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Ariola All the Way

Dear Editor,

Two strong women are vying to become our next City Council rep (D32) but one of them, Felicia Singh, is wrong on policy and wrong for Rockaway.

Safety, schools and prosperity are three vital issues for most Rockaway families.  When it comes to safety, Ms. Singh offers us a false budget tradeoff: social services vs. policing. The NYPD budget is not preventing the City from investing in more services.  In fact, NYC spends a much lower percentage on policing than most other major cities. “Defund the Police” is not about reallocation; it’s a punitive action.  That is why they insist on cutting police before their ideas reduce crime.  It’s an approach that hurts civilians even more than it hurts law enforcement.  “Defund” has meant more theft in 11694 and more murders in the 101 (and in big cities from coast to coast).  Regardless, Singh wants to double-down and take even more resources from the NYPD.  Joann Ariola will work with the new Mayor to restore the NYPD’s ability to deter crime and to pursue needed reforms.  A vote for Joann is a vote for fewer felonies and improved safety for all.

Schools. Every parent knows that education is the key to opportunity.  Again, Ms. Singh offers us a false tradeoff: gifted and talented programs vs. good schooling for all.  Advanced academic programs are not robbing the rest of the system of vital resources.  In fact, NYC spends more per student on education than any place in the world – by far.  The failures of our school system have little to do with money so we don’t need to cut programs that benefit any children.  Yet her opposition to charter schools and advanced academic programs would undermine our best performing schools (Success Academy, Scholars Academy) while denying Far Rockaway the gifted and talented program that our community has been begging for.  Joann Ariola will work hard to invest in an innovative variety of programs that will help all our children reach their potential.

Prosperity.  Most people in Rockaway and Broad Channel still believe in the American Dream. For generations, a big part of that dream has been home ownership.  My parents scrimped and saved to buy a home in Rockaway so they could raise their children in a less crowded environment and build a little nest egg for the golden years.  Too many progressives don’t respect the sacrifices and hard work of homeowners in places like Belle Harbor and Edgemere.  Instead they promote reckless upzoning in deference to the cult of density.  As a mother, grandmother, and leader with 30 years of community service experience, Joann Ariola will value our families’ dreams more than any political ideology. Joann understands the powerful role the City Council member plays in NYC zoning decisions.  She will fight to preserve the gains our families have made over generations and to keep the door open to aspiring homeowners.

On the issues that matter most to Rockaway and our families, Joann Ariola has the right policies and the right values.  Please vote for her as our next City Council member.

Paul King