Thursday, March 22, 2012

Of Interest

Tom Casey reports on the Galvan Initiatives Foundation proposal to build a police and city court building in today's Register-Star: "GalVan proposes plan for new police/court facility." A special meeting of the Common Council has been scheduled for Thursday, March 29, to discuss the project prior to deciding if they will enter into a memorandum of understanding with Galvan Initiatives, stating they agree with the concept. The MOU is required by April 1 so that grants and tax credits can sought for the project.  


  1. Galvan/Scalera would have the citizens of Hudson believe that combining a municipal building with housing for the homeless is a "model" never done before. A "model program" is one that is replicated AFTER it has been tested and proven successful. This is a real estate deal that Galvan/Scalera have cobbled together to meet the need for a new municipal building and to provide permanent housing for the homeless (even though a companion piece in the Register states that homelessness is at a 22 month low in Columbia County). Further, Scalera is wrong -- there are numerous projects in NY that include affordable housing combined with municipal buildings (one that comes to mind is the public library/affordable housing combo in Irvington, NY) and affordable housing combined with commercial enterprises (everywhere). The "model" here, if there ever is one, is how they put the financing together for this project. Why is the County going with one developer? That seems short sighted. Is it because the developer owns the town? There are outstanding developers elsewhere, "model" developers, ones with track records, ones with transparency. The developers of the public library/affordable housing in Irvington is one example.

  2. My apologies, but I must rant:
    The rendering includes columns (!?!). Galloway's specialty. Dig out a picture of the General Worth Hotel, and you will see what they are trying to evoke. A cheap pastiche of 19th century ungainly architecture. Hudson needs a hotel actually, not more public housing, particularly SRO housing.
    Any Common Council member who believes in the future of Hudson lies in becoming the jewel it is meant to be should vote with conviction and confidence against this proposal. And don't let Scalera and his pals at GalVan rush you with some made-up April Fool's Day deadline.
    GalVan is just a cover for graft, corruption, nepotism, Olde Hudson backscratching and the revival of a failed social welfare system that ruined Hudson in the first place. How much are Scalera and Swope getting paid to peddle this crap? If they are not being paid, what are they getting out of it? They should disclose whatever financial, pecuniary or personal interests, direct and indirect, that they may have. Call the Attorney General and report these folks!! I find it appalling that Don Moore tried to make HPD Chief Richardson seem like a callous, classist rube when all the Chief was doing was expressing his professional opinion that placing "supportive" studio housing above his new police station might not be such a great idea. It's a really bad idea, it's illogical, and it's very bad for Hudson. Why can't the aloof and imperious Eric Galloway and his mercurial rich backer/romantic partner Henry van A leave us all alone? And why is anyone listening to an alderman who also serves on the board of the foundation that is proposing this nonsense? Scalera has a clear conflict of interest and should not be allowed to vote on this matter. I find it shocking and really disappointing that Swope, a real estate agent, antiquities dealer and gallery owner, former Historic Preservation chair and former BAR review board member would get involved in such a proposal and with this foundation. The whole thing stinks to the high heavens, and it is time for honest Hudsonians to stand up to these people. Before GalVan moves forward with any project, it should be required by the City to FINISH all its unfinished projects (i.e., all those abandoned, boarded up buildings first).

  3. Observer--Scalera is a county supervisor representing the Fifth Ward. He is not an alderman on the Common Council and will not be voting on this project. That said, many believe that, as the former mayor of Hudson, it is inappropriate--perhaps even unethical--for him to be serving as spokesman for the Galvan Initiatives Foundation in this project. Hudson City Code, Chapter 20-3.H could be interpreted as addressing this situation. Speaking of a municipal officer's or employee's future employment, this paragraph says: "He shall not, after the termination of service or employment with such municipality, appear before any board or agency of the City of Hudson, the Hudson Community Development and Planning Agency or the City of Hudson Industrial Development Agency in relation to any case, proceeding or application in which he personally participated during the period of his service or employment or which was under his active consideration." Finding a new home for the police department and city court is certainly something that was "under his active consideration" for most of the many years he was the mayor.

  4. You've got to be kidding? Why ugly?

  5. The GalVan Iniative and her go-fer-boys offers a cruel indifference to Hudson.

  6. Observer,
    of the many great points you make-
    including the very real question
    of Scalera's involvement ,at all as ex Mayor
    Ethically, as sited above by Carole
    Chapter 20-3.H City of Hudson Code-
    I especially like your last one.
    Galloway's real estate eyes appear to be
    bigger than his stomach. How could our City Government approve and award
    to Lantern GalVan Conglomerate
    such an ambitious and expensive project from scratch
    on GalVan's Land that has been recycled from the rejected
    'Starboard 'Commercial &special needs Housing Emporium
    one block down & over on 5th & Warren?
    Scalera ET AL pulls this plan
    out of their hat in a week?
    All of it having to adhere to 2012 NYS Universal BLDG.Codes
    for Public Assembly and further complicating it by the addition 2 residential floors of a vague assortment of ADA Social Service special need , low income apt/rooms
    paid for by different County ,NYS , Fed agencies from scratch- 2012code
    Also including is what ever security and requirements
    a Police Station /Headquarters,lock up
    and indoor Garage for squad &emergency vehicles requires in 2012code
    Along with the specific code& requirements
    of a Courthouse in 2012code
    under one roof,on busy State Trk Rte 23B,9G
    which is also the mixed commercial residential
    narrow, Columbia Street
    intersected by a mixed residential,commercial
    narrow 4th St, a block from elementary school
    with parking plans, in the air for now.$
    but they will have a meeting this Thurs29th
    so plenty of time to think this through
    leaving Fri 30th to mail in applications for Tax credits & Grants
    for GalVan.

  7. They are going to build all of this
    when Galloway has left so many properties
    vacant for years now,right on Warren St and elsewhere
    and has shown such disrespect to the community
    in leaving them in irresponsible vacant states for years?
    All potential housing,just vacant
    So make GalVan prove themselves
    Make those apts. available first, before we even contemplate paying
    GalVan for "affordable housing" in GalVan's fictitious Civic Multiplex
    a BLDG that does not exist or any other proposed shelter location
    they announced last week
    GIVE ONE PENNY to GalVan?
    GalVan's only possible good for Hudson,
    is to restore it's multiple holdings to Hudson Code
    including HPC,
    with their own money
    and pay full taxes on it.NO BREAKS.
    Based on what record ,should GalVan be awarded
    any Fed, State,County or City grants,tax credits or contracts
    (which is all tax payer money),
    using NYS's Columbia County Seat-the City of Hudson- as its bait?
    I see only one guarantee.This will cost Fed, NYS,County&
    Hudson Taxpayers for leases,Social Services and maintenance
    long after most of these players are dead
    ( or in one of Pinehaven's new 128 beds
    costing $239,000 per bed 30.6mil from State taxpayer&
    2.7mil for County Tax payer to complete.This is the lastest project
    from Columbia BOS including Scalera-
    just to give a dose of real costs,before overruns
    these characters are playing with.)
    But for the immediate future,
    Galvan,contractors & investors will make profits.
    hence "investors"
    What gets skipped over here is
    in Register Star they say
    "The building would be leased to the city at a price of
    $100,000 per year for 30 yrs
    after which the city will have the option
    to purchase the space housing the police and court for $1"
    NOT the land,NOT the building?
    NOT the 2 floors of supported housing?
    (the real cash cow)
    Not the potential commercial space they mention.?
    No ,after 30 years of tax payers paying $100,000 a year for our own Police DeptSPACE and Courthouse SPACE...we can have those 2 SPACES for $1
    and tax payers and Social Sevices will continue to pay for the rest of building?
    Will GalVan's heirs ever pay property or school taxes?
    Fed or State Taxes?Or will it all come from our pockets and our heirs.
    Sheer lunacy
    that anyone has to even think about this mess.
    is this just some big red herring?
    They can't possibly be serious
    What are they really up to?
    Has one person in favor of this
    even bothered to go down to the
    Bronx and Manhattan,to inspect Lantern's
    previous ventures
    into Not for Profit or profit housing?
    They obviously have no record in building
    Court Houses or Police Stations.
    or for even restoring a single apartment building
    of the many they own and have left vacant
    for years in the heart of Hudson's
    Business District.

  8. I too was appalled at Moore's
    treatment of Chief Richardson
    for having obvious and well founded questions
    about such a ludicrous plan that could not affect his Dept. more directly &
    just come out of nowhere.
    I have been on the receiving end
    of CC Pres. Moore's brusque & dismissive grandstanding when he wants something
    and is deaf to all other voices of reason
    It should not be possible that such a few insular peoplecould make such monolithic decisions for the entire City
    Something is really wrong here
    If GalVan/Scalera can get grants based on that irresponsible,unrealistic drawing of GalVan's by theirgrant deadline of April 1st
    (Not the taxpayer's or citizens of Hudson's deadline),
    then it is fraudulent,
    as was "City"getting grants for Senior Center extension on Youth Center
    with fictitious drawings
    (never mentioning they were proposing to attach this to a Historic BLDG in Historic District in Grant Application)
    that City admitted later were not actual representations but were renderings done only for the grant application.
    Something Galloway is already known for, with HPC.