Schumer, Meeks, Suozzi Bill Renames Offensively-Named Waterway

    U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer

    U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks

    U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and U.S. Reps Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica, Laurelton, Rosedale, Cambria Heights, Saint Albans, Springfield Gardens, Far Rockaway, JFK Airport) and Tom Suozzi (D-Eastern Queens, Long Island) last month succeeded in getting a bill through Congress and to President Trump’s desk to rename the Negro Bar Channel that runs between Inwood and Kennedy Airport for fallen Long Island fire fighter Joseph Sanford Jr.

    Sanford, 43, a 17-year veteran of the volunteer department, died Dec. 23, 2014, five days after falling through a floor while responding to an early morning fire in Long Island.

    The Negro Bar Channel name has existed for 55 years and remains the official name of the channel on geographic maps. The waterway runs south of Kennedy Airport, which includes the channel toward the Inwood Marina and crosses the Town of Hempstead’s border with New York City to Jamaica Bay.

    Meeks introduced the bill in the house and Suozzi was one of 19 co-sponsors. Schumer first introduced the bill last year after a former Hempstead Supervisor discovered the name on a map.

    The White House gave no timeline when Trump may sign the bill into law to officially change the name on maps and documents to the Joseph Sanford Jr. Channel.


    According to the non-profit organization that advocates for New York’s lawmakers to vote on bills and enact legislation to protect the environment, Addabbo, a member of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, voted “correctly” on 12 of 15 heavily weighted environmental bills, which was calculated by the group to be a 2018 score of 95 — up from Addabbo’s 2017 score of 82.

    ELP/Environmental Advocates scores each environmental bill that comes to the Senate and Assembly floors on how much of a positive or negative impact it will have on the environment. In 2018, there were 11 bills that ELP/Environmental Advocates highlighted as being beneficial to New York’s environment, while four bills would have a negative impact on the state.

    Addabbo said he takes the geographic location of his district and its environmental issues into consideration when voting on related bills. He also noted that in addition to the legislative actions taken by the state to address environmental concerns, the events he sponsors in the district, such as recycling and rain barrel events, matter too.

    “It is an honor to be recognized by ELP/Environmental Advocates for my work voting on bills that will positively affect New York State’s environment,” Addabbo said. “I take pride in my record on sponsoring and voting on bills that will protect our environment, and plan on continuing to do that when session picks up again in January.”

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