You are reading

Polls for Council District 24 Special Election to Open on Time Tuesday Despite Snow

(Michael Appleton/ Mayoral Photography Office)

Feb. 1, 2021 By Allie Griffin

The special election for 24th City Council District in Queens will go on as planned Tuesday despite the massive snow storm bringing the city to a near halt.

“With thousands of New Yorkers having already cast their ballots during early voting, tomorrow’s special election in Queens is still on!” said Jose Bayona, a spokesperson for the mayor’s office. “Polls open at 6 a.m. and our plows are making extra rounds near polling sites tonight.”

The snowstorm has been wreaking havoc on the city just as one candidate received a major endorsement today and recent public filings reveal an influx of real estate money in the race.

Progressive activist Moumita Ahmed earned the backing of former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders Monday for the 24th District seat, which covers Kew Gardens Hills, Fresh Meadows, Hillcrest, Pomonok, Jamaica Hills and Briarwood.

“I’m endorsing Moumita Ahmed because she understands that working class New Yorkers from diverse backgrounds built this city, and that we need leaders on the City Council who will always put them before the interests of the wealthy and the powerful,” Sanders said in a statement.

Ahmed — who volunteered for the Sanders campaign and has a tattoo of the Vermont senator’s face — said she was honored to have the senator’s endorsement.

We are so humbled and proud to have @BernieSanders join our working-class coalition as we battle the billionaire real estate developers trying to derail our campaign for housing justice,” she wrote on Twitter. “His support will definitely help us tomorrow as our organizers work to turn out immigrant voters — who have suffered so much during this pandemic — during this blizzard.”

In her tweet, Ahmed alluded to the mailers sent to District 24 homes attacking her. The ads were paid for by Common Sense NYC — a new independent expenditure committee that has taken a $1 million donation from billionaire real estate developer Stephen Ross.

Public filings reported over the past week show that Common Sense NYC has spent more than $206,000 on the special election.

The committee spent $81,817 on four mailers and one print ad attacking Ahmed, according to the NYC Campaign Finance Board.

The pamphlets denounce Ahmed’s progressive policies — such as her plan to cut the NYPD budget — and past tweets on the Israel Palestine conflict.

Meanwhile, Common Sense NYC also spent $107,326.51 on three mailers, three radio ads, two print ads, a phone call campaign and sweatshirts supporting candidate James Gennaro, who previously held the D-24 Council seat for three terms until 2013.

Common Sense NYC also paid $17,695 for a mailer supporting another candidate in the race, attorney and President of the Queens County Women’s Bar Association Soma Syed.

The winner of the nonpartisan special election will finish Lancman’s term that is set to end on Dec. 31, 2021. Lancman resigned from the City Council on Nov. 4 to take a position within Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration.

Other candidates in the running include small business owner and community organizer Deepti Sharma; New York’s first Indian-American female Democratic District Leader Neeta Jain; healthcare executive Dilip Nath, who previously ran for the seat; “conservative” Democrat Mujib Rahman and real estate broker Michael Earl Brown.

The special election is the first test of the city’s new ranked-choice voting ballot.

email the author: [email protected]
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

These Queens eateries are participating in the upcoming NYC Restaurant Week

NYC Restaurant Week is underway, so nix that skillet and bring family and friends to your favorite neighborhood spot, or get inspired and break bread somewhere new and different. During this special citywide culinary event, food-lovers will enjoy curated menus and prix-fixe prices that are easy on the wallet.

Bookings began on Jan. 17 and are available until Feb. 12, and you can reserve a table at 30 participating Queens restaurants, along with hundreds more across the five boroughs.

Lunar New Year ‘special celebration’ held at Queensborough Community College in Bayside

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz joined Councilwomen Sandra Ung and Linda Lee on Wednesday, Jan. 18, for a special celebration in honor of the Lunar New Year at the Student Union Building at Queensborough Community College in Bayside.

Ung escaped the Cambodian genocide as a child, and her family emigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old. Now she represents Flushing with its enormous Asian American population. She said she is proud to see how many Lunar New Year celebrations she sees around the city compared to when she first arrived in Queens.