Investigation Will ‘Make Sure’ Protest Didn’t Occur

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Mayor Michael Bloomberg used the words “unacceptable” and “inadequate” to describe NYC’s slow response to clearing piles of snow from city streets. Bloomberg also commented on reports that city workers may have intentionally slowed their response in protest at a news conference Thursday.

“When something goes wrong, we find out why it went wrong and then we roll up our sleeves and fix it. And that’s exactly what we’ll do here,” Bloomberg told reporters including WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall.

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall reports

City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Queens) said that three plow workers from the Sanitation Department confessed to dragging out the plowing process as part of a supervisor-mandated protest to recent layoffs and budget cuts by the mayor.

“The 3 sanitation workers that came in to see me basically indicated that when they reported for duty their supervisors gave them a speech that went something like this: ‘Guys don’t worry we’re not going to be out in the field on top of you. If you miss a street, it’s okay, don’t worry about it,'” Halloran said.

“I don’t think it took place, but we’re going to do an investigation to make sure that it didn’t,” Bloomberg said.

PHOTO GALLERIES: Blizzard Slams East Coast | User-Submitted Storm Photos

1010 WINS Reporter Kathleen Maloney on the speculation of a worker slowdown.

“Unfortunately, I think the rogue group of supervisors who felt that this was a good idea to send the mayor a message actually did just the opposite for themselves. They basically told the city of New York that their labor issues were more important than public safety,” Halloran told 1010 WINS’ Kathleen Maloney.

Halloran called the “protest” unfortunate and said the situation won’t be taken lightly. The head of the Sanitation Workers Union, however, said the slowdown protest was not true.

“There’s no call of action by any union. We just don’t do that. Nobody gains by it. How do we gain by doing something like that? We lose,” Harry Nespoli, President of the Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association said.

CBS 2’s Pablo Guzman was in Queens Village and spoke to some residents still not satisfied by the mayor’s words.

“I heard the Mayor talking about all the streets cleaned. This is 208th Street — nothing cleaned. Nothing,” Cecilia Vaughan said.

Speculation into Sanitation Slow Down

In the Bronx, Councilman James Vacca had a sit-down with the mayor to relay the anger of the voters.

“We should not be saying ‘do you live on a prime street or secondary street or tertiary street.’ I’m going to rename the tertiary street, ‘taxpaying streets,'” Vacca told reporters.

Residents from the outer boroughs in particular were angry, saying many side streets in western Queens, Staten Island and Brooklyn were neglected.

Bloomberg toured the outer boroughs Thursday to get a first-hand look at the clean up and admitted it did not meet the standards of New York City, 1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks reported.

1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks reports

Mayor Tours Brooklyn to See Snow Removal Situation

PHOTO GALLERY: Is Your Street Plowed Yet? Send Us Your Pictures

‘Too Little, Too Late’

“We’re looking every time, waiting for a plow. Nobody comes out here. I mean, what are we supposed to do?” said Mendy Shapiro of Borough Park.

“I’m very upset. And I think everybody in this neighborhood is upset,” another resident said.

Mobile 2 Checks on Street Conditions with Councilman Greenfield

Meanwhile, Gov. David Paterson has also ordered an investigation into the city’s response.

“We’ll find out what was different this time and try to do everything to make sure it’s better next time,” Bloomberg said.

  • hate you

    toolate theymurder people who need ing help togoto docter s a momwho didnt make it and more is there fault

  • Carol

    Come out to Forest Hills where the streets have been plowed so many times that Sanitation Dept. are now plowing streets that have no snow. Yes, they plowed Continental Avenue about 15 times this morning even though there was no snow on the road. They plow asphalt. I guess they have nothing better to do.

  • tom

    passed thru old mill basin,georgetown,bergen beach area today,as of 4 o clock,,not much plowing….i was ,however behind a plow for 3 blocks(e 53rd,between ave k,l,m) with the plow up

  • tom

    passing thru mill basin,georgetown,bergen beach at 4 o clock,,still no plowing,however i did stand behind a truck for 3 blocks on e 53rd between ave k ,l,m with their plow up.and i was wondering why no snow was removed with this plow in front of me

  • harriet in ny

    well that’s a well reasoned argument.

  • Glenn

    An “investigation” will show no wrong doing because Bloomberg can not handle discension in his ranks.

  • markandersone

    Companies will be barred from instituting caps on coverage when your costs for treatments goes up due to sickness, you can now get insurance with out caps on coverage at “Wise Health Insurance” search them online.

  • Zhu Zhang

    La nieve es muy mala. Mi coche es cubierto en el hielo. Es muy frío afuera. Michael no es feliz. Michael tiene un trabajo difícil.

  • tom raffaele

    now pushing 11;30 at night,,,old mill basin,georgetown,mill island and bergen beach still has not been plowed,,someone please get john doherty.s ass out of the irish pub and give him a dose of reality..i bet they will plow on saturday,new yrs day so they gey holiday pay

  • Oscar LeBron

    I do not believe anything that these clowns at City Hall are saying about any slow down. From what I have seen this evening and earlier today, all the plows that went through my neighborhood had either had their blades up or just high enough to clear the street. Our streets are still not thoroughly plowed!!!

  • Maria Queens NY

    I think sanitation didn’t do a good job because they didn’t get what they want… They knew about the storm and didn’t threw salt the day before as they used to…Jackson Hts has many street that are unplowed and must of the community angry with the Mayor response to the situation…

    • harriet in ny

      you think wrong, the mayor and deputy mayor goldsmith admitted they were late in telling sanitation to prepare for a major storm, the bad response due to the mayor, it’s really hard to plow and clean after 12 inches of snow falls

      • AngryNY

        explain all the snow plows driven down the streets with their plows raised above the snow and more than half of the department call in sick. they can stay home from now on for all we care. Many unemployed people are dying to get these cozy jobs. We dont need you cry babies and your Union leeching the life out of us.

  • joy

    Couldn’t help notice that the Mobil 2 reporter/driver and his back seat passenger didn’t have their seat belts on as they toured around a Brooklyn neighborhood. Buckle up guys so you don’t become the news!

  • angryNY

    fat lazy Union raped us tax payers while big government just sit around do nothing and collect their union votes. Cut the government down to size. Government works for us, not the union cronies!!

    • harriet in ny

      no the major and goldsmith who didn’t send out the plows, and if we make government smaller then snow removal will get worse, unless you think the streets will just magically plow themselves

      • Jere

        Ok now you are calling the sanitation guys government? These high school drop outs are supposed to only govern trash and snow and they failed at both. I’m managed in my line of work too, and I don’t wait for my bosses to tell me what obvious things to do. That is just an fyi, I’m not actually remembering reading what you stated about the mayor.

  • Don Bayside Queens

    I personally witnessed two sanitation plows (one behind the other) between 2100 and 2200 hours last night go from 15th to 14th ave south of Bell Blvd (Bayside) and barely touched the snow. In addition to to protesting budget cuts, they were probably dragging it out to maximize OT $$$ for them and their coworkers.

    • harriet in ny

      i personally live on bell blvd by bell Terrence and personally noted that most of the very wide area between 15 and 14th was clear of snow two days ago except for the snow banks which have cars buried in them, which would make it a slow go to plow around them, when cleaning wide streets, it is not uncommon for two plows to work together so they clear the street at once instead of leaving a pile in the middle of a traveling lane. Also they could have been heading towards the highway at ft. totten, bell is the main street hear.

  • lOU

    Bay 10th St Bklyn between Cropsey Ave & Independence Ave hasnt seen a plow since Sunday nite a disgrace to the Mayor & the City

  • mike reed

    I was listening in on my scanner and the supervisors kept telling the plow operators to call him on his cell phone.time and time again.over several channels.

    • The Truth

      Great you did this. Now they can trace those calls to those who particapated and fire them. You will have no problem replacing them with responsible workers who will take less do more and appreciate a 401K instead of a glorified PENSION.

      • harriet in ny

        trace calls, what calls? a tea party/republican, freshman councilman said 3 workers from DSNY and 2 from DOT told him personally, however, he’s not naming names, wonder way

    • harriet in ny

      so? scanners are not as clear as cell phones, maybe he just wanted to be sure people understood him

  • John V.

    You Know, now it makes sense why after plow came down my street Monday Mid – day that there was still 10 to 12 inches of snow remaining in roadway. The sanitation supervisors who directed this fiasco should be brought up on criminal charges.

  • angryNY

    Stop arguing the obvious harriet! Fire the union and prosecute those responsible!

  • Help the unemployed

    harriet in NY, spinning the fact wont get your sanitation job back. What happened and what we see speak volume. The truth is the government is getting too big and Union is getting too greedy while all tax payers suffer for your laziness!

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