Last spring, Queens Community Board 12 voted to re-name a street after Sean Bell, the 23-year-old groom who was killed in a hail of bullets three years ago by police, and yesterday it was approved by a City Council committee as part of 70 new street names. The City Council is set to vote on the proposal on Monday and it's sparking some controversy among representatives and officials who oppose the implications of the naming.
"Sean Bell Way" would cover three blocks. According to the Daily News, the Detectives' Endowment Association is against the naming: "President Michael Palladino [said that Bell] achieved nothing of distinction but arrests - and brought on his own demise by drunkenly aiming his car at cops. 'With today's vote, the fantasy of Sean Bell lives on.'"
Councilmen Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Queens), James Oddo (R-Staten Island) and Eric Ulrich (R-Queens) all oppose the vote as well. (For Oddo, this keeps with hisgeneral stance against re-naming streets because they are time-wasters.) Vallone Jr. told the News that other colleagues plan to oppose the naming as well, saying, "Nothing about that tragedy is worthy of a street renaming." Nonetheless, the proposal has the support of Council Speaker Christine Quinn, and is expected to pass and be approved by Mayor Bloomberg.