A call to kill the new tax bill

To the editor,

Listen up, Senators Gillibrand and Schumer; you too, Congressman Hakeem Jeffries! We need you to fight, and to fight like a Republican.

We cannot allow HR1, the Republican attempt to hijack our tax system to benefit the rich and powerful, while burdening the middle and ignoring the working class to pass. We cannot allow them to broadly affect everything from small business owners to students paying off loans to health insurance carriers. This unilateral action on the part of the Republicans in the Senate and the House is an affront to regular order, democracy, and the basic tenets of decency. I would like to see you out passionately defending the livelihoods of the American people, but I also encourage you to reach across the aisle to appeal to those reasonable enough on the other side to perhaps see the error of their ways. I was sickened by what has taken place, and am apprehensive [about] the long-term impacts of this legislation. As a young adult, I know that these drastic changes to tax code would unduly affect me for the rest of my working life, and I am livid thinking that some are going to pocket massively from this and then bow out, leaving me and the rest of the American people holding the bag. Please fight for us.

Gerard D. Miller


Building bugs him

To the editor,

One of the many things that the Council should consider is to enact legislation regarding the remodeling of apartments when they become vacant. The constant work with the drilling and banging is annoying to tenants in residence as this occurs day after day and serves to wake up the roach population in these buildings. In the evening, the vermin make their appearance and are observed in apartments, hallways and incinerators.

Many of these apartments are in buildings more than 50 years of age and who knows the damage that is being done to the infrastructure of the building with the constant work being done. This problem has become a major one in both co-operative apartments and rent controlled and rent stabilized buildings. In the latter two, landlords, by doing this work, are allowed to further increase their high rents to begin with. In the co-ops, asking prices also become higher as the apartment is now described as “modern.” I didn’t know that modern includes cockroach infestation.

It has reached the point that the roaches have moved in. We didn’t buy or rent our apartments to have these critters live with us. Help!

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Make scooters scoot!

To the editor,

I would like to bring it to your attention how some people in Bay Ridge are abusing the parking situation. Everyone knows that parking is difficult in Bay Ridge, especially on Shore Road where there are many apartment buildings. Now many people have started reserving their spots (back angle parking) by parking their scooter. I have noticed that all they do is never ride the scooter but use it to reserve the spot for their car. Technically this is not illegal, but is unfair. What will happen when everyone in the neighborhood will start buying a $400 scooter and reserving a spot for themselves. There are at least four to five people who do this everyday on Shore Road between 91st and Oliver Street. Please address this issue and force the authority to take some action.Aj Quadros

Bay Ridge

He’s not neutral

To the editor,

Please, Congressman Daniel Donovan, listen to what I have to tell you. We have a problem and need you to be part of the solution.

In the past few weeks, the reaction to the FCC’s proposed plan to roll back Net Neutrality rules has been deafening. The public, from all ends of the political spectrum clearly opposes it. I’m asking you to step in and demand that the FCC abandon this terrible plan. Rolling back Net Neutrality will pave the way for paid prioritization of online content, throttling, blocking, and censorship. It will fundamentally end the internet as we know it. Not only will this be damaging to privacy and free communication, it will also deeply wound our still-growing online economy. Small businesses that depend on the internet for growth will inevitably lose out to larger corporations that can afford to pay for network prioritization. Please take a stand against this singularly bad plan. Call FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, voice your opposition, and demand he abandon this rollback. I will continue to make my voice heard until something is done to stop Chairman Pai and protect Net Neutrality. Thank you for your time.Mike Egan

Bay Ridge

Anti-anti-drug ads

To the editor,

Why bother?

Television, radio, and newspaper advertisement campaigns, touting the anti-drug message has wasted millions of tax dollars. Why bother showing the dangers of drug abuse when state after state is legalizing known gateway drugs such as pot. Today, after seeing yet another anti-drug commercial, the news station segued into a story showing people lining up, by the hundreds, to buy recreational pot once the midnight hour of 2018 struck. States are legalizing drugs, not to end abuse but to line their pockets with tax dollars, which is a crying shame. So anytime I see one of these anti-drug commercials, I’ll change the channel, as the call of the almighty tax dollar is more important than saving families and the lives of the addicted.

Robert Lobenstein

Marine Park

Whack on tax (bill)

To the editor,

Everything we know about this tax bill — how it was put together in secret, the way it has been rushed-forced through, and the unfair, imbalanced advantage it gives to the rich on the backs of the middle and lower classes — is a travesty. If the word on the street is accurate, then shame on all of you. If it is not accurate, then it is your collective responsibility, as elected officials, to help educate the people you represent and allow them to be heard before acting-voting. Not to do so, shows your interest lies not in serving the public you represent, but in serving your own ambitions and acting in alignment with what has become an obviously desperate and foolish GOP.

James Cunningham

Staten Island

A tip: Boost wages!

To the editor,

Governor Cuomo is to be commended for taking action to raise restaurant workers’ salaries equal to those of other employees. Since waiters, waitresses, busboys, and bus women especially, rely on tips. I have learned when I lived in South Florida [that] those who perform a service for customers have to split their tips with other employees, including their employer. This is where tipping by the public is naive hypocrisy. In Brazil, for example, these workers are paid on salary by their employers, and regard tipping as an insult.Elliott Abosh

Brighton Beach

Douse the fireworks!

To the editor,

In case there was ever any doubt, I want to assure my fellow New Yorkers that fireworks are perfectly legal in Gravesend, Brooklyn, and I have the bags under my eyes to prove it. If you doubt my point, I’ll set up a cot for you in the guest room of my house this upcoming Fourth of July and any New Year’s Eve. I fully understand and respect that the NYPD gets deployed in large numbers to Times Square because of security concerns but I likewise realize that illegal firework activity in the boroughs assumes a very low priority. Know this: What is not condemned and enforced is sanctioned!Robert Hagen


Is it the best ‘Buy?’

To the editor,

Gov. Cuomo signing the “NY Buy America Act” legislation mandating the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and other state agencies to “Buy American” is nothing new for the MTA, the New York State Department of Transportation, the Thruway Authority and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority who receive billions each year from the United States Department of Transportation Federal Transit and Federal Highway Administrations. “Buy America” requirements for transit, bridge, and highway projects are one of many requirements for receipt of federal funding.

This impacts the MTA’s ability get the best bang for the buck when spending $7 billion in direct federal formula grant funds, potentially several billion more in competitive discretionary, New Starts and Hurricane Sandy relief dollars under the MTA’s $32 billion 2015 – 2019 Five Year Capital Program.Larry Penner

Great Neck

Reach James Harney at (718) 260-2529 or e-mail him at jharney@cnglocal.com.