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Around Brooklyn: Restaurant group isn’t pleased with dining postponement

July 2, 2020 Editorial Staff
On my walk to Brooklyn Botanic Garden, I passed this home in Dyker Heights. Photo: Lore Croghan/Brooklyn Eagle

Restaurant group isn’t pleased with dining postponement

Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, recently made these comments about Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s delay in reopening indoor dining in New York City: “We respect the government and public health officials’ decision to postpone the anticipated July 6 reopening of indoor dining, but the longer neighborhood restaurants and bars are forced to be closed, the harder it will be for them to successfully reopen.” Rigie has also called for the city and state to forgive rent and expand outdoor dining.

Three Brooklyn pools to reopen in August

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Three Brooklyn pools are set to reopen for swimming in August. They are the Sunset Park Pool, the Betsy Head Pool in Brownsville and the Kosciuszko Pool in Bedford-Stuyvesant, according to Mayor Bill de Blasio. “For families, for kids in particular, this is going to be so important,” he said. City officials chose to open 15 of the largest public pools in the city to allow swimmers to spread out and allow social distancing, according to the Brooklyn Paper.

Cancer care facility planned for Downtown

New York Cancer and Blood Specialists, one of the leading oncology practices in the nation, announced that it has partnered with The Brooklyn Hospital Center to build a new cancer care facility known as the Brooklyn Cancer Center. The new center will be located at 523 Fulton St. in Downtown Brooklyn and is expected to be finished during the fourth quarter of this year. Current physicians at The Brooklyn Hospital Center will join the new entity but will continue practicing at the hospital’s main building at 121 DeKalb Ave.

All-female brass band takes to the streets

The coronavirus pandemic has forced some musicians to perform in the streets. One such group is an all-female brass band known as the Brass Queens, who perform traditional New Orleans-style music. “We’re just here to spread the joy. Everyone’s been in lockdown and people have been enjoying the music,” said trumpeter Alex Harris. They recently performed outside the window of a Brooklyn toddler who was celebrating his fifth birthday, according to CBS88 radio.


Lawyers accused of throwing explosive free until trial

Two Brooklyn lawyers accused of throwing a Molotov cocktail at an empty police car in May are allowed to go back home after a federal appeals court released them on bail while their case proceeds. Urooj Rahman, 31, and Colinford Mattis, 32, had been held at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn until June 5. Prosecutors argued that two lower court judges made an error in releasing Rahman and Mattis by failing to consider the risk they pose to the community. Rahman worked as a Housing Court lawyer for Bronx Legal Services, while Mattis worked for a Manhattan law firm, according to Gothamist.

Driver of stolen truck smashes into cars, kills another driver

A man driving a stolen truck left a trail of destruction through Brooklyn and Queens, smashing into more than a dozen cars and killing another driver. On Tuesday afternoon, the suspect, later identified as Roman Pena, stole a box truck in Richmond Hill, Queens, then crashed into a vehicle. He then took off, heading into Brooklyn, then returned to Queens and hit 12 more vehicles. After the final crash, he fled the truck and got onto the subway, Officers chased him down and arrested him in the subway tunnel. Pena was charged with manslaughter, assault, grand larceny and several other offenses, according to 4NewYork.

Suspect in Sunset Park flashings arrested

A flasher who allegedly exposed himself six times to young girls in Brooklyn has been arrested, police said. Lucio Pecher Garcaux was arrested on Tuesday for incidents in the Sunset Park area stretching back to September 2019. Most recently, on June 24, Garcaux flashed his nether regions at 11- and 13-year-old girls who were walking their dog near 7th Avenue and 18th Street, according to police. The girls’ mother then followed the perp and took multiple photographs. Garcaux was charged with nine counts of acting in a manner injurious to a child and several other offenses, according to the New York Post.

Panera Bread announces free coffee

Panera Bread has announced “Freecoffee4Summer.” Anyone who signed up for the “MyPanera+Coffee” subscription will enjoy free premium hot coffee, hot tea and iced coffee until Labor Day. Guests can get refills every two hours in the bakery-café to accompany their sandwich, sweet treat or bagel. Panera launched the MyPanera unlimited coffee subscription in March. In Brooklyn, Panera has outlets in Downtown Brooklyn and at the Gateway Mall in East New York.

Clarke votes for health care measure

U.S. Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-Brownsville-Crown Heights-East Flatbush-Midwood-Park Slope) recently voted for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which expands on the Affordable Care Act by lowering prescription drug prices and reducing the cost of health care. The bill combats inequity in health coverage faced by communities of color, expands more affordable coverage to vulnerable populations and requires states to extend Medicaid of CHIP coverage to new mothers for a full year after birth.

Velazquez calls for election reforms

Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-Brooklyn) recently wrote the New York City Board of Elections asking the agency to take immediate steps to improve voting access and election procedures in the wake of problems observed during the June 23 primary election. In 2015, a purge of 120,000 Brooklyn voters disproportionately impacted New York’s Seventh Congressional District, which Velazquez represents. The Department of Justice determined that the board had violated federal law in removing these voters from the rolls.

New mapping technology to measure air pollution

Aclima, an environmental company, will be launching its air pollution mapping initiative in Brooklyn this summer. Through its mobile air-sensing fleet, Aclima will be able to analyze and measure air pollution and greenhouse gases block by block in Brooklyn neighborhoods in which air pollution data is scarce, such as East Flatbush and East New York, according to Bklyner. “As we’ve seen with COVID-19, the health impacts of air pollution disproportionately affect communities of color,” said Davida Herzl, CEO of Aclima, “which is why it’s important to include potential environmental justice communities in the measurement area.”

Adams wants probe of cop response times

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams recently said that officials need to investigate police response times. He said there were charges of officers responding late to violent crimes, such as an incident on Troy Avenue where a man and his wife were being violently assaulted. He also said that police services should not suffer, despite recent budget cuts, if many non-essential services that are not directly tied to law enforcement are “civilianized.” For example, he said, auxiliary police can be used to augment police presence at parades, according to the New York Post.

Rose helps pass funding bill

U.S. Rep. Max Rose (D-Southwest Brooklyn-Staten Island) helped pass the Moving Forward Act, a comprehensive funding bill for transportation, water infrastructure and housing. “Staten Islanders and South Brooklynites deserve lower tolls, better streets, subways that are actually on time, shorter commutes, and the assurance that their roads won’t flood every time it rains—and I won’t stop fighting until that’s a reality,” he said.

RE firm to buy portfolio of Brooklyn apartments

David Werner Real Estate Investments has re-entered a contract with All Year Management to buy a 68-building portfolio of Brooklyn apartments. Werner agreed to buy the buildings for $302 million in two separate transactions, one slated to close this month and the other in November. The deal, originally made early in the year, was renegotiated because of COVID, according to Commercial Observer. The portfolio is worth $312 million.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer.


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