Vallone Announces $425K Allocation For Security Camera System at PS 184

    City Council Member Paul Vallone

    City Council Member Paul Vallone (D-Alley Pond Park, Bay Terrace, Bayside, College Point, Douglaston, East Elmhurst, Flushing, Fresh Meadows, Little Neck, Whitestone) announced $425,000 in the upcoming Fiscal Year 2019 budget to install a complete  Intercomplete Internet Protocol Digital Surveillance (IPDVS) system for P.S. 184 in Whitestone.

    This funding allocation is part of Vallone’s continued promise for school safety reforms and reflects his commitment to addressing this issue both in his district and throughout the city.

    In the council’s response to the Mayor’s budget, Vallone requested a massive $100 million increase in funding to install new IPDVS systems in schools throughout the city. An IPDVS system allows authorized school officials to view live and archived camera images directly on their computer stations and provides remote viewing capability to authorized personnel from borough and central offices.

    Out of the over 1700 schools in the City of New York, only 1,123 have IPDVS, leaving a third of schools without this modern security system. In Vallone’s district, the problem is even worse with 62% of schools lacking IPDVS.

    “At the Community Education Council District 25 meeting in March, I made a promise to the parents at 184 and today I am fulfilling that promise by committing to funding a full security camera system for the school,” said Vallone. “Unfortunately, while this is great step forward, there are still many schools throughout Queens and the city that continue lacking security systems and only the Mayor can provide the amount of funding needed to put cameras in every school. I’m proud to stand with our students, parents, teachers, and my colleagues in City Hall as we call on the Mayor to make school safety a priority.”


    Addabbo, Senate Approves Bills Protecting Public From Convicted Sex Offenders

    Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr.

    State Sen. Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. (D- Howard Beach, Ozone Park, Woodhaven, Glendale, Middle Village, Maspeth, parts of South Ozone Park, Ridgewood, Woodside, the Rockaways) recently joined with his Senate colleagues to pass 26 pieces of legislation designed to better protect children and members of the general public from convicted sex offenders who are at greatest risk of repeating their horrific and predatory crimes.

    “Sex offenses are among the most devastating crimes that can be committed, often leaving victims extremely fearful, humiliated, and in both physical and psychological anguish,” said Addabbo. “While I believe in rehabilitation in some cases, unfortunately the most serious sex offenders have a significantly high rate of recidivism, and may seek out additional victims when released from prison. To protect our kids and others from being sexually assaulted, it makes sense for the state to pursue new measures to better inform the public about these criminals, make sure offenders comply with New York’s Sex Offender Registration law,  and place reasonable restrictions on their employment and living arrangements.”

    Among the proposals supported by Addabbo in the 26-bill legislative package were initiatives to:

    — Prevent level 2 and level 3 sex offenders, who are considered the most dangerous and most likely to re-offend, from living within 1,500 feet of their victims (S.968);

    — Prohibit sex offenders from working at facilities where they have door keys or otherwise have unsupervised access to residential living quarters (S.2170);

    — Require that level 2 sex offenders living in the community appear in person at law enforcement agencies once a year, with a current photograph, instead of every three years (S.2638);

    — Provide that home address information about a sex offender who has moved to New York from another state may be released to the public, even while the offender is awaiting official risk-level designation by legal authorities (S.6548);

    — Make people guilty of a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in prison, if they knowingly harbor, house or employ a sex offender who has failed to register or verify their residence or employment with the State Division of Criminal Justice Services (S.2595); and

    — Prohibit convicted sex offenders from working directly with children, whether in paid or volunteer capacities (S.1635).

    Now that the bills have been approved by the State Senate, they have been sent to the State Assembly for consideration.


    Sanders Nominates Army Sgt. For Veterans Hall Of Fame 

    Se. James Sanders

    State Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Rochdale Village, Far Rockaway) yesterday nominated US Army Reserves Sergeant Lakia Echols of Far Rockaway for the 2018 New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame.

    “I am proud to recognize Sgt. Echols for her dedication in serving our country and our community,” said Sanders, who is a Marine Corps veteran himself. “She has done so much to help so many of us and is well deserving of this honor.”

    Sgt. Echols has served the nation since 2001 and is pursuing to be a Warrant Officer.

    Each year senators from across the state are asked to select a veteran from their district to be inducted into the NYS Veterans’ Hall of Fame. The honor was created to recognize and celebrate outstanding service members from the Empire State who have distinguished themselves both in military and civilian life.

    “Act as though it’s impossible to fail” is the motto that Sgt. Echols not only lives by but also values. 

    While deployed in Kuwait from 2004 to 2006, Sgt. Echols was involved in community development and discovered her passion – giving back to the community.

    She is the founder of MakeMyMotherProud, an organization that provides guidance and motivation to the youth in Far Rockaway and Queens community towards education and life paths. She also is the Director of The Child Center of NY Redfern in Far Rockaway.

    As the Director of the Cornerstone program in one of the most dangerous housing developments in Far Rockaway, Sgt. Echols utilized her military background to encourage youth faced with life challenges to join military service. She managed to help several young men and women get off the streets and pursue a career within the service or at an educational institution.

    Sgt. Echols also stepped forward when Hurricane Sandy struck in 2012. She quickly mobilized assistance for community residents who could not reach a distribution center, bringing food and materials directly to them. Sgt. Echols also helped raise $20,000 from private companies that went directly to families affected by the storm.

    Sgt. Echols, a single mother, is a motivational speaker leadership teacher and highly motivated community leader. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Organizing Management from St. Joseph’s College and is currently pursuing her Master’s degree at St. John’s University.


    Amato Invites Teens and Their Families to Take Arrive Alive Pledge

    Assembly member Stacey Pheffer Amato

    With prom and graduation season approaching, Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato (D-Broad Channel, Hamilton Beach, Howard Beach, Lindenwood, Ozone Park, Rockaway) is encouraging parents and teens to take the Arrive Alive pledge together to ensure teens can get to and from their destinations safely on prom night and graduation night.

    The pledge asks teens to promise not to drink and drive or ride in a vehicle with someone who has done so, while asking parents to provide a ride home at any time, no questions asked.

    “The Arrive Alive pledge helps parents and teens talk about the dangers of driving under the influence and ensures that teens know it’s better to reach out to their parents rather than get behind the wheel intoxicated or with someone who is,” said Pheffer Amato.

    One in five teen drivers involved in fatal car crashes had some alcohol in their system, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Further, young drivers between the ages of 16 and 20 are 17 times more likely to die in a car crash when they’ve been drinking and had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over .08 percent. Judgment and ability are impaired even at a lower BAC, and one mistake behind the wheel can cause a fatal accident, noted Pheffer Amato.

    Pheffer Amato is inviting families to take the pledge with their teens to prepare for prom season and support them on one of the most memorable nights of their lives.

    To print a copy of the pledge, contact the Assemblywoman’s office at 718-945-9550, via email amatos@nyassembly.gov.

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