TIMES, THURSDAY, AUGUST 14, 2014 • 26 Judge Recommends Denial Of Ousted Library Trustees Lawsuit Ben Carson News & Opinion -CONTINUED FROM PG. 4- would be lower. If we enact policies that allow American companies to bring back hundreds of billions of dollars in corporate profits to our country without punitive taxation, the upside would be considerably greater than any negative consequences. This is not complex economic theory; it’s common sense. As the president and Congress consider enacting regulations to limit or eliminate future inversion deals, I hope they take the time to talk to a wide spectrum of business leaders about ways to create a fertile and friendly atmosphere for innovation and growth. It will require more than just talk to persuade American companies to stay or return to our shores. Instead of just talking about fixing our taxation woes, we need to just do it. And I hope grateful companies will feel an obligation to do even more to contribute to the well-being of the citizens of our nation. * * * Ben S. Carson is professor emeritus of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University and author of the new book “One Nation: What We Can All Do To Save America’s Future” (Sentinel). Calls For Immigration Reform At B’wick Forum -CONTINUED FROM PG. 6- people, who elect us are telling us, Members of Congress, enough, pass comprehensive immigration reform.” “We are saying to the president ... this Congress will not do anything to address the broken immigration system, so we ask you to use the power of your office, the power of your pen to issue an executive order that will provide the greatest relief to those who have been here for so long,” she added. “Issue an executive order so the DREAMers and relatives of dreamers can remain in the United States.” Coates told the Times Newsweekly he favors the president taking executive action to end deportations as well. Further, he believes the president should support the DREAM Act for undocumented so they can come forward and receive a work permit. The event featured several testimonials from individuals describing their perilous journey to the U.S., and the difficulties of living here as an immigrant. Rev. Omar Almonte opened the forum, and said he believed in empathy for the less fortunate and newly arrived immigrants. He invoked religious teachings of compassion as well, and said in Spanish, “Jesus was an immigrant.” The testimonials that described the struggles they went through were hard for even the speakers themselves to get through without tears. One speaker became emotional as she described her journey to the U.S. to bring her kids “to this country of opportunity,” she said. “My family is one of thousands,” Not an unconstitutional decision Carter further dismissed the trustees’ claim that their removal violated their First Amendment right to free speech, arguing their support of Galante and refusal to fully disclose the library’s finances to City Comptroller Scott Stringer were valid reasons. “Voting to retain the current president of the QBPL, Thomas Galante, in the midst of the scandals he has brought upon the library and voting to resist the comptroller’s legitimate inquiries into the financial transactions that underlie those scandals is not protected speech,” he wrote. “The legislature expressly adopted these amendments to empower the borough president and the mayor to address the recent scandals at the QBPL—not to immunize the trustees—and it would violate the clear legislative intention to preclude the borough president from removing a trustee for taking actions that the legislature amended the statute to address.” Galante came under fire earlier this year amid published reports that he received a nearly $400,000 annual salary from Queens Library and authorized a six-figure renovation of his Jamaica office, which included the construction of an outdoor deck. Questions also arose over the library’s authorization of private contractors to perform certain services. Say trustees made poor choices After stories about the library’s finances broke, Carter noted, Katz repeatedly reached out to the board of trustees seeking further information about Galante’s salary and whether city funds were used to fund the office renovation. In two conference calls with the borough president, Carter stated, none of the trustees “could answer with certainty as to whether the board ever voted on the construction of an outdoor deck or whether city money was used to build it.” Additionally, Galante repeatedly ignored requests Katz made to provide for further financial information. The scandal led Comptroller Stringer, the FBI and the city Department of Investigation to launch separate inquiries into Queens Library and Galante. Additionally, Carter noted, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Loretta Lynch convened a grand jury which subpoenaed Galante and Queens Library for various documents. Even so, the board of trustees deadlocked in April on a resolution that would have forced Galante into a leave of absence pending the ongoing investigations. Five of the six members Katz removed voted against the resolution; Arrington abstained from voting. Then in May, the trustees further angered Katz and other lawmakers in passing a resolution authorizing Queens Library to release to Stringer financial documents in accordance with a 1997 disclosure agreement reached with then-Comptroller Alan Hevesi. Stringer, seeking full financial disclosure from the library, filed a lawsuit seeking that the courts declare the agreement invalid. All six members that Katz removed voted in favor of the May resolution. Response ‘was not sufficient’ Katz removed the six last month and subsequently denied their appeals. In a form letter to each of them, the borough president stated the state legislature provided her and the mayor “with appointment, and now removal, authority to create accountability for the provision of library services and to protect library assets and public dollars.” “I have questioned why the board isn’t taking all possible steps to get a firm grasp on current library finances and why the board isn’t providing full cooperation with an audit by the governmental entity empowered to do so,” Katz wrote. “Your response is not sufficient. ... Clearly, several other trustees felt it was important to cooperate with the comptroller, but you voted against that step toward accountability and true understanding of how CEO Tom Galante manages taxpayer money.” “Such an action does not protect library assets and therefore doesn’t further the educational purpose of QBPL,” she added. -CONTINUED FROM PG. 8- Rep. Nydia Velázquez urged the president to take executive action to protect immigrants at a forum organized by Make The Road New York last Thursday, Aug. 7. (photo: Noah Zuss) she added. Romeo Moreno lives in Staten Island and came to the U.S. from Mexico. He described being arrested for a minor crime, being sent to Rikers Island and then was held in New Jersey for deportation. Velázquez spoke mostly on her frustration at the inaction on the federal level to support immigrants. “How we treat children speaks to the character of our nation,” she said. Speaking on children looking for escape from war and poverty arriving at the U.S./Mexico border, Velázquez said she is angered by many Congressional members’ attitudes towards newly arrived immigrants. “How could we look into their eyes and say no. That is not the American way. We need to reject that inhumanity,” she said. “That we could look into the eyes of those little children and say, ‘I’m, sorry, but we are going to send you back,’ that is not the American Way. That is not who we are and we need to reject that kind of inhumanity. “We want to send the DREAMers back to their countries,” she added. The testimonials were from “members who are active in our organization,” Coates said. Aside from advocacy work, the nonprofit provides legal help, tenant advocacy, ESL instruction, immigration assistance and job training, he said. Elmhurst Gunman Caught In N.J. responded to the location after receiving a 911 call regarding trespassers in the area. While heading to the scene in a marked police vehicle, authorities said, they observed Mosquera allegedly chasing another male and armed with a handgun. Reportedly, the officers stopped and exited from the vehicle, then ordered Mosquera multiple times to put down the weapon. Authorities said Mosquera allegedly turned the weapon on police and fired a shot, which missed both officers. He reportedly fled from the scene on foot. While running away, law enforcement sources said, Mosquera allegedly dropped a loaded .22- caliber Ruger Mark 1 long-arm pistol that police eventually recovered. The gun had two live rounds of ammunition, police noted. In the shooting’s aftermath, the NYPD identified Mosquera as the prime suspect and offered a $12,000 reward for information leading to his arrest and conviction. After the Fugitive Task Force picked Mosquera up last Wednesday, prosecutors said, he allegedly told officers that he didn’t fire at police, but rather shot “one or two times at someone else.” During arraignment last Wednesday night, Brown stated, Judge Suzanne Melendez ordered the suspect held without bail on charges of first-degree attempted aggravated murder, first- and second-degree attempted murder, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment. He is scheduled to return to court on Sept. 10. If convicted, Brown stated, Mosquera faces up to 25 years to life behind bars. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Michael E. Brovner of the DA’s Gang Violence and Hate Crimes Bureau, which is supervised by Assistant District Attorneys Mariela Herring, bureau chief, and Michelle E. Goldstein, deputy bureau chief. -CONTINUED FROM PG. 9- SEND A LETTER TO THE EDITOR TO email@example.com WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!
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