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October 23, 2014- By Steven E. Greer
BatteryPark.TV previously reported on the $1.5 Million spent by the BPCA to simply study the cause of a roof leak over the Asphalt Green facility. Despite this being a building owned by Howard Milstein’s Milford Management, the BPCA was paying for this, at what seemed to be inflated prices.
That was a year ago. Yesterday, the BPCA approved the 2015 budget, and astonishingly, the roof leak persists and they have made no progress in fixing it. The problem will be part of the 2015 BCA budget! One board member did chime in and ask why this was not a Milstein problem.
Update November 16, 2013- The actual salary of Mr. Buquicchio is $130,000, which we learned from a FOIL request.
October 24, 2013- By Steven E. Greer, MD
At the October 22nd meeting of the BPCA board, Gwen Dawson (VP of Asset Management), listed a capital expenditure in the proposed 2014 budget of $1.5 Million to “repair leaks to the (Asphalt Green) community center”. She said, “We have had an engineering firm investigating for four to five months.”. The acting President and CFO, Robert Serpico, interjected that the building owner, Milstein Properties, will be asked to share in the expense.
An employee at Asphalt Green stated, “I know there is a leak that appears to be coming from the Terrace, between the pavers, and leaving watermark stains in the long hallway in the cellar level of the community center. The authority has been trying to find the source of the leak and stop it, and they have spent considerable time digging and looking for the leak source. It’s not clear to me what the solution is. I don’t know anything about the cost involved in what they have done so far, or what it will cost to solve the leak. It does not appear to be a structural or system interfering problem, but there definitely is a localized seepage problem in that area when it rains.”.
The LiRo Group was the engineering firm contracted to oversee the construction of the Asphalt Green community center. The project manager was Anthony Buquicchio.
The BPCA made no mention at the meeting of requesting a refund from LiRo. One reason might be that Mr. Buquicchio was actually hired by the BPCA under the Dennis Mehiel administration. He is now a full-time BPCA employee earning more than $160,000 in salary, sources told BP.TV.
The name of the “engineering firm” now receiving $1.5 Million in additional funding, on top of what has already been spent in 2013 for the “leak”, is unknown. A LiRo project leader stated that it was not them.
For a professional engineering firm to spend more than five months “investigating” the leak, and to still not find the cause of the leak, and for the problem to extend into the 2014 budget costing $1.5 Million simply to repair leaky roof, smacks of old-fashioned New York politics. Community centers are magnets for corruption, as previously reported. In fact, the recent arrests of elected New York senators all involved bribery and misconduct revolving around community center contracts.
As usual, the BPCA declined to comment.