Tag Archives: Assemblywoman Grace Meng

Onderdonk House raises the roof


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Anthony Giudice

A virtual who’s who of Ridgewood and Bushwick joined the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society (GRHS) in celebrating the completion of the historic Vander Ende-Onderdonk House’s new roof during its Raise the Roof event on Thursday night.

Those in attendance included Councilman Antonio Reynoso, Congresswoman Grace Meng, Vincent Arcuri and Gary Giordano from Queens Community Board 5, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs Tom Finkelpearl, Deputy Brooklyn Borough President Diana Reyna and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, among several others.

The push to get a new roof for the Onderdonk House, located at 1820 Flushing Ave., began in 2009 when the GRHS held a fundraiser to help get the project started.

“We were able to raise over $25,000, really pretty impressive for one night, but well short of the working estimate of over $350,000 to restore the roof,” said Linda Monte, president of the GRHS. “That’s when our super women, Diana Reyna and Elizabeth Crowley…sprang into action. They were able to add member items to the New York City Capitol Budget.”

This allowed the Onderdonk House to get the additional funding to repair the roof.

“Although we had a delay in the construction of the work, we finished this past fall, under budget,” Monte added. “Tonight is to thank you, recognize our major donors, officially declare the roof restored and have a great time.”

Guests were allowed inside the Onderdonk House to tour the restored attic to get a look at the wooden shingle gambrel roof.


During the ceremony, the GRHS dedicated a plaque to the major donors who helped fund the Onderdonk House’s brand-new roof.

“It gives me great pleasure to have joined with Council member Elizabeth Crowley to support those landmarkings for historic districts in Ridgewood,” Reyna said. “Historic preservation does not only mean preserving old buildings, it means preserving the entire identity of the neighborhood. The fact that the Onderdonk House exists is a great illustration of what we can accomplish with participation from community and government.”

In lieu of a traditional ribbon-cutting ceremony, the GRHS gave each of the major donors of the project their very own hammer, which they used to ceremonially hammer in a nail of the newly constructed roof.

The Onderdonk House was built in the late 18th century and is the oldest Dutch Colonial stone house in New York City. With the help of federal, state and local funds, it was opened to the public in 1982 and in June of 1996, it was given city landmark status. The house now serves as a museum for a permanent exhibit on the archaeology of the Onderdonk site, as well as having changing exhibits relating to history, the arts and culture.

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Rep. Jeffries wants investigation into FEMA flood insurance scandal


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Rep. Hakeem Jeffries is calling upon the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) inspector general to investigate potential fraud in the insurance claims process for people who were affected by Hurricane Sandy.

“Superstorm Sandy devastated many communities throughout New York City,” said Jeffries, whose district includes Howard Beach and other areas hit by Sandy. “Homes were destroyed, businesses damaged and lives turned upside down.”

“In the wake of this tragedy, FEMA failed to oversee a fair and expeditious processing of flood insurance claims,” he continued. “The public deserves to know what happened, why it happened and how we can prevent it from ever happening again.”

In New York, over 300,000 housing units were damaged and more than 260,000 businesses were affected in the 2012 storm. Jeffries charges that claims made by home and business owners were tampered with.

In a letter to FEMA, Jeffries penned, “It has become increasingly apparent that a systemic fraud was perpetrated on a vulnerable group of tax-paying Americans in need of immediate financial relief.”

“In multiple instances, engineering reports regarding storm damage were apparently altered without the knowledge of the author,” the letter continued. “Equally troublesome, in other cases engineers appear to have been pressured to inappropriately reach specific conclusions that would lower insurance company payments.”

The letter goes on to say, “Given the urgency of this situation, an independent and comprehensive review of the disposition of Superstorm Sandy-related flood insurance claims is critical. In light of the serious nature of the allegations, FEMA cannot serve as judge and jury of its own potential wrongdoing.”

Joining Jeffries in signing the letter are U.S. Representatives Charlie Rangel, Steve Israel, Gregory Meeks, Grace Meng, Yvette Clarke, Jose Serrano and Carolyn Maloney.

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

 TODAY’S FORECAST 

Tuesday: Partly cloudy in the morning, then mostly cloudy. High of 75. Winds from the WNW at 5 to 10 mph. Tuesday night: Partly cloudy in the evening, then clear. Low of 61. Winds from the WSW at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: 9/11 anniversary events in Queens

To commemorate the eleventh anniversary of September 11, there are several remembrance events around the borough Tuesday evening.  Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

NYPD seek suspect in attack on woman in Queens

The NYPD is seeking the public’s help in identifying a suspect in connection with an attempted sexual attack in Queens. Read more: Wall Street Journal

Trial begins for man suspected of stealing two police guns from precinct

Two officers who had their guns stolen from the 103rd precinct in Queens last year took the stand in State Supreme Court on Monday to tell the court what happened, but could not say how. Read more: NY1

Ethnic politics in the mix in crowded Assembly primary in Flushing

The scramble to replace Assemblywoman Grace Meng has produced a crowded primary, charged with ethnic politics and intrigue. Read more: New York Daily News

School bus nightmare for Queens child

The new school year has meant four mornings of frustration for Shanie Fryer and her 3 year old daughter Annaya. The child’s bus has either shown-up hours late or not at all. Read more: ABC New York

Cuomo, Bloomberg, Christie reach a deal to end the impasse that has stalled construction of the 9-11 museum

The dispute that has all but halted construction on the 9-11 museum was resolved on the eve of the 11th anniversary of the terror attacks. Read more: New York Daily News

New York is lagging as seas and risks rise, critics warn

With a 520-mile-long coast lined largely by teeming roads and fragile infrastructure, New York City is gingerly facing up to the intertwined threats posed by rising seas and ever-more-severe storm flooding. Read more: New York Times

For Sept. 11 anniversary, a turning point passed?

Is it time for a different kind of Sept. 11? Victims’ families and others were poised to gather and grieve Tuesday at ground zero, the Pentagon and near Shanksville, Pa., for the first time after the emotional turning point of last year’s 10th anniversary. Read more: AP

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

EVENT of the DAY: Free Yoga-Fit classes

Free Yoga-Fit Classes will be conducted by Susan Blayer on Fridays at 11 AM and Sundays at 1 PM starting July 20. Yoga-fit is basic yoga combined with fitness exercises, and learned to combine breath with movement—appropriate for all ages, with doctor’s approval.

[Click here for more info] or to [submit your own events]

Tentative deal ends Con Ed Union lock out

It was the threat of very bad weather that broke the impasse in Con Ed’s labor dispute. After Gov. Andrew Cuomo brought the two sides together in his Midtown offices Thursday, they first announced workers would return to work temporarily to handle the severe weather. Then, just two hours later, they emerged again to announce a labor agreement, the product, Cuomo said, of crisis. Read more: [NY1] 

UPDATE: Dad-burned candidate 

Assemblywoman Grace Meng faces a more fiercely competitive race to win a House seat in Queens following the embarrassing bribery bust of her father, Jimmy Meng, political insiders said yesterday. Backers of her Republican opponent, City Councilman Dan Halloran, pounced on the Meng family scandal. Read more: [New York Post]

Police seek two men in connection with Queens robbery

Police in Queens are looking for two men they allege robbed a gas station in Ridgewood. Police allege that on Sunday, July 15 at around 3 a.m., two men robbed a CITGO employee on Forest Avenue. Read more: [NY1] 

Long Island City-based Songza music service streams for business success 

A trio of college friends are betting that they have created a soundtrack for success. The Long Island City-based Songza, which streams curated song playlists tailored to fit listeners’ moods, has several million users, according to the company. Read more: [New York Daily News] 

Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival marks nation’s 50 years of independence with food, music and fun

The spicy scent of jerk seasoning wafted through the Caribbean crowds at the 2nd annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival in southeast Queens. About 8,500 people came out last Sunday to Roy Wilkins Park to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence, hear live reggae music — and sample jerk chicken, pork and other Jamaican cuisine, organizers said. Read more: [New York Daily News] 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Supreme Court upholds Obamacare

The Supreme Court upheld President Obama’s historic health care law Thursday – a defining moment in the 2012 race for the White House. The stunning ruling – unexpected from a Court led by conservatives – was a huge victory for Obama, who staked much of his term on passing the national plan. Read more: [New York Daily News]

Police Search For Boyfriend Of Queens Homicide Victim

Police are looking for the live-in boyfriend of a Queens woman found dead in her apartment. Authorities said they want to talk to 33-year old Jason Bohn in connection with the Tuesday night death of 27-year old Danielle Thomas. Read more: [NY1] 

Police Search For Boyfriend In Connection With Murder Of Danielle Thomas Of Astoria

A man is suspected of killing his girlfriend after once threatening to hunt her down, “like a dog in the streets.” Several instances of documented domestic abuse caused Danielle Thomas, 27, to flee her Astoria apartment building, where police found her dead Tuesday night. The big question now is why did she return? Read more: [1010wins]

Queens Democratic Congressional candidate to Republican foe: Keep race and religion out of contest

Newly-minted Democratic nominee Assemblywoman Grace Meng kicked off her Sixth District Congressional run by thanking voters and challenging her Republican opponent, City Councilman Dan Halloran, to keep race and religion out of the campaign. Meanwhile, Halloran issued his first statement, in which he congratulated Meng, but painted her as a tax-and-spend candidate. Read more: [New York Daily News]