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Kindergarten Day Care Crisis

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

Janet Lora is a single mother in Corona. Every weekday at 8 a.m., she drives her 5-year-old son, Freddy, to kindergarten at the Small World Day Care Center in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, before going to work as a medical secretary in Manhattan. Freddy, stays there until 5:30 p.m. when his mother comes back to pick him up.

“He’s been there since he was three,” said Lora. “He loves the other kids and the teachers there.”

On February 16, Lora got a letter from the city Administration for Child Services (ACS) telling her that starting next year, Freddy will not be able to attend kindergarten classes in his day care center. The letter advised her to try any public school in Queens instead. But when Lora went to her local school, she said she was told that it’s too crowded and that she needs to find another one.

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Cafes Try to Make the Health Grade

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

As she sliced a raw jumbo shrimp and dropped it into her sweet coconut calypso sauce, Siobhan Letchford said her customers at The Islands know she runs a clean kitchen. They can’t help but notice – the homey Jamaican joint in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn that Letchford owns and operates is so small that diners pass within six feet of the frying pan as soon as they open the front door.

Prospective diners may begin to prejudge her as soon as next year, though, when the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene posts letter grades showing restaurant inspection results.

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Ad Threat Seen For Historic Areas

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Preservationists in Chelsea and Greenwich Village fear a loophole in a City Council bill could bring a blight of advertising into some historic neighborhoods.

“I think it is certainly likely to diminish the character of buildings in commercial and manufacturing zones in historic districts,” said Ed Kirkland, chairman of the Community Board 4 Landmarks Committee.

The bill, proposed Councilmember Melinda Katz (D-Queens), would legalize advertising on construction sheds that cover sidewalks when buildings undergo exterior construction.  Advertisements wouldn’t be allowed to abut any buildings or sites that have historic designation from the city Landmarks Preservation Commission, under the bill.

But advertising could still appear in historic districts originally zoned for commercial and manufacturing uses, which would include parts of Greenwich Village and West Chelsea, according to Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. (more…)

Help and Hope for the Jobless

Monday, April 20th, 2009

As jobs continue to vanish, job hunters in New York City need someone to give them hope and practical advice. For many, Khalil Rashid is that person.

In a government office building on Fulton Street at the Labor Services Resource Room, it is the responsibility of Mr. Rashid and the other labor services representatives to help people find jobs — no easy task as unemployment rises.

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Bakery Rises for Greek Easter Rush

Friday, April 17th, 2009

Church Regains its Radio Voice

Saturday, April 11th, 2009

Local Lawyer Tackles Congo Cause

Saturday, April 11th, 2009

Podcast: Top Health Concerns in NYC

Thursday, April 9th, 2009

Tough Times, Tender Steaks

Thursday, April 9th, 2009