Thursday, December 9, 2010

Senator Klein’s Court Watchers Team To Show Solidarity At Bronx Vandalism Case
UPDATE This was postponed, as The case has been adjourned until further notice.
    Members of State Senator Jeff Klein's (D- Bronx/ Westchester) court watchers team will observe the court case of Iyylania Milityk on Friday, taking place at the Bronx Criminal Courthouse. Milityk is being charged a second time for committing vandalism within the 49th Precinct. Klein's Bronx Court Watchers program, which launched in April, is aimed at showing community support and solidarity in calling for tougher sentences for repeat adult graffiti vandals. The program is an extension of Klein's ongoing efforts to eliminate graffiti across the Bronx. As part of the Court Watchers program, volunteers from the community sit-in on repeat, adult offender court proceedings, wearing t-shirts and buttons that express their intolerance for graffiti and desire for a jail-time sentence. To volunteer for the Court Watchers program, residents should call Klein’s office at (718)-822-2049. 
     Observing the Court Case of Iyylania Milityk, who is being charged a  second time for vandalism within the  49th Precinct.  
     Bronx Courthouse, 265 East 161 Street, Bronx 
     For more information call (718) 822-2049

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

     On Thursday, December 9th  at Haven Academy Charter School in the Bronx, 175 students in grades Kindergarten through 3rd, will learn, rehearse and perform the timeless “Nutcracker” ballet in an engaging, one-day workshop. Children will learn basic ballet steps, practice scenes from the “Nutcracker” and then perform, dressed in costumes, for parents, peers and staff. The workshop will be led by two professional dancers from Ballet Ambassadors, Inc.-- a non-profit organization that gives children and teens in schools, afterschool programs, and homeless shelters the chance to share the stage with professional dancers in costumed adaptations of the ballet classics, original ballets, and world dance productions.
    The New York Foundling, one of the City’s oldest and largest child welfare agencies, developed Haven Academy Charter School to address the obstacles to educational achievement that plague students growing up in poor, underserved, urban communities and particularly those in the child welfare system. The school enrolls one third children in foster care, one third children with families receiving preventive services and one third children from the general Mott Haven community, the poorest Congressional district in the country.

Thursday, December 9, 2010
Haven Academy students perform “Nutcracker” ballet
Haven Academy Charter School, 170 Brown Place, Mott Haven, Bronx
CONTACT:       Abby Ross, LAK PR 212-329-1404/479-283-3505 or



Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Riverdalian Charles Moerdler named to MTA Board

   Prominent labor lawyer and Riverdale community leader Mr. Charles Moerdler has been named to the MTA board. It is unclear just whom Mr Moerdler will replace on the MTA board as there are several members who are holdover  members beyond the expiration of their terms. With his extensive labor background it is suspected that Mr. Moerdler will represent either the  Transit Workers Union, or the Metro North Railroad Unions. 
    There are 17 members of the MTA board appointed by either the Governor, Mayor of New York City, 7 surrounding county executives serviced by the MTA, employee unions, and New York City Transit Riders Council. The 17 member MTA board is headed by Mr. Jay Walder, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
The Battle For Control Of The State Senate May Not Be Over
    Newsday is reporting that former Democratic State Senator Craig Johnson has filed a notice of appeal Monday of a judge's ruling certifying Republican Jack Martins as the winner of the election in the 7th State Senate District, his attorney said. "We are optimistic that justice will be served on appeal". 
    Johnson believes that a hand count of all 85,000 ballots is needed to unearth votes for him that were missed by the new electronic voting machines.  Currently Republicans have a 32-30 margin in the State Senate, but should the full hand recount change the results in this race the State Senate would become deadlocked at 31-31.
Bronx Annual Chanukah Menorah Lighting Ceremony

    On Monday, December 6, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and the Bronx Jewish Community Council hosted the Bronx Annual Chanukah Menorah Lighting Ceremony at the Bronx County Building. The event, attended by elected officials, Jewish community leaders and dozens of residents, featured a live musical performance by Dafna, a world-renowned recording artist, performer, educator, and music therapist.
     “The Bronx Annual Chanukah Menorah Lighting Ceremony is a great opportunity to both celebrate the holiday season with our borough’s Jewish community and to renew the bonds of solidarity and friendship in faith that bind our residents together. Once again, Bronxites of all faiths and ethnic backgrounds join with communities across the world in commemorating the Festival of Lights,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
       Above Bp Diaz lights Menorah with Rabbi Greenblatt inside borough hall.
         They then went outside to light the giant Menorah on the steps of borough hall below.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

It's Official Democrats Loose Control of State Senate

     With new voter ballot scan machines, it took over one month to finally count all the ballots and declare all the winners in the State Senate races. The result is, after all that hard work in 2008 to finally win the majority (after 40 years of Republican control) State Senate Democrats have given back control of the State Senate to Republicans 32-30. Not only did they loose control; of the state house, but Democrats reelected the man who lead them to defeat Brooklyn Senator John Sampson as their leader.
     Some will say it was Pedro Espada Jr that caused the loss to Republicans, while others will point to the AEG scandal at Aqueduct Race Track, and others will say it was newly elected governor Andrew Cuomo who did not do enough to help senate Democrats either win more seats or get reelected. As we predicted there were three new Democratic State Senators elected this year, one in Queens, one in Hudson Valley, and one in Buffalo. The flip side however was that Democratics lost five seats while gaining only three for a net loss of two seats, and control of the State Senate.
     This will mean a loss of millions of dollars in member items to senate Democrats, as well as chairmanships of committees, as the party in power controls who gets what committee. Worse is that Republicans in the State Senate will control redistricting in 2011 on how State Senate districts will change. We have already heard that the 34th State Senate district (D-Jeff Klein) may change to include some of the area of former State Senator Frank Padavan's Republican stronghold, while dropping some heavy Democratic areas of the Bronx. This would then give Senator Klein a reason to run for that new proposed East Bronx congressional seat that may open up after redistricting