By Steven Goodstein
The Bayside councilman has delivered what he calls a record-breaking budget once again.
City Councilman Paul Vallone (D-Bayside) has secured a new budget totaling $20 million for District 19, after it was announced last week that the City Council passed an $89.2 billion budget for the fiscal year 2019.
More specifically, Vallone was able to allocate $8.2 million out of the $20 million in funding for schools in his district. Each District 19 school will receive at least $50,000, with Bayside High School receiving $1.9 million for its musical performance space, while more than $1 million will go for the implementation of security camera systems at PS 184, PS 209 and World Journalism High School, $750,000 for PS 32’s gymnasium and $400,000 for PS 41’s playground.
Out of the $20 million budget for District 19, $6 million will be used for parks, including $1 million for Bowne Park in Flushing, with nearly $600,000 going towards MacNeil Park in College Point to fund construction of pathways and granite steps which will lead to the shoreline. Another $400,000 will be set aside for the land acquisition of a parcel in Udalls Cove.
Vallone also cited the creation of a brand new community sports complex in Bay Terrace, a plan he will reveal in more details at a later date. For this particular project he, along with Katz and Johnson, partnered with the Samuel Field Y.
The $20 million budget that Vallone secured also resulted in increases for many council initiatives that provide funding for programs and services in District 19. This includes a 33 percent increase in funding for his Support Our Seniors initiative as well as an increase for the Cultural After-School Adventure, a program that provides students with cultural programs.
“Each year we have proudly reached new records and milestones for northeast Queens,” said Vallone. “We have once again invested in the future of our children, schools, parks and libraries. You can’t hide what you’re passionate about – and defending our quality of life and safety while By making sure our children, families, teachers and principals have every resource they need, have always been my top priorities.”
Vallone said he has also secured more than $1 million to support non-profits in Bayside, Little Neck, College Point, Whitestone, Flushing and other areas within his district. These non-profits include the Bayside Village BID, the Bayside Historical Society, the Greater Whitestone Taxpayers Community Center, the Alley Pond Environmental Center and the New York Junior Tennis League, among others.
In Vallone’s first five years as councilman, District 19 has received nearly $85 million in budget funding – a strong showing after many years of being near the bottom of the City Council list in terms of the amount of funds allocated to the northeast Queens district.
Vallone noted that the fireworks at the Independence Day Celebration to be held June 27 at Fort Totten will be “a clear signal to the rest of the city of how far our district has come and of its equally bright future.”
“With this year’s budget victories and allocation of over $20 million to our district, our communities can continue to stand tall knowing that their priorities are finally being met,” Vallone added.
Reach Steven Goodstein by e-mail at sgood