January News: Covid-19 Vaccine, Victory Against Tower on Stilts, Blood Center, and an App for Government
We've almost made it through 2020 and have so much to look forward to in 2021, from a Covid-19 vaccine to a new Presidential administration, plus an election in June for everything from a new Mayor to a new City Council that will determine the future of our city.
Following record turnout for the Presidential Election, I am holding the Board of Elections accountable, and with so many people asking how to get involved, I've proposed an app to put government in your pocket, literally. But that can only work if we finally deliver on the promise of Universal Broadband, which is why I collaborated with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams on a white paper detailing a roadmap to connecting every New Yorker to the internet.
Just in time for the holidays, the Eastside Taskforce for Homeless Outreach and Services (ETHOS), which I co-founded with Borough President Brewer and Senator Krueger, welcomed a new food pantry to our neighborhood at the Urban Outreach Center.
We closed out the year with another victory against overdevelopment, as Our Town reported that the infamous "Jetson's Tower on Stilts" proposal was finally abandoned. A proposal for the site of the Blood Center came to Community Board 8 Manhattan, with an opportunity to submit testimony for the Environmental Scoping until December 31. In hopes of ending the "land use dance," I've joined Speaker Johnson in proposing a new Comprehensive Planning framework for the city as a whole.
As we make our way through this second wave of Covid-19, indoor dining at restaurants has closed, we brought testing to Roosevelt Island with Borough President Brewer, started administering the vaccine and are pushing to extend the eviction moratorium. As always, we are here to help as we continue distributing masks, hand sanitizer, and food.
Thank you for your partnership in getting through 2020 and this pandemic. Let's look to 2021 with hope for all that it may bring if we work together to build a recovery for all of us.
Happy New Year!
P.S. In observance of the federal holiday on New Year's Day, there will be no First Friday in January, but please join me as I celebrate my 40th Birthday and host First Friday on Friday, February 5th, 2021!