Saturday, July 31, 2010

MLB debut nears for Varvaro

Anthony Varvaro is five years removed from St. John’s, but he’s just a short drive away from Seattle. Comment.

Sunnyside teen shot to death in Brooklyn: Police

A Sunnyside teenager was killed over the weekend while he was out late at night in Brooklyn, police said. Comment.
Ridgewood

Richmond Hill store owner to pay $840G in wages

The owner of four Richmond Hill food stores agreed Monday to pay 42 employees a total of $840,000 in back wages and overtime pay, ending a 2008 lawsuit filed by the U.S. Labor Department that charged her with unfairly compensating the workers. Comment.

Queens’ Asian influence explored

Students from around the country will tour Queens neighborhoods, sample area restaurants and visit cultural hot spots this week as part of the Queens College Asian/American Center’s new summer institute program designed to teach students about the borough’s Asian-American populations as well as help them learn more about their own identities. Comment.
Queens Village

Teachers blame layoffs on protest

More than a quarter of the instructors at southeast Queens’ only public charter school were laid off last week and the teacher’s union is claiming the decision was done in retaliation after they protested unfair work conditions. Comment.
Queens Village

Obama cabinet member takes tour of Jamaica Bay

The U.S. secretary of the Interior paid a visit to Jamaica Bay Monday and borough elected officials said they hope his trip will have a positive impact on the future of its environment. Comment.

Queens precincts invite community to National Night Out

Queens’ communities will come together in support of their local police officers at the 27th annual National Night Out Against Crime  on Tuesday. Comment.

Council gives Flushing Commons the go-ahead

The City Council approved the Flushing Commons development plan and the adjacent Macedonia Plaza affordable housing project Thursday afternoon and gave new concessions to nearby small business owners who have contended the construction of the mixed-use building would hinder their shops. Comment.

MTA to hold hearings on proposed 2011 fare hikes

The MTA board today approved public hearings for the fall prior to an array of proposed higher transit fares and tolls that will take effect next year. Comment.

Court gives OK to 9/11 hero listing

A Queens Supreme Court judge ruled this week that retired Little Neck Capt. James Corrigan should be listed alongside his fellow firefighters with whom he died Sept. 11, 2001, at a Ground Zero memorial. Comment.
Crime

Cops search for missing Queens Village man, 18

QUEENS VILLAGE — A young man was reported missing and investigators asked the public to help bring him home safely. Comment.
Crime

Cops search for missing mom and her two kids

FLORAL PARK — A mother and her two young children went missing and the authorities asked for the public’s help in finding them. Comment.
Crime

Jamaica man breaks wall, window in home: Brown

JAMAICA — A young man was arrested two weeks ago on charges of causing damage to his home during an argument, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.
Crime

Boro man leads cops on car chase thru Jamaica: DA

JAMAICA — A 28-year-old man was arrested two weeks ago on charges of going on a wild ride in his car, causing havoc on the streets and nearly striking another vehicle, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.

Friedrich accuses Weprin of foul play

State Assembly candidate Bob Friedrich claimed his opponent, Assemblyman David Weprin’s (D-Little Neck), is trying to knock him off the ballot and said the effort is a North Korean-style tactic. Comment.

St. Albans woman’s killer sought by cops

Police were searching for clues to a mysterious homicide that took place in St. Albans late Friday night. Comment.

City to pay $7M to victims in Sean Bell shooting

After more than two years of delay, the civil case filed by Sean Bell’s fiancée and the two friends shot alongside him against the NYPD ended Tuesday evening with the city paying out slightly more than $7 million in settlements. Comment.
Laurelton

SE Queens pols hail new export center

A decade ago, 157-11 Rockaway Blvd. in Jamaica was an abandoned former tire repair shop some neighbors worried would crumble to the ground if anyone set foot in it. Tall weeds, huge piles of trash and illegally dumped materials filled the yard, which also held an old, dilapidated shed. Comment.
Laurelton

Baisley Park hosts Gospel Fest

Extreme heat and humidity did not stop a huge crowd from gathering at Baisley Pond Park Saturday and getting some soul in their weekend. Comment.
Editorial

A Limit to Taking Names

Does it matter if the police know who you are, where you live and that you were in the neighborhood when a store was robbed or an old lady got mugged? Are your rights violated when the NYPD keeps information on people who are stopped and frisked and not arrested? Comment.

UFT demands apology for layoffs

The United Federation of Teachers said it wants an apology from Principal Yvonne Marrero, who initially removed seven teachers from the 25-member staff of PS 222 at 86-15 37th Ave in Jackson Heights, when cuts to the school’s budget only demanded two. Now the other five teachers will be allowed to return to work. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Peralta, broker hold foreclosure workshop

When in dire financial straits and facing foreclosure, the first instinct for many people is to sell their homes — and in this economic crisis, many are fighting to keep their heads above water. Comment.

DOE wants parents’ say on courses for new Maspeth school

The city Department of Education is asking for community input as it plans the curriculum for its new high school at 54-40 74th St. in Maspeth. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Cops nab 2 in Corona death

Two people are under arrest for allegedly killing a Corona man during an early morning scuffle Saturday on National Street, police and eyewitnesses said. Comment.

Weprin urges MTA not to fire subway station agents

State Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck), transportation employees and union officials urged the MTA at a news conference in Jamaica Estates last week to retain the hundreds of subway agents whose jobs are in danger of being cut. Comment.

Woodhaven rally calls for crime crackdown

Forest Park Co-op residents held a rally against violence Monday after a woman from the development was carjacked Sunday. Comment.

St. Saviour’s backers fight development

Despite efforts by area politicians and activists to preserve the property, Scott Kushnick, developer at Maspeth Development LLC, said he is moving forward with plans to build warehouses at the former site of St. Saviour’s Church at 57-40 58th Street in Maspeth. Comment.

Fresh Meadows teen draws inspiration from Holocaust museum internship

Fresh Meadows resident George Itzhak has found his voice. Comment.

Gas station worker shot, killed in Flushing: Police

A Pakistani immigrant was gunned down Sunday morning while working the night shift at a Flushing gas station´╗┐ that an assemblywoman said had been plagued by an increase in criminal activity. Surveillance tape captured two men robbing the store and shooting the station attendant. Comment.

Protesters hold final rally over Flushing Commons

Opponents of the Flushing Commons project made one last call Saturday to the city to rethink the controversial development they claim will destroy surrounding small businesses. Comment.
Flushing Times

Flushing event aims to help small businesses go global

A unique opportunity for Queens business owners is coming to Flushing next week. Comment.
Crime

Man from Bayside, 35, goes missing: Police

BAYSIDE — Police were looking for a missing man who they said was last seen at his Waters Edge Drive residence July 20. Comment.
Crime

Robbers steal Jet Ski from trailer: Police

BAYSIDE — Police said robbers stole a Jet Ski water vehicle the night of July 22 in Bayside. Comment.
Crime

Chinese food deliverer robbed, assaulted: Cops

BAYSIDE — A delivery man was assaulted during a robbery Saturday night, police said. Comment.
Editorial

Room for Every Child

In these tough times, schools are under pressure to cut costs. In some parts of the state, schools reportedly have been looking for ways to reduce the number of children who not have the proper immigration papers. Doing this violates a U.S. Supreme Court ruling which holds that immigration status cannot be used to refuse children equal access to a public education. Comment.

Tennis club members weighing sale

West Side Tennis Club members are expected to decide next month whether to sell the club’s stadium, an iconic structure that was home to the US Open for more than 60 years, but which has not been used for decades and which residents said is dilapidated. Comment.

Jewish institutions get security grants

Seven Jewish institutions in Queens at risk of being targets of terrorism will receive nearly $525,000 in U.S. Department of Homeland Security grants, U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) and a group of borough officials announced Monday at the Rego Park Jewish Center. Comment.

MTA expected to approve 7.5 percent fare increase

First came the eliminated subway lines and diminished bus service, now it’s how much more money is it going to cost New York City’s straphanging millions with the arrival of 2011. Comment.

Friedrich attacks Weprin on stop-and-frisk vote

State Assemblyman David Weprin’s (D-Little Neck) vote to deny the city Police Department use of a stop-and-frisk database has come under fire from his primary opponent, Glen Oaks Village President Bob Friedrich, who said the law makes communities less safe. Comment.

Unpopular Floral Park hall lands license to serve alcohol

A controversial catering hall in Floral Park that has drawn the ire of neighbors for its customers’ rowdy antics was granted a liquor license, prompting outrage from elected officials. Comment.

Ackerman spends more than he raises in last cycle

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) has raised more than $839,000 for his re-election campaign this election cycle and spent more than $864,219, but he is in the green with $1.139 million in cash on hand. Comment.
Food

Dining Out: Five Napkin Burger: Meat the way it ought to be in Astoria

Five Napkin Burger, that Manhattan bastion of juicy ground meat, has done the reverse commute, cloning itself for a third location in Astoria, at 35th Avenue and 36th Street. Instead of the frenzied eclecticism of the restaurant’s former occupant, Bizaare Ave. Café, the eatery has adopted a meat locker theme, with white subway-tiled walls and floors and racks of meat hooks serving as lighting fixtures throughout. To underscore the retro-ness of the menu, old commercial milkshake blenders, seltzer siphons and vintage fans are used as a repetitive decorative element. Comment.
Crime

7 train rider exposed himself to woman: Cops

ASTORIA — Police are looking for a man who they said exposed himself in front of a woman on the No. 7 train last week. Comment.
Crime

Woodhaven man damages car with pipe: Brown

JAMAICA — A 45-year-old man was arrested two weeks ago for damaging another person’s car and having drugs in his possession, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.
Crime

Missing man last seen near LIJ center: Police

NEW HYDE PARK, L.I. — The authorities were looking for a man who they said went missing from the vicinity of the Long Island Jewish Medical Center last month. Comment.
Crime

Corona men chase man with sharp objects: DA

FOREST HILLS — Two men were arrested two weeks ago for allegedly threatening someone with sharp weapons on 108th Street, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.
Letters

City has to better track crimes in parks

We at New Yorkers for Parks were saddened to read your recent article on the murder of Ruben Angel Vargas in Astoria Park (“Homeless pair charged with murder in park,” Astoria Times, July 15-21). The park is heavily used and greatly loved by residents and visitors to the neighborhood with a dedicated stewardship group, the Astoria Park Alliance, and numerous year-round events. Unfortunately, this tragic incident highlights the urgent need to collect and publish data on crime in all of our parks so park users are educated about safety. Comment.
Letters

Owners of co-ops and condos need Senate ‘ombudsman bill’

Bob Friedrich wrote in his June 17-23 letter that the state Senate co-op and condo “ombudsman bill” (S7958) addresses “a problem that does not exist.” We wish he was right. Comment.
Letters

Sometimes exaggeration goes too far

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

City residents must always try to secure quality education for their children

Of the number of times I have written or spoken to you constructively criticizing your editorials, I thought it incumbent upon me to express my gratitude for your editorial in your July 8-14 issue. “Jamaica HS Saved from the Gallows” was an appropriate title. During slavery in this country, if you did not follow “massa’s” orders, you were hanged. But since massa did not follow the law of the land, Jamaica High School, along with several other high schools, were saved, thanks to the lawsuit filed by the United Federation of Teachers and the NAACP. Comment.
Letters

Saujani a worthy Maloney opponent

I am an Astoria resident and a Reshma Saujani supporter, so I feel compelled to respond to a letter published suggesting Saujani was running a “slick” and “nasty” campaign against U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Astoria) (“Don’t believe negative attacks aimed at Carolyn Maloney,” Astoria Times, July 15-21). Comment.
Letters

City more green than people think

A few years ago, Forbes magazine picked Vermont as the greenest state in the nation. But if it had truly wanted to honor an ecological paradigm, it should have selected New York City, since the average New Yorker uses only about a quarter as much gasoline as the average Vermonter. New Yorkers also use less electricity — about 4,700 kilowatt-hours per household per year compared with about 7,100 kilowatt-hours in Vermont and more than 11,000 kilowatt-hours in the United States as a whole. Comment.
Letters

Pols spend too much on races

After reading about the amount of money being raised and spent for state Assembly and state Senate races this fall, it appears that when you divide the amount of funds spent by the total votes received on primary night, the candidates — both winners and losers — will have shelled out close to approximately $30 per ballot cast in their favor. Comment.
Letters

Support, don’t cut, school funding

With all the budget cuts that are going to have to be made in these hard economic times, one place where no budget cuts should be made is in the field of education. Comment.
Opinion

I Sit And Look Out: Political games end position of longtime public service

The members of the state Board for Professional Medical Conduct are appointed to three-year terms by the governor. In the years I served on the board, I was reappointed on schedule with never an indication that politics was a problem. The reappointment occurred without my knowing about it until I was told. It seemed to be almost automatic. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: GOP must stop backing Dems and start grooming their own

Last week, we printed Liz Berney’s assessment of her problems with the upper echelon of the Queens GOP. As we promised in last week’s column, we would contact the Queens GOP and get its rendition of the current status between Phil Ragusa and Berney. Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: ‘Vacation’ not in vocabulary of the United States’ workers

On a job applicant’s résumé: “I don’t care what salary I’m offered because money has no meaning to me. I never look at the clock and will work 80 hours a week. However, I want 46 days vacation time annually. The résumé was promptly returned stamped, “Try France.” Comment.
Business

Fresh Meadows gym fills area business void

At first glance, Push Fitness, a new fitness center that recently opened in Fresh Meadows, looks like a tiny storefront sandwiched among Union Turnpike’s restaurants, bars and shops. Comment.

Mysterious dogs sent on wild goose chase at Fort Totten

Dogs made of bark that cannot bite have been popping up around Fort Totten to scare off gaggles of geese, but no city agency has yet to come forward to take credit for placing the pretend pooches at the historic fort. Comment.

NYPD cracks down on tix fix

The city Police Department has started tracking all parking and traffic tickets issued by police officers through scanners at precincts across the five boroughs in a bid to stop ticket fixing. Comment.

Family of Taconic crash mom cuts deal for movie: NY Post

The family of the mother who killed eight people, including herself, her daughter and her three young Floral Park, L.I., nieces in the wrong-way Taconic Parkway accident last year just inked a deal with a movie company that plans to exhume her body to determine if a stroke led to the crash, the New York Post reported. Comment.

St. Mary’s Hospital to expand

St. Mary’s Hospital for Children in Bayside is embarking on a $114 million expansion the facility said will move its patients into more modern quarters and cut down on their hospital stays. Comment.

Rangel faces trial before House Ethics Committee

U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel (D-Sunnyside) will face a trial before the House Ethics Committee to determine whether he violated ethics rules following a House panel’s recent investigation. Comment.

Moynihan Station starts construction in October

Work is expected to start in October on the long-delayed project to turn the James Farley Post Office on Manhattan’s West Side into a resplendent successor to Penn Station, the last stop for thousands of Long Island Railroad riders from Queens. Comment.

New medical center opens at Kennedy Airport

With hundreds of thousands of travelers, airline workers and other visitors using John F. Kennedy International Airport every day, there are countless health risks faced by people at the airport, according to Dr. Manuel Ceja. Comment.

Martha’s bakery in Bayside temporarily closes after fire

A weekend fire on Bell Boulevard has forced the popular Martha’s Country Bakery to shut its doors temporarily and a physical therapy office to close until the extensive damage is repaired. Comment.

MTA elevators, escalators need repair: Liu

City Comptroller John Liu said his agency has issued recommendations to the MTA after an audit found transit officials have grown lax in maintenance and safety oversight of subway elevators and escalators. Comment.

Man accused of stealing from 8 LIC businesses

A 47-year-old Port Washington, L.I., man was charged with multiple counts of burglary and larceny last week for allegedly stealing multiple items equivalent to thousands of dollars from eight businesses in Long Island City, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

LaGuardia CC cooks present their dishes to the masses

Gilmar Avila, a 6-year-old from Ozone Park darted through the pouring rain at the Jamaica Farmers’ Market last week to stand in line for the raw beet and apple salad about which he could not stop raving. Comment.

LIC summer camp puts girls up close to nature, science

For many children, summer camp means playing ball or hiking through the woods on a sunny day, but for Green Girls, participants in a summer program for middle school girls through the City Parks Foundation’s Coastal Classroom, summer camp means seining the East River in Long Island City on a cloudy, drizzly day — and loving every minute of it. Comment.

Gennaro bill slated to clean Queens air

A bill sponsored by City Councilman James Gennaro (D-Fresh Meadows) and slated to pass the Council Thursday is expected to reduce air pollution, promote the use of alternative fuels and create green jobs in the city, Gennaro and Mayor Michael Bloomberg said this week. Comment.

Slain EMT was ‘good kid’

As family and friends laid to rest EMT worker Jason Green, a 32-year-old Ravenswood resident who was shot and killed in front of a Manhattan nightclub, some friends took the time out to defend him Monday from the scandal that had plagued Green for the last eight months. Comments (1).

Weiner trumps Turner in fund-raising for 2010

Bob Turner, a Republican from Rockaway Point who is running for U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner’s (D-Forest Hills) seat, has raised a little less than $40,000 and has given himself a little more than $50,000 in the last campaign filing period, according to his most recent filing with the Federal Election Commission. Comment.

Mayor, DMC take stand on caregiver abuse

The recent killings of children by caregivers in Queens and throughout the city prompted Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Hollis hip-hop artist Darryl McDaniels and a bevy of other officials to launch a citywide campaign in Forest Hills last week urging parents to be cautious about those looking after their little ones. Comment.
Astoria Times

Hells Angel murdered in Astoria

A reputed member of the Hells Angels was gunned down on the streets of Astoria early Saturday morning, creating fear among the residents who said their neighborhood has been seeing a surge in violent crime. Comment.
Astoria Times

Astoria playgrounds honor Greek culture

The city unveiled two new playgrounds last week at Astoria’s Athens Square Park, where a comfort station and a fence that will protect the park’s equipment are also in the works. Comment.

Astorians discuss waterfront improvements

For more than a year, Green Shores NYC has been working to realize its vision of a connected waterfront along the East River from Bowery Bay to Newtown Creek, and last week the organization began to formulate that vision further with the public. Comment.

114th Precinct captain retires in abrupt move

The deputy inspector of Astoria’s 114th Precinct unexpectedly retired from his post last week, while several other top officers at the precinct also stepped down, community leaders said. Comment.
Film

The Reel Queens: Socrates goes global as Film Forum focuses on Astoria

The summer’s movie season may be winding down, but two Queens-centric cinema series will offer a smorgasbord of classics and foreign films through mid-August. Comment.
Arts

Fiesta for all

The Latino population in Queens has been growing rapidly and this has given them a significant presence in the community. So the borough seems like the perfect place for the Chase Latino Cultural Festival. Comment.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Whitestone Times

Stavisky, Carrozza face challengers

Whitestone has three contentious political races this year, with candidates battling for seats now held by state Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone), state Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Whitestone) and state Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza (D-Bayside). Comment.

Teams’ merger ‘best of both worlds’

It started as a running joke, grew legs at a local Chinese restaurant on Union Turnpike in Queens and intensified as the summer season neared. Comment.

CK’s Calhoun poised to bust out this month

Omar Calhoun doesn’t ease into things. Comment.
Ridgewood

Incumbents lead fund-raising efforts

State Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan (D-Ridgewood) is about $2,000 in the red in her campaign for re-election, according to filings with the State Board of Elections. Her Republican challenger, John Wilson, has not yet filed with campaign finance. Comment.
Queens Village

Queens Village political races begin to heat up

By Howard Koplowitz Comment.

Weiner filings show cash raised from across country

When U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) runs for Congress, he shoots for the stars. Comment.

Peralta, LaSalle face off

Four months after winning the Jackson Heights state Senate seat left open after Hiram Monserrate was ousted in a landslide election, Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Jackson Heights) has been already gearing up to try to win it again. Comment.
Ridgewood

Glendale teen collects supplies for soldiers

Glendale student Eric Kramer, 16, is asking for donations of travel-size toiletries, as well as food and entertainment, to send to U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Eric will be collecting the items from now until September in two Woodhaven and three Glendale locations. Comment.

Group pays tribute to slain Hollis man

Southeast Queens residents turned out last weekend to honor the life of a 23-year-old Hollis man who was gunned down in November 2007 through an event in Jamaica sponsored by hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons that promoted nonviolence in the community. Comment.

Hevesi gears up for challenge

State Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills) has raised more than the Democrat and Republican challenging him for his seat in Albany, according to the July 15 filings with the state Board of Elections. Comment.

Con Ed to form $1M account for Floral Park explosion

The state Public Service Commission and Con Edison reached an agreement last Thursday for the utility to establish a $1 million reserve account that will end a PSC investigation into the April 2009 Floral Park gas explosion that killed Ghanwatti Boodram. the mother of three boys. Comment.
Crime

Cops caught man with Beretta in JFK: Brown

JAMAICA — Police arrested a man after he allegedly attempted to carry a firearm through security at John F. Kennedy International Airport, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Crime

DA says man harassed woman with screwdriver

JAMAICA — A 27-year-old Jamaica man was arrested after he allegedly threatened a woman with a screwdriver, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

U.S. reps out-raise foes in 2010 races

South Queens’ congressional members will be facing some competition this fall for their bid for another term in the U.S. House of Representatives. Comment.

Meeks, Smith used campaign funds to pay attorneys’ fees

U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica) and state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-St. Albans), who are reportedly under investigation, have used their re-election campaign accounts to spend a collective $40,000 on lawyers, according to campaign finance disclosures. Comment.

Huntley, Clark face rivals

Election season has been heating up this summer in Queens as several political hopefuls announced their challenges against incumbents in the state Legislature. Comment.

Port Authority wants to charge parking lot owners at boro airports

The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey is trying to find a way to reap some of the benefits from independent parking lots within the vicinity of Queens’ airports. Comment.

Republican Taub in uphill battle vs. Meeks

Kew Gardens resident Asher Taub knows he has his work cut out for him. Comment.
Laurelton

Challengers target Meeks, Clark

The primary elections are less than two months away and the incumbents in key races in southeast Queens are already getting their finances ready for their campaigns. Comment.
Editorial

No Place for a Squatter

A story in this newspaper last week described a woman who has been living in St. Albans Park for the last three years as a “squatter.” It would have been politically incorrect to call this lady a bum, but that is exactly what this person is — a bum who has been allowed to ruin this park for families in southeast Queens. Comment.
Opinion

Neighbor to Neighbor: Man from Laurelton embodies service to nation, community

Whenever you take the opportunity to walk to a shopping district, you avoid parking problems, get exercise and have an opportunity to meet and greet neighbors. Since this is the last Neighbor to Neighbor column, I thought it appropriate to let you meet in it a wonderful Laurelton family: the Lawrence Harris family. Comment.
Jackson Heights

St. Michael’s aims to buy 4-acre strip

St. Michael’s Cemetery in East Elmhurst hopes to buy a nearly 4-acre strip of open space adjacent to its property, but the city Parks Department said the sale will not go through unless an equivalent amount of open space is found. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Peralta gears up for race for Senate seat

State Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Jackson Heights) has raised about $600,000 in contributions this year and spent almost as much between Jan. 1 and July 15, according to reports from the State Board of Elections. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

DOT irks Briarwood by repaving street lines

When the city Department of Transportation began resurfacing some Briarwood streets just after the agency repainted crosswalk lines, area residents were surprised — but said they should have expected it. Comment.

TLC makes ex-Q79 line part of group ride service

The defunct Q79 bus route that stretched from Little Neck to Floral Park will be included in the city Taxi and Limousine Commission’s livery van group ride program, thanks to City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens), TLC Commissioner David Yassky announced. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

Boro leaders gear up for elections

Hotly contested campaigns with candidates vying for seats representing northeast Queens are gaining traction with the July 15 campaign finance filings. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

The Civic Scene: Do not favor charter schools or dismiss public education

In 2009, the state Legislature permitted Mayor Michael Bloomberg to keep control of city public schools, but required the city to hold public hearings and provide information on the effect of any closings. A judge in state Supreme Court said this was not done and the state Appellate Court backed the lower court decision. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Lost Battalion Hall short on heart help

The city has not adequately ensured that automated external defibrillators are correctly implemented and staff know how to use them at centers throughout the city, including a spot in Rego Park, according to an audit released by city Comptroller John Liu last week. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Boro candidates ready for 2010

Hotly contested campaigns with candidates vying for seats representing western Queens are gaining traction with the July 15 campaign finance filings. Comment.

Livery service fills gap left by cutting Q74

Borough residents who once rode the Q74, which ran from the Kew Gardens-Union Turnpike subway station to Queens College before being axed by the MTA, will soon be able to use the group-ride livery van service unanimously approved by the city Taxi and Limousine Commission last week. Comment.

PS 20 students bring English to Flushing signs

An issue that has befuddled and divided Flushing’s grown-ups for years may have simply required a little bit of child-like creativity. Comment.
Flushing Times

Stavisky faces three opponents for Senate seat

Candidates to represent Flushing and surrounding areas in elected office have filed their campaign finance disclosures for the first half of 2010 and the neighborhood’s most contentious race is for longtime state Sen. Toby Stavisky’s (D-Whitestone) seat. Comment.

Pols vow to work out kinks in Flushing Commons

There are still some important details to be worked out on ways of offsetting Flushing Commons’ effects on local business owners, but the project is expected to clear the important hurdle of being voted out of the Council Zoning and Franchises Subcommittee when it reconvenes Tuesday. Comment.
Crime

Dead Hispanic man found floating in marina: Cops

FLUSHING — Police said they discovered the body of a man floating in the water near the World’s Fair Marina in Flushing. Comment.
Crime

Flushing man involved in hit-and-run: Brown

FLUSHING — A 42-year-old Flushing man was arrested after he allegedly struck another vehicle at the intersection of 20th Avenue and the Whitestone Expressway and left the scene of the accident, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Editorial

Divided on the Future of Flushing

The differences between the Chinese- and Korean-American businesses in downtown Flushing are noticeable. The signs for most businesses are written in the language of the owner. These businesses have breathed new life into Flushing and made it one of the most prosperous areas in the city. Comment.

Woman charged with robbing 5 borough banks

A 41-year-old Manhattan woman was charged last Thursday with stealing a Woodside man’s car last week and then robbing five Queens banks, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.

Ackerman, Weiner dominate fund-raising

U.S. Reps. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) and Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) have far outpaced their opponents in fund-raising for their re-election campaigns, according to the July 15 filings with the Federal Election Commission. Comment.

Spring. Gdns. blaze caused by father: Qns. DA

The Springfield Gardens fire that killed a mother who was seven months pregnant and her toddler son last week was allegedly caused by the father of the unborn child who left the 25-year-old woman to burn to death, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

Padavan outpacing Avella in money race

State Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Bellerose) has raised more money than his Democratic challenger, former City Councilman Tony Avella, in the race to retain his seat this fall, according to state campaign finance records. Comment.

6 in race for Carrozza seat

The four Democrats and two Republicans vying for state Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza’s (D-Bayside) seat this fall have raised a combined total of nearly $300,000 in their bids, with several candidates pulling in a few thousand while others are nearing the $100,000 mark, according to state campaign finance records. Comment.

Meeks did not report $40k loan: Ethics group

A Washington, D.C.-based, nonpartisan ethics group has filed a complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica), alleging the congressman violated federal law and House rules for accepting a $40,000 personal loan from a Richmond Hill real estate developer in 2007 that he failed to disclose until last month. Comment.

Rangers at Fort Totten teach canoeing on bay

Queens residents hoping to cool off amid the summer’s third heat wave took to the water at Little Neck Bay as Fort Totten’s Urban Park Rangers gave them an advanced lesson in canoeing last weekend. Comment.

Phillip Willis named new Jamaica arts center head

After years of helping to improve the arts and music in inner city neighborhoods, Philip Willis is bringing his vision to the streets of southeast Queens. Comment.

DOE plans to put two schools within Jamaica High

An agreement between the United Federation of Teachers and the city Department of Education that is expected to bring in two new schools to Jamaica High School has outraged some officials and community members who said the plan is essentially a move to close the school mandated to remain open by the court earlier this month. Comment.

Court throws out Halloran traffic ticket for $155

City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) said a Queens traffic court judge has dismissed a ticket given to him last month by a Whitestone traffic agent whom the councilman spotted driving recklessly and running stop signs along 150th Street. Comment.

Downtown Flushing streets have traffic changed over weekend

A long-awaited new traffic scheme has gone into effect in downtown Flushing and car traffic has not screeched to a halt, despite the warnings of some of its harshest critics. Comment.

Forcina vows to help boro

Whitestone’s Elio Forcina said he is the conservative Democratic candidate in the race to replace state Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza (D-Bayside) and vowed to prioritize services for senior citizens, tax breaks for small businesses and the creation of charter schools. Comment.

College Point study points to long Gulf cleanup: Scientist

While the new cap on the Deepwater Oil Rig in the Gulf of Mexico has as of this week temporarily stopped the months-long oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, environmental scientist Dr. James Cervino said that based on his observations in College Point the Gulf may not be cleaned up for 100 years. Comment.

Padavan tops Avella in fund-raising

State Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Bellerose) has raised more money than former City Councilman Tony Avella in the hotly contested race for his seat this fall, while six contenders for state Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza’s (D-Bayside) seat have brought in a combined total of nearly $300,000, according to state campaign finance records. Comment.
Letters

Only back institutions people want

I have one question for TimesLedger Newspapers columnist Ronald B. Hellman. Hellman claims in his July 8-14 column that “Queens needs a year-round theater dedicated to plays.” Comment.
Letters

Watching NYC’s checkbook

As an advocate in New York City for three decades, I have often been asked, “Where do my tax dollars go?” Now answers can be found at the Checkbook NYC website recently launched by city Comptroller John Liu. Comment.
Letters

City will still find way to close Jamaica HS

Your July 8-14 editorial “Jamaica HS Saved from the Gallows” concluded with, “There are problems at the school that need to be addressed, but closing the school is no longer an option.” That misses the point, I think. Comment.
Letters

Law would force Washington electeds to disclose earmarks

As I travel the state and listen to New Yorkers, I have found that people have no faith that Congress is working to solve their problems. When they look to Washington, they see a lot of people who are more concerned about scoring political points than solving problems. Comment.
Letters

City teachers need a new contract

Another school year is over and the teachers in our city public schools still do not have a new contract. Comment.
Editorial

Charter Schools Play Valuable Role

In a letter published in last week’s newspaper, Chet Szarejko raised questions about the growing number of city charter schools. Although we disagree with Szarejko’s conclusions, we recognize he speaks for many New Yorkers who believe charter schools threaten the public education system. Comment.
Opinion

QueensLine: Garbage men went on strike in 1960 over contract dispute

In July 1960 in Flushing, a dozen members of the Religious Society of Friends held a six-hour demonstration in front of the Friends Meeting House at 137-16 Northern Blvd. to protest the manufacture of germ weapons. The demonstration’s purpose was to educate Flushingites about the weapons’ manufacture at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Md., where members of the Friends had been standing in line — the Quakers’ method of picketing — for more than a year. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: Confusion over chairmanship of the Queens GOP continues

You know, it seems like a lot of information printed in this column is gathered by chance and circumstance rather than deliberate planning and research into the minutest of details. A case in point, on Saturday evening two friends and I stopped in the Scobee Diner for a bite to eat. On our way in we ran into Liz Berney, who was leaving. She invited us to stop by her house for coffee after we left the diner. Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: Americans need one diet plan to combat unhealthy overeating

Oh, I diet all day and I diet all night,/It’s enough to drive me bats./Got no gravy or potatoes/’Cause the whole refrigerator’s/Fulla polyunsaturated fats. — Allan Sherman Comment.
Business

Forest Hills creperie hits the spot in summer

Inside Crepe’n’tearia in Forest Hills on a sweltering summer day, a steady stream of customers were taking refuge from the heat with bubble tea and cold desserts that come with names like the summer break crepe and Japanese ice cream cone crepe — concoctions that come with mounds of fruit and whipped cream. Comment.

Addabbo raises $126G for Senate re-election

While nobody knows for certain who will win the 2010 elections, the western Queens races for state Senate are marked by clear leads of the incumbents over their challengers when it comes to raising and spending money. Comment.

West Queens races heat up

The 2010 elections mean seven New York Assembly seats in western Queens are up for grabs, and thousands of dollars have been raised across the board. Yet in what looks to be the most contentious race in the area, two of the candidates have not filed with the New York State Board of Elections on how much money they have raised or spent in their campaign. Comment.

Maloney, Weiner prepare for challengers

U.S. Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-Astoria) and Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) have raised more in campaign funds and outspent their opponents in their bids to retain their House seats, according to the July 15 filings with the Federal Election Commission. Comment.

Vacant stores weigh down boro economy: Weiner

U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) said it does not take abstract numbers on the economy to know the country’s financial situation — just look at the empty storefronts on the borough’s commercial strips. Comment.

Workers in Flushing protest biz conditions

A Flushing businessman with about a dozen restaurants, karaoke bars, nail salons and other businesses throughout New York City came under heavy fire during a protest Tuesday afternoon in front of his Chao Zhou Restaurant in the heart of downtown Flushing. Comment.

Stop-and-frisk law will help Queens residents: Officials

Queens leaders are applauding Gov. David Paterson’s decision to change the way the police conduct stop-and-frisk procedures. Comment.

Queensbridge turns out for native son, Lakers’ Ron Artest

At a high point in the 2010 NBA Western Conference Finals, Los Angeles Laker and Long Island City native Ron Artest scored a rebound as the buzzer went off, winning game five for the Lakers against the Phoenix Suns May 27. In his moment of victory, Artest did not forget his hometown and exclaimed “Queensbridge!” in his post-game interview. Comment.

Budget cuts threaten Queens Pride Center

Despite early support of two sitting City Council members, the Queens Pride House in Jackson Heights could soon be closing its doors due to Gov. David Paterson’s line-item vetoes of discretionary spending in the fiscal year 2011 state budget. Comment.
Astoria Times

PS 2 extracurricular program avoids shutdown

An after-school program at Astoria’s PS 2 that provides activities for an estimated 175 students has been saved from the chopping block following the community’s fight to keep the program intact, City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) said. Comment.

Tunneling for 7 train extension finished

Amid thunderous grinding and clouds of dust, a huge boring machine crashed through a wall of rock to complete the final tunneling for an extension of the No. 7 subway, the way to work for thousands of Queens commuters. Comment.

Weiner the first filer for 2013 mayoral race

U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) has had a big week. Comment.

Mayersohn bill expands HIV testing access for New Yorkers

Gov. David Paterson, whose state has the highest number of AIDS cases in the United States, is considering a measure to increase HIV testing and access to the test among New Yorkers. Comment.
Astoria Times

Maloney, rival rake in big bucks

U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D- Astoria) has raised $1 million more than her Democratic opponent, Reshma Saujani, in the race to retain her seat, while her two Republican opponents, Dino Laverghetta and David Ryan Brumberg, have both brought in more than $88,000, according to state campaign finance records. Comment.

Jamaica leads nation in mortgage fraud: Study

A new report released last week has named Jamaica as the nation’s leading neighborhood for fraudulent home loan sales and the problem has gotten worse over the years, according to experts. Comment.

EMT accused of refusing to help a pregnant woman is killed outside club

Long Island City resident Jason Green, 32, one of two EMT dispatchers accused of refusing to help a pregnant Brooklyn woman who died of an asthma attack in December, was shot and killed in front of a Manhattan nightclub early Sunday morning, police sources and the New York Post reported. Comment.

Late activist David Oats honored with garden

David Oats, a Forest Hills resident who died of cancer in 2008, would have loved the garden named in his honor last week that is nestled in the park to which he devoted decades of his life and near the structures that had inspired him since boyhood, his wife said. Comment.

Queens blackout victims given few funds by Con Ed: Study

A Pace University study released last week found that Con Edison shortchanged western Queens ´╗┐businesses and residents who were left without power for nine days during the massive 2006 blackout. Comment.

Genting presents Aqueduct plans

The only bidder vying for the video lottery terminal contract at Aqueduct Race Track informed the community of its plans during a public hearing at Aqueduct last week and said it would draw customers from John F. Kennedy International Airport, Citi Field and Manhattan if it is lucky enough to be selected by the state Lottery Division. Comment.

Feds find Astoria auto thief with DNA: DA

A 29-year-old Astoria man was the first person charged in Queens as part of a federal DNA matching program after he is alleged to have stolen a Jeep in front of a home in April, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

Center for Afghan women moves from College Point to Fresh Meadows

The Women for Afghan Women’s community center in Queens has found a new home in Fresh Meadows replete with a spacious backyard, several rooms for classes and a new, central location in the borough. Comment.
Arts

Curtains: Jackson Heights’ Robert Lyons bids farwell to his beloved Ohio Theater with its final Ice Factory Festival

The Ohio Theatre is closing for good at the end of August. Robert Lyons, the artistic director of its resident company, SoHo Think Tank, and a Jackson Heights resident, is unhappy. Comment.
Arts

LaGuardia to host festival of international theater

For the first time, the Queens community will have the opportunity to attend an international theater festival in their home borough, when The Internationalists, the resident theater company at LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, stages a nine-day program of plays that riff on Homer’s “Odyssey” at the college this month. Comment.
Film

The Reel Queens: New film fest unites Spanish-speakers at Queens Museum

The Queens Museum of Art will host the first annual New York Iberoamerican Film Festival, where attendees will be able to meet with Spanish-speaking members of the film industry and watch two films that highlight Iberoamerican cultural identity. Comment.

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