In Public Service – October 9, 2019

October 11, 2019 Paula Katinas
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MADD honors Ortiz

The group Mothers Against Drunk Driving has named Assemblymember Felix Ortiz one of its “2019 Legislators of the Year” for his efforts to change the state’s laws to combat drunk driving.

Ortiz, a Democrat representing Sunset Park, Red Hook and parts of Bay Ridge, joined with State Sen. John Liu to introduce legislation to lower the blood alcohol concentration under which a driver would be considered intoxicated from .08 to .05.

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Liu, a Democrat from Queens, was also honored by MADD as a Legislator of the Year.

Ortiz, who said was honored to be lauded by MADD, added that has made safety a priority throughout his legislative career. “The right to drive a car is dependent on being a responsible motorist. There’s no tolerance for drunk drivers to sit behind the wheel of a car. I will continue to fight for progressive laws to protect the public from reckless driving action,” he said.

 Colton praises Cuomo on MTA

Assemblymember Bill Colton praised Gov. Andrew Cuomo for sending a letter to MTA Chairperson and CEO Patrick Foye calling on him to complete an audit of the agency. Cuomo also called on the MTA inspector general to review the integrity of the agency’s procurement and inventory control systems.

“For many years, the MTA has spent billions and billions of dollars on unnecessary projects and then asked for fare increases, claiming that there’s not enough money to continue with some other wasteful ideas. I believe that, for far too long, the taxpayers have been paying the price of the MTA’s wasteful policies,” said Colton, a Democrat representing Gravesend and parts of Bensonhurst and Dyker Heights.

“That is why I am pleased that the governor included the requirements of a forensic audit as one of the reforms of transparency in the governing structure of accountability in how such monies are spent by the MTA and NYCTA,” Colton said. NYCTA stands for New York City Transit Authority.

Treyger unveils Sarah V. Kennedy Way

Councilmember Mark Treyger was joined by religious leaders and community leaders at a ceremony marking the city’s official co-naming of a street corner after a beloved Coney Island civic leader on Oct. 5.

The intersection of Mermaid Avenue and West 20th Street was co-named Sarah V. Kennedy Way in honor of Kennedy, who worked with young people in Coney Island, fought to keep the city from closing Coney Island Hospital and advocated for affordable housing for low income families.

Kennedy was elected as the first woman executive vice president of DC 37, the municipal union. She died in 2018 at the age of 78.

“Her advocacy helped secure funding for local projects and she encouraged residents to become civically engaged, leading to many constructive outcomes for Coney Island,” said Treyger, a Democrat whose district includes Coney Island, Gravesend and parts of Bensonhurst.

Lentol makes the rounds in his district

Democratic Assemblymember Joseph Lentol has been busy in his North Brooklyn district in recent days, visiting festivals and marking Banned Books Week.

Lentol was one of several elected officials who attended El Puente’s WEPA Festival, an event showcasing the culture, artistry and history of the Latino community in South Williamsburg. State Sen. Julia Salazar and Borough President Eric Adams were also on hand to congratulate El Puente Founder Frances Lucerna.

Lentol stopped by Drag Queen Story Hour at St. John’s Lutheran Church during Banned Books Week to raise awareness of the fight against censoring books.

Lentol also paid a visit to Town Square’s annual School Fest, where he met with parents and educators to discuss the needs of North Brooklyn families and the efforts that are being made to ensure they have the resources and tools necessary for a quality education for their children.

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