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New Service, New Keys, at Vladeck Tenants’ Meeting


Vladeck Manager Juan Bello with Council President Nancy Ortiz
by Yori Yanover

Last night, September 25, in a small basement decorated with dramatic murals of the twin towers, the three bridges, and fairly realistic depictions of the New York City Housing Authority six-story buildings which have been associated with the best public housing in America since the 1930’s – all dotted with Keith Herring shadow characters climbing in and out of the scenes, the Vladeck Houses Resident Council meeting was held before a respectable-size audience. Nancy Ortiz, the president, ran a tight ship, permitting very few digressions – both because the meeting started a bit late due to late-arriving guests, and because everybody was determined not to miss Fox’s Prison Break at 8:00 PM.

A major item on the council’s agenda was a discussion of the new way NYCHA is handling maintenance repairs. Local management offices no longer accept these calls, which go instead to the CCC (Centralized Call Center – which may be clumsy as acronyms go, but is hard to forget), at 718-707-7771. Only one tenant present complained of difficulties in utilizing the new system, while the general consensus was that the new CCC was communicative, competent, cogent and courteous.

Officer Duran and Lieutenant Nusser from PSA4 (Police Service Area 4, which provides security to housing enclaves in the 5th, 7th, 9th and 10th precincts) discussed the state of crime in the area – a nice 2 percent reduction in overall crime, compared with last year. They offered report sheets for individual residents to point law enforcement in the direction of local crime – those sheets were grabbed by eager tenants just as soon as they hit the council table. And they encouraged local youths to join the Explorers Club.

Over the summer there have been a few random shooting incidents in the Vladeck area, but those appeared more like target practice than violent conflict. Nonetheless, PSA4 patrols were moved up to between 6 PM and 2 AM, to better respond to these and other potentially dangerous incidents. As a result, 24 arrests were made last month in the PSA4 housing developments.

Vladeck Houses Manager Juan Bello announced the gradual issuing of new keys to all the lobbies, as the old locks are being replaced. These keys cannot be copied in a regular hardware store and only two keys per family will be issued initially, for security reasons.

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