Today’s news:

SPEAK OUT - Five boroughs survive mayor’s assault

The Mayor’s scheme to sever our five-borough city was scrapped after long study by my Assembly Speaker, Sheldon Silver. Representing a district on both sides of the lower Manhattan-Brooklyn bridges, Silver wisely let the Bloomberg $8 toll bill die aborning.

If approved, it would have netted our MTA billions of new bucks to squander, to keep our transit in disrepair; to build new modern stations with old-fashioned staircases.

We would have been compelled to pay the eight bucks each time we went into his toll-traps in our city.

Remember that our city planners are commissioned by our mayor. They have planned our city where all major attractions are in Manhattan. Buildings there dwarf the other boroughs. Most Manhattan MTA terminals are gigantic.

All other boroughs have antique stations, closed lavatories, many terminals are kept closed. Escalators are non-existent, or in constant disrepair, change booths are often closed as are some entrances and exits.

City planners have all federal, state and most city courts in Manhattan. Major city, state and federal offices are piled higher in Manhattan. Major post offices in Manhattan have later hours.

Our borough of Brooklyn even in Depression days had major theaters in downtown Brooklyn. Second- and third-run movie houses attracted movie lovers even in the Great Depression.

Once billed as New York’s hometown newspaper, the Daily “Noose” dug into Speaker Silver when the $8 toll bill died without presentation to the Assembly for vote. Speaker Silver fully represented the NY State Assembly by letting the bill expire trying his best to maintain a true five-borough city, endearingly known as the Big Apple. Knowledgeable Assembly people had adequately spoken out about that bill earlier led by Yonkers’ Westchester Assemblymember Richard Brodsky, who assailed the divisible and unaffordable bill as it if it were a land mine entrapment.

Now we still have a five-borough city. Over-populated Manhattan can come out to our beaches, our parks in the other four boroughs soaking in the heat and sun before sweltering on the 52ndfloor in Manhattan, dodging falling scaffolding and straying aircraft.

We’re still a big apple, free to all except in $10 toll Staten Island. Brooklyn Pharmacist Frank Giordano remembers the day his daughter was born 42 years ago. It was the day the Verrazano Bridge opened at 24 cents a toll, leave it to the MTA.

Since January, Lou Powsner was on vacation in Puerto Rico and as well as hospitalized there. He is now in recovery and rehab and is hoping to return to his trusty typewriter in May, just in time for his granddaughter Lori Powsner’s wedding.

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