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Over at his job as a Medicare counselor, Barry Klitsberg says, he’s been getting calls from senior citizens who may have an ulterior motive.

“People call up, ostensibly with a problem,” he said in March. “They’re so happy that they get a person picking up instead of a computer. They just want someone to talk to. I’m getting that a lot and I’m sure it’s happening all over the city. Covid has taken a year from people’s lives.”

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EDITORIAL

Leave it to the unelected educrats in the city Department of Education to make a divisive policy change, via the school calendar of all things, walk it back a little and leave no one satisfied but many bitter in the end.The issue is Columbus …

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Two scenes from Queens this week: In one, a Chronicle staffer with a face mask on his chin walks into a car repair shop with the bay door and regular door to the office right next to it both wide open, the wind blowing all over. The manager s…

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The city is in the midst of spending its biggest budget ever, with a $10.4 billion increase planned for the next one as money rains down from Washington, and the workforce under Mayor de Blasio is far larger than ever before — but the governm…

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There can never truly be justice for George Floyd, but we got as close to it as we can expect to come Tuesday when a jury found killer cop Derek Chauvin guilty on all counts in Floyd’s horrific death. The nation will never forget what it saw …

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What the heck is going on with the U.S. Postal Service? It used to be a veritable Rock of Gibraltar among federal government agencies, or at least that was the perception. You put something in a mailbox and it was sure to get where it was sup…

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Spring is here, and with it the Queens Chronicle’s annual Spring Guide! You’ll find the special pullout supplement inside the paper you’re holding or at qchron.com if you’re reading us online.Publishing the guide marks a major accomplishment.…

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Among the 16 states that have legalized recreational marijuana, only one allows it to be smoked in public. This one.That’s right: Aside from allowing people to smoke weed in their own homes, the new law just signed by Gov. Cuomo lets tokers i…

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For the third time in a month, a fire in Queens turned out much worse than it had to be because of an outdated building feature: the cockloft.On March 4 a Jackson Heights fire damaged six businesses. Last Saturday a Queens Village blaze trash…

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So the feds are “fast tracking” the plan to charge you a new fee every time you drive into Manhattan, by allowing for a less-onerous environmental assessment of the project instead of a deeper environmental impact statement. We can only hope …

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Imagine you had the chance to ask questions of one of the scientists behind the new Perseverance rover we just landed on Mars to cruise around, study the soil, take photos, video and audio and, of course, gather samples that might yield info …

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We have one question for our state lawmakers who still want to impose record tax hikes even after the feds rode to New York’s rescue with $12.7 billion in direct aid for the government in Albany and tens of billions more for entities both pub…

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However the novel coronavirus sprang into being and whenever it first got out of Wuhan, China, has nothing to do with any Asian or Asian-American in the United States. If anything, that person may have fled the very Chinese regime that hid in…

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Is this town big enough for both of us civic associations? That’s the question some may be asking in College Point these days, but we’re sure the answer is an emphatic yes — despite the comments some people have made against a newly formed gr…

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Crime rates in Queens may be bucking citywide trends, but we’re seeing some horrific things here. Last Friday Gudelia Vallinas, a mother of two was shot dead on the street on the Astoria-Woodside border, the third killing of a mom in western …

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Citi Field’s massive parking lots were virtually empty late Monday afternoon when a Chronicle staffer arrived for his first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, with just a clutch of cars parked around the entrance to the Jackie Robinson Rotunda. Th…

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The massive parade of vehicles and socially distanced celebration of a former soldier and cop’s 100th birthday held last Sunday was primarily a demonstration of love and respect for someone who dedicated his life to public service. Gary Inzer…

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In her Twitter bio, incoming Schools Chancellor Meisha Porter describes herself in part as a “Disruptor, Leader and Teacher!!” — in that order. But disruption is the last thing New York City schoolchildren need right now. What they need is ca…

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Why on Earth aren’t Queens residents getting the Covid-19 vaccine as fast as they possibly can? Is it the awkward scheduling procedure? The micromanaging of who is eligible at certain sites? Is it a language barrier? Historical distrust of th…

When Mayor de Blasio opposes something that would centralize planning, create reams of paperwork and require the hiring of more people to produce it, all in the name of addressing community needs and historical racial disparities, you know it…

Let’s go to the movies! That favorite cry of teens and families and just about anyone else looking for some easy entertainment has been silenced in the city for nearly a year, but it’s about to be heard again, as theaters can begin reopening …

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In politics, they say the cover-up is worse than the crime. Usually that’s true, but not when it comes to the Covid-19 nursing home death scandal surrounding Gov. Cuomo. Nothing could be as bad as his insistence that elderly patients with the…

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It’s one thing for Hiram Monserrate to be a free man, having served his time for stealing taxpayer money and having gotten a break over roughing up his girlfriend and slicing open her face with a broken glass.It would be another thing altoget…

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After a full year of horrors unlike any in living memory, there is finally good news in the fight against the novel coronavirus. And to a greater degree than before, it’s coming from multiple fronts.First is the number of new cases being repo…

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What happens when the mayor is unable to fully exercise mayoral control of schools? The answer is what happened last week, when the Panel for Educational Policy turned down a policy of Mayor de Blasio’s — and, in so doing, crushed the hopes o…

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If you felt helpless watching the unrelenting, merciless snow fall, swirl and pile up earlier this week, you weren’t alone. All across Queens and the region, people were reminded of the awesome power of Mother Nature and the fact that while w…

Mayor de Blasio, speaking of the school system, on Wednesday said, “I am adamant that based on everything we’re seeing now, we’ll be able to come back full strength in September.”It’s pathetic that this could even be a question at this point.…

After all they’ve suffered during the virus crisis, do you think what city restaurants and retailers deserve is more competition, of the kind that comes with inherent advantages and less regulation?Of course not. Yet the City Council and Mayo…

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If you want a docile, complacent population more likely to put up with growing societal ills and less likely to hold those in power to account, while also becoming more dependent upon them, you could hardly do better than to encourage more po…

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The Metropolitan Transportation Authority was wise and kind enough in these terrible economic times to put off raising subway and bus fares for several months at least. Not so with tolls on its bridges and tunnels. Those still may go up nearl…

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President Trump must be completely ostracized from society following his disgraceful actions of the past week, his attacks on our very system of government that are unlike anything ever seen in our history.So we welcome not only the impeachme…

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It’s taken way too long for the city’s vaccination efforts to get off the ground — it still had only administered 268,000 shots out of nearly 794,000 in its possession as of Wednesday morning — but we’re finally accelerating toward the rate w…

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Can the United States bear even two more weeks of President Trump? That’s a question to ask and answer today, following Wednesday’s attack on the U.S. Capitol, and the democratic republic for which it stands, by mobs of rioters.Never before i…

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City Hall has blood on its hands after the fatal shooting of a 20-year-old man outside the Umbrella Hotel in Kew Gardens early New Year’s Day, in New York’s first homicide of 2021.Of course the triggerman is the person ultimately responsible …

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As the old country bluesman Furry Lewis would have put it, “We’ve been down so long that it looks like up to us.”Given where our city, state, nation and world are now, 2021 simply has to be a better year than 2020. Right?

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How fitting that in this season of miracles, we can celebrate the arrival of one that knows no religious or cultural boundaries: the Covid-19 vaccine.Make that vaccines. We so far have two miracle medicines inoculating people against the kill…

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Closures and lockdowns made a lot of sense back in March, when the city first grasped the immensity of the danger of the novel coronavirus, a public health challenge unrivaled in the last 100 years.But that was before the Plexiglas went up be…

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Among those most in need this holiday season who could use your help are 11 families burned out of their homes in Richmond Hill last week.Nearly 50 people were displaced by the blaze, which apparently began in a business on Jamaica Avenue and…

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You see your favorite neighborhood eatery dismantle its outdoor dining contraption as winter’s chill sets in and wonder if the place can survive on a meager 25 percent of regular indoor capacity.Probably not. Certainly not with the staff and …

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What Queens needs is jobs. And housing. A major development project planned for Flushing will bring more of both.The City Council is set to vote today, Dec. 10, on approving the Special Flushing Waterfront District, a plan that will see 29 ac…

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For more than two months now, Mayor de Blasio has shown true leadership on one of the most vital aspects of life under the coronavirus: keeping schools open.When he announced their temporary closure Nov. 18 because the city’s positive test ra…

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It was a full year ago that more than 100 houses in South Ozone Park were flooded with filth in a sudden sewage backup just after Thanksgiving. To add insult to injury, the city at first blamed the victims for causing it, only later admitting…

It seems nearly impossible to have an attitude of gratitude in these dismal times, but Thanksgiving is that one day out of the year when nearly all Americans, regardless of faith or ethnic origin, agree that we should consciously appreciate a…

With his single term wedged between the longer tenures of two much more boisterous and impactful mayors, it can be easy to dismiss David Dinkins’ service to New York City. But we should not.Dinkins, who died on Monday at 93, brought a grace a…

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Mayor de Blasio’s decision to close the city’s public schools to in-person learning and go to the fully remote model for who knows how long is a tragic surrender in the city’s fight against the coronavirus.It’s true that the majority of stude…

How fitting for 2020 — the Queens Chronicle is celebrating our 42nd anniversary with a special history supplement reliving some of the worst events ever to happen here — from devastating transportation accidents to natural disasters, from the…

We can’t say we weren’t warned. As COVID infection rates dropped in the late spring and early summer, we enjoyed some of our newfound freedom after the horrors of March, April and early May. That was only natural, and we could do it, because …

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Nationwide, the election results at this point appear to be a clear repudiation of President Trump, of the reactionary recklessness, casual cruelty and debilitating dishonesty that stain his character, overshadowing any decent policies that m…

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We were thrilled to see Neir’s, the historic Woodhaven tavern that has so often come to the verge of closure only to rise again, sign a five-year lease last week that will give it some of the stability it needs to survive and thrive.But Neir’…

Once we are done with this epic election, and know who’s going to occupy the White House, as well as Congress and our own state Legislature, lawmakers here should get right down to remaking the Board of Elections.You remember how the BOE wron…

Hey, remember when we were supposed to assess how we were doing with the virus this month and see if restaurants could go from 25 to 50 percent capacity in the city on Nov. 1? We do. You might. Apparently Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio do not…