The convention is always held in the spring in the Albany area. Several of us who are long-term attendees were trying to remember just how many years we have been attending. We have all been here for the eight years that George Pataki has served as governor. Prior to that, a number of years of Mario Cuomo's term. We guessed we must have been going to the convention for at least 15 or 16 years. Somehow or other it doesn't seem that long. The NYPA has become so large it has outgrown several of its former locations including the Desmond, the OMNI, several locations in Saratoga Springs and this year back to the OMNI, which has been renovated and sold and is now part of the Crowne Plaza chain.The convention has always been a wonderful resource for networking. The exchange of information and the ability to learn first-hand all the new innovative ways of doing things. It's also a prime opportunity to explore the job market, both from the employer's as well as the employee's point of view; it's always good to see what's new out there and why.Our favorite parts of the convention are always the numerous seminars they thoughtfully provide. Where else can you acquire so much useful information in the same place at the same time? It's a sort of instant immersion process, a way to obtain the answers to all the questions that have occurred to you over the past year.It's also a break in the daily routine that is both informative and helpful. It's a way to experience what's new in the world of journalism in all parts of the state from your peers.The TimesLedger, as usual, racked up an impressive number of awards. The crew this year comprised of Steve Blank, publisher, Roz Liston, managing editor, Jewell Davis, art director, William Shore, sales manager, Rashmi Vaish, news editor and reporters Michael Morton and Sophia Chang and me, Dee Richard. A good time was had by all.From our point of view, one of the most interesting seminars was the one entitled "Broadcast Buddies," subtitled "the convergence between print and broadcast journalism." Considering the electronic age in which we now live, that seems to be the direction of the future in our profession. As a matter of fact, a report in the News recently stated that most of the Wall Street Journal's revenue was generated by advertising on their Web site. The only reason the New York Times was in the black and not in the red was due to the sale of their headquarters. It would appear the above mentioned facts give credibility to Jeff South, the professor who conducted the "Broadcast Buddy" seminar. It's always worthwhile exploring all the new avenues of information available pertaining to our chosen careers.All of the above becomes a perfect segue into our completion of our first month towards obtaining accreditation as a producer on Queens' QPTV. That is another fascinating aspect of what's available in Queens. We will furnish you with more details next week, as we do not want to shortchange the many wonderful opportunities provided by that organization.Due to our Albany safari we missed a lot of what happened last week in Queens. It's too bad no one has come up with a way to be in two places at one time.We did, however, manage to get back in time to attend the Queens Conservative Party get-together at Roma View in Howard Beach. At this event they introduced a young man by the name of Steve Shaw, who is another contender for New York City mayor. He seems to be a very bright young man with a promising future.Community Board 7 held a packed-to-capacity hearing on the upzoning or downzoning of the East Flushing community. It's referred to as both up and down depending on who you speak to. It was a rather contentious meeting with many stating it was a "done deal' made without the majority of the community's input.It was more of the same at the mayor's Town Hall meeting with the Douglaston Civic Association combined with the Little Neck Pines Civic Association. Some of the comments we overheard at that meeting were: "Why the hurry?" "Why not sufficient time for the residents to fully explore what the negative as well as the positive impact will be on the designated communities"? They already have many zoning regulations on the books which they have never successfully enforced. "Why the rush for a new set of zoning regulations with out plugging up all the loopholes in the old ones?" "Who will the new regulations really serve?" "Will it be the local residents or the real estate developers?" "Are you really sure of the true motives and results?"Check it all out, but be careful what you wish for as you may find out it's not what you thought it might be. Remember, the devil is in the details. One last disturbing comment we overheard was "that should put a lid on the Asian invasion in our community." If that comment is shared by anyone other than the person making the remark, that's a rather distressful situation. We do hope that it is only one man's opinion, as we feel the Asians as well as the many other ethnic groups have contributed much to the success and desirability of living and/or working in the northeast Queens corridor.Keep your voice mails conning at 718-767-6484, fax at 728-746-0066 or if you prefer, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.Till next week,Dee.
©2005 Community News Group
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