Primetime Interviews: Chief Ronnie Murchinson, President Of Rockaway Volunteer Ambulance Corps

Welcome.

Primetime Interviews recently met with Chief Ronnie Murchinson President of the Rockaway Volunteer Ambulance Corps.

The Chief speaks about how the Rockaway Volunteer Ambulance Corps will serve the Rockaway community. Chief Murchinson noted the need for more ambulances and better response times on the peninsula.

Chief Murchinson has 10 years experience as a Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), and  currently has 40 volunteers ready to serve the Rockaways as Emergency Medical Technicians.

Here are few topics discussed in the audio below.

  • The need for better response times
  • Needs for the Rockaway Volunteer Ambulance Corps
  • Services the organization will provide to the Rockaways
  • Events and upcoming workshops
  • Donations

Enjoy the show.

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Chief Murchinson (Right) along with City Controller Scott Stringer at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Assemblyman Goldfeder Proposes Aqueduct Restructuring to Include Local Community Voice

Under proposal, new governing board to include representatives from Ozone Park; Assemblyman touts plan as way to improve historic Aqueduct Racetrack

 

Ozone Park, Queens – A year after American Pharoah’s successful Triple Crown run thrilled fans and brought horse racing to new heights across New York State, Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D – Ozone Park) is among the first out of the gate to support a new restructuring plan to revitalize the New York Racing Association (NYRA). Goldfeder joined colleagues representing other race tracks in sending a letter to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo asking him to support a proposal that would transition NYRA to private, not-for-profit status and create a new Board of Directors that will include host community representatives from Queens and other respective track communities.

“NYRA has really hit its stride in bringing new levels of popularity and profitability to horse racing across New York State,” said Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder. “Our proposed restructuring plan will help put the state’s racetracks on an equal footing with programs across the country and give them a real run for their money. Most importantly, it will give a voice to communities around Aqueduct Racetrack and ensure the continued success of this great sports facility.”

 

In a letter to Governor Cuomo, Assemblyman Goldfeder presented the outline of a new governing structure for NYRA under a proposed return to private, not-for-profit status. The letter details the composition of a new 15-member Board of Directors that will include representatives from the state Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, state Breeders Association, and an equine veterinarian. The board will also include the NYRA C.E.O. and 3-at large members nominated by the board.

 

Most notably, the new board outlined by Goldfeder and fellow legislators will include two host community representatives each from Ozone Park, Elmont and Saratoga Springs, which are home to the state’s three premier racetracks: Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga, respectively. Under the plan, the six members would be appointed by the Mayor or Supervisor of the host community. The plan also proposes the creation of Community Advisory Boards (CABs) for each host community. NYRA officials would regularly meet with the CABs to review and take comments on policies and programs impacting the local communities.

Goldfeder’s letter comes shortly after NYRA voted in favor of the restructuring plan during its full board meeting on April 12th. If approved by the legislature and the Governor, the plan would return NYRA to private status for the first time since it was placed under state control in 2012. In the years since, the organization has experience consistent explosive growth, aided in part by the surge in popularity surrounding the 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, who drew record crowds to Belmont Park and Saratoga. According to a media release following the meeting, NYRA has seen back-to-back profitable years in 2014-15, with $1.7 million in profits in 2014 and $3.5 million in 2015, a first since its 2006 bankruptcy.

In the Assemblyman’s Queens district, Aqueduct Racetrack has had its share of the recent success. NYRA reported that during the 2016 winter meet, the track’s average daily handle, or mutual stake wagers, were up $831,590, while its total handle had increased $54.5 million year-over-year. Additionally, Goldfeder recently announced that the Resorts World Casino, located on the track grounds, is poised to receive 1,000 video lottery terminals as part of a state budget deal with Nassau County. A portion of the revenues generated by the addition would fund maintenance work at the racetrack. For Goldfeder, the increased revenue and the proposed NYRA restructuring are steps towards ensuring the historic track’s long-term viability.

“For years, NYRA, Aqueduct Racetrack and Resort World have put their money on Queens and brought prestige and economic opportunity to our families and the community as a whole. It’s time we put a leadership structure in place that will continue the current success and make sure our community is represented,” concluded Goldfeder.

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Ozone Park, Queens – Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (center) holds a 2014 press conference calling for greater funding for Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens. The Assemblyman is joining colleagues in asking Governor Cuomo to support a proposal that would transition the New York Racing Association to private, not-for-profit status and create a new Board of Directors that will include host community representatives from Queens and other respective track communities.

When Are We Going to Get Real Work Done in Rockaway?

I’ve asked myself this question on many occasions and wondered if we’ll ever to get the goods and services that we need. Sadly, my answer is always no. Why? I’ve noticed a constant pattern regarding how business is conducted in Rockaway, economically, politically and socially. Let me give you a few examples.

The Rockaway Ferry – Many residents and activist have been vigorously fighting over this issue and continue to do so. They attend meeting after meeting to express their concerns and present recommendations to the Economic Development Corporation (EDC). Oftentimes, the EDC reps respond by saying, “We are making note of your concerns and we’ll submit them to our team for discussion”. Or better yet, the agency will say something like, “We have no answers or ‘specifics’ at this time”.

Much to my surprise, typical response of community residents has always been complete silence. We let them get away with it! Nobody holds them accountable! We all know what they’re telling us is total nonsense, and we don’t have to be lawyers or politicians to figure that out.

Anyway, to further illustrate my point, NY1 just issued a report on how over 1500 supporters signed a petition that was created to name the ferry landing after a community activist/photographer named Laura Deckelman. This is amazing! Don’t get me wrong. I’m not attacking the effort. In fact, I signed in support of the measure as well.

Now, let’s compare this to what people have been fighting about regarding the ferry. People still want a shuttle bus service from and to the ferry landing from all areas of Rockaway. This was mentioned to EDC several times. No response has been issued by the EDC. People also want a Metrocard transfer from the ferry to a train or bus. Again, no solutions have been introduced. Why? In my humble opinion, we don’t fight hard enough.

‘STOP’ the BS! – Here’s another example. A petition was also created by a local resident in effort to have a stop sign placed in a school zone. The petition was launched after a three-car accident occurred on the block of Nelson Street and Dinsmore Avenue. You can scroll through previous news posts on this site to read the story and view photos of the accident scene.

The photos clearly pinpoint the site of the accident and where the schools are located. You would think this petition would get the same amount of signatures as the one for the naming of the ferry landing. Well, it didn’t. By the way, don’t give me that…”Oh, it wasn’t advertised enough”. It was brought to the attention of Community Board 14 and local elected officials. To date, nothing has been accomplished. I guess child safety is not as important as naming the ferry landing. Don’t take my word for it. Visit the following links for proof.

https://www.change.org/p/new-york-city-department-of-transportation-put-a-stop-sign-on-neilson-street-crossing-dinsmore-ave-far-rockaway?recruiter=269727236&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=autopublish&utm_term=des-lg-share_petition-reason_msg&fb_ref=Default

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/name-our-rockaway-ferry-dock-deckelmans-landing

Wait!  I’m not done!

Why aren’t the parks in Rockaway equipped with flood lights for night-time sports activities?  No, no, no. I’m not talking about one or two little flood lights at Bayswater Park. I mean something like this.

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Why don’t our parks look like this? This court is located in Harlem. If it can be done there, it can be done here. I think the youth of Rockaway would prefer summer nights at the parks instead of summer nights in jail cells. That’s something to think about. Enough said on this issue.

In closing, here’s a link that breaks down how Puerto Rico, a U.S. Commonwealth, provides funding for parks and recreation.

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https://www.nps.gov/uprr/cities/puerto_rico.html

“J-Man”

 

Weekly Update From Mayor’s Office Of Community Affairs

Weekly Overview

 

The Mayor has revamped how agencies coordinate homeless outreach and prevention, while more shelter inspections are helping to improve facility conditions…students and parents are giving the Mayor’s expanded after-school programs high marks…the City is combating anti-Semitism, reuniting families with missing loved ones, and moving ahead to protect the future of East New York…Gracie Mansion and the First Lady have started a book club…new ThriveNYC

ads are helping to jumpstart a conversation on mental health…and another dozen hospitals are getting involved in the City’s maternal depression screening effort.

 

The Details

 

Homeless Services Revamp – The Mayor has released a comprehensive plan to ensure homeless services are delivered as efficiently and effectively as possible with a focus on both preventing vulnerable New Yorkers from becoming homeless and transitioning individuals and families in shelter into permanent housing. The plan is the result of the 90-day review of homeless services ordered by the Mayor. It builds on the many reforms that were announced during the review period, including full implementation of the HOME-STAT street homeless outreach program and efforts to improve conditions and safety in shelters. The City will also implement an integrated management structure with both the Human Resources Administration and the Department of Homeless Services reporting to a single Commissioner of Social Services, current DSS/HRA Commissioner Steven Banks.

 

Shelter Inspections Increase, Violations Decrease – The Mayor has announced that the Shelter Repair Squad and shelter providers have cut outstanding building code violations at non-cluster shelters by 44% since the City’s inspection push in January.

 

After-School Program Grades – Mayor de Blasio and Department of Youth and Community Development Commissioner Bill Chong have released the findings of the Year One Evaluation of SONYC (School’s Out New York City), part of the City’s expanded middle school afterschool initiative. The study shows the Mayor’s historic $145 million 2014 investment worked to triple SONYC enrollment and dramatically increase education and recreation opportunities for New York City sixth through eighth graders. Ninety-eight percent of parents surveyed reported their sons and daughters like coming to the program, and nearly all of the families surveyed said they would recommend SONYC to others.

 

New York City Missing Persons Day – The Office of Chief Medical Examiner hosted the second New York City Missing Persons Day, aimed at connecting families with resources to help find and identify their missing loved ones. Dozens of families received scientific, investigative, and emotional support services during a now annual event credited with helping to identify seven missing persons throughout the New York metro area since its launch in November 2014.

 

Gracie Mansion Book Club – The Gracie Mansion Conservancy has launched the Gracie Book Club, a collaborative effort between First Lady Chirlane McCray and renowned New York City authors to foster conversation on a curated selection of literary works. First Lady McCray and three Gracie Book Club moderators – authors James Hannaham, Jacqueline Woodson and A.M. Homes – will select six books to read and discuss with fellow New Yorkers over the next year. The theme of this season of the Gracie Book Club is “Envisioning Distant Neighbors,” which aims to open dialogue on New York City’s diversity and rich immigrant community.

 

ThriveNYC Ad Campaign – First Lady Chirlane McCray announced the launch of “Today I Thrive,” a comprehensive ThriveNYC campaign to raise awareness among New Yorkers about the prevalence and treatment of mental health issues. The ads aim to open the conversation about a problem affecting one in five New Yorkers. Promoting the notion that mental health issues do not define those who suffer from them, and inviting New Yorkers to talk openly about mental health issues, the campaign seeks to destigmatize mental health issues by reframing the way people think and talk about them.

 

More Hospitals Screening for Maternal Depression – More women will now have better access to maternal depression screenings as 12 hospitals are joining ThriveNYC’s initiative to screen and treat all pregnant women and new mothers for depression. Joining Maimonides Medical Center and 11 NYC Health + Hospitals locations announced in November are Flushing Hospital Medical Center; Northwell – Forest Hills Hospital; Northwell Long Island Jewish; Northwell Zucker Hillside Hospital; NYU Langone Medical Center; Jamaica Hospital Medical Center; Montefiore Medical Center; The Mount Sinai Hospital; Mount Sinai Beth Israel Petrie; Mount Sinai West, formerly Mt. Sinai Roosevelt; New York Methodist Hospital; and St. John’s Episcopal Hospital.

Marine Parkway Bridge closed for all traffic Thursday

Friday, April 22, 2016
Contact: MTA Press Office
(212) 878-7440
Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge Closed To All Traffic
Thursday morning, April 28
Thursday
, 1 AM to 2 AM
The Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge will be fully closed to traffic during the early
morning hours on Thursday, April 28 for maintenance work on the bridge lift span.
The closure will take place on Thursday, April 28
th
from 1:00 a.m. through 2:00 a.m. for necessary
maintenance. All traffic will be detoured to the Cross Bay Veterans Memorial Bridge during this
time.
Electronic signs will be placed along the Belt Parkway and Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn and along
Rockaway Point Boulevard and Beach Channel Drive in the Rockaways, notifying motorists to use
the Cross Bay Veterans Bridge.
Customers are urged to sign up for MTA e-mail/text alerts or to check the Service Status box at
http://www.mta.info for the latest information on closures and planned work at MTA’s seven bridges and

Need to find your local poll site?

This link below will provide all the information you need for primary day tomorrow 4/19/2016.

Directions

  1. Click this link: http://nyc.pollsitelocator.com/search
  2. Enter the home address of where you live. If you are doing this for friend, type your friend’s address in. Capture
  3. After you enter your address it is important that you look at the address and location and write it down. What ever address comes up, that’s your polling station.Capture.PNG 2
  4. You are not done! Take a look at this before you exit. It is Important to know what district you live in and who is running for your district. Capture.PNG 4
  5. Last, check the ballot to see who is running for what. Prepare who you are going to vote for before you go. That way no one can persuade you otherwise.Capture.PNG 3

Weekly Update From The Mayors Office

Weekly Overview

 

HOME-STAT is ramping up…universal pre-K got a national endorsement…veterans will now have a City department to coordinate support…the First Lady threw a baby shower on Staten Island…and  Paul Krugmanweighed in on the Mayor’s recent affordable housing reforms. Shootings hit an all-time low last quarter…the NYPD is going after dangerous dirt bikes and expanding ShotSpotter…and the Mayor, courts and NYPD are using new tools to reduce unnecessary warrants and  better deploy resources.

 

The Details

 

HOME-STAT Progress – More than 500 workers are helping homeless New Yorkers get off the streets and into safe shelters using an array of services offered by the now fully staffed HOME-STAT initiative. The Mayor also announced that the City will be adding three new homeless counts to the City’s annual census efforts, designed to improve City agencies’ ability to transition those living on the streets into shelter and permanent housing. Overseeing the implementation of HOME-STAT will be Dr. Michael Jacobson, who previously served as Commissioner to three City agencies, as well as President of the Vera Institute of Justice.

 

Department of Veterans’ Services – Mayor de Blasio has announced the creation of the Department of Veterans’ Services. Dedicated to serving the City’s veterans and their families, the Department and its Commissioner, Retired Army Brigadier General Loree Sutton, will work to house homeless veterans, improve the physical and mental health of veterans and their families, expand education and career opportunities for veterans, and make more efficient the City’s ability to connect veterans and their families to benefits and care.

 

First Lady “Baby Showers” – As part of the City’s expanded commitment to early childhood development, NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray and Deputy Mayor Richard Buery are hosting a series of “baby showers” for expecting and new parents and caregivers. The events are one-stop shops for resources that busy parents need to set their children on the path to success. The baby showers are organized by the NYC Children’s Cabinet, which consists of 24 City agencies and Mayoral offices working together to advance the Mayor’s commitment to increasing child safety and wellbeing in high-need communities.

 

Warrant Reform – Mayor de Blasio, the State’s chief judge and NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton have developed new tools aimed at simplifying the summons process and reducing failure-to-appear warrants that often needlessly consume vital court and police resources. The new initiative includes a redesigned summons form, court date reminders sent via text message, and more flexible scheduling of appearance dates.

 

Assemblyman Goldfeder on Proposed NYC Water Rate Increase

Rockaway Beach, Queens – It’s important that we secure funding to maintain the infrastructure for our water system, while not wringing our families dry in the process. By proposing the lowest water rate increase in sixteen years and freezing minimum usage charges, the city has done just that. I applaud the Water Board and the Department of Environmental Protection for committing to sensible rate increases that will ensure all New York families continue to have affordable, reliable utilities for years to come.

 

Goldfeder, Ulrich to Sponsor Rain Barrel Giveaway in Broad Channel

Elected officials to host April 17th event at Broad Channel American Legion Hall offering free Department of Environmental Protection rain barrels to area homeowners; advance registration at www.FreeRainBarrelEvent.com

 Event part of city-wide green infrastructure initiative launched in 2008 to reduce water waste, save homeowners money on water bills; comes in wake of recent water rate hike 

 Broad Channel, Queens – As rising water rates continue to strain the budgets of middle class families in Queens, New York State Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D – Broad Channel) and city Councilman Eric Ulrich (R – Broad Channel) are sponsoring an event to provide homeowners with free rain barrels to help reduce home water bills and encourage water conservation. Assemblyman Goldfeder and Councilman Ulrich are urging homeowners to reserve their free barrels online ahead of the April 17th event, which is co-sponsored by the city Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

“Rain barrels are a great way for families to reduce their water usage. Not only does this translate into real savings on monthly water bills, it also helps protect our sewer system and reduce street flooding. I’m pleased to partner with Councilman Ulrich and the Department of Environmental Protection in hosting this giveaway. I encourage everyone to stop by and take advantage,” said Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder. 

 “These rain barrels will help Broad Channel homeowners save on their water bills while protecting the environment and easing street flooding,” said Councilman Eric Ulrich. “I’m pleased to sponsor this giveaway with the Department of Environmental Protection and Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder.”

On Sunday, April 17th, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Assemblyman Goldfeder and Councilman Ulrich will hold a rain barrel giveaway together with DEP at the Broad Channel American Legion Hall, located at 209 Cross Bay Boulevard. The giveaway is part of a DEP citywide program started in 2008 to distribute 60-gallon water barrels free of charge to homeowners.

According to the DEP website, the barrels can be used to capture and manage water runoff during rain storms. This can help prevent the city’s sewer system from being overwhelmed by heavy rains, which leads to street flooding and pollution. The program also helps homeowners reduce costs on their water and sewer usage bills by capturing rain water for use in gardens and yards, or for washing cars.

Both Goldfeder and Ulrich have each hosted the rain barrel giveaways in years past. This weekend’s event comes as the city Water Board is considering another increase to water usage fees charged to homeowners. Last summer, the board raised rates by 2.97%, which DEP reported would go towards capital and operating expenses for the city’s water system. The city has raised water rates every year since 1995, according to the Water Board website.

At Sunday’s event, approximately 200 rain barrels will be provided. In order to claim a barrel, homeowners are required to pre-register by visiting www.FreeRainBarrelEvent.com. Anyone with questions regarding the event is encouraged to contact either Assemblyman Goldfeder’s office at (718) 945-9550 or Councilman Ulrich’s office at (718) 738-1083.

Broad Channel, Queens – As rising water rates continue to strain the budgets of middle class families in Queens, New York State Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (left) and city Councilman Eric Ulrich (right) are teaming up with the Department of Environmental Protection to sponsor a rain barrel giveaway in Broad Channel this weekend.