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Marine Drive Apartments Manager Resigns

Since the moment he was installed into his position by Mayor Byron Brown, Henry Littles has been under fire as manager of the Marine Drive Apartments, the BMHA-owned public housing complex on Buffalo’s waterfront.

Now he’s resigned. Details on the reason for his resignation are forthcoming (we’re waiting for an okay from a party to the story), but suffice to say it is not exactly mismanagement or malfeasance that did Littles in, though he has been accused of both by the tenants’ association. (Most recently, there were complaints that Littles was trying to intimidate residents to prevent them sharing their complaints about management with one another.) Rather, a deeply personal scandal that suggests abuse of his authority led to Little resignation.

Littles became manager of the waterfront apartment complex when control of Marine Drive passed from the scandal-ridden HKMDA, LLC, headed by Richard Hutchens, to a newly formed entity called Erie Regional Housing Development Corporation, whose board is largely controlled by Buffalo’s mayor. Littles is a long-time supporter of Brown whose previous experience managing property was not so successful: In 2008, Littles was cited by city housing inspectors for numerous violations at properties he owned on Schreck and West Utica streets.

More soon.

  • linda

    I think you need to look up the definition of malfeasance …

  • geoff kelly

    Poor writing on my part. It’s probably malfeasance.

  • Richard Kern

    Surely there is more to this story than a mere “affair”.

    Having monitored waste & corruption at BMHA for decades as a social worker, I am distressed that ‘the elephant in the room’ is ignored, as repeated ‘petty’ scandals at BMHA are steadily exposed.

    Yesterday ballots went out to about 3000 BMHA tenants of voting age to select two tenant representatives on the seven member BMHA Board. Ballots must be returned by June 8.

    There are four candidates, including two-term incumbants Joseph Mascia & Leonard Williams, who are sure winners. The other two candidates are 20 year (Shaffer) tenant Elaine DiAllo & somewhat controversial Frederic Douglass tenant Rudolphus Boans.

    The elections are monitored by League of Women Voters on a $3000 contract to counter longtime irregularities in the elctions. But the League refuses to discuss the real issues in the election.

    Last year HUD poured $32 million into BMHA to house about 3140 tenants households in 3940 HUD-funded BMHA apartments (800 vacancies). That is an annual HUD subsidy of about $10,190 per typical household of two persons. In addition the city provides generous tax forgiveness & tenants pay modest rents based on income.

    The real cost of BMHA housing is over $1500 monthly in a city with massive vacancies, abandonment & blight. Indeed, the less than 10% of the city’s poor living at BMHA get over half of city-controlled ‘affordable housing’ funding.

    Is is massivley UNFAIR HOUSING as most of the city’s poor live in blighted neighborhoods gettng little or no city aid.

    But such issues are unlikely to be addressed in this election cycle.

    BMHA is apparently “too big to fail”!

  • linda

    what do you mean “somewhat controversial Rudolphus Boans” ??

  • Before your story is “forthcoming”, please correct some of your information.
    Henry Littles was not “installed” by Mayor Brown; he was hired by Erie Regional,
    which was incorporated at least ten years before Hutchens/Kissling were ousted from Marine Drive.
    Erie Regional and Henry Littles took over the management of Marine Drive, under a massive deficit created by H/K; they reduced that deficit, bringing Marine Drive to a point of having no outstanding debts. Under Erie Regional and Henry Littles, occupancy was increased and unpaid rents were decreased. Henry Littles submitted a full report each month, so maybe you want to ask Erie Regional for those figures (unless old news about privately owned property just makes better reading). Speaking of which, you may want to revise your sentence about Mayor “Brown’s previous experience managing property”.
    Let’s correct another comment in your article. Henry Littles did not try to “prevent residents from sharing their complaints with one another”. Be serious. Does any sensible person really think “a letter” would stop people from talking with one another ? Henry Littles simply wanted to tell residents they need to report problems to the office, in order for them to be addressed (unless garbage complaints by the Resident Council just makes better reading).
    Lastly, as a resident of Marine Drive, I’m totally disgusted with the negative comments made by the negative few on the Resident Council. So Mascia didn’t get the manager he wanted; get over it and stop casting a negative image on a wonderful place to live (unless, of course, that doesn’t get mascia’s name into the news).

  • Richard Kern

    Please do print “the rest of the news” soon!

    I do find it ironic that George Stokes got a good “Crime Analyst” job at BMHA because of who he sleeps with, as Littles so quickly lost his for his choice of ‘sleepmates!

    What is the story behind the lover-tenant’s spilling the beans??

    This comment by “iobserve” on the Bflo News article has been removed. I do not see any serious errors in the comments. Are there any?


    Mr. Kern,
    Four years ago, you posted information on a website about
    mascia owing $220,000 in liens. I wasn’t “on line” then; someone left the information in an envelope at my front door.
    At that time, you quesioned how someone owing money to the federal government can sit on an authority receiving federal funds, and how someone owing money to the state government can sit on an authority serving state housing
    I didn’t doubt you, but I checked for myself in the County Clerk’s office (public record) and found you were right on target. The dollar amount mascia owed was actually $221.098.06; $76, 201.96 of that was in Federal Income Tax not paid and $44,965.73 was in New York State Income Tax not paid. I thank you, Mr. Kern. I agree with you, and also wonder how someone with mascia’s financial track record can make sound decisions for the Housing Authority.
    I received another document this year; it appears there are added liens; I haven’t had a chance to research these yet.
    Also, large “mascia” posters (not just 8×11 flyers) are popping up all over. I’d like the other candidates to ask mascia his income, how he can afford these posters and how well he can relate to the low-income people in public housing.
    And Mr. Kern, there surely is more to the Deidre Williams
    story. Some day, I’ll share that with you.
    Oh, and by the way bflogloria, Henry Littles IS a gentleman and a good business man ! Sometime, in all your blabbering, talk about him reducing the deficit created by Hutchens/Kissling, bringing Marine Drive to a point of having no outstanding debts, increasing occupancy and decreasing unpaid rents. If you want those figures, I’d be happy to post them.
    And you and sistersue please remember : this will be my only comment; I don’t play “back-and-forth” with you.

    Posted by: iobserve on May 25,2010 at 04:59 pm (END QUOTE)

  • Gerry

    Someone sure has their panties in a twist. Is this really all about your not being successful in your attempts to solidify your “Queens Landing” take-over of Marine Drive. Just an FYI, ERHDC is basically BMHA. Both are run by the Mayors office or as it’s so fondly referred to, “The Second Floor”. But then again, you already knew that. What in God’s name did they offer you to do their dirty work? Nothing like selling your soul just to have someone pay attention to your ramblings. Regarding HKMDA, I believe “someone” not mentioning any names, was in the habit of sending flowers to HKMDA’s offfice manager because some strings were pulled for her regarding securing her a large apartment.It still remains to be seen as to this “major reduction of the debt”. Marine Drive will hopefully be audited to see exactly how well? things were running. At least that’s what I hope would happen. FYI, Geoff was referring to Littles not Brown when he stated that “his previous experience managing property was not so successful”. Any sensible person would have surmised that. In reference to this “letter”, perhaps a copy of the posting regarding the intention of the manager would help. In fact Geoff may already have a copy. Maybe that’s where he got his information from. It was most certainly a “veiled threat”. I understand that many people in your building chose to move rather than put up with your hateful, prejudiced comments. I would advise that you stop drinking the Kool-Aid. Please stop being so self-serving. As far as I can ascertain, the comments of the of the resident council representative’s are certainly not meant to be negative rather they seem to be more “integrity driven”. You are familiar with the word “integrity” aren’t you? All of their efforts have been positive. Their efforts did rid us of HKMDA. Now where exactly did you stand on that? I believe you thought they were great. So much for your judgement of character. Keep blogging and spreading your venom. At the very least your approval of someone will alert the rest of us as to who not to trust. Finally, remember, “Time Wounds All Heels” and you can take that to the bank.

  • Gerry

    I hope you have gotten everything off of your chest Iobserve. You and Marilyn should really compare notes. She is your alter ego isn’t she? By the by, I haven’t seen your blog asking for the credentials and background of the other BMHA nominees. Perhaps that is forthcoming. My responses to Marilyn/Iobserve will suffice for you as well. Regarding Mr. Mascia’s financial situation,it has no bearing on whether or not he should be a BMHA commissioner. After all, he hasn’t been fired by a banking institution regarding questionable loans, there aren’t any accusations of extra-marital affairs, he doesn’t have a record of being a convicted felon and many people, especially in these very tough economic times, are also suffering financial hardships. It seems that his unfortunate circumstances would make him easily a more compassionate representative of the BMHA residents. In fact, do some more digging,or as you call it “investigating” it would indeed be interesting as to the “background” of the other candidates. Surely even you must realize that the majority of the BMHA board are appointed by the Mayor. BMHA=ERHDC. The two elected commissioners, who are there to represent the residents, are usually over-ridden by the majority who, again, are appointed by the Mayor. Any sensible person would be aware of the fact that the commissioners don’t actually handle any “money”. All of the decisions regarding where the money is to be spent comes from the appointees of the “second floor”. You certainly do have a vendetta against Mr. Mascia. How are you being paid and how do you find the time to do the dirty work of BMHA, ERHDC, the Marine Drive property manager and the “second floor”? Oh that’s right, I almost forgot, you are on the board of ERHDC. It makes it all that much easier to muddy things up. Just what they needed another bobblehead that will pass anything as long as the “second floor” approves. I can’t believe that the Mayor hasn’t yet appointed you to the BMHA board. Whatever, I hope it’s been worth it. Again, “Time wounds all heels”.

  • Mr. Kern, thank you for bringing forth my Buffalo News comments. I am certain you won’t find any “serious errors”, because I don’t write or speak without documentation to verify my comments (said documentation, I should mention, is stored in my attorney’s office).
    I’d also like to thank you, again, for your expertise in finding the mascia liens; you were right on target.
    Gerald, you need to grow up on the Queens Landing thing; I didn’t even live at Marine Drive when Queens Landing was incorporated, but I certainly admire the imagination of the women who did so. Long-time residents tell me you’re quite bitter because you didn’t think of it first. I am “guilty” of trying to arrange a time when Council and Queens Landing residents could meet to talk about “rumors” vs “facts”. Your cohorts on the Council, however, aren’t large on accuracy and didn’t show up.
    It’s basically impossible (and fruitless) to try to correct all things you are wrong about, but I have my “large apartment” because I was offered both sizes and was willing to pay the higher rent for the “large”; there were no “strings” attached (except maybe Saint Joseph); and it was Erin, not the “office manager” Julie, who gave me the keys. You are right, however, I absolutely did send flowers to the office (both Hutchens/Kissling and Erie Regional); it’s called courtesy and appreciation. For the last two years, I’ve done “hot dogs” for the office staff, on opening day of the Hatch. (It supports local business.)
    Gerald, I absolutely do have people I “admire”; they have never offered and I have never asked for “favors”; they have never told or asked me to say or do anything (which is one of the reasons I admire them). I must also mention, I have people I consider to be “pond scum”, for reasons which are obvious (and they, most likely, will identify themselves by objecting to the term).
    By the way, Gerald, I don’t drink. You probably have your allegation confused with the person who wrote “RAT B-S-A-D” on my front door, in magic marker.
    Lastly, as I make clear to your cohorts, I won’t play “back and forth” with you.

  • linda

    Marilyn, you seem to be good at research, I asked MR. Kern but he didn’t respond . do you know what he means By the “controversial Rudolphus Boans” ? Hoping you have some background on him in your archives. Thank you .

  • Gerry

    It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to find out the the information that Mr. Kearns “discovered”. As far as your speaking or writing without documentation or the fact that you do not make errors, that in itself is quite funny. Your neighbors are quite aware of the fact that you do tend to bend the truth (lie)on many things. It is truly unfortunate that genetically you are prone to lying when the mood suits you. Anyone who would try to create a racial incident at Marine Drive does not deserve to live there. So then, you weren’t the person that reported back to the Queens Landing spokesperson right after every council meeting. You were seen by many of your neighbors. Hmm, very interesting. Wow, your imagination or ability to see things that aren’t there is really quite astounding. The person you are speaking of is, most likely, too honest a person to try to dupe their neighbors into thinking that they could buy their apartment and pay the same mortgage payment as they are paying rent.Intimidating people into thinking that unless they join QL they wouldn’t have a place to live. Shame on the women that you admire and you for scaring many people into leaving. If greed is to be admired then all of your entire Queens Landing friends must be in constant awe of each other. I understand that the manager of HKMDA educated you on how to use the name of a person that had already passed so that you would be eligible for a two bedroom. At the time HKMDA was managing Marine Drive, you couldn’t qualify for a two bedroom unless you had an in and did it illegally. Like I said before, you seem to be attracted to people who are unsavory. Birds of a feather and all that. No, I think you used the words courtesy and appreciation when you really meant “I owe”. I really don’t know who you are referring to when you used the term “pond scum”. The people I am acquainted with are above “playground name calling”. You will have to play that little game by yourself. But, then again, you must be used to being alone. Even the Queens Landing group has more sense than to be seen with you. Wow, you don’t drink anything, even Kool-Aid. Check with your Doctor, usually people who are dehydrated talk crazy. Case in point, What are you referring to when you wrote “You probably have your allegation confused with the person who wrote “RATBSAD” on my front door, in magic marker.”? Maybe you just need an IV. Please, do all of us a favor and include me in with the group that you won’t play “back and forth” with.

  • I lived at Marine Drive from 1998 untill 2004.The complex was run by Ed Smith and his wife.I understood at that time there was a surplus of a few million. The whole complex was clean and all different types of people lived in harmony. I am not living in Buffalo at this time,but I have many happy memories of my time at THE DRIVE.

  • Linda,
    In 2008, I publically said I would not vote for mascia, for tenant commissioner.
    There were only three candidates, which “cast my vote” for Leonard Williams and Rudolphus Boans.
    “Gerry”, in support of mascia and in an attack on me, posted flyers alleging things about Mr. Boans. I have no idea as to the accuracy of what he wrote and wouldn’t repeat it. His allegations did not stop me from voting for Mr. Boans.
    I’ve seen Mr. Boans at public meetings, at various times throughout the years; he has been polite and friendly. I’ve heard Mr. Boans speak at public forums;
    his comments are well thought out and well spoken.
    According to the League of Women Voters, “the candidates must consent to a “Candidate’s Night” (we can be pretty certain mascia will not) so, if I don’t have the opportunity to meet Elaine DiAllo and/or if Leonard Williams does not
    “endorse” her, I will once again vote for Mr. Williams and Mr. Boans.

  • Gerry

    Thank you for letting us know that Mr. Mascia is surely the candidate to trust and vote for. It’s good to know that just by your keeping the residents informed us as to who you favor, in any situation ,helps them to know who NOT to vote for. regarding a Candidate’s Night, I’m sure all of the candidates will consent. Good luck to all. Marilyn, with all of your completely reliable “investigative” skills, I’m sure it wouldn’t be too hard to check out the background of all of the candidate’s. Please spread it around to all the people that trust you and all your friend (no, that is not a typo) that you back Williams and Boans. That should surely make it a no-brainer landslide success for Mr. Mascia.

  • linda

    Marilyn – your disdain for Mr. Mascia is obvious – not sure why you have to keep repeating it., I asked you a very specific question regarding MR. Boans and got more “I hate Joe Mascia instead”. Thanks anyway,. Maybe Mr. Kern will respond.