The Wave has received many calls over the past two weeks about deteriorating mail service in all of the Rockaway post offices. When Postmaster George Buonocore was reassigned in the wake of a scandal several months ago, Congressman Gregory Meeks was involved in working with residents to solve some of the problems. Anybody having delivery problems with any of the local post offices is urged to Call Meeks at 718-327- 9791.
The Rockaway Museum, located at 88- 08 Rockaway Beach Boulevard has copies of "The Rockaways: A Postcard History Series," by Emil Lucev, Jr. The books are being offered for a $25 contribution to the museum. For further information, call 718-634-4000.
There is a little more sunlight on Albany this week. Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has set up a Website dedicated to letting the public know about things our legislators have tried to keep private for years - who contributes to their campaigns and who gets their largess each year. The site can be accessed by logging into www.sunlightny.com. Try it. You'll find some surprises.
The Far Rockaway High School Alumni website at www.farrockaway.com has been blazing since the report came in last week that the 110-year-old school would be phased out to make way for several of the mayor's small schools. While everybody understands that the school of today is not the school they remember from the '50s and the '60s, most of the past graduates feel that the school has enough of a storied history that the name should not disappear, only to become the Far Rockaway Educational Campus. It seems that graduates are beginning a movement to save the school from extinction. That has not helped with other schools that the Department of Education closed down, but they believe that it's worth a shot. City Councilman James Sanders, a graduate of FRHS is calling for an emergency meeting at the school to address the closing.
The number of city homeowners struggling with foreclosure soared by more than 60 percent in the month of November. In Queens, homeowners received 1,514 default notices or filings in October, up by 120 percent over October of 2006. That is the most filings by a single borough since January of 2005, when the city began keeping that statistic. Arecent map in New York Magazine showed that the eastern end of the peninsula was one of the hardest-hit areas in the city. The Wave is working on a story about the foreclosure problem for a future issue, and if any homeowners with the problem would like to have their story told in the newspaper, they should call Managing Editor Howard Schwach at 718-634-4000. If you use the pedestrian walkway on the Cross Bay Bridge to get from Broad Channel to Rockaway, you're in for a long wait. That walkway closed last week and will not reopen until October of 2008. Take heart, however. The MTA will provide shuttle buses that will take both you and your bicycle across the bridge on a regular basis. The free bus will operate at 15-minute intervals between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. seven days a week until the walkway reopens. The buses will have room for 11 passengers and four bikes, the MTA says. The Rockaway bus stop is located at Beach 92 Street, adjacent to the closed pedestrian ramp. The Broad Channel stop is at the south curb of Van Brunt Road. Of course, the city is using Access-a- Ride vans for the job and the company's drivers went on strike on Monday. We'll have to see how it all plays out.
The annual Harry G's Doo-Wop Concert will take place on Saturday, January 26 at Beach Channel High School. Showtime is 7 p.m. and, if past concerts are any measure, the music will go on late into the night. This year's fundraising concert to benefit the Susan G Memorial Scholarship Fund at the school, will feature 10 acts, including Kenny Vance and the Planotones ("Looking for an Echo"), Lenny Coco and the Chimes ("Once in a While") and Cleveland Still and the Dubs ("Could This Be Magic?"). Those interested in purchasing tickets should call 718-646- 5580. Fred Thompson, who is running for President, apparently doesn't think that New York City represents the rest of the nation. Railing against his opponent, ex-mayor Rudy Giuliani, Thompson said, "He relates everything to New York City. Well, New York City is not emblematic of the rest of the country, I don't think."
Here's an idea. One of New York's top federal housing officials said that the city's cash-strapped Housing Authority should consider selling off its public housing buildings in expensive neighborhoods (Hammel Houses, perhaps?) to developers and then build public housing elsewhere. "It might displace some people," the official said, "but that's not necessarily a bad thing if it creates more housing elsewhere."
Motorists on Beach Channel Drive at Beach 84 Street on the first weekend in December, were surprised to find themselves diverted from the major east-west roadway by barriers and a sign that warned that the road was blocked because debris was falling from the subway elevated structure. The motorists could see large cranes and work crews up on the subway line, and it was obvious that there was a problem. Calls to city officials during the week, however, brought nothing but shrugs. Nobody at the MTA, nobody at City Hall, nobody anywhere knew anything about the problem. Must have been aliens.