* State official to probe P.S. 24 music cuts > Dr. Betty A. Rosa, who represent The Bronx on the New York State Board of Regents, has agreed to look into the actions surrounding the elimination of the music program at P.S. 24. She said she intends to ask the State Education Department to make sure the school remains in compliance with regards to arts education.
|State Senator Adriano Espaillat at a news conference outside|
his campaign headquarters in Inwood on Monday, July 9
* Koppell pushes budget reform > Major reforms are needed to ensure City Council slush funds are doled out more equitably among the 51 members, according to Councilman G. Oliver Koppell. The local elected official said City Council speaker Christine Quinn currently wields too much power and urged for discretionary monies to be distributed according to a district's needs rather than to officials with the most clout or the closest political ties.
* Property tax abatement for co-ops and condos renewed > Local co-op and condo owners can breathe a sigh of relief now that Albany lawmakers have agreed to renew the city's tax abatement scheme for the fifth time. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, along with the state Assembly and Senate, last week struck an accord to retroactively extend the program, which gives apartment owners significant property tax breaks.
* Two Riverdale groups to receive funds from Borough Hall > The Spuyten Duyvil library branch will receive $125,000 to replace and repair its sidewalks, while Wave Hill will be given $35,000 for a new audio and visual system. The local groups are just two of the 67 Bronx schools, community groups, public parks and housing and economic development projects that will share in nearly $23 million, thanks to a capital funds bonanza. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. announced on Monday that he secured $22.97 million in capital funding as part of his fiscal year 2013 budget requests.
* Spaces still available at college garage > The lucky residents who snapped up coveted free parking spoys in Manhattan College's Broadway garage have begun filing into the facility. Officials from the Lasalian educational institution said most of the 50 available spaces, which were offered on a first come, first served basis last month, have already been assigned. One space for a handicapped driver is still available, as are a few regular spots.
* Dinowitz obtains Neighborhood Slow Zone around school crossings > City officials have agreed to establish a Neighborhood Slow Zone outside two of Riverdale's public schools in a bid to improve pedestrian safety and reduce speeding. The designation will encompass the stretch of Independence Avenue between West 232nd Street and West 246th Street and will result in he area's speed limit being lowered from the current 30 mph to 20 mph. Speed bumps, road markings, stop signs and other traffic calming measures will also be employed to reduce the number of traffic fatalities and fender-benders.
* New indoor play space opens here > Two Riverdale moms have combined forces to open Kidaroo, Riverdale's first and only indoor play space and enrichment center. The facility, which is located at 3603 Fieldston Road, opened two weeks ago and has already attracted nearly 400 clients. The space caters to children from infancy through age 10 and was born out of a desire to provide local young families with a fun space to congregate and mingle.
Also, in the Bronx Press:
* Mom charged in deaths of two children > A Parkchester mother has been arrested and charged with the deaths of her two young children after her own failed suicide attempt. Fire officials were called to investigate gas odors coming from a ninth-floor apartment at 1500 Noble Avenue just before midnight on Thursday, July 5. Officials discovered two children, later identified by police as Trevor Noel Jr., 5, and his 4-month-old sister Lillian. who were unresponsive and both were declared dead at the scene. Paramedics removed the children's mother, Lisette Bamenga, 29, an elementary school teacher, and rushed her to Jacobi Hospital for smoke inhalation and slash wounds to both her wrists.
* Club violence leaves one dead, eight wounded > Two incidents in area bars have left one man dead and eight others wounded. Three others were killed and at least four others were wounded in at least five other violent incidents reported across the borough.