The New York Lottery says “all you need is a dollar and a dream.”
We say all you need is The Queens Courier.
Since 1985 we have been bringing you hard-hitting, award-winning news — from national issues, to what’s going on in your own backyard — with the mantra “we’re all about you.”
Well, over the past few weeks our reporters have really run with the ball.
In early June — after appearing on our front cover — a Fresh Meadows homeowner who said he was bilked by the city in 2009 for over $2,000 was reimbursed more than half the cost and was refunded a piece of his pilfered American Dream.
John Biagi, 62, said when the city billed him $2,240.69 for what he called unnecessary sidewalk repairs, he felt his right as a homeowner was violated.
An infuriated Biagi called 3-1-1, filed three complaints and then contacted City Comptroller John Liu, the DOT, the Department of Design and Construction (DDC) and Councilmember Dan Halloran. When he only received help from Halloran after four years of getting the runaround from city agencies, Biagi, out of frustration, reached out to The Courier in March and propped up a white handcrafted billboard sign that read “Another Homeowner Screwed by NYC” in bold, red-painted lettering.
Now, the homeowner has been given back $1,442.62 — a check from the city Biagi was happy to cash. He has also replaced his billboard with a smaller one that reads “Refunded $1,442.62. Thanks for your support.”
And, following our story on 89-year-old Fresh Meadows resident Anna Gallotta, her tale of sidewalk woe was picked up by a major news network.
A 90-year-old viewer was so moved by the fact that the octogenarian was billed more than $2,000, for sidewalk repairs she was told she would not have to pay for, that he sent her a check for $1,000.
Not to mention the fact that Melissa Chan’s stories on the ongoing co-op/condo tax battle were linked to by The New York Times.
Moral of the story: we get things done.
Not only are we “all about you,” but also about affecting change — for the better — in the lives of our readers.