Morning Political Odds & Ends, Nov. 9, 2021

Black chalkboard with drawing of a loudspeaker and inscription odds and ends

Addabbo Statement on Mobile Sports Betting Licenses

State Sen. Joseph Addabbo Jr.

State Sen. Joseph Addabbo Jr. (D-Queens), chair of the Senate’s Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering expressed optimism after the New York State Gaming Commission recommended nine mobile NY sports betting operators be licensed at its Monday meeting.

The two winning bids were Bally Bet, BetMGM, DraftKings Sportsbook and primary applicant FanDuel Sportsbook; and Caesars Sportsbook, PointsBet, Resorts World, Rush Street Interactive, WynnBET and primary applicant Kambi.

Those sportsbooks will see gross sports betting revenue taxed at 51%. All nine will be licensed for 10 years based on the tax rate.

“With New York moving closer to the goal line to witness its first mobile sports bet, we must remain focused on providing a premier product and giving New Yorkers the best mobile sports betting options in order to effectively compete with neighboring states like New Jersey. I am confident that with the announced, credible winning bids, we have the potential of eclipsing other states in mobile sports betting handle, raise significant revenues and funding for education and youth sports, while effectively addressing the problem gaming issue,” said Addabbo.

“Of utmost importance remains the timeframe for the servers that validate the mobile bets to be up and running, ready to take New York’s first mobile sports bets in January and in time for the 2022 Super Bowl,” he added.

NYC Parks Celebrates Memorial Plaza at Olde Towne Flushing Burial Ground

NYC Parks Commissioner Gabrielle Fialkoff today will join Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Congresswoman Grace Meng, Senator John Liu, Assembly Member Edward Braunstein, Council Member Peter Koo, District Attorney Melinda Katz and Co-Chair of The Olde Towne Flushing Burial Ground Conservancy Robbie Garrison, to cut the ribbon on a new commemorative plaza at the Olde Towne Flushing Burial Ground. 

The $1.76 million plaza honors the site’s past as a burial ground for 500 to 1,000 people, mostly African Americans and Native Americans, with a memorial wall that is etched with 318 recorded names of those buried.

Once known as the “Pauper Burial Ground”, “Colored Cemetery of Flushing,” and “Martin’s Field”, this site was renamed in 2009 “The Olde Towne of Flushing Burial Ground”. From the 1880s (and possibly earlier), until the cemetery was closed in 1898, the site was used for the burial of African Americans and Native Americans and served as the final resting place for between 500 to 1,000 individuals.

This project constructed a new memorial wall composed of an etched barre gray granite top that includes the name of the site, a brief site history and 318 recorded names of those buried here.

The ribbon-cutting is slated for 1 p.m., today, Nov. 9 at Olde Towne Flushing Burial Ground, 46th Avenue & 164th Street in Queens.

QBP Richards to Host Town Hall in Bayside

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. tonight will hold the third in his series of regional town hall meetings as part of an effort to address outstanding issues impacting the residents of Northeast Queens.

The Town Hall will feature representatives from City agencies like the New York City Police Department, the New York City Housing Authority, the New York City Department of Sanitation, and others. The representatives will listen to concerns raised by the community members in attendance and work to correct any problems brought up.

Borough President Richards, representatives from Community Boards 7, 8, and 11, and local elected officials will also be in attendance to gather feedback on local issues from the Northeast Queens community.

The event is co-sponsored by State Senator John Liu, State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky, Assembly Member Edward Braunstein, Assembly Member Nily Rozic, Assembly Member David Weprin, Council Member James Gennaro, Council Member Barry Grodenchik, Council Member Paul Vallone, and Council Member Peter Koo.

The Town Hall is slated for 6:30 p.m., tonight Nov. 9 on the lower level of the Student Union Building on the campus of Queensborough Community College, 222-05 56th Avenue in Bayside. Members of the general public who wish to attend should RSVP at

Colton Outraged That Insurance Companies Denying Homeowner Sewer Backup Coverage

Assemblymember William Colton

Assemblyman William Colton (D-Brooklyn) is outraged at insurance companies denying sewer backup coverage to their policyholders.

“I am furious and strongly believe that it is wrong for the insurance companies to take advantage of the policyholders by denying sewer backup claims and at the same time charge them an extra premium for the sewer backup, just because drain backups occurred at the same time that a flood was declared. The cause of the backup might have been inadequate sewer lines, clogged city sewer lines, or clogged catch basins,” Colton stated.

“FEMA has declared a flood emergency even though the sewer backups occurred where floodwater was not on a block of homeowners but water from the sewer system entered the premises backing up from such outlets as toilets or basins,” Colton continued.   

“A letter was sent to Governor Hochul to use her power as Governor to get insurance companies to honor claims of hard-pressed homeowners. Therefore, I demand that the city must execute regular maintenance of clogged sewer lines. The DEP is obliged to schedule a vacuuming out the bottoms of the city sewers and catch basins to avoid the assurance of severe leaks when there is heavy rainfall,” Colton added.    

Bichotte Hermelyn Hosts Listening Tour

Rodneyse Bichotte
Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn

Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn (D-Brooklyn) will host a listening tour throughout the 42nd Assembly District to hear from constituents on what is happening in their surrounding areas. 

The discussion will center around what is working, what is not working and to hear suggestions on how to improve our community as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In 2018, we introduced our first Community Survey to address issues you found concerning. We have communicated your feedback with the respective agencies tasked with improving these issues. Since then, we have successfully made over 35 potholes/road repairs and made other safety improvements thanks to community involvement,” wrote Bichotte Hermelyn in a e-newsletter.

“We are looking to hear from you again to get an update on what is happening in your area. We will be joined by various agencies including DOT, DSNY, HPD, Parks & Recreation, and NYPD,” she added.

The next installment of the listening tour is slated for between 6-8 p.m.Tonight, Nov. 9 at the Vanderveer Park United Methodist Church, 3114 Glenwood Road in Flatlands, Brooklyn.


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