CompStat reports are produced by the New York Police Department on a weekly basis. We summarize the week’s statistics for the 61st Precinct reports every Friday. The 61st Precinct is the police command responsible for Sheepshead Bay, Gravesend, Kings Highway, Homecrest, Madison, Manhattan Beach, and Gerritsen Beach.
It’s rare whenever Southern Brooklyn get a cool new tech or cultural addition ahead of, like, anywhere else in the city, but the Brooklyn Public Library and Google are looking to reward us for our suffering from Sandy.
Google, a company which knows all and has all the money, generously donated 1,000 fresh Nexus 7 tablet’s to libraries in Brooklyn devastated by Superstorm Sandy. According to a press release, Google, along with Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Fund for Public Schools, donated a whopping 17,000 tablets to New York City libraries, senior centers and community centers, amounting to a $2.7 million donation.
The tablets will be used to support a range of functions, including English as a second language training, job training or simply serving as eReaders. Library patrons will even be able to borrow the tablets, just like a book, free to add music, movies and other apps, as long as they come back freshly deleted when returned.
The tablets will be available for loan from Brighton Beach, Coney Island, Gerritsen Beach, Red Hook and Sheepshead Bay libraries.
Linda Johnson, the president of the Brooklyn Public Library, was thrilled with the donation.
“These communities were some of the worst hit by Hurricane Sandy, so they are receiving priority access to our new tablet lending program. Providing digital learning opportunities is at the forefront of our Library’s mission, so now, one year after the storm, we are thrilled to be able to offer this wonderful new resource to our patrons,” Johnson said in the release.
Wow, the library just got a lot cooler. Also, if you think that borrowing a tablet and never returning it would only cost you 15 cents or so in overdue fees, think again. According to the Brooklyn Library’s webpage on the Tablet Lending Program, you are going to owe $200 bucks for a lost or broken tablet, so be sure not to spill any coffee on it (looking at you, Ned).
Photo by Emilia Amos
EXCLUSIVE: After Defeat, Storobin Says He’ll Never Run For Office Again, Takes Swipe At GOP Colleagues
Following his defeat on Tuesday to Councilman-elect Chaim Deutsch, former State Senator David Storobin told Sheepshead Bites that he has no plans of ever running for office again, and also threw a jab at his Republican colleagues, likening them to a “debating society.”
The comment was made in an e-mail to us, following a tweet we posted in jest after the results of Tuesday’s election came in.
So… who's ready for Cymbrowitz v Storobin next year? ;)
— Sheepshead Bites (@SheepsheadBites) November 6, 2013
In reply, Storobin sent us this:
On twitter, you wondered about my future runs for office, against Cymbrowitz or someone else. Let me put this to rest: I didn’t run for the last two years because I’m obsessed with campaigning for public office. I’ve always been interested in politics and felt it was a way of making a difference for the better. The way things lined up, I had to run 3 times in a row, a nightmare I would’ve never started had I known how long it would take. But once I was in it, this is what I had to do. Under the circumstances, those were the correct choices, regardless of the final outcome.
My one regret in all this is that all my time in public eye has been very divisive because that’s the nature of elections where you have to distinguish yourself from your opponent, particularly when you are trying to be “the first”, both as a Russian and as a Republican, which upsets a lot of the traditional political balance.
I wish I had the chance to work without the divisiveness of elections. The one article I enjoyed the most about myself featured a quote from a CUNY professor who said I wasn’t just a Russian Senator, I tried to work for everyone in my brief tenure. I wish I could’ve done more of that – help my neighbors, regardless of their ethnicity, political affiliation or even if they like me or not.
And now things will go back to normal. I will go back to being a lawyer. Brooklyn Democrats won’t have to worry about getting re-elected. Brooklyn Republicans will go back to being a small debating society. Everything makes sense to everyone again.
After we requested clarification on whether or not this means he was done with politics, Storobin was unequivocal:
“Yes, I have no intention of ever running for office again,” he wrote.
If this is the end of the line for Storobin’s political career, it was a brief but historic stint. Storobin made his mark as the first Russian-American to sit in the State Senate, a distinction he won after an uphill campaign in a 2012 special election, taking on one of the city’s most powerful politicians, Councilman Lew Fidler. The victory was an upset, and seen by observers as an indicator of a Republican resurgence emerging in Southern Brooklyn.
Unfortunately for Storobin, his two subsequent campaigns, one to take on Simcha Felder for the “Super Jewish” district last year, and this year’s run for City Council, did not have the same success.
I was perusing Zillow last night for no real reason when I stumbled upon this little palace in Manhattan Beach, now on the market for the low, low price of $3.3 million.
This 5,000-square-foot single family home features six bedrooms and five and a half bathrooms. It sits on a mammoth lot of 6,011 square feet, so there’s some private yard space for you to gaze upon from your balcony while you ponder on what new things you can jam marble or trim with gold.
The house has been on the market for nearly three months and hasn’t dropped in price. Here’s the description from the broker, Alex Bragynsky:
Homes of this caliber rarely come to market. Young brick beauty is the most exciting property to hit the market in years it is the real harmony of grandness and comfort! Nestled on a coveted street just steps to the Ocean Beach and park! This ultra luxurious 3-story + basement residence with a gated entrance sits on a 6,000 SF property. Indulge in your own outdoor paradise with a gorgeous landscaped garden with a fontan, summer kitchen with grill and more. Boasting a 5000-SF interior with 6 bedrooms & 5 baths, this magnificent sunny and airy home features the finest finishes! The double-height living wows you, entertain in the living room with unique fireplace, dining room and chef’s kitchen, 2 sfabulous master suites with an ensuite baths and franch balconies. Enjoy of huge terrace, play area & jacuzzi
If $3.3 million sounds like a lot to you, well, actually, it’s not for Manhattan Beach, historically speaking. In the two years before Superstorm Sandy, several homes sold for between $2 million and $3.5 million.
However, that was before the flood. It’s the highest price tag on the market in Manhattan Beach since that fateful October day in 2012. Even if it was slashed by more than a million dollars, it would remain the highest sell since the storm. The current record holder is this home at 183 Girard Street, which sold in March for $1.98 million.
Anyway, Mr. Bragynsky has not disclosed the address of the house. But that’s no fun. We want to go get a peek at the outside, because that’s where we’re told beauty really lies. On the outside.
If you know where this house is, let us know.
As seniors prepare for another winter, many in homes battered last year by Superstorm Sandy, fire safety becomes a huge concern. According to a press release, the FDNY Fire Safety Education Unit will be installing smoke, carbon monoxide and hard-of-hearing detectors, as well as performing in-home safety reviews, for elderly and disabled residents whose homes had to be repaired following the events of Sandy.
The program comes courtesy of a $590,000 grant from the Department of Homeland Security and is earmarked for residents living within the realms of Community Boards 13, 15 and 18. The release described the reasons behind the program and how it might save lives:
With the cold weather season upon us, so many of us depend upon having heat in our homes to keep us warm, but with home-heating equipment such as portable space heaters and fireplaces, come certain risks. The possibility of fire increases by 33 percent during the winter months of December, January and February, with the FDNY reporting that fire remains the major causes of death in the home.
There were 106 fires attributed to Superstorm Sandy last year – 21 of which occurred during the powerful October 29, 2012 storm, and 85 fires in the months following, which were attributed to damage from the storm.
If you would like an installation in your home, you can call (718) 281-3872.
Thanks to Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz for providing the information on the program and the service. The assemblyman has encouraged constituents with any questions to contact his office too at (718) 743-4078.
Stay safe, everybody.
Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.
The Simplified Needs Test (SNT) is question 34 on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. The purpose of it is to determine whether assets will be counted or excluded in the Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) Calculation. The EFC represents the amount of money the government feels the student and family can afford to contribute toward his or her college education. Simply stated, the lower the number, the less you’re expected to pay. The best score possible is zero.
City Hall’s budget battles and shortfalls are constantly putting a strain on the city’s library system, including Southern Brooklyn’s libraries, where they serve large immigrant populations. The New York Times is reporting that the library squeeze has consequences for the city’s immigrant population, which relies on the institutions for learning and cultural integration.
Since 2008, funding for New York City libraries in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens was cut by $65 million, increasing the strain on the system by decreasing hours and limiting the hiring of much-needed employees. Brooklyn Public Library executive David Woloch told the Times that the borough’s 60 branches need $300 million in capital improvements. According to Woloch, only $15 million was available in 2013.
Julie Sanford from the Charles H. Revson Foundation, which recently awarded the Sheepshead Bay Library $10,000, summed up the problem to the Times:
“The libraries often can’t plan beyond a year because they don’t know what the budget is going to be,” said Julie Sandorf, president of the Charles H. Revson Foundation… “It’s not like schools or parks, who start with a set budget. The libraries start from zero.”
Ms. Sandorf said that for $50 million more each year — “a rounding error in the city’s $70 billion budget” — all of the city’s libraries could be open 50 hours a week, instead of the current average of 43 hours. “If we are talking about a knowledge-based economy, this is what we need to do,” she said. “The problem is there is a huge gulf between the decision makers in this city who can pay for books or iPads and what is going on in every single library branch in the city.”
As the budgets for libraries shrink, demand for their services have increased, especially for the ever-growing immigrant population that uses them as cultural and learning centers. The Times described the cross-cultural services offered at the Sheepshead Bay branch:
Despite these challenges, branches like Sheepshead Bay offer countless services to an unending stream of people, including language and citizenship classes, arts and crafts, preschool story time, chess and even a Russian literature fan club.
Last Wednesday, a couple played Scrabble at a table while another couple studied for a nursing test. Nearby, a man browsed a selection of Korean movies, while another thumbed through recently arrived books in Russian. Upstairs, children did their homework or checked their e-mail
“If you are going to be educated, you have to be in touch with the culture,” said Laura Sermassan, an immigrant from Romania who meets her three sons at the library each day after school. “It’s a point of integration into American culture. It’s a support.”
Ms. [Svetlana] Negrimovskaya, in her office — where the shelf behind her desk has dictionaries in Yiddish, Russian, English and Chinese — was already looking forward to Tuesday’s gathering to mark Hurricane Sandy’s passing and the community’s rebound. She said people came alive when they were able to come back.
Today’s featured photographer, bless his heart, submitted a cool title, which refers to “a line from an ancient rhyme often repeated by mariners during the past centuries,” as well as some fun lyrics to “Sunrise” by Eric Carmen (the guy who sang “Hungry Eyes” from “Dirty Dancing.”)
A “shovel ready” post — Erica likes!
Of your crimson sky
I spent a long time
Believin’ in a dream that had passed me by
But the moon and stars have gone
And I can see the light of dawn
Like a golden smile
Brightening up the morning sky
Photo by Neil Friedman
The following is a paid announcement from il Fornetto Italian Restaurant & Caterer (2902 Emmons Avenue), Sheepshead Bay’s premier waterfront dining experience.
The above is a paid announcement by il Fornetto Italian Restaurant & Caterer. Sheepshead Bites has not verified the claims made in this advertisement. If you own a business and would like to announce a special offer to tens of thousands of locals, e-mail us at advertising [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com.