Saturday, April 12, 2008


My multiple sources in New York City and Washington D.C. have indicated that the new VA Secretary, Mr. James Peake (Gen., RET.) will be coming to New York City and visiting the Borden Avenue Veterans Residence (BAVR) in Long Island City (Queens) this coming week (April 14 - 18).

I have been told that there will be some sort of press conference with Mayor Bloomberg (and I'm sure the DHS and VA Commissioner' s) to announce HUD Vouchers for veterans. I am told he will also visit a VA hospital.

The actual day when Secretary Peake is coming is a closely guarded secret, as well as the time of this Press Conference but I would guess it will take place sometime between April 15 and 17 as Pope Benedict XVI will be in Washington, D.C. during those days.

Once again, what I don't and have never understood with this Mayor is that if he's looking to have a press conference on something that will help veterans, why do you NOT include the veterans community? Why does it have to be the veterans living at BAVR, who will be used as the backdrop, to make it look like the community supports it (when the community knows nothing about it). Once again this goes to my point that the Mayor (and his administration) does not understand the community.

In any case, if anyone finds out something more, please let me know. Also, as a sidebar, this visit by the VA Secretary may present an opportunity to address the situation at St. Albans with him. Thanks...

Joe Bello