Michael Gianaris's News items

Sunnyside Merchants Urge DOT To Rethink Parking Rules

Senator Gianaris spoke to NY1 on the need to change parking regulations in Sunnyside to better serve local businesses and residents.

Watch the video here.

August 18, 2011
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Cuomo Signs Gianaris-Simotas Bill

Queens Gazette wrote about joint-legislation, sponsored by Senator Gianaris and Assemblymember Simotas, that Governor Cuomo signed into law. The bill further protects law enforcement personnel during investigations.

State Senator Michael Gianaris and Assemblymember Aravella Simotas announced that Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed a bill they sponsored cracking down on criminals who attempt to impede felony investigations through the use or installation of explosive devices and other hazardous materials.

August 17, 2011
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New York’s Energy Policy Lacks Leadership, Experts Say

City Hall News hosted an energy panel to discuss New York State's energy future. Senator Gianaris was invited to participate in the panel since his Senate district is home to more than 60% of New York City's power generating plants.

[...]

Moving forward will require a range of new initiatives, panelists said – including conservation measures such as retrofitting buildings to be more efficient, and installing smart meters to let electric customers monitor and control their power use more closely.

“We have to balance all of these resources,” said Sergej Mahnovski, senior advisor and director of the Office of Energy Policy and Infrastructure at the city Department of Environmental Protection. “There is no magic bullet, so we have to be careful.”

August 16, 2011
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Sunnyside leaders want city to reconsider parking rules

Queens Times Ledger wrote about the need for revised parking regulations in Sunnyside, which would alleviate much of the congestion and make it easier for residents to travel through their neighborhood streets.

Sunnyside business owners and western Queens officials want the city Department of Transportation to change the parking rules along Queens Boulevard, saying the rules benefit commuters at the expense of local businesses.

Ciaran Staunton, who opened the pub and coffee shop Molly Blooms at Queens Boulevard near 43rd Street in Sunnyside in March, said his morning business has been hindered because of a no-standing rule on the boulevard from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. between 39th and 49th streets Monday through Friday.

August 15, 2011
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Gianaris Bed Bug Legislation Signed Into Law

Queens Gazette wrote about Senator Gianaris' bed bug legislation that was signed into law by Governor Cuomo.State

August 15, 2011
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Electeds Join Together To Keep Grand Station P.O. Open

Closing the Grand Station Post Office would leave community members, many of whom are seniors and immigrants, at a disadvantage. Queens Gazette wrote about the rally in which Senator Gianaris participated as well as the letter he sent along with fellow local elected officials.

Astoria’s four legislative representatives have joined together in the effort to convince the United States Postal Service (USPS) to keep the Grand Station post office in Astoria open for business.

August 15, 2011
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Honoring Gloria D'Amico

Queens Courier wrote about Senator Gianaris' participation in the dedication ceremony of a new Astoria senior residence to the late Honorable Gloria D’Amico.

On July 3, the Vestry of the Board of St. Georges Church in Astoria, along with the owners of D&F Development Group, dedicated the newly-built Senior Residence in honor of the Honorable Gloria D’Amico, late Queens County Clerk.

Those who spoke at the ceremony included State Senator Michael Gianaris; Assemblymember Aravella Simotas; former State Senator George Onorato; Father Juan Quevedo-Bosch of Church of the Redeemer; Mother Karen of St. Georges Church; Leonard D’Amico and Peter Florey of D&F Development; and Amanda D’Amico, Gloria’s granddaughter.

July 29, 2011
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The Hon. Gloria D’Amico Senior Residence Dedicated

Queens Gazette wrote about my participation in the dedication ceremony of a new Astoria senior center to the late Honorable Gloria D’Amico.

July 27, 2011
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Senators DeFrancisco, Gianaris to debate redistricting on Wednesday

‎Syracuse Post-Standard wrote about the joint-interview/debate Senator Gianaris and Senator DeFrancisco will participate in this afternoon on The Jim Reith Show.

Syracuse -- Two New York Senators are scheduled to talk about legislative redistricting Wednesday on The Jim Reith Show on WSYR radio.

Sen. John DeFrancisco, R-Syracuse, has been critical of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposal to create an independent commission to redraw state and congressional political boundaries, questioning whether such a commission could be independent of political influences.

July 27, 2011
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A debate in Syracuse

Senator Gianaris has challenged Senator DeFrancisco to a debate on redistricting to take place live on WSYR's The Jim Reith Show. Senator Gianaris is hoping for an open, honest debate on the issue. Capitol Confidential wrote about the challenge:

This should be lively: it looks like Democratic Sen. Mike Gianaris of Queens and Syracuse Republican John DeFrancisco will debate redistricting with Syracuse talk show host Jim Reith on Newsradio 570 in the near future.

Here is the interchange of letters today, triggered by Gianaris’s interview last night on Reith’s radio show, which prompted DeFrancisco to call in.

Read the full post here.

July 25, 2011
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Independence is key in state redistricting

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle editorialized the importance of creating an independent redistricting commisssion so that district lines will be redrawn in a nonpartisan fashion.

For what it's worth, the New York Legislature's traveling committee on redistricting was in Rochester this week to gather public input on redrawing boundary lines for state legislative and congressional districts.

Though the four-member panel is bipartisan, includes two citizens, and is said to be committed to transparency, it was hard to take seriously. Its members, after all, were doing work that should be done by a panel independent of the legislative process.

July 25, 2011
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Queens Boulevard merchants ask city to ease parking regulations so street becomes destination

The Daily News wrote about my efforts to enhance parking regulations on Queens Boulevard in Long Island City so that they better serve Queens residents and business owners rather than people travelling through Queens.

Sunnyside merchants are urging the city to change parking rules on Queens Blvd. so that it becomes a shopping destination instead of a thoroughfare for out-of-borough drivers.

Officials and business owners are asking the city to eliminate the current no-parking rule between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m.

They also want the municipal parking lots under the 7-train tracks to be reduced from 12-hour spots to four-hour spots to discourage commuters from hogging spaces.

July 21, 2011
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Pols seek DOT’s help on parking

Queens Chronicle wrote about the letter I sent with Assemblymember Aravella Simotas requesting more parking spaces and increased traffic safety measures in Long Island City.

If you live or park on 14th Street between 34th Avenue and 33rd Road in Long Island City, relief from a lack of parking spots and an excess of litter may be on its way.

In a letter dated June 27 to Department of Transportation Queens Commissioner Maura McCarthy, state Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) and Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria) requested the establishment of angled parking spaces and the implementation of alternate-side parking on 14th Street.

July 18, 2011
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Trees are coming to Sunnyside/Woodside

Sunnyside Post wrote about Senator Gianaris' continued work to get more trees planted in Sunnyside and Woodside. It is expected that hundreds of trees will be planted in the area within the next two years, thanks to the help of local leaders.

Hundreds of trees will be planted in Sunnyside and Woodside within the next two years, according to the neighborhood’s political leaders.

State Sen. Mike Gianaris, who wrote a letter to Mayor Michael Bloomberg in April insisting that more trees be planted on the south side of Queens Blvd, said that the first wave of tree planting is likely to begin in October.

July 18, 2011
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Annual Tour De Queens

Queens Gazette wrote about Senator Gianaris' participation in the Tour de Queens.

A record number of people biked through Eastern and Southern Queens on July 10 as part of the Fourth Annual Tour de Queens. Around 2,000 bicyclists were joined by New York Mets mascot Mr. Met, state Senator Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) and Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson for the event.

“Bicycling is truly a fiveborough phenomenon,” Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives Paul Steely White said. “Thousands of people proved that in Queens yesterday as they rolled through 20 miles of New York’s largest borough for the fourth year in a row.”

July 13, 2011
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Inmates key in redistricting issue

There is a cloud over the entire redistricting process. Albany Times Union wrote about LATFOR's continued use of prison-based gerrymandering, despite a 2010 law making it illegal.

ALBANY -- Good-government and civil rights groups charge New York's commission on legislative redistricting will break a 2010 law if it counts inmates where they are jailed.

The legislative commission, known as LATFOR, held its first meeting last week in Albany and announced it will for now ignore a 2010 law -- passed when Democrats controlled the Senate, Assembly and Executive Mansion -- that requires inmates be counted at their last known address.

July 12, 2011
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Census gives NY office miles and miles of data

Queens Chronicle wrote about how census offices in several other states will be closed, making New York's office responsible for collecting and organizing even more data.

How many infants live in Puerto Rico? Workers at the New York regional office of the U.S. Census Bureau will soon be responsible for keeping tabs on the island and many more states, according to the bureau.

July 11, 2011
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Gov. Cuomo must stand firm against Legislature's moves toward the same old partisan redistricting

The Daily News editorialized on the need for passage of an independent, nonpartisan redistrcting panel.

Defying one of Gov. Cuomo's key goals for reforming Albany, the Legislature is gearing up to shamelessly gerrymander election districts so as to protect incumbents and preserve power.

In his winning campaign, Cuomo rightly backed nonpartisan redistricting as critical to breaking the bossism that cows individual lawmakers and makes them less accountable to voters.

But now, as the time approaches for drawing the lines based on the results of the 2010 census, the Legislature has set up a commission that is steamrolling toward doing the job its way.

July 11, 2011
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Cyclists Undertake Annual "Tour De Queens"

Senator Gianaris attended the "Tour de Queens" bike race and talked to NY1 about the importance of and fun in biking around New York City.

Cyclists took to the streets of the city's largest borough Sunday for the fourth annual "Tour de Queens."

Organizers said more than 2,000 people showed up for the 20-mile ride that started and finished in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park and took riders through the eastern and northern parts of the borough.

Advocacy group Transportation Alternatives organized the event, and spokesman Michael Murphy said today's enthusiasm shows biking is truly a five-borough phenomenon.

July 11, 2011
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Security gates get makeover to fight graffiti

Queens Courier wrote about the roll down gates press conference Senator Gianaris participated in.

New York City storefronts are getting a makeover.

July 6, 2011
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