Tag Archive: Bob friedrich

Sep 05 2014

Avella Caught in Pay to Play Scandal


Talk about pay to play politics.

You have to see the light.

Tony Avella pledges 400K to a Co-op that hand delivered a tacit endorsement letter for his campaign to their shareholders.

Glen Oaks Village is a lovely, quaint little co-op in Queens with a tight-knit community governed and administrated by a Board of Directors and an Executive Board. As a co-op, they aren’t supposed to endorse candidates, but that didn’t stop Glen Oaks Village officials from hand delivering what can only be described as an “endorsement of Tony Avella” letter to ALL residents including all shareholders and tenants.

According to the letter, “The Board believes candidates that strongly support co-op housing and take positions that help Board members work effectively and keep costs down should be supported by voters.” The letter goes on to describe how Tony Avella has advocated for the co-op community and it goes on like this.


You should question the motive behind this letter.

What kind of propaganda mill is Glen Oaks running out there? Are they blazingly ignoring the fact that John Liu did more for co-ops that Tony ever could have with one of his rallies? Or are they being misled by a political insider? As Comptroller, Liu audited property-tax rolls to determine why the values of some co-ops and condos shot up by as much as 147 percent, putting homeowners at risk of huge tax hikes. He never gave up, Liu found the root cause of the problem and advocated for reform. His office actually found flaws in the city’s valuing of properties. “According to the audits, the Finance Department suddenly and drastically upped condo and co-op property values without warning, leading to an uproar over alleged opaque practices. Liu’s audits also accused the DOF of ignoring errors made by a new and allegedly faulty multimillion-dollar computer system. “

That’s more accomplished for co-op owners than Tony Avella ever did. 

But something doesn’t smell right. And that’s because it’s good ol’ fashioned propaganda. The letter goes something to the tune of this: We, the Glen Oaks Village Inc., support candidates that fight for co-ops, Tony Avella fights for co-ops, you should support candidates that support co-ops too.

Well, we got news for you folks, this letter should be written in support of John Liu judging by who’s had a real, tangible impact on resolving tax issues in the co-op community.

Still, it’s very clever and it only cost taxpayers $400,000.

Tony Avella has always belly ached about good government and transparency, but what we have here is pay to play politics, and the scapegoats are the residents of GOV — they are being misled with complete falsehoods. If you listen to this letter, you’ll miss out on voting for the man that actually helped them. Tony’s the real hypocrite, a very smooth charlatan. So what do you say Mr. Avella? Did you buy this letter? We’ll leave the lights on for you.


Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2014/09/tony-avella-caught-in-pay-to-play-scandal/

Jan 27 2012

Queens Co-op Owners Unite To Fight Tax Increases



From HabitatMag: In a replay of last year, when a purported computer “glitch” skyrocketed property-tax assessments with increases as high as 146 percent, a coalition of Queens co-op and condo developments is preparing to fight newly announced increases of as much as 50 percent.

Jan. 27, 2012 — Every January, the New York City Department of Finance releases preliminary figures for the coming fiscal year’s property-tax assessments. Homeowners, typically, often contest these figures, and in a standard legal process called tax certiorari eventually receive a refund. The city even offers a database of property-tax refunds. But something different happened last year, when the DoF hit some co-ops in northeastern Queens with demonstrably unrealistic, triple-digit increases that shocked all reasonable observers. Yet it took public outrage in the form of protests and a widespread tax revolt before the DoF finally begin to question figures so obviously and blatantly incorrect. And now this year, say community leaders, it’s all happening again.

Despite an average 4.1 percent increase over last year in Queens overall, according to tentative figures by the DoF, “My own properties have increased an average of 7.7 percent,” says Warren Schreiber, board president of the 200-unit Section 1 of the 12-section Bay Terrace Cooperative, who says co-ops in northeastern Queens are seeing high double-digit spikes. “At Deepdale Gardens, one of the biggest garden apartment complexes in Queens, each one of their block and lots came in at a 50 percent increase. At another Alley Pond, they came in at about 47 percent.”

We may go forward and demand the resignation of Commissioner Frankel.

Bob Friedrich, president of Glen Oaks Villageand co-president, with Schreiber, of the co-op /condo board-member group the Presidents Co-op Council, estimates the average increase at his 2,904-unit co-op complex at about 21 percent. “And we can’t forget about last year,” he says, “when we were increased 50 percent with a five-year phase-in, 10 percent a year. Now we’re seeing huge increases again. It is unsustainable, unfordable and unacceptable. They are pushing the middle class out of this city very quickly.” These are just unaffordable increases in an economic period of time that is completely unjustified.

Among the other boroughs, Brooklyn saw a 4.2 percent average increase over last year while Manhattan’s average jumped nearly five 5%, according to figures that the DoF released on Jan. 19.

And just as the Queens coalition did successfully last year (see “Finance Dept. Admits Computer ‘Glitch’ in Huge Co-op/Condo Tax Overvaluation” and related articles), Schreiber vows that co-op / condo owners in northeastern Queens will again mount a tax protest, which had involved town-hall meetings with officials, street protests and a City Hall rally.

For Full Article: http://www.habitatmag.com/Publication-Content/2012-January/Featured-Articles/Queens-NY-co-op-tax-revolt-2012#.TyMP7831jBc 

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/01/queens-co-op-owners-unite-to-fight-tax-increases/

Dec 16 2011

Friedrich Demands LATFOR Listen To Community Redistricting Proposal

Let's do it my way.

Times Ledger: This time around civic leaders in eastern Queens are saying they have learned the lessons from past battles and are planning to make their message loud and clear: The neighborhoods of Glen Oaks, Floral Park, New Hyde Park, Bellerose and Queens Village should be joined in one state Assembly district.

“We must make sure that our communities are not divided for political purposes,” Glen Oaks Village President Bob Friedrich wrote in a statement. “This issue is not about endorsing any candidate or political party.”

“Our objective is to make sure that whoever is elected to represent our community understands that our concerns are backed up by tens of thousands of voters,” he wrote. “We will not accept district lines that slice and dice us as if we are on some legislative committee’s chopping block.”

City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens), whose district represents the entire area, used to hold the 24th District Assembly seat. He said he agrees the state should focus on trying to unify communities.

“It keeps neighborhoods strong and united. I’m glad local people are trying to get that done in Queens,” he said.

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/12/friedrich-thinks-latfor-will-listen-to-redistricting-proposal/

Nov 03 2011

Robbed At The Muni-Meter

From http://www.vosizneias.com/51108/2010/03/11/new-york-ny-its-true-walking-to-muni-meter-to-pay-for-parking-can-get-you-a-ticket/ Be careful, a muni-meter can steal your money.

Say goodbye to the parking meter, muni-meters will soon replace every single one of the old fashioned coin-style models.

Paying for parking is a  terrible fact of life. In many parts of Queens the infrastructure for convenient public transportation doesn’t exist, so people take to their cars to zip around town. Yes it raises a host of environmental issues, but the City already decided to replace them. Muni-meters provide 20% more spaces than their iron predecessor and increase revenue for the City.

Muni meters have a Dummy Feature. What’s a Dummy Feature? If the meter is no longer in effect, say after 7PM or 10PM,  it will still take your money. There’s no stop mechanism in the meter stand. It’s like a software glitch. If it’s 10 minutes to cutoff, the kiosk will continue to over-clock past the posted time and eat your change. In other words, if metered parking stops at 10PM, you could pay for 11pm or 12AM, and the kiosk won’t inform you. It’s like a tourist trap, especially when the signs are halfway down the block.

Munimeters should cut off in accordance with the signs that are posted.

You can demand reimbursement of your 50 cents from Mayor Bloomberg, but currently a refund process does not exist, nor is it worth the postage. Surely the City is making some money on it, but to what extent do we bleed the people?

Google "Munimeter," and former 24th Assembly District Candidate Bob "Fearsome" Friedrich pops up #2. Fearsome guaranteed an hour of free parking for all said the website. Where were you Bob when my meter ran out on Bell!? Probably trying to annex yourself into CB11. Friedrich who is not exactly known for his diplomatic skills may need to read up on parliamentary etiquette. He lost to Mark Weprin by a wide margin.


Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/11/robbed-at-the-muni-meter/

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