Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010

Police investigate shooting death in Brookville

Police spent all of Wednesday night and most of Thursday morning combing the scene of a shooting that took place on the streets of Brookville. Comment.

Hunt, Smyer power Royals past St. Pete’s

There is a running joke between Terrel Hunt and Jayvaun Smyer dating back to their days as eighth-graders playing for the Valley Stream Green Hornets youth football team. Hunt, the Christ the King quarterback, usually finds the end zone more times in a game than Smyer, the receiver, does. The Syracuse-bound star had to make sure Smyer didn’t run away from him like he did the St. Peter’s defense. Comment.

Long drive, stout defense help Cross douse Firebirds

Time nearly ran out on Holy Cross, but it wasn’t for the final whistle. Comment.
Queens Village

Alleged pimp beat teen prostitute: DA

A suspected South Ozone Park pimp was indicted by a Queens Supreme Court grand jury Friday on sex trafficking and other charges after he allegedly intimidated and threatened to kill a 19-year-old prostitute who worked for him, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.

S. Jamaica shooting kills 2

Two people were shot to death inside their car last Thursday night in South Jamaica in an area that residents said has been plagued with crime. Comment.

McGoldrick Library reopen after $21M renovation

Flushing residents have regained one of their sources for reading materials. Comment.

Alan Hevesi to plead guilty to corruption: Times

Former state Comptroller Alan Hevesi plans to plead guilty to felony corruption charges stemming from the investigation into improprieties in his office, The New York Times reported, citing people with knowledge of the case. Comment.

Guv calls for federal storm aid to Queens

Gov. David Paterson and Queens officials are calling on President Barack Obama to send federal funding to the borough after a preliminary report by the Federal Emergency Management Agency found last month’s tornado caused about $27 million in damages to the city. Comment.
Ridgewood

Maspeth residents fight for traffic light

Members of the Maspeth West End Block Association led children from PS 153 and elected officials in a rally Friday to get a traffic light or speed bump installed at the intersection of 60th Street and 60th Road. Residents said motorists speed down the road and threaten the safety of the students. Comment.

Unlimited MetroCards will stay: Walder

It’s looking as if the unlimited 30-day MetroCard is here to stay, but at a higher cost. Comment.

Shovels put in ground for new psych facility

Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks broke ground last week on a $125 million inpatient pavilion that hospital administrators said will lead to better treatment of the facility’s psychiatric patients. Comment.
Crime

Assault victim hit with belts in Corona: Post

CORONA — Two men are accused of beating a third man with belts at about 3:30 a.m. Sept. 19, according to the New York Post. Comment.
Crime

Jamaica man harassed with baseball bat: Post

JAMAICA — A man wielding a bat allegedly chased another man out of his own home, according to the New York Post. Comment.

Pols slam Paterson for CUNY board veto

State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone) and state Assemblyman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows) lambasted Gov. David Paterson this week for vetoing legislation they sponsored that they said would result in more objective State University of New York and City University of New York boards of trustees. Comment.

Jamaica business to complete green transformation

For most of the 20th century, J. Sussman Inc. has been crafting and installing high-end windows in some of the most famous buildings around the nation and an installation that is set to be completed this week to the company’s Jamaica offices will help it become more energy efficient for the 21st century. Comment.

MTA looks to cut $54M in overtime pay this year

The MTA, facing a budget gap of more than $800 million, said it is “on track” to reduce overtime pay by $54 million this year. Comment.

Hero pilot lands jet at JFK after mishap

A pilot’s quick thinking during an emergency landing at John F. Kennedy International Airport Saturday night prevented serious injuries among the 64 people aboard the flight, officials said. Comment.

Crime incidents low in Bellerose, Glen Oaks

More than a third of the 105th Precinct’s crime over the past month has been occurring in Queens Village, which had nearly double the percentage of incidents than the next highest neighborhood, 105th Precinct Detective Jovoda Cooper told Community Board 13 Monday night. Comment.

Accused cabbie attacker rants released: Cops

The college student accused of stabbing a Jamaica cabbie over his Muslim faith barely spoke when he pleaded not guilty to his charges last week, but a newly released police report claims he was shooting his mouth off to the authorities. Comment.
Laurelton

Police investigate shooting

Police spent all night last Wednesday and most of the next morning combing the scene of a shooting that took place on the streets of Brookville. Comment.

Nunziato disrupts Markey presser on truck traffic

A news conference held by elected officials Monday announcing a city Department of Transportation plan to reroute trucks in Maspeth erupted when state Assembly candidate Tony Nunziato and members of the Juniper Park Civic Association crashed the event. Comment.

Fresh Mdws. rapist draws up to 42 years

A St. John’s University student who called 911 while being forced into an alleyway in Fresh Meadows and raped saw her attacker sentenced to up to 42 years in prison last week, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.

ROTC recruiter at SJU leaves to serve in Afghanistan

When Lt. Col. Richard Gulley left his job at St. John’s University in April, it was, he said, to take the job of a lifetime. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

QC profs recount Katrina

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans five years ago, Queens College English professor and poet Nicole Cooley was beside herself. Comment.

Community fills Captain Tilly park for Family Day in Jamaica Hills

Captain Tilly Park in Jamaica Hills was a little more festive than usual Sunday afternoon as residents gathered in the bucolic greenspace to enjoy one of the first glorious days of autumn. Comment.

Officials cut ribbon on Metro campus

The ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Metropolitan Avenue Campus in Forest Hills last week marked a moment that for some seemed like it would never come. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Author to advocate for gender equality at Forest Hills library

When Donald Unger speaks about his new book at the Forest Hills library, he is hoping the dialogue will bring gender equality a little closer to becoming a reality. Comment.

Voelker Orth celebrates founder with beekeeping fest

The Voelker Orth Museum is teaching Queens residents about the birds and the bees — literally. Comment.

Flushing seniors talk healthcare on Biden conference call

While President Barack Obama was in Manhattan last week for the opening of the United Nations General Assembly, Vice President Joe Biden spoke with Queens seniors via teleconference. Comment.
Editorial

GOP Should Be Embarrassed

If civility in the state’s political discourse is not dead, it is at least on life support. The nomination of Buffalo real estate developer Carl Paladino to represent the Republican Party in the state’s gubernatorial race represents a new low in state politics. We can only hope that the handful of people who voted in the primary did not know much about this candidate other than the fact that he was the choice of the Tea Party movement. Comment.

Young Dems call for probe of Turner’s fund-raising

The president of the Queens County Young Democrats called on the Federal Election Commission to investigate campaign finance filings by Bob Turner, the Republican challenging U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills). Comment.

Fort Totten walk raises funds for women’s center

Several dozen men and women laced up their sneakers Saturday morning for a trek through the grounds of Fort Totten. Comment.

Bell attorney denies taking $2M for settle

The attorney representing Sean Bell’s family fired back against a report that he had sought a multimillion-dollar paycheck from the lawsuit settlement they reached with the city. Comment.

Poll sees Padavan far ahead of Avella

The race between state Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Bellerose) and former City Councilman Tony Avella is not as tight as some may expect, according to a Siena College poll that showed Padavan with a 24-point lead over Avella. Comment.

Mayor looks to roofs to stem sewer overflows

The mayor wants the state to look to the tops of buildings to solve the excessive stormwater problems in the city and he used an environmentally friendly school in St. Albans Tuesday to make his point. Comment.

Guv kills Lancman bill to protect taxi drivers

State Assemblyman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows) criticized Gov. David Paterson’s decision to veto a bill last week that he said would deter attacks against taxi drivers, such as the Jamaica man allegedly stabbed by a passenger in his cab. Comment.

New science facility set up at Fort Totten

The city introduced its first urban field station last week at Fort Totten, where scientists will be able to conduct research on urban ecology, conservation and stewardship, the city Parks Department commissioner said. Comment.

Queens awaits federal storm aid

The federal government is expected to decide by the end of the week whether Queens will obtain funding to help clean up what some have said could be hundreds of millions of dollars in damages sustained during last week’s tornado, borough officials said. Comment.

Borukhova decision appealed

Queens prosecutors struck back last week against the appeal by Alan Dershowitz of Mazoltuv Borukhova’s murder conviction. Comment.

DiNapoli’s office goes after MTA over agency’s business practices

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said the MTA’s dire financial plight is the result of “years of undisciplined bloat and inefficiency” and the agency must change the way it does business. Comment.

Bayside salon celebrates anniversary with ‘Fabulous 40’ stories

For the last 40 years, the Bayside hair salon and spa Christie and Company at the Bay Terrace Shopping Center has helped not only to beautify women but also to give rise to future hairstylists. Comment.

APEC boosts Little Neck Bay

The Alley Pond Environmental Center opened its doors on Little Neck Bay Saturday afternoon to hundreds of visitors for National Estuaries Day, an annual event for families nationwide to learn about the bodies of water and what they can do to protect their natural environment. Comment.

Northern Blvd. work to end in 2011

Three major projects along Northern Boulevard, including the creation of a pumping station in Douglaston and the renovation of the Alley Pond Environmental Center, will probably wrap up within the next year, leaders of Community Board 11 said. Comment.

Ackerman helps reunite Korean girl with family

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) introduced the Lees, a recently reunited family of South Korean immigrants, at his Bayside office Saturday afternoon, saying their case is an indication of how essential the proposed Dream Act immigration reform bill is. Comment.
Food

Dining Out: Dinner at the Farm series is a Queens locavore’s delight

On a recent Wednesday night in September, we dined al fresco against the backdrop of fecund fields of vegetables, while being eyed suspiciously by an itinerant chicken and catching the occasional whiff of fresh manure. Did this happen at some bucolic paradise in upstate New York? Uh-uh. It was right here in our own fair borough at the Queens County Farm Museum. Comment.
Crime

Woman beaten, then robbed in Ridgewood: DA

RIDGEWOOD — A woman was charged with two counts of second-degree robbery after she allegedly beat another woman, allowing a second woman who was not arrested to steal her purse, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown’s office. Comment.
Crime

Victim hit with beer bottles, produce: Post

WOODSIDE — A brawl at a bodega led participants to throw beer bottles, produce and floral bouquets at one another, police told the New York Post. Comment.
Crime

Man receives stitches after chair attack: DA

CORONA — A Corona man has been charged with third-degree assault, criminal possession of a weapon and harassment after allegedly violently attacking another man, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown’s office. Comment.
Letters

Thank you, kind strangers, for help

A special thank you to the group of women who helped me when I fell in the parking lot of Key Food Sept. 14. They all advised me, especially the doctor who stopped, to get further help. Comment.
Letters

Two new schools offer great opportunities for Queens’ children

On the first day of school, I had the opportunity to tour and meet the students and faculty of both the Young Women’s Leadership School of Queens and Queens Gateway to Health Services High School. Comment.
Letters

Vote against incumbency

Standing on the stairs of City Hall a few weeks back in the blistering midday sun, I witnessed an important reminder of why change is so elusive in this great state of ours. Former Mayor Ed Koch was promoting his “NY Uprising Movement,” an endeavor to create greater transparency, fair redistricting and better governance in the quagmire that is the state Legislature. Comment.
Letters

Nonprofits must file with IRS under new law

We at the Internal Revenue Service are concerned because as many as 21,500 small, community-based nonprofits in the state are in jeopardy of losing their tax-exempt status. The loss of this status could greatly affect the organizations’ charitable work and their donors’ potential tax deductions. Comment.
Letters

Computers must not replace teachers

While it is important for students in our schools to become familiar with computer technology, it is just as important to remember that computers must not and will not ever take the place of classroom teachers. It is important to understand that computers do not drive and formulate instruction — teachers do. Comment.
Editorial

Getting the Power Back in Queens

Even as we write this editorial, dozens of emergency crews continue to work around the clock to repair the damage left by the storm that devastated Queens and other parts of the city. In Queens alone it is estimated that 1,000 trees were uprooted by the powerful winds. Tens of thousands of residents were left without power and some still do not have it. Con Edison estimates that 45,000 customers citywide lost power during the storm. Comment.
Opinion

I Sit And Look Out: Designation of ‘sacred ground’ at former WTC site is unclear

When I worked for the city Department of Air Pollution Control at 15 Park Row across from City Hall Park, I occasionally had lunch with Rosamund Trilling Low, a lawyer who had offices in the area. Roz lived with her husband and three sons in a corner house on 112th Street in the Old Forest Hills section, not far from Forest Hills High School. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: QTIP seeks to raise $2M in donations for the arts

The Carl Paladino/Andrew Cuomo Race is starting to heat up big time and has all the earmarks of becoming down and dirty, but what else is new and what else would you expect? Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: Oktoberfest the prefect time to whet your whistle continually

After participating in an Oktoberfest celebration, several men staggered down the street. Laughing and singing, they arrived at a two-story home. One pounded on the door. A light came on in the window. The leader of the pack bowed and said, “Is this where Joseph Smith lives?” “It is. What do you want?” “Then I am speaking to Mrs. Smith?” “I am Mrs. Smith. What do you want?” “Can you please come down here and pick out Mr. Smith so the rest of us can go home?” Comment.
Business

Astoria nightspot emphasizes conversation

Upon moving into the neighborhood, many Astoria residents pushing up against Vernon Boulevard, the Ravenswood Houses and the tail end of Astoria Boulevard tend to find what seems to be a serious lack of nightlife and social options. Comment.

Whitestone Bridge traffic to create temporary tie-ups

The MTA recently put into place a new traffic pattern at the Whitestone Bridge, and drivers are advised to follow certain recommendations in order to keep travel moving as quickly as possible. Comment.

Aqueduct winners pay upfront to state

The winning bidder of the Aqueduct video lottery terminal contract delivered a $380 million check to the state Monday — the upfront payment attached to the deal awarding the company the project. Comment.

Queens Theatre expands

Big donors and elected officials helped cut the ribbon last week on Queens Theatre in the Park’s $27 million expansion and renovation that includes new cabaret space and a 3,000-square-foot lobby. Comment.

City should buy Steinway mansion: Pols

Western Queens elected officials are calling on the city to purchase the historic Steinway Mansion, which has been put up for sale, and preserve it as a museum, park or community facility. Comment.

LaGuardia program fosters new biz owners

Investment banking giant Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is putting $500 million into improving the fortunes of small businesses across the country and 23 small business owners in Queens, Brooklyn and across New York state were the first to benefit. Comment.

Farm living, fun featured at Queens County Fair

The Queens County Farm Museum opened its doors to the community once again last weekend for the 26th-annual Queens County Fair. Comment.

Newtown Creek now Superfund site

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designated the 3.8-mile Newtown Creek along the southwest Queens-Brooklyn border as a Superfund cleanup site Monday, a move praised by elected officials and community activists. Comment.

Meng calls in Insurance Dept. to help Flushing’s storm claims

The state Insurance Department was deployed in Queens last week as one more measure to help residents navigate the aftermath of the tornado that swept through Queens Sept. 16. Comment.

Creativity shines at Maker Faire at New York Hall of Science

The creative and technological set descended on Queens en masse last weekend when the Maker Faire occupied the New York Hall of Science in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comment.

LIRR plans major weekend shutdowns on Jamaica lines

The Long Island Rail Road has advice for Jamaica-bound commuters on two forthcoming weekends: Take the E train. Comment.

Astoria’s Falafel King captures top Vendy award

He’s already the king, but now he’s been crowned winner. Comment.

K-Rod violated order, texted wife: Queens DA

Disgraced New York Mets star Francisco Rodriguez appeared in Queens Criminal Court last week to be charged with seven counts of criminal contempt for allegedly text messaging his common-law wife in violation of an order of protection, the Queens DA’s office said. Comment.

Plaque honoring borough native Joey Ramone reaches new heights

Ramones fans will go to great heights to steal a street sign named for late Forest Hills resident Joey Ramone. Comment.

Indian film to premiere at Jackson Heights Cinema

Having reopened four months ago with new management and new types of movies on the marquee, the three-screen Jackson Heights Cinema is planning a special premiere when the major South Indian movie “Endhiran the Robot” hits U.S. shores Friday. Comment.

Sign hospital bill, boro pols urge guv

State Assemblyman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows) and state Sen. Shirley Huntley (D-Jamaica) appeared in front of the former site of Mary Immaculate Hospital Friday to urge the governor to sign a bill they sponsored that would help New York communities that face similar health-care voids. Comment.

ERDA opens new LIC site

The East River Development Alliance, a nonprofit that originated in the Queensbridge Houses dedicated to improving the lives of those in public housing, announced Monday not only a new initiative but a new office to house it in. Comment.

ERDA program uses podcasts as tools to help youth

Many prospective college students dread writing application essays. So Bethany Cureton, coordinator for the East River Development Alliance’s College Access Program, found a way to make the process both modern and fun by having the students record their essays on podcasts. Comment.

City teams gather at Francis Lewis Park for bocce games

A dispute broke out between opposing teams at the Francis Lewis Park bocce courts in Whitestone Sunday Afternoon. Comment.

Turner turns down Paladino rebuke plea

Bob Turner, a Republican running against U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills), responded this week to a letter the congressman sent to him asking him to condemn Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. Comment.

Peralta, Dromm warn budget cuts mean more rats

Elected officials, union members and city employees ripped into Mayor Michael Bloomberg at a rally Monday, saying his decision to cut funds to the city Department of Health will mean rats will run rampant throughout Jackson Heights and Queens. Comment.
Film

The Reel Queens: Long-running shorts series makes first visit to Queens

The city’s longest-running short film exhibition will make a stop in Queens next month as it celebrates its 30th anniversary with a screening of 11 award-winning movies in Flushing. Comment.
Arts

To praise ‘Caesar’

“Would all these people dressed in punk/Goth attire be the cast of Julius Caesar?” the writer wondered as she passed through a throng of them at the loading bay of Long Island City’s Secret Theatre. They would be, it turned out, and it’s not surprising for a company who performed “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” with everyone in their pajamas. But even beyond the costumes, this version of the Bard’s “Julius Caesar,” directed superbly by Richard Mazda, was filled with delights and surprises. Comment.
Arts

The Play’s The Thing: APAC earns deserved outer-borough love at IT awards

I was part of an enthusiastic crowd gathered for the Sixth Annual New York Innovative Theatre Awards last week in the Great Hall at Cooper Union. This was billed as the Off Off Broadway theater community’s biggest night, when some 17 “IT” awards for achievement and three honorary awards were given out. Comment.
Arts

Opera, jazz and more for bridge-and-tunnel crowd

It is wonderful to live in a city where, on any given night, one can see an enchanting opera, be stirred by the symphonies and concertos of the great masters, or groove to America’s classical music at one of the city’s jazz spots. Comment.

Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010

Pair murdered inside car in South Jamaica

Two people were shot to death inside their car Thursday night in a south Jamaica neighborhood that residents say has been plagued with crime. Comment.

Big win continues to elude Campus Magnet

For all Eric Barnett has accomplished since taking over the Campus Magnet football program five years ago, the Bulldogs are best known for failing to pick up a marquee victory. Comment.

Terriers’ aerial show falls short vs. Mount

The St. Francis Prep players received appreciative applause from their parents and fans as they walked back to the locker room. You wouldn’t have known the Terriers had just lost had you not watched what happened on the field or the events immediately after the game. Comment.

S. Jamaica man murdered outside his house, police say

Investigators are looking for a killer who shot a 29-year-old man outside his home in South Jamaica early Wednesday morning. Comment.

Q79 alternative gets push

Three northeast Queens elected officials joined city Taxi & Limousine Commissioner David Yassky on Little Neck Parkway Sunday to raise awareness of the new group ride pilot program to replace the defunct Q79 bus line. Comment.
Crime

Teen stabbed on school bus in Hollis: Witness

HOLLIS — A teenager was stabbed Friday by a group of kids waiting for him inside a school bus in Hollis, according to the Breaking News Network and a witness. Comment.
Laurelton

Electeds rally behind Wills

A diverse coalition of supporters surrounded City Council candidate Ruben Wills at his campaign headquarters on Liberty Avenue Monday to endorse the man they said should replace late Councilman Tom White. Comment.

Councilman remembered at Banner Day

The spirit of late City Councilman Tom White filled Baisley Pond Park Saturday during Banner Day — an event he had sponsored for the community featuring bouncy castles, food, music and information tables promoting various civic organizations from the neighborhood. Comment.

Rosedale wins rezoning from City Council

The Rosedale community has won the fight to keep the neighborhood from losing its small, residential character after the City Council voted to rezone the neighborhood last Thursday afternoon. Comment.

Richmond Hill school opens for pupils with autism

Last week’s ribbon cutting for the School for Language and Communication Development’s high school in Richmond Hill was lauded as a dream come true by the school officials who have spent the past eight years in a contentious legal battle with the state Department of Education. Comment.
Laurelton

Term limits choice flawed, CB 12 chair tells residents

The head of Community Board 12 in southeast Queens is urging voters in her district not to approve the term-limits measure that is going to be put on the ballot this November because it fails to repeal the term limits extension enacted by the City Council in 2008. Comment.
Editorial

Another Look at Islam

When a wacko minister in Florida with a congregation of 15 members announced that he was planning to burn copies of the Quran on the anniversary of Sept. 11, it made headlines around the world. But on the eve of 9/11, when as many as 28,000 Muslims gathered on the football field at Jamaica High School to celebrate the holiest day in the Muslim calendar, the media did not notice. With the exception of TimesLedger Newspapers, this event was ignored by the television networks and print media. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Hiram done in by scandal

Community activist Francisco Moya bested former state Sen. Hiram Monserrate nearly two-to-one in last week’s Democratic primary, but was his win due to voters liking Moya or disliking Monserrate? Comment.
Jackson Heights

Dromm urges community to help with survey

City Councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) and Community Board 3 District Manager Giovanna Reid called upon area residents last week to participate in a survey aimed at fixing every pothole and picking up every piece of trash on every street corner in the area. Comment.

Whitestone family to host concert in memory of daughter

When Theresa Buccellato went to Cascarino’s restaurant in College Point to get a bite to eat with friends Aug. 16, she was a happy, exuberant 16-year-old with dreams of studying at St. John’s University for a career as a veterinarian or helping children with disabilities. Comment.

Ex-SJU dean stole over $1M from school: DA

A Jamaica Estates woman who was employed by St. John’s University for more than three decades has been charged with stealing more than $1 million from the school and using the funds for trips to casinos, shopping at Victoria’s Secret and her son’s tuition, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said last week. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

The Civic Scene: Neighborhood civics work to maintain quality of life

The May newsletter of the Kissena Park Civic Association expressed concern about pigeon droppings as an aesthetic and a sanitation issue. It seems that in some areas of the community there has been a severe increase in pigeon droppings. There is also concern that some dog owners leave their dogs tied up outside barking all night. Comment.

Weiner wants opponent to rebuke Paladino

U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) sent a letter last week to his GOP challenger, Bob Turner, calling on him to condemn Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino’s reported statement comparing state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) to Hitler. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Tornado tables vote on tennis stadium

The tornado that devastated the borough and much of Forest Hills last week caused West Side Tennis Club members to postpone a vote to decide whether to sell the club’s stadium to the Cord Meyer Development Co. until Oct. 7, as opposed to the previously scheduled Sept. 23, according to club members. Comment.

UFT sues for smaller classes

The United Federation of Teachers filed a lawsuit against the city Department of Education last week in an attempt to lower the class size at Francis Lewis High School in Fresh Meadows, which the city Independent Budget Office recently ranked as the second most-crowded high school in the city. Comment.

Queens College to hold China events thru 2011

Queens College will officially kick off its year-long series of events focused on China next month, and two art exhibitions that opened this month at the school are giving borough residents a glimpse of the programs that will be offered at the college, including performances by world-famous artists, lectures by top scholars and a virtual guided trip to China’s Silk Road. Comment.

Queens Boro Board approves Commons plan

The $800 million Flushing Commons development project has cleared its final bureaucratic hurdle after nearly a decade of planning. Comment.

Flushing Caldor site to become mixed-use mall

The former site of the Caldor department store in downtown Flushing is slated to open by the end of the year as a mall with a wide range of new amenities for area shoppers. Comment.
Editorial

Judge Tramples on Dreams

Frank, not his real name, was 18 and barely out of high school when he signed up for the U.S. Army. He was shipped to Iraq, where he was nearly killed when a landmine blew up the truck he was riding in. Comment.

Woodhaven boy found shot in head: Police

A Woodhaven teen was murdered last week by a unknown killer who shot him in the head around the corner from his 106th Street home, police said. Comment.

Afghan women’s group settles in new Queens home

In an unassuming house in Fresh Meadows, the extraordinary happens. Comment.

Protesters rally to stop plan for St. Albans VA

Veterans groups, elected officials, civic organizations and the Jamaica NAACP marched around the perimeter of the St. Albans Veterans Administration Hospital Saturday to protest plans to develop private housing or other facilities on a portion of the hospital land. Comment.

Stavisky credits her focus in Senate primary win

Candidates and political observers have begun to make their assessments about what happened this election season to lead to the easy re-election of state Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone). Comment.

QCC shines spotlight on theater in fall lineup

Queensborough Community College will have a flair for the theatrical next month when it hosts a George Gershwin musical, a political satire, an Italian opera and an evening of romantic ballads at its performing arts center in Bayside. Comment.

Glendale vets host ceremony honoring POW/MIA

Pat Toro Jr., president of Chapter No. 32 of the Vietnam Veterans of America in Glendale, said he has been conducting the chapter’s annual POW/MIA Recognition Day ceremony for 10 years, and every year it gets harder. Comment.

Laurelton scam victim lands his owed $14M

A Laurelton senior citizen is now a millionaire following an investigation into a Lotto ticket vendor who nearly scammed him out of his winnings last month, the state Lottery Division said. Comment.

Queens students, Broadway vets hold concert in Jamaica

Southeast Queens youth shared the stage of the Jamaica Performing Arts Center last week with Broadway stars as a Jamaica nonprofit treated the community to a free concert called “Space Safe and Broadway Light Up Jamaica Avenue.” Comment.

Establishment support powered Braunstein win

Edward Braunstein won last week’s Democratic primary because he had broad support from voters across his northeast Queens district as well as the backing of the party’s county organization, political insiders said. Comment.
Bayside Times

BID wants more Bell Blvd. biz

The Bayside Village Business Improvement District wants to obtain grants for the upkeep of the neighborhood’s business district along Bell Boulevard and push a plan to extend meters along that strip, the group’s leaders told store owners and elected officials at an event it held this week. Comment.

Milano takes aim at Ackerman over biz interests

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) easily defeated his Democratic challenger in last week’s primary and will now face Republican James Milano, a Long Island doctor who has called for the longtime congressman to be investigated. Comment.
Crime

Man stabbed in the arm with an ice pick: Brown

OZONE PARK — An Ozone Park man was charged with assault, criminal possession of a weapon and harassment after he allegedly stabbed another man with an ice pick, a spokeswoman for Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Crime

Teen assaults woman, steals her iPhone: DA

OZONE PARK — A Jamaica teen was charged with robbery and criminal possession of stolen property after he allegedly swiped an iPhone from a woman in Ozone Park, a spokeswoman for Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment.
Crime

3 robbed gas station, 2 stores over 5 days: Cops

QUEENS — The NYPD sought the public’s help in capturing three men it suspects of robbing a gas station and two grocery stores at gunpoint in western and southeast Queens in a span of five days earlier this month. Comment.
Letters

Candidate regrets using image of 9/11 in campaign literature

Reflecting on my recent run for the state Assembly and speaking at length with some of my close South Asian friends and supporters about the Sept. 11 flier I mailed during the campaign has been enlightening. When you can have a discussion with thoughtful people and avert name-calling and selective proclamations of “moral outrage,” a powerful dialogue and understanding can emerge. Comment.
Letters

New voting system easy to use

I cannot believe people are complaining about the new voting system. I voted on Primary Day Sept. 14 and there were no problems at my polling place. Comment.
Letters

St. Albans Park homeless woman misunderstood

I am writing in response to the Sept. 9-15 article entitled “St. Albans squatter taken in by shelter.” Comment.
Letters

City teachers need pay raise now

The recent awarding of nearly $700 million in education funding is a positive development for schools throughout the state, including those here in New York City. Hopefully, some portion of this money will be able to be used to help give raises to the teachers in the city public school system. Comment.
Editorial

No threats, no hate, no story

On the eve of the ninth anniversary of Sept. 11, events at Astoria Park and Jamaica High School demonstrated the hope the thousands of Muslim families in Queens have that the nation can move beyond fear and divisiveness. Comment.
Opinion

QueensLine: ‘Yellow journalism’ named for Flushing man’s comic strip

On Sept. 25, 1928, a man died of cirrhosis of the liver in Ohio at the age of 65. He was Flushing native Richard Felton Outcault, who, under the pen name “R. F. Outcault,” was known to millions. He was the genius who created the first American comic strip. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: Primary elections are more important than people realize

This week we are going to start out with the most humorous quote of the week. Warren Schreiber had a question for his Conservative Party friends from Queens. His question was, “Why would you allow Robert Schwartz to run for office under your banner? He makes [Carl] Paladino look sane.” This provoked a number of responses on Facebook. The one from Michael Schenkler was the funniest: “Schwartz was the milk guy? That’s udderly ridiculous.” Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: The first crushes of pupils prove to be their teachers

School days, School days, dear old golden rule days,/Readin’ and writin’ and ’rithmetic,/Taught to the tune of a hickory stick. Comment.
Business

LIC eatery blends diner grub with fancy food

M. Wells, a new restaurant in Long Island City, looks like a typical diner with its metal facade and wide windows looking in on a stool-lined bar with baked goods under glass. Comment.

Weather Service finds two tornados hit city

A brief but devastating tornado with winds up to 125 mph stormed through Queens last Thursday, knocking down hundreds of trees and causing damage throughout the central and northeastern regions of the borough. Comment.

Voting machines to be investigated after problems

Queens lawmakers said widespread problems with the new voting machines throughout the borough during last week’s primary have prompted them to look into the irregularities before November’s general election. Comment.
Astoria Times

Astoria pupils paint murals

City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) unveiled two murals painted by western Queens students that he funded to cover a blank wall underneath the Amtrak train overpass along 31st Street in Astoria. Comment.

Two left dead in borough in aftermath of twister

The vicious tornado that ripped through Queens last Thursday killed a Pennsylvania woman after a tree fell on her car on the Grand Central Parkway, police said. Comment.

‘War zone’ in storm’s wake

A fierce tornado’s path through Queens last week may have been brief, but the storm left some communities in northeast and western Queens devastated as more than 1,000 trees crashed onto borough streets and tens of thousands of residents were left without power. Comment.

Smith’s leadership post safe: Analyst

State Senate President Malcolm Smith (D-St. Albans) is unlikely to face any repercussions in his status as a high-ranking Senate Democrat, even if Republicans take over the body, because of a built-in voting bloc of support as a Democratic leader, according to the analysis of a political science professor at Queens College. Comment.

Sanders, Dromm back small biz paid sick leave bill

Two Queens city councilmen took to the streets Tuesday morning to get support from parents over a bill that would mandate small businesses to give their employees paid sick leave. Comment.

Sasson accuses Stavisky camp of voter intimidation

The Sept. 14 Democratic primary has come and past for most voters and candidates, but Isaac Sasson, who came in second in the race to replace state Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone), had not yet thrown in the towel as of Tuesday afternoon. Comment.

Primary election brings few Queens voters to polls

Without the allure of a presidential election year and with few incumbents facing serious challenges, turnout in last week’s Democratic primaries in Queens was disappointing, according to figures compiled by TimesLedger Newspapers. Comment.

Muslim leaders meet in Queens to discuss Park51 Islamic center

A large group of Muslim leaders from around the country gathered in Queens over the weekend to discuss the growing amount of tension arising over the plans to build an Islamic community center near the former World Trade Center site in Manhattan. Comment.
Astoria Times

Maloney won over Saujani due to visibility: Insiders

Manhattan attorney Reshma Saujani may have been U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s (D-Astoria) toughest opposition in years, but the longtime congresswoman handily defeated her challenger in last week’s Democratic primary because she has been visible in her district, political insiders said. Comment.

LaGuardia CC class graduates

As LaGuardia Community College’s class of 2010 prepared to switch their tassels from one side of their caps to the other at their graduation Tuesday, faculty and speakers urged the students to be proud not only of their accomplishments, but also commended the sacrifices the students had to make to get there. Comment.

JetBlue pays homage to NY with advertising campaign

JetBlue demonstrated its love for New York by keeping its offices in Queens, and now the state is showing its appreciation for the airline by unveiling a new ad campaign that adapts one of the most famous slogans in the country, the governor announced. Comment.
Astoria Times

Group discusses LIC waterfront changes

As Green Shores NYC completed its listening sessions last week, the conglomeration of six activist groups found most residents were happy with the Astoria/Long Island City waterfront, but had a number of ideas for how to improve it. Comment.

Elected officials work to bring assistance to decimated areas

Queens legislators sprung into action after a tornado devastated the borough, offering loans for homeowners to repair damages, calling for quick tree removals from the city, urging residents to sign up for emergency alerts, and asking for state and federal aid. Comment.

Landmark church decapitated on Main St.

Pastors and parishioners are optimistically planning a long-term recovery after last week’s storm blew the lid off the landmark home of a 308-year-old congregation in the heart of downtown Flushing. Comment.

Mayor freezes hiring at city agencies

The mayor’s announcement that he will impose a hiring freeze on city agencies until they can come up with budget cuts to counteract the city’s deficit has angered at least one union, which claims he is going too far to fight the city’s financial troubles. Comment.

Citi touts microloans in Jackson Heights

After two years helping provide financial stability to entrepreneurs below the poverty line in America, Grameen America and Citi Microfinance celebrated Monday how far they had come at the place where they had started in the United States: Jackson Heights. Comment.

Ex-boro cop in Playgirl launches line of clothing

An ex-NYPD officer from Astoria may have gained recognition in the past for disrobing, but he now hopes to be known for keeping people clothed. Comment.
Arts

Working on a dream

Twenty-one year old R&B singer Laurent Luke is revving up his career in the music industry. A fixture in the southeast Queens music scene who lives just over the Nassau border in Elmont, the up-and-coming songwriter describes himself as an urban gentleman hoping to reach people through his emotional, wholesome lyrics. Comment.
Arts

From the Footlights: Roy Haynes

Next week we’ll have Part Two of Raphael Sugarman’s fall preview, encompassing highlights from some of Manhattan’s top jazz and classical music venues, but for now here’s a timely taste. Comment.

Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010

K-Rod charged with violating order of protection by texting his wife

Disgraced New York Mets star Francisco Rodriguez appeared in Queens Criminal Court Wednesday morning to be charged with seven counts of criminal contempt for allegedly text-messaging his common-law wife in violation of an order of protection, the Queens DA’s office said. Comment.

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