At our Bowne Civic Association general meeting yesterday evening, Mr. Nicholas Circharo, Community Affairs Liaison at the NYC Department of Sanitation presented eye-opening information about sanitation. For example, it costs taxpayers $300 million to export waste. For more details, click HERE.
Cost is one of the reasons to recycle. Another is saving our environment. Mr. Circharo recommends that our community participate in the recycling program to save our money and the environment.
Each ton (2000 pounds) of recycled paper can save 17 trees, 380 gallons of oil, three cubic yards of landfill space, 4000 kilowatts of energy, and 7000 gallons of water. This represents a 64% energy savings, a 58% water savings, and 60 pounds less of air pollution.
As an example, a school with 100 teachers would use 250,000 piece of paper annually. With that, a school like this would spend approximately $7,500 per year on printing on this paper and paper itself costs $25,000, not to mention costs of copy toner and service agreements.
Every year, Americans use more than 90 million tons of paper and paperboard. That’s an average of 700 pounds of paper products per person each year. Every year in America, more than 2 billion books, 350 million magazines, and 24 billion newspapers are published.
In the U.S. industry moves, mines, extracts, shovels, burns, wastes, pumps and disposes of 4 million pounds of material in order to provide one average middle-class American family’s needs for one year. In sum, Americans waste or cause to be wasted nearly 1 million pounds of materials per person every year.
Even when it’s in landfills, plastic is at risk of blowing away and ending up in rivers or oceans. Even more of a risk is plastic litter. … Holidaymakers visiting beaches and leaving behind their bottles, food packaging and cigarette butts on the sand directly contribute to plastic getting into the ocean. Not only does this affect our lands, it kills animals. For more details click HERE.
Recycling saves costs on consumer and office goods. For more details click HERE.
The following information was handed out at our meeting. We also received a free gift of a cool reusable bag.
For more information about the Zero Waste Pledge, click HERE.
You can take New York’s Pledge for Zero Waste and receive a free gift HERE.
News from Congresswoman Grace Meng
Queens, New York
For Immediate Release: May 30, 2018
Contact: Jordan Goldes, 718-445-7861
MENG PROVISION TO AUTHORIZE NAVY’S JET NOISE REDUCTION PROGRAM PASSED BY HOUSE
Congresswoman’s measure supports research that could lead to reduced aircraft noise over Queens
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In her continuing effort to combat aircraft noise over Queens and other impacted communities, U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-Queens) announced today that the House has passed her measure to authorize the Jet Noise Reduction Program, an initiative within the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research.
The program seeks to reduce engine noise of high-performance military aircrafts, and breakthroughs that are made could possibly be applied to commercial jets, which would result in decreased airplane noise over communities such as Queens. In fact, Meng’s provision – which passed as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) – would direct the Secretary of the Navy to share relevant noise reduction discoveries with the civilian aviation community.
“The Jet Noise Reduction Program has the potential to be a critical component in mitigating excessive aircraft noise over communities like Queens,” said Rep. Meng, a founding member and former Co-Chair of the Congressional Quiet Skies Caucus. “That is why it’s important for Congress to authorize this initiative, and I’m pleased that the House has voted to do so. The U.S. military has made many significant breakthroughs over the years that have greatly benefitted our nation. Many of these advancements have been implemented for civilian use and the same can certainly be done for combating airplane noise. Excessive airplane noise remains a major issue that negatively impacts residents of our borough, and we must continue to take advantage of all opportunities – such as measures like this – that can help provide long-term solutions to the problem. I now call for the NDAA to be passed by the Senate with this specific provision included and I’m hopeful that this will happen.”
Those cosponsoring Meng’s provision include Reps. Joe Crowley (D-Queens/Bronx), Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, Tom Suozzi (D-Queens/L.I.), Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn/Queens) and Kathleen Rice (D-Nassau County). All are also members of the Quiet Skies Caucus, of which Suozzi is the current Co-Chair.
“Authorizing the Jet Noise Reduction Program will ensure we can provide relief to the thousands of families living in Queens and the Bronx that are burdened with excessive aircraft noise,” said Rep. Crowley. “This program is crucial to our efforts to reduce noise pollution in New York City. The U.S. military has always paved the way on technological breakthroughs in aviation, and I’m eager to work with our armed forces as they develop and deploy aircraft technologies that help combat the excessive noise that has plagued our communities.”
“Noise pollution has been a quality of life issue for the residents of Queens and Nassau Counties for way too long,” said Rep. Suozzi. “As Co-Chair of the Quiet Skies Caucus, I have made it a priority to ensure that excessive aircraft noise levels are reduced. The Jet Noise Reduction Program is an important first step in seeking a long-term solution to this problem.”
“This is a step in the right direction,” said Rep. Jeffries. “Deafening airplane noise that incessantly pollutes many neighborhoods in New York City is an unacceptable scourge that must be corrected. Congresswoman Meng and my colleagues in the New York delegation should commended for their stalwart vision and leadership in helping restore sanity and silence for our neighborhoods that have been forced to suffer through the scourge of blaring aircraft noise.”
“The American military has a long history of finding innovative solutions to difficult problems,” said Rep. Rice. “Our investment in the Jet Noise Reduction Program is an investment in the strength of our military, an investment in our national security, and ultimately I hope it will be an investment in improved quality of life for people in my district who have long lived with the consequences of excessive airplane noise.”
Meng originally secured the authorization of the Jet Noise Reduction Program in last year’s House-passed NDAA, but the measure was not included in the version passed by the Senate. She is hopeful that the provision will be in both versions this year.
The NDAA is the annual legislation that establishes funding levels and policies for the U.S. Department of Defense. The bill would take effect at the beginning of fiscal year 2018 which begins on October 1.
As you already know, this is the fourth year that our district will be taking part in the upcoming Participatory Budgeting vote. Between April 7 and April 15 throughout District 19, residents will be able to cast their Participatory Budgeting ballot and vote for the projects they feel will best serve their community. Through Participatory Budgeting, you can decide how at least $1 million is spent on improvements to parks, schools, libraries, streets and more.
When this project began, our office took suggestions from each of the communities within District 19. After gathering all of the project ideas, our office coordinated with community volunteers, who served as Budget Delegates, to create a ballot of projects that would best serve our community’s needs. These Budget Delegates met several times throughout the winter to narrow down the project ideas through field research, discussions, and consultation with city agencies. Nearly one hundred project ideas were analyzed for feasibility and practicality with help from city agencies, with twenty projects ultimately being placed on the final ballot for voting.
After the voting period has ended, our office will tally up all of the ballots cast and announce which of the projects have won. The projects which receive the most votes for a total of at least $1 million will be selected as winners!
Anyone who lives in District 19 (Auburndale, Bayside, Bay Terrace, Beechhurst, College Point, Douglaston, Little Neck, North Flushing, Malba and Whitestone) and is at least 14 years old (age requirement varies per Council District) can vote, even if you are not registered or eligible to vote in electoral elections.
We encourage you to cast your Participatory Budgeting ballot at one of these voting sites:
The lake at Bowne Park in Flushing is planned to receive a $1.45 million reconstruction project, with the Parks Department expecting it to be finished by late 2019. The plan features bioswale plantings around the pond and two new turtle islands along with other improvements, including a new filtration system.
Read full article in the Queens Chronicle, March 29, 2018 HERE
Below is the story of the civic associations fight against 100% Re-assessment in New York State. Although this fight happened a long time ago it is always relevant as it affects people’s lives every day.
The question that bothers me and the other civic leaders that fought this battle is, is the City obeying the law? In particular we are concerned that the part of the law that says that the sector, that one, two, and three family homes, is protected and insures the balancing off of assessments, cannot pay more than 15% of the city’s taxes. With that sector protection, if assessments rise for some properties then assessments must be decreased for over assessed properties otherwise the 15% State Law would be abused. Who is watching if the law is being obeyed?
It is important that individual home owners should be aware that the Assessment on their home cannot be increased more than 6% a year and not more than 20% in any 5 year period.
You might have seen on TV that Trenton New Jersey has gone through a 100% assessment of all properties and it is a disaster. Homes with Real Estate Taxes of $2,000 jumped to $9,000 one elderly lady’s home went from $5,000 To $40,000 well if it wasn’t for your Civic Association and a union of many civics in our State we would have had that disaster here.
In 1975 a lawyer who lived in Fire Island N.Y. was upset because his neighbor was paying a lot less Real Estate taxes then he was for a similar house. He sued the State and won, what was called the Hellerstein decision. The New York State Supreme Court decided that all properties in New York State should be re assessed to 100% of value.
Our old system of assessing was really a mess, as a home was assessed when it was built and never reassessed. Consequently older houses taxes were much lower than newer houses of the same size. Homes were assessed at 40% of value, and commercial buildings were assessed at 70% of value giving the home owner a break. To reassess all properties in one step would have resulted in the same disaster that Trenton is going through right now. Older people with fixed incomes would have to sell their home as they would not be able to pay the huge Real Estate tax increases.
About 1400 New York State Civic associations formed a united association and we called it The State Coalition Against 100% Re-Assessment, or SCAR. We fought a 5 year battle with Stanley Fink who was the “Speaker” of the State Assembly who was for 100% reassessments. For years wherever Fink went, we went, with our signs and voices. We were successful in defeating a Bayside Assemblyman (who was running for re-election) as he was a supporter of Fink and the 100% assessment. That shook Fink up especially when we spoke at a large meeting of a big Civic Association in Brooklyn in Fink’s Assembly district. With that in late 1960 Fink invited us to a meeting in Albany to hammer out a bill.
I said that we were 1400 Civic Associations and yes some of the upstate civics were active but the battle was for the most part, was fought by, State Senator Frank Padavan, State Assemblyman John Esposito, and 6 Queen’s Civic associations who were represented by their presidents. They were the, Queens Colony Civic – Virginia Sallow, West Cunningham Civic – Bob Harris, Bowne Park Civic – John Procida, The East Bayside Civic – Frank Skalla, Auburndale Civic – Jack Norris, and the Bayside Hills Civic – Bill Caufield (not in order of importance). In short we all agreed to the system of very slow equalizing that we have now. Our bill, S.700-a/A.9200 was passed into law in January of 1961. Details on Request.
John Procida 161-09 29th Ave Flushing N.Y. 11358 718-746-5200