2000-03-25 / Columnists

Simon Says….


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

The Breezy Point Golden Age Club held their annual corned beef and cabbage dinner on Tuesday. The party started at 4 p.m. with live music in honor of St. Patrick's Day.

After dinner many of the local neighbors showed their talent singing or telling a joke. We even got into the act by doing a duet with the club president, Grace McCloskey, of "you Made Me Love You."

Grace opened with a joke about her mother letting her marry me because I'm, a Democrat. She announced that rumors about or engagement are true. I just have to start saving for the ring.

We had the pleasure of sitting at the table with Rockaway's finest Dotty Taphouse. Many of the seniors shared their home baked soda bread with me. A great time was had by all.

Wednesday night was the Rockaway Action Committee meeting. We got there in the middle of the presentation by Bernard Smyth, community affairs coordinator of the Department of Sanitation. Rosie Gentzler of Rosie's Books was telling how she was constantly harassed with tickets for garbage in front of her property.

Rosie stated that since the elimination of the Beach 117 street bus stop, her corner has become a major hangout. Her store and property have become the city dump. People dump garbage, beer cans, soda cans, coffee cups, cigarette butts, and even defecate on the lawn. Rosie stated that she cleans constantly, but found it unfair to get these tickets.

I spoke to Rosie at the end of the meeting and invited her to come up to see me so we could reach Department of Sanitation Commissioner Kevin Farrell on the issue of the tickets.

After I called, Commissioner Farrell returned my call the following day, event though it was St. Patrick's Day. He is now working on rectifying the problem. The commissioner is an absolute gem. God bless you commissioner.

Other complaints which came up at RAC included the fact that mechanical brooms push the garbage but do not clean. Smyth asked the people to write the number of the equipment and his office. Many of the attendees also spoke about dog feces on Shore Front parkway. They said that tickets are rarely issued.

Community activist Liz Sulik, representing the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce, invited everyone to attend the awards luncheon given by the chamber. They are honoring those members of the NYC Fire Department, EMS, and the NYC Police Department who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to serve our community. It will be held on Tuesday, April 11 at 12:30 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus. Contact event co-chairs Liz Sulik or Harold Rochelle for reservations.

Our next trip to Atlantic City will be on Saturday, April 8. The bus leaves at 5:30 p.m. and returns 8 a.m. The cost is $25 with $15 returned. Call my office now for reservations.

This Tuesday, March 28, is a special election for state senate in the 10 Senatorial District, which covers all of Rockaway. The seat is vacated by State Senator Alton R. Waldon, who became a Court of Claims judge.

I have endorsed Malcolm Smith because he has always been his own person. We remember that in 1991 Malcolm ran in a nine-way race for the city council. Malcolm was not endorsed by the Queens County Democratic organization, which endorsed Juanita Watkins. The primary was so close the court ordered a runoff election. Unfortunately, Malcolm did not win the runoff, but he kept plugging along.

The election has not already been decided--so don't stay home. There are choices besides Democratic, Republican, Conservative and Working Families Party.

Malcolm's vision is bringing Governor George Pataki to see the diamond in the rough that is Rockaway. Malcolm wants to make sure Destination Technodome and reopening the old Rockaway Beach LIRR line become a reality. He reminds us that for the last seven years his office has been located in Far Rockaway. We feel he has made a strong commitment to the Rockaways. We urge those who are fed up with do nothing politicians to vote for Malcolm Smith on Tuesday.

We want to thank Cathy Hogan for alerting us to a sign on Beach 102 street, which said, "Rooms to Rent." When she called she was told she could rent a bedroom in a five-room apartment and share the kitchen, bath and living room. We immediately left a message on Solomon Levy's (owner) answering machine telling him this is illegal. It's time for Mr. Levy to clean up his houses there and on Rockaway Beach boulevard. We'll be watching you.

My mom died of cancer and finding a care for cancer is near and dear to my heart. A boy named Steven is fighting cancer and his family needs help to pay the bills. Make your checks payable to "Steven's Choice," c/o Full Gospel Tabernacle Church, 361 Beach 42 street, Far Rockaway, New York 11691. Give him a chance to try something different to save his life.

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