Gramercy Park Block Association - Neighborhood News #403
Shame on the Board of Directors of The Players

On Monday, July 22nd,  newly re-elected Players president Johnnie Planco sent an e-mail to the members outlining some of the many dire financial woes at the club.

Many who read the e-mail reacted with outrage and astonishment at how The Players Board of Directors could re-elect Planco, since for months it has been made crystal clear that much of the club's $4 million in debt has accrued under his leadership, and his and his Executive Committee's support of John Martello as Executive Director.

Below are excerpts from Planco's e-mail.  The subjects and quotes are taken directly from his e-mail, while the text in blue is added commentary.
                                             Photo by Sabina Mollot
  
1. Tax Lien
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "Back on May 17, 2013 the New York City Dept. of Finance sold a tax lien "for nonpayment of taxes, and/or water and sewer charges, other assessments and the interest accrued on these charges." The total lien amount was $251,494.82 and it was sold to MTAG Services, LLC. The date of the letter from NYC is June 28, 2013. Foreclosure can begin one year after the sale date or we don't pay the semi-annual interest on the lien sale amount within 30 days after it is due. We have not been notified when that date is. It seems that we haven't made a payment on the payment plan entered in October 2011 with NYC in almost a year and that is why our lien was sold," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.
  
2. Union Issues.
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "As of May 31, 2013 we owed over $190,000.00 in past due contributions to the Union Health Benefits and Pension Plan Account. No payment has been made since July, 2012. Interest and penalties push this closer to $250,000.00,"  AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.
 
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "There is also the matter of union dues that were never forwarded to the union. As of March, 2013 the amount we owed was over $136,000.00," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.              

3. Reclaim the Sargent painting.
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "We must raise approximately $315,000 by August 13th for The Players to retain control of the painting.  This will enable us to sell the painting for future debts and not lose it to the current loan company," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.  
 
4. Complete the facade restoration.
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT due to deferred maintenance and neglect the facade deteriorated, and the cost to now complete the facade restoration "will take approximately $325,000," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.
 
5. Repair the elevator.
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "Approximately: $5,000 plus $1,600 owed on maintenance agreement," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.
 
6. Repair the air conditioning.
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT the cost to repair air conditioning "Approximately: $16,000." "The original estimate came in more than 25% cheaper but a number of issues (mainly due to lack of maintenance and corner-cutting on the previous installation) caused the costs to rise," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT.
 
7. Back Sales Taxes
WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "We owe NYS for unpaid sales taxes 11/30/2012 through 2/28/2013. The amount is $37,230.86. With interest and penalties of $9601.71 the total owed (and it continues to accrue) is $46,832.57," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT. 
 
8. Vendors
I KNOW THIS ONE SOUNDS HILARIOUS, HOWEVER, WHILE I WAS PRESIDENT "We can't even begin to give an accurate total as we owe so many people and companies for the food we serve, the linens and uniforms we used to launder, service calls, etc. gone unpaid for. Let's just say it totals in the mid five figures," AND THE BOARD JUST RE-ELECTED ME PRESIDENT. 
 
In closing Planco says "This is not only the business of the officers and the Board, it is all of our business and we can only make this happen by working together" 
 
We say those words are totally meaningless when it comes from a president with no credibility and no business plan in place to solve $4 million in debt. 

Shame on the Board of Directors for choosing Planco over the survival of The Players!