Michael Gianaris's News items

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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114th Precinct Cops Honored, Hidden Auto Compartments Outlawed

Queens Gazette wrote about the passage of Senator Gianaris' concealed vehicular compartment legislation, sponsored in the Assembly by Aravella Simotas. Senator Gianaris and Assemblymember Simotas announced the bill's passage at the 114th Precinct Community Council meeting.

Police Officers Peter Predescu and Mubashir Tohfafarosh were honored as Cops of the Month at the June 28 meeting of the 114th Precinct Community Council.

July 6, 2011
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Wager Honored in Street Co-Naming

Queens Gazette wrote an article about the event co-naming part of Steinway Street the "Julie Wager Way." Senator Gianaris, a friend and supporter of Julie Wager, spoke at the event. 

Members of Julie Wager’s family along with Councilmember Peter F. Vallone Jr., state Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Aravella Simotas, Congressmember Carolyn Maloney and Central Astoria Local Development Coalition President George Stamatiades, gathered together amid a friendly crowd on June 30 for the co-naming of the corner of Steinway Street and Broadway, Julie Wager Way.

Family, friends and local officials exchanged stories of their lost friend.

July 6, 2011
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The Rockets Red Glare

Queens Gazette wrote about the Astoria Independence Day celebration and Senator Gianaris' participation in the festive evening.

The skies above the East River as seen from Astoria Park lit up as more than 20,000 people gathered in awe on June 30 to celebrate America’s birthday. The fireworks, provided by the Grucci Family, went off at 9:15 p.m., lighting up the skies between the Hell Gate Bridge and Robert F. Kennedy Triborough Bridge.

The fireworks display came after the Astoria Symphony Orchestra performed in front of a crowd on the Astoria Park Lawn. The lawn was filled with people sitting and standing as children blew bubbles and played with glow-in-the-dark swords sold by vendors.

July 6, 2011
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Watchdog Groups Call For Independent Redistricting

Politics on the Hudson wrote about the need for the Legislature to return to session to approve independent redistricting, in light of the first public meeting of the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR).

Remember independent redistricting?

After Gov. Andrew Cuomo scored legislative victories last month, there’s one glaring piece of unfinished piece: establishing an independent panel to draw district lines in 2012. Cuomo wants it done, but Senate Republicans balked and they left town without considering it.

But the issue will take center stage today when the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR) holds its first public meeting this morning in Albany.

July 6, 2011
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