2005-03-11 / Community

Broad Channel Volies Money Bill Goes To House Floor

By Howard Schwach


Artist’s rendering of the new BCVFD firehouse, which will be built on Cross Bay Boulevard nearby the American Legion Hall. Should the money from the House of Representatives be forthcoming, those funds would “put the organization over the top.”Artist’s rendering of the new BCVFD firehouse, which will be built on Cross Bay Boulevard nearby the American Legion Hall. Should the money from the House of Representatives be forthcoming, those funds would “put the organization over the top.” A bill that includes $1 million dollars for a new Broad Channel Volunteer Fire Department (BCVFD) firehouse has been voted out of committee and moved to the full House of Representatives for a vote, according to Kathryn Prael, a spokesperson for Congressman Anthony Weiner, who represents Broad Channel in the House of Representatives.

“The bill should go to the floor soon,” Prael said on Monday.

In a brochure handed out by Weiner and his staff members at the recent St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Rockaway, Weiner, who is running for Mayor, wrote, “The volunteer fire department has always been there for the people of Broad Channel, so when it became time to replace the dilapidated fire house, just about everybody pitched in. Now, thanks to Congressman Anthony Weiner, so is the Federal Government – to the tune of $1 Million. The new facility will allow the BCFD to keep an eye on the neighborhood and also be available if there is ever an emergency at JFK Airport.”

Despite Weiner’s claim that the money is forthcoming, legislative experts say that it is far from being a done deal. The House has to debate the bill and have an affirmative vote, keeping the Broad Channel money in place. The Senate has to vote on a similar bill. Should the Senate version be different than the House version, the bill has to go to a Conference Committee made up of members of both houses of Congress.

Then, the President has the option of vetoing the bill.

“The bill has a long road before it becomes a law, if it ever does,” a local political science expert says.

An official of the BCVFD agrees.

“I haven’t heard anything about the money for a while,” said the organization’s new Chief, Thomas Larkin. “I will believe that we are going to get the money when I see it.”

Larkin added that the money would “put the volies over the top and insure that the firehouse would be built.”

The Wave contacted Senator Hillary Clinton, who visited Broad Channel last June for an American Legion parade and spent more than an hour with BCVFD officials. Clinton’s press secretary said that the Senate bill was not that far along, and that no specifis were yet in the Senate bill.

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