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New Express Bus Stop Coming to Avenue R and Nostrand Avenue

Councilman Chaim Deutsch announced that, in a major victory for Sheepshead Bay residents, a new B44 SBS bus stop will be coming to Avenue R and Nostrand Avenue.

For more than four years commuters have been advocating for this additional bus stop along the express SBS route that begins on Shore Parkway in Sheepshead Bay and ends in Williamsburg. Since taking office, Deutsch, along with Assemblymember Helene Weinstein, has been at the forefront of this effort, leading the charge to petition the MTA and the Department of Transportation to implement the change. The distance between the two stops nearest to Avenue R is more than a mile, the largest gap between any two SBS stops in Southern Brooklyn.

In addition to the bus connections, Nostrand Avenue at Avenue Ris home to several medical facilities and a plethora of small businesses, many of which service the large, local senior population. The lack of expedient B44 service has had a significant impact on seniors, and people with disabilities in particular, who often find themselves waiting in inclement weather for the slow local buses for 20 to 30 minutes, even as near-empty SBS buses sail by every few minutes. When the SBS B44 route was originally implemented in 2013, several concerns were raised about bus stops that had been included in as a Limited (express) stop, but were removed from the SBS route. Deutsch successfully advocated at the time, along with Councilman Jumaane Williams, to include Avenue L back into the express route.

“I am thrilled to have been able to successfully advocate for the installation of an SBS B44 stop at Nostrand Avenue and Avenue R, the culmination of years of effort. I must commend newly appointed MTA President Andy Byford, who has put his money where his mouth is in truly listening to feedback from the community,” said Councilman Chaim Deutsch.

Senator Martin Golden Calls on the Governor to Use Speed Cameras the Right Way

Senator Martin J. Golden blasted the governor’s Executive Order allowing the City Council to circumvent State Law and reinstituting the school zone speed camera program.

“People need to understand that this Executive Order is a 30-day solution to the speed zone school program problem.
A short-term solution is no solution at all. The Executive Order allowing the City Council to circumvent the Legislature is likely in violation of State Law. There will be a ticket issued, and someone will sue saying it is illegal. The State will lose, there will be confusion, and that will cause distraction to the fact our children will still not have the protection of speed cameras,” Golden said.

Senator Golden added, “Once again, I am calling on the Governor to do the right thing, the right way. Just call the Legislature back to complete the business on this life-saving issue. We need to reinstate and expand the school zone speed camera program. The Governor has an opportunity to really lead, rather than hide behind the Mayor and the City Council.”

Agudath Israel Hails Efforts
to Provide Kosher/Hallal Food
for Public School Students

Agudath Israel of America joined elected officials and other advocates at a City Hall press conference earlier today announcing a $1 million pilot program to provide kosher and halal meals to students in public and private schools.

The pilot program was announced by City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Councilmember Chaim Deutsch, who spearheaded the effort. Agudath Israel has long been concerned that thousands of schoolchildren, both Jewish and Muslim, are unable to partake of school lunches. Many of these children either go hungry or bring inferior food from home while their classmates enjoy a full nutritious lunch.

Representing Agudath Israel at the press conference was Rabbi Yeruchim Silber, Director of New York Government Relations. Rabbi Silber thanked Speaker Johnson, Councilmember Deutsch, and the other elected officials and advocates behind this effort. He called for the pilot program to be expanded further, and for the state legislature to pass Assembly Bill 7231 introduced by Assemblymember DavidWeprin, which would provide kosher and halal options in public schools.

“We strongly support these various efforts to provide kosher and halal options to public school students” said Rabbi Silber. “No child should have to choose between their religion anda nutritious lunch.”

Free Backpack Giveaway by Met Council Gives Needy Kids an Edge in School

As the new school year starts, many children are outfitted with new clothing or even have shiny new supplies to take with them to school. For hundreds of thousands of needy New Yorkers, however, these things are just not an option. That's why Met Council, America's Largest Jewish Communal Social Safety Net, distributed over
1,800 backpacks to students last month – the largest distribution of free backpacks in Met Council's history.

 “I'm proud that we at Met Council are expanding our many different programs for struggling New Yorkers," said Met Council's CEO David G. Greenfield. "This past Pesach we gave out more food, this summer we gave out more free kosher lunches, and now we are giving out more free backpacks than ever before. Putting a child on equal footing with their classmates is something so important for developing children. It really makes all the difference in the world to a child that can start school with a brand-new backpack full of supplies. It gives that child confidence, and more importantly, the dignity to succeed.”

By partnering with eleven of its sixteen associated Jewish Community Councils (JCCs) across the city, Met Council provided backpacksfilled with quality school supplies for children who have been served as crisis and domestic violence clients.

The backpack distribution took place at the same time as Met Council’s Rosh Hashanah food distribution. Met Council provides kosher food to more than 100,000 needy New Yorkers at seventy distribution sites across New York. This comes on the heels of Met Council's successful free lunch program at the end of the summer that distributed 5,000 free kosher lunches in New York.
Met Council, the largesttzedakahin New York, and has ten different programs dedicated to helping over 225,000 New Yorkers in need each year.

State Senator Simcha Felder Wins Reelection

On September 13th, State Senator Simcha Felder easily defeated challenger Blake Morris in the Democratic primary in New York’s District 17.

District 17 covers Midwood, Ditmas Park, Kensington, Borough Park, Sheepshead Bay, and Sunset Park. Felder has represented the district since 2012.

After his victory Senator Felder issued the following statement: “The people have spoken loud and perfectly clear, they are voting on the issues that matter to them –
safety and security, quality of life, and education. I thank everyone in the 17th Senate District for coming out to vote today. Your confidence and support are truly humbling. I will continue serving you and all New Yorkers faithfully.”

Dov Hikind Thanks President Trump for Shout Out During Rosh Hashanah Call with Jewish Leaders

NY State Assemblyman Dov Hikind thanked President Donald Trump last month for the kind recognition that the President personally gave him during the White House’s annual Rosh Hashanah call.

“President Trump has been a genuine friend to the Jewish people and to the State of Israel,” said Hikind. “As promised, he recognized Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel; he abolished the terribly dangerous Iran Deal, which threatened not only Israel and the rest of the Middle East, but alsothreatened American interests and world peace. And more recently, he took the steps necessary to remove the last known Nazi war criminal living in the United States.

“I am truly grateful to our President for these things, as the Jewish people should all be, and I’m honored that the President recognized me today on his call for the work I’ve done with regard to deporting this Nazi.

“My office was filled this afternoon with Holocaust survivors who the President thanked for being on the call. You can only imagine how important this call was to them. After everything they’ve been through, they can go into this coming Jewish New Year knowing that not only is their country now free of Nazis, but it was the work of President Trump - a President who cared enough totell them how honored he was to be on the phone with them. This was a phone call that they will tell their grandchildren and great grandchildren about over the holidays – a call they deserved and will never forget. President Trump just made a real difference in their lives.”