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For Immediate Release: Contact:
MONDAY, MAY 11, 2009 Corey Bearak
(718) 343-6779

 "The Race For City Hall"
NY Post/ CNG, Queens Civic Congress, Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council, UJA-Federation, Met Council on Jewish Poverty, sponsor Mayoral Forum @ Samuel Field Y, May 17, 9:30 a.m.

Eight Community groups, joined by the New York Post and its affiliated Community Newspaper Group invited "Our Mayor & Those (All) Who Would Be Our Mayor" to speak at Legislative Forum 2009, Sunday, May 17, 2009 - 23 Iyar 5769, announced Corey Bearak, President of the Queens Civic Congress (QCC) and Jack Friedman, President of the Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council ["NEQJCC"]. The event, hosted by New York Post and its affiliated Community Newspaper Group, Queens Civic Congress, Northeast Queens Jewish Community Council, The Samuel Field Y, Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care & Rehabilitation, UJA-Federation of New York, Queens Hadassah, Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty ("Met Council"), and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, takes place 9:30 a.m. at the "Y", 58-20 Little Neck Parkway in Little Neck. This year's forum, a reprise of 2005 when all the candidates participated, will again focus on "The Race For City Hall".

As of postings on the www.queensciviccongress.org and www.northeastqueensjewish.org websites, two of four announced and unannounced candidates [Anthony Avella, William Thompson] have already confirmed and confirmations remained pending for two others [Michael Bloomberg, Anthony Weiner]. New York Post City Hall Bureau Chief David Seifman will serve as moderator.

Legislative Forum 2009, an annual program of the NEQJCC and the Y, also invites the Borough's legislators to meet and greet their constituents. In the past years, the breakfast attracted many community and civic leaders in addition to members of the Councils' member-organizations.

The letter from Mr. Friedman and Mr. Bearak to the mayor and each candidate stated "We envision the program starting with each candidate receiving up to five minutes for opening remarks. After all the candidates speak, the audience can pose questions (not longer than 30 seconds) to a specific or any combination of candidates. Each candidate whether directed the question or not may have up to 90 seconds to respond. We do not envision closing remarks. While we generally plan to conclude at 11:30 a.m.; no space or time limitations exist and we can allow for further questions if audience interest exists. Prior to and after the mayoral program, time-permitting, we generally welcome greetings from our local elected officials (This is the practice in years when the Legislative Forum features a Keynote Speaker.). We will not accept surrogates."

NEQJCC President Jack Friedman stated: "We look forward to working cooperatively with our fellow sponsors to present this Legislative Forum and other events to benefit Northeast Queens communities." NEQJCC Executive Director Gail Eisenberg added: "This forum presents an important opportunity to show decision-makers the strength and unity of the Jewish community." Y Executive Director Steve Goodman noted: "By coming out on May 17, we can be sure that our voices will be heard when critical decisions that impact on our community are made."

The Forum begins with the serving of a light breakfast - courtesy of Parker Jewish Institute - at 9:30 a.m. and usually concludes in under two hours. People wishing to attend are advised to make reservations by May 15. Call the NEQJCC at (718) 225-6750 extension 247. 

The NEQJCC represents synagogues and other community, educational, fraternal, and religious institutions and organizations in some of the communities which form the City's backbone: Bayside, Bay Terrace, Bellerose, Douglaston, Floral Park, Fresh Meadows, Glen Oaks, Hillcrest, Hollis Hills, Holliswood, Jamaica Estates, Little Neck, New Hyde Park, Oakland Gardens and Queens Village. NEQJCC projects include a pre-Passover food Drive which collected over several thousands pounds, neighborhood development, Jewish continuity, Lay Leadership, social action, promoting involvement and volunteer opportunities, fostering intergroup understanding and building a multi-cultural coalition. The Council combats anti-Semitism and discrimination, sponsors forums with major public figures, Jewish cultural events, open discussions with local Rabbis and represents community concerns. Its newest program, the Harmony initiative or �Hi� represents a collaboration funded by the City Council including the Office of the Queens District Attorney, the City Commission on Human Rights and the Northeast Queens Branch-NAACP. 

The NEQJCC helped form the NORC-WOW, a pilot program to serve seniors in one and two family homes. It publishes a (four-fold, 8.5 by 14-inch) brochure, You Can Have It All, touting life in northeast Queens communities, also available through its website, www.northeastqueensjewish.org, which also features a �community calendar.�

Mr. Gurdus said annual programs include its Installation of Officers and Awards Breakfast each fall, the lighting of the largest Chanukah Menorah in Queens, a Purim Carnival at the Samuel Field Y, and its Legislative Forum each Spring. In 2002, 2004 and 2008, the Council, together with Queens Hadassah and the Consulate of Israel, hosted the Ben Yeduda Street Comes to Bayside, an Israeli Gifts, which attracted thousands of visitors who purchased direct from Israeli merchants and listened to Israeli entertainers. A beneficiary of UJA-Federation, the NEQJCC works closely with the Queens Hadassah, Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater New York, Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, the Samuel Field/Bay Terrace Y and Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation, noted Executive Director Gail Eisenberg who can be reached at (718) 225-6750 x247 or via email at gail@northeastqueensjewish.org.



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