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Poll

When should the meeting with our local representatives take place?

Wednesday November 14
3 (15.8%)
Thursday November 15
3 (15.8%)
Wednesday November 28
5 (26.3%)
Thursday November 29
8 (42.1%)

Total Members Voted: 15

Voting closed: November 09, 2007, 11:28:48 PM

Author Topic: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives  (Read 3472 times)

Offline costa01

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Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« on: November 02, 2007, 11:57:15 PM »
From Debbie on an earlier post:

"I wish to make a proposal!  I will personally organize an Astorians.com Meeting with our local representatives this fall.  It will be held at the Quinn Building from 6:30-8 PM.  We would invite Gianaris, Vallone, representatives from the 114th Precinct, Sanitation, representatives from Astoria Park and perhaps the Transit Authority.  It would be privately sponsored by local organizations and would not bear the name of Astorians.com.

We should focus on three topics, so that we keep this to one and a half hours the most.  In order to decide which subjects to focus on, we will put up a poll to determine what people are really concerned about.   These are some suggestions:

Noise pollution (mainly from motorcycles)
Trash and littering
Graffiti
Dog walkers not picking up after their dogs
Astoria Park issues
Odd smells on Ditmars
Over Development of the area
Pistilli and various issues with his buildings

Please give me an idea of any other subjects that you would like to see on the poll.  If there is more time, we can certainly go to a fourth and fifth topic."

In order to make this work, we need to choose a date that is amenable to our community within the next month.  The possible dates are:

Wednesday November 14th
Thursday November 15th
Wednesday November 28th
Thursday November 29th

For this to work, we need at minimum 25 responses for one night.  Please enter on this thread the night that works best for you and the amount of people that you will be able to guarantee to attend. Another thread will be posted when we have a date in order to confirm the topics for the evening out of the posted list. Looking forward to working with all of you to make this a reality. 

Offline stevenman5000

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2007, 12:22:27 AM »
Thursday November 29th is the best of those days, and put me down for 2 people.

Offline costa01

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Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2007, 12:28:48 AM »
From Debbie on an earlier post:

"I wish to make a proposal!  I will personally organize an Astorians.com Meeting with our local representatives this fall.  It will be held at the Quinn Building from 6:30-8 PM.  We would invite Gianaris, Vallone, representatives from the 114th Precinct, Sanitation, representatives from Astoria Park and perhaps the Transit Authority.  It would be privately sponsored by local organizations and would not bear the name of Astorians.com.

We should focus on three topics, so that we keep this to one and a half hours the most.  In order to decide which subjects to focus on, we will put up a poll to determine what people are really concerned about.   These are some suggestions:

Noise pollution (mainly from motorcycles)
Trash and littering
Graffiti
Dog walkers not picking up after their dogs
Astoria Park issues
Odd smells on Ditmars
Over Development of the area
Pistilli and various issues with his buildings

Please give me an idea of any other subjects that you would like to see on the poll.  If there is more time, we can certainly go to a fourth and fifth topic."

In order to make this work, we need to choose a date that is amenable to our community within the next month.  The possible dates are:

Wednesday November 14th
Thursday November 15th
Wednesday November 28th
Thursday November 29th

For this to work, we need at minimum 25 responses for one night.  Please enter on this thread the night that works best for you and the amount of people that you will be able to guarantee to attend. Another thread will be posted when we have a date in order to confirm the topics for the evening out of the posted list. Looking forward to working with all of you to make this a reality.

Offline costa01

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2007, 12:32:33 AM »
There is now a poll thread on the same topic.  Please use that for the vote.  Sorry for the confusion, getting the hang of the site  :-o

Offline Debbie

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2007, 04:16:52 PM »
At this point everyone, since it is so close, Nov 14th and 15th are not a possibility so please choose between the later dates.  We cannot possibly invite Representatives 10 days from now and expect them to attend.  There was a delay in getting this survey going, mainly due to my lack of computer skills.  Sorry.

Offline NYCMacUser

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2007, 04:54:25 PM »
I, personally, don't understand the need for a date survey. No group polls their members as to a meeting date. Debbie, find out when you can get the most representation fom Community officials and just tell us the date, place and time. People always seem to complain that the date or time is not right for them. Announce the meeting. Even if you have people telling you that they will be able to make only a certain date and time, there are ALWAYS those last minute whiners who can't make it for one reason or another. This meeting is too important to anyone who cares anything about Astoria to let anything interfere with their attending. The community-at-large will pick up the numbers slack. People will post it in their buildings; their laundromats; their supermarkets; people will tell their friends and neighbors. You will have enough to fill a large room. Even if it is after the new year. The when doesn't matter. The where doesn't matter. Having it matters.
Women are like teabags.
We don't know our true strength
until we are in hot water! —Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline stevenman5000

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2007, 09:47:06 PM »
I respectfully disagree with the person above me. It is important we pick a day where most people can show up, because if we schedule a meeting where only 5 people show up, it'll embarrass the people who organized the event and might defeat any possibilities of future kinds of such meetings with the representatives of Astoria. The key is to begin a conversation between the residents of Astoria, who may or may not be political, with the people who we voted into office, and to ensure that this conversation does not end with only 1 such meeting. There are many like us who can find the time to attend these kind of events, as the person above stated, but then there are people who work all day and might not have the knowledge about our local officials and/or community organizations as we do. It is those people we must reach out to and let them know that they too can meet their representatives and bring up questions and concerns. A poll such as the one in this thread serves the purpose of finding a date that will allow the most residents of Astoria to meet their politicians. I personally believe that date to be Thursday November 29th, because that gives both the residents and the politicians enough time to work their schedules around the date. ensuring maximum turn out compared to the other dates.

Offline NYCMacUser

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2007, 10:46:09 PM »
It is those people we must reach out to and let them know that they too can meet their representatives and bring up questions and concerns.
Not at this meeting. This will be a very tightly controlled environment. The questions will be predetermined way before the meeting. They will be about very specific issues that exclusively affect the quality of life here in Astoria. There will be no follow-up questioning allowed. There will be no free-for-all raising of hands, no speaking over the speakers, probably no applauding and certainly no hissing or booing. This meeting is to ascertain answers. Or to get the promise of answers. This is not going to be on anyone's social calendar. All the other groups in the Community seem to be getting nothing accomplished. Please read all the other threads containing those issues that must be presented at this meeting. If people have a personal problem, they need to address it with the proper authorities. This will not be the place to do it.

Friends and neighbors, this may be the opportunity of a lifetime. To meet with all the people who represent us and get some answers to some of our pressing issues. If Debbie can put this together, anytime she choses is okay with me, and with most of the people who desperately want to see this happen.

This is not a social mixer where you may be able to make friends or find a potential mate. Let Debbie make the contacts and determine when these people are available (and willing) and let her make the determination from that information as to when the meting will be held. If you can't make it your business to attend, then so be it.

If these representatives see that a group of their constituents can hold a peaceful and organized meeting they might consider doing it on a regular basis.

Debbie, if you can pull this off, you will be my hero.
Women are like teabags.
We don't know our true strength
until we are in hot water! —Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline stevenman5000

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2007, 11:02:51 PM »
LOL I just love how the politicians love to find ways to avoid answering REAL questions from REAL residents of Astoria. I guess unless its their own political people in the audience they are going to make these kind of meetings undemocratic. Though I have my hopes, because last time I checked the rules of this meeting were not set in stone and it hasn't been planned out extensively as of yet. I thought the purpose of the meeting was to provide a forum where the politicians actually have to answer questions from a concerned audience, not have a mock forum where questions are preselected by political cronies

Offline NYCMacUser

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2007, 11:25:36 PM »
There will be no political cronies. We will formulate the questions in order of their priority. They will be presented in an orderly fashion by a designated person. The reason why our local representatives are hesitant to attend meetings such as this is because people don't respect the hard work it takes to put something like this together. We are not trying to crucify our representatives, we are trying to get them to understand our major concerns. The primary reason that most local Community groups fail is because of the disorganization that their meetings seem to promote. Individualism is alive and well even in Astoria, but this meeting must be for the benefit of all the residents of Astoria, not just those people who have problems that don't represent the community-at-large. The people who will be attending this meeting are those who are dedicated to this Community. Who understand the need for such a meeting where (exclusively) quality-of-life issues will be discussed. Look at all the other local groups who are simply spinning their wheels. Debbie has been a part of this Community for a long time and has been active in getting things done. This is a new approach to the issues. Let's give it a chance to succeed before we allow all the cynics to have their dissident attitudes keep it from being tried.
Women are like teabags.
We don't know our true strength
until we are in hot water! —Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline costa01

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2007, 12:32:49 AM »
I think this thread has moved slightly off topic.  As someone who has worked for elected officials and has organized meetings in which elected officials were to attend, I've learned it is important to have a date to approach them with as a starting point.  Debbie's request for this survey was to narrow down dates that would start the conversation to get this done.  We cannot just go to an elected official or city agency and say "Hi, we want to have this great meeting, when it is good for you?"  It's never necessarily good for them, their schedules are always busy. 

The reality of the situation is as Debbie laid out earlier, either November 28 or 29 is a good place for us to start.  The holidays are fast approaching and if we cannot get this going in the next few weeks, we lose this opportunity until the beginning of next year. 

The content and structure of this meeting has been laid out previously, but I do not recall it being as narrow as scripted questions known to the electeds beforehand nor as broad as complete participation on any topic. Debbie's original post was to have a meeting structured around 3-4 topics with no mention of whether or not individuals would be able to ask questions on these topics without "approval".  That said, I stand with both of the previous posters on thanking Debbie for her hardwork and on the sentiment that this meeting is of the utmost importance to all "Astorians".

Offline Debbie

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2007, 08:28:12 PM »
Folks, I will see if the dates are still available tomorrow and if so, I will go ahead and book one and then the work begins - someone will need to put together a flier to distribute.  We should all try to get these posted throughout Astoria.  A Press Release should go to the local media.  I will invite the Representatives etc.

Some advice based on experiences from prior meetings -

Yes indeed, the Politicians try to go around and around and rarely do they respond directly to a question.  I have learned a way around that.  Also, they tend to blame the lack of money on everything, so they need to be reminded that the issues we will be discussing occur in a strong economy and in a weak economy.  Believe me, none of the issues, with the exception of over crowding are old issues.

There should be some sort of preparation since a 'free for all' environment often gets out of hand.  My recommendation is that we decide our top ten or so topics, which are universal to Astoria ie. Trash, Transit, Noise Pollution, Park issues etc.  We can then formulate questions around those issues (which will not be shared with the Politicians) which encompass the general feelings of the audience.  Perhaps we can have one or two follow up questions at that point.  Time is of the essence and we need some responses from our Politicians, and not lip service.

First thing's first - let's set the date and get the venue organized.  I will follow up with you a.s.a.p.

Offline Debbie

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2007, 08:50:21 AM »
Okay all - this is the last call.  I was able to secure Wednesday, November 28th at Quinn at 6:30 p.m.  The 29th has already been booked.  If by Friday, I receive enough commitments from you, (you can also let me know how many other people you will bring and I will count them in), 25 at least, we will go forward.  Some of you feel that we already did this, however, now that we have a definitive date, we need to recommit.  I am sorry but I cannot risk standing there with five people in the audience.  From past experience, I will not do that again.  By Friday, I need to know how many of you will be attending.  We can then proceed.

Thanks,

DR

Offline megc

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2007, 09:06:14 AM »
That evening is open on my calendar.  I can be there.

Offline NYCMacUser

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Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2007, 06:34:32 PM »
I will be there, but cannot yet tell you how many will be with me.
Women are like teabags.
We don't know our true strength
until we are in hot water! —Eleanor Roosevelt

Astorians

Re: Survey for Meeting with our Local Representatives
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2007, 06:34:32 PM »

 

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