The Manhattan Beach Community Group announced on its website yesterday that they will hold a town hall/debate between Councilman Lew Fidler and GOP opponent David Storobin, both of whom are vying for the seat of former State Senator Carl Kruger. Holding the event on a leap year, the group decided to give it a little twist (and add some humor to what has become a decidedly dirty race). Here’s what they posted on their website:

The MBCG is hosting a town hall/debate between the 2 candidates vying for convicted felon-State Senator Kruger’s seat. Our last debate for the vacated congressional seat attracted over 500 people.

The date is Feb. 29, 2012, the time is 8PM and the place is PS 195 on Irwin Street in Manhattan Beach.

This being a leap year, Manhattan Beach has a long standing Feb. 29th tradition. Doing it backwards, the audience will sit on the stage and the candidates in the auditorium seats. They will have the opportunity to ask us questions to see what we need to improve our lives. We are also working on an electric shock truth machine in case we  hold the debate the traditional way. The position of shocker is available.

Anyway you slice it, what else do you have to do on Feb. 29th. Join us when we meet the two men trying to become our next state senator.

All are welcome from any community. This debate is a public service event from the MBCG.

THE BITE: Ah, how I love to save money. It’s become a compulsion these last couple of years with the economy in the toilet. I like to eat, so I’m always looking out for a lunch or dinner special to raise me from these financial doldrums.

Max’s Burgers and Steaks, located at 367 Avenue X, has a burger lunch special. For only $5.50, you receive a burger that’s grilled to order, hand cut French fries and a can of soda. Not a bad deal at all.

At The Bite, we usually only focus on one item, but since we’re talking about the lunch special, let’s discuss each item individually.

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Photo by Erica Sherman

A pawn shop – apparently named Pawnshop – will soon open at 1727 Sheepshead Bay Road.

The storefront became vacant after the previous tenant, accountant Larisa Komsky, was brutally stabbed on Homecrest Avenue in November.

We stopped by last week and a worker said they planned to be open within the month.

“The sun sun shines on everyone.” – Petronius, Satyricon Lybri 100

Photo by Yuriy Semenov

Source: Rafael Kage/Flickr

Are you a fan of Kingborough’s radio station? Well, we can explain that deafening silence you’ve been getting when you tuned in these last few days.

WKRB 90.3 FM, Sheepshead’s local college radio station hosted by Kingsborough Community College, is currently off the air. According to their Facebook page, the live feed went off air on Friday, February 10, while they renovate the station. They estimate they will resume broadcasting in April or May.

Worry not! Fan’s of the college station won’t miss a beat. Though the live feed will be down you can still listen to an automated version of the station’s playlist by going to WKRB.org.

The approximate location of the proposed natural gas pipeline.

After the House of Representatives passed a bill last week approving the construction of a three-mile gas pipeline, running underneath Jamaica Bay through Brooklyn and Queens, environmentalists and local leaders are outraged, claiming they were kept in the dark about it.

“It was done behind the public’s back,” said Ida Sanoff, Chairperson of the Natural Resources Protective Association.

Find out what the plan is, and why environmentalists say they’re being left out of the process.

The current State Senate district lines in Southern Brooklyn, showing District 27 (former Senator Kruger's district) and District 22 (Golden's). It is known as one of the worst examples of gerrymandering in New York State. The latest proposal is no better.

Looking at political district maps for Brooklyn and the city, you might think you’re gazing at an elaborate jigsaw puzzle. Yet, the process seems to get more complicated, not to mention inequitable, when the lines are redrawn every 10 years.

Nevertheless, the best laid district lines of Democrats or Republicans usually don’t count much towards a representative democracy, but rather for the ruling political party.

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On Valentine’s Day, we love our ladies. We love our local businesses. But we sure as heck don’t care for illegal vendors.

The NYPD is making rounds along the district’s commercial corridors, finding and squashing attempts to set up illegal flower stands.

Setting up shop on a sidewalk without proper permits is illegal any time of the year, but the problem gets particularly bad on holidays like Valentine’s Day. According to Sergeant Kerry Carty of the 61st Precinct Community Affairs Unit, within an hour of being out on Kings Highway today they had already shut down three illegal vendors.

“The florist shops pay a lot of money for their space,” Carty said, noting that illegal vendors are undercutting brick-and-mortar flower shops.

Storefront florists need to charge a little more to cover long-term costs like rent – and pay taxes – while fly-by-night vendors seize an unfair advantage, hurting the stability of the community. Illegal vendors in New York City can be fined between $250 and $1,000 and, if charged, face imprisonment of up to three months.

Photo by Erica Sherman

The following is a press release from the offices of State Senator Marty Golden: 

The New York State Senate today  passed legislation (S. 1746) introduced by Senator Martin J. Golden (R-C-I, Brooklyn), a former New York City Police Officer, that would prevent convicted felons currently confined as an inmate in any correctional facility, on parole, or on probation, from being able to legally change their name.

The legislation is a result of a 2000 civil rights law amendment that established a process for violent felons so to petition for a legal name change that includes crime victim and community notification. The process gives victims a chance to voice their opposition to such name changes.

Senator Golden stated, “Isn’t it enough to be a victim of a crime, and then to have to proceed with a trial, looking the one who caused you harm right in the face for days, weeks and sometimes months.  This court ruling now adds to the pain of New York’s victims, in it causes people to vividly recall the incident, in an effort to keep a felon from changing their name.”

Golden continued, “This bill stops criminals from victimizing law abiding citizens again in a court of law. New York needs to stop coddling criminals at the expense of victims. We should never consider the rights of the criminals in advance of those of the victims.”

The bill was sent to the Assembly.

Photo by Erica Sherman