Assemblywoman Helene E. Weinstein
A special report to
the Residents of the 41st Assembly District
Summer 2016
Helene E. Weinstein

Making a Difference in Brooklyn and Albany


The 2016 Budget and Session resulted in important achievements that will help many New Yorkers. I’ve highlighted some of the most important achievements in this newsletter. I’ve also included information on important community office programs I am sponsoring.

As your Assemblywoman, my most important responsibility is to listen carefully, answer questions and help solve your problems. Along with my experienced community office staff, I can assist you with a variety of important services and help to resolve community problems. Please contact my office if you think I can be of assistance to you.


Keeping You and Your Neighbors Safe

Bragg Street
Halfway House Petitions
Assemblywoman Weinstein prepares some of the 2500 letters and petitions her office received for mailing to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
Community Voices Strong Opposition
to Bragg Street Halfway House

Assemblywoman Weinstein is spearheading an effort to prevent the Federal Bureau of Prisons from establishing a halfway house for federal prisoners, at 2261 Bragg Street – former site of the Beth Aaron Synagogue. Along with Councilman Maisel, Senator Persaud and former Councilman Fidler, Helene Weinstein mobilized a massive response via a community-based campaign of letter writing and petition signatures.

To date, over 2,500 signatures on petitions and letters of opposition have been sent to the Bureau of Prisons stating that the facility “would pose a great disruption” and “drastically alter the character of our neighborhood and the sense of security.”

The Assemblywoman hopes this clear demonstration of opposition from the community and Elected Officials convinces the Federal Bureau of Prisons to reject the ill-conceived proposal for this site. With the Bureau of Prisons likely to make a decision on the halfway house sometime before the end of this year, she is still urging those who have not objected, to register their opposition. Sign Helene Weinstein’s online petition to reject the Bragg Street halfway house by going to:


Giving New York Kids Something to Cheer About

Assemblywoman Weinstein presented a Certificate of Merit to a deserving graduate from PS 109.

Assemblywoman Weinstein successfully fought for improvements in the 2016 State Budget, which included tremendous wins for children in public and private schools, a major investment in education to ensure every child has the opportunity to succeed.

This year’s state budget secured a huge increase in state aid for our public schools – $1.4 billion over last year.

Other highlights of the 2016 State Education Budget include:

Supporting private schools

To make sure this year’s budget helped all students, including those attending Parochial schools and Yeshivas, the budget and end of session actions provide:

Assemblywoman Weinstein will continue to fight for all schools and teachers, so they can continue to provide a quality education to students throughout New York.


Private School Equity
Assemblywoman Weinstein met with Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of the Brooklyn Diocese and representatives from Agudath Israel of America to discuss various Parochial and Private School issues including the Education Investment Tax Credit, which, despite best efforts was not included in the Final State Budget (details inside on private school budget).

70th Anniversary
A longtime supporter of local businesses, Assemblywoman Weinstein joined Jo Mart Chocolates on Avenue R to celebrate 70 Years of confectionary and chocolate manufacturing and presented them with a Congratulatory Citation.
Chancellor Farina Visits Albany
Assemblywoman Weinstein spoke with NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina outside the Assembly Chamber, about issues relating to our local schools

JCC of Marine Park Visits Albany
The JCC of Marine Park brought a number of neighborhood partners to speak with Assemblywoman Weinstein about community issues during a recent visit to Albany
Marine Park Civic
At a recent meeting of the Marine Park Civic Association, Assemblywoman Weinstein, MPCA President, Bob Tracy and former City Councilman, Lew Fidler discussed the Department of Transportation’s recent denial of their request for a left turn signal on Gerritsen Avenue and Avenue U.

Caring For Our Environment

The 2016 Budget includes an additional $200 million for the NYS Water Infrastructure Improvement Act to assist municipalities in funding water quality projects.

As one of only two New York City Legislators this year who earned the highest score from our State’s environmental watchdog organization, EPL Environmental Advocates, Assemblywoman Weinstein takes great pride in having consistently voted in favor of measures addressing the adverse effects of hydraulic fracturing, the quality of our drinking water, and the upkeep of our State’s water and waste systems.

“I pledge continued support and to pursue measures that preserve and protect our natural resources so that future generations can benefit from them as we have,” said Assemblywoman Weinstein.

Passover Pickups a Success
Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein and NYC Councilmembers Alan Maisel and Chaim Deutsch met with the Department of Sanitation; Mr. Shea Rubenstein, Vice President of the JCC of Marine Park; Yosef Segal, Assistant Executive Director of the JCCMP; 63rd Precinct Clergy Liaisons; Mr. Rafi Treitel, representing Rabbi Shimshon Sherer; and Mr. Avrumi Brown, representing Rabbi Tzvi Elimelech Rokeach; Mr. Chaskel Bennet, Community Advocate; and Mr. Yaakov Schapiro, representing Rabbi Berish Schapiro to discuss this year’s Pesach plan.
Passover Food Distribution
Every year before Passover, organizations throughout the City mobilize to help those who cannot afford a meal for the holidays. Assemblywoman Weinstein helped put together some of the hundreds of hand delivered care packages, at a distribution organized by the Council of Jewish Organizations of Flatbush.

SBS Bus Route Issues
Assemblywoman Weinstein met with President of the Avenue D Merchants Association, Terrence Lapierre and Joan Irish, a local business owner and member, to discuss their concerns about the negative impacts the Utica Avenue Select Bus Service route might have on local businesses.
Improving Quality of Life
Gerard Brewster, Board Member of the Flatlands Flatbush Civic Group met with the Assemblywoman to discuss the awkward and illegal placement of the garbage dumpster by the Glenwood Road homeless shelter, adjacent to private homes.

Russian Voting Materials and Assistance

Assemblywoman Weinstein has long supported voter education initiatives within our community and throughout the state. This year, Assemblywoman Weinstein along with a number of her Assembly Colleagues sponsored legislation that would require the New York City Board of Elections to provide all electoral and voting information (both at the polling site and online) available in English, in Russian (A01361), allowing voters for whom English is a second language, to participate effectively in the electoral process and all voting-connected activities. The Board of Elections already does so for primarily Chinese and Spanish speaking voters.

Assemblywoman Weinstein previously directed legislative funding for the publication of “The Handbook for the Russian American Voter: We Vote,” an educational and informative supplement for bilingual voters to ensure all New Yorkers are able to participate in the electoral process.

Creole Voting Materials and Assistance

Assemblywoman Weinstein has long supported voter education initiatives within our community and throughout the state. This year, Assemblywoman Weinstein along with a number of her Assembly Colleagues sponsored legislation that would require the New York City Board of Elections to provide all electoral and voting information (both at the polling site and online) available in English, in Creole (A9729), allowing voters for whom English is a second language, to participate effectively in the electoral process and all voting-connected activities. The Board of Elections already does so for primarily Chinese and Spanish speaking voters.

Shorefront Y & West Point Cadets
Assemblywoman Weinstein was on hand as Cadets from West Point Military Academy practiced conversational Russian with members of the Shorefront Y.
West Point Day
Assemblywoman Weinstein welcomed Lieutenant General Robert L. Caslen, Jr., the 59th Superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point to the Assembly chamber for West Point Day, an annual tribute to the cadets of West Point for their commitment to defending our freedom and peace throughout the world.

Protecting Neighborhoods & Homeowners by Strengthening Foreclosure Laws

Assemblywoman Weinstein’s legislation that forces banks and lenders to maintain “zombie” properties before and during the foreclosure process and minimize the negative effects these vacant homes can have on their communities and city resources has been signed into law by governor Cuomo. The new law establishes a statewide electronic Vacant and Abandoned Property Registry and requires mortgage lenders to visit and maintain these homes to ensure they do not fall into disrepair or face a stiff fine.

It is estimated that there are 16,000 “zombie” properties in New York State. These homes, vacant and abandoned, can pose serious safety risks to residents living nearby, and often become havens for drug dealers or targets of vandalism. Worse yet, the market value of neighboring homes - and the entire neighborhood - decreases as these properties deteriorate.

“It is time for lenders to take responsibility for their foreclosed and abandoned properties,” said Assemblywoman weinstein “Nobody should have to live in a neighborhood where houses have been left to rot.” Finally, the bill gives the court a clear ability to impose financial sanctions against lenders who do not make good faith efforts to resolve mortgage foreclosure actions. These protections for homeowners, as well as others contained within the bill, should ensure a more level field for the homeowner when the mortgage lender tries to take their home away.

State Budget a Victory for New Yorkers

Assemblywoman Weinstein is proud of the victories won in the 2016 budget. This year’s budget is proof of the State’s commitment to the promises made to stand by hardworking families. Highlights include:

Boat Owners Meeting
Sheepshead Bay boat owners met with local elected officials and representatives from the Parks Department and NYPD to review procedures to ensure their boating events don’t affect the quality of life for local residents during the summer tourist season.
Community Hospital Ribbon Cutting
Assemblywoman Weinstein joined administrators and medical professionals at Community Hospital as they celebrated the grand opening of their expanded Emergency Room. Others in attendance were Senator Simcha Felder, Councilmembers Chaim Deutsch and Jumaane Williams, Community Hospital CEO, Barry Stern and Community Hospital Trustee, Shea Rubenstein.

Midwood Mature Adults
The Midwood Mature Adults Center celebrated the tireless effort of their Senior Volunteers. Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein and Councilman Alan Maisel were on hand to applaud their dedication to the center and present them with New York State Assembly Congratulatory Citations.
Philip Howard NORC
The Philip Howard Senior Association has been a long time provider of services and social activities for local seniors. Assemblywoman Weinstein was on hand to congratulate them and the Millennium Development Corporation on the grand opening of a NORC – a Naturally Occurring Retirement Community - located within the building which will offer more extensive programming and services.

Protecting Consumers

New York’s utility consumers are currently represented by the Public Service Commission and the Utility Intervention Unit, but neither is designed solely to represent the customer. Assemblywoman Weinstein is trying to change this by establishing the office of the State Utility Consumer Advocate.

In other states where such an office exists, residential consumers have seen drastic savings in comparison to the actual amount of funding that goes to these offices. The creation of an advocate with the powers allotted in this bill would give New York utility customers a voice at the table and hopefully save them a considerable amount of money.

Assemblywoman Weinstein and
DEP sponsor Rain Barrel Giveaway

Sunday, July 17th, 2016, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

By capturing storm water, the 55 - gallon rain barrels can help you conserve water by storing rainwater for future use, such as watering your lawn or garden.

This will keep your plants healthy–and save you money–since households devote almost 40% of their water to watering lawns and gardens.

One per homeowner,
call Assemblywoman Weinstein’s Community Office
to reserve your rain barrel now.

Programs Coming This Fall

"Protect Your Identity"
A Free Shredding Truck
Is Coming to
Our Neighborhood

You can shred documents containing your personal information, such as bank and social security statements, credit card applications, etc.

Call Assemblywoman Weinstein's Community Office for more information to sign up.

Free Flu Shots at Weinstein’s Community Office

Sponsored by Mount Sinai and Coney Island Hospitals

Call (718) 648-4700 to add your name to our waiting list.


Chinese New Year Celebration

Members of the Homecrest Senior Center welcomed Assemblywoman Weinstein to their Annual Chinese New Year Celebration.

Half-Fare Metrocard

Assemblywoman Weinstein explained the process of obtaining, using and refilling a half-fare MetroCard to constituents during the MTA’s monthly visit to her office. The MTA Half-Fare bus comes to the office the 3rd Thursday of every month from 10:30am to 12pm.

Upcoming Dates:
July 21st
August 18th
September 15th


Protesting Bragg Street Halfway House

Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein and Councilman Alan Maisel discuss with members of the PS 194 PTA the adverse effects a proposed Halfway House on Bragg Street would have on the neighborhood and their children

Haitian Unity Day

Assemblywoman Weinstein addressed attendees who traveled to celebrate Haitian Unity Day in the State Capitol. Among those participating were Haitian American Assemblymembers Rodneyse Bichotte, Kimberly Jean-Pierre and Michaelle Solages. The celebration was enhanced by the attendance of a Senator from the Southern area of Haiti.