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Click to enlarge. Image courtesy of Mark Treyger

From the offices of Assemblyman William Colton:

Declaring the B64’s return to Southwest Brooklyn a “victory we can all be proud of,” Assemblyman William Colton (D-Bensonhurst) and his Transportation Improvement Coalition Co-Chairs Mark Treyger and Priscilla Consolo have organized a Celebration Rally to mark the first day of the bus line’s return to Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, and Coney Island. The community celebration is scheduled for Sunday, January 6, 2013, at 11 A.M., on the corner of Bay 50th Street and Harway Avenue. Colton’s coalition is celebrating the MTA’s July 2012 decision to completely restore B64 service in Southwest Brooklyn, which was partially eliminated in 2010 due to budget cuts and sparked community uproar. The 2010 MTA cuts eliminated B64 service from 25th Avenue in Bensonhurst to Mermaid Avenue in Coney Island, which negatively impacted thousands of riders and the local economy.

The Brooklyn legislator is helping organize the victory gathering to show his appreciation to the enormous support the successful B64 fight received from community leaders, groups, and residents. “Together with the help of countless individuals and community organizations who fought hard to restore B64 service in Southwest Brooklyn, we proved that there is truly strength in numbers,” asserted Assemblyman Colton. “Our formula of success was having families, children, seniors, small businesses, community groups, and concerned residents work together toward accomplishing a common goal, added Colton. “This victory marks the beginning, not the end, of our work ahead to ensure further transportation improvements in Southern Brooklyn,” Colton went on to say.

“The B64’s complete restoration is a victory that solely belongs to the families and small businesses of Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, and Coney Island,” insisted Co-Chair Mark Treyger, who along with Co-Chair Priscilla Consolo, assisted in organizing residents against the MTA cuts. “The MTA often loses sight of the impact its reckless decisions have on families, children, disabled persons who rely on public transportation, and small businesses. To have cut service from Bensonhurst to Coney Island, especially at a time when Coney Island’s amusement district is being revamped, was an unconscionable decision made by the MTA. I am so proud of our community for coming together and successfully pressuring the MTA to reverse course,” added Treyger.

“As a young community activist, I am deeply proud and encouraged to see the power of people coming together to fight for important services that help make our neighborhoods stronger,” stated Co-Chair Priscilla Consolo, who helped raise community awareness on the B64 issue. “I am eager to continue working with Assemblyman Colton, my Co-Chair Mark Treyger, and community residents to fight to make further improvements to our transportation system,” Consolo added.

From collecting thousands of petition signatures, to holding rallies, to even requesting the federal Justice Department’s intervention on behalf of people with disabilities, Colton and his coalition did not relent in their successful fight to restore bus service for Southwest Brooklyn residents. Additionally, they are determined to keep this alliance in tact to make further transportation improvements that are greatly needed.

Some of the organizations involved in helping make this victory possible include; Most Precious Blood Roman Catholic Church, Transport Workers Union, United Progressive Democratic Club, Jewish Community House of Bensonhurst, Bensonhurst West End Community Council, Harway Terrace Apartments Board of Directors, Contello Towers residents, Our Lady of Grace Roman Catholic Church, Castellammare del Golfo, Aidone Social Cultural Association, ASU of New York, Community Education Council – District 21, NIA Community Services Network, Southern Brooklyn Democrats, and the United Chinese Association of Brooklyn.

Source: Jim.henderson via Wikimedia Commons

Two transit officers were shot last night at 7:30 p.m. inside of the N subway station at 62nd Street and Fort Hamilton Parkway.

One officer was shot in the leg and the other was grazed by a bullet. It is not known how many shots were fired at the officers or why, according to NY1.

All N line southbound trains were suspended and the northbound trains ran on the D line.

There have been no reports on the condition of the officers who were taken to Lutheran Hospital and no further information on the suspect.

Source: Nadler.house.gov

From the office of Congressman Jerrold Nadler:

Congressman Jerrold Nadler released the following statement on the successful passage last night of legislation to avert a fiscal cliff, provide tax reform, extend unemployment insurance, and postpone the massive spending cuts attached to sequestration.

“While this isn’t a perfect bill, it does provide reforms and certainty to our tax code and postpones painful spending cuts that our nation doesn’t need.  This bill will prevent an immediate fiscal crisis, generate new revenue by asking the wealthiest among us pay a bit more in taxes, and extend unemployment benefits for the millions of people who depend on them.

“While there is still the looming threat of billions of dollars in cuts to our social safety net for kids, seniors, and the most vulnerable among us, we now have more time to try and avoid such a catastrophic outcome.  We must work toward full economic recovery and provide genuine and immediate support for the American people.  Then we must ensure that we never have another crisis in which the American economy is held hostage to advance the political demands of the most unreasonable and extremist Members of Congress.  The simplest way to do that is to abolish the debt ceiling once-and-for-all, and I have introduced and will reintroduce legislation to do just that.”

Click to enlarge

CompStat reports are produced by the New York Police Department on a weekly basis. We publish the week’s statistics for the 62nd Precinct reports every Friday. The 62nd Precinct is the police command responsible for Bensonhurst and Bath Beach.

Source: Norbert Nagel via Wikimedia Commons

Witnesses driving across the Verrazano Bridge said they saw a man jump from the right lane of the Staten Island-bound upper level before 4 p.m. yesterday. The search for the man took several hours and it was unclear if there had actually been a jumper. However, MTA officials did confirm later in the day that there was indeed a jumper, according to SI Live.

The male driver’s identity has not been revealed at this time.

Prior to the first incident to happen this year, there have been five suicides on the bridge since December of 2011, including thwarted several attempts.

The MTA has attempted to stop the increase of suicides on the bridge by putting up suicide prevention  signs which read “Life is Worth Living,” along with contact numbers for suicide prevention agencies.

Emergency response officials searched the waters for several hours but no body has been found yet.

This is kind of an odd tour, but here it is. There are several of these videos showcasing the everyday shops in and around our area. I don’t know about you, but I like shouting at the screen when I see places I know on T.V. or the internet.

Take a look at places you probably see every single day.

Source: tmcNYC/Flickr

From the Department of Sanitation:

The NYC Department of Sanitation will be conducting special collections for mulching and recycling of Christmas trees.

Collections will take place beginning on Wednesday, January 2 through Saturday, January 19, 2013.

Residents are encouraged to put out their discarded trees at curbside as early as possible during the collection period.

DSNY asks residents to remove all tree stands, tinsel, lights, and ornaments from trees before placing them out for collection. DO NOT place trees in plastic bags. Trees will be chipped into mulch that will be distributed to parks, playing fields, and community gardens throughout the city.

New Yorkers can also participate in NYC Parks & Recreation Mulchfest by bringing their holiday trees to designated sites throughout the five boroughs on Saturday or Sunday, January 12 & 13, 2013, from 10 am to 2 pm.

All of the trees will be chipped into mulch that will be used as ground cover to nourish plantings across the City. Before dropping off your tree, please remove all tree stands, tinsel, lights, and ornaments from trees.

Free mulch will be available at Mulchfest locations —bring a bag if you would like to take home some mulch.

Photo by Susan Armitage

When John Sandano learned in September that the owners of Maple Lanes were in contract to sell the property the bowling alley sits on to a developer, he mourned the loss of his “home away from home,” where he’s been a regular bowler for more than 25 years.

“A lot of people are going to miss this place,” said Sandano, 67, of Bensonhurst.

But in his loss, others in the community may find new homes of their own. Plans to replace Maple Lanes with a 112-unit residential development is likely to advance to the next frame.

On December 19, the City Planning Commission held a public hearing on the zoning change requested by the developer, Fairmont Lanes, LLC. Maple Lanes, at 1570 60th Street, near the Borough Park-Bensonhurst border, is in an area currently zoned for manufacturing, not residential use.

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Source: @Bitchyy_McFlyy via Twitter

Photography is an art form that documents life. In this case, it’s also a medium to create abstract art. This week’s photo feature by @Bitchyy_McFlyy is a reminder that blurry photography can be cool too.

Source: vmabney via Flickr

For many in Southern Brooklyn 2012 was a challenging year. Now that it’s behind us, we can all hope for a happy and healthy 2013.

Here’s to a joyful and prosperous new beginning! Happy New Year to you and yours.