Council Member Ben Kallos Praises OneNYC Plan


New York, NY – Council Member Ben Kallos praised the administration’s OneNYC plan released today, calling it a path to a stronger and more sustainable city.

Council Member Kallos said, “Thank you to Mayor de Blasio for working with elected officials and New Yorkers throughout this city to hear our solutions for OneNYC."

Vision 1: Our Growing, Thriving City: Public Transit

“A fast city depends on investment in ferry and subways, because public transit is an economic engine that can provide access to millions of jobs within a 45 minute commute. The Second Avenue Subway will finally start running December 2016 and ferry service will start to come to the East Side and Roosevelt Island in 2017. OneNYC rightly calls for the full funding for Phase II of the Second Avenue Subway, to ensure all New Yorkers have a faster commute,” said Council Member Kallos.

As a candidate and then as an elected official, Council Member Ben Kallos has been pushing for expanded ferry service for years. He advocated for ferry service during his campaign, testifying before the City Planning Commission to encourage Roosevelt Island Ferry Service and terminal development. As part of his 2013 book of policies, he advocated for the “Nerd Boat” proposed by Senator Schumer to connect Astoria, Manhattan and Roosevelt Island. Once elected to the City Council, Kallos proposed revitalizing the East River Esplanade and successfully for ferry service investment to be included this year's City Council preliminary budget response.

Vision 2: Our Just and Equitable City: Universal Broadband

“Closing the digital divide can help make our city fairer and smarter. Whether it is wifi in parks or repurposed payphone booths, or high-speed broadband in the home, every New Yorker must have access the world’s library of knowledge online. I commend the administration's OneNYC plan for maintaining Universal Broadband as a top priority.

“Applying for a job, connecting with loved ones or doing research must be equally and fairly accessible to all, including low-income households—36% of whom do not have Internet at home in New York City.

“I look forward to continuing to work with the de Blasio administration to ensure that all New Yorkers get equal access and especially believe that public housing residents should be proactively equipped with high-speed Internet,” said Council Member Ben Kallos.

Council Member Kallos has been a leader in closing the digital divide. Together with Public Advocate Letitia James, he has fought for free, high-speed Internet in public housing and continues to do so. A software developer, he also heavily funds science, technology, engineering and math education in public schools and supports programs that train seniors in technology.

Vision 3: Our Sustainable City

“Zero waste has become a standard for diverting waste from landfills. OneNYC plans to update our city’s obsolete trash policy so that New York City can join other progressive cities with zero waste throughout the nation and world,” said Council Member Kallos.

As a candidate and then as an elected official, Council Member Ben Kallos has been advocating to modernize solid waste management in New York City through increased diversion from landfills through programs such as recycling and composting. Council Member Kallos received a 100% perfect score from the NYLCV. Council Member Kallos introduced the "Green Construction Bill" to increase the amount of recycled material used in roads and reduce the amount of debris going to landfills. He co-sponsored and voted for key environmental legislation, including the bill to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050.