M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives


Finding Aid for the
PAPERS, 1958-2004


For reference queries contact M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives Reference staff

Finding Aid Compiled by
Nicole Nadeau
June 1996
Amy C. Schindler
January 2003

M. E. Grenander Department of Special Collections & Archives 
University Libraries / University at Albany / State University of New York 
1400 Washington Avenue / Albany, New York 12222 / (518) 437-3935

VOLUME: 7.0 cubic feet

ACQUISITION: All items in this manuscript group were donated to the University Libraries, M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, by Harold Rubin on August 1, 1989; October 1, 1989; July 27, 1990; September 13, 2002; and September 8, 2004.

ACCESS: Access to this record group is unrestricted.

COPYRIGHT: The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of copyright. Whenever possible, the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives will provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions, but the legal determination ultimately rests with the researcher. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the Head of Special Collections and Archives.


Biographical History

Scope and content note

Series descriptions

Box and folder list:

Harold Rubin
Biographical History

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Harold Rubin was born in the Bronx and began his civil service career with New York State in 1950 as a statistician with the Public Service Commission. He joined the Department of Commerce in 1953 as an economist and the division of the Budget in 1956 as a research analyst, where he held a variety of positions until he retired in 1989 as a chief budget examiner. Rubin has a B.S.S. from the City College of New York and a M.P.A. and a Ph.D. from Syracuse University. A prominent Albany neighborhood activist since the 1960's, he is also known for his participation in a 1978 lawsuit which stopped Governor Carey's attempt to disclose the outside income of top level bureaucrats.

As a community leader, Rubin has chaired the Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA) from its inception in 1976 to May 1996. While playing a significant role advocating neighborhood concerns throughout the City of Albany, Rubin has also been active in the Center Square Neighborhood Association, his residence since 1964. He has also been an active member of the Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, the Neighborhood Resource Center, and Friends of Albany Public Library. Among the causes that Rubin has fought for are tenants rights and the preservation and restoration of historic buildings and areas in Albany.[1]


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1. Information on Harold Rubin's career from Kyle Hughes, "Albany's Gadfly Ends State Career", Albany Times Union, 3 May 1989; Karen Roach, "Neighborhood Group Turns 20", The Daily Gazette, 28 January 1996; and from Harold Rubin.

Harold Rubin Papers
Scope & Content Note

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The Harold Rubin Papers consist for the most part of files Rubin kept as a neighborhood activist interested in historic preservation and neighborhood renewal in Albany, New York between 1964 and 2002. To a lesser degree they document Rubin's legal struggles with the administration of New York State Governor Hugh Carey over Carey's 1978 attempt to force New York State civil servants to disclose outside sources of income, and his interest in Governor Mario M. Cuomo's attempt to withhold salary increases for civil servants.

Rubin chaired the Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA) from May 1976 to May 1996. CANA is the coordinating body for Albany neighborhood associations. Rubin has also been involved with the Neighborhood Resources Center, the Center Square Association (his neighborhood), and the Capitol Hill Architectural Review Commission. His files on these organizations contained correspondence, minutes, news clippings on the organizations and issues they were interested in, organizational newsletters, and reports. His files also contain extensive correspondence with other Albany neighborhood organizations such as Hudson/Park Neighborhood Association and Pine Hills Neighborhood Association. The files included correspondence with Albany organizations interested in urban renewal and historic preservation including the Capitol Hill Improvement Corporation, the Capitol Housing Rehabilitation Corporation, the Historic Albany Foundation, Historic Resources Commission (1988), Historic Sites Commission, Albany Industrial Development Agency, Mayor Corning Memorial Committee (1984), and St. Joseph Housing Corporation (1983).

Rubin's files also contain correspondence with New York City and New York State organizations interested in historic preservation including the Brownstone Revival Committee, New York State Council on Architecture, and Preservation League of New York State; and national correspondence with and information on the Alliance for Neighborhood Government and Neighborhood Preservation. There is also a small general Clippings/Miscellaneous File on Albany issues of concern to Rubin.

The files are organized into four series: Albany Community Subject Files, 1964-1989; a State Employment Subject File, 1975-1977; a Neighborhood Associations File which contains sub-series on the following organizations: Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA), 1975-2002, Neighborhood Resource Center, 1975-1990, Center Square Association, 1972-1979, Capitol Hill Architectural Review Commission, 1971-1988, Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1974-1977; and a general Clippings/Miscellaneous File, 1972-1980. An inventory of the 2004 accession is also included in the relevant series, but that material has not as of yet been fully arranged and described.

Harold Rubin
Series Descriptions

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Series 1: Albany Community Subject Files, 1964-1990, 2.7 cubic ft., Arranged alphabetically.

The files contain newspaper clippings, codes, and investigations on a wide range of topics pertaining to urban issues such as housing codes and enforcement, highway construction, parking, preservation and demolition of buildings and historical sites, preservation of the Pine Bush, security, burglary, a 1973 investigation of police enforcement and corruption, taxes, urban community and neighborhood development and preservation, ordinances, and zoning. They contain correspondence with and information on the Hudson/Park and Pine Hills Neighborhood Associations, Albany neighborhood associations, Capitol Hill Improvement Corporation, Capitol Housing Rehabilitation Corporation, the Historic Albany Foundation, Historic Resources Commission (1988), Historic Sites Commission, Albany Industrial Development Agency, Mayor Corning Memorial Committee (1984), and St. Joseph Housing Corporation (1983); and correspondence with and information on the New York City Brownstone Revival Committee, New York State Council on Architecture, and Preservation League of New York State; and national correspondence with and information on Alliance for Neighborhood Government, and Neighborhood Preservation.

The subject files also contain information on the development and building of the Civic Center, Capitol State Plaza, and South Mall, the preservation and history of such sites as Arbor Hill, Center Square, the Pine Bush specific to the building of Crossgates Mall, Pastures Preservation District (1973), the urban renewal of Ten Broeck Triangle, and Mansion Area, and the 1980?1981 demolition controversy over one of the buildings purchased by the Fort Orange Club to be demolished for parking spaces.

Series 2: State Employment File, 1975-1984, .6 cubic ft., Arranged alphabetically.

The files relate primarily to Harold Rubin's opposition to Governor Hugh Carey's attempt (Executive Order #10, #10-1) to impose financial disclosure requirements on civil servants which would have curtained their participation in outside activities.  They include a statement by Barbara Zaron, president of the Organization of New York State Management/Confidential Employees, at the Civil Service Merit System Hearing of 1984 and two letters on the issue.  Also included are briefs and a memorandum on James T. Evans, M.D. vs. Hugh L. Carey, Governor, concerning the public financial disclosure of civil servants private income records and the briefs on Susan Rapp vs Governor Carey on disclosure of public servants and the the Executive Order overturned by the New York Supreme Court of Appeals in James T. Evans vs. Governor Carey.  There are briefs and exhibits on the salary increase withholding lawsuit of 1983, Charles Shattenkirk and Eugene Tashman vs Michael Finnerty, Budget Director of New York State, and Governor Mario Cuomo.

Series 3: Neighborhood Associations File, 1972-2002, 2.0 cubic ft., Arranged in sub-series by organization and alphabetically thereunder.

The file contains clippings, correspondence, minutes of meetings, newsletters and other publications, reports, records of lawsuits, relating to Harold Rubin's membership in or interest in Albany neighborhood associations and groups involved in urban renewal and revitalization(historic preservation) including: the Capital Hill Architectural Review Commission, the Center Square Association, Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations, the Neighborhood Resource Center.  The files are organized into sub-series by association or organization as follows:

Sub-series 1: Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA), 1975-2002

CANA is an umbrella organization of active neighborhood groups, and associate group members, involved in such issues as the city budget, mayor's salary increases, Capital Plaza security, Common Council Procedures, Ethics Committee, a proposed "Floor Thru" zoning amendment to authorize multiple dwellings in certain neighborhoods, historic preservation, home occupation, community development, regulating business signs (the Key Bank sign controversy), and other city issues. The Albany city budget files includes news clippings, correspondence, testimony before the city council by members of CANA, and city budget's. The files also include CANA minutes and newsletters.

Sub-series 2: The Neighborhood Resources Center, 1975-1992

Contains general correspondence, clippings, committee placements, Director's reports, minutes, publications, and information on annual meetings and the Anti-Crime projects.

Sub-series 3: The Center Square Association, 1969-1979

Contains information on the building of a McDonald's, Lawsuit vs. Board of Building and Zoning Appeals (1977), police court, Terry Fox properties, and other zoning cases.

Sub-series 4: The Capitol Hill Architectural Review Commission, 1971-1988

Contains agendas, appointments, minutes, and recommendations, and information on sandblasting, and tax delinquency.

Sub-series 5: The Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1974-1978

Includes newspaper clippings and records on the organization.

Series 4: Clippings/Miscellaneous File, 1972-1980, .7 cubic ft., Arranged alphabetically.

Contains files kept by Harold Rubin relating to his concerns as a civil servant and in the Albany community.  They include clippings about the State Investigation Committee (SIC) hearings into the awarding of governmental contracts in Albany; Albany code enforcement and community development issues.  Includes one folder labeled Code Enforcement which inaddition to newspaper clippings includes Rubin's correspondence as head of the Center Square Association Zoning Committee in 1973-74 with city officials including Mayor Corning, copies of speeches Rubin made to local organization, and drafts an article on code enforcement Rubin wrote which was published in the Times Union relating to the enforcement of zoning ordinances in Albany.

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

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Series 1: Community Subject Files, 1964-1990

Box 1

1-2. Albany Civic Center, 1985
3. Albany City Salary Increases, 1986
4. Albany Code Enforcement (contains news clippings), 1973-1977
5-6. Albany Code Enforcement, 1974-1975
7. Albany Code Enforcement, 1974-1976
8. Albany Code Enforcement, 1974-1977
9. Albany Code Enforcement: Rev Potter, 1976
10. Albany Common Council Procedures, 1980-1986
11. Albany Department of Buildings, 1974-1979
12. Albany Ethics Commission, 1986-1987
13. Albany Finances, 1983-1987
14. Albany Financial Report, 1980
15. Albany Highway Construction, 1983
16-17. Albany Housing, 1980-1985
18. Albany Parking Permit System, 1974-1979
19. Albany Parking Permit System, 1984-1987
20. Albany Police Department, Investigation, 1973
21. Albany, Preservation/Demolition 1976-1989
22. Albany Prison, 1982
23. Albany Security Ordinance, 1980
24-26. Albany Strategic Plan, 1985
27. Albany Tax Delinquency, 1967-1968
28. Albany, Taxes, 1974-1975
29. Alliance for Neighborhood Government, 1976
30. Anti Grouper Legislation, 1975-1985
31. Arbor Hill, History, undated
32. Brownstone Revival Committee, 1969-1974
33. Burglary Protection, 1975
34. Capital Hill Improvement Corp., 1977-1988
35. Capital Housing Rehabilitation Corp., 1977-1978
36. Capital State Plaza, undated
37. City Living Series, 1974-1978
38. Civil Service Mgt., 1982-1984
39. Center Square, 1974
40. Coalition for Fair Assessments, 1978-1979
41. Community Development, 1974-1980
42. Community Development, 1974-1977
43. Community Development, 1975-1977
44-45. Community Development, 1977-1978

Box 2

1-2. Community Development, 1978-1979
3-4. Community Development, 1980-1981
5. Community Development, 1981-1982
6. Community Development, 1983
7. Community Development, 1984-85
8. Community Development, 1988
9. Community Development, Central Avenue, 1981
10-11. Fort Orange Club, Demolition, 1980-1981
12. Friends of Albany Public Library, 1972-1990
13-15. Historic Albany Foundation, 1974-1989
16. Historic Preservation, Clippings, 1971-1975
17. Historic Preservation, Periodical, 1976-1977
18. Historic Resources Commission, 1988
19. Historic Sites Commission, 1964-1988
20. Hudson Park Neighborhood Association, 1973-1988
21. Industrial Development Agency, 1980-1984
22. Mayor Corning Memorial Committee, 1984
23. Mayor's Cup, 1984-1985
24. Neighborhood Associations, 1970-1980
25. Neighborhood Associations
26. Neighborhood Associations, Conventions, 1976-1990
27. Neighborhood Preservation, 1976-1980
28. New York State Council on Architecture, 1974-1988
29. Pastures Preservation District, 1973
30. Pine Bush, 1978
31. Pine Hills Neighborhood Association, 1970-1988

Box 3

1. Preservation League, 1976-1987
2. Preservation League Newsletters 1976-1987
3. Preservation League, 1977-1987
4. Red-lining, 1975-1978
5. Retaliatory Eviction Protection, 1978
6. Salary Withholding Lawsuit, 1983
7. St. Joseph's Housing Corporation, 1983
8-9. South Mall Envisions (2 folders), 1972-1974
9-10. Ten Broeck Triangle, Urban Renewal, 1980
11. Thomas J. Senchyna Award, 1981-1990
12. Urban Development Action Program, 1978-1985
13. University/Community, 1985-1986
14. Urban Renewal, Mansion Area, 1908
15. Zoning, 1983
16. Zoning, 1988
17. Zoning, Use Variance, 1984
18. Zoning, Definition of Family, 1973-1985
19. Zoning, Definition of Family Lawsuits, 1972
20. Zoning, Definition of Family Lawsuits, 1973
21. Zoning, Definition of Family Lawsuits, 1974-1979
22. Zoning Ordinances, 1967, 1978

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

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Series 2: State Employee Files, 1975-1977

Box 3 (continued)

23. Evans, James T. vs. Gov. Carey, 1976
24. Executive Order #10, 1975-1976
25. Executive Order 10-1, 1976
26. Executive Order 10-1, 1976-1977
27. Rapp, Susan v Gov. Carey, 1976-1977
28. Rapp, Susan v Gov. Carey, 1977

Box 4

1. Supreme Court Briefs, 1977
2-3. Supreme Court Briefs, Rapp v Carey, 1977

Unprocessed Accession

SUNY/TIAA, Pension options prior to adoption of TIAA-CREF
Pensions- Vesting
Albany Industrial Project, 1996-1997

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

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Series 3: Neighborhood Organization Files, 1975-2002

Sub-series 1: Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA), 1975-2002

Box 4 (continued)

4. Albany Budget, 1975
5. Albany Budget, 1976
6. Albany Budget, 1977
7. Albany Budget, 1978
8. Albany Budget, 1979
9. Albany Budget, 1980
10. Albany Budget, 1981
11. Albany Budget, 1982
12. Albany Budget, 1983
13. Albany Budget, 1984
14. Albany Budget, 1985
15. Albany Budget, 1986
16. Albany Budget, 1987
17. Albany Budget, 1988
18. Albany Budget, 1989
19. Albany Budget, 1990
20. Albany Budget, 1992-1993
21. Albany Budget, 1994
22. Albany Budget, 1995
23. Albany Budget, 1996
24. Albany Budget, 1997
25. Albany Budget, 1998

Box 5

1. Albany Budget, 1999
2. Albany Budget, 2000
3. Albany Budget, 2002
4. Albany Mayor Salary Increases, 1986
5. Capital Plaza Security, 1980
6. Common Council Procedures, 1980-1986
7. Community Development, 1975-1981
8. Ethics Committee, 1987
9. "Floor Thru" Zoning, 1981-1982
10. Historic Preservation Committee, 1985-1987
11. Home Occupation, 1981-1984
12. Key Bank Sign, 1983
13. Minutes, 1977, 1995
14. Newsletters, 1977
15. Public Notices, 1979-1981
16. Smith vs. Albany, 1983-1984
17. Storage Regulations, 1982
18. Tax Assessments, 1987
19. Trash Collection Scandal, 1983

Unprocessed Accession

Albany Budget, 2001
Albany Budget, 2003
Albany Budget, 2004

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

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Sub-series 2: Neighborhood Resources Center, 1975-1992

Box 5 (continued)

20. Annual Meetings, 1976-1989
21-23. Anti-Crime Project, 1978-1979
24. Anti-Crime Projects, 1979-1983
25. Clippings, 1982-1983
26. Committee Placements, 1976-1990
27. Director's Report, 1975-1982
28. Director's Report, 1983-1989
29. General Correspondence, 1975-1982
30. General Correspondence, 1976-1988
31. General Correspondence, 1978-1989
32. Minutes, 1975-1977
33. Minutes, 1978-1979
34. Minutes, 1980-1982
35. Minutes, 1983-1985
36. Minutes, 1988-1989
37. Property Assessment Guide, 1991-1992
38. Publications, 1976-1989

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

Sub-series 3: Center Square Association, 1972-1979

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Box 5 (continued)

39. Lawsuit vs. Board of Building and Zoning Appeals, 1977
40. McDonald's, 1972
41. Police Court, 1975-1976
42. Terry Fox Properties, 1977-1979
43. Zoning, 1969

Unprocessed Accession

Center Square Association
- Jay Street 175 (Knickerbocker Apts.)
- Jay Street 182 to 201
- 128 Lancaster Street (Tri City Women’s Center)
- Lancaster Street151/153
- Lancaster Street 152
- Lancaster Street 171-173 (8-13-73)
- Lancaster Street 177
- So. Susan Street 96/98
- State Street 256
- State Street 258 (former Russell Sage)
- State Street 281-283 (Camary Inc.)
- State Street 281/283
- State Street 312
- State Street 314

Center Square Association, 1958-1979
-Center Square Association, Formed, 1958
- Center Square Association, 1958
- Center Square Association, 1959
- Center Square Association, 1960s
- Center Square Association, 1970
- Center Square Association, 1971
- Center Square Association, 1972
- Center Square Association, 1973
- Center Square Association, 1974
- Center Square Association, 1975
- Center Square Association, 1976
- Center Square Association, 1977
- Center Square Association, 1978
- Center Square Association, 1979

Center Square Association, 1980-1989
- Center Square Association, 1980
- Center Square Association, 1981
- Center Square Association, 1982
- Center Square Association, 1983
- Center Square Association, 1984
- Center Square Association, 1985
- Center Square Association, 1986
- Center Square Association, 1987
- Center Square Association, 1988
- Center Square Association, 1989

Center Square Association, 1990-1999
- Center Square Association, 1990
- Center Square Association, 1991
- Center Square Association, 1992
- Center Square Association, 1993
- Center Square Association, 1994
- Center Square Association, 1995
- Center Square Association, 1996
- Center Square Association, 1997
- Center Square Association, 1998
- Center Square Association, 1999

Open Container Ordinance
South Mall Evirons- Study Leading to Preservation Zoning in South Mall Environs, 1972-1974

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

Sub-series 4: Capital Hill Architectural Review Commission, 1971-1988

Box 6

1. Agendas, 1975-1988
2. Appointments, 1974-1981
3. Capital Hill Architectural Review Commission, 1974-1985
4. Capital Hill Architectural Review Commission, 1975-1978
5. Minutes, 1975-1977
6. Minutes, 1978-1980
7. Minutes, 1981-1984
8. Minutes, 1985-1987
9. Miscellaneous, 1971-1986
10. Recommendations, 1977-1979
11. Sandblasting, 1975-1979

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

Sub-series 5: Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1974-1977

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Box 6 (continued)

12. Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1974-1977
13. Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1975-1976
14-15. Coalition for Effective Code Enforcement, 1976-1977
16. Tax Delinquency, 1977-1978

Harold Rubin
Box and Folder List

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Series 4: Clippings/Miscellaneous Files, 1972-1985

Box 6 (continued)

17. Albany, State Investigation Committee (SIC), Investigation, 1972
18. Code Enforcement (includes drafts of Rubin articles and speeches), 1973-1979
19. Miscellaneous
20. News Clippings, Albany, 1974-1976
21. News Clippings, Albany, 1980
22. Community Development, Albany, undated
23. City of Albany Charter Revision Commission, 1996-1998

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Last updated November 12, 2004