Michael Gianaris's News items

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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On a roll against graffiti with see-through gates

The Daily News quoted Senator Gianaris in a story on the new roll-down gates required for storefronts, an initiative led by Councilmember Vallone.

Solid, rolldown security gates around the city may become a thing of the past - but not overnight.

A new city law, sponsored by Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria), went into effect last Friday and will require that all new rolldown gates must provide at least 70% visibility through the storefront window.

But business owners who currently have solid metal gates will have until 2026 to replace those with the higher-visibility ones.

July 5, 2011
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Mayor, City Council reach budget deal

Queens Chronicle included Senator Gianaris' statements on the restoration of Ladder 128 in LIC as part of the New York City budget.

Seven weeks after detailing an executive budget fraught with some of the most severe cuts the city has ever seen, Mayor Bloomberg, joined by members of the City Council, announced last Friday night that they had reached an agreement on an on-time fiscal year 2012 plan that averts teacher layoffs and the closure of fire companies and senior centers.

June 30, 2011
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Wedding bells ring for gay New Yorkers

Queens Chronicle quoted Senator Gianaris on the historic passage of the Marriage Equality Act.

It is said that marriage marks the beginning of the rest of your life, and for gay and lesbian New Yorkers, Friday night was nothing less than a fresh start.

“We are now being treated as fully equal citizens,” said gay Councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights), touting the passage of state legislation legalizing same-sex marriage. “Having the option just makes us more whole as human beings, whether we choose to get married or not.”

In bars and in clubs, in homes and on the steps of City Hall, New Yorkers from all walks of life celebrated.

June 30, 2011
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Battle on vs. LIC strip club: Decision on liquor license has been postponed

The Daily News wrote a story on the liquor license application for a LIC strip club, which Senator Gianaris opposes. He is glad the decision has at least been postponed.

A decision on whether to recommend a liquor license for a proposed strip club in Long Island City has been postponed.

Owners of the club, called Gypsy Rose, pledged to Community Board 2 on Thursday to follow a strict set of guidelines to avoid problems at the site, which sits at the foot of the Queensboro Bridge.

Local politicians and residents have denounced the club, saying it feeds into the seedy image Long Island City is trying to shake.

State Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) has asked State Liquor Authority Chairman Dennis Rosen to reject the application.

June 27, 2011
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Strip club tries again for liquor license as Long Island City community voices opposition

The Daily News asked Senator Gianaris for his input on the attempted renewal of a liquor license for  a strip club located in Long Island City. The Senator vigorously opposes this application.

The owners of a planned Long Island City strip club are making their second bid for a liquor license, just months after their previous application was overwhelmingly rejected by local and state officials.

The firm, 21 Group Inc., plans to open a gentlemen's club called Gypsy Rose at 42-50 21st St. They will outline their plans tonight to members of Community Board 2, which will then vote on whether to support their application to the State Liquor Authority.

June 23, 2011
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$2.9 M Grant Announced To Serve NYC Schools

Queens Gazette quoted Senator Gianaris from the press release announcing of millions of dollars in funding for City Year New York. This initiative was led by Congresswoman Maloney, and Senator Gianaris is grateful for her hard work to make this happen.

June 22, 2011
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Plans to bring trees to Sunnyside-Woodside on track

Senator Gianaris is hosting a meeting with area leaders to determine where the trees he requested to be planted in Sunnyside and Woodside should be located. Sunnyside Post wrote about the upcoming meeting.

State Sen. Mike Gianaris is holding a meeting on Friday with Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and civic leaders to determine those areas of Sunnyside and Woodside where trees need to be planted.

The meeting comes after Gianaris sent a letter to Mayor Michael Bloomberg urging him to plant trees in the neighborhood arguing that there was a lack of trees in many parts of the area—particularly on the south side of Queens Blvd.

June 22, 2011
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Family Members Seek Justice For The Wrongfully Convicted

Senator Gianaris for years has been advocating for a "Peace Commission" to review the cases of potentially wrongfully convicted individuals in order to decrease the number of cases of wrongful conviction in New York.

Dozens of family members stood on the steps of City Hall Thursday, shouting the names of related prisoners that they say have been locked up for no reason.

"I know he is innocent, and that's what hurts," said Louis Holmes, father of a current inmate.

Family members and activists say Albany leaders need to form what they called an "Innocence Commission," a panel with subpoena powers to investigate the cases of inmates who claim they're not guilty and should be set free.

June 17, 2011
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Gianaris Applauds Increase In Film Production

Queens Gazette wrote about Senator Gianaris' prase for the increase in film productions planned for New York this year.

A record number of new television series are being scheduled to film in New York state this year due to the state Film Production Credit championed by state Senator Michael Gianaris. Eight new television series will be filmed in the state in 2011, creating more than 4,700 industry related jobs.

The Governor’s Office for Motion Picture and Television Development announced that the film tax credit lured 70 new projects to New York since January. These projects are expected to spend a total of more than $1 billion.

June 15, 2011
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MTA does right by western Queens?

Queens Chronicle wrote about my participate in the Court Square Station Complex ribbon-cutting ceremony.

It may not last long, but western Queens politicians this week are expressing satisfaction with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

First, the agency joined with Citigroup to open a long-completed internal transfer point at the Court Square station in Long Island City on Friday. Then, the MTA decided to lease long-vacant retail space at the Jackson Heights Transit Hub at Roosevelt Avenue and 74th Street on Monday.

Councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) had been asking the MTA to lease its vacant properties since 2009. He said it would help the community and enable the struggling agency to raise money.

June 13, 2011
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LIC subway station opens

Queens Times Ledger quoted Senator Gianaris on the opening of the Court Square Station Complex.

MTA officials and legislators cut the ribbon Friday on a project that could reduce some straphangers’ MetroCard costs by half.

Three stations located in the shadow of Long Island City’s 50-story Citigroup Building, at 1 Court Square, were combined into one in a recently completed $47.6 million project. The new station, known as Court Square, will allow commuters traveling on the No. 7, E, G or M subway lines to transfer without having to swipe their cards again.

June 9, 2011
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Queens United, Almost, for Marriage Equality

Senator Gianaris spoke to the Advocate about same-sex marriage following yesterday's rally advocationg for the passage of same-sex marriage.

A substantial contingent of elected officials, labor leaders, and other advocates hosted a press conference Wednesday to show support for marriage equality in Queens, N.Y., a borough represented by two undecided state senators key to passage of the legislation.

June 9, 2011
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MTA Cuts Ribbon At LIC Subway Station Complex

Queens Gazette wrote about Senator Gianaris' attendance at the Court Square Station Complex ribbon-cutting ceremony.

MTA officials were joined by community leaders on June 3 for a ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the expansion of Long Island City’s new Court Square Subway Station Complex. The completion of this project links the G line station at Long Island City-Court Square with the Court Square Station on the 7 line and the Court Square-23rd Street Station on the E and M lines.

June 8, 2011
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Gianaris Stands Up For Energy Consumers

Queens Gazette wrote about Senator Gianaris' participation in introducing an energy alternatives package of bills.

State Senator Michael Gianaris is continuing his efforts to increase energy affordability for consumers while enhancing energy efficiency and protecting the environment throughout the state. On May 25, Gianaris, along with various senate colleagues including fellow state Senator Jose Peralta unveiled a package of alternative energy bills aimed at making energy affordable.

June 8, 2011
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New Queens businesses band together to lure shoppers to Sunnyside

The Daily News wrote about how Sunnyside merchants have started a new initiative to make the neighborhood a more appealing place to shop, visit and hang out.

A new group focused on revitalizing Queens Blvd. in Sunnyside kicked off its agenda yesterday with some simple yet key goals - Shop local, buy local and free up some parking spaces.

"How can we entice you to shop more in your community?" Ciaran Staunton asked a large gathering of residents, elected officials and property owners at his pub Molly Blooms on hand to launch the Queens Blvd. Merchants Initiative.

"We have 200,000 people who pass here every day going to and from Manhattan," he pointed out. "How do we get them to stop?"

June 8, 2011
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Greece to Face Ecuador in Inaugural Soccer Match at Citi Field

The Epoch Times wrote about the June 7 Greece-Ecuador soccer match and the press conference announcing the match at Citi Field, which Senator Gianaris participated in.

Get out your vuvuzelas New York soccer fans, international soccer is right in your backyard! Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, will host its first-ever soccer match on Tuesday night at 8 p.m. The national teams of Ecuador and Greece will face off in what should be an electric atmosphere.

Both the Greek and Ecuadorian communities are well represented near Citi Field. Queens County houses a robust population of Ecuadorians, the largest of any county in the U.S. Astoria, Queens boasts the largest population of Greeks outside of Greece.

June 7, 2011
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