Tag Archives: Mayor Ed Koch

Vallone introduces legislation to remove Ed Koch from Queensboro Bridge name


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYC Mayor's Office Flickr/By Edward Reed

One local politician is taking the next step to bring the Queensboro Bridge back to the borough.

Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr. introduced legislation on Tuesday to reestablish the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge to its original name, the Queensboro Bridge.

The city renamed the bridge in 2011 after the former Mayor Ed Koch, who passed away on February 1. Vallone led the opposition against the renaming of the bridge in 2011, along with 12 other councilmembers.

Vallone’s bill instead calls to rename the Manhattan Municipal Building, located at 1 Centre Street in Manhattan, as the Ed Koch Manhattan Municipal Building.

“While I realize this bill will not pass before the end of my term, I wanted to start the process so that Queens elected officials who come after me can restore the Queensboro Bridge to its rightful owners, while simultaneously providing an appropriate honor for the late Mayor Koch,” said Vallone.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Partly cloudy. High of 37 with a windchill as low as 16F. Winds from the West at 5 to 15 mph. Monday night: Mostly cloudy in the evening, then overcast. Low of 34 with a windchill as low as 27F. Winds from the SW at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: The Art of Ink in America 2013/2014: Gesture and Beyond, An East/West Exhibition of Contemporary Calligraphy

The exhibit includes approximately 50 new works by 32 and five invited artists and consists of abstract and avant-garde pieces, which show the many different forms and innovative techniques available to contemporary ink painters. On view at Queen College’s Godwin-Ternbach Museum through December 30. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Man shot, killed in Jamaica

A 47-year-old was fatally shot in the head on 107th Avenue in Jamaica around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, said police. Read more: The Queens Courier

Bird strike reported at JFK Airport

There was a scare upon landing Sunday night for a flight full of passengers approaching JFK Airport, as the plane was hit by two birds. Read more: ABC New York

Hearing set for proposed New York City foam container ban

The future of plastic-foam food containers in takeout-loving New York City is up for debate. Read more: NBC New York

Schumer seeks to pull plug on robocalls

Sen. Charles Schumer is introducing legislation to try to curb an increasing number of unwanted telemarketing calls. Read more: CBS New York/AP

Mayor Ed Koch’s letters to be auctioned

During his reign as mayor of New York and for years after, Ed Koch corresponded with heads of state and other dignitaries. Read more: AP

 Investigators to release report on Sandy Hook shooting

Investigators are planning to release a long-awaited report on the Newtown, Conn. school shooting, nearly a year after the massacre of 20 children and six women inside Sandy Hook Elementary School. Read more: NBC New York

 

Borough president candidates pick up endorsements


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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As the candidates start to get out and campaign, the race is heating up for the next Queens borough president.

Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr., who has led in terms of fundraising since mid-2012, was the most recent candidate to officially kick off his campaign with an event on Monday, March 11 in his native Astoria. Norman Seabrook, president of the New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association, gave the group’s endorsement at the rally.

Former councilmember and former assemblymember Melinda Katz has picked up the backing of the late former Mayor Ed Koch, and the Rev. Floyd Flake, a former congressmember and current senior pastor of the Greater Allen A. M. E. Cathedral of New York.

“It’s been 20 years,” she said of her relationships and endorsements. “I’ve been extremely fortunate in my life to have made a lot of friends.” As former chair of the Land Use Committee, Katz said she gained considerable experience working with the entire borough, either to preserve neighborhoods or help economic growth in others.

State Senator Jose Peralta, representing mainly Corona, has been an advocate for replenishing portions of his district, particularly developing Willets Point and cleaning up Roosevelt Avenue. Union 32 BJ SEIU endorsed Peralta’s candidacy on Friday, March 8.

“No one fights harder for working families and immigrant New Yorkers than SEIU 32BJ, and I am thrilled that they have joined our campaign,” Peralta said. “The thousands of 32BJ members who live in Queens know that we need new leadership to make sure that every child receives a great public school education, that families have a chance to succeed no matter where they come from, and that no neighborhood or borough is left behind when it comes to city services and public safety.”

Former Deputy Borough President Barry Grodenchik has been backed by Queens-based Local 3 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. “It is an honor to have the support of Local 3, and the thousands of Queens residents that belong to this great union,” Grodenchik said. “Together we’re going to bring hands on, visible leadership, and continue the fight to bring good paying jobs to Queens.”

Representatives for Councilmember Leroy Comrie and State Senator Tony Avella were contacted regarding their races, but did not return calls as of press time.

 

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One of the greatest mayors ever


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

BY PETER VALLONE SR.

I served with Mayor Ed Koch for 12 years, the last four from 1986 through 1989, while I was the newly-elected head of the City Council, soon to be empowered as a truly independent legislative branch of government with the coming elimination of the unconstitutional Board of Estimate.

He and I became very close friends because the city was in deep trouble fiscally, there was a notable absence of cops, the subways were unsafe, and the city needed a cheerleader to lift its sagging spirits, as well as a government that worked and gave hope for the future.

Ed Koch was the right person. We worked together to fashion the most significant landmark legislation in any four year period in the history of the city. The first Clean Air Act in the country, preventing people from being forced to inhale smoke from others, dividing restaurants and all public places accordingly; the first Campaign Finance Law ensuring a level playing field to anyone aspiring to run for office; the first so-called Gay Rights Bill preventing discrimination by reason of sexual orientation; the first and biggest housing plan providing for hundreds of thousands of affordable units to be built over the next four years, and a homeless policy to break up homeless shelters and provide homes wherever possible, just to name a few.

The best way to remember Ed Koch is in his own words. I was present with him on many occasions when he told a large audience mad at something or other he said or did, he would say: “Look, if I were a baseball player and got a hit only three times out of every 10 I batted, I would be a pretty good player, wouldn’t I? So if you agree with me three out of 10 times, I’m doing pretty good as mayor, too. But if I got a hit 7seven of 10 times, I would be the greatest player ever, right? Now most of you here agree with me 7 out of 10 times, so I must be the greatest mayor ever! On the other hand, if you agree with me 10 out of 10, you must be crazy!”

Many still think Ed Koch was single. That’s not true. He was married to this city, and loved it with a passion and devotion from beginning to end. I told him many times he could be one of the greatest stand-up comedians if he chose to, as well as being one of the greatest mayors ever.

Perhaps the best tribute you could say about any person is that when you mention his name, a smile comes to your face, and that is how I will always remember my dear friend, Ed Koch. My only hope is that he will enjoy and love Heaven as much as he loved this city.

Peter F. Vallone is former Speaker of the NYC Council

 

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Street Talk: What do you think Mayor Ed Koch’s legacy will be?


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Street Talk Ed Koch

BY ANTHONTY O’REILLY & ADJANI SHAH

I loved him; he was very straightforward. Overall his legacy will go on for a while…he knew where he stood.
Dennis DeBorger

I remember when he was mayor. He was a very good mayor, one of the best ones. The city was broke; I remember when he bought us out of that.
Elias Hernandez

He’s the best mayor we ever had in my time. He stood up to anybody and everybody; he’d tell you what he felt. He did what was best for New York.
Richard Murphy


He was honest. He said everything that had to be said and said it the
way it was. He wasn’t political in that sense.
Claire Pipolo

He had warmth toward people. He had a great sense of humor and he was
loved by the people. One of the greatest mayors of all time.
Anne Pipolo

He seemed like a pretty good guy; he helped the city in a financial crisis.
Joost Burgers

I thought he was terrific; he was full of life. His enthusiasm impacted how we viewed the city.
Joan Rosenberg

He was the quintessential New Yorker; he loved being the mayor. He was direct and honest and he was one of our greatest mayors.
Fred Warshaw

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Tuesday: Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers in the afternoon. High of 86. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%.Tuesday Night: Overcast with thunderstorms and rain showers. Low of 73. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 60% with rainfall amounts near 0.5 in. possible.

EVENT of the DAY: Live at the Gantries with Christel Rice

Traditional Irish flute player and Philadelphia native Christel Rice has created a sensational and unique style with her music. She studied with the late Michael Rafferty of Ballinakill, Ireland where she learned the regional style of flute playing. Come see her preform for free tonight at Gantry Plaza State Park. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Glendale property owner in talks to lease vacant Cooper Ave. land to local nonprofit for a homeless shelter

A Glendale property owner is mulling a plan to turn a former factory into a shelter for the homeless, though community leaders have vowed to fight it. Read more: New York Daily News 

Vallone urges emergency lanes on Queens Boulevard

Forget bike lanes and pedestrian plazas: It’s time to accommodate emergency responders navigating Queens’ deadliest road, a lawmaker says. Read more: New York Post

Congressional Candidate Meng comments on her father’s bribe charges

As Democratic congressional candidate Grace Meng picked up the endorsement of former Mayor Ed Koch at City Hall on Monday, she spoke publicly for the first time about her father’s arrest on wire fraud charges. Read more: NY1

Judge who accused cop of assault says Queens DA is whitewashing probe

The Queens judge who accused a cop of striking him in the throat with a military-style chop says the District Attorney’s probe appears to be a sham. Read more: New York Daily News 

DOE finds almost 70 percent of city students live in poor households

At Hillcrest High School in Jamaica, Queens, 65 percent of the students live in households that earn under $30,000. That is double the figure of just three years ago. While Hillcrest saw one of the biggest jumps, student poverty has increased citywide. Read more: NY1

Bratton makes rounds

Former New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton is signaling his interest in succeeding Commissioner Raymond Kelly, holding private meetings with potential mayoral candidates during which he’s discussing public-safety strategies and his desire to return to service. Read more: Wall Street Journal 

Veteran officer, gunman die in Texas shootout

A routine serving of an eviction notice to a man living near the Texas A&M University campus turned deadly for Brazos County Constable Brian Bachmann when the resident opened fire on him, leading to the death of the law enforcement officer and another man before the gunman was killed. Read more: AP