Borough president now accepting applications to join community board

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Here’s your chance to get involved with your local community.

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz is now accepting applications from community-minded people to serve on their local community board. Sunnyside is represented by Community Board 2.

Community boards play an advisory role, contributing to land use and zoning decisions, city budget priorities and public hearings on a variety of local neighborhood issues.

Each board meets a full meeting monthly, and members also participate in individual committees, which host regular meetings.

“Government works better when we have active and engaged members from whom to draw expansive knowledge and extensive life experiences,” Katz said. “Serving on a community board is a significant commitment, demanding in both time and energy.”

“Civic-minded residents interested in playing a larger role in the governance of the city, helping to ensure the delivery of municipal services and serving Queens families and neighborhoods are encouraged to apply.”

The community board membership application is available online at www.queensbp.org/community-boards.

The application deadline for new and current community board members is January 12, 2018.

The two-year term of service begins on April 1, 2018.

Peralta, Woodside on the Move distribute 700 turkeys

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It’s almost Thanksgiving, and thankfully, some of our neighbors in need will have some turkey to eat.

State Senator Jose Peralta and Woodside on the Move teamed up with local community organizations to donate more than 700 turkeys to faith-based groups, schools, senior centers and daycare centers, all of which will be provided in meals for families in need.

“As we reflect during these times, it is imperative to give thanks and help families who are less fortunate,” Peralta says. “This event is about giving back to the community, and assisting those who are struggling by providing them with a free turkey.”

Partnering organizations include Foodtown, CRE Adult Day Care Center, C-Town, World Fair Marina Restaurant, Con Edison, the LeFrak Organization and the Ferrari Driving School.

Van Bramer re-elected for third term

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Jimmy Van Bramer cruised to an easy victory last night, securing his third term in the City Council.

He will represent Long Island City, Sunnyside and Woodside for four more years.

According to unofficial early results on the Board of Elections website, Van Bramer won 16,515 votes out of 19,387 total votes cast. That’s 85.19 percent.

If you break it down by party, Van Bramer received 14,748 votes on the Democratic line, and another 1,767 votes on the Working Families Party.

His Republican challenger was Marvin Jeffcoat, a U.S. Army veteran who is involved in civic and veterans organizations. Jeffcoat garnered 2,803 votes, or 14.46 percent, in the race.

Last year, Jeffcoat also ran for state Senate, but lost to Democrat Michael Gianaris.

Van Bramer is now contending for City Council speaker, a powerful position in city government. He currently holds the title of majority leader.

Sunnyside pol backs “Fair Fix” plan

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Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer is among 27 council members who have announced their support for Mayor de Blasio’s Fair Fix proposal.

The plan would increase taxes on the city’s wealthiest to raise $800 million annually to fix the crumbling subway and bus system. It would also pay for half-fare MetroCards for 800,000 low-income New Yorkers.

“New Yorkers deserve better than a subway system that is in a state of crisis. Albany and the MTA must urgently make the investments in our subway system that New Yorkers desperately need,” Van Bramer said. “That’s why I am joining Mayor de Blasio and calling on Albany to pass the common-sense Fair Fix proposal to modernize our subways and end this daily crisis that harms millions of every day New Yorkers.”

Fair Fix would need to get through Governor Cuomo’s Albany, which seems unlikely considering the governor is pushing congestion pricing, which the mayor opposes. Let’s not forget that the mayor and governor can’t seem to get along, and are in a constant political fight to top one another.

But with 27 supporters from the City Council, Mayor de Blasio’s plan appears to be picking up momentum.

Time will tell which plan will prevail. Either way, New York City commuters are just hoping that a solution comes soon.

Voter Guide for NYC Local Elections on November 7th

The NYC local city office elections on November 7th are rapidly approaching and New Yorkers need to get informed!
In order to ensure this education, Vote NYC announced the broadcast schedule for the city’s official nonpartisan Video Voter Guide ! The guide contains statements from each candidate about their stances and plans for the city. The video edition of the guide began airing Sunday, October 29th and will be on every night at 7pm (4pm on election night) from now until the election on the NYC Gov station (see channel depending on carrier below).

NYC Gov Channels and Carriers
Spectrum (TWC)….74
Verizon FiOS……….1960 HD | 24 SD
Cablevision…………74
RCN…………………..81
Over the Air (Broadcast)……….25.2

The video guide will also air on borough-based public access stations; check local listings for time and dates on BRIC, QPTV, MNN, and BronxNet.

The Voter Guide information can also be found online at voting.nyc as well as in print when it is delivered to every household with registered voters in the five boroughs.

Aspects of daily life such as affordable living and public schools will be affected by these local elections so make sure to learn about the candidates and get out there and vote!

Van Bramer opposes Con-Con

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On November 7th, which is Election Day, the toughest vote won’t be for mayor, comptroller, public advocate, borough president of City Council member.

It’s likely the ballot question for the proposed Constitutional Convention, a once-in-20-years opportunity to open up the New York State Constitution to make changes.

The debate has intensified as Election Day nears. Good government groups and some progressive advocates, such as those pushing for ethics reform, are pushing for a “yes” vote.

Most elected officials and labor unions, who have poured in significant funds into this vote, are completely opposed to it.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer declared last week that he’s strongly opposed to the “Con-Con.” Here’s why:

“A constitutional convention raises deep concerns to me about the possibility of lowering and diminishing workers’ pensions, something I would never stand for. A constitutional convention would open up governance in our state to special interests and extremely wealthy individuals and would see the delegate selection process rigged by the same Republican gerrymandering we have seen from Albany in our legislative and congressional districts. Simply put, a Constitutional Convention would run the risk of rolling back decades of progress on environmental protections, workers’ rights, civil rights and more.”

Celebrate the renaming of Lily Gavin Place

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This Saturday afternoon, elected officials, community leaders and neighbors are gathering at Queens Boulevard and 40th Street to celebrate the renaming of Lily Gavin Place.

Gavin, the late owner of Dazie’s Restaurant and a longtime community leader, passed away last July.

She opened Dazie’s in 1972, and remained active in her neighborhood. She served as the president of the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce and was a founding member of the Sunnyside Shines BID.

She helped relocate and expand the local YMCA to Queens Boulevard. She was involved with the LaGuardia Community College Foundation and the local Kiwanis club.

And when the Sunnyside arch was scheduled to be torn down, Gavin worked with Luke Adams to restore it.

Read more about Gavin here.

Shedding truck is coming to Woodside this weekend

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Woodside and western Queens residents can personally unload their unwanted personal and business undocumented into the shredder this weekend.

Congressman Joe Crowley, State Senator Mike Gianaris, Assemblyman Brian Barnwell and Councilman Costa Constantinides are teaming up to bring a shredding truck to the Boulevard Gardens complex on 30th Avenue and 57th Street this weekend.

You can shred all those documents for free from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.