Tunnel To Tower Run press team even can't get It right

As the mayor of New York City keeps telling people, “The economy is robust and NYC is enjoying sustainable growth.”

However, as I tripped over a young homeless man lying on the sidewalk on West 40th Street earlier this week – right next to the prestigious Fairfield Suites Hotel – it occurred to me that someone might be telling tales 'out-of-school.'

After several days of investigation, I found a few of the culprits. One is certainly the mayor of New York City. Another one is the greed that has made a huge comeback in this great city 'that never sleeps.' But I will save the worst culprit for last. Let's examine the mayor first.

It seems that Mayor Bill de Blasio has inherited one of the few foibles of Italian-Americans – the ability to tell lies without blinking.

Now before you get all lathered up about that statement, please realize that I am also an Italian-American. The statement about NYC's mayor is not a slur on Italians. It's a simple observation about the realities of life in politics in New York City. This guy can lie better than a rattlesnake on a flat-tar road in Alabama.

I say, come on Mr. Mayor, 'Show Me the Money!' The state of New York generates $1.6 trillion in gross income annually. But where does the money go Bill de Blasio – and gang?

The budget of New York City is the largest municipal budget in the United States at $92 billion a year. Yet people are sleeping on every corner of the city using a cardboard box as a mattress and a backpack as a pillow.

The city employs over 325,000 people, spends about $21 billion to 'try' to educate more than 1.1 million students (the largest public school system in the United States) and levies $27 billion in taxes. It receives $14 billion from state and federal governments. All of this cash is overseen by the NYC Mayor's Office of Management and Budget. (The word 'budget' here seems rather hilarious to this writer).

By the way – the “de Blasio” cartel – which consisted largely of intelligent women when he first took office – has devolved into a mish-mash of ass-kissers and other 'employees' who know they need to put up with Bill's constant abuse of his staffers -- or buy a one-way ticket to Alabama.

Of the 31 high-level officials who have left their positions since Mayor Bill came into power, 22 have been women. Of the eight department commissioners who have left, six have been women, and most of them left within two years. The only deputy mayor to leave the administration was a woman, Lilliam Barrios-Paoli. Also among the high-ranking women who quit were Karen Hinton, the mayor’s press secretary; Laura Santucci, the mayor’s chief of staff; Chloe Drew, the mayor’s appointments director; Minerva Tantoco, the chief technology officer; and Maya D. Wiley, the counsel to the mayor.

Hinton, Drew and Santucci only lasted a year and the rest did not make it past two years. All have stated that the mayor is hostile toward women, and berates even the male staffers. (I can just imagine how many of those guys were wrestlers in high school … ).

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When my great-great grandparents emigrated to NYC from Italy, they encountered a sometimes welcoming -- but sometimes harsh – social environment.

My great-great grandfather George (on my father's side) was born in Perugia, Italy in 1840 and was transported on an overpriced steamer to America in 1859. His grandfather Pietro paid for the trip after insisting that George leave before he was called to fight in the Second Italian War of Independence. (Of note, George was named a member of the Roman Praetorian Guard who was put to death because he would not renounce Christianity).

My great-great grandmother Camilla met George on the trip over from Italy and they joined forces. They were married in NYC in 1861 and stayed together until George's death in 1917. (George was exempted from the Civil War due to being deaf in his left ear. He worked as a machinist his entire life and left me a right-handed hammer in his will. That is a joke).

When George and Camilla first lived in Manhattan, disease epidemics such as typhus, cholera, diphtheria, and tuberculosis were rampant in the city's slums where they rented a walk-up tenement apartment in Manhattan's Lower West Side. They said that horse manure always ruined the streets, and in the Winter, when all the horse crap froze, it was tough to walk on the sidewalks. My grandmother passed down the stories from George about all the dead pigs and other animal carcasses that would often remain on the streets for weeks.

In 1867 came Boss Tweed, who became the sole leader of Tammany Hall. From 1870 on, with the passage of a city charter consolidating power in the hands of his political allies, Tweed and his cronies were able to defraud the city of tens of millions of dollars over the next three years, most famously with the construction bill for a lavish courthouse that cost a fraction of what the citizens paid for it.

Which brings us to today. Same day, different year. You only need to walk for a few minutes around the 'city that never sleeps' to see the thousands of beggars, homeless people and criminals that swarm all of the corners of the crossroads of the world, just as they did before the fall of the Roman Empire. It's difficult to not see the writing on the wall.

The once-great New York City has again succumbed to the social scourges of the early 1980s and the 1880s – we're talking political and financial thievery and scandals; unreal increases in violent and petty crimes; and at its base is again a city with perverted leadership.

The progressive's and liberal's consistent aggression against people who cannot stand up to oppression has not only stifled real growth around the entire nation – but has sadly found its way to choke out New York City again. The question is, can we rise from the ashes once more?

With the homeless problem in New York mirroring the nasty downturn in California's major cities, people are sleeping all over Manhattan like it is one big roach motel. We see uncollected garbage on every corner. No one can get along. The Police Departments and Unions are beyond reconciliation with Mayor de Blasio, and it appears that everyone wants everyone else out of office. Back to the 'blame-game,' big-time.

Where is Joe DiMaggio? Frank Sinatra? Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani? This city suffers from a lack of leadership that hasn't been this lame since Tammany Hall days.

But the deterioration of this great city does not seem to have an upturn in its future this time.

I hate to be negative about this city that I love and visit often, but it certainly is a sad time for the people of New York. And this time, the downer attitude and lack of common courtesy has spilled over into the hotel tourism industry, which has kept New York City at the top of visitor's lists for decades, and is a financial and social lifeline for the city. But how can a tourist from another country see a Broadway play without being comfortable and safe at a mid-town Manhattan hotel?

Greedy hotel chains have ridden the growth of robust areas of the city under the last few mayors, and have given almost zero back to New York. With tip-jars all over the place simply doing their jobs around the city, the public is getting rather exhausted spending our time-and-dime on what amounts to foolishness in and around NYC .

One such ridiculous place to waste your money is the Fairfield Suites Hotel on West 40th street in Manhattan, which opened nine years ago and has enjoyed the financial gains of the city with no return on investment .

Many questions are being raised by people that have stayed at or simply visited the hotel . One of the best views of Manhattan is at the top of the hotel in the Sky Room.

People are starting to be heard – complaints are plentiful about the Sky Room on websites such as Yelp – which has logged over 800 comments and a 2.5 rating out of a possible 5.

Complaints seem to follow a pattern – poor service by the staff; prices too high; cannot see out the dirty Plexiglas windows, and just an overall lame experience.

Myself and my journalist tried to determine who or what actually owns or manages the Sky Room, but the hotel management said, “we're not sure who owns the place.”


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So, as with many things in New York City, who actually owns each problem and is responsible for the behavior of its employees seems to trickle down from the top, from Mayor Bill de Blasio to the Sky Room.

As far as the Fairfield Hotel's Sky Club is concerned, some names have surfaced as party promoters, ICLUBNYC seem to be the biggest of all.

The company's representatives cannot be found to answer requests on the paying public's behalf by the hard-working media people.

As DJs and party event planners make tons of cash, young people stand in lines to enter the Fairfield Hotel's Sky Club on 40th Street.

Is it really worth the stretch and abuse from the hotel and Sky Room staff? Our calls to Marriott and Fairfield Hotels – including the Sky Room were not returned.

Do you think that Mayor Bill de Blasio's office will return them?

Back to the slums we go … 'the tired, the poor, the hungry.'

Go ahead. Party at the Sky Room. But don't trip over that person on your way to the car …


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