Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011

I Sit and Look Out

Perform your civic duty by observing Constitution Day

I doubt there will be any parades in Forest Hills, Bayside or other areas of Queens Sept. 17. I would be surprised if there are any elsewhere in the country about a national event. There should be parades throughout the United States on that day. Comment

Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2011

Man receives summons for stealing gum from Bayside shop

The corner of Bell Boulevard at 41st Avenue in Bayside was blocked with several NYPD vehicles Tuesday morning as officers responded to a 911 call of a man who allegedly stole a pack of gum and harassed a pedestrian on the street. Comment

Weprin pulls out of debate with Turner

A debate between congressional candidates Bob Turner and state Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck) set for Monday night was canceled after Weprin bowed out of the forum, citing the aftermath of Hurricane Irene. Comment

Subways, buses, LIRR resume some service

The MTA will begin restoration of subway service at 6 a.m. Monday. Comment

Irene leaves her mark on boro

From the Atlantic Ocean to the East River and the Long Island Sound, Queens was battered with heavy wind and rain as the brunt of Tropical Storm Irene hit the area early Sunday morning. Now residents are doing what they can to pick up the pieces. Comment
Whitestone Times

Graffiti removal gets dirty

A Whitestone graffiti cleanup event turned divisive last week when the civic leader who spearheaded it became upset because he believes a news report on it failed to give his civic group enough credit. Comment

Ruben Wills break-in case set to start after election

A Manhattan judge has postponed the much-delayed misdemeanor trial for City Councilman Ruben Wills (D-Jamaica) until after his primary, but the beleaguered elected official said he is focused on other matters. Comment

Weprin, Turner debate draws hecklers

Congressional candidates David Weprin and Bob Turner had to talk over loud cheers, boos, groans and hecklers as they squared off in a debate Monday night at the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills. Comment

Workforce at St. Mary’s votes to unionize ranks

Employees in a variety of positions at St. Mary’s Hospital for Children in Bayside decided by a large margin to form a labor union under 1199/SEIU during a two-shift election held last week. Comment

Sean Bell’s legacy remembered during community day

Baisley Pond Park and its baseball field played host Saturday to the fourth-annual Sean Bell Family Day, a time when the Jamaica community Bell called home gathered to remember and preserve his spirit through one of his life’s passions. Comment

NBA player from Hollis to kick off annual skills clinic

A Hollis athlete who has gone the distance in the NBA is giving back to the community starting this Thursday with his annual clinic that not only teaches youth new tricks on the court, but also life skills that will go a long way. Comment

Queens Villager ran mortgage rescue scam: DA

The Queens Village ringleader of a massive mortgage rescue scam that defrauded homeowners — many of them from the borough’s Guyanese community — and lenders out of more than $2 million in equity was sentenced last Thursday to four to 12 years in state prison, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Qns Vil woman fined for 1994 sidewalk fix

Linda Ferrone was in for a shock when she looked at her most recent property tax invoice from the city. Comment

Bill gives neighbors a voice

As the city Board of Standards and Appeals waits to reconvene the hearing involving a Bayside Hills home next month, City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) has introduced two pieces of legislation designed to give the community more recourse on uncharacteristic development. Comment

Douglaston Greenmarket grows its clientele

Greenmarket vendors and patrons talked locally sourced ingredients and recipes at the Douglaston Greenmarket over the weekend as the new venture began to establish itself a little over a month after it opened. Comment

SE Qns. trailblazer Young, 93, dies

The southeast Queens community will be gathering this week to remember the life of a political activist who made strides in the neighborhood. Comment

Cuomo picks Conslato for biz council

Queens Chamber of Commerce President Carol Conslato was tapped by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to be a part of the city Economic Development Council, a body Cuomo created that he said would change the way state government and businesses stimulate regional economic development and create jobs. Comment

104th Pct. to hold blood drive

The 104th Precinct will sponsor a blood drive at the station house Aug. 31 from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Comment
Little Neck Ledger

Injured worker a victim of policy change

Bay Terrace resident Keith Shepard said the state put him in a bind after he learned that his workers’ compensation no longer pays for his chiropractic visits. Comment
Little Neck Ledger

Quinn calls for new co-op tax law at Towers

State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone), state Assemblyman Ed Braunstein (D-Bayside) and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan) paid a visit to the restaurant at North Shore Towers in Floral Park — which was strewn with white banners — Monday evening to discuss taxation issues of concern to the residents of the co-op. Comment

Rich Hill man steals $53K from apt. hunters: Brown

RICHMOND HILL — Queens District Attorney Richard Brown announced Tuesday that a Richmond Hill man has been charged with taking approximately $53,300 in security deposits from prospective tenants for the same apartment in his residence although, in fact, it was never available for rent. Comment

Man from Rockaway, 80, last seen at City College

ROCKAWAY — The NYPD needs the public’s assistance in locating a missing Rockaway beach man. Comment

Roy Wilkins Park activists celebrate summer with festival

The Friends of Roy Wilkins Park teamed up with state Sen. Shirley Huntley (D-Jamaica) Saturday to present a day for the community to come together in order to appreciate and take advantage of the partnerships that make the park and its services available. Comment

Fire guts Rich Hill building

A team of firefighters was lucky to escape a Richmond Hill medical office building that went up in flames Monday and covered the neighborhood in thick smoke for hours. Comment

L.I. man leaves SE Qns. homes in disrepair: DA

A Long Island contractor allegedly stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from southeast Queens homeowners who hired him to renovate their houses but were left with partially demolished buildings, investigators said. Comment

Councilman Halloran featured in 9/11 documentary

Flushing Town Hall played host Monday evening to a new documentary honoring the memories of the thousands of people who died in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, and those who survived the terrorist attack that felled the Twin Towers. Comment

Diaz wants to tackle loans in run for City Council seat

Clifton Stanley Diaz has spent years managing the ins and outs of one of southeast Queens’ biggest co-op communities, and he said his experience would give him an edge in City Hall. Comment

For Whom the Toll Belts

It is easy to see why a skeptic might believe the whole debate over raising the tolls at Port Authority bridges and tunnels was scripted to make Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie look like heroes. Comment
Forest Hills Ledger

Forest Hills gets Terminator in cup

Forest Hills is in for a real treat. Comment
Forest Hills Ledger

Middle Village to receive train noise relief soon

Lawmakers took action this week to help Middle Village residents who said idling trains make their lives miserable. Comment
Forest Hills Ledger

Goldfeder brings in three times more cash than Deacy

The two candidates vying for the 23rd Assembly District seat have raised vastly different amounts of money in the short period before the September special election. Comment

Jersey slay suspect tried to cash in Hillcrest apt.

The New Jersey man accused of getting his mistress to murder his wife on a tree-lined street convinced an elderly gay man to transfer his share of a Hillcrest apartment building over to him two years before the slaying, property records showed. Comment

Hindu temple to fete Ganesha

Flushing’s Sri Maha Vallabha Ganapati Devasthanam Temple’s annual, nine-day festival ringing in the birth of Lord Ganesha is upon us once again, and the temple is planning a soiree worthy of the gods. Comment

DeSena runs for Assembly as a reformer

Marco DeSena, the Republican and Conservative parties’ nominee in the special election to replace retired state Assemblywoman Nettie Mayersohn in the 27th District, says he will be “the citizen legislator” if elected, working to represent his constituents and to reform politics as usual in Albany. Comment

Drunk L.I. motorcyclist killed man, 19: Nassau DA

NEW HYDE PARK — A New Hyde Park man faces three to nine years in prison after pleading guilty to charges stemming from a drunk-driving incident, the Nassau County district attorney’s office announced. Comment

Sanitation’s Bird-Brained Plan

In government, it is better when the right hand knows what the left hand is doing. Case in point: New York City and Queens birds. Comment

Flushing pond home to state’s only radio-controlled boat club

Every Sunday, the placid waters of the pond at Bowne Park ripple gently as boats — some fishing boats, a ferry every once and a while, but mostly tugboats — chug along under the shady weeping willows, most often with no particular destination at all. Comment

Kissena, Bowne parks afflicted by plant, animal poaching

Flora and fauna from two borough parks and other greenspaces in the city are disappearing, prompting government action. Comments (2)

McLaughlin still owes big bucks to scam victims

More than three years after he pleaded guilty to embezzling $2.2 million from such groups as the Electchester Athletic Association, the Central Labor Council and his own campaign account, jailed former state Assemblyman Brian McLaughlin has yet to pay back the organizations he stole from. Comment

Celebrity chef sued for $5M in slave suit

Lawyers for an Italian woman filed a lawsuit last week against Douglas Manor resident Lidia Bastianich, claiming the celebrity restaurateur misled her with the promise of a job as a chef in one of her renowned kitchens and a green card, but instead withheld six years of wages as the woman took care of one of Bastianich’s elderly family friends at her College Point home. Comments (1)

Columnist for TimesLedger Newspapers honored

The Queens Jewish Community Council is slated to bestow dedicated community service citations next week on activists Robert and Edna Harris, longtime legislator Audrey Pheffer and a Jamaica nursing home. Comment

Graying Qns. poetry club seeks next generation

The Fresh Meadows Poets Society has had a dedicated membership since its founding 25 years ago, but its existence is at risk due to a lack of new blood, particularly from the ranks of younger people. Comment
Bayside Times

Bayside BID criticizes DOT over Bell repave

It was a bit rough going there for a while, but last week the city Department of Transportation paved Bell Boulevard, although the director of the Bayside Village Business Improvement District said the job is still not done. Comment

Ackerman bill seeks to jump-start housing market

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) announced plans last week to introduce a bill he claims would assist in clearing the inventory of more than 3 million unsold existing homes while creating jobs in order to spur the economy. Comment

Delhi Heights: Indian cuisine that keeps getting better

I do not often get the opportunity to revisit restaurants once I have written about them. Sadly, many eateries with stellar beginnings, with time start a slow but seemingly irrevocable descent into mediocrity. Delhi Heights, a Jackson Heights Indian eatery, in contrast, I was delighted to discover, is on an upward trajectory since my last visit. Comment

Police seek man who robbed cell phone

WOODSIDE — The NYPD has asked for the public’s assistance in identifying an individual wanted in connection with a robbery that occurred in the confines of the 108th Precinct. Comment

Boro man gets 25 years for sex assaults: Brown

WOODHAVEN — A Woodhaven man was sentenced to 25 years in prison Monday after he entered a guilty plea for four unsolved sexual attacks he was arrested for when investigators matched a DNA sample he was required to give following a 2009 larceny conviction, according to the Queens district attorney’s office. Comment

Woman in Corona struck and killed by minivan

CORONA — A pedestrian attempting to cross the street at the intersection of Corona Avenue and 93rd Street Sunday was struck and killed by a vehicle, according to the NYPD. Comment

Newborn left in shoebox, in stable condition: Cops

ASTORIA — A newborn baby was found inside a shoebox in front of an Astoria home early Friday morning, according to the NYPD. Comment

Back planned science campus

The mayor’s recently announced plan to build a government-sponsored, engineering and science campus in New York challenges us to deliver training and jobs to the many talented young men and women of color that our economy has left behind. It is an opportunity we cannot afford to miss. Comment

Boro memorial service canceled

On behalf of the Haitian American Veterans Association and Carol Blanc-Damas, beloved mother of the late U.S. Marine Cpl. Leopold Damas, we would like to apologize because on the second anniversary we will not be able to hold a memorial service this year. Comment

Tea Partiers only care about themselves, not nation

Want a wild ride on the stock market? Here it comes! Who can we blame for the S&P downgrading of U.S. credit? S&P said the downgrade was not solely due to the amount of debt alone, but was also due to the failure of both parties coming together to create solutions going forward. So who would not come together? The Tea Party, that’s who. They refused to negotiate at every opportunity. It was their way or else. Comment

Economy must improve at quicker pace

Even though the president and Congress were finally able to come to an agreement to prevent the country from defaulting, our economic situation is no better than before. Comment

Hometown Heroes

In a summer with few highlights in the world of sports, two hometown heroes have given Queens sports fans something to cheer about. Comment

QueensLine: South Jamaica man holds second-oldest Olympic record

Six seconds. That’s all it took for Bob Beamon to leap into history. Comment

Dishing with Dee: Residents pitch in to give Whitestone a needed makeover

One of the great things about this job is that as old and experienced as you are, you are constantly being exposed to new things, philosophies and points of view often opposed to each other. You can find validation for embracing all. Comment

German eatery in Glendale gets replaced

Tim Sullivan knew that when he and his six business partners decided to buy and transform a Glendale staple into a new hotspot for food and drinks, he had big shoes to fill — but with the right amount of creativity and experience, their restaurant is making a big splash in the neighborhood. Comment
Astoria Times

Windmuller Park gets snazzy $1.7M face-lift

The laughter of children acted as the soundtrack to a ribbon-cutting in Windmuller Park Tuesday morning. Comment

Judge to rule on Willets legal challenge

An attorney for a group of Willets Point business owners argued last week that a state judge should revisit a prior decision to allow the city’s $3 billion plan to redevelop the 62-acre space to move forward. Comment

US Open ‘11 sports new court, activities

The US Open will take to the courts at Flushing Meadows Corona Park next week, when Queens plays host to the highest-attended annual sporting event in the world. Comment

Feds quash mayor’s sugar ban

Queens residents who use food stamps will still be able to buy sugary drinks after the mayor’s plans to ban the sweet beverages was rejected by the federal government Friday. Comment

Mayor introduces new DEP head at LeFrak

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced Carter Strickland Jr., deputy commissioner for sustainability for the city Department of Environmental Protection, would now be the new head of that organization at a news conference in LeFrak City last week. Comment
Astoria Times

Maloney holds rally to keep open Grand Post Office

U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Astoria) announced at a rally last week that more than 1,000 people have signed a petition to keep the Grand Post Office open. This was the second rally this month to save the Astoria office. Comment
Astoria Times

Groping victims hold rally to raise awareness of crime in Astoria

An online campaign against sexual violence that began on a social networking site came to a park in Astoria ´╗┐last Thursday as two neighborhood women held a rally to fight the gropings that have been going on in the neighborhood. Comment

5.9-magnitude quake in VA shakes Queens

An earthquake hit Queens Tuesday afternoon and sent crowds of people streaming out of the borough’s largest mall, rattled businesses and shook homes with tremors that stretched along the East Coat from North Carolina to Boston. Comment

Peninsula nixes ambulances

Elected officials said they were furious Tuesday that Peninsula Hospital’s administrators were starting to cut back on their services as the financially strapped medical facility mulled a possible bankruptcy filing, according to sources. Comment

Feds charge Monserrate backer

A Miami businessman was indicted in Brooklyn federal court on charges of bribing a public official, who state campaign finance records indicate is former state Sen. Hiram Monserrate. Comment
Astoria Times

Bloomberg visits incubator

Mayor Michael Bloomberg visited Entrepreneur Space, a food-manufacturing, small business incubator in Long Island City, last Thursday and touted the jobs and enterprises that have sprung from this and the eight other city-sponsored start-up locations. Comment

Council OK’s religious dress

The City Council unanimously passed a bill last Thursday sponsored by Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) that makes it against the law for employers to discriminate against their workers’ religious beliefs or dress. Comment

Liu says Walder bailed on MTA

City Comptroller John Liu, one of the harshest and most public critics of the MTA, slammed outgoing MTA Chairman Jay Walder for not following through on his six-year commitment to the post. Comment

MTA must pay LIC accident victim $20M: Judge

A Queens Supreme Court judge has ordered the MTA to pay $20 million over a 24-year period to a Nassau County woman who was left severely disabled in 2009 when a bus struck her while she was crossing a Long Island City street, her lawyer said. Comment

Republican Koo switches sides to endorse Weprin

City Councilman Peter Koo (R-Flushing) crossed party lines last Thursday to endorse state Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck) in his bid for the 9th Congressional District seat vacated by Anthony Weiner amid a scandal in June. Comment

Ed Koch robo-call for Turner causes candidates to butt heads

Bob Turner is demanding state Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck) make an apology after his congressional campaign said a robo-call that former Mayor Ed Koch made on behalf of Turner is “annoying and deliberately misleading.” Comment

Ferreras attends Ramadan fast-breaking at Qns mosque

City Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst) and representatives from the Council of American-Islamic Relations broke the Ramadan fast with Sri Lankan Muslims Monday evening at a Jackson Heights mosque. Comment

City urged to consider Iron Triangle college

City Comptroller John Liu said during an interview with TimesLedger Newspapers that city projects, such as its $3 billion proposal to redevelop Willets Point, are facing delays and challenges that have not plagued private development throughout Queens and the city. Comment

Sanitation driver’s truck plows into Maspeth garage

The city Sanitation Department was still investigating Tuesday how a 15.5-ton Sanitation truck smashed through the brick wall of a Maspeth maintenance garage last week and was left dangling three floors above 52nd Road with the driver still inside. Comment

Men accused of Astoria car break-ins

Two men were arrested last week for allegedly smashing the windows of dozens of cars in Astoria and stealing items from the vehicles, a spokeswoman for Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Qns. Family Court judge heads ACS

The mayor selected Queens Family Court Judge Ronald Richter to take over as head of the city Administration for Children’s Services after Commissioner John Mattingly steps down in September. Comment

Queens’ Ultimate Band

For music lovers who enjoy Carnatic music, and for those who never heard of it, the refreshingly exotic sounds of Charanams’ ragas (musical modes) and rhythms is a unique experience that shouldn’t be missed. Performing an unusual blend of South Indian classical and jazz style, this spirited cross-genre group competed in March at the annual WQXR and WNYC Battle of the Boroughs for the coveted title, Best Band in Queens — and won. Comment

‘Great Women of Jazz,’ then and now, in focus

One of TimesLedger’s own, freelance photographer Norm Harris, is commemorating women jazz players in an exhibition at the Freeport Recreation Center this August. Comment


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