Tag Archives: facebook

LIC, Jackson Heights highlighted in new ‘See Your City’ campaign


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Poster courtesy of NYC & Company

Two western Queens neighborhoods are part of a new campaign encouraging New Yorkers to stretch their legs and explore their own backyards.

NYC & Company, the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for New York City, has launched a new promotional campaign, called “See Your City,” to motivate residents to explore the diverse neighborhoods found in all five boroughs.

The three-month promotional campaign will showcase 10 neighborhoods throughout the city including Jackson Heights and Long Island City.

“For visitors, a trip to New York City is a vacation for a lifetime. For a lucky 8 million, it’s just a subway ride away,” said Fred Dixon, president and CEO of NYC & Company. “We want to give New Yorkers a new perspective on the five boroughs. Start thinking of the more than 250 New York City neighborhoods as 250 opportunities to travel.”

Content featuring itinerary suggestions and video postcards will be included on NYC & Company’s website and five of the 10 neighborhoods, including Long Island City, will be promoted through custom illustrations inspired by vintage travel posters.

The LIC poster features an art piece at Socrates Sculpture Park overlooking the Manhattan skyline and the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge.

“With See Your City, we were challenged with the task of selling New York City to New Yorkers, and our goal was to create inspiration to convince New Yorkers to explore their own backyards,” said Emily Lessard, NYC & Company creative director.

The See Your City campaign will be promoted through bus shelters throughout the city, posts on NYC & Company’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts, commercials running in city taxicabs, and through American Express’ digital channels.

Since Oct. 15, social media ambassadors have been promoting the program on Instagram through sharing images with the official hashtag #seeyourcity.

For more information and to check out the featured neighborhoods, visit www.nycgo.com/seeyourcity.

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Two Glendale residents searching for kidney transplants


| slicata@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Salvatore Licata

When the workday ends for Debbie Zeni, she returns to her Glendale home to her husband and two children, Ava, 8, and Dario, 9.

But before she can spend time with them, she has to meet with another member of the household: Nancy #3.

Nancy #3 is Zeni’s dialysis machine and its name was coined by her two children as it is now the third one to have taken residence in their home.

Zeni needs to use it each day for over two hours because she has a condition called polycystic kidney disease, a hereditary condition where cysts form on the kidney.

Both of her kidneys have been completely non-functional for almost two years, so she needs Nancy #3 to survive.

“It is a real hardship each day,” Zeni said. “But you just have to keep fighting and not give up hope.”

Zeni’s appearance would not cause anyone to think that she is fighting for her life each day, and many times when she breaks the news to people, they respond with a look of disbelief.

This also applies to James Deifel, one of Zeni’s friends who also is suffering from kidney complications. Deifel, a Glendale resident and father of two, has a condition called focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), which has currently depleted his kidney function to about 16 percent.

Still, each day, he gets up and goes to work for Verizon in order to support his wife, Claudia, and two children, Julia, 9, and Michael, 13.

There is no cure for either Zeni or Deifel’s diseases. The only option for either is a kidney transplant.

Each has gone to family members and are on a transplant list, but neither has found a match.

But they are not giving up hope and neither is Deifel’s wife, who is now trying to up the chances to find a donor by using social media.

Last week, Claudia Deifel started a Facebook page called “Glendale Kidney,” where she has listed both her husband’s and Zeni’s conditions along with their case managers’ information. The page has already received more than 1,500 shares, and she is hoping that getting the word out to the community and beyond will better the chances of finding donors.

“I thought to myself, let me start with the community and get the word out to people,” Claudia Deifel said. “All I could do is keep putting the word out there and hope the right person sees it.”

Contrary to popular thought, with today’s technology, a kidney transplant requires only minimally invasive surgery. The donor would first have to take a blood test to see whether a match existed.

But both Zeni and Deifel understand the difficulty involved in kidney donation.

“We are aware it would really take a special type of person for a stranger to donate an organ to another stranger,” Zeni said, while holding Ava on her lap. “But if I get a kidney, I know I would live to a ripe old age.”

As they continue to fight, both are humbled with the overwhelming response they have gotten from the community via Facebook. They hope that as their story spreads, their chances of finding a match will grow.

“It’s great to see that friends of friends in the community have been spreading the word around,” Deifel said. “Remember, it only takes one.”

To find out more information, visit “Glendale Kidney” on Facebook.

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QEDC hosts League of Kitchens culinary sweepstakes


| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of It's in Queens

Food lovers may apply.

The Queens Economic Development Corporation is hosting a sweepstakes for a chance to win two cooking workshops that offer cultural delights from South Indian food to Lebanese cooking.

The nonprofit organization hosts a taste sampling event called Queens Restaurant Week every year and they are now holding a sweepstakes on Facebook.

The winner will be given a gift certificate for two food workshops by The League of Kitchens, a New York City-based company that hosts workshops like “Afghan cooking with Nawdia” and brings different cooking styles from all across the world.

The prices for these classes usually go for $100 to $195, making the gift certificate as valuable as $390. You can enter here to win.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: Sun and clouds mixed. High 31. Winds NE at 10 to 15 mph. Thursday night: Partly cloudy skies this evening will become overcast overnight. Low 24. Winds ENE at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Art of Science – Princeton University Photo Exhibit

View photographs from Princeton University’s annual competition, Art of Science at this new exhibit at the New York Hall of Science. The featured works were submitted as part of a competition that began in 2005, organized to judge the most aesthetically pleasing images produced during scientific research at the university. March 6 through September 14. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Rare skin infection outbreak tied to Chinatown seafood markets

The Health Department is warning customers of Chinatown seafood markets in Queens and other parts of the city about an outbreak of a rare skin infection. Read more: The Queens Courier

Facebook cracks down on posts for illegal gun sales

Go on Facebook or Instagram and you can find hundreds of guns to buy, from assault rifles like the AR-15, the weapon used to murder little kids in Newtown, to gun accessories like 30-shot clips illegal in New York and Connecticut. Read more: Fox New York

De Blasio ignores pledge to restore school vouchers

Mayor de Blasio is ignoring a campaign pledge to restore millions of dollars for some after-school programs — pulling the exact same move he excoriated his predecessor over. Read  more: New York Post

New SAT: Essay optional, no extra penalties for wrong answers

The SAT college entrance exam is undergoing sweeping revisions. Read more: CBS New York/AP

Gov. Cuomo’s approval sags, but he maintains large re-election lead: NBCNY poll

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s job approval rating has slipped, but he remains popular and enjoys a comfortable advantage in his quest for re-election, according to a new poll. Read more: NBC New York

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Thursday: A few showers this morning with overcast skies during the afternoon hours. High 59. Winds SSE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 30%. Thursday night: Foggy with light rain developing overnight. Low near 55F. Winds SSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Urban: An Exploration of New York’s Landscapes

Come to the Crescent Grill in Long Island City for the reception for the exhibit Urban: An Exploration of New York’s Landscapes at 6 p.m. Refreshments will be served. The exhibit runs through February 2. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Cops looking for E train rider who groped woman

Police are searching for a suspect who they say groped a woman onboard a subway train near Roosevelt Avenue Tuesday. Read more: The Queens Courier

Man found murdered in Richmond Hill home

Police are investigating an incident in which an unidentified woman was brought to Jamaica Hospital with a gunshot wound to her head. Read more: The Queens Courier

New York City Council considers e-cigarette ban

New Yorkers who say electronic cigarettes helped them quit smoking asked city lawmakers at a hearing on Wednesday not to ban the nicotine inhalers from restaurants, workplaces and other indoor spaces, saying there isn’t enough evidence they pose a health risk to justify their exclusion. Read more: AP

City’s grad rate hits record high

Despite stagnating in recent years, the graduation rate at city public high schools edged up to an all-time high this past school year — hitting 66 percent, according to city measures. Read more: New York Post

Passwords compromised for 2 Million Facebook, other online accounts

Passwords for some 2 million Facebook, Google and other accounts have been compromised and circulated online, according to security experts. Read more: CBS New York

Norman Rockwell painting sells for record $46 Million at NYC auction house 

A Norman Rockwell painting titled “Saying Grace” sold at an auction on Wednesday for $46 million, a record for the Saturday Evening Post illustrator and for any American artwork sold at auction, Sotheby’s said. Read more: NBC New York

 

 

NYPD issues social media rules for officers


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Screenshot via Facebook

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly is patrolling the streets of the World Wide Web.

According to the New York Daily News, the commissioner released a list of what the city’s 35,000 officers can and cannot put up on their personal social media sites.

A three-page NYPD memo, obtained by The News, states “Members of the service should be aware that activities on personal social media sites may be used against them to undermine their credibility as members of the department.”

The order also explicitly bans the creation of any online site by precincts or units, as well warning officers “not to disclose or allude to their status as members of the department.”

Police officers will also be prohibited from posting photos of themselves in uniform, unless at an official ceremony, the News reported.

The memo states that any officers caught violating the policy will face disciplinary action, including termination.

Those working in the NYPD have mixed reactions to the memo.

Edward Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, supports the order telling The News that, “[The NYPD] have to be held to a higher standard.”

Robert Gonzelez, a police training expert at John Jay College, told The News he disagreed with the memo, calling it an example of “unauthorized censorship,” and saying that, “members of the NYPD are proud public officials and should be authorized to express that right on social media sites without retribution.”

The NYPD is no stranger to controversy when it comes to social media. Seventeen cops were disciplined last year after they were caught posting offensive comments on a Facebook page entitled “No More West Indian Day Detail.” More than 150 comments were posted calling the participants of the annual parade “savages” and “animals.”

The memo comes off the heels of two FDNY employees, including Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano’s son, were caught posting racist tweets. The FDNY is in the process of reviewing its social media guidelines following the controversy.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Clear. High of 48. Breezy. Winds from the WNW at 15 to 20 mph. Wednesday night: Clear in the evening, then partly cloudy. Low of 36. Winds from the NNW at 5 to 15 mph

EVENT of the DAY: Queens Young Professionals Holiday Party

Recently, the Queens Young Professionals group formed to provide resources and networking opportunities to cultivate the borough’s future business leaders and encourage the next generation to become invested in borough wide issues. QYP, which is free to join, hosts its first ever holiday party with an unlimited buffet and specially priced drinks plus the chance to network. $10. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

M.T.A. chief will resign as he looks at mayoral bid

Joseph J. Lhota, the chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, has informed the Cuomo administration that he is stepping down from his position, according to four people with direct knowledge of his plans. Read more: New York Times

MTA to vote on fare, toll hike proposal Wednesday

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is scheduled to vote on its latest fare and toll hike proposal Wednesday morning. Read more: NY1

Little-known program can help flood-prone homeowners stave off future damage

Broad Channel homeowner Joan Delahunt, still reeling from the impact of Hurricane Irene, was working on a plan to raise the level of her flood-prone home when Superstorm Sandy struck. Read more: New York Daily News

NRA breaks silence, comments on Newtown tragedy

After four days of self-imposed silence on the shooting that killed 26 people inside a Newtown, Conn., elementary school, the nation’s largest gun rights lobby emerged Tuesday and promised “to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again.” ABC New York

Obama to call for gun policy changes

President Barack Obama is launching an administration-wide effort to curb gun violence, underscoring the growing political consensus over tightening gun restrictions following the horrific massacre at a Connecticut elementary school. Read more: Fox New York

Instagram takes step back, says ‘It is not our intention to sell your photos

Instagram, the popular mobile photo-sharing service now owned by Facebook, has backpedaled on some of its planned changes that led to concerns that it would use its members’ photos in advertisements. Read more: CBS New York

Time 2012 Person of the Year: Barack Obama

Twenty-seven years after driving from New York City to Chicago in a $2,000 Honda Civic for a job that probably wouldn’t amount to much, Barack Obama, in better shape but with grayer hair, stood in the presidential suite on the top floor of the Fairmont Millennium Park hotel as flat screens announced his re-election as President of the United States. Read more: Time magazine

 

 

NYPD to double gang unit


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

The NYPD is announcing an initiative today that will double the size of its Gang Unit and focus on social media to combat gangs.

Dubbed Operation Crew Cut, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly will discuss the program Tuesday in a speech to the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in San Diego.

In a pre-released copy of the speech obtained by The Courier, the number of detectives assigned to the “street crew” units will increase from 150 to 300 over time, he said.

Instead of concentrating on bigger gangs, such as Bloods and Crips, Operation Crew Cut will focus on ones where loyalty is tied to a small geographical area.

Police are also changing how they track gang activity by going online, where crew members are using sites such as Facebook and YouTube to brag about crimes and intimidate rivals.

This is the first time the NYPD has a “coordinated, consistent approach” to combating gangs, said Kelly

Though, as Kelly points out in his speech, gangs are “responsible for no less than to 30 percent of shootings in New York City,” shootings are down by about one percent compared to this time last year and murders have been reduced by 18 percent.

“We’re hoping that by focusing more resources in a coordinated thoughtful way on these crews we’ll reduce violent crime in New York City even further,” he said.

 

 

Apple unveils iPhone 5


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Apple

Today, Apple debuted iPhone 5, a new, thinner, lighter version of its popular cell phone.

It’s so thin that Apple said it’s now the thinnest smartphone in the world, and it is 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter than iPhone 4S.

The phone also features other improvements on the iPhone 4s, including a 4-inch Retina display, a faster performing A6 chip and wireless internet, a longer battery life and enhanced audio features.

It also comes with a new mobile operating system, iOS 6, with more than 200 new user features including a new Apple-designed Maps app and Facebook integration with its Contacts and Calendar apps.

The iPhone 5 is available for pre-order starting September 14 and Apple stores will start selling it at 8 a.m. on September 21.

Pricing starts at $199 for the 16GB model (with a wireless service plan), the same as the iPhone 4S was selling at until today. That model is now $100 cheaper and the iPhone 4 is free with a two-year cell contract. 

 

Politics in the Social Media Age


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

By Kevin J. Ryan
As the technology that connects us constantly evolves, the core skill of written communication is the one constant foundation on which good technological communications must be built. However, public relations professionals, especially those working for a public figure, need to be proficient at using all the latest means of delivering their message. Today’s communications toolbox includes web sites, press releases, blogging, email, Facebook, Twitter, web analytics, YouTube, Digg and search engine optimization.

Demand the Brand

The names of celebrities are brands, like Nike or Apple. They differ from corporations, however, because they are each a personal brand. Public figures must promote and protect that brand even more rigorously than a corporation, because their own name is much harder to rehabilitate once it is damaged. Rock stars, movie stars and athletes are all personal brands, but politicians are under greater scrutiny.

A cautionary tale for politicians using social media is that of former Congressmember Anthony Weiner. The Weinergate flap ended his career and handed the district back to the Republicans. A company can introduce new products or change executive leadership to recover from a controversy, but a politician has no such luxury. The speed and effectiveness of social media is a double-edged sword. What takes seconds to post can cling to a public figure forever.

The Social Media Advantage

Twitter and Facebook are essentially short-form messaging platforms. A brief (140 characters) text message or “microblog,” often accompanied by a link, is all that fits in a Tweet. Facebook allows one to show and see a bit more, which can be better or worse. Like any format of writing, it’s as effective as the writer makes it. The text needs to catch the reader’s attention so that he or she will want to click on the link or follow the poster. A politician or campaign can waste a lot of time on Facebook or Twitter with little reward, if they’re not careful. As with all media, judicious use is key.
Candidates and officials from both parties have embraced the Internet and its social media tools to stay in touch with their constituents and keep them informed. Councilmember Eric Ulrich’s recent State Senate campaign was announced with YouTube, rather than an old-fashioned press conference. The video was distributed via social networking, such as Ulrich’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. Newspapers and bloggers immediately picked it up that morning.

One of the main uses of Twitter and Facebook is to push traffic (“hits”) to a blog/web site, where constituents should be able to see pictures, videos, full-length articles, press releases and biographical information on a candidate.

The traffic can be monitored with tools like Google Analytics, allowing staff to see which Tweets and Facebook posts are most popular. This is especially useful for a politician, because it enables him or her to gauge which issues are most important to voters.

Monitoring programs also allow users to see where the traffic is coming from and which links are being clicked, so a campaign can decide which news outlets or advertising opportunities are most effective. They can see referral traffic, where it’s coming from and where it’s being sent. Analytic programs are among the most useful, cost-effective weapons in the social media arsenal.

Google recently launched a new marketing campaign called Four Screens to Victory, as both a promotion for their technology and a tutorial on how to use it to reach voters via TV, computer, tablet and phone.

Another advantage to Internet-based communication is the timing. When voters look at Twitter, Facebook or a site like Google, they are receptive to messages and want to connect and gain information. More traditional media, like TV, radio and paper mailings often catch people when they’re either much less receptive or otherwise occupied. They can also bookmark, come back and look at a politician’s Tweet, blog or Facebook page at their convenience. That means the presence is long-term and cost-effective, especially for local politics.

Accept No Substitute

Twitter and Facebook are merely tools that will someday go the way of Betamax and MySpace. But the essential core communication skills necessary to make productive use of these tools will always be the same. Skill at writing, regardless of length, format or purpose is what drives a successful public relations campaign. The message needs to be clear, consistent and engaging.

All of these techno-tools can be learned fairly quickly, but there will never be a substitute for knowing how to write a good article, paragraph or line. Good writing is much harder to learn and far more valuable as it disappears from the world. Our Queens community leaders must balance both and continue to adapt to the ever-changing technological landscape.

Top Headlines From Around the Web


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Queens woman killed in overnight fire

A Queens blaze killed a woman this morning, and seriously injured her cousin, authorities said. Firefighters discovered the unconscious body of Joanne Brown, 63, as they extinguished the flames in her Auburndale home on 189th Street, near 45th Avenue. EMS pronounced her dead at the scene. The fire began about 4:40 a.m., and was under control less than an hour later, according to an FDNY spokesperson. Read More: New York Post

Prober uses Facebook to nail perv, goldbrick NY teachers

Facebook is giving more Big Apple teachers a black eye. As the city Department of Education prepares to release it’s first-ever social-media policy, Schools Investigator Richard Condon has tallied a rapid growth in complaints about improper Facebook usage by city school employees — 120 in the past 18 months. Some teachers got in trouble for posting dumb jokes tinged with sex or violence. Others were busted after their own or students’ Facebook comments tipped officials to wrongdoing. Read More: New York Post

Sleepy driver kills 2: cops

A Long Island man on prescription drugs fell asleep behind the wheel and drove his 2011 Honda Ridgeline into a tree early yesterday, killing his 19-year-old girlfriend and a 17-year-old passenger, cops said. Thomas Smith, 20, of Ridge, and Jacqueline Salvador had just moved in together last week and were returning from Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ. Also in the car were her brother, Johnny Salvador, 17, Ryan Baumgartner, 17, and an unidentified girl, 16. Read More: New York Post

Queens Child’s Fundraiser Raises Awareness Of Rare GI Disorders

A Queens fourth grader with a rare gastrointestinal problem held a Saturday fundraiser in Woodside to raise money and awareness. KeVaughn Plunkett, who is allergic to almost all foods and has to use a food pump to survive, held his fourth Annual Art Show event at Saint Mary’s Church in Woodside. Proceeds went to the American Partnership For Eosinophilic Disorders (APFED). For more information, visit apfed.org. Read More: NY1

 

 

Schumer Demands Harsher Penalties For Pharmacy Robberies

In the wake of several robberies of pharmacies in the area, Senator Charles Schumer is urging Congress to pass a bill calling for tougher penalties. The Safe Doses Act, which is already waiting for a Senate vote, would increase punishments for robbing drug stores and give police more tools to crack down on illegal prescription drug rings. Just last week, two man held up an East Harlem pharmacy looking for pain medication. Read More: NY1

 

 

 

New York Marks Centennial Of Titanic Sinking

Exactly 100 years since an iceberg sank the RMS Titanic, New York City is holding events today to mark the centennial of the famed shipwreck that killed more than 1,500 people. The Titanic sank early in the morning of April 15, 1912, after hitting an iceberg late the previous night. A tour in Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx is letting visitors pay respects at the gravesites of several Titanic passengers. Also, the Noble Maritime Collection at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center on Staten Island is opening a Titanic-related art exhibit. Read More: NY1

Flushing’s Heejun Han named American Idol finalist as Creighton Fraker is sent home


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Photo Cortesy of Michael Becker / FOX

Viewer votes chose American Idol’s finalists Thursday night and only one of the two Queens contestants were chosen to continue the Idol journey.

Heejun Han was among the group of five guys that received the most votes securing his place in the finals and a chance to be named the 11th American Idol.

Astoria’s Creighton Fraker did not fare as well, being sent home after not being among the top five male vote getters and not being chosen by the judges as one of the three wild cards.

“Had so much fun on my Idol journey! More than grateful for this experience,” Fraker tweeted after the show. “Can’t wait to keep writing and performing my music. Much love.”

The Randy Jackson-dubbed “mad talented” Han advanced despite the judges believing his semifinal song choice — “Angels” by Robbie Williams — did not fully display his voice that Jennifer Lopez called “silky smooth.”

Fan flocked to the Queens crooners Facebook page to congratulate him after receiving the news he was safe.

“All for God. All by God,” Han tweeted.  “Thank you guys so much for everything . I wont let you down.”

This is the second year in a row a Queen resident advanced to American Idol’s finals. Howard Beach’s Pia Toscano made it all the way to the top 9.

The Flushing resident will continue his Idol odyssey on Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Fox 5 as he and his 13 fellow finalists will perform.

 

Vallone’s trash talk


| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. is telling illegal garbage dumpers where they can stick their trash.

Vallone, who observed personal garbage in a public receptacle outside his office, is outraged that some citizens view the city as their private dumping ground.

“I was walking into my office in the rain and I noticed one of the garbage cans outside was stuffed up with personal garbage. I passed it and got angry,” said Vallone. “This is something a lot of people are not aware of, but they see these overflowing garbage cans and a lot of times they assume it’s because they haven’t been emptied. But a lot of times it’s because pigs think they can dump their garbage in public property.”

Vallone proceeded to remove the refuse and inspect it in search of the “swine’s” identity. He says he found a magazine with a name and address, which he has passed on to the Department of Sanitation for enforcement.

“I have your last name and address. Expect a visit from Sanitation to your pigsty,” Vallone posted on his Facebook page on January 17.

Beyond singular civilians, Vallone also believes businesses are dumping their trash in public cans for financial benefits.

“Businesses try to avoid paying for a private trash removal company by emptying into public dumpsters,” said the councilmember. “Private people who do it are either too lazy or too stupid to figure out pick up days. But either way it causes our neighborhood to look dirty.”

According to the Department of Sanitation (DSNY), 793 fines were issued for illegal dumping of residential garbage in street bins in Queens in 2011 – down from 887 violations in 2010. Fines increased by roughly 47 percent citywide, however, from 2,512 in 2010 to 3,681 in 2011.

DSNY spokesperson Kathy Dawkins says the city is doing whatever it can to enforce what is considered a “well-known law.”

“It is important to know that people are not supposed to put their household trash in the litter baskets,” Dawkins said. “We are responding to commercial areas where merchants are concerned about this problem, as well as to complaints by politicians.”

To discourage dumpers, Vallone said he has introduced legislation that would increase the fine for a first offense from $100 to $200.

According to the councilmember, the key to cutting down the dumping is notifying the city by registering complaints with 3-1-1.

“Enforcement is complaint driven,” said Vallone. “Sanitation does not have the resources to investigate every garbage can. We have to do a better job of letting them know where this is a problem.”

Queens Teacher Charged With Raping 13-Year-Old Student


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Queens Teacher Charged With Raping 13-Year-Old Student

A Queens teacher is facing charges including rape after authorities say he had an inappropriate relationship with a 13-year-old student. Special Commissioner of Investigation Richard Condon says Charles Oross, 44, a teacher at IS 238, had a sexual relationship with the girl while she attended the school in 2009. Officials say the two also exchanged inappropriate emails and Facebook communications. Oross was removed from the school last month. Read More: NY1

 

Boyfriend of Young & Rubicam elevator victim Suzanne Hart calls her ‘bright spot’ 


The heartbroken boyfriend of elevator accident victim Suzanne Hart said Thursday “she was the bright spot in my life.” “I don’t have the words for this,” Chris Dickson said outside the couple’s Brooklyn Heights home. “I can’t process this.” Dickson, who said he and Hart “were together for five-and-a-half years,” was with her father, Alex Hart, and step-mother, Mary, when he spoke. Read More: New York Post

 

Man Accused Of Beating Jets Fan Faces New Charges

Charges were upgraded Wednesday against the man accused of attacking a Jets fan after Sunday’s game. Merle Lee, 35, is now being charged with aggravated assault. He was previously charged with simple assault. Police say Lee punched James Mohr of Queens in the face after an argument ended with a group of men. Mohr, 23, has been taken out of intensive care and is listed in fair condition. Investigators say the dispute wasn’t about the game. Read More: NY1

 

One last spin for land marking Forest Park Carousel

Forest Park Carousel is getting one more spin at landmark status. Area residents and leaders hope to have the historic local landmark officially recognized as one by the city’s Landmark Preservation Commission. The carousel — which last spun in 2008 — is currently being reviewed by the commission to see whether it meets the eligibility for landmarking. Read More: Queens Courier

 

Queens Courier Exclusive – What Would Judy Say?™ – Judge Judy Sheindlin answers your questions about problems that trouble you most. Read: Queens Courier

 

Facebook Timeline now available to all users

Facebook’s 800 million users can now access the site’s Timeline feature, which turns their profile pages into a virtual scrapbook of big photos, memorable posts and life events. For many users, turning on Timeline will likely serve as a trip down memory lane as they rediscover photos and updates they shared months and years ago. All that’s been stored on Facebook. Read More: New York Post

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 11/04/2011: Queens Officials To Stand Against Swastika Graffiti


| jlane@queenscourier.com

The Round Up

Queens Officials To Stand Against Swastika Graffiti

Four swastikas showed up on the walls of the Jackson Heights branch of the Queens Library Thursday. At least one more was painted on the library branch in East Elmhurst, and another was etched on the door of a synagogue on 88th Street. Police believe the incidents in three separate locations are related. They are being investigated by the hate crimes taskforce. Local leaders plan to hold a news conference Friday to denounce this kind of hateful vandalism. Read More: NY1

 

‘Fresh Meadows Rules’ Facebook group unites former residents from around the world in Queens

More than 150 former Fresh Meadows residents reunited last week to celebrate the planned neighborhood many remember as a small utopia tucked away in Queens. The gathering, organized through a Facebook group called Fresh Meadows Rules, brought residents from all over the country and even overseas back to Queens to meet up with childhood pals and revisit local landmarks. Read More: Daily News

 

Melanie Webb, Long Island City woman, pleads guilty to shooting slay of her sister,Tara, on victim’s birthday

A Long Island City woman pleaded guilty Thursday to fatally shooting her sister on the victim’s 27th birthday.Melanie Webb, 25, also shot Tara Webb’s boyfriend, Terrell Carmichael, on March 26 in the Long Island City apartment they all shared, she admitted. A source close to the case said Webb shot her sister Tara in her bed and turned her gun on Carmichael, hitting him twice in the torso in the shower. Read More: Daily News

 

Queens high school students to help upstate NY rebuild after Hurricane Irene ravaged homes and businesses

Students at a Bellerose high school will soon get a lesson in what it means to build stronger communities — one nail at a time. The Habitat for Humanity club at the Queens High School of Teaching, Liberal Arts and the Sciences is raising money and supplies for a trip to upstate New York to rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Irene. The group plans to partner with a yet to-be-determined Binghamton high school by the end of the year. It also plans to donate cleaning and school supplies. Read More: Daily News

 

FEMA extends deadline for Hurricane Irene victims

There’s a ray of hope for those affected by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in August. On Oct. 31, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced a deadline extension for individuals seeking disaster assistance. The new FEMA registration deadline is Dec. 15. Read More: Staten Island Live