“This is something I’ve always wanted to do, and I thought College Point would be a good starting point,” Avella said. “If you don’t complain, you don’t get action.”
Avella and three groups from his legislative office spent the day walking the neighborhood. Avella explained the information they gathered would be put into an Excel file and submitted to the proper departments.
“We’ll submit a letter and a list,” he said. “I will make sure that they respond to me to follow up on what they actually did.”
Trees growing into telephone and power lines were a frequent issue throughout the neighborhood.
“Those branches are going to fall over, and if somebody’s walking by, they’re going to be seriously injured,” Avella said, pointing at a tree limb near 25th Avenue. “During the storm we have a major problem.”
He added that there is still work to be done with the 311 system, implemented in the city back in March 2003, mainly in keeping up with complaints and cycling them to the proper agency.
“They don’t follow up, so who knows if the agency ever responded,” he said. “You have to have somebody who knows, and unfortunately the 311 operator is just punching in the computer, but the computer can’t predict every single situation.”
Sara Perez, a College Point resident near 123rd Street and 24th Avenue, noted several problems with downed trees and potholes along her street, however trash is the number one problem.
“There’s just a lot of litter everywhere, on every block wherever you go,” Perez said.
Perez added that she has little to no faith in the current 311 system.
“They tell me they can put in a claim, but you never get feedback whether they’re going to take care of it or not,” she said.