Sunday, Feb. 28, 2010

JFK’s busiest runway to close for 4 months to be resurfaced

The busiest runway at John F. Kennedy International Airport will be shut down for four months, but two of the airport’s major airlines said they are prepared to deal with the changes by reducing their flights. Comment

Three men arrested in S. Jamaica slaying

Police apprehended three men who they say were connected to a targeted shooting that left one man dead and another seriously injured on the streets of South Jamaica Monday afternoon. Comment

Keizs touts York progress to Community Board 12

York College’s campus has grown over the years not only in the number of students, but also in the range of opportunities it provides to learners across the borough. Comment

City completes sewer project in SE Queens

The city Department of Environmental Protection has linked the residents of Meadowmere and Warnerville to the city’s sewer system for the first time, but several of the southeast Queens homeowners say the project has wrecked their streets. Comment

Another Door Closes in Bell Case

Another Door Closes in Bell Case Comment

Neighbor to Neighbor: Applaud volunteers who helped victims of earthquake in Haiti

Now that Black History Month has arrived again, the U.S. Postal Service and the Jamaica Postal Advisory Committee are hard at work preparing this year’s Black History Month stamp unveiling. This year, the stamp will honor a brave, multi-talented young man who joined the U.S. Navy to see the world. His name was Doris “Dorie” Miller. Comment
Jamaica Times

MTA to hold hearing on toll for Cross Bay

If Rockaway residents want the plan to rescind the rebate they receive when they cross the Cross Bay Bridge revoked, they better show up in large numbers at the MTA hearing planned for Flushing March 2, Democratic District Leader Lew Simon said. Comment
Fresh Meadows

The Civic Scene: Planned charter commission must keep powers of beep, CBs

Borough President Helen Marshall was sworn in for her third term with high hopes at York College, but civic leaders have concerns about the plans City Hall has for charter revision. Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed a new Charter Revision Commission, which is unnecessary unless City Hall wants to take power away from the communities of the outer boroughs and centralize it in Manhattan. Comment

Students as Pawns

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has yet to back away from its plan to charge New York City students if they want to ride a bus to get to school. At a rally last week, members of the state Assembly, teachers and union leaders made it clear that doing away with student MetroCards is not acceptable. Comment

Dishing with Dee: Take time out of your day to volunteer for an elected

The rites of spring, Queens-style, have officially begun. It was both my honor and pleasure to once again be asked to serve on the Queens Theater in the Park Gala Committee. Comment

Electeds want MTA to nix Q79 bus cuts

A bevy of Queens elected officials at the city and state level joined borough bus drivers and mechanics last weekend at a Little Neck Parkway bus stop to protest proposed cuts to the neighborhood’s Q79 line. Comment

Flushing pupils bowl to raise funds for Haiti

A second-grade class from a Flushing elementary school took time out of their week-long vacation to help Haiti. Comment

Wyclef Jean urges SJU students to help Haiti

One of Haiti’s most beloved sons came to St. John’s University last Thursday evening to tell his story, discuss his foundation and implore students to volunteer in the devastated country this summer. Comment

Pomonok feeling the cold

When Pomonok Houses resident Shirley Berenguel puts her three children to bed, she wraps them in sweaters and tucks them in under mounds of blankets to ward off the cold she said has made life nearly unbearable this winter. Comments (1)

Friedrich urges CB 13 to denounce mailing

Failed state Assembly candidate Bob Friedrich urged Community Board 13 Monday night to condemn campaign literature sent by his opponent, Assemblyman-elect David Weprin, three days before the Feb. 9 contest that called Friedrich an extremist for opposing increased penalties for hate crimes in a mailing that used a swastika. Comment

Bayside auto dealer gets flak

Members of a massive citywide union that covers carpenters and industrial workers protested along the curb at Bayside Mercedes-Benz dealership Helms Bros. Inc., alleging that a construction project at the site was not paying standard wages to workers. Comment

City touts plan to ease traffic on Main Street

The city Department of Transportation presented to Community Board 7 last week its proposal to table a long-awaited plan to convert Main and Union streets in Flushing to one-way in favor of a new plan to test what it calls a modified two-way street. Comment

Planned Flushing Commons parking unfair: BID

The debate over downtown Flushing parking issues heated up Tuesday afternoon as Flushing BID Chairman James Gerson came out strongly against plans for the $800 million Flushing Commons mixed-use development project, saying it does not provide enough fairly priced parking. Comment

Whitestone homeowners want streets to handle less cars

Residents of a beach-side enclave of Whitestone near the Whitestone Bridge brought their longstanding traffic concerns before Community Board 7 during a heated meeting last week. Comment

Older students seek out SJU for lifelong dream of a degree

For most of her 70 years, Bayside resident Maria Christina Campos has hoped to get her bachelor’s degree in psychology. Comment

Queens College opens new Korean center

Queens College unveiled its new Research Center for the Korean Community Friday, the first of its kind in the United States. Comment

Protest DOE for decision to close schools

A recent travesty regarding the city Department of Education is its decision to close 19 schools. This will affect students, teachers and staff at each of these places. It is incomprehensible that city Schools Chancellor Joel Klein and his committee could vote to do this. Comment

Halloran should challenge Ackerman for Congress

Recently I attended a Tea Party event focused on interviewing candidates to take on U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) in the Fifth Congressional District. Comment

Shed light on MTA’s holdings

I read TimesLedger Newspapers’ article about Gov. David Patterson and Mayor Michael Bloomberg fighting about helping the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (“Bloomy rips guv’s plan to help MTA,” Feb. 11), which is a sore issue with me these days mostly because I believe the MTA has been wasting money for years and is holding on to real estate that generates no income. Comment

Klein, mayor didn’t hear public on school closings

Your Feb. 4-10 editorial was right on the money: “Chancellor Klein Goes to School.” Yes he did, but he did not learn anything. Nor has he learned anything from the students, parents and different community organizations who say he is wrong in his approach to the education of children. Comment

‘Very Poor Taste’

We have known Corey Bearak for a long time. He has been a dedicated community activist involved in countless civic battles. We have not always agreed with him, but we have never doubted the sincerity of his commitment to the people who live in this borough, Comment

Berger’s Burg: Winter weather lowers moods, but spring just ‘round corner

Take Winter as you find him, and he turns out to be a thoroughly honest fellow, with no nonsense in him, and tolerating none in you, which is a great comfort in the long run. — James Russell Lowell Comment

QueensLine: Boro suffered through heavy snow, rain storms in 1920s

In February 1926, former Borough Presidents Maurice Connolly of Queens and Julius Miller of Manhattan sent a letter to the city Board of Estimate proposing an East River tunnel to relieve congestion on the Queensboro Bridge, which at that time was only 17 years old. Comment

Let the day melt away at Glendale eatery

Queens might be referred to as a melting pot of ethnicities and nationalities, but those craving actual melting pots might best head to Glendale, where Simply Fondue offers an array of tempting, European-style dinners at the Shops at Atlas Park. Comment

Rego Park shopping complex to bring in new jobs

Rego Center’s opening slated for March is a welcome relief in a city with a 10.6 percent unemployment rate, Community Board 6 District Manager Frank Gulluscio said, despite lingering concerns community members have about an increase of traffic from the new shopping hub. Comment

Monserrate fights to regain lost Senate position

Ousted state Sen. Hiram Monserrate (D-East Elmhurst) has filed petition signatures for the special election for his seat and appealed a federal court ruling last week that declined to interfere with the vote expelling him from the Senate. Comment

Husband killed wife, hid body in park: DA

Nearly two years after his wife’s dismembered body was found in a suitcase in Forest Park, a former Woodhaven man has been charged with her murder, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Women’s group to hold talk on sex trafficking

The Center for the Women of New York is helping to present a conference on sex trafficking at Queens Borough Hall March 2. Comment

City issues plans for Kosciuszko

The state Department of Transportation unveiled four potential designs last week for the reconstruction of the Kosciuszko Bridge, which connects Brooklyn to Maspeth, and the project’s manager said work at the site could begin by 2014. Comment

Bayside students land scholarships

Queens Borough President Helen Marshall honored six borough students with scholarships ranging from $500 to $1,000 at an annual awards reception in Corona which celebrates African-American heritage. Comment

Bayside bar owner held in double murder

A Bayside bar owner from Richmond Hill was charged Saturday in the murders of a Howard Beach man and an Ozone Park resident in a northern New Jersey town in killings that are believed to be drug-related, the Bergen County prosecutor’s office said. Comment

Rego Pk. family return to home after March fire

Almost one year after a fire destroyed the Zeltser family’s Rego Park home, their lives are finally returning to normal. Comment

DNA nabs suspect in Kew Gardens rape

A Woodhaven man who was convicted of petit larceny in November has been charged with raping an 11-year-old Woodhaven girl and a 19-year-old woman in Kew Gardens based on DNA samples he was ordered to give because of his conviction, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said last Thursday. Comment

CB 1 OKs rezoning plan

A massive plan to rezone sections of Astoria for the first time in 49 years moved one step further last week as Community Board 1 approved the project, which will limit building heights in the neighborhood and allow for commercial development. Comment

Bid revision put AEG on top

Aqueduct Entertainment Group, which was awarded the controversial contract to install and operate 4,500 video lottery terminals at Aqueduct Race Track in Ozone Park, was in last place out of five bidders in terms of how much revenue the machines would generate for the state until it changed its projections three months later and was catapulted into first place. Comment

Lunar New Year roars in with Flushing parade on Main Street

The streets of Flushing were strewn with confetti and filled with music last weekend as thousands of borough residents lined up along Main Street to watch the Flushing Lunar Parade, which celebrated the Year of the Tiger. Comment

Queens leads city in statewide health study

Queens leads the city in a health study that reports that the borough has the fewest smokers in the city but the highest percentage of people without health insurance. Comment

Boro teen faces 25 yrs. for assault in Flushing

A Woodhaven teen who is a member of the ferocious MS-13 gang was convicted last week of gang assault and other charges in the 2007 attack on a 19-year-old outside of a Laundromat and deli in Flushing, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Bathroom break costs Astorian his vendor license

An Astoria man has the dubious distinction of being the first street vendor in the city to lose his permit for leaving his cart to go to the bathroom under a new citywide policy. Comment

MidVil drunk driver jailed for up to 15 years

The drunk driver who mowed down a 16-year-old Middle Village teen and his friend in a stolen car a year ago has been sentenced to up to 15 years in prison for killing them, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Ex-Flushing man pleads guilty to NYC subway bombing plot

Najibullah Zazi pleaded guilty Monday to plotting with al-Qaeda associates to carry out a string of bombings in the New York City subway system within days of Sept. 11, 2009. Comment

Remembering the fight for justice in Little Rock

The Little Rock Nine are drawing Social Security now, more than a half century after they made worldwide news by trying to go to school — in this case, Central High School. Comment

MTA slammed at LIC meeting for work on 7 train

Half a decade of pent-up commuter frustration poured out on a group of MTA officials who came to Long Island City last week at the request of City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) to hear the community’s complaints about weekend repair work on the No. 7 subway line. Comment

Astoria tenant killed while leaving home

Police said they were searching for suspects in the fatal shooting of a 22-year-old Astoria man who was killed while in the process of moving out of his apartment. Comment

Boro school pushes fieldwork

The Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School slated to open in Forest Hills this fall will be the first of its kind in Queens. Comment

City to include ambulance corps on 911

After catching flak from elected officials, including City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village), the city has agreed to repeal a policy change that excluded volunteer ambulance corps from the 911 dispatch system. Comment

Biz summit brings green thinkers to Queens

Eco-friendly technology and policies are making their way into Queens and the rest of the city, but legal conundrums are hot on their heels, experts told entrepreneurs at the second annual Queens Green Business Summit last week. Comment

Pilot project brings security cameras to E trains

Some may say “it’s about time” and others might see it as Orwellian, but regardless cameras are now recording everything in some subway cars of the E train. Comment

Cardozo HS student, family slain

Those who knew the Bailey family said they remembered the Rosedale clan as a happy group with no apparent problems, so when they were discovered Monday killed in an apparent murder-suicide enacted by the family’s patriarch, relatives said they were shocked and horrified. Comment

Corona co-op to honor first black man to win Navy Cross

The first black man to win the Navy Cross was born in Waco, Texas, and probably never set foot in Queens. And yet the figure of Doris “Dorie” Miller looms large on black history in the borough. Comment

Meeks says AEG scrutiny is unfair

U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica) said two figures who were part of the group selected to operate and install 4,500 video lottery terminals at Aqueduct Race Track — Darryl Greene and the Rev. Floyd Flake — were being unfairly scrutinized in the media for their involvement with the consortium. Comment

Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010

City to include ambulance corps on 911

After catching flak from elected officials, including City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village), the city has agreed to repeal a policy change that excluded volunteer ambulance corps from the 911 dispatch system. Comment

Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2010


Many robberies of shops hit southeast Queens

JAMAICA — The NYPD is asking for information from the public about a string of robberies at shops in Jamaica. Comment

Queens Village man shot in home

Police were looking for whoever was responsible for killing a 38-year-old father inside his Queens Village home during a burglary Tuesday morning. Comment

Scarborough worried over school plans

The city is mulling the placement of an all-boys public school in Springfield Gardens, a move that has made state Assemblyman William Scarborough (D-St. Albans) and community members nervous about possible repercussions it could have for students. Comment

SE Queens group aids youth

During these tough economic times, some young adults need an extra push to make their goals a reality, according to the administrators of the Southern Queens Park Association’s Young Adult Internship Program. Comment

A Leak in NOAH’s Arc

A scandal involving money donated to help the victims of Hurricane Katrina threatens to send a tremor through southeast Queens. The New York Post reported last week that a U.S. attorney is investigating a charity called New Yorkers Organized to Assist Hurricane Families that was created to raise funds for the people whose lives had been devastated by Katrina. Comment

Far Rock man drove drunk over fight: DA

FAR ROCKAWAY — A Far Rockaway man was arraigned last week on charges he was driving drunk after a fight with his wife, allegedly causing his car to hit a lamp post, the Queens district attorney said. Comment
Jamaica Times

Guv hears Rockaway’s woes

Gov. David Paterson said he was in favor of lengthening the school day in an effort to quell teen violence and other problems during a town hall meeting last Thursday night at Far Rockaway High School. Comment

Man punches and kicks friend over money: Cops

BAYSIDE — Police arrested an 18-year-old who allegedly assaulted his friend in a parking lot at Northern and Bell boulevards in Bayside Feb. 11, officials said. Comment

Cop with family in boro crashes into Tiffany’s

MANHATTAN — An allegedly drunk, off-duty NYPD officer drove into Tiffany’s Fifth Avenue storefront after colliding with a private garbage truck, injuring himself and two passengers last week, police said. Comment

2 men, 1 teen stole from Bayside home: Police

BAYSIDE — Police arrested three men who allegedly stole cash, marijuana, laptops and knives from a Bayside home Saturday, according to the 111th Precinct. Comment

2 teens attacked man and stole his Xbox: Cops

BAYSIDE — Police arrested two teens who allegedly punched and stole an Xbox from a male at the Raymond O’Connor Field in Bayside Feb.13, according to the 111th Precinct. Comment

Getting Tough on Domestic Violence

There is irony in the fact that state Sen. Frank Padavan introduced legislation in the Senate protecting the victims of domestic violence in the same week the Senate found the courage to expel Sen. Hiram Monserrate. Comment

QCC wins prize for promoting technology in classrooms

A bilingual consortium that focuses on Hispanic education honored Bayside’s Queensborough Community College for its teaching practices and use of technology in the classroom during a conference in Puerto Rico earlier this month. Comment

Glen Oaks high school helps students make WISE decisions

When Bellerose resident Tiji George began her senior year at the Queens High School for Teaching last year, the student knew she wanted to pursue medicine in college, but was not sure exactly what part of the field to pursue. Comments (2)

Koreans observe Lunar New Year at Flushing center

More than 100 members of Flushing’s Korean community came together Friday afternoon to celebrate the Lunar New Year in the spirit of “hyo,” the traditional Korean virtue of reverence for the elderly. Comment

Flushing leaders fume as DOT pulls one-way plans

A city plan introduced nearly four years ago to make Main and Union streets in Flushing one-way was tabled earlier this month, surprising and aggravating community leaders. Comment

Weprin to challenge city education policies

When it comes to education, City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) plans to be a thorn in Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s and city Schools Chancellor Joel Klein’s sides. Comment

Library hosts play on Beals

Queens residents caught an intimate glimpse last week into the life of Melba Pattillo Beals, one of the Little Rock Nine students who faced mobs chanting death threats and dodged lighted sticks of dynamite to become one of the first black students to attend Central High School in Arkansas. Comment

Jung will not run for office in 2010

Despite widespread rumblings that he was gearing up to run for the state Assembly, S.J. Jung said he does not intend to run for any office this year, leaving what Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing) said is currently an open field in the race for her seat. Comment

Windsor Pk. Library closes until autumn for renovation

The Queens Library at Windsor Park will close Feb. 19 for a renovation project that is expected to wrap up later this fall, but in the meantime the library will offer limited services two times per week through its book bus. Comment

2 boro residents stole eatery patron’s ID: DA

ELMHURST — Two Applebee’s bartenders from Corona and Fresh Meadows allegedly used a stolen credit card to shop at the Queens Center Mall between Jan. 31 and Feb. 4, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Woman perishes in LeFrak City blaze

CORONA — A woman was killed Tuesday in an early-morning fire in one of the high-rise buildings that comprise LeFrak City, police and city Fire Department officials said. Comments (1)

Police search for missing teenager, 17

SUNNYSIDE — Police asked for the public’s assistance in finding a 17-year-old female last seen in Sunnyside. Comment

Queens man accused of assault with his car

FLUSHING — A Forest Hills man was arraigned last week on charges he allegedly drove his car into an individual with whom he was fighting, the Queens district attorney said. Comment

Pay tribute to real heroes

The 80 returning police and fire emergency workers who worked feverishly in earthquake-ravaged Haiti to help rescue victims buried in the rubble are to be commended for their indomitable spirit and valor. Comment

Elected leaders must not cut jobs in city and state budgets

Here we go again! As if we have not suffered enough, another brutal whammy — this time from both the city and state governments. New York City’s gloom and doom budget, released by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, spells tough times ahead. Comment

Hold Weprin, Bearak accountable for controversial campaign flier

Last week, a special election was decided in the 24th State Assembly District, pitting me against David Weprin. The results of that election are now tarnished due to my opponent’s use of political hate mail tactics — specifically a disturbing flier that was timed to arrive in mailboxes four days prior to the election in which I had little or no time to respond. Comment

State should keep close eye on lotto funds

Seems to me that every time a politician takes over, one of the first things he or she does is explain to us New Yorkers that New York has some sort of deficit. Are we to believe that with all the Lotto money and other games of chance going on for over 30 years we are still behind the eight ball? Comment

Take a Hike, Governor

Gov. David Paterson, you must be kidding. Your plan to balance the MTA budget by raising the taxes on New York City businesses while reducing suburban taxes is disgraceful. Comment

Political Action: Friedrich Assembly campaign hard-fought despite losing race

The Feb. 9 special election for the 24th State Assembly District seat between Democrats David Weprin and Bob Friedrich, who was running as a Republican, ended with Weprin winning by a decisive margin. Friedrich, however, made an impressive showing getting close to 40 percent of the vote. Comment

Berger’s Burg: Money a very useful thing, but still the root of all evil

I’m a dollar bill. I’m not on speaking terms with the meat manager at the supermarket. I’m too small to buy a pint of ice cream. I can’t buy a gallon of gas. I’m hardly big enough as a tip. But on Sunday, in the collection box, I’m considered a big deal! — Milton Berle Comment

Dishing with Dee: Queens Village GOP club honors Betsy McCaughey

In between Mother Nature’s flexing her winter muscles, there seems to be a glimmer of indications that spring is on the way. Be of good cheer — this winter can’t last forever and will soon be over. Comment

Cozy bagel shop comes to Long Island City

Freshness is what drives Breadbox Cafe, a new bagel place and more at 47-11 11th Ave. in Long Island City. Comment

Former 105th Precinct police officer receives kidney donation from son

Nicole Dean gave her son the gift of life and he returned the favor when she was in need of a kidney transplant. Comment

Fire in Jax Hts. destroys businesses

Maria Lalita stared, her eyes brimming with tears, on Monday at a strip of Jackson Heights stores reduced to shells of their former selves by a four-alarm fire last weekend. Comment

City will close gate at Hart Playground

Tensions between neighbors, day laborers and a mobile soup kitchen appear to be on the wane at Woodside’s Hart Playground, where the city has begun taking measures to gently discourage adults from using the playground area while leaving them use of the on-site restrooms. Comment

Touro founder dies at 94

Touro College founder and President Dr. Bernard Lander, 94, of Forest Hills, led his school to international acclaim over the past four decades, those mourning his death last week said. Comment

Albany cutbacks threaten St. Saviour’s park plan

Belt-tightening in Albany could result in a major loss for Maspeth, preservationists said. Comment

Astoria resident sets sights on Gianaris seat

One could easily call Aravella Simotas a striver. The longtime Astoria resident enrolled in college when she was 16, got her law degree and rose through the ranks to become a commercial litigator and Community Board 1 member. Comment

Queensbridge man found guilty in ex-girlfriend slay

A Long Island City man has been found guilty of stabbing his ex-girlfriend to death more than three years ago, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. Comment

Flake proteges under fire

The questions surrounding the controversial nonprofit co-founded by state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-St. Albans) have put the elected official and several of his associates in the crosshairs of federal investigators who are looking into the organization and a possible conflict of interest in the Aqueduct Race Track bid. Comment

Congestion pricing may avert MTA hikes: Group

Transit officials are in desperate need of a way to avoid hiking fares by as much as 15 percent and a solution worth reconsidering is congestion pricing, a news analysis says. Comment

Newsmagazine in the works for Woodhaven area

In conjunction with the 175th anniversary of Woodhaven, the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association is planning to publish a newsmagazine for the community. Comment

Monserrate fights removal with suit

State Sen. Hiram Monserrate (D-East Elmhurst) did not waste time last week after being expelled from the Senate by his fellow lawmakers. Two days later he and his lawyers filed an appeal in Manhattan federal court, claiming the move violated his civil rights. Comment

Feds will not charge officers in Sean Bell case

After nearly two years of waiting, Sean Bell’s family and friends learned Tuesday that the federal government would not charge the five officers who killed the bridegroom in a hail of 50 bullets with civil rights violations. Comment

Ozone Pk. site in limbo as bidder loses out

When Aqueduct video lottery terminal contract bidder SL Green made a presentation to the Queens Chamber of Commerce in September, it pointed to the purchase of property near the Ozone Park track as evidence of its commitment to the community. Comment

N.J. woman alleges swindling by Queens Film Fest founder

A 54-year-old office manager from New Jersey is the latest person to come forward and contended she was bilked by Queens International Film Festival founder Marie Castaldo, who has been accused by former festival collaborators of failing to pay thousands of dollars for services during the past several years. Comment

TimesLedger offers paid summer internship

TimesLedger Newspapers is one of many publications in the state eligible to take on a paid summer intern through a program from the New York Press Association. Comment

Weiner wants funds for 9/11 mom

Howard Beach resident Dorie Pearlman is tired of waiting for justice. Comment

Deliveryman killed by drunk LIC driver: DA

An Elmhurst deliveryman died last week after a Long Island City driver suspected of being drunk hit him on the Long Island Expressway service road and then fled the scene, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment

Group tells Rich Hill residents how to fill out Census

The last time the Census was taken in 2000, Richmond Hill’s response rate was lower than 40 percent — well below the national and citywide averages. Comment

Vantage reaches $1M settlement with Cuomo over tenant harassment

Vantage Properties, which owns more than 80 buildings in Queens, agreed to pay $1 million to compensate harassed tenants as part of a settlement that state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday. Comment



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