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April 16, 2015- By Steven E. Greer
The BPCA, run by CEO Dennis Mehiel and President Shari Hyman, is in crisis mode in the wake of the public outcry over the eviction of Mike Fortenbaugh and his sailing school from the North Cove Marina. BatteryPark.TV previously reported that the authority hired a PR firm that specializes in crisis management, and demoted Robin Forst.
Now, the authority is uncharacteristically ignoring document requests made via the Freedom of Information Law process. BP.TV made two FOIL request in February which were acknowledged by Mr. Mehiel’s assistant, Kevin McCabe. In the past, Mr. McCabe has delivered the documents requested. This time, the request is long past due, and Mr. McCabe is not replying to our emails.
The documents requested by BP.TV were detailed RFP issued for the marina, and any contract formed between the BPCA and Brookfield Properties or IGY Marina, the winners of the RFP. Given the lack of any activity in the marina at this late date in the season, knowing whether a contract has even been signed yet would be vital information, and potentially embarrassing to the BPCA.
In addition to FOIL law being violated, the BPCA is breaking New York Open Meeting Law. On April 14th, the BPCA convened a board meeting which was supposed to have been visible via live webcast and also archived on the state website. During the live event, the webcast link was not working. Robin Forst stated, “There was a technical glitch”. Now, days later, the link on the BPCA website that should direct the public to the state site is broken. Ms. Forst is “investigating”.