Cuomo extends eviction moratorium until Aug. 20
New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced yesterday during his daily press briefing that he would be extending the eviction moratorium that he put in place to protect people who are facing financial hardship due to the COVID-19, or novel coronavirus, pandemic.
His original moratorium, which prevented landlords from evicting their tenants for any reason, was set to expire in June, but Cuomo said yesterday that it will be extended until Aug. 20.
Additionally, late fees cannot be incurred from not paying rent until the end of the moratorium.
“We’re going to take additional steps to ban any late payment fees because a person could not pay rent during this time, also allowing people to use their security deposit as a payment and they can repay it over a period of time,” Cuomo said. “I hope it gives families a deep breath.”
The goal of this development is to protect New Yorkers who lost their jobs due to the pandemic and who can’t afford to pay rent each month, partially or in full.
“I get it, there’s a tradeoff,” Cuomo said. “We’re working on relief from the banks for the landlords also and there are programs that the federal government and the state is doing to make sure those banks get relief so they don’t have to do any foreclosures.”
Read more about this in this article: AM New York
De Blasio says city may limit people in certain city parks
At his daily press briefing yesterday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the city might limit the amount of people that can enter some parks throughout the city in an effort to maintain social distancing.
Some parks, he said, have been getting overcrowded, so it makes sense to reduce the number of people inside them so that each individual has more space between them and the next person.
“We’ve got some parks that are just, the way they’re set up is, it’s just too easy to have crowding,” the mayor said. “We can’t let that happen, and we have to limit the number of people going in.”
De Blasio said that he and the New York Police Department commissioner had “extensive conversations with members of both our teams and other agencies as well” about formulating a plan to do this.
Whatever plan they come up with is subject to change based on the initial results they see during implementation, he said.
Another hiccup comes, however, when the issue of enforcement comes up.
Up until now, it was the NYPD that has been enforcing the social distancing mandates — in fact, police issued around 70 summons for failing to social distance just last weekend, including one arrest that turned violent.
The NYPD’s main union has called for the end of police enforcement of social distancing, as have activists who say that it has not been enforced equally among different groups of people.
“The way you keep people safe in New York City is to use the finest police force in the world to protect people. That is a fundamental truth,” de Blasio said. “And when confronted with the biggest crisis we’ve ever known, we’re not going to sideline the NYPD. We’re gonna’ use the NYPD to the fullest, but with smart protocols, smart training, figuring out what works and what doesn’t work.”
Read more about this in this article: New York 1
Owner of iconic Brooklyn event space dies at 82
The owner of a well-known, eclectic event space and restaurant, Michael Halkias, has died from the coronavirus at the age of 82.
Halkias and his wife Alice owned the Grand Prospect Hall in Prospect Park on Prospect Avenue between Fifth and Sixth avenues since 1981.
The hall is a historic landmark and was used in various popular culture and media campaigns, including an American Express commercial, a Vogue photoshoot and a set for the films The Royal Tenenbaums and Cotton Club.
Additionally, the space — which was the first electrified commercial building in Brooklyn, according to its website — has been the site of a few music festivals, including Arcade Fire’s fifth album release party back in 2017.
Grand Prospect Hall was also known for its iconic commercial that ran on television for years and was even parodied on Saturday Night Live in 2019.
The Halkias’ then opened the Brooklyn Bavarian Biergarten in 2015. The seasonal German-American restaurant is outdoors, located right next to their event space.
“He was a man with big vision and an even bigger heart,” State Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D- Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bath Beach, Bensonhurst, Gravesend, Homecrest, Manhattan Beach, Marine Park, Gerritsen Beach, Sheepshead Bay, Borough Park, Midwood) tweeted on Wednesday. “And of course, he made dreams come true for thousands of people who celebrated at his hall.”
Read more about this in this article: Eater New York
Queens Taste Postponed for 2020, Hopes to Return in 2021
Queens Taste 2020, an annual celebration of food and international cuisine, has been canceled for this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Queens Economic Development Corporation and the Queens Tourism Council, who organize the event, announced it’s cancellation after officials had been hoping to just postpone it from May to October.
“We’re saddened by this decision, but there’s so much uncertainty that even holding it in the fall is not feasible,” QEDC Executive Director Seth Bornstein said. “We hope for a healthier 2021 and we’ll hold another Queens Taste then.”
This year’s Queens Taste would have been the 18th installation of it, and would have taken place at the New York Hall of Science in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, which is where it’s been held for the past five years.
The event offers food from countries around the world, including China, Colombia, Guyana, Haiti, India, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, Thailand, Trinidad and the Philippines, and sees around 500 attendees.
“We are hoping to hold a triumphant, post-COVID affair and show off the borough’s businesses, but this disease is just too dangerous,” QTC Director Rob MacKay said. “It’s a shame, but we’ll be back.”
Read more about this in this article: Queens Courier