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Tuesday, June 7, 2016

State Senator Liz Krueger

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State Senator Liz Krueger
Standing Up And Speaking Out
New York State Senate – 28th District
Community Bulletin – June 2016
 
Table of Contents
Message from Liz
Policy Spotlight
        Reducing Plastic Bag Waste 
Community Update
        Upcoming Shred-a-Thon Events 
        The Radical Age Movement Intergenerational Age Cafe
        Museum Mile Festival 
        Upcoming Pet Adoption Events 
        Upcoming Rent Guidelines Board Meeting
        ID NYC Pop-Up Site at Webster Library July 1 – July 16
      Â Â ActionHealthNYC Enrollment for Uninsured Immigrant New Yorkers
        Legal Advocacy Clinics From Lenox Hill Neighborhood House 
        Affordable Housing Opportunities in Manhattan 
        Metrocard Bus and Van Schedule
 
Message from Liz...
Each year as the legislative session approaches its final days, there always seem to be a few really bad bills that pop up, and this year is no exception.  Among the doozies we are facing this year are some major expansions of online gambling and a significant overhaul of liquor license rules that would weaken the ability of communities to appropriately regulate the location of bars.  In the policy spotlight, I will discuss another bad idea, legislation that would overturn the plastic bag fee recently passed by the City Council.  But I want to focus this message on the unwise legislation proposed by Mayor de Blasio that would effectively eliminate height restrictions on residential buildings in the city.
 
For many decades, the state multiple dwelling law has limited Â the maximum size of residential buildings to a Floor Area Ratio (FAR) of 12.  FAR is the primary zoning regulation controlling the bulk and size of every building in New York City. Each zoning district has an FAR which, when multiplied by the lot area of the zoning lot, produces the maximum amount of floor area permitted to be built on that lot.  For example, a building constructed on a 10,000 square foot zoning lot in a district with a maximum FAR of 5 cannot exceed 50,000 square feet.  
 
The City is pushing legislation (S5469/A7807) that would remove the 12 FAR limit.  I believe doing so would only worsen the problems of out-of-control overdevelopment we already have in my district and many other parts of the city.  This bill passed the Senate Housing Committee on June 3rd over my “no” vote, and I have made clear to the Mayor’s staff in Albany the devastating impact I believe this would have on efforts to preserve existing buildings and impose responsible limits on development.  While they have now suggested the proposal may be amended to limit the zones it applies to and cap FAR at 20, neither of those solve the underlying problems with getting rid of the current cap.  
 
The mayor’s office wants to connect these changes in zoning to the effort to build more affordable housing, but the reality is that the mega-towers that are already being built throughout Manhattan are the opposite of affordable, and there is nothing in this legislation that would change that – all this bill would do is give the City the ability to allow even larger residential towers for the ultra-rich. Â And when you increase FAR you also increase the value of land, making it even harder to build affordable housing.
 
Infrastructure in Manhattan is already strained to the limit. What communities in my district and throughout the city are calling for is neighborhood-based community planning that takes this reality into account.  Rushing a bill through Albany in the last days of the legislative session that removes one of the few protections we have against overdevelopment has nothing to do with the kind of thoughtful planning we should be engaging in.
 
 
Policy Spotlight
 
Reducing Plastic Bag Waste
 
The New York City Council recently passed a bill to place a 5-cent fee on any plastic or paper bags provided to consumers at retail stores.  But now there is an effort in the State Legislature to stop this reasonable effort to reduce our waste stream from taking effect – a strategy that the plastic bag industry and their ALEC allies have used successfully in other states. This industry-backed bill, S7336/A9904, cannot be allowed to succeed in New York.  A Senate vote on this bill could happen as early as today and it is possible the Assembly will also consider this bill in the next few days.
 
Every year, New York City residents use and dispose over 9 billion plastic bags. Weighing over 91,000 tons, these bags cost the City over $12.5 million to send to landfills, requiring over 7,000 garbage truck trips. Many of them don’t make it that far, instead getting stuck in trees, clogging storm drains, getting caught in recycling equipment, and becoming part of the growing islands of plastic pollution that are poisoning our oceans and our food supply.
 
The bill recently passed by the New York City Council would require most stores to charge a 5-cent fee for any plastic or paper bags provided to consumers at check-out. Low-income consumers paying for any part of their purchase with SNAP or WIC are exempt from the charge. The City will also undertake a large-scale giveaway of reusable bags and extensive outreach, particularly targeting low-income communities. The purpose of the fee is not to raise money, but to encourage a change in behavior so that people will switch to reusable bags.  The law will go into effect on October 1.
 
Plastic bags make a significant contribution to the waste stream in New York City, costing millions of dollars and requiring thousands of extra garbage truck trips each year, which places a disparate burden on low-income communities and communities of color. NYC, after years of debate, has passed a local law implementing a model that has been proven to work in cities and countries around the world. We should respect the city’s democratic process, and allow their chosen solution time to prove whether or not it will be effective.
 
I have organized a petition opposing S7336, as I strongly believe that Albany should not be taking away the ability of New York City, and other cities throughout New York State, to clean up their waste streams.  If you agree, you can sign the petition at https://www.nysenate.gov/petitions/liz-krueger/support-nyc-plastic-bag-bill-stop-state-intervention.
 
Community Spotlight

Upcoming Shred-a-Thon Events
:
On Saturday, June 11, Upper Green Side is hosting a shredding event at 82nd Street between First and York from 11am-2pm. 
  
On Sunday June 26th Assemblymember Rebecca Seawright is hosting a shred-a-thon in partnership with Upper Green Side.  The shredding truck will be parked at the Green Market on the East Side of First Avenue between 92nd and 93rd Streets on Sunday, June 26 from 11am-2pm. 
 
NO cardboard or handled shopping bags or hardcover books are accepted at either event. Please remove paper clips and spiral bindings.

The Radical Age Movement Intergenerational Age Cafe:
On Tuesday June 14th, The Radical Age Movement will host an Intergenerational Age Café.  The Age Café is based on a model of engaging people in conversations that matter called the “World Café,” which is a powerful social technology offering an effective antidote to the fast-paced fragmentation and lack of connection in today’s world. Based on the understanding that conversation is the core process that drives personal, business, and organizational life, the World Café is more than a method, a process, or technique; it’s a way of thinking and being together sourced in a philosophy of conversational leadership. 
 
Everybody wants to live a long life, yet nobody wants to get old.  Our youth-centric society drives this way of thinking.  Ageing is a part of life that brings with it both challenges and great rewards.  We are living in rapidly changing times that are posing brand new encounters for young and old. There is no longer a blueprint to guide either cohort on their life journeys.  It is up to all of us to create a new blueprint for the generations that follow.  Each cohort cannot do this alone.  Only together can we travel this unexplored territory and learn from each other along the way. By participating in our Intergenerational Age Café, you will be taking the first step towards shaping an all-inclusive future that embraces everyone. 
 
This event is co-sponsored by Emerging Aging, the Grey Panthers and the Transition Network. The event will take place from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm at the NY Society for Ethical Culture, 2 West 64 Street (Central Park West). To RSVP, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/intergenerational-age-cafe-tickets-25572497027.

Museum Mile Festival:
The annual Museum Mile Festival offers free admission to some of the world's finest art collections during extended evening hours. The 23-block stretch of Fifth Avenue is home to seven participating institutions—El Museo del Barrio, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Cooper-Hewitt, the Jewish Museum, Neue Galerie and the Museum of the City of New York. In addition to all the art to see inside, there are plenty of outdoor festivities: face painting, chalk drawing, live music and other block-party-type events. The festival kicks off at 6pm on Tuesday June 14th, rain or shine. For more information, visit museummilefestival.org.
 
Upcoming Pet Adoption Events:
Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC) is sponsoring several Pet Adoption events around the district in December. Upcoming dates and locations are:

Saturday, June 18, 11-3PM: 
Biscuits & Bath Sutton Place, 1064 1st Avenue at East 58th Street

Sunday, June 26, 12-4PM: 
Petco Turtle Bay, 991 2nd Avenue at East 52nd Street

Upcoming events are also listed at http://nycacc.org/Events.htm
 
Upcoming Rent Guidelines Board Meetings:
The Rent Guidelines Board will hold two Public Hearings in Manhattan on rent increases for 2016-2017 for rent-stabilized apartments:
 
- Monday June 20 from 2:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Great Hall at Cooper Union, 7 East 7th Street.
- Tuesday June 21 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Oberia D. Dempsey Multi Service Center – Auditorium,
127 West 127th Street
 
Last month, the NYC Rent Guidelines Board (RGB) adopted a proposed range of increases for NYC rent-stabilized apartments between 0 and 2% for 1-year leases and between 0.5% and 3.5% for 2-year leases. If approved, these increases will negatively impact millions of low- and middle-income New Yorkers, many of whom are still recovering from Hurricane Sandy and pay more than 50% of their income in rent. I will be submitting testimony in opposition to these increases.
 
If you would like to testify, Call the RGB at 212-669-7480 to sign up to speak at on You can also submit your views in writing instead of speaking at the hearing by addressing them to the Chairman, or any Board member, c/o the NYC Rent Guidelines Board, 51 Chambers St., Suite 202, New York, NY 10007 or via email to this address: chair@nycrgb.org.
 
The final vote on proposed increases will take place on Monday June 27 at 6:30 p.m. at the Great Hall at Cooper Union, 7 East 7th Street.

ID NYC Pop-Up Site at Webster Library July 1 – July 16:
From July 1st to 16th, IDNYC will be bringing a pop up enrollment site to the Upper East Side. The pop up site will be at Webster Library, located at 1465 York Avenue at East 78th Street.  Hours are Tuesday through Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Many New York cultural institutions offer free memberships or other benefits to ID NYC holders. For a list of benefits or to make an appointment to get your ID NYC, visit www.nyc.gov/idnyc
 
ActionHealthNYC Enrollment for Uninsured Immigrant New Yorkers:
ActionHealthNYC is part of a comprehensive plan to improve health care access for the city's immigrant population. ActionHealthNYC will offer low-cost coordinated health care to enrollees who are immigrant New Yorkers that currently do not have access to or qualify for health insurance, contingent upon income-eligibility. Participants will have access to primary and specialty health care. The program features a primary care home model, in which patients have an opportunity to build a relationship with health professionals who understand their individual medical history and health care needs, as well as additional care support mechanisms for individuals with high-risk chronic conditions. 
 
Prospective enrollees can call 311 and say "ActionHealthNYC" or visit www.nyc.gov/ActionHealthNYC to learn how to apply for the program. Enrollment is scheduled to run through June 30, 2016. Enrollment centers include:
 
HRA Waverly Job Center
12 West 14th Street, New York, NY 10011
 
NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue
Atrium – Main Lobby
462 1st Avenue (27th St. and 1st Ave), New York, NY 10016.

Legal Advocacy Clinics At Lenox Hill Neighborhood House:
The Lenox Hill Neighborhood House Legal Advocacy Center Offers assistance on a number of different issues. Here is a list of their ongoing programs and clinics:
● SNAP (formerly Food Stamps) Clinics: Wednesdays from 10am to 1pm at Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, 331 East 70th Street. First come, first served. Bring proof of identity, income information, utility bill, proof of housing costs, information on any dependents and if you are 60 or over or on SSI/SSD, information on medical costs.  For more information, call 
212-218-0431.
● SCRIE Clinics: call 
212-218-0503 ext. 6 for assistance in applying or recertifying for the Senior Citizens Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) program. The SCRIE clinic is open to tenants city-wide. Please note that due to the volume of calls, it sometimes takes up to two weeks for staff to respond to messages.
● Eviction Prevention: Walk-in clinic, every 2nd and 4th  Monday of the month, from 
10am to 1pm at 331 East 70th Street, for tenants who live, work, or go to school on Manhattan’s East Side above 59th Street and on Roosevelt Island.
● End-of-Life Planning/Advance Directives: volunteer attorneys may be able to assist you with one-on-one counseling and individualized drafting of Advance Directives including Health Care Proxies, Living Wills, Powers of Attorney, and simple, low-asset Wills. If you are interested in being screened for a possible appointment,  call the intake hotline at 
212-218-0503 ext 4.
● Health Care Access/Medicare/Medicaid: call 
212-218-0503 ext 3. Find out about Medicare Savings Programs, Medicaid home care, Medicare Part D, Medicaid Spend-down, EPIC and if you are eligible for Medicaid.
● Health Insurance Enrollment: call 
212-218-0432.  Assistance with finding and enrolling in an affordable health insurance plan. 

Affordable Housing Opportunities in Manhattan:
Riverton Apartments 
is now accepting applications for its waiting list for 1-, 2- and 3- bedroom apartments located at 135 Street to 138 Street, between 5th Avenue and the East River Â in Manhattan. Rents for these apartments range from $980 to $2891 depending on income and unit size. To be eligible, applicants must have incomes between $34,972 and $131,375 depending on unit and family size. Preference will be given to residents of New York City. A full description of the building and application process is available at 
 
Households may elect to submit an application by one of two methods: EITHER online OR by mail. To submit your application online now, please visit NYC Housing Connect atwww.nyc.gov/housingconnect and select “Apply for Housing.” To request an application by mail, mail a self-addressed envelope to: Riverton Apts, 243 5th Avenue, Box 425, New York, NY 10016.
 
7,500 applications will be selected through a randomized lottery process for placement on a waiting list.  As units becomes available, applicants on the waiting list who appear to qualify will be contacted in order of log number and preference and invited to an interview to continue the process of determining eligibility.  If you are selected for the waiting list and invited to an interview, you will be asked to bring documents that verify your household size, identity of members of your household income.  The waitlist established will be active for no more than two years, at which time a new lottery will be held to refresh the waitlist. 
 
Completed applications must be submitted online or returned by regular mail only to the post office box that will be listed on the application. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by June 13, 2016. Applicants who submit more than one application may be disqualified.
 
555 Ten is now accepting applications for 120 affordable studio,1-, 2- and 3- bedroom apartments newly constructed at 555 Tenth Avenue in the Hudson Yards neighborhood in Manhattan. Rents for these apartments range from $913 to $1315 depending on unit size. To be eligible, applicants must have incomes between $32,640 and $63,060 depending on unit and family size. Preference will be given to Community Board 4 residents for 50% of units, mobility-impaired persons for 5% of units, visual- and/or hearing-impaired persons for 2% of units, and City of New York municipal employees for 5% of units. A full description of the building and application process is available at 
 
Households may elect to submit an application by one of two methods: EITHER online OR by mail. To submit your application online now, please visit NYC Housing Connect atwww.nyc.gov/housingconnect and select “Apply for Housing.” To request an application by mail, mail a self-addressed envelope to: 555TEN c/o Breaking Ground, PO Box 3620937, New York, NY 10129.
 
Completed applications must be submitted online or returned by regular mail only to the post office box that will be listed on the application. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by July 6, 2016. Applicants who submit more than one application may be disqualified.
 
70 Charlton is now accepting applications for 29 affordable studio and 1- and 2- bedroom apartments newly constructed at 70 Charlton Street in the West Soho neighborhood in Manhattan. Rents for these apartments are $833 and $1082, depending on unit size. To be eligible, applicants must have incomes between $29,898 and $54,360, depending on unit and family size. Preference will be given to Community Board 2 residents for 50% of units, mobility-impaired persons for 5% of units, visual- and/or hearing-impaired persons for 2% of units, and City of New York municipal employees for 5% of units. A full description of the building and application process is available at 
 
Households may elect to submit an application by one of two methods: EITHER online OR by mail. To submit your application online now, please visit NYC Housing Connect atwww.nyc.gov/housingconnect and select “Apply for Housing.” To request an application by mail, mail a self-addressed envelope to 70 Charlton c/o Breaking Ground, PO Box 3620937, New York, NY 10129.
 
Completed applications must be submitted online or returned by regular mail only to the post office box that will be listed on the application. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by July 20, 2016. Applicants who submit more than one application may be disqualified.
 
KB 25 is now accepting applications for 55 affordable studio and 1- and 2- bedroom apartments newly constructed at 325 East 25th Street in the Murray Hill/Kip’s Bay neighborhood in Manhattan. Rents for these apartments are $1,715 and $2,216, depending on income and unit size. To be eligible, applicants must have incomes between $60,138 and $108,720, depending on unit and family size. Preference will be given to Community Board 6 residents for 50% of units, mobility-impaired persons for 5% of units, visual- and/or hearing-impaired persons for 2% of units, and City of New York municipal employees for 5% of units. A full description of the building and application process is available at 
 
Households may elect to submit an application by one of two methods: EITHER online OR by mail. To submit your application online now, please visit NYC Housing Connect atwww.nyc.gov/housingconnect and select “Apply for Housing.” To request an application by mail, mail a self-addressed envelope to KB25, 243 5TH Avenue, Box 428, New York, NY 10016.
 
Completed applications must be submitted online or returned by regular mail only to the post office box that will be listed on the application. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by July 27, 2016. Applicants who submit more than one application may be disqualified.
 
133 EQUITIES, LLC PHASE 2 is now accepting applications for 36 affordable studio and 1-, 2- and 3- bedroom apartments newly renovated at 235 West 116th Street, 119, 123-125 and 132 West 133rd Street, and 63 West 137th Street in the Harlem neighborhood in Manhattan. Rents for these apartments are $1,156 and $3,309, depending on income and unit size. To be eligible, applicants must have incomes between $41,143 and $173,415, depending on unit and family size. Preference will be given to Community Board 10 residents for 50% of units, mobility-impaired persons for 5% of units, visual- and/or hearing-impaired persons for 2% of units, and City of New York municipal employees for 5% of units. A full description of the building and application process is available at 
 
Households may elect to submit an application by one of two methods: EITHER online OR by mail. To submit your application online now, please visit NYC Housing Connect atwww.nyc.gov/housingconnect and select “Apply for Housing.” To request an application by mail, mail a self-addressed envelope to by mail, send a self-addressed envelope to 133 Equities, LLC, Phase II 316 West 118th Street, New York, NY 10026.
 
Completed applications must be submitted online or returned by regular mail only to the post office box that will be listed on the application. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by July 29, 2016. Applicants who submit more than one application may be disqualified.

Metrocard Bus and Van Schedule:
The MTA offers MetroCard-related services throughout New York City through mobile buses and vans. Buses provide a full range of services, including applying for or refilling a Reduced-Fare MetroCard, buying or refilling a regular MetroCard, or getting answers to a MetroCard-related question. Vans sell Unlimited Ride MetroCards and Pay-Per-Ride MetroCards, and they refill MetroCards and Reduced-Fare MetroCards. Buses and vans will be in my district on the following dates and locations:

June 14, 9 - 10:30 am, 92 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
June 14, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm., 86 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
June 14, 1:30 - 2:30 pm, 68 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
June 15, 
9 - 10:30 am, 79 Street & 3 Avenue – Bus
June 15, 11 am - 1 pm, 7
9 Street & York Avenue – Bus
June 15, 1:30 - 2:30 pm, 72 Street & York Avenue – Bus
June 16, 8:30 - 10:30 am, 47 Street & 2 Avenue – Van
June 16, 1:30 - 3:30 pm, 28 Street & 2 Avenue – Van
June 28, 9 - 10:30 am, 92 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
June 28, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm., 86 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
June 28, 1:30 - 2:30 pm, 68 Street & Lexington Avenue – Bus
July 1, 
9 - 10 am, 57 Street and 1 Avenue – Van
July 1, 10:30 - 11:30 am, 57 Street and 3 Avenue – Van
July 1, 12:30 - 2:30 pm, 68 Street and 1 Avenue – Van
July 6, 9 - 10:30 am, 7
9 Street & 3 Avenue – Bus
July 6, 11 am - 1 pm, 7
9 Street & York Avenue – Bus
July 6, 1:30 - 2:30 pm, 72 Street & York Avenue – Bus
July 7, 7 – 9 am, 90 Street and York Avenue - Van
July 7, 8:30 - 10:30 am, 47 Street & 2 Avenue – Van
July 7, 1:30 - 3:30 pm, 28 Street & 2 Avenue – Van 


The full mobile MetroCard schedule is available at 
http://mta.info/metrocard/mms.htm. Please note that MetroCard buses and vans do not take credit cards.