Brooklyn Lawmakers On The Move April 16, 2018

News Site Brooklyn

BP Adams Calls On NYPD To Step Up Efforts In Canarsie Murder Case

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams will call on the New York Police Department (NYPD) to step up efforts in finding the killer of a Canarsie woman today.

Last Monday, the body of 26 year-old Brandy Odom was found dismembered at Canarsie Park by a dog walker, according to initial reports. Odom is suspected to have been the victim of a brutal murder.

Adams, in remembrance of her life, and to keep attention on her still-unsolved slaughter, will drape a memorial ribbon over several blocks of the park’s fence, while urging the NYPD to step up their efforts in apprehending her at-large killer.

Adams has committed $1,000 of his personal funds to the reward for information that brings Odom’s murderer to justice. He is holding this memorial ceremony in partnership with clergy members, community advocates, and local elected officials in Canarsie, including State Senator Roxanne Persaud, Assembly Member Jaime Williams, Council Member Alan Maisel, and District Leaders Sue Ann Partnow and Frank Seddio.

The event is slated for 7:00 p.m, today, April 16, at Canarsie Park (corner of East 86th St. & Seaview Ave.) in Canarsie.

Schumer Demands TSA Keep Dog-Sniffing Program Intact in NYC

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) demanded that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reverse their decision to cut critical canine Visible Intermodal Prevent and Response (VIPR) teams from New York City yesterday.

Last week, TSA in a cost-cutting move announced a proposal to eliminate federal funding to the bomb detecting canine teams across the five boroughs. TSA chief David Pekoske said he wanted to eliminate the agency’s use of canine VIPR teams and turn the responsibility over to state and local governments. According to Politico, Pekoske stated, “”We just can’t afford to continue to provide that level of support.” Schumer went on to note that under the new proposal, locals would foot the bill for the canine teams.

Canine teams include a highly trained detection dog and a handler. Visible Intermodal Prevent and Response (VIPR) teams, which augment the security of any mode of transportation at any location within the United States using an asset of DHS including canine detection teams. VIPR teams may approach people and ask questions, examine bags, search vehicles, conduct searches, and patrol the airport to detect suspicious activity.  According to the TSA, the agency allocates canine teams to specific cities and airports utilizing risk-based criteria that take into account multiple factors, including threat score, number of people with secure access, and passenger throughput.

“We are talking about preserving the most basic charge of the TSA: to keep America safe. And to suggest in a formal Congressional hearing that we can do without these specially trained teams is both myopic and maddening. Given the all-too-recent suicide bombing attempt within the Port Authority subway station, just this past December, it is unthinkable that the TSA is even considering the removal of our security firewall; the canine VIPR teams,” said Schumer.

“My message to the TSA is a simple one: if you think you are going to tell New York to just pick up the security slack and then the tab for a canine VIPR team that is–and must remain–a federal responsibility, you are barking up the wrong tree, because it should not happen. Canine teams are not a luxury. In New York City, canine dog teams can mean life or death,” added Schumer.

Malliotakis Mourns Loss of Assemblyman Frank Skartados

Assembly Member Nicole Malliotakis

Assembly member Nicole Malliotakis (R-Bay Ridge, Staten Island) mourned the loss and legacy of Assemblyman Frank Skartados yesterday.

State Assemblyman Frank Skartados died early Sunday morning at St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital at the age of 62, according to reports. Skartados was diagnosed with metastasized stage IV pancreatic cancer in January, and on March 24, was admitted to the hospital for respiratory issues and pain.

Skartados, a Democrat, represented the 104th Assembly District, which encompasses the city and town of Newburgh, Marlborough, Lloyd and the city of Beacon. He was elected to a two-year term in the Assembly in 2008 and narrowly lost re-election in 2010 to Tom Kirwan. Kirwan died in November 2011, and Skartados has held the seat since winning a special election for the seat in 2012.

“‪I am saddened to learn of the passing of my colleague Assemblyman Frank Skartados. He was a dedicated legislator and also very proud of his Greek heritage, giving passionate speeches on the Assembly floor about Hellenism and his journey to America as a Greek immigrant,” said Malliotakis.

“I had the privilege of visiting his district not long ago and was impressed with his exceptional knowledge of farming and agriculture. His passing is a loss to his district, our state and the Greek community, all of which he represented with great pride. I send my deepest condolences to the Skartados family and to the residents of the 104th Assembly District. Frank’s presence will be greatly missed,” added Malliotakis.

CM Williams Sends Condolences To Victims of Flatbush Ave Accident 

City Councilmember Jumaane Williams

City Council Member Jumaane D. Williams (D-Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood) is sending his condolences to the victims of the multi-car accident that occurred at the intersection of Flatbush Avenue and Farragut Road last Friday.

At least a dozen people were injured after two cars collided Friday night at Farragut Road and Flatbush Avenue, according to initial reports. Witnesses say a white sedan was turning onto Farragut Road from Flatbush Avenue when another car, silver in color, tried to beat a red light and crashed head-on into the white car. At least one vehicle ended up on the sidewalk.

Sources say at least 12 people were hurt, with injuries ranging from minor to serious and potentially life-threatening. However, there was no official comment on the number of injured pedestrians.

“My thoughts are with all of those who were injured in last night’s horrific accident. I pray for all of their full and swift recovery, and I want to express my sympathies to all who are affected by this tragic incident. I want to thank all of the emergency responders whose quick actions to treat those on the scene helped to saved lives. “

Deutsch Applauds SBS B82 Plan Postponement

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch

City Council member Chaim Deutsch (D-Sheepshead Bay, Midwood, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach) applauded the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) decision to postpone the planned summer rollout of the Select Bus Service (SBS) on the B82 bus route last week.

Last Friday, city’s new MTA President Andy Byford made the announcement amid community and local outrage over the proposal. The proposal for the SBS service included off-board fare payment, bus lanes, traffic signal priority, and longer spacing between stops. The bus lines on paper are supposed to service communities now well served by the subway, but has had a mixed reaction with a growing number of residents distressed in SBS taking away a good number of valuable parking spots and making it especially hard on seniors that use local stops which the SBS bypasses.

Deutsch led a group of Southern Brooklyn’s elected officials in a meeting with Byford and Department of Transportation (DOT) officials last Monday to discuss the plan, which originally was expected to roll out this summer.

“I’m pleased to announce that MTA President Andy Byford and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg have agreed to delay the start date for implementing the SBS route on Kings Highway. They will spend the next several months speaking with community members and elected officials in an effort to address some of our concerns about the plan,” said Deutsch.

“This decision comes after a lengthy meeting we held with the MTA, DOT, and my colleagues in government, urging further consideration about the potential impact that removing significant parking and creating a bus-only lane could have on small businesses,” added Deutsch.

Donovan Announces 2018 Congressional Art Competition

Congressman Dan Donovan

Congressman Dan Donovan (Southern Brooklyn, Staten Island) announced the opening of the 2018 Congressional Art Competition last week.

Open to high school students around the country, the competition is an opportunity for Staten Island and South Brooklyn students to showcase their artistic talents. One winning submission from each Congressional district will be displayed in the U.S. Capitol for one year. Participants may submit original paintings, drawings, collages, photographs, computer-generated art, or a combination thereof.

Last year’s winning art piece was a photograph entitled “Petition #1,” which highlighted issues related to sexual assault and feminism. The picture was submitted by Staten Islander Meghan Callahan-Scarcella, a student at Susan Wagner High School.

“Each year, I am blown away by the numerous works of art submitted by talented Staten Island and South Brooklyn high school students. Whether it’s through a photo, painting, or pencil sketch, it’s amazing to see students showcase their perspectives and stories using art. I look forward to seeing this year’s submissions,” said Donovan.

Students interested in participating must register online by April 30 at Submissions are due by the evening of May 1.  Students may also contact Congressman Donovan’s office at (718) 351-1062 with questions. More information can also be found by visiting: