Category: Technology

READ: My remarks at the 14th Street Tech Training Center groundbreaking

Brewer stands in front of podium Delivered Monday, August 5, 2019 It’s great to be here today, but, as you know, all development in Manhattan is controversial! Thank you to EDC, Council Member Rivera and my friend Andrew Rasiej.  I have supported this project since its inception because since my days as Chair of the City Council’s Technology Committee, I have understood what technology can mean for this city and its residents.  Technology can re-shape government,… Read more

Schools need a broadband “czar” to ensure better public school wifi; new report from my office shows wide variance across 70 campuses

Pubic school building in sunlight Even as New York City’s technology sector grows (Amazon HQ2 notwithstanding), a survey of Manhattan public schools by my office shows that city students are lagging behind in the most basic tech currency: broadband wifi access. My staff and interns surveyed a sample of multi-school “campuses” across the borough and conducted measurements of wifi upload and download speeds at three points during the school day: 20 minutes before classes start,… Read more

Mesh wifi installed at my office

White Mesh wifi box installed at Gale's office I’m excited to announce that my office is hosting a tech demonstration by NYC Mesh. As you know, I have advocated for net neutrality and consumer data protection since my time on the City Council. Far too often, we have seen large internet service providers (ISPs) collect consumer data only to sell it for a profit or lose it in a preventable security breach. NYC Mesh’s mission is to… Read more

Brewer, Vacca bringing “Open Data Law 2.0” to Council hearing tomorrow

NEW YORK – Tomorrow, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and New York City Council Member James Vacca will bring Intro 1707, a bill upgrading the City’s first-in-the-nation Open Data Law, to the City Council for a public hearing. Council Member Vacca, who chairs the Technology Committee, will lead the hearing and sponsors the legislation in partnership with Borough President Brewer, who authored the city’s original Open Data Law.… Read more

Finance Board approves plan for public Wi-Fi hotspots

Today, all five borough presidents cast a yes vote together at the city’s Franchise and Concession Review Committee for the LinkNYC plan to create a system of free public WiFi kiosks, after we secured an agreement on improvements to the plan. Specifically, today’s agreement meets the goals that I and the other Borough Presidents were fighting for by requiring community input on the siting of WiFi kiosks, and introducing more… Read more

BP Brewer and activists call for reboot of City schools’ tech curricula and purchasing policies in advance of Proposal 3 bond vote

NEW YORK, NY – Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and education and technology advocates today called for reforms to city schools’ technology curriculum and purchasing policies to better prepare them for a tech-driven world, in advance of next week’s statewide vote on Proposal 3, a $2 billion school bond authorization. “There’s no other way to put it: our public schools are behind in almost all aspects of technology,” said… Read more

.NYC is now available to all New York City residents and businesses

When I first introduced a resolution in support of the .nyc domain name as a City Council Member in 2008, I had high hopes for what the domain could become. After all, Paris, Berlin, and othe global cities already had their own top-level domains. Today, after years of hard work and determination from the City, and the approval of ICANN, the web-governing body, anyone in New York City can establish… Read more

CUNY Service Corps students to help communities navigate NYC data

Government transparency and open data have remained an important concern during my years of public service. As a City Council member, I was proud to sponsor NYC’s Open Data Law, which unlocked a treasure trove of data about our streets, crime, restaurant inspections, and other information gathered by city agencies. But that law was only the first step, as “open” data doesn’t automatically mean “useful” data. More work needs… Read more

Brewer Calls for Strict Scrutiny of Comcast-Time Warner Cable Merger

In comments submitted to the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) on Friday, August 8, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer continued her strong advocacy on behalf of New York consumers in the proposed merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable. In her comments, Brewer expressed concern about the potential size and scale of the newly created telecom giant, and urged the PSC to demand concessions from Comcast in… Read more