Tuesday, April 3, 2018

The 'Night Mayor's' challenge close to home

Over at the Voice, Allegra Hobbs explores the challenges that Ariel Palitz, newly appointed senior executive director of the Office of Nightlife (aka Night Mayor), faces in her own neighborhood.

Palitz, an East Village resident, owned Sutra Lounge on First Avenue from 2004 to 2014. She also served on CB3's State Liquor Authority subcommittee from 2007 to 2014.

Hobbs speaks with residents and Block Association leaders who believe Palitz's appointment was a mistake.

Members of the Dwellers, North Avenue A, and the Orchard Street Block Associations all say that during her time on the community board, Palitz voted overwhelmingly in favor of new liquor license applications and brushed aside residents’ concerns in public meetings. (Community Board 3 declined to comment for this article and was unable to provide Palitz’s voting record.)

“They really couldn’t have made a worse choice, in my opinion,” says Pamela Yeh of the Orchard Street Block Association, which covers a swath of blocks below Delancey Street and between Allen and Clinton streets. “She voted in favor of just about passing every [liquor license] application that came through the SLA committee.”

Meanwhile, some of her former CB3 colleagues are more positive about the work that Palitz will do for the city.

“I am extremely happy that she got appointed — I think she is the perfect person for this job,” enthuses former board chair Anne Johnson, who says Palitz’s experience as a bar owner should allow her to effectively tackle the issues facing the Lower East Side and East Village. “I always found her to be reasonable and willing to listen to all sides and not just blanketly support one side or the other.”

Former community board member Chad Marlow, who has been a staunch supporter of limiting liquor licenses in the community, recalls Palitz as a voice of reason, attempting to bring “uniformity and clarity” to the process of supporting or denying liquor license applicants on the subcommittee. “I think [for] Ariel, her challenge is going to be to try and find a way to promote the interests of the industry while at the same time protecting the interests of the community, and I have no doubt she’s going to labor very hard to strike that balance,” he says.

Palitz declined requests for an interview with the Voice.


Anonymous said...

I wonder if this woman would allow a loud sports bar to open in or nearby her apartment building? Why must we accept any bars at all in our residential neighborhood. What is the ratio of bars per resident in the LES compared to the UES or UWS?
I strongly encourage anyone reading this to join you local block association, come to the CB3 meetings and make your voice or at the very least presence witness by the CB3. We can fight this.

Anonymous said...

How can her experience as a bar owner make her anything but an unabashed supporter of bars? How is that fair? It would have been better to hire a community advocate with no ties to bar ownership.

Anonymous said...

"Palitz declined requests for an interview with the Voice." And there you have it: She is a law unto herself, and she is NOT available to anyone who doesn't sign her paycheck or pay her money.

I think it's EXTREMELY clear what Palitz is all about - and the good of our neighborhoods is not on her agenda.

Anonymous said...

And it sure would be nice if thieves didn't steal and liars didn't lie and ... but I'll just remain in perpetual outrage.

Anonymous said...

Agree there is no way in hell she can be impartial or beyond being "influenced" by bar or club owners hoping to win her favor, hint, hint....

Giovanni said...

So Ariel Palitz refused to be interviwed by the Village Voice, but we are supposed to believe that she is going be sensitive to the needs of the community? What I remember about Sutra Lounge is speeding up every time I walked by there to avoid the pretentious bouncers and sketchy looking crowds.

Making Ariel Palitz the Night Mayor is almost as ridiculous as Gothamist doing a Kickstarter to relaunch their website. They went from selling out to a Billionaire owner who shut them down to begging for money online. What’s next, Gothamist, selling high fives from the Night Mayor for five dollars? How about Gothamist Biscuits with fois gras and Night Mayor flavored jam? I can't wait to see Gothamist’s take on the Night Mayor, endlessly ripping the person whose job it is to basically hand out an endless supply of liquor licenses to the kind of hotspots that Gothamist loves to promote.


It's never too early to think about SantaCon.

Anonymous said...

"Community Board 3 declined to comment for this article" and "Palitz declined requests for an interview with the Voice"
I respectfully decline to answer any questions that my implicate me...based on my rights under the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Also, "Community Board 3 was unable to provide Palitz’s voting record". Someone get this via Freedom of Information Act.

Anonymous said...

This is lousy.
Look the information is out there. The videos show the behavior. Venue Advisors-2014-2017- Not. It started in 2012, and she was in business with Paul Seres at the time and voted and advocated for him. The CB is in part, to blame, for allowing her to act like an animal. It only hurt and humiliated residents and the neighborhood.
Hundreds of factual,hair raising letters were sent to De Blasio, Julie Menin and Espinal. They were ignored-like everything else in his administration.
I think that the administration should watch the videos, if they already haven't salivated. And they should demand vote records from the CB 3 SLA Committee, and send them to COIB.
The community board is so lazy, I don't even think they have the records, other than in notes. And for chrissakes do we really have to have SLA meetings at The Public Hotel. Just despicable, considering all of the displacement taking place. What a dump and a schlep.

cmarrtyy said...

Don't you just love "progressive" politicians. What would we do without Mayor Bill. What?! Competence, be damned!!!!

JQ LLC said...

Does Ariel own only 2 t-shirts?

I recall in that video last week when they coronated the night mayor in Bushwick that club owner was riffing about how clubs like hers are unable to make it because (only) one person complains about the noise. Wasn't that Ariel's excuse about all the complaints for her top seeded noisy obnoxious establishment?

@ccmartyy: It's fauxgressive.

@giovanni. sweet preemptive strike on Gothamist.


Anonymous said...

Chad and Anne both talk about too many licenses in the article, do they have amnesia or never seen Ariel approving everything. The videos reveal her behavior, which was consistent monthly, and went on for years. Now we are here.

“high alcohol outlet density is associated with many social harms among neighborhoods in and around the alcohol outlets, such as disorderly conduct, noise, neighborhood disruption, public nuisance, and property damage. High alcohol outlet density is also linked with many alcohol-attributable effects among neighborhoods further away from alcohol outlets, such as alcohol-impaired driving, pedestrian injuries, domestic violence, and child abuse and neglect.”

"Marlow and the committee began addressing the over-saturation problem in earnest this past September, and hosted a contentious public meeting at that time to discuss fallout from living in an area with the most bars per square-mile in the nation."

"Anne Johnson, the long-running board member who was not re-appointed to CB3 by the Borough President last year due to potential conflict of interest (she did taxes for former Councilwoman Rosie Mendez), expressed similar sentiments.'

“I would say that the proliferation of bars in the CB3 area, more than any place in the U.S. except for possibly Austin, would pose a threat to the public safety of CB3 residents and visitors,” Johnson told us in an email. “That subject seems to be an issue that several Board members do not want discussed, and possibly a City Council member who allegedly gets big contributions from the Real Estate Industry. Was that the reason that Chad was removed as Chair of the Committee?”


Anonymous said...

CB3 has got to be one of the most utterly useless groups in existence anywhere on this PLANET. If they were completely disbanded, would anything in this area be worse off? I don't think so!

Anonymous said...

That shirt she's wearing -- is she being sardonic and stick it to the NYErs?