Political Odds & Ends, Nov. 19, 2021

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Velázquez Introduces Bicameral Bill to Stop Predatory Small Business Loans

U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez

U.S. Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (D-Brooklyn/Queens/Lower Manhattan), chair of the House Small Business Committee, and Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) yesterday introduced the bicameral Small Business Lending Disclosure Act.

The measure aims to protect small business borrowers from predatory lenders and loans carrying unfair terms and conditions and would ensure safeguards already required in consumer lending, through the Truth in Lending Act. The bill would bolster the role of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in policing small business lending and bring enhanced transparency to small commercial loans.

“Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, immoral lenders sought to prey on small businesses with unfair and unsustainable loans, said Velázquez. “Once we were in the midst of the worst public health crisis in over a century these predatory lenders would take aim at business and entrepreneurs trying to stay afloat. 

“This legislation is a critical step in extending many of the protections in consumer lending law to small firms, bringing needed transparency to small business credit markets and ensuring entrepreneurs understand their obligations and rights when they sign up for a loan.”

Van Bramer Takes Queens Blvd. Victory Ride

City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer/Facebook

City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Queens) this past Sunday, I joined Transportations Alternatives, community organizers, elected leaders and over 100 bicyclists to ride the newly implemented Phase IV of the Queens Boulevard bike lane.

“There are few things I am more proud of during my time in the Council than my advocacy to make our streets safer in Western Queens. And there are few better examples of that than the transformation of the “Boulevard of Death” into a very real victory for street safety,” said Van Bramer in his e-newsletter.

“I was happy to ride with so many street safety advocates and especially happy that Lizi Rahman, who has dedicated her life to making Queens Blvd safer after losing her son to traffic violence along the boulevard, was able to be present for this victory,” the lawmaker added.

Chin Convenes Meeting of Committee on Aging

Council Member Margaret Chin
Council Member Margaret Chin

City Council Member Margaret S. Chin (D-Manhattan), chair of the Committee on Aging, will convene a meeting to take up several issues.

This includes going over a home care and caregiving strategy, reimagining the long-term care task force act, and placing limits on the maximum amount of hours a home care aide may be required to work.

The remote hearing is open to the public. It is slated for 11 a.m., today, Nov. 19. Watch here

Richardson Hosts Healthier for the Holidays

Assembly Member Diana Richardson

Assemblymember Diana Richardson (D-Brooklyn) tomorrow will host her Healthier for the Holidays- Harvest Festival.

“Please join me for a time of smiles, music & activities for the entire family. There will be health screenings, food, games, a turkey giveaway and live entertainment. We can’t wait to see you,” said Richardson in her e-newsletter.

The free event is slated for between 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 20 in front of 1077 Nostrand Avenue between Lefferts Avenue & Lincoln Road in East Flatbush, Brooklyn.

Reichlin-Melnick hosts local seniors for first annual “Senior Fair”

State Sen. Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick

State Sen. Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick (D-Rockland/Westchester) this week hosted over 800 local senior citizens at his first annual “Senior Fair” at the Rockland Community College Eugene Levy Fieldhouse. 

The event featured around 80 businesses, organizations, and government departments which provided free information and services geared towards senior citizens. 

“It was so great to finally be able to bring back the Senior Fair event for senior citizens in Rockland and Westchester counties,” said Reichlin-Melnick. “I talked to so many seniors today who were delighted to be back at RCC enjoying food and entertainment and learning about the many valuable and important services we have for seniors here in Rockland and Westchester counties.” 

Seniors were able to get free COVID booster shots and flu shots provided by Community Medical & Dental/Monsey Healthcare, as well as senior yoga classes that were hosted throughout the day by Jamie Surya Yoga Studio. Informational breakout sessions took place with a representative from Hudson Valley Credit Union holding a talk about avoiding financial fraud, and Assistant Attorney General Gary Brown speaking about protecting seniors from a variety of targeted senior scams. 

Attendees were encouraged to wear a mask at all times, and a free to-go bagged lunch was given to all attendees provided by SUNY Rockland Culinary Program “Hudson on Main”, Howard Hanna Rand Realty, and Nyack Ridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, with Kosher lunch selections provided by Polaris Healthcare. 

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