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Public Housing Spotlight

Issue 74
Published on February 26, 2001

(Click Here for NYCHA "preliminary" Audit
by NYC Comptroller Alan Hevesi)

(Click Here for Directory of Issues)

Design Department loses
$92,000 Change Order.
Who cares?

First up, Spotty received a Design Department email. (Click Here) It was sent from Mitchell Feder, Chief of Design's Payment Section, to all of the Design Dept. Execs. It plainly illustrates just the sort of incompetence and lack of due diligence given to the taxpayer's money that we keep harping on. It concerns a Change Order for $92,000 that the Chief of NYCHA's Design Department's Payment Section has lost!

(A Change Order is a means for the contractor to request "extra" payment for work that was NOT included in the original contract. In some cases, the Change Order is for additional work that NYCHA decides it wants done, such as the addition of ramps to a contract that originally only called for new entrance halls.

In other cases, it may be that on NYCHA's blueprints and/or in the contract there is a mistake that the contractor would not normally be expected to face. For instance, a long hallway is shown as being a straight run, where the contractor might easily run lengths of pipe work. But at the site it is found that the hallway has many drops, twists and turns, causing the contractor much more time and expense to complete the job. As it wasn't the contractor's fault, a Change Order may be issued allowing extra payment for the unforeseen work.)

In this instance, the Design bigwigs make themselves look the fool. Somehow, they totally lost track of Change Order paperwork representing almost $100,000 worth of government/taxpayer funds!

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Well, the Office for the Aging still is without consultants! That means that seniors are no longer getting arts & crafts, music, exercise etc!

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"Why", you ask?

Well it seems that the past consultants weren't good enough for Hugh Spence. (Click here for issue 17, wherein we mention a Hugh Spence/Franco connection.)

You see, one of the good parts of this program is that NYCHA helped talented recovering alcoholics, retired teachers & non-professional artisans by utilizing their talents in this program. Spence wants them to submit all new resume's.

(Getting contracts for the "Consultants" who buzz around 250 Broadway, 90 Church and "Official" NYCHA parties always seems to be a priority around NYCHA.)

As low pay and great resumes are not often found in the same pool, there is already a severe shortage of qualified people who can run the programs in our Development's Community Centers. So the Senior's suffer!

When Ms. Kalia Bokser started these popular programs, they were meant to do more than just be an outreach to the elderly. We're told that Ms. Bokser also wanted to assist those people who worked as staff in the programs. Many hired as staff/consultant just needed a job like this to give them a renewed sense of self worth, by allowing them the sense of being productive, while at the same time helping low-income senior citizens by providing interesting and varied programs. Everybody was a winner!

Now, like with many other NYCHA interventions, it looks like it may become infected with the political cancer of NYCHA's consulting practices.

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Why do they even bother to give a Civil Service exam? I know a guy who got a 37 on one and after they curved the test he passed.

Passed the test with a 37?

And they want to know why housing is so messed up? Give me a break!

They then make all the provisionals in place (those are the ones that failed with out the curve) and the poor caretaker that studied and got a higher mark (with out the curve) gets stuck with choosing an opening from the leftover projects.

If I studied and came out higher than a provisional supervisor I should be the one to get first pick!

But NYCHA says noooooo!

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Where is the justice? Why should I go to school to learn just to be passed over by someone with a lower score because he is a provisional? It's just not right! NYCHA should have to go by the list number, or what good is studying for and then taking a civil service exam?

(On this very same subject,
another Spotty helper had some words.)

NYCHA has some utterly ridiculous rule whereby even if you are on a civil service list for a higher title than what your currently have, and even if you have a rating of 100%, you cannot apply for those titles unless you already have the title. So who are the only ones who currently have the title so that they can apply for the higher level? The provisionals!

(Finally, in the same ballpark,
we were sent the following
that might help some of you
caught in NYCHA's Catch 22.)

NYCHA recently hired an "executive recruiter" to advertise for all sorts of good paying positions. Bob Bomersbach, the Authority's new addition to the Human Resources Department, is advertising for jobs in departments such as CAD, Construction and Materials Management.

So for those employees who are not permitted to apply for titles for which they have passed a civil service test, they can now check out the latest NYCHA job offerings on the web. (Click Here)

Nora Reissig-Lazzaro's name is being whispered in the hallways of 90 Church Street, once again. Word is that Nora is really sick of her new job at Community Operations and wants Joanna Aniello to let her come back to Operation Services.

Nora's telling everyone that Community Operations is "not run right", but others say that our Nora isn't getting along with her superiors in her current assignment.

(Could be Nora's finding that telling people that your bosses aren't doing a good job can backfire when they eventually hear about it?)

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Click here to view the E X P A N D E D NYCHAnews site.
It's well worth a visit.
And once you've visited, you'll be a frequent guest!

© 2001 Public Housing Spotlight and John Ballinger. All rights reserved.
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Contact Jack Ballinger at nychaspotlight@netscape.net
for a Real Audio sound clip containing a
conversation wherein DOI Investigator
John Kilpatrick discusses how he learned
that 2 NYCHA execs attended
a Mafia connected contractor's funeral .

Contact Jack Ballinger at nychaspotlight@netscape.net
for a Real Audio sound clip containing
the (3 Meg) confession of Tony DiAlto.
Tony was a member of a group of
corrupt Contract Inspectors working at NYCHA.
Neither Tony nor the person he confessed to
sharing his bribes with (Richard Penesi)
were ever charged, let alone prosecuted, by DOI.

For a great source of general tenant information,
visit the Tenant Net Home Page |

And for a great source of New York City news and
policy information, visit our friends at the Gotham Gazette

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