In reference to John Toscano’s article in the June 7, 2000 edition, page 12, I On Politics, I would like to bring to your attention another candidate for the District 21 seat to be vacated by [City] Councilmember Helen Marshall. Dr. Marvin J. Bentley has declared his candidacy and is actively campaigning. He has held numerous fundraisers and has been endorsed by local leaders, block associations and social organizations.
Dr. Bentley is currently a member of Community Board 3, president of the Corona-East Elmhurst Clergy Association, and pastor of the Antioch Baptist Church of Corona for the last 20 years. He is a former member of Community School Board 30, having served as president and vice president.
As a civic and religious leader, Dr. Bentley has been able to uplift the issues that concern the residents of District 21.
Committee to Elect Marvin J. Bentley
Lauds PoliceTo The Editor:
73rd Street and 37th Avenue (is) the hottest spot in Jackson Heights for noise and traffic every weekend. But there is a solution. I saw it with my own eyes last month: a police officer in the intersection, moving traffic at a brisk pace.
He left the intersection for a moment to give fair warning to the driver of a car illegally stopped in the bus stop on 73rd Street at 37th Avenue. In spite of the warning the driver proceeded to load up his groceries The officer wrote the ticket.
The quality of life in the environs of 73rd and 37th deteriorated tremendously in the last decade of the 20th century. Noise and garbage, they grew, but the city’s response didn’t. Community Board 3 was finally moved to have the city’s Department of Transportation, against great odds, create loading zones to ease traffic congestion.
But when those loading zones are abused, the free lane for loading and unloading is blocked. So cars and trucks double park in the lane meant for moving cars and trucks. Traffic stagnates, horns honk and residents are miserable.
Here’s hoping the 115th Precinct makes its contribution. A single officer with heart like the one I saw last month will make all the difference. Every Saturday afternoon, every Sunday evening. It can be done if there is the will to do it. The residents of the lower 70s deserve it.
Let this be the summer of respite from horns ahonking.
P.S. Thanks to Key Food on the corner. They’ve been hit by graffiti seven times this year and seven times they painted over promptly. An example of community-mindedness from the private sector. We need more of that in the lower 70s shopping center without parking.
Dead Dogs In TrashTo The Editor:
In the past week, three dead pit bull dog bodies were found in Evergreen Park located between Seneca and Forest Avenues. Additionally, the trash bins are usually overflowing. Garbage is strewn throughout the park.
Area residents have long known the park to be a place to buy and sell drugs. Undesirable youths flock to the park, blasting radios and frolicking with young girls. Parents are reluctant to bring their children into this once beautiful and safe neighborhood park, for fear of their physical, mental and social health.
A petition to clean up the park and have an attendant stationed there throughout the day is currently being circulated by EVE of NYC. All local politicians have been notified, including Mayor [Rudolph] Giuliani and city Parks [Department] Commissioner Henry Stern.
We will continue these efforts until this matter is resolved.
Applauds HDRTo The Editor:
Let me be the first to applaud Democratic (City) Council Member Noach Dear for sponsoring bills that would require comprehensive noise, traffic, and air pollution studies to be conducted before the U.S. Department of Transportation could grant exemptions to the High Density Rule (HDR).
President (Bill) Clinton’s Aviation Investment and Reform Act severely weakens the HDR and seems to largely disregard the fact that increased flights may severely diminish the quality of life of communities like Astoria and Jackson Heights that border airports.
I also applaud Borough President Claire Shulman for litigating to try and force the DOT and the FAA to conduct environmental quality reviews in advance of granting HDR exemptions. We wish her every success.
Commerce and transportation are exceedingly important to our local economy but they must be balanced against the needs and quality of life of Queens residents.
Vince Tabone Esq.
Decries AntisemitismTo The Editor:
I hope that Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan and her rival, Patrick O’Malley, will join me in condemning Hillary Clinton’s anti-Semitic outburst. I am specifically referring to her use of the lovely epithet "blanking Jew-bastard." Apparently, this outburst is not an isolated incident. As a proud member of the Jewish faith and the Republican nominee for Assembly from the 37th A.D. (encompassing, Ridgewood, Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City), who has resided in Woodside since 1987, I am nauseated that Nolan and O’Malley approve of the nomination of a bigot for the United States Senate seat being vacated by Daniel Patrick Moynihan. How sad it is to think that Nolan believes that Hillary Clinton is the best candidate to represent New York. My advice to Nolan and O’Malley is for them to distance themselves as much as possible from this carpetbagging demagogue.
Republican candidate for
Assembly, 37th A.D.
Park Needs Repairs
A copy of the following letter was received by the Gazette.
City Councilman Sheldon Leffler
I read your comment in the July 12th issue of the Queens Gazette concerning their very complete article written on June 7th concerning the need for renovation of the very heavily used Cunningham Park.
I know that you jog in the park so you know the needs of the park. When I walk there at 7 a.m. weekends there are thousands of people using the park. There are operas, concerts, military demonstrations, parties, a circus, auto shows, church events plus the usual soccer, baseball and track events.
While the park employes keep it clean, they do not have the resources to renovate and repair the decades of wear and tear. Yes, you, Assemblyman Mark Weprin and Assemblywoman Ann Margaret Carrozza provided money for renovation, but this was in the eastern end of the park. In fact, Assemblymember Carrozza’s money fixed up the area where the Auburndale Soccer League, from her district, plays.
The West Cunningham Park Civic Association and the Friends of Cunningham Park want the western part of the park renovated, which is near our homes and where thousands play each weekend and where the concerts are held.
Just walk the area along Union Turnpike near 193rd Street and see the eroded areas, cracks in the walking/jogging paths, exposed tree roots, bare patches of dirt, dilapidated and non-handicapped toilets, low areas which become puddles when it rains and the sorry excuse for a fence.
We feel that money should be found to repair the areas used by the individual families and members of the Jamaica Estates Little League which use the core areas of Cunningham Park in and around the heavily used oval track.
We would be willing to take a couple of hundred thousand dollars, here or a million there. I hate to sit on a blanket or on a chair to watch a concert or the Philharmonic and realize I am sitting on dirt with a few patches of grass. Oh, put in underground sprinklers when you renovate so we can have green grass in the summer and not dry brown grass.
Robert I. Harris, President
West Cunningham Park
Civic Association, Inc.