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Former mayors Ed Koch’s and Rudy Giuliani’s first weeks in office in 1978 and 1994 respectively were dominated by brutal winters and criticisms of their handling of them, just like Bill de Blasio 20 years later.
Endless snow removal in Bayside reflects the city’s huge snowfall this season of 55 inches and it’s not over yet. Mayor de Blasio is not the first who had to deal with big snowstorms at the start of his tenure, so did his predecessors Ed Koch and Rudy Giuliani.
The city post-Hurricane Sandy recovery program “Build it Back” is doing anything but, according to many residents, civic leaders and officials in South Queens. They say the program needs to be completely revamped and needs to be placed on top of Mayor de Blasio’s priority list.
The Build it Back program was created last June to help residents whose homes were damaged in Hurricane Sandy get access to relief money, contractors needed to help rebuild or funds to acquire homes of homeowners who wish to move.
It’s February and the city has been socked for weeks by snow, ice and frigid temperatures in the most miserable winter many can remember. At City Hall, a new mayor from a political party that has not held the city’s top office in 20 years has just taken the reins of power, and his honeymoon period when he should be unveiling his ambitious agenda is instead frozen over by the icy weather.
But this is not 2014. Instead it’s 1994 and that new mayor is Rudy Giuliani.
The Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association kicked off 2014 on Saturday with new leadership and a full agenda.
Topping that list of items was participatory budgeting, the process by which members of the public pick capital projects in the community to be funded in the city budget.
In your Dec. 5 editorial, “Bloomberg’s greatest achievement is in fighting crime,” you correctly credit Mayor Bloomberg with reducing violent crime. The problem with your editorial is you give scarcely any credit to the man primarily responsible for reducing violent crime and making New York City safe, Mayor Giuliani.
In 1989, the year before Mayor Dinkins took office, there were 1,905 murders. In 1993, Mayor Dinkins’ last year, there were 1,946 murders. In Mayor Dinkins’ four years in office there were 8,340 murders, the most for any four-year period in New York City history. In 1994, Mayor Giuliani’s first year in office, murders dropped to 1,561. In Mayor Giuliani’s last year there were 649 murders. This “remarkable” 67 percent drop in murders made New York City the safest city in America.
Mayor Bloomberg continued to reduce murders to 414 last year, for a drop of 36 percent. To give more credit to Mayor Bloomberg than Mayor Giuliani is misleading. To give credit to Mayor Dinkins is insane.
I do feel you have another agenda, which is to rewrite history. Misrepresenting the miracle of the Giuliani crime reduction and misinforming the citizens of New York allows for misguided views, which lead to events such as the mayoralty of Bill de Blasio during which, I fear, this great city will regress.
The appointment of former Police Commissioner Bill Bratton back to his old post once Mayor-Elect Bill de Blasio takes office was lauded across Queens and the city.
As commissioner under former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Bratton drove crime down and instituted the CompStat tracking system that has been a staple of the NYPD ever since. The system is cited as a key reason crime has declined for more than 20 years, as it gives police notice of where crime is happening so they can deploy accordingly.
A horrific car accident, allegedly caused by a driver impaired by alcohol, killed one man and injured two others in Howard Beach very early on Saturday morning.
The accident happened at the intersection of 159th Avenue and 98th Street at around 1 a.m. According to police, a 2006 Ford sedan operated by James Celauro, 23, of Ozone Park, was traveling southbound on 98th Street, entered the intersection and struck a 2001 Saturn, operated by James Sinisi, 38, of Glendale, who was killed.
Of all the accomplishments of Mayor Bloomberg’s three terms in office, which this page will be examining over the next several weeks, along with his shortcomings, the most profound is the remarkable reduction in violent crime that he has achieved.
The cut in the murder rate over the last 20 or so years has been nothing short of a miracle. In 1990, homicides in the city peaked at 2,262. They began dropping the next year under Mayor David Dinkins, and continued falling under Mayor Rudy Giuliani. But it was under the leadership of Mike Bloomberg that New York became, as he would be the first to point out, the safest big city in the United States, with murder rates far below comparable municipalities such as Chicago and Los Angeles.
Former Mayor David Dinkins was instrumental in securing the National Tennis Center and the US Open as fixtures in Queens.
And it was there that Dinkins attended a meet-and-greet last Friday prior to a book signing of his new memoir.
Claire Shulman rose to power in 1986 with the death of Borough President Donald Manes, but 1989 was the year she was elected to her first full term.
Shulman, who was Manes’ deputy, succeeded the troubled and scandal-ridden borough president, who committed suicide. She was appointed to replace him by the City Council and later in 1986 elected to complete his term.
Restrictions placed on the Police Department as a result of the federal lawsuit over stop and frisk are all on hold, and the judge who imposed them has been thrown off the case by the Court of Appeals.
The court determined that Judge Shira Scheindlin compromised her need to appear impartial in the case and criticized her for making sure she got to hear it when it was filed six years ago.
For many Queens Republicans, there was hope that Tuesday’s primary election for state committee positions, also known as district leaders, would put an end to the ongoing civil war within the party.
But as results trickled in Wednesday, it appeared there wasn’t any decisive decision one way or another.
A mailer from the 26th Assembly district GOP state committee race includes an endorsement from former Mayor Rudy Giuliani for Sal Bacarella and Anne Marie Devlin, who are running against Queens Republican Chairman Phil Ragusa and former Board of Elections commissioner Judith Stupp.
In tomorrow's Republican primary for the state committee positions in the 26th Assembly District, which includes Auburndale, Bayside, Douglaston, Little Neck and Whitestone, Queens Republican Chairman Phil Ragusa and former Board of Elections Commissioner Judith Stupp are facing off against Sal Bacarella and Ann Marie Devlin, in a race that could end the years-long civil war in the county party.
The city is looking into two different flooding problems in two locations in southern Queens.
The first issue, at the corner of Cross Bay Boulevard and 165th Avenue in Howard Beach, has already gotten a response by the city Department of Environmental Protection, while the other location, outside John Adams High School in Ozone Park, may be eyed for a fix, according to Rudy S. Giuliani, chief of staff to Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park)
Term limits, and in one case a federal indictment, have made for some wide-open City Council races.
But money may make the difference in some of the more hotly contested races, and campaign finance reports, due this past Monday, are starting to draw a clearer picture of just who may have staying power through the Sept. 10 primaries.
This is not Bill Thompson’s first time on the mayoral campaign trail.
The former city comptroller ran against Mayor Bloomberg in 2009 and lost by less than 5 percent — a much closer margin than had been expected. Now he’s back for another run and says he’s the best candidate.
The recent spate of arrests and criminal investigations involving public officials has ensnared a high percentage of minorities in the state Legislature, leading some in the community to ask if black and Hispanic lawmakers are being targeted.
State Sen. James Sanders (D-Jamaica) decided last week that the question of conspiracy or corruption was far better-suited for an open, frank and free-wheeling debate before nearly 200 people at the Black Spectrum Theatre in Roy Wilkins Park in Jamaica.
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.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) has been considered the frontrunner in this year’s race for mayor all along, and a new survey by Quinnipiac University serves to bolster her standing, though with one little caveat.
If the Democratic Primary contest were held today, 37 percent of voters would cast their ballots for Quinn, the poll found. That’s more than her three closest competitors combined. Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, formerly a city councilman from Brooklyn, got the nod from 14 percent of the poll’s respondents. Bill Thompson, the Democratic nominee in 2009, when he was the city comptroller, came in third at 11 percent. And current Comptroller John Liu, who previously had been the councilman from Flushing, was chosen by 9 percent.
Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) will host a town hall meeting focusing on questions about tax assessments on Wednesday, Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. in St. Helen’s Father Dooley Hall in Howard Beach.
Representatives from the Tax Commission and the Department of Finance will take questions from residents who are seeking more information about property tax assessments.
The ongoing civil war between two factions of the Queens Republican Party is flaring up again — just in time for the 2013 city elections.
It all began when Queens Republican leaders failed to appropriately renominate Judith Stupp as the borough’s GOP commissioner on the Board of Elections by the Jan. 31 deadline. Stupp, a district leader from Bayside, is a key ally of Queens GOP Chairman Phil Ragusa.
Mayor Bloomberg, front, and former mayors Rudy Giuliani and David Dinkins departing the temple.
The Knicks did not ask their fans to observe a moment of silence on the passing of former New York City Mayor Ed Koch Friday night but they did put his photo and pictures of his life on the Jumbotron during the first quarter. In a moment that Koch would surely have loved, the crowd cheered mightily.
It was the least the Knicks could have done, not just because they are a New York-based NBA franchise but because in 1982 Mayor Koch gave the then-owners of Madison Square Garden, Gulf & Western, a permanent exemption from paying New York City real estate taxes. Veteran sports business author and lecturer Evan Weiner estimates that over the last 30 years the Garden has saved roughly $300 million cumulatively from Koch’s largesse.