2016-04-20 / Political Page

Busy Week Ahead For Presidential Hopefuls

Looking ahead, presidential Republican hopefuls Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich, and Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, will have another busy week ahead, chasing five state primaries which have their elections or caucuses within six days – on (Tuesday, April 26). The only good part is that their targets – Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island are bunched together along the East coast.

The major target that will call for more attention, as far as delegates are concerned, is Pennsylvania, which is huge geographically. And it also is very attractive delegate wise.

For Democrats Clinton and Sanders, it beckons with 181 delegates while Maryland offers 105. As for Republicans, the delegate prize for Pennsylvania will only be 71, but it still figures prominently for Trump, Cruz and Kasich. Proportionately it is important, since the total needed to win the Republican nomination is 1,237, about half the Democratic total of 2,383.

For Trump, it would bring him close to what he needs to win the nomination. As of this writing, we haven’t figured New York State and its 95 delegates into the picture because that contest is still to be decided. However, leaving NYS aside, Trump needed close to 500 delegates pre- NYS, so Pennsylvania’s 71 would still be helpful for the New York builder.

As for Cruz (currently at 529 delegates) and Kasich (143) at this stage of the contest, any time they win delegates the real value is keeping Trump from reaching his goal, so this helps them to improve their position and continue their battle. In doing so, hope remains alive and anything can happen at the Republican Presidential Convention in July.

On the Democratic side, the delegate prizes for the five states we’re looking at here are Pennsylvania (181) delegates, and Maryland 105 delegates, total 286 delegates. Again let’s set aside the New York State situation. Among Democrats their pool of delegates requires Clinton or Sanders to secure 2,383 to win the nomination.

Clinton already has 1749 and needs 634 to finish the job; Sanders has 1061, still a respectable distance behind Clinton.

So, as regards Clinton, winning both Pennsylvania (181) and Maryland (105) would get her about halfway home; but for Sanders to take both, it would help tremendously while winning only one would be merely helpful, considering Clinton’s large lead over Sanders.

As for the other states and the delegates they offer, for Republicans the numbers are as follows: Connecticut, 28; Delaware, 16; Maryland, 38; and Rhode Island, 19.

For Democrats, the delegate numbers are: Connecticut, 65; Delaware, 27; Maryland, 105; and Rhode Island, 31.

MALONEY: ‘BUDGET PROCESS A TRAVESTY’, URGES GOP, ‘PUT HARDWORKING AMERICANS FIRST’: As last week’s budget deadline passed with House Republicans refusing to bring any proposal to the floor for a vote, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney echoed her floor speech from yesterday, calling on the Republican-led budget Committee to redraft their budget blueprint and meet the responsibilities of governing by adopting a budget that helps everyday hardworking Americans and their families.

“The 2016 budget process has, from the start, been a travesty. Before President Obama even released his proposed budget, Republicans announced that they would refuse to give it a proper hearing, rejecting the President's budget out of hand even before it was printed,” Maloney (D–Queens/Manhattan) charged.

“House Republicans have made their values abundantly clear with their budget blueprint that would end the Medicare guarantee, take health care coverage away from 20 million Americans who received it under the Affordable Care Act and make deep cuts that harm children, students, seniors and hardworking Americans.”

Maloney added:“As just one example, the GOP’s proposed budget would have cut transportation funding by $184 billion— about 19 percent—over the next decade. In New York, we need robust federal funding to ensure that we can begin Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway on time and complete this critical link to

DuPreupper Manhattan, as well as important work on Phase 3 to Lower Manhattan in coming Vinnythe years. The proposal would also have ended independent financing of the

PhotoConsumer Financial Protection Bureau—a critical agency I have fought to protect in Washington from political meddling just like this. The Bureau has already recovered $11.2 billion for consumers and is working to end abusive, predatory practices that cost middle-class families millions.

“My Republican colleagues don't seem to have a budget or a plan to move forward, and the American people deserve better – they deserve better than this do-nothing Congress. Clearly, the budget process has collapsed and must start anew. I urge the GOP to work with Democrats to craft a budget that invests in our future and meets the challenges facing our nation.”

NOLAN REJECTS LIC HOMELESS SHELTER: Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan (D–Ridgewood) stated regarding the contract between the NYC Department of Homeless Services and Acacia Network Housing, Inc.:

“Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the contract between the City of New York and Acacia Network Housing, Inc. for the operation of a homeless shelter at 40-03 29th Street, Long Island City, Queens.

“First I object to the four and one-half year term. I am opposed to any term greater than one year. This is lengthy especially in light of the history of this provider at this location. Acacia was given an emergency contract to operate the shelter in October 2015. Acacia mismanaged this shelter clearly showing an inability to handle the 200 residents. The neighborhood was negatively impacted since the shelter opened in October 2015. There were over 400 911 calls to the location in a six-week period soon after opening. Although the situation has improved, I remain deeply concerned for the welfare of the residents and with the operator’s ability to properly assist them.

“The situation has changed as extra security was added and the Department of Homeless Services and Acacia met with the community biweekly for the last two months. Although largely addressed, problems lingered. For example, there continued to be reports of security employees smoking with residents in front of the facility as recent as early March.

“Although these incidents have diminished dramatically, and Acacia has made good efforts now to respond to the overt problems, I do not have confidence that this provider should be given such a long contract term.

“Regarding the contracting process I object to the short time frame we were provided to review the contract, a copy of which was not provided. Also the dearth of information provided on the summary sheet raises more questions than it answers. What happened in the RFP process? Who was contacted? Who responded? No meaningful summary of the process or the contract terms beyond the term were provided. This lack of openness alone should delay the approval of this contract.

“Therefore, I urge the rejection of this contract as the term is too long and the operator has shown little or no ability to improve the lives of the residents or safeguard our community during the term of the emergency contract.”

CROWLEY NIXES NORWEGIAN AIR OK: Congressman Joe Crowley (D–Queens, The Bronx), Vice Chair of the Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s tentative approval of Norwegian Air International’s flag-of-convenience scheme that would allow it to operate in the United States. In 2014, Crowley led a letter signed by 23 Members of Congress to DOT expressing concerns about Norwegian Air International’s petition.

Crowley stated: “I am very disappointed by this decision, particularly in light of overwhelming opposition from Members of Congress. My colleagues and I have sent multiple letters regarding the great threat this arrangement would pose to American jobs and fair competition in the airline industry. More than 200 members of the House and Senate are on record opposing Norwegian Air International’s application, and Congress passed legislative language directing the Department of Transportation in this matter. The decision to bypass the intent of Congress greatly concerns me and I plan to look into further actions we can take before the 21-day review period ends.”

KOSLOWITZ PARTICIPATORY BUDGET COMPLETED: “The people have spoken, and congratulations to the winning ideas,” Councilmember Karen Koslowitz declared at the conclusion of this year’s participatory budget exercise in her Council District, 29 (Forest Hills, Kew Gardens, Rego Park, Richmond Hill).

The winning proposals, which will be included in this year’s NYC capital budget, were described by Koslowitz (D):

#1-Traffic/Pedestrian Safety Enhancements – a safety improvement for 71st Avenue and Austin Street in Forest Hills, which includes installation of a single curb extension at the northeast corner of 71st Avenue and Austin Street. The project “will promote safety for pedestrians as it will align them with the parking lane which will increase their visibility to drivers,” Koslowitz explained.

#2-Renovations to our Local Public Schools Complete renovation of select bathrooms at three of our local public schools: PS 144, PS 174, and PS 101.

#3-Forest Hills Library Improvements. Construction of an outdoor reading area and renovation of the interior meeting room at the Forest Hills Library.

Under participatory budgeting, resident members of City Council districts, in this case Koslowitz’ district meet, suggest proposals, discuss them thoroughly and then take final votes on them “concerning how to spend $1 million to make our community better…”, Koslowitz explained. The winning proposal becomes part of the city’s Capital (or construction) budget.

Koslowitz thanked her Community Liaison Alex Anderson, “who spearheaded a successful and robust Participatory Budget get-out-the-vote effort.” The lawmaker also thanked the many community members who participated in the project.

ADDABBO ON DEALING WITH ‘ACTIVE SHOOTER’: State Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr. (D–Howard Beach) will partner with the Ozone Park Tudor Civic Association and the NYPD to host a presentation Wednesday evening to inform the public “how they can spot possible signs of someone who may become an active shooter in a public place.”

Addabbo said the police officers from the NYPD’s Community Affairs Bureau will also provide information on what to do during an active shooter situation in order to keep yourself and those around you as safe as possible.

“It is a sad and unfortunate reality that in recent years, mass shootings in public places have become an all too common occurrence,” said Addabbo. “While our main goal is to prevent these tragic events and ultimately put an end to gun violence once and for all, it is important that we also stay prepared for such circumstances and educate ourselves with certain tips that can help you survive a situation involving an active shooter. Just like we are taught to be prepared for other emergency situations such as a fire or weather phenomenon, we should also know how to protect ourselves in the event of a dangerous situation while in a public place.

“These seemingly simple tips our police officers will provide can prove to be something that one day saves your life or someone else’s. I sincerely thank the Ozone Park Tudor Civic Association for hosting this event, as well as the NYPD for its continued determination to ensure all New Yorkers are kept as safe as possible, even in the event of a tragedy.”

The presentation will take place today, Wednesday, April 20 at 7:30 p.m., inside Party Affairs, located at 85-08 Pitkin Avenue in Ozone Park. Due to limited seating, if wishing to attend the free event, call Senator Addabbo’s Office at 718-738- 1111.

MILLER URGES STUDENTS ‘TAKE SAFE DRIVING PLEDGE;” As prom season draws near, Assemblyman Mike Miller (D–Woodhaven) is asking students and parents to take the Arrive Alive pledge, an anti-drinking and driving campaign that encourages safe driving practices.

“We all know that driving under the influence can have devastating consequences,” said Miller. “That’s why I’m encouraging young people to take this pledge and reminding them to never drink and drive or ride with someone who has been drinking.”

The pledge asks parents and guardians to drive teens home at any time of the night – with no questions asked – and for teens to refuse to drink and drive or accept a ride from anyone who has been drinking.

Miller noted that car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens, with a quarter of those crashes involving an underage driver who has been drinking. Statistics collected by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) also show that 4,700 people die each year as a result of teen alcohol use and one in seven teens binge drink.

“Underage drinking occurs, and we shouldn’t ignore it,” said Miller. “What we need to do is have an open and honest conversation with our sons and daughters to warn them about the dangers of drunk driving.” To receive a copy of the Arrive Alive pledge, contact Miller’s office at 718-805-0950 or by email at Millermg@assembly.state.ny.us.

PERALTA, MOYA ENDORSE LASHER: State Senator Jose Peralta and Assemblymember Francisco Moya, announced their endorsement of Democrat Micah Lasher for the New York State Senate (31st District). Peralta and Moya are the lead sponsors of the New York DREAM Act, legislation which provides undocumented students access to state financial aid and scholarships. In their endorsement, Peralta and Moya highlighted the need to elect effective and progressive legislators in order to pass the DREAM Act and provide needed support for immigrant families and increased access to higher education.

Lasher is running in the Democratic Primary to succeed Adriano Espaillat and represent the 31st State Senate District, in Manhattan.

BOARDWALK CLOSING ‘DETRIMENTAL BLOW’: Statement by Senator Joseph P. Addabbo Jr. on Delay of Boardwalk Opening at Rockaway Beach. “The decision by Mayor de Blasio’s administration to push back the anticipated opening of the boardwalk from Beach 108th to Beach 124th Streets is understandably a detrimental blow to the residents, business owners and beach-goers who were counting on the City to have repairs finished by Memorial Day, when we mark the unofficial start of summer in New York City. While I am frustrated and disappointed that repairs will not be finished by then as originally promised, I intend to work closely with the Department of Parks and Recreation, appropriate city agencies and related companies to ensure that the remaining work to complete this and other sections of the inevitable boardwalk opening will be done in a timely, professional and careful manner. Our mission to keep rebuilding from the destruction we suffered during Sandy will continue to be the number one priority, but we must also see that the work is done safely, accurately and in accordance with regulations.”

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