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 Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations

Meeting Minutes June 7, 2006

Albany Public Library


1)     Introductions


2)     Minutes:  Minutes of the CANA May 3, 2006, meeting were not introduced for approval.


3)     Guest Speakers and Presentations:


 Police Chief James Tuffey


Focus on the quality of life in Albany is one of the priorities of the APD under Chief Tuffey’s leadership.  He has attended meetings of most neighborhood associations since taking office. 


The Department has increased the visibility officers in uniform; eight officers are back on old-style beats and move on a minute’s notice from one hot spot to another as needed.  As crimes are mapped and trouble spots identified, the assignments of these officers are concentrated into those spots. 


Beginning about 12 weeks ago, the locations of crimes in the city have been tracked and mapped.   Police resources are assigned and visibility increased as troublesome locations are identified.  As each officer reports for work, s/he is able to view a city map that indicates the neighborhoods in which crimes have been committed since his or her last shift.  Lieutenants strategize about the best resources to assign to each of those geographic areas.


Overall, the number of rapes, robberies and assaults has decreased. The crime rate in Park South is the same—neither up nor down.    Crime is down in the South End and progress is being made in the West Hill and Arbor Hill neighborhoods.


The addresses of parolees have been monitored and the crime rate in the neighborhoods where they live has increased.  Patrol cars are a constant presence in those neighborhoods.


The department knows which individuals and groups are involved in gun violence.  Overall the number of instances of gun violence is down.



Police officers are visiting businesses located in the city and checking on properties routinely.  They are spending less time in cars and more time on the street increasing communication with residents and business owners.  


Officers may work more flexible shifts and have a stronger presence at special events as well.



Technology is a tremendous asset and has given the department the means to communicate and produce reports more rapidly.   Shortly officers will be able to enter reports into computers from the scenes of crimes.


The chief personally takes telephone calls.  Residents and business owners who feel that officers are not responding appropriately are encouraged to contact him.


The department’s priorities for the future include:


bulletreviewing the work of outreach units
bullet development of closer relationships with neighborhood associations
bulletraising the profile of leaders in the community
bullet proactive approach to safety issues
bulletincluding crime statistics on the Department’s public website
bulletproviding department  personnel with additional training in communication skills


Chief Tuffey responded to questions and comments on the following issues:


bulletOfficers are attempting to deal with pan handlers in the downtown area.
bulletNeighborhood associations can get reports from the Department to share with residents by contacting the Community Services Unit.
bulletCitizens are encouraged to report street sales and questionable pawn shops.
bulletA speed monitoring machine in the Manning Boulevard neighborhood as deterred speeding drivers.


School Superintendent Eva Joseph


The recent school budget was defeated by only 71 votes.  Since the margin of defeat was so small, the district will campaign to have more residents vote.  It is felt that the relocation of polling places affected turn out.  Posters will be placed on polling places and entrances will be clearly marked.  The district is offering a modest reduction for a June 20 re-vote because a contingency budget would cut valuable resources.  A modest reduction rather than a contingency will also keep morale higher.  The old budget was for $7.09 million; the reduced budget is for $7.01 million.  The property tax rate and charter schools contributions will be the same.  It was pointed out that the polling place at TOAST school is not actually within the ward of the residents who vote there. 


4.)               Announcements and New Business


·        Library Facilities Plan:   Plans for three new libraries and renovation of others are moving forward.  Feedback from the community about programs and ideas for space are being considered.  Concept drawings for the Howe Library were presented.  Relocation of the Delaware branch to St. James was considered, but plans are in the advanced stages for use of the former Chiccorelli Funeral Home.   A motion was adopted for CANA to support St. Joseph ’s Academy on North Swan Street as the location an Arbor Hill branch of the library. 


·        Central Avenue Reconstruction:  Joe Cuniff presented the benefits, drawbacks and challenges of burying utility lines during road construction and requested a motion by CANA favoring the burying of utilities.  A motion was passed that “ CANA recommends to the City of Albany that utility lines be buried during the reconstruction of the Albany TIP Gateway Project.”


5.)               Committee Reports:


bullet CANA 30th Anniversary Planning Committee:  The event details have been confirmed.  The celebration will be held on Wednesday, October 4, 2006 , at 6 PM at the University Club.  Guest speaker will be B.J. Costello.  Tentative cost is $25 per person.  CANA will contribute $200 to help pay for the cocktail hour. Additional volunteers are needed to assist with the vent.  Contact John Paneto (457-8450) or Tom Gebhardt (442-3130).  The next meeting will be on Wednesday, June 21 at 3 PM at the SUNYA police department office.


bulletCommittee on University and Community Relations:  The committee is pleased to announce that it is one of four 2006 awardees as a US Department of Education Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Model Program.   As such, their $174,932 grant proposal to develop, implement and evaluate a coordinated and multifaceted campus-and-community-based social norms media campaign has been approved.  The committee’s next meeting will be June 14.


The meeting adjourned at 9:00 PM .


                                                                                                Submitted by Deanna Colfels



June 7, 2006

Meeting Attendees





Daniel VanRiper

Lincoln Park NA

Harold Rubin

Center Square

156 Chestnut St

Helen Klaeysen

West End

817  Livingston Ave

Joe Cunnifff


Fred Perkins


Andrew Harvey

Park South NA

271 Myrtle Ave

Mike O’Brien

33 Danker Ave


Anthony Capece


Richard Conti

151 Chestnut Street

Shawn Morris

24 Marinello Terr

PO Matthew Montesano



Dianne Hansen

22 Manning Blvd

Colin McNight


Brian Levine

Hudson/Park NA

92 Willett St

Susan Holland

Historic Albany

Gene Solan


126 South Allen St

Howard Stoller


Pat Maxon

Upper Wash NA


Don Wardle

United Tenants


Tom Gebhardt

Univ at Albany


Steve Winters

South End

Holly Katz


Mimi Mounteer

Manning Blvd