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Wednesday, November 15, 2017 - 11:35am
Plan accelerates and expands production, fights tenant displacement, creates more homes for seniors and working families and new homeownership tools Read the new plan: Housing New York 2.0 Read Mayor Bill de Blasio’s op-ed in today’s Daily News: Building a City We Can All Afford NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today released his “Housing New York 2.0” plan laying out new tools and programs to build and preserve affordable homes for 300,000 New York families – up from the previously announced goal of 200,000 homes. Under the accelerated and expanded plan, the City will boost the number of affordable homes for seniors and families to an unprecedented 25,000 per year, while also increasing resources and strategies for affordable homeownership programs and not-for-profit organizations purchasing rent-regulated buildings to preserve affordability. Housing New York 2.0 introduces a suite of initiatives that will help create 200,000 affordable homes two years ahead of schedule, by 2022, and reach a new goal of 300,000 homes by 2026. The City’s upgraded housing plan was announced at New Settlement Apartments in the Bronx where nearly 900 affordable homes, across 15 buildings, are being preserved as affordable for another generation of New Yorkers. “Building on the incredible affordable housing accomplishments of our first term, Housing New York 2.0 commits us to creating 25,000 affordable homes a year and 300,000 homes by 2026. Making New York a fairer city for today and for future generations depends on it,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. "This team has pulled together the biggest and best housing ideas, from both inside and outside the administration. This update to our landmark plan will continue to build the strongest engine for affordable housing New York City has ever seen. That means thousands more families living paycheck to paycheck will have help with the number one expense in their lives, and the security they need to keep calling New York City home," said Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen. Housing New York 2.0 requires an additional $150 million a year in the current 4-year financial plan. This will bring the City’s investment in achieving the 100,000 more homes – or 300,000 total homes – to about $1.3 billion per year over the next nine years. Future financial plans will reflect the commitment. “Housing New York 2.0 sets a new bar, one that reflects the urgency of the needs on the ground, and builds on the incredible progress that has been made over the past several years. Through innovative new programs and far-reaching policies, we are delivering affordable housing at a clip that hasn't been seen in decades while doing more to protect tenants and ensure the quality and safety of their homes. Looming threats on the horizon demand that we be more resourceful with underused sites and new technologies; more targeted in preserving the affordability of neighborhoods experiencing rapidly rising rents; and more creative in serving our seniors and expanding opportunities for affordable homeownership. I want to thank the Mayor, my team at HPD and HDC, and our many partners for helping us build a stronger, more equitable city today and for generations to come,” Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer said. “This Administration has made remarkable progress towards achieving Mayor de Blasio's vision of a more affordable and equitable New York City. Building on that momentum, our recalibrated housing plan will deploy critical resources and new initiatives to preserve and create even more affordable housing opportunities for New Yorkers,” said HDC President Eric Enderlin. “I thank the Mayor for his leadership, and I commend our many colleagues in the public and private sectors for their continued partnership as we take Housing New York to the next level.” Department of City Planning Executive Director Purnima Kapur said, “Our housing agencies have been indispensable partners as we work with stakeholders in neighborhoods throughout the city to plan for a more equitable and vibrant future with housing for all New Yorkers. Building on the considerable success of the last four years, Housing New York 2.0 is enhancing the toolkit to address the needs of residents today and in the future. From increasing the City’s commitment to preservation in collaboration with local non-profits, to providing pathways to affordable homeownership, to serving our growing senior population, and pioneering new models of affordable housing, the expansion of the housing plan will go even further to help achieve the goals of a more affordable and equitable New York. City Planning is proud to be part of this critical multi-agency effort.” “New York City is addressing the housing shortage with an unprecedented investment in affordable housing,” said NYCHA Chair and CEO Shola Olatoye. “Under NextGen NYCHA, our long-term strategic plan, we’re proud to play our part in providing seniors with affordable homes through Housing New York 2.0.” Today’s unveiling of Housing New York 2.0 was made at New Settlement Apartments, which were built during the Koch Administration. With City financing, the buildings are being rehabilitated and affordability will be extended for all 893 apartments for an additional 60 years. System wide upgrades include the installation of solar panels and energy efficient boilers at each building. In partnership with the City, the not-for-profit affordable housing developer Settlement Housing Fund also rehabilitated a playground and initiated the new construction of 60 affordable apartments on a once vacant lot within the portfolio. The 11-story building, where families will start moving in as early as next month, creates 60 new homes for households earning between $20,000 and $53,00 a year, as well as for formerly homeless families. Since Housing New York launched in 2014, the City has financed the creation or preservation of affordable homes for more than 78,000 households across New York City. This puts the City on track to secure more affordable housing in the first four years of the Administration than in any comparable period since 1978. Under Housing New York, the City has tripled the share of affordable housing for households earning less than $25,000, and doubled funding for housing construction and preservation. Building on this foundation Housing New York 2.0 will: * Create more homes for seniors by setting aside underutilized public lots for new affordable senior housing, and make new and preserved affordable housing accessible to seniors and people with disabilities. * Build a firewall against displacement in fast-changing neighborhoods by helping non-profits purchase as many as 7,500 traditional rent-stabilized apartment buildings and keep them affordable to current residents. * Protect affordability at Mitchell-Lama buildings, which represent some of the last already existing affordable homeownership opportunities. * Unlock affordable homeownership to help low- and moderate-income New Yorkers build equity, improve the quality of their homes, and stabilize New York City neighborhoods by financing construction of coops and condos for first-time home buyers and by offering home repair loans. * Unlock the potential of vacant lots long considered too small or irregular for traditional housing with innovative smaller homes, and develop more affordable housing on lots long used for parking at existing Mitchell-Lama and federally regulated senior affordable housing complexes. * Capitalize on advances in technology and innovative design to expand modular building and micro-units that can lower the cost of construction, build new homes faster, and respond to the city’s changing demographics. “Housing is a basic human need, and studies show a stable place to live helps lead to better employment, better health, and a better overall quality of life,” said U.S. Representative Joseph Crowley. “To ensure the sustainability of our city as well as the ladders of opportunity for every New Yorker, housing affordability is essential. That’s why I’ll continue to fight to protect incentives on the federal level to develop affordable housing and applaud initiatives like Housing New York which are critical in our effort to make our city more livable.” “Working in partnership with the city, we have put in place initiatives to help senior renters and homeowners stay in their homes, and created and preserved affordable housing for thousands of families and individuals across our city,” said Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz, Chair of the Assembly Housing Committee. “Our work is not done, and I look forward to continuing to work with Mayor de Blasio in creating additional housing opportunities for middle- and low-income New Yorkers as well as those in our most vulnerable communities.” “Quality affordable housing is a top priority for all New Yorkers. We must ensure that New York remains affordable for our families and seniors as our diverse neighborhoods continue to grow. I commend Mayor de Blasio for expanding on his ambitious plan to reach for greater goals to preserve and generate even more affordable housing, fight displacement as well as bring homeownership opportunities for residents across the five boroughs,” said Council Member David Greenfield, Chair of the Land Use Committee. “This expanded goal is indicative of two things. First, that the steps we are now taking in city government toward confronting this massive problem are having a meaningful positive impact. Second, that we are not content to simply applaud our own successes but to push forward aggressively working from our existing efforts and exploring and implementing new strategies to combat the affordable housing and homelessness crisis. We can do more, we must do more, and with this new goal, we will do more. I look forward to working on those solutions alongside the administration,” said Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, Chair of the Committee on Housing and Buildings. “I am pleased that the city’s new open door financing program will promote the construction of cooperative and condominium buildings. Representing tens of thousands of residents of cooperative and condominium housing units, I know that cooperative and condominium housing can make the dream of home ownership a reality for New Yorkers. At the same time, the home fix program will help New Yorkers stay in their homes by providing financing for necessary repairs; I worked on a similar program in the Queens borough president’s office and saw how impactful it was,” said Council Member Barry S. Grodenchik. “Thank you to Mayor De Blasio for delivering on his commitment to create a more affordable, accessible and equitable New York City,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “The City's comprehensive plan to create 300,000 affordable homes within the next decade will be a game changer for our communities' efforts to fight against displacement and homelessness. Through innovative urban planning, leveraging the potential of vacant lots to create senior housing and helping non-profits preserve the affordability of rent-stabilized buildings, our City will provide critical new tools to ensure that longtime residents have the opportunity to thrive and age with dignity in the communities they have helped build.” “To address New York’s housing crisis, we need to think bigger about preservation. With this initiative, the Mayor is doing exactly that. These new tools to preserve Mitchell-Lama buildings as affordable and to empower nonprofits to prevent displacement will make a huge difference in my district and across the city—especially in tandem with a redoubled effort to prevent tenant harassment. New York City has made a commitment that no tenant stands alone; I look forward to ensuring that we honor it. I thank the Mayor for his leadership and partnership,” said Council Member Helen Rosenthal. “We applaud the Mayor for his ongoing commitment to address the city’s affordable housing crisis”, said Sam Marks, Executive Director of LISC New York City. “Housing New York: 2.0 is the largest municipal housing plan in the country and reflects the unprecedented crisis in housing affordability and supply impacting virtually all New Yorkers, including working families, seniors, homeowners, and households experiencing homelessness. We welcome the addition of $150 million annually to the city’s financial plan which will help expand homeownership opportunities for low-income renters, preserve the affordability of rental housing at risk of being converted to market-rate housing, and increase the new construction of affordable housing by better leveraging public and privately-owned vacant lots.” ‘What used to be a hallmark of the American Dream and a tool for working and middle class families to achieve economic and social stability is now a luxury reserved mostly for the wealthy. High market prices, rising foreclosure rates and countless scams make it difficult for families to buy and keep their home. The only way to preserve and increase the middle class is through policy targeted at increasing opportunities for homeownership to those who need it most. I applaud the de Blasio administration for instituting these two programs and working to make affordable homeownership a reality for more New Yorkers,” said Council Member Rafael Espinal. “Homeowners in neighborhoods like East New York are struggling to pay for critically needed repairs to their houses that can mean the difference between financial stability and potential foreclosure, as our recent research has shown,” said Christie Peale, Executive Director of the Center for NYC Neighborhoods. “That's why we're thrilled that Mayor de Blasio is tackling the need for expanded, publicly-funded home repair programs with Home Fix. We are also gratified by the promise of Open Door for creating long-term affordability for new homebuyers. Both programs demonstrate the City's commitment to addressing the housing affordability crisis and supporting homeowners.” “New York City’s housing crisis disproportionately affects our lowest income households. The new programs and resources that are being rolled out will help ensure that even more of these families have an opportunity to find housing they can afford,” said Rafael E. Cestero, President & CEO of the Community Preservation Corporation. “With crippling federal cuts to affordable housing programs looming large, there is no time to waste in deploying our city’s resources to ensure we are doing all we can to expand and protect our affordable housing stock. I look forward to continuing CPC’s partnership with the city as we work together to address the diverse housing needs of our communities.” “We applaud the City for launching more initiatives to help support the housing needs of single adults. Single people face particular challenges in the housing market with one income, and more options are desperately needed. By exploring how different housing typologies can respond to our needs, New York continues to be a pioneer of housing innovation,” said Jerilyn Perine, Executive Director of Citizens Housing Planning Council. “We know that older people in New York City, especially older LGBT people, face a housing crisis,” says SAGE CEO Michael Adams. “That’s why SAGE and our various partners, including the City, are currently building affordable LGBT-welcoming senior housing in Brooklyn and the Bronx. We are proud that the Mayor and the City are taking a larger stance on senior housing, and we look forward to partnering with them to make future housing welcoming to all of NYC’s elders.” “We commend the Mayor and HPD for increasing the City’s investment in single- and multi-family homeownership opportunities,” said Karen Haycox, CEO of Habitat for Humanity New York City. “By expanding strategies to build and preserve both low-density and cooperative homeownership, the City is positioning itself to lay a new foundation of permanently affordable homes for generations of first-time homebuyers. We look forward to working with the Mayor’s office and HPD to expand our services to more of our low- to moderate-income neighbors, giving them the opportunity to own a piece of their communities and the city we all love.” “The Urban Homesteading Assistance Board (“UHAB”) has served low-income homeowners in New York City for the past 44 years and believes in the stabilizing effects of homeownership for both individual families and the wider community. We applaud the City for strengthening its efforts to create first-time affordable homeownership opportunities for low-income New Yorkers through the “Open Door” program and for providing much needed resources to struggling homeowners through its “Home Fix” program,” said Andy Reicher, Executive Director of the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board . “We are thrilled by the Mayor’s renewed and expanded commitment to affordable housing. The need has never been greater. We have no doubt that his incredible team of housing professionals is up to the tremendous task of delivering on the commitment,” said Daniel Moritz, Principal of The Arker Companies.
Tuesday, November 14, 2017 - 5:05pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio: Thank you Father Cruz. Thank you for leading us today for the beautiful invocation you started this ceremony with. Good morning, everyone. [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] I am honored to be here for this day that’s so important. Not only for the families gathered here, but for our whole City. I want to acknowledge and thank two individuals who have helped to make this ceremony so special and so important for everyone, Detective Dan Byrnes, NYPD and Firefighter, James Sorokac of the FDNY. Also to the readers who named the family members and expressed what everyone was feeling through their renditions of the names, I want to thank all of them. [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] It was 16 years ago. It was a picture perfect morning. There was no indication that anything would be different that day and then flight 587 fell from the sky and changed the lives of everyone here so painfully. Taking lives of 265 people, every name we heard just now, remembering each and every one of them. And families from Bell Harbor to Santo Domingo were left in painful grief. It’s been 16 full years but when I talk to so many of you, over the years, it’s quite clear how fresh and how sharp the pain still is and how the sorrow lingers. But I also have heard so many of you speak with joy about those you loved and what they meant to you, how they lived their lives, and what a positive and powerful impact they made on all those around them. Scripture urges us to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep. Today is a day to do both. Through our tears, we remember that one of our City’s worse days, also showed us our City at its best. We saw how strong our proud Dominican community is. We saw people banded together to help each other. We saw the resilience of Bell Harbor, neighbors coming to the aid of each other. We saw as always the bravery of the NYPD and the FDNY. And over the years, we’ve seen those who lost loved ones forge bonds with each other. New bonds to help in some small way move people forward and as they comforted each other and they helped to create this memorial in the process they made sure that their love for each other would stay strong and the memory of those lost would always be with us. And we continue to make sure that we will always remember and such a good example of that fact occurred just last month, and I want to thank everyone, everyone here and everyone in my administration who helped to achieve this with the City Council when 181st and Amsterdam Avenue was renamed Flight 5-8-7 Way. What a powerful message to a neighborhood that lost so many and that remembers so strongly to have that street renamed to carry on the memory. It was some of the loved ones here today, some of the relatives who brought this idea to me last year, and I heard, and my colleagues heard, and all together we wanted to make sure that we could add this honor. To everyone, who 16 years later still I’m sure feels lonely sometimes, I want to say to you the City of New York is here with you today, and we will be here with you tomorrow, we will be here with always. [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] On behalf of 8.5 million New Yorkers, we honor together the memory of those who are gone, and we honor the strength of all of you, and all of those who are here, and we say with a full heart. [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] May God bless you all, thank you.
Monday, November 13, 2017 - 5:05pm
Starting this week, changes will provide over 40,000 daily riders on the route with faster, more reliable connections to subways, the Long Island Rail Road, and over 20 bus routes on one of the borough’s major north-south corridors; Launch marks the fifteenth SBS route – and builds on Mayor’s commitment to SBS expansion across the five boroughs, while adding transformational safety features to one of New York City’s highest-crash streets NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced that the New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT), together with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), has this week launched the operation of Select Bus Service (SBS) along Woodhaven and Cross Bay Boulevards in Queens. The Q52/Q53 SBS marks the fifteenth SBS route and at more than 14 miles in length, the longest corridor with the service. The project also brings transformational Vision Zero safety improvements to one of the widest and highest-crash streets in New York City. “Woodhaven and Cross Bay Boulevard are critical roads in Queens -- and from the Rockaways to Elmhurst, residents deserve this first-class service,” said Mayor de Blasio. “We are committed to expanding Select Bus Service even further, as we know it not only brings increased reliability and reduced travel time for bus riders, the dramatic street improvements of SBS will also make our streets safer for pedestrians and motorists. Here in Queens, along a street that has been a Vision Zero Priority Corridor with far too many tragic crashes, we expect these changes to make a big difference.” “I am happy to announce the arrival of Woodhaven/Cross Bay SBS, which we know will bring faster, more convenient and more reliable bus service to so many Queens communities, most of them without subways” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. “The new service follows a three-year process of community engagement, and we made many adjustments to our plans along the way. From planners and engineers to roadway crews and traffic signal installers, so many different DOT divisions deserve praise for their hard work here, the end result of which will not only be better bus service but significant safety benefits on one of New York City's widest and most crash-prone roadways.” The new SBS route covers 14.7 miles, the longest ever for the service, and the corridor serves over 30,000 daily bus riders, with connections to eight subway lines and over 20 additional bus routes in the Queens communities of Elmhurst, Rego Park, Middle Village, Woodhaven, Ozone Park, Howard Beach, Broad Channel, Rockaway Park, and Arverne. The Q52 and Q53 have combined daily ridership of 20,000 riders, but altogether, over 45,000 daily riders of Queens bus routes, including express bus passengers, will benefit from improvements along Woodhaven and Cross Bay. Across New York City, SBS has delivered 10-30% increases in bus speeds and resulted in a 10% increase in ridership along these lines. The project launched this week will be followed by NYC Department of Design & Construction capital construction along the corridor. Safety Improvements: Between 2011 and 2015, Woodhaven and Cross Bay Boulevards saw over 3,000 traffic-related injuries and 24 fatalities. DOT and the MTA began outreach for Woodhaven/Cross Bay SBS in 2014, developing the design concept to address myriad concerns identified by both riders and community residents: unreliable and slow bus service; long pedestrian crossings across as many as ten lanes of traffic; varying road widths and configurations along the corridor; congestion; and the need for transit improvements for customers. The two agencies participated in over 50 community meetings, including sit-downs with stakeholders, elected officials, and the six different community boards that the route serves. DOT also conducted on-street outreach along the route, and collected feedback via online portals. The corridor contains eight Vision Zero Priority intersections, including at Woodhaven/Union Turnpike, which were all redesigned as part of the arrival of SBS. Altogether, more than 30 intersections are being upgraded and improved for pedestrian safety and/or traffic flow as part of DOT’s largest safety project in 2017.The Q52/53 SBS service along Woodhaven/Cross Bay brings new red-paved bus lanes, real-time bus information, improved pedestrian safety elements and other enhancements, including new median bus stops along 1.3 miles of the boulevards now with service roads. A portion of the corridor was resurfaced this past year in advance of the improvements. Bus –Lane Enforcement: Woodhaven/Cross Bay SBS joins 11 other bus routes where automated camera enforcement will be in effect, and motorists driving in the new red bus lanes along the Q52/Q53 route will be issued mailed warnings starting next Sunday November 19, 2017. The warning period extends 60 days, after which violations replace warnings. Bus lanes will be in effect curbside in residential areas from 7 A.M. to 7 P.M. Monday-Friday, and curbside along Cross Bay Boulevard from 7-10 A.M. and 4-7 P.M. Monday-Saturday. Bus lanes offset from parking lane or in the main road will be in effect 24 hours, 7 days a week, and curbside parking will be preserved. Where they are permitted, bus-lane camera enforcement has proven to be a critical tool to deliver increases in speed and reliability of MTA bus service. New signage along each bus route indicates the hours when bus lanes are operable, and during which the lanes are camera-enforced. Under state law, the 60-day warning period ensures that regular drivers along the route learn that cameras are in operation. Once in full effect in January, bus-lane violations will result in a Notice of Liability, which includes a photo of the violation and a fine of $115 – $150, mailed directly to the vehicle registrant’s address. Since violations are issued against the vehicle, not the driver, points are not deducted from motorists’ licenses. Transit Signal Priority: The new Woodhaven/Cross Bay SBS will include Transit Signal Priority. Earlier this year, DOT released a report, Green Means Go, on Transit Signal Priority (TSP; report can be viewed here ). The technology is used to speed buses, hold green lights for buses and more quickly turn red lights green. Currently active along five other SBS bus routes, TSP has reduced bus travel times by an average of 18 percent. With MTA moving forward with its TSP procurement, DOT announced it would quadruple its installation rate, covering over 1,000 intersections total by 2020 -- including along the Q52/Q53 SBS. Select Bus Service began on the Bx12 route along Fordham Road in the Bronx in 2008, bringing bus rapid transit to New York City for the first time. Select Bus Service features, such as dedicated bus lanes, signal priority, off-board fare collection, and all-door boarding have led to faster bus speeds, increased ridership, more reliable service, and safer streets. SBS Routes are currently along the following corridors: * Fordham Road/Pelham Parkway (Bx12) * First/Second Avenues (M15) * 34th Street (M34/M34A) * Hylan Boulevard (S79) * Webster Avenue (Bx41) * Nostrand Avenue (B44) * 125th Street-LGA (M60) * 86th Street (M86) * Bronx-Flushing-Jamaica (Q44) * Woodside-Jackson Heights Airport Connector, LaGuardia Link (Q70) * Utica Avenue (B46) * 23rd Street (M23) * 79th Street (M79) * Crosstown South Bronx (Bx6) “The implementation of new Select Bus Service on the Q52/Q53 lines will be very convenient for our Queens bus riders since thousands of students and hardworking New Yorkers depend on daily public transportation,” said Council Transportation Chair Ydanis Rodriguez. "As SBS grows more efficient and safe, over time it will gain ridership, making public transportation more reliable in our City.” “This new SBS route will connect communities that previously had to rely a slow bus that was often caught in traffic. Now, the Q52/53 SBS will speed up commutes for tens of thousands of daily riders,” said Nick Sifuentes, Executive Director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign. “We’re glad that, after a comprehensive, multi-year community process, Mayor de Blasio and DOT have designed an SBS route that will speed up buses for riders, make roads safer for pedestrians, and improve commutes for everyone who uses Woodhaven and Cross-Bay Boulevards.” “Tens of thousands of bus riders depend on the Woodhaven corridor every day, but they have been stuck on slow and unreliable buses for as long as anyone can remember. Select Bus Service will make the bus a faster, more dependable option for thousands of Queens residents, helping connect people with jobs and educational opportunities. SBS is a step forward for Queens, and for long-suffering bus riders who are clamoring for better service," said Stephanie Burgos-Veras, a community organizer with the Riders Alliance and a bus rider who grew up in Woodhaven, Queens. As a college student, Stephanie regularly commuted to her Queens Center Mall retail job on the Q53 bus. The launch of the Q52/Q53 SBS route is the latest step toward Mayor Bill de Blasio’s commitment to expand Select Bus Service, route creation of which has more than doubled in the last four years. In October, Mayor de Blasio announced that New York City would dramatically expand Select Bus Service (SBS), pursuing upgrades on more than 21 new routes over the next ten years, reaching a half-million more bus riders each day. He also announced that the City and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will also expand bus-priority improvements to make buses faster on key non-SBS corridors in all five boroughs. For more information about Select Bus Service, please visit .
Saturday, November 11, 2017 - 5:05pm
Andrew Sorkin: And as that tax reform battle continues on Capitol Hill, New York City’s mayor – calling the Republicans’ plan the biggest current threat to New York City. Joining us right now is New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, right here on set. We’re thrilled to have you. Mayor Bill de Blasio: Thank you. Sorkin: You wrote an op-ed where you said that you might as well ask New Yorkers to take $1,000 out of an ATM and give it to a hedge fund manager, that that’s what this tax plan means. Mayor: Look, it’s going to transfer a tremendous amount of wealth to folks who are doing very well and to corporations when in fact what we need is a government that is investing in this country, investing in our cities, investing in our economy. When you look at this it’s almost as if the plan was created to take away the potential to fix a lot of the challenges we have. How are you going to see an infrastructure plan, for example, after this? If you balloon the federal deficit, you’re never going to see a real infrastructure plan. If you take away $1.5 trillion in federal revenue long-term, how are you going to see an infrastructure plan? How are you going to see investments in affordable housing, for example, which is needed in this city and cities all over the country. So, I don’t get it. I think in the end the notion that there’s any semblance of a positive impact here for the places where the economy is actually growing like New York City where the jobs are being created, where the revenue for the federal government is being created. It’s actually going to set us back. Sorkin: Let me ask you this though, do you believe, ultimately, that we need higher growth rates in this country and that could come from tax cuts? Mayor: No. I believe we need higher growth rates and I believe fundamentally it comes from things like fixing our infrastructure. I think, look, our – I’m taking the New York City economy as an example – we’re doing great. We have had tremendous job growth. We have the highest number of jobs we’ve had in our history but our infrastructure is falling apart. And a lot of cities around the country, you can say the same on. We cannot possibly fix that on our own. We need a strong federal government. Kernen: How about if we used some of the repatriated stuff for infrastructure? Mayor: Look, that’s a real possibility but what I’m troubled by is if you do a massive transfer of wealth to rich folks and to corporations and you balloon the deficit and then there’s no potential for the federal government to be an active partner in infrastructure, where does it come from? I don’t buy – I just don’t buy trickle-down economics. So, I would like to see a structural-focused federal role. This takes that off the table long term. That’s part of what’s not being talked enough about. Kernen: If you were – let’s just say this for argument’s sake – that if corporations somehow became more competitive globally from a lower tax rate, therefore maybe they start doing more business here. Let’s say they start expanding more. They’re able to invest more capital. They’re able to hire more people. And eventually you see some wage gains come from that. Isn’t there anyway that you could connect the dots to where that could grow the pie and then, I mean, once you have growth, all the stuff you want to do becomes much easier. All the, you know, education or infrastructure – you get three or four percent and suddenly you’re able to do some of these things. Mayor: Right, look – Kernen: There’s no way that – you think all you guys are either misguided or just trying to help their friends? Mayor: Well, I think one – I think some of them are trying to help their friends. I think, two – I think some have an ideology that’s pretty rigid. That is the supply-side ideology. Of course I want growth. Democrats, Republicans, progressives, conservatives – we should all want growth. But here’s the challenge, the thing that’s not being fixed. We’re not fixing our infrastructure. We’re not fixing our educational system in a coherent manner. We’re not making it easier for kids to go to college. I mean the problem here is the table-setter for everything that happens after. Sorkin: Speak to this. We’ve been having a big debate on this set about the state and local deductions. Mayor: Yeah. Sorkin: And what should happen. Obviously, I’m a New Yorker. He lives in New Jersey. We pay a lot and we will lose that deduction but there is an argument to be said that you’d want to level the playing field among all states. That is the argument that you will hear from the GOP. Mayor: Here’s the problem – Sorkin: What does the Mayor say about that? Mayor: Listen, to the trap here. State and local deductibility has been in place since 1913. It has been something agreed upon by Democrats and Republicans throughout. Once it is gone you will never see it again. So, you start with double taxation that for a lot of people, not just New York, New Jersey, but it’s 100 million Americans who would be subject to double taxation immediately. So, that puts downward pressure on state and local revenue. We’re going to be having constantly people saying well you got to lower taxes, lower taxes therefore we can’t provide as much police, fire, schools, etcetera. The second problem is the federal government then at any point can start raising the federal tax rate again. There’s no prohibition. So, you lose the protection for homeowners, for everyday people, for middle class people. This is why in the end a lot of middle class people are going to see a tax increase, practically speaking from this plan. Kernen: I love that – you are on the record now, you don’t like double taxation – Mayor: Yes, I do not like double taxation. [Laughter] Kernen: I got you. Mayor: News flash. News flash. Kernen: So, no – we got to get rid of the State tax then. Mayor: Look, again, let me talk about Dwight Eisenhower, the Golden Age – Kernen: Your tax – as you’re building it up, you’re taxed. Now, when you’re dying, you’re taxed again. That’s not fair. That’s like – Mayor: Listen, what will be good for the country? The Golden Age of this country, one could argue – Kernen: Now, you don’t like – now you do like double taxation. Mayor: Listen to this. When Republican Dwight Eisenhower was president, we were investing in infrastructure. We had a strong federal government helping to spark the economy, investing in education research. It worked. We saw it with our own eyes. This makes it impossible to regain that ground but also it takes – this the trap – the middle class – I bet from what I’m seeing about half the middle class pays a tax increase here and it’s – Kernen: What do we do, Mr. Mayor, with education, though? I want to – we want to fix it. We want to fix it. Mayor: You got to invest. Kernen: What about choice? What about this relationship between unions and really not being able to – throwing so much money at more than any other country and then we don’t get what we pay for? Mayor: Let’s recognize, we’re not investing at the level we should in education and again – Kernen: Do you see any problems with unions – teachers unions? Mayor: Oh look, I have a lot of respect for the union movement, but I also want to see the best efforts for our kids. I think this city is a good example. We push back and forth with the union to get to the right outcomes. We’ve had graduation rates go up steadily. We’re at the highest graduation rate ever. We have the highest test scores we’ve had ever. By the way, Mike Bloomberg and I didn’t agree on a lot of things, but he got mayoral control of education in our schools. It was a great move on his part. Since he got that 13 years – our graduation rate has gone up 50 percent – five-zero – 50 percent in New York City with education unions that I think are willing to work with us, but because we’ve also heavily invested. I created pre-K for every child in New York City. That is a table setter for kids to be able to have a successful education, but you don’t get that for free. So of course it’s constantly improving the educational practice – train our teachers better, push them to do the best they can do – but look if you’re not investing in early childhood education, if you’re not – we’re doing AP class, advanced placement classes, in every single high school in New York City regardless of zip code. That’s telling kids they’re college bound. That takes money, but it’s money well spent. Sorkin: I have a totally separate question. Mayor: Yes? Sorkin: Now, that you’ve won a second term, does it change the dynamic for you? Mayor: Look, when you have that second mandate it allows you to get a lot more done. So I just mentioned that we have pre-K for every child in New York City. That’s something we created that my first term. I want to do the same thing for three-year-olds now. I want every three-year-old to have an early childhood education for free in this city. I think it will revolutionize our approach to education, and it’s going to take a financial burden off of working parents, too. And I think it’s the kind of thing the country needs to look at – how do we give our kids a strong start and actually lighten the burden on parents, working class parents, middle class parents who are struggling to make ends meet. So it’s wonderful to be able to do these things – big scale, fast – in a place like this, and the mandate allows that to happen. Sorkin: And given that Mayor Bloomberg set the pace, you want to go for a third term? Mayor: Oh no. Sorkin: Oh, no? Mayor: Oh no. Again, I had differences with Michael Bloomberg, and things I also really appreciated. I think it was a mistake to go for a third term. Two term limit – the people chose it, the people were right. Go out there, give it eight years, leave it all on the playing field. That’s the way I look at it. Kernen: Being the mayor of New York, obviously it helps if we have a vibrant Wall Street, a vibrant financial sector, I’m just back to wondering whether there’s any way that we can get corporations not to want to open offices abroad or move headquarters over there or move operations over there and leave the money over there, you know, because it’s taxed at a lower level. Is there anything you would do for corporations to level the playing field that you wouldn’t just call ‘just helping big corporations’ where you could see that helping the private sector would end up helping the people that you want to help in narrowing incomes. Mayor: Sure, and I don’t – Kernen: What should we do then? Mayor: I don’t pretend to have that magic formula. It’s not my area of expertise, but do I think there is a version of figuring out – Kernen: Corporate tax reform. Mayor: Is there a way to get that money back that is fair? I think there is – Kernen: And keep it here without having it – Sorkin: So what would you do? Mayor: And again, I don’t – I don’t come here with that perfect plan in hand, but I do think you see this across the spectrum – democrat, republican, progressive, conservative – that people think there are pathways that could be fair. But I think that’s a different discussion than the one before us. How on earth are we going to go back to supply side after it has proven wrong? Right, that is the issue before us today. Kernen: But then I would say that what we tried for the past eight years – and that is trying through maybe redistribution or trying to make – one of the, looking at your notes, you said ‘I’d like the tax reform to include helping the income inequality.’ And I assume you mean by that giving tax breaks to people in the lower – but they how do you when they don’t pay taxes? It’s hard to do it. Mayor: No, no, no, let’s talk really clearly. Kernen: It’s just entitlements. Mayor: No, no, middle class and working class people – let’s talk really clearly. Backbone of the country – middle class, working class people. If this tax plan were about them, it would look entirely different. If we said let’s just focus on the vast majority of people – and they’re struggling right now, we know that. Kernen: But what would you do for them? Mayor: You – if you want to give them a tax break without shifting – Kernen: But what if the lower 47 percent don’t pay taxes – don’t pay federal income tax in the first place, wouldn’t they rather have a job and then pay some taxes? Mayor: Everyone wants a job, and the question is what spurs a healthy economy, right? Let’s go right back to brass tax. I’m arguing we have not invested in this country. You can say the last eight years – Kernen: So you’re infrastructure, all about infrastructure? [crosstalk begins] Mayor: Yes, a real – but a real infrastructure plan. Kernen: Got $3 trillion over there, $3 trillion think what you could do with that? I want to talk you into that. [crosstalk ends] Mayor: There’s real money there, but listen to me. If you do not have a public sector run – when I mean run, public sector funded – infrastructure plan – Kernan: It won’t get done? Mayor: It won’t get done. And history suggests when that has happened it has spurred the entire economy. And I’m not talking about the stimulus under Obama, which I think was only a glimmer of what it could’ve been and should’ve been. We have real live examples in peace time and in war time of what a proper stimulus does. And, but in particular look at our competitor nations – what is China, India, Germany, everyone – they’re investing in infrastructure, education, research, and what are we not doing? We’re not doing those things. Kernen: There’s somewhere we could agree on this. Mayor: Great minds think alike. Kernen: Exactly. Sorkin: Mr. Mayor, thank you for coming in. Mayor: Thank you, it was a pleasure. Sorkin: Let’s do this a lot more. Congratulations on your re-election. Kernen: But it’s early. People said you wouldn’t show, but here you are. Mayor: Right on time. Kernen: Right on time! Mayor: Right on time. I think it’s the Squawk Box effect. Kernen: It’s the new term I think. But you don’t want to be here every day at six, do you? Mayor: Well, I was thinking well it could be a side gig. I kind of like it. Kernen: Like his? [Laughter] Sorkin: Ooh.
Saturday, November 11, 2017 - 5:05pm
Video available at: “Today is a day to honor the millions of brave men and women who have served us over generations. And today is a day to give thanks to the brave Americans who took up arms to defend freedom, and so many people who have selflessly served,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.“We are so proud to be a city where over 200,000 veterans live, veterans who have answered the call of duty and have traveled to the ends of the globe to protect liberty at home and abroad. For the sacred sacrifice of all veterans across this country, the 8.5 million Americans who call New York home will forever remain in the debt of their service.” “On this Veterans Day, we join all New Yorkers – veterans, their families, and civilian allies – in honoring those who have raised their right hand to defend our nation’s freedoms,” said New York City Department of Veterans’ Services Commissioner Loree Sutton, MD. “We affirm that veterans and their families are this City’s greatest natural renewal resource, with the capacity for service renewed as they become leaders in their communities. The Department of Veterans’ Services and I proudly commit ourselves to improving the lives the veterans, service members, and their families who call New York City home.” Since last year on Veterans Day, the Department of Veterans’ Services (DVS) has doubled in size to reach functional operational capacity -from 18 to 32 staff members. DVS continues to build its foundation as a stand-alone agency and moves into its second year in operations with increased focus on its three lines of action: Housing and Support Services; Whole Health and Community Resilience; and City Employment, Education, Entrepreneurship, Engagement & Events. Housing & Support Services (HSS): The HSS Unit leads and supports initiatives to expand and improve housing and social service resources available to NYC veterans and their families, and provides assistance to veterans navigating existing resources. Our top priority is working with homeless veterans, developing and sustaining a system that rapidly rehouses all those that become homeless, and working with our public and private partners to prevent homelessness in the first place. Since 2016: * Our Veteran Peer Coordinators provided one-on-one assistance in order to place over 250 veterans into safe, permanent housing * DVS’s Aftercare Coordinator provided assistance for 182 veterans, directly assisting in successfully preventing eviction for 17 veterans Whole Health and Community Resilience (WHCR): The WHCR team at DVS matches veterans and their families with opportunities to connect, to heal, to grow, and to thrive. We adopt a holistic approach to veteran wellbeing with the VetsThriveNYC Whole Health program.Since 2016: * WHCR far exceeded our original outreach goal to reach 2,000 veterans & family members with mental health services to increase help-seeking behavior and increase social engagement, with actual outreach to over 7,000 veterans & family members * Our Veteran Outreach Team regularly provides veteran-specific Mental Health First Aid Training across New York City and conducts weekly outreach in satellite offices at the VA veteran centers City Employment, Education, Entrepreneurship, Engagement & Events (CE5): DVS is dedicated to helping veterans gain access to educational programs, find fulfilling and sustainable jobs, and create their own business opportunities. DVS recognizes that it's not enough to ensure veterans have a place to live. They need the means to live. And just as important, they need to do work that fulfills them. Also, veterans and often their families are eligible for special benefits specifically geared toward education, employment and entrepreneurship. Yet navigating these resources can be challenging. To address this, DVS’s CE5 team provides vetted resources, one-on-one assistance, and information about various events assisting and honoring veterans. Since 2016: * CE5 expanded our City-wide presence from 3 satellite sites to 6, now open in all 5 boroughs, enabling veterans and their families to access DVS staff without ever having to leave their home borough * Our Veteran Outreach Specialists represented DVS at over 300 community events and provided in-borough, one-on-one assistance to over 2,300 veterans and family members Agency-wide achievements * For first time ever, NYC has an accurate count of the number of veterans living here. This was achieved through advanced data science work that earned CIO Venkat Motupalli the “Best of New York City Award in Data Analytics” * DVS has had a significant impact on improving the lives of New York City’s veterans and family members: since 2016, DVS has engaged with over 10,000 veterans and family members – with a staff of just 32 * DVS’s Public Artist in Residence Bryan Doerries has reached over 1,500 veterans and civilian New Yorkers in all 5 boroughs with over 20 Theater of War performances thus far. Theater of War includes staged readings of Greek tragedies that spark community conversations addressing critical public health and social issues. All events are free and, over the course of the 2-year residency, will take place in a total of 60 venues across New York City. Prior venues have ranged from public libraries and cultural institutions to homeless shelters and City parks, enabling access to theater for the widest community possible * DVS is working on “hacking transition” to turn what used to be called a “break in service” from military to civilian life into a “bridge for continued service,” with veterans and their families as leaders in their communities. DVS is pursuing this through two major programs: 1. Veterans on Campus: a consortium of colleges, universities and private entities dedicated to sharing best practices to better support student veterans and their families. Starting with a kick-off event in September that brought together representatives from 32 colleges and universities, DVS continues to learn from student veterans and academic administrators on a listening tour, with the aim to connect with the 40 colleges and universities with the largest student veteran populations 2. Mentor a Vet – NYC: a consortium of over 25 mentoring organizations dedicated to aiding veterans and family members connect with peers, mentors. DVS acts as central hub where, on our website, veterans and family members can find the right mentoring organization for their needs, whether looking for career advice, training in specific skills, or just connection to other veterans in NYC
Thursday, November 9, 2017 - 5:05pm
$185 million transformation of World War II-era storage facility will be home to 3,000 jobs NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today celebrated the opening of the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Building 77, a one-million-square-foot, state-of-the-art manufacturing building and the largest on the 300-acre industrial campus. The $185 million renovation of the World War II-era storage facility is a milestone for the growth of manufacturing in New York City and the de Blasio administration’s push to build 100,000 good-paying jobs across a range of industries. Located within the City-owned Brooklyn Navy Yard at the corner of Vanderbilt and Flushing Avenues, the 16-story building will be home to more than 3,000 jobs. Building 77 is the centerpiece of a billion-dollar investment currently underway at the Yard to add over two million square feet of space and 10,000 good-paying jobs by 2020. “As a major driver of quality middle-class jobs, investing in and expanding manufacturing space is key to growing and diversifying our economy and boosting wages. As we re-open this historic building we re-imagine New York’s future,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. Long a symbol of America’s industrial might, the Brooklyn Navy Yard is among the country’s leading urban manufacturing centers, with some 400 companies currently employing more than 7,000 New Yorkers. In the next three years, that number is expected to more than double to 17,000 accessible middle-class jobs. Images of Building 77 can be found here . The Mayor’s New York Works plan to create 100,000 good-paying jobs in 10 years is squarely focused on industrial and manufacturing jobs: Twenty thousand of the total jobs, or one fifth, are in the industrial and manufacturing sectors. Building 77, the largest in the Navy Yard, includes a 60,000-square-foot ground-floor Food Manufacturing Hub that will serve as a public gateway to the Yard, as well as the central gathering point for Navy Yard businesses, employees and guests. Built in 1942 as part of the U.S. Navy’s wartime mobilization, the huge concrete building had been a storage facility with fewer than 100 jobs and no windows on its first 11 floors. More than three million pounds of concrete have been removed and replaced with 50,000 square feet of windows as one component of the upgrade. The project is financed through a combination of BNYDC investment, $73.1 million of Mayoral City Capital and $7.1 million from the City Council and Brooklyn Borough President. “Let there be no doubt that in cities across America both existing manufacturing firms and new enterprises need modern space to thrive,” said Alicia Glen, Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development. “Industrial jobs are a springboard for social mobility for many New Yorkers, in particular those without advanced educational degrees.” “The Brooklyn Navy Yard has been a center of innovation, growth and opportunity for New York City for more than 200 years, and Building 77 represents an incredible continuation of that tradition,” said Brooklyn Navy Yard president and CEO David Ehrenberg. “Building 77 will contribute tremendously to our mission of creating accessible middle-class jobs and securing a vibrant future for manufacturing in Brooklyn. We are grateful to Mayor de Blasio and his team for their unflagging commitment to this bold project and look forward to building on this national model for urban manufacturing we have created together.” “The opening of Building 77 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard is a watershed moment that symbolizes the remarkable strength of New York City’s manufacturing sector and the businesses that are driving its growth,” said Hank Gutman, chairman of the Brooklyn Navy Yard. “Thanks to the leadership of Mayor de Blasio and BNYDC President David Ehrenberg, the Brooklyn Navy Yard today remains a wellspring of both innovation and inspiration more than two centuries after it first opened.” “The NYCHA community’s entrepreneurial skills, and delicious food businesses will be on full display in the new Brooklyn Navy Yard,” said Sideya Sherman, executive vice president for community engagement and partnerships at NYCHA, which is partnering with BNYDC to create the first permanent retail opportunity for participants of its Food Business Pathways program, as part of the ground-floor Food Manufacturing Hub. “Created as part of the NextGen NYCHA strategic plan, Food Business Pathways is a proven business program for residents to enter and succeed in the food industry. Now, through this exciting partnership, NYCHA residents will run a food kiosk in the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s new building 77, creating new opportunities for public housing residents’ small businesses to thrive.” “EDA’s investment of $2M in floors 6 & 7 of Building 77 supports the critical need for space to accommodate new and expanding manufacturers and start-up companies creating approximately 400 jobs to benefit the region,” said Linda Cruz-Carnall, Economic Development Administration Regional Director. “Empire State Development is proud to support Building 77 and the creation of state-of-the-art, modern manufacturing spaces for New York’s industrial firms,” said ESD President, CEO, and Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “These industries spur innovation, opportunity and jobs for New Yorkers across all skill levels and today’s opening will build on Brooklyn’s strength as a manufacturing hub both for New York City and across the state.” “I am pleased to see the opening of Building 77 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard,” said U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “This investment in the Navy Yard will create good-paying jobs and help New York’s manufacturing sector continue to grow.” “Today is truly a milestone in the reactivation of the Brooklyn Navy Yard into a center of 21st century industrial jobs,” said Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “The City Council is proud to have contributed to the transformation of Building 77 from an empty windowless warehouse to a thriving center for hundreds of businesses and 3,000 new jobs. The Brooklyn Navy Yard continues to be a great success story for New York’s manufacturing and industrial sector, which provides good middle-class jobs and helps support our growing economy.” “The opening of Building 77 signals loud and clear that Brooklyn is open for business,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. “Our borough’s proud manufacturing history is seeing a new chapter written at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, attracting makers and innovators creating high-quality local jobs and local products of which we can be proud. My administration’s investment in the transformation of Building 77 is a down payment on economic development that we will ensure produces benefits for all Brooklynites.” “The rise of Building 77 represents the type of sustainable and community-centered development that we need in Brooklyn. It will bring real jobs and economic opportunity to the hardworking people of the adjoining communities and throughout the borough. The completion of this state-of-the-art project represents another strong step in the right direction for the Navy Yard,” said U.S. Representative Hakeem Jeffries. “The recent renovation of Building 77 will contribute to the ever-growing success of Brooklyn Navy Yard as a hub of local economic activity,” said U.S. Representative Nydia M. Velázquez. “I am pleased to see that this easily accessible building will bring over 3,000 new jobs as well as numerous minority and women-owned businesses to Brooklyn. New York City has long been a place of successful industry and Building 77 is continuing that legacy.” “The work Brooklyn Navy Yard is doing will not only revitalize an important community space, but provide jobs and programming for the downtown community,” said Assembly Member Walter Mosley. “I have always been proud to support the investments the Navy Yard makes in our neighborhood, and I know that this building is the next step in a journey that will continue to benefit Brooklynites.” “The Brooklyn Navy Yard has undoubtedly led New York City’s economic development. The companies at the yard have not only created incredible innovations, they have also created an abundance of well-paying jobs. Building 77 is yet another great addition to the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s offerings. I look forward to the positive contributions this new building will bring to the community’s economic vibrancy,” said Assembly Member Joseph R. Lentol. “Building 77 is a shining example of what creative design and innovation can look like in New York City in 2017,” said Council Member Stephen Levin . “This project is set to generate 3,000 jobs once at full capacity and 10,000 more jobs by 2020, many of which will be filled by local Brooklyn residents. I look forward to working with the Navy Yard’s on-site Employment Center, and members of the community, to ensure we are connecting residents of the 33rd District to good-paying manufacturing jobs right here in Brooklyn.” “The Brooklyn Navy Yard is a national model of industry and innovation that has been integral to the revitalization of our community and the City of New York as a whole,” said Council Member Laurie A. Cumbo. “The grand opening of Building 77 as a state-of-the-art manufacturing hub is a catalyst for future economic and employment opportunities – particularly for the neighboring residents, minority, and women business owners. I am proud of our continued and collective investment into the modernization of this public space, which has been a gateway for everyday New Yorkers to realize the American dream, support their families, and strengthen our city’s economy.” “Manufacturing jobs have been a vehicle for social mobility in our country for decades. Unfortunately, the trend in New York City has for too long been a loss of manufacturing. I am excited by the opening of Building 77, which will provide a million square feet of much-needed manufacturing space and add 3,000 new jobs to our city's economy, all with a strong commitment to diversity,” said Council Member Robert E. Cornegy, Jr. “Building 77 is another great achievement for the BNY, contributing to its global reputation as a model for urban economic development in the age of innovation,” stated Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City. As the result of an aggressive, ongoing marketing program undertaken in cooperation with real estate brokerage firm Jones Lang LaSalle, the Brooklyn Navy Yard has signed leases with 29 tenants. They will occupy approximately 62% of Building 77’s available space, with nearly finalized deals with tenants for an additional 20% of the building. Russ & Daughters, one of New York’s most prominent and historic food institutions, will be the ground floor’s anchor tenant. The company will lease 15,000 square feet, which will house its food making operation as well as a bagel and lox takeout counter. The space will enable Russ & Daughters to dramatically expand its food production and distribution capabilities, while providing its first retail presence outside Manhattan. Other food production companies will lease spaces throughout the floor, representing a diverse and complementary array of food and beverage offerings. “In the Brooklyn Navy Yard and the incredible team at BDNYC, we found much more than a landlord; we found champions who want us to succeed. The Yard’s resources, employment center, prime location, vibrant community and market stability are unparalleled,” said Niki Russ Federman, a fourth generation co-owner of Russ & Daughters. “One of the main reasons we chose to be in the Brooklyn Navy Yard was because of its unique status as a city-owned non-profit. Like Russ & Daughters, Building 77 is part of the city’s history, its fabric, and its future. It felt like the natural home for Russ & Daughters’ newest base of operations and growth for generations to come,” said Josh Russ Tupper, also a fourth generation co-owner of Russ & Daughters. The building’s upper-level tenants include Catbird, a boutique jewelry manufacturer; Lights Up!, a lighting manufacturer and designer; Situ Studio, a metal fabricator and long-time Navy Yard tenant; and Care Of, manufacturers of personalized daily vitamin packs. The apparel firm Lafayette 148 will move its entire operation to Brooklyn after 20 years in Soho, bringing a range of jobs from senior executives to cut and sew workers, all of which offer a pathway to the middle class. “We are excited to join the thriving tech and creative community in Brooklyn and contribute to the renaissance of the Brooklyn Navy Yard,” said Deirdre Quinn, co-founder and CEO of Lafayette 148. “This location allows us to bring employees together on one floor with room to grow and to move closer to our warehouse and fulfillment center at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. This provides a more seamless and interactive work environment with the kinds of efficiencies that are essential to success in a very competitive industry.” “I am very appreciative of the Navy Yard and its mission to support entrepreneurs who emphasize local hiring and good-paying jobs that provide a pathway to the middle class,” said Rawlston Williams, owner and founder of The Food Sermon. “Our new location will allow us to offer our delicious West-Indian inspired cuisine to a new customer base, expand business significantly and increase production of our bottled hot sauces right here in Brooklyn while joining other like-minded innovators as part of an incredible Food Manufacturing Hub.” Building 77 is drawing businesses to New York City and allowing businesses already here to expand. Of 29 tenants, three are from outside the five boroughs, four held leases elsewhere in the Navy Yard, two are new businesses, and 20 relocated from or are expanding within the City. The building’s two top floors offer 360-degree views of Manhattan and Brooklyn, with four terraces per floor. International startup incubator 1776 will build its first New York City campus on the top floor, bringing new entrepreneurs to the Yard and supporting existing businesses. For smaller tenants, floors four through nine offer a “prebuilt program” under which the Navy Yard will deliver turnkey units ranging in size from 2,000 to 14,000 square feet. The third floor will be developed as a next-generation Career and Technical Education program in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. In addition to the City’s investment, and BNYDC’s equity contribution, BNYDC secured $72 million in financing through a loan from New York City Regional Center and $8.3 million of New Markets Tax Credits from Dudley Ventures, Goldman Sachs and BRP Companies. Goldman Sachs is also serving as the New Market Tax Credit investor on the project. The U.S. Economic Development Administration contributed $2.0 million and the NYS Regional Economic Development Council contributed $1.0 million. A grant from Deutsche Bank and smaller other sources rounded out the capital stack. “The redevelopment of Building 77 represents an incredibly ambitious project that set a new standard for the catalytic, job-creating potential of adaptive reuse. The team at the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation has delivered once again,” said Margaret Anadu, Goldman Sachs Managing Director and head of the Urban Investment Group. “We are proud to be part of the public-private partnership that turned this vision into reality, for the benefit of New Yorkers for generations to come.” “New Markets Tax Credits played a critical role in funding the financing gap and made it possible for Building 77 to proceed,” said Jim Howard, CEO of DV Community Investment, an NMTC Program allocatee. “DVCI is proud to have been a part of this transformative project that serves as an economic catalyst and brings much needed full-time, quality jobs to the local community.” “Building 77 is primed to transform the Navy Yard and introduce thousands of new jobs into the already thriving Brooklyn community,” said Steven Smith, BRP Companies Managing Director and Chief Investment officer for BRP CDE LLC. “The entrepreneurial energy that drives BRP is perfectly aligned with the environment of innovation and collaboration Building 77 will cultivate. Our investment in the Navy Yard demonstrates BRP’s commitment to the economic growth of Brooklyn and its evolution into a hub for technology, manufacturing, and creativity.” “The New York City Regional Center is proud to have provided more than $300 million of financing over the past eight years to assist the transformation of New York City’s largest industrial park and further the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation’s charge to spur economic development and create new jobs,” said Paul Levinsohn, Co-Managing Principal of the New York City Regional Center. “The Navy Yard’s focus on launching local businesses and generating jobs in the surrounding community perfectly complements our mission of helping create quality jobs for New Yorkers.” “Deutsche Bank is proud to have supported the Brooklyn Navy Yard in the development of the Navy Yard Commons in the newly-opened Building 77,” said John Kimble, Vice President of Philanthropic Initiatives in Deutsche Bank’s Community Development Finance Group. “The Commons advances the Navy Yard’s important place-making efforts that will create high quality local jobs and expand opportunities for entrepreneurship for communities that have been historically marginalized. We applaud the Brooklyn Navy Yard for this important work, and we extend our congratulations and support to the Navy Yard’s innovative entrepreneurs and workers who are helping to lead New York City into a more equitable and prosperous future.” This is such a big boost for middle class job creation in New York,” said Jonathan Bowles, Executive Director of the Center for an Urban Future. “The City’s manufacturing sector has more promise today than at any point in decades, but it’d be impossible to capitalize on all this potential without modern new spaces like Building 77.” “We are so excited to see Building 77 reopen its doors and join the ranks of the over 300 industrial businesses located in the Brooklyn Navy Yard,” said Downtown Brooklyn Partnership President Regina Myer. “We have a thriving innovation ecosystem here in the Brooklyn Tech Triangle, and large-scale manufacturing facilities like this help translate innovation into thousands of jobs and much-needed economic activity.” “We are thrilled to see the reactivation of Building 77 and what it will mean for job creation in Brooklyn,” said Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Andrew Hoan. “Today’s manufacturers need modern facilities to keep up with Brooklyn’s continuous innovation and ever-evolving industrial sector. The ground floor Food Manufacturing Hub, featuring the over-100-year-old New York City business Russ & Daughters as its anchor, is a powerful addition to this development. As the Brooklyn Chamber celebrates its Centennial in February, we look to the borough’s long-standing businesses and celebrate their growth, and we congratulate David Ehrenberg and his team for more successful growth at Brooklyn Navy Yard.” “First BLDG 92, now Building 77, and soon with the Wegman’s supermarket, the Brooklyn Navy Yard is opening up the southern edge of the Yard to the community in a way that is truly revolutionary,” said Community Board 2 Chairperson Shirley A. McRae, said Community Board 2 Chair Shirley A. McRae .
Thursday, November 9, 2017 - 5:05pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio: I could immediately tell that Mabel grew up in New York City because she was quick to take the opportunity to market her fashion line there. Mabel, you are a born New Yorker so you know how to sell, you know how to market, well done. I love your story. I love your story because it is a New York success story. And I’m also a Brooklynite so I love to see a Brooklynite make good and I’m glad you are able to do it right here in Brooklyn. And Mabel just gave us, I think a perfect summary of what we want to see happen over and over and over again for people in this city, from all five boroughs – people who grew up here, worked hard and deserve opportunity, deserve to know they can stay in their own city and they can thrive here and they can bring up their family here. So, Mabel, I really love that you started as an intern and worked your way up through the ranks. And I love that your family is still in Brooklyn and I love that your future and your company’s future is so bright. Let’s give Mabel another round of applause. [Applause] Now, Mabel’s part of one of the industries you are going to see represented here in this building. Fashion is going to have a presence here in this building, design, you’ll see design firms here, you’ll see robotics firms, you’ll see advanced manufacturing. But supremely important to all of us as New Yorkers, you will also see food manufacturing here and, really care about that. [Applause] And I want to say to all of the food companies – thank you all for being a part of this and I look forward to sampling your products over the years. But I want to do a special honorable mention because some companies, some restaurants, some delis represent the fullest truth of New York culture – they are part of who we are and they are indispensable and they have to preserved. And there is something very exciting for Brooklyn, in particular, to have Russ & Daughters come to Brooklyn – this is a big moment for all of us. [Applause] So, I’m kvelling at this point, this. The folks who helped make this possible – so many, so many people believed in what could happen here, believed it was worthy of a big investment, that big things could happen if we made a big investment. And I want to thank some of the architects of this success. I want to start with of course, our dynamic Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen, thank you Alicia. [Applause] I want to thank, you heard from him before, my dear friend and he has done an outstanding job as chair of the Navy Yard Development Corporation, Hank Gutman, thank you for all you have done. [Applause] Hank Gutman is a very good human being so he actually also gave credit where credit was deserved with his predecessor Alan Fishman, Alan thank you for everything that you got started here. [Applause] And you will hear from him in a moment but a special thank you to the President and CEO of the Navy Yard Development Corporation, David Ehrenberg, great job David. [Applause] And all of the elected officials who believed in this vision of investing to build jobs in this borough and this city – investing in the people of our borough and of our city. I want to thank Assembly-member Joe Lentol. [Applause] Councilmember Laurie Cumbo [Applause] Councilmember Steve Levin [Applause] And everybody who helped bring us to this day, thank you so much. It’s a very big day for Brooklyn – it’s a very big day for New York City because we are in a very big building. This is an extraordinary building. Building 77, you hear it, it sounds kind of anonymous on its face but when you, when you hear the facts, it’s extraordinary – a million square feet, that’s what this building has to offer, a million square feet, 16 stories high. This building is going to be a difference maker for so many companies. It is going to give them the chance to live up to their dreams. And to create a whole lot more jobs in the process so this is really exciting and it is part of reaching the potential of the Brooklyn Navy Yard. The Brooklyn Navy Yard is one of the biggest success stories in New York City in the last few decades. And it needs to be told more and more. But the Brooklyn Navy Yard is far from done. And this is another step in the evolution and reaching the potential of the Navy Yard. And it’s also a step towards something I talked about the other night. I am committed to making sure this city becomes fairer and fairer for all of its people. And I use the analogy the other night – I said we are already the safest big city in American we should be the fairest big city in America. That means opportunity for everyone. That means everyone can make it here – willing to work hard, you get an opportunity here, regardless of your background, regardless of your neighborhood, regardless of your zip code. The Brooklyn Navy Yard is a place where that happens every day but now it’s going to happen on a much bigger level. So I want you to think of it this way – Building 77 is one million square feet of new opportunity for every day New Yorkers, isn’t that exciting to think about? [Applause] What will it mean? It’s going to bring 3,000 new jobs to the Navy Yard – 3,000 new jobs. [Applause] Now, some people when they hear that they think – ‘oh that must be a long time away.’ No, that’s going to be in the next 18 months you’re going to see these jobs grow rapidly. What we believe in is not just creating jobs, but creating good paying jobs. I announced a plan for 100,000 good paying jobs because we want this city to be affordable for all New Yorkers, and we’re attacking the affordable housing crisis every day, but the other piece of the puzzle is to continue in every way we can to raise wages, raise benefits, create salaries that people can live on. And so our standard is simple – when we invest public money, we want to create a lot of jobs, we want to make sure more and more they’re higher paying jobs. They pay $50,000 or more, or they have a quick pathway to people reaching that level because if more and more New Yorkers can get to that level they can really enjoy their own city, they can support their own family, they can stay in the city that they have helped to make great. That’s the vision we’re working on today. Now, Building 77 was one of our first economic development projects in this administration. Hank mentioned when we came here to initiate it, it’s just been a few years now, but it’s already bearing fruit. And it’s a very big deal because of what it says about the future of New York City as well. You know we lived through the reality of losing manufacturing in this city for decades, and a lot of people counted us out, and I love what Mabel said. This is an example of reasserting manufacturing in this city and in this country because it can be done here, and it should be done here. And we have to be smart about how we help manufacturing grow again because what does it mean? It means good paying jobs, stable jobs. It means the products that are created go right to the local market. They don’t come from thousands of miles away. That’s good for the environment, too. There’s so much to recommend building a strong manufacturing sector again in this city, but this is going against decades of history. Because you literally have to go back many decades to have had a building of this size opened as a manufacturing facility. That’s something that would’ve been assumed to be a part of ancient history in this city, and that it would never be seen again, and yet we’re all standing here today in 2017 on the dawn of a new era where we bring these jobs back in real numbers and create a lot of opportunity for New Yorkers. So it’s exciting, and I will tell you that good things require investment. They don’t always happen automatically, and this is something we believe in in this city – the City government making strategic investment to spark this kind of activity. So a $73 million investment by the City and key investments by Borough President Eric Adams and the City Council, and again thank you to Laurie Cumbo and Steve Levin for really supporting the Navy Yard. Give them another round of applause for that. [Applause] We invested so we could get to this day, and it’s going to create a lot more momentum, and it’s going to create a lot more focus on the Navy Yard and more and more businesses are going to want to come here and create jobs right here in Brooklyn. This will result ultimately as a whole vision of the Navy Yard – 10,000 more jobs over time and paying an average not only that level that we want to see minimum. We see the growth of the Navy Yard resulting in higher and higher paying jobs, averaging $70,000 a year in many cases. This is really something powerful for everyday families. So when you think about what’s happening here, you can also think about it as protecting the middle class, making sure the middle class can survive and can thrive in this city going forward. The magic of New York City is that it’s a city for everyone. That people – whether you’re well off, you’re middle class, you’re working class, you’re lower income – it does not matter. We all ride the same subways. We all ride the same buses. We walk the same streets. We have to keep this a city for everyone, and this is an example of how we do it. Another really exciting thing is that one of the great new additions that we’ve made in this city in recent years that’s going to foster job creation but also just helping people get around and get out of the crowded roads and crowded subways is NYC Ferry, and there will be an NYC Ferry stop right here serving the people of the Navy Yard. That’s exciting for everyone. [Applause] So as we open the doors of Building 77, we open the doors of opportunity for thousands of New Yorkers. That’s the good news. Now my friends, we have to maintain this progress, and as I’ve said to people lately – New York City, we all should be proud New York City is getting it right. New York City is creating opportunity all the time. The danger to our progress is not here. Unfortunately it’s 200 miles to our south down I-95, and what we’ve heard recently coming out of Washington in terms of the president’s tax plan unfortunately would really undermine the kind of progress we’re making right here. And I’ll give you an example. The tax plan would eliminate the new markets tax credit and the historic tax credits. They meant $348 million in investment in the Navy Yard, so tools that are working that are creating economic progress, that are creating jobs might be taken away, and my message is simple. We need to fight that. We need to fight it with all we have. We cannot reach this point as a city where we’re now consistently creating more and more jobs. We have the highest number of jobs we’ve ever had in the history of this city, and we’re growing. We can’t see that progress undermined in our nation’s capital. So my plea to everyone is if you believe in what’s happening here in the Navy Yard, if you believe that we need to create jobs for every kind of person, help us join in the fight to make sure we don’t end up with a federal tax plan that actually undermines economic progress for middle class and working class people. I just want to say at the end a few words in Spanish with great, again, appreciation to everyone who has helped us to achieve this day and to reach this moment. [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] A city that is fair for everyone. With that, I want to bring forward and congratulate a man who has a lot to be proud of today, the president and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, David Ehrenberg.
Thursday, November 9, 2017 - 5:05pm
Willie Geist: Joining us now that man right there, fresh off his re-election as the democratic Mayor of New York City – Mayor Bill de Blasio. Mr. Mayor, welcome. Congratulations. Mayor Bill de Blasio: Thank you very much, a good feeling. Geist: So we were talking about the journey of your four years, your first term, first time obviously being elected a mayor of a major city, and there were some stumbles along the way. What did you learn over four years that allowed you to win by almost 40 points two nights ago? Mayor: I’ll tell you something, Willie. In this work, you better be learning every single day. And it’s a humbling experience, and what I learned is go out to the people, go out to every neighborhood, including places where you’re not popular, and talk about the changes you’re making in people’s lives that are tangible. I had 43 townhall meetings. You know, I have 8.5 million constituents, and I always say every single one of them has a strong opinion, and I heard a lot of those strong opinions. But it helps you grow to listen to what’s on people’s minds. So they wanted to hear very tangible change. We showed specific ways we were going to create more affordable housing, specific ways we were going to fix the schools and do things like give pre-K to all the kids in New York City, and when people actually saw those things starting to happen it opened their mind up to the direction we’re going it. We reduced crime. We reduced stop-and-frisk at the same time. We showed police and community could come back together, and it worked. But I’ll tell you this is a message I would say to all democrats – get out of your office, go out into the community, talk to people, listen to their concerns, and show them they you can make a difference in their life that they can touch and feel because otherwise they’re not going to be moved. Geist: There were some moments in regards to the police department where, you know, at police officer’s funerals some of the officers turned their back to you. But I think there was a dissonance, and I talked to leadership at the NYPD and they said – ‘No, actually, we love the mayor. He’s a great mayor to work for. He gives us what we need to do the job.’ A lot of them supported your ending stop-and-frisk. Talk a little if you can about your evolution with the police department over four years. Mayor: Well, Willie, the police leadership in this town is amazing, and I was proud to support them and give them the resources. We added 2,000 more officers on patrol. We created neighborhood policing approach meant to bond police and community again, and literally get people on a first name basis knowing each other and having that mutual respect, and we created some of the strongest anti-terrorism tools we’ve ever had. We actually have the biggest anti-terrorism force of any police force in the country. So the police leadership knew I was in favor of investing in them. The union – look, it’s not a shock the police union often stirred the pot. That’s some of what they do all over the country. But I think a lot of the rank and file officers saw over time that I believe in making real investments in them – more training, better equipment, all the things that could make their lives better and safer. And over time I think it really helped to create a more positive atmosphere, and I’ve got to tell you also – look, what’s happening around the country. We need police and community to come together, and one of the ways to do that is to create a philosophy that says we’re going to train our officers to deescalate conflicts, build personal relationships in the community, and get everyone feeling like ‘hey, we are 100 percent on the same side here. We’ve got to help each other.’ The community has to help police too to do their job, and we’ve seen that happened in New York City. Crimes gone down four years in a row, and we’re the safest big city in America. I’m very, very proud of that. Joe’s got a question for you. Mayor: Yes, Joe? Joe Scarborough: Yes, I do. So Mr. Mayor, you are re-elected mayor of the biggest, greatest, baddest city in America and the world – we will all say. You are the first democrat re-elected since 1985. That’s a pretty extraordinary achievement as well. You win by almost 40 percent. This is the landslide to end all landslides, and I’ve got to believe when you woke up the next morning the greatest thing in the world for you was to see you had finally won over the city’s tabloids. Let’s put those tabloids up right now. Mayor: Come on. [Laughter] Scarborough: Come on, man! What do you have to do to get a little respect here? Come on! Mayor: Joe, I was not surprised. I was not surprised. I was impressed by their creativity though. You know, you win a landslide victory you think ‘what are they going to do with this?’ but they found a way. You’ve got to give them credit for that. [Laughter] Scarborough: So what is the challenge moving forward? What is – and let’s just talk about the one challenge. What is the one big challenge that you’d like to accomplish over the next four years? Mayor: Look, I – the challenge of New York City, and I think it’s a challenge all over the country, is still fighting income inequality and helping working-class and middle-class people to have an economic future they can believe in. And, you know, when I ran four years ago I said, look, what’s happening here is the whole social fabric is being undermined because there are so many people working so hard, harder than ever, and they’re not getting anywhere and they don’t feel a lot of confidence in their economic future or their kid’s economic future. What we focused on is putting resources – literally putting resources back in people’s hands. When we did pre-K for all the kids and we did after school for all middle school kids, those were free that took a financial burden off of families. Paid Sick Leave took a financial burden off of folks who were sick and were going to lose a day’s pay if they went to the doctor. We took away that challenge. We worked to bring up the minimum wage. But there’s so much more we got to do. So, my goal right now is a huge affordable housing plan. It’s going to reach 750,000 New Yorkers and they would pay no more than 30 percent of their income in rent going forward – again, take away the biggest expense in people’s lives as a burden which is housing – and a plan to create 100,000 new, good-paying jobs in New York City. This place has to remain affordable for working people. And one of the things we can do is create better paying jobs. I mean we have a great tech sector here in this city, for example. The film and TV industry is booming in this city. A lot of different pieces of our economy are working but they got to work for everyday people in all five boroughs and we got to get to them to the kind of job that they can live on for the long term. That’s going to be a lot of the focus of these next four years. Michael Barnicle: You know, Mr. Mayor, a lot has always been said and written when it comes to politics about the coastal elites – West Coast, East Coast – except when you go to Washington Heights or Astoria or Staten Island you see America – Mayor: That’s right. Barnicle: Uniquely in this city, I think more so than any other place in America. And yet we live with this constant fear in the country – a lot of people do – of the other. What do we do about that? Mayor: Well, first of all, the elites are part of the problem whether they’re on the coast or any place else and we have to confront that. Anyone who looks down their nose at their fellow Americans or their fellow New Yorkers is part of the problem. And I get very upset when I hear people disdain everyday people and working people. You know, Joe has spoken powerfully about this, about the folks who go to the cocktail parties in Manhattan but have never been to Staten Island. That, to me, shows a misunderstanding of the kind of society we have to have where everyone is respected. And working people who make the society come together, who make it all function, deserve our respect. And this is a problem of the Democratic Party too. To the previous conversation you guys had earlier, I think the Democratic Party’s got to refocus on working people of all backgrounds, and what transcends the question of identity politics is economics. There are people of all backgrounds who need a better economic reality, who need opportunity. We should be speaking to that and we should go to them, and we should go to places where people are doubting us and have the conversation because when you’re talking to someone, you value them. If you go to someone, it means you value them and respect them. And so that to me is part of overcoming this who concept of the elites because the elites are not comfortable with the notion of a society that actually serves working people. And that’s a society I think we should be building. Right here in this city, I think that what you saw on Tuesday was an affirmation that people want to believe their government is on their side and actually doing something tangible in their lives. We showed them enough for them to believe the government could work for them and they want more. Heidi Przybyla: Pivoting off of that – what exactly is the lesson from Tuesday, more broadly from sea to shining sea, of these very different type of candidates who won. You have a candidate like Ralph Northam who is considered to be more like a centrist establishment Republican. Then you have, for example, at the House of Delegates level in Manassas, Virginia a woman who is part of the Democratic Socialists of America. I mean what is the lesson for Democrats about what their model should be to appeal particularly to moderates in these Republican leaning districts that are held by Republicans? Mayor: Sure, and Northam is someone who I think understood working people’s lives, understood the whole state. So even if he might be more moderate than some of us, I still think he went out to people and talked to them about a direction for the state. I think that’s half the battle right there. And this is what democrats are used to be very good at and should be again a central message around people’s economic needs showing that we could use government as a positive tool to improve their economic reality and that of their children ahead. And then going out to people in every corner – this party started receding from whole swaths of the country and not contesting things, huge mistake in my view. You go everywhere, you contest every inch. And when you do some surprising things happen. People hear something they like and things start to move. So look, I don’t buy it was just a rejection of Trump at all. That kind of clean sweep, that blue wave is not just about Donald Trump. It’s also about that fact that three million more Americans vote for Hillary Clinton than Donald Trump. The country is becoming more progressive. Look across the board on Obama Care, the country now supports it – on immigration reform, comprehensive immigration reform. The American people would actually like to see that. You go down the list of issues there is an emerging progressive majority in this country. The problem is democrats have not been tapping into by contesting elections and going after the grassroots. So I think Tuesday was the beginning of that turn towards a new approach. Geist: Mr. Mayor you already know you’ve heard this, but his will be amped up now since you’re now a two term Mayor of New York City – that there are people who are going to want you to run for President in 2020. Mayor: Willie that is the sweetest thing you’ve said to me. Geist: No, I am not saying it. It’s the people I have spoken to. But it’s going to be a free-for-all. You know there are going to be all kinds of people who want to come in and run against Donald Trump. I understand you’re 36 hours away from your re-election. But is that something you would consider if the party came to you and said we think that you’re the guy who could take out Donald Trump. Would you consider running for higher office? Mayor: My focus is New York City Willie. You know I’ve got four years and it’s going to be four years of intense urgent action to do everything I want to do in the city. That’s what I’m here to do. Geist: I understand that, but if the party came to you. Would you at least listen? Would you consider it? If they said you are – we’ve looked at all the numbers; you’re the guy that can beat Donald Trump. Mayor: In Willie’s rich fantasy land. Geist: It’s not my fantasy land, it’s the party’s. Mayor: You’re very kind, I want – look I’ll tell you this much. I am ready to serve for the next four years as Mayor of New York City, but in the in meantime I want to help this party in every way I can to get back to reaching working people. And to come up with a clear progressive economic message, which had we had in 16’ no question we would have won. So I want to be part of the solution but my job is here in New York City. Barnicle: Would you favor any potential candidate for President of the United States as a democrat that one of the things that the candidate must do is ride the New York Subway? Mayor: I think everyone. Barnicle: That’s America. Mayor: That is America. When you go on that subway you see everyone. And yeah of course it’s the example of being connected to people. It’s just get out there where they are. Every candidate should do that everywhere. But I’ll tell you something, I think another big factor is going to be how this tax plan plays out. Because I think what’s going to happen is more and more Americans are going to realize they’re being bamboozled. It is a rip off of the middle class. And I know now as a result of the election that a lot of Republicans say “oh lets the rush the tax plan even more. We need it, we need an achievement.” But the problem is people are going to realize all over the country it ends up being double taxation. It ends up being actually a tax increase for the middle class and a giveaway to the rich and corporations. That’s the kind of thing that will dig the republican hole deeper. And they don’t realize yet, if they try trickle-down economics again. It’s going to back fire on them. Geist: Now two time, two term Mayor Bill de Blasio. Congratulations sir, good to see you. I’ll see you on the 1-Train uptown. Mayor: There you go brother, there you go. Geist: Thank you very much. Mr. Mayor.
Thursday, November 9, 2017 - 5:05pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio: Good afternoon, everyone. So, yesterday, the people of New York City delivered a message loud and clear, they delivered a mandate. It’s a mandate for fairness to make this the fairest big city in America. I’m very humbled to accept that mandate and to turn it into a reality. People want this to be a more just place. They want this to be an inclusive place, a place of opportunity for all. And there’s a deep sense all over the city that we need to keep what is great about New York, great for generations to come. It needs to be a place for everyone and it needs to be an open place not a place that becomes exclusive. And that’s the mandate I’m ready to act on right away and we’ll have more to say in the days to come about additional plans and visions to achieve these goals. But I just want to express how appreciative I am to all the people of New York City, particularly all those who voted, for your faith and your confidence. And I am humbled as I start on the pathway to a second term. Now, New Yorkers have seen a number of changes in the last four years. They’ve seen that real change can happen and can happen quickly. They want more and I intend to give them more. We have seen extraordinary progress both in driving down and in bringing police and community together. There’s a lot more to do to become a safer city and to become a more unified city. And I really do envision a day where the whole nation looks to New York City as the model for a positive relationship between police and community. We have to change our school system much more. I do not accept the status quo in education today. I have seen real progress. We’ve made real progress. Better graduation rates. Better test scores. I’m particularly proud that almost 70,000 kids are going to full-day pre-K now but we’ve got a lot more to do. We have to achieve 3-K in the next four years. We have to lay an even strong foundation for our children. We have to get our kids reading on grade level by third grade. We need the school system to look entirely different in the coming years. It’s come a long way but there’s much, much more to do. And that is the mission I will be most focused on. That will be the issue I put my greatest passion and energy into. And obviously New Yorkers are desperately concerned to ensure that this remains a city that they can live in, that they can afford. We have been speeding up the pace of all of our affordable housing efforts and job creation efforts. It’s going to make a real difference in people’s lives. This morning I went to Downtown Brooklyn to thank voters, to thank them for their faith and their confidence. And it was a wonderful experience just to express my appreciation to people. But one woman came up to me who told me she had applied for the Housing Connect lottery to get an affordable apartment, that she was desperate. She didn’t know if she would be able to stay in the city. She didn’t know what was going to happen to her and her child – a single mother. And she literally had tears in her eyes because she was chosen through the lottery. She’s in a three-bedroom apartment now. She said her life has been turned around and she had trouble getting the sentences out because it was so emotional for her that she feared losing what she had and she feared losing her very own city. And now she now she knows she has affordable housing for years and decades to come. We have to do a lot more of that and we have to protect the affordable housing that people are in right now. There’s a lot to do here. There’s a lot to do in Albany going forward. We have to strengthen our rent laws and if this were a more just world we would be able to achieve greater self-determination for New York City when it came to our rent laws. But either way you slice it, they must become stronger to protect affordable housing for millions of rent-stabilized and rent-controlled tenants. Now, we’ve put out a clear vision of what’s next, how we’re going to expand the affordable housing plan from 200,000 apartments to 300,000 apartments. It was originally going to serve half-a-million people. Now it’s going to serve 750,000. Obviously, Right to Counsel law making a huge difference, all of our efforts to stop evictions, what we’ve brought in terms of fairness to the rent process with the Rent Guidelines Board, all this is going to continue. This will make a big difference in people’s lives. But there’s more we have to do. I am going to go back and fight for the mansion tax in Albany. I think it is a fair idea to ask those who buy very expensive homes to pay a little more so that seniors could have affordable housing. I am going to fight for the millionaire’s tax in Albany so that those who have done very, very well and live in New York City pay a little more in income tax so that everyone else can get around and that we can have the Fair Fare – the half-priced MetroCards for low-income New Yorkers so they can have opportunity too. These will be crucial initiatives going forward. We’re going to make sure there’s even greater trust and accountability in the relationship between police and community with body cameras on all our officers over the next two years – all our officers on patrol. And I think that’s something that is going be deeply felt in this city. A lot of people – and I talk to them about it around the city – consider that one of the greatest steps forward we can take. And I think it will be a crucial part of really bonding police and community together once and for all. So, there’s a lot to do. But I want to say I’m once again optimistic. I’m optimistic because I’ve seen so much change happen. I’m optimistic because I’ve brought my vision to the people twice, and I’ve said we need to make big and serious changes and bold changes, and both times I got a very strong mandate. Yesterday – winning almost two-thirds of the vote sends a clear message that New Yorkers want more change and they believe this administration can deliver. So, I am particularly honored as a Democrat to say that I am the first Democrat re-elected mayor in 32 years. The last one was Ed Koch, a mayor who did so much for this city. This is, as I said last night, it’s the beginning of a new era in this city and I’m very clear about that. What we saw around the country last night and we saw here is that people are waking up. They want change. They’re getting more involved. They’re going to reclaim their democracy. And I think between the last election and this, you see a clear picture of what the vast majority of New Yorkers want, what their values are, what they really believe in. I think it will be the beginning of an era of progressive Democratic administrations in this city, and continued change in this city that’s going to be very good, that’s going to right a lot of wrongs of the past. So, I’m honored to be at the beginning of that era. We have a lot to do. I want to thank, again, everyone who voted regardless of who you voted for. I want to thank everyone who voted and participated. I think a lot more people who have voted and participated if we hadn’t had the rain storm in the late afternoon, into the evening. But much more important than the rain, a lot more people would have voted and participated if we didn’t have some of the most backward election laws in the whole country, and it’s a disgrace. And I am sick of my state being one of the last in the country to achieve electoral reform and I’m going to put my heart and soul into this fight in Albany in the coming months, and I know a lot of New Yorkers are going to join in. There’s tremendous passion on this point. We are one of only 13 states that does not allow early voting. Early voting is the greatest preventative measure to make sure people are not excluded because of the weather or because work went late or because the subway broke down. If you don’t have early voting, you’re implicitly allowing the disenfranchisement of a huge number of voters. If you don’t have same-day registration, you’re keeping a vast number of people out of the process. You know the numbers. There’s a million people in this city who are eligible but not registered, two million in the state eligible not registered because the political class has attempted to exclude them consistently for decades. And this is a Democratic problem and a Republican problem. This is a continuation of some of the bad history of Tammany Hall that still haunts this state. We cannot accept it any longer. We need to come into the 21st Century. We need to say that every New Yorker who wants to vote should have the right to vote. It should be easy. It should be something that people can do naturally, not have to struggle to do. So, that is going to be one of the big focus points in our Albany agenda starting in January. Look, despite the obstacles, despite the weather, despite the fact that there was a lot of coverage that said the election was a sure thing, people still came out in strong numbers. In fact, turnout for this election exceeded the election four years ago. And just to give you perspective, the number of New Yorkers who voted in this mayoral election exceeds the entire population of eight states in this country meaning the number of people who voted was larger than the population of each of eight states. That’s a reminder, there’s still a hell of a lot of people who are engaging, and more people who engaging now for a variety of reason but I know that that will be supercharged if we fix our electoral laws. So, I hope you can hear in my voice that I am ready to get to work right away. I’m not interested in any victory laps, I just want to get right back to the agenda. I feel a deep sense of urgency. I am a believer in term limits for executive office. I feel it very strongly. One of the advantages of term limits for executive limits is now I can count down to the last day of 2021 and I’ve got just that period of time, just those four years and seven weeks to get done everything that I am supposed to get done for the people of this city. I have a sense of mandate and urgency and I know I have a time limit that I have to achieve these goals in. And that’s the message I’m sending my whole team and my team is responding with their typical energy and urgency as well. So, I want all New Yorkers to know I have heard them loud and clear throughout this election season and through the 43 town hall meetings I’ve been a part of – I’ve been honored to be a part of in neighborhoods all over the city, and there will be more coming up in the coming weeks. I have heard loud and clear how much people need change. One voter, yesterday, I said to her, “I need your vote.” And she said, “I’m voting because I need you to do what you say you’re going to do.” And she meant it very personally. It was for her life, for her family’s life she needed change particularly when it comes to fighting the affordability crisis. People need change. So, I heard loud and clear what’s on the mind of New Yorkers, and it’s my job to produce for them. So, I conclude by saying a couple things. One – again, I am honored to be the Mayor of all New Yorkers whether you voted for me or not, or whether you voted or not. My job is to serve you in all five boroughs. I think making this the fairest big city in America is in everyone’s interest and it will make this a stronger city for everyone. So, that’s my sense of calling as I go forward. And before I open up to your questions, I just want to say upfront, I will not be discussing personnel matters today. Obviously, we just had the results of the election. There will be a lot more to say in the weeks ahead and I will stick to my historic rule that you’ve all experienced – when I have something to say on the personnel front, you’ll be the first to hear but today is not the day in terms of this administration, to give you any personnel updates. Just a few words in Spanish – [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] With that I welcome your questions. Yes? Question: Two things – first, can you tell us to what extent you want to reform the rent laws? And then secondly, last night you said – and I think I’m paraphrasing here – ‘you ain’t seen nothing yet.’ Do you expect to move farther to the left? What did you mean by that? Mayor: It means that the agenda will deepen. You know, going from pre-K to 3K is a multiplier. 3K is even higher impact, even harder to achieve, even more unprecedented, as one example. Going from a 200,000 apartment affordable housing plan to 300,000 is a big, bold jump. But we’re going to put these things into action. I know you and others have asked ‘well, where is the big transcendent vision?’ I feel like those things are big, transcendent vision items. Putting Equity and Excellence into action. I don’t ask everyone to be experts on education, but if you talk to educators the notion that we’re going to get every child reading on grade level by third grade is a huge stretch goal, profoundly important, incredibly difficult – probably more difficult than any of the other plans, but absolutely necessary. So that’s when I say ‘you ain’t seen nothing yet’ that we’re going to go places this city has never gone before, and I think it’s going to make a huge difference. Now, on the first question – look, obviously I believe we should have self-determination when it comes to our rent laws. I understand how hard that will be to achieve, but in the meantime there’s some real, obvious things we can do. I’m not going to give you the whole layout today. We’ll have plenty of time to talk about the Albany agenda, but clearly addressing the weaknesses in our current rent guidelines and rent laws. Too many apartments are being lost because the legal dynamics allow them to be lost from affordability. We have to change that. We have to change the dollar figures at which apartments go out of rent regulation. We have to address the MCI issue, which I think has been a horrible loophole that many landlords have taken advantage of to put additional costs on tenants unfairly and to have an easy way to get out of rent regulation. So a lot of big changes that I think would have a huge impact on improving affordability in this city. Question: And you want [inaudible] you want the City to control that or you want Albany to heighten the dollar figure where they can [inaudible]? Mayor: Again, very simply, I have no illusions – read my lips: I have no illusion – I think the city should determine its own rent laws, but if we don’t get that the thing I think is more reachable and very, very crucial is to improve the rent laws we have and make it easier for affordable apartments to stay affordable and to stop losing them and also to address this abuse of the MCIs by landlords. Question: Will you and your political team be creating a federal PAC or some other vehicle to raise money for outside political activity – outside the city I mean? Mayor: We don’t have any plan at this point. Our focus at this point is preparing for the second administration and on the issues that are confronting New Yorkers and preparing for the four years. Question: Just a follow up – on a totally unrelated note – what big city do you believe is more fair than New York City today? Mayor: David, I did not go about the question that way. I didn’t take a survey of big cities and ask ‘what’s your fairness quotient?’ I’m saying it as a goal for us. When everything is said and done – we know we’re the safest big city in American. That’s a purely numerical matter. Determining what is the fairest big city, there are some numerical measures and there’s other measures as well. I’m setting a goal for us to reach the heights we can reach, and to know that we’ve done everything – and we already know we’re doing some things no other city has done – and intend to do more. Question: Did the governor call to congratulate you on your win? Mayor: No, but it’s just been a few hours. Question: And do you have – now that your race is behind you – do you intend to get involved in the governor’s race next year? Mayor: I’m not thinking about that. I’m just – we’re focused on New York City right now. Question: Mayor, did you communicate or did anyone in your office communicate with the Department of Buildings regarding enforcement actions that should or should or should not be taken at Jona Rechnitz’s hotel? Mayor: We’ve covered this many times over. There’s nothing more to say. Question: I don’t think you’ve covered this specifically. Mayor: I’ve covered it many times over. Go ahead? Question: Mayor, you said something last night along the lines of ‘I bring you tidings from Virginia and New Jersey and New York City’ but do you really think that Donald Trump really – Mayor: Oh my god. Question: – in this election? Mayor: Yes. Absolutely. Guys, everyone who read a paper or watched TV or looked online was told this election was effectively over from the start. It rained heavily in the crucial voting time of the day – the time when most people vote, right? There were so many reasons that you could’ve see turnout tank. Now, I do want to say I do believe in my heart that my message, the things I’ve been doing, the things I plan to do did energize a lot of the voters. And I believe in my heart that my campaign team did an amazing job with an organizing model that reached deep into communities that you guys couldn’t see – and I don’t mean that in a bad way, but I mean it was sort of a classic grassroots operation that wasn’t big and showy but really reached deeply into communities and energized turnout. I think those two things were really important, but I have no doubt the Trump factor was important, too. A lot of people have been turned back on to the political process because of their frustration with Donald Trump, and I say with humility I have been a leading anti-Trump voice and clearly have defended New York City against the policies of the Trump administration. I think a lot of the people of this city appreciate that and want to see that continue, so I have no doubt it played a role. Yes? Question: So you mentioned that more people cast ballots yesterday than in the 2013 election, but based on the numbers that are available now – the returns that are in – as a proportionate of active, registered voters the percentage of turnout was actually lower than 2013. Mayor: Again, I’m telling you – I see first of all a votes a vote. More voters voted than last night, that’s a good thing. More still coming in as you know, so we don’t have the final count yet. I think it’s the beginning of rebuilding turnout to the levels we’d like to get it to. I think there’s a lot of reasons turnout got depressed over decades in this city and in this country. I think we are going to – all of us who care about making change – and I think this should include all Democrats and all progressives need to rebuild that voting culture and that civic participation, and this was a good sign here. It was a good sign obviously in Virginia and New Jersey and Washington state and so many places. I think it’s undeniable that something is turning in the right direction, but it’s a beginning. We have a lot more to do. Marcia? Question: Mr. Mayor, on the heels of your victory yesterday there’s a lot of speculation about your aspirations, talk that you might go national. My question to you is what are your aspirations and is there – could at any point you go national either fighting Washington or running for something? Mayor: Marcia, first, I’ve said many, many times one goal – one goal only – to be mayor of New York City for four more years. In terms of fighting the fights on the issues, it’s my job as mayor of New York City to challenge the Trump administration and challenge republicans in Congress when they do things that hurt New York City. This tax plan, as I talked to the folks at ABNY about the other day, is a direct threat to New York City. I’m going to fight it. I’m going to work with democrat and republican mayors all over the country to fight it. And especially my republican colleagues have been outstanding at using their influence with the moderate republican senators and congress members to really make a difference, and that’s something I need to do to defend New York City’s interest. So of course I’ll do that, but I’m very clear about my focus. Go ahead? Question: Where did you – you mentioned before that people are waking up and getting more involved. Getting involved how and where? Mayor: I see it everywhere. I mean look, guys, I think a lot of people went in to yesterday all over the country worried that because people were so discouraged last November 8th and because of the special elections that happened in between that, you know, this was going to be somehow a night where nothing changed. I remind you those special elections – in Georgia and Montana – those were for republican seats, every one of them. They were people Trump chose for his administration, and they were already republican seats. It was amazing they were contested to the degree they were, but this was the first time we actually got to see an election on the bigger dynamics, and it was a clean sweep. I mean look what happened – Jersey, Virginia, the Washington state senate flipping, the Virginia house of delegates that’s still up for grabs. No one – literally no one – thought we’d be talking this morning about the possibility of the Virginia house of delegates flipping. I mean, it’s just across the board. Something powerful is happening. That’s plenty of evidence on its face, but in the meantime just in the last year – before that – the fight to save the Affordable Care Act, the fight already against the tax plan, the women’s marches on January 21st. Something very big is happening. Trust me. I talked to a lot of you starting in 2012 about the fact that income inequality was becoming a dominant issue. There were a lot of doubting Thomas’s. I hope you came to see that income inequality is really a crucial issue now in America and people care about all over, and they want to fight it. Well, trust me on this one. The Trump election has profoundly changed American politics, but it’s not the only factor – what happened the year or two before that where all the energy that came up on the income inequality issue that was already affecting the whole country, it was affecting big changes all over the country – minimum wage and paid sick leave and all sorts of actions around the country, everything you saw in Bernie Sanders campaign, what you saw in Maine last night in the vote on Medicaid expansion. Something very big is happening. Trust me. And it’s going to play out now. It’s going to be supercharged going in 2018, and it’s going to be – all these groups that have emerged on top of the traditional groups are engaging thousands and thousands of more people in the political process. I see it all the time. Question: Do you want to lead the charge? Mayor: I want to be a part of it. I want to help it along because it’s good for New York City, and it’s good for our country. Yes? Question: Have you spoken yet to the Governor-elect of New Jersey? Mayor: I look forward to it. I think he’s fantastic, and I look forward to working with him, but I expect to talk to him later on today or tomorrow. Yes, way back? Question: Mr. Mayor, you’re going to need the City Council to help implement the agenda of making it a fairer city. What are you looking for generally in a City Council speaker over the next term? Mayor: Look, I want to see a progressive. I want to see someone who shares values and vision as we had with Speaker Melissa Mark Viverito. I think that was a very positive, productive partnership. I mean you guys saw we had the earliest budget in many years. In general, we found a lot of very positive agreement. There was a lot less friction. I’d like to see that continue. Obviously someone I feel, you know, we can work with on a regular basis. I do not have a candidate. I’ll be talking to all the candidates. I’ll be talking to a lot of councilmembers, but we’d really like to see that kind of partnership. Question: IDNYC, you’ve said you’re planning to delete these records to protect people. It’s been nearly a year now since you first tried. Did you miscalculate by creating this database of vulnerable people that you now don’t seem to be able to get rid of? Mayor: We did not know Donald Trump would be elected president. We worked under the world we knew then, which there was no prospect of any such problem based on what we knew, and we worked really closely with the NYPD to figure out a secure card and to determine what would be the right security steps to take. But you know, again, one thing I would urge everybody to think about a bit as we go through the journey going forward. People learn through experience, and over the course of the three years that was the timeline that was set for then being able to remove those records and destroy them, we learned that we did not need to keep them as backups. So from the beginning of this year we no longer required it, and as soon as the court case is concluded we will destroy that information, and I believe we will prevail in the court case. Yes? Question: Mr. Mayor I want to go back to the beginning where you were talking about your mandate. Mayor: Yes. Question: You know, there was this very low voter turnout and of those who did turn out there are those who did not support you. So how do you begin to persuade those folks – Mayor: I just – I have to stop you. Guys, an election is an election. People decide they wanted to participate. Now again, the state has broken electoral laws that is a generic, painful, wrong reality. It has to be fixed, but it does not negate the million plus people who came out to vote and they gave a very clear mandate. I’m just not going to, you know – you can go back through every election in history and parse it and question it and re-litigate it but we have one unified system. Everyone’s offered the opportunity and the people who participate make the decision. So this is a clear, strong mandate. But I’ll tell you something, if we fix the voter laws you’re going to instantaneously see a lot more involvement. Question: Your comment on there’s one City Council race where it appears that an incumbent may have lost, Elizabeth Crowley, and the man who challenged her, Robert Holden, is someone who has been a very outspoken critic of the administration and you know, part of some of those protests [inaudible] hotel in Maspeth. I’m wondering what you think of him joining the City Council potentially – Mayor: I don’t know him. I mean, he’s obviously a Republican and we don’t share values and I’ll try and work with him, although I suspect we won’t see eye to eye on most issues. That race is still being looked at and there may be a recount there. But, look, I don’t know what happened there because the overall trend in the city went the other way. So I don’t know what happened there. Question: Just to follow up quickly on David’s question before I ask my question on the federal path, you said you don’t have any plans at this point. Was that something that was under discussion by – Mayor: I have no plans, that’s all I want to say. Yeah? Question: My actual question is, in a city where Dems outnumber Republicans six to one, how is the two to one margin of victory a mandate? Mayor: I don’t know what your definition of an election is but my definition is that people decide to participate and whoever gets the most votes wins. And if you have two thirds margin that is a clear, strong mandate. And that came from everyone participating, Democrats, Independents, Republicans. So I think it’s unquestionably – I’m not shocked if your paper wants to denigrate it in some way, shape, or form but it’s a clear mandate and I’m thrilled to see that turnout is starting to go up. Go ahead. Question: [Inaudible] so many more Democratic in the city – Mayor: Go ahead. Question: The public hospital system is facing deficits of probably two billion or more dollars. Can you issue an ironclad promise that you’re not going to close any of these hospitals? Mayor: I’ve said it many times, all the facilities are going to be kept open. We’re going to do a lot of different things with them because healthcare is changing and we have to reach communities in new ways. But we’re going to keep the facilities open. Question: Mr. Mayor, good afternoon, you spoke about the – your agenda for the next four years, you said schools, affordable housing, job creation, but so far I haven’t heard anything about what appears to be your toughest task that you’ve committed yourself to which is closing Rikers Island. So my question is what measures are you going to take to make that happen starting now? Mayor: Well it begins with the land use process and the Council, and I think the fact that really a very admirable, noble thing happened in Queens, I think it deserves a lot of both respect and deserves coverage. That a group of Councilmembers came together proactively, including the Councilmember who represents the Queens House of Detention, and said this site should be used for an expanded facility. We want to start that land use process immediately and we want to start the processes in the other three boroughs immediately as soon as they can be begun. Everyone knows land use, just to – the land decision making process through ULURP is on a clock and that clock will have to run its course, and everyone knows that construction in New York City does not happen overnight. But that’s the first step and it’s going to happen aggressively. We continue to act on bail reform, on alternative sentencing initiatives, we continue to drive down arrests to begin with and drive down crime, that’s happening as we speak, you’ve seen it. I don’t know if you were at the last briefing on the monthly statistics but it’s happening more all the time. That’s affecting the flow into the correction system. The x-factor is getting the State to speed up trials which is solely a State responsibility. We need to push them on that and they need to step up on that. If they’ll speed up the trials that’s going to reduce the daily population of the correction system importantly. But first, number one ideal is move the ULURP process for those sites. Yes? Question: Mr. Mayor, you mentioned yesterday and today again that you hope that this is the beginning of a new era of Democratic and progressive rule in New York City. You also just mentioned the Tammany machine and its impact on voting laws. I mean, Republicans didn’t just lose yesterday in New York City with the exception of that seat in Queens, they lost abysmally. I mean do you think that one party rule, no matter who is winning, is really the best thing for the city? Mayor: Look, when I evoked – Tammany per se doesn’t exist anymore, we know that. But the reason I evoked it is that same mentality still pervades in Albany. Meaning, exclude inconvenient voters. Right? Unfortunately a lot of the political class would like to keep the voting base really small. And that’s Democratic and Republicans both. And that’s wrong. You should want to constantly expand the number of people who are voting and talk to them and convince them, not repress the growth of the voting population. So that’s why I evoke that very old-school idea which I think is still sadly current. But do I think Democratic leadership across the board would be best for the state? Of course I do. The Democratic Party is not a monolith; you can turn to Yoav and explain this to him, that Democrats actually have a whole range of ideas and concerns and they don’t all think alike and they don’t all vote in lock step. We don’t do block voting in the Democratic Party. People all make their own decisions. So, I think if you have the Democratic Party in charge of the Assembly and the Senate, Governorship, County Executives, Mayor of New York City, City Council of New York City, you’re going to have a more progressive city and state, you’re going to have a city and state that’s run better, but there’ll still be plenty of debate. There’ll still be plenty of differences. Question: Republicans did have control of the mayorship for almost 20 years – Mayor: Yes I was here. Question: Right. Depending on how – as was I. Depending on how you count it. But, so they’re not winning anymore in that way. What advice do you have for Republicans who are hoping to win in New York City? Mayor: I don’t think I’ll be offering them a lot of advice. I, look, I think one thing to recognize is that they’ve lost two elections in a row, but they won elections they should have never of won to begin with in 93 and in 2001. And therefore we should never take it for granted, never rest on our laurels. We have to build a progressive movement in this city and we have to build a stronger Democratic Party in this city and we have to involve a lot more people. So, I’m only going to give advice to Democrats. Yes Marcia? Question: At the end of your term you’ll be about 60-years-old, presumably you’ll have your health – Mayor: Thank you Marcia. Thank you. That was the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me. That was so good. That was a step forward Marcia. We’re going to bond over that. Question: Presumably you’ll also have the passion then that you have now so, I wonder if you plan on doing something else following your term or if you’ll retire from political life – Mayor: I’m going – Question: – be quite and do nothing? Mayor: Thank you. Go to the old folks’ home for former mayors. Way too far ahead. Right now it’s about preparing for the next term and the things we have to do for New York City. I do not have the luxury of thinking that far ahead. Gloria? Question: Two questions for you, one I want to go back to the Crowley race. Your team helped out in other races that were also somewhat competitive. Did you provide any help to Crowley’s race? And the candidate who might win is actually a registered Democrat. He ran as a Democrat in the primary – Mayor: But ran as a Republican. Question: Yes. Mayor: And I just want to stop you there and say I don’t understand Democrats who’d run as Republicans. So if you can run as a Republican in Donald Trump’s America, you just bought the whole label. I don’t know the guy, I’ll try and work with him, but he just signed up for something very troubling in my book. I don’t know who helped him and who didn’t honestly so. Question: Well back to the rental laws – Mayor: Yes. Question: Do you plan on taking it up when they expire or – Mayor: Again, I’m offering you an idea, not a game plan yet. We will be coming forward with an Albany agenda. This is the number one issue on the minds of New Yorkers, I think we can all agree on that. There’s a lot we can do right here in the city, the thing we can’t do is fix the fundamental rent regulation laws here and we can’t fix the MCI issue here. It has to be done in Albany. I’m going to be working for that to be done the first available opportunity. If it can be done ahead of the expiration it should be, if it has to wait to the expiration then that’s when we’ll do it. But I’m telling you, if we want to reach all the people we need to reach that’s one of the most essential things we can do. Okay let’s wrap up. Question: [Inaudible] Unknown: Two more guys, two more. Mayor: Go ahead. Question: [Inaudible] minds of many New Yorkers is obviously the subway system and last night in your speech you talked about the need, that got a lot of applause, the need for the subway system to start working. I’m wondering if you think these election results help you as you try to make the case for quicker repairs. And beyond the millionaire’s tax what immediately are you going to be doing to improve the situation for commuters. Mayor: Thank you, that’s a very good question. The first, absolutely having a mandate helps. You know, I think if you would just got to a survey of people who run for office and say how would you feel about winning two thirds of vote in an election, you would get a uniform ‘I’ll take that’ from people who run for office. So, a strong mandate always helps and it always creates energy. And I ran one of the biggest – one of the biggest planks I ran on was the millionaire’s tax and you saw the polling. It’s tremendously popular. So I think that is going – I think the two facts will affect peoples’ minds in Albany. One, they saw the polling too. They understand it’s tremendously popular. Two, I think my election helps propel it forward, but the number one reason to do it is fairness, and that we need a sustainable source of revenue for the MTA. But I’ll give you another good reason, there’s no other plan on the table. There’s literally no other plan on the table and the issue has to be addressed. Now this is about fixing the long term needs of the MTA and that can be done literally in a matter of month a plan could be approved and we could get right to work. This is literally the only option on the table, and it’s not my option alone. Its Senator Gianaris and Assembly member O'Donnell and a lot of other people. So, I think you’ll see real momentum for it. Right now, again, MTA has the resources for the immediate plan; the State should give them back the $456 million they owe them. We will help in every way with the police coverage if they need any additional police coverage, we’ll do that out of our pocket. Any additional emergency services, we’ll do that out of our pocket. Any additional work to address homelessness in the subway, we’ll do that out of our pocket, no question. But in terms of fixing the next few months, they clearly have enough resources for that. Let’s agree on the long term plan. That’s the thing that will really change the picture. Question: [Inaudible] do you intend to continue riding the subway – Mayor: Sure. Question: – on a semi-regular basis. I know in the lead up to the election you – Mayor: I will indeed, absolutely. I’ll see you more in the next few days. We’ll have plenty of time. Thanks everyone.
Wednesday, November 8, 2017 - 5:05pm
City pledges up to $1,000 in zero-interest loans for women launching crowdfunding campaigns to start or grow their businesses; City contribution will facilitate $3 million in loans and 500 new businesses in three years NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio and the not-for-profit crowdfunding platform Kiva.org today launched WE Fund: Crowd, a first-of-its-kind City-led crowdfunding program to help women entrepreneurs access affordable capital and start businesses in New York City. Through Kiva, women entrepreneurs can apply for crowdfunded loans of up to $10,000 and the City will contribute the first 10% of their loan request. The program is designed to reach at least 500 businesses over three years. “Leveling the playing field for women entrepreneurs will help grow and diversify our economy, and strengthen our families and neighborhoods,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “With Kiva, we will help launch small businesses that might otherwise never get off the ground.” “Connecting women entrepreneurs directly to investors gives them access to seed money they need to open stores, restaurants and fashion companies in neighborhoods across New York City. As we continue to focus on stabilizing communities, growing jobs and supporting women in business, this collaboration with Kiva.org is simple and smart,” Alicia Glen, Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development said. “This joint initiative aims to drive social impact as well as provide crowdfunded capital to women who are traditionally denied loans,” said Jonny Price, Senior Director of Kiva U.S. “At a national level, if women were to receive a proportional amount of traditional small business loans, lending to women would increase almost sevenfold. This partnership is so important it can go a long way in demonstrating a path forward for entrepreneurial women across the country.” WE Fund: Crowd helps address the gender entrepreneurship gap: * Seventy percent of women entrepreneurs in New York City cite access to capital as a major challenge as they launch and grow companies. * While approximately half of women entrepreneurs in New York City seek less than $10,000 when launching a business, traditional financial products are often unavailable in small amounts and non-traditional financial products typically come with high interest rates. Entrepreneurs interested in the program should visit . How WE Fund: Crowd works: * The City will contribute the first 10% of an entrepreneur’s crowdfunding goal when they launch their campaign. * This loan from the City will be confirmed when the entrepreneur meets their full fundraising goal. * The City’s contribution is capped at $1,000 per campaign and includes no-interest repayment terms for up to 42 months. * In total, the City’s commitment will facilitate more than $3 million in loans. * Lenders: Visitors to can choose the woman entrepreneur they want to help crowdfund with a loan of $25 or more. As the entrepreneur repays, lenders can relend to another person or withdraw their money and put it back in their pocket. Neither lenders nor Kiva make any money from the loans facilitated. The City will provide the first 10% of the loan to help the entrepreneur reach her crowdfunding goal. * Borrowers: Kiva’s loans are available up to $10,000 and are designed to reach women-owned small businesses locked out of traditional lending. Loans are offered at 0% interest, no fees, no minimum credit score, collateral, or minimum years of operation. Ninety-five percent of loan requests are fully fundraised, which is rare among crowdfunding sites. This partnership with New York City is the first time that Kiva has worked on a government-supported crowdfunding initiative to provide seed money specifically for women entrepreneurs. Founded in 2005, Kiva is an international nonprofit with a mission to connect people through lending to alleviate poverty and expand economic opportunity. Kiva has connected 2.5 million entrepreneurs in 83 countries with over $1 billion in loans crowdfunded by 2 million individuals. WE Fund: Crowd is also partnering with Kickstarter, Indiegogo, GoFundMe, and CrowdCrux to create digital tools to increase women’s participation and success in crowdfunding campaigns. Those interested may also register for the WE NYC: Show Me the Money conference on November 21st at NYU’s Kimmel Center. The program will cover an array of topics related to business finance, including crowdfunding and other accessible financing options. WE Fund: Crowd is part of WE NYC, a women’s entrepreneurship initiative launched by the City’s Department of Small Business Services in 2015. WE NYC connects women to mentoring, expert advice and customized business and leadership courses to help them start and grow successful businesses. WE NYC has engaged nearly 4,000 women across New York City. “The City is invested in women entrepreneurs and today we are proving it by launching an innovative program to help more women raise the capital they need to succeed,” said Gregg Bishop, Commissioner of the City’s Department of Small Business Services. “Having the City as their first investor will help women entrepreneurs build momentum in their crowdfunding campaigns and attract additional investors.” “Investing in quality opportunities for women entrepreneurs is a critical part of our work to support small businesses and eliminate barriers to success,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President and CEO James Patchett. “Through our partnership with SBS, we are excited to launch this new crowdfunding platform to ensure that women-owned businesses have the necessary resources to succeed.” “For too long, minority and women entrepreneurs have faced barriers to accessing capital which is essential to the success of any business. WE Fund: Crowd is another program in the City’s toolbox to help break these barriers down and help foster the entrepreneurial spirit in New York City. I would like to thank SBS and Kiva.org for partnering and bringing this much needed program to women entrepreneurs,” said Jonnel Doris, Senior Advisor and Director of the Mayor’s Office of Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises. “It’s hard to get loans from traditional banks. This program is great for entrepreneur women who want to start or expand their businesses,” said Mona Birjeeb, owner of Safari, a Harlem Restaurant who used Kiva to raise funds to expand her business. “WE Fund: Crowd is exactly what is needed to close the funding gap for women entrepreneurs living in New York City,” said Salvador Briggman, Founder of CrowdCrux. “Without a doubt, this will boost innovation, job growth, and tax revenues for the region. Funding is the lifeblood of any new company. A program like this has never been tried before and it has the opportunity to spur growth, development, and attract valuable talent to New York City.” “As an institution that provides access to capital for small businesses, we’re proud to support this progressive program to help women entrepreneurs get the affordable capital they need to succeed, in Brooklyn and throughout New York City,” said Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Andrew Hoan. “The commitment from the Mayor, NYCEDC and NYC SBS to jump-start crowdfunding opportunities through Kiva will help to foster the city’s continued economic development and help women-owned small businesses proliferate.” “I believe that WE Fund: Crowd, a first-of-its-kind City-led crowdfunding program to help women entrepreneurs access affordable capital and start businesses in New York City is an excellent program to give women a competitive edge in launching a business,” said Nunzio Del Greco, President and CEO of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce. “Studies show that women are particularly successful at crowdfunding,” said Jessica Walker, president and CEO of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce. “Investing in this area is a smart way to support women entrepreneurs who need capital to grow.” “It is good to see the city is focused on bringing new sources of funding to woman entrepreneurs. Initiatives like this will provide the seed money to encourage innovative start-ups to realize their vision and passion and launch new businesses throughout the city, “ said Linda Baran, President and CEO of the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce. “The Queens Chamber of Commerce wholeheartedly supports this initiative”, says Thomas J. Grech, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Women are an important part of our small business economy and as we continue to grow our Chamber, we want to be inclusive of all entrepreneurs, especially women-owned and operated ventures” “According to research conducted by the City of New York with support from Citi, 90 percent of women entrepreneurs funded more than 70 percent their business start-up out of their own personal savings, indicating a lack of access to other sources of funding,” said Eileen Auld, NY Tristate Director, Citi Community Development. “Through WE NYC’s leadership, women entrepreneurs in New York City will soon benefit from funding platforms, paired with training and support services, specifically designed to expand access to capital.”
Monday, November 6, 2017 - 5:10pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio: Welcome, everyone. We’re gathered for a somber occasion but one that is so important both to the people of Argentina and to the people of New York City and our entire country. Chirlane and I want to thank President Macri and First Lady Awada for being here at this very important, difficult time. We live 5,000 miles apart but we feel a tremendous sense of unity and a deep connection right now. And we share the same heartache, we share the same grief because this is a loss we have in common. I want to thank all the members of my administration and all the representatives of the Argentine government who are here. Mr. President, on Tuesday, we all felt a sense of shock and you see this setting – this peaceful, tranquil setting where good, innocent people were enjoying the beauty of this city. And that’s what we understand about the horror of terrorism that it is aimed at the innocent, it’s aimed at the unassuming, and it’s meant to change us and undermine us, to make us doubt ourselves and our values. Eight innocent lives were cruelly taken right along this pathway. Our prayers are with the victims and with their families. We feel their grief. It doesn’t matter what hemisphere they call home, it doesn’t matter what nationality, we feel the grief in common. But let’s be clear, this was not just an attack on eight individuals. It was not just an attack on New York City, it was not just an attack on the United States of America, it was an attack on all of humanity. It was meant to tear us apart, to undermine our faith in each other. It was an attack the values we share as people who love freedom, who appreciate a pluralistic society, who believe we can all get along. Six of those who were lost were visiting New York City from other countries including a mother of two from Belgium. The country that lost the most was Argentina – five of your citizens, who we honor and mourn today. Everyone knows the story now – a group of ten friends, friends for a lifetime, who came here to celebrate that bond. It’s even more painful to know that what they were doing was such an affirmation of all that is good about life. They ended up being the victims. Mr. President, we will forever remember them as New Yorkers and feel they are a part of us. This city is proud to be a place for every kind of person. We’re proud to be a place where every faith, every nationality, people of every walk of life come together each day not in perfect harmony but in the spirit of living and let live. And that is the very thing the terrorists want to undermine – a place where everyone can respect each other, where all faiths are treated with equality is an affront to the terrorist ideology. It’s even more important that we affirm our faith in each other and our commitment to continuing to be a place for everyone. We will always be open and welcome to people of all backgrounds, to visitors from all over the world. And even in the depths of our grief, we will not stop being who we are and we will not change our values. And I have to just thank all the people of New York City for the way they addressed this crisis by immediately showing the terrorists would not change our way of life. Nothing was more powerful than the marathon yesterday. Two million people came out just days after this attack, 125 nations were represented among the runners, what an example of what we all aspire to and what we remain committed to. Just a few words in Spanish – [Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish] With that, it is an honor to welcome the President of Argentina, Mauricio Macri. President of Argentina, Mauricio Macri: Good morning, everybody. Thank you, Mayor de Blasio for your words. And as I told you before, especially I want to thank you in the name of all the Argentines for the care given to the Argentine group and their family. [President Macri speaks in Spanish]
Monday, November 6, 2017 - 5:10pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio: That is a really big apple. Bill, you – you have been honored for good reason. I want to thank you for all you have done for New York City and I think everyone can agree that Bill Rudin’s open personality, his embrace of this whole city, his ability to work with everyone in common cause to better our city has meant so much to all of us. And it’s a lot of work to bring people together in this place, eight and a half million people, eight and a half different and strong opinions, but we all love our city deeply. And no one more than Bill Rudin. So Bill – a fantastic job over 17 years – thank you for all you’ve done. And you have passed the torch to a fine choice. Steven, I just want to thank you for taking on this responsibility. You too have that ability to work with everyone and hear everyone, and you’re going to help us make New York City a better place. Let’s congratulate Steven everyone. [Applause] I also want to offer my thanks and congratulations to all the members of the Rudin family because everyone – when it comes to the Rudins they’re all in this together helping the city so, thanks to all the members of the family. I want to thank all of the members of my administration who are here, and I just want to take a moment as we get to the close of four very long and intense years to say I’ve been so privileged to serve with my colleagues of this administration. They have been really exemplars of public service. I couldn’t be happier with the people I’ve been blessed to serve with. I want to thank all of them. I want to give special thanks to First Deputy Mayor Tony Shorris, Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen, and Deputy Mayor Richard Buery all of whom are with us. If you would join me please in saluting the leadership of this administration. [Applause] Thanks to all the elected officials who are present, thanks for all you do. A special thanks to Congressman Jerry Nadler who – Jerry Nadler fights battles every day in Washington that are let’s just say things we did not anticipate. And Jerry, you’re doing a great job standing up for this city and for this country. Thank you, Jerry. And a huge congratulations to all the marathon winners, Shalane Flanagan in particular makes us proud. The marathon is when we celebrate the coming together of all nations and people joining in harmony. It’s a beautiful event, 125 nations were represented by the runners. But, we are also patriotic Americans so it’s really great to see an American woman win isn’t it? That’s – so we’re really happy about that. [Applause] So the marathon puts a lot in perspective. We had a very tough week last week and one of those moments that really tells you so much about who we are as New Yorkers. It would not have been surprising after a tragedy such as occurred on Tuesday if people withdrew, if people felt a sense of unease and pulled back from their lives. No one would have blamed them but what was so outstanding about this city is everyone understood the attack on us for what it was, it was an attempt to undermine our values, it was an attempt to undermine our democratic society, to change who we are. And New Yorkers were so quick to reject the idea that anyone could change who we are. And I saw it at the Halloween Parade, who knew that that event would take on such powerful meaning. But, within hours of an attack a million New Yorkers were out in force, going about their lives, celebrating all that’s great about this city. And then we saw it again at the marathon, two million people together enjoying all that’s great about humanity. Doesn’t that make you proud to be a New Yorker? [Applause] I remind you we are targeted for a reason, because this city exemplifies a pluralistic society. This is a place for people of all faiths, all nationalities, people speak all languages can actually work together and live and let live. That is an affront to the terrorists’ ideology. We are proof positive that they are wrong and therefore they have to attack us. But New Yorkers, again, understood our obligation to our city and also to our nation to stand strong, to be unmoved by any effort to undermine us. So it’s a proud time, a painful time for sure, but a proud time for New Yorkers as well. Now that reality of this city, a place for everyone, I talk about a lot and I am a product of that reality. Grandparents who came here from far away seeking opportunity, having that chance, nothing was perfect by any stretch but New York was and remains an open city. And the fact that it is open to all, the fact that everyone has a chance to make it is what has made us great. It has created a city of strivers and great creative minds and entrepreneurs and its intrinsic to our success is that we are open and inclusive and that opportunity is available. And that has informed everything we do. Bill mentioned some of the things I’ve had the honor to talk about from this stage. He mentioned the Pre-K initiative, for example, which I first put forward to the world from this stage in 2012. He mentioned the Equity and Excellence plan for our schools. The notion underlining all of it is to keep New York New York to keep that flame alive, to keep that ability of New Yorkers to reach opportunity, to keep that real, to not ever let anyone be excluded. And let’s face it, we are living in a time where things have changed. We’re living in a time where we’re confronting challenges we couldn’t have imagined just 20 years ago. I think everyone here would agree that the affordability crisis that we have today and the way it reaches into every part of the city was unimaginable just a couple of decades ago. Our job is to address it. Our job is to address the new reality of what our economy requires of workers and of our young people going to school. Our obligation is to come up with new solutions. And so, we did that with Pre-K and we look forward with everyone’s help here to doing that with 3-K because three-years-olds deserve an early childhood education for free don’t you think? [Applause] We did that by bringing police and community closer together. What a striking fact that stop-and-frisk is down 93 percent, crime is down four years in a row, and complaints against officers are down to a 15 year low proving that together we can be safer. We are doing that in our schools by increasing graduation rates and improving test scores, and that’s happening in all 32 districts of this city. And we’re doing that by building an economy. Everyone in this room contributed to the amazing economic success we’ve had over these last four years, and I want to thank you, anyone who thinks any one of us does it alone misses the reality. I want to offer my profound thanks to everyone here because when you add 350,000 plus jobs in four years well that takes a village for sure. So I’d like to say that’s something we all should be very proud of, 350,000 more jobs plus in the last four years. I’d ask everyone applaud your neighbor because everyone helped build that reality in our city. [Applause] But despite the fact that we have proven that we can address the challenges of our times and we can do things that truly keep New York City an open city, an inclusive city, a city of opportunity. There still looms real danger. And the danger of us losing our essential character is real. We should be concerned that we never fall into the trap of becoming an exclusive place, that we don’t become a gilded city, that we don’t become a large gated community. We will not be New York City anymore if every day people can’t afford to live here and if they can’t find real opportunity here. We need to understand just like those giants of the 1970s understood the treat that faced our city then, we need to understand the threat that faces us now. And we need to be devoted to constantly coming up with better and better solutions. Now I want to give you an example of our affordable housing plan. I love to quote a well-known expert in the housing field who when we originally unveiled the notion of an affordable housing plan that would create and preserve 200,000 apartments in 10 years, the quote I received from this expert – very sympathetic, kind, someone who wanted to be as helpful as possible, and he said ‘Bill, that is this close to insane’ and I took that as a badge of honor that we had found the ultimate stretch goal. Well I want to tell you, the team I want to commend Deputy Mayor Glen and everyone at HPD and HDC and City Planning and all of the elements, EDC, everyone in the City government who took on that goal, believed in it no matter how stunning it was, no matter how challenging it was, believed in it, believed they could innovate, believed they could reach a level that wasn’t reached before. You know the standard used to be we could build and preserve about 15,000 apartments in a year that would be affordable. This team promptly went and showed they could do 20,000 a year and then they started to surpass that number. Well when you see goals being met and then surpassed, when you see a plan not only on budget but ahead of schedule, it begs the question can we go farther? So I turn to the Deputy Mayor team and I said give me a new stretch goal, tell me how much farther we can go because there is a vast need, a vast yearning in this city for affordable housing. I have had 43 town hall meetings during this administration, I talk to everyday New Yorkers all day long and I’ll tell you something, the number one issue by far, the number one concern, the number one fear is the possibility that they won’t be won’t be able to live in their own city. Even for so many who did so much to make it great, families who have been here for in some cases generations, wondering if this is – these are the last years they’ll get to be here. So the mandate I gave was let’s go farther. And we recognize that we could achieve our 200,000 apartment goal not in 10 years but in just eight years. And we recognized that we could bring production up to 25,000 apartments a year and therefore we set a new goal, 300,000 affordable apartments. 300,000 – enough for 750,000 New Yorkers to remain in the city they love. That is essentially the size of the City of Boston. Imagine that, enough affordable housing for everyone in Boston but right here in our city where the need is so great. Please join me in thanking Deputy Mayor Glen and her whole team for what they have achieved. [Applause] And when I talk to those audiences around the city I say you know it also dawned on us there are two ways to keep things affordable. And the first, of course, is to take the number one expense in peoples’ lives, the housing expense and make it affordable, but the second is to just constantly increase income. And we’ve tried to do that in a number of ways including initiatives that were crucial to this administration in the beginning, raising minimum wage, creating deeper paid sick leave policy, things that would reach millions of New Yorkers and improve their lives. We have to go a lot farther. So we determined that we would create a job creation plan based on targeted government investments, creating jobs that would not have been built otherwise because we invested where it was needed. The goal is 100,000 jobs, but not just any jobs – jobs that will pay at least $50,000 per year, which for so many New Yorkers would be a huge improvement in their circumstance. And it comes from targeting investment in the tech sector, in the life sciences sector – which is one that excites me greatly, with the right investment is one that could take off here – in film and TV, and advanced manufacturing, and so many areas that with the right government intervention and support can grow far beyond their current boundaries. So the sky is the limit for this city’s economy, and we will make sure as we build this economy that it’s a five borough economy. This is something we talked about a lot four years ago, and it’s really been visible in recent years. Economic growth is happening in all five boroughs, and it needs to stay that way, and it needs to deepen, and we need to make sure the people from this city get those jobs, and it’s part of how we keep New York New York. So when I put together those pieces, I can report to you some very good news. We are by every measure a prosperous city right now. Our economy has tremendous potential. There are a number of sectors poised for growth. We see the basics improving – our streets safer, our schools getting better. There’s a lot we could feel good about, and if only that were the whole story we could leave here today very content that we were on the right path and we just have to keep working hard to build on it. But the danger to New York City isn’t here – it’s 200 miles down I-95. The danger to New York City and to our growth and to our potential is a series of policies emanating from Washington, and sadly the one that could do the most damage is the one that’s being debated right now. President Trump’s tax plan takes dead-aim at New York City. It would undermine the success that we have achieved, and despite the hype it would undermine the middle class in this city – and I would say all over the country. We understand that what is being portrayed is not a middle class tax cut. I want to be very, very clear. This is not a middle class tax cut. It’s a shell game. It is an illusion, and middle class people who have struggled so hard in this city and beyond are in for a rude awakening if this plan passes. We have to understand that all the changes that are projected, all of the personal deductions that would be taken away – the notion of state and local tax deductibility alone being taken away. This fundamentally undermines the lives of so many families. It creates a reality of double taxation. And I think this is a room of worldly, wise people, and you would agree with me something like state and local tax deductibility – it’s been a part of American life since 1913 – over a century. But if it is taken away, you will never see it again. If that right which was meant to give people opportunity and help them live a better life – if that right is taken away, it will be gone forever, and it will undermine working families and middle class families. Meanwhile, we are promised all sorts of tax cuts, but they are inherently – even if they occur – they are inherently temporary. The thing that’s protected us – the deductibility – will be gone forever. The tax cuts, maybe we’ll see them, maybe we won’t. Maybe they’ll be for a few years. Maybe they won’t. It’s not a safe bet to say the federal government will never raise taxes again, but taking away our right to deductibility undermines us all fundamentally. One hundred million Americans – some people have portrayed this as a niche issue, only affecting a few states, and they said ‘oh look, they’re blue states, oh it’s payback.’ No, no – it’s very, very different. One hundred million people in a nation of 330 million. It’s a huge swath, and it’s not just a few blue states. It’s states in the heartland. It’s states all over the country that would be negatively affected, and that realization is coming to bear. Whether you live on the Atlantic or the Pacific or the Rio Grande or Lake Michigan, there are people who are going to be hurt by this tax plan, and they’re starting to understand it. And they’re starting to engage. So it’s a universal challenge, but I also want to be clear President Trump’s tax plan will hurt nowhere more than his own home town, and this is a sad commentary. And I think it’s fair to say he understands life in this city, and I find it strange that he would come up with a plan that would undermine us so deeply. There are more than 700,000 New York City families that would see a tax hike if this plan were passed as is right now – 700,000 New York City families. The vast majority of them earn less than $200,000, so that means working class and middle class families would bear the brunt. How much more would they pay cumulatively in taxes? $3.7 billion. Just those families in New York City - $3.7 billion more out of their pocket. That’s what double taxation looks like. And there’s also a painful delayed release reality to this plan. Some people may not do so bad in the first year but will see taxes go up more and more in subsequent years. It’s like a boomerang effect for middle class families. Here’s the other reality – what it will do to our city budget and our ability to serve. Look, we have undertaken an approach that has proven it produces result. We have an investment oriented model in this administration. We believe in investing in the people of New York City. We believe in ensuring the City provides the services that will help us all grow. We put 2,000 more police officers on patrol in this city. That helped us to make the city safer. It helped us to build neighborhood policing, to improve the social fabric, to bring police and community together. It helped us to create the 500-member-plus Critical Response Command, so we would have the strongest anti-terror capacity of any police force in the country. That took investment. It took investment to create pre-K. It took investment to improve the ability of our Sanitation Department to keep our streets clean and clear the storm after snow storms. These things don’t happen by accident, and they don’t happen without resources. But these are investments that paid off. Here’s the problem with the tax plan – at minimum it takes away $1.5 trillion in federal revenue. $1.5 trillion. And look, we can all debate the meaning of that loss of revenue. I would say very bluntly, and I’ve always come before this audience with great respect but also trying to be a truth teller. I don’t think the $1.5 trillion tax cut for wealthy Americans and corporations is the best way to move this country forward. But whether you like it or don’t like it – here’s the problem, $1.5 trillion less in revenue will eventually create an impact on this city. Will it all just be deficit spending? Maybe. But I find it hard to believe. That loss of revenue will express itself as cuts to the support for this city and other cities around the country. So it will take away money ultimately, I believe, from support for mass transit and infrastructure, which we desperately need to keep growing and to be strong. It will take away support for education. It will take away support for public safety and for anti-terror activities. You can’t take that much out of the federal budget and expect it not to hurt this city and cities all over the country. And here’s the challenge, and everyone in this room knows it. We are more and more the engines of the economy. The cities of our nation are helping to build up our economic strength. We’re creating the jobs. We’re where so much is happening that’s good for everyone in this country. This plan will undermine the ability of cities to maintain their growth and to address their most fundamental problems. So, we need to see this for what it is, and we need to understand that later the impact of this plan will start to be felt when it comes to Social Security and Medicare and Medicaid, the very things that have helped guarantee a decent society and the ability of people to survive even in tough economic times. I will tell you that amidst this challenge there have been some really extraordinary acts of leadership. I want to particularly commend Senator Schumer for leading the charge against this tax plan, and I think his leadership in the Senate has been outstanding and so important for this city. [Applause] But I want to inject some honest bipartisanship into this discussion. I have been so struck in working with my fellow mayors around the country how we have been shoulder to shoulder democrats and republicans alike to challenge this tax plan or to fight the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. What’s amazing – and it’s a good news story – is there are republican mayors all over the country who recognize that these decisions will hurt their constituents and the growth of their cities, and they have stepped up, too. And in the Congress, outstanding – and it is the only word appropriate because it’s really, visibly extraordinary – the leadership of Congressman Donovan, Congressman King, and Congressman Zeldin fighting against what’s wrong with this tax plan. [Applause] Joining me in opposition to the tax plan are my traditional allies and closest political confidantes – the National Association of Home Builders, the National Association of Realtors, and the National Federation of Independent Business. To say the least, something about this plan is bringing out a bipartisan spirit and something universal in recognizing the danger it would create. And I know that as more and more people understand in this city and beyond the impact more and more opposition will rise; more and more questioning of how something of this magnitude is force through with very, very limited debate; how much danger could be created to our real estate market, to our tax base, to our ability to grow economically, to our ability to be a fair society – all of that it up for grabs right now. So I ask everyone in this room right now to join into this effort to stop this plan, to stop it from having such negative impact on all the progress we have achieved together. I want to invoke history for one moment as I conclude. You know, this organization has done so much for the city, and as everyone knows this organization was founded at one of our most dire moments. There were a lot of people as the fiscal crisis was progressing who really were literally about to give up on New York City, who could not see any potential rebound. Well thank God, the founders of ABNY and so many other good people believed that New York City could come back. Some of them are no longer with us, but I wish they were because they would be stunned by the strength that we see today. It would be a wonderful gift we could give them if they could just see for a moment how their faith was rewarded. But a very specific historical fact – Lew Rudin who did so much for this city, one of the earliest battles he undertook of behalf of this organization was to fight against a proposal to end deduction of state and local taxes made by President Ronald Regan, and ABNY and so many others stepped up and protected that right for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers. A reminder that we see lots of challenges, but we also have tremendous ability in this city to overcome them. So I conclude with this – we have fought these fights before and won. We have seen challenges from Washington many a time and overcame them. This city right now – we have a lot to be proud of. Everyone has been a part of it, and I thank everyone in this room, everyone has been a part of this success. But we have eyes to see – crimes going down, schools are getting better, jobs are increasing, something is working. We can’t risk it. We can’t risk going backwards. Can’t risk losing our progress. We can’t have it taken away from us from, of all places, our nation’s capital. We know what to do in this city. This city has the ability to do bold and important things faster and better than ever. That’s something to be very proud of, and now we’re going to need to fight shoulder to shoulder to protect that reality and to ensure this will always remain a city for everyone. Thank you. God bless you all. Bill Rudin: We have a few minutes for some Q and A, so, anybody have a question for the Mayor? Yes, Mr. Thompkins right there? Hold on, microphones coming in hot. Mayor: There is supposed to be a microphone Bill Rudin: Yeah, where is the mic? Mayor: Theoretically there’s a microphone. Bill Rudin: Go ahead. Mayor: You can start. Question: [Inaudible] there is also – done an amazing job with respect to counterterrorism, both in first responder, rapid response, but also staying ahead of the curve. How do incidents like the things that happened last week, how are they affecting NYPD’s and the City’s plans, counter-terrorism plans going forward. Mayor: Thank you. When I started working with the NYPD so closely in this role, what was striking to me was the incessant, strategic work that was done, certainly with the fight against terror, but also in crime fighting. I think this was, in one part the brilliance of Bill Bratton and what he started with COMPSTAT that pervaded the whole department and certainly Jim O’Neill has taken that mantle and taken us even further. The notion that we cannot stand pat, we can never assume that the strategy we are using is sufficient in an ever changing world, that pervades everything being done at the NYPD, but particularly in terms of our counter-terrorism activities. So I would tell you the simple answer is we combine tremendous intelligence gathering capacity, including having some of our detectives assigned overseas to help get very current, very realistic assessments of what’s going on with a heavily resourced apparatus here focused on prevention. So, you know, I’m sorry to have to say it, but expect that very visible, physical presence of the NYPD including well-armed, well-trained anti-terrorism officers, expect that for years to come until this threat passes. But the adjustments are made incessantly. So, literally within hours of that attack, the question was, what changes and modifications make sense whether is adding additional barriers, physically in some areas, or other kinds of deployments of officers, and then looking ahead, what are the unfortunate trends that we may have to address going forward. A simple example, you know, we saw what happened in Nice, we saw what happened in Berlin, that the attacks on big public gatherings were a particular challenge. So now, you will notice, big parades, Thanksgiving parade, St. Patrick’s, all sorts of gatherings, no vehicles are allowed to cross them anymore. There is a huge number of blocker trucks up and there is a real discipline about imposing order on that situation, not allowing anybody thru who is not authorized. We will keep making those changes, and look, sometimes it will be an inconvenience to the everyday lives of New Yorkers, but it will keep people safe. Bill Rudin: Yes, sir in the – Question: Good Morning, Jonathan Bowles, Center for an Urban Future. First off, Mayor, thanks so much for your plan 100,000 good jobs, I agree it’s such – the important gap in the economy and economic development today. My question is about Amazon, I’m glad your administration has put in the bid for Amazon’s second headquarter and the 50,000 very good jobs that are part of it. How important is to you that New York get Amazon, and what exactly are we as a city offering to help us beat out all the other cities in the race? Mayor: First of all, Jonathan, thank you for the great work you and your colleagues do, which we pay a lot of attention to at City Hall, so thank you for that. We offer Amazon the greatest city in the world. I’m not making it up. That’s the number one thing we offer. [Applause] We offer Amazon – look we are very enthusiastic about Amazon, we are going to work hard, our teams are already been working very hard to put forward the best possible proposals to provide any and all information to Amazon that will help with them in their decision, we will roll out the red carpet in every way. But, I honestly believe our best selling points, best workforce in the country and an abundance of that workforce, you know, I don’t want to belittle any other city, a lot of great cities in this country, but if you – if the mission of Amazon in creating a second headquarters is to develop that strong workforce and to have another location that can be that focal point, where, anywhere in this country, or any other country is there a stronger workforce than what we have right here? And a place where people want to be, and let’s face it, we all understand this, one of the interesting dynamics of talent acquisition today is talent is choosy about where they want be, and more and more really talented, really creative people want to be here. And then, the other tremendous reality is that we can connect Amazon to all other economic sectors right here in a way that is much hard to do in other places. So, we will do everything in our power, I know the State feels the same way, I’ve been clear there are some things that other cities are choosing to do that we don’t believe is the right way to approach it, but it when it comes to very energetic effort to reach Amazon to convince them to show them all sorts of great opportunities including great physical options. The sites we put forward are outstanding and I think fit their needs but also will be extraordinarily appealing to the talent they are seeking and we are going to work it very hard, and look, I like to believe it’s hard to say no to everything that is great about New York City. Rudin: One more question, we’ll go over here. Question: Morning, Mayor. Mayor: Good morning. Question: You have – as you know frustration with the inequities and disparities in the property tax has built up to the point that there is now a lawsuit pending challenging it supported by many people in this room. You’ve said that you don’t think litigation is the right way to handle this problem and that you intend to work on it in your second term. Could you share with us what you think needs to be addressed? And how you plan to work on this? Mayor: Thank you, absolutely. First of all the people have to decide whether they want to renew my employment contract. So were going to work hard for the next two days and then we’ll see what they choose. If they choose me, we’re going to get to work on this in a very big and focused manner. I’ll tell you why I think the lawsuit is wrong to begin with – and I understand the frustration, I obviously do. I’ve talked to a lot of people who feel it. And there is no question that his current property tax system is broken in many ways. But I caution – you know, be careful what you wish for. When you put things in a hand of a judge, you never know where it’s going. And there is a reason why we have a legislative process, and there is a reason why we have an executive branch of government to make decisions in this magnitude and not to turn them over to a judiciary. Really this is not their function to make policy like that. I’ve said it very clearly; we’ll gather all the stake holders. It will probably take a year or two to complete this work. It will certainly take both city and state legislation. But here are the ground rules that I see going forward. Wildly inconsistent system has to be made more consistent. I hear from people across different neighborhoods how blatantly unfair their property tax bills are and literally the way they change from neighborhood to neighborhood that makes no sense per say. Obviously people live in condos, co-ops versus single family homes, the disparities there. There are so many issues that we have to get under the skin of that are really thorny, and really difficult. But were going to have to be blunt about it, we’re going to have to really be open about some of the tough choices, and then further we have to protect our revenue levels. I’ve been at a lot of these town hall meetings people raised almost always raised property taxes. Usually from a homeowner point of you, and then I say to them look; it’s going to be a massive undertaking. We will come up with a more consistent, more transparent, more fair system. But I want to put a caveat on it. We can’t reduce our revenue substantially. If we do that and I look at people in the eye and say if we’re going to reduce our revenue substantially it might feel great at first. But then we can’t have the same number of police officers, or we can’t sustain early childhood education, or we can’t provide the same sanitation services. Do you want that? And two a one I want to be fair to the people of this city, including to some of the most virulent critics of what I’ve been doing. They stopped dead at that point. They say no, I don’t want to lose of those services. In fact they were very happy there is more officers on patrol. Almost everyone has been really happy about pre-K. So that’s the rug. Creating fairness in an open manner, a transparent process that will ultimately show people how all of the pieces fit without substantially changing the revenue picture. But I will say, I am ready to do it, it will take a lot of time and energy but I am ready to do it. And it’s not the kind of mission a lot of people want to take on in public life. But I’ve said it, because I mean it. And I will just say this one personal plug. When I say something that definitively, I mean it. I said we’d do pre-K, I said we’d do 200,000 affordable apartments; you know, I said we would bring down stop and frisk. You name it we’ve done it. We will create a tax reform, a property tax reform that will end up with a better and fairer system for this city. [Applause] Thank you.
Monday, November 6, 2017 - 5:10pm
NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced a new phase of WildlifeNYC – a campaign launched last October to teach New Yorkers how to live responsibly alongside the wild animals that inhabit the city. The citywide campaign will now focus on a specific action: “Please don’t feed NYC’s wildlife.” Starting today, new ads will be visible on buses, subways, phone kiosks and street pole banners in all five boroughs. The ads will feature mallards, deer, raccoons, coyotes and red-tailed hawks. “In order to coexist peacefully and responsibly with our city’s wildlife, it’s important not to feed animals. This new campaign will make sure New Yorkers get the message – and learn more about living alongside our urban wildlife,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Most people think they’re doing a good deed by feeding ducks and other wild animals,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “But if you share your food with them, they’ll lose their natural hunting instincts. Some of these animals have mastered the art of begging, but they are resourceful New Yorkers and have access to plenty of nutritious food in our city and parks.” The WildlifeNYC website provides guidelines for safely coexisting with raccoons, coyotes, piping plovers, red-tailed hawks, waterfowl and deer, as well as fun facts, information about animal behavior and background on how the City is helping to manage and care for these populations. As part of the campaign, New Yorkers can report their interesting wildlife sightings through a web portal on the WildlifeNYC, to help us learn more about the wildlife that call NYC home. One of WildlifeNYC’s core initiatives is the City’s deer management program on Staten Island. NYC Parks estimates there are about 2,000 deer on Staten Island, causing vehicle collisions and damaging trees and native plants. The City has developed a multi-pronged plan to address these negative impacts, including traffic safety measures and the humane sterilization of male deer. To date, more than 1,000 males have been sterilized. To learn more about WildlifeNYC, visit .
Monday, November 6, 2017 - 11:35am
NEW YORK—Mayor de Blasio today signed Intro. 1313-A that expands paid leave to domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and trafficking survivors. This new law will allow the nearly 3 million New Yorkers eligible for paid leave to attend to immediate safety needs without fear of penalty or loss of income. The bill was introduced by the Mayor, First Lady McCray and Council Member Julissa Ferraras-Copeland in October 2016. “No New Yorker should ever have to decide between their safety and a paycheck,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “This new law will make it easier for survivors to get the care they need without jeopardizing their livelihood. I want to thank the First Lady, Speaker Mark-Viverito and Council Member Ferraras-Copeland for championing this cause, and fighting to bring an end to the pernicious cycle of domestic abuse.” "Individuals experiencing intimate partner abuse should not be forced to choose between earning a living and keeping themselves and their children safe. They need the time and space to consult police or prosecutors, seek medical attention or relocate to another neighborhood. I'm proud to stand alongside Mayor de Blasio to make Paid Safe Leave a reality in New York City so survivors can access the services they desperately need without fear of losing their job,” said First Lady Chirlane McCray, Co-Chair of the Commission on Gender Equity. “No one should have to choose between their safety or their employment," said Speaker Mark-Viverito."Providing New Yorkers with paid safe leave will help ensure that domestic violence survivors can get the help they need without fear of retribution. I thank Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland for her leadership on this critical issue and the Administration on their continued partnership as we work to make our City safer and more just for all New Yorkers." Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland said: “Today, we once again demonstrate that New York City is a safe place for survivors of domestic violence. With the Mayor’s signing of this important legislation, victims of domestic violence, sexual harassment, and human trafficking will be able to take the time needed to procure protection and services needed to move forward with their lives, without having to worry about losing their job or income. I want to thank Mayor de Blasio, their First Lady, and the Speaker for their partnership on this proposal and continuous efforts to protect domestic violence survivors.” No New Yorker should ever stay in a dangerous situation because they fear missing paid work to address safety needs, or face loss of income for recovering from abuse. Yet, victims of intimate partner violence across the US report an average of 7.2 days of work-related lost productivity per year. Intro. 1313-A, which takes effect 180 days after signing, expands New York City’s Paid Sick Leave law to allow workers to use paid leave to address safety and access critical services related to specified criminal offenses. This bill does not add to the total amount of leave, no less than 40 hours per year, that workers can take – instead it adds reasons for using the leave to allow a survivor of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking or stalking to take time off of work in order to plan their immediate next steps and focus on safety, without fearing a loss of income. NYC is the first city to pass paid safe leave legislation that includes survivors of human trafficking in addition to domestic violence, sexual abuse, and stalking. Workers who have been the victims of these offenses – or family members who need to assist them – can use Paid Sick or Safe Leave to care for their needs, whether physical, psychological, financial or otherwise. Examples of uses that will be allowed under this bill include: meeting with and safety planning with a social worker/advocate, meeting with a civil legal attorney, filing a police report, meeting with the District Attorney’s Office, attending a court appearance, an appointment with a financial counselor, moving into safe housing, and others. The bill also expands the definition of family member for all uses of paid time, Sick or Safe, under the law to recognize chosen families, not just biological ones. The Department of Consumer Affairs has enforced the Paid Sick Leave Law since it took effect in 2014; now DCA’s Office of Labor Policy & Standards will continue its enforcement work of the amended law that includes the new SAFE leave uses, and the expanded definition of family member. If employers violate the Paid Sick or Safe Leave law, DCA-OLPS can require them to provide restitution to workers and pay civil penalties. DCA-OLPS will collaborate with the Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence, as well as community partners, to conduct outreach and education to inform the public of these amendments. Understanding the complexity of the challenges domestic violence survivors already face, we want to ensure that survivors know their rights under this new law, and are able fully to take advantage of them. "Assuring all New Yorkers have the ability to move towards safety without jeopardizing their employment is critical," said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Dr. Herminia Palacio. "The signing of the Paid Safe Leave law fortifies the tools our brave survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and trafficking have to secure safety for themselves and their families.” "The passage of NYC's Paid Safe Leave law is a tremendous achievement and another example of the city's commitment to survivors," said Cecile Noel, Commissioner of the Mayor's Office to Combat Domestic Violence. "This legislation will help survivors preserve one the most important things they need to move forward from abusive relationships--their employment--by allowing them to use earned sick time to attend to matters related to preserving their safety. Today, survivors can rest a little easier knowing that another form of assistance is available to them." DCA Commissioner Lorelei Salas said: “This amendment to expand the City’s current Paid Sick Leave Law comes in the face of federal threats to minimize local paid leave policies, sending a strong message that New York City will continue to fight for the workplace protections New Yorkers need and deserve,” said DCA Commissioner Lorelei Salas. “The ability to use ‘safe’ leave to seek help provides survivors of domestic violence the necessary protection they need to ensure their safety and the safety of their families. And the broadening of the definition of family gives all New Yorkers the right to use sick and safe leave to care for those who are closest to us no matter what the label.” Jacqueline Ebanks, Executive Director of the Commission on Gender Equity, said: “Paid Safe Leave is a critical protection for survivors of intimate partner violence. At one of the most vulnerable moments any family can ever face, paid safe leave helps ensure the safety and well-being of survivors of intimate partner violence and offers comfort that they do not face this trauma alone.” In 2014, Mayor de Blasio signed legislation expanding Paid Sick Leave to half a million more New Yorkers, ensuring that employees who work in NYC for more than 80 hours a year can earn up to 40 hours of sick leave each year to care for themselves or a family member. Across the country, cities have struggled to effectively reduce rates of domestic violence. In New York City, where crime is at historic lows, domestic violence persists. The de Blasio Administration is investing $11 million to reduce domestic violence by increasing early intervention, expanding services for survivors and better holding abusers accountable. These recommendations were developed by the Domestic Violence Task Force, which the Mayor and First Lady convened in 2016. Director of Center for Battered Women’s Legal Services at Sanctuary for Families, the largest provider of dedicated holistic services to survivors of gender violence and their children in New York State, Dorchen Leidholdt said: “For too many domestic violence victims, reporting abuse and seeking safety, medical assistance, services, and justice for themselves and their children has resulted in increased economic hardship, the loss of their jobs, and even greater economic dependence on their abusers. The new Paid Safe Leave law will provide domestic violence victims with protection from these harms and make it far easier for them to achieve safety and independence.” Irene Jor, New York Organizer for National Domestic Workers Alliance said: “Domestic violence and labor trafficking disproportionately impact domestic workers as a direct result of the persistent discrimination domestic and care workers face as women of color and migrant workers, and the economic insecurity they experience in the sector and at large. The National Domestic Workers Alliance is thrilled to see the passage of the SAFE Leave bill which will extend paid sick leave for domestic violence and trafficking survivors. This is a key development for the members of the domestic and care sector. In order to rebuild and stabilize one’s life after such traumatic and life altering experiences, there are many steps to take to break these cycles of abuse and exploitation. These steps include making necessary appointments that may be legal or health-related, and tending to personal matters like finding new housing and securing childcare. The SAFE bill is a powerful demonstration of how government, employers, and all of us can and will stand by workers who have experienced extreme and unacceptable forms of violence.” “At Her Justice we recognize the important role family court plays in the path to safety for victims of partner violence. We thank Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland for her efforts to draft and pass legislation that provides protections for women in crisis by ensuring they are able to meet with an attorney and participate in their legal case," said Amy Barasch, Executive Director of Her Justice. “We are beyond thrilled the NYC Paid Safe Leave legislation is being signed into law, as it extends critical support to those attempting to escape and recover from domestic violence," said Nathaniel M. Fields, President and CEO of Urban Resource Institute and Center Against Domestic Violence. "Far too often, employers and the general public may not be aware of or fully understand the devastating and wide-ranging effects that domestic violence has on a survivor’s family, career, and finances. This legislation removes an immense barrier and encourages victims of domestic violence to seek out the life-saving services that will allow them to flee abuse and begin to rebuild their lives.” "A Better Balance is thrilled at this expansion of New York City’s path breaking earned sick time law. We worked tirelessly to pass this law in 2013 and we congratulate Mayor de Blasio and the New York City Council for expanding this legislation to now cover the critical times in a worker’s life when they need time off to insure their safety or the safety of their loved ones. We also applaud the recognition in this expansion that our New York City families are diverse and that all New Yorkers should be able to take time to care for those closest to them," said Sherry Leiwant, Co-President of A Better Balance. Madeline Garcia Bigelow Esq, Managing Director of Domestic Violence Project and Urban Justice Center, said: “The robust panoply of services available to victims of violence, trafficking and stalking are only as good as their accessibility. This legislation ensures survivors are not placed in the untenable situation of choosing between relief from suffering at the hands of an abuser and the crushing bondage to poverty and homelessness. This legislation empowers survivors to make decisions based on personal safety while ensuring their wages and employment. The Domestic Violence Project at the Urban Justice Center thank Mayor de Blasio and the Honorable Julissa Ferreras-Copeland for their continued support and championing of the rights of all survivors of violence.” “At the beginning of its term, this Council passed the law that has since afforded nearly one million more New Yorkers the opportunity to tend to the medical needs of self or family without fear of losing their pay under the Earned Sick Time Act," said Council Member I. Daneek Miller, Chair of the Committee on Civil Service and Labor. “With today's passage of the Safe Leave Law, we acknowledge the fact domestic violence can be as crippling as any illness and that extending the benefits of the Earned Sick Time Act to the survivors of such physical and psychological forms of abuse is just. I applaud the work of Council Member Ferreras-Copeland in recognizing this once glaring omission in our ongoing efforts to promote fairness for our City's workers, as well as Mayor de Blasio for his continued leadership in preserving the health, safety and dignity of those who have endured such acts of violence."
Saturday, November 4, 2017 - 7:30am
Mayor Bill de Blasio: I like the way you think. Peter Rosenberg: I can’t believe you had the audacity to not shake a man’s hand after he looked you right in the face and called you a criminal. Mayor: Yes, call me – call me old fashioned. [Laughter] Rosenberg: Well done Mayor, well done. Mayor: Yes. Rosenberg: This mayoral race that we are watching, these debates – why does it feel like WWE? Who are these weirdos? Mayor: They are two Trump supporters. They are two right-wingers who don’t fit New York City and that’s what we are talking about here. But I wish we had seen a more real debate this year about serious issues. Rosenberg: During the debate, Mayor, when you were asked about maybe if you should have or if you had regrets about not putting these little blockers in so cars can’t get into the bike lines. Obviously what happened this week is a tragedy and not something we would ever – I mean of course we can do the best to protect ourselves, you would never see that coming, but what are your thoughts on that, what precautions are going to take now moving forward now that this has happened? Mayor: Listen, we, we consistently are trying to learn from what we see all over the world and now what we have seen here in our own city. What we did over the last few years is we added 2,000 more police officers on patrol and within that over 500 were constitute a new critical response command to fight terrorism. That’s why you see so much more anti-terror presence, you see the officers with long guns and the heavy gear. That’s one piece of the equation. We have blocked off a lot more areas than we used to and we will keep doing that wherever we sense vulnerability – and we are also doing things like we don’t allow vehicles to pass across parades anymore. We used allow at certain intersections when there was a big event or big parade the vehicles go through. We stopped that after the attacks in Berlin and Nice. So this is – look it’s a new reality we are facing, we have to consistently adjust with it. The good news is NYPD has the strongest anti-terrorism force in the country, the best intelligence gathering anywhere in the country. And they have thwarted 20 plus attacks since 9/11 already. We are just going to have to constantly make adjustments as we learn new information. Ebro Darden: Mayor de Blasio, I know the hardworking Muslim community there is a lot of you know, Muslim community listening to us that feel under attack right now. Not only because of the president but because when an a-hole does something like what happened on Halloween, people automatically start pointing at that religion and people who have beards. And even in the debate you know, I don’t know the guy’s name but the crazy guy said – Rosenberg: He looked like a terrorist, he said he looked like a terrorist. Mayor: Right. Darden: He looked like a terrorist. I’d love to hear from you Mayor, on how, I mean because you work with this community very close and I’m sure they want to hear from you today when they are under attack like that. Mayor: Yes Ebro this is, we are talking about a community in this city of hundreds of thousands of people – overwhelmingly law abiding, you know, loyal New Yorkers who go about their business every day just want to live in peace. And there is going to be bad people in every community and it’s horrendous when – you’re right this is a heinous, awful act by an individual. That does not implicate an entire people or entire state. You know, we have 900 people I like to about, 900 members of the NYPD who are Muslims and who serve all of us and serve with distinction. So we in fact need to, in moments like this, we need to double down on deepening our connection to those hundreds of thousands of good hard working people who can be part of keeping us all safe. And [inaudible] you know every day, the fact we have gotten safer as a city is because all of our communities and more and more communities working with police. So we can’t let a horrible incident like this, you know, take us off that path of deepening the ties with every kind of community. Darden: Mayor de Blasio, as I’ve you seen you speak on TV, I think two or three times about affordable housing and the amazing rate at which we’re – you’re able to complete new housing and make it available for people who need it. What number, it was like originally you were trying to get to 200,000 units, and now it’s much higher? Is that, my understanding – Mayor: Yes 200,000 – the original plan was 200,000 apartments that we would either build or we would give people the subsidies to keep them affordable and keep, you know, them and their family in the apartment long term. And when that happens Ebro, people pay no more than 30 percent of their income in rent whatever their income in. We have now said that instead of 200,000 apartments, we are going to go for 300,000. We believe we can do it. That reaches almost 750,000 New Yorkers, you know pushing on towards a tenth of the entire city’s population and we need it. I mean there is an affordable housing crisis. So many people are struggling to make ends meet – find a way to keep them right in the apartment they are in now but make it finically viable for the long term. And also things like, providing free lawyers to stop people from being evicted. Thousands of people have been saved from eviction because now the city provides them a free lawyer to protect their interest, not just the landlord’s interest. Usually the landlord has a lawyer, the people don’t, now we have even up the score. And it’s keeping thousands of people in their apartment. So a lot is changing that is going to allow us to make sure that every day New Yorkers can stay here. Darden: Mayor de Blasio, thanks for your hard work man. I know we’ve had so many conversations about people loving to rip you across the pages. The most recent being the allegations that I think you were exonerated for which was the donating allegations and they keep bringing that stuff towards you so – look you’re a better guy then we are on this show because I would have told them to eff off a long time ago. Rosenberg: That’s right and we don’t recommend that, especially at this stage. You only got a week left, no room for that bro. Darden: Look man, you’re going to win man you might as well wild out bro. Mayor: Look, you know Rosenberg, Rosenberg has got my best interest in mind here. Rosenberg: Yes, I think we wait until next week Ebro, maybe next Wednesday or Thursday. Mayor: Yes, let’s, let’s schedule that carefully – Darden: No, right now man, middle finger, let’s go, send it up. Mayor: But Ebro, I want to say to all of you, thank you – these last four years, the conversations we’ve had here on your show have been literally some of the most important, some of the most thoughtful about this city and its people. So I want to thank you for doing that. And I just want to remind everyone, Tuesday, November 7th, this coming Tuesday, is your chance to decide, everyone’s chance to decide the future of this city. I have a very simple message – this is your city, to all your listeners, this is your city. You decide where it goes, if you think we are on the right path in terms of things like Pre-K and now Pre-K for three-year-olds and more affordable housing and bringing police and community together, neighborhood policing – I need your help to keep moving forward so I’m asking all of your listeners, please – whether you are voting for me or voting for someone else, get out and vote on Tuesday. Ebro: Thank you Mayor good luck. Mayor: Thank you everyone.
Saturday, November 4, 2017 - 7:30am
As part of Vision Zero Dusk and Darkness initiative, stepped up NYPD enforcement against dangerous driving will be concentrated in evenings; in the Bronx and on Staten Island, drivers should be especially alert for mating deer during dusk hours; clocks “fall back” this Sunday, November 5 at 2:00 AM, creating earlier sunsets NEW YORK––Leading up to this weekend’s clock change, Mayor Bill de Blasio today issued an alert to New York City drivers about the increased dangers of driving this time of year, when drivers and pedestrians are at increased risk during dusk and evening hours. The de Blasio Administration last week announced the return of its Vision Zero Dusk and Darkness initiative that includes stepped-up NYPD enforcement against unsafe driving during fall and winter dusk hours, which have traditionally been the most dangerous time of year for pedestrians. Those same hours have also been highly correlated to deer-mating activity and deer-related crashes on New York City roadways, especially in the Bronx and on Staten Island. “While we all can be grateful for an extra hour’s sleep this coming weekend, at the same time we all need to stay mindful of the driving dangers of the darker fall and winter months,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “As part of our Dusk and Darkness initiative, NYPD will be out during those darker afternoons and evenings, making a big difference on our streets for the safety of pedestrians. On other roads, deer pose a special danger to drivers during those same dusk hours. For everyone’s protection, the best choice for drivers is to take turns slowly and obey the speed limit – on both our streets and our highways.” “As Daylight Saving Time ends, a dangerous time period on our roads – especially for pedestrians – begins,” said NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill. “Sunset coincides with the evening commute, and people may not be as alert or able to see as clearly. So the NYPD and its Vision Zero partners are calling on people – especially motorists – to slow down and make safe turns. Officers will be out looking for hazardous moving violations. So, please look out for one another, and if you’re in an area with deer, look out for them too.” “Our research shows that rush-hour driving in newly dark evenings of the fall can be a perilous combination for pedestrians, and with deer also out in greater numbers, drivers need to be especially vigilant during this season” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. “We know from our Dusk and Darkness efforts that vision is compromised enormously as the sun sets, which now happens during the busiest evening rush hours. As part of Vision Zero, we are reminding New Yorkers that in the colder, darker months ahead, they need to exercise extra caution and slow down.” “Deer are a relatively new traffic danger that New Yorkers should watch out for,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “Fall is mating season, which means deer will be most active – especially during dawn and dusk, and especially in Staten Island and the Bronx, where deer are most prevalent.” The NYPD, DOT and NYCParks detailed the three dangers of the season: Dusk DOT has conducted extensive analysis of year-over-year crash trends , noting that: * Vision experts note that visual acuity can decrease by as much as 90% during the dusk hours, making driving especially perilous. * The earlier onset of darkness in the fall and winter is highly correlated to a 40 percent increase in traffic injuries and fatalities among pedestrians. * Lower visibility during the dark hours of the colder months leads to twice as many crashes involving turns. Deer Activity * Deer can appear without warning on roadways, so be alert. The animals are most active in the evening and early morning, especially during the mating season -- going on now. * To avoid collisions, drive the posted speed limit. Scan the road ahead and avoid distractions. * If a deer runs in front of your vehicle, brake firmly but do not swerve. Swerving can take a motorist into oncoming traffic or off the road. * If you strike a deer, call 911 immediately. Do not touch or get close to the animal. it may be injured and could behave frantically, causing further safety risks. * Learn more about living alongside deer in New York City at Daylight Savings * Daylight Saving Time ends this Sunday, November 5 at 2am, when clocks “fall back” one hour. Sunsets happening this week just before 6pm will be before 5pm next week, at the height of the evening rush hour. * In addition to the increased NYPD enforcement during these hours, the Dusk and Darkness campaign will employ afternoon and evening drive-time radio advertising, reminding drivers to obey the speed limit, watch for pedestrians and turn slowly. “We all know during the upcoming winter months, drivers need to heed caution and drive with extra care,” said Congress Member Joe Crowley. “The fact is, as darkness sets on our roads, the potential for accidents rises. The safety of motorists, cyclists and pedestrians alike must continue to be priority number one and I commend the City for implementing the Dusk and Darkness Initiative as part of its Vision Zero program.” “Whether we’re going for a quick stop to the neighborhood store or crossing the entirety of Staten Island, safer roads are a responsibility we all have when we get behind the wheel,” said Assembly Member Matthew Titone. “The reality is we all need to slow down and take the recommendations in the Vision Zero Dusk and Darkness Initiative seriously. Now more than ever, we Staten Islanders must learn to adapt to the new hazards deer pose to us when driving.” “As the winter approaches, we have to make sure that New Yorkers are educated on the dangers of the day getting darker earlier,” said Council Transportation Chair Ydanis Rodriguez. “November is the deadliest time for deer. To avoid deer crashes, drivers should be aware that deer are likely to be out during the evening. Drivers have to be aware of deer-crossing signs and fences, and also make sure that they're wearing seat belts to prevent greater damage in case of a deer crash." “As we turn back our clocks and start to prepare for fall and winter holidays, I also want to urge my constituents to be extra alert while driving in the coming weeks,” said Council Member Debi Rose. “With the sun going down earlier each evening, we should all be more vigilant for pedestrians, cyclists and an increased population of deer, who are more likely to come into roadways during mating season. Be reminded also that NYPD will step up enforcement during these hours to better ensure the safety of all Staten Islanders.” In 2017, as part of Vision Zero, DOT has implemented its most aggressive street redesign safety program, with increased investment in street redesign and traffic-calming measures citywide. DOT has improved the safety at a record number of dangerous intersections and thoroughfares, expecting to install more than 25 miles of protected bike lanes this year along key high-traffic corridors like Queens Boulevard and 111th Street in Queens, as well as 5th Avenue, 7th Avenue and Park Row in Manhattan. DOT will this year also install a record number of leading pedestrian intervals (LPIs) – more than 800 – to give pedestrians a head start while crossing the street. For more information about the de Blasio Administration’s Vision Zero initiative, please see .
Saturday, November 4, 2017 - 7:30am
Urges District Court to stop federal government from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, prevent federal officials from using DACA information in deportations NEW YORK—New York City signed on to an amicus brief this week, led by Los Angeles and alongside twenty-four other jurisdictions and the U.S. Conference of Mayors, urging the United States District Court of the Northern District of California to permanently enjoin the federal government from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, as well as from using information from the DACA program in removal proceedings of individuals, in Regents of University of California v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Approximately 800,000 DACA recipients have benefitted from the program, including a licensed attorney from New York City who became the first Dreamer admitted to the New York State Bar. As the brief notes, DACA delivers economic benefits for communities across the country, contributes to the public’s safety and general welfare, and reflects this country’s values as a proud nation of immigrants. The brief argues that the federal government unlawfully terminated DACA in violation of the Administrative Procedure Act. “New York has 30,000 reasons to fight for DACA against Trump’s malicious and misguided policies,” said Mayor de Blasio. “In our city, DREAMers are our friends, neighbors, and valued members of our communities. Their contributions strengthen the economy and help us live up to our highest values. We are joining with jurisdictions across the nation to stand up for these young people, so they can stay in the only homes they have ever known.” “New York City stands with 800,000 Dreamers calling on the courts to recognize that the Trump Administration’s attempt to end DACA is contrary to our values and our local economies, as well as unlawful,” said Bitta Mostofi, Acting Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs. “DACA has kept families together and has lifted workers’ wages. While Congress must act to pass the DREAM Act to grant Dreamers a pathway to citizenship, the courts must stop the Trump Administration from feeding its deportation machine by abusing the trust that hundreds of thousands of young people put in their government.” “New York City is proud to stand with other jurisdictions in urging the courts to halt the Trump Administration’s actions to terminate DACA,” said Corporation Counsel Zachary W. Carter. “The City has long supported DACA, and is home to one of the highest concentrations of DACA recipients in the United States. DACA recipients make significant contributions to our communities as business owners, military personnel, teachers, lawyers, and students at our local schools. Our City is stronger and safer because of the DACA program, which allows recipients to freely contribute in ways that enhance our economic wellbeing as well as public health and safety.” “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has been an essential lifeline for close to nearly one million young people, many of whom have only known the United States as their home,” said Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “The Trump administration’s intention to jeopardize the promising futures of Dreamers is a cowardly attempt to allow Americans to be intimidated simply because Dreamers may look different or immigrated to this country to seek better lives. New York City will continue to stand as a model for the rest of the nation for acceptance. Now as we stand in solidarity with Los Angeles, we will continue to do everything in our power to ensure DACA recipients stay here in our great nation and are able to follow the American dream.” The amicus brief is available here . The Mayor, Speaker and City Council are long-time supporters of DACA and New York City’s 30,000 Dreamers. Under the Mayor, the Administration and City Council have made unprecedented investments in immigration legal services, which have helped DACA-eligible youth apply for and renew their DACA applications, including during the final renewal period that ended on October 5. The Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs has also led two campaigns on behalf of New Yorkers eligible for DACA: a 2014 campaign to boost enrollment and a 2016 campaign to encourage recipients to obtain Medicaid and access additional City benefits. Following the Trump Administration’s announcement of an end to DACA, the Mayor and Speaker called on Congress to pass the DREAM Act, which would grant Dreamers a pathway to citizenship.
Saturday, November 4, 2017 - 7:30am
David Greene: The man who carried out a deadly attack on a bike path in New York City Tuesday had been plotting this for a year, according to federal law enforcement. He wanted to maximize the carnage, renting a vehicle early so he could practice making the turns and striking on Halloween, hoping more people would be out. The suspect, an immigrant from Uzbekistan, is being charged under terrorism statutes. And joining me now is New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. Mayor, you should know a lot of people are thinking about your city this week. Thank you for taking the time with us. Mayor Bill de Blasio: Thank you. There's been a great outpouring of love for New York City, and I've got to tell you I'm just so proud of New Yorkers because they've shown tremendous strength and resiliency, you know. In the face of something so horrible, people have not let it change who we are. Greene: Well, that's really good to hear. As you've been learning more about the attacker, what stands out for you so far? Mayor: Look, what stands out is that ISIS has been able to reach with its ideology a lot of disaffected people and convince them to do something horrendous. The most extreme examples are those that got to go to battlefields thousands of miles from their home, but this is another example. This individual, you know, our deputy commissioner for counterterrorism said it best, that he, the individual literally took the ISIS playbook from online and played it out specifically. And that's distressing and troubling in so many ways, but it also gets to this core question - why are there people in this world who can be moved to kill innocent, just innocent, everyday people they have no connection to for such a destructive ideology? Greene: Yeah. And we should say, I mean, our reporters in New York are saying that this man, an original target of his was the Brooklyn Bridge. What was he trying to do, and could this have been a lot worse? Mayor: Well, it certainly could have been a lot worse, and the NYPD responded quickly. And Officer Ryan Nash is getting, rightfully, so much acclaim for quick thinking and stopping him. And it could have been a lot worse. You know, at the time, who knew if he had a bomb attached to him, how many weapons he had, et cetera? But, yeah, his plan was to do a lot more damage. And it's cautionary, and it reminds us, you know, everything that we do to stop terrorism in this city and in this country, the counterintelligence that we utilize, the preventive measures, the strong, clear physical presence of police at key locations, we need all these tools. And we particularly need a close working relationship with communities because here in New York City, we've had over 20 plots directed at us since 9/11, and they were stopped in many cases because of information that everyday people provided to the police, which is why it's so important to keep an open channel to all communities and deepen that connection. The best way to stop one of these things from happening is to get information beforehand – Greene: From a community. Mayor: From the community. It comes from everyday people. And we say around here if you see something, say something. That's not an idle phrase. It's a very urgent phrase that anyone might overhear a conversation that could be the difference between one of these attacks occurring or stopping it in time. Greene: Well, I mean, it has so frustrated counterterrorism officials, this idea of being able to use a vehicle as a weapon, as we've seen in Europe, and exactly how in the world you can stop that. I do want to ask you about one proposal from President Trump in the wake of what happened in your city. I mean, this suspect came to the United States in 2010 as part of a diversity lottery system that brings people from some countries. The president is saying if that's how he got into the country, end that program after this attack. Do you agree? Mayor: No. I think, you know, the president, first off, should never politicize this tragedy, and his attacks on Senator Schumer were particularly inappropriate. The fact that tens of thousands of people have come in on a visa that we've not seen a problem like this before on does not indict the entire visa program any more than one individual coming from a country indicts a whole country or indicts a whole faith. This is the problem with the president's approach from day one. You know, what we know, and I certainly know from working so closely with the NYPD, is that it's about individuals. It's about understanding where there's someone who unfortunately may have decided to do harm and locating that person or stopping them. It's not about excluding whole nations or whole faiths of people. By the way, when we do that we undermine our relationship with the communities we depend on for the information. This is the part that really doesn't get enough attention. We have 900 Muslim members of the NYPD who do extraordinary work, who protect everyone. They make their community proud. They show by their very example that everyone belongs here, that everyone is a part of this as stakeholders, and that therefore it gives further incentive to everyone to participate and to stop these things from happening. The notion of starting to exclude and indict people according to faith or national background puts that wedge in place. That's exactly, unfortunately, exactly consistent with the propaganda ISIS is putting out. Greene: But, if I may, Mayor, I know you're talking about some of the, you know, the bans on some countries, but the president in this case seems to be talking about, you know, not targeting certain countries, but a program. And I guess I just wonder is he politicizing it or might some argue he's just pointing out that this man would not have been here if that program were not in place in 2010? Mayor: If that's what he was narrowly saying, we'd be having a different discussion. But the fact that he very flippantly attacked Senator Schumer and obviously was relishing having someone to blame rather than saying, here's an individual, how did this specifically happen and what do we learn from this, how do we address it? As someone said the other day, the attackers on 9/11 would have still gotten in. There were students who spoke English on a "merit-based system." They would be the type of people who would be allowed in. I don't think this is about a broad program. This is about obviously improving our vetting all the time but not wasting time on a broad swath, actually trying to figure out how we can identify the individuals who aim to do us harm. Greene: And just in the couple seconds we have left, how worried are you about the New York Marathon that's coming this weekend? Mayor: I'm very confident. It's an event that we have to make happen for our people, but for the whole nation. We're going to have a tremendous amount of security in place, and New York City will move on, and with something we want to show the world, that we're going to keep going. Greene: Bill de Blasio is the Mayor of New York City, which endured that terrorist attack on Tuesday. Mayor, again, we're all thinking about your city, and thanks so much for coming on with us this morning. We appreciate it. Mayor: Thank you, David.
Saturday, November 4, 2017 - 7:30am
Dan Mannarino: It’s 7:37 right now. All eyes have been laser focused on Lower Manhattan and a situation that unfolded just 48-hours ago in terms of the terror attack here. So joining us now is the Mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, to talk about the very latest on the investigation and really the resiliency of this City. I want to pull ups some live pictures we have right now of Lower Manhattan. Did you think that you were going to be able to see Lower Manhattan the way it was back a couple days ago to today traffic once again moving. Mayor Bill de Blasio: Dan, it’s absolutely amazing. I have to tell you, even within hours of this incident, people on the West Side of Manhattan were going about their business, with strength, with resiliency, you know, an amazing statement about the strength of this City that a million people came out on Halloween night to that parade in Lower Manhattan. New Yorkers should be very proud. We should be proud of each other, we should be proud of the NYPD and all of our first-responders who handled this so well. A lot of other cities would understandably be thrown by this, but this City, we have so much strength, and the speed with which everything has proceeded. Mannarino: Absolutely. Mayor: Including, you know, the federal prosecution, the indictment already coming down yesterday, this is something that people should be proud of, even though it is a very painful moment, and it is a moment of course that causes people real concern. One more thing I’d say is, you know, you are going to see a lot of police presence the next few days. You are going to see a lot of our specialized forces that have the heavy weapons, the heavy gear, that’s a good thing. Mannarino: Is that because of the threat or because the fact that the New York City marathon is happening, or both? Mayor: Look, it’s one, because we want to reassure people. And today, in today’s world, actually find most New Yorkers are reassured by that presence. Second, we are looking forward to the marathon, and we are going to have beefed security for the marathon, but it is essential that things continue [inaudible] it’s one of the great events in the city is here, it’s an international event, it’s going forward, we are going to make it work. There is no ongoing threat, there is no credible and specific threat directed at New York City right now, thank god. But that increased presence makes sense in this kind atmosphere. Mannarino: In terms of this investigation, the suspect is now speaking in his hospital and making some disturbing statements, asking for an ISIS flag. The FBI originally was looking for a second individual yesterday, then today no longer. Can you speak about the investigation unfolding? Did he in fact act alone? Mayor: Look, will let the FBI answer those questions, there is a very thorough investigation going on with the NYPD. And there is tremendous partnership between the two of them, it wasn’t, unfortunately, always the case in the past, today there is a great bond and a great partnership between the NYPD and the FBI. We need to learn a lot more before we can definitively say. At this moment, there is no evidence of anybody else being involved, this appears to be a classic lone-wolf situation, as Deputy Commissioner Miller said, literally from the ISIS playbook that is online. And that’s horrible, and that’s deeply disturbing that anyone would make that decision to follow that playbook, but no thank god we do not see any other involvement at this point. Mannarino: And last question, moving forward in terms of security and safety for things like bike paths, simple, we saw the bollards in place in certain locations. Is that feasible for all bike paths throughout New York City, how do you move forward with this? And what lesson was learned from this? Mayor: We learn every single time. I always give the example, you know, we used to for years in this City, have the big parades, Thanksgiving, St. Patrick’s, and we would allow vehicles at certain major streets to cross across the parade during intervals. We’ve ended that, because of some of what we saw that happened overseas in places like Berlin and Nice, we don’t allow any crossing at parades at this point. That’s one example. The bollards is another example, after what happened in Time Square, which was not a terror incident some months ago. We reinforced Time Square. We already had huge presence of NYPD, but we put in a lot more physical measures. We’re obviously going to look at the West Side, we’re going to look at a lot of places, and keep adding those measures. [Inaudible] put them at absolutely every corner of New York City, very hard, but can you put them in key places and learn from each incident? Absolutely. Mannarino: Alright, Mayor de Blasio, you are sticking around because right after the break we are going to talk about last night’s very spirited – Mayor: Spirited? Mannarino: - debates. Sometimes, sometimes, funny, there was a little bit of humor mixed in with all of that – Mayor: There is got to be some. Mannarino: You got to – you have to laugh once in a while – Mayor: Let me tell you. Mannarino: Alright, stick around we have Mayor de Blasio coming up. […] Mannarino: We are back with Mayor Bill de Blasio. This time talking politics because last night was a spirited and sometimes humorous debate, so once again here you are. We had Assemblywoman Malliotakis on just a few minutes ago, so I want to touch on a bit of what she said and get your reaction. She said that if she was mayor, she would have an administration that is proactive rather than reactive. Your response to that? Mayor: Look, I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved. We see there’s an affordable housing crisis, we’ve created the biggest affordable housing plan in the history of the city. It’s going to reach 750,000 New Yorkers. That’s one example. We saw there were challenges between police and community, we created neighborhood policing. Crime has gone down four years in a row. Complaints against officers have also gone down. There’s a noticeable improvement in the atmosphere in neighborhoods in terms of police-community relations. We didn’t have enough early childhood education, we created pre-K for every four-year-old in New York City. I mean these are the best examples you can think of of addressing a problem, getting ahead of a problem. Mannarino: There are some issues still at stake. One of them is the homeless. I want to play a little bit of what you said last night. [Clip of Mayor de Blasio begins] Mayor: We put a huge amount of resources into addressing homelessness from the beginning. What we failed to do – and I’ve been very open about it, I take full responsibility – I should’ve put forward a holistic plan from the beginning. We did that early this year. I think that’s been a very important contribution to moving us forward. We should have focused as much on street homelessness as on shelter homelessness. [Clips ends] Mannarino: Very honest, taking responsibility. So the question is how do you right the ship and get it done quickly going forward? Mayor: Well, I wish we could get it done quickly with homelessness, but one of the things I’ve been honest about with New Yorkers is this is a structural problem. This is a problem that’s been growing for 35 years. Now very much caught up with the cost of housing in this town, which has become harder and harder for so many families including working families of low income. Look, the good news here is we have a plan. We believe over years we can steadily reduce homelessness in shelters. We’ve seen real progress on the street. We’ve gotten 900 people who were street homeless to come in off the street in the last year and a half and stay off the street. So there is progress, but I’ve said there’s going to be a long battle. Mannarino: And 10 seconds or less because we’re running out of time – subways, huge concern for New Yorkers, you’re saying millionaires tax is dead on arrival to – Mayor: No, I don’t think it’s dead on arrival. Millionaires tax – Mannarino: I’m sorry – the congestion pricing. Mayor: Yes, I think the millionaires tax – and I was honored to be supported by Bernie Sanders earlier this week who is a strong proponent of the millionaires tax with me – is the fair way to fix the subways, to make sure we have a steady stream of revenue to fix the subway on an ongoing basis. Millionaires in this city can afford to pay a little more so the rest of us can get around. I think because it only would affect millionaires in New York City it actually could pass the Republican State Senate. Mannarino: Alright, I ride the subway every day. I hope it works out. Mayor: Amen. Mannarino: Alright, thank you very much for coming. I appreciate your time. Mayor: Thank you.
Friday, November 3, 2017 - 7:30am
Joe Scarborough: Back to Morning Joe. Let’s bring in the Mayor of New York City now, Mayor Bill de Blasio. Mr. Mayor thank you so much for being with us. You obviously were on the scene immediately after yesterday. Anything we should know about that terrorist attack yesterday? And moving forward should we be worried about the New York Marathon? Mayor Bill de Blasio: Joe, look, first of all, I want to say the NYPD did an outstanding job and all of the first responders yesterday. Our brave young officer stopped that [inaudible] from ending up potentially a lot worse. And what’s amazing Joe, and you and your colleagues were talking about it. New Yorkers went back to business, back to work immediately. We had a Halloween Parade last night. We do it every year. A million people were there. Scarborough: Wow. Mayor: And I talked to a lot of them Joe, I talked to a lot of them. I’ve got to tell you their attitude was one of resilience, strength, persistence. They’re not going to let terrorists change our way of life. It made me very proud of New York City. Scarborough: Is that what you’re expecting for the New York City Marathon as well? Mayor: I am. Scarborough: Do you think it will go on uninterrupted? Mayor: Absolutely, we think it’s important as a message to the whole world that we’re not going to change who we are. The marathon is a huge endeavor, very well organized. All of our uniformed services know how to handle it. NYPD will be out in even greater force Joe. You’ll see a lot of visible presence, a lot officers with long guns. You’ll see some things, other things you won’t see that are protecting us. But we’re confident it will go off as planned and it will be safe. Mika Brzezinski: So let’s go to Willie Geist. The marathon is an iconic event in New York City and runners are – runners are resilient people for sure. Mayor: Yes. Brzezinski: As we look forward to that. Willie Geist. Willie Geist: Mayor de Blasio its Willie, good to see you this morning. Just to echo what you were saying – I was out trick or treating with my kids last night and the streets were absolutely full of children who went back out with their parents and went about doing what they would have done anyway. And just behind me –I’ am a block away Mr. Mayor from the Home Depot truck that was used in this attack. And I’m watching kids stream into school right outside the police tape. They’re walking right past the crime scene get back to their lives. But I want to ask you a little bit more about this suspect – 29-year-old Uzbek national we know rented the truck in New Jersey, drove it in. Came onto Houston Street, went down and took eight lives. Can you tell us anymore from what you’ve gathered from the New York Police Department about who this guy is? Mayor: Look, Willie, NYPD, FBI, all our partners are working very closely on this investigation. It’s important not to go into a lot detail this early on in the investigation so we can get it right. But to the point you made – we made a decision last night to keep those schools open, to keep people on their everyday lives because, look, it’s so important to not give in, to not blink when we are affronted. And I got to tell you – I’m sorry those kids have to go by that site but I also think it says to them, we can overcome this, we are stronger than this, we’re better than this. And that’s the attitude I’ve seen in New York. So we’re going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened Willie, and we are going to also assess other changes we need to make in our approach going forward. But one thing you will know for sure, you’re going to see a lot of NYPD presence throughout the week into the marathon and that deterrence is a big part of what we do. We’ve created the biggest anti-terrorism force of any police force in the country because that visible deterrence matters. Brzezinski: Mike Barnicle. Mike Barnicle: You know Mr. Mayor, as you move around this city, any part of the city, any of the boroughs in this city, you realize that each and every day is actually sort of a massive mini security detail. Mayor: That’s right. Barnicle: With New York Police Department and other ancillary organizations affiliated with the NYPD. The cost of it is enormous. What does a city like New York, given its world responsibilities, responsibility to the world and an attraction to the world do about covering those costs? Mayor: Look, first of all Mike, we know we are the number one global, or number one, I should say, terror target in the United States of America and we understand that we have to be in a ready position. We have to be strong. We added 2,000 more police officers in the last two years largely so we could have that additional visible presence. We do bear a lot of that cost. Now we do expect some of that to be taken over by Washington and that’s historically been the case. You know in recent months some of that funding has been threatened for other political and policy reasons by the Trump Administration. My message has been consistently how on earth are going to take away anti-terrorism funding from the number one terror target in America. But we will bear the cost to the extent we can, you’d think the federal government would see it as a national priority to protect our biggest city. Brzezinski: Mike? Mike Lupica: Mr. Mayor, one of the things I was thinking about yesterday was it’s 16 years since 9/11. This doesn’t happen here, and it’s another way to honor the anti-terrorism people in the city and the cops in this city. Sixteen years is a long time, and there’s sometimes this feeling that it happens all the time. It never happens. Mayor: It doesn’t. Mike, there have been 20 plots before this incident – 20 plots directed at New York City or originating in New York City – that were foiled by the NYPD, by the FBI. Intelligence gathering makes a huge difference. There are a lot of things that are stopped you never hear about on purpose. And we also know the times that everyday New Yorkers came forward, told police something that stopped an attack, or as we remember several years ago in Times Square ran over to an officer and stopped something right in the middle of an attack. This piece, you know, “if you see something, say something,” it’s not an idle phrase. Everyone can help our police to protect us. Any tip might be the lifesaver. Brzezinski: And as the president as tweeting, I think it’s important to point out that everyday New Yorkers consist of people like the victims – people from Belgium, people from Argentina, people from all over the world that come here because they love New York. Mayor: That’s right. And who keep up safe, and Mika, here’s such an important point. The NYPD believes deeply in building close relationships with every community. By the way, there are 900 Muslim officers in the NYPD who protect everyone. But because we are deep into communities we get the flow of information, and this is really the way forward for our country. We need to be able to encourage everyone to come forward. We’re all wearing the same uniform if you think about it, and if every community feels connected and invested and willing to come forward to the police, including our immigrant communities, that’s what actually keeps us safe. Brzezinski: Well, we’re looking forward to Sunday. Mayor Bill de Blasio, thank you very much for coming on the show this morning.