Today’s news:

Beware of people calling, asking for your personal info

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The October 2012 edition of the Holliswood Civic News warns about mail tampering and theft on two blocks in the community. It seems that a person has or people have been going into mailboxes. People have had their mail thrown into a garbage pail, a credit card application was taken and unauthorized charges were made and a large check was stolen but was not cashed. The U.S. postal inspector has been notified.

People are urged not to have their mail put into an unlocked mailbox, especially if it is at the curb, and are urged to have their mailbox put adjacent to the house or have a mail slot either in the locked screen door or the house door. I know of several neighbors who have unlocked mailboxes. It is a risk one should not take.

The June 2012 Bowne Park Civic Association Newsletter warns people to be careful of criminals illegally calling you to obtain information so they can steal from you. A criminal opens an account in the name of your bank or credit card company and calls you to try to obtain sensitive information about you. This is called “caller ID spoofing.”

You are warned to never give any personal information over the phone to anyone who calls you. Call your company using a number obtained from the statement it sent you.

The October/November Jamaica Estates Newsletter warns members that the 107th Precinct wants people to be alert when they are walking and using electronics. When you are on a phone or listening to a radio, you are not fully aware of your surroundings and thieves can sneak up on you because you are distracted.

After Hurricane Sandy, the West Cunningham Park Civic Association waged a battle against the city Department of Buildings because it issued summonses to people who had street trees fall onto their homes. The citation said homeowners had “failed to maintain their property.”

People are not supposed to do anything to a city curb tree. When confronted, DOB said it wanted a record of how many trees had fallen on homes. Then DOB said it would remove any violations from people’s homes.

The March 2012 Bowne Park Civic Association Newsletter had a box with information from state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside). It is illegal to park a commercial vehicle on a public street or continuously on a residential property. It is illegal to place an old mattress out for garbage collection without a plastic covering, due to bedbug concerns. It is illegal to place your garbage out prior to 5 p.m. for the following day’s pick-up, except in the winter. Park on your front lawn or cement over the front lawn.

GOOD NEWS OF THE WEEK: The city Parks Department had a good Mulch Fest with more than 700 tress mulched in Cunningham Park. Volunteers from the West Cunningham Park Civic Association and the Key Club of Francis Lewis High School helped with the mulching and giving out free mulch.

Parks says it will leave piles of mulch in the parking lot of Cunningham Park off Union Turnpike at 196th Place for a couple weeks and then place new mulch around April in time for spring planting. We will let you know when it is put out.

BAD NEWS OF THE WEEK: Gov. Andrew Cuomo called for a harder “bar exam” for new teachers.

Doesn’t he remember that the city had a Board of Examiners which administered tests that required literacy, spelling ability, speaking ability and subject knowledge?

But the BOE was eliminated a few years ago because too many people could not pass it.

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