Astoria Times

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Jackson Heights

Maspeth residents clash over proposed school

Tempers ran high in a community that remembered well the strain and conflict of a school−siting process a decade ago as they discussed the possibility of the city seizing property in Maspeth to build a new high school. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Ecuadorian’s murder brings hate charges

Two Bronx men have been indicted on hate crime charges in connection with a brutal attack on a pair of Ecuadorian men in Bushwick, Brooklyn, that left one of them dead and alarmed Ecuadorians throughout Queens and Long Island. Comment.
Astoria Times

Man robbed two jewelry stores: Brown

ELMHURST — A 35−year−old was arraigned in Queens Criminal Court last week after allegedly stealing more than $4,000 in necklaces and rings in two separate robberies, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Astoria Times

Woodside man robbed pizza joint twice: DA

CORONA — A Woodside man was arrested last Thursday after allegedly stealing cash from a pizzeria on two separate occasions, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Astoria Times

Three people robbed by SE Queens teen: Brown

OZONE PARK — A St. Albans teen was arrested last week after allegedly robbing three people, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Astoria Times

Reasons to say ‘I heart Astoria’

If New York is a city of neighborhoods, to borrow a phrase from Gotham−lovin’ scribe E.B. White, then Astoria is one beloved ’hood. Comment.
Letters

Objectivity called for in column

It appears TimesLedger columnist Dee Richard is dealing in payola in the print media. Richard’s “Dishing with Dee” column has gone deep−sea dishing and she has got herself on the hook. I received calls from many people outraged by her last column. Comment.
Letters

Electeds should always read bills

I agree with Chris Donnellan’s Feb. 19 letter “Electeds must review stimulus package before passing it.” Comment.
Letters

Let community residents decide where to place cell phone towers

There is a serious problem in our country with the proliferation of cell phone towers within residential neighborhoods. It is my understanding that federal legislation has limited the right of local communities as to the placement of these cell towers. Comment.
Letters

Bloomberg can help city recover economically

Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s approval rating has dropped to 52 percent from about 70 percent in November. But his numbers are still ahead of his leading contenders, like U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D−Forest Hills), city Comptroller Bill Thompson, and City Councilman Tony Avella (D−Bayside). Comment.
Letters

Catholic−turned−charter schools should stay open for all students

I take issue with your Feb. 19 editorial “Save the Schools.” Save the schools, yes, but for whom? Comment.
Letters

Management of city schools has not benefitted anyone

Thank you, city Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, for using your limited educational experience to destroy whatever hope there was for city public schools. Comment.
Letters

New identification called for when crossing U.S. borders

Summer will be here soon and many New Yorkers are making plans to travel outside the United States. Beginning June 1, a change in federal law will require most U.S. citizens to present a valid passport or other approved document to enter the United States at all land and sea border crossings between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean. Comment.
Letters

Protect bus service for students from boro to Bronx Science HS

An open letter to MTA Executive Director Elliot G. Sander and Queens DA Richard Brown. Comment.
Editorial

Hope

For every Queens resident, the nation is caught in a recession of historic proportions, one that threatens retirement plans and the hope of saving for a child’s higher education. For families on the brink of losing their homes to foreclosure, it is the Great Depression all over again. Comment.
Astoria Times

Make the time to observe daylight saving this year

A farmer walked into the house after completing his chores, sat down, wrinkled his brow and became pensive. “What are you thinking?” asked his wife. “I’m trying to figure out where I can find all the daylight I saved when I set the clocks back last November,” he said. Comment.
Astoria Times

Political parties bring order to the electoral process

Mayor Michael Bloomberg does not like the political party system, especially as it exists here in the city. That was proven in 2003, when he initiated a citywide referendum to abolish political party designations in city elections. It seems an overwhelming majority of New York’s registered voters disapproved of this initiative, since the referendum was defeated by 70 percent of voters that year. Comment.
Astoria Times

Bloomberg hints at possible run for mayor with GOP

The political pot is still boiling and letting off steam, as most boiling pots do. Let’s try and get a timeline perspective. Comment.
Astoria Times

Grand Loews Triboro met tragic end

On Feb. 2, 1931, the Loews Triboro Theatre opened. One of the last giant Loews palaces to be built in the city, this classic Thomas Lamb theater welcomed visitors with a classic Aztec Revival exterior. Comment.
Astoria Times

Family fun comes cheap

Whatever happened to spending quality time with our family? With the current state of financial affairs, maybe it is time we look to have fun in some old−fashioned and cost−efficient way. Doing things that do not cost a lot of money can open new doors in terms of what we put value on. Comment.
Astoria Times

Learning how to refresh mind, body

When Rockaway Beach resident John Nash’s doctor told him to try yoga to help alleviate pain from a back injury he received in 1997, Nash was a bit incredulous. Comment.
Astoria Times

Queens takes it easy on snow day

A wall of white slammed into Queens and the rest of the city Sunday night and Monday morning, dumping as much as 10 inches of snow on the borough but causing mostly minimal headaches for commuters and city agencies. Comment.
Astoria Times

Woodside parents livid at cut

A group of Woodside parents were up in arms after the city announced it would cut bus service from the Big Six Towers and require students there to walk to PS 229. Comment.
Astoria Times

Closings stretch Queens’ hospitals

After St. John’s and Mary Immaculate hospitals closed down Monday, Borough President Helen Marshall said she would be keeping a close watch on the state of Queens’ other medical centers as they face a large influx of patients from the shuttered medical centers. Comment.
Astoria Times

Schumer seeks funds for Moynihan Station

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D−N.Y.) has called for using federal stimulus money to revive the Moynihan railroad station project to replace Penn Station because “we, too, must have bold visions.” Comment.
Astoria Times

Poletti will close: State Power Authority

The chairman of the state Power Authority is insisting that the agency will shutter Astoria’s notorious Charles Poletti Power Project by its scheduled January 2010 closure date following recent concern by western Queens elected officials and community activists that the plant would remain open. Comment.
Astoria Times

Woodside fireman grew pot in Queens Village home: U.S. attorney

A Queens firefighter was arraigned on federal drug charges last week in connection with growing $500,000 worth of marijuana that was stored in a rented Queens Village home, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn said. Comment.
Astoria Times

City pushes tax help for elder homeowners

More than 6,000 Queens properties are currently at−risk of having their tax liens sold to private collectors, but city Finance Department employee Lee Fiorino is working to ensure that number decreases. Comment.
Astoria Times

Millions approved for Second Ave. subway: Maloney

The federal government has come up with another multimillion−dollar infusion of cash for the Second Avenue subway and the East Side Access project. Comment.
Astoria Times

Vallone puts boro prez bid on hold, seeks third term

City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D−Astoria) said he plans to run for a third term this fall after giving up his bid for Queens borough president amid the overturning of term limits last year. Comment.
Astoria Times

Queens pols slam plan for East River bridge tolls

More than 20 New York City elected officials have attacked state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s proposal to establish tolls on East River and Harlem River bridges in a last−minute rescue of the financially beleaguered MTA, calling it an assault on the middle class. Comment.
Astoria Times

NE Queens activists want city to assign Ft. Totten security

Northeast Queens community activists scheduled a rally this weekend to urge the city to provide security guard detail at Fort Totten following a recent announcement by the FDNY that it would not renew its contract with the Bayside fort, which it guarded, amid budget constraints. Comment.
Astoria Times

Forest Hills rehab center sues Madoff for $10M

A Forest Hills−based charity is suing Queens native Bernard Madoff for $10 million after it lost about $2.5 million in the $50 billion Ponzi scheme Madoff created, according to papers filed in Queens Supreme Court. Comment.
Astoria Times

F train is dirtier, slower but overall gets C−minus

Straphangers who ride the F train have given it the same C−minus grade as the previous year, but they told the New York City Transit Authority that subway car cleanliness had declined. Comment.
Astoria Times

Liu calls for stricter idling truck probes

City Councilman John Liu (D−Flushing) joined the state Department of Environmental Conservation last week in Flushing in ramping up efforts to curtail emissions from diesel trucks as part of a citywide campaign to reduce air pollution. Comment.
Astoria Times

Gioia, Liu trailing in poll on public advocate contest

City Councilmen Eric Gioia (D−Sunnyside) and John Liu (D−Flushing) are not faring well against their challengers for the soon−to−be−vacated public advocate seat, according to a recent Marist poll. Comment.
Astoria Times

Qns. College to dust off French poetry format

A bit of 17th century France is coming to Queens. Comment.
Astoria Times

Monserrate says attack charge was ‘fabrication’

State Sen. Hiram Monserrate’s (D−East Elmhurst) legal team again went on the offensive Friday as the former city councilman fought allegations that he slashed his girlfriend’s face with a broken glass during a fight in December, contending the prosecutor fabricated accounts that the incident was an attack. Comment.
Astoria Times

HSBC plans to shut four branches of lenders HFC and Beneficial in Queens

London−based HSBC bank announced this week that it plans to close 800 branches of two units that specialize in consumer lending and have several branches in Queens. Comment.
Astoria Times

LIC subway rape victim files suit against MTA

The attorney for a Brooklyn woman who was raped four years ago on a Long Island City subway platform said the city Transit Authority and two of its employees should pay for failing to protect the victim as she pleaded for help. Comment.
Astoria Times

Hundreds line up for Sunnyside St. Patty’s Day parade

St. Patrick’s Day may be less than two weeks away, but that didn’t stop Sunnyside residents and city leaders from showing off their Irish pride Sunday. Comment.
Astoria Times

Slow economy spurs high LaGuardia CC enrollment

Enrollment figures are spiking at two of the borough’s community colleges, and officials are chalking it up to the economic downturn. Comment.
Astoria Times

Thrift store in Astoria gets set from TV’s Conan

Conan O’Brien fans who are looking for a piece or even several pieces of television history need look no further after a used furniture and appliance company from Astoria inherited a number of items from the “Late Night” show. Comment.
Astoria Times

QCC gets $33,000 for Holocaust center

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D−N.Y.) has secured $33,000 for Queensborough Community College that will allow the Bayside school to complete construction on its new Holocaust resource center, the center’s executive director said. Comment.
Astoria Times

Disputed tape stokes fire at Malakov trial

A tape−recorded conversation made by the people accused of killing Dr. Daniel Malakov became a serious point of contention Monday as the prosecutor and defense attorney clashed over the audio’s correct translation. Comment.
Astoria Times

The International

It’s long been known that Queens is the most diverse county in the United States, but the Queens Museum of Art is hoping that its latest exhibition will shed some light on how that population is evolving and integrating. Comment.
Astoria Times

NYC Opera brings touring show to LIC

The New York City Opera’s “Looking Forward” series is traveling citywide. Having already hit Staten Island and Brooklyn, their next stop will be the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center in Queens on March 7th. Comment.
Astoria Times

Astoria couple’s love is star−crossed in opera ‘Carmen’

On stage, they’re one of the most famous and tragic couples in music history. Off stage, they’re a couple of married opera singers living in Astoria. Comment.

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