Bo Dietl’s Uphill Battle, the East-Side’s Shrinking Sea Barrier & More: Headlines for Oct. 26

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“He has a vision. He isn’t always the most articulate in explaining his positions or why he’s in the race, but his heart is in the right place.”

–Eric Ulrich, a Republican councilmember from Queens, on Bo Dietl

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Ugly Maspeth Fight Over Shelter is a Preview of Things to Come

Village Voice

“When it comes to larger issues like poverty and homelessness, Maspeth has historically averted its eyes. But as a brutal housing market has forced more residents across the city to seek shelter, the de Blasio administration is seeking to distribute homeless services more equitably throughout the boroughs, which means building shelters in predominantly white middle-class neighborhoods that have never had them before. In Maspeth, which was intended to be a prototype for this initiative, news of a shelter has generated months of venomous protest and political upheaval, pitting residents against homeless men and throwing a councilmember’s future into question. And with nearly a hundred more facilities slated to open over the next five years, the events of the past year seem to signal that the worst is yet to come.”

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Next Mayor Will Have to Contend With the Growing Tab for Retiree Healthcare

Gotham Gazette

“This week’s data point is $95 billion, the current value of all of the future retiree benefits, except pensions, already earned by current retirees and current workers of New York City. This amount, referred to as OPEB, or ‘other public employee benefits,’ is primarily the cost of health insurance for New York City employees, their spouses and families. Thad Calabrese of the Wagner School at NYU joined Ben Max and Carol Kellermann to discuss the report he authored for CBC on OPEB debt and what to do about it, ‘The Price of Promises Made: What New York City Should Do About Its $95 Billion OPEB Debt.'”

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Sweeping Vision for East Side Storm Barrier Shrinks Amid Cost Concerns

WNYC

“Five years after Sandy, the plan — perhaps the most high-profile of numerous resiliency projects to protect the city and region — is still just lines on paper. The groundbreaking has been delayed by at least 18 months, and already some of the amenities promised to the community have been removed to cut costs. ‘Right now, I don’t feel any more prepared than we were five years ago,’ said Trever Holland, who lives in an affordable housing complex in the densely packed neighborhood. ‘We know what can happen now and the fact that we don’t even have temporary solutions is a bit troublesome,’ Holland said.”

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Bo Dietl Undaunted by Uphill Fight for Mayor

The New York Times

“He has no party line to run on. He voted for Donald J. Trump, a black mark for a citywide electorate that massively rejected the president in 2016. And a recent poll showed him more than 50 points behind Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat whom he often refers to as ‘Big Bird.’ … Mr. Dietl’s investigative work could also pose problems should his candidacy gain traction: The investigators at his company, Beau Dietl and Associates, have looked into the lives of women who had accused Roger Ailes, the deceased former chairman of Fox News, of sexual harassment, and assisted Stephen K. Bannon, the former senior White House adviser, with a domestic violence accusation. (The case was later dismissed.) None of that has dissuaded Mr. Dietl, who has been campaigning across the city attacking both Mr. de Blasio and the Republican nominee, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis.”

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Where the Post-Sandy FEMA Funding is Going

DNAinfo

“Of the $5.9 billion from FEMA, $2.9 billion has been set aside for the New York City Housing Authority, which will improve more than 250 buildings inside 30 developments damaged by the storm. NYCHA work also includes repairs to strengthen the decades-old buildings from future storms — including elevating boilers and electrical work, installing backup generators and dry flood-proofing and wet-flood proofing buildings, according to FEMA. The largest share of funds went to the Red Hook Houses; Red Hook West will receive more than $240 million, and Red Hook East will receive more than $197 million in work. The Ocean Bay houses in Edgemere, which includes the oceanside and bayside buildings, will receive more than $347 million in repairs.”

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