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Showing posts from December, 2016

Bill and Hill Chill in the Bronx

POLITICS- Former President Bill Clinton and Former Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton took in the sights of the Holiday Train Show at the NY Botanical Gardens in the Bronx this weekend.

Handicapping Race to Replace Vacca

DeBlasio Plays Santa Claus with NYCHA
(AWKWARD- Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj at an event with potential City Council challenger John Doyle who is on the far left.)

By Robert Press
POLITICS- The person most people thought would be in the 13th city council district race announced that he would indeed be a candidate in next year’s 13th city council race. That person being curent Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj of the 80th Assembly District. 

I think Assemblyman Gjonaj now comes into this race as the favorite, but that alone will not make him Councilman Mark Gjonaj. However Mark Gjonaj is used to working hard as an elected official, and as a candidate. Four years ago when everyone but this reporter said that Gjonaj's opponent would win the assembly race, Mark Gjonaj became the new assemblyman from the 80th A.D. 
It is too early to call the 13th City Council race as there are four other current candidates for the Democratic primary thought to be the only race to win which are: Community Board 10 Vice-Ch…

Bronx Bodega Bandit Terrorizes Workers


Cite Putin Ties

WASHINGTON—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement:

“Rex Tillerson is not qualified to be ,  and the Senate should not confirm him.  Aside from his utter lack of diplomatic experience, Mr. Tillerson’s cozy ties to Vladimir Putin and Russia would represent an untenable conflict at the State Department. Especially in light of mounting evidence that Russia interfered in our election to aid President-elect Trump, it’s unthinkable that Mr. Tillerson should become our top diplomat.  If he does clear the Senate, I’ll look forward to Mr. Tillerson testifying before the Foreign Affairs Committee so we can learn more about his troubling foreign relationships, particularly his ties with Russia."

Gjonaj to Replace Jimmy Vacca?

Assemblyman to Run for City Council

(Photo by Robert Press)
By Robert Press
POLITICS- A popular Assemblyman is looking to add his muscle to a northeast Bronx city council district. 

On Monday morning in Westchester Square, only a stones throw from the current term limited 13th City Councilman's office, Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj announced his intentions to run in the Democratic primary for the open 13th City Council seat. He is running to replace term-limited Councilman James Vacca.
The announcement came at the powerful Chippewa Democratic Club where Assemblyman Gjonaj was joined by many elected and Democratic party officials which included State Senator Jeff Klein, Assemblyman Michael Benedetto, Congressman Joseph Crowley, and a packed room of supporters from all parts of the council district.
Gjonaj said that he was running for the city council seat to make a significant impact on the continuum of the council district. He also wants to be able to serve the people of the council district …

Santa Brings Appliances to NYCHA Residents

BRONX- Christmas came early for NYCHA residents who received badly needed new appliances. 

Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo, Chair of the Assembly Puerto Rican Hispanic Task Force and member of the Speaker’s Anti-Poverty Working Group announced that thanks to funding he helped secure through the 2016-17 State Budget, residents of housing developments in the Bronx will be receiving new appliances.  The upgrade to new appliances comes a few weeks before Christmas, Hanukkah and end of year celebrations.
According to Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo: “I am proud to be able to deliver critical funding for the developments in my district including providing over $500,000 for new appliances for the residents of Stebbins and Bronx River housing developments.”
In addition, Assemblyman Crespo said: “This is part of my ongoing work to improve our communities and quality of life for all its residents. Safe, decent and affordable housing is the bedrock to achieving such goals.”  
“These investments in Stebbin…

Stop Housing Homeless in Slumlord Buildings- Pol

By Dan Gesslein
BRONX- Elected officials are calling on the city to end the temporary housing of homeless families in some of the worst buildings in the city. The calls for action come after two baby girls were scalded to death by a radiator in one such apartment.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. is calling on the mayor to end cluster homeless shelters in the city. These are private buildings which the city uses to temporarily house homeless families. 
On Wednesday, Ibanez Ambrose, 2, and Scylee Ambrose, 1, were apparently scalded to death by the radiator in their apartment. The babies suffered burns to over 70% of their bodies. They had been living in one such cluster building at the Hunts Point Avenue building.
"The cluster homeless shelter program has been broken for a long time and should have been eliminated years ago," said Diaz. "There is an undeniable homelessness crisis in this city, and the city must initiate an aggressive reform in the shelter s…

‘We Will Not Rest’- Mayor on Radiator Tragedy

Young Girls Scalded to Death in Homeless Shelter (Facebook photo)
BRONX- Mayor Bill DeBlasio vowed not to rest until the cause of the radiator explosion, which killed two young girls in a Hunts Point homeless shelter, had been determined. 

“Our city is mourning the loss of two young children in a tragedy earlier today that appears to be connected to a steam radiator in their family’s Bronx apartment. We are in the preliminary stages of what is a highly active, multi-agency investigation into what happened in this home and whether there’s anything that can be done to help prevent such an unspeakable event in the future,” DeBlasio said. 
“Our law enforcement, buildings, fire and social services personnel will not rest until we can answer what has given rise to this heartbreaking incident,” the mayor said.
Fire officials on the scene said a valve blew off the radiator and filled the apartment with scalding steam. According to published reports both the mother and father were seen running out…

Pol Introduces Bill to Curb Parole Inequality

POLITICS- Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda praised Gov. Cuomo for announcing his plans to nominate several minority group members to the state parole board.

This follows an investigation by the NY Times that found black and Latino inmates were denied parole at higher rates than whites.
Sepulveda said he would now re-introduce legislation requiring the parole board to issue annual reports giving a more detailed accounting of their operations.

The Times investigation also found that black and Latino inmates were punished at significantly higher rates than whites, sent to solitary confinement more often and held there longer.
A member of the Assembly Committee on Correction, Sepulveda is Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Transitional Services, which deals with integrating released inmates back into the community.
The Bronx legislator's bill would amend state law to require the parole board to issue an annual report of its work for the preceding calendar year to the governor and the legislature.


Cuomo Funds Army of Volunteers to Combat Poverty
POLITICS- Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced $6.7 million in funding over three years to create Empire Corps, a new program that consists of AmeriCorps and AmeriCorps VISTA members, to serve 16 communities across the State. The new program is part of the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative, a $25 million initiative to help support community-driven, poverty reduction strategies that increase economic opportunity for all New Yorkers.

“Every New Yorker deserves a fair shot to succeed,” Governor Cuomo said. “This administration has made it a mission to fight poverty and its root causes and this new Empire Corps program puts resources and manpower on the front lines of this battle to achieve a stronger, fairer and more just New York for all."
Funding for Empire Corps will establish a team of 134 AmeriCorps and 17 AmeriCorps VISTA members to accelerate poverty reduction in the Bronx, Rochester, Syracuse, Binghamton, Oneonta, Buffalo, …

Can’t Throw $ at Education- Pol

City Hall must stop denying space to great new schools
By Senator Reverend Rubén Díaz
POLITICS– When I moved to New York City from Bayamon, Puerto Rico, I knew the key to opportunity was going to be a good education.To be sure, I cared deeply as a young man about health care, economic opportunity and poverty. But my ability to rise through the ranks as a Hispanic leader in New York City in order to tackle those issues was only possible because I was able to get an education that prepared me for the challenges ahead.

Unfortunately, too few of my constituents have that opportunity today, and part of the reason is that policymakers are failing to make space for high-quality alternatives in our public schools. Just 38 percent of the city’s middle-schoolers are proficient in reading — and barely a quarter of black and Hispanic children read at grade level.
This is a moral crisis and should spur us all to action. And it can’t simply be solved by throwing money at it: A quarter of New York City’…

Blaz Gets Cheer from Bronx

Bx Pol Becomes First State Official to Endorse Mayor

By Robert Press
BRONX- Mayor Bill deBlasio came to the Bronx to pick up his first endorsement in his bid to run for re-election.

Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda stands with Mayor Bill de Blasio for the second time in four years to once again endorse a mayor who has become his friend at City Hall for re-election. The mayor and Assemblyman Sepulveda visited Pastor Dr. Felecia M. Smith and members of the Parkchester Baptist Church.
Citing the mayor’s "on-going efforts and accomplishments," Luis Sepulveda  became the first state Assemblymember - and first Bronx elected official - to endorse Mayor Bill de Blasio for a second term.
"Almost four years ago, I was the one of the first Bronx electeds to endorse then-Public Advocate Bill de Blasio to become mayor," the Assemblymember told the congregation of the Parkchester Baptist Church, led by the Reverend Felecia (cq) Smith, on Sunday. "Since then, he has not failed my faith…

Saving the Life of a Vet 1 Hug at at Time

POLITICS- The Bronx Veteran Chamber of Commerce would like to invite you to our Suicide Awareness “22 HUGS A DAY CAMPAIGN & TOY DRIVE” event hosted by Lourdes Melendez-Gamez of Confetti Party Place.

The purpose of this event is to bring awareness to the 22 Veteran suicides per day dilemma, which totals over 8,000 a year. Since the release of the study, that would mean the death by Veteran suicides since 9/11 surpasses the death toll of 9/11 and the total loss from the on going war combined. 
At this event we will have service members and non-service members join together in a hugfest. Additionally we will be collecting toys for our annual Christmas Toy Drive, please bring one unwrapped toy. Drop off a toy but stay for the hugs!  
The purpose of the hug is to lower your defense and open yourself up for the possible. Those possibilities can be someone to talk too, seeking resources, or getting medical care. This method promotes a connection so that a Veteran will become open to the ide…