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State Sen. Tony Avella, left, has incurred the wrath of state and local Democrats with his decision to join the Independent Democratic Conference. State Sen. Malcolm Smith, right, is widely blamed by the party for costing them control of the Senate for the current term.
Forgive state Senate Democrats if they view their colleagues from Queens with a jaundiced eye.
Depending on whether Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) can win re-election, and just whom he winds up caucusing with, he may become the second Queens Democrat in two election cycles to cost his party working control of the august body in Albany.
Someone should tell Malcolm Smith that the weather’s warming up and indeed spring is nigh.
The state senator from Hollis seems stuck in wintertime. Maybe the harsh season gave him a bit of cabin fever. Or maybe there’s some other explanation for the oddball fundraising “event” he has planned for March 24.
A flier on the campaign website of state Sen. Malcolm Smith is touting a “virtual golf” fundraiser this month.
You are cordially invited to more than nine hours of golf in the outdoors, in the company of and in honor of state Sen. Malcolm Smith.
Roslin Spigner, center, helped kick off an NAACP initiative to sign up residents of Southeast Queens for New York State of Health, the state clearinghouse for insurance coverage under the federal Affordable Care Act. Also on hand were state Sen. Malcolm Smith, second from left, Congressman Gregory Meeks, NAACP Jamaica Branch President Leroy Gadsden, behind Spigner, Assemblyman Bill Scarborough and Carolyn Phillips of the NAACP.
Obamacare is the term used by both the president’s supporters and critics when discussing his signature legislative initiative, the federal Affordable Care Act.
And with the March 31 deadline for those without health insurance to apply without paying a penalty, the Jamaica Branch of the NAACP is pulling out all stops in its effort to get residents of Southeast Queens to sign up.
Not far enough.
That was the message sent this week by members of Community Board 13 in response to the Indian Cultural and Community Center proposing to cut three stories from a pair of senior apartment buildings on the grounds of the Creedmoor Psychiatric Center in Bellerose.
Maverick Democrat Tony Avella has done it again. The Bayside state senator announced Wednesday he is joining the Independent Democratic Conference in Albany.
Never one to follow the party line, Avella’s move is seen as a plus for him. He is more likely now to be able to move his bills through the Senate.
The lawyer who asked that a case involving his client, Vince Tabone, be delayed, saying it would be unfair to Republican candidates seeking office, has thrown his own hat in the ring to oppose Rep. Steve Israel.
Grant Lally, a Republican from Lloyd Harbor, LI, announced last week that he would oppose Congressman Israel for the 3rd Congressional District seat. The district covers parts of Nassau and Suffolk counties and a section of Queens, including Douglaston, Little Neck, Whitestone and Floral Park.
State Senate Co-Leader Dean Skelos (R-Nassau) said he won’t allow a vote on Mayor de Blasio’s request to permit New York City to raise its taxes on residents with incomes over $500,000 a year to fund universal pre-kindergarten in the city.
“This isn’t just a home-rule issue,” Skelos told reporters Monday. “It infected the entire state in terms of revenues, in terms of the finance industry. The last thing we need to see is high earners leave New York State.”
State Sen. Malcolm Smith of Jamaica is entitled to a fair speedy trial under the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution. He is not entitled to delay the trial over the felony corruption charges he faces until after the voters decide to renominate him or not in a primary.
Yet that’s what’s the senator’s attorney will formally ask a federal judge to do tomorrow. Smith faces conspiracy, wire fraud and extortion charges in a case in which he allegedly sought to run for mayor as a Republican. He was charged almost a year ago, along with five other co-defendants, two of whom have reached plea deals. Naturally Smith doesn’t want the trial to be going on while he’s running for re-election, but it should.
Dan Halloran and Malcolm Smith could be tried in June. Smith wants to wait until his primary.
The lawyer for state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) will ask a federal judge to postpone the senator’s federal corruption trial until after this year’s Democratic primary.
In a hearing in federal court in White Plans on Friday morning, Attorney Gerald Shargel told federal Judge Kenneth Karas that he will submit his request to the court in writing on Feb. 7.
A second co-defendant in the federal corruption case against state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) and former Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) has pleaded guilty.
Joseph Desmaret, former deputy mayor of upstate Spring Valley, admitted to accepting $10,500 to support the sale of village land to an undercover FBI agent who he believed was a developer. He signed the six-page agreement last Tuesday.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith, left, now has political challenges to add to his legal troubles with Munir Avery, center, and Clyde Vanel trying to force him into a Democratic primary in September.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) formally kicked off his re-election campaign last week.
But the senator, under federal indictment on corruption charges that also cover former Republican Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone), now will face at least two experienced campaigners, including one who will be very well-financed.
It was shortly after midnight on New Year’s Day when police from the 103rd Precinct seized their first pair of illegal handguns for 2014.
But to hear Inspector Charles McEvoy tell it Tuesday night, his officers were just picking up where they left off in 2013, and the numbers bear him out.
State Sen. Malcolm Smith was one of six people, including Councilman Dan Halloran of
Whitestone, arrested in April on federal corruption charges. Former state Sen. Shirley Huntley pleaded guilty in January in federal court, followed by a similar plea weeks later in state court.
From the perspective of many north and northeast Queens residents, 2013 was a good year for developers and not so great for the average citizen, who had to put up with increased airplane noise, overcrowded schools and more from College Point to Little Neck.
Like any year, 2013 brought many changes, but the overriding story here is Flushing Meadows Park, which has been bombarded on all fronts with some unpopular projects as the New York State Pavilion from the 1964 World’s Fair continues to suffer from neglect.
Elections and new laws adopted in 2013 promised sweeping changes across the city’s horizon in 2014, with a new mayor, a new City Council, and an uncertain future for policies on education, law enforcement and city finances.
The ongoing recovery from 2012’s Hurricane Sandy dominated life in South Queens for most of 2013 and was a factor in many other big stories, from the future of the abandoned Rockaway Beach LIRR line to the election battle between Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) and his Democratic opponent Lew Simon.
But South Queens also dealt with a wide array of other issues in 2013, from crime at Forest Park to internal strife on Community Board 9.
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.
The uncertainty remains over a plan to build a high school on the site of a former country club in Whitestone as this year draws to a close.
State Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) said in October that he had learned the School Construction Authority was seriously looking into the former Cresthaven Country Club site at 150-33 Sixth Ave. to build a much-needed high school. But area residents oppose the plan, saying the site floods and lacks public transportation and sewers.
A public watchdog group is raising questions about how embattled state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Hollis) is spending his campaign money.
The New York Public Interest Research Group, citing documents filed by members of the state Legislature, said Smith charged more than $100,000 to his campaign fund to offset the cost of leased cars, bridge tolls and related expenses.