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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Bronx News Roundup, Aug. 4

Due to staff vacations, we haven't done a news roundup in a while now, so this is a long one.  Here goes:

Fernando Tirado, the district manager of Community Board 7 who was looking to unseat State Senator Pedro Espada, Jr., has been kicked off the ballot.  After the validity of Tirado's petition signatures were challenged, the city Board of Elections determined he was nearly 300 short of the 1,000 required, according to the Daily News' Bob Kappstatter, whose weekly column also includes a rundown of who will face primary opponents this September and who won't. (We'll have more campaign updates later in the week.)

Espada and a group of tenant activists were involved in a nasty spat in Albany yesterday [video]. As the chair of the Senate's housing committee, Espada has long been accused of holding up tenant-friendly legislation.

As you've likely heard by now, yesterday evening state legislators finally completed the budget. Espada had been criticized in recent days for attempting to hold things up, before eventually relenting. Here's the press release he sent out late last night, and here's a full page ad he ran in El Diario recently in which he claims he's been "vilified" by the press.

Away from Espada: several community gardens in the Bronx are now home to chickens.

Faced with huge fee hikes, fruit and vegetable merchants at the Hunts Points market are threatening to move elsewhere

Last Saturday, a 25-year-old man was shot dead in Melrose in the courtyard of the building in which he lived. 

Police say a Bronx grandfather who was attacked by a group of men in Mott Haven on July 24, and who later died in hospital, was murdered for his cellphone.

Morrie Yohai, the 90-year-old founder of Cheez Doodles, died last week at his home on Long Island Sound.  Yohai grew up in the Bronx and created the ubiquitous snack in the 1950s after taking over the Bronx food factory his father owned.

Anthony Rotunno, the former principal of Kennedy High School who resigned after a state audit found that $90,000 in bake sale money was missing, has been fired from his new job in Westchester, after officials there learned of the probe.

A Bronx man with Down syndrome is celebrating two milestones this month: his 50th birthday and his 30th year working at the Botanical Garden. Talking of the Garden, here's a little history, courtesy of WNYC, for an ongoing series called Borough Tales.

A potential buyer has been found for 10 troubled apartment buildings owned by Milbank Real Estate, a private equity firm which defaulted on its loan and left the buildings in a terrible state.  But tenants should hold off on celebrating, says City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and others.  See here and here for some background on this issue.

In The New York Times, Steve Singer, the director of college counseling at Horace Mann School, has some advice for college applicants.

If we've missed anything important, please post a link in the comments section.


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