2003-06-04 / Political Page

On the brief side...

3 Lawmakers Rally For Libraries
On the brief side...

On the brief side...

3 Lawmakers Rally For Libraries

City Councilmembers Helen Sears, Hiram Monserrate and Tony Avella participated in separate protest rallies last week to restore funding for branch libraries in Queens.

Sears (D–Jackson Heights) and Gary Strong, director of the Queens Borough Public Library system, rallied on the steps of the Elmhurst branch at 86-01 Broadway. Sears, budget negotiator for council Democrats, said, "Cuts at this time would be detrimental to the future of our children and adults, too." She called for restoration of funds to buy new books, provide six-day-a-week service and enhance summer reading programs.

Strong also joined Avella (D–Bayside) last Thursday at a protest rally at the Bay Terrace library branch, 18-36 Bell Blvd., Bayside. The Bay Terrace Community Alliance and other residents joined in the protest.

Last Saturday, Monserrate (D–Corona) led community residents in a protest rally at the East Elmhurst branch, 95-06 Astoria Blvd. He said the loss of millions in library funds has already forced the branch to close on Saturdays.

Marshall Marks ‘Jerusalem Reunification Day’

Queens Borough President Helen Marshall and the Queens Jewish Community Council celebrated the 36th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem last Thursday evening in the LeFrak Concert Hall at Queens College in Flushing.

The celebration commemorated the reunification of Jerusalem following the division of the city from 1948 to the end of the Six Day War of 1967. On June 28, 1967, the Israeli government proclaimed the reunification of the sacred city.

"We are especially delighted that this year’s anniversary celebration will include world renowned performer Yoel Sharabi and the Solomon Schecter Day School Queens Choir," Marshall added.

Cosponsors of the event included the Central Queens YM and YWHA of Forest Hills, the Flushing Jewish Community Council, the Jackson Heights–Elmhurst Kehillah, the Jewish Community Council of Kew Gardens/Richmond Hill, the Jewish Community Council of the Rockaway Peninsula, the Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council, the Queens coalition for Israel Action and the Samuel Field YM & YWHA of Bayside.

Council Bans Unruly Fans

Under a bill introduced by Council Speaker Gifford Miller and Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. (D–Astoria), it will be a misdemeanor to trespass on the playing area of a professional sporting event in New York City and will impose a civil penalty for anyone who interferes with a professional sporting event.

The legislation, they said, is in response to a recent increase in the number of unruly fans at professional sporting events throughout the country and is intended to protect players and sports officials.

"This will send a message to any publicity seeking punk who wants to run on a ball field in New York that you will be going to jail and helping us to balance our budget," Vallone declared.

BP Gets $7,000 For Youth Groups In Queens

More than $7,000 in gift certificates for sporting equipment was distributed last Saturday by Borough President Helen Marshall to youth groups at the Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City, the largest public housing complex in the nation.

The certificates are redeemable at Modell’s Sporting Goods, Marshall said. They break down to $5,000 for youngsters in 15 New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments, $1,500 to Boy and Girl Scout troops in Queens and $750 to the Youth and Tennis Organization, a Jamaica-based agency which has been teaching youngsters to play tennis for more than 30 years.

Marshall explained that Saturday’s event was the latest in her continuing efforts to augment existing recreational services for youngsters between the ages of 6 and 18 who live in public housing. As part of her "Marshall Plan," she has been working to achieve this goal with support from NYCHA Chairman Tino Hernandez, Queens Scouting groups, the YMCA and community-based organizations.

Street Name Changes Honor 9/11 Dead

Liu held a ceremony last Saturday to rename the intersection at Oak and Quince Avenues and 158th Street in Flushing in honor of Firefighter Scott M. Kopytke, who grew up in the area and died at the World Trade Center on September 11. Kopytke’s family, Assemblymember Barry Grodenchik (D–Flushing), and Community Board 7 Chairman Eugene Kelty, a captain in the Fire Department, also took part in the ceremony.

Also last Saturday, Councilmember Dennis Gallagher (D–Middle Village) led a ceremony renaming the intersection at Juniper Valley Road and Gray Street in honor of Jill Maurer-Campbell, who perished while working at her job with a financial services firm on the 78th floor of the World Trade Center on September 11.

She was the wife of Police Officer Steven Campbell and the mother of their son, Jake. Her body was never recovered. She was a lifelong Middle Village resident and the daughter of Fire Captain Joseph and his wife Jeanne Maurer.

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