Tuesday, November 30, 2010

DISPUTE OVER PROPOSED PUBLIC SCHOOL

The New York City School Construction Authority has proposed that a primary/intermediate public school with a capacity of about 735 seats be built for students who live in School District 22. The proposed site, however, isn't located in School District 22--it's in School District 15, which Kensington is in.

The site, consisting of eight privately-owned lots, is bounded by Coney Island Avenue to the east, Turner Place to the north, Hinckley Place to the south, and dwellings fronting on East 8th Street to the west.

The site is within the boundaries of Community Board 12 (CB 12), whose board voted against the proposal at its November 23rd public hearing.

The Wall Street Journal says "The problem for residents is that the school would primarily serve students living in a neighboring school district [School District 22], and parents were angry that children who live near the school [in School District 15] might not be able to attend."

Yeruchim Silber, vice-chairperson of CB 12's Land Use Committee, said "We'd rather save [that site] for a school that would serve our board."

The article quotes the Department of Education (DOE) as stating that it's planning to add more than 4,000 seats in School District 15 in the near future. Classrooms in School District 15 are notoriously overcrowded.

DOE is also quoted as saying that "Students from District 15 may still be allowed to join the proposed District 22 school, but exactly how many students will be able to attend hasn't been decided. That will depend on the demand for the school and the admissions criteria, which has yet to be determined."

Background documents about the proposal include a letter from the School Construction Authority to Alan Dubrow, chairperson of CB 12, a site plan (map), a notice of filing, an alternate sites analyses, and announcements of CB 12's public hearing.

The SCA is accepting comments on the proposal from the public until Friday, December 3rd. Write to
New York City School Construction Authority
30-30 Thomson Avenue
Long Island City, NY11101
Attention: Ross J. Holden

SPEED HUMP FOR OCEAN PARKWAY

Community Board 7 Transportation Committee Meeting
Thursday, December 2nd, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

CB 7's Transportation Committee will be meeting to discuss two petitions for speed humps.

One petition is from the residents of Ocean Parkway for one or more speed humps on the Ocean Parkway northbound service lane by Caton Avenue. The goal is to slow down the speeding traffic on Ocean Parkway between Caton Avenue and Park Circle. Everyone is invited to give testimony and present additional ideas, such as installing stop signs or a left-turn traffic light.

From a report by the New York City Department of City Planning, Transportation Division, "Prospect Park - Ocean Parkway Greenway Study":
Motorists using the Ocean Parkway east service road face no traffic signals, flashing lights, stop signs or crosswalks between Caton Avenue and Park Circle, which encourages travel at relatively higher speeds.

Equestrian traffic also frequently crosses the east service road at this intersection. A stop sign does exist for northbound traffic on East 8th Street.

NYCDOT should conduct an analysis of this intersection to determine whether it should be equipped with all-way stop signs for park-bound vehicular traffic on the east service road and for northbound traffic on East 8th Street. The need for laddered crosswalks along the southern and eastern edges of this intersection should also be analyzed. If NYCDOT determines that this intersection meets the standards for stop sign and crosswalk placement at
this intersection, then they should be installed. See Figure 3-D.

As an alternative to stop signs and crosswalks, a speed hump could be installed on the service road.
The other petition for a speed hump is from residents of 47th Street between 3rd and 4th avenues.

For more information, call (718) 854-0003 or send an e-mail to communityboard7 [at] yahoo.com.

Community Board 7 meets in the Board Room at 4201 4th Avenue. The entrance is on 43rd Street. 

OPERA-SINGING DOG



Monday, the opera-singing dog, was adopted from the Sean Casey Animal Rescue.

Sean Casey Animal Rescue
153 E. 3rd Street (between Fort Hamilton Parkway and Caton Avenue)
(718) 436-5163
http://scarnyc.org
Specializing in the rescue, rehabilitation, and placement of 
reptiles, amphibians, and exotic and domestic animals.

SUPPORT LOCAL INDEPENDENT BUSINESSES!

Monday, November 29, 2010

HOLIDAY BAZAAR AT P.S. 130


Holiday Bazaar
Saturday, December 11th, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The December 11th Holiday Bazaar sponsored by the P.S. 130 PTA promises to be lots of fun for children and adults: free crafts for kids, food, live music, a raffle, and vendors PLUS pictures with Santa from noon to 2:00 p.m., a cooking demonstration, and a performance by the talented students of Cynthia King Dance Studio.

P.S. 130 Holiday Bazaar
Saturday, December 11th, 2010
in the school cafeteria, 70 Ocean Parkway, at the corner of Fort Hamilton Parkway
10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
RAIN OR SHINE

Vendor tables: a 5 foot table for $25, a 10 foot table for $35.00.
CASH ONLY
If you are interested in selling crafts or new goods, return the completed form above, along with payment.

Restrictions: The sale of foods and beverages will not be allowed.

Return the completed form by Friday, December 3, 2010, to P.S. 130 PTA, 70 Ocean Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11218.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

LOCAL SHOPPING DAY

Today is the first-ever Small Business Saturday. Shop locally as much as possible in support of your neighborhood's independent small businesses. Not everything you're shopping for is available nearby, but many items are. Many stores sell a greater variety of products than the store name implies. Go into your neighborhood's stores, spend some time browsing, and be pleasantly surprised by how much you'll find there.

For several decades, the big retail companies have been heavily advertising the day after Thanksgiving as "Black Friday" and promoting it as the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. A few years ago, Shop.org, a division of the National Retail Federation, invented Cyber Monday and promoted it as a day to shop online. This year, small business is standing up to be counted. Small Business Saturday has been added to the shopping calendar, and shopping locally is being encouraged.

Buy what you can locally, and shop elsewhere for what you can't buy nearby. 

Please click here to link to the websites of local businesses and services.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

OVERTURNED CAR


A car overturned at 11:00 p.m. last night, Wednesday, November 24th, at Ocean Parkway and Cortelyou Road. Injuries were sustained.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

"SHENANIGANS AT CB 12-FIRING AND REHIRING COMMITTEE MEMBERS TO VOTE ON A VARIANCE"

From a neighborhood listserv. Reprinted with the permission of the author.
Nobody goes to the Community Board meetings - myself included! I have an excuse. He's two years old.

But I've been interested in what goes on there, especially since the minutes in the past have been extremely short and haven't reflected what I've *heard* was said at the CB 12 meetings.


So I was really excited when KARMA posted minutes in their entirety and they were more than a few paragraphs long!

http://karmabrooklyn.blogspot.com/2010/11/what-your-community-board-decided.html


I finally felt informed - like I had a front seat at the meeting.


KARMA just posted an addendum to the CB 12 minutes which includes some really interesting stuff -
http://karmabrooklyn.blogspot.com/2010/11/left-out-of-cb-12-meeting-minutes.html

1) Someone has requested a stop sign at a dangerous intersection from the DOT since 2006 and has LOTS of documentation to prove both the danger and effort in trying to get the sign. There has been no response by the CB or DOT thus far.


2) Someone addressed that local City Councilman David Greenfield stole a huge chunk of Kensington when he was asked about the borders of Borough Park. KARMA quotes The New York Times "'Bounded by Fort Hamilton Parkway to the west, 60th Street to the south, McDonald Avenue and Bay Parkway to the east, and McDonald Avenue to the north, the neighborhood is home to more than 300 religious institutions, according to Councilman Greenfield.' However, those boundaries would mean that a portion of Kensington--including P.S. 230--is in Borough Park. His response was that The New York Times made the mistake."


3) The final addition to the notes that absolutely BLEW MY MIND must be quoted in its entirety:

"When the Variance Committee met, only six committee members were present. Eleven of its twenty members were needed to constitute a quorum. Phone calls were made, and three more members showed up. Committee Chair Peter Rebenwurzel "fired" (membership is an unpaid position) four of the members who weren't there, bringing the number needed for a quorum to nine. Mr. Rebenwurzel said he might "rehire" the four fired members the next day."

ARE YOU SERIOUS? The Committee Chair used quite a strange technique to make sure that his quorum was reached. I mean, he "FIRED" committee members so that he would have a quorum and plans to "REHIRE" them? HUH? Is that even legal???


CB 12 Chair Alan Dubrow is quoted in the original CB 12 minutes as saying "Mr. Dubrow pointed out that Committee members need to fulfill their duties, as there are many requests from others wishing to join the Variance Committee." The reason why the variance committee (also called the Land Use Committee) is so popular is that they decide whether or not a developer can develop something.


If Committee members aren't COMMITTED enough to attend a meeting during which they must vote, then they shouldn't be on the Committee.


KARMA posted a while back about how Committee membership is open to the public - in other words, YOU AND I - we can be on the committee, too!

http://karmabrooklyn.blogspot.com/2010/10/not-on-community-board-you-can-still-be.html


KARMA quoted the The 2010 Handbook for Community Board Members:

"Although the Charter requires that the chairperson of each Community Board committee be a Board member, there is no limitation as to the number of non-Board members who may be appointed to serve on a Board committee."

Now who wants to be on the Land Use Committee? Or at least go to CB 12 meetings to express how happy, indifferent, irate you are about this stuff? People are always car-pooling to go to the meetings or taking the B16 bus there. I have info about car-pooling, so if you want to go I can put you in touch with folks who will chauffeur you to and from your home. E-mail me!


Jasmina

Affiliated with KARMA and other KWT neighborhood organizations

PASSING OF CONNIE LITWAK

Connie Litwak, a longtime and active member of the Albemarle Neighborhood Association and the Flatbush and Shaare Torah Jewish Center, has passed away. Services will be held tomorrow, November 24th, at 10:00 a.m., at the Kirschenbaum Chapel, 1153 Coney Island Avenue, near Avenue H. Phone: (718) 377-4848.

At meetings of the Albemarle Neighborhood Association, Connie sat in the first or second row of seats so that she wouldn't miss a word of the discussions. She could always be relied on to provide a historical context for issues concerning Kensington.

Connie had been the chairperson for the Flatbush Jewish Center's Bazaar/Flea Market, held just two days ago.

Thanks to Larry Jayson, president of the Albemarle Neighborhood Association, for notifying us of Connie's passing.

GHOROA SWEETS & RESTAURANT PICS

Two photos of food at Ghoroa Sweets & Restaurant 

Ghoroa serves Bangladeshi, Indian, and Pakistani food.

Ghoroa Sweets & Restaurant
478 McDonald Avenue, between Church Avenue and Avenue C (closer to Church Avenue)
(718) 438-6001 and (718) 438-6002
Website for the Ghoroa in Jamaica: http://www.ghoroa.com

REVIEW OF SHENANIGAN'S PUB

Cead Mile Failte (“100,000 welcomes” in Gaelic) reads a sign above the bar at Shenanigan’s; take it as an invitation to down $3 Foster’s drafts on the cozy back patio. Don’t leave without making the acquaintance of buyback-prone barkeep Chuck Van Nort, one of the friendliest drinking companions in all the borough. Not that you'll need the freebies: A two-for-one happy hour on already cheap drinks runs daily from 5–7pm. BYO meat: When it's warm out, bring some eats to throw on the grill out back.
Shenanigan's
802 Caton Avenue, at 8th Street
(718) 633-3689

Open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Sunday from 4:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. and Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m.

Monday, November 22, 2010

"INAPPROPRIATE" IN KENSINGTON

Guess which Kensington business is on the list of The Most Inappropriate Business Names of All Time? Click on the link or scroll down for the answer!






















FLUTE FUN

Interactive Live Music and Storytelling
Tuesday, November 23rd, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

music, dancing, singing, and instruments
A series of interactive live music sessions for children ages newborn to 3 and adults will be hosted by Namaste Yoga of Kensington. Amelia Robinson will perform, with audience participation. Each week, learn, listen, play, and read about a different instrument with the help of a special guest. On November 18th, the ukulele was showcased. This week, it'll be the flute.


Bring shakers and easy-to-carry instruments, if you have any.

The fee per session is $10 per family, to be paid at the door.

For more information, visit Amelia's website, e-mail her at mail [at] ameliarobinson.co.uk, or call Molly at (917) 860 3673.

Event location:

Namaste Yoga of Kensington
482 Coney Island Avenue, 2nd Floor. The main entrance is on Church Avenue. Walk up the red staircase to the red door, behind the corner pizzeria and next to the car wash service center.
http://www.mynamasteyoga.com
(347)533-6226 or (347)533-6227

NEW TRAFFIC SIGN


A new "No Turns" sign prohibits left turns from Fort Hamilton Parkway onto E. 5th Street. Right turns are already prohibited because traffic on E. 5th Street runs one-way, north to south.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

LEFT OUT OF THE CB 12 MEETING MINUTES

Some of the proceedings at the October 26th public meeting of Community Board 12 (CB 12) weren't included in the official minutes, and one error was made:
  • CB 12 Board member Maggie Tobin has been asking the Department of Transportation [not the Police Department, as the official minutes erroneously state] to put a stop sign at a dangerous intersection--Chester Avenue and Louisa Street--since 2006.
  • Ms. Tobin reported on the success of the Kensington World's Fair. She said that she wished City Councilmember David Greenfield had been there, and he responded that he had not been invited. But at the September public meeting, Ms. Tobin had extended an open invitation to everyone who was present, which included the councilmember.
  • Ms. Tobin noted that Councilmember Greenfield had provided The New York Times with incorrect boundaries for an article about Borough Park. The article says that Borough Park is "Bounded by Fort Hamilton Parkway to the west, 60th Street to the south, McDonald Avenue and Bay Parkway to the east, and McDonald Avenue to the north, the neighborhood is home to more than 300 religious institutions, according to Councilman Greenfield." However, those boundaries would mean that a portion of Kensington--including P.S. 230--is in Borough Park. His response was that The New York Times made the mistake.
  • Councilmember Greenfield said the B23 replacement failed because the vendors don't understand the communities. For example, bus service began during Jewish holidays, so the number of passengers was low. The vendor, not realizing the reason for the low ridership, adjusted the bus schedule. By then, the holidays had ended, and ridership had increased to what would be the typical number of passengers. Councilmember Greenfield will meet with the Department of Transportation in the next few weeks. Contracts should be made available to companies in the community.
  • When the Variance Committee met, only six committee members were present. Eleven of its twenty members were needed to constitute a quorum. Phone calls were made, and three more members showed up. Committee Chair Peter Rebenwurzel "fired" (membership is an unpaid position) four of the members who weren't there, bringing the number needed for a quorum to nine. Mr. Rebenwurzel said he might "rehire" the four fired members the next day.

BEATING AND ROBBERY ON E. 5TH AT FHP

Police report that an eighteen-year-old male was allegedly beaten and robbed on E. 5th Street near Fort Hamilton Parkway on Thursday, November 11th, at 6:00 p.m. by a nineteen-year-old and a twenty-five-year-old man and a twenty-one-year-old woman who approached him, struck him repeatedly in the head, and took his bag, his wallet with $20 cash in it, and his BlackBerry. The three were arrested.

ASTORIA BANK FACELIFT

Astoria Federal Savings (101 Church Avenue, corner of McDonald Avenue) is making alterations to its upper level, so the Personal Bankers/account representatives have been moved to the lower level--the area customers used to go to when they only had one transaction to make.

 

Friday, November 19, 2010

NEIGHBORHOOD EVENTS, NOVEMBER 20TH TO NOVEMBER 23RD

These events will take place in the neighborhood during November 20th to November 23rd:

Saturday, November 20th
* Leaf Drop-off for Composting. Free. 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. East 4th Street Community Garden, E. 4th Street, between Fort Hamilton Parkway and Caton Avenue.

* Brooklyn Commune Grand Opening. Free. Noon to 3:00 p.m. 601 Greenwood Avenue, at the corner of Prospect Avenue

* Haitian Dance, Drumming, and Special Art Exhibit. $8 in advance/$10 at the door. 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Green-wood Cemetery, inside the main entrance at 25th Street and 5th Avenue (details on our Community Calendar at http://karmabrooklyn.blogspot.com/p/calendar.html)

Sunday, November 21st
* Flea Market & Bazaar. Free admission. 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Flatbush and Shaare Torah Jewish Center, 327 E. 5th Street, corner of Church Avenue

* Leaf Drop-off for Composting. Free. noon to 2:00 p.m. East 4th Street Community Garden, E. 4th Street, between Fort Hamilton Parkway and Caton Avenue.

Tuesday, November 23rd
* Electronics Registration. Free. 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Astoria Federal Savings Bank, 101 Church Avenue, at the corner of McDonald Avenue

* Interactive Live Music and Storytelling. $10 admission at the door. 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Namaste Yoga of Kensington, 482 Coney Island Avenue, 2nd Floor

* Community Board 12 meeting. Free. 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 5901 13th Avenue, at the corner of 59th Street. Enter on 59th Street and take the elevator to the 3rd floor (details on our Community Calendar at http://karmabrooklyn.blogspot.com/p/calendar.html)

GRAND OPENING AT BROOKLYN COMMUNE


Brooklyn Commune's Grand Opening will be tomorrow, November 20th, from noon to 3:00 p.m. It'll be a low-key event, with tastings and samplings from their menu.

For the time being, the cafe and store are open from noon to 9:00 p.m. on weekdays (Tuesday through Friday) and noon to 8:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

When the cafe is fully operational and ready to serve breakfast, it'll be open from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Tuesdays through Fridays and 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Brooklyn Commune
601 Greenwood Avenue, at the corner of Prospect Avenue
(718) 686-1044

e-mail: feedme [at] brooklyncommune.com

http://brooklyncommune.com

MAHAMMAD HAS LEFT THE BUILDING

After ten years in the neighborhood, Mahammad has closed his grocery store--A&S Mini Market--on Fort Hamilton Parkway. I don't know if he'll see this, but I want to thank him for being such a kind and friendly soul to everyone he met and wish him the best.


SIGALIT MOVING

Sigalit Gift Shop/Sigalit Flower Shop will be moving by the end of November from 226 Church Avenue (next to Korner Pizza) to Church Avenue at E. 4th Street, according to the owner. Sigalit's phone number is (718) 871-2626.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

DNA LEADS TO ARREST

From The New York Post:
The guys from CSI would be proud.

Investigators pulled DNA from a suspect's cigarette butt and busted him for an August home invasion in Brooklyn, authorities said yesterday.

Paul Gaity, 23, was released after being questioned on an unspecified criminal case at a Brooklyn station house in September, sources said.

Police tested his cigarette and got a DNA match with a cap found in an alley near the scene of the Aug. 23 burglary on Beverly Road in Kensington, sources said. He was arrested Tuesday.

WRAP MATTRESSES AND BOX SPRINGS


As of December 3rd, all mattresses and box springs that are being thrown away must be fully encased in a securely sealed plastic bag to help prevent an increase in bed bug activity in New York City. It doesn't matter if the bedding is infested by bed bugs or not--it must still be enclosed in a plastic bag.

Failure to encase bedding can lead to a $100 to $300 fine. Summonses will begin being issued on January 3rd.

The Sanitation Department suggests that you put the bag on the mattress or box spring before you take it out of your home and put it on the curb.

The large-size bags that are needed should be available at department stores, home improvement centers, home supply businesses, hardware stores, and online. Most bedding stores will remove your old bedding when you buy new bedding from them.

WE'RE STUCK WITH THE SHUTTLE BUS AGAIN THIS WEEKEND


This weekend, the service disruptions on the F and G trains will be the same as last weekend: from Friday, November 19th, at 11:30 p.m. through Monday, November 22nd, at 5:00 a.m., the F won't run between Jay Street and Church Avenue, and the G won't run between Hoyt-Schermerhorn Streets and Church Avenue.

Instead, free shuttle buses will travel from Jay Street to Church Avenue and back, making stops at Bergen Street, Carroll Street, Smith-9th Streets, 4th Avenue, 7th Avenue, 15th Street, and Fort Hamilton Parkway.

WARNING: last weekend, the bus didn't stop at either end of the Fort Hamilton Parkway station--it stopped at Prospect Park Southwest by Greenwood Avenue.

The F will run its normal route between 179th Street and Jay Street and then be rerouted along the A local line to Euclid Avenue. It will also run its normal route between Church Avenue and Coney Island.

On the G train going toward Church Avenue, transfer between the G and A trains at Hoyt-Schermerhorn Streets. Take a Manhattan-bound A train to Jay Street and transfer to the shuttle bus. 

On the G train going toward Court Square, transfer between the shuttle bus and the A train at Jay Street. Take a Lefferts Boulevard/Far Rockaway-bound A train to Hoyt-Schermerhorn Streets where Court Square-bound G service is available.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

SHARES AVAILABLE AT THE KWT CSA FROM GARDEN OF EVE

From Erin at Garden of Eve
A winter CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share from organic farm Garden of Eve in Long Island consists of a pre-boxed, once-a-month pickup from December through May of approximately 15-20 lbs. of our own organic vegetables and 2-3 dozen of our pastured organic eggs. For details visit: www.gardenofevefarm.com/WinterCSAShare.htm

KWT Distribution:

Where: Brooklyn Commune, 601 Greenwood Avenue (& Prospect Ave. Windsor Terrace)
When: Saturdays, 10am-12 noon on December 4, 2010, January 8, 2011, February 5, March 5, April 16, May 7
Winter Share prices for 2010-11 will be $280 (for 6 months), plus a REQUIRED BOX DEPOSIT of $2 per month, or $12 total, for a total of $292 for the season. You will receive $2 BACK for every box you return to the share site.
Sign up online at: http://csa.farmigo.com/join/gardenofevefarm#Step=0. Go to "CLICK HERE to sign up on our new online system with a credit card or online-check." Select Kensington-Windsor Terrace as your location.
Erin

FELONIES REPORTED TO THE 66TH PRECINCT, NOVEMBER 8-NOVEMBER 15

The 66th Precinct informed us of two felonies in Kensington that were reported to them during the week of November 8th through November 15th.

Burglary: November 11th, at 114 Beverly Road, in front of Walgreens. An unknown perpetrator broke the lock on a truck door and removed cartons of cigarettes.

Burglary: November 12th, at 1411 35th Street, between 14th Avenue and Dahill Road. An unknown perpetrator entered an apartment through a bedroom window and removed money and jewelry.

WHAT YOUR COMMUNITY BOARD DECIDED, OCTOBER 26, 2010

                       THE CITY OF NEW YORK
                        COMMUNITY  BOARD 12

                                 5910 - 13 Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11219

(718) 851-0800    FAX # (718) 851-4140      email:  zsender@aol.com            

  Marty Markowitz                  Alan J. Dubrow                          Wolf Sender
Borough President                   Chairperson                         District Manager
                                                                                                                                                                                    Moshe Wieder, First Vice Chairman
Martin Katz, Second Vice Chairman
Roberta Feinstein, Secretary
Larry Jayson, Sergeant-at-Arms
                                                                                                            November 10, 2010

TO:  COMMUNITY BOARD 12 MEMBERS/ELECTED OFFICIALS/INTERESTED PARTIES

               FROM:  ALAN DUBROW, CHAIRMAN

RE:  NOVEMBER BOARD MEETING


The next regularly scheduled meeting of Community Board 12 will be held on:

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 23, 2010
7 PM
AMICO SENIOR CENTER
5901 – 13TH AVENUE (Third Floor)
(Entrance on 59th Street)
Brooklyn, N.Y.

A  G  E  N  D   A

1.        PUBLIC SESSION
2.        PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
3.        ADOPTION OF MINUTES
4.       CHAIRMAN’S REMARKS --  ALAN J. DUBROW
5.        DISTRICT MANAGER’S REPORT --  WOLF SENDER
6.       TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE REPORT
    FT. HAMILTON ISLANDS FROM 45TH STREET TO 49TH STREET
7.        OLD BUSINESS
8.       NEW BUSINESS
9.        ADJOURN


SUMMARY OF COMMUNITY BOARD 12 MEETING HELD TUESDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2010 AT THE AMICO SENIOR CENTER, 5901 – 13TH AVENUE, BROOKLYN, NY7PM

BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT             
SANDY ABOULAFIA
TAMAR ABRAHAM
TAHIR BHUTTA
ANNA CALI
FRED CASSERA
JACOB DASKAL
ALAN J. DUBROW
JOEL EISDORFER
RABBI TZVI ENGLARD
ROBERTA FEINSTEIN
JULES FLEISCHER
JACQUE FRIEDMAN
RABBI EDGAR GLUCK
EDWARD HANDLER                                                       
CHAIM ISRAEL                           ELECTED OFFICIALS PRESENT
SAMUEL ISRAEL                     COUNCILMAN DAVID GREENFIELD
JOSEPH JACOBS                     BARRY SPITZER, REP. COUNCILMAN GREENFIELD
LARRY JAYSON                      GABRIELLA FRIEDLANDER, REP.            
MARTIN KATZ                         COUNCILMAN BRAD LANDER
MORDECHAI KATZ                  ANN SCHAETZEL, REP. ASSEMBLYMAN BRENNAN
ABU KHALIQUZZAMAN          YISROEL TABI, REP. ASSEMBLYMAN HIKIND
ANDREW KOHEN                     JOEL EISDORFER, REP. SEN. ERIC ADAMS
LILY MARINELLI                       JULES FLEISCHER, REP. SEN. DIANE SAVINO
JOHN MORONI                         RABBI SHLOMO BRAUN, REP. SEN. GOLDEN
ELI OIRING                                ELI SLAVIN, REP. CONG. YVETTE CLARKE
DR. JOAN PASTORE                 AVI SEIGEL, REP. BORO PRES. MARKOWITZ    
MORTY PUPKO                                                       
PETER REBENWURZEL                                          
ELLIOT ROSMAN                                                    
DAVID SHLOMOVICH               COMMUNITY PRESENT
AMY SICIGNANO                      APPROXIMATELY 26 RESIDENTS PRESENT
YERUCHIM SILBER                   (NAMES ON FILE IN CB OFFICE) 
SAMUEL STOBER
STANLEY SUSSMAN                                                      
MARGARET TOBIN                                                 
JOSHUA WEINSTEIN                STAFF PRESENT
MOSHE WIEDER                        WOLF SENDER, DISTRICT MANAGER
ROCHELLE ZAMI                       LUCILLE MAURO, COMMUNITY ASSISTANT
MENDEL ZIBERBERG                 ADY MATTEO, COMMUNITY ASSISTANT

BOARD MEMBERS ABSENT
YAKOV ABRAMOV
LAN CHEN
RABBI BERNARD FREILICH
SHARON FUCHS
JACOB HAAS, P.E
DOUGLAS JABLON
RAYMOND LEE
MENDEL REINER
MORDECHAI SCHWARTZ
MORRIS SENDEROVIC      
SOL WAHBA
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------                                         
PUBLIC SESSION
Elizabeth Ridler; Neighborhood Library Supervisor, announced the reorganization of the Ryder Branch at 59 St & 23 Ave.  It will now have Sunday hours, as well as evening hours Tuesday & Thursday, and Saturdays from 1 – 5 PM in an effort to better serve our children, seniors & adults. She left flyers with the hours and programs.

Saribeh Mustafa, of the Brooklyn Hospital, announced expanded services to the Community Health Center.  The clinic will now offer pediatric, ob/gyn, family health, dental and more, to better serve the community.  Brochures will come at a later date.

Morty Pupko, CB 12 Board member, advised of an invasion to his home of “critters”, such as squirrels and opossum.  He notified 311, who called police, although some construction workers had coaxed the critters out.  He found out his neighbor also found a colony of squirrels in her home.  Mr. Pupko suggests the Health Department should be charged with doing something about the ongoing problem.

Eli Oiring, CB 12 Board member, spoke on behalf of resident Joe Nathan, an outspoken member of the community.  Mr. Oiring expressed outrage at the harassment Mr. Nathan was subjected to when an unnamed Board member entered his place of employment specifically to complain to his employer that Mr. Nathan “talks too much” in terms of community matters.  Mr. Dubrow agreed this was unacceptable behavior.

Joseph Nathan reported the need for traffic lights on 21st Ave as there are none from 51st to 59th Streets.  He reports this area has become a car racing strip, with several recent accidents occurring.  Mr. Dubrow suggested he send an official request to the Board office.

Joseph Nathan stated last year there was a terrible accident in which a child was killed on 49th Street because of the traffic hazard caused when school buses stop sideways across oncoming traffic to pick up children.  He asked why we have not done anything about this. Mr. Dubrow replied that it is not within the scope of the Community Board’s mission.  Mr. Nathan suggested that the police enforce existing laws pertaining to the problem.

Referring to the previous report of a Board member harassing Mr. Nathan at his job, he stated that if it ever happens again, he will expose the party and make a motion to have them dismissed from the Board.

Natalie DeNicola spoke about the continuing need for CB 12 to maintain a current website, as most other Community Boards already have beautiful and informational ones.  She also brought to our attention that the Daily News listed the October Board meeting for all Boards except CB 12.  Board member Elliot Rosman reminded all that we have had several volunteers offer to help establish our website.  It is currently in the works.

Jole Carliner discussed the recently widened sidewalks near Church & Beverly.  She voiced the opinion that area residents would appreciate trees, benches and planting in this plaza, but lack the organization.  She worked with a landscape designer and architect to produce a sketch and proposal outlining two possible plans of what could be.  Some probable issues might be merchants not wishing to have trees block their view.  Alan Dubrow suggested we hold a meeting to find out who would be responsible for pushing the idea through.

Peter Russo stated that while the Board regularly praises the work of the Police Department & Sanitation; he feels they are not doing their job.  He, as well as others, gets passed over for pick-up whenever there is a holiday.  He was advised by Sanitation they do not have the manpower for a pick-up the day following a holiday.

Mr. Russo also pointed out the need for a “No Parking” sign and a beat cop on 59 St & 20 Ave, as there are 2 schools there with a constant flow of traffic when the light changes.  There are also double parked cars ignoring existing signs, and he feels this is a problem waiting to happen.

Bridget Elder reiterated the need for benches in the area that Ms. Carliner discussed before . Mr. Dubrow reminded all that 15-20 years ago, there were benches in the area, but they were soon constantly occupied by sleeping homeless people.  Ms. Elder suggested the type of benches with dividers.

Maggie Tobin thanked Wolf Sender and everyone who attended the Kensington World’s Fair last Sunday.  It was a wonderful event.

She also mentioned the request for a “Stop” sign at Chester & Louisa, which has been ignored since 2006.  Ms. Tobin has a folder filled with accident reports from that corner, including a recent 3 car pile-up, as well the danger of children playing and cars racing.  So far the Police Department has been looking into it but nothing has been done.

Ms. Tobin also pointed out that the Police station at Coney Island Ave & Caton Place has a stock pile of iron benches with dividers on their property that we could make use of.  Mr. Dubrow stated that it would be up to Parks to donate the benches and merchants to accept them.

Lastly, Ms. Tobin mentioned the new bike lane at Fort Hamilton near McDonald Ave, is extremely dangerous.  Mr. Dubrow advised that while he agrees, we were never asked or notified about this.

Abu Khaliquzzaman, Board member, also acknowledged the Kensington World’s Fair.  He commended Councilman Brad Lander, community director Miss Jessica Turner, Maggie Tobin and all who contributed to make it such a success.  He also brought 2 cakes and smachas for meeting attendees as a symbol of unity and friendship.  The extra food was left at the Center for the seniors to enjoy.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Mr. Dubrow introduced Councilman David Greenfield, who stated that it was encouraging to see so many concerned residents attend the meeting.  Councilman Greenfield gave a few updates on things happening.  Firstly, he stated that in the matter of street renaming, the process includes voting and adoption by the Community Board, followed by the City Council, which has its own criteria for approving these matters.

Councilman Greenfield thanked those who attended the event of September 27th with the Police Commissioner, welcoming the new Executive Officer Russo to the 66 Precinct.

Councilman Greenfield work with Councilman Brad Lander and Assemblyman Dov Hikind to spruce up 13th Ave. and Bay Parkway.  He suggested creating some sort of Merchants Association to deal with issues such as trash.

Councilman Greenfield remarked on the experimental pilot project of private van service along the former B23 line.  Some of the expected problems in the system are due to the fact that the vendors are not yet familiar with area holidays and that there have been no riders because of this.  They will adjust their calendars accordingly with the help of the TLC and keep trying, as there are approximately 1600 riders every day.

Councilman Greenfield reminded all about the upcoming vote regarding the Culver El, intended to improve desperately needed housing.  He thanked Councilman Brad Lander and former Councilman Simcha Felder for their work on this project.

Finally, Councilman Greenfield gave some voting tips for the election November 2nd, reminding all that many have never used the new machines.  Ask for a privacy sleeve, which is a folder meant to keep others from seeing your votes.  You also have the right to insert your ballot into the scanner with the sleeve covering it for added privacy, although the inspectors don’t particularly like this, as it can jam the machine.  He pointed out that there are two questions on the back of the ballot you shouldn’t miss  Also it is possible to over vote now, which was not possible before.  In case of mistakes you are entitled to up to 2 replacement ballots.  He also announced the firing of the Executive Director of the Board of Elections.
Once again, Councilman Greenfield stated his office phone number; 718 853 2704, and wished all a great Election Day.

CHAIRMAN’S REMARKS -- ALAN DUBROW
Mr. Dubrow extended deepest heartfelt sympathy on behalf of the entire Board, to Dr. Joan Pastore on the recent passing of her mother.

Mr. Dubrow introduced the newest member of Community Board 12; Rochelle Zami.

Mr. Dubrow mentioned that last week, District Manager Wolf Sender and Karol Joswick met with City agencies regarding budget priorities.  This year we added a request for a green area for Kensington.  Parks said they are working on it and that if any residents are aware of a suitable site, to please advise the Board office.  Regarding requests for benches on the enlarged sidewalks on Beverly Road, the requests must come from merchants who will be responsible for maintenance.  A request was also submitted to HPD for a Community Center; again, residents must do their part to help find suitable property.  Finally, Councilman Greenfield has committed funding to Gravesend Park, Col. Marcus Park, and to finish the Ocean Parkway malls up to Ave. P; and Councilman Lander has committed funds to Dome Park, and renovations to Brizzi Park.

TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE REPORT – DAVID SHLOMOVICH
On 19th, the Transportation Committee met to discuss three street renaming requests.  Since there were not many people in attendance for or against, and since there weren’t many guidelines to use in consideration of such requests, the Committee discussed possible criteria for future requests.  However, the current requests need not adhere to new criteria.
                                               
A)             EAST 10TH STREET AND AVENUE K –‘LORRAINE EPAMINONDA PLACE
                     VOTE TAKEN:                         MAJORITY APPROVED
 
B)              18TH AVENUE AND 56TH STREET – ‘RABBI ZVI FLORENCE WAY
                     VOTE TAKEN:             MAJORITY APPROVED
 
C)              AVENUE O AND EAST 2ND STREET – ‘SAL FISCHETTI WAY
                     VOTE TAKEN:                         MAJORITY APPROVED

New criteria were set forth to be voted on, consisting of four parts:

1)      Individual must have made an outstanding contribution to the community
2)      Requested name must consist of legal name and professional title only
3)      Individual must have lived and/or worked in the community
4)      A majority of merchants and residents must sign a petition supporting renaming

VOTE TAKEN:          UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED

New street renaming criteria adopted.

During the voting, Roberta Feinstein; Board Secretary, pointed out that too many members have been signing in to get credit for meeting attendance and then leaving, as was evident when votes were being counted.  It was suggested that perhaps the old rule of taking roll call at the end might help put a stop to this practice.

 VARIANCE COMMITTEE REPORT – PETER REBENWURZEL
Mr. Rebenwurzel reported that while 100 residents attended the Committee meeting, only 9 of the 20 Committee members showed up.  He called this a disgrace, as the meeting had to be delayed until a quorum could be reached, with people having to be called to come in.

Mr. Dubrow pointed out that Committee members need to fulfill their duties, as there are many requests from others wishing to join the Variance Committee.

A)    BSA CAL. NO. 230-98-BZ --  5810-5824 BAY PARKWAY
This variance concerns J C Enterprises auto repair, requesting extension of terms of variance to use premises for sales & repair.  They requested a 20 year extension.  Normally a variance is given for life, but since this is a non-conforming use in an R-5 district, they must renew every 10 years.  The city wants to ensure that the community has no problems.  While there were issues in the past, there seem to be no complaints currently.  Discussion followed.

The Variance Committee voted unanimously to approve the request.

VOTE TAKEN:  IN FAVOR:  37  OPPOSED:  1  ABSTENTIONS:  0

B)       CAL. NO. 104-10-BZ – 5002 – 19TH AVENUE 
This variance concerns the extension and conversion of an existing structure to a synagogue.  The zoning, as it is, would prevent the synagogue from being built to the specifications needed.  Discussion followed.

The Variance Committee voted unanimously to approve the request.

VOTE TAKEN:  IN FAVOR:  35  OPPOSED:  0  ABSTENTIONS;  3

C)    CAL. NO. 156 TO 172-10-BZ --  37TH STREET, BLOCK 5295, LOT 4 – BLOCK 5300 LOT 9
This variance concerns the Culver El property being converted into affordable housing.  Current zoning does not allow for a ten foot yard.  Discussion followed.

The Variance Committee voted unanimously to approve the request.

VOTE TAKEN:  IN FAVOR:  33  OPPOSED:   0  ABSTENTIONS:  3

Chaim Israel and Alan Dubrow  recused themselves from the above vote.

Jacques Friedman, Chairman of the Consumer Affairs Committee, made a recommendation regarding a gaming café, which was tabled until it can go to Committee.

Meeting adjourned.
                                                                                                Respectfully submitted,

                                                                       
                                                                                                ADY MATTEO
                                                                                                Community Service Aide

Some of the proceedings at the October 26th public meeting of Community Board 12 (CB 12) weren't included in the official minutes, and one error was made. Please click here to read the additional information.