3 THE QUEENS COURIER • APRIL 1, 2022 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
Bayside leaders share residents’ frustration regarding local squatters
BY ETHAN MARSHALL
Queens Senator John Liu and Assemblyman
Ed Braunstein were among the handful
of people to speak during a rally on March 25,
joining members of the Bayside community in
venting their frustration regarding squatters
who have been illegally occupying and renting
out a home on Airbnb for two years.
Other speakers included Congresswoman
Grace Meng (via a phone call from Albany),
Community Board 11 District Manager Joe
Marziliano, Roseann Foley Henry of the Bell
Court Civic Association and Stephen Markowski,
one of the more vocal voices in the
While they’ve all been trying to get the
squatters evicted from the property — located
at 208-16 38th Ave. — for two years, there is
now a heightened sense of urgency following
an incident last weekend near the property in
which a group of transient residents allegedly
fi red at least 19 gunshots around the neighborhood,
injuring one and damaging a lot of
“We’re calling upon the Department of Buildings
to issue a vacate order,” Liu said.
Additionally, Liu called upon Airbnb to stop
advertising the house on their site. Th ere have
been repeated instances of Airbnb taking down
the posting, only to allow the same home being
advertised under a diff erent account.
Braunstein called upon the bank to expedite
foreclosure and eviction proceedings on the
property. He also called out Airbnb for allowing
the house to be advertised.
“While authorities continue their investigation
to apprehend the individuals responsible
for the shooting, Airbnb must permanently
ban listings at this location,” Braunstein said.
“We are not going to rest until this situation is
Braunstein also revealed that he reached
out to ConEd to see if they can do anything
about the property, such as possibly disabling
the electricity. While he is waiting to hear back
from them, some in the neighborhood believe
the squatters may already be prepared for it.
Th e squatters have been seen bringing large
jugs of gasoline to the home, leading many to
believe they are using a generator for electricity.
Meng reached out to Airbnb CEO Brian
Chesky asking for insight following the
In a letter to Chesky, Meng asked what the
company intends to do to rectify the fact that
the house was able to get posted on Airbnb by
illegal squatters who just had to change the
name of the accounts. She also asked why the
property itself hasn’t been banned from being
listed on the site.
“Neighborhood residents must not have
their safety put at risk and their quality of life
disrupted,” Meng wrote. “Th is problem must
be addressed at once, and my colleagues and I
stand shoulder to shoulder with the community
as we push Airbnb for answers.”
Marziliano discussed how the property itself
has caused problems since the old homeowner left .
“For fi ve years, this problematic property has
plagued our neighbors, fi rst as a zombie home,
then as an alleged squatter’s den, and now as
an illegal Airbnb with a shooting spilling over
into the streets,” Marziliano said.
Liu provided some details into some of the
roadblocks that have prevented the squatters
from being evicted sooner. Th e bank had
undergone foreclosure proceedings, but they
botched the paperwork.
Joe Carollo, the former owner of the property,
spoke during the rally and said that he had relinquished
his rights to the house over to Citi
Bank. Since he was no longer the landlord of
the property, Carollo was unable to approve
Th e squatters were previously Carollo’s tenants.
When Carollo left , they allegedly stopped
paying rent. Now, the squatters barely stay at
the house, choosing instead to rent it out via
Airbnb, making money on a property they don’t
Shortly before the rally, the Department
of Buildings (DOB) attempted to perform an
interior inspection of the home, as any violation
would grant them the power to kick the squatters
out. However, since the DOB didn’t haven’t
a warrant to search the premises, the squatters
were able to refuse them entry.
City Parks Foundation expanding popular senior fi tness program to the Rockaways
BY BILL PARRY
As the weather warms and with COVID
cases declining across the region, the City
Parks Foundation is resuming and expanding
its senior fi tness program, bringing it to the
Rockaways for the fi rst time.
Participants will meet at the Beach 30th
Street playground and then proceed to walk
along the Rockaway Boardwalk. Classes will be
held on Tuesday and Saturday mornings from
9 to 10:30 a.m. beginning May 3.
City Parks Foundation is working with local
health and fi tness consultant Elizabeth Madison,
who helped deliver a very successful new
walking program last fall at Springfi eld Park.
Th e new program is funded by Assemblyman
Khaleel Anderson and Councilwoman Selvena
Brooks-Powers, along with youth programs in
“Providing meaningful opportunities for socialization
and physical activities for older adults and
our youth at Brookville Park, Springfi eld Park and
Beach 30th Street Playground,” Brooks-Powers
said. “I am excited to continue my partnership
with City Parks Foundation and my colleague
in government, Assembly member Khaleel
Anderson, to provide City Parks Senior Fitness
and youth tennis programming for residents of
the dynamic 31st District and the larger southeast
Queens community throughout the year.”
Th e organization has worked closely with
NYC Parks to provide programming to
thousands of New Yorkers in hundreds of parks,
recreation centers and public schools across the
fi ve boroughs. Since 2006, the City Park Foundation’s
senior fi tness program has served more
than 10,000 New Yorkers with activities like
yoga, tennis and walking. Its programs have
been held online since 2020.
“Socialization and physical activity has never
been more important aft er these last two years,”
City Parks Foundation Director of Sports Mike
Silverman said. “Seniors, in particular, have
been eager to get active again and we look
forward to giving them that opportunity this
To register for the new Rockaway senior
fi tness program visit here. Th ere is also a full
list of senior programs at parks and recreation
centers across Queens, including tennis at
Astoria Park and Flushing Meadows Corona
Park, yoga at Phil “Scooter” Rizzuto Park in
Richmond Hill and walking at Springfi eld Park.
Courtesy of Liu’s offi ce
New York Senator John Liu and Assemblyman Ed Braunstein speak at the podium with neighborhood residents
Photo by Sean J. Rhinehart
The City Parks Foundation is expanding its popular senior fi tness program to Rockaway for the fi rst time this spring.