2013 ELECTIONS: District 20

Flushing Incumbent Facing Three Challengers

Three challengers have risen in Council District 20, each hoping to defeat Councilman Peter Koo (D-Flushing) in his bid for re-election.

(L-R) Evergreen Chou and Sunny Hahn

(L-R) Evergreen Chou and Sunny Hahn

Green Party candidate Evergreen Chou, Jobs and Education candidate Martha Flores-Vasquez and Reform candidate Sunny Hahn have all thrown their names into the ring, facing off against the incumbent councilman.

Koo took office in 2009, replacing John Liu. Although he was elected as a Republican, Koo switched to the Democratic Party last year.

During his first term, Koo helped create the Downtown Flushing Task Force, worked with police to remove illegal Casino buses from the streets, fought with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to keep 7 trains running normally for the Chinese New Year, secured funding for more security cameras and funded a clean-up of the Olde Flushing Burial Ground.

As a Green Party candidate, Chou’s environmental platform is completely against fossil fuels, nuclear power or fracking. He supports expanding the use of renewable resources, including solar power, wind turbines, hydropower and geothermal energy. Chou also supports affordable housing for all, single-payer universal healthcare and universal free education to college. These ideas would be paid for with increased taxation on corporations.

(L-R) Peter Koo and Martha Flores-Vasquez

(L-R) Peter Koo and Martha Flores-Vasquez

Flores-Vasquez has built up a name for herself as Flushing’s district leader. She is the founder of Community Prevention for Families in Crisis, an organization meant to help victims of domestic abuse and children’s services cases. In August, she joined residents of the Harwyn, located at 143-40 41st Ave., in protest against a planned adjacent building that would pose environmental hazards by blocking the Harwyn’s windows.

Hahn is running for City Council to make Flushing a destination for businesses, citizens and visitors. She would fight against over-regulation of small businesses. With the threat of the Flushing Commons project taking over municipal lot 1, Hahn would work with organizations like the YMCA to make their lot available in the interim. She would also work to create a Flushing Transportation Hub.

-Joe Marvilli