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Young recruits join old guard on Community Board 2

Van Bramer announces new appointments Thursday

Van Bramer announces new appointments Thursday

April 6, 2014 By Christian Murray

Community Board 2, which represents Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City, is getting an injection of young blood.

Four new members were appointed to the 50-member board Thursday, following some recent departures. The board, which is known for having very little turnover, plays an influential advisory role in reviewing new developments and in the issuance of liquor licenses.

The new members include three people below the age of 30, with the fourth being a woman in her mid 30s, who will become the board’s only bar/restaurant owner.

The appointees, who were selected by Queens Borough president Melinda Katz, were based on the recommendations of Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer.  All new appointments to Queens’ community boards are made either by a sitting councilman or the Queens Borough president.

Van Bramer said he wanted to bring on some young people.

“I made a concerted effort to bring younger people on to the community board,” Van Bramer said.  “I feel strongly about young people getting involved into civic process.”

Van Bramer, who views turnover as good, said new people provide fresh ideas and new viewpoints.

The board tends to have many older, long-serving members–since there are no term limits and individuals only lose their spots if they leave the district or have very poor attendance records.

Van Bramer said he recommended Juan Carlos Rivera, a 20-year-old resident of Woodside, who is currently attending Baruch College to the board. Van Bramer said he met Rivera when he was the president of student government at Information Technology High School in Long Island City. “He is very smart and very mature for his age.”

Rivera was joined Thursday by Jordan Levine, 25, from Sunnyside. Levine recently worked for State Sen. Daniel Squadron and in that role would attend community board meetings in lower Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Dana Frankel, 29, who lives and works in Long Island City, joined the board. She is the Director of Economic Development for the Long Island City Partnership, where she organizes events and monitoring the activities of the area.

“I’ve been impressed with her work,” Van Bramer said about Frankel. “She is also extremely dedicated to the community.”

Rebecca Trent, the owner of the Creek and the Cave, will be the only bar/restaurant owner to be on the board. Trent, 36, who is also the head of LIC Eateries ( a group of LIC bars/restaurants), has been in talks for a few years to get on the board. However, with the lack of turnover she has had to wait.

“I thought it was outrageous that there was not one restaurant owner on the community board, especially with all the SLA (State Liquor Authority) issues and discussions about back yard use [in Long Island City},” she said.

Van Bramer said she had a very compelling case and that is why he wanted her on the board.

Van Bramer said that Trent has been invaluable in bringing the fight to the MTA concerning the lack of weekend 7 train service this year.

Each new member will be meeting with Community Board 2 chair Joseph Conley. Conley will assign each members to a committee.

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LIC Resident2

Joe Conley is a terrible leader for CB2. There should be term limits to get him and his bully Pat O’Brien out of there. Joe Conley and Pat O’Brien do not represent the majority of LIC. They are bullies. They are supposed to be impartial but they are not at all. William Garrett has them both wrapped around his little finger.

And to “Barownershouldnotdecideliquorlicensesorpermits” –
Until now, out of 50 people on CB2 not one of them has been a restaurant or bar owner for years. Of course there should be at least ONE. The opposition has too many people. The restaurants need representation. Of course Pat O’Brien will never let her on the liquor license committee, so she will only be a vote not a voice.


Jimmy Van Bramer is looking to take over NYC by putting HIS people in positions throughout the City. Mr. Van Bramer will be leaving his position due to term limits in less than 2 years so he needs all his ducks lined up so he can intimidate his way to another position. CB 2 is managed by an extraordinary man in Joseph Conley. Mr. Conley has long been an advocate of the people of LIC, Woodside and Sunnyside and he does it without recognition or fanfare. He is not involved in any scandals or unworthy organizations which is why he gets overlooked so often.

As for Borough President Katz, it amazes me that she can look any person in the face after her shenanigans with Curtis Sliwa. No matter how many young people they put on Community Boards remember one thing, they are not doing it for you, they are doing it for themselves. These are the people who will try to carry out the plans of both Van Bramer and Katz.


Just wondering how much campaign donations does it take to get on the CB? How long till she pushes he own agenda and not the community that she leads like the Restuarant Association? She was quoted in LIC magazine a few ago talking about the 7 shutdown. “I am losing money”, not we are losing money. The line before that read that she was the leader of the LIC resturant and bar association. She is being put into a postion to knockout her competiton even before they began.

LIC Resident2

Its about time! Way to go Rebecca. Now we need to put in term limits, especially for the chair people who have been there far too long.

How is it possible that there is a representative body like this without term limits? Its ridiculous.


Young blood for neighborhoods that are seeing an influx of young residents, well done Mr. Van Bramer and Mrs. Katz.


Love it! And way overdue!! I’m looking forward to having Rebecca Trent there especially.

And I always wondered how people get on these community boards and now I know.

LIC just got even more interesting and in a good way. 🙂


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