I just love stories like this one...this why liberalism is indeed a mental disorder......and lastly this business used to pay taxes to the financially strapped city...now the city must shit out almost 10 million a year to float this monument to NY dems. too funny!
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Last Updated: 7:16 AM, January 20, 2011
Posted: 2:21 AM, January 20, 2011
What delicious irony.
Manhattan's Upper West Side, ancestral home of leftist poli tics and skyrocketing real estate values, is having a meltdown.
In a tale one could not cook up on a bet, politicians and do-gooder activists last year conspired to get a law passed in Albany aimed at ridding the 'hood of an undesirable element -- backpacking, party-going, European tourists.
"I don't know about you, but I don't want to live next door to a tourist who's young and partying," sniffed City Council member Gale Brewer.
Be careful what you wish for.
The new law resulted in the shuttering of The Alexander, a clean hotel on West 94th Street that catered mainly to unwashed travelers who, for $80 a night, shared communal hallway bathrooms.
But just as residents were popping Moet, the West Side woke up to an ugly truth. A huge homeless shelter designed to house about 200 men -- some saddled with drug and mental-health issues -- is taking The Alexander's place faster than you can yell, "Not in My Back Yard."
Local residents, who have no one to blame but themselves, are furious.
"Not only homeless people, but homeless people with disabilities!" warned Marcella Stapor, who lives on West 96th.
"It affects the quality of life," said another resident, Tom.
Last weekend, a protest was thrown outside the hotel by Brewer, Borough President Scott Stringer and Rep. Charles Rangel. The West Side is papered with vaguely sinister fliers, which read:
"We will pay the price, first in taxes, depreciation of property values, personal safety, store closings and the loss of our beloved, safe, beautiful neighborhood."
Well, where should homeless men sleep? The Bronx?
"I don't want to characterize the motives of anybody who opposes the shelter," said a frustrated Seth Diamond, head of the city's Department of Homeless Services.
"It is absolutely not true" that the shelter sneaked into the nabe in the middle of the night, he said. "We had extensive discussions with the community."
The property is to be run by Samaritan Village, "one of the city's leading providers of services, drug treatment and rehabilitation," said Diamond. "This is our busy time of year."
The hotel, which took in tourists as recently as Martin Luther King Day weekend, is now turning away paying folk. "I'm going to lose my job," groused a desk clerk. The transition is being delayed until the city helps the hotel's seven permanent residents find new places to live.
Let's see if the incoming addicts get invited to fancy West Side dinner parties.
Fans of the new law hoped it would replace tourists with "affordable housing." But even those who might score such a flat -- and cheap housing always goes to the politically connected -- don't want to live in a room without a private bath. And what is affordable in Manhattan? Is it $500 a month? Or $2,000?
Facing an empty hotel, owner Alexander Scharf did what any intelligent human would do. He contracted with the city, which will pay him $7.9 million a year for the next nine.
"One side of City Hall wanted the permanent housing," said Brewer, suggesting that the city staged a land grab. "The other side was the homeless side." The homeless side won.
The hypocrisy is incredible. Folks who insist they care about the downtrodden have shown they do -- provided poor folks live somewhere else.
"We paid over $2 million for our home," complained a stroller-pushing mom. "And now what?"
Welcome to the big city, Upper West Siders. At least Eurotrash won't bother you anymore.
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