Thursday, July 8, 2010

Man shot dead in his car in Jamaica

Police are searching for suspects in a violent shooting that took place in Jamaica Friday morning. Comment.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

All-Queens softball team honors

Queens might not have been as strong at the top as Staten Island, but there wasn’t a borough deeper. Comment.

All-Queens baseball honors

Expectations were high for Queens, but the results didn’t quite match as the quarterfinals lacked any ‘A’ program from the borough. Comment.

Klein targets 11 city schools for Transformation makeover

After much controversy surrounding its decision to close down failing schools and replace them with smaller institutions, the city announced Friday a new approach to improve the campuses. Comment.

Foreclosure bill to help Queens, Lancman says

Queens residents facing foreclosure could get a big boost in retaining an attorney under a bill passed by state lawmakers last week, state Assemblyman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows) said. Comment.

Appeals court stops closure of three Queens high schools

Jamaica High School, Beach Channel High School and one of the Campus Magnet schools were saved from the threat of closure Thursday. Comment.

Obituary: Joseph B. Hellmann, 70

Joseph B. Hellmann, a longtime Queens community activist, died May 28 at New York University Hospital Center in Manhattan of lung cancer. He was 70. Comment.
Ridgewood

M train platforms due for face-lifts, CB 5 officials say

Community Board 5 gave updates on a number of rehabilitation projects throughout the area last week, including reconstruction of the Cooper Avenue underpass, the Metropolitan Avenue bridge at Fresh Pond Road and a number of platforms along the M train line. Comment.

Rosedale rezoning discussed at CB 13

A representative from the Department of City Planning updated Community Board 13 on the effort to rezone 193 blocks in Rosedale in an attempt to preserve the neighborhood’s character of one- and two-family homes. Comment.
Little Neck Ledger

Member’s life threatened: CB 13 chair

Community Board 13 Chairman Bryan Block said the life of one of the board’s members was threatened “because of their activism” and said the threat would not be tolerated. Comment.
Crime

Boro man injures victim’s eye with punch: Brown

ST. ALBANS — A St. Albans man was charged with assault and harassment after he allegedly punched a man in the face, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Crime

L.I. man caught with fake IDs at JFK: Brown

JAMAICA — A Long Island man was busted at John F. Kennedy International Airport for allegedly having fake IDs on his person, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Crime

Two officers injured in frying pan assault: DA

JAMAICA — A Jamaica teen was charged with assault, resisting arrest and criminal possession of a weapon after she allegedly punched a police officer, swung and hit him and another officer with a frying pan and threw grease from the pan on the two officers, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.

Sean Bell cop sues estate for injuries

One of the officers who fired some of the 50 shots at Sean Bell and his friends is claiming in new court documents that the Far Rockaway bridegroom seriously injured him during the confrontation outside a defunct Jamaica nightclub. Comment.

Yankees, Giants players turn out for DAC’s field day in Bayside

The Bayside-based De Phillips Athletic Club held its annual field day Sunday at the Bayside High School Athletic Field, where it registered children for its three sports and held a home run derby and two all-star games. Comment.

50 Cent holds anti-childhood obesity event in Jamaica

South Jamaica native and rap superstar Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson returned to his old neighborhood Saturday after his foundation sponsored a fun-filled day at Baisley Pond Park in an effort to fight childhood obesity. Comment.
Editorial

Getting Fit with Fitty

The politicians, teachers and community leaders of southeast Queens could talk until the cows come home and not have a fraction of the influence on kids rapper 50 Cent had during a few hours in Queens Saturday afternoon. Comment.

Senate passes changes to stop-and-frisk

The state Senate approved a bill last week that would change the way city police officers conduct their stop-and-frisk procedures to protect civilians. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Crowley views computers at Corona center

In 2008, U.S. Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-Jackson Heights) requested $50,000 in federal funds for a computer center in Corona. On Monday, he got to see it. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Group informs parents about housing rights

Finding an apartment can be a hardship for many in Queens, but for those with children, it can be nearly impossible. Many families with children are turned away from apartments, and often the landlords do so in defiance of the law. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

New sports field breaks ground

The Jamaica Hills field, where former Gov. Mario Cuomo spent much of his childhood playing baseball and which is home to Thomas Edison High School sports teams, is getting a major face-lift, complete with new synthetic turf and misting stations, officials announced last week. Comment.

Fox, Hevesi hit streets for votes

As the campaign to win the 28th Assembly District intensifies, candidate Joe Fox touted recent praise for him from former Mayor Ed Koch and state Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills) promoted his environmental legislation he said would help to grow green jobs in the state. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Family arrested in tax record fraud scheme

A Forest Hills accountant, members of her family and a Manhattan fashion model have been charged with preparing false state tax returns in an attempt to bilk the state out of $1.1 million in refunds by falsely claiming they had earned high salaries, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown and acting state Commissioner of Taxation and Finance Jamie Woodward said this week. Comment.

Forest Hills woman plotted spouse kill: DA

A Forest Hills wife convinced her estranged husband was having an affair allegedly tried to have him killed by a cab driver who alerted Port Authority police to the murder request, officials said last week. Comment.

Whitestone teen starts neighborhood group

As summer heats up, typical Whitestone 19-year-olds are spending their time playing video games, going to the beach and working crummy jobs at local stores. Comment.
Flushing Times

Street renamed for activist

Parsons Boulevard by 24th Avenue was renamed Sunday after a Flushing attorney and civic leader who was active with the Garden Jewish Center and offered the synagogue’s space to members of a Korean church after their place of worship was destroyed in a fire. Comment.

Flushing Hospital finances in the black

As the number of hospital beds citywide continues to fall at an alarming rate, the health of existing hospitals in Queens is of great concern to borough leaders and residents. Comment.

City Planning okays Flushing Commons

Jim Gerson, co-president of the Flushing Coalition for Responsible Development, a group that led a protest last week against plans to build the $850 million Flushing Commons mixed-use project, said the project’s opponents have not given up on blocking the proposal. Comment.
Crime

Bellerose man burgled house of neighbor: DA

BELLEROSE — A Bellerose man was charged with burglary after he allegedly broke into a neighbor’s house, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Editorial

CB 7 Deserves a ‘Well Done’

This newspaper exists to report on events and issues important to Queens residents and through letters to the editor to give readers a sounding board to express their opinions. Comment.

St. Albans man charged in drag race crash

A St. Albans man who went on an alleged drag race in his friend’s car and crashed into a minivan was indicted last week on charges of seriously injuring the 60-year-old driver in the other vehicle, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

Marti OK’d for major role in city community colleges

Queensborough Community College President Eduardo Marti has been named vice chancellor for the city’s community colleges, the City University of New York’s board of trustees announced this week. Comment.

Violent storm takes down trees

A 10-minute storm last Thursday left days worth of cleanup for Little Neck and Douglaston residents with streets covered in branches, broken trees and telephone poles. Comment.

Exotic bird stolen from outside Bayside florist

A Bayside Juliet has been left lonely after her Romeo was snatched last week in front of a floral shop on Bell Boulevard. Comment.

Fairway Market in Little Neck will open in 2011, CB 11 says

A long-awaited Fairway Market chain store will now not likely open until the first quarter of 2011 at the Douglaston Plaza Shopping Center, members of Community Board 11 said this week. Comment.

Braunstein says he’ll fight for locals

Bayside’s Edward Braunstein said his seven years of work at state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s (D-Manhattan) office has given him insight into how Albany operates that would benefit him if he is elected to replace Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza (D-Bayside) this fall. Comment.

Bayside history gets showcased virtually

The Bayside Historical Society introduced a new virtual exhibit on its Web site this week that presents visitors with an overview of the community’s history spanning more than 350 years. Comment.
Crime

Cops search for robber of Queens woman, 94

SOUTH RICHMOND HILL — The NYPD has asked for the public’s help in finding a man wanted in the June 24 attempted robbery of a 94-year-old woman in South Richmond Hill. Comment.
Crime

Two teen thieves injured cop in arrest attempt: DA

FOREST HILLS — A Maspeth teen and another from Ridgewood were charged with burglary, petit larceny, criminal possession of stolen property and resisting arrest after they allegedly broke into a Forest Hills home, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Crime

Teen physically, verbally assaults bus driver: DA

FOREST HILLS — A Woodhaven teen was charged with attempted assault and harassment after he allegedly punched a bus driver who picked him up in Forest Hills, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Letters

Co-ops, condo boards need state agency to fight abuses

Recently, Bob Friedrich, president of Glen Oaks Village, wrote a letter concerning state Senate bill S7958 (“Albany bill would cause problems for co-op and condo boards,” June 17). I can understand why he opposes it. After all, as president of the board he would prefer not having any government agency looking over his shoulder should shareholders question his board’s decisions. Comment.
Letters

MTA shouldn’t balance budget on backs of riders

An open letter to Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Jay Walder. Comment.
Letters

MTA service cuts will burden people traveling to Manhattan

An open letter to Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Jay Walder. Comment.
Letters

Columnist wins reader’s admiration

An open letter to TimesLedger Newspapers columnist Alex Berger. Comment.
Letters

America needs help and fast

Well, 2010 is six months old and still the economic outlook, while improving ever so slightly, is far from where it should be. Comment.
Editorial

Questions Abound in Haggerty Mess

The case of John Haggerty Jr. raises questions about the health of the Republican Party in New York state and its relationship with the state Independence Party. Comment.
Opinion

QueensLine: MidVil memorial service held for General Slocum victims

William “Bill” Rafferty, born in Queens June 17, 1944, had an interesting résumé before his success as a comedian and game show host on television. Rafferty was a New York cab driver, butcher in California and military police officer in the U.S. Army. Comment.
Opinion

Political Action: Ackerman faces biggest GOP challenge yet for seat

In the Fifth Congressional District in northeast Queens and northwest Nassau County, there are intense political activities developing to challenge U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside). This year started out with a Tea Party affiliate demonstrating twice in front of Ackerman’s Bayside district office on Northern Boulevard. Its main grievance was the national medical insurance plan Ackerman supports. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: K of C raises $10K for a boro Memorial Day parade

June 26 was the day of the birth of a new Queens tradition to be known as “Whitestone Family Appreciation Day.” It was a day of great fun in the sun with camaraderie involved among the many diverse groups participating in the event. Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: Signers of the Declaration all paid heavy prices for freedom

There are those ... who will reply that the liberation of humanity, the freedom of man and mind, is nothing but a dream. They are right. ... It is the American Dream. — Archibald McLeish Comment.
Business

Manhattan restaurant opens in Astoria

5 Napkin Burger, one of Manhattan’s most popular burger joints, has made its way into Queens after opening its first chain restaurant in the borough last week near Astoria’s Museum of the Moving Image. Comment.

Football fever grips United Nations of Queens

World Cup fever has taken over Queens as the international soccer championship held in South Africa had residents both cheering and holding their heads in their hands after the United States lost in the knockout stage and teams from their home countries advanced. Comment.

Assembly OKs bill to reform city Water Board

State Assemblyman David Weprin’s (D-Little Neck) bill to reform the city Water Board was passed by the Assembly last week. Comment.

Far Rock Library recording booth teaches music

A new state-of-the-art sound-recording booth established at Queens Library Teen Center in Far Rockaway last month allows kids to explore their love for music while enhancing academic skills. Comment.
Astoria Times

Vallone, residents bid farewell to W

City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) joined a swath of Astoria’s community leaders and residents Friday to hold a mock funeral along 31st Street where they mourned the final day of W train service to the neighborhood. Comment.

MTA to hold public hearing on subway agent job cut plans

Queens straphangers will soon get a chance to voice their opinions about the MTA’s plan to eliminate the jobs of hundreds of subway station agents. Comment.

Dems blast Paterson vetoes

Queens Democrats criticized Gov. David Paterson’s decision to veto much of the budget passed nearly three months after it was due by the state Legislature Monday, saying it could be a particularly bad blow for borough schools. Comment.

Flushing woman delivers triplets at QHC in Jamaica

When Flushing resident Paola Silva-Chambilla went to get a checkup early in her pregnancy, she and her husband, Roberto Chambilla, were more than a little surprised by a question posed to them by the sonogramist. Comment.

City’s oldest bar holds a grand reopening in Woodhaven

The owners of what they contend is the city’s oldest bar held the grand reopening of Neir’s in Woodhaven last week, which featured a Mae West impersonator and longtime patrons reminiscing about the watering hole that opened in 1829. Comment.

Three bid for contract at Aqueduct Racetrack

Three bidders submitted proposals for the Aqueduct video lottery terminal contract by Tuesday’s deadline, including one bid combining two separate companies that showed interest in the project, the state Lottery Division said. Comment.

Queens says goodbye to subways, buses

Queens residents and elected officials complained of longer waits for subways and buses following MTA service cuts that went into effect last weekend. Comment.

Flushing slay-suicide shocks leaders, kin

Police have closed the case on two longtime Flushing friends who were found dead in an apparent murder-suicide last week, according to a spokeswoman for state Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing). Comment.

Sunnyside man releases book of interviews on losin’ it

After catching a movie at the Cleveland International Film Festival about a girl’s search for the right man to take her virginity, Sean Wickens, 34, now of Sunnyside, ended up making himself an unusual dare. Comment.
Astoria Times

Vernon Boulevard in LIC repaved to fill deep potholes

Driving on Vernon Boulevard in Long Island City will no longer be a bumpy ride — or a swervey one. Comment.

JFK Airport runway reopens

Port Authority administrators said no one believed them when they promised four months ago that they would be able to complete the crux of the bay runway renovation at Kennedy Airport on schedule, but with hard work and careful planning they were able to meet their goal with time to spare. Comment.

3 Queens schools enter summer in limbo

As the final bell for the school year sounded at schools across the borough Monday, students and teachers at the three Queens high schools slated for closure in January said they were starting the summer with tremendous concern over the future of their campuses. Comment.

Bedbug bills proposed by Queens leaders

State legislators representing western Queens are pushing legislation that would require landlords and city schools to disclose whether their buildings have ever been plagued by bedbugs. Comment.
Astoria Times

LIC group aids in job search

The poor state of the economy means many residents are out of work and looking for new jobs, but the East River Development Alliance, a Long Island City-based economic development organization, is helping those in public housing build new lives. Comment.

Bloomberg and biz leaders want immigration reform

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch and a number of other mayors and business leaders joined forces last week to push for immigration reform, including creating a path to legalization for the millions of undocumented immigrants in the United States. Comment.

MTA chief recalls days at Beach Channel HS

MTA Chairman Jay Walder returned to his alma mater, Beach Channel High School in Rockaway Park, this week and in his commencement address touted the need for public service, particularly in times of economic duress. Comment.
Parenting

From the Footlights: Queens subway conductor eats his way to fame

When he is not eating 30 Nathan’s hot dogs in 12 minutes or 120 chicken wings, Eric “Badlands” Booker insists he likes to eat slowly and savor his food. Comment.
Arts

Emboldened by Color

Tucked between 77th Street and 37th Avenue in Jackson Heights, there is a neighborhood café called Espresso 77 that serves a variety of beverages, sandwiches and soups. However, it’s not what’s on the menu that’s impressive — it’s what one sees on the walls. Owner Afzal has adorned the café with paintings that would make any viewer take a second look. Comment.

Council undoes many of Bloomberg’s proposed cuts in budget vote

Queens residents can breathe a sigh of relief along with the rest of the city, as the City Council passed by a vote of 48-1 a $63 billion budget Tuesday night that reversed many of the most feared cuts Mayor Michael Bloomberg included in his proposed budget. Comment.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Council undoes many of Bloomberg’s proposed cuts in budget vote

Queens residents can breathe a sigh of relief along with the rest of the city, as the City Council passed by a vote of 48-1 a $63 billion budget Tuesday night that reversed many of the most feared cuts Mayor Michael Bloomberg included in his proposed budget. Comment.

Brothers killed in Springfield Gardens fire laid to rest

Family and friends of the brothers killed in a massive fire in Springfield Gardens two weeks ago gathered Wednesday morning for an emotional goodbye to the young boys. Comment.

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