Queens County Politics Lawmakers On The Move Jan. 19, 2018

Queens County City Council News

Avella Calls On City to Reclaim Privately Owned Streets

Sen. Tony Avella

State Sen. Tony Avella (D-College Point, Whitestone, Bayside, Flushing, Jamaica Estates, Fresh Meadows, Bellerose, Floral Park, Jamaica, Douglaston, Little Neck, Auburndale, Kissena Park, Briarwood) will join residents of Douglaston’s Willow Place and Stuart Lane to call on the city to finally reclaim privately owned streets.

Willow Place and Stuart Lane are two streets in Douglaston that are privately owned streets and as a result, are ignored by the City. Residents on these streets say it is a burden on their quality of life and safety.

The rally is slated for 1 p.m., today, Jan. 19 at 9 Stuart Lane in Douglaston.

Crowley On Rise Of Uninsured Americans During Trump Administration

U.S. Representative Joe Crowley/via Facebook

U.S. Rep. and House Democratic Caucus Chairman Joe Crowley (D-Sunnyside, Astoria, College Point, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Corona, Woodside, parts of the Bronx) this week took the Trump Administration to task over reports that 3.2 million more Americans were uninsured at the end of 2017 than when President Trump took office last January.

“The constant attempts to destabilize our health care markets by President Trump and congressional Republicans have reversed the progress made under the Affordable Care Act, which produced the lowest levels of uninsured Americans in our country’s history,” said Crowley.

“The GOP’s fear-mongering about the survival of the ACA pushed insurers and consumers out of the market, leaving our most vulnerable to fend for themselves. With the passage of their latest tax scam, which includes the eradication of the individual mandate, we can only expect to see the number of uninsured continue to rise.

“It’s my hope that these troubling figures will finally force President Trump and Republicans to do what’s right for the health of our country and work with Democrats to ensure that all Americans have access to affordable and quality health care.”

Sanders’ Condemns Trumps Plans For The Community Reinvestment Act

Se. James Sanders

State Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Richmond Hill, South Ozone Park, Jamaica, Rochdale Village, Rosedale, parts of Far Rockaway) last week condemned President Trump’s proposal to revamp or rescind the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), something that would be detrimental to low-income and working class families.

The CRA is legislation, which states that banks should lend a certain amount of money to people who live in the neighborhoods where the banks are located. Prior to this legislation, redlining was a common practice. Banks literally drew a red line around neighborhoods that they did not want to lend to – minority and so-called “high risk” neighborhoods – places where people had the most need.

“I would suggest that those in need of a loan get one right away, before the protective regulations of the CRA all come crashing down,” Sanders said. “Banking systems are necessary, but we must examine how much is profit and how much is greed.”

Sanders said the CRA has attempted to remove redlines and held banks accountable for who they were lending to by making them report how many loans went where and to whom. Complex grading systems analyze and rate how banks have addressed the borrowing needs of the surrounding community; all while maintaining practical lending standards, of course. A bad grade could hurt a bank’s ability to merger and restrict other activities.

“The primary question every bank should be asking is – can you pay back the loan at a reasonable rate, in a reasonable amount of time? That should be the bank’s primary question, not how to make the most profit without considering the needs of the poor and middle class,” said Sanders.

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