Addabbo Household Paint Disposal Bill Moves Forward

    Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr.

    State Sen. Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. (D-Howard Beach, Ozone Park, Woodhaven, Glendale, Middle Village, Maspeth, South Ozone Park, Ridgewood, Woodside, The Rockaways) recently joined with his Senate Environmental Conservation Committee colleagues in approving legislation (S.881) he co-sponsored that would establish a statewide paint stewardship program to safely and conveniently dispose of old cans of paint.

    “Constituents who participate in my twice-yearly community recycling events often mention how hard it is to safely dispose of old paint and other household hazardous waste,” said Addabbo, noting that his Spring recycling fair is tentatively scheduled for Sunday, April 29. “This program would go a long way towards solving this stubborn problem: helping to protect our environment, saving municipalities money, and making it easier for all of us to feel good about cleaning out our basements and garages of old paint without posing a threat to our waterways and other natural resources.”

    Under the proposal, paint manufacturers would be required to either set up a paint stewardship program of their own to accept leftover household paint from consumers, or form a non-profit organization of producers to launch an initiative for the collection, transportation, reuse, recycling, and/or possible burning for energy of old paint by appropriately licensed facilities.

    “By some accounts, about 3.1 million gallons of paint go unused in New York State every year, and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that about 10 percent of household paint nationwide becomes waste,” said Addabbo.  “Tossing old paint into the garbage or washing it down the sink or sewer system is a threat to our environment, which we can minimize with an effective safe disposal program.”

    Addabbo pointed out that the City supports the legislation, which passed the Senate but not the Assembly in 2017.

    The next step for the bill would be a vote by the full Senate.

    Van Bramer Hails CreateNYC Cultural Expansion

    City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer/Facebook

    City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Astoria, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Long Island City, Maspeth, Sunnyside and Woodside) yesterday hailed Mayor Bill de Blasio’s announcement of a new grant program associated with CreateNYC, which found major potential for new and expanded collaborations between City government and arts organizations

    De Blasio announced the selection of seven new and expanded partnerships for funding under the first Mayor’s Grant for Cultural Impact (MGCI). An outgrowth of the CreateNYC cultural plan, the collaborations supported by MGCI seek to enhance vital public services through cultural and creative programming, bringing the unique benefits of arts and culture to help address pressing civic issues including public health and safety, domestic violence, literacy, planning, immigration, and criminal justice.

    Among the non-profit cultural arts organization that received funding includes:

    • Carnegie Hall and the Department of Probation (DOP) will continue their successful partnership centered on DOP’s Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) arts initiative by expanding the Free Verse Poetry Apprentice Project, which began in the South Bronx and will now launch in Northern Staten Island and Jamaica, Queens. Free year-round literary arts programming will build connections between people on probation and their neighbors, and will generate new pathways to employment in NYC’s arts economy in areas known for high levels of poverty and unemployment.
    • Cool Culture will continue work with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) on promoting arts engagement in family shelters, an initiative designed to encourage exploration of art and culture by preschool-aged children living or receiving childcare in 93 shelters across the city. In addition, participating families will be offered free access to 90 cultural institutions citywide.

    “The mission of Create NYC is to bring culture and the arts to more New Yorkers and make access to culture more equitable for all,” said Van Bramer. “Today’s announcement demonstrates the power of culture and the arts to connect New Yorkers in all neighborhoods and of all backgrounds to these life changing experiences. I am proud of the work we have done in the City Council’s committee on Cultural Affairs to support these values, and I am excited to see this $500,000 announcement supporting seven innovative partnerships between city government and cultural organizations.”

    The seven partnerships were selected through an open call and application process. Each collaboration will receive $50,000 in cash support from the Department of Cultural Affairs (DCLA), and an additional $25,000 match of either in-kind or cash award from the partnering agency, for a total of over $500,000 in City support.  Programs must conclude by the close of the fiscal year on June 30, 2018.

    Holden On De Blasio’s Vision Zero Announcement

    City Council Member Bob Holden

    City Councilman Bob Holden (R-Middle Village, Maspeth, Glendale, Ridgewood, Woodhaven, Woodside) participated in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Vision Zero press conference on Monday along with City Councilmembers Jimmy Van Bramer and Ydanis Rodriguez, in which the mayor hailed the reduction in pedestrian deaths.

    While Holden acknowledged the city has been making great strides in improving safety and reducing motorist and pedestrian fatalities along many busy thoroughfares in Queens, there is still work to be done.

    “Now that stretches like Woodhaven Blvd are moving slower and seem to be more congested, cars and trucks have been using side streets to avoid traffic and our neighborhoods have been feeling the biggest impact,” said Holden.

    “We may be making some roads safer, but we may pay the price on our side streets. The Mayor and DOT must work with local communities to eliminate this compiling safety concern and to ensure there are no unintended consequences from Vision Zero,” he added.

    Coffee With Crowley Set For Saturday

    U.S. Representative Joe Crowley/via Facebook

    U.S. Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Astoria, College Point, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Woodside, parts of the Bronx) will host the first of several planned “Coffee with Congressman Crowley” events this Saturday.

    “Last month, President Trump signed into law a massive tax cut for corporations, special interests, and Republican donors that will bankrupt middle-class America. I fought against passage of this bill because it shortchanged the very people it should have helped most—every day, hard-working Americans,” said Crowley, adding he will discuss the tax bill and any other questions constituents may have.

    “Please know this is the first in a series of coffees I will be hosting this year at diners, coffeehouses, and businesses throughout Queens and the Bronx,” the lawmaker added.

    The event is slated for between 9-10:30 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 13 at Jahn’s Diner, 81-04 37th Avenue #1, (Between 81st and 82nd Street) in Jackson Heights.

    Crowley also noted that constituents in need of anything to call his district offices at 718-779-1400 (Queens) and 718-931-1400 (Bronx).

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