2008-09-26 / Columnists


There has been a noticeable increase in the panhandling on Beach 116 Street in recent months. And, some say, the panhandlers are getting more aggressive. While some take a rejection with a, "Thank you, have a good day," others question why a person will not give them any money. We understand that there is no legal way to move the panhandlers off the street, or to stop them from asking people for money, but perhaps a beat cop who was constantly on the street could deter some of the more aggressive activity.

Vietnam vet Howard Cienski has donated a new flagpole to the St. Francis de Sales parish. The flagpole, which stands in front of the parish school, will be dedicated on November 10, the day before Veterans Day. A plaque will be placed at the site stating that the pole is dedicated in memory of longtime parish member Pat Raymond.

Those who believe that they adopted a dog from the North Shore Animal League at the Rockaway Music And Arts Council Fall Festival last weekend should know that the dog really comes from the New York City Animal Care and Control agency. One local found out that the Nassau County organization lends out its adoption van to the city when it is not otherwise in use, and the city does nothing to debase the belief that the dogs come from the famed Nassau organization. She found out only because the rabies vaccination tag was not in her package, so she called the Animal League to get another. That's when she was told that the dog came not from them, but from the city. She says that the dog is healthy and happy, and she will keep it, but that she feels betrayed by the North Shore Animal League, an organization that she has used for pet adoptions in the past.

The aircraft carrier, USS Intrepid, will soon return to its Manhattan berth after two years away being refurbished. The carrier, which survived Kamikaze attacks during World War II and served in both Korea and Vietnam, will return on October 2 to Pier 86 at 12 Avenue and 46 Street. The public will be able to view the ship's return from Staten Island, the last leg of its trip, from sites along the west side, including Battery Park and Pier 86, which will be open for the ship's return. The ship serves as a sea, air and space museum. It is interesting to note, however, that the Concorde aircraft, which has been at Aviator Sports at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn during the carrier's rejuvenation, may not return to the Intrepid. Internet sites are reporting that the original deal to bring the Concorde to Brooklyn included a mandate that the sports complex pay for its return trip to the Intrepid. New ownership has taken over at Aviator, however, the website reports, and the new owners say that all deals are off. We'll have to wait and see how this turns out.

New York City residents will now be able to send photos and documents to the 911 and 311 systems through their cell phones and computers, officials announced last week. Those who want to send photos to accompany 311 calls should log onto www.nyc.gov. Those who want to send crime photos to the NYPD crime center should call 911 and tell the operator that there are photos available. The operators will take it from there.

Trish Bertuccio of the Department of Parks and Recreation emailed The Wave to say that the we received some erroneous information for our article "Parks Updates Timeline for Repairing Boardwalk." In that August 29 issue, we reported that the city was installing handicap-accessible ramps at the beaches at Beach 104 and Beach 102 Streets. According to Bertuccio, the ramps will be installed at Beach 24 and Beach 104 Streets.

The Tuesday, September 16 edition of the Daily News showed a prominent photo of Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, City Councilman Joseph Addabbo Jr. and district leader Frank Gulluscio decrying the smell of rotting fish in Howard Beach. Both Pheffer and Gulluscio (he will be running next year for Addabbo's seat) are holding their noses, while Addabbo holds a fish. We have to wonder where the trio was when the city's wastewater treatment plant in Rockaway stunk up the place for days on end. It seems as if our elected officials have given up on Rockaway, showing up only when there is some ceremonial chore to do, and sometimes not even then.

Speaking of Addabbo, we were sure that he would do well in his race against Republican Serph Maltese in the mainland race for the State Senate, but now we are not so sure. First of all, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who asked Addabbo to run against Maltese in the last election, is now campaigning for the Republican politician, and perhaps even funding his campaign, as some reports suggest. Maltese is running attack ads on local editions of CNN stating that Addabbo is not the person that Democrats want representing them. They are very effective ads that portray Addabbo as a typical liberal politician. While Rockaway has no dog in this hunt, many locals are keeping an eye on the race and are telling mainland friends that Addabbo abandoned Rockaway and that he might well do the same to them should he be elected.

The new Enhanced Driver License issued by New York State is now available to those renewing their licenses at all motor vehicle offices. State officials say that the new license will allow a driver to "carry a single, secure document that meets their driving, identity and land and sea border crossing needs. It can be used as a passport for land and sea border crossings between the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean." There is an additional charge for the new licenses.

The Ocean Bay Community Development Corporation is sponsoring a voter registration drive that will last until October 9. Those who want to register to vote in the upcoming presidential election should go to the Arverne Social Center, 339 Beach 54 Street, from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. any weekday.

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