Tag Archive: Michael Simanowitz

Mar 21 2014

NYPIRG To Simanowitz: Label GMO’s Now


Lobbying for labels.

NYPIRG activists from Queens College were distributing leaflets in local supermarkets to urge Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz to vote in favor of a bill sponsored by Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal and Senator Kenneth Lavalle that requires labeling foods that contain genetically modified organisms, or, GMOs, in New York State.

Press Release:


CONTACT: Rob Kornblum

718-926-7738 (cell)


Students take to local supermarkets to push for labeling of genetically engineered foods

[FLUSHING, NY] – Today, shoppers at an Associated Supermarket and Aron’s Kissena Farms were greeted by student activists from the Queens College chapter of the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), asking them to urge their NYS Assemblymember Michael Simanowitz to vote in favor of a bill that requires labeling foods that contain genetically modified organisms, or, GMOs, in New York State.

“New Yorkers have the right to know what’s in the food they consume,” said Julia Bernhardt, Queens College student and NYPIRG advocate. “We are here talking to shoppers about the issue and having them call their Assemblymember to tell him to make sure foods containing GMOs are labeled, just like they are in many other countries around the world.”

This afternoon’s action is part of a larger statewide effort to align New York with other states like Connecticut and Maine, which have recently taken steps to secure labeling of foods containing GMOs throughout the northeast market. The bill—number A3525/S3835—is sponsored by Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal and Senator Kenneth Lavalle.

Students, armed with clipboards full of flyers and carrying signs depicting so-called “franken-foods,” engaged shoppers in discussions about the topic and helped them contact the office of Assemblymember Simanowitz. Simanowitz, who represents Flushing, sits on the NYS Assembly’s Committee on Consumer Affairs and Protection, where the bill currently resides. For it to continue on its path toward becoming law, it must first get voted out of this committee.

“Right now, big agricultural companies like Monsanto are dipping into their endless resources and lobbying our elected officials in a brazen attempt to undermine this effort—just like they did in California and then in Washington State,” said NYPIRG Project Coordinator, Gabe Recchio. “But we know the public is on the side of transparency, not secrecy, and that’s why Assemblymember Simanowitz’s constituents are speaking out.”

Genetically engineered food is labeled in 64 countries, including all European countries, Australia and Japan. Advocates argue that genetically modified food is fundamentally different from non-genetically modified food, and needs to be labeled. GMOs have been tied to the creation of new allergies, the inflated use of herbicides, and have increasingly permeated the agricultural landscape over the last two decades.


Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2014/03/nypirg-to-simanowitz-label-gmos-now/

Mar 22 2012

Disorder in politics brings no objections

It’s petition time and those big green sheets that won’t fit in a folder will be circulating throughout Queens. Take a look at the vacancy appointments.

What is a committee to fill a vacancy? Typically candidates can name a committee and list them on their designating petition, which is the green form where candidates collect signatures for ballot access. If something happens to the candidate i.e illness, arrest or declining to accept etc. the committee will make a decision to appoint any registered Democrat (pursuant to residency requirements) to run in the candidate’s absence – even after the petitions have been collected and successfully filed under the candidate’s name. There is a small time frame where this can be accomplished, according to a source at the Board of Elections.

In other words, if Candidate X gets on the ballot, but gets sick or says I don’t want this to happen, their committee will pick someone to replace Candidate X and they won’t have to recollect the signatures. It’s sort of an insurance policy, like a failsafe to safeguard ballot access and all that hard work collecting signatures.

Pop Quiz, what do each of the committee members have in common with each other?

If you know the answer, we’ll give you a shout out in the next article.

You can Comment on our Facebook page or email us info@queens-politics.com.

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/03/disorder-in-politics-brings-no-objections/

Feb 29 2012

Lancman Bill To Deter Fanatical Nazis

Assemblyman Rory Lancman center with Congregation Ohr Natan in Rego Park flanked by Rabbi Nahum Kaziyev, and the archetype for political corruption Toby Stavisky (D-Queens), Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz (D-Queens), Assemblyman Charles Lavine (D-Glen Cove) plus members of Congregation Ohr Natan.

Lancman’s new bill will help protect houses of worship by increasing the penalties for hate crimes perpetrated by klansmen and neo-nazis. Ok, on a serious note, if the bill becomes law it should deter criminals from violently expressing religious intolerance while restoring a sense of security to shaken congregations. 

The specifics:

  • Increase the penalty for theft or the intentional damage to a scroll, vessel or any other item used in connection with religious worship in any house of worship, to a maximum of seven years in prison from four by classifying these crimes as third-degree grand larceny and second-degree criminal mischief, both Class D Felonies. Currently, these charges would only apply in cases where items worth more than $3,000 have been stolen, or where items have sustained more than $1,500 in damages.
  • Increase the penalty for theft of any scroll, religious vessel or any other item valued at more than $250 used in connection with religious worship in any house of worship to a maximum of fifteen years in prison from seven by classifying these crimes as second-degree grand larceny, which is a Class C felony.
  • Increase the penalty for any intentional damage to house of worship-owned property to a maximum of four years in prison from one year, by making it a Class E felony. Currently, this penalty applies only where the damage is worth more than $250.


Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/02/lancman-signs-bill-to-punish-nazis/

Nov 29 2011

In The Halls Of Justice, The Only Justice Is In The Halls


How does the Democratic party perpetuate its own power? Through manipulating the court system, according to the NY Times.

The Queens county surrogate court is a bastion of power hungry party loyalists. They are the batteries that makes the machine function.

Operatives and future candidates stay in the loop by towing the party line.

Luckily,  a few brave souls that are not afraid to speak out against a good ol’ boy system where loyalty is measured by submission.

Read the scathing NY Times article for the full scoop.


Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/11/in-the-halls-of-justice-the-only-justice-is-in-the-halls/

Oct 21 2011

Two Queens Candidates File For A “Run”

Born in Manhattan and raised in Queens, Justin Wax Jacobs is a lifelong resident of Briarwood. The recent graduate of the University at Albany has filed a campaign committee. Generally seen by insiders as tantamount to running for office.


From City Hall News,

 Justin Wax Jacobs looks like he’s giving politics another crack. The 22-year-old recently registered a campaign committee to run in 2012 against Queens Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz, after getting tossed from the ballot on the most minor of technicalities in the recent special election for the seat. The young politico gathered 1,600 signatures in six days to run as an independent, but was by the Board of Elections because he failed to write the correct district number on the top of every page – becoming a poster boy for a broken system. 





Silverstein is keeping his options open.


 Matt Silverstein, the former president of both the New York and Queens Young Democrats, took a step towards joining the fray to take on Republican Councilman Dan Halloran in 2013. Silverstein registered a campaign committee this week and may face off against several 2009 contenders for the seat.

 Silverstein said in an email he was simply keeping his “options open,” according to City Hall News.



Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/10/2012-hopefuls/

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