New York, NY--Oct 7, 2014--A City Council bill introduced today by Council Member Julissa Ferreras and co-sponsored by Councilman Ben Kallos aims to improve transparency at the Environmental Control Board (ECB). The outstanding debt to the City of New York for ECB judegements is $1.5 billion, of which 84% is over 24 months old.
"In addition to recuperating millions, this bill will improve our inter-agency relationships and help us gain clarity," said Council Member Ferreras, "I will continue to work closely with Commissioner Jiha to find solutions that work for the DOF and ECB and will put money back into our communities."
The bill requires that the Department of Finance report yearly to the City Council on its collection activities on judgments returnable to the Environmental Control Board. The report would include the total amount of such violations, age of outstanding debt and the total amount of interest accrued, among other figures.
"More than one billion dollars in unpaid fines could be financing our education system, building affordable housing and revitalizing our open space. It is imperative that the City Council have the oversight to find cost-savings through this transparency measure," said Council Member Ben Kallos. "I look forward to working with Council Member Ferreras to introduce needed reforms of the ECB."
The ECB has struggled to streamline the violation notices it receives from up to 13 City agencies, making it difficult for the DOF to track and enforce penalties.