Archive for the tag 'marty golden'

MBCG boardmembers, including new president Judy Baron (left) and outgoing president Ira Zalcman (right) pose with Comptroller-elect Scott Stringer

MBCG boardmembers, including new president Judy Baron (left) and outgoing president Ira Zalcman (right) pose with Comptroller-elect Scott Stringer

The Manhattan Beach Community Group met earlier this month for their 72nd annual general membership meeting, an end-of-year celebration where new officers are installed and the year’s accomplishments celebrated. This year’s event carried extra weight as the group’s president, Ira Zalcman, said goodbye after seven years of leadership, and the group passed an amendment to its bylaws intended to create peace with its rival neighborhood group.

The December 4 event – which we must note with regret has taken far too long to find its way to our website – drew nearly 200 neighbors, as well as a broad swath of incoming and outgoing elected officials.

Most significantly, the group passed an amendment to its bylaws that they hope will end a bitter six-year feud with the Manhattan Beach Neighborhood Association, a rivalry that many say has divided the community, and diminished its power to effect positive changes in the area.

The new bylaws create an exception for members of the “other group” to rejoin the MBCG as directors without having to wait the requisite two years. Passed with only one objection, by MBNA member Ed Eisenberg, the motion provisions for the group’s president to appoint as many as four members of the MBNA to the MBCG’s board, so long as the MBNA agrees to dissolve.


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Lawyer Mark Nussbaum

Nussbaum (Source: RUNY)

I’m not quite sure why one would release a statement in response to a quote published a month and half ago, or why one would attack a former elected official of the same party who has said he will never run for office again. But that’s exactly what’s going on this week, with Republican District Leader Marcus Nussbaum of the 46th Assembly District “taking issue” with former State Senator David Storobin for comments he made after the election.

Storobin blamed his loss in November’s race for the 48th District of the City Council, ultimately won by Chaim Deutsch, on low turnout in the Russian-speaking community. Following redistricting, the area became known as a “Super Russian” district, in which Russian speakers are the largest voting block. But apparently that didn’t benefit Storobin.

Nussbaum, who rose to local prominence after providing pro bono legal representation to Bay People in their fight against the Voorhies Avenue mosque, rejected Storobin’s narrative, saying that his loss was because of his failure to garner support from the party. To add some context here, the Brooklyn GOP is in the midst of a power struggle, with a faction led by State Senator Marty Golden looking to unseat county boss Craig Eaton, and Storobin wasn’t exactly a favored son of either side.

Here’s Nussbaum’s press release in full:

Marcus Nussbaum, one of the two newly elected Republican District Leaders in the 46th Assembly District, has stated that he strongly disagrees with former State Senator and City Council candidate David Storobin’s recent statement that he lost his election because the Russian electorate did not come out to vote.

“This analysis labels the Russian community as disinterested in civic affairs. I found this to be in accurate. As I campaigned, talking with hundreds of Russian constituents, I found the overwhelming majority to be very much concerned with government affairs and eager to cast their votes,” Nussbaum said.

Mr. Storobin’s remarks were included in a Politicker article entitled “Non-Russian Triumphs in ‘Super-Russian’ Council District” written by Ross Barkan last November 7th. Mr. Storobin blamed turnout for the letdown, “It’s disappointing the Russian community tends not to come out in high numbers,” he said, reflecting on his bid.”

Nussbaum explained, “I am of Russian descent, and convinced that my victory last September, together with that of my running mate, Lucretia Regina-Potter, happened because of the strong support that we received from the Russian Republican community. In order for us to receive such support, we personally asked for it by meeting with as many Republican voters as possible throughout the entire 46th Assembly District.”

“In spite of the fact that the established factions did not support us, we were able to overcome those obstacles and their very strong opposition. In my opinion, Mr. Storobin lost because he failed to reach out to those people, including myself and my co-leader, who had just succeeded in convincing a large number of Republican voters to actually come out and vote in a Primary election,” Nussbaum stated.

“Could it have been political rather than cultural considerations that were at play?” Nussbaum asked. “At this stage, one is inclined to conclude that perhaps Mr. Storobin did not value our support, or worse, he may have been instructed not to reach out to us by his alignment with one established Republican faction.”

“The result of all of the bickering and infighting among Brooklyn Republicans is that it is almost impossible for Republican candidates for public office to be elected. We must stand united, work for a common victory, and overcome these petty differences in order to succeed. It is not a community that is disappointing, but perhaps the candidates that take the community for granted,” Nussbaum concluded.

Are you still struggling with city, state or federal agencies – or your insurance company – with Sandy-related problems? Are you still in need of help and support but don’t know what programs are still running?

State Senator Marty Golden is putting together yet another Superstorm Sandy follow-up town hall meeting, featuring representatives from many of the related agencies. The meeting is tonight at 7:00 p.m., at P.S. 277 (2529 Gerritsen Avenue). See the flier below for details.

sandy-flier

State Senator Marty Golden. Source: NYSenate.gov

State Senator Marty Golden. Source: NYSenate.gov

State Senator Martin J. Golden is initiating a series of new holiday events he calls “Holiday Senior Festivals,” which will feature the participation of numerous city and state agencies, free blood pressure screenings, entertainment and lunch, raffles, as well as a free shredding truck parked outside to shred old and sensitive documents, and a tree trimming.

Invited governmental agencies include Aging, Sanitation, Environmental Protection, Finance, the Fire Department, Parks and the Police Department. The events will also serve as collection sites to support the Toys for Tots campaign. Letters and cards can also be brought to the events, which will then be mailed to our American servicemen and women overseas.

The events, which are free and open to the public, are scheduled for:

  • Wednesday, December 18 from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at St. Francis Cabrini, 16th Avenue (entrance) between 86th Street and Benson Avenue
  • Thursday, December 19 from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at St. Patrick’s Auditorium, 9511 Fourth Avenue
  • Friday, December 20 from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at St. Edmund’s Preparatory High School, 2474 Ocean Avenue

For more, contact Senator Golden’s district office at (718) 238-6044 or email golden@nysenate.gov.

In conjunction with the American-Italian Cancer Foundation’s (AICF) Free Mobile Mammography Program, State Senator Marty Golden will host free mammography screenings outside of his district office, 3604 Quentin Road, this Friday, November 22 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Staffed completely by women, the mammography screenings take about 30 minutes to complete inside the 37-foot mobile mammography van.

The AICF’s Free Mobile Mammography Program aims to break down the barriers to breast cancer screening, which results in many underserved women losing their lives to breast cancer due to advanced disease at diagnosis.

Women interested in appointments must be over 40 years of age and have not had a mammogram in the past year. Results will be sent to you and/or your doctor within 10 business days. Uninsured women will be covered by the AICF’s funding.

An appointment, which is necessary, can be made by calling (718) 238-6044.

Source: Senator Golden's offices

State Senator Marty Golden (Source: Senator Golden’s offices)

New York Times columnist Michael Powell took State Senator Marty Golden and Sheepshead Bay’s State Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz to task for sponsoring legislation that would have directed millions of dollars to the tobacco industry, and came, Powell writes, at the behest of a campaign contributor.

The legislation in question is a bill to reform the security tax stamp placed on cigarettes that proponents said would help combat cigarette bootlegging and raise $6 million for enforcement.

But in reality, Powell writes, it would have authorized an increase in payments for cigarette wholesalers who place the stamps, raising the take from two cents per pack to five cents per pack.

When Golden was questioned during a hearing on the bill by State Senator Liz Krueger about the increase, he chalked it up to rising costs.

Mr. Golden began to mutter of higher costs for wholesalers: Con Ed, health benefits, gasoline, rent, trucks, whatever. “That’s all increased much more than the dollars that we are asking for here,” he said, a touch plaintively.

This was not true, at least percentagewise. A 1996 dollar, adjusted for inflation, is worth $1.49 today. The bill backed by Mr. Golden and Mr. [Jeff] Klein, who intently watched this debate from his desk, would more than double the revenue of the wholesale firms.

Klein, leader of the Independent Democratic Conference, which shares power with the Republican party in the State Senate after forming an unusual alliance that shut Democrats out of leadership, co-authored the bill with Golden.

It was introduced in the State Assembly by Cymbrowitz.

According to the Times report, the bill was put forward at the behest of Leonard Schwartz, a Manhattan Beach resident and chairman of Global Wholesale Tobacco. Schwartz has been a generous contributor to the campaign coffers of Klein, Golden and, less so, Cymbrowitz.

Of course, none of this is illegal, and the bill eventually died. But Powell opines that it’s deeply symptomatic of the pay-to-play culture that pervades Albany, wherein politicians can legally except funds from corporate interests, and then push legislation that steers large sums of money into their pockets.

Neither Golden nor Cymbrowitz commented on the bill to the New York Times. But a Klein ally, Senator Diane Savino, who represents Coney Island, went on the attack when asked about it by Politicker yesterday:

“I think people should take a step back and stop pretending to be outraged because it’s absolute nonsense,” Ms. Savino told Politicker at a Hurricane Sandy press conference in Coney Island. “You can take any issue and you can find a way to twist it to make it seem like something nefarious. In every one of these articles you see is a caveat there: ‘There’s nothing illegal about this.’ Well if that’s the case, why are you writing it?”

It’s worth noting that Savino, too, has benefited from Schwartz’s largesse. He donated $500 to her campaign in 2012, according to state campaign filings.

Powell, though, responded by pointing out that it’s his duty as a reporter to point out transactions of questionable ethics, even if it’s not against the law – especially when the subjects are those who make the law.

“If all we wrote about was the illegality in Albany without looking at all the shades of moral and ethical murk that encompass it, we wouldn’t be doing our jobs as journalists,” Powell told Politicker. “If a politician does hack work, the politician can’t really complain.”

For the Republican senator, the news comes on the heels of another alleged pay-to-play scheme, in which Golden introduced legislation that would grant large tax breaks to five luxury developments in Manhattan, saving them tens of millions of dollars. The tax breaks were intended to spur residential construction and affordable housing, but the luxury properties were included under an exception proposed by Golden in the Senate, and Keith Wright in the Assembly.

The developers had contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to leadership in both parties, including Golden.

When asked, Golden could not explain who added the giveaway to the legislation, or what justified it. The Moreland Commission, charged with investigating corruption in Albany, subpoenaed the developers in August.

PS 222, 3301 Quentin Road (Source: Google Maps)

PS 222, 3301 Quentin Road (Source: Google Maps)

State Senator Marty Golden honored P.S. 222 (3301 Quentin Road) for its recognition as a 2013 National Blue Ribbon School winner. Brooklyn News is reporting that the school won for “Exemplary High Performing.”

The award is presented by the US Department of Education and was given out to 236 other public schools across the country this year. Officials from P.S. 222, including Principal Theresa Oliveri and former Principal Louise Blake, will be on hand for the ceremony in Washington D.C. in November.

Golden said he was proud to honor the Marine Park school in his remarks.

“It is an honor to represent such an outstanding school and I extend my heartfelt congratulations to the entire Public School 222 community on this honor.  Together, students, parents, teachers and administrators, have made this great honor possible.  This is a great day for School District 22 and a great day for Marine Park,” Golden said.

US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan commented on prestigious nature of the award.

“National Blue Ribbon schools represent examples of educational excellence, and their work reflects the belief that every child in America deserves a world-class education,” Duncan said.

Congratulations to P.S. 222 on the impressive honor.

Marty Golden, Photo By Erica Sherman

Marty Golden, (Photo By Erica Sherman)

State Senator Marty Golden is hosting a town hall meeting tomorrow night for people in Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach and Gerritsen Beach who were affected by Superstorm Sandy. Brooklyn News is reporting that Golden has invited a slew of officials representing various city, state and federal agencies to interact with attendees and answer questions relating to the continuing recovery effort.

Brooklyn News listed the agencies that the officials will be culled from as well as Golden’s remarks encouraging residents affected by Sandy to make it to the meeting:

Senator Golden will welcome officials from Build It Back, National Flood Insurance Program, Small Business Administration, The Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Financial Services, The Army Corps of Engineers, The New York City Department of Buildings, The Health Department, City of New York, The New York City Department of Environmental Protection, and The New York City Department of Transportation.

“Almost 11 months after Hurricane Sandy, many residents still need help with rebuilding, insurance, and getting back on their feet,” said Senator Golden (R-C-I). “I urge all residents of my district who are still facing Hurricane related issues to come to this meeting and take advantage of all the different agencies present. By working together, we can make sure that all those who were affected by Hurricane Sandy get their lives and homes back to normal.”

The meeting is schedule for tomorrow, September 25, at 7 p.m. at Public School 277 located at 2529 Gerritsen Avenue.

Source: Golden's office

Source: Golden’s office

State Senator Marty Golden wrote a letter to Joan McDonald, the Commissioner of the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT), throwing his support behind an amendment that would provide billions of dollars for Superstorm Sandy-related MTA projects.

Here are the details of the proposed amendment:

  • Adds $5.674 billion to the 2010-2014 Capital Program for mitigation projects identified in response to Superstorm Sandy;
  • Includes $1.6 billion in project-level adjustments in accordance with the full funding plan approved by the CPRB in March 2012, and
  • Rebalances the budgets of various project classifications to reflect the current priorities and allow projects to proceed, including addressing so-called 10 percent issues.

Golden explained the importance in approving the amendment and provided more specifics on what the money would cover.

“This amendment includes $5.674 billion in transit and commuter railroad mitigation projects which will prevent or reduce water intrusion in stations, tunnels, and support facilities; fortify key infrastructure and right-of-way equipment; improve operational flexibility; and improve the overall resiliency of the MTA system and its ability to recover from major weather events and other disruptions,” Golden said in the letter to the NYSDOT.

The following is a press release from the offices of State Senator Marty Golden. You can learn more about STAR here.

State Senator Martin J. Golden (R-C-I) today is reminding homeowners who receives a Basic STAR property tax exemption will need to register with the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance to keep getting the STAR exemption in 2014 and beyond. This is part of a new effort to eliminate fraud and protect property taxpayers.

Beginning later this month, the State Tax Department will mail detailed instructions to all current Basic STAR recipients on how to register. The letter will include a personalized code that homeowners will need to register on-line or over the phone. The registration process will simply require homeowners to provide some basic information to confirm their eligibility for the STAR program.

“It is imperative that all recipients of Basic Star register with the State of New York or risk losing this vital benefit,” said Senator Golden.  “A recent State Comptroller’s report showed that taxpayers are being cheated out of tens of millions of dollars every year by individuals who are fraudulently obtaining STAR exemptions for their property. This statewide accountability effort is being undertaken to weed out that abuse. Most homeowners are doing the right thing, but when someone takes advantage of the system everyone else has to pay more in school taxes. That’s not fair or legal.”

Here are a few key points to be aware of:

  • This is a one-time process. Basic STAR recipients will not need to re-register every year.
  • Senior citizens who receive the Enhanced STAR exemption are not affected by the new registration requirement and nothing will change for them.
  • Questions about the registration process can be asked by calling the State Tax Department at (518) 457-2036 or visiting www.tax.ny.gov.

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