More than 200 residents gathered across the street from the Rochdale Village apartment complex on Tuesday night in an effort to rally their neighbors — and state officials — to make changes in governance and management.
Residents met in Holy Unity Baptist Church, saying the complex’s board of directors would not grant state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park) permission to have it on the grounds.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) has been finding endorsements hard to come by in his battle to hold his 14th District seat.
This was supposed to be the week John Liu was to be surging with major political and union endorsements; the week state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) was supposed to be glancing nervously into his rearview mirror.
And it was — until about 4 p.m. on Tuesday, when Mayor de Blasio endorsed Avella and the Working Families Party withdrew its pledged endorsement of Liu, choosing to remain neutral in the Democratic primary in the 11th Senate District.
With one Queens politician being arrested last week and two more set to go on trial in federal court in June, one also is set to be freed from federal custody this month.
The New York Post reported this week that former state Sen. Shirley Huntley will be released from a halfway house at the end of May, 10 months into a 366-day prison sentence for corruption.
Moments before leaving for Albany on Tuesday evening, state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park) offered to help mediate the ongoing dispute between the Presbyterian Church of St. Albans and neighbors over a proposed 5-story senior housing complex that the church wants to build on Farmers Boulevard.
He should have stayed another 20 minutes, as the meeting, hosted by the St. Albans Civic Association, erupted into a nearly five-minute shouting match before about 30 church members walked out of the Guy R. Brewer Democratic Club.
Richmond Hill High School PTA Co-president Vishnu Mahadeo speaks at Tuesday night’s public hearing against the DOE’s decision to move forward with the closing of the school’s annex, joined by state Sen. James Sanders Jr., left, Public Advocate Letitia James and PTA Co-president Cheryl Rose.
Meryl Tisch, chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents, right, was the featured speaker last Friday night at a meeting on education hosted by state Sen. James Sanders Jr. Local superintendents, including Lenon Murray, left, of District 29, and Community Education Council presidents such as Willie-Flora Gaines of District 28 also were on the panel.
Former Mayor Mike Bloomberg came under heavy criticism for his handling of the city school system in his final years in office.
But a gathering in South Jamaica last Friday, hosted by state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park), showed that many parents and education advocates have similar or new concerns with the policies of Mayor de Blasio and Gov. Cuomo.
State Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Laurelton) and Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Fresh Meadows) have introduced and continue to back bills that would prohibit discrimination in the workplace against attire that is worn for a religious purpose.
The legislation, which has passed the Assembly but not yet the Senate, was introduced in response to a series of cases and concerns from religious communities throughout New York that have seen workplace discrimination due to individuals’ religious garb or facial grooming.
Resorts World must rehire or find new jobs for the 175 workers it laid off recently without prior notice, who cooked and served at the buffet. We were informed that they just shut the buffet and let the workers go because it was losing money, although the price had increased to $40 a plate.
Whereas we are grateful that these workers were told that they will receive between one and five weeks of severance pay, along with a package that includes unused sick and vacation days and four months of family medical coverage, we demand to know how many have been rehired, since the casino assured the Hotel Trades Council, the union that represents these workers, that it will let them apply for any open positions.
We have always worked with Resorts World as a job creator, not a job killer, and while we appreciate the fact that it has created many jobs and brought revenue that goes to public schools across the state, these local workers must be given jobs to feed their families.
Resorts World has brought phenomenal profits to its owners since it opened, and our community has contributed to its growth. Its exponential expansion has, and will always affect our community, in both positive and negative ways. As a community advocate and district leader who serves the Ozone Park, South Ozone Park and Richmond Hill area, I again join forces with state Sens. Joe Addabbo Jr. and James Sanders and call on Resorts World to give more jobs to our community, and to rehire these suffering workers.
We have reached out successfully to management to help the community with jobs. Many residents were painfully displaced when the Aqueduct Flea Market was closed after decades of existence, a casualty of Resorts World’s expansion. Many have since been given jobs there.
Resorts World should, and can, do more. Some of these job applicants are regulars and are part of the loyal base of gamers who have helped Resorts World earn millions. Hiring policies and data must be made more open and accessible to all, and more information about job vacancies and hires should be made public to the surrounding communities.
State Sen. James Sanders Jr.
It could be said that 2013 was a good year to be a political junkie in New York City with Public Advocate Bill de Blasio being elected mayor, and Eliot Spitzer and Anthony Weiner enjoying short-lived political comeback tours.
It also proved to be a bad year to be a school advocate, a Republican seeking elective office or former state Sen. Shirley Huntley.
She was an outspoken, longtime representative of Southeast Queens in the state Senate. She displayed an increasingly disturbing pattern of public behavior before a highly publicized run-in with the law. And she lost her Senate seat in a primary even with the Democratic Party endorsement and a large fundraising advantage.
Her name was Ada Smith.
Democratic candidates for City Council seats in Southeast Queens all annihilated their competition on Tuesday night.
Scherie Murray’s seemingly unlikely campaign for the City Council — she is a black woman running on the Republican line in overwhelmingly Democratic Southeast Queens — had its genesis in the most unlikely of places: a swing set in Brookville Park.
“I did gymnastics in school and I like to use the swings to work out,” she said in a Monday interview with the Chronicle. But one day she went there and “they were gone.”
What is a state senator from Astoria — who’s not running for higher office — doing in Woodhaven?
Believe it or not, he represents part of the neighborhood.
The final meeting of the 113th Precinct Community Council before summer break was the final one as president for Vivian McMillian, who decided not to seek another term at the helm after 23 years as a council member.
Tributes poured in Monday night for “Miss Vivian,” as she has become known throughout the community, including those from Queens District Attorney Richard Brown; City Council members Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) and Ruben Wills (D-Jamaica); state Senators James Sanders (D-Jamaica) and Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis); and Assembly members William Scarborough (D-Jamaica) and Barbara Clark (D-Queens Village).
With the Senate session winding down in Albany, and about a thousand bills left to debate, the hydrofracking moratorium bill may not even hit the floor for a vote. Most Queens lawmakers oppose allowing the drilling process in New York State without conclusive scientific evidence that it can be done safely, without contaminating groundwater.
The drilling process known as hydrofracking is used to obtain natural gas from rock formations, such as the Marcellus Shale, which stretches from New York’s Southern Tier to West Virginia. Fracking involves injecting millions of gallons of water along with a slurry of sand and about 600 chemicals into a narrow horizontal pipe at high pressure to induce “mini-earthquakes,” which release the natural gas.
The Richmond Hill South Civic Association’s most recent meeting, held at the United Methodist Church on 112 St. on May 30, included the reinstallation of its entire executive board and a special tribute honoring a local community leader, but the star attraction of the evening was unquestionably Margaret Finnerty, who was celebrating the 20th anniversary of her first installation as president, as a seemingly never-ending procession of local elected officials stopped by to sing her praises.
“It’s never about herself. It’s always about others,” said Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park), on hand to dismiss the outgoing board, to whom he added, “Don’t give up fighting for this neighborhood. Without you, it just wouldn’t happen.”
Resorts World Casino New York City has hit another big milestone.
The casino, which opened in October, 2011, announced last week that it raked in $67 million in April, putting total revenue since opening at over $1 billion.
Shot in Southeast Queens, “Let’s Get Bizzee” is a feature film that is said to truly inspire youngsters to make a change and be a part of the political process, according to director Carl Clay.
Clay’s re-released film will be featured on May 10 at the Black Spectrum Theatre followed by a panel discussion hosted by state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Laurelton) on “Attack on Black Leaders: Corruption or Conspiracy?” at the event.
Lachman Budhai, the 102nd Precinct Community Council president ,speaks with state Sen. James Sanders Jr., in shades, along the parade route.
On March 1, Alfred Osbourne’s quarterly permit to park in the municipal lot at the Rosedale Long Island Rail Road station went from $90 to $110.
“They initially raised it to $200, but we complained and they cut it back to $110,” he said.
Councilman Donovan Richards, center, would like the city to reconsider some corporate tax subsidies before slamming drivers with triple-digit rate increases at municipal parking lots. State Sen. James Sanders Jr., left, and Rosedale resident Alfred Osbourne joined him Friday at a press conference at the parking lot at the Long Island Rail Road’s Rosedale station.