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Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) is launching a new initiative to make it easier for consumers who are overcharged for items.
“For too long stores have enjoyed the rewards of their overcharges and seen paying city fines as just the cost of doing business,” said DCA Commissioner Jonathan Mintz. “This year doubling the number of inspections and thus doubling that ‘cost of doing business’ still was not enough to get the city’s supermarkets to get it right at their check-out counters.”
The act comes with two components. First is a tripling of city fines for any supermarket that overcharges at the register. Second, every time a consumer is overcharged, they will receive ten times the amount of the overcharge and that item for free.
Read more:LIC/Astoria Journal – DCA SHOP Act aims to protect consumers at the check out
A new ethics law was signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday, August 15th.
It will provide increased transparency in the state government and stronger financial disclosure requirements for its employees.
The Public Integrity Reform Act of 2011 establishes an independent Joint Commission on Public Ethics to replace the existing Commission on Public Ethics. In addition to its oversight of the financial dealings of elected officials, their employees and lobbyists, the new commission will have the power to investigate signs of wrongdoing.
Read more:LIC/Astoria Journal – State passes new ethics reforms
Mayor Michael Bloomberg visited a business incubator in Long Island City on Thursday, August 18. He was there to speak about how the city supports its entrepreneurs.
Incubators provide affordable workspace, conference rooms and fully licensed kitchens to small businesses that are trying to get their footing in the city’s marketplace.
“We developed new ways to help small businesses weather the storm and to help entrepreneurs get their ideas off the ground,” Bloomberg said. “Let them start here and hopefully they grow and hire other people and move on.”
Click here for more information.
Council members are speaking out against a bill introduced by their colleague Daniel Dromm, which would protect illegal immigrants from deportation proceedings after they are proved innocent and released from city jails.
Dromm, who represents Jackson Heights, said when immigrants are proven innocent of a crime and released, jails such as Riker’s Island will hold them for 48 hours so ICE can come evaluate their immigration status.
“Why should anybody have to have their name run through a system like that when they haven’t been found guilty of anything at all,” Dromm said. “They’re still innocent in this country until proven guilty.”
To read more about this click here: LIC/Astoria Journal – Immigration bill incites controversy
On Tuesday, August 23rd, a 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck just outside Charlottesville, Virginia. Tremors from the quake were felt across New York City.
Colorado also reportedly experienced a 5.3-magnitude earthquake the night before on August 22.
NYC residents flooded streets in fear that buildings would collapse.
To learn more about Tuesday’s earthquake, go to LIC/Astoria Journal – Earthquake felt across Queens
Over the past year, the amount of groping attacks on women have increased. Men ride bicycles around neighborhoods and attack women. Attacks have occurred throughout Queens and the upper east side of Manhattan.
On Thursday, July 18th, victims of the attacks held a rally in Athens Park. It was held by the fledgling organization Astoria Against Violence. The organizers were victims Kate Salute and Michelle Gutman.
Councilman Peter Vallone Jr., State Senator Michael Gianaris, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and members of the 114th Precinct’s Civilian Operation Patrol attended the rally, along with more than 30 Queens residents.
Read more here.
On August 19th the Festival of Flowers begins in Queens. It combines exquisite flora with Columbian cultural activities.
The event kicks off today at the Queens Museum of Art with the unveiling og a 7,500-square-foot tapestry of flowers – the largest of its kind – comprising over two million roses, carnations, sunflowers, and lilies, which will earn its place in the Guinness World Records and United Record Data Base.
Co-sponsored by LaGuardia Community College and Queens Museum of Art, events will be held throughout Queens.
To learn more, click here.