2000-01-29 / Columnists

Chatting With Chapey

by Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey

On Monday, January 24, 2000, D. Brian Heffernan from West End
Realty called together at the Beach Club a group of community and political leaders to work together as a task force to improve our area. He referred to other locations that have created an appealing, tourist friendly
environment, which revitalizes the community. Brian is a dynamic and
energetic community activist who wants everyone to work together to improve the community. As a result of this meeting a task force is being created to rejuvenate the neighborhood.

Several people had very good ideas. Chris George had brought with her a
collection of articles describing different places that had a similar
vision and that have been successful in their ventures. Joe Hartigan has
been very industrious in working toward the betterment of the neighborhood. He has contacted several ferry services and he had them come to Rockaway to assess our situation. One company, Empire Water Link has expressed an interest but they are more interested in freight. Sea Streak is another ferry service which expressed an interest in moving passengers by boat to Manhattan from Rockaway. Joann Shapiro, from Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer's office, Brian Gottlieb from Congressman Weiner's office and Alex Lutz from Councilman Stabile's office had very good suggestions. Another
proposal was to look into TEA-21 money from the federal government. The Friends of Gateway have used this fund for the bike path around parts of Rockaway. Joe Hartigan mentioned that he had applied for TEA-21 federal monies previously to assist in the development of the ferry line. His original application was not accepted but he is looking for assistance in resubmitting it.

Brian Heffernan has invited Joyce Coward, the director of Business Services for New York City to address our next meeting. Thanks to
Steve Goode for allowing us to meet in the Beach Club. He is a very
community minded person. We appreciate it. Others who joined the meeting were Harold Rochelle, Mary Leahy, John McLoughlin, Barbara Morris, Lew Simon, Eugene Pasternak and myself. It was an excellent meeting because everyone at the table had something to contribute. Thanks to D. Brian Heffernan for starting this. I look forward to our next meeting.

The Queens St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee held its annual
Hearts and Shamrocks Dance at St. Camillus Springman Hall last Sunday. All of the honorees for the March 2000 parade were there with their family and friends. The dance was very well attended and everyone had a wonderful time. Please read Beverly Baxter's interesting column "On the Beach" for more details. Beverly has such a talent for expression that I always look forward to reading her remarks.

The Southside Democratic Club, with Connie Grabowski serving as
president, had the first Democratic club meeting in Queens in the new millennium. It was a time for celebrating with good friends. Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer addressed the group and discussed a very important issue for homeowners. New York State has a Cease and Desist List. The old list has been terminated. It is now time to put your name on the new list. By putting your name on the Cease and Desist List you stop brokers from soliciting you to sell your home. If you have not signed up please call Audrey Pheffer's office at 945-9550 or at 642-8755 to get a card to sign and place your name on the list.

Joe Addabbo, our Democratic state committee person, told us at that
meeting that as a real estate attorney he wants to encourage all homeowners to sign up on the Cease and Desist list. Joe also mentioned that he
is the chairperson of the Community Planning Board 10 sub-committee on the Port Authority. He acts as a liaison between them and the community. He chaired a community meeting at St. Barnabus on the Port Authority three part construction on January 20, 2000. He also reminded the group that the FAA is having a hearing on February 3, 2000 at the Ramada Inn at JFK Airport at 7 p.m. to address the issue of airport noise and air pollution created by the airlines. Everyone is invited to attend and to speak if you wish. Please call ahead if you intend to address the meeting.

Joe Addabbo will be addressing our nest meeting of the Southside Democratic Club on Monday, February 28, 2000, at 7:30 p.m. on the topic of the
importance of having a will. A will helps your family members to disburse your assets as you wish. Joe will also talk about what having a proper will entails. I invite everyone to come to our club meeting and hear this interesting presentation.

On, February 8, 2000, I will be testifying in Albany at the Assembly Committee on Consumer Affairs and Protection. The topic of the open hearings is "Fraudulent and Abusive Telemarketing Practices."

I will keep you informed of further developments.



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