Watch: City Council Censures Defiant Pereira For Vitriolic Language, Calling Chief Porter A “Pig” – Stripped Of Committee Assignments, Debate

By a vote of 13 to 1, the City Council Monday night censured councilwoman Maria Pereira for an assortment of inflammatory actions including describing Police Chief Roderick Porter as a “pig” and department members “piglets,” as well as flipping the bird to the public during a council session last month, a response that strips her of committee assignments and limits her debate.

The resolution read by councilwoman Jeanette Herron called on Pereira to resign from the council, which Pereira refused to do and offer an apology which she also rejected. The City Charter has a removal clause for council members, but state law does not allow a recall provision.

Pereira also directed inflammatory remarks last month at the Palestinian community during debate calling for a cease fire in the Middle East. Pereira wrapped herself in the Israeli flag Monday night.

Pereira cloaked herself in the Israeli flag.

Pereira’s removal from committee assignments renders her enfeebled from voting on measures and parliamentary discussion.

Short six members all but Pereira voted yes for the censure including her Upper East Side council partner Jazmarie Melendez who is now another in a long line of representatives of the Upper East Side 138th District who’ve split from Pereira’s controlling personality. Melendez ran well ahead of Pereira in last September’s council primary that Pereira won because of absentee ballots.

Jazmarie Melendez Monday night. Photo courtesy of Joel Gonzalez.

Pereira’s beef with the police department stems from her November election day arrest for allegedly assaulting a 70-year-old woman in front of the JFK voting precinct, something she is defending in state court.

Councilman Ernie Newton, in absence of Council President Aidee Nieves who was away due to a family death, chaired the meeting.

Afterwards Newton said “We took care of business. She’s alienated herself to the point I feel sorry for her constituents.”

Council meeting crowd. Photo courtesy of Joel Gonzalez.

At one point Pereira read from a lengthy defense, what Newton coined “a book,” with a long line of grievances and insults cast at her political enemies. Several times she scornfully fabricated disruptions from the large audience filled with Middle East factions, drawing rebuke from council members and a back and forth with Newton.

“I thought she was a publisher,” Newton added afterwards. “That was the worst campaign speech I’ve ever heard.”

Council members also rallied behind Melendez who has drawn the fury of Pereira for separating herself from Pereira’s actions and treatment of constituents.

Melendez, see video clip below courtesy of council member Eneida Martinez, delivered from her council seat next to Pereira a forceful condemnation of Pereira’s conduct declaring “how many people along the journey of me getting elected told me how they are scared of her, how she harasses them, how they feel bullied by her. And that is the truth…I myself is also being bullied by Maria.”

Melendez’s delivery was followed by a large roar of approval and standing ovation from many spectators.

Pereira has aligned herself with John Gomes in this extended mayoral cycle, but Ganim defeated Gomes handily in her district in the second mayoral primary two weeks ago showing another setback of her diminished standing with constituents.

Gomes has boxed himself in with Pereira opting to embrace her absentee ballot prowess rather than see the larger picture of the baggage among her broader constituency.





  1. Lennie, I forgot to report that Jimfox was nowhere in sight. But, I swear I saw 2 pairs of feets sticking out the bottom of the Israeli flag cloaked on Pereira.

    1. Sure, Jimfox. I know it was you under her cloaked flag. Next time use matching footwear instead of Electrician Safety Boots.

      Pereira stated that she told her “supporters” NOT to attend to speak on her behalf as it was too dangerous to do so. Her former close friend and neighbor Mrs. Losak was among the first (JML spoke first. To read what he said, just read any of his OIB comments) speakers. Then there was the Classy Councilwomen Melendez, who sat next to her as Pereira kept harrasing her going as far as continuosly putting/recording with her cell phone very close to Ms. Melendez’s face.

  2. Last evening my subject was specific to the continuing lack of a Fair Housing Commission while housing issues of all types cause troubles for residents. The failure of a series of Democratic Mayors for over 20 years to appoint candidates for Fair Rent and Fair Housing boards and as member terms expired, an people died, retired, or faced the lack of quorums, those Charter Commissions DIED IN PLACE.

    As a public speaker at many pre-City Council meetings, I found the absences of Mayor Joseph Ganim, City Council President Aidee Nieves, plus several other CC members notable. The censure of a Council member is a critical step for local governance, though the facts surrounding her words and gestures were never in question.

    Council member Periera has chosen not to apologize or resign. Perhaps this incident needs special attention whenever Charter review begins. Leaving Council member to handle the chaotic competition of voices with out due respect and order, but only a gavel, and a police presence as tools is not fair to anyone. The voices competing for attention were not attending the injunctions from Muslim, Jewish, and Christian faith leaders at the beginning of the evening session praying for peace in the world. I wish that Reverend Anthony Bennett, whose voice immediately creates awe and respect, as people listen for his next words had been present to bring order. Time will tell.

  3. The only voice competing for attention was your voice. You left shortly after your echo was transmitted in the chamber.

    Had you stayed or read Lennie’s commentary, you would have been informed of the death of Aidee’s relative in Puerto Rico. Ernie Newton did a better job than Joe Ganim would have done, political correctness was out the window. Joe Ganim’s presence wasn’t necessary as it was obvious there would be no need to break a tie vote. JML, you’re just disappointed the full body of the Council and the mayor were not present to hear you. Again, Reverend Anthony Bennett did speak as you left after you felt you were heard. Can’t heard what time tells if you’re not there to listen.

    This is OIB correspondent Joel Speedy Gonzalez. Back to you Lennie!

  4. Speedy,
    Indeed??Your journalism is failing, factually, but never from want of ‘opinion’
    I stayed until 8 PM. That is when you saw me leaving the meeting. And if you had been at the PUBLIC SPEAKING session, you would have realized that there was silence in the audience until I completed my comments, then applause from the audience. FACT

    Public Speaking is presided by City Council President, so absence of Ganim2 is not necessary to a speaker, because I most frequently send a copy to Frances Wilson, City Clerk Office for inclusion in the records, as well as to listed Council members. FACT

    I hears Rev Bennett offer his prayer with Muslim and Jewish faith leaders as well. FACT. Did he speak again?

    A journalist, as you have recently claimed to be, sticks to verifiable facts. Your closing comments betray without any doubt that your “efforts” are merely for the Ganim2 camp, and you believe that you can help him by eliminating comments that observe the failure of Ganim2 as the latest Mayor responsible for the failure of Fair Rent Commission (until they meet in 2024) and Fair Housing Commission, each dead in the water last year, with no membership nominees for a decade or more, no meetings, no agendas, and no minutes?

    Why does Ganim2 not perform all the Mayoral responsibilities? Is it because he does not care about FAIR? We know he knows about real estate though through CT Post reporting on occasion. Have a comment to offer for a Mayor who does not care, and within the recent term, removed Fair Rent and Fair Housing from the listing of City Commissions from the City website. Verifiable facts? Go check. Report back, please. Time will tell.


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