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CB 13 hears volunteer call to aid military draft boards

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But the representative, Maj. Heidi Wolf of the Selective Service System, said her timing had nothing to do with the war in Iraq since draft boards are in place even when the country is not in a state of "national emergency," as she put it.

"This process has been going on for many years," Wolf told the monthly meeting of Community Board 13, held at the Parish Hall of Queens Reformed Church in Queens Village.

CB 13 covers Laurelton, Springfield Gardens, Rosedale, Queens Village, Cambria Heights and Glen Oaks.

In the event of a military draft, members of the local draft board would determine which people in their area eligible for service would be granted deferments, postponements or exemptions based on federal guidelines.

Volunteers for the boards are uncompensated and must complete an initial 12-hour training. After that, they meet once a year when there is no draft and a minimum of once a month if one is reinstated.

"I think this is something that can be done very easily," Wolf said.

During the board meeting, Max Green of the city's Office of Emergency Management advised members how to prepare their community for future crises. Green passed out a flier detailing recommended emergency responses and urged the board to help him spread the word about preparedness.

"We can't do it on our own," Green said. "That's why I put the challenge on you to help with the work."

He advised area civic groups to call his office to order fliers or to schedule their own OEM presentation. Green also recommended that community members assemble a home emergency supply kit and a bag they can quickly grab during evacuations with possible contents listed on the OEM's Web site.

On zoning matters, Board 13 Chairman Richard Hellenbrecht said the Board of Standards and Appeals, the city authority that rules on contentious construction requests, had postponed a decision involving a site on 224-20 Prospect Court in Laurelton.

At the property, the developer wants to build a two-family home wider than what is allowed and needs a variance. But the community is worried the proposed design will facilitate an illegal basement apartment, and Board 13 voted down the plan in March.

Hellenbrecht also said the BSA had turned down a second request from a builder to construct more homes on two vacant lots in Queens Village than what area zoning permits. The developer originally wanted to build 12 two-family semi-detached homes and one two-family detached house, a proposal voted down by both the BSA and Board 13.

The builder came back to the BSA with a plan for 12 two-family detached homes, but it was again voted down.

"The BSA did not feel that was enough of an attempt to meet their requirement," Hellenbrecht said. The next BSA hearing on the matter is June 8 at 40 Rector St. in Manhattan, he said.

Reach reporter Michael Morton by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by calling 718-229-0300, Ext. 154.

Posted 7:05 pm, October 10, 2011
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