Southeast Queens rivals spar ahead of primaries

Southeast Queens rivals spar ahead of primaries
By Naeisha Rose

The Democratic primary is less than a week away and the candidates running for two City Council seats in southeast Queens have received endorsements from different organizations and other politicians.

Adrienne Adams is running for the seat in District 28, which was vacated after Councilman Ruben Wills was convicted of corruption last month.

She is the chairwoman of the second largest community board in Queens, CB12, and was endorsed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. She wants to bring participatory budgeting to the district so that constituents will have a say in how public funds are spent. She is the only candidate on the board of Jamaica Now, an economic development group, and she intends to use her powers to pressure developers into erecting affordable homes. She also wants to work tirelessly on getting guns off the streets.

The other challengers are Richard David and Hettie Powell for District 28, which represents Rochdale Village, Richmond Hill, Ozone Park, South Ozone Park and parts of Jamaica.

David is a former public sector worker and the youngest candidate in the race. Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) endorsed him.

As the former VP of the city’s Economic Development Corporation, David wants to bring his expertise in managing over $2 billion in construction projects to develop inclusive senior centers and STEAM after-school programs. The candidate wants to create a tax commission that monitors how taxpayer’s money is being spent in the district. He hopes to work with the New York City Sanitation Department to increase recycling times for old electronics to curb illegal dumping on residential properties.

Powell is a public defender who wants to bring strong, effective and honest leadership to the district after Wills was sentenced up to seven years in prison for stealing $30,000 in taxpayer’s money. The Caribbean American Social Workers Association endorsed Powell, a Jamaican-American. She was also endorsed by state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-South Ozone Park).

Powell wants more schools to offer vocational training. As a lawyer, she plans to use her knowledge to reform the criminal justice system by decriminalizing petty crimes. She plans to procure funds for schools to develop their infrastructure in order to give them high tech upgrades necessary for students to receive STEM training.

City Councilman I. Daneek Miller (D-St. Albans) is running for re-election in District 27.

A total of 42 different organizations and Queens’ lawmakers, including Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and his former union as well as 1199, have endorsed Miller.

The former president of the ATU Local 1056(2009-2013) wants to improve transit issues plaguing the areas he represents, Cambria Heights, Queens Village, Springfield Gardens and parts of Jamaica. He also intends to spur economic development in the southeast region of the borough and create jobs for residents.

Anthony Rivers, a former U.S. Marine and retired 23-year NYPD veteran is challenging Miller.

Rivers is not seeking any endorsements for his grassroots campaign because he does not want other affiliations influencing him if elected. He was endorsed, however, by the New York State Court Clerk Association, Politics Reborn, People from the Neighborhood and the St. Albans Civic Community. The former lieutenant also was endorsed by the NYPD Lieutenants Benevolent Association.

Rivers wants to bring fair share policies to District 27. He hopes to put a stop to the dumping of shelters in the region, end co-locations in high schools in southeast Queens and protect the district from gentrification.

Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4573.