2012-09-28 / Columnists

Beachcomber

The Wave will host a debate between Eric Ulrich and Joseph P. Addabbo Jr., the two candidates for the State Senate seat in the 15th District. The debate will be held at the West End Temple, 147- 02 Newport Avenue, at 7:30 p.m. on October 30. We are asking our readers to submit questions that they would like to ask the two candidates about issues in and around Rockaway. The Wave editorial board will choose a number of those questions to be asked at the debate.

While it is not illegal for gambling companies to provide campaign money for politicians, it seems somehow wrong for Genting, the giant Malaysian company that owns the Racino at Aqueduct, to provide substantial amounts of money to local politicians and even host fundraisers for them at the same time that those politicians will be voting on the future direction of gambling in New York State. Two locals, State Senator Joseph P. Addabbo and Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder have been the major recipients of Genting’s largess. It’s amazing to note that State Senator Shirley Huntley, under indictment for pumping money into a non-profit that she founded and that was run by her friends and which, court documents show, had no intention of fulfilling its public mission, got more than 3,000 votes in her recent primary against City Councilman James Sanders. It makes one wonder if people actually read the news to find out what is going on in their community before voting. Or, could it be a mistrust of government prosecutors. In any case, we are glad that she is gone from the political scene. The City Council race for the seat that James Sanders is leaving to become a State Senator is heating up as you read this. There will most likely be a special election sometime in February to fill the seat until the regular November election. You’ll remember that candidates for a special election cannot run for any specific existing party, so it could easily become a free-for-all. The front runner, of course, is Donovan Richards, a young man who has been Sanders’ chief of staff for a long time. Recently, however, the large and powerful Orthodox Jewish community in Far Rockaway has been thinking about running a candidate of their own for the seat, and that person would be a formidable opponent for Richards. Then, there are always fringe candidates who believe that a free-for-all is their best chance to sneak in. There are already a number of civic activists who are looking longingly at the possibilities. Then, of course, there are the Republicans, who have kept a small profile in that area for many years. When the new seats were set up 20 years ago, the premise was that the east end seat would be a “minority” seat, a feat that was guaranteed by putting every minority-heavy census tract in that district. Now, 20 years later, that might guarantee a win to a non-minority due to the large growth of the Orthodox Jews in West Lawrence.

When you see something, say something! That modern injunction led to a large police response on West 12th Road in Broad Channel on Wednesday, September 19. Seems that one of the locals saw a man wheeling a dolly with a number of large cylinders towards the bay. What he did not see was the propane delivery truck at the head of the street. In any case, the suspicious local called 911 and in no time at all, several cars from the 100 Precinct showed up. By that time, the delivery man and his truck were gone and it took some time to straighten everything out. The local apologized to the cops for bringing them running, but they told him that he had done the right thing by calling.

The Department of Design and Construction has been working extensively in the Rockaway Beach area for the past year. The agency has completed the majority of the work that needs to be done, but still has the water main on Beach Channel Drive between Beach 88 and Beach 91 Streets, the sanitary sewer in the same area and a storm sewer nearby to complete this month and next. Then, hopefully, the roads, now among the worst in the city thanks to the work, will be smoothed out and repaved.

Last week, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that he would have to make cuts in the budgets of most city agencies because his plan to create new taxis and sell millions of dollars worth of new medallions was turned down by the court. At the same time, he hiked the pay of 48 staffers who work for his office by as much as 20 percent. It’s another example of how much the people who actually live in this city mean to the mayor. If you are not a millionaire or a tourist, step to the back of the line.

Last week, The Wave reported that the money for the musical entertainment at the 9-11 Tribute Park ceremonies came from the Rockaway Artists Alliance when, in fact, the music was funded by the Rockaway Music and Arts Council. We regret the error and hope that it did not cause anybody embarrassment.

Now that the summer months are over, dog lovers may once again walk their dogs on the beach and the boardwalk – not that they haven’t been doing it all summer. The rules say that from October 2 to April 30 leashed dogs are allowed on the beach and boardwalk. The operative word is “leashed,” and remember to clean up after your pooch.

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