Civics is the study of the rights and duties of citizenship. Knowing civics one can set about changing the world, or in the case of Jackson Heights, the neighborhood.
Localism is the belief that power should be wielded as much as possible locally.
How does one make a positive change to the neighborhood?
- Rule #1: If it's to an ongoing government project or program, find out who funds it (is it federal, state, or city money) and approach the public officials with their fingers on the budget.
- Rule #2: If you see an opportunity or have an idea for an improvement, approach a civic organization or political club to seek support.
- Rule #3: If you see an opportunity or have an idea and no existing organization offers to support it, start your own initiative.
(Legacy) Legislative Power
Jackson Heights residents elect and send 12 representatives to city, state, and federal legislatures:
- 3 to the Council City - City Council Districts 21, 22, 25
- 5 to the state legislature in Albany - Assembly Districts 34, 35 and 39; Senate Districts 13 and 16
- 4 to the capitol - U.S. House of Representatives District NY-14 and Senate
These might be thought of as princely positions, offering the holders prestige, power, a fair salary, good benefits, and staff. Those holding these positions rarely retire from them, but depart for higher office, upon death or term limits, or being voted out.
If Jackson Heights' representatives see that the neighborhood is behind an issue, they will offer their support. Rule #1 for legislators is to get reelected.