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B.P. Brewer and Manhattan Borough Board to hold public hearing on Mayor de Blasio's proposed city budget for FY 2018

Media Advisory: Wednesday, February 15, 2017

NEW YORK – On Wednesday, Feb. 15, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and the Manhattan Borough Board will hold a public hearing on Mayor Bill de Blasio's preliminary city budget for the 2018 fiscal year.

Section 241 of the New York City Charter tasks each Borough Board with holding at least one public hearing on the mayor's budget proposal as it develops its response and statement of priorities. These hearings are opportunities for local Community Board members, organizations, and members of the public to offer their own input, as well as an opportunity for the Borough Board to call upon officers of city agencies to appear and provide further information.

As Borough President, Brewer is chair of Manhattan's Borough Board, which is comprised of the borough's City Council members and Community Board chairs.

Who:
Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer
The Manhattan Borough Board

What:
Public hearing on mayor's preliminary budget for FY 2018

When:
Wednesday, February 15
4:00-7:00 pm

Where:
InfoCommons at Guttman Community College
50 West 40th Street

B.P. Brewer Statement on Trump executive order restricting immigration for refugees and for persons from seven predominantly Muslim countries

For Immediate Release: January 27, 2017

Borough President Brewer issued the following statement reacting to President Donald J. Trump’s signature of an executive order restricting immigration for all refugees, as well as all persons coming from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen from entering the United States. While text of the order is not yet publicly available, a draft obtained by media outlets and published Wednesday contained a blanket ban on all refugees and a ban on all persons coming from the countries listed above.

“This newest action from the White House confirms what has already been made clear: Mr. Trump and the people working for him simply have no idea what it is to be American, and Mr. Trump clearly does not know what it means to be a son of the world’s greatest immigrant city.

“There is nothing – nothing – more un-American than a blanket ban on refugees and immigrants rooted in religious and racial distrust and fear. That is what this is. The people working for Mr. Trump can dress this up however they like, they can claim this is about security, but we know better: this is about bowing to – and stoking – fear, prejudice, hate, and scapegoating.

“This action would be odious no matter the date. But on Holocaust Remembrance Day of all days, to ban refugees and immigrants because of who they are and where they are from is to show the most depraved indifference to history and our need to live our values. One of our nation’s greatest moral collapses was its failure to take in refugees seeking to escape the Holocaust, and to repeat that failure on this day is unspeakably shameful.

“I am an American citizen. I believe in liberty and justice for all, and I believe that this nation, imperfect though it is, has been and must continue to be a light to the world. I refuse to accept that this man will put that light out for good. But that light flickered and darkened today.

“New York has been and will remain a place where immigrants are welcomed and immigration is celebrated as part of our heritage. I stand with our immigrant communities, and that support will not waver.”
B.P. Brewer Statement on the Passing of Wayne Barrett

It's beyond irony that the world's single greatest expert on Donald J. Trump died the night before Trump's inauguration and will no longer be available to us.

Wayne Barrett was, as a journalist, simultaneously excited about the new Trump stories about to unfold and, as a citizen, sad for the country.

I was surprised and thrilled to see him at the opening of the Second Avenue Subway a few weeks ago. He was the most popular person there-- and there were hundreds of people attending! He always knew exactly what to tell each person; I got an earful about buildings in floodplains. I remember every conversation with him-- I don't always remember everyone else's-- because they were that serious, substantive, and memorable.

Everyone in the world will miss him, but especially those of us who knew him. My heart goes out to his wife Fran and the rest of his family.

It's up to the reporters, officeholders and activists who were inspired and constantly challenged by him to continue his legacy of speaking truth to power.

Statement by B.P. Brewer on the Passing of Detective Steven McDonald

Detective Steven McDonald was a hero both for his work and his sacrifice as an NYPD officer, and for what he did afterwards. Shot and paralyzed by a 15-year-old boy, Det. McDonald forgave his assailant. He was a passionate voice for reconciliation here and around the world, a champion for Americans who live with disabilities, and a role model for us all.
Statement by B.P. Brewer on Judith Clark's clemency

Judith Clark has accepted responsibility for her involvement in a terrible crime and has become, in her decades of incarceration, a model of rehabilitation. Continuing to imprison her does not serve a social purpose, and I hope the state's parole board will grant her release. I commend Gov. Cuomo for granting clemency.
Brewer, Food Bank For New York City celebrate thousands of diapers collected in first holiday diaper drive

For Immediate Release: December 29, 2016

Today, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and Food Bank For New York City celebrated the donation of thousands of diapers in Brewer’s first holiday diaper drive. Brewer and Brady Koch, Food Bank’s Chief Programs Officer, held a media availability and thanked New Yorkers who donated as a Food Bank truck arrived to pick up more than 9,000 diapers at Brewer’s Northern Manhattan Office and transport them to food pantry locations across the borough.

The diaper drive is an unusual addition to the city’s many holiday season donation drives, but fills a real need. Low-income and homeless working parents with small children often rely on childcare services that require them to supply disposable diapers for their children. By supplying diapers for free at emergency food providers, Food Bank For New York City can help relieve a major burden on these parents and their families.

Read more...

View photos...
Brewer-Chin deed restriction reforms signed into law, will prevent repeat of Rivington House disaster

For Immediate Release: December 22, 2016

Borough President Brewer and Council Member Margaret Chin today celebrated the enactment of their tough new legislation introducing transparency and Mayoral accountability to the murky process that resulted in Rivington House’s sale to a luxury condominium developer. Chin and Brewer introduced the legislation in response to widespread outrage over the City’s removal of a deed restriction that had protected the Lower East Side property, reserving it for use as a nonprofit community healthcare facility.

“Our city government failed when it did not protect Rivington House. When government screws up, it’s our first job to figure out why and make sure it cannot happen again,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Today's legislation is a strong reform package that addresses the key failures that led to the loss of Rivington House, sets new standards for transparency so for the first time, we’ll know where all these deed restrictions are and what they’re protecting, and gives its reforms the permanence of law, so they can’t be undone in future administrations.”
 
Council Member Margaret S. Chin said: “Our city is not a playground for powerful real estate interests. Every transaction that involves properties set aside for the good of the people of our City, such as Rivington House, needs to be subject to the greatest amount of public input, transparency, and accountability as possible. Our legislation, which creates a public database of deed restrictions, requires notification of elected and community officials of transactions involving deed restrictions, and demands Mayoral sign-off for any deed restriction removal, achieves that goal. Today we are united with a simple message: No more Rivington Houses, not on this Mayor’s, or any other Mayor’s watch. I am proud to join Borough President Brewer and Speaker Mark-Viverito in solidarity with the Lower East Side residents who woke up one morning to find a cherished, community asset taken from them.” 

Read the full press release for more details...

View photos from the bill signing ceremony...

Brewer and NYC & Company invite Manhattan cultural institutions to apply for tourism grants

For Immediate Release: December 16, 2016

Borough President Gale A. Brewer and the NYC & Company Foundation are encouraging Manhattan cultural institutions to apply for funds through the Manhattan Cultural Tourism Development Grant Program. Proposals are due by 5:00 pm on Monday, January 16, 2017.

The grant program is designed to promote tourism in neighborhoods across the entire borough, and raise domestic and international travelers’ awareness of the wide range of cultural experiences and opportunities available in Manhattan. Grants fund program development and production of marketing materials to help organizations reach new audiences.

Read more about the Cultural Tourism Grant Program...

Apply online...

Brewer and Food Bank For New York City launch holiday donation drive for disposable diapers to help low-income working parents

For Immediate Release: December 15, 2016

Borough President Brewer and Food Bank For New York City are joining to conduct an unusual holiday donation drive: diapers.

"Without diapers, low-income working parents who use child care services can’t go to work because the services require each parent to supply a day's worth of diapers for their child," said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. "That’s why we're mounting our first-ever holiday 'Diaper Drive' to collect these vital items to distribute to the working and homeless parents ‑ and their children who need them."

Donors are asked to bring new, sealed boxes of diapers in sizes 3, 4, 5 or 6 -- but especially 4 & 5 -- to either of Brewer's two offices:

  • Downtown at 1 Centre St., 19th Fl. South
  • Uptown at 431 W. 125th St.

Amazon customers may also contribute by ordering from the Food Bank’s Amazon Wishlist for delivery straight to Food Bank’s warehouse, using this link.

Donations will be accepted until December 30. Once collected, Food Bank For New York City will distribute the diapers at their locations in Manhattan.

Read more...

Brewer opens Community Board applications for 2017

For Immediate Release: Thursday, December 1, 2016

Borough President Brewer's office is accepting applications for membership on Manhattan’s 12 Community Boards and encourages all eligible New Yorkers living, working, or studying in the borough of Manhattan to consider applying.

Applications can be completed online at http://manhattanbp.nyc.gov/CBapply. Applications must be complete and submitted by 5:00 pm on Friday, February 3, 2017. (A PDF version is also available for download and can be mailed to the Borough President’s Office or dropped off in person; printed applications must be postmarked by February 3.) Read more...

Statement on Street Festival Regulation Changes

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer issued the following statement today on Mayor de Blasio's withdrawal of proposed changes to street festival regulations:

"Governing requires patience and a willingness to get things right, even if it takes a little longer. That's what the mayor is displaying here.

"The mayor's proposal contained real positives, but it also contained real flaws and suffered from a one-size-fits-all approach. I'm confident that by working with residents, Community Boards, and neighborhood business associations, the mayor can craft a plan that achieves our shared goal of higher-quality street festivals that enhance communities without overburdening them."

In October, Brewer offered testimony on the mayor's proposal before the Office of Citywide Event Coordination and Management. That testimony is available here.

Statement on the Passing of Maggi Peyton

For Immediate Release: Thursday, October 27, 2016

I am saddened to share with you news of the passing of my dear friend and advisor Maggi Peyton.

There are legions of Maggi acolytes in politics, government, and arts groups across this city. And I am one of them.

She was the quintessential New York political operative: brilliant, quick, funny, graceful and skeptical all at once -- and all that in just a glance from her piercing blue eyes.

I've known her since I had my first political job and have trusted her counsel on a host of campaigns, causes and projects ever since, while we worked together for a better world.

When I took office as Borough President, I was grateful that she was willing to stay on in her role as a special advisor to the Borough President. Now that I won't have her advice anymore, my life will be the poorer for it.

My heart goes out to her family and I join the rest of her friends in being heartbroken -- but ever so grateful to have known her.

There will be a memorial service on November 21, 2016 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College, 695 Park Avenue.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a special fund in her honor at the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute, 105 Duane Street, 21C, New York, NY 10007.

Brewer appoints Michael Kraft to NYC Panel for Educational Policy

For Immediate Release: Monday, October 24, 2016

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer announced the appointment of Michael Kraft to the New York City Panel for Educational Policy (PEP). The PEP, consisting of 13 appointed members and the Schools Chancellor, is the New York City public school system’s governing board, and each of the city’s five borough presidents appoints one of its members.

“Michael Kraft is a strong, thoughtful voice for students and parents who has given more than a decade to the work of improving our schools,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “In his many leadership roles, Michael has grappled directly with some of the biggest issues facing our school system today, from the high school admissions process to capital planning, security, and more.”

Mr. Kraft is the president of Art and Design High School’s Parent Teacher Association. He has served as a representative on the Citywide Council on High Schools, and has volunteered in multiple PTA and school leadership roles within Community School District 3. Mr. Kraft succeeds Laura Zingmond, Brewer’s first appointee to the PEP.

“For nearly three years, Laura Zingmond has been active, engaged, and inquisitive on behalf of Manhattan’s students, parents and educators,” said Borough President Brewer. “When Mayor de Blasio and I both took office three years ago, I looked forward to a more active PEP that would take a more substantive role in the management of our schools. In her work on the PEP, Laura didn’t just live up to that goal, she personified it, and in the process she set a fine example for all future members.”

Friday, October 14 is the last day to register to vote in the Presidential Election on November 8!

You must be registered to vote if you want to cast your ballot in the 2016 Presidential Election on November 8! Check your registration status and confirm your party affiliation by entering your information into the NY State Voter Lookup.

If you are not registered to vote, you can do so in several ways:

– Register online by filling out an Electronic Voter Registration Form.

– Registration forms are available at my Northern Manhattan office, 431 West 125th Street. Walk in anytime between 10 am and 4 pm this Thursday and Friday to register. Staff are available to help fill out forms (in English and Spanish), answer questions, and even deliver your registration to the post office for you!

– Visit a Board of Elections Voter Registration Drive in your area on Thursday, October 13 from 3pm - 8 pm or Saturday, October 15 from 1pm - 9 pm.

To find the district in which you live and locate your polling place, look up your address on the NYC Poll Site Locator. A comprehensive list of Manhattan poll sites will be available shortly. Keep in mind that your polling site may have changed.

To learn more about the candidates and races in your district, check out the Campaign Finance Board's Voter Guide.

Fall 2016 Leadership Development Series Registration Open

October 11, 2016

The Office of Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer is pleased to announce our Fall 2016 Leadership Training series. This series will cover topics important to Community Board members and appointees. Trainings are open to the public, however registration priority will be given to Manhattan Community Board members and other Borough President appointees. Please register online to attend.

Uptown (431 W. 125th St.):
– Land Use & Zoning 101: October 24, 6 –8 pm
– NYC Budget Process & the Community Board: November 3, 6 –8 pm
– Landmarks 101: November 29, 6 –8 pm

Downtown (1 Centre St. 19th Fl.):
– Land Use & Zoning 101: October 11, 6 –8 pm
– Open Data & Mapping Resources for Community Planning: October 17, 6 – 8 pm
– Census Data & Mapping for Demographic & Housing Analysis: October 27, 6 –8 pm

"Access Manhattan: Services for Better Communities" Fall Schedule Announced

October 11, 2016

Access Manhattan workshops are designed to help New Yorkers learn more about available city benefits, resources and services. All sessions in my Northern Manhattan Office at 431 W. 125th St. are open to the public, but please register online or call (212) 531-1609 to attend.

– Workforce & Job Opportunities: October 13, 6 –8 pm
– NYCHA Training with Housing Court Answers: October 18, 6 –8 pm
– Immigration & Citizenship: October 19, 2016, 6 –8 pm
– Grandparents & Senior Resource Fair: October 20, 2016, 6 –8 pm
– African Immigrant Task Force: October 26, 9:30–11 am
– Gun Violence Prevention Among Youth: October 27, 6 –8 pm
– Disaster & Snow Preparedness: November 2, 2016, 6 –8 pm
– Financial Literacy: Credit, Budgeting & Investment: November 30, 6 –8 pm
– Child/Family Justice: What You Need to Know: December 7, 6 –8 pm

Hurricane Matthew Emergency Relief

October 11, 2016

Last week, Hurricane Matthew whipped through the Caribbean and the southeastern United States, killing over 1,000 people and displacing countless families. If you would like to make a contribution to the relief efforts, there are several ways you can help.

Haiti Communitere is a local relief and renewal organization established after the 2010 earthquake with a proven record of disaster recovery. Madre provides aid to women and children in Haiti, who are even more vulnerable to violence in times of crisis. You can also donate to Doctors Without Borders, who are working to treat patients in Haiti suffering from storm-related injuries and the ongoing cholera epidemic, even as access to safe drinking water and electricity remains scarce.

The Mayor's Fund has organized a list of reputable humanitarian organizations working on the ground to provide relief to individuals and families across storm-affected areas. And for city employees, an optional donation can be made directly from your paycheck to Hurricane Matthew relief efforts.

"She saw something and she said something": Brewer & Chelsea Officials Honor New Yorker Who Called Police About Second Chelsea Bomb

For Immediate Release: Friday, September 30, 2016
Photos Available

Today, Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and city and state elected officials recognized photographer Jane Schreibman for her role in reporting the second, undetonated improvised explosive device in Chelsea on the night of Saturday, September 17.

Schreibman is the Chelsea resident who "saw something and said something" that night, finding a suspiciously modified pressure cooker on the sidewalk and notifying the authorities of what turned out to be a second, undetonated bomb. The device was later safely removed from the street by police.

In a ceremony at Fashion Institute of Technology's Reeves Great Hall, Brewer, Council Member Corey Johnson, State Senator Brad Hoylman, and Assemblymember Richard Gottfried presented Schreibman with an official proclamation recognizing her potentially life-saving action. City Comptroller Scott Stringer, Public Advocate Letitia James, and Fashion Institute of Technology President Dr. Joyce F. Brown also attended the ceremony and spoke in praise of Schreibman's actions.

"By looking out for her neighbors and calling in a suspicious device left out in the street, Jane Schreibman exemplified our New York values," said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. "'If you see something, say something' isn't just a slogan -- it's an affirmation that we all live on top of each other, we're all in this together, and we all need to look out for each other. That's New York." Read more...


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