1999-10-23 / Columnists

Simon Says….

by Lew M. Simon, Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

Last week Acting Superintendent Matt Bromme of District 27 was our guest at a meeting of the Good Government Regular Democratic Club. My friends in Ozone Park have known Matt, where he was a very successful principal at J.H.S. 210 for eight years. It was a wonderful opportunity for people in Rockaway who didn't know Matt to get acquainted.

Bromme is looking to reverse the flight of hundreds of our students to schools in District 21 and 22 in Brooklyn. When children leave our district, money to improve our schools

also leaves. When families with children leave our district because they believe our schools are not outstanding, our communities lose. With the cooperation of our local school board, and the help of his staff, Bromme will address these problems. Acting Deputy Superintendent Marty Weinstein and Gerard McCarthy, acting principal of P.S. 114, also attended the meeting. The other acting deputy, Michele Lloyd-Bey, was at another meeting.

Bromme told us a story about how he fought to get a traffic light outside P.S. 88 in Ridgewood, where he was principal. After three children had been hit by cars Bromme decided that he had to join parents in blocking traffic to get attention to their needs as calls to city officials had not been effective. Bromme was happy that his district superintendent came to join him.

I am happy that we have a superintendent who is ready to fight personally for the needs of his schools.

Rowena Schwab, a long time parent leader, and newly elected member of School Board 27, urged the media to give more attention to local educational issues.

Professor Tibbi Dubois, director of Elementary Education at Brooklyn College, discussed the need-for training teachers to replace the large numbers who will retire in the next few years. She opposes the end to remediation, which would prevent many of our current high school graduates from entering college.

Congressmen Anthony Weiner was a surprise guest speaker. Weiner criticized public officials who beat up on public education, but do not help when they can. The congressman told us of his efforts to change federal rules so that the Army Corps of Engineers could spend money on permanent improvements like groins and jetties instead of just pumping sand every few years.

Weiner is a strong opponent of placing the Doppler in Gateway. He explained that federal law prohibited using the park for commercial aviation. No one would dream of putting such a facility in Yosemite or Grand Teton Park and Gateway is our park. Community groups including anglers in the Brooklyn portion of Weiner's district have joined to bring a lawsuit against the location of the Doppler radar.

Last week we noted the loss of Sylvia Alexander. She was a great great grandmother! Sylvia will definitely be missed, but her legacy will live on.

On Friday evening, once again, one of Michael Andrew's notorious houses, 230 Beach 118 street, became a problem. Over two years ago a vacate order was put on this house. Unfortunately people still live there. On Friday evening there was an attempt to install a brand new boiler in this house. We immediately called the 100 Precinct which dispatched a sergeant to check out this problem. The super put him on the phone with Michael Andrews who said the vacate order was lifted and Monday they would have papers to show them.

When we went to the 100 Precinct we spoke to Sgt. Davidson who brought Sgt. Maher who quoted to us that the super has been there for a while and asked why we were there tonight.

The sergeant called a Department of Building’s phone number. We received a call back from the emergency unit of DOB at 8:30 a.m. Saturday. They stated they didn’t have copies of the vacate orders for Queens in Manhattan, but would send an inspector out and issue a stop order.

It has been stated at recent meetings that there is a vacate order and the 100 Precinct should have it on file. On Monday morning we received a response from DOB that they would send an inspector on Tuesday morning. We received a follow up phone call from Assemblywoman Pheffer. She stated that the original vacate order was for the first two floors, not for the basement. Pheffer said that thanks to Commissioner Jimmy Leonard a full vacate order was issued that included the basement and the superintendent.

Good Government Democratic Club will hold its next meeting on Thursday, November 4. Public Advocate Mark Green will be our guest. We hope to see you there.

Our next Atlantic City trip will be on Saturday, November 20. We leave at 5:30 p.m. and return at 8 a.m. Call now for reservations.

I am always available to help with community problems. I am listed in the Rockaway phone book or stop by at 112-20 Beach Channel drive (second floor, across from Waldbaum’s).



Democratic District Leader Lew Simon (left) welcomes Acting Superintendent Matt Bromme to a meeting of the Good Government Regular Democratic Club.



Congressman Anthony Weiner (right) dropped in at a meeting of the Good Government Regular Democratic Club.

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