2006-03-03 / Front Page

Councilman James Sanders Hosts Town Hall Meeting

By Miriam Rosenberg Contributing Editor

Councilman James Sanders Hosts Town Hall Meeting

By Miriam Rosenberg
Contributing Editor

City Councilman James Sanders, Jr.

Victoria Gordon of RDRC talks about the job training her agency is providing as Sanders listens. Victoria Gordon of RDRC talks about the job training her agency is providing as Sanders listens. hosted a Town Hall style meeting at MS 198 in Arverne last week bringing

together representatives of the Rockaway's

two police precincts, the New

York City Housing Authority (NYCHA),

the Rockaway Development and

Revitalization Corporation (RDRC) and the Department of Environmental

Protection to discuss topics of importance

to residents up and down the peninsula. A majority of the two-hour meeting was taken with up residents asking

questions of Captain Charles Neacy,

Commanding Officer of the 100 Precinct,

and the 101 Precinct's Executive

Officer, Captain Milt Marmara. Neacy reported that crime has risen

in his precinct, but he said, "It is the

safest residential command." Neacy said "Youth drove crime in the

precinct up last year. We have to talk to kids. We have to talk to churches,

At left: Captain Milt Marmara, the executive officer of the 101 Precinct, explains why officers might stop someone on the street for questioning. At right: The commanding officer of the 100 Precinct, Captain Charles Neacy describes his program for bringing down crime in his precinct.  At left: Captain Milt Marmara, the executive officer of the 101 Precinct, explains why officers might stop someone on the street for questioning. At right: The commanding officer of the 100 Precinct, Captain Charles Neacy describes his program for bringing down crime in his precinct. expand the explorers program. We don't want crimes created by kids."

The 100 Precinct's commanding officer told residents he was reinstating patrol beats in three areas - the east end of the precinct, at Beach Channel High School and in the business district on Beach 116 Street. Neacy also said his command would be concentrating on patrol visibility, gathering intelligence, keeping track of known criminals in the area, crime prevention and concentrating on petty crimes.

To Sanders comment about crime not going down in the local city housing projects that line the peninsula as much as he would like, Neacy said

There have been no major crimes in the Hammels Houses since September. There have been seven felonies," he added.

The 101's executive officer, Captain Marmara told those at the meeting that crime decreased in his precinct last year.

"Bringing crime down increases the quality of life," said Marmara.

Marmara also said the precinct has 21 new officers.

"Nineteen of the 21 will [be assigned] into the housing developments as well as commercial areas," said Marmara.

He also said the narcotics division recently concluded a six month investigation of the Dix and Refern Housing developments.

"Forty people were arrested," continued Marmara. "We hope it will make a big dent in [the drug problem]."

Audrey Anderson, the mother of fourteen year-old Andre Anderson, who was killed in a hit and run car accident in September on Short Front Parkway, asked Neacy to detail the duties of a responding officer to a crime scene.

"I realize there was an error at the time of the death [of your son]," Neacy said. He continued by saying the police officer's responsibility is to preserve the crime scene...fill out the accident report. The accident squad does the follow-up."

In response to a question about why officers stop a lot of black young men, especially at bus stops and near the Mott Avenue train station Marmara, who said he didn't "think there was an increase of black males being stopped" explained that a lot of people concentrate around transit facilities.

At left: Audrey Anderson, the mother of hit and run victim Andre Anderson who was killed in September on Short Front Parkway, asked Captain Neacy the duties of a responding officer to a crime scene. At right: Teresa Scott asked Marmara how the community's young people could regain the respect of the police. At left: Audrey Anderson, the mother of hit and run victim Andre Anderson who was killed in September on Short Front Parkway, asked Captain Neacy the duties of a responding officer to a crime scene. At right: Teresa Scott asked Marmara how the community's young people could regain the respect of the police. "Perhaps the officer observed something or a radio call of shots fired or a man with a gun was made," Marmara said. He explained there are a lot of valuations such as a general description that could cause an officer to stop someone.

Teresa Scott was concerned how the police could begin to regain the respect of the youth in the area.

Marmara suggested that police start by going to the housing developments and speaking one-on-one with them.

"At Ocean Bay and Refern, get to know everybody," he said.

Marmara also suggested getting young people involved in the explorer program.

"Young people get plugged in, even if they don't want to get into law," continued Marmara. "[You have to] keep the rapport going."

Victoria Gordon, the acting executive director of RDRC and Sanders both spoke about job training for those living in the Rockaways.

"I have put $1.3 million into the Rockaways to do job training," said Sanders, who went on to say that RDRC and Ocean Bay Community Development Corporation have received money to do job training. "Our goal is to put 200 people to work on the peninsula," said Gordon. "Call us or look us up on our website."

For more information people can call RDRC at 718 327-5300 or go to its website at www.rdrc.org.

Mike Cornelius, NYCHA's director of management of Housing in Queens assured those living in public housing that new rules will not have residents paying for electricity.

"Air conditioning will go up from $7 to $10," said Cornelius.

He also said there would be charges for repair or replacement of things not damaged through normal wear and tear.

"We are losing money, we have to generate revenue," added Cornelius.

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