Queens Child Guidance Center
The Queens Child Guidance Center celebrated its 51ST Anniversary in 2004. It has earned the respect of its community for its unwavering commitment to the highest quality of care, for its ability to grow and adapt as Queens has changed, for its cadre of highly skilled bi-lingual and bi-cultural staff, and for its sensitivity to the impact of culture and immigration on families. Last year, the Center served more than 10,000 children, youth and families. For additional information on the Center's current services, please contact them at 60-02 Queens Boulevard, Woodside, NY 11377, (718) 651-7700, or visit their web site at www.qcgc.org.
New York Hall of Science
The Hall of Science recently celebrated its 29th Anniversary of service to the community. The New York Hall of Science, located at 47-01 111th Street in Flusing Meadow Park, is New York City's only hands-on science and technology center. The Hall features more than 225 hands-on exhibits. On November 24, visitors welcomed a new, doubled New York Hall of Science. Over $82 Million has been raised to ensure learning and fun for hundreds of thousands of families, students, and teachers in training and youngsters climbing the Science Career Ladder. Visit the New York Hall of Science in Flushing Meadow Park or find more information at their web site, www.nyscience.org or by phone, (718) 699-0005.
Queens Theatre in the Park
On August 7, Queens Theatre in the Park concluded the 2004 Latino Cultural Festival. This was the 8TH year for the festival which brought talented artists from across Latin America to the stages of Queens Theatre in the Park. For the past several years, the Theatre has commissioned the creation of a new work from Latin American artists. This year, La Lagrima of Mexico created "Canciones para el Camino/Songs for the Road." Newsday's Steve Dollar proclaimed the Fesitval an "increasingly vital showcase." The Festival was also extensively covered in the Spanish language media, including an article in a Mexico based magazine entitled Procesco. The Theatre presents over 450 shows each year, and is located in Flushing Meadow Corona Park. To learn more about Queens Theatre in the Park, please call their box office at (718) 760-0064, or visit their web-site at www.queenstheatre.org.
New Opportunities For Disabled New Yorkers
A new law was passed in November 2004 that will increase opportunities for New Yorkers with disabilities, allowing them to live more independent and productive lives in a community setting. The Nursing Facility Transition and Diversion law authorizes the New York State Department of Health to seek a new Federal waiver under the Medicaid program to provide home and community based services to individuals who may otherwise be cared for in a skilled nursing facility. It will also provide funding to reimburse many for services in the community setting that are not presently included in the traditional Medicaid program. Specifically, the services that will be covered under Medicaid would include case management, independent living skills training, support for assistive technology and other support services needed to maintain a more independent lifestyle.
Those eligible for participation in the Nursing Facility Transition and Diversion Medicaid Waiver Program include those who are: at least eighteen years of age; eligible for and in receipt of Medicaid; currently residing in a nursing home or are in need of skilled nursing care; and capable of residing in the community with the help of nursing facility transition and diversion services. The Department of Health will contract with not-for-profit agencies throughout New York State that are experienced in providing community based services to people with disabilities. These agencies will assure that individuals have a choice in selecting a service coordinator and other providers, as well as to assess applicants for waiver participation.
Service Helps Seniors Make a Difference
More and more older Americans are realizing that volunteering is a perfect way for them to remain active, creative and productive in their later years. An estimated half a million Americans age 55 and over volunteer for nonprofits, public agencies, and faith-based organizations. A non-profit web-site called VolunteerMatch has helped more than 29,000 nonprofits post over 30,000 volunteer opportunities online. Visitors to the site simply enter their ZIP code at www.volunteermatch.org to find local volunteer opportunities.
MTA Skips Queens For Fare Hike Hearings
Board members of the MTA concluded a series of public hearings in November to consider voting on measures that may include fare and toll hikes, service cuts and booth closures. The round of five hearings took MTA officials across the Metropolitan area to review revenue-generating proposals. Public hearings were held in Manhattan, Staten Island, Long Island and White Plains. The hearing nearest to Queens was held on Nov. 10, 2004 at Franklin K. Lane High School in Cypress Hill, Brooklyn - near the Queens border, but outside the borough.
These hearings were required before the MTA could raise subway fares and bridge tolls in order to meet a projected $1 billion budget deficit over the next several years. Proposals currently under consideration would raise the price of a weekly MetroCard to $24 from $21, a monthly card to $76 from $70, and express bus fare to $5 from $4. These price hikes would come less than two years after the MTA's last fare hike, which raised the standard subway and bus fare by 50 cents. Some 13 subway booths in Queens would face closure under the MTA proposal.
Do Not Call Cell Phone Registry
A directory of cell phone numbers will soon be published for all consumers to have access to. This will open the doors for solicitors to call you on your cell phones, using up precious minutes. The Federal Trade Commission has set up a "do not call" list called a cell phone registry. To be included on the "do not call" list, you must call from the number you wish to register. The number is 1-888-382-1222 or you can go to their web site at www.donotcall.gov and add your number to the do not call list.
Heart Disease is Women's No. 1 Killer
The American Heart Association held a campaign earlier this year called "Go Red for Women" to raise awareness of cardiovascular disease, women's No. 1 killer. The campaign invites women to take charge of their heart, make it a top priority and live a stronger, longer life. Heart disease and stroke claim more women's lives each year than the next seven causes of death combined, and nearly twice as many as all forms of cancer, including breast cancer. Ninety-percent of women feel they have power over their health - but only 27 percent say their health is a top priority - according to a recent American Heart Association survey. This lack of urgency about such a serious health threat contributes to the deaths of more than 500,000 American women each year. By calling 1-888-MY-HEART or visiting americanheart. org, women will receive a Heart Health Tool Kit with tips and information about taking charge of their heart health. I have once again introduced legislation, which the Assembly has passed, that gives taxpayers the opportunity to contribute to the Heart Disease Prevention and Education Fund on their income tax returns (A.6896-Passed Assembly; S.2668A-Rules).
Carbon Monoxide - A Silent Danger
Carbon Monoxide is considered a silent killer. The gas is colorless and odorless and can be produced by burning any fuel, such as natural gas, gasoline, wood or coal. Carbon monoxide can come from household appliances such as stoves or washers and dryers. While the installation of a carbon monoxide detector is required in several counties throughout New York State, state legislation has been proposed to require the installation of carbon monoxide detectors in various multiple dwellings and other rental premises where the dwelling unit contains or is serviced by a gas-fueled or an oil-fueled appliance or device (A7941B; A8275; and A442A). Current New York State law requires the installation of carbon monoxide detectors in every one or two family dwelling or any dwelling accommodation located in a building owned as a condominium or cooperative in the state, constructed or offered for sale after the effective date of this law (Laws of New York State, 2002- Chapter 257; Effective November 1, 2004).
|Assemblyman Aubry addresses members of the NYS Coalition for Women Prisoners during their visit to Albany, NY on March 9, 2004.|
The following scholarships are available for High School Seniors. For further information regarding the requirements for these and other scholarships, you may contact your local library - East Elmhurst Library (718) 424-2619; Corona Library (718) 426-2844; or the Langston Hughes Library (718) 651-1100.
Queens Primary and Secondary Schools
Queens has 263 public schools with approximately 286,807 pupils, 92 Catholic schools with an enrollment of 48,387, 40 schools of other Christian denominations, 34 Jewish schools, 41 private non-religious schools and three state-operated schools.
Queens Colleges and Universities
Queens also has seven Colleges and Universities with Campuses with a total enrollment of 63,637 students.
The following degree-granting institutions have campuses in Queens:
Safe Routes to School Program
The state legislature passed legislation that would direct the state Department of Transportation to establish a "Safe Routes to Schools" program to promote pedestrian and bicycle safety and traffic calming project near schools (A.10057-A/S.7267-A; Delivered to the Governor).
School Bus Safety
The Assembly passed legislation that would require that drivers of vehicles transporting pre-school or nursery-school children to or from school submit to criminal history background checks, mandatory testing of their behind-the-wheel skills and knowledge of the rules of the road, medical exams and standards for disqualification. (A.1193; Passed Assembly; Referred to the Senate)
The recommendations by the court appointed referees in the Campaign for Fiscal Equity case were submitted to the Judge on November 30, 2004. These recommendations confirmed the Assembly Majority's position that resources plus reform produce educational results. The recommendations respond to the goals set in the CFE case, the Assembly's plan on a statewide basis, and truly respond to the criteria established by the court over a year ago. Several outcomes are possible at this point and include, but are not limited to, an Order from the Judge affirming the court-appointed referees' recommendations whereby the state would carry out its provisions over the course of four years; or the state could appeal the Judge's Order to do so. In the interim, in the interest of expediting a statewide solution, the Assembly Majority has called for an immediate education reform summit of the Executive, legislative leaders, representatives from the State Board of Regents and the Mayor of the City of New York. To view a copy of the referee's report, which includes a table that outlines the funding breakdown (New York City to receive $5.63 Billion over the course of 4 years), you may visit www.cfequity.org.
Rockefeller Drug Law Reform
The Assembly Majority and the Senate reached a bipartisan agreement to reform sentencing provisions of the state's Rockefeller Drug Laws. Under the legislation (A.11895/S.7802) which was signed by the Governor on December 14, 2004:
The agreement also provides for possible retroactive sentencing relief for approximately 400 inmates. Under the bill, A-1 felony offenders serving sentences of 15 to 25 years to life, would be eligible to apply to their sentencing courts for a conversion of their sentence to a new term consistent with these reforms. A denial of resentencing or an excessive resentencing term could be appealed by the offender to the Appellate Division on the grounds that the denial of resentencing or the resentencing term was harsh and excessive. Another major reform under the bill would provide offenders with easier access to the state's Comprehensive Alcohol and Substance Abuse Treatment Program (CASAT). Weight possession thresholds were also changed under the bill for A-1 and A-II heroin and cocaine possession crimes f rom 4 to 8 ounces for A-1 felonies and from 2 to 4 ounces for A-II felonies. Weight thresholds for sale and attempted sale crimes, as well as for possessing other drugs and at other felony levels, were not changed. While this is a small step towards reform, the Assembly remains committed to making further steps towards reform during the next legislative session on this important issue.
On June 24, 2004, the State Court of Appeals declared New York's death penalty law unconstitutional. According to the ruling, the sentencing instructions under the law could coerce juries into choosing death over life without parole. Juries were advised during the sentencing phase that a deadlock would automatically give the convicted criminal a lesser sentence of 20 to 25 years to life in prison, with the possibility of parole. The June 2004 ruling guarantees that no one currently on death row in New York State can be executed, nor can the death penalty be sought in any pending case. New York's death penalty has cost the state $170 Million since it was adopted in 1995. The Senate majority passed a bill in 2004 to address the unconstitutionality of the law, which would require the judge to impose life without parole if the jury cannot agree, and change the jury instruction to allow a third option, a sentence of 20 to 25 years to life without the possibility of parole. The Assembly majority scheduled three public hearings on this important issue, on December 15, 2004 in NYC, January 21, 2005 in NYC, and January 25, 2005 in Albany, NY.
N.A.A.C.P. - Last Sunday of every month
Corona East Elmhurst Civic Association - Every 3RD Monday
Planning Board Meetings -
Community Board #3 - Every Third Thursday at 7:30pm
Community Board #4 - Every 1st Tuesday at 7:30pm
Community Board #6 - Every 2ND Wednesday at 7:45pm
Community Council Meetings:
115TH Precinct Community Council - Every 3RD Tuesday at 8pm
112TH Precinct Community Council -
Every 3RD Wednesday at 7:30pm
110TH Precinct Community Council - Every 3rd Wednesday at 7:30pm
Block Association Meetings
Queens Borough Public Library
East Elmhurst Branch - Chess Club Meets Every Monday
Langston Hughes Community
and Cultural Center
The Langston Hughes CCC has scheduled many holiday programs which include their 20th Kwanzaa Festival. Please contact the center for a schedule of these programs which are scheduled to begin on December 4 -18.
Corona Public Library
The Expansion Project will soon be completed. The library is scheduled to resume its services within the library in January 2005, with a grand re-opening ceremony scheduled for March 2005. In the interim, the library will remain operating in front of the branch location. As an alternative, you may wish to visit The Langston Hughes Community and Cultural Center, or the East Elmhurst Library.
Lefrak Queens Public Library
Lefrak Queens Library is temporarily closed after the catastrophic flooding in the area. The library is scheduled to re-open in January 2005. In the interim, you may visit Forrest Hills Queens Public Library, 108-19 71ST Avenue, 718-268-7936; Elmhurst Queens Public Library, 86-02 Broadway; 718-271-1020; or Rego Park Queens Public Library, 61-41 63RD Drive; 718-459-5140.
Queens Chamber of Commerce
The Queens Chamber of Commerce was established in 1911. Its mission is to promote the general welfare of the borough of Queens, and to foster its commerce. The Queens Chamber of Commerce offers a number of services to the borough's business community. Each of these activities helps business people by offering information and advice helpful to their business, as well as opportunities for meeting and working with other businesses and groups in Queens.
The Chamber honored the 2004 outstanding business persons of the year and Hall of Fame Inductees on November 4, 2004. The prestigious Hall of Fame Award, which was inaugurated last year, was given to Plaza College in Jackson Heights. Since its start in 1916, Plaza College has been a hallmark in the field of education, preparing thousands for a lifetime of qualified service to the business community.
The Queens Chamber of Commerce is located at 75-20 Astoria Boulevard, Suite 140 Jackson Heights, New York 11370-1131, (718) 898-8500. You may also visit their website for further information, www.queenschamber.org.
National Hispanic Business Group
The National Hispanic Business Group was founded in 1985 by a group of prominent Hispanic entrepreneurs with one common vision: to create an organization designed to advance business goals and opportunities for its members, while supporting positive social change and complete community involvement. For more information please go to www.nhbg.org.
Association of Minority Enterprises of New York
The Association of Minority Enterprises of New York, Inc. (AMENY) is a minority and women business enterprise (MWBE) not-for-profit trade organization dedicated to the development and enhancement of its constituents, and the economic viability of disadvantaged communities. For more information, please visit www.ameny.org
Queens Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Queens is a non-profit organization, whose purpose is to assist in the growth and development of Hispanic owned businesses in the County of Queens. The Chamber was formed in order to establish business relationships, foster the development of Hispanic Business through affiliations, interchange, participation, certification and education with the goals of unifying the Hispanic Community in New York and elevating their level of participation in Corporate America and Government. For more information, please go to www.hccq.org.
New York & New Jersey Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc.
The New York & New Jersey Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc. (NY & NJ MSDC) is a not-for-profit organization established in 1973 to enhance the growth and development of minority-owned business enterprises (MBEs). Our minority supplier representation consists of Asian and Pacific Island-Americans, African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and Native Americans. For more information, please go to www.nynjmsdc.org.
Queens County Overall Economic Development Corporation
Queens County Overall Economic Development Corporation (QCOEDC) is a not-for-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors that includes key business and civic leaders in Queens County. QCOEDC provides broader access to economic opportunity for all residents of Queens County. The organization has been active for 20 years, with the mission to create and support strategies that promote business enterprise and neighborhood development in Queens County through innovative programs and specialized projects. QCOEDC provides economic and neighborhood development assistance to Queens residents and businesses in various ways. QCOEDC markets programs of economic significance to the business and local communities to attract, expand and retain business within Queens County; provides assistance and networking opportunities to women business owners through its Women's Business Center (WBC) and more. For more information on QCOEDC, 120-55 Queens Blvd., Suite 309, Kew Gardens, NY 11424, (718) 263-0546; www.queensny.org.
Contact Assemblyman Jeffrion L. Aubry
ALBANY OFFICE: Room 526 LOB · Albany, New York 12248
DISTRICT OFFICE: 98-09 Northern Boulevard · Corona, New York 11368