2013-08-07 / Front Page

‘Borough Point Of View’

BY JASON D. ANTOS


Mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner and Gazette Publisher Tony Barsamian. Mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner and Gazette Publisher Tony Barsamian. Mayoral candidate and former Congressmember Anthony Weiner stopped by the Queens Gazette to shake hands and discuss his plans for the future of the city.

The Brooklyn native, and former Forest Hills resident, talked about the importance of job creation, hurricane preparedness, stop and frisk, local development and health care.

“I come from a different place,” said Weiner stating that he is not part of the city elite.

Weiner believes strongly in rebuilding the middle class by not only creating new jobs but also by offering careers that provide higher wages and benefits.

On the matter of health care in the borough and citywide, Weiner expressed his concern over the closure of many area hospitals including St. John’s, Parkway and Peninsula.

When asked about the practice of “stop and frisk” by police, Weiner said that if an officer suspects an individual is about to commit or has committed a crime, then they have the right to stop and search for any potential danger. However, he feels that the current policy is being abused and should be a deterrent of crime and not a case of randomly stopping individuals. With regard to the amount of available officers, Weiner would utilize retired cops for parade, rally or concert duty thus allowing active cops to remain available for precinct assignments at a local level.

“We need greater transparency with the police department,” Weiner said. As for NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly, the mayoral candidate simply said that he “respected the man greatly”.

Weiner criticized the current trend of turning former factories and industrial centers into highend residential settings. With space and resources being utilized for purposes other than industrial, it is difficult to bring manufacturers to the area.

“We need to create a space for light industry,” Weiner declared. “A good leader creates runways for businesses to land.”

The former congressmember went on to say that he is a “pro-development Democrat.”

On the subject of Hurricane Sandy and future storms, Weiner is calling for vulnerable parts of the city’s infrastructure, namely power lines, to be buried underground to prevent long-term blackouts like the ones experienced up to several weeks after the storm. He pointed out several actions he was involved with to strengthen Gateway National Park and the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, which proved helpful during Hurricane Sandy.

When asked why he wanted to be mayor of New York City, Weiner simply responded, “You are able to get more done.” More than 20 years of public office have given Weiner plenty of experience, and he feels that being mayor allows him to make greater contributions for the benefit of all New Yorkers.

Weiner explained, “I am a borough kind of guy, with a decidedly borough point of view.”

Weiner, who now lives in Manhattan with his wife, Huma Abedin and son, admitted that he misses Forest Hills and stated that Queens, “may not be my borough of birth but it is definitely my adopted borough”.

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