It’s in the bag – Plastic bag that is…..

The world uses 500 billion plastic bags per year!

The world uses 500 billion plastic bags per year!

From amNew York

Plastic bag tax would apply citywide

A proposed plastic bag tax would hit shoppers not just at grocery stores but at all retailers, a change expected to bring in vastly more money to the cash-strapped city.

Facing a deficit that has now ballooned to a projected $4 billion for next fiscal year, the city has revised its bag tax and now expects it to generate $84 million, up from the $16 million the mayor’s office estimated in its November budget plan.

“When we went back to study the plastic bag fee proposal, we broadened who the proposal applies to,” said Jason Post, a spokesman for Mayor Michael Bloomberg. “We want to use the fee to discourage use of plastic bags from more sources than just grocery stores.”

The fee is actually a tax, and as such would require state legislative approval.
Shoppers would pay 5 cents per plastic bag, down from the 6-cent charge proposed in November.

The tax is one of a slew of measures laid out in Bloomberg’s Fiscal Year 2010 budget proposal, unveiled last week, aimed at helping the city shore up its finances.
Bloomberg also proposed cutting 23,000 city jobs — including 14,000 teachers and 1,000 police officers — asking municipal employees to contribute to their health plans and raising parking meter rates.

-Jason Fink


“Idiots, start your engines!”



From the Daily News

Just ‘Idiots’ in shopping cart race in Queens


Sunday, February 1st 2009, 4:00 AM

“Idiots, start your engines!”

That’s what hundreds of contestants heard Saturday at the start of New York’s sixth annual Idiotarod – a local take on Alaska’s Iditarod dog-sled race that replaces dogs with people, and sleds with shopping carts.

Teams of four runners and one driver navigate homemade carts from checkpoint to checkpoint along a mystery route only revealed as the race goes on via text messages. Organizers say the map is kept secret by design in order to keep police from intervening along the way.


New plans announced for Bay Terrace Shopping Center at community meeting

New plans announced for Bay Terrace Shopping Center

New plans announced for Bay Terrace Shopping Center

Queens Chronicle

New plans announced for Bay Terrace shopping
by Laura Shin, Chronicle Contributor

Consumers who frequent the Bay Terrace Shopping Center have several changes to look forward to in the coming months. Cord Meyer Development Co. representatives revealed new plans for the property and addressed concerns at the Jan. 22 meeting of the Bay Terrace Community Alliance.
Empty space on the second level may soon be home to new eateries such as a steak house and an Italian restaurant. “Unfortunately, things are slow because of the economy, but we are working on some nice things,” said Mary Hughes, vice president of leasing for Cord Meyer.

Hughes explained that there had been a deal with Petco for that space, but it did not work out. Rumors that a Trader Joe’s was coming to the shopping center had circulated, but Hughes said that is not possible due to lease restrictions with Waldbaum’s.
Reports about a Panera Breads opening in the FedEx Kinko’s and Camelot space, however, were confirmed. “We should see construction plans in about three weeks and an opening by early summer,” Hughes told attendees of the standing-room-only meeting.
She also dispelled rumors about a New York Sports Club coming to the center, explaining that a gym facility would require a change of use in the lease agreement and there is no guarantee for such a change.
The five representatives of Cord Meyer, including Anthony Colletti, its chief financial officer, stood at the head of the crowd as local residents and community leaders offered praise, questions and concerns.
“We are accountable,” Colletti said. “We don’t just build and leave; we’ve been there for a long time,” he said, assuring members of the community that all complaints would be heard.
Cord Meyer has a 104-year history and a 60-year history at the shopping center.
Colletti responded to one resident’s concern about the ever-popular Ben’s Deli. “We are pleased they are staying,” he said. “We wish them to stay forever.”
After months of negotiations and no resolution, the deli reported last November that it would leave the property. Earlier this month, however, the deli renewed its lease and will remain at its current location.
State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Flushing) made an appearance at the meeting and offered good words about Cord Meyer and encouraged everyone to “come out and patronize the stores.”
Community members eagerly raised their hands hoping for their chance to speak. Some complimented Cord Meyer for the cleanliness of the property and good security. Others expressed concern over traffic and pedestrian safety.
Cord Meyer officials explained that they are not able to write traffic summons and that traffic laws are not enforced in parking lots in New York City.
In response to various suggestions, Cord Meyer officials said installing a trolley on the site is not feasible due to expense, liability and traffic. They also said having a sidewalk run across the parking lot is “impractical.”
Representatives from Waldbaum’s were also present at the meeting. Community members commented on various issues such as prices, availability of organic foods and the lack of delivery service.
“I’m here for you. I listen to every word you say,” said Bill Reilly, representative for Waldbaum’s, as he wrote down every comment. “Some things we can do, other things are harder.”
BTCA President Warren Schreiber ended the meeting by assuring attendees that the civic association is working on a community survey in which residents will be able to report their concerns and suggestions.

Bay Terrace Community Alliance – Meet Your Local Merchants Night

It was standing-room-only at the BTCA’s January meeting. The huge turn-out on January 22nd, solidified the BTCA’s reputation as the “Voice of Bay Terrace.” In addition, the organization’s credibility was further enhanced by the presence of State Senator Stavisky, Gene McSweeney from Assemblywoman Carrozza’s office, Rabbi Yossi Blesofsky, four announced candidates for City Council in the 19th District, a former candidate for the State Assembly, Mac Harris who is head of FDNY operations on Fort Totten and members of the press.

Bay Terrace Shopping Center

Bay Terrace Shopping Center

There is no doubt that the representatives from Cord Meyer Development (Bay Terrace Shopping Center) and Waldbaum’s Super Market heard the community’s concerns loud and clear. Both companies should be applauded for caring enough to not only accept our invitation but also their willingness to answer any and all questions. There are high hopes that the suggestions, comments and in some cases criticisms which were offered will result in positive change.


January 22nd Meeting in Bay Terrace – Important Shopping Center Updates

The Voice of Bay Terrace

The Voice of Bay Terrace


Thursday, January 22, 2009


Special Guests Include:

State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky

Rabbi Yossi Blesofsky

The next meeting of the Bay Terrace Community Alliance will be held on Thursday, January 22, 2009 at 7:30 PM sharp. The meeting will take place in the Benenson Family Center/Chabad of Northeast Queens located at 212-12 26th Avenue, Bay Terrace, NY.

We’ve Got Ben’s


It’s been reported that Ben’s Deli will be staying at their present location in the Bay Terrace Shopping Center. This should come as good news to many of Ben’s loyal customers who were upset at the loss of a Kosher Deli in the community.

Maybe Ben’s can repay customers for their continued patronage by undertaking some badly needed renovations. They may also want to address concerns that the quality of food being served has deteriorated over the years.

Here at the Café, we wish Ben’s the best of luck and look forward to their being part of Bay Terrace for a long time to come.

Below are photos of the Ben’s Deli in Boca Raton, Florida.