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VOL. 17 • NUMBER 48 • DECEMBER 6, 2018

PRIORITY JAIL See Story on Page 3

Cops Cuff Pair of Perps for Mailbox Fishing in Richmond Hill and Forest Hills Alvaro Martinez and Luis Velazquez allegedly stole mail from four different borough blue boxes including this one near the intersection of Lefferts Boulevard and Jamaica Avenue in Richmond Hill. Forum Photo by Michael V. Cusenza

THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 1


City Council to Hold Hearings on Amazon Deal

Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Queens Borough President

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz this week suggested that Amazon should help pay for the BrooklynQueens Connector as “a fair investment into its new home” in LIC.

By Michael V. Cusenza The City Council will hold a series of hearings over the next two months to gain some insight into the recent agreement between Amazon and NYC that will establish a new corporate headquarters for the e-commerce behemoth in Long Island City. The hearings, which have been scheduled for Dec. 12, a January date to be determined, and a February date to be determined, will feature City and State officials close to the polarizing pact. Reps for Amazon have been invited, though as of Wednesday afternoon, the company had not responded to the invitation. Last month, following a comprehensive, year-long selection process during which the company was courted by dozens of U.S. cities, Amazon, Mayor Bill de Blasio, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that Amazon had chosen The World’s Borough for its next base of operations. To bring HQ2 to LIC, the State offered Amazon a package of incentives totaling $1.705 billion, including $1.2 billion in tax credits through the Excelsior Jobs Program, which is directly tied to Amazon’s commitment to create 25,000 new jobs and no less than $2.3 billion investment over 10 years; as well as a $505 million capital grant that is directly tied to Amazon’s commitment to invest $3.6 billion and create up to 40,000 new jobs over 15 years. The mammoth deal has garnered plenty of opposition.

“We cannot support a giveaway of this magnitude, a process that circumvents community review through the use of a [general project plan] or the inevitable stress on the infrastructure of a community already stretched to its limits,” State Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) and City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) wrote in a joint statement. In response to questions about Amazon and Long Island City’s infrastructure needs, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz suggested that Amazon pay for the Brooklyn-Queens Connector streetcar service first unveiled by de Blasio in his 2016 State of the City address. The new transit line—the first city streetcar in more than 50 years—would stretch 16 miles from Astoria to Sunset Park in Brooklyn, linking together neighborhoods “long underserved” by public transit with some of the fastest-growing job hubs, Hizzoner noted. The price tag for the BQX is estimated at $2.5 billion. “A substantial and meaningful investment by Amazon that helps ensure the feasibility of BQX would be a fair investment into its new home, and a welcome opportunity for a good corporate neighbor to directly benefit the existing, impacted communities of Western Queens,” Katz said. “The company and the public sector must work together to make investments in necessary transit improvements that will support Queens residents.”

2 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP


Pol Pours $2M+ into District Street Repaving By Forum Staff City Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) has allocated $2.125 million for street resurfacing projects throughout the 32nd District slated for 2019. Ulrich, who joined City Department of Transportation Queens Borough Commissioner Nicole Garcia on Friday in Woodhaven to announce the funding, noted that he will collaborate with DOT and constituents to identify and repave the most problematic streets throughout the district. On Friday, Garcia and Ulrich gathered near the Woodhaven Bridge to showcase the new resurfacing work which was completed earlier this month. The area surrounding bridge, located on Woodhaven Boulevard between 91st and 97th avenues, had not been repaved in nearly 20 years. Garcia noted that this resurfacing project was part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to improve safety and mobility for thousands of motorists who use Woodhaven Boulevard on a daily basis.

Photo Courtesy of Councilman Ulrich’s Office

Councilman Ulrich (second from r.) noted that his office will be accepting road repair suggestions from District 32 constituents through the end of 2018.

“I am thrilled to again work with the Department of Transportation to improve road conditions throughout the community. I’d like to thank Queens Borough Commis-

sioner Nicole Garcia—and the entire DOT team—for their continued partnership,” Ulrich said. “I encourage my constituents to call my district office and submit their sug-

gestions, which will be reviewed by DOT.” The department estimated that Ulrich’s allocation will repave approximately 10 miles of roads throughout several neighborhoods in CD32, which covers Howard Beach, Lindenwood, Ozone Park, Belle Harbor, Breezy Point, Broad Channel, Lindenwood, Neponsit, Richmond Hill, Rockaway Park, Roxbury, South Ozone Park, West Hamilton Beach and Woodhaven. The extra funding will supplement the millions of dollars that were previously allocated to DOT for various projects across the five boroughs. “Collaborations like this help the agency get even more done for the community. We thank the council member for this significant contribution and for being a great partner in helping deliver safer, smoother streets for Queens residents,” Garcia added. Ulrich’s office will be accepting road repair suggestions from constituents through the end of the year. To submit a suggestion, call his Ozone Park district office at (718) 738-1083.

Two Men Charged in Borough ‘Mailbox Fishing’ Schemes

Forum Photo by Michael V. Cusenza

Martinez and Velazquez last week allegedly tried to steal mail from this box on Lefferts Boulevard in Richmond Hill.

By Michael V. Cusenza Two men have been charged with “fishing” mail out of blue U.S. Postal Service collection boxes in Richmond Hill and Forest Hills in October and November, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown announced on Friday. Alvaro Martinez, 28, of Manhattan, and Luis Velazquez, 22, of the Bronx, were arraigned Thursday night on three complaints charging them with third-degree burglary, first-degree criminal tampering, third-degree criminal possession of stolen property, first-degree identity theft, and possession of burglar’s tools. Bail for Martinez was set at $25,000; Velazquez’s bail was set at $13,000. As of Wednesday afternoon, neither had posted bail, according to City Department of Correction records. “Mailbox fishing” is a federal crime in which envelopes containing checks and sensitive documents are “fished out” of curbside mailboxes by crooks using a makeshift rod: an adhesive slathered all over a weighted, 16

ounce-20 ounce bottle attached to the end of a string or rope. According to the charging documents, around 4:35 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 29, Velazquez was seen on surveillance footage standing in front of a USPS mailbox at 64th Avenue and 108th Street, and a second box roughly a block away, in Forest Hills. The video allegedly shows Velazquez inserting an object into the mailboxes and pulling it out again along with pieces of mail. According to the complaints, shortly after 4 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 17, Martinez was observed on surveillance video standing in front of a blue mailbox at 62nd Drive and 108th Street, also in Forest Hills. Martinez allegedly could be seen on camera placing something inside the mailbox and then retrieving that item along with mail attached to it, the complaints noted. And on Wednesday, Nov. 29, Martinez and Velazquez were seen around 3:50 a.m. at the intersection of Lefferts Boulevard and Jamaica Avenue in Richmond Hill, according to the charges. Martinez was allegedly observed with his hands near the opening slot of a mailbox and Velazquez was leaning on the box. As a detective approached, both men moved away from the box, but a shoestring was left dangling from the slot. A member of the U.S. Postal Police opened the box and found the shoestring attached to a juice bottle that was covered with glue. Velazquez allegedly admitted that a nearby vehicle belonged to him and inside that car police recovered dozens of pieces of both unopened and opened mail along with mouse and rat glue traps. The complaints noted that at least one envelope recovered contained a check for $4,000. Mailbox fishing has hit Gotham hard in recent years—especially Queens. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service told The Forum

on Wednesday that the agency has already replaced approximately 40 percent of the old collection boxes in Queens with new, virtually “fishing-proof ” ones. “The plan has always been to replace all of these boxes; it’s the most prudent approach,” USPIS Public Information Officer Donna Harris said. “We know it works.”

boxes were replaced in the 104th Precinct, USPIS has not recorded a single mailbox fishing complaint in that part of Queens, Harris noted. “We’ve done a lot, but we’ve still got a ways to go,” the spokeswoman added.

HBL CIVIC BRINGS HOLIDAY CHEER!

Though the weather outside was frightsince all residents of the old collection ful,Indeed, our community were delightboxes; it’s the most prudent approach,” USed with the First Annual Christmas Tree PIS Public Information Officer Donna Harand Menorah Lighting . The event was a rishuge said.success! “We know it works.” Indeed, all of came the old Dozenssince of residents out collection to the cel-

ebration organized by the Howard Beach Lindenwood Civic and supported by many local businesses, the 106th PCt and Councilmember Ulrich. Kudos to HBLC for hosting another successful community event!

THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 3


City’s Affordable Housing Plan not Reaching Those Most at Risk: Stringer By Forum Staff The City’s current affordable housing plan is not reaching those most at risk, according to a report released on Thursday by City Comptroller Scott Stringer that establishes the scope of Gotham’s affordable housing crisis and proposes a fundamental realignment of the program. According to “NYC for All: The Housing We Need,” roughly 580,000 households across the five boroughs are in the greatest need of affordable housing. These households—almost 90 percent of which make less than $47,000 per year for a family of three—are paying more than half of their incomes to rent, bunking in overcrowded apartments, or have been living in homeless shelters for more than a year. Yet less than 25 percent of the City’s current affordable housing plan is being built for these New Yorkers, Stringer said. The comptroller’s proposal connects the City’s housing policy to its rising homelessness crisis by tripling the homeless setaside to 15 percent for new construction and planning to meet that goal each year. To finance the proposal, Stringer said he’s calling for the elimination of favorable tax treatment currently enjoyed by all-cash homebuyers and reducing “unfair, outdated” taxes on middle class New Yorkers who borrow to purchase a home.

Photo Courtesy of Comptroller Stringer’s Office

With “NYC for All: The Housing we Need,” Comptroller Stringer proposes a fundamental realignment of the City housing plan.

According to “NYC for All,” the current affordable housing plan—Housing New York—is building nearly as many units for middle income families earning up to $155,000 per year as it is for extremely low income families earning less than $28,000 per year. Stringer said he is proposing to increase the number of units for the lowest income households and deepen subsidies for long term affordability. Stringer on Thursday pointed out that

developing housing for extremely low or very low-income households is more costly. So “NYC for All” calls for increasing the capital budget for new construction by $375 million annually, and repurposing the remaining 85,000 new units under the HNY plan for the households in the greatest need. And to safeguard the long-term viability of deeply affordable units, “NYC for All” proposes a new operating subsidy, funded at up to $125 million, to ensure

that buildings have sufficient revenue to meet basic maintenance needs, while keeping rents affordable for the lowest-income households, the comptroller noted. And in order to appropriately address rising rates of homelessness, the City’s approach to affordable housing must take into account working families that are at the greatest risk of becoming homeless, Stringer said. His report notes that of the families with children living in longterm shelter, one-third (nearly 4,500) are working—highlighting the fact that many working families struggle to find affordable housing. Currently, HNY sets aside 5 percent of all units preserved and constructed for homeless New Yorkers—but just 1 percent of those units has gone to homeless families as of November 2017. Stringer’s report proposes tripling the number of newlyconstructed units set aside for homeless families to 15 percent and meeting that target each and every year of the plan. Additionally, “NYC for All,” calls for the elimination of the Mortgage Recording Tax in favor of a more progressive Real Property Transfer Tax. Stringer’s proposal also calls for the creation of a Land Bank/Land Trust to help jumpstart the development of affordable housing on hundreds of vacant lots owned by the City.

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4 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP


Jeffries Elected Democratic Caucus Chairman

Photo Courtesy of Rep. Jeffries’s Office

Jeffries said he’s looking forward to working with Rep. Katherine Clark (D-Mass.), the incoming vicechairwoman of the House Democratic Caucus.

By Michael V. Cusenza Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-Queens and Brooklyn) was recently elected by his colleagues to serve as chairman of the Democratic Caucus, succeeding former Rep. Joe Crowley in the fifth-highest ranking position in U.S. House of Representatives Democratic leadership. “Today marks the end of a hard-fought campaign of ideas with my friend [Rep.] Barbara Lee (D-Calif.),” Jeffries said. “For decades, Barbara has been a tireless advocate

for social and economic justice. I honor her. In the next two years, House Democrats will fight aggressively to lower healthcare costs, protect people with pre-existing conditions, increase worker pay and clean up corruption in Washington. We will focus on kitchen table, pocketbook issues that unite all Americans. I look forward to working with all of my colleagues in the Democratic Caucus to fight for the people.” Jeffries announced his intention to run for the post four weeks ago. In a letter seeking support from his House colleagues, Jeffries, who served as co-chairman of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee during the last congressional session, said his candidacy is anchored in three principles: “Our team is strongest when everyone is on the playing field”; “Learn from the past, succeed in the future”; and “The best defense is a good offense.” “Together, we delivered a strong ‘For the People’ closing argument to America that was simple and authentic to who we are as public servants. We emphasized an agenda focused on lower healthcare costs, increased pay for everyday Americans and cleaning up corruption in Washington. It worked,” the congressman wrote. Jeffries won the race for the 8th Congressional District seat back in 2012. The 8th CD features Howard Beach and Ozone Park in Queens, and Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brownsville, East New York, Canarsie, Ocean Hill, East Flatbush, Marine Park, Mill Basin, Clinton Hill, Fort Greene, and Coney Island in Brooklyn.

Ulrich Secures $250K for Woodhaven Library

City Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) on Friday put his John Hancock on a ceremonial check for $250,000 that he later presented to the Woodhaven Library to fund a temporary space for community residents during the branch’s planned renovations. “The councilman is laying out money for

the future of this library. He has been supportive—not just of this library—but all the libraries in his district,” said Queens President and CEO Dennis Walcott. “[These funds] will help us tremendously and I’d like to thank the councilman for all that he has done for us over the years.” Photo Courtesy of Councilman Ulrich’s Office

www.orderaplumber.com • (718) 522-0818 THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 5


EDITORIAL A QUEENS KING This week, in this space, we want to talk to you about someone we’ve never met, about whom we’ve never had the pleasure of writing. Because this person made a difference. His name is Don Capalbi. A longtime member of U.S. Rep. Grace Meng’s staff, Don died on Sunday at a local hospice facility after spending the last month at Long Island Jewish Medical Center due to a head injury suffered in a fall. He was 73 years old. Don Capalbi was born in Astoria to an Italian immigrant mother and a father from Indiana. Don eventually moved to the Queensboro Hill neighborhood of Flushing, where he lived most of his life and was a community leader. Don was president of the Queensboro Hill Flushing Civic Association, and belonged to myriad other World’s Borough organizations, including the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce, New York Hospital Queens Community Advisory Council, 109th Precinct Community Council, Kissena Corridor Park Conservancy, Lions Club, and the Knights of Columbus, among others. Don was “a member of our family,” Meng noted. “It is a deeply sad day,” the congresswoman said. At the time of his passing, Don was a community liaison for Meng. He served in the same capacity for the legislator when she was in the Assembly. “We are devastated by this terrible loss,” Meng continued. “Don worked tirelessly for the people of our congressional district. He was an invaluable at civic meetings and local events. He also fought trepart of my team, providing me with information and mendously for his neighborhood, dedicating countadvice about community issues, and representing me less hours to preserving and improving the quality of

life in his community. “But Don was much more than a terrific staffer and civic activist,” she continued. “He was also a great human being; a wonderful and special person who was selfless and full of life, and one of the kindest, friendliest and gentlest people I’ve known. He touched and impacted so many lives and was loved, admired and respected by all with whom he worked. Rarely did I see him without a smile on his face. I thank Don for his many years of dedication, and I will always remember his unwavering commitment to our constituents, and his many efforts to make our district a better place for all who live and work here. As I grieve his loss, I extend my deepest sympathies to his family and friends at this difficult time. He will be sorely missed but the legacy of his service, and the contributions he made to help others, will never be forgotten.” Just look at some of the words and phrases Meng used to describe Don: great human being; wonderful; special person; selfless; fought tremendously for his neighborhood; kindest, friendliest, gentlest; impacted so many lives; loved, admired, respected; unwavering commitment; dedication; legacy of service. Incredible. Though we’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Don, we pray that he is resting in peace after a lifetime dedicated to the well-being of others. Thank you for your service, Don. Thank you for making a difference.

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Two Bronx Men Charged in Astoria Bodega Robbery By Forum Staff Two men from the Bronx have been charged with robbery, criminal possession of a weapon and other crimes for being part of a fourman hold-up team that stormed an Astoria grocery store on November 17, 2018. A good Samaritan was shot when he tried pursuing the robbers - some of whom wore masks and look-alike police shields around their necks. “A young man quashed down any fear to pursue the gun-toting robbers into the night. For that, he is a hero,” said District Attorney Brown. “The 18-year-old was shot in the leg and will thankfully survive the injury. The defendants were identified as Bronx residents Hannibal Ali, 55, of Hughes Avenue and Luis Zayas, 25, of LaFontaine Avenue.

Some of the robbers wore masks and phony police shields.

Both were arraigned last week and ordered to return to court on December 12. The two are charged with first- and second-degree robbery and seconddegree crimi-

p.m. on November 17, 2018, Ali and two unapprehended others, who wore masks, walked into a grocery store on 36th Avenue in Astoria. All three wore authentic-looking police shields around their necks. One of the two masked men walked around the store’s countergrabbed a bag with cash inside and opened the cash register to remove all the money. The three men ran out and rushed toward a waiting van where Zayas sat behind the wheel. While in pursuit of the bandits, the 18-year-old brother of the bodega heard a Courtesy of NYPD loud pop and felt something strike him in the leg. The teen fell to the ground and realized he nal possession of a weapon in two separate had been shot in the left leg as the thieves sped complaints. If convicted, the defendants face away. The investigation into the robbery and up to 25 years in prison. shooting is ongoing and additional charges are According to the charges, around 8:20 likely.

South Ozone Park Man Admits to Torching Nine Vehicles By Forum Staff A 29-year-old Queens man who set nine vehicles on fire in his South Ozone Park neighborhood has plead guilty to third-degree arson. On three separate occasions in December 2017 and February 2018 Evan Person, 29, of Linden Boulevard, “has now admitted to committing these reckless acts of arson,” according to DA Brown. The DA went on to note that Person damaged thevehicles and knowingly endangered the lives of his neighbors as well as firefighters responding to the blazes. Queens Supreme Court Judge John Zoll, Person set a 2004 Buick ablaze in front of a home on 109th Avenue. said that the defendant will face between four and eight years in prison when he is sentenced

Photo Courtesy of Google

on December 13, 2018. Firefighters responded to calls for fires set to vehicles at different locations in the vicinity of 116thAvenue in December of 2017. A total of five car fires were extinguished at on December 15th. Then on February 6, 2018, Person set fire to three more vehicles in and around 124th Street. The defendant struck yet again on February 16, 2018 - just ten days after this second fire-spree - sending firefighters scrambling to respond to yet another call of a burning vehicle in front of a home located at 124-03 109 Avenue, also in South Ozone Park, Queens. The vehicle which was burned beyond initial recognition was later identified as a 2004 Buick.

Senator Sounds Alarm over Airports Using Toxic Chemicals that Poison Local Waterways By Forum Staff A New York senator has slammed the Trump administration for “dragging its feet” on enforcing a new law that would help end the use of dangerous chemicals at airports across the Empire State and the country that poison local waterways. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday called for the immediate implementation of the new measure that would finally bring an end to the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, a toxic group of chemicals that are the primary ingredient in firefighting foams utilized at New York airports. According to Gillibrand, PFAS can seep into groundwater, contaminating the drinking water supplies for nearby communities. The chemicals are linked to cancer and other serious health problems, the senator added, and the continued use of PFAS at airports poses a serious health risk. According to a study conducted by the Environmental Working Group, as many as 110 million Americans are drinking from water supplies contaminated by PFAS; and according to the Green Science Policy Institute, 75 percent of PFAS contamination sites are likely related to firefighting foam use. Prior to the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization this year, commercial airports were required to use PFAS in firefighting foams. Airports frequently use firefighting foam

for drills and training exercises. Gillibrand successfully fought to pass a new law as a part of the FAA Reauthorization that eliminated the requirement, allowing U.S. airports to use alternative, industry-accepted firefighting foam. Although the law passed two months ago, the FAA still has not implemented the new regulations, the senator noted. “One of the biggest reasons this chemical keeps leaking into our water is because it’s one of the main ingredients used in the firefighting foams at airports,” Gillibrand added. “This was an arbitrary regulation, and I fought to pass a law that allows airports to use firefighting foams without PFAS. We have a responsibility to ensure our airports are not poisoning the water in our communities, and I’m calling on the Trump administration to immediately implement this law and protect our communities from these dangerous chemicals.” Gillibrand sent a letter on Tuesday to acting FAA Administrator Dan Elwell requesting that the agency: Provide specific actions the FAA plans to take to complete the switch to PFASfree foam and a proposed timeline for each action; make all commercial airports in the U.S. aware of the change in requirements; prohibit the use of PFAS-containing foam for training File Photo purposes; and end the annual requirement to test firefighting “We have a responsibility to ensure our airports are not poisoning the water in foams containing PFAS by directly spraying on them onto the our communities,” Sen. Gillibrand said. ground. THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 7


8 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP


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For more information, call 718-641-6785 THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 9


Borough Breaks Ground on Vietnam Vets Memorial

The memorial is slated to be completed in fall 2019.

By Forum Staff Borough veterans joined civic leaders, elected officials, and the City Parks Department on Thursday in Elmhurst Park to break ground on the Queens Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the first borough-wide remembrance to honor all Queens residents who were either killed in action while serving in the Vietnam War, or served in the war and are officially listed as “Missing in Action.” Queens Borough President Melinda Katz noted that construction of the memorial has been long sought after by Queens veterans who have wanted a borough-wide monument to recognize the sacrifices made by hundreds of Queens residents and their families during the Vietnam War. The $2.85 million in funding secured by Katz is enough to fully fund the design and construction of the memorial. The late Pat Toro, former president of Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 32 and a Marine Corps veteran, was a vocal and persistent supporter of the project before he died in 2014. Chapter 32 has followed Toro’s lead by continuing to seek the necessary funding for the memorial, Katz added. “To our veterans of the Vietnam War, we know the sacrifices you made, the sacrifices your families made. The Queens Vietnam Veterans Memorial will help ensure generations never forget, and remind our borough, city and nation to remain ever grateful,” the borough president said. “It’s been 10 years since Pat Toro first dreamed up the idea for a Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and now that dream will soon become reality. Because of his leadership and that

Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Queens Borough President

of Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 32, the service members who made the ultimate sacrifice during and as a result of that conflict will have a fitting and dignified tribute right here in the borough they proudly called ‘home.’” The memorial was designed by NYC Parks in consultation with VVA Chapter 32. It is intended to be a contemplative space that honors those Queens residents who lost their lives during the Vietnam War, Katz said. Two semi-circular granite walls will flank the space. One will bear the name of the memorial, the five crests of the military and the Vietnam Service Medal, which is awarded to all military members who served in the Vietnam War. On the inside of this wall will be an etching of bamboo, which represents a common element of the Vietnam War. The second wall will offer a history of the Vietnam War that will list key events and dates. This wall will also bear the names of Queens residents who served in the Vietnam War who were either killed in action or are listed as missing. The names of fallen will be placed strategically so that they receive sun most of the day, Katz noted. The granite walls, as well as the existing flagpole, will both be illuminated at night. Additionally, there will be a map of Vietnam on the floor of the memorial that will depict key Vietnam War locations. A separate plaque will also be installed that will recognize Toro and fellow Vietnam War veterans from Queens who died here at home due to effects of the war, such as exposure to Agent Orange.

10 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP

The Pharmacist’s Corner Presented by Frank Pantina, R.Ph

TACKLING HOLIDAY HEARTBURN As holiday celebrations approach, so does the chance of heartburn. Holiday feasts are too often accompanied by reflux. So we’d like to give you a little advance advice on keeping your spirits up and your indigestion down. Many OTC preparations are available at the pharmacy but, we’d like to see your needs for these meds kept at a minimum . Antacids like Tums and Rolaids neutralize stomach acid. Another class of meds, acid blockers, actually reduce the production of acid like Pepcid AC, Prilosec OTC, Tagamet HB and Zantac 75. For best results, take your heartburn medication before it starts! Alcohol, caffeine and rich fatty food all to induce that slow burning, creeping, sensation that can ruin the festivities. When we get full, our instinct is to kick back in a recliner and relax while we wait for dessert. The problem is that when we do, we are tilting our stomachs and allowing acid to rise up into the esophagus. Gravity naturally aids the stomach acid from rising-stand up! Extra pounds add to internal pressure and also cause a rise in acid. And fatty foods slow digestion to a snails pace as well, basically guaranteeing heartburn. We have come up with 8 basic strategies to help you keep the fun up and the

acid down: • Know thyself. Steer clear of what is irritating to you. Some common culprits are alcohol, caffeine and chocolate. • Don't eat too close to bedtime. Curtail the eating right before you hit the bed. You’re taking all of that with you in a reclined position. A definite no-no • Be selective. Go for what you want in moderate-sized portions. • Savor small bites. Think of yourself as a wine taster -- the first couple of sips are for tasting, savoring. Really experience the food. You don't need to eat a whole plate of coconut shrimp, eat just one. • Fix one plate, and don't pile it high. You want to save room for a sliver of dessert. • Ask for a to-go plate. Most hosts are more than happy to send food home with guests. You can enjoy the same delicious dinner again - the next day, when you're hungry enough to enjoy it. • Take a walk after dinner. A great habit to get into, because it helps food digest preventing heartburn. • Don't wear tight pants. Tight pants can constrict your stomach, which makes heartburn more likely. Until next week...

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Cops Help Keep Howard Beach Clean

A tip of the cap to 106th Precinct Miele, Sr. Pedestrian Bridge that conNeighborhood Coordination Officers nects Old Howard Beach to Hamilton Pete Pease (foreground) and Mike Pe- Beach. trizzo, who recently pitched in to cover Thanks, guys! up some graffiti that marred the Joel A. Photo Courtesy of NYPD


THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 11


New HIV Diagnoses in NYC down 64 Percent Since 2001 By Michael V. Cusenza The annual number of new HIV diagnoses in the city has reached an all-time low, with 2,157 New Yorkers getting newly diagnosed last year, the de Blasio administration announced on Thursday. And the number of new HIV diagnoses in the five boroughs has decreased by 64 percent since HIV case reporting began, City officials noted. The estimated number of new HIV infections in NYC also continues to decline, with a 35-percent decrease among men who have sex with men and a 36-percent decrease overall since 2013, according to the City Health Department. Officials suggested that estimated new infections continue to decrease at a historic, accelerated pace due to a combination of prevention strategies (including HIV treatment, preand post- exposure prophylaxis), and NYC Condom distribution. “Our city has been on the frontlines of the HIV and AIDS epidemic for decades,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “Reaching our goal to end the AIDS epidemic by 2020 in New York City is a good start, but we won’t rest until we eradicate the epidemic once and for all.” New diagnoses of HIV are falling across the state as well, while rates of enrollment in treatment for those diagnosed continues

Photo Courtesy of NY City Council/Emil Cohen “As someone who is HIV positive, I’m proud to lead a council that has made the fight against AIDS/HIV a priority,” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson.

to climb, according to the Cuomo administration. New HIV diagnoses in the Empire State declined for a third consecutive year, reaching an all-time low of 2,769 in 2017, down 20 percent since 2014. Governor Andrew Cuomo on Friday proposed new regulations that will expand

access to care for uninsured or underinsured people living with HIV. The State Department of Health will modify regulations governing the HIV Uninsured Care Programs to update income criteria and eliminate the assets test. Currently, to be eligible for the HUCP, an applicant’s household

income must be equal to or less than 435 percent of the federal poverty level, and the applicant’s liquid resources must be less than $25,000. The new regulations, according to Cuomo, will increase eligible income to 500 percent of the federal poverty level and eliminate the cap on resources. The proposed regulations will be published in mid-December, with adoption anticipated in early 2019. “As our fight to end the epidemic continues, these new regulations will ensure more individuals living with HIV have access to the care they need and in the process help stop further transmissions,” Cuomo added. On Saturday, World AIDS Day, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who has lived with HIV for the last 14 years, said he’s “proud to lead a council that has made the fight against AIDS/HIV a priority.” Johnson also acknowledged that “the battle is far from over.” “On World AIDS Day, we collectively remember those we lost and we mourn for what might have been,” he added. “We hold these 675,000 [Americans that have died since the start of the AIDS crisis] in our hearts; we will remember them, we will remember their struggle, and we will pledge that under our watch we won’t let this happen again. We will fight in their name for those still living with this disease.”

Cuomo Hails Opening of New Gates at LaGuardia Airport By Forum Staff The first new gates in LaGuardia Airport’s Terminal B, part of the $8 billion transformation of the airport into a unified 21st century terminal system, officially opened on Saturday. Governor Andrew Cuomo joined representatives of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and LaGuardia Gateway Partners, the private consortium rebuilding and operating LGA’s Terminal B, in touting the 250,000 square-foot lightfilled new concourse, which houses a total of 18 gates which will be occupied by Air Canada, American Airlines, Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. “The opening of the first new concourse and gates at Terminal B marks another significant milestone in the transformation of LaGuardia Airport into a modern, global gateway that is worthy of the State of New York,” Cuomo said. “While leaders in Washington only talk about investing in infrastructure, in New York we are actually getting it done, and now travelers from across the world will start to see and experience a whole new LaGuardia.” The new concourse is designed with 55-foot high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows that allow natural light to fill space, which includes an indoor park with benches, landscaping and real trees. Charging stations are placed throughout the gate

Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Governor/Kevin P. Coughlin Governor Cuomo remarked, “While leaders in Washington only talk about investing in infrastructure, in New York we are actually getting it done, and now travelers from across the world will start to see and experience a whole new LaGuardia.”

seating areas, with free, fast and unlimited high-speed Wi-Fi enabling travelers to surf, search and stream while they wait, State officials said. Family amenities include an airport-themed children’s play area, familyfriendly restrooms and a private nursing room. Large, modern restrooms include spacious stalls and above-sink shelves designed to keep belongings dry. More than a dozen concessions in the new concourse include New York-inspired food, beverage and retail options—with 12 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP

the ability for passengers to have food delivered directly to their gate. Restaurants include Shake Shack, La Chula, Osteria Fusco, Kingside and Irving Farm Coffee. Retail venues include an FAO Schwarz toy store, McNally Jackson independent bookseller and District Market, which includes “Made in Queens” products through a partnership with the Queens Economic Development Corporation. Cuomo noted that the new LaGuardia will comprise $8 billion in new facilities.

On the western side of the airport, the new $4 billion Terminal B is replacing the obsolete terminal that opened more than 50 years ago. The terminal will have a total of 35 gates, including the first 11 that opened this weekend and seven more coming into service in early 2020. Dual pedestrian bridges will rise over active plane taxi lanes, connecting the main departures and arrivals hall that will open in 2020 with the two island concourses, offering travelers views of the Manhattan skyline as they head to and from their gates. “As project after project is completed, the once outdated facility is transforming LaGuardia Airport into a world-class, 21st century transportation hub. The new gates will not only ease passenger travel, but they will also offer the amenities that all visitors have come to expect at international airports today,” said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz.“Queens lauds Gov. Cuomo for committing to this massive undertaking and for spurring economic growththrough new jobs and opportunities brought on by this project.” Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Governor/Kevin P. Coughlin Governor Cuomo remarked, “While leaders in Washington only talk about investing in infrastructure, in New York we are actually getting it done, and now travelers from across the world will start to see and experience a whole new LaGuardia.”


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THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 13


VJC RESOURCES LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 07/31/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: Vilma J Cruz, 5945 48th Avenue, Woodside, NY 11377. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose.Purpose: any lawful purpose. Notice of Formation of THE CANDIDATES FILM LLC Arts. of Org. filed with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 08/30/16. Office location: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to Legalinc Corporate Services Inc., 1967 Wehrle Dr., Ste. 1-086, Buffalo, NY 14221, regd. agent upon whom and at which process may be served. Purpose: Any lawful activity.

PONOKEFALOS TAXI LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 08/31/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: John Giovanis, 33-21 21 Street, Astoria, NY 11106. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose. Notice of Qualification of Peter Speliopoulos Projects, LLC. App. for Auth. filed with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 9/26/18. Office location: Queens County. LLC formed in Delaware (DE) on 9/18/18. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, c/o Jennifer W. Brown, Esq., 1133 Avenue of the Americas, NY, NY 10036. DE address of LLC: c/o Corporation Service Company, 251 Little Falls Drive, Wilmington, DE 19808. Cert. of Form. filed with DE Secy. of State, 401 Federal St., Ste. 4, Dover, DE 19901. Purpose: any purposes permitted by applicable law. ARIS 553 SACKETT LLC (the “LLC”) filed Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State of New York (“SSNY”) on 8/8/18. LLC office location: Queens County. The SSNY has been designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. The SSNY shall mail a copy of any process served to LLC, c/o Aris Realty Corp., 31-87 Steinway Street, Suite 5, Astoria, New York 11103. Purpose: any lawful activity. SIVOTA LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 11/21/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: Savas Konstantinides, 34-20 31 Street, Astoria, NY 11106. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose. SUNNYSIDE MEDICAL OF NEW YORK LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 8/06/18. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of PLLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to Corporate Creations Network Inc 15 North Mill ST Nyack, NY 10960. Purpose: Any lawful activity.

SUN TZU STRATEGY GROUP LLC Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 09/24/18. Office: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the SUN TZU STRATEGY GROUP LLC, 5253 79TH ST. FL 2, ELMHURST, NY 11373. Purpose: Any lawful purpose.

Legal-Notices

Notice of Formation of 1182 Developer LLC. Arts. of Org. filed with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 9/10/18. Office location: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: c/o The Bluestone Organization, 90-11 160th St., Ste. 100, Jamaica, NY 11432. Purpose: any lawful activity.

Notice of formation of FRIENDS TEAM REALTY LLC Articles of Organization filed with the Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on 06/08/2018. Office located in Queens County. SSNY has being designated as agent for service of process. SSNY shall mail a copy of process to, SYED N ALAM, 121-08 LIBERTY AVE, RICHMOND HILL, NY. Pur218-11 REALTY, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY pose: any lawful purpose.

Sec. of State (SSNY) 10/19/16. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the Registered Agent: United States Corporation Agents Inc 7014 13th Ave Ste. 202 Brooklyn, NY 11228. Purpose: Any lawful activity.

NOTICE OF FORMATION OF 1562 DEKALB CONSTRUCTION LLC Arts of Org filed with Secretary of State of NY (SSNY) on 11/16/2017. Office location: QUEENS County. SSNY designated as agent upon whom process may be served and shall mail copy of process against LLC to principal business address: 111-23 JAMAICA AVENUE, 1ST FLOOR, RICHMOND HILL, NY HK FIRST HOLDINGS LLC Articles of 11418. Purpose: any lawful act.

Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 11/06/18. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the Registered Agent: HK FIRST HOLDINGS LLC 97-45 OCCHIO VIVO LLC, Arts. of Org. filed 63RD DRIVE, UNIT 6H, REGO PARK, NY with the SSNY on 10/03/2018. Office loc: 11374. Purpose: Any lawful activity.

Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: The LLC, 148-29 Cross Island Pkwy, Whitestone, NY 11357. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose.

THE URBAN COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT GROUP LLC. Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY n 10/05/18. Latest date to dissolve: 12/31/2117. Office: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the LLC, 244-04 Jericho Turnpike, Floral Park, NY 11001. Purpose: Any lawful purpose.

B & A FAMILY HOLDING LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 9/24/18. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall Notice of Formation: Henry Street Partmail copy of process to: THE LLC, 147-23 JEWEL AVE., FLUSHING, NY 11367. Purpose: Any lawful ner LLC, Art. Of Org. filed with Sec. of State of NY (SSNY) on 08/17/2018. Office Loc.: activity. SUNNYSIDE MEDICAL OF NEW YORK LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 8/06/18. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of PLLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to Corporate Creations Network Inc 15 North Mill ST Nyack, NY 10960. Purpose: Any lawful activity. Notice of Conversion of Landome Associates, a partnership, to Landome Realty Associates LLC. Cert. filed with SSNY on 10/1/18. Office: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served and shall mail process to: c/o Richard E. Tanenbaum, 43-29 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361. Purpose: any lawful act. B & A FAMILY HOLDING LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 9/24/18. Office in Queens Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to: THE LLC, 147-23 JEWEL AVE., FLUSHING, NY 11367. Purpose: Any lawful activity. Notice of formation of HELLO THIS IS EMMA LLC. Articles of Organization filed with the Secretary of State of New York SSNY on 8/03/2018. Office located in Queens County. SSNY has been designated for service of process. SSNY shall mail copy of any process served against the LLC to: 1862 Menahan Street, Unit 1R, Ridgewood, New York, 11385. Purpose: any lawful purpose. Notice of Formation of CLEANOLOGY MAINTENANCE LLC Art. of Org. filed Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 7/23/2018. Office location: Queens County. SSNY Designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to: THE LLC, 75-06 197TH STREET, FRESH MEADOWS, NY 11366 . Purpose: any lawful activity.

14 DECEMBER 6, 2018 • Number 49 VOL. 18 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP

Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: 34-30 Collins Place, Flushing NY 11354 Purpose: Any lawful activity.

DOUBLE BREAK LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 11/08/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: YADRAM MAHABEER9415 215TH St., Queens Village, NY 11428. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose. EZ GLOBAL TAX LLC Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 11/05/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: THE LLC 3621 166TH STREET, 2ND FLOOR, FLUSHING, NY 11358. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose.

ELEONAS TAXI LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 10/11/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: John Giovanis, 33-21 21 Street, Astoria, NY 11106. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose. RKRC LLC. Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 08/06/18. Office: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of the LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to the LLC, 163-43 99th Street, Howard Beach, NY 11414. Purpose: Any lawful purpose. Notice of Formation of MURRAY'S LIC LLC Arts. of Org. filed with Secy. of State of NY (SSNY) on 08/15/18. Office location: Queens County. Princ. office of LLC: 2519 Borden Ave., Long Island City, NY 11101. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to Corporation Service Co., 80 State St., Albany, NY 12207, regd. agent upon whom and at which process may be served. Purpose: Any lawful activity. LATHOS TAXI LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 10/11/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: John Giovanis, 33-21 21 Street, Astoria, NY 11106. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose.

LEAP HIGH LLC, Arts. of Org. filed with the SSNY on 09/20/2018. Office loc: Queens County. SSNY has been designated as agent upon whom process against the LLC may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: The LLC, 196-62 45th Road, Flushing, NY 11358. Purpose: Any Lawful Purpose.

Notice of formation of 1277 Nostrand PLG LLC. Articles of Organization filed with the Secretary of State of New York (SSNY) on July 23, 2018. Office located in Queens County. SSNY has been designated for service of process. SSNY shall mail copy of any process served against the LLC to 4102 31st Ave Ste. A, Astoria, NY 11103. Purpose: any lawful purpose.

Notice of Formation: 55-08 J&J LLC, Art. Of Org. filed with Sec. of State of NY (SSNY) on 10/17/2018. Office Loc.: Queens County. SSNY designated as agent of LLC upon whom process against it may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: 55-08 98TH Street, Corona, NY 11368. Purpose: Any lawful activity.

Notice is hereby given that an Order entered by the Civil Court, Queens County, on the 7th day of August, 2018, bearing Index No. 000562/18/QU, a copy of which may be examined at the Office of the Clerk, located at 89-17 Sutphin Blvd., Jamaica, new York, 11435, grants me the right to assume the name of (first) MONICA (last) JEAN HECTOR. My present address is Richmond Hill, NY. The month and date of my birth are MAY 2012. The place of my birth is Brooklyn, NY. My present name is MONCIA HECTOR JEAN.

Notice is hereby given that an Order entered by the Civil Court, Queens County, on the 17th day of SEPTEMBER, 2018, bearing Index No. 000763/18/ QU, a copy of which may be examined at the Office of the Clerk, located at 89-17 Sutphin Blvd., Jamaica, New York, 11435 grants me the right to assume the name of WACKING HORACE II. My present address is RICHMOND HILL, NY. The month and date of birth are MARCH 2018. The place of my birth is MANHATTAN, NY. My present name is ANDRES WACKING VALDEZ (infant)


THE FORUM NEWSGROUP • VOL. 18 • Number 49 DECEMBER 6, 2018 | 15


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THE FORUM NEWSGROUP | DECEMBER 6, 2018  
THE FORUM NEWSGROUP | DECEMBER 6, 2018  
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