Sep 082014
 

VID was well represented at the Clemency Vigil which took place by candle light on the evening of September 6th in Mt. Kisco, NY

outside the home of Governor Andrew Cuomo.  Over 150 people participated.

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Its purpose was to try to convince the governor to start issuing clemencies to those inmates in the NYS correctional system who deserve them.  Many inmates have been incarcerated for long periods of time either for non-violent crimes or for serious crimes, but have unquestionably been rehabilitated.  As of today the governor hasn’t issued a single clemency.   The rally was organized by the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club with the support of the VID.

Among the wide variety of speakers asking the governor to do the humane thing and start issuing clemencies were Allen Roskoff, President of the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club, Robert Dennison, retired Chairman, New York State Board of ParolePhilanthropist Bill Samuels, Zenaida Mendez, President of NYS NOW, and celebrities Kathryn Erbe, star of Law & Order: Criminal Intent and Cathrine Curtin from Orange is the New Black.

The following VID’ers attended the Candle Light Vigil: Jonathan Geballe, Mary Dugan, Betsy Mickel, Tom Connor, Kathy Slawinski,  Alexander Meadows,  Kate Linker, Kitty Loving and Tony Hoffmann.

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Jan 262014
 

January 2014 MeetingPosted here are the Minutes of January 2014

Here are some highlights.

David Kruger updated everyone about the anti-fracking bus trip to Albany on January 8th.  More press coverage from PBS station WSKG

Keen Berger reported that Tim Gay has resigned at the Board of Elections, and will be replaced by Jamal Nelson, District Leader in Harlem.  Keen also announced that the transfer of 75 Morton Street from New York State to New York City for a middle school is still in the works.

Jonathan Geballe reported on the lawsuit brought by the GVSHP vs. NYU, in which Deborah Glick is involved.  He said this was a huge victory for the neighborhood.  The court determined that three strips of land that weren’t officially designated parkland could not be used by NYU without permission of the New York State legislature.  The University will still proceed with the Zipper Building and other parts of its plan that are not impacted directly by the court decision.

Tony announced that this year’s Gala date will be Thursday, April 24.

Nat Johnson, the Technology Committee Chair, said the results of the canvas for a website coordinator will be announced at the next Executive Committee Meeting.  The committee recommends staying with the current web-person.

Katherine Wolpe announced that Lynn Stewart had been pardoned and released on New Year’s Eve, the result of her Stage 4 cancer.  Ms. Stewart came to St. Marks Church the following Sunday to thank her supporters.

Marti Speranza announced the first meeting of the Community Affairs Committee will be on January 15 at 6:30 at Think Coffee.   Anyone interested is invited to attend or contact Marti re future meetings.  In general, the objective of this Committee will be to integrate community issues into the VID.

The VID forum, on the possible outcome of the two-state solution in Israel, was presented over by Kate Press, New York City Regional Director and Deputy Field Director of J Street.  Also see this posting for details.  There was a 20 minute presentation followed by 15 minutes of questions and 15 minutes of discussion.

ELECTIONS.
See additional coverage on 2014 officers here

Linda Jacobson was unanimously re-elected as Treasurer by voice vote.
Kathy Slawinski was unanimously re-elected as Recording Secretary by voice vote.
Alex Meadows and Ed Yutkowitz were unanimously re-elected by voice vote.

There was a closed secret ballot to elect the new Executive Committee.  Those members elected are:

Frieda Bradlow
Georgina Christ
Tom Conner
Josh DuBoff
Jim Fouratt
Anne Heaney
Nadine Hoffmann
Ron Illardo
Ann Kjellberg
Jackie Manuel
Ellen Peterson-Lewis
Alec  Pruchnicki
Charles Stimson
Celia Wu
Annette Zaner

Jim Fouratt proposed a letter to be written to our elected officials re the Washington Square Park  Conservancy.  Tony said to get him the letter and he will send it out, pending an okay by the Executive Committee.

New Business:

Ann Heaney spoke about future buses to Albany protesting fracking.  Jim Fouratt spoke about the very important pre-K legislation pending.  Sharon Woolums said she hopes the resolution to preserve small businesses will be brought to a vote at the City Council this year.

Here are the complete  Minutes of January 9

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Jan 122014
 

VID Elected 2014 OfficersAt the January 9, 2014 meeting, VID elected 2014 officers…

after a stimulating and thorough forum led by Kate Press, Deputy National Field Director for J Street on Secretary of State John Kerry’s Initiative To Achieve a Two State Solution To The Israeli/Palestinian Issue, club members nominated and elected the remaining Officers and Executive Committee members for 2014. 

VID elected 2014 officers include:

Anthony Hoffmann, President
Nat Johnson, Vice President
Irene Kaufman, Vice President
Katharine  Wolpe, Vice President
Linda Jacobson, Treasurer
Kathy  Slawinski, Recording Secretary
Alexander Meadows, Corresponding Secretary
Ed Yutkowitz, Corresponding Secretary

Executive Committee

Keen Berger, District Leader
Jonathan Geballe, Past President
Peter Crosta, Chair Campaign Committee
Frieda Bradlow
Georgina Christ
Tom Conner
Josh DuBoff
Jim Fouratt
Anne Heaney
Nadine Hoffmann
Ron Illardo
Ann Kjellberg
Jackie Manuel
Ellen Peterson-Lewis
Alec  Pruchnicki
Charles Stimson
Celia Wu
Annette Zaner

View a slideshow of the meeting on the Photo Gallery page.
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Nov 262013
 
VID General Meeting

VID Membership at May 9th Endorsement Meeting

Summary of VID’s General Meeting Minutes of November 2013.

You can view the full meeting minutes of November 2013 here:  VID Membership Meeting of November 14, 2013  To view all available VID Minutes type that word in the Search Box in the VID banner at the top of  any page.

President Tony Hoffman opened the meeting with the announcement of the passing away of Nan Robinson.  He also spoke about the meeting held the evening before by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation re:  the air rights bill signed by Governor Cuomo last night, of which VID was one of the co-sponsors, along with the VRDC and 22 other organizations.  See posting

The next general membership meeting will be on December 12 and will cover the elections for President and three Vice Presidents. 

On November 2, there was a protest against the Spectra pipeline, during which Corey Johnson and Nancy Shamban were arrested.  Other VID members also attended, along with several local politicians.  See posting.

Allen Shulkin delivered a report in which he introduced himself to the VID.  He stressed that he has been active since 1979 and that he intends to join the VID.  He wants to help the VID and speaks to Corey regularly.  He hopes to make the state committee more democratic and to strengthen the influence of the reform caucus.

Keen Berger made a report on the state of elections and poll workers, and the fact that there were many problems.  She will be sending copies of her observations to five local officials who have some authority over this arena.  It was suggested that this report should be posted on the club website, and Tony agreed.  See posting.

Keen stated her other goals of addressing affordable housing and improved schools, and how the new mayor would affect these issues.

Tom Connor spoke about the bus situation in the neighborhood, and how seniors need help in transportation.

Marti Speranza spoke of how she wanted to make the club responsive to local issues through a Community Affairs Committee.  She was given many suggestions on how to accomplish this by the membership.

Nadine Hoffman addressed the holiday party–she is organizing food donations for this event.  She also spoke of the upcoming Gala and possibly organizing events at local bars designed to attract new members.

The Forum on Affordable Housing was conducted by Moses Gates, director of Competitive Housing Assistance for Multifamily Properties (CHAMP) and Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development, and Ted Houghton, executive director of the Supportive Housing Network and co-chair of Housing First!  See posting

New Business

  • John Bredin spoke of  bringing Richard Wolf to VID for a talk.
  • Alex Meadows announced that the meat-packing district wants to form a BID.
  • Marlene Nadle suggested making a list of important items to bring to the attention of the new mayor.  Tony will bring this suggestion to the executive committee.

 

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