COLUMBIA OUSTS AUTO SHOPS
By AUSTIN FENNER
July 5, 2007 -- In late May, Columbia University handed out degrees to its graduating class - and now, the school is effectively handing hardworking Harlem auto mechanics eviction notices, the workers say.
More than 20 mechanics at three auto repairs shops near 131st Street and Broadway in Manhattan will be out of work by July 31, as they become the first economic casualties in Columbia's campus-expansion plan.
"We don't see how we are going to support our families," said Rolando Sally, 42, a mechanic at Tony's Auto Repair. "We are stuck."
Tony Garcia, who owns Tony's, threw his hands up in the air when a reporter asked him what would he do come Aug. 1. The businesses were subleasing space from Juan German, who has inked an agreement to clear out of the space by the end of the month.
Columbia said the situation with German's subtenants is complicated because they didn't have leases with him.