Queens Lawmakers On The Move Aug. 15, 2018

Queens County City Council News

Katz Has Busy Evening

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz (D) is either hosting or attending three events this evening.

She kicks off her night 6 p.m. hosting the celebration of India’s 72nd Independence Day at the Helen Marshall Cultural Center at Queens Borough Hall, 120-55 Queens Boulevard in Kew Gardens.

Then she heads over to the Queens Jewsih Community Council’s Free Jewish Music Under the Stars summer concert series.

Here she is slated to speak at 7 p.m. at Cunningham Park, 196th Street and Union Turnpike in Fresh Meadows. 

Katz will finish her evening at the Tomchei Shabbos of Queens 7th Annual Volunteer Night of Appreciation.

At this event she is scheduled to speak at 8 p.m. at Tomchei Shabbos Warehouse, 129-01 Metropolitan Avenue in Kew Gardens. 

Avella, Braunstein Ramp Up Pressure Opposing Fort Totten Conservancy

Sen. Tony Avella
Assembly Member Edward Braunstein

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), Assembly Member Edward Braunstein (D-Bayside), along with  Community Board 7, Friends of Fort Totten Parks, and Bayside Historical Society yesterday ramped up their pressure to oppose the Fort Totten Conservancy.

The Conservancy, which was formed and filed for nonprofit status without any input from the community, aims to repair and rehabilitate the buildings at Fort Totten, yet did not bother to ask for community support ahead of time.

Additionally, when the President of the Conservancy, Ann Sklar, finally decided to meet with the community, she misrepresented to many of the groups that stood with Senator Avella – telling them that other groups she had met with supported her, which was untrue, these opponents alleged.

“I have serious concerns over the intentions of the Fort Totten Conservancy,” said  Avella. “While I agree that the buildings at the Park need repair, the Department of Parks and Recreation and Ms. Sklar should have reached out to the community and elected officials prior to forming and filing for nonprofit status. Not reaching out shows a real lack of respect to the local community and I would ask the community to support the long-established group, Friends of Fort Totten Parks.”

“Like Senator Avella and many community leaders, I am troubled by the circumstances surrounding the creation of this conservancy,” said Braunstein. “Generally, organizations such as this grow out of the collective efforts of the local community. In this instance, someone with no connection to Northeast Queens created a conservancy seemingly for the primary purpose of securing her own employment. I strongly urge the Parks Department to refrain from taking any action that would legitimize this organization, and urge the public to direct contributions to Friends of Fort Totten Parks, should they want to donate.”

Koo, Summer Interns To Clean Up Downtown Flushing

City Council Member Peter Koo

City Council Member Peter Koo (D-Downtown Flushing, Murray Hill, Queensboro Hill), his summer interns and volunteers will hit the streets today with brooms and cleaning supplies to pick up loose trash and litter in downtown Flushing.

The city’s Department of Sanitation is providing the cleaning equipment.

The cleaning crew is scheduled to meet for work at 10 a.m., today, Aug. 15 at Lippman Plaza pedestrian walkway between Roosevelt Avenue and 39th Avenue in  Flushing.