The RIRA Column
February 13, 2016
Valentine’s Day weekends for the past two years were both forecast to be snowy and cold. This Valentine’s Day weekend is forecast to be the coldest this winter. As with all weather forecasts, one must take predicted conditions in stride; but as New Yorkers, and especially as Roosevelt Islanders floating in our little ship down the East River, we should never underestimate what Mother Nature may blow our way. Understanding how cold temperatures affect vulnerable members of our community in different ways, I implore you to check in on your infirm, immobile, and needy neighbors. Lend a helping hand as they seek comfort and warmth.
RIRA Polling Initiative: The Survey
Have you taken The Survey yet? If not, join your Island neighbors, family, and friends who have, and go to www.riraonline.com/survey now, answer a few questions regarding Island life and community concerns, and have your voice heard by your RIRA Common Council! With just a few clicks, you can shape the term of the current and next Common Council, voice directly to RIOC and your elected officials what Island issues matter to you the most, and help determine the programming and advocacy platforms which affect your life on the Island.
RIRA Planning Committee Update
Composting Initiative Partnership
The Roosevelt Island Composting Initiative, in cooperation with the NYC Compost Project and BIG-Reuse, report that in the first ten weeks of the composting program, Roosevelt Islanders have made a total of 576 organic kitchen scraps and organic waste drop-offs at the Roosevelt Island Saturday Markets under the Helix, totaling over 3,924 lbs. That’s close to two tons of waste that would otherwise have ended up in landfills! It will now be diverted to be recycled, composted, and used to rebuild Island and city gardens, thanks to Roosevelt Islanders.
Uptick in Complaints re Pet Waste
As the last of the snow of the last blizzard has melted, I would be remiss not to mention the number of recent complaints and calls to RIRA, RIOC, 311 and the City of the failure by dog owners to curb their pets and pick up after them during the last snow storm. Although required by City law and finable up to $200 for failing to do so, a number of residents continually choose not to pick up their dog’s feces, causing unsanitary and unsightly conditions, which expose both children and adults, young, old and infirm, to a number of diseases, bacteria, and environmental hazards that only uncollected waste can cause.
As a dog owner, I can sympathize. I understand – especially when the temperatures freeze, snow is on the ground, or rains fall. It is not an option for any dog owner, however, not to pick up after one’s dogs. Notwithstanding seeking from RIOC, and individual buildings, the installation of more waste dispensers and receptacles in and around highly trafficked and used areas, as well as signage reminding of the local laws requiring pick-up, it is up to each and every one of us – pet owner and non-pet owners alike – to seek community enforcement of such rules.
We inhabit an Island of limited space with an exploding population – of both humans and pets alike – and it is up to us to ensure that the beautiful walkways and parks that we all enjoy are not, come spring, filled with animal waste.
Tags: RIRA Column