Michael Gianaris

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LATFOR React-o-Mat: outraged Senate Dems edition

Capitol Confidential posted an article that highlights the many issues resulting from the state Senate Republican's redistricting proposal, which Senator Gianaris feels should not be tolerated by the people of New York.

Because we’re expecting several of them, we’re posting a separate React-o-Mat to corral statements from Senate Democrats ticked off by the release of LATFOR’s maps.

From Sen. Mike Gianaris, in a phone interview with Jimmy:

“I spent over five years making the case for an independent redistricting, and in five years I did not accomplish as much for the cause as Senate Republican’s did today. It’s about as bad — partisan, political — as you could imagine.”

January 30, 2012
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Gianaris Compares Senate GOP To Tom DeLay

Capital Tonight posted a video that features Senator Gianaris speaking about the blatant politicized process by which the Senate Republicans have drawn new district maps.

Watch the video here

January 30, 2012
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State Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Dems into two

The New York Daily News article discusses the state Senate Republican's proposal for new districting lines that combines four Queens districts into two. Senator Gianaris believes that the Senate Republican's ploy further demonstrates why the redistricing process needs improvement.

The state Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Democrats into two — and one is held by the chair of the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee.

Michael Gianaris, whose position makes him a main architect of Democratic campaign strategy in the Senate, would face a reelection dogfight against a Latino incumbent, Jose Peralta, in a heavily Latino district, sources said.

January 30, 2012
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As goo-goos despair, a reform legislator says court-drawn lines are still the 'most likely outcome'

An editorial written by Capital discusses the looming release of LATFOR's redistricing lines and the possibility that Governor Cuomo will veto the redistricting proposal. According to Senator Gianaris, LATFOR's inability to propose district lines that are fair will likely necessitate court involvement.

This week, the lawmakers running the redistricting process are expected to reveal the lines they came up with. (A lawmaker told me they may release Assembly and Senate lines as soon as today, but not congressional ones.)

January 30, 2012
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SHADOW PLAY

City and State wrote an editorial that talks about the upcoming release of New York state's new lines for election districts. Senator Gianaris believes that LATFOR's redistricitng process is nothing more than a political power play.

It was one of the last of the group’s dozens of public hearings before drafting new lines for election districts. Dilan, representing the Senate Democratic Conference on the task force, was upset about a memo from a Senate Republican lawyer that advocated for a 63rd Senate seat. The memo had been placed on the LATFOR website late on a Friday, with no Democratic input.

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January 30, 2012
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Senator Gianaris speaks at new Egyptian Community Center

Senator Gianaris was honored to speak at the grand opening of the new Egyptian Community Center on Steinway Street.

January 29, 2012
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Senator Gianaris speaks at Bryant High School

Senator Gianaris speaking at Bryant High School in Long Island City about the Department of Education's plans for restructuring

January 26, 2012
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Senator Gianaris speaks at Mayor Bloomberg's press conference

Senator Gianaris speaking at Mayor Bloomberg's press conference celebrating the 100th episode of Gossip Girl and all the jobs the show has brought to LIC and the rest of New York City.

January 26, 2012
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Senator Gianaris speaks at Long Island City High School

Senator Gianaris speaking at Long Island City High School about the Department of Education's plans for restructuring

January 24, 2012
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Local pols reject Morgan Stanley price fixing settlement

The Queens Courier wrote an article about the Department of Justice's $4.8 million settlement with Morgan Stanley for their illegal pricing scheme, which cost ratepayers roughly $300 million. Senator Gianaris and other local politicians are pushing the Dept. of Justice to increase the fine, arguing that the current settlement is unacceptable and would allow Morgan Stanley to keep millions in profit.

Local elected officials are expending “energy” to ensure Morgan Stanley doesn’t get a quick “fix” to its illegal pricing ploy.

January 23, 2012
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Community Victorious Over Strip Club

An editorial by Queens Tribune talks about the State Liquor Authority's denial of the Gypsy Rose strip club's liquor license application, which was a favorable result for Long Island City community members. According to Senator Gianaris, the type of person and business that adult establishments tend to attract are not welcome in Long Island City.

The community spoke and its voice was heard by the State Liquor Authority, who denied the 21 Group Inc.’s application for a liquor license for the Gypsy Rose establishment in Long Island City during a hearing Jan. 18 in Manhattan.

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January 23, 2012
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A slap on the wrist for illegal millions?

The Queens Chronicle investigates the alleged prixe-fixing scheme employed by Morgan Stanley and KeySpan that overcharged New Yorkers for electrictity while garnering Morgan Stanley and KeySpan $21.6 million. Senator Gianaris believes that the Department of Justice's recommended fine of $4.8 million is inadequate.

A price-fixing scheme allegedly concocted by Morgan Stanley and KeySpan, and involving Astoria Generating Co., may have overcharged New Yorkers for electricity while garnering Morgan Stanley and KeySpan millions, according to published reports and two area politicians outraged at the scheme: Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Astoria) and state Sen. Mike Gianaris (D-Astoria).

January 20, 2012
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Just say no to gerrymandering

An editorial written by the Queens Chronicle highlights a 2012 New York Redistricting Project where students were able to propose ideas for state Senate maps and express their opinions on how political lines should be drawn in order to meet the needs of groups with similar interests. Senator Gianaris believes that this demonstrates how excellent redistricting proposals can be made in a short period of time.

And the winner is ... districts that are not gerrymandered.

January 20, 2012
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State Liquor Authority rejects Long Island City strip club’s bid for license

NY Daily News reports that the State Liquor Authority has rejected the Gypsy Rose gentlemen club's bid for a liquor license, following protests from Long Island City residents and community leaders. Senator Gianaris believes the decision was an important step in establishing the neighborhood as a wholesome, family friendly environment.

For the second time, the State Liquor Authority has rejected an application by the owners of a Long Island City strip club for a liquor license.

“I believe that there is sufficient good cause for us to deny this application,” Dennis Rosen, chairman of the authority, said Wednesday.

Community leaders who are opposed to the club, known as Gypsy Rose, have flooded the board in recent weeks with petitions and testimony.

January 20, 2012
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LIC employer Fresh Direct eyes N.J. move

The Times Ledger wrote an article that talks about Fresh Direct's potential move to New Jersey and New York's attempt to keep them in the city. Senator Gianaris agrees that it would be disappointing if the online grocer were to leave New York.

A Long Island City online grocery company has filed for a large tax incentive program in New Jersey, but New York state and city agencies are hoping that Fresh Direct stays — if not in Queens, then at least in the city.

“It would certainly be disappointing if they left,” said state Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria). “I think it’s important that the business climate in New York continues to be welcoming.”

January 20, 2012
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Elderly Passengers Upset About TSA’s Strip Search Denials

CBS posted a video with Senator Gianaris' comments on the TSA's response admitting some wrongdoing. 

Watch the video here.

January 20, 2012
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TSA regrets 'discomfort,' but says elderly fliers weren't strip-searched

CNN reports that although the TSA has altered their responses to the allegations that they wrongfully strip searched two elderly women travelling through John F. Kennedy Airport, they are standing by their statements that neither of the women were asked to remove any clothing. Senator Gianaris believes the TSA has failed in admitting to their misconduct and in making sure their procedures are welcoming to the flying public.  

January 20, 2012
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TSA apology? Two elderly women were screened improperly

The Los Angeles Times investigates the matter involving two elderly women who claim to have been strip searched while travelling through Kennedy Airport and the subsequent denial by the TSA that such strip searching actually occured. Senator Gianaris says that the letter he received from the TSA acknowledges standard procedures were violated but that it didn't go far enough in admitting the strip searches were done and in apologizing to the victims.

The Transportation Security Administration has offered a mea culpa, of sorts, for the screening of two elderly women who said they were partially strip-searched at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport in November.

January 20, 2012
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Fresh Direct Ponders Move

The Queens Gazette wrote an article that talks about New York City's push to keep the online grocer Fresh Direct from making a move to New Jersey. Senator Gianaris believes that it is crucial to remain welcoming to local businesses, like Fresh Direct, in order to keep jobs in our neighborhood.

Fresh Direct, an online grocer that delivers to residences and offices in the New York City metropolitan area and one of the largest employers in Long Island City and Queens as a whole, has become a prize in a bidding war between New York City and New Jersey. The business, which bowed in New York City in 2002, is rapidly expanding and expects to outgrow its Long Island City facility in a few years.

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January 20, 2012
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P.S. 234 Elementary School Gym Repaired

The Queens Gazette article announces that the P.S. 234 School Gym, which has been closed since September due to flood damage, was finally repaired as a result of the efforts made by parents and elected officials.

Following a joint effort by Councilmember Peter F. Vallone Jr. and state Senator Michael Gianaris, the gymnasium at the Astoria Elementary School, P.S. 234, which suffered substantial flood damage, has been repaired and is now in use.

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January 20, 2012
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