July 9, 2020 By Michael Dorgan
Council Member Paul Vallone has announced that more than $20 million from the city budget has been allocated to northeast Queens for school upgrades and other public projects.
Vallone secured nearly $5 million for school upgrades and over $10 million for improvements to parks within the 29th Council District, according to a statement Tuesday.
Vallone, who is Chair of the Committee on Economic Development, said that a further $5 million will go to various other projects.
“These record financial victories for our Northeast Queens community are promises kept and will have positive impacts that will carry into future generations,” Vallone said.
Vallone said that every school within the district will receive a minimum of $50,000 to make technology upgrades.
Other projects funded include $674,000 for classroom renovations at JHS 194, $500,000 for a reading garden at Auburndale Library and $1 million towards playground renovation at PS 184.
PS 169/Bell Academy was allocated $350,000 for an auditorium upgrade, Udall’s Cove Park was awarded $350,000 towards land acquisition and JHS 185 will get $300,000 for gymnasium upgrades.
MS 67, MS 379 and PS 376 will share $430,000 worth of funding for technology upgrades.
Vallone said that $250,000 will also go toward NYPD security cameras in schools.
“Supporting the safety and wellbeing of our Northeast Queens families, principals, teachers, and students will always be a top priority,” Vallone said.
“And this year’s budget once again reflects just that, with millions in funding secured to make improvements to our schools, parks, and libraries that will be enjoyed for years to come,” Vallone said.
The lawmaker said that as part of the $10 million budget for park improvements, $5 million will go to completing waterfront, esplanade and seawall repairs at MacNeil Park in College Point.
He said that $3.4 million was been allocated to pathway renovations at Joe Michael’s Mile which runs along the shore of Little Neck Bay.
A further $1.6 million will go towards making ecological restorations at Powell’s Cove in College Point.
Powell’s Cove Park has suffered from inadequate maintenance and upkeep since its creation and is badly in need of repair, according to Kathryn Cervino, President of the Coastal Preservation Network.
“We look forward to partnering on plans to improve flood-prone and worn out trails, thin the hazardous overgrowth, beautify entryways and add trash cans to ease the rampant littering, Cervino said.
“This park is truly a gem in the rough,” she said.
Additionally, Vallone revealed that over $800,000 was awarded to St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children in Bayside for 10 new beds. The facility provides long-term care to children with medically complex conditions and is the city’s only post-acute care facility for children.
Vallone said he also helped secure $5.1 million in funding for the Support Our Seniors initiative, which provides support to local senior services, and over $1 million in funding to support local nonprofits.