quid Protocol
BY PHYLLIS RYAN
I
f you want a place in a Philadel-
phia homeless shelter, you have to
stay clean and sober, put most of
your money in a savings account and
pay a small part of your income to the
city.
Those were the rules until a few
months ago, that is, when public
officials and business leaders finally
decided there were simply too many
people living on downtown streets and
in subway stations; that's when they
relaxed the shelter regulations and
made it easier for the homeless to come
inside.
Back in 1988, Philadelphia began
requiring all homeless men, women
and families to comply with certain
requirements, popularly known as the
"protocol," in exchange for food and
shelter. These guidelines stipulated
that homeless people save 60 percent
of their income, pay another 15 percent
to the shelter and submit to drug
testing if requested. There were other
rules enforced by individual facilities,
such as curfews and prohibitions on
food being brought into the shelters.
The protocol , devised by city
officials and homeless advocates work-
ing together, was implemented at a
time when public opinion and media
reports depicted life in the shelters as
"easy living." When the guidelines
were put in place in October, 1988,
they had an immediate impact. Within
four months, the number of people
living in the city's homeless shelters
dropped from 5,600 to 4,200.
In that short period of time, 400
families and individuals were asked
to leave the shelters for failing to
comply, according to Jane Malone, di-
rector of the city's Of-
fice of Services to
Homeless and Adults
during the administra-
tion of Mayor W. Wil-
son Goode. No advo-
cates claim that the
evictions forced home-
less families with chil-
dren to sleep on the
streets or in the subway
concourses of Central
Philadel phia.
But researchers, in-
cluding Dr . Dennis
Culhane of the Univer-
sity of Pennsylvania,
found that the single male population
on the streets increased dramatically
as a direct result of the protocol.
As the number of homeless people
living on the streets and subway
concourses of Philadelphia's Central
Ci ty increased, business leaders
demanded that something be done.
They had staked the city's economic
recovery on the area and on the
construction of the new convention
center that opened there last summer.
In response to their complaints, the
newly elected mayor, a conservative
Democrat named Ed Rendell, moved
two months ago to make a large num-
ber of shelter beds available to men
and women who refuse to (or are un-
able to) comply with the protocol, just
to get them off the street and out of the
subways. He also eased the require-
ment that shelter residents remain
clean and sober.
Since then, with the help of
advocates and outreach workers, the
concourses have been cleared. Yet the
shelter system is now too small to
cope with the number of people in
need of its services, largely because of
the still-continuing downsizing that
followed the implementation of the
protocol. Today, there are only 2,234
beds in the system, yet even city
officials concede that on an average
winter night they need at least 3,000
beds and, in bad weather, many more.
That means hundreds of men, women
and children are being bumped from
shelter to shelter, night after night, in
a desperate shell game to make space
for newcomers. Others remain on the
streets.
Ultimately, the protocol has proven
hazardous to homeless people's health,
says Joe Rogers, deputy executive di-
rector of the Mental Health Associa-
tion of Southeastern Pennsylvania.
"Where are people supposed to go?
We see a lot of young
people who are not able
to access other services
such as long-term
welfare. They have no
money to put toward
rent [and, because of
the protocol,) they get
denied extended ser-
vice."
"It is not enough
simply to have disin-
centives," adds Cul-
hane, who recently
published an analysis
of city shelter records
that proves home-
lessness is far more common in Phila-
delphia (and in New York) than
previously believed. "There need to
be incentives to stay [housed) in the
community by making services and
[Thsources available," he says.
Phyllis Ryan is executive director of
the Philadelphia Committee for the
Homeless.
ern u.TS/JANUARY 1994/9
Unconventional Wisdom
Homelessness is not a pathology after all.
A
new study of New York City and Philadelphia
homeless shelter records reports that homeless-
ness is far more common than city officials or
advocates previously believed, and undermines
the increasingly popular argument that the majority of
homeless people suffer from drug addiction, mental ill-
ness or other psychological problems.
The study, by Dennis Culhane of the Leonard Davis
Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, found that
one of every 30 New Yorkers-and one out of every 20 of
the city's children-spent time in a homeless shelter
between 1988 and 1992.
Culhane and city researchers calculated their findings
from government data bases listing the name, social secu-
rity number and date of intake for every person entering
the cities' shelter systems in recent years.
This is the most comprehensive effort yet to calculate
the number of homeless people in either city. Previous
efforts have simply counted the number of shelter resi-
dents at a single point in time. For example, the federal
census found that only one-half of one percent of New
York City's total population was living in the shelter
system on one night in 1990.
Culhane's study discounts the value of one-night shel-
ter counts, and this has major consequences for
policymakers. One-night shelter counts overrepresent the
How Many HoIIIelelS?
239,425 _Id.nts of New Yorl CIty .....
.... .. • ..... 1 ........... b ...... JI.III.,. 1,
1_'" Dec_ ..... 31, 1992.
l"IuIt'.3.3 ....-.tol ...... Y......, _1I.8n ...
8 perceat 01 .. Afttcu AIIIerica New Y .......
5 perceat of al New Yorl CIty chldren.
4.5 percenlofNewYorlCity's ..... children.
0.5 percent of ....... New Y .......
chronically homeless who suffer from drug addiction
and mental illness, because they spend much more time
in shelters than those who are not chronically homeless.
Yet such counts have been the basis for many policy
decisions; government agendas are increasingly focusing
on dealing with the chronically homeless.
In a survey over a longer period of time, the true
variety of homeless people becomes apparent, Culhane
explains, and a much smaller proportion of the homeless
are in the shelters for the long haul. The majority, there-
fore, are less likely to be substance abusers or mentally
ill.
Because of the similar rates of shelter use in
Philadelphia and New York City, Culhane concludes that
regional economic trends are the most likely cause of
homelessness. He argues that policymakers could best
reduce the number of people entering the shelters by
focusing resources on "rebuilding (or creating) the com-
munity and social support infrastructure that would en-
able people to stay in their own homes." In other words,
if people can tap whatever assistance they need while
they still have a home to live in-to help stave off an
eviction, for example, or demand heat and hot water from
their landlord, or deal with an abusive spouse-then they
will not have to go into the homeless shelters. And that
will save the city money. Andrew White
Different Methods,
Different Conclusions
One-day counts of the homeless can obscure the
dimensions of the problem .
'"
'"
~
Q)
S
o
..Q
4%-r------------r------------,
3.27%
3%-r------------+_
I I
I I
I I
2% -+-------------+-
1%-r------------+_
0.32%
o%lJ __ LLJ
One day: 1990 F'tve years:
1988-1992
The census bureau's one-day count of the homeless in 1990
found less than half of one percent of the city's population
living in the shelter system. But a new five-year analysis
shows that more than three percent of city residents spent
time in the shelters between 1988 and 1992.
Source: "Public Shelter Admission Rates in Philadelphia and New York City," published by the Fannie Mae Office of Housing Research.
10/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
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CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/11
By Hanna Liebman
The Church on the Hill
For decades S1. Ann's was a vibrant center of
community action. But in recent months, activists
and organizers have been unceremoniously evicted.
T
he lobby of St. Ann's Episco-
pal Church in the Mott Haven
section of the Bronx is still
dotted with reminders of the
many activist programs that were
housed and promoted there in recent
years. A certificate of "domestic part-
nership" is tacked to the bulletin
board, testimony to St. Ann's once-
active Gay and Lesbian ministry. A
sculpture embellished with eerie
skulls and bearing the legend "Close
it Down" is on display, used in a
demonstration against the nearby
Bronx/Lebanon medical waste incin-
erator by the South Bronx Clean Air
Coalition, which has worked out of
the church since its founding two
and a half years ago.
But the church's days as a haven
for aggressive neighborhood advocacy
12/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
have come to an abrupt end, at least
for now. The offices ofthe gay minis-
try, the Clean Air Coalition and a
number of other organizations have
closed or moved out of the church.
All were once part of a lively consor-
tium of community groups dedicated
to unifying and mobilizing the people
of Mott Haven. But each has fallen
victim to a recent change in manage-
ment-and some say vision-of this
South Bronx parish.
When the Episcopal Diocese of
New York abruptly suspended Fa-
ther Luis Barrios from his position of
priest-in-charge at St. Ann's last sum-
mer, just 18 months after he took the
post, the diocesan leadership charac-
terized him as a rogue minister who
had an "authoritarian leadership
style." Bishop Richard Grein charged
that Barrios was manipulating lay
leaders, "forcing them into making
decisions they believed were not in
the best interest of the parish," ac-
cording to the July issue of The
Bishop's Newsletter.
Today, the tremors accompanying
Barrios' dismissal continue to rever-
berate in Mott Haven, and the full
impact is only now becoming clear.
Attendance of Spanish-speaking
parishioners at the church's Sunday
mass has declined dramatically. st.
Ann's vestry, or board of directors, is
so bitterly divided that it is unable to
meet normally, members say, and
about one-third of its 14 members say
they are on the verge of resigning or
have already done so.
Most importantly, activists and
organizers in the neighborhood charge
that a vital center of community life
has been extinguished.
"The church was a model of a
community church in the poorest
congressional district in the United
States," says Chris Norwood, direc-
tor of Health Force: Women Against
AIDS, a program that, for the time
being, still leases office space on the
church grounds. "Groups from the
Clean Air Coalition to AIDS groups
found an enormous welcome under
several pastors. The community feels
that the diocese has abandoned that
role for the church."
"There was a lot of potential there,
us working together with the needle
exchange and Health Force," adds
Mary Robinson, a parishioner who
ran a federally-funded perinatal
program for drug-abusing mothers at
the church. But now, she says, "The
activists are gone. It's over."
Hands-On Ministry
The tradition of activism at St.
Ann's has strong roots. In the 1960s
and '70s the church leadership orga-
nized tenants in the neighborhood to
fight landlords who were burning
down buildings to collect insurance.
In the late 1970s, large community
fairs graced the wide church yard,
and young ministers worked with
homesteaders in the surrounding
community. The Mott Haven AIDS
Task Force was founded
at St. Ann's in 1988, when
local activists began to
notice the rapid spread of
the disease among their
people.
"It's necessary to get re-
ally hands-on in a com-
munity like Mott Haven,"
attests the Reverend Earl
Kooperkamp, Barrios' pre-
decessor as interim rector
at St. Ann's and now as-
sistant minister at the
Church of the Intercession
in Harlem. But Barrios,
who first came to the
church to do pastoral work
in 1985, went further than
his predecessors.
that keep people apart," she
continues. "Charity means that you
go out to the corners of the commu-
nity and bring those people into the
church ... extending the reach of the
church beyond its physical bound-
aries."
Barrios maintains he was develop-
ing "a broad-based community
ministry, ... a very, very known, tradi-
tional approach, especially in a very
poor community." But the diocese
had come to believe that the fiery
minister reached too far, sanctifying
same-sex unions, welcoming the
needle exchange program and open-
ing the church to an organization de-
manding Puerto Rican independence,
as well as backing up his support
with leadership and resources.
It was Barrios' aggressiveness that
the diocese ultimately found
unacceptable. He roused ire and
suspicion when, during a speech he
was invited to give on Latino chal-
lenges in the church at the Cathedral
of St. John the Divine, the seat of the
Bishop Grein wrote in his formal
severance letter to the priest, the result
was the same.
No Illusions
Following Barrios' departure last
summer, Mother Martha Overall
became st. Ann's interim pastor. She
has been involved with the church
and the surrounding community for
a decade as a deacon and assistant
minister, but the neighborhood orga-
nizations were under no illusions
about her vision of St. Ann's role in
the neighborhood once she took
office. "She wanted to terminate the
[perinatal] program the day she got
here," says Robinson.
Very soon she did. The church's
contract with the Bronx Perinatal
Consortium was canceled, and
Robinson moved out.
Since then, all but one of the groups
that formerly used church space for
offices or public events have discon-
tinued their association with St.
Ann's. Many of their members say
they have had conflicts
with Mother Overall. While
they say they are reluctant
to dredge up once more the
skirmishes that followed
her installation, they do
charge that she unceremo-
niously ousted some activ-
ists while blatantly ignor-
ing others. Overall refused
to be interviewed for this
article, saying the church
was not interested in press
coverage at this time.
"Some people thought
that he was risque," says
Robinson. "He'd talk about
sex so young people could
understand. He'd say you
need to use condoms.
Some people took offense
at that. But he was giving
advice. That's what a min-
ister does."
Father luis Bamos was a popular figure and a leader among Mott IIaftn ac:tIvIsts,
until his retnCWal from 51. Ann's last summer by the diocesen leadenhip.
The situation since Bar-
rios' departure has brought
a "rugged way of doing
business" for activist
groups, says Americo
Casiano, a steering commit-
tee member of the Clean
Air Coalition. The coalition
is now surviving without a
home. But, says Nina
Laboy, also on the steering
committee, "It has been a
big setback for us." The
group had won a grant to
open a resource and
"Father Barrios had a real ample
vision of pastoral care," adds Joyce
Rivera-Beckman, executive director
of St. Ann's Corner of Harm Reduc-
tion, the needle exchange program
that recently moved to new offices
away from the church.
"He broke down ideological walls
diocese, he publicly denounced the
church powers as racist. Whether or
not the edict from the diocese for
Barrios' removal was executed
because, as his supporters contend,
the church institution is racist, or
because Barrios "waged a media and
protest campaign that fostered fear,
intimidation and falsehoods," as
fundraising library for neighborhood
residents in a room at the church
center, and were about to begin work
when Barrios departed. Now, they
must look elsewhere. Laboy has also
been forced to look for a new meeting
and work space at a crucial point in
their campaign against the nearby
incinerator, whose owner recently
ern LIMITS/JANUARY 1994/13
filed bankruptcy and is thus vulner-
able to community challenges.
Losing the backing of the church
has had a deeper significance for
many of the groups, including the
Clean Air Coalition, because St. Ann's
acted as a fiscal conduit for govern-
ment and foundation funding. Now,
they are on their own, and must
either establish official nonprofit
status with the government or find
another fiscal sponsor.
And then there is the loss of the
community life itself that made these
activists' days so productive. "We
continue our work but there is a
vacuum now," says Rivera-Beckman
of Health Force. "There isn't the
chatter or the clatter of different
people coming into the church."
Divided Church
Within the hierarchy of the church
itself, the change has also taken a toll.
Of the vestry's 14 members, who are
elected for two-year terms, half are
Hispanic. According to one member,
Father Gustavo Perez, five of the seven
favor resigning their posts, while one
has already done so; they claim Over-
all has fostered division between the
Latino, African American and Carib-
bean American members of the vestry.
Ousted activists note that a majority
"If I'm not involved
with the community,
I don't deserve
to be a priest"
of the vestry, which is the voice of
the parishioners, had supported the
measures Barrios instituted, as well
as earlier outreach programs.
Division within the vestry is not
new. Some members of the board
bitterly opposed Barrios' agenda from
the start, and the actions of one of
them, Viola DeChebert, apparently
helped prompt his removal. In his
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July newsletter, Bishop Grein notes
his "determination to reestablish the
right of the people of St. Ann's to
worship in their parish church, free
from the threat of violence of outside
groups," a reference to a letter sent
him by DeChebert.
The reconfiguration of St. Ann's,
shorn of many of its extracurricular
activities, raises profound ques.tions
about the liberal tradition of the
Episcopal Church in New York, and
about the nature of the church's
responsibility to the communities it
serves, say some disappointed parish-
ioners. It is uncertain whether the
turmoil at St. Ann's is an isolated
event or a sign of the direction of the
diocese itself, whose current bishop
is considered by many to be more
conservative than his outspoken pre-
decessor, the Right Reverend Paul
Moore, who retired in 1989. Bishop
Grein was unavailable for comment,
despite repeated calls to his office.
"Are there broader implications
within the Episcopal Church? I don't
know," says the Reverend Kooper-
kamp. "This situation has been so
tortuous. The more I think about it,
the less I know .... It's been a sad and
tragic situation. It didn't go down the
way anyone expected it to."
Father Perez, who is in the process
of converting to the Episcopal faith
from Catholicism, says Barrios'
punishment is of fundamental im-
portance to the church. "To me, if I'm
not involved with the community, I
don't deserve to be a priest," he says.
"Saying a priest who becomes too
involved is a 'social worker' is just an
excuse for not getting involved at all,"
he adds, referring to an argument
sometimes made in the dialectic of
priesthood.
For his part, Barrios, who remains
a priest in good standing in the
Diocese of New York, hardly intends
to be silenced by his sudden unem-
ployment. "They just took the build-
ing, nothing else," he says. "New York
is my congregation and it will con-
tinue to be." While he looks for a new
flock-he considers himself a "priest
in exile"-Barrios is teaching courses
at two colleges-Hostos Community
College in the Bronx and the New
York Theological Seminary in
Manhattan-and is working on a book
about his own particular brand of
liberation theology. 0
Hanna Liebman is a reporter for
MediaWeek.
R
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Stopping Freight I
I
BY STEVE MITRA
-re cO"'tant ,wish and hum of c"'" and trucks mown
out the gentle sounds of the Harlem River lapping at the
edge of the Port Morris section of the South Bronx. High-
ways and bridges crisscross the industrial neighborhood,
providing easy access to the biggest marketplace in the
United States for consumer goods.
"One way to Manhattan, one way to Queens. It's beauti-
ful. It brings tears to one's eyes," says John Dean, associate
researcher at the Regional Plan Association. "This is an
irreplaceable tract of land." It is also the site of the Harlem
River rail yard, 90 acres that have been lying fallow for two
decades.
Some 20 miles away, freight trains ply the tracks along
the vast acreage of northern New Jersey's rail yards near the
western shore of the Hudson River. More than two-thirds of
the goods brought into these yards are transferred to trucks
and hauled into New York. The trucks crowd the Hudson
River tunnels and bridges, clog the city's highways and cost
New York manufacturers and shippers a fortune in transpor-
tation costs, far more than those paid by their counterparts
elsewhere in the country, where rail freight services reach
well into most cities. New York's lack of a proper transpor-
tation infrastructure is one reason why the city's manu-
facturing base has been gutted in the last 30 years,
abandoned by a now-defunct railroad company in the early
1970s. State agencies produced careful, detailed plans to
develop a major freight facility here, with feeder lines ca-
pable of handling high capacity modern railway traffic.
More recently, in 1991, Governor Mario Cuomo included
these plans in his "New, New York" agenda, with the ambi-
tious title, "Freight Link America." Development of the
Harlem River Yard, he said, would "reaffirm New York's
position of strength and potential in the world market."
There was just one small problem with Freight Link
America, however. Two years before Cuomo announced his
grandiose vision ofrenewal, the state's Department of Trans-
portation (DOT) had already given Harlem River Yard Ven-
tures, a group of politically connected developers, control of
the site. The group announced plans to build an industrial
park there that relegates rail to a minor supporting role.
Despite all of the governor's hype, the Harlem River Yard is
no longer slated to be anything approaching a major rail
facility.
losing more than 700,000 jobs, economists
say.
Over a decade ago, New York State
set out to alter the cost equation
Worse yet, the basis for that deal, City Limits has learned,
was a short-term study, prepared by consultants hired by the
state DOT, that failed to take into account a massive, $175
million state and city investment in a modern rail link
then under construction. Experts said the new link
between the Hudson River line and Port Morris
would have made the Harlem River Yard
How
theatate
a contender in the freight market-
place. Yet remarkably, the con-
sultants were asked to look
at development possi-
bilities only over
the next three
and bring freight rail back
across the Hudson to
the Harlem River
Yard, which was
16/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
blew a $175 lRillion
invesllnent and killed any
hope for a .... ight rail revival
ead in its Tracks
to five years, before anyone expected the link to be com-
pleted. And the developer's 1989 contract with the state
includes a 99-year lease on the site.
"You don't award a 99-year lease on the basis of a study
whose span is three to five years," says John McHugh, a
member of the transportation committee of the Association
of the Bar of the City of New York, which has been investi-
gating the matter. "It's sheer idiocy."
According to McHugh and a growing coalition of commu-
nity activists, legal experts and transportation professionals
who oppose the plan, the industrial park deal was a fatal
blow to the chances for reforming the transportation infra-
. structure of New York: the Harlem River Yard is the last,
best piece of government-owned land large enough to handle
a modern freight rail facility in New York City. And con-
struction on the industrial park is scheduled to begin this
spring.
I n New York City, 90 percent of all freight moves by truck.
A Regional Plan Association analysis shows this to be an
anomaly: in other cities, only 41 percent of all freight is
carried that way. Because of this, about 30,000 trucks enter
New York City every day, bound for points in the five
boroughs, Long Island and New England. Two-thirds of
them pass through Manhattan.
It is a far cry from just 30 years ago, when half of all this
city' s cargo moved by rail. Freight trains rattled along
Manhattan's West Side and across Brooklyn, Queens and
the Bronx. From there, the trains moved north, crossing the
Hudson and on to points west at a bridge upstate. For
decades, freight cars also crossed the Hudson River and New
York Harbor on barges unloaded-and reloaded-on Man-
hattan and Brooklyn piers.
But many of the railroad and barge operations had col-
lapsed by the 1960s and 1970s, casualties of government
and business policies favoring highway transportation. And,
as railroads across the northeast went bankrupt, the city's
transportation infrastructure failed to keep up with the lat-
est freight car technologies. In 1976, Congress created a new
company, Conrail, to take over the defunct railroads in the
northeast. And before long, Conrail chose to concentrate its
operations at its sprawling yards in northern New Jersey,
with easy access to the nearby ports-and the rest of the
country.
Still, the idea of New York City regaining its foothold in
the rail freight business had not been abandoned. By the
early 1980s, state planners concluded that opening a mod-
ern, regional, "intermodal" freight facility at the Harlem
River Yard-where shipping containers could be loaded
onto trains or unloaded onto trucks-would save metropoli-
tan manufacturers and shippers $100 million a year. After
all, it costs as much to ship freight from the rail yards in New
Jersey to Pittsburgh-400 miles-as it does to get from New
Jersey to Queens by truck. They also determined that the
plan would dramatically reduce truck traffic in Manhattan
and boost blue collar employment citywide.
But to make the plan work, something had to be done
about the tracks cutting through the South Bronx: clearances
below the rail lines' bridges and in its tunnels were too low
to accommodate modern freight cars, and the tracks had to
cross busy commuter lines. State officials set out to lay new
tracks from Highbridge to the Harlem River Yard along a 1.8
mile route called the Oak Point Link at a cost of $62 million.
Because of cost overruns, delays, and legal problems, the
Oak Point Link was still far from completion by 1987 when
the state's contractor on the project, the engineering firm
Morrison Knudsen, pulled out citing technical and design
problems.
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/17
Suddenly the economic viability of the Harlem River
Yard looked doubtful. Without the Oak Point Link, there
could be no intermodal rail yard.
That's when the state decided to look at alternative uses
for the valuable industrial land, according to Paul Pastecki,
a coordinator with the commercial transport division of the
state's DOT. Officials from DOT commissioned the consult-
ing firm of Temple, Barker & Sloane (TBS) to study the
potential for developing the yard quickly and on a short-
term basis. William Rennicke, project manager for TBS,
recalls that he was asked to examine the three- to five-year
viability of the yard. "They asked us what would it take from
a private operator's perspective to plunk money down," he
says. "Basically, our work was done so that they could begin
development of the yard, so that they could get something
going fast."
While the study was being done, Rennicke says, it was
assumed that the Oak Point Link would not be completed.
"At the time the project was discussed,
we were told there were problems with
the [underground) fault lines for the
link," says Rennicke. Given the limited
time scope of the study, he adds, "we
assumed the Oak Point Link was not
going to happen." The TBS study con-
cluded the Harlem River Yard could not
become a full-scale modern intermodal
yard-that it would accommodate and
attract only a quarter of the traffic origi-
nally projected.
track, the government continued pouring money into the
Oak Point Link on ariother. The state hired a new contractor
to complete that project after Morrison Knudsen pulled out,
and, by 1991, it had become the centerpiece of Governor
Cuomo's "Freight Link America" plan to connect New York
City with the rest of the nation's freight lines. Today, the
Oak Point Link is slated for completion in late 1995, and,
according to state officials, the work is on schedule.
It has turned out to be more expensive than planned: the
final projected cost is $175 million-almost three times the
original estimate. Of that, about $100 million comes from
the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, $33 million
from the city and the rest from the state.
The irony of the government spending millions to build
new tracks while supporting a plan that will undermine
their potential has not been lost on everyone inside govern-
ment. "This is certainly not worth the investment in the Oak
Point Link, " says Stephanie Pinto, former director of the city
Department of Transportation's commercial transportation
division. Pinto had worked for the agency for three years
when she resigned last May-frustrated, she says, by the
Pastecki confirms this study was
used shortly after as a basis for contract-
ing out the development of the rail yards.
In 1989, the state awarded a 99-year
lease to Harlem River Yard Ventures-a
consortium of the Galesi Group, a
Rotterdam, New York-based developer,
Browning-Ferris Industries, a Texas-
based waste hauling company, and the
Hunts Point Market Food Cooperative-
The Har1em River Yanllies within easy access of the biflgest marketplace in the United States
for consumer goods.
to develop the yard as an industrial park with a rail compo-
nent. The proposal the group came up with is now the
development plan adopted by the state; it includes a waste
transfer facility, warehouses and possibly a factory that will
process recycled paper. Only 28 acres will be allocated to
rail, less than one-third of the total 90-acre site.
Harlem River Yard Ventures touts the plan as a way to
bring jobs into the Bronx fast. "It's a very important project
that will serve a public purpose," says Anthony Riccio,
project manager for the group. "It will bring rail and blue
collar warehousing jobs into the Bronx .... How many other
companies do you know of that are moving into New York
City?"
But even as the development plan moved forward on one
la/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
bureaucracy's lack of attention to developing rail in New
York City. She says that because of the small size of the
Harlem River Yard Venture's rail component, "there's never
going to be serious rail there."
Pinto is not alone in her assessment. "When they cut that
amount ofrail down to 28 acres, they were assassinating the
economy of New York," says U.S. Representative Jerrold
Nadler of Manhattan, a longtime advocate ofrail transporta-
tion. "We need a fully developed rail system.
"New York cannot survive on white collar industries
alone," Nadler continues. "You've got to have manufactur-
ing-it provides traditional entry-level jobs and a larger tax
base. If we had a decent rail system, we could have all kinds
of manufacturing in New York."
The 28 acres devoted to rail under the
Harlem River Yard Ventures plan is not
enough to develop a facility of any signifi-
cance, agrees Hoy Richards, a transportation
expert at Texas A&M University. "It just
doesn't make sense that this is going to be
heavily utilized."
Most major intermodal yards are as big as
hundreds of acres, Richards explains. It takes
that much space to move trains efficiently
and to store containers and trailers before
they are trucked away. It is this storage space
that's missing in the Harlem River Yard pro-
posal. According to an analysis by the Re-
gional Plan Association, the area alloted for
The state's plan for the Harlem River Yard is "sheer idiocy," says lawyer John McHugh (above, right,
with colleagues Unda Coleman and Deborah Shennan).
storage is enough for only about. one-fifth the volume of
traffic than was originally projected in a 1982 plan for the
yard, not counting the goods that will be delivered there and
immediately trucked to the nearby Hunts Point Market Co-
operative, which supplies most grocery stores in the region.
"The whole purpose of the Harlem River Yard was to
handle the bulk of city [freight) traffic," says Pinto. "At this
point that is not going to happen. "
What's left then, is a small-scale rail yard capable of
serving the Hunts Point Market and the few factories and
warehouses that may be built on the site. But it will be
utterly insignificant in comparison to other rail yards in the
region: Conrail's yards in Kearny, New Jersey, have room for
1,700 storage containers. Another in Jersey City can accom-
modate 4,000. The current plan for the Harlem River Yard
provides for only 350. And by acreage alone, the yard won't
compare in size with those in other major cities nation-
wide-even San Francisco, a city with one-tenth the popula-
tion of New York, has a 36-acre rail yard with enough space
around it to expand to 56 acres, should volume warrant it.
As currently planned, the Harlem River Yard may get
little use, because it won't be economical for Conrail or
trucking companies to go there, says Robert Cavazos, a
senior policy analyst with former City Comptroller Liz
Holtzman, who coauthored a report critical of the project
that was released in March of 1993. "You need 40 acres to
truly exploit the technology and the economies," he says.
will get sizable public subsidies. Because the state owns the
land, the developer will not be subject to property taxes,
which would have amounted to $2 million annually. In
addition, an analysis by the comptroller's office shows that
the developer will be getting the property at substantially
below the market rate for unimproved industrial land in the
South Bronx. The analysis shows that the market rate rent
for the property is $3.35 million a year; Harlem River Yard
Ventures has projected that it will pay $1 million a year to
the state-a percentage of its gross revenue. "Thus," the
report concludes, "[Harlem River Yard Ventures) will re-
ceive a $2.35 million per year rent subsidy, or $24 million
over ten years."
"I can't believe this thing will go, " says Richards of Texas
A&M. "It seems to me like there's some hidden agenda
here."
What is clear is that key players in the development
group are well-connected; one of them represents a classic
case of the revolving door between city government and the
real estate development industry.
In 1980, Anthony Riccio was policy analysis director for
the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Economic Policy and
Development. That year, he coauthored a report identifying
two sites for major intermodal rail facilities: the Penn
Yards at 60th Street in Manhattan-now slated to be- According to the comptroller's report, instead of sav-
ing $100 million in shipping costs annually, as origi-
nally projected, the current plan will save only
$6.5 million. And instead of the 5,000 jobs
that Cuomo predicted in his "New, New
In
1880.
come Donald Trump's Riverside South develop-
ment-and the Harlem River Yard. The report , "A
Capital Improvement Plan for New York City'S
Rail Freight System," emphasized that a
minimum of 40 acres was necessary for
an efficient, modern rail yard.
York" plan, only 1,500 jobs will be cre-
Riccio lett
the public sector
ated-"l,OOO at the low end," admits
Riccio of Harlem River Yard Ven-
tures.
..d rev ....... his opinion
about the ...... i.u. size of a
Yet, even as the public
benefits have been
heavily pared down,
the Harlem River
functional freight rail yard.
Yard Ventures
The following year, Riccio was
promoted to become the city's
director of the Office of Rail
Freight Development, re-
porting directly to
Mayor Ed Koch.
From 1986 to
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/19
standards. Since
1990 he served as the
commissioner of the
city's Department of Ports,
International Trade and Com-
.......... ldj .. k .........
freight rail engines gen-
erate about one-tenth as
much diesel soot as trucks in pro-
portion to the loads they carry, the
city is missing out on a valuable opportu-
nity to reduce truck congestion and the air
pollution it generates, says John Klotz of the Si-
erra Club.
.. d t .... the who ..
merce.
In 1990, Riccio left the public sector
and subsequently reversed his opinion about
thingb.ck
to rail.-
the minimum size of a functional rail yard. He
was hired on as the project director for the Harlem
River Yard Ventures in 1991 and is one of the primary
designers of the current plan.
His boss, Francesco Galesi, is chairman of the Galesi
Group and a heavy contributor to top state political cam-
paigns. In 1989, one of his subsidiaries, Rotterdam Ventures,
violated state law by contributing too much money to Gover-
nor Cuomo's reelection campaign. Newsday reported last
February that half of the $5,000 the governor received from
Galesi had to be returned. Newsday also reported that Galesi
gave $4,000 to the campaigns of Senator Alfonse D'Amato
between 1986 and 1991. In addition, Harlem River Yard
Ventures gave $1,000 to Bronx Borough President Fernando
Ferrer's campaign in 1990.
Also involved in the project in its startup phase was
Stephen Karsch, one of the owners of Sloan's Supermarkets
and former president of the Hunts Point Market Coopera-
tive. Karsch was also a prominent campaign contributor to
D'Amato, whose brother, Armand D'Amato, reportedly in-
troduced his client, Browning Ferris Industries, to the Galesi
group and Karsch, according to Newsday. Browning Ferris
joined the Harlem River Yard Ventures, but pulled out of the
project in 1991. And last August, Karsch pleaded guilty to
defrauding grocery suppliers $3.5 million over a 10-year
period through a coupon scam. He and his companies have
also contributed hundreds of dollars to Bronx Borough
President Fernando Ferrer's campaigns.
Karsch could not be reached for comment. Riccio, how-
ever, defends the Galesi Group's plan and believes the criti-
cism from other quarters is unwarranted.
"There's been nothing on that yard for 20 years," he says.
"Now I've got to listen to people who want a Taj Mahal
there?" Riccio is vehement in his claim that, however small,
the yard will be adequate to serve the needs of New York
City. Asked about his own decade-old conclusions about the
size of a viable yard, Riccio replies: "How much did I know
about capacity then? Very little."
But pressed with numbers about rail yard capacity, he
asserts: "Rail will never be the major mode of transportation
in the Northeast. It will always be truck-dependent."
State officials similarly defend their decision to award a
99-year lease based on a short-term study, not a long-term
analysis: "We find that long-term studies are nothing but
dreams," says Pastecki.
L ast month, the federal Environmental Protection Agency
declared Manhattan to be in violation of federal air quality
20/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
"What they're doing here is immoral, because the city
needs to cut down on congestion," Klotz says. "This facility
is not going to accomplish that."
The final environmental impact statement on the project
is being filed with the state as City Limits goes to press. After
a 10-day comment period, the state DOT can give the final
go-ahead, says DOT's Pastecki. It does not have to go through
a city review process because the state will remain owner of
the land, charging rent from Harlem River Yard Ventures.
While the debate over the Harlem River Yard has been
taking place among rail experts, community-based opposi-
tion has geared up slowly. Most of it stems from the work of
the Bronx Clean Air Coalition, founded in 1991 to oppose a
medical waste incinerator in Port Morris. Member groups
come from all over the Bronx, from Mott Haven to Riverdale.
Since last summer, the group has been addressing the issue
of the Harlem River Yard, and members have testified against
the plan in public hearings before the state DOT.
"To me it's really a common sense issue, because I know
the terrible state of our air," says Alisa Eilenberg, who heads
the Riverdale Committee for Clean Air, part of the Bronx
coalition. "It's just common sense to preserve what we have
and use it for public and transportation purposes."
In October, the group assembled experts and politicians
to explain the issue to the community at large. The gathering
drew more than 100 people from throughout the Bronx. Yet
it has been difficult for the opponents to sustain community
opposition, in large part because it is such a technical,
complex issue, coalition members say.
In any case, the borough and city leadership have sup-
ported the plan. "I think it's a wise trade-off because of the
economy," says Kevin Nunn, deputy director of planning
for Borough President Ferrer, citing the desperate need for
jobs.
The Dinkins administration also took a favorable stance
towards the development. In fact, according to a city official
who asked not to be identified, the city Department of
Transportation was critical of the project, but their objec-
tions were superseded by the Economic Development Cor-
poration (EDC). Chris Ward, senior vice president at EDC,
gave the plan his "strong support and commitment" during
public hearings this past summer.
Mayor Rudolph Giuliani released a statement during his
campaign saying he would push for the "full construction of
the Harlem River Yard in the Bronx as an intermodal facility
to serve industrial needs." Opponents of the Harlem River
Yard Ventures plan took heart, believing his comments
meant he opposed the Galesi proposal. But while transition
team officials say Giuliani
stands by his statements,
they add that he has no
position on the current
plan as yet.
Elizabeth Holtzman
and Congressman Nadler
have been the leading
political opponents of the
project. Holtzman's
former aide, David Eich-
enthal, says the city
should delay the project
by withholding payment
on the Oak Point Link.
Construction af the Oak Point Unk will allow New Y 0ItI City to be a contender In the freight
marketplac;e.
Ironicall y, the mo-
mentum of freight rail is
picking up so quickly
that if New York City fails
to come up with a mod-
ern intermodal yard
within the next decade,
it may lose out to its sub-
urban competitors on
Long Island. State Sena-
tor Norman Levy of
Nassau County, who
chairs the Senate trans-
portation committee and
Nadler recommends a more urgent, drastic step: "We
should junk the lease and turn the whole thing back to rail,"
he says. Nadler says the state still has the final say, and
should drop the curtain on Galesi and Harlem River Yard
Ventures immediately.
MeanWhile, as the state and city governments fiddle,
nationwide use of intermodal rail facilities is on the rise. In
1983, 4.1 million trailers and containers were shipped by
rail; in 1991, the number had grown to 6.2 million, accord-
ing to the American Association of Railroads.
has long been critical of
the state DOT, is calling for the development of a network of
rail facilities through the city leading out to the island.
While this would include one small intermodal facility in
New York City, most of the intermodal traffic would be
unloaded in one huge yard-in the center of Long Island.
Meanwhile, opponents of the Harlem River Yard plan
have become increasingly cynical about the possibility of
changing the minds of the state DOT planners or the gover-
nor. "The key to our long-term economic survival is in
developing adequate rail facilities," says Robert Brill, chair
of the Transportation Committee of the Association of the
Bar of City of New York. "What we need is visionary leader-
ship. Instead, what we have is pure myopia." 0
Specializing in
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NANCY HARDY
Insurance Broker
Over 20 Years of Experience.
80 Business Park Drive, Armonk, NY 10504,914,273,6591
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/21
By James Bradley
The Road to Recovery?
What will Communi-care dollars buy: clinics run by
the community-or hospital annexes for the poor?
P
eople used to come into the
Highbridge Extension Clinic in
the Bronx for checkups, and if
there was anything wrong with
them, they were referred to a nearby
family planning center or to Lincoln
Hospital. Services and hours at High-
bridge were limited, and
only one part-time phy-
sician was available; the
only full-time member
of the medical staff was
a physician's assistant.
" It was basically
triage," says Cecilia
Moffatt, the clinic's as-
sistant director.
While the refurbishing has gener-
ally been welcomed as long overdue,
the Communi-care program remains
very small, designed to serve about
65,000 city residents. Some health
care advocates question whether the
highly promoted project is little more
"The potential for abuse is there,"
says Lani Sanjek of the Patient's
Rights Hotline, a health care con-
sumer advocacy group. She argues
that many of the city's major hospi-
tals have displayed little accountabil-
ity to their local communities. What's
more, she asks, why should the
government pay to develop private
clinics that will compete with public
institutions?
Showcase Program
When Mayor David Dinkins began
the Communi-care project in April,
1992, it was hailed as a
visionary showcase in
the midst of difficult
financial times, with
$48 million going to
spruce up clinics run by
the city Department of
Health (DOH) and the
Health and Hospitals
Corporation, the agency
responsible for the city's
public hospitals. Since
the program's inception,
more than 100 primary
care physicians and 60
nurse practitioners have
been added to the clin-
ics' staffs.
Today, the staff at
Highbridge consists of
two primary care doc-
tors, a pediatrician and
a physician's assistant.
The doctors here know
their patients and their
families, and take a more
acti ve role in their
health. Even little things
can be attended to now;
for example, the staff
Communi-care clinics, such as this one in the Highbridge section of the Bronx, are
brillling primary hMlth care to undenerved neighbortloods.
So far, 13 clinics in
neighborhoods includ-
ing Harlem, the South
Bronx, Bushwick, Fort
regularly telephones patients to re-
mind them when it' s time for a
checkup.
"I see patients every day, and you
teach them when to come in, how to
follow up, and when to go to the
emergency room, " says Dr. Mayo-
banex Torres, a physician there. "This
is a new approach to everything. "
The Highbridge Extension Clinic
is one of 20 city clinics that received
an infusion of money last year through
the Communi -care program, a Dinkins
administration initiative to increase
the availability of primary care in
impoverished communities. So far,
13 referral centers like Highbridge
have been renovated, expanded and
transformed into comprehensive,
community-based health centers
specializing in preventive care.
Seven more will follow in the next
couple of years. The services are
covered by the patients' health insur-
ance or, if they are uninsured, by
Medicaid.
U/JANUARY 1994/CITY LIMITS
than a Band-Aid stuck across the gap-
ing wound of inadequate primary
health care services in New York's
poorest neighborhoods. The scale of
the shortage is tremendous: the Com-
munity Service Society, a philan-
thropic and research organization,
concluded in a 1990 survey that 1.7
million New Yorkers lack access to
adequate primary care.
But there is a much larger debate
swirling around the program, and it
centers on privatization, a hot topic
in government circles today. While
Communi-care's first phase focused
on improving city-owned and oper-
ated clinics, the program's second
phase, Communi-care II, will provide
state financing to nonprofit organiza-
tions to develop as many as 30 new,
private, community-based primary
care clinics around the city. Many of
the nonprofits in the program will be
major hospitals, officials predict. And
that has some health care advocates
worried.
Greene, Jamaica and East New York
have been refurbished. Renovation
work will be far more extensive in
the next seven clinics, according to
DOH officials. New facilities in
Bushwick, Jamaica and Tremont, for
example, are slated to be consider-
ably larger than current Communi-
care centers; they will each have eight
medical teams (for a total of four
family practitioners, four pediatri-
cians, eight nurses, eight medical
assistants) and a radiology suite
offering mammograms, X-rays and
other services. All 20 clinics in the
first phase of Communi-care will be
managed by the Health and Hospitals
Corporation starting next year as part
of a plan to consolidate the city's
health care system.
Communi-care clinics have doc-
tors on call 24 hours a day, seven
days a week. This is expected to
relieve pressure on the city hospitals'
emergency rooms , long the principal
if not the only source of health care
services for many residents of poor
neighborhoods. And because the
problem of inner city health care has
always been more complex than
simply a shortage of facilities-there's
also been little in the way of outreach
and education around primary care-
the new program is designed to foster
bonds between physicians and the
communities they serve.
"The days of the family doctor with
the little black bag are clearly over,"
says David R. Jones of the Commu-
nity Service Society. "But under this
system, we can establish a sense of
relationship between patients, doctors
and community."
"It's what medicine is supposed to
be," adds Dr. Barry Liebowitz, presi-
dent of the Doctors Council, a union
of physicians in the public sector.
"Instead of two ships passing in the
night," he says, referring to the im-
personal, haphazard effect when
emergency rooms are used for primary
care, "people will have a doctor who
knows them, who cares about them,
who can coordinate their services
with hospitals. It completes the circle
of public health."
$250 Million in Capital
Instead ofreceiving money directly
from the city budget, new Communi-
care II clinics will be financed through
the Primary Care Development Cor-
poration (PCDC), an independent
nonprofit organization created earlier
this year. This summer, Mayor
Dinkins won City Council approval
for $17 million of city funds which,
along with private grants, enabled
PCDC to commence operations in
August.
Under the Communi-care II
program, the state will provide $250
million in capital for developing new
clinics by selling bonds through the
state's Medicaid Care Facilities
Finance Agency. The bonds will be
guaranteed by the city, according to
Ronda Kotelchuck, executive direc-
tor of PCDC. Nonprofit organizations
will develop, own and operate the
clinics.
But many advocates for commu-
nity-based health care question the
wisdom of handing responsibility for
primary care to the private sector,
fearful that large, unresponsive insti-
tutions may wind up dominating the
program. "Will these funds go to a
family planning clinic or to New York
Hospital?" asks Sanjak. "To what
extent will they support genuinely
community-based clinics? That
remains to be seen."
Sanjek cites revelations a few
months ago about the segregationist
policies at Mount Sinai Medical
Center, which up to that time main-
tained separate maternity wards for
women on Medicaid and those
covered by private insurers, as an
"We don't want
hotshots who don't
understand the
needs of the poor."
example of how the private sector
has not always acted in good faith.
"They segregate, and provide second-
class care to people who are poor and
people of color. There's a long his-
tory of this," Sanjek adds.
With the change in mayoral
administrations, the future of the
plan remains uncertain. The city
must insure the bonds, and that will
require the approval of the incoming
administration of Rudolph Giuliani
as well as the City Council.
The issue of accountability has
emerged as a sticking point for some
City Council members. The PCDC is
an "off-budget" item, meaning it is
not subject to the same oversight by
the council as other city agencies, a
fact which a number oflegislators are
critical of, including the powerful
council speaker, Peter Vallone.
Another opponent is Councilmember
Una Clarke of Brooklyn, who serves
on the Health Committee.
"We're asked to use public dollars
to fund a private entity in which we
will have no oversight," Clarke says.
"There has to be some accountability
for public dollars."
Clarke is also concerned that
PCDC's 20-member board of business
executives, philanthropic leaders, city
officials and community representa-
tives is neither diverse enough nor
sufficiently knowledgeable about
community health needs. "They want
a board of monied people who can
attract big private sector dollars," she
says. "We don't want hotshots who
don't understand the needs of the
poor."
There are other concerns as well.
Kotelchuk and city officials argue that
the city's shaky financial situation
and its weighty bureaucracy are
important reasons for developing
private, rather than city-owned,
clinics. But Liebowitz of the Doctors
Council warns of the financial conse-
quences if the PCDC or any of the
Communi-care II projects should go
bust, since the city is insuring the
bonds: "If that plan fails, taxpayers
get to pick up the tab for private
enterprise." And the resulting bailout,
Liebowitz adds, may drain the budget
of the city's public health system.
Public Bureaucracy
Cesar Perales, deputy mayor for
health and human services in the
Dinkins administration, counters that
it is unwise to shun the private sector
because "it is neither appropriate nor
feasible for government to take on all
of the city's health problems."
Kotelchuck says PCDC will help
nonprofit organizations get financing
never before available. "The reason
that capital is not available to primary
care centers is that they are deemed
to be not credit-worthy," she says.
"The result is that [the development
of primary care clinics] is confined to
the biggest players. The PCDC will
change that."
Still, says Lawson Shadburne,
PCDC's director of project develop-
ment and finance, whoever wins the
contracts will have to have state
certification as a health care provider
and be a big enough player to recruit
physicians and other staff. He says
that PCDC's aim is to forge links
between hospitals and community
groups. "I think we are going to see
some interesting partnerships," he
says.
Kotelchuck adds that private
hospitals like Mount Sinai cannot be
excluded from the program, noting
that running a primary care clinic is a
complicated task requiring a degree
of staying power and expertise that
many cOinmunity-based groups may
not have.
"This is not something that every
populist can take on," she says.
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/23
Perales, on the other hand, empha-
sizes that Communi-care will make it
possible for new facilities to be
opened by smaller organizations that
have already proven their ability to .
manage health services, like the
William F. Ryan Community Health
Center on Manhattan's Upper West
Side. "Not many people know this,
but the Ryan Center wants to open
@M13
another clinic," he reports. "We could
make that happen."
Central Flaws
Some activists believe the debate
over finances has obscured central
flaws ofthe entire Communi-care pro-
gram. Sidique Wai, cochair of the New
York City Health Crisis Coalition,
argues that genuine preventive care
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24/JANUARY 1994/CITY
must include all elements of a com-
munity in the planning stages so that
the focus is kept on the underlying
causes of urban health problems. So
far, he says, Communi-care does not
live up to that promise.
The proper course to take, says
Wai, is comprehensive, integrated
neighborhood planning. "You must
have all elements of the community
represented in the program," he says.
"Churches, schools, doctors, commu-
nity people. Everybody must be in-
volved. It's cost-effective, it's sensible,
and it empowers the community."
There is also the fundamental prob-
lem of the shortage of primary care
practitioners. "The rewards, recogni-
tion, prestige, and, most of all, the
money, is in specialized medicine,"
notes Dr. Elena Padilla, a resident
scholar at St. Barnabas Hospital in
the Bronx. In order to turn around
this imbalance, Padilla believes that
the state government, which sets
reimbursement rates for Medicaid
coverage, must make it more lucra-
tive for private doctors to provide
care to poor people, and must also
take a leadership role in promoting
the education and training of primary
care physicians.
Health policy experts say that
President Clinton's health care plan,
when it is finally ironed out in
Congress, will probably include
provisions to expand and promote
programs that train new primary care
physicians. Another likely compo-
nent of the federal plan will be special
grants for community-based health
care providers.
Whatever happens as government
policies change, it is clear that the
Communi-care initiative is charting
new terrain in urban health care.
Robert Gumbs, director of the
Health Systems Agency, a nonprofit
organization that surveys the city's
health care needs, says confronting
this problem requires a trial-and-
error approach. "If I say Bedford-
Stuyvesant needs more primary care,
do they need a 100,OOO-visit-capacity
facility?" he asks. "If they do, how do
you build that and how do you link it
with the hospitals and other systems?
The fact is nobody really knows. But
this is a beginning step. There's a lot
we need to do." D
James Bradley is a frequent con-
tributor to City Limits.
II' I 'ii' i J'all
By Moises Perez
Police, Fear and History
I
n the final days of his mayoral
campaign, Rudolph Giuliani
promised voters that, as mayor,
he would give police a green light
to crack down on street-level drug
dealers and the violence they breed.
His comments did not sit comfort-
ably with the people of Washington
Heights, our largely Dominican neigh-
borhood in northern Manhattan. One
need only recall the crisis that erupted
in the summer of 1992, following the
police killing of Kiko Garcia, tq see
how pervasive is the Dominican
community's ambivalence toward the
police, and how much we fear the
use of force.
A historical perspective is needed
in order to understand just how deep-
seated these fears are. Dominicans
have a long history of oppression at
the hands of security forces.
We are not alone in this: the Jewish
community has faithfully expressed
its concern about police brutality, ever
mindful of the oppression unleashed
by the brown-shirted shock troops of
Hitler-too vicious to ever forget, and
too vivid in everyone's memory. So
too are African Americans sensitive
to the excesses of the police in their
communities; memories of the lynch-
ings that accompanied their struggle
for civil rights, a struggle waged
against police forces throughout the
South, are still fresh. Images of police
dogs and water hoses are not easily
forgotten.
Weapons of Fear
Dominicans are also the unlucky
inheritors of a history of police forces
out of control , forces used more as
weapons of fear and suppression than
as the protectors of the citizenry. My
mother spent her childhood and early
adulthood in the Dominican Republic
under the shadow of a dictatorship.
That has had an enormous impact on
Cityview is a forum for opinion
and does not necessarily reflect
the views of City Limits.
her outlook on life, as it has on her
entire generation. The use of military
and police force is probably the single
most important influence in the ex-
periences of Dominicans in this cen-
tury. It has been the most consistent
element of our history, starting with
the invasion of Santo Domingo by
United States troops in 1916. Our
grandparents still speak of the terror.
The troops left a decade later, leav-
ing behind the Dominican National
Guards, headed by an ambitious
young colonel -who rose from poverty
to become one of the most ruthless
dictators in all of Latin America,
Generalissimo Rafael Trujillo.
Supported by the United States,
Trujillo converted the guards into a
fierce weapon that terrorized the
nation, killing more than 28,000
heard from again.
The tensions and hostilities that
simmer amongst the people of Wash-
ington Heights do not stem from a
desire to protect drug dealers. They
are a reflection of the anger and
indignation about a police force
whose history of corruption and
brutality, exposed during the recent
hearings of the Mollen Commission,
was common knowledge on the
streets of this community.
Dubious Results
Clearly we have a major problem
in terms of public safety and violence
in Washington Heights. We don't
want the police out of our lives, and
we don't want more policing. We
want the right policing: Dominicans
want to develop a personal relation-
Haitian nationals.
Thirty years later,
when Trujillo lost
his hold on the
guards, the United
States plotted his
assassination and
invaded the island
once more. This
time they left be-
hind a government
headed by one of
Trujillo's chief
allies, who ruled
ruthlessly, driving
thousands of Do-
minicans out of their
homeland to New
York City in search
of democracy and
liberation from de-
Moises Perez is the executive director of
Alianza Dominicana, a youth and social
services agency in Washington Heights.
ship with the po-
lice. Our concern is
that Giuliani will
invest enormous re-
sources in the
criminal justice
system-more jail
space, more police
officers-with du-
bious results. That
will drain the bud-
get, and it won't
resolve the drug
problem in our
communities. It
won't contribute to
public safety.
We want a com-
prehensive strategy
that better links the
community with
community polic- cades of oppression.
This has been the history of Domini-
cans for this century. Our fear of
police violence is rooted in our con-
sciousness.
It is not surprising, then, that for
many residents of Washington
Heights, the death of Kiko Garcia,
shot in the lobby of an apartment
buidling, conjured up images of
people during the dictatorship in the
Dominican Republic being dragged
offby the national guards, never to be
ing: a policy that invokes and
empowers the community side of the
formula and seeks strategically to
meet with neighborhood people, even
at the tenant association or block
association level. to develop a more
comprehensive and participatory
strategy for public safety. If we can
have a dialogue and begin to develop
a relationship with the police now,
and not when tensions arise, we' ll be
in a better position to address crisis
CITY UMnS/JANUARY 1994/25
situations.
But the new administration may
sweep those issues under the rug.
The new police commissioner may
not be interested in working with the
communities, but rather in empow-
ering the police department.
Three Tragic Deaths
During the last week of the mayoral
campaign, three children died tragi-
cally in Washington Heights. First, a
13-year-old boy was executed, gunned
down because his father testified as a
witness in a drug case. The father
was killed in 1992 as he was leaving
the courthouse, and now the child
was also executed, to drive home the
warning about what happens to those
who meddle in the affairs of drug
dealers.
Then a 13-year-old girl committed
suicide, distraught over the news that
her mother had recently tested posi-
tive for AIDS. Days later, her class-
mate was playing Russian roulette
with a gun and killed himself.
The deaths of these three children
underscore the needs of this commu-
nity. I don' t think any distressed
neighborhood-plagued by drugs,
violence, drop-outs and teen preg-
nancy-can recover unless the grass-
roots levels of the community are
included in the process. Giuliani
needs to reach out and work with
grassroots leadership to bridge the
gap that currently exists in Washing-
ton Heights and in other neighbor-
hoods , where people leery of his
agenda cast their votes for the incum-
bent.
I don't think we are far apart. But
there has to be more emphasis on
education and on the recruitment of
officers. Community policing is most
successful when the police are clear
about their role in the neighborhood.
There are officers on the beat who are
resentful about being there. And that
simply won't do in Washington
Heights. 0
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Offered only through Citibank's Economic
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t e cre It you eserve. LENDER
By J. B. Springs III
Reality Check
"The Mole People: Life in the Tunnels
Beneath New York City, " by Jennifer
Toth, Chicago Review Press, 1993,
267 pages, $19.95 hardcover.
O
ne hundred and seventeen
pages into "The Mole
People," Jennifer Toth writes
of the tunnel dwellers she met
while researching her book: "They
tell many stories and there is truth in
all their stories. You just have to find
it." I agree wholeheartedly, but the
same must be said for Toth's tale of
her venture into the world of home-
lessness.
She takes us on a thought-provok-
ing tour through an unexplored part
of New York: the tunnels inside Grand
Central Station, the bunkers and track
lines beneath Riverside Park and mid-
town Manhattan, and many other
places where the destitute and home-
less dwell , places that, thankfully,
few people will ever see. She intro-
duces a host of colorful and unfor-
gettable characters, and you can feel
what she experiences as she walks in
the darkness of the tunnels.
But Toth has taken a serious prob-
lem in dire need of a solution and
sensationalized it to a dangerous
degree. At the same time, there are
key flaws in her account that suggest
she was naively taken in by some of
her subjects. She tells us that her re-
search was done between 1989 and
1990 and credits the self-styled
"mayor" of an underground Penn
Station community for the flowery
piece of prose, "We leave our pasts
and our failures with our names above
ground." I know firsthand that there
was only one community beneath
Penn Station between July 1989 and
February 1990, and that the leader of
that community was a person called
Bear, dubbed that not only for his
immense size and strength-which
came from spending years in prison
weight rooms-but because of the size
of his heart. I know this because I am
Bear. For almost eight months, I was
the closest thing to a mayor living
J.B. Springs III is a former mole per-
son who is currently incarcerated in
Trenton State Prison. His work has
appeared in Essence.
beneath Penn Station, and I never
had the pleasure of meeting Toth nor
of hearing her name.
}T __ for Cans and Luck
. she
ith a home-
It filled with
,es. Toth says
apartment a
I combing the
ck."
y loses their
1t a few days
lunt for alumi-
t people who
selves on the
uEren,.......,'P"' _ ___ days in a
The odds
were against
an ex-mole person
being asked to
review this book.
But I was.
trance of confusion and disbelief. The
next few weeks are spent searching
for a way back inside. People new to
the streets visit or call any and every-
one they can think of who might be
able to help them. And even when
they can't find help, they don't go out
searching "for cans and luck."
To even use the phrase, this woman
had to be a veteran of the streets:
digging in the garbage for cans is a
solution of last resort. And "hunting
for cans and luck" is a street phrase
that means you are hoping to break
luck by finding something of value
during your daily wanderings, some-
thing that will give you another shot
at a life inside.
Toth's credibility as a reporter is
further suspect in that she claims to
have visited the lower levels of Grand
Central Station alone, where many
women have disappeared and where
even I dared not trespass without an
armed band of my own people. If
indeed Toth was there, she is either a
better man than I am or she should be
playing the lottery on a regular basis.
I also knew Sergeant Henry, the
transit officer Toth describes in
favorable detail. He and his social
service outreach teams have done
more harm than the good Toth notes,
and if he would tell the complete
truth, he would have to admit that
not only are there people in the
tunnels who have nowhere else to go,
but who don't want anything other
than to be left alone.
Toth attempts but fails throughout
the book to capture the vernacular
and tone of the people she paints
with such detail, and it hurts the work.
Fortunately she is young-she started
this project while a student at the
Columbia University School of
Journalism-and has a very bright
future to look forward to, unlike the
people scattered throughout her book
for whom time is swiftly running out
with each additional day spent
beneath the sidewalks of New York.
To be sure, there are truths here,
such as the youths who prey on the
"Wanderers," the people who use the
tunnels and platforms only as a tem-
porary resting place or as filling up
stations. These teens are called
"Gremlins" for the troubles they bring,
but even they know better than to
roam the tunnels in search of victims,
as Toth relates in Chapter 18. They
do their dirt on or near the train
platforms, where they have a shot at
getting away unharmed.
Dispel the Myths
Toth tells us that she wishes to
dispel the myths about the "animal-
like" underground dwellers, but gives
us stories about dog and rat eaters; a
Dark Angel who intimidates the
tunnel dwellers and police alike;
substance abusers, mentally and
physically diseased men and women;
and a person known as Blade, who is
so schizophrenic he goes berserk
when she offers to pay him to be her
guide to the underworld.
It is understandable why Toth felt
it would be safe to embellish upon
her experiences, no doubt figuring
the odds were good that few of her
mole people would ever have the
courage walk into a bookstore to
(Continued on page 29)
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/27
AbelTilnt Analysis
To the Editor:
Robert Fitch's article, "Economic
Suicide" (November 1993) footnoted
that it was an excerpt from a book
entitled The Assassination of New
York. Perhaps an autopsy should be
performed to determine whether it
was suicide or assassination. The
article itself wavers between the two
in its very widespread diatribes on
the recent New York economic
decline, its perpetrators and victims.
A singular delusion, repeatedly
asserted, is that the decline in man-
ufacturing employment caused the
city's overall employment decline.
Actually, the manufacturing plunge
was itself the overall decline. Be-
tween 1959 and 1990, job losses in
manufacturing totaled 639,000,
according to the Bureau of Labor
Statistics, while there was an increase
of 590,000 jobs in other sectors ofthe
city's economy. Therefore the net job
loss in that period was only 49,000.
Also featured at length in the article
are very recent unemployment esti-
mates, especially the estimate for
January, 1993: "Gotham's 13.4 percent
spike was no seasonal aberration,"
asserted the first page. Contrarily, the
chart on the second page reveals
exactly what it was-a quirk. Perhaps
this is indicative of the degree of
ideological emphasis affecting the
subject article.
I would like to list some other
fallacies, such as the notion that office
development caused the shrinkage of
manufacturing employment (a total
misconception); the failure to censure
the 30-year planning effort intended
to stimulate manufacturing employ-
ment by restricting housing construc-
tion and its resulting deleterious effect
on the housing stock; and the writer's
expressed belief that the manufactur-
ing decline was not substantially
related to advanced and
automation.
This aberration even denied that
market forces brought about much of
the economic changes and declines.
Certainly technological and labor
costs in New York City were prima-
rily responsible for the decline of
manufacturing employment since
1960.
Most certainly-and this is one of
the most fallacious viewpoints of the
article-office development hardly
encroached at all on manufacturing
areas. Third A venue and the Avenue
28/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
ofthe Americas in midtown spawned
very major office development,
replacing aged "old law" tenements
which came down as the noisy
elevated train structures finally
succumbed.
Until after the turn of the century,
the Park Avenue block fronts from
50th to 53rd streets were occupied by
the Steinway Piano factory and the
Schaefer Brewery, but they were
replaced by very fine residential struc-
tures, only to succumb themselves to
severe wartime rent strictures. Their
sites then filled the expanding need
for office space.
The recent Broadway-Times
Square office development, largely
stimulated by misguided government
and media efforts, only replaced
movie theatres and some porno-
graphic enterprises. Nor even did the
Widespread
diatribes on New
York's economic
decline
new lower Broadway office buildings
or other downtown executive office
facilities replace viable manufactur-
ing buildings. Even the few post-war
commercial buildings in the garment
area are showroom buildings, such as
1407 and 1411 Broadway, because
showroom and design firms are the
primary employers in the garment
district; what little "blue collar"
garment production remains in New
York is mostly in Chinatown.
Of course, showroom and design
personnel are categorized as "manu-
facturing" in enumerating labor
statistics and it is not generally real-
ized that, because of longstanding
statistical practice, even many
thousands of executive and staff
personnel in major midtown office
buildings are classified as "manufac-
turing" and included in the data. So
too are publishing and printing firms:
executive and editorial personnel
counts in the manufacturing category.
So much for the imaginary office
---------
development threat to manufactur-
ing activities.
Another enigma is that, while
market forces of the New York City
economy were predominantly respon-
sible for the decline of manufactur-
ing employment (an autopsy would
show this), governmental political
decisions and actions were primarily
responsible for excessive construc-
tion of office buildings. Not only
because of the real estate tax abate-
ment that was mentioned in the
article, but the very strong acceler-
ated depreciation incentives, numer-
ous zoning incentives spurred on by
deadlines, and, of course, encourage-
ment of huge buildups of liquid
capital in lending institutions through
government insurance of bank
deposits.
Is this lengthy effort at correction
of such conundrums regarding
housing and employment of impor-
tance? Planning theories and other
governmental intrusions upon the
city's economic and social viability
are so detrimental, exposing fallacious
theories is vital lest they lead to
further destructive governmental
actions.
Seymour B. Durst
The Durst Organization
Manhattan
Robert Fitch replies: I feel deeply
grateful to be singled out by Seymour
Durst as "this aberration." It is an
honor I accept with humility, but also
with a certain pride. Durst, after all,
is no ordinary crank letter writer. In a
city famed for its greedy landlords,
he has been designated on the
editorial pages of The New York
Times as the head of "Greed Inc." His
chutzpah in creating something called
"Reclaim Times Square" has become
truly legendary. As Carl Weisbrod,
now head of the Economic Develop-
ment Corporation, pointed out,
Durst's family has owned much of
Times Square for 50 years. For 50
years the Dursts built not a single
building there, simply collecting the
ever-growing revenues from the porn
industry while accumulating block
after block of midtown property. From
whom was Durst trying to reclaim
Times Square-himself?
Here in this letter, Durst deploys
the same public relations tactic:
personally deploring the conditions
he has done so much to create, and
from which he has profited so hugely.
Durst pretends to care about the loss
of industry. But there are few New
Yorkers whose fortunes have grown
fatter from Manhattan's industrial job
loss than Durst and his family, ranked
this year among America's 400 rich-
est families on the basis of their still
enormous Manhattan real estate hold-
ings. Forbes' estimate: $600 million.
But Durst, according to sources at
the Department of City Planning, has
not been satisfied to let city and state
planners sweep out west and south
midtown industry through their many
deindustrial initiatives-e.g. conven-
tion center rezoning, the Clinton Plan,
the midtown plan of 1982, and so on.
Durst himself has been a mover in the
efforts to rid lower Sixth Avenue of
industry: he has pressured planners
to remove zoning protection from the
area to benefit his extensive Sixth
Avenue and mid-block holdings.
Naturally, he is anxious to shift
the blame for industrial job loss onto
impersonal technological forces . But
the pressure for getting rid of the Sixth
Avenue flower district isn't coming
from "advanced technology and auto-
mation." It's coming from Durst and
his fellow greed heads.
Understandably, Durst wants to
minimize the problems he creates.
Nine percent unemployment, he says,
is "not so terrible." But in the month
Durst writes, the national rate is 6.2
percent and the New York City rate is
10.2 percent. And while the U.S. has
added over two million jobs since the
1989 downturn, New York's economy
has lost nearly 400,000 and continues
to lose jobs. The Prentice-Hall
Almanac of Livable Places ranks 343
metropolitan areas in the U.S. and
Canada in terms of the job market.
New York ranks 343rd.
Why are we last? Automation?
Technology? Impersonal market
forces? Certainly not property tax
rates, which have fallen by more than
50 percent since the mid-1970s. Try
the disproportionate wealth, power
and influence of the land-owning
Dursts, Rockefellers, Tisches. It is
their speculative efforts-mightily re-
inforced by city planning-which
have destroyed the city's industry but
failed to produce the highly-touted
"information city" that was supposed
to provide new jobs and careers for
all.
In De gubernatione Dei, the great
fifth century ecclesiastical writer
Salvian attacked landlords as the
"assassins" of Rome. They pushed
more and more direct producers off
the land, bought up their holdings
and dumped their tax burdens onto
the urban poor and working people.
Seymour Durst is just such an
assassin. I am proud to have provoked
him.
Know Your Toxins
To the Editor:
As you suggest in "Toxins for
Dinner" (December 1993), New York
State waterways have been plagued
by chemicals known to be toxic to
humans. These chemicals, including
PCBs, are a result of the most con-
venient and inexpensive disposal
practices of the state's industrial waste
dischargers.
As a professional environmental
advocate and a concerned citizen, I
would like to thank you for bringing
this very important issue to your
readers. Informative articles such as
this one are very helpful in address-
ing environmental problems.
I would also like to inform readers
of a recently introduced state legis-
lative proposal that, if enacted, will
be a primary step toward reducing
the toxic chemicals discharged into
the state's waterways. The bill, intro-
Review (continued from page 27)
look at the book, let alone have the
money to purchase a copy. The odds
were astronomical that an ex-mole
person would be handed a copy and
asked to review it. But I was.
If I didn't know these people as
well as I do and read The Mole
People, I surely wouldn't want to do
anything to bring them back to the
world. In fact, I would probably vote
to have supplies dumped below for
them and guards placed at the exits.
But I did know them. There was
Slim, who never wore shoes or a shirt
no matter what time of year it was,
and who surfaced, greasy and spooky-
looking, only in the late hours of the
night, to stand guard and protect the
subway riders along the platform out-
side of his tunnel. And he performed
his service well. There was Alicia, a
homeless woman who lived in the
tunnels for protection and washed
up in a bathroom at Macy's before
going to work every day. She was
duced by Senator George Pataki of
Peekskill and Assemblyman Paul
Tokasz of Cheektowaga, is currently
referred to as the Fisherman's Right-
to-Know Act (S. 5452 and A.6754).
Many communities are unaware
of the toxins that are legally dis-
charged into their local waterways.
The goal of the bill is to promote
public awareness of toxic water
pollution in order to protect public
health. Equally important, this legis-
lation will help cultivate grassroots
pressure to reduce and eliminate toxic
waste from our rivers and streams.
The act will require all discharge
permit holders to post a sign at the
point of discharge indicating the
specific pollutants discharged, the
permit holder's name and a contact
number for more information.
Public notification of toxins in our
environment is critical if citizens are
to make better, more informed
decisions on water resource use.
William C. Cooke
Albany Program Coordinator/Lobbyist
Citizens Campaign for the Environment
We want to hear what you have
to say! Send your letters to City
Limits, 40 Prince Street, New
York, NY 10012.
saving money in a bank across the
street from Penn Station until she
had enough to bring her four chil-
dren to the States from Antigua, where
her grandmother cared for them.
And there was Amtrak Billy, who
lived beneath Penn Station with me
and worked cleaning the trains when
they came in. He shot dope with part
of the money he earned and sent the
rest to his kids in Washington, D.C. ,
via Western Union. At least once
every other month he talked his way
onto a train home, hoping to rejoin
his family one day. He never made it.
I'm not sure whether it was the heroin
or the tunnels that killed him.
There are many people beneath the
streets of New York who want to stay
there, but there are just as many that
want, need and deserve to be saved.
At the very least, Toth's work may
force some to remember and to think
about these desperate people-
whether they wish to or not-and
thus it serves a purpose. But she
should have told it straight. 0
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/29
PROFESSIONAL DIRECTORY
Planning and Architecture for the Non-Profit
Specializing in
Feasibility Studies, Zoning Analysis & Design of
Housing, Health Care and Educational Projects
Magnus Magnusson, AlA
MAGNUSSON • ARCHITECTS
10 East 40th Street, 39th Floor, New York, NY 10016
Facsimile 2124813768 Te/epJwne 212 6835977
DEBRA BECHTEL - Attorney
Concentrating in Real Estate & Non-Profit Law
Title and loan closings All city housing programs
Mutual housing associations Cooperative conversions
Advice to low income co-op boards of directors
100 Remsen Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201, (718) 624-6850
LPC DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
a project of Lexington Planning Coalition Inc.
Proposal Writing - Grantsmanship
Grass-Roots Fundraising Campaigns
Public & Private Sectors
JO frAtS nPrRlrNC' WITH MINORITY e80'S .. eOMMUNITirS
1939 3rd Avenue
New York. NY 10029
212-427-4927
Rolando Cintron
Director of Development
LAWRENCE H. McGAUGHEY
Attorney at Law
Meeting the challenges of affordable housing for 20 years.
Providing legal services in the areas of General Real Estate,
Business, Trust & Estates, and Elder Law.
217 Broadway, Suite 610
New York, NY 10007
(212) 513-0981
William .Jacobs
Certified PlIhlic ACCllllnt.lI1t
Over 25 years experience specializing in nonprofit housing
HDFCs, Neighborhood Preservation Corporations
Certified Annual Audits, Compilation and Review Services,
Management Advisory Services, Tax Consultation and Preparation
CIIII Todllr For A Free Conaultllti_
77 Quaker Ridge Road, Suite 215
New Rochelle, N.Y. 10804
914-633-5095 Fax 914-633-5097
3O/JANUARY 1994/CITY UMITS
TURF COMPANIES
Building Management/Consultants
Specializing in management & development
services to low income housing cooperatives,
community organizations and co-op
boards of directors
230 Flatbush Avenue
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11217
John Touhey
718/857 -0468
RESG provides non-profits and managing agents
with low cost consulting regarding all DHCR matters.
RESG specializes in analyzing and riling rent
registrations Corms Cor current and missing past years.
Call (718) 892-5996
For information and a FREE building
evaluation.
COMPUTER SERVICES
Hardware Sales:
IBM Compatible Computers
Super VGA Monitors
Okidata Laser Printers
Okidata Dot Matrix Printers
Software Sales:
Data Base
Accounting
UtilitieslNetwork
Word Processing
Services: NetworklHardware/Software Installation,
Training, Custom Software, Hand Holding
Clients Include: ANHD, MHANY, NHS, UHAB
Morris Kornbluth 718-857-9157
David H. Grumer
Certified Public Accountant
25 West 45th Street, Suite 1401, New York, New York 10036
(212) 3541770
• Financial Audits • Compilation and Review Services •
• Management Advisory Consulting •
• Tax Return Preparation & Advice •
Over a decade of service to community and nonprofit organizations.
Change\Norkers
171 Avenue B
New York, NY 10009
(212) 674·1308 Fax (212) 674-0361
Changeworkers provides affordable project services
to not-for-profit organizations.
Fundraising • Publishing • Computing
Money Management • Board Development
Concrete products, not abstract plans.
PROFESSIONAL DIRECTORY
GINBERG & HABERMAN
Attorneys at Law
Formerly of Counsel to DHPD of the City of NY.
Engaged in the general practice of law including
representing individual tenants, groups and
associations in all legal matters.
6 West 32nd Street, NYC (212) 643-7183
LAW FIRM OF BARRY K. MALLIN
The experts in syndications and closings
of low income housing tax credit projects
Dedicated Service-Se Habla Espanol
72 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012, (212) 334-9393
PUBLICITY PLUS
CONTRACTS • TRAINING • FINANCING. PROMOTION
• SELF HELP MATERIALS
Valerie White
PO Box 265 • Huntington Station, NY 11746
718 • 279 • 5196
Put your card in the hands of thousands
of New York decision makers, including ...
NONPROFIT MANAGERS 0 COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS
GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS 0 COMMERCIAL DEVELOPERS
and many more.
To place your ad
in the City Limits Professional Directory,
call Faith Wiggins at (917) 253-3887.
JOB ADS
HOUSING PROGRAM DIRECTOR. PfT Consultant. Highly skilled housing
professional needed for not-for-profit housing development work.
Knowledge of mortgage and real estate financing, local, state and
federal housing programs, proforma budget development, grant
and proposal writing. Approx. 20 hr/wk, salary negotiable. Send
resume to R.D.R.C., P.O. Box 1400, Far Rockaway, N.Y. 11691.
PROGRAM ASSOCIATE FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND SERVICES.
Exciting opportunity with Bronx-based non-profit housing organiza-
tion. Seek creative, energetic individual to work with interdiscipli-
nary team of community services professionals to develop, plan
and deliver services and programs to families and children. Strong
social work skills, particularly community organizing, group work
and crisis intervention a must. Responsibilities include: supervision
of MSW students and other staff. MSW preferred, BSW w/strong
community background considered. Min. 3 years experience. Bilin-
gual (Eng-Span) a great plus. Salary mid to high 30s, based on
education and experience; excellent fringe benefits. Send resume
and letter of interest to Search Committee, NSA Community
Services, 1512 Townsend Avenue, Bronx, NY 10452.
HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT SPECIALIST. Affordable
Housing Network, New Jersey, seeks experienced, highly qualified
housing/community development specialist. Responsibilities in-
clude assessing organizations' training/technical assistance needs
and providing in-depth, hands-on assistance in community plan-
ning, organization development, project development, property
management. Requirements: experience working in community-
based, non-profit organizations; substantial real estate develop-
ment experience; financial analysis skills/proficiency with spread-
sheets. Statewide travel/flexible work hours involved. Competitive
salary/excellent benefits. Send resume to Martha Lamar, Afford-
able Housing Network, P.O. Box 1746, Trenton, NJ 08607.
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT. Kensington
Action Now and the Kensington Area Revitalization Project (KAN/
KARP) seeks an experienced community development profes-
sional. KAN/KARP is an 18 year old community-based organization
working to revitalize Kensington, an urban blue-collar neighbor-
hood in northeast Philadelphia. KAN/KARP combines community
organizing and planning strategies with creative rental and home-
ownership development. The Assistant Director for Community
Development will be responsible for planning and coordination for
KAN/KARP's housing development, assistance and planning efforts;
developing the KARP board; and managing external relationships.
He/she will report to KAN/KARP's Executive Director and will in turn
supervise housing staff. Candidates need broad vision of community
development, 5 years experience, demonstrated skills in develop-
ment, planning, management. Compensation: $40,000, benefits.
Resumes to KAN/KARP, 3023 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA
19134. Fax: (215) 426-4409.
ATTENTION FREELANCERS! City Limits, New York City's award-winning
urban affairs monthly, is looking for writers, illustrators and
photographers. Send samples of your work along with resume to
Jill Kirschenbaum, City Limits, 40 Prince Street, NYC 10012.
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS. Prep for Prep identifies gifted students
from minority group backgrounds, provides 14-month intensive
academic preparation, places students in leading independent
schools, and provides post-placement counseling and leadership
development opportunities. We seek experienced professional for
multi-faceted executive position. Duties include coordination
between departments, daily problem-resolution, staff recruitment,
facility management, computerization, and PRo Requirements:
strong interpersonal and writing skills; BA plus relevant experience;
Tues-Satworkweek (Sept-June) and Mon-Fri (summers). Resume/
Salary history to: A. Hefferren, 163 W. 91st St., NYC 10024.
CITY UMITS/JANUARY 1994/31
,......-
k
~ THE PARTNERSHIP FOR THE HOMELESS
I ~ I ,
presents
ACDON
DAY
'94
A New Mayor ...
A New Mandate?
A New Homeless Policy?
What does it mean for the City?
For homeless people?
For you?
Saturday, January 29, 1994
The New Sehool for Soeial Researeh
66 West 12th Street
9:00 a. .... - 3 p .....
Registration Form.: ACDON DAY '94
Name ______________________________________________ ___
Address ____________________________________________ __
City ______________________ _ State ______ _
Zip ________ _
Phone _____________________ Affiliation ________________ _
o I will attend. 0 I will not attend. 0 I would like to make a donation of $ ___ _
Any questions: Call (212) 645-3444. Please detatch and mail to:
Please send reservations in by January 24, 1994
The Partnership for the Homeless
305 Seventh Avenue, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10001-6008

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