Author Archives: Daniel Weinberg

Celebrate the 3rd Annual Taste of the East Village on Saturday, October 6th, 2018

Click above to buy your ticket!

New York, NY (August 28, 2018) – Taste of the East Village, the popular outdoor food festival on East 7th Street between Cooper Square and 2nd Avenue, takes places on Saturday, October 6th from Noon to 5 pm.  Tickets are on sale here

The Taste of the East Village brings together around 20 of the East Village’s favorite chefs and restaurants to benefit the Cooper Square Committee’s housing programs, and to promote the Gofundme campaign of EVIMA’s President, Jimmy Carbone, a co-founder of the festival. Local chef at Huertas at 107 1st Avenue, Jonah Miller, is chairperson of the festival committee and has selected many of the participating restaurants.

Ticket holders are entitled to four dishes from participating neighborhood restaurants and eateries, including newcomers to the festival like the Eddy, Fry Guys, Ho Foods, Huertas, Maharlika Filipino Moderno,Virginia as well as returning restaurants like Brick Lane Curry, Porsena, Al Horno Mexican Kitchen, Narcbar and Le Petit Parisien. Dessert venues such as Insomnia Cookies, Sweet Generation Bakery, Veneiro’s and Davey’s Ice Cream will also be joining us.  This list is still in formation and we expect some others to join us.

The first 350 attendees to the festival will receive a gift bag containing complimentary appetizers or drinks at many of the participating restaurants. The festival will also include live music and a deejay, as well as more than a dozen local community and cultural organizations like Fourth Arts Block, Downtown Art, East Village Community Coalition, Bowery Alliance of Neighbors, Solar One, Tenants Taking Control, Lower East Side Ready, Met Council on Housing and many more. Some of the groups will have interactive exhibits.

LES READY! Hurricane Relief Resources

Please see this list from our colleagues at LES READY! on how you can help those affected by the recent hurricanes.

In addition:

  1. The Maria Fund, mariafund.org
    Donations go through the Center for Popular Democracy and communities on-the-ground decide how to distribute the money and what to spend it on.
  2. GOLES is collecting donations of physical objects (canned food, diapers, sanitary napkins, clothing) and these are sent to various locations in PR via the post offices. 171 Ave B, 212-533-2541, contact: Ceci Pineda
  3. Resilient Power Puerto Rico is an initiative aimed at immediate-term and long-term recovery in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. Your donation will fund the purchase and delivery of high-efficiency solar panels, inverters, wiring equipment and battery backups; installation by local citizens; and on-the-job-training by our electrical engineers, solar technicians and alternative energy experts. Given that over 80% of Puerto Rico is without electricity more than 2 weeks after the storm, impacting homes, stores, hospital and many essential services, this is the most critical component of recovery.
  4. Uprose is an environmental justice organization working closely with several community based organizations doing disaster recovery work in Puerto Rico. You can donate to Uprose, and they will in turn donate the funds to groups such as WhyHunger, Güakiá Colectivo Agroecológico, La Corporación Piñones Se Integra (COPI), and Proyecto Agroecológico El Josco Bravo. Add the memo Por Nuestra Gente: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=rySDFRHd-MboDccF5qIF1yj5hoiXKATWwleQSe_zyDrKZDu4mBMHwOMvLm62NQF8vZJl8m&country.x=US&locale.x=US

Taste of East Village

 

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WHERE: East 7th Street between Cooper Square & 2nd Avenue
WHEN: Saturday, September 16, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM

A Culinary Festival to benefit The Cooper Square Committee

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The Taste of East Village is an outdoor culinary festival on East 7th Street, between Cooper Square and 2nd Avenue, benefiting the Cooper Square Committee’s affordable housing preservation and development work (including the soon to open Bea Arthur Residence for homeless LGBT youth), our environmental greening work, social services, and senior programming. We feature dishes from more than 15 of the East Village’s best restaurants and eateries (see the list below). Come celebrate our amazing East Village and Lower East Side community!  Read More

CANCELLED: 8/2 STS Action

We are canceling tomorrow’s (Wednesday 8/2) STS action.

We have decided to concentrate all efforts on the STS legislation which will be heading for a City Council vote in August (we just learned of this news).

We’re doing a big press conference on the steps of City Hall next week on Wednesday 8/9 at 11am instead to promote the STS legislation.  We’ll get you a flyer ASAP for that.

Please contact anyone you notified about tomorrow’s event to let them know it’s been canceled.

Thanks & sorry about the inconvenience.

Wish your councilmember a Happy Valentine’s Day!

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, let’s show our Council Members some love…by sending them some amazing e-cards!

STS Valentines Roses

Picture 1 of 5

Here are 5 amazing Valentine’s-themed STS e-cards which y’all can send to your local Council Members, kindly reminding them to please pass our 12 STS bills regarding construction-as-harassment. If possible, please take some time to e-mail your local Council Member one or a few of these fabulous e-cards. It will only take a minute or two! On a mobile device, click to enlarge each image then choose a Share option, or on your desktop you can right-click and choose Save As.

Not sure who your Council Member or what their contact info is? Click here.

Happy Valentine’s and e-card sending day!!!

 

A statement from CSC and FAB about the Mayor’s Remarks on Jared Kushner

Download PDF of this letter here.

          

January 11, 2017

 

Mayor de Blasio seems hopeful that his friendly relationship with Jared Kushner may be of some benefit to New York City, but our community has not benefited at all from Kushner’s ownership of close to forty buildings in the East Village.

Kushner has brought nothing but unaffordable, luxury housing to this community and to NYC at large. While we are in the grips of an intense housing crisis, and homeless rates are at an all-time high & virtually every regulated tenant in the city is facing harassment, Kushner has converted scores of affordable rent regulated apartments into luxury housing that rent for $3,000-$5,000 per month.  In doing so, Kushner has faced allegations of harassment and lack of essential services repeatedly.  Numerous articles have chronicled Kushner’s bad-acting over his four years of ownership here in East Village.

We say to the Mayor that Jared Kushner’s actions are not those of somebody who “cares deeply about New York City.”  We say that Kushner’s actions have contributed greatly to the loss of affordable housing.  Furthermore, if the Mayor stands by his words and thinks Jared Kushner is “reasonable and moderate,” we suggest the Mayor come meet with Kushner tenants in the East Village to hear what they’ve been through under his ownership.

 

Sincerely,

Steve Herrick                                              Risa Shoup
Executive Director                                     Executive Director

Cooper Square Committee                      Fourth Arts Block
61 East 4th Street                                      61 East 4th Street

*REGISTRATION CLOSED* STS Manhattan Town Hall 1/10, 6:30pm, 1 Centre St, 19th FL South

Due to the popularity of this event, we reluctantly must limit participation. We cannot accept new RSVP’s and if you attend without an RSVP, please be aware that you cannot be assured a seat. We are planning a similar event in the Spring. If you’d like to be placed on a waiting list or to be notified about future forums please email Harriet Putterman at harrietp@coopersquare.org . Thank you for your interest and please stay in touch with the Stand for Tenant Safety Campaign by visiting www.standfortenantsafety.com.

Click flyer to RSVP.

Download PDF of flyer here.

TUESDAY 1/10: Is your Landlord Using Construction to Harass You? SPEAK OUT!

RSVP by clicking the flyer

We have confirmed our STS Manhattan Town Hall on TUESDAY JANUARY 10TH at 1 Centre Street (19th Fl. South) at 6:30PM. This town hall will be focused on construction-as-harassment issues and how tenants can combat these issues and protect themselves. (This event is part of the Stand for Tenant Safety Coalition, of which CSC is a member. Find out more about STS here.) Let everyone in your organization(s), tenants, friends, and other folks know. We want a big turnout! If you can attend, please fill out this RSVP link so we can get a sense of how many folks can make it.

For more info or any questions, read more on the RSVP page, or contact Harriet Putterman.  You can download a PDF of the flyer here.

This Sunday! JOIN COOPER SQUARE COMMITTEE and WORKERS UNITE FILM FESTIVAL for a FREE film showing of 99 HOMES

99homes2

Sunday, May 22

6:30pm

(Light refreshments at 6:30, Film at 7 pm)

59-61 E. 4th Street

4th floor

Set amidst the backdrop of the 2008 housing market catastrophe, Dennis Nash, a hard-working and honest man, can’t save his family home despite his best efforts. Thrown to the streets by real estate shark Mike Carver, Dennis, out of work and luck, is given a unique opportunity – to join Carver’s crew and put others through the ordeal done to him in order to earn back what’s his. Fueled by powerful acting and a taut, patiently constructed narrative, 99 Homes is a modern economic parable whose righteous fury is matched by its intelligence and compassion.

Free! Please register here so we know how many to expect.
Any questions, email carmenp@coopersquare.org

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Sponsored by CSC and the Workers Unite! Film Festival

COOPER SQUARE COMMITTEE APPLAUDS INDICTMENT OF PREDATORY LANDLORD STEVE CROMAN

For Immediate Release: May 10, 2016

Contact: 
Steve Herrick – steveh@coopersquare.org212-228-8210, ext 1
Brandon Kielbasa, bkielbasa@coopersquare.org212-228-8210, ext 4

COOPER SQUARE COMMITTEE APPLAUDS INDICTMENT
OF PREDATORY LANDLORD STEVE CROMAN

The Cooper Square Committee applauds NYS Attorney General Eric Schniederman for bringing a 20 count criminal indictment and civil charges against notorious landlord, Steve Croman, who has a long track record of harassing and intimidating his rent regulated tenants.  “Our Organizing Director, Brandon Kielbasa, brought many of these allegations to the attention of Attorney General Schneiderman’s office over 2 years ago. We are deeply gratified that he and his staff did a thorough investigation of the many tenant claims of harassment and intimidation that we documented, and moved forward with an indictment”, said Steve Herrick, Executive Director. Read More

FAITH LEADERS AND TENANTS CITYWIDE CALL FOR AN END TO ABUSE BY INFAMOUS “WORST LANDLORD”, CROMAN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: MAMADOU BAH, COOPER SQUARE COMMITTEE
MAMADOUB@COOPERSQUARE.ORG, 212-228-8210 EXT 8

FAITH LEADERS AND TENANTS CITYWIDE CALL FOR AN END TO ABUSE BY INFAMOUS “WORST LANDLORD”, CROMAN

Faith Leaders: Tenants Will Not Be Pushed Out
Respect Tenants’ Rights

New York City, April 7, 2016

PDF DOWNLOAD HERE

Tenants living in buildings citywide owned by abusive landlord Steve Croman – named twice by the Village Voice as one of the 10 Worst Landlords in NYC – and who have suffered threats, harassment and illegal rent increases at his hand have enlisted powerful new allies in their fight for justice. These tenants who refuse to stand by while their families are displaced have won the support of 31 faith leaders from across the five boroughs and beyond to denounce this unjust treatment and bring about change. Faith leaders and tenants from Croman-owned buildings will deliver letters from the 31 faith leaders to Croman’s office at 632 Broadway, 7th Fl (near Bleecker St.) on Thursday, April 7th at 1:30pm.

In their letters, the 31 faith leaders from a broad array of denominations – including Catholic priests, rabbis, Buddhists, and Lutheran, Presbyterian, Pentecostal, Methodist, Unitarian and Interfaith ministers – exhort Croman to “treat your tenants with dignity and respect rather than pressuring them to leave their homes.”

This landlord’s underhanded tactics include threats of jacking up rents by hundreds of dollars coupled with pressure to take buyouts. Tenants who reject buyout offers have received bogus leases with illegal rent increases, a blatant attempt at removing apartments from rent stabilization. Croman is also known for baseless court actions and hazardous and toxic demolitions and renovations, tactics aimed at driving out long-term tenants. Religious leaders argue that Croman’s abuses and tactics will have long-lasting effects as they “are resulting in the loss of critical rent regulated housing, which has a devastating impact on our communities by destroying the ethnic diversity and character of them.”

Croman is currently under investigation by the New York State Attorney General for his efforts to push rent-stabilized tenants out of their homes. Despite action by the Attorney General against Croman’s “tenant relocation specialist,” Anthony Falconite, well-known for harassing Croman’s tenants, this individual is still operating and pressuring tenants in buildings across New York City.

East Harlem tenant, Esperanza Figueroa, a member of Movement for Justice in El Barrio, is one of many who have suffered Croman’s intimidation attempts and abuse. When Esperanza went to Croman’s office to pay her rent, staff demanded that she sign a “Surrender Agreement” saying she would give up her apartment. When she refused, Croman illegally jacked the rent up by $300 a month on her new lease. Esperanza refused to sign and joined together with her neighbors and tenants in other Croman buildings to defend their rights as tenants. Esperanza, along with other members of Movement for Justice in El Barrio and members of the Cooper Square Committee and are now joined in their efforts by a powerful grouping of faith leaders from multiple denominations and faiths reflecting the diverse backgrounds of tenants in Croman’s over 185 buildings citywide. Figueroa says, “My family and I are staying in our home. This landlord is trying to scare us with threats, push us out of our community and sell it off to the highest bidder. With the support of priests, ministers, rabbis and other faith leaders, we’re even stronger and we’re not going anywhere.”

George Tzannes, a tenant of 529 East 6th Street and a member of the Cooper Square Committee, who had been living without cooking gas in his building since December of 2014 (gas was just recently restored after a 15 month outage) said, “When Steven Croman bought the rent-regulated building where I’ve lived since 1974, the tenants immediately experienced aggravating rent billing errors, questionable legal fees, lost rent checks and baseless court actions. But the worst part is the way hazardous and toxic demolitions and renovations in vacant apartments push regulated tenants into buyouts. After years of living with toxic dust contamination from construction and enduring constant service cut-offs, anyone would want to leave.”

These examples of Croman’s abuse expose the landlord’s true intentions: to force rent-stabilized tenants and their families from their homes, replacing them with people from outside their communities who can pay double and triple the rents, further contributing to gentrification in low-income neighborhoods. The 31 letters to Steven Croman end by saying “as the owner of over 185 buildings in New York City, you have a great responsibility to thousands of tenants and we implore you to take on this responsibility and respect the rights of your tenants”.

Who: Faith leaders and tenants from Croman-owned buildings
What: Deliver 31 letters from faith leaders to landlord Steven Croman
When: Thursday, April 7th at 1:30pm
Where: Office of Steven Croman, 632 Broadway, 7th Fl (near Bleecker St)

###

 

Jared Kushner’s tenants at 118 E 4th St demand adequate living conditions and a restoration of cooking gas

PDF of press release here.

For Immediate Release
March 2, 2016
Contact:          Brandon Kielbasa
(212) 228-8210    bkielbasa@coopersquare.org

LET THE TENANTS COOK AGAIN!

East Village Tenants to Jared Kushner: We’ve Gone Months Without Gas — Enough is Enough.

Tenants of 118 East 4th Street Demand Adequate Living Conditions and a Restoration of Cooking Gas

Tenants Have Been Without Gas for Nearly Five Months, Other Building Services are Grossly Neglected

New York, NY – Tenants of 118 East 4th Street in the East Village appear back in Manhattan Housing Court on Thursday March 3rd at 9:30AM as part of ongoing litigation against their landlord, Jared Kushner. Tenants are calling for the immediate restoration of essential services and for living conditions to be rectified.

The tenants have recently endured bouts of no heat, mounding trash, and have been without cooking gas since October 2015.  Con Ed shut down all gas for the building and Jared Kushner has yet to take the necessary procedures with the city to restore it. This comes on top of the landlord’s failure to repair a multitude of potentially dangerous conditions in the building, including:

  • No cooking gas
  • Collapsed ceilings
  • Questionably safe electrical systems
  • Mounding trash
  • Deprivation of heat
  • Apartments entered without notice
  • Blocked mail delivery
  • Vermin

Read More

2015 Gala Program Journal – online

Inside: our work in 2015, as well as advertisements from local people and organizations. Full PDF here.
The Cooper Square Committee Annual Gala

October 1, 2015

Program

6 pm:  Cocktails and appetizers

6:45 pm:  Dinner

7:30 pm:  Program

8 pm:  Dessert and dancing

___________________________________________________________________________

 

Welcome:  Steve Herrick, CSC Executive Director

MC:  Rosie Mendez, NYC Council Member

 

Presentations to Honorees:

 

Presenting to the Icon Community United

Brad Hoylman, NYS Senator

 

Presenting to the Mahfar Tenants Alliance

Margaret Chin, NYC Council Member

 

Presenting to the   Community Development Project

of the Urban Justice Center

Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President

 

Silent Auction

We thank the following businesses, restaurants, theaters and individuals for donating items for our silent auction:

Catherine Cottages – Montour Falls, NY

Crunch Gym – 404 Lafayette Street

Erez Ziv – Horse Trade Theater Group, 85 East 4th Street

Frank’s Bike Shop – 553 Grand Street

Horse Trade Theater Group – 85 East 4th Street

Jane’s Exchange – 191 East 3rd Street

La Palapa, Cocina Mexicana – 77 Saint Marks Place

New York Theatre Workshop – 79 East 4th Street

Pangea, Italian Restaurant & Bar – 178 2nd Avenue

The Public Theater – 425 Lafayette Street

Robert Pinter – Masseur & CSC Member

Roberta Schine – Yoga Instructor & CSC Member

Shawn Dahl – CSC Member

Standard Hotel – 25 Cooper Square

Soaring Adventures of America (Hot Air Balloon Rides) – Nationwide

 

Check out the historic & recent Cooper Square Committee photos around the room! They are available for purchase for $40 each.

 

9:00 pm:  Silent Auction ends

___________________________________________________________________________

We would also like to thank Horsetrade, Rod Rodgers Dance Company, and Metropolitan Playhouse for donating items towards the production of this event.
Additional Gala Supporters: Paula Luria Caplan and Margarita Lopez.
Correction: Gladys Cortez-Feliciano is a member of the Gala Committee – her name was misspelled in the book.