BY TRONE DOWD
With the fall’s elections out of the way, the New York City Council and the state Assembly have announced which members will lead their respective committees for the next year.
In the City Council, Queens elected officials received a handful of posts under the new speaker, Councilman Corey Johnson (D-Manhattan). One of the most notable appointments is western Queens councilman Danny Dromm (D-Jackson Heights), who is assigned to the powerful Finance Committee. As chairman, Dromm will have major influence on the distribution of funds throughout the city. He will take over the position from retired Queens councilwoman Julissa Ferreras.
Elsewhere in Queens, Councilman Donovan Richards (D-Laurelton) has become chairman of the Public Safety Committee, which handles oversight of the city’s Police Department and the Civilian Complaint Review Board, along with hearing and voting on legislation related to public safety. Richards called the appointment an “honor.”
“We look forward to working with the NYPD, CCRB and legal service advocates to ensure they have the resources and that there’s a fair balance between civil liberties and safety,” he said. “We commend the work of the NYPD that has led to us being the safest big city in the nation, while we continue to improve police-community relations by increasing accountability and transparency.”
Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) will head the Rules Committee, while assemblyman turned Councilman Francisco Moya (D-Jackson Heights) will head the subcommittee on zoning. Councilman Barry Grodenchik (D-Oakland Gardens) will take over the Parks and Recreation Committee and Councilman Paul Vallone (D-Bayside) will lead the Economic Development Committee. Councilman Rory Lancman (D-Hillcrest), who chaired the Courts and Legal Services Committee two years ago, is now leading the Rules, Privileges and Elections Committee. And Councilman Peter Koo (D-Flushing) is the chairman of the Technology Committee.
In the State Assembly, three Queens representatives have been chosen to lead committees. Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Fresh Meadows) will now lead the Corrections Committee, while Southeast Queens’ Michelle Titus (D-South Ozone Park) will lead the Labor Committee. Western Queens Assemblyman Michael DenDekker (D-East Elmhurst) will head the Veterans Affair Committee.
Queens members also took their fair share of subcommittees in Albany, with Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato (D-Rockaway Beach) taking on the Child Safety Subcommittee, Brian Barnwell (D-Maspeth) leading the Emerging Workforce Subcommittee, Clyde Vanel (D-Queens Village) chairing the Internet and New Technology Subcommittee and Alicia Hyndman (D-Springfield Gardens) taking on the Tuition Assistance Program Subcommittees.