July News + COVID-19 Update #14: Phase 3 Reopening, Apply for 300 Affordable Apts, Chokeholds Outlawed, $15 Billion in Waste & Voted No on the Budget
As we celebrate our nation’s independence, I am more grateful for the liberty guaranteed by freedom of speech than ever before.
Covid-19 has claimed the lives of over 21,000 New Yorkers and blown a multi-billion dollar hole in the City’s budget. I opposed Mayor de Blasio’s doomsday budget that zeroed out services for youth, families, and seniors. As you may have read in the Daily News, I proposed saving millions by writing our own culturally responsive textbooks and trimming $15 billion in fat from the budget to fund essential services.
Residents have been marching in our streets and over 125,000 New Yorkers emailed me since the murder of George Floyd, demanding that we #DefundNYPD by $1 billion. As a member of a Council that made the mistake of adding 1,300 police officers and increasing the NYPD budget by a billion dollars, it is our responsibility to right that wrong. Though we outlawed the chokehold, I am disappointment in a budget that failed to achieve the $1 billion without resorting to accounting tricks. Instead of making these cuts, we were forced to cut more heavily from schools, libraries, and the composting program. This budget continues to invest in policing our children instead of taking care of them, which is why I voted NO.
We continue to move forward with Phase 3 reopening, although indoor dining has been postponed, personal care businesses are opening along with outdoor recreational spaces from basketball courts to dog runs. All this is dependent on social distancing, wearing face coverings, and everybody getting tested, which is why we brought mobile testing to Roosevelt Island and continue to partner with buildings and neighborhood associations to distribute free face masks.
Please be sure to apply for one of 300 affordable apartments on Roosevelt Island by July 6, as we break the 1,000 mark for affordable units built or preserved in my district. As you may have read in the New York Times, this summer we will see 2,500 affordable homes come back on the market thanks to a law I authored to bring existing hundreds of thousands of units of affordable housing back for new applicants that I hope will increase affordable housing by as much as 50%. We also won our third rent freeze for 1.1 million rent regulated tenants.
Last but not least, after 8 years of advocacy, I finally made good on one of my earliest campaign promises to bring bike share to Roosevelt Island, so take a visit by tram, ferry, or a quick transfer off the Q.
Council Member, District 5
P.S. In celebration of the 4th of July holiday observed on Friday, July 3rd, the next First Friday will be held on Friday, August 7th.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
(If you experience trouble with the links below, read in your browser)
- Hundreds of Thousands of Affordable Housing Units Coming Online Thanks to My Law
- Tenants’ Rights Town Hall and How We Won Our 3rd Rent Freeze
- Apply for 300+ Affordable Apartment on Roosevelt Island by July 6
- Legacy of George Floyd and Why I Voted Against this Budget
- City Council Passes Police Reform Package
- Town Hall with Speaker Johnson on #DefundNYPD & Justice Reform
- Phase Three Reopening without Indoor Dining in July
- Phase Two of Reopening in June
- Warning the Nation on Fox News
- Bringing Free Mobile Covid-19 Testing to Roosevelt Island
- Supporting Non-Profits Providing Essential Services Through the Pandemic
- Distributing Face Masks and Bagged Produce with Community Partners
- Citi Bike Arrives on Roosevelt Island
- State Legalization of eBikes and eScooters Goes into Effect for NYC
EDUCATION & YOUTH
- Daily News Op-Ed: Save $84 Million a Year by Writing Our Own Textbooks
- Parenting During the Pandemic
- Dual Language Education - We Won Dual Language French Pre-K, Now on to K-5 and More Languages
- Funding Summer Youth Programs
- Open Restaurants Map
- Domestic Violence Text Line
- Shoe Drive by Soles4Souls
- Cancer Support for Women
- NYU Langone Health’s Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias Family Support Program