2004-05-14 / Letters


Parking On The Avenues

Dear Editor,

Perhaps we should extend the new parking restrictions all along the avenues in Belle Harbor. Wouldn't that be nice, to eliminate even more parking in our forever growing neighborhood. Let's see how many residents would be in favor of interrupting their lives by this elimination. I am sure that anyone who owns a home along Rockaway Beach Boulevard has found these new parking restrictions a new found headache. Let's share that headache with our neighbors on Newport Avenue and Cronston Avenue. Let's see how long they would tolerate the headache. I guarantee it wouldn't be long.

I don't think these new restrictions have done anything but enable cars to go even faster in a two lane highway now created and create more tension in a neighborhood where parking is already at a premium.


Not To Rockaway

Dear Editor:

I couldn't help laughing a bit when I read Kevin Callahan's letter regarding the capital improvement money for Queens, which will result from the approval of the city's airport lease deal with the Port Authority.  The land use application on the lease was presented and acted upon by all of the Community Boards in Queens affected.  It is my understanding that all of them, with just one exception, supported and approved the deal.  What Board was the exception?

Community Board 14!  So, it seems that Rockaway said it did not want a deal that would provide this money to Queens.  Does Mr. Callahan really believe that when it comes to doling out this money that the other Community Boards are going to roll over and say, "oh yeah, give it to good old Rockaway?" Not in this lifetime, I'd bet.


311 No Help, Addabbo Was

Dear Editor:

This letter is in response to "311 NO HELP" Friday April 16,2004. I had a similar situation two years ago when there was an accident in front of my house and a light pole and street sign lay on my side walk for over 6 weeks, I called the DOT, LIPA, LILCO, CON EDISON and I was very frustrated and getting no place until one of my neighbors recommended I call the office of Joseph Addabbo our Councilmember and I did. A very nice lady named Sandee, took my call and in a matter of three days not only were the old light pole and street sign removed but a new pole and street sign were put in place.

I would recommend that Nicole Jones and anyone who have problem always call the office of Mr. Addabbo and avoid all your aggravations they are extremely helpful and friendly and I was told they are there for us.

I would just like to clarify that I am not in politics and I only met Mr. Addabbo for the first time a few weeks ago at the RAA function. I am just trying to give credit to where it belongs.


Not In The Public Trust

The following letter was sent to officials of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) by Richard George, the director of the Beach and Bungalow Association in Far Rockaway.

Dear Editor;

NOAA has not conducted a complete Section 312 DRAFT Evaluation, which would encompass, in it's totality, the nine key issues of national significance and include the legal and enforceable Public Access policies which incorporate Public Trust Doctrine principles and adherence to any portion of the financial awards, grant, work plans and cooperative agreements.

According to the Public Trust Doctrine and Pubic Access in New Jersey discussion prepared by the Urban Harbors Institute of the University of Massachusetts, Boston under contract with NJ Coastal Management Program which is funded by NOAA: The use of the Coastal Zone Management Rules (CZMA) have proven to be a powerful tool to ensuring public access yet NOAA has ignored these powerful tools in the evaluation of New York State's Implementation Coastal Management Program.

There were federal and state court cases which argued the state should also insure sufficient access points between nearby public right-of-ways and the waterfront termed "perpendicular" or "vertical" access. Subsequent rulings have concluded that the public has the right of access not only to wetland beach but also the dry sand beach, even if they are privately owned. If public access points, running between nearby right-of-way and the waterfront are too widely spaced, then the intervening stretches of coastline become de facto private beaches, due to public access being generally impractical. Such becomes private domain of nearby waterfront property owners, such as the actions that obstruct public access presented as comments and evidence at the Federal Public Meeting, Wavecrest Gardens II, Duane Reade and Arverne, Brighton Beach and Bergen Beach that were not evaluated by NOAA in this DRAFT Evaluation.
To prevent this it would be necessary for the state to establish a greater
number of perpendicular access points so that the public can reach the more isolated public trust lands.  Instead the state is eliminating "EXISTING" public access and NOAA is helping them do that by not conducting the evaluations, continuing reviews pursuant to their authority under the administrative regulations 15 CFR 921 and 922 and 923.

The CZMA Rules are designed to protect, maintain and enhance existing public access areas which include public parks. The NEW WRP Public Access Policy 8 presents standards to protect, maintain and repair existing public access streets and easements on privately owned property and has not been evaluated in this DRAFT Evaluation.

The Beachside Bungalow area is built on landfill over public trust lands, and the many public access areas recorded in the deeds as streets and over the private priorities of the bungalow owners WAS NOT EVALUATED OR CONTAINED in the DRAFT Evaluation. These "existing public access" easements are protected under the Public Trust Doctrine that was incorporated into the State and City Public Access Policies, which are legally enforceable policies that no one at each level of government, NOAA, the State or City is enforcing in this CZMA national land and water use plan.

The other policies that have not been enforced are the Development Policies 1, 2 and 6 and NEPA, SEQR and CEQR that should concur with the Council on Environmental Quality's First Annual Report (CEQ). The CEQ's Report as part of the CZMA Legislative History include mortgage and subsidy properties that include FHA pre-approved mortgages and federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit subsidy programs included in the public comments BUT not included as part of this DRAFT Evaluation.

The information presented in this e-mail are some of the reasons why this CZMA program and its funding and evaluations practices that do not adhere to the ACT or its Regulations at each level of government should be investigated and audited.


Over His Head

Dear Editor;

I just read about C. Talamo's "promotion" in the 5/8/04 edition of the Wave. Talamo was just transferred last September to a Queens precinct, was he not?

Usual tours of duty are two years. Talamo must have made quite an impression! I have a different interpretation: the Dilbert Principle!

When an employee cannot be kept out of trouble, and you don't want to fire him, the only way to prevent him from causing more damage is to put him in management!

Very creative on the part of the PD..thanks!


The Perilous State Of Business

Dear Editor:

On these pages a few weeks ago State Senator Malcolm Smith wrote of the jobless conditions in NY State and the perilous state of business in New York State.  He also offered a suggestion...why not establish a linkage, he suggests, between New York State and certain active, progressive Indian states.

He's certainly dead-on with his prognosis...NY State has been in a state of decline for the last twenty years and job growth today is at one-half America's job growth rate.  From 1990 thru 2003, for instance,  US job growth grew by 19% while NY State jobs grew at a festering 2.7% pace.

I think, though, Senator Smith is a bit misguided with his prescription.  Indian 'outsource' services and businesses are low-cost providers for the US and the world.  No low-cost provider would establish, prosper or even survive in a high-cost environment...and NY State is the ultimate high-cost environment!

Why would any business - low-cost provider or not - choose NY State over our 49 brothers and sisters?  Our tax structure and compensation issues are totally out of control, while our self-regulatory State Legislature rules behind a heavy & musty cloak of silence.  What right-thinking CEO would court such disaster?

'Pete', you might say, 'you are exaggerating these problems...all states have raised taxes these days'. Unfortunately, the Citizen's Budget Commission's conclusions from a November 2003 report speak for themselves, "New Study Finds NY State Taxes are Highest in the Nation".  This non-partisan group - the CBC - found NY state taxes 72% higher than the US average.  Among the 11 large, urbanized states with which NY competes, six have tax structures below the US average, and the next worst - behind NY - imposes a tax burden 20% above the average.  In other words, not only is NY the worst confiscator, but far worse than all other major states combined!

Would you like to see your taxes (& mine, too!) at work?  No more clear & obvious example exists than in State Senator Sheldon Silver's district.  Walk over to the western edge of Shelly Silver's jurisdiction and look across Henry Hudson's River and you'll see a transformed New Jersey waterfront, compliments of NY State and NY City tax policy.  There are now new gleaming office towers abutting NY, but circumventing NY.  As the CBC points out, NY State's high tax burden is evident for every major category...income taxes 5 times the national average, sales taxes double the national average & property taxes 33% higher than the national average.  So, our Jersey neighbors/commuters have finally cried 'uncle' and rebuilt their home state. 

What else do we have to show for our annual April 15th contributions...well, we have NYC cops and firefighters makin' $32,000 a year, while empowerment & diversity trainers pull down 6 figure salaries; we have an occupation army that works for NYC (yeah, 247,000 people work for the City of NY) movin' paper from one murky office to another; and we have a School Board - until very recently - graduating less than 50% of our students on time, while they commission quarter-million dollar studies on 'why Johnny has 2 Mommies & still can't read?'.

Senseless, foolish, self-destructive... this is the position we in NY find ourselves.  Dell is in Texas, Micron in Idaho, the 'Research Triangle' in North Carolina and - as we speak - the Scripps Research Institute presently building a new science center in Florida.  What we have is Dan Rather & Susan Sarandon.

Senator Smith, thank you for your concerns for our state, but please help us...jump out of the box and part from those 'progressive' self-destructive policies of old. 

Before the last engineer has rolled up his plans and left Long Island, Senator Smith, throw open the doors and declare Nassau & Suffolk Counties tax-free zones.  Restore the entrepreneurial spirit of these 2 million New Yorkers & challenge these incredibly-educated Long Islanders.  Invite Lockheed's 'skunk-works' and Genetech's research labs to America's fabled Big Island. 

Before IBM and PepsiCo lock their last door, Senator Smith, cut taxes, cut spending & stop the unnecessary meddling in corporate affairs. 

By your actions, Senator Smith, not your sentiments, demonstrate to the world business community of Akiro Morita, Jurgen Schremp, Marco Provera and Federico Sada that NY's Southern Tier is again open for business and investment.

Most importantly, Senator Smith, offer our SUNY & CUNY graduates the opportunities they crave and deserve...to use all they've learned in Oswego, Binghamton, Potsdam, Stony Brook, Baruch & York.

In short, Senator Smith, in the words of Voltaire, PLEASE  'till your own garden'


Spring Little League Fever

Dear Editor;

As the spring begins and we start packing away those winter memories, we bring ourselves to a new season, baseball season that is. It's time to make our way down to Fort Tilden and pay homage to America's pastime. That usually includes many smiles from the young ones as they work on their home run trot, change ups and rally caps. It also includes dinner at 8:30, coaches sneaking out of work early and changing in the parking lot before games.

There are many things we in Rockaway should be thankful for when it comes to baseball. It is the Rockaway Little League's 50th Anniversary (and I think Marty and Rick have been for there for most of them). As many of the city's baseball programs are falling by the wayside, the Rockaway Little League is blossoming with participation higher year after year. That's a testament to the league and some of its coaches, past and present. Guys like Jim Roberts, Frank Iudica, Tommy Burke, Tom Boland and Tommy Morgan to just name a few. They all share the quality of working hard and caring.

Furthermore, thanks to guys like Vinny Esposito, who introduced many of the Rockaway boys to the Cadets, there are as many as 60 kids from 9-13 years old traveling over the bridge to play in leagues in Brooklyn while still playing for the Rockaway Little League. These teams are headed by Richie Knott, Vinny Esposito, Jim McCool and Ed Fitzpatrick, some of Rockaway's best coaching talent. But as we move into this new season, we as coaches and parents need to keep some things in perspective.

Although we all hope our son or daughter will be the next top recruit the probability of that happening is quite remote. Sure, there will be some youngsters that do make it to the "next level" but it requires an enormous commitment from them to get to that level and a similar commitment by the parents.

A few things for coaches to consider as we work our way through the season: When that boy or girl is out there pitching and the coach yells out "Just throw Strikes!!" or when they are in the batters box and swing and miss and the coach yells out "hit the ball!!", my immediate thought is don't you think they are trying to do that. Also, in a game situation don't expect the kids to know how to bunt or the correct base to throw to if you haven't worked on it in practice.

Keep in mind what the big picture goal is for the kids; to be around their friends, learn something they enjoy and most likely eat as many Hot Dogs and candy as possible in 6 innings. If winning is part of that mix, they enjoy that also. The coaches should help fulfill these goals (maybe not the Hot Dogs) with encouragement, enthusiasm and a positive atmosphere. That's not to say that teaching baseball isn't part of that. If anyone wants to get an idea of what all of us coaches should be striving for come to an Apex game on field 3 some Saturday or Sunday and watch Chris McCabe come to the plate in his wheelchair with kids from each team cheering him on. It's a wonderful sight. By the way, he's 8 for 8 on the season.

So, the next time you are walking by a field and you hear a coach yell out, Hey Tommy or Eugene let's hope it's not to say "Just throw strikes!!" but to encourage them to do their best.


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