Park Slope

Thanks & farewell, Deputy Inspectors Pintos & Argenziano

On Friday, we learned that the commanding officers of two of our neighborhood precincts -- Deputy Inspectors Raul Pintos (72nd) & John Argenziano (78th) -- are being reassigned to new commands, after strong tours leading the crime-fighting efforts in the neighborhoods of Sunset Park/Windsor Terrace (72) Park Slope (78).

Both of them worked hard to keep our neighborhoods safe, and were good friends to me in my first years in office. I appreciate their efforts and will miss them.  Read more »

Budget delegates for the Parks and Recreation committee get real

Photo of JC Martinez-Sifre

Participatory Budgeting update from JC Martinez-Sifre of the Parks and Recreation Committee:

The reality is beginning to set in for budget delegates engaged in Councilmember Brad Lander's initiative to make participatory budgeting a functional reality in his district.

“I think we’re all beginning to understand how big a process this is going to be,” said Budget Delegate, Michael Hickey of Kensington. The delegates, if they weren't already aware, are coming to understand that this is not going to be a brief exercise in spending a million dollars of public funds. Read more »

Of Dumpster Pools and Solar Panels: Checking In on NYC’s Participatory Budgeting Project

Channel 13 WNET

Participatory budgeting, an experiment in democratic engagement that launched in New York City this fall, allows citizens to suggest how their tax dollars should be spent, and then to vote on the proposed ideas.

Hundreds of people in the districts of the four  Council members involved — Brad LanderJumaane WilliamsMelissa Mark-Viverito and Eric Ulrich — attended public assemblies over the past few months to share their ideas on how to spend approximately $1 million per district in capital funds. The proposals are now being considered by volunteer committees and will be put to a vote this spring. Read more »

Thanksgiving Day Fire Heroes Recognized

Park Slope Patch

Three fire engines and two ladder companies arrived on the scene of the fire in a President Street apartment on Thanksgiving afternoon in two minutes and 27 seconds.

Thanks to the FDNY’s rapid response time to the inferno in the apartment between Fourth and Fifth avenues, five lives were saved, including an eight-month-old baby boy who was brought back to life by fireman Neil Malone who administered CPR on the scene.

Last Friday, Councilman Brad Lander awarded citations to six FDNY companies who responded to the Thanksgiving Day blaze at Engine 220 and Engine 219's firehouses with Squad 1, Rescue 2, Ladder 105 and Ladder 122

Read more »

Lander report: Call it the B61 bomber

Residents boarding the B61 bus
Brooklyn Paper

The main bus out of transportation-starved Red Hook arrives too late or doesn’t stop at all, according to a scathing new report.

Fewer than half of the buses on the B61 line — which runs from Red Hook to Downtown via Park Slope — arrived on time during “peak hours” and the rest showed up at least three minutes early or late, according to an exhaustive survey put together by Councilman Brad Lander (D–Park Slope) and dozens of volunteers.

Many of the buses were too crowded, arrived erratically, or were bunched up with other buses. Read more »

Violence Against Women – Keeping up our Resolve

Over the last several months, a string of sexual assaults, ranging from groping to rape, shook the Park Slope, Sunset Park, and Windsor Terrace communities.

The response from neighbors has been inspiring. Grassroots organizations emerged – Safe Slope, Brooklyn Bike Patrol, KWT Canine Watch, and more – to confront these attacks. The community mobilized to put the right kind of pressure on police and elected officials to respond. The local NYPD precincts responded with an aggressive mix of uniformed and plainclothes officers.

Thankfully, we have not had an attack in several weeks. But this is an important moment to reflect on the plague of violence against women, in Brooklyn and beyond. Because the truth of sexual assault is that it happens every day in our community – in our streets and subways, our workplaces, and our homes – and we all have a responsibility to stop it. Read more »

Next Bus Please: Improving the B61 Bus

Release of B61 report

At a press conference at the 4th Avenue-9th Street bus stop in Park Slope, Council Member Brad Lander, Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, Council Member Sara M. González, transit advocates, and local bus riders unveiled the report Next Bus Please: Improving the B61 Bus, to address growing frustration over the B61 bus.

The report finds that less than half — only 43%— of B61 buses arrive in an acceptable timeframe during rush hour. The report lays out nine cost-effective ways to improve the bus line to help riders connect to subway lines and commute to work faster, including keeping lights green for buses at key intersections, installing countdown clocks in bus shelters and adding more buses at peak hours. Read more »

New Program Lets Taxpayers Do More than Gripe About City Spending

Gotham Gazette

From the Occupy protestors to millions expressing disgust with debt ceiling debacle, many American are angry about how the government spends money,. something most of them have little control over outside the polling booth. Now, four New York City Council members are trying to change this and give residents a direct say in where the funding goes, at least on a local level.

"I walk down my street every day, wishing I could do something about the conditions," said Ali Abdul Rahman, a resident of Brooklyn’s 39th district, who is getting the opportunity to do some budget . "Well, now there is." Read more »