The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Former CB9 Chair and DM Win Settlement

Word just came to the Q that pretty much all the allegations against your Borough President regarding your Community Board were, well, not defend-able, let's leave it at that. A settlement of $200K is coming to Jake Goldstein & Pearl Miles as a result of their lawsuit against Eric Adams which claimed they were forced out without due process, or even a proper vote from the Board as it was then reconfigured. Jake was told he would not be reappointed if he ran for chair again - that's just not cool. Dude had served admirably for 30+ years. Look around - some Board chairs have been there longer than that! Alvin Berk of CB14 and central Flatbush, for instance, has done quite a number of years himself.

The claim in the lawsuit of age discrimination against Pearl was perhaps overplayed. The BP maintains that he would never discriminate against anyone over anything. I'm inclined to believe him, though many in the Jewish community would disagree at this point. The words about Pearl being "too old" were out there though, on paper, and the judge was persuaded enough evidence of foul play existed to go to trial. But Corporate Counsel for NYC chose to settle, rather than risk an award much higher than the $200K. It should be noted that Rabbi Goldstein also won the right to go public with his grievances, rather than lose 25% of the payout due to disclosures. (Bet you didn't know about that gag rule, did you?)

The BP may well be on the right side of many issues. He may be a hero for losing weight and changing his diet - publicly - to combat diabetes. He may be a man of firm convictions. But he's not above pettiness. This whole era at CB9, ever since Adams' election, has been a total shit-show. And while many CBs in the borough remained relatively unchanged after he entered office, CB9 has seen more than 32 (!) board members removed to make way for new ones more loyal to the team. This has destabilized the Board, providing zero continuity (to the point yours truly has had to inform members repeatedly of its own actions a mere two and three years ago) and even less accountability.

(first to answer correctly gets a playful nugie)
The Q has watched this unfold, and this is what he believes went down, and why.

The BP wanted District Manager Pearl Miles fired, and when 30+ year Chair of the Board Jacob Goldstein wouldn't do it, Adams refused to reappoint Jake unless he stepped down as Chair. Why not let the Board vote its own conscience? Such flagrant disregard for the community he long served as State Senator feels to the Q like a punch in the gut. Why would Adams go to such lengths to fire Miles? The Q has gone into the whole hairy saga before, but the short version is that this was score settling, all pointing back to longtime hot shot Clarence Norman, Jr., once the Kingmaker of the Kings County Machine, who fell from grace as a felon, only to help undo the very man who put him behind bars (longtime DA Charles Hynes, who lost to Norman's man Ken Thompson, r.ip.). Ultimately, after cleaning house on the Board, and two BP-approved Board chairs came and went (Dwayne Nicholson and Demetrius Lawrence), longtime "friend" of Clarence's Carmen Martinez was hired. Somehow. Despite hundreds of submitted resumes, CM became PM's replacement at DM. (I'll continue to say it - CM is a fine potential DM, but this was hardly a fair fight.)

Along the way, YOUR neighborhood has had to endure unending incompetence and inexperience at its Community Board, constant in-fighting, and miserable services delivery as top posts went unfilled. Pearl Miles didn't make a lot of friends in her time as DM, but she got shit done. Ask anyone in the City...PM was a killer DM, albeit without the BM (bedside manner) some consider a requisite for the gig.

So where are we now? Unless The People start to take an interest in their local politics, it's really hard to imagine positive change in Albany and Washington. Don't think because you're a Democrat you're getting the best representation. You're simply being told what's best for you, and your vote or lack thereof will continue to be taken for granted.

Please. Vote accordingly.


MikeF said...

Do you think Eric Adams will run against DeBlasio? He seems to have the right mix of talents.

diak said...

I don't know if this is significant but a couple of weeks ago I got called by a pollster asking about the next mayoral election; how did I feel about particular issues and my reactions pro, con or indifferent to various candidates. They asked me about de Blasio, Scott Stringer, Christine Quinn, and three or four others who I'm not remembering or hadn't heard of. But Eric Adams wasn't in the mix at all. I asked the pollster about Adams but it was just a college kid who said she just asked the questions that were on her screen. (In fact she might have been calling from way out of town and had no idea who any of these people are...)
Anyway, it struck me that at least one major candidate's campaign isn't concerned about Adams running.

Anonymous said...

I heard from a political insider that there's some kind of problem with Eric Adams. I got no details so who knows. But it was a very trusted source. That may be why they don't put him forth as mayoral candidate. I want Hillary. NYC as a city state and sanctuary city going up against Trump needs a way smarter more experienced person (international and domestic) than Deblasio or Adams or Quinn et al.