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Queens Chronicle

CB 6 tackles crime and other issues

Varied topics from scams to liquor licenses addressed at meeting

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Posted: Thursday, March 20, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:14 am, Thu Mar 27, 2014.

The March 12 Community Board 6 monthly meeting addressed a number of issues relevant to the residents of the area, beginning with a report from Lt. Brian Goldberg of the 112 Precinct that indicated crime was down 4 percent overall last month. That was the good news.

But Goldberg also issued an alert about telephone scams aimed primarily at the elderly. A report from the NYPD states that “people are losing thousands of dollars in a phone scam involving Green Dot MoneyPak cards.”

The scams generally involve a call from someone claiming to be collecting a debt for either a utility company or the Internal Revenue Service, threatening to cut off the victim’s heat or electric or arresting or possibly deporting them.

The NYPD encourages everyone to “be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason.” It also advises to “never give out personal or financial information to anyone who emails or calls unsolicited. Never wire money, provide debit or credit card numbers or Green Dot MoneyPak card numbers to someone you do not know.”

The lieutenant also indicated that the suspect in a rash of recent apartment burglaries in the area had yet to be apprehended. “We’re still working on that,” he said.

Chairman Joseph Hennessy presented his report in which he pointed out that the per capita money for Queens is roughly $2 per person, compared to $12 per person in Manhattan. “Guess who’s in the bottom rung?” he asked. “The money that comes back into Queens is not enough.”

Tops among the board’s financial priorities is the expansion of the public library at Rego Park, which is seen as the key to the success of the area’s children.

Also among the items on the board’s wish list are an upgrade to the area’s sewer system, upgraded equipment for fire houses and funding for Lost Battalion Hall, the community center in need of air-conditioning repairs.

District Manager Frank Gulluscio suggested to the board that attendance by members at meetings needs to be improved. As last week’s meeting got under way, the board was just short of a quorum.

Gulluscio reminded the board that the previously discussed mandatory webcasting of community board public meetings might become a reality in the future.

“I’m not quite sure what it will end up being,” he admitted.

The district manager also addressed requests for the designation of certain streets in the area as one-way, pointing out that “one block affects all other blocks. We’ll submit (the requests) to the DOT and discuss it in committee. We have to do it according to procedure.”

In response to complaints from area residents against food vendors along Metropolitan Avenue, Gulluscio pointed out that they are “perfectly legal. There’s not a whole lot we can do.”

Of one vendor, in particular, Gulluscio noted, “He had a crowd going by there every day. They were making him rich.”

A request had been filed with the board for a special permit to enclose a rear porch of a two-story, two-family home at 66-31 Booth St. in Rego Park. The committee recommended approval and the motion passed.

Linda Ford, administrative director of preventive services of Forestdale, Inc., a nonprofit group that provides foster care and other family services, and is located at 67-35 112 St. in Forest Hills, made a presentation to promote volunteerism there. To contact her, call (718) 263-0740, ext. 571.

The board had been notified of three new applications for liquor licenses. Of these, one had earlier requested deferral.

The second, Pollos Mario, at 63-20 Woodhaven Blvd. in Rego Park, was approved on the condition that it is, indeed, located within CB 6. The Red Panda Asian Bistro, 95-25 Queens Blvd. in Rego Park, applied for an alteration on its license, requesting a full liquor license. The motion passed.

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