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Care for All Children

Rush Limbaugh and other conservative activists can talk all they want about why illegal immigrants should not be entitled to taxpayer-funded services, but no one should question that children in the city’s foster system should be offered the care they need.

But just in case, City Councilman Daniel Dromm has sponsored a bill that will protect immigrant children in the city’s foster care system. The bill will guarantee these children are given Special Immigration Juvenile Status that will ensure they are given access to all appropriate services and become permanent residents eligible to apply for a green card.

The new law will make it easier for the city Administration for Children’s Services to give these young people the services they need.

These children are not responsible for the difficult situations they find themselves in. They deserve to be treated like any other foster child. To do any less would be un-American.

Delaying Tactics at Willets Point

Anyone who wants to know why it takes so long to get any public works off the ground should study the efforts being made by lobbyist Richard Lipsky to block the redevelopment of Willets Point.

The city has been trying to convert the industrial area with its auto repair shops and salvage yards into a mixed-use development project with hotels, shops and housing.

Willets Point United, an organization that represents most of the businesses that have yet to be relocated, has been fighting to block the redevelopment. Thus far, it has been a losing battle. Last year it hired Lipsky and paid him at least $20,000 to lobby on its behalf. He claims the redevelopment will create traffic jams.

Each year the redevelopment is delayed, the cost rises. As long as the remaining businesses are treated fairly and compensated for the cost of relocation, this project should move forward.

We are uncomfortable with the use of eminent domain to seize property that will be used to benefit private enterprise, but Willets Point is an eyesore that brings down an entire area in Queens. It is time for development opponents and their hired gun to get out of the way.

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