Vincent Maltese, neighborhood activist, dies at 86

Vincent Maltese, second from the left, at an event at Christ the King in 2013.

Vincent Maltese, second from the left, at an event at Christ the King in 2013.

Vincent Charles Maltese, a neighborhood activist who was a prominent member of the Conservative Party and the brother of former Republican State Senate Serf Maltese, died on Sunday. He was 86 years old.

Born on the Lower East Side in June 1934, Maltese was accepted to Stuyvesant High School, and later completed his high school education at Seward Park High School.

Maltese worked as a self-taught car mechanic, a salesman and a truck driver before working as a sales agent for Prudential Insurance for 14 years.

He then entered a career in law enforcement. At the age of 38, Maltese took the test to become a court officer, and passed with a 99. He was quickly promoted from captain to lieutenant, and eventually to sergeant.

While working, Maltese continued his college education at Adelphi, Hofstra and St. John’s University.

Maltese ran for president of the Queens chapter of Parents & Taxpayers and won. He was elected district leader of the Conservative Party, which he helped co-found in 1962.

The LES native served on the Ridgewood Community Board of Directors, which operated the Peter Cardella Senior Center. He was a member of the Italian Charities of America, serving as vice president for 30 years.

He was also on the board of the Italo-American Federal Credit Union, and a member of First Avenue Boys, the Scafidi Belmonte Mezzagno Benevolent Society, and the Bella Italia Mia.

Maltese was notably a founding member of the Triangle Fire Memorial Association and served as chairman of the board. He lost a grandmother and two aunts to the 1911 fire.

Mass cards and notes of condolences may be sent to his family address at 199-05 33rd Avenue Bayside, NY 11358.

Free COVID-19 antibody testing event all day

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Councilman Bob Holden and Community Board 9 Chair Kenichi Wilson are hosting a free COVID-19 antibody testing event in Middle Village today.

The event, with Advanced Cardiovascular Diagnostics, will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Juniper Boulevard South and 78th Street.

Please note that the antibody test is free with no co-pay, if you have insurance, you will be asked to show it.

Schedule your appointment here. Walk-ins are also welcome.

Addabbo opens Middle Village district office

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On Monday, June 29, State Senator Joe Addabbo reopened his district offices in Middle Village and Howard Beach.

The Rockaway office, however, will remain closed as renovations continue on the building.

During the shutdown, Addabbo’s offices were open but ran at reduced hours, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., while staff had staggered schedules.

Since Monday, the offices has returned to operating full-time, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Although in-person services have resumed, all constituents are asked to wear a mask upon entering the offices.

The Middle Village office is located at 66-85 73rd Place. Their phone number is 718-497-1630.

Richards leads BP race, Meng wins primary

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In the hotly-contested race for Queens borough president, former Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley is in second place as we wait for absentee ballots to be counted.

Hundreds of thousands of voters turned out, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, to vote at their polling places. But tens of thousands more voted through absentee ballots.

We likely won’t know the results of every primary race until July.

But according to unofficial results from the New York City Board of Elections, with 96 percent of precincts reporting, Councilman Donovan Richards is leading all BP candidates with 41,915 votes, or 37 percent.

Crowley, who racked up major union endorsements, received 31,781 votes, or 28 percent.

Other Democratic candidates include Councilman Costa Constantinides with 17,164 votes (15 percent), Anthony Miranda with 16,613 votes (14.7 percent) and Dao Yin with 5,028 votes (4.4 percent).

Though Richards is leading by a decent margin, we will wait until all ballots are counted to declare a winner.

The Democratic nominee will likely face Joann Ariola, the Republican’s pick, in the general election in November.

In the 6th Congressional District, which includes Middle Village, Congresswoman Grace Meng defeated challenger Melquiades Gagarin and Sandra Choi.

With 98 percent of precincts reporting, Meng, who is seeking re-election to her fifth term in office, received 15,181 votes, nearly 61 percent of the district.

Gagarin, a progressive activist, won 5,261 votes, or 21 percent. Choi, another first-time candidate, received 4,318 votes, good for 17 percent.

 

Though the district leans heavily Democratic, Meng will still face Republican nominee Thomas Zmich in the general election in November.

On the state level, Assemblyman Brian Barnwell and State Senator Joe Addabbo did not face primary challengers.

Juniper running track renovation to start in August

A Community Board 5 meeting in 2017 about Juniper Valley Park.

A Community Board 5 meeting in 2017 about Juniper Valley Park.

At this week’s virtual Community Board 5 meeting, District Manager Gary Giordano said the start of construction for the renovation of the turf soccer/football field and running track at Juniper Valley Park has been pushed back.

It was supposed to start in March, Giordano said, but the COVID-19 outbreak and lockdown paused all work.

On the Parks Department website, the project timeline says construction will begin in August 2020 and is projected to be completed in August 2021.

The $4.6 million project was funded by the City Council.

Past completed projects at Juniper Valley Park include the bocce court renovation, spray shower renovation and hockey rink renovation.

CB5 to meet virtually next week

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Community Board 5 typically meets the second Wednesday of every month in the cafeteria of Christ the King High School.

But given the circumstances of this pandemic, and the restrictions governing public gatherings, the board will meet virtually on Tuesday, April 7, starting at 7:30 p.m.

Members of the public can view and listen to the meeting on this YouTube link: https://youtu.be/B9kjPWTBXRE.

The agenda for the meeting includes the public forum, a review of liquor license applications, a review of building demolition notices, the chairperson’s report and the district manager’s report.

Anyone wishing to make a statement in the public forum can email their statement to CB5 at qn05@cb.nyc.gov by 2 p.m. on April 7. Statements or questions will be read aloud.

Next CB5 meeting will be on March 11

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The next regularly-scheduled meeting of Queens Community Board 5 is on Wednesday, March 11 at 7:30 p.m. at Christ the King High School.

If you can’t make the meeting, you can watch it on the livestream here.

The agenda includes the usual items: the public forum, chairperson’s report and district manager’s report.

That’s followed by committee reports from the following committees: Parks Services, Public Transit Services, Transportation Services.

For the public forum, speakers must either pre-register by calling or emailing the CB5 office or register at the podium prior to the start of the meeting.

You can reach Community Board 5 by email at qn05@cb.nyc.gov or over the phone at 718-366-1834.