But last week the 52-year-old had the special satisfaction of getting face-to-face answers from a high-ranking Department of Sanitation official about the nuisance at an annual town hall meeting in Astoria. "It's a problem of space," Sanitation Dept. spokesman Tom Fitzgerald told him. "There's just not enough room at the garage." Fitzgerald, who said he would deal with Cadiz's complaint promptly, was among nearly two dozen bureaucrats whom local residents grilled about quality-of-life concerns for three hours at the American Museum of the Moving Image. They let off steam about the cell phone towers near PS 122, disruptive livery cab drivers in Ditmars, noise from LaGuardia Airport, traffic congestion from Rikers Island workers, a lack of stop signs and too much graffiti.If the city officials could solve the problem, they handed out business cards and took names and addresses. Queens Department of Transportation Commissioner Connie Moran said she would oversee the removal of leftover construction signs at the intersection of Steinway Street and 28th Avenue - which one man said have been an eyesore since work wrapped up months ago. Moran also promised the DOT would again look into placing stop signs at 24th Street and 23rd Avenue, where 77-year-old Maria Mariolis said she was struck by a vehicle. "We have a lot of children on 24th Street," Mariolis said, walking up to the stage where the city officials sat before an audience of more than 50 people. "We have no light there." Officials who could not solve a particular problem offered advice or gave insight into agency policy. A resident who complained about snowplows blocking his driveway learned that Sanitation trucks can only plow to the right - it's been a rule for years. "My boss told me to be prepared for this question," said Fitzgerald, the sanitation spokesman. "It's unfortunate living on the right side of the street."The 114th Precinct's Inspector David Barrere took the microphone to address traffic problems at Ditmars Boulevard and 82nd street caused by Corrections Department workers leaving Rikers. The area does not qualify for a traffic agent, he said, but the precinct has cracked down with traffic signs and officers with radar guns. Department of Corrections Chief Robert Davorean said he has distributed memos telling workers to be courteous drivers. Barrere also said the precinct has for years targeted livery cab drivers illegally picking up fares at the intersection of Ditmars Boulevard and 31st Street. Police have towed their vehicles and issued hundreds of summonses, he said. The commander said residents should take an active role in tackling the problem."Do not get into a vehicle if you did not call for it," he said. "It's breaking the law by taking you without pre-arrangement."Reach reporter Matthew Monks by e-mail at news@times
©2005 Community News Group
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