Queens Lawmakers on the Move September 11, 2020

Queens County City Council News

Dromm Secures Funds to Keep District Clean

City Council Member Daniel Dromm/via Facebook

New York City Council Finance Chair Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights, Elmhurst) successfully secured thousands of dollars in Fiscal Year 2021 funding to keep the streets and sidewalks of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst clean, he announced on Thursday.  

Dromm allocated $160,000 to the Association of Community Employment Programs for the Homeless, Inc. (ACE) for 128 hours of supplemental cleaning services each week. ACE employees are now regularly sweeping community streets and sidewalks, periodically removing taped flyers from lampposts, and emptying City trash bins to prevent them from overflowing. ACE has resumed cleaning services in Jackson Heights and Elmhurst while wearing PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and adhering to social distancing practices to keep workers and local residents safe. 

“These thousands of dollars in funding mean a cleaner Jackson Heights and Elmhurst for everyone,” said Dromm. “We are in the middle of a financial crisis. The restoration of these dollars was not easy. I fought long and hard to ensure that my district receives the funding we need to continue these important services. I want to thank ACE for their impeccable work which keeps our streets and sidewalks clean.”

Dromm also secured $30,000 that will enable the NYC Department of Sanitation to conduct additional weekend garbage pick-ups along Broadway from 69th Street to Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst, and additional Saturday pick-ups along 37th Avenue and Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights.

Rosenthal and Koslowitz Call for Action at Umbrella Hotel

Assembly Member Daniel Rosenthal

Assemblymember Daniel Rosenthal (D-Kew Gardens Hills, Kew Gardens, Pomonok, Electchester, College Point and parts of Whitestone, Richmond Hill, Briarwood and Forest Hills) and City Councilmember Karen Koslowitz (D-Rego Park, Forest Hills, Kew Gardens, Richmond Hill) released a joint statement on Thursday about the Umbrella Hotel in Kew Gardens:

City Council Member Karen Koslowitz

“Over the last two months, our offices received hundreds of messages from concerned constituents regarding the dangerous state of affairs at the Umbrella Hotel. In response, we convened a meeting at Queens Borough Hall, inviting various City agencies to find a solution. The continued lack of meaningful response from City Hall is indefensible.

Despite near daily conversations with the mayor’s staff, City Hall has yet to formulate a plan of action. 

As elected officials, keeping our residents safe is our paramount responsibility. The unfolding situation at the Umbrella Hotel threatens not only public safety, but has grave public health repercussions. The lack of response from City Hall points to the sad reality that Mayor de Blasio is not taking these concerns seriously. The utter absence of regard for our community cannot be ignored. We stand united in the call for City Hall to take immediate action and shut this hotel down before another resident of Queens is harmed.”

James Celebrates Census Win Against Trump

State Attorney General Letitia James

New York Attorney General Letitia James scored a victory on Thursday in the fight to protect the 2020 Decennial Census from the Trump Administration by stopping President Donald Trump’s attempts to exclude undocumented immigrants from the apportionment base following the census count.

“President Trump’s repeated attempts to hinder, impair, and prejudice an accurate census and the subsequent apportionment have failed once again,” said James. “The courts have ruled in our favor on every census matter in the last two years and continually rejected President Trump’s unlawful efforts to manipulate the census for political purposes. We cannot allow the White House’s constant fearmongering and xenophobia to stop us from being counted. We urge everyone to fill out the census, if they have not already, and we will continue to take every legal action available to ensure all communities are counted, all communities are properly represented, and all communities get the federal funding they need and deserve.”

In July, Attorney General James led a coalition of states, cities, and counties in filing a lawsuit against President Trump, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, and others after they announced that they would illegally leave millions of undocumented immigrants out of the apportionment base that establishes the number of members in the House of Representatives that each state receives. The lawsuit sought to stop the Trump Administration from violating the longstanding constitutional and statutory requirement to count the “whole number of persons” residing in the country for apportionment, without regard to immigration status.

Thursday, a three-judge court agreed with Attorney General James that the president’s plan to exclude undocumented immigrants from the apportionment base was unlawful. 

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