Author Archives: TheForum

Suboxone: Integral Element in Battling Opioid Addiction

Last month, The Forum chronicled one borough native’s descent into opioid addiction; how in the matter of a couple of years a dentist’s prescription for a painkiller rapidly plunged into full-blown dependence on heroin. This week this space spotlights what many opiate addicts have characterized as a wonder drug, one of the crucial tools in managing addiction to narcotic painkillers or heroin: buprenorphine and naloxone, better known as Suboxone. Approved in 2002 for office use by physicians by the Food … Continue reading

Queens Library Branch Marks 85 Years Serving the Community

As part of the Queens Library System, which serves a population of 2.3 million in one of the most ethnically diverse counties in the U.S., the Ridgewood Library celebrated its 85th anniversary last Wednesday. According to library officials, the Ridgewood Library first opened its doors on Madison Street in Ridgewood on Oct. 15, 1929, and was the first library in the Queens system to be built with city funds. Previously, the Ridgewood Library had made its home in store fronts, … Continue reading

DOT Studying Pedestrian Plaza for Possible Changes

Community Board 9 this week decided that it would scrap a letter it had intended to send to the city Department of Transportation regarding concerns about an Ozone Park pedestrian plaza because the agency was already conducting the study that the board would have called for in the missive. According to some area small business owners, the plaza, located on 101st Avenue at Drew Street and Liberty Avenue, has negatively impacted their bottom lines. In August, at a Borough Hall meeting … Continue reading

Borough Keeping Buildings Department Busy

It seems that Queens continues to keep the city Department of Buildings very busy. That was the story Tuesday night at the Community Board 9 meeting as DOB officials detailed how active the borough is with complaints, inspections and penalties. “In the city, there were 278 access warrants [filed] last fiscal year,” said Anthony Iuliano, director of intergovernmental affairs for the DOB, referring to building-inspection documents, “Two hundred seventy two were in Queens.” Iuliano also noted that illegal curb cuts … Continue reading

Build It Back Responds to Howard Beach Senior’s Sandy Dillemma

  After this newspaper last week spotlighted the seemingly unending bureaucratic saga of one Superstorm Sandy victim living in Howard Beach, it appears as though the wheels of justice, however slowly, are turning in the direction of a resolution. A representative of the Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency has indicated that the agency has assigned personnel to review and resolve the case of Leo Marinconz, who has lived in his storm-damaged home on 160th Avenue for 33 years. Sandy … Continue reading

Rego Park Republican Set to Take on Addabbo

The reputations of the city and state legislatures have been in tatters for so long now—so many elected officials have been charged and convicted of corruption and betraying the public trust—that one publication recently held a contest which awarded a free dinner to the contestant who could correctly guess the next elected official to be indicted in New York. With this as one of myriad examples of how the Empire State’s legislative leaders are perceived, why would anyone want to … Continue reading

New Casino Exhibit Spotlights ‘Wonders of Jamaica Bay’

The latest exhibit at Resorts World Casino New York City brings a bit of Jamaica Bay to South Ozone Park. Unveiled Tuesday morning in the Times Square Atrium, “Hidden in Plain Sight: The Wonders of Jamaica Bay” highlights the city’s largest open space through the photography and cinematography of Dan Hendrick, François Portmann and Don Riepe. “I fell in love with Jamaica Bay about 15 years ago,” said Hendrick, author of “Jamaica Bay” and an environmental advocate who works with … Continue reading

Centreville Sewer Project Moving Forward After Decades of Delays

To Centreville residents, or those who live close to Albert Road in Ozone Park, the mere mention of the now 30-years-overdue sewer and infrastructure project for the area will likely be met with more than a bit of skepticism. “For me, who has been involved with this project for some 35 years, back when it first was proposed…There have been so many false start dates that I have my concerns and doubts about any new dates the city comes up … Continue reading

QueensWay Draws Raves, but Some Still Oppose Park Plan

Friends of the QueensWay and the Trust for Public Land this week released the much-anticipated QueensWay Plan, a study which both groups jointly characterized as “a blueprint for the QueensWay—New York City’s next great park.” The project involves converting the long-abandoned Rockaway Beach Branch line of the Long Island Rail Road—a 3.5-mile swath of the borough, from Rego Park to Ozone Park—into a $120 million public park boasting trails and many amenities. According to the study, the QueensWay will “provide … Continue reading

Community Board 9 Accepting District Manager Applications

Community Board 9 is now accepting resumes from individuals interested in the district manager position. The board, which serves Kew Gardens, Richmond Hill, Woodhaven and Ozone Park, has been searching for candidates since longtime District Manager Mary Ann Carey announced her retirement in August. As of Oct. 1, the position has been vacant. “Community Board 9’s next district manager will play a critical role in ensuring that the board effectively serves the residents of Woodhaven, Ozone Park, Richmond Hill and … Continue reading

Queens Museum Names New Executive Director

After an exhaustive national search, the Queens Museum Board of Trustees last week named Laura Raicovich as the borough cultural institution’s new president and executive director. Raicovich, 41, replaces long-time museum head Tom Finkelpearl, who earlier this year was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio as the commissioner for the city Department of Cultural Affairs. She will assume her new position on Jan. 1, 2015. “Laura has spent the past two decades strengthening arts institutions, realizing the visions of artists, … Continue reading

School Says Afterschool Program Slots Still Available

One of the pillars of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s first year in office has been afterschool programming for middle-school students. And according to the head of PS 207’s own afterschool program, area parents of children in grades 6 through 8 can still take advantage of de Blasio’s initiative at the Howard Beach school. “We just want to make people aware that they should enroll soon,” said Michael Taylor, director of the afterschool program at PS 207, “because we’re going to … Continue reading

Suit Settlement Paves Way for City’s Disabled to Seek Storm Shelter

A federal judge’s decision last week will produce impactful changes in the way the city responds to natural disasters, according to local advocates. Judge Jesse Furman accepted a settlement agreement that mandates improvements in the way the Big Apple mobilizes services before, during and after events such as Superstorm Sandy. Christine Chuang, senior staff attorney for Disability Rights Advocates, said the biggest change will ensure that New Yorkers with disabilities know where to flee in a disaster. “This agreement constitutes … Continue reading

Pols, Communities Call on State to Improve Evacuation Routes and Signs

Emergency evacuation infrastructure and route signage along the Nassau Expressway and connecting roadways in southern Queens and southwestern Nassau County are in desperate need of immediate repair, according to area elected officials. Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Rockaway Beach) and Nassau County Legislator Howard Kopel (D-LI) led a rally on Sunday morning in Five Towns to call on the state Department of Transportation to improve the roadways and signage before more natural catastrophes wreak havoc on communities. “In southern Queens and Rockaway, … Continue reading

Area Communities Tops in State Reading Program

More than 100 students from the communities that comprise state Senate District 15 last week received official certificates from the Senate after emerging on top in number of participants in the legislative body’s summer reading program. Before summer began, state senators reached out to district schools, offering the opportunity to enroll in the program, in conjunction with the state Library. Participating students kept an online journal to track their progress throughout the break from school. The online journal, used via … Continue reading