The former assistant district attorney, now practicing in a small Flushing law firm, was not coy about his perceived strengths --or his competitors' perceived weaknesses- for the seat now held by Tony Avella (D-Bayside)."There's no one else running who can come even close to my record here," Iannece said, referring to his work as the one-time chairman of CB 11, former president of the powerful Bayside Hills Civic Association and a member of the Queens Civic Congress, among other titles.He cites as his main achievements the push to increase the police presence at the 111th Precinct, attention to zoning, getting the ball rolling on the Little Neck Quiet Zone and pushing for the Oakland Ravine wetland mitigation project.Avella, whose district covers Bayside, Whitestone, College Point and Auburndale and parts of Douglaston and Little Neck, must give up the seat in 2009 because of term limits.Iannece described potential competitor and CB 2 District Manager Debra Markell as someone who "did a bad job" serving under Mayor Michael Bloomberg as Queens coordinator for the Mayor's Office. CB 2 covers Sunnyside, Woodside, Hunters Point and Long Island City.He also took to task Paul Vallone, who like Iannece has officially declared his intention to run for Council."He said he's lived here for 10 years but he's only voted the last 1 1/2," Iannece said, adding that he and others are offended by notions of political "dynasties." "Don't come in here with your hand in the air saying you want to run things," Iannece added.Vallone's brother is Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) and their father, Peter Vallone Sr., served as councilman for that area from 1974 to 2001. Iannece said his decision to run was not spontaneous but the result of two months' consultation with family and friends. He said he has the backing of many area civic leaders who urged him to run and further asserted that Democratic district leaders are inclined to support him. "Of course, nothing is final now, but I think they have a very, very favorable view," he said.The former CB 11 chairman said that as councilman, he would make sure the district is fairly represented in its dealings with the Queens Borough Board, which, he contends constantly shortchanges the area because it is viewed as privileged."Nothing could be further from the truth. We pay greater taxes, and we're entitled to our fair share of tax dollars," he said, questioning the idea that more resources should go to schools in poorer areas as a matter of policy.He also said he would carefully eye possible changes to the 111th and 109th precincts to help cut down on response times. "The 109th is just huge," he said, adding that shuffling each precinct's boundaries and creating a new precinct altogether are two possibilities he would consider.The aspiring councilman said he looked forward to discussing these issues and seeing what kind of ideas his competitors come up with in the race. "I really look forward to the campaign."Reach reporter M. Junaid Alam by e-mail at malam@time
©2008 Community News Group
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