2003-08-15 / Columnists

Simon says...

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon, Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B
Simon says...

Simon says...


Lew M. SimonLew M. Simon

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon, Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

There is still time to enjoy our monthly Atlantic City trip to Trump Marina on Saturday, August 16. We leave at 5:30 p.m., and return at 8 a.m. from the Good Government Regular Democratic club at 112-20 Beach Channel Drive. The cost is $28 with $14 returned. We have eight hours to enjoy. Call 718 945-1216 now for reservations.

This past week we have been inundated with a monsoon. If we are unhappy now, we wonder what we will be in for this winter.

We would like to notify everyone that there will be no primary election in our area because there were no challenges for September 9.

Congratulations to the members of School Board 27 who got an extension on their terms of office. We hope they will be able to continue so that local parents, education activists and those who want to speak out about issues affecting their local schools will have a place to voice their opinion.

Our local schools will face a difficult time in September. Many teachers have retired and paras and aides have been laid off. New supervisors will be in charge. Dr. Cashin will be running our region 5, which includes Brownsville and East New York. Rita Geremita will be the superintendent of District 27. Rita was the C-30 administrator under Superintendents Josephine Schwindt and Brenda Issacs. She then became principal of PS 232.

Our District 27 Superintendent Matt Bromme has retired from the school system. We were saddened by the fact that Matt Bromme was not allowed to continue serving the district he loved. Instead he was sent to be in charge of the "No Child Left Behind" rules for the whole city. Matt did a fantastic job with this district. We wish our great friend Matt the best.

We wish Dr. Cashin and Rita Geremita and the whole staff of Region 5 good luck and success. We look forward to working closely with you to improve the quality and standards of education in Region 5 and District 27.

Tuesday evening was National Night Out Against Crime. This is the annual take back the streets against crime and drugs. The event was held once again at Rockaway’s Beach Club.

That evening, I chose to once again take the beach and boardwalk petitions to obtain signatures from my constituents and neighbors to rid us of antiquated beach and boardwalk rules.

Once again I was harassed by one of the 100 Precinct’s Community Relations officers. He seemed to think I should not be soliciting signatures for our worthy cause at this event. I reminded the officer that the petition had nothing to do with the Police Department or its officers.

A few minutes later 100 Precinct Council President Howard Jate Doremus asked me to stop taking signatures in the parking lot. When I questioned him why, he said my petition was political. Were they political due to the fact that his wife Sandee works for Councilman Joe Addabbo? Councilman Addabbo is Chair of the Council’s Parks and Recreation committee, and one of the people we will be presenting petitions to. Is it not a major conflict of interest for him to have yelled at me?

I asked him what was political about it. He stated this petition would be going to the mayor. We felt it was completely ridiculous to receive this harassment for doing what I believe was my first amendment right. We have freedom of speech and to petition the government. None of the people we approached refused to sign.

One of the police officers suggested that we stand in the street, which we did. It was brought to my attention later on that Jate Doremus forced the issue of forcing me out of the parking lot. For the last 10 years I have always sung my theme song "Ain’t No Stopping Us Now" at these events. After I spoke, the DJ put on my song. Jate Doremus refused to let me use the mike. What’s with this childish behavior?

For many years, Jate and his wife Sandee Doremus have worked together with me on many issues of concern to this community. I personally like the Doremuses. Why has the score changed? Is it because a fire has been lit under the Councilman’s backside on the beach and boardwalk issue? We look forward to hearing their response.

The fireworks were 20 minutes of sheer bliss, but it was reported to me that people who stood on the boardwalk were hit by ashes. I wish to congratulate Ellen Connolly and the Connolly School dancers on their magnificent performances. We also wish to congratulate Sensi Bruce Hodes on World Championship Karate Center, which is located under my office for their great performance. We only hear good things about World Champion Karate.

We wish to extend belated happy birthday wishes to State Senator Malcolm Smith. He celebrated on Sunday August 9. We wish you many, many happy birthdays.

On Friday evening we attended the 110th anniversary of The Wave. It was a gala event at Pier 92. Publisher Susan Locke, General Manager Sandy Bernstein and Editor Howie Schwach were great hosts and hostesses. At this event were State Senator Malcolm Smith, Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, all of the columnists and staff as well as community leaders. This event was a class act.

A beautiful barbeque and buffet dinner was served with drinks and great conversation. I am very proud to be one of the columnists and to have my voice heard in the community. The Wave is widely read and I know my column is widely read by the responses to my office. I thank Susan, Sandy, Howie and the staff for giving me the privilege and honor to write my column in this wonderful newspaper.

Congratulations to all the staff. Here’s to another 110 years.

On Monday morning at 8:30 a.m., a Belle Harbor resident attempted to move one of his cars out of his garage to get to his other car. When he moved the car out, he left the key in the ignition. When he moved the other car out, he was in for a rude awakening. His first car was stolen.

After swift action by the 100 Precinct, the car was found with some damage, but promptly returned. Congratulations to the 100 Precinct on a fine job and let me remind people to never leave keys in the ignition.

We would like to congratulate the five board members who were elected or reelected to the board of the Breezy Point Cooperative. Congratulations to Steve Greenberg, John Conroy, John Kelly, Arthur J. Smith and William Tietjen. We know how hard it is to be involved in a non-paid position and at the same time hold a full time job. I tip my hat and congratulate these fine men. We look forward to working together on issues and concerns that affect our community. Please feel free to reach out to me at any time.


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