The Briefly for February 27, 2020 – The "Who is the Most Powerful Person in New York City?" Edition
Today - Low: 29˚ High: 43˚
Light rain in the morning.
Central Park has a turtle problem. The red-eared slider turtle, technically listed as an invasive species, is having its run of Central Park and muscling out the park's other species of turtles. How did they get there? They're usually pets who are abandoned in the park because they've grown to an unmanageable size, or their humans weren't ready for a potentially 50+ year commitment to their new shelled friend. (Sarah Lewin Lebwohl for I Love the Upper West Side) Video: See life in NYC from 1911 with this colorized and restored 4K footage. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist) The 100 most powerful people in New York City. The mayor is #4, which seems high. No, I did not make the list as the person who runs The Briefly, maybe in 2021. (City and State) Pedro Colon, 61, faces criminal charges after his bus hit Patience Albert, 10, and a 15-year-old boy on the corner of Wortman Avenue and Crescent Street in Brooklyn. The 15-year-old survived, Patience Albert did not. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch) Get ready for over a year's worth of construction on the F train to repair damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. The 14+ month job will also add cell service and wifi to the tunnel, so the next time you're imprisoned by the MTA underneath the East River, you'll also have to endure someone making a FaceTime call at the same time. Work is slated to start sometime later this year. (Jose Martinez for The City) It's not time to freak out, but the coronavirus in the United States is "more of a question of exactly when this will happen" and not if, according to the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. Here is how to prepare for coronavirus in NYC. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist) The mayor has been requesting the CDC allow New York City labs to test for coronavirus and that passengers arriving in NYC be screened for it. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro) "New York, as we know it, will no longer exist tomorrow. [...] It'll be the 1970's all over again. People will get mean, the streets won't be safe, graffiti everywhere, and movies will only cost three dollars." -Tracey Jordan (30 Rock) Here are NYC's James Beard Awards semifinalists. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater) First Lady Chirlane McCray is considering running for Brooklyn Borough President. People of Brooklyn, I implore you to stop electing anyone in the de Blasio family into any public office in New York City. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch) A look back at the Depression-era shanty towns in New York City parks. (Lucie Levine for 6sqft) The NYPD is investigating police union boss Ed Mullins, the head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association. Mullins, who will never be accused of making the rational move, has taken to Facebook to declare "I WILL NOT BE SILENCED BY THE THREAT OF DISCIPLINE, NOW OR EVER!" This is a man who was quoted as saying "Ferguson Missouri was a lie," declared war on the mayor, NYPD officers should stand "shoulder-to-shoulder" with ICE and the list goes on. The investigation is to see if his views undermine his capacity as a sergeant, where he earns a salary of $133,524. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist) State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron upheld an August 2019 ruling that four towers planned for the Lower East Side Two Bridges development cannot move forward. The ruling says the land-review process was illegally bypassed and that 2,775 new apartments and 2.5 million square feet of new space does not qualify as "minor modifications." (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft) The MTA announced 1,800 planned job cuts on Wednesday, but hasn't said where they are coming from or if they are part of the 2,700 job cuts announced in the summer. The agency is hoping to close the projected billion dollar plus deficit projected by 2023. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro) Harvey Weinstein may never see the inside of Rikers Island to avoid "another Epstein incident." (Ben Yakas for Gothamist) A look back on when Mayor Bloomberg wanted poor people to drink less soda. (Arthur Delaney for HuffPost) Maybe Mayor Bloomberg should never have uttered "we treated our teachers the right way" during this week's Democratic debate, because NYC's teachers have the receipts. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist) Amazon continues to rent buildings across the city, this time it's a 300,000 square foot space in Middle Village, taking over the Metropolitan Museum of Art's former space. (Bill Parry for amNewYork Metro) The Trump administration can withhold millions of dollars in law enforcement grants from so-called sanctuary jurisdictions that refuse to cooperate with immigration authorities, according to a ruling issued on Wednesday from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan, a break from three previous court rulings. NYC received about $4 million a year in law enforcement grants. (Annie Correal for NY Times) The City Council will consider a package of bills aimed at limiting how much food delivery apps like GrubHub and Seamless can charge restaurants. (Jeffery C. Mays and David Yaffe-Bellany for NY Times) Staging a Broadway should is tough, staging a Broadway show in Madison Square Garden for 18,000 students is tougher. (Julia Jacobs for NY Times) Staten Islanders have been wrapping yellow ribbons around utility poles to indicate the presence of speed cameras. The argument of the Facebook group behind the effort is that the speed cameras are nothing more than a money grab from the city. (Amanda Farinacci for NY1) Most elected officials in Staten Island won't be participating in the island's St. Patrick's Day parade because the parade's organizers will not allow Staten Island's largest LGBT to march. Republican State Assemblymembers Nicole Malliotakis and Mike Reilly have announced they will be marching, perhaps making the political decision that Staten Islanders hate the LGBT community more than they hate bigotry in general. (Amanda Farinacci for NY1) Here's how the Gowanus Canal clean-up will proceed. (Pardon Me for Asking) Where to eat in Mott Haven. (Robert Sietsema for Eater) Thanks to reader Camila for today's featured photo!