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Around Brooklyn: Myrie reminds constituents about census

September 10, 2020 Editorial Staff
Shell Bank Creek at the end of Devon Avenue looks so serene before sunset. Photo: Lore Croghan/Brooklyn Eagle
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Myrie reminds constituents about census

State Sen. Zellnor Myrie (D-Brownsville-Crown Heights-East Flatbush-Gowanus-Park Slope) recently reminded constituents about the census. “There are 23 days left to complete the census, and this week there are several opportunities to help make sure #SD20Counts. Join the “Battle of the Boroughs” phone bank this week to help encourage our neighbors to fill out the census,” he said. He also mentioned that NYC Census is also organizing volunteer phone banking in Brownsville, which has one of the lowest census response rates in the city.

 BHS starts new Muslims in Brooklyn website

On Wednesday, the Brooklyn Historical Society launched a new website that contains several oral histories collected as part of the multi-year Muslims in Brooklyn initiative. The site is divided into several sections, including an introduction to the oral history narratives, an illustrated timeline of the history of Muslims in Brooklyn since the 1600s, and more. The narrators include immigrants and first-generation Brooklyn Muslims from Bangladesh, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan and other nations, as well as those who were born in Brooklyn itself.

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

Man yanked out of car, beaten, robbed

A 28-year-old man was yanked out of his car, beaten and robbed at gunpoint in Flatbush, video that police released on Wednesday shows. The victim was parked on Sheffield Avenue near Pitkin Avenue in Brownsville at around 12:30 a.m. on Aug. 17, waiting to meet friends, when an SUV parked across the street, police said. Two men from the SUV approached the victim’s car, pulling him out and punching and kicking him. One of the men took out a gun and grabbed the man’s ID. One attacker fled on foot, while the other drove off in the SUV, according to the New York Post.

Construction wraps up on Williamsburg building

Construction is wrapping up at 65 Graham Ave., a six-story building near the southwestern boundary of Williamsburg. The light-colored brick building is located on the corner of Graham Avenue and Moore Street and replaces a three-story building constructed in the 1930s. The apartments above the second floor have balconies that are protected by black metal guardrails. The building includes eight rental units as well as a community facility on the ground floor and retail stores. It is designed by Bricolage Design Associates and was developed by Graham Raflico Associates, according to New York YIMBY.

Colton praises Sanitation commissioner

Assemblymember William Colton (D-Gravesend-Bensonhurst-Bath Beach-Dyker Heights) recently lauded New York City Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia for recognizing that city policy poses a health threat to New Yorkers. Garcia stepped down Tuesday and is reported to be interested in running for mayor. “I’ve been saying for months that de Blasio had reduced the budget for litter basket service citywide by 63 percent compared to last year. That the reductions are equivalent to an effective headcount loss of 400+ sanitation workers,” Colton said.

Pricey Park Slope townhouses lead luxury RE market

Fifteen luxury real estate contracts were signed last week in Brooklyn for a total volume of $47 million, according to Compass’ weekly report on home contracts worth $2 million or more. These contracts included 13 town house deals; only two condos asking at least $2 million found buyers. The most expensive property was a five-bedroom townhouse in park Slope at 556 First St. that includes a music studio, a media room, a chef’s kitchen and a 2,000-book library. The second most expensive deal was for another limestone townhouse two blocks away at 556 Third St., according to The Real Deal.

Rockland venue settles with Brooklyn couple over wedding

In 2019, a Brooklyn couple paid a $43,000 deposit to the Valley Rock Inn in Sloatsburg, Rockland County, for a June 2020 weekend wedding for 150 guests. However, the coronavirus pandemic upset these plans, and as of June 24 Gov. Andrew Cuomo was only allowing gatherings of as many as 50 people. Valley Rock owner Michael Bruno agreed to reschedule the event for later in the year. While other couples agreed to a change of date or a downsized wedding, this Brooklyn couple wanted to cancel, and demanded a full refund. Eventually, the matter ended up in Rockland County State Supreme Court. The two sides eventually settled, and the Brooklyn couple had a Zoom wedding, according to the Rockland Business Journal.

James seeks to block increased immigration fees

New York State Attorney General Letitia James, a former Brooklyn councilmember, has taken legal action, along with 19 attorneys general, to block a new Trump administration regulation that increases fees for immigration-related applications. “This regulation is just another xenophobic attempt by the Trump Administration to keep immigrants out of the country,” said Attorney General James. “Most asylum seekers come to the U.S. with hardly anything in their pockets, having quite often used every dollar to flee persecution. But despite these obstacles, most of these immigrants are still able to build incredible lives for themselves and their families.”

Inmate caught after escaping from MDC

Police on Wednesday were searching for a 19-year-old inmate, identified as Johnny Soto, who escaped from the federal Metropolitan Detention Center in Sunset Park. He was last seen around 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday in front of the building at 170 25th Street. Police said Soto was being transported from court back to the MDC. Somehow, he jumped out at 27th and 3rd, ran up 27th Street and cut through backyards to get to 25th Street between 3rd and 4th avenues. Soto was last seen wearing all black and was handcuffed in the front, according to Eyewitness News. Later, he was caught after sneaking into a stranger’s living room and hiding under a sheet for several hours.

Nurse shot after taking road test

A registered nurse who had just taken a DMV motorcycle road test in Red Hook was grazed by a bullet. The woman, Tracia Briere, 50, was probably not the intended target, since she was a half-mile away from the shootout, police said. Briere, who lives in Long Beach, was taken to Brooklyn Methodist Hospital and treated there. Briere had worked at several Brooklyn hospitals during the height of the coronavirus pandemic and contracted the virus herself in March, according to the New York Post. Whether she passed the road test, we don’t know.

Brooklyn teachers test positive for COVID-19

Two Brooklyn public school teachers have tested positive for the coronavirus, officials announced on Wednesday. They were identified only as a teacher at P.S. 1 in Sunset Park and a teacher at M.S. 88 in Park Slope. A third possible case has been identified at P.S. 11. “School staff have access to free, expedited testing, and we’ve encouraged all staff to get tested before they return to buildings while we continue to navigate the realities of a pandemic,” the Department of Education said in a statement, ABC News reported.

Official seeks busway in Williamsburg

In the wake of Jay Street in Downtown Brooklyn being made into a busway, Councilmember Antonio Reynoso, who represents Williamsburg, is proposing a busway on Berry Street between Broadway and North 12th Street. He said that a car-free busway on that street could partially take the place of the stalled Brooklyn-Queens Connector, or BQX, a light-rail project that was slated to run along the waterfront from Astoria to Red Hook. “Berry should be a busway both ways, no cars, just buses, express buses — whatever the BQX wanted to do in bus format,” said Reynoso, who represents Williamsburg, said during a virtual City Council meeting, according to Streetsblog.

Three nabbed after joyride with stolen BMW

Three young men were arrested Tuesday night after they allegedly stole a new BMW, struck a pedestrian and then tried to escape from cops who cornered the vehicle. On Sept. 8, a BMW was stolen from Kings Highway and East 27th Street. The vehicle then went along Kings Highway, where the driver hit an unidentified pedestrian, causing minor injuries, and continued at high speeds. Police began a search of the area and located the BMW at East 38th Street. Police demanded that the occupants get out, but instead the driver hit the gas, went onto the sidewalk and hit a brick wall. One of the men surrendered, while the other two ran but were captured after a chase, amNewYork said.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer.

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