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Saturday, July 2, 2011

NIMBY and Autism reports from Queens, New York:
Bellerose residents are saying “not in my backyard” to an Astoria nonprofit’s plan to set up a group home for autistic children on 247th Street, arguing that a similar home is operating just nine houses away.

In a letter to Cory Polshansky, deputy executive director for the Astoria-based Quality Services for the Autism Community, Bellerose resident Virginia Salow said she was concerned about the proximity of the proposed home, at 88-01 247th St., to a similar home one block down and to the schoolyard at St. Gregory’s.

“You have my and my neighbors’ strongest objection to this action and we call upon you to reconsider this foolish and dangerous proposal,” Salow wrote.

Gary Maffei, executive director of QSAC, said the nonprofit was not aware of the other group home, but said it is up to the state to decide whether his agency’s home is approved.

Salow also accused Community Board 13 Chairman Bryan Block of “negligence” for failing to put the group home on the board’s May agenda.