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Queens Chronicle

Queenswide

Stories with boroughwide interest

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Mayor, in Richmond Hill, touts afterschool

Mayor de Blasio came to Queens on Monday, and his first stop was to the newly renovated Boys & Girls Club of Metro Queens to promote one of his young administration’s latest education policies.And it wasn’t universal prekindergarten

Costa calls for gun registry to go public
Posted: August 28, 2014

Councilman Costa Constantinides (D-Astoria) announced the introduction of legislation that is aimed to keep the community informed of gun violence in the neighborhood.

The bill, primarily sponsored by Constantinides and Councilmen Ritchie Torres (D-Bronx) and Paul Vallone (D-Bayside), would mandate a community notification requirement for the city’s gun offender registry.

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Goldfeder: Graffiti is not for children
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 12:03 pm

Call it a gateway toy.

Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Rockaway Park) wants a stencil toy removed from store shelves because he’s afraid it will promote graffiti vandalism and ultimately more serious crimes.

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Council passes Rikers solitary bill
Posted: August 28, 2014

After the Department of Correction’s use of solitary confinement came under fire during a recent Council hearing, a new bill to force Rikers Island administrators to publicly release statistics on inmates thrown into segregation was approved by the City Council on Aug. 21.

According to the bill, drafted by Councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) — an avid opposer of solitary confinement — the department would have to publish four reports a year detailing how many inmates are placed in solitary, why they are sent and for how long, whether they attempt suicide or are physically or sexually assaulted.

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Ferguson rally held in Jackson Heights
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 12:07 pm

A large group of mostly young immigrants gathered in Diversity Plaza in Jackson Heights to protest the actions of police in Ferguson, Mo.

“Ain’t no power like the power of the people, cuz the power of the people don’t stop,” almost 100 people chanted.

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Is this another kink in the rollout of UPK?
Posted: August 28, 2014

Brian O’Toole of Long Island City is frustrated.

His efforts to enroll his daughter in a prekindergarten class at PS 78 have been fruitless, and he says the city has not been responsive to his concerns.

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Serena Williams surprises campers
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 2:19 pm

Some of the 23 Elmcor youth group campers had never stepped foot on a tennis court before they traveled to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center for a tennis clinic last Thursday.

Serena Williams made sure their first time gripping a racket was a memory they will cherish forever.

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No throwing in the towel on ferry route
Posted: August 28, 2014

The Rockaway Ferry may be slated to end in two months, but residents, civic leaders and elected officials from the peninsula are not yet defeated.

Supporters took their fight right to the steps of City Hall, as they have before when the service started after Hurricane Sandy was in jeopardy.

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Moss, GOP go on offense on Queens
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 2:48 pm

Chris Moss, running for lieutenant governor with Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino, headlined the list of statewide and Congressional candidates speaking Tuesday night at a meeting of the Queens Village Republican Club.

And the Chemung County sheriff said he and Astorino feel quite at home in New York City.

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De Blasio headlines annual QJCC event
Posted: August 28, 2014

Mayor de Blasio kicked off the Queens Jewish Community Council Testimonial Dinner on Monday by thanking the organization for its work of feeding the poor and hungry in the borough, voicing strong support for the state of Israel and fighting the stain of anti-Semitism and hate crimes.

“For members of the Jewish community, this is an incredibly important institution that provides so much assistance, but for so many members of the larger Queens community who happen to not be Jewish, it’s a place they turn to equally for help and an open door,” de Blasio said at the Jamaica Estates event.

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City settles with three unions
Posted: August 28, 2014

The city announced tentative contract settlements last week with three more municipal unions.

Last Friday, Mayor de Blasio’s office announced settlement on 88-month contracts with the United Probation Officers Association and SEIU Local 300, which represents procurement analysts, associate fingerprint technicians, forensic mortuary technicians and others.

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QUICK HITS
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:07 pm

Seeking to achieve in court what it could not get in arbitration, the United Federation of Teachers last week filed a lawsuit asking a judge to rule that teachers do not have to show their lesson plans to school administrators.

The suit, filed in state Supreme Court in Manhattan, grows out of an arbitrator’s ruling in May that while all teachers must create lesson plans, what they contain will be left up to them, according to multiple published reports. The arbitrator refused a union bid to also rule that principals and other supervisors would not even get to review the plans, prompting the suit.

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Friday 08/29/2014
Bratton, NYPD ruff on crime at the US Open
Updated: August 29, 2014 - 12:27 pm

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton stopped by the US Open Thursday night, getting a first-hand look at security measures taken by the city to protect visitors who have come from around the world to Flushing Meadows Corona Park.   

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Yonkers man arrested for Sunday assault on Queens family
Posted: August 29, 2014

A Yonkers, NY man has been arrested in connection with last weekend's attack on a mother and her three children outside the Boulevard Family Residence, formerly the Pan American Hotel, in Elmhurst.

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Thursday 08/28/2014
United Airlines employee assaulted at LaGuardia
Updated: August 29, 2014 - 9:58 am

A young man from Yonkers allegedly decided to beat up a United Airlines employee at LaGuardia Airport Wednesday night rather than show a ticket in order to pick up his luggage.

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MTA Labor Day weekend schedule
Posted: August 28, 2014

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority will operate all buses and subway trains on a Sunday schedule for the Labor Day holiday on Monday, Sept. 1.

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Jamaica Hospital testing lung drug
Posted: August 28, 2014

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a disease that causes irreversible scarring of lung tissue, with most patients dying in periods ranging from a few months to a few years.

But at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center patients are now participating in tests of Pirfenidone, a drug that has shown promise in slowing the disease down.

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Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day enchants younger set
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 2:39 pm

The Saturday before the US Open begins is set aside for youngsters and this year was no exception.

The day-long Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day began with hands-on tennis instructions, supplemented by face painters, stilt walkers and animal balloon makers.

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‘Don’t look down on me,’ little person says
Posted: August 28, 2014

Living in a big city you are exposed to a melting pot of people from different cultures and ethnicities as well as a lot of different views and opinions. Within such a huge conglomerate of people you’ll often find biases plaguing the minds of some. Being or seeming different in the eyes of the society brings about questions that can be annoying and frustrating to hear time and time again.

That’s how it can be for Jon Novick, 22, a Sunnyside resident who recently made a documentary called “Don’t Look Down on Me,” which shows the type of stares and comments he receives as a little person in New York City. Novick has a condition known as achondroplasia, which is the most common form of dwarfism, and stands 4 feet tall.

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Donations for U.S. wounded
Posted: August 28, 2014

The Queens Chapter of the Marine Corps League is seeking donations of items needed by the families of wounded American military personnel now being treated at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Maryland.

Requested items include Pack-n-Play baby playpens; Swiffer WetJet brooms; size 5 diapers (not Pampers or Huggies); small containers of hand sanitizer; baby wipes; flushable wipes; large bath towels; liquid hand soap in pump bottles; blenders; Clorox wipes; laundry detergent; Kleenex tissues; mechanical can openers; brooms and dustpans; mops; standing mixers; cutting boards; measuring cups; kitchen knives; bowls; mixing bowls; water pails; toilet cleaners; portable high chairs for toddlers.

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It does compute for three Queens girls
Posted: August 28, 2014

Computer programming is a man’s world.

Statistics stand by that assertion as a fact, and that gap is inspiring even big corporations to invest in closing it.

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No news or good news, depending on time frame
Posted: August 28, 2014

The number of people working in Queens was roughly the same in July as it was in June — 1,092,800 — according to the latest figures from the state Department of Labor.

The number counted as unemployed increased from 81,000 to 82,700 and the unemployment rate ticked up by a tenth of a point, from 6.9 percent to 7 percent.

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Queens can help save the Earth, from the ground up
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 1:37 pm

Being a progressive city that has already felt the wrath of global climate change, it’s still surprisingly easy for New York to ignore the recent definitive warning bells that sea levels will rise 3 to 9 feet and Earth will warm 6 to 8 degrees Fahrenheit within the century. Cities are the source of 70 percent of greenhouse gas emissions and also most vulnerable to their effects. But the overwhelming numbers leave us wondering- what is next for us in New York City?

The challenges of climate change need to be taken in a multifaceted approach, with local and national policy changes and community engagement inspiring personal behavioral changes. We cannot tolerate a state of paralysis and inaction waiting for the UN (despite our former mayor’s leadership in the UN Sustainable Cities initiative), our dysfunctional Congress or a gridlocked state government to tell us how to solve our woes. The problems are just too big, entrenched and complex to defer.

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Tuesday 08/26/2014
Back to School & Fall Guide 2014
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 4:01 pm

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City preps for universal pre-K, year one
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:57 pm

If it goes off without a hitch, it may be the shining moment of Mayor de Blasio’s term in office so far. If it doesn’t, it could be a black eye to any chances of a second.

As summer winds down, a new school year prepares to start up, and with it, 50,000 new prekindergarten students, the first class of the city’s universal pre-K program who will be entering the classroom for the first time on Sept. 8.

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Mom’s got a long checklist to go through
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:56 pm

Our family’s traditional August soaking detachment from all responsibilities was slothing happily along when, on Aug. 19, I received a Facebook message wishing me a Happy Hoo Hah Day. That’s how I knew it was time to start thinking about back-to-school.

When my siblings and I were teens, my brother invented Hoo Hah Day as a way to indulge while still sheltered by several weeks from summer’s last call on Labor Day. We observed by concocting a favorite beverage and running wild in the yard at night. Now as the mother of a 9-year-old, my first priority for back-to-school season is still to happily top off summer before we yield to practical preparations.

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Parents seek to weaken teacher job protections
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:56 pm

As students and teachers head back into the classroom, some parents and union officials are heading into the courtroom.

At issue are teacher tenure and other job protections for educators. The plaintiffs in two lawsuits filed against the state this summer — including two parents from Queens suing on behalf of their children — contend that tenure and the lengthy process for removing teachers are so onerous that many bad educators remain in the system, denying children their constitutional right to a sound basic education.

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Education never ends at the Queens Library
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:58 pm

Career counselor Nancy Cafferty sits at a small round table opposite two young ladies who have come for guidance in their search for fulfillment in the workforce.

Kafayat Onanuga, of Jamaica, is in her mid-20s and has been through the process before. Leandra Cedeno, who lives in Ridgewood and is also 20-something, has come for the first time.

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Keeping players healthy is the name of the game
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:55 pm

The debate over player safety and the impact of playing sports on an athlete’s body has raged on the professional level for years.

News of a major league pitcher needing elbow reconstruction surgery or an NFL star getting a concussion are often top stories on ESPN and professional sports leagues have made player safety one of, if not the, highest priorities.

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2014-15 Public School Year Calendar
Updated: August 28, 2014 - 3:57 pm

Sept. 4, Thursday SCHOOL SESSIONS BEGIN FOR ALL STUDENTS. (Partial day for prekindergarten.)

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