By Regina Skyer
Since October 17th, when we first sent our open letter to the City Council making our ‘Demand for Payment,’ we haven’t stopped squeaking. As of November 15th, thirty-one percent of the outstanding stipulations have been executed and returned to us. That leaves us squeaking about the remaining sixty-nine percent.
Similarly, reimbursement payments are once again flowing into our escrow account and are being sent on to clients forty-eight hours later. As of today, almost thirty-five percent of the cases that were awaiting payment as of two weeks ago are now paid. Again, we are relieved to see this movement—but the battle is far from over.
We have continued to provide regular updated information on both non-executed stipulations and non-paid cases to the appropriate department heads at the DOE. We have repeatedly demanded that they execute and pay out these cases immediately. In response, the Department of Education’s Office of General Counsel and the Finance Department inform us that they continue to work diligently on our cases.
What I strongly suggest is that if you are one of our clients whose 2015-2016 case has not been executed or paid, that you write to your City Councilmember, inform them of your situation, and request that your attorney, Regina Skyer be given an opportunity to address the City Council about this issue affecting many hundreds of New York families of special education students. Remember, there is a city election next year, and no one up for re-election including the Mayor, wants negative publicity.
Find your Councilmember’s name and contact information using this online form: http://council.nyc.gov/html/members/members.shtml. You will see a district office address and legislative office address listed for your representative. If you decide to use snail mail, address your letter to the district office.
Please also send a copy of your personal letter to your Councilmember to the following legislators:
NYC Council Education Committee Chair Daniel Dromm
250 Broadway, Suite 1826
New York, NY 10007
NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito
250 Broadway, Suite 1856
New York, NY 10007