Northeast Queens councilman secures nearly $19 million in capital funding for District 19 schools, libraries and parks

Credit: New York City Council

Northeast Queens will soon see major community improvements in its schools, libraries and parks.

Councilman Paul Vallone secured nearly $19 million for northeast Queens improvements following the $92.8 billion budget agreement between Mayor de Blasio and the City Council on June 14.

“For a sixth straight year, I am proud to report record-setting funding for northeast Queens,” said Vallone. “These budget victories would not have been possible without close work and collaboration with our City Council Speaker Cory Johnson and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, and I thank them for their ongoing partnership. This year, our northeast Queens communities can continue standing tall knowing that their needs and priorities are finally being met by the city.”

In his six years in the City Council, Vallone secured over $100 million in funding, eclipsing two prior decades of city budgets in District 19.

Six million dollars of the budget will go toward District 19 schools, with each school receiving at least $35,000 to fund important technology upgrades.

A portion of the education funding will allow for more schools to receive Cultural After-School Adventure (CASA) programming, which provides students cultural experiences by partnering with local nonprofits. Seventeen schools will collaborate with organizations like Inside Broadway, Marquis Studios and the Queens Museum of Art.

Vallone also secured $5 million for district parks, $3 million of which will be for lighting installations at College Point Park. In addition, Vallone and the mayor’s office also previously allocated over $7 million to construct new athletic fields at the park.

The councilman will provide over $1 million to support nonprofit organizations in District 19 including Alley Park Environmental Center, HANAC, Selfhelp Community Services and the New York Junior Tennis League.

A portion of the funding will also allow for the continuation of the Senior  Transportation Program and Annual Independence Day Fireworks Show and allow for the purchase of tree guards for the district.

Funding for the district also came from this year’s participatory budgeting process in District 19, which boasted the most votes of any district in the city. In addition to the top three winning projects — NYPD security cameras, a gymnasium renovation for P.S. 129 and a green biome for Bayside High School — Vallone announced he will also fund several of the other top projects the community selected.

These projects include a portable STEM Lab at M.S. 67 and over $300,000 in technology upgrades at local libraries.

“Investing in the future of our schools, parks and libraries and ensuring sustained quality of life for the families who call Auburndale, Bay Terrace, Bayside, Beechhurst, College Point, Douglaston, Flushing, Little Neck, Malba and Whitestone home are top priority,” the councilman said. “This year’s budget marks another clear victory for our community, and I look forward to celebrating our district’s bright future at the Independence Day Celebration at Fort Totten next week!”

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