Red Hook Resident Now Has to Worry About Water Meter


A note came in from a Red Hook resident on Sullivan Street, now displaced on Long Island. Due to flooding, her meter reader stopped working, and the DEP cannot measure the home’s water usage remotely. They have told her they will bill at a higher estimated rate unless she gets it fixed.

My property on Sullivan Street was flooded about two and a half feet into the ground floor in the storm. While I have only a three-foot cavity under my property and no standing water, my power is still not on because of others on my grid. [I received a] ridiculous notice from the DEP that they are unable to access the electronic remote water meter reader and that they will dun my empty and powerless property at a punitive estimated rate.

The DEP notice is automated, but she never received a follow-up message acknowledging the widespread flooding in the neighborhood. Any other Red Hook residents having this issue — among the many, many other problems that have come up in the past two weeks?

39 Comment

  • There was a story on Ch 4 news last night showing a guy in Queens with a massive tree that had fallen on his house and he got 2 notices from the DOB the next 2 days that theu will fine him if not removed and property niot fixed.

    This is the type of beauracracy and idiocy that we Republicans strive to correct in our never ending attempt to make the government smaller. Absolutely ridiculous.

    • making government smaller MAY reduce bureaucracy but at what cost? leaving everything up to profit driven companies sounds like a sure fire way to ensure more idiocy and create a widened gap between the haves and have nots. by the way, i work for a private company. there is plenty of bureaucracy here too. bureaucracy is unavoidable when over 300 million people are a part of a society.

    • making government smaller MAY reduce bureaucracy but at what cost? leaving everything up to profit driven companies sounds like a sure fire way to ensure more idiocy and create a widened gap between the haves and have nots. by the way, i work for a private company. there is plenty of bureaucracy here too. bureaucracy is unavoidable when over 300 million people are a part of a society.

    • How does smaller government reduce the lack of common sense shown in these situations? Do you think the people affected by Sandy would have better off by the response to the storm by a smaller government?

  • There was a story on Ch 4 news last night showing a guy in Queens with a massive tree that had fallen on his house and he got 2 notices from the DOB the next 2 days that theu will fine him if not removed and property niot fixed.

    This is the type of beauracracy and idiocy that we Republicans strive to correct in our never ending attempt to make the government smaller. Absolutely ridiculous.

  • DEP is incredibly ridiculous. However, you can often get the rate adjusted after the fact. Our property had been empty for years without a meter when we purchased it and the water charges were ridiculous, but we were able to get them adjusted and refunded once the meter was installed and running again. I don’t think it’s as much about big or small government as poor management. Many of the NYC agencies need a big clean up: HPD, DOB, DOE. Bloomberg, I would rather have you do this then worry about my soda sizes!

  • There are lawyers doing free legal aid at Red Hook Initiative from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. to help residents with their FEMA forms and I believe in navigating other bureocratic waters as well. They might be able to help and if not someone there or at SBIDC, where the rest of the relief efforts are being organized may be able to point you in the right directiuon. There’s a lot of info and organizing happening on the ground in Red Hook but because we were without comm services for so long its being passed word of mouth or by email. Do you know anyone still in the hood who can go over to RHI on your behalf? Otherwise I’d say start by emailing Jill Eisenhard at RHI, jill@rhicenter.org. There have been multiple meetings with local govnt officials asking the residentswhat they need. (This helped us get the DOS pickups we needed to stay on top of clearing out all the debris) so If RHI is a bust try Nydia Velazquez’s office. I would also canvas you’re neighbors to see who else is having this issue.

  • In addition to combustiblegirl’s advice, Red Hook resident should access 311 online or by phone and record their complaint. Make sure to keep a copy of both complaint and complaint #. For online complaints, go to this link and search for “water meter complaint”: http://www.nyc.gov/apps/311/homepage.htm

  • Bait taken! Like shooting fish in a barrel to get the left wingers all wound up.

  • DEP is chronically disorganized and dysfunctional. It is the sort of government agency that gives Republicans plenty of anecdotes and “bad government” stories.

  • re: private sector…At least if social security were privatly run the funds would actually be there, segregated and able to monitor as compared to nowhere and being used as general revenue when the contributions are collected. remember the “Lock box???” LOL

    • Legally, Social Security has its own, dedicated funding, via the payroll tax (“FICA” on your pay statement). But it’s also part of the broader federal budget. This dual accounting means that there are two ways Social Security could face financial problems. First, that dedicated funding could prove inadequate, forcing the program either to cut benefits or to turn to Congress for aid. Second, Social Security costs could prove unsupportable for the federal budget as a whole.

      But neither of these potential problems is a clear and present danger. Social Security has been running surpluses for the last quarter-century, banking those surpluses in a special account, the so-called trust fund. The program won’t have to turn to Congress for help or cut benefits until or unless the trust fund is exhausted, which the program’s actuaries don’t expect to happen until 2037 — and there’s a significant chance, according to their estimates, that that day will never come.

  • Dave, remember Lehman Brothers?

  • Yes, I do, Minard. Not relevant given the type of accounts the $ would be managed under.

  • In addition to advice from combustiblegirl, Red Hook resident should access 311 online or by phone and record their complaint. Make sure to keep a copy of both complaint and complaint #. Go to this link and search for “water meter complaint”: http://www.nyc.gov/apps/311/homepage.htm
    Also see this PDF: http://www.nyc.gov/html/nycwaterboard/pdf/rates/fy2013_rates.pdf
    Funny (NOT) how the Republican froths about government while not one word of help for the Red Hook poster.

  • In addition to advice from combustiblegirl, Red Hook resident should access 311 online or by phone and record their complaint. Make sure to keep a copy of both complaint and complaint #. Go to this link and search for “water meter complaint”: http://www.nyc.gov/apps/311/homepage.htm
    Also see this PDF: http://www.nyc.gov/html/nycwaterboard/pdf/rates/fy2013_rates.pdf
    Funny (NOT) how the Republican froths about government while not one word of help for the Red Hook poster.

  • what part of Enron was run by an incompetent government agency?

  • Yes, Minard, they were bought, unlike Lehman. Assets all safe. You left wingers love to trot these two names out, don’t you????

    How about Madoff???? In fact, he was a Democrat.

    • i think the point is that they were bought after they ruined many lives. imagine how many lives could be ruined if gov’t agencies go private and then have to be sold because they go belly up. gov’ts are able to run at a loss. private companies are not. and what does Madoff being a Democrat have to do with anything? there are d*cks on both sides.

    • i think the point is that they were bought after they ruined many lives. imagine how many lives could be ruined if gov’t agencies go private and then have to be sold because they go belly up. gov’ts are able to run at a loss. private companies are not. and what does Madoff being a Democrat have to do with anything? there are d*cks on both sides.

  • Yes, Minard, they were bought, unlike Lehman. Assets all safe. You left wingers love to trot these two names out, don’t you????

    How about Madoff???? In fact, he was a Democrat.

  • Minard, there’s no accountability for government spending. Bringing up these isolated corporate examples is just making you look like you don;’t actually understand any of them.

  • Minard, there’s no accountability for government spending. Bringing up these isolated corporate examples is just making you look like you don;’t actually understand any of them.

  • AIG never lost customer funds either and with Enron it wasn’t an issue. Shareholders and bondholders were srewed, the way it should be in a capitalist society.

    As a frenchman, you’re starting to sound like your compatriot, Hollande. Tsk, tsk. That’s not going so well for france nowadays.

  • AIG never lost customer funds either and with Enron it wasn’t an issue. Shareholders and bondholders were srewed, the way it should be in a capitalist society.

    As a frenchman, you’re starting to sound like your compatriot, Hollande. Tsk, tsk. That’s not going so well for france nowadays.

  • Anyway, that’s some sexy meter setup.

  • my point is whatever inefficiency is present in the public sector is more than offset by the level of greed and deceit in the business sector.

  • Not really, Minard. Those are a few incidents among the hundreds of thousands of companies in the private sector. hardly representative of the sector as a whole.

  • Not really, Minard. Those are a few incidents among the hundreds of thousands of companies in the private sector. hardly representative of the sector as a whole.

  • And the government will be screwing milions of Treasury bond holders once rates start rising. All the private sector bankruptcies in history won’t amount to the losses experienced when rates rise!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • And the government will be screwing milions of Treasury bond holders once rates start rising. All the private sector bankruptcies in history won’t amount to the losses experienced when rates rise!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Thanks combustiblegirl and cupolacoffee,
    I have accumulated enough frequent flyer miles over the years on 311 to take me to timbuktu and back. Will do re: 311 complaint.

    Right now I have getting my power back on the “front burner” . Only 2 days ago was I informed by con Ed, after twice daily phone calls since the power went out, that I need to obtain at my expense a licensed electrician certification that my meters were not damaged in the storm. Without it, and even though buildings that had some water near me have been turned on WITHOUT certification, they will not turn on my power. Any dummie walking down my street can see that my meters are mounted outside and approximately 12′ from ground level.

    Oh and I was in my building when the power went on for about 20 minutes 2 days after the storm. No breakers went, no scorching, no problem. Ohhhh, this isn’t a delay tactic at all, it is for my own safety. Welllllll, yeah, we totally would have got the power back on, but those stupid Red Hook residents didn’t see the Electric Services memo buried in the website somewhere. And, the number they give you for information? Nobody answers, you must have a name or extension that isn’t supplied by con Ed representatives.

  • Redhookresident, I’m sure the DEP aggravation is the last thing you need to be juggling right now, but…
    If you need an electrician, I recommend Ceriello: http://antoniocerielloelectric.com/
    Make sure you hang onto electrician’s receipt, and if there’s any way to document DEP’s insistence you obtain a licensed electrician at your expense, make sure to document.
    In addition to 311, file DEP’s online dispute form too (and see flooding complaint note further up on same page): http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/customer_services/customer_service.shtml#dispute
    Log onto your AMR account, just so you can record whatever info it’s showing (take a screen shot if you can): http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/customer_services/amr_about.shtml
    This text appears on the link above, so make sure, as much as you’re able, that an electrician can do the work, rather than a DEP contractor: “DEP contractors continue to provide door-to-door installations of the AMR transmitters at no cost and will also be replacing some old water meters….”