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A lot can change in five days.
Community Board 7 voted on Monday to approve the proposed Phase One redevelopment of Willets Point, including a controversial 1.4 million-square-foot shopping mall adjacent to Citi Field, after its Land Use Committee initially failed to approve the project.
About a dozen restaurant owners and bikers got the 411 on Tuesday on new delivery regulations.
A package of city laws that went into effect on April 23 requires helmets, reflective vests, lights, bells and identification linking the riders to their employers’ establishments.
Repairing the seawall in Queensbridge Park has been talked about for well over a decade. Last Friday those plans came to fruition when politicians, the Parks Department and dedicated neighborhood advocates dipped their symbolic golden shovels into a pre-dug pile of dirt to commence construction.
The $6.65 million project will raise the crumbling seawall separating the park from the East River in the most northern section of Long Island City across from the Queensbridge Houses. Plans also call for a 6-foot-wide promenade with benches, plantings and a small wharf at its northern end.
The new executive officer of the 103rd Precinct said crime statistics — particularly those involving guns — are headed in the right direction on Tuesday at the monthly meeting of the precinct’s Community Council.
“Year to date we have had five shootings; last year at this time the precinct had 16,” Capt. James Fey said. “In those incidents there have been six shooting victims. We had 19 in the same period last year.
The bill mandating that companies in the city with more than 15 employees eventually provide paid sick leave is awaiting a promised mayoral veto — and an expected override of that veto by the City Council.
The bill passed last Wednesday 45-3, more than enough to nullify the veto promised by Mayor Bloomberg, if members stick to their positions.
From his office on Bell Boulevard and 73rd Avenue, City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) says he can hear his frustrated constituents at the former Q75 bus stop swearing, yelling, and literally crying out for someone to restore the cancelled bus route.
The Q75, which ran from Oakland Gardens to the F train stations in Jamaica, was eliminated along with 32 other bus routes, 570 bus stops and two subway lines on June 27, 2010, a $93 million service reduction.
Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn,Queens) came to the May meeting of the Lindenwood Alliance, in the Fairfield Arms Co-op, to meet some of his new constituents.
Jeffries told the audience that he was concerned with resolving any issues that residents had with the Federal Emergency Management Agency regarding Hurricane Sandy.
The city’s executive budget plan has been released. It proposes a cut to Queens Library of $29.6 million, part of a proposed cut to libraries citywide of $100 million. If that proposal were to become reality, the impact on library service hours and the number of job layoffs are unthinkable.
Our representatives in City Hall and the City Council value libraries. They have demonstrated that in the past. Elected officials have limited revenue resources and tough choices to make. Nevertheless, the proposed cut is enormous.
It is up to the people of Queens to show the City Council and City Hall that library hours and library jobs are critical to this city. Libraries in Queens urgently need your help. Go to savequeenslibrary.org. You will be able to sign our electronic petition and send an email to your elected representatives. Or, stop in to any library and sign the paper petition or write a postcard.
Speak up for Queens Library! Tens of millions of our neighbors use free library resources or attend free library programs. They enjoy quiet reading time, sharpen their skills for their next big job, use the computers, prepare for an important exam for work or school, find out more about a health con
dition or email a friend far away. To allow that, libraries must remain open for service at least five days a week, or more.
As we speak with our elected officials, we will also be talking about how critical a stable funding stream is for libraries in the future. We need to be able to better plan for the library services you need from year to year and be assured of being able to buy books for the shelves.
For now, I hope I can count on everyone to Speak Up for Queens Library. Go to savequeenslibrary.org on your computer or smartphone, or stop at the library and sign the petition. You need your library. Right now, your library needs you.
“Gravity of the Sculpture: Part II” will remain on display at The Dorsky Gallery, 11-03 45 Ave., Long Island City, through July 3. Call (718) 937-6317, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit dorsky.org.
The United States Tennis Association, three Queens elected officials and some parks advocates this week lauded a deal with the city that would have the nonprofit “replace” land it wants so it can expand its National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.
The accord reached between the nonprofit and city represents a unique bargain: according to a press release sent by the USTA, it replaces the 0.68 acre of parkland needed for its expansion with 1.56 acres of what looks like, is used as and mapped as existing parkland already within Flushing Meadows.
A proposed zoning addition changes everything, one Long Island City restaurateur said.
Two and half years ago Jeff Blath, owner of Alobar at 46-42 Vernon Blvd., signed a contract with Community Board 2 that he would never have outdoor seating, but now to the outrage of a few residents he’s asking for just that.
The School Construction Authority came before Community Board 11 on Monday night with a proposed new 416-seat school, pointing to what it calls a strong need for more classrooms in one of the city’s high-performing education districts.
The agency ran headlong into the gaping maw of Northeast Queens’ ire, fueled by the potential school’s incredulous neighbors, who claimed the city did not look hard enough for a better site.
City Comptroller John Liu continues to run for mayor as if confident he can overcome the embarrassment of a campaign finance scandal that could send one of his top former aides and a contributor to prison for decades.
How much impact the case will have is an open question. But according to two political science experts in Queens, the Liu campaign faces multiple challenges arising from the convictions last week of Jia “Jenny” Hou, his former treasurer, and Xing Wu “Oliver” Pan, a fundraising “bundler,” who secured donations from other parties that then went to the campaign.
Elected officials, members of the public and Queens Library employees gathered Tuesday on the steps of the Flushing Library to decry a $29.6 million fiscal buzzsaw in the mayor’s proposed budget looming over the institution.
The gathering starts what has become something of an annual cut-then-rescue ritual inspired every year by Mayor Bloomberg’s budget. Inevitably, hizzoner puts out dollar figures that cause lawmakers to use terms like “unacceptable” and “draconian.”
Jon Torodash has officially thrown his hat in the ring to be the next City Council member for the 29th District.
“I want the residents of the 29th District to know that they are not second-rate citizens,” Torodash said after his candidacy announcement on Sunday. “There’s a perception that Queens is some kind of consolation prize, which is not true at all.”
Sorry, park advocates, the Major League Soccer stadium planned for Flushing Meadows is a done deal. And, some of you same folks will lament the fact that the Ridgewood Theatre will never be a performance venue again. Lastly, you fans of City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) will be disappointed to learn she will not be the next mayor of New York.
These were all revelations made to this writer on Tuesday. Do I have a crystal ball? No. (After all, I was liking Curtis Sliwa’s pick in the Kentucky Derby until the darn horse scratched at the last minute). No, what I had was a conversation with Queens’ own celebrity psychic, Jesse Bravo.
The responsibilities of a borough president have recently become the subject of debate. While some have said these borough-heads who cannot make any decisions on legislation are irrelevant, Queens borough president candidate Barry Grodenchik says the position is about more than rules and regulations.
“The job is about bringing people together,” Grodenchik said in a sit-down with the Queens Chronicle editors last Thursday. “We live in the most diverse place in the country and probably the world, and while it’s easy to scream and rant, the tougher job is to work with the people.”
The reviews are in, and critics of Mayor Bloomberg’s final executive budget are saying they have seen this show before.
And, as per usual, there is likely to be a rousing closing dance number when City Council members restore funding for the same fire companies, after-school programs, senior centers and libraries that have been proposed for cuts by the mayor for years.
(NAPSI)—Just because gas prices go up, that doesn’t mean your driving has to go down.
Major League Soccer’s proposal to build a stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park has re-emerged this week, jangling a borough that has spent the better part of three months focused elsewhere.
The league once again contends it’s weeks away from finalizing a deal with the city, as it did last fall. This time, the league may have found an oil-rich owner for the proposed franchise: Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, a billionaire member of the Abu Dhabi royal family and deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates.
Seven-year-old Alec McFarlane looks at home at the Rosedale Little League field with his teal uniform and black glove.
He plays shortstop just like his idol, Derek Jeter. And like the Yankee captain, it will be a while before Alec can get out on the field and play again.
Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone), who was arrested last month on accusations that he took part in a scheme to bribe Republican officials in order to get state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) onto the mayoral ballot as a Republican, announced Wednesday that he will not run for a second term.
Halloran, who was first elected in 2009, was arrested April 2, along with Smith and Vince Tabone, former vice chairman of the Queens Republican Party, for an alleged plot to solicit bribes to acquire a Wilson Pakula for Smith, a Democrat, in order for him to get a place on the GOP primary ballot for mayor. He was indicted late last month.
Members attending the inaugural meeting of the Education Task Force convened by Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-Corona) last Thursday were asked to keep an eye out for lots and empty buildings that could be utilized to combat overcrowding in school districts 24 and 30.
At PS 142 students start lunch at 9:30 a.m. and only attend physical education four months out of the year, one parent said.
With chants of “save our centers” reverberating across the steps of Queens Borough Hall, hundreds of young students, representing various after-school programs and encouraged by their mentors and elected officials, made their voices heard at a rally on April 24 to protest proposed budget cuts that would leave many of them without a home away from home.
“How would you feel if your second home was gone?” 10-year-old Jessica Calvo asked the crowd as she stepped up to the podium.
Unionized meat department workers from the chain of Queens’ Trade Fair grocery stores, who have rallied against unfair labor practices for the last six weeks, were paid a visit by an important City Council politico last Friday.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) told ralliers outside the 37th Street store in Jackson Heights that she is on their side.