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(BPT) - Saving for retirement is a scary prospect for many Americans. In fact, just 14 percent feel confident they will have enough money to live on when they retire, according to the 2012 Retirement Confidence Survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute. And 60 percent say they have less than $25,000 saved for retirement, the survey reveals.
(BPT) - While you may not know the term “nowism,” you more than likely live it. With our fast-paced lives, this term, coined by www.trendwatching.com, a leading trendscouting website, describes the trend of the consumer’s need for instant gratification. We want fast service, fast answers and fast results.
(NewsUSA) - With residential solar systems gaining popularity in the U.S., a growing number of consumers are choosing American-made solar panels for their homes. According to a national solar survey conducted in 2011, 82 percent of those polled support American solar manufacturing.
Superstorm Sandy’s impact could be felt everywhere in the weeks following the hurricane. And of course it left its mark on politics.
There were long lines on Election Day and it wasn’t just because people were anxious to do their patriotic duty as Americans. Many people had been displaced, their homes badly damaged or destroyed by Sandy, while others couldn’t travel because the fuel shortage had left their cars with little or no gas.
A poll worker assists a voter.
Three days before Election Day, Isabel Valencia rang a doorbell on Roosevelt Avenue in Corona. When there was no answer, she glanced at her partner, Fausto Gara, and rang again. After a minute, Roger Davila answered the door.
In Spanish, Valencia immediately launched into an introduction that she had made hundreds of times since Sept. 8: she works for a faith-based organization; she hopes you will vote on Nov. 6; and please join thousands of others in telling Congress to pass the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, which would grant deportation deferral and temporary work permits to qualifiying illegal residents.
Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing) defeated Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) for the newly drawn 6th Congressional seat, becoming the first Asian American to represent New York in Congress.
The second-term Assemblywoman won by nearly 54,000 votes, defeating Halloran by a 36-point margin with all but one of the district’s 409 election precincts reporting.
Politics as usual indeed.
Tuesday’s elections confirmed what everyone already knew: people cheat. Even when they don’t need to.
Missing wheelchair ramps, blocked paths and locked doors at accessible entrances are some of the barriers that have prevented disabled persons from voting, according to one advocacy group, and now a federal court has ordered the Board of Elections to adopt a plan that would eliminate such obstructions.
The BOE must have one Americans with Disabilities Act poll worker at every city voting location in time for the Nov. 6 general election. The person will be trained on poll-site accessibility by the Center for the Independence of the Disabled in New York.
This week the Council of Municipal Retiree Organizations of New York City, which represents more than 250,000 retired city workers, announced that three candidates for office in Queens had signed its pledge to oppose any cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and unemployment insurance. The candidates all pledged in fact to spend more on those programs, agreeing to “adjust them to the rising cost of living.”
The three are all Democrats, office holders already, one seeking higher office, one defending his seat against a tough challenge and one running for re-election unopposed. They are, respectively, Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing), who’s running for the 6th Congressional District seat against City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone); state Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach), who’s running to retain his seat against Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park); and Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck), who has no opponent.
State Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach) went to Albany after ousting a 20-year Republican incumbent in 2008. With him came a Democratic majority for the first time in more than four decades.
But four years later, that majority is gone and Addabbo is fighting for his seat in a newly redrawn district facing off against his successor on the City Council.
In at least two recent cases, public affairs have clashed with a belief of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish religion, prohibiting followers from attending a public hearing and almost stopping them from voting.
The issue is that entering the sanctuary space of a church is prohibited for them.
PS 20 in Flushing was one of the polling places used by voters who initially were misdirected to another location by the Board of Elections. Here a campaign worker passes by the school on Primary Day.
Just when I thought the Board of Elections couldn’t get any dumber, they proved me wrong. On primary election day — Sept. 13 — they screwed up big-time, offending most Kew Gardens Hills Democratic voters and Jewish voters. Here’s what happend. The regular polling place — PS 164 at 77th Avenue & 135th Street — was deemed inaccessible to the handicapped by the U.S. Justice Department. They were wrong, but more on that later.
The BOE replaced PS 164 with St. Nicholas of Tolentine Church at 150-75 Goethals Ave., which is in Hillcrest, not Kew Gardens Hills. This outraged Orthodox Jewish voters who refused to set foot in a Catholic church. After state Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz intervened, the BOE announced that it was
shifting the polling place to the Kew Gardens Hills Library at 72-33 Vleigh Place. Everything seemed satisfactory, until election day. When I arrived at the library, a BOE poll worker told me that only registered Republicans could vote at that location. Democrats had to vote at St. Nicholas of Tolentine. Many voters were furious and didn’t vote. Whoever heard of separate polling places for Democrats and Republicans? This tops a rotten record of performance by the BOE, including faulty electronic voting machines and archaic vote tabulation procedures.
Fortunately, there was a light voter turnout on primary day. If this disaster is repeated on election day in November, most Kew Gardens Hills voters will be disenfranchised. You can count the number of registered Republicans on one hand. The solution is to restore PS 164 as the polling place for everyone. That can be done by opening the school’s entrance just off 77th Ave., allowing unimpeded access to the gym, where voting took place.
We had an expression in the Air Force for this kind of screw-up: FUBAR, for Fouled Up Beyond All Recognition. You can substitute another F-word for “fouled.” The BOE should change its initials to BOI — Band Of Idiots. They must shape up or ship out.
It was expected that there would be confusion among some voters in last Thursday’s primaries due to redistricting and the resultant shifting of some people’s polling places to new locations. But all across Queens, voters also reported being given bad information by the Board of Elections, prompting some to forget about voting altogether.
At PS 113 in Ridgewood, Republicans were voting in the primary race for the 15th state Senate District between City Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) and Forest Hills attorney Juan Reyes, while Democrats were casting ballots in the 38th Assembly District race between incumbent Mike Miller (D-Woodhaven) and challenger Etienne David Adorno, a City Council aide.
Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh’s (D-Manhattan) old chief of staff is now the Democratic nominee for the 25th state Assembly District. Nily Rozic, 26, defeated opponent Jerry Iannece, chairman of Community Board 11, for the seat being vacated by Assemblyman Rory Lancman (D-Fresh Meadows).
Poll workers assist voters at Grace Lutheran School in Queens Village, where a coordinator said things were going smoothly. But many citizens elsewhere in Queens reported problems casting their ballots in today's primaries because they had been directed to the wrong polling place.
As expected following this year's redrawing of state legislative districts and the Board of Elections' admission that it directed thousands of people in Queens to the wrong polling places, a number of voters were unpleasantly surprised when going to cast their ballots in Thursday's primaries.
Board of Elections officials are remaining mum on just how tens of thousands of voters have received notices sending them to the wrong polling places for the primaries being held on Sept. 13.
Some reports state that 30 or more polling places could be affected. Fortunately, or unfortunately for the BOE, one notice was sent to the home of Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village).
Voters throughout much of Queens will go to the polls Thursday, Sept. 13, to cast ballots in primary races held by both the Democratic and Republican parties.
Citizens can expect some changes and possible complications, however. The state Senate and Assembly districts for which the primaries are being held have been redrawn, as per the last Census, so many residents will be faced with names that may not be familiar to them.
While last week’s primary voting went smoothly at many polling places in Queens, confusion reigned at others, with some voters being turned away, poll workers not knowing their responsibilities under the law and, in at least some cases, not even knowing what primaries were being held, according to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund.
The group is compiling a list of irregularities it observed at a number of polling places, and will be filing a formal complaint with the city Board of Elections with the goal of having them rectified before the next time voters go to the polls, its lead attorney said Thursday.
While Tuesday's voting went smoothly at many polling places in Queens, confusion reigned at others, with some voters being turned away, poll workers not knowing their responsibilities under the law and, in at least some cases, not even knowing what primaries were being held, according to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund.
A useless office
Obama’s still off