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While Assemblymember Jenifer Rajkumar (D-Woodhaven) is not the first to seek to establish a school holiday on Diwali, she is the first Hindu and South Asian lawmaker to do so.

Rajkumar introduced a bill that would create a day of observance for Diwali, a holiday known as the Festival of Lights that is celebrated by religious faiths including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists. The bill would honor the cultural heritage of hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers who celebrate the holiday by establishing the holiday in school districts with an Asian population of a certain size.

If the fight against Covid-19 has been a battlefield, NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst made up the trenches where the fight was fought room by room, patient by patient and hour by hour.On Monday, organizers of the Queens International Film Fes…

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People on parole are steps closer to having their voting rights restored after Gov. Cuomo signed a bill that will automatically reinstate that privilege for those who were formerly incarcerated of a felony on Wednesday.The bill is sponsored b…

A second alleged shooter has been arrested in the killing of Astoria mom Gudelia Vallinas — another teenager with alleged gang ties who stands accused of murder in the case.Benaiah Reid, 19, a resident of the Woodside Houses, is charged with …

The calls of Kew Gardens Hills Library lovers have been heard: The branch is expected to resume service no later than July 13.Ewa Kern Jedrychowska of the Queens Public Library told the Chronicle the library would not be extending its agreeme…

Mary Ann Carey, a district leader of 30 years and a lifelong community activist, died after suffering a stroke last week at the age of 81.Carey, an Ozone Park native, had one of the longest tenures in the history of the city as a district man…

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Months of organizing by essential workers, labor leaders and workers rights activists have led to the New York HERO Act being signed into law by Gov. Cuomo last week.The bill sponsored by Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris (D-Asto…

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Shaeleigh Severino, a 21-year-old paralegal who has been running for the City Council seat representing District 32, announced last Thursday that she would be suspending her campaign.Severino, a Democrat who previously described herself to th…

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A pocket of Eastern Queens residents are falling behind in getting fully vaccinated or even getting a first dose for residents 18 and up against the coronavirus, according to data from the city’s Department of Health.People who live near John…

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Last week, Gov. Cuomo signed legislation that would extend the eviction moratorium until Aug. 31, but city landlord lobbyists are trying to halt the measure.The Rent Stabilization Association and the Community Housing Improvement Program, whi…

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Two and a half years after the final phase of the Queens Boulevard bike lanes was originally set to be completed, Mayor De Blasio announced on Thursday that the city will follow through with the construction of the redesign project starting t…

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Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato (D-Rockaway Park) is trying to bring some Biden infrastructure bucks to Central and South Queens to create a new rail line along an abandoned stretch of Long Island Rail Road tracks that would connect the Ro…

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During a Regional Plan Association meeting last week, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards called out Mayor Bill de Blasio for not being daring enough in his vision for urban street designs when it comes to projects in the Jamaica area, …

Queens Public Library was the center of another rally protesting Asian hate on Sunday, May 9.More than a hundred people gathered around the library’s steps to call attention to anti-Asian attacks and to advocate for the rights of hate crime v…

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Advocates for the borough’s food service industry are advising businesses not to wait to fill out grant applications under the now-open Restaurant Revitalization Fund.And last Friday they said it in six languages outside the Queensboro Restau…

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Last Thursday, Keller Williams Realty Liberty, in partnership with local businesses in and around Ozone Park, held a fundraising event at the Tudor Park basketball courts called “Free Throws for Project Destined.”The fundraiser was held in be…

Students from York College’s Department of Performing and Fine Arts presented a virtual concert, called 2021: A Telematic Odyssey. The school’s jazz band will feature music from Chet Baker, Duke Ellington, Eddie Harris, Herbie Mann, Peggy Lee…

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The Queens Borough Board gave the city Economic Development Corp. the green light May 10 for a long-term lease to develop phase one of the Special Willets Point District.“It’s time to shed Willets Point’s ‘Valley of the Ashes’ reputation,” Ja…

The proposed Kew Gardens parking garage could be the first in New York City to be certified for its sustainability.Project architects revealed the goal of achieving Parksmart-certified status to the Queens Borough Board at its May 10 meeting.…

The city on May 8 began another major sewer construction project in Maspeth, this one in the area of 70th Street.The Department of Design and Construction, in a bulletin sent out last week, said one segment is 70th Street between Calamus and …

On May 1, Leo Cai, 15, was jumped at Real Good Playground in Rego Park by five teenagers who attacked him while hurling anti-Asian slurs.On Monday he was back at the site, supported by his family, as state legislators announced bills aimed at…

It was a bloody Mother’s Day this weekend for one family in Bellerose Manor.Immediately after allegedly killing his mother, Saroj Sharma, 65, Pushkar Sharma grabbed his keys and wallet, and then walked to the 105th Precinct to confess to the …

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In the universe of bike retail, there have been two constants over the past year: resounding interest and stifled inventory.Following national trends, short bike supply has thrown a wrench into the potential boom for shops around the borough …

Data from a Kaiser Family Foundation report issued last week found that fewer than one-third of parents are likely to get their children vaccinated if eligible.The report comes days before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Pfizer…

Firefighters immediately rushed to Rochdale Village on Sunday, May 9, after an apartment unit in one of its 20 buildings was reported to have a fire, according to the FDNY.The fire occurred at 10:11 a.m. at 134-29 166 Place on 137th Ave. on t…

Museums and historical homes have been slowly opening back up throughout the city, but that shouldn’t mean virtual programming has to stop.So the Queens Historical Society decided to continue its virtual tours for a special day: Step Into Queens.

Incumbency apparently was neither a blessing nor a curse last week when the city’s Board of Elections drew up ballot positions for all primary races on June 22.In Democratic races impacting Central and mid-Queens, office holders drew a split.…

Community Board 10 unanimously approved the city’s plan to rezone transit hubs for accessibility at its meeting last Thursday.The citywide zoning change spearheaded by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Department of City Planning and…

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On Tuesday, 66,516 fifth-grade students began receiving middle school admission offers for the year ahead after the city tested out a process that Mayor de Blasio altered back in December.Though the total number of applicants dropped from nea…

Police last weekend apprehended a suspect in the April 23 stabbing death of a man in the Grand Avenue subway station in Elmhurst.Mark Albano, 34, of Grand Avenue in Elmhurst, was arrested on Saturday, May 8, according to the NYPD. He was char…

Three police officers from the 105th Precinct were arraigned May 11 for allegedly abusing their positions within the NYPD. They allegedly took advantage of auto accident victims for cash bribes, and one officer was alleged to have used his in…

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As part of its annual Streets Week! agenda, a set of transit, traffic safety and open space policy announcements, the de Blasio administration committed to reducing the speed limit along 45 miles of streets in 11 locations in the outer boroug…

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The sheep and alpaca at Queens County Farm Museum got their annual haircuts last Saturday. Several pounds of heavy fleece were shaved off their bodies in preparation for the warmer weather.Visitors were invited to watch artisans like sheep-sh…

The second-annual Joanna’s Fun Run is back!Set for June 26, the 5K walk or run will raise money toward the study of sudden unexpected death in epilepsy.

Donate at one of New York Blood Center’s upcoming drives:• The 212-51/55 26 Ave. storefront in the Bay Terrace Shopping Center, where American Eagle was previously located, on May 13 from 1 to 7 p.m.

The state Senate took a major step in halting the New York puppy mill pipeline last week.The chamber passed legislation May 5 that would prohibit the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits in retail pet stores. It would also authorize collaboration w…

Gov. Cuomo announced Monday that State University of New York and City University of New York campuses will require proof of vaccination for students attending in-person classes starting in the fall semester.“Let’s make a global statement tha…

The Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee for Ironworkers, Local Union #40 & #361, is conducting a recruitment period through May 19 for 100 outside ironworker apprentices in the Long Island and New York City regions.Applications mu…

The Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee for Operating Engineers, Local Union #15, will conduct a recruitment from May 31 through June 11, for five operating engineer, or heavy equipment, apprentices for the New York City and Long Isla…

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There was blood Mother’s Day this weekend for one family in Bellerose Manor. Immediately after allegedly killing his mother, Saroj Sharma, 65, Pushkar Sharma grabbed his keys and wallet, and then walked to the 105th  Precinct to confess to th…

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Firefighters immediately rushed to Rochdale Village on Sunday, May 9, after an apartment in one of its 20 buildings was reported to have a fire, according to the FDNY. The fire occurred at 10:11 a.m. at 134-29 166 Pl. on 137th Ave. on the eig…

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A second alleged shooter has been arrested in the killing of Astoria mom Gudelia Vallinas — another teenager with alleged gang ties who stands accused of murder in the case.Benaiah Reid, 19, a resident of the Woodside Houses, is charged with …

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Out of a protracted court battle between three campaigns to get on the Democratic primary ballot in the race for the City Council’s 32nd District, a new feeling emerged from a group of ostensibly competing candidates: solidarity.After Howard …

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The president and CEO of the Queens Chamber of Commerce is predicting a powerful breakout within the borough’s business community on the heels of Gov. Cuomo’s ending most restrictions by mid-month.“It’s very definitely a step in the right dir…

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Ruben Wills, a former councilman for Southeast Queens Council District 28 who is challenging incumbent Councilwoman Adrienne Adams (D-Jamaica), recently celebrated his exoneration in the conviction that expelled him from office.Wills was forc…

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A GoFundMe raised over $100,000 to support the family of a delivery worker killed in a crash in Astoria last week.A driver who lost control of her vehicle on 35th Street in Astoria fatally struck a scooter driver before careening into an outd…

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From this day forth, May 1, 2021 will be known as Bayside Hills Civic Association Day.Queens Borough President Donovan Richards declared the honor last Saturday during the neighborhood’s 85th anniversary celebration.

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John Walter was born, raised and lived in Middle Village.“We used to say that his biggest adventure was moving from one side of Metropolitan Avenue to the other,” said his son, Brian.