“I am thrilled the State Liquor Authority stood with the Long Island City community today when it voted against the Gypsy Rose liquor license application. This neighborhood is no place for a sex-based business, and today’s vote brings us one step closer to ensuring the wholesome, family-friendly environment in which an increasing number of people live and work. It is clear the SLA takes community input to heart and I commend the board for today’s decision.”
Queens, NY – Continuing their efforts to protect energy ratepayers, Senator Michael Gianaris and Council Member Peter F. Vallone, Jr. are pushing a federal judge to reject the proposed settlement for an illegal price-fixing case involving Morgan Stanley and two western Queens power plants that caused ratepayers to lose nearly $300 million in two years.
"Today, we honor the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. and are reminded of the power of perseverance and the importance of helping others. As a representative of one of the most diverse communities in the world, I am humbled by the ability of different peoples to live side-by-side and create a respectful, loving environment in which our children can grow up understanding the inherent nature of dignity for all. None of this would be possible without the sacrifices made by Martin Luther King, Jr. We are forever indebted to him."
"There has been much to celebrate in western Queens this holiday season, and I have enjoyed participating in all the wonderful traditions commemorated here. As we gather with friends and family during this festive time, I am proud of all that we have accomplished this year and look forward to continuing that work in the new year. I wish everyone a happy and safe holiday and hope that all are able to make merry this time of year.
Bill allows local businesses and non-profits to be safe-havens for crime victims
Queens, NY – Continuing his fight to ensure safety in the neighborhood, Senator Michael Gianaris today announced he has introduced new legislation expanding New York’s “Good Samaritan” laws. The legislation would protect local businesses and non-profits offering themselves as safe havens from being held liable for damages or injuries that may have occurred while helping a victim.
Senator Gianaris held a press conference at Dazies, a restaurant owned by a small business owner in Sunnyside, to formally announce the legislation.
"I welcome the selection of Cornell University to create a state-of-the-art Applied Sciences Campus on Roosevelt Island. This facility will create thousands of new jobs and its location will advance western Queens' growing reputation as a hub of job growth, technology and entrepreneurship. As we continue to face difficult financial times, it is initiatives like this one that incentivize new businesses to establish themselves here and fuel economic development."
“Despite the unfortunate economic climate we are facing, there remains much to celebrate in western Queens this Thanksgiving. Our community continues to flourish as a haven for families and businesses alike, with new residences and businesses sprouting by the day. As we pause to commemorate all for which we are thankful, I am proud of the work we have done together to make our community such a wonderful place in which to live and work. Happy Thanksgiving!”
Queens, NY – Due to the efforts of Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Cathy Nolan, and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer, sound abatement equipment for the 7 train ventilator plant in Hunter’s Point has successfully been installed. The elected officials’ secured funding for the equipment last year after complaints of ear-splitting sounds coming from the MTA East River ventilator, located at 50th Avenue between 5th Street and Center Street.
NYC Transit President, Thomas Prendergast, sent a letter to the three elected officials in October indicating that the equipment’s installation was complete and area noise levels reduced.
Local leaders protest recent area crimes and introduce initiatives to make the neighborhood safer.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Aravella Simotas and Council Member Peter Vallone, Jr. today held an anti-crime rally to protest the concentrated number of criminal activities that have occurred in the neighborhood recently. The elected officials, as well as community leaders and activists, also announced new crime-fighting initiatives to increase safety in the neighborhood.
Queens, NY – “Today, we honor all of the brave individuals who put our nation’s safety before their own lives. Our veterans deserve thanks every single day for their love of this country and their sense of responsibility to protect us from danger. I salute New York’s veterans as well as veterans across the country for their dedication to ensuring our safety from those who wish to do us harm. Their service is admirable.”
Senator Gianaris continues to accept nominations for the New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame. Nominations can be made to email@example.com or by calling Senator Gianaris’ district office at 718-728-0960. Inductees will be announced early next year.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris is sponsoring the New York State Senate Thanksgiving Day Creative Celebration for western Queens elementary schools as part of this year’s holiday. Eligible students are invited to submit a piece of artwork, poem or one-page essay expressing why they are thankful on this Thanksgiving. The program is called “What Are You Thankful For?”and is offered to students in kindergarten through 6th grade.
“As Thanksgiving approaches, I encourage all our elementary school students to participate in this fun, reflective program,” Senator Gianaris said. “The program gives students the opportunity to be creative and convey thanks for their family, friends and community. I look forward to seeing all of the imaginative submissions.”
Queens, NY – As winter approaches, Senator Gianaris reminds western Queens residents of a federal program offering low income households assistance to pay their energy bills. The program, Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), particularly helps those households with the lowest incomes paying a high proportion of household income for energy.
“During these difficult economic times, energy costs are an increasing burden for all New Yorkers, particularly for those in need,” Senator Gianaris said. “Programs like LIHEAP are vital to many members of our community who struggle to keep warm during the cold winter months. I strongly encourage all who are eligible to see how this program can help their families.”
“For more than a decade, Greek-Americans have been without our place of worship in one of the most significant locations in this country. This long-awaited deal reminds the world of New York’s emphasis on religious freedom and the value of reconstruction as we continue to remember all we lost on September 11th. I look forward to celebrating the rebuilding of Saint Nicholas with my fellow Greek-Americans and all New Yorkers. I thank the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, Governor Cuomo and the Port Authority for their hard work to bring about today’s agreement.”
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris is pleased to welcome the installation of free Wi-Fi in Astoria Park, one of five New York City park locations offering free wireless service, provided by AT&T and the City of New York. The addition of this new digital network will allow western Queens residents to enjoy the outdoors while browsing the Internet without extra charges to their cell phone or cable bills.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Cathy Nolan and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer today held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the refurbished Vernon Boulevard Dog Run in Long Island City. The elected officials, along with Queens West Development Corporation (QWDC), New York State Department of Parks and DOG LIC, a local advocacy group, worked together since last year to secure funding for the much-needed renovations to the dog run and are pleased to finally announce the renewed run is open and ready for use.
Twice as many texting-while-driving tickets handed out this year than last year.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris praised the effectiveness of a recently enacted driving law, which has led to double the number of drivers ticketed for texting while driving in August 2011 than in August 2010.
The Distracted Driving Bill makes the use of portable devices while driving a primary offense. Previously, using these devices while behind the wheel was a secondary offense and police could only stop motorists if they were committing another, primary offense – such as speeding or running a red light.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Catherine Nolan and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer today announced that long-awaited renovations to the Vernon Boulevard Dog Run in Long Island City have begun. The elected officials, along with Queens West Development Corporation (QWDC), New York State Department of Parks and DOG LIC, a local advocacy group, have worked together since last year to make major improvements to the park.
Renovations to the park and dog run include:
• More than double space in dog run from 4,000 square feet to 10,000 square feet;
• Cleaned out, re-graded and leveled-off dog run with new dog-friendly gravel surface;
• New separate fenced-off areas for large and small dogs;
“September 11, 2001 is an experience that will remain engrained in our psyche forever. The emotional scars of that day will never leave us as we remember those who were lost, and my condolences continue to go out to their families and friends. May their memories be eternal.
While New York City will never be the same, it is gratifying to see the unity that developed among New Yorkers and the work that was done in the last decade to increase our preparedness and help prevent another attack.”
Reminds New Yorkers of the importance of voting in upcoming September 13 elections.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris has introduced four bills in the Senate that would strengthen the voting process and make ballot-casting more convenient. These measures would result in increased voter participation and a more efficient Board of Elections.
Senator Gianaris said, “The upcoming special elections remind us of the importance of voting. As we quickly approach 2012, it is vital that we make voting an accessible and convenient process in order to maximize turnout. Every ballot counts, and New Yorkers must be able to exercise this valuable right as easily as possible.”
The four bills amend New York State law in the following ways: