2000-02-12 / Columnists

Simon Says….

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

This is your last chance to get a seat for our bus to Atlantic City on Saturday, February 12 at 5:30 p.m. We return at 8 a.m. Because of increased fuel costs, the cost is now $25 with $17 returned. Call my office for reservations. The next trip is March 11.

This week we attended a briefing on the upcoming March 7 primary election. Queens Board of Elections was excited to announce the new way that absentee and challenge ballots would be done. Scannable ballots will be filled in as schools have done with math and reading tests. Final results of close elections should be available much faster.

If any registered Democrat in the 23 A.D. Part B (above Beach 95 street) would like to work as an inspector on March 7, please call. Pay is $130.

We are concerned with the mayor's plan to privatize the EMS. EMS workers are the worst paid first responders. This job is stressful and dangerous on many occasions. We urge the mayor and city council to give a major increase in salaries to these workers.

We are saddened by the loss of a great Rockaway fixture, Helen Ross, otherwise known as Miss Martin's Corner. She worked hard for 38 years on the midnight to 8 a.m. shift. She took constant abuse from nasty intoxicated customers and had knives and guns put to her head near the end of Martin's reign on Beach 99 street. Helen always had a beautiful smile and only good things to say. She will be missed. We love her and miss her. May she rest in peace.

We are also saddened by the death of Etta Schack, mother of Fred and mother-in-law of Maxine Schack, director of the Neponsit Day Care program. Our heart goes out in this time of sorrow.

On Thursday evening we attended the FAA public hearing on airplane noise and flight patterns. One again it was a major farce. Speeches had to be handed into a stenographer. We did have a chance to talk to Tom Bock, head of the FAA New York airspace redesign project, and Manny Weiss, regional executive manager. In speaking with them, we reminded them that a real public hearing should be held in Rockaway for residents of Rockaway, Broad Channel and in Howard Beach for those residents. We expressed our opposition to Doppler Radar in Gateway National Park. Part of my statement was as follows: "I'm tired of the charade of presenting complaints with which you agree, but do nothing to remedy….As a resident of Rockaway Park, I find it harder and harder to sleep at night with the constant flights overhead….We urge the airlines to accelerate the acquisition of Stage III aircraft to reduce the noise we hear."

Get well to community activist Moe Weinschel, who had a pacemaker inserted. If not for that we know Moe would have given the FAA hell. God bless you…

I'm always available to help with community problems. The Good Government Regular Democratic Club meets every Thursday evening, 7:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. We are located at 112-20 Beach Channel drive (opposite Waldbaum's).

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