Category: News from Gale Brewer

New Community Board appointments announced

Gale speaks to a crowd at Natural History Museum This year’s slate of Manhattan’s 12 Community Board appointments include 89 new members–four of them teens–among the 320 total appointees (from a totel of 651 applicants). Following this latest round of appointments, 93 percent of all appointees now live in the district in which they are appointed. See the complete list of Manhattan Community Board members and appointees (by term) here. If you’ve followed the process at all, you know… Read more

The Charter Revision Commission wants to hear from you!

room full of people at Charter 2019 Manhattan Hearing The 2019 Charter Revision Commission released a preliminary staff report on proposed changes to the Charter in four areas: elections, governance, finance, and land use. You can see the proposed changes here. Over the next few weeks, the commission will hold borough hearings on these draft proposals. The first, in Queens, was held April 30th. Here are details for the upcoming hearings: Thursday, May 2: Brooklyn
Brooklyn Borough Hall,… Read more

Changes coming to 14th Street during L train slowdown

Front of m14A bus The city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) has agreed to create a “busway”—or what DOT is now calling a “Transit-Truck Priority” project—on 14th Street between 3rd and 9th Avenues beginning in June for an 18 month pilot. This means buses and delivery vehicles will be given priority over private and for-hire vehicles during most of the day, with the exact hours still to be determined by transportation officials. Private cars that… Read more

Charter Revision Commission begins drafting proposals in four areas

room full of people at Charter 2019 Manhattan Hearing The 2019 Charter Revision Commission—which will recommend proposals to be placed on the November ballot—has completed a series of “expert forums” on four topic areas it will focus on. Having narrowed focus after hearing from experts and the public (at hearings last fall), the commission will now draw up specific proposals in these four areas, and hold hearings on them in each of the five boroughs on those drafts later this spring.

State budget passes with measures to raise funds for the MTA

room full of people for a public hearing about congestion pricing plan The state budget just passed in Albany includes two measures which will provide desperately needed funding to the MTA… Congestion pricing.  A congestion pricing plan—the first in the nation—will impose a fee on most vehicles when they enter Manhattan south of 61st Street, with revenues to be directed mostly to the MTA. I’ve supported congestion pricing as a way to reduce the clog of traffic in the business district and… Read more

Helping retailers transition to new electronic system for WIC payments

WIc program card with vegetables on the front The federal WIC program (“Women Infants Children”) for low-income parents is moving into the digital age. A new system called eWIC will make it easier for participants to redeem benefits and for retailers to get paid by the government. Retailers must obtain new  EBT (eWIC) machines and complete training for the new system by April 30. Staff in my office, in partnership with the New York State Department of Health,… Read more

Faith-based institutions face real estate challenges

Reverend Harper seated at the back of his church The pressures facing the Harlem faith-based institutions highlighted in this article are not unique. This is a borough-wide problem that must be addressed, which is why my office has conducted outreach and hosted events, like the Faith-Based Development and Preservation Conference we held early last year in conjunction with Community Board 10.

There oughta be a law: we need a database to track vacant storefronts

Gale speaks into mic at NYC council committee I testified today at the NYC Council Committee on Small Business in support of Intro No 1472-A, a bill that would require owners to report the vacancy status of their storefront properties and establish an open database for vacancies. The crisis facing small businesses has only grown worse. National chains steadily spread throughout the city, storefronts sit vacant for years, and online shopping is reducing foot traffic to our local… Read more