Marty is king of queens as Beep secures big bucks for gay center

The Brooklyn Paper
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Brooklyn’s wandering gays are one step closer to realizing a long-held dream of opening a permanent community center in the borough, thanks to a new pot of cash at the end of their rainbow.

Borough President Markowitz announced yesterday that he and Council Speaker Christine Quinn had allocated $2 million in discretionary funding towards the purchase of a still-unidentified building that would soon become the Brooklyn Community Pride Center.

It’s the latest effort by Markowitz to secure a home for Brooklyn’s gay community — the largest in the five boroughs. Two years ago, Markowitz helped negotiate a deal that would’ve put the community center in a Bruce Ratner-owned building Downtown, but the deal unraveled over the gay community’s opposition to Ratner’s Atlantic Yards project.

Markowitz strongly supports Atlantic Yards, but is also the elected official in the borough most staunchly in support of gay marriage. As a result, the Beep kept pushing for a gay community center, a central location for lesbians, gays and transgender residents to receive medical and social services, counseling, and help with name change paperwork — all services that are provided in Manhattan’s better-known gay community center.

“Brooklyn is 70 square miles, there is no reason the LBGT community should have to go to Manhattan like a second-class citizen to get help and support,” said Tom Smith president of Brooklyn Community Pride Center.

Smith has not found a building, or a neighborhood, but the $2 million will go a long way towards securing a brownstone or other appropriate community center.

“We’ve looked at both city-owned and private property, and [the move-in date] depends upon the site we decide upon,” said Smith, whose group has been holding its meetings in that ultimate fixer-upper, Borough Hall.

“I wish we could take this over,” Smith said, pointing towards the building’s monstrous pillars. “It’s perfect and grand, but they just won’t let us.”

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Reader Feedback

No Hand Grab from Dope Slope says:
Let's hear it for the boy
Oct. 9, 2009, 3:47 pm
Pacholo from Red Hook says:
So what will be going on at the center? What kind of help will a get?
Oct. 11, 2009, 7:18 pm
Mike from Bay Ridge says:
Cheesey and kind of rude jokes all over this article(but I guess that is kind of standard for the Brooklyn Paper now - are you required to make a pun in every single headline?)
But otherwise great news. I'm glad to hear it's finally, almost happening. Let's hear something when a decision is actually made and something is actually going to open at some date at some location.
Oct. 12, 2009, 7:42 am
S from dumbo says:
Hey Gersh: I'm neither particularly PC nor without humor, but... Don't call me a "queen." Is that honestly how you refer to your gay friends? How depressing -- in progressive Brooklyn, the progessvie weekly can toss a slur into its headline about an LGBT center. Try that with the _________s (any other ethnic / minority community)and you'd be out of a job, dude. SP
Oct. 12, 2009, 1:12 pm
Laurie Cumbo from Fort Greene says:
There is a very bizarre system in place in New York City as far as the allocation of capital funding and resources. It appears strange at best that an "organization" such as this would be allocated $2million in capital resources with no track record of success or accomplishment and they don't even have a space. All of the capital request paperwork that I have been presented with require you to have all three in place. It is amazing how in Brooklyn, organizations can pop up from no where and be granted attention, support and resources. There appears to be no formal process about how organizations are selected to receive capital funding.
Oct. 13, 2009, 2:13 pm
Brian from E Burg says:
Why are you rehashing this lame headline?
One time was stupid, repeating it is negligent and offensive.
If you are not clever you could at least aim to be original.
Every queen knows this brand of dehumanizing insult is so out of fashion.
Oct. 15, 2009, 3:53 pm

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