Stories from Astoria, Long Island City, Jackson Heights, Sunnyside, Woodside, Corona, Elmhurst and East Elmhurst

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Social Security and Supplemental Security Income payments will jump 5.9 percent in January, the government said Wednesday, the biggest increase in nearly 40 years.

The average retiree will see his or her monthly benefit go up $92, from $1,565 to $1,657, according to the Social Security Administration. The average older couple, both receiving benefits, will see a hike of $154, from $2,599 to $2,753. And the average disabled worker will see an increase of $76, from $1,282 to $1,358. Read more

Thursday, October 14, 2021

The NYPD and the Office of Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz will host a gun buyback event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 6 at First Baptist Church in East Elmhurst.

Participants can receive a $200 pre-paid gift card for turning in any operable handgun or assault rifle with no questions asked; and a $25 card for other rifles, shotguns and air guns. Read more

  • Updated

Social Security and Supplemental Security Income payments will jump 5.9 percent in January, the government said Wednesday, the biggest increase in nearly 40 years.

The average retiree will see his or her monthly benefit go up $92, from $1,565 to $1,657, according to the Social Security Administration. The average older couple, both receiving benefits, will see a hike of $154, from $2,599 to $2,753. And the average disabled worker will see an increase of $76, from $1,282 to $1,358. Read more

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Gov. Hochul signed a bill into law last Thursday that promotes the use of opioid antagonists to combat drug-related deaths and overdoses.

“Addiction can impact any family, suddenly and harshly — those who find themselves trapped in a vicious cycle are there through no fault of their own,” Hochul said in a statement. “This is a personal battle for me and I am proud to be able to combat the opioid crisis by signing these bills into law.” Read more

Thursday, October 07, 2021

You can sign up for Medicare Part B online! If you’re enrolled in Medicare Part A and want to enroll in Part B during the Special Enrollment Period, please visit our Medicare web page at ssa.gov/benefits/medicare/.

From there, you can enroll in Part B by completing these forms: CMS-40B (Application for Enrollment in Medicare – Part B [Medical Insurance]) and CMS-L564 (Request for Employment Information). Read more

The senior population makes up approximately 50 million people in the United States and every day 10,000 people turn 65, according to AARP, an organization dedicated to issues surrounding seniors.

As baby boomers continue to hit that milestone, more and more become eligible for Medicare, the national health plan for seniors, which has an open enrollment starting Oct. 15 and a few minor changes this year. Read more

Queens is throwing party on Oct. 9 and everyone’s invited.

Queens Comes Back!, sponsored by the Queens Economic Development Corp. and the Queens Tourism Council, will bring vendors, restaurants, bars and entertainment to the historic backlot at the Kaufman Astoria Studios from noon to 4 p.m. Admission is free. Read more

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Queens community board and Borough Hall officials raised concerns Tuesday over language access as residents across the borough apply for federal and city recovery aid in the wake of Hurricane Ida.

When the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the city Comptroller’s Office briefed the Queens Borough Cabinet on the response to Hurricane Ida, cabinet members raised the issue at several points during the meeting. Read more

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Forest Hills resident Rhonda Williams delivered Christmas gifts to children in a homeless shelter in 2006. Inspired by the impact she made upon those children that Christmas, Williams has continued going into homeless shelters citywide to bestow various donations upon children in need.

Two years following her first visit to a shelter, Williams began a nonprofit called 4 Kids In Need to make a full-time commitment to helping those children in the shelter system. Since the organization’s inception, Williams and various volunteers have brought donations and educational programs to over 5,000 children in homeless shelters. Read more

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The Queens Historical Society is hosting its 24th Annual Art and History Contest, which is open to all third-, fourth- and fifth-grade students in Queens.

Participants should pick a favorite historic site or prominent personality from Queens, such as a library branch or singer. They will use references, conduct research and explore the subject’s history. Read more

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U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Queens, Nassau) joined students, parents and staff on Oct. 4 at a ribbon cutting to celebrate the opening of the new Success Academy Ozone Park Middle School.

The school, which opened in August and serves 250 Success Academy Queens fifth- and sixth-graders, was provided by the city in late May, after years of advocacy by SA parents and educators and support by elected officials. Read more

The former CEO of a defunct Briarwood-based credit union has been sentenced to 46 months in federal prison for accepting bribes related to loans and advertising.

Alan Kaufman, 62, the former head of Melrose Credit Union, was convicted of two counts of bribery of a financial institution officer back in April. He was sentenced Sept. 29 by U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, according to a press release from the office of Audrey Strauss, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York. Read more

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State Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park) is hosting his Fall Career & Job Expo at the Hammels Houses’ park in Far Rockaway at 81-04 Rockaway Beach Blvd. on Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Candidates will have opportunities for on-the-spot job hiring, so they must dress for success and bring several copies of their resume, according to Sanders’ office. Read more

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Attorney General Tish James is delivering on her promise to use settlement money from medical companies to give back to the communities that have been devastated by the opioid crisis.

While at Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx during a statewide tour Monday, James announced that she would deliver upwards of $1.5 billion to the New York communities most impacted by the abuse of the painkillers. Read more

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A Covid-19 vaccination mandate went into effect on Monday for New York City public school teachers and staff, leaving some Queens schools to fill the vacancies left by those who refused the shot.

“Unfortunately, we have teachers that are adamant about not getting the vaccine,” said Phil Wong, president of the Community Education Council 24. Read more