Thursday, Jan. 1, 2004

South Jamaica youth killed after holiday visit to granny

Eric Weaver, 17, of 139th Street in South Jamaica, died at Mary Immaculate Hospital after being shot once in the back at 12 a.m. Saturday, police said. Comment.

Fresh Meadows immigrant honored for community involvement

Last month Ramsaran, 56, now the recording secretary for the Fresh Meadows Home Owners' Civic Association and the secretary general of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin, an international organization for Indians living outside of India, was honored by the City Council for his contribution as an immigrant. Comment.

Queens duo celebrate Garden party with Cross

For Holy Cross men’s basketball players and Queens natives Jave Meade and Kevin Hamilton, 2003 could not have ended on a higher note. Comment.

Red Storm holds off Holy Cross in consolation

Entering its consolation game against Holy Cross Monday night at Madison Square Garden, two thoughts must have been running rampant in the minds of the St. John’s men’s basketball squad: Earning St. John’s interim coach Kevin Clark his first victory as a Division I coach and trying not to become the first team in n the 52-year history of the Holiday Festival to finish in fourth place in consecutive seasons. Comment.

Councilman Liu pushes bill to clear Flushing sidewalks

Liu said the proposed legislation, which he introduced in the fall, expired at the end of the calendar year because it was not brought up for a vote in 2003 and will be reintroduced when the Council resumes in January. Comment.

Elderly sisters found dead in a Fresh Meadows home

Frances O'Rourke, 84, and Margaret O'Rourke, 80, who lived together on the ninth floor of the Cherrywood building at 188-04 64th Ave., were as close as sisters could get, said Linda, one of their neighbors. Comment.

Sex offender’s Bay Terrace move draws ire

The two groups say the community was not notified of the 20-year-old offender's presence or what restrictions were placed on his activities. Comment.

Boars Head bests DG Sunday AM, 54-27

Boars Head topped DG Sunday AM, 54-27, in a hard fought contest. Ben Tockarshewky led all scorers with 20 points. Ali Azizi had 12 and Tom Monte chipped in with 8. Jordan Colflesh made several key steals in the fourth quarter to ensure the victory. Boars Head controlled the boards throughout, as Derek Capponi and Dustin Lee each had 8 rebounds. John Dreyhaupt had 4 points and 5 assists. Dino Zenunvic played well throughout the game. Logan Frankel led DG Sunday AM with 10 points. Leo Nin and Jonathan Soto also played well. Comment.

Cops investigate vandalism at bus shelters

Police were investigating an apparent spate of vandalism to bus shelters in Maspeth and Middle Village that occurred sometime last week. Comment.

Retiring boro rabbi sees ‘Judaism moving east’

After more than 46 years leading the Forest Park Jewish Center, Rabbi Yitzchak Sladowsky has decided to call it quits and head into retirement.   But as the only rabbi in the 50-year history of the center, Sladowsky said he has seen many changes in the neighborhoods around the Glendale facility, including a shift among the members of his congregation from young to old and the immigration of the majority of the Jewish community eastward. Comment.

Incidents at boro airports raise holiday tension level

Two Christmas-weekend security breaches at Kennedy and LaGuardia airports put increased efforts to patrol the borough’s airports under scrutiny just days after the federal government raised its alert level and city officials stepped up measures to prevent terrorist attacks. Comment.

36 new officers to be added to 104th Precinct hot spots

The 104th Precinct covering Ridgewood, Middle Village, Maspeth and Glendale will receive 36 additional police officers starting Jan. 12, thanks to a recently enacted city initiative, the TimesLedger has learned. Comment.

Hevesi seeks to hold public authorities accountable

State Comptroller Alan Hevesi has called for reforms to curb public authorities, such as the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and other agencies which he says operate without accountability. Comment.

Boro recycle plant shut amid protests

A controversial Springfield Gardens recycling company has closed its doors while waiting for a decision on its application for a 24-hour operation, but community leaders are still demanding a public hearing on the topic. Comment.

South Jamaica youth killed after holiday visit to granny

A 17-year-old youth was shot to death on a St. Albans street after he went to a relative’s home to deliver a Christmas present late Friday night, police and the teen’s mother said. Comment.

Antun’s to hold blood drive in honor of Queens Village man

A Queens Village man who was severely burned when a voltage box exploded in front of him in November got a great birthday present last month when he was released from the hospital in time to celebrate with his family. Comment.

Queens politicos say this New Year’s they mean it

As Queens residents wake up Jan. 1 and tackle the ambitious New Year’s resolutions they set for themselves over the last few weeks, they can at least take some comfort in the fact that many of the borough’s elected officials are facing the same challenges — and then some. Comment.

Sex offender’s Bay Terrace move draws ire

The recent move of a registered sex offender into a Bay Terrace high-rise has angered dwellers in the co-op and elected officials because of the children who live in the building and attend a nearby elementary school. Comment.

City rejects plan to build 4 houses on Bayside plot

The Department of Buildings has rejected Flushing developer Thomas Huang’s plans to build four houses on a Bayside lot, a Buildings spokeswoman said last week. Comment.

Canine helps disabled Bayside man find greater independence

Jeff Brosi’s dog, Jasper III, is a loyal friend to his Bayside master, sleeping in a cot next to his bed and responding when his name is called. Comment.

Oakland Gds. firefighter charged in Astoria brawl

An off-duty firefighter was arrested and charged with assault, harassment and criminal mischief after he allegedly attacked the superintendent of his Astoria building on Christmas Day, prosecutors said. Comment.

College Pt. bizman honored for community involvement

After Fresh Meadows immigrant Ashook Ramsaran got a degree in electronic engineering and opened up his own business in College Point manufacturing intercoms, he began reflecting on his experiences as an Indian from Guyana and thinking of ways to contribute to his community. Comment.

Flushing luncheon held to support reform in N. Korea

A group of Korean civic leaders met for lunch last week in Flushing to lend their support to human rights, democracy and development initiatives in North Korea. Comment.

Whitestone Bridge to get $136M in new roadways

A contract was awarded on Christmas Eve to two companies that will replace the entire roadway of the Whitestone Bridge, the MTA said this week. Comment.

Season’s shoppers show animal side

After only one year in business, Bob Lubeck said his Forest Hills pet supply store is already pulling in respectable profits, developing a loyal clientele and continuing to expand to meet growing demand. Comment.

How’s Business?: Job recovery

If you were a major corporation, earnings were quite positive. But what about John Q. Public right here in Queens? While corporate profits have been quickly on the rise with continuation expected in the year ahead, this still has remained for the most part a jobless recovery. Major corporations have eliminated positions only to create new ones to be farmed out to foreign lands. It is the exportation of American labor. Comment.

Rockaways boast urban perks in beach community

The Rockaway peninsula in Queens encompasses 11 coastal miles within the boundaries of the Atlantic Ocean, Nassau County and Jamaica Bay. Although primarily a residential beach community, pockets of commercial activity are present throughout the peninsula. Far Rockaway and Arverne are in the east end of the commercial hub, Hammel and Rockaway Park are in the center, and Rockaway Park is at the west end, all offering an exciting and vibrant shopping experience. Comment.

Queens awaits reduction in property taxes

The Borough of Homes may get some relief from the 18.5 percent property tax increase that went into effect in Jan. 1, 2003 if Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposes cutting it in his preliminary budget this month. Comment.

Business Calendar

Jan. 14- Greater Jamaica Development Corporation Gala celebrating AirTrain, At JKF Corporate Square, Cocktails 6-9 p.m. 212-838-2660 x 13. Comment.

Editorial: Queens 2004

Like the rest of this city, the Borough of Queens entered the year 2003 in the grips of an awesome fiscal crisis. After years of relative prosperity and growth, we’re entering a second year of gloom and doom marked by service cuts and layoffs in both the public and private sector. Although more tough times may lie ahead, we believe that the city has turned the corner. There is sound reason for optimism in 2004. Comment.

The Public Ought to Know: Boro senior services must be saved from budget ax

As we complete our holiday celebrations, we must remember those less fortunate. Many remain somewhat out of view. We’ll see the homeless person often on the street or outside a shelter; it is an image the media does not shy from placing before us. Comment.

Berger’s Burg: January is poised to give us a cool reception

Two housewives living in adjacent homes were having a feud. Penelope claimed Britney never returned the soup pot she lent her for her New Year’s Eve dinner. Britney’s reply was a gem of logic. “In the first place, I never took a pot from you. In the second place, it was an old pot. And in the third place, I gave it back to you in better condition than when I took it from you.” Comment.

Dishing with Dee: World’s Fair anniversary planners meet in Corona

Now that 2003 has come to a close and 2004 is barely a glimmer in our eye, perhaps this is as good a time as any to play catch-up and fill you in on all the local bits and pieces. Comment.

Neighbor to Neighbor: Laurelton starts 2004 on a fresh, blank page

Happy new year. The beginning of each new year is like a blank page; there is the hope that you may be able to do with it whatever you wish. Comment.

The Civic Scene: Fresh Meadows salon gives to disabled kids

For the past 18 years, Larry Mottola has given back to the Fresh Meadows community just prior to the holidays. Mottola is the owner of the LP, or Larry Paul Beauty Salon, in Fresh Meadows. On a December Sunday Mottola opens his shop and makes the life of developmentally disabled children and young adults a little brighter by giving them full beauty treatments. His staff and a bunch of volunteers come in for about four hours to perform these acts of brotherhood. Comment.

Teen Talk: January is a great time to start over, set goals

There is nothing new about New Year’s resolutions. The beginning of the new year, whether it falls at harvest time, spring time or any other time, has always been thought to be a great time to start over. Comment.

Boro Iranians monitor quake in native land

Aftershocks were being felt by the Iranian-American community in Queens this week in the wake of the massive earthquake that devastated the city of Bam in Iran the day after Christmas. Comment.

Police Blotter: Man escapes with cash from Bayside bank robbery

A man robbed the Chase bank on Bell Boulevard and 43rd Avenue Friday morning, police said. Comment.

Astoria film museum schedule

The following is AMMI’s January schedule. Comment.

19th century poem pays homage to coming New Year

Submitted by Gloria Berger Comment.

Arts & Entertainment Listings

Acting Seniors Comment.

Northeast Queens Community Calendar

Alzheimer’s Disease Comment.

Boro’s prancing prince: Flushing’s Rivera, 10, in ‘The Nutcracker’ at Lincoln Center

Jerimy Rivera and his mom took three trains and a bus from his home in Flushing to get to his rehearsals at the School of American Ballet in December. Comment.

Southeast, West Queens Community Calendar

Housing work group Comment.

Bosco’s Corner: A look back at borough sports in ’03

Ah, and so it ends, another year of sports in the great borough of Queens. So in addition to buying a brand-new calendar featuring the great works of French impressionist painter Claude Monet to replace the Keith Harring that adorned my kitchen wall, I will take this opportunity to reflect on the goings on that filled these pages over the last 12 months. Comment.

Former CK star poised to help USC to share of national title

When Willie Poole runs onto the field with the No. 1-ranked University of Southern California Trojans Jan. 1, it will mark the end of a long and difficult journey. Comment.

Cardozo edges a Telfair-less Lincoln, 82-77

The way Skyler Khaleel sees it, the Cardozo boys’ basketball team made a statement Sunday in an 82-77 win over Lincoln in the Big Apple Invitational at a packed Gauchos Gym, even if the Railsplitters were without star Sebastian Telfair. Comment.

Mayor announces tough anti-school violence plan

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced in southeast Queens last week he is taking off the kid gloves, promising to get tough on school violence with a new plan that will bolster security at problem schools and stiffen punishments for offenders. Comment.

The Butler Did It: Victory over Lincoln well-deserved for Morris

Vic Morris knows what the skeptics will say, that the Cardozo boys’ basketball team’s 82-77 win over Lincoln in the Big Apple Invitational was a shallow victory because the Railsplitters were without Coney Island’s favorite son Sebastian Telfair. Comment.

Mary Louis wins two to capture own tournament

The Mary Louis Academy varsity basketball team captured the championships of its own Christmas tournament this weekend, defeating Preston and Walt Whitman high schools. The two wins improved the Hilltoppers to 5-3 on the season. Comment.

Freshman Ferguson tallies 5 points in McClancy win

Steve Ferguson knew what to expect when he joined the McClancy hockey team. His brother Ryan told him. Comment.

TimesLedger Athlete of the Week: Vic Morris

School: Cardozo Comment.

2003 TimesLedger CHSAA All-Queens Soccer Team

Testa appeared well on his way to leading Molloy to a city title showdown with Holy Cross when his final high school season came to a crushing end with a broken collarbone against St. Francis Prep. Testa, who has drawn interest from Division I schools Columbia and Holy Cross, didn’t have to make many saves but when tested he was phenomenal, as was the case in a 1-0 early-season win over Holy Cross. Comment.

CHSAA Soccer Coach of the Year: Franco Purifcato, St. Francis Prep

And in the end, he was one who led the Terriers to an unlikely CHSAA double, beating rival Holy Cross to win the school’s first city title in 20 years and then upset Chaminade en route to its first-ever state crown. Comment.

Punta Sal: Forest Hills Peruvian fare delights tastebuds.
100-05 Metropolitan Ave. Forest Hills

Punta Sal is a beach resort on the northern coast of Peru in the province of Tumbes, and also the name of a chic new Peruvian restaurant on Metropolitan Avenue in Forest Hills. Comment.

Boro firefighter charged in Astoria brawl

The firefighter, 31-year-old Ahmed Morsi, was assigned to Engine Co. 326 in Oakland Gardens. The Fire Department is reviewing the incident but has so far taken no disciplinary action, a spokesman said. Comment.

Charges dropped for man accused of Astoria scam

The contractor, Louis Marando of Lindenhurst, had been charged with grand larceny and criminal possession of a forged instrument, the DA's office said. Comment.

Gianaris vows suit over Astoria power plant funding

A coalition of Astoria elected officials and residents have opposed the effort by the plant's developers, Astoria Energy, to obtain $400 million in funding through Liberty Bonds, state-issued tax-free loans to stimulate economic recovery. They say the bond issue would violate the spirit of the Liberty Bond program, which was intended to revitalize lower Manhattan following the Sept. 11 attacks. Comment.

Gianaris asks for investigation of fire in Astoria house

"I urge the district attorney to investigate the renting of illegal living space and prosecute offenders who show no respect for residential laws," Assemblyman Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) said last week. Comment.

CHSAA Soccer Player of the Year: Nick Caputi, St. Francis Prep

Pretty high praise for a scrawny kid from Jamaica Estates, the starting goalkeeper for a St. Francis Prep team in an apparent rebuilding year. Comment.

Future of Richmond Hill downtown at crossroads

Questions about the survival of decades-old Victorian homes have also arisen recently after a developer was able to remove part of a historic home and erect a modern two-family building out of character with the neighborhood. Comment.

Hearing planned for S. Ozone group home

The board will also convene public hearings on whether to approve a zoning alteration for a gas station on Cross Bay Boulevard and the conversion of two-way streets into one-way thoroughfares in Ozone Park. Comment.

Glen Oaks cabbie hits pedestrian

The victim, identified by police as Ralph Onorato, 76, was taken to New York Weill Cornell Medical Center, where he later died, according to the hospital. Comment.

2003 TimesLedger PSAL All-Queens Soccer Team

If there was any question about how good Kitson was, the league’s coaches answered that emphatically last week as the senior keeper ran way with the Heisman PSAL Wingate award, given annually to the top senior boys’ soccer player. An athletically gifted and lanky keeper, Kitson was a major reason the Judges shared the Queens A East crown. The Bayside native has narrowed his college choices to Stony Brook and Hofstra. Comment.

KeySpan to sell Elmhurst tank site to city for $1

The news came as a much welcome holiday gift to Queens officials and residents, who had tried to raise $12 million to purchase the land but were $9 million short with the Dec. 31 sale deadline fast approaching. Comment.

Boro councilmen, LIC rabbi denounce recent anti-Semitic acts

In what appeared to be the latest round, police reported Monday that vandals in Forest Hills knocked over menorahs at 8:50 a.m. at two Queens Boulevard intersections near 70th Avenue and 66th Road. The incidents were being investigated as possible bias crimes. Comment.

Briar Wyck’s sale raises concern among residents

"Everything is working kind of good right now," said Loretta Campbell, 51, a writer who has lived in the Briar Wyck building at 86-25 Van Wyck Expressway for eight years. "I say if it ain't broke, don't fix it." Comment.

Pataki grants clemency in boro drug smuggling

Emmanuel Nkemakolam, now 47, was arrested on Christmas Eve 1991, when customs agents at a Queens airport discovered drugs in his suitcase, which had a false top and bottom, said Tom Grant, special assistant to the chairman for the state Division of Parole. Comment.

Retiring boro rabbi sees ‘Judaism moving east’

But as the only rabbi in the 50-year history of the center, Sladowsky said he has seen many changes in the neighborhoods around the Glendale facility, including a shift among the members of his congregation from young to old and the immigration of the majority of the Jewish community eastward. Comment.

Drunk driver kills Richmond Hill woman: Cops

Amanda Kandial, 26, of Richmond Hill died at Brookdale Hospital shortly before 3 a.m. Friday morning after the 1993 Toyota Camry in which she was a passenger collided with a 1996 Nissan Maxima at the intersection of Remsen and Ditmas avenues in Brooklyn, police said. Comment.

PSAL Soccer Coach of the Year: Eric Premisler, Jamaica H.S.

The coach of the Jamaica boys’ soccer team couldn’t believe he was there, under the lights at one of the top soccer facilities in the Northeast. Comment.

Boro celebrates Kwanzaa in August Martin festival

The Afrikan Poetry Theatre held its annual Kwanzaa gala at the Baisley Boulevard high school Sunday, featuring an African marketplace, cultural performances and the lighting of the traditional Kwanzaa candles. Comment.

Antun’s to hold blood drive in honor of Queens Village man

Sean Lally, who turned 26 on Christmas Eve, is still recovering from the second- and third-degree burns covering about half his body, but his family is just happy to have him home. Comment.

Jennings accused of sexual discrimination

The two former staff members, who were not identified, accused Jennings (D-Jamaica) of sexual harassment and discrimination, and one said he fired her after she rejected his romantic overtures, according to one Queens lawmaker who sits on the Council's Standards and Ethics Committee. Comment.

PSAL Soccer Player of the Year: Mohammed Mashriqi, Flushing H.S.

The Flushing phenom was by far the best soccer player in Queens this year and could quite possibly be the best player in the city. Comment.

Flushing man’s suit against Yankees dismissed

A Flushing activist’s lawsuit that accused members of the New York Yankees of physically abusing him and firing him because he is gay and HIV-positive was dismissed last week by the New York State Court of Appeals. Comment.

Secret Santa grants Queens library $1M gift

A Secret Santa delivered a $1 million gift to the Queens Borough Public Library on behalf of an anonymous donor last week. Comment.

St. Vincent’s exec resigns, boro facility awaits owner

The president of St. Vincent’s Catholic Medical Center resigned two weeks ago as one of the company’s three hospitals in Queens still waits to know who its new owner will be. Comment.

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