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Turtle Bay Holds Annual Meeting

The 2000 Annual Meeting of the Turtle Bay Association was held on November 14th in the Grey Advertising Building at 777 Third Avenue. Approximately 100 members were on hand to hear reports from the various committee heads and to elect officers for the coming year.
Two board members who died during the past year were remembered fondly by President Bill Curtis in his opening remarks: George Bonner and Blair Clark, whose active service over many years will be sorely missed. (We also lost a longtime member of the newsletter staff during the year - Rennie Weber, who leaves a unfillable void among our frequent contributors.)

President's Report
Curtis also reported that there are now more than 1,900 member households of TBA. We are holding discussions with the Turtle Bay Tree Fund regarding a possible merger of our activities. Another new venture being considered is the establishment of a senior center in the neighborhood.

Slate Elected
A total of 286 votes, including proxies, was cast in favor of the proposed slate, presented by Barbara Connolly. There were no dissenting votes. Officers elected are the same as last year: Bill Curtis, president; Millie Margiotta, Dolores Marsh, and Bruce Silberblatt, vice presidents; Marie-Louise Handal, secretary; and Francine Mohink, treasurer.

The following were elected directors, class of 2002: Mary Bartolotta, Bill Curtis, Denise Hamilton, Brenda Levin, Millie Margiotta, Dolores Marsh, Francine Mohink, Michael Resnick, and Jeannie Sakol. Ethel Bendove was elected as a new director, Class of 2001.

Francine Mohink, treasurer, reported that total TBA income for the year was $51,600, of which $16,000 was raised by the Turtle Bay fair. The balance came from dues. The association's biggest expense is the printing and mailing of the newsletter.

The Public Safety Committee report was given by Captain Kevin P. Ward, commanding officer of the 17th Precinct. He spoke mainly about the problems with the many bars in the neighborhood. The most common complaint involves noise. There have been 83 summonses and 11 operations (inspections for violations) involving bars in the past year. All together, there were 1,280 summonses issued and 159 homeless arrests in the precinct.

Police Presence
Jeannie Sakol and Marie-Louise Handal asked for more police presence, particularly in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, where there are problems with skateboarders and with dogs. City Parks Commissioner Henry Stern arrived during this discussion and joined in with a lengthy discussion of problems with the homeless.

Bruce Silberblatt, chair of the Land Use Committee, spoke with regret about the new Trump building, which could not have been built if today's "unified bulk zoning" laws had been in effect two years ago. There is a new condominium now being built at the corner of 51st and First Avenue that is designed by the same architect as the Trump building, and it will have to conform in height and setbacks. Increasing the height through purchase of air rights will be severely limited. Silberblatt also mentioned that there are two other new buildings scheduled for First and Second Avenues that have been waiting for the zoning changes.

Special Events
Barbara Connolly, Special Events Committee chair, spoke about upcoming plans for the yearly holiday party where toys are collected for needy children. There will also be the annual "Love Thy Neighbor" gathering at Valentine time, and, of course, the Turtle Bay Fair in the spring.

Turtle Bay Business
Turtle Bay Business Associates was represented by its chair, Pauline Evans. This group has 178 member businesses, and meets quarterly at a restaurant in the area. They work to improve information and services.

Pat McDougald, chair of the Grants Committee, reported that during the year TBA granted funds totaling $17,232, the largest of which was $3,232 for the Turtle Bay tree program, followed by $3,000 to the Doe Fund.
Sherrill Kazan, treasurer of Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, spoke about progress with the park during the year. The summer Greenmarket was such a big hit that the organization is considering a Saturday market as well.. The latest addition to the plaza is the "Endangered Species Sculpture Exhibit" on display through April 30th, 2001. The organization will again present its annual Holiday Song and Cider Fest, to be held this year on Wednesday, December 20.

Marie-Louise Handal, TBA Parks Committee chair, and Bill Curtis topped off the evening by presenting to George Vellonakis, architect and designer of the Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, an "Excellence Award" for dedication and service to the community and its parklands. Vellonakis has been involved with Dag Hammarskjold Plaza since 1984 when he did the preliminary design. There were many obstacles along the way, some of which were known and others that were unthinkable, such as "demapping." A job well done, by George!


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The Turtle Bay Association is a nonprofit (501c3) community organization.

224 East 47th Street, New York City 10017
(212) 751-5465
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