Showing posts with label Carlina Rivera. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Carlina Rivera. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Reports: Dan Goldman is the Democratic nominee for the 10th Congressional District

Dan Goldman, former House impeachment counsel, has been declared the winner in New York's newly drawn 10th Congressional District, which includes the East Village and Lower East Side. 

The Associated Press called it just after midnight... Goldman also declared himself the Democratic nominee for the open seat... According to published reports, Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou trails by a little over 1,000 votes. She has yet to concede the race, waiting until all the absentee ballots are counted, per Gothamist

The crowded field for the open seat saw Mondaire Jones (18.09%) in third and local City Council member Carlina Rivera (16.87%) in fourth, as City & State reported

Rivera posted her speech to her supporters from last night... Meanwhile, here's a breakdown of how people voted in the different neighborhoods making up the 10th Congressional District...
City & State has more election-night coverage here.

Thursday, June 2, 2022

City Councilmember Carlina Rivera makes bid for Congress official

District 2 City Councilmember Carlina Rivera made it official yesterday, announcing that she is running for Congress in the newly redrawn 10th District that spans parts of Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn.

It's a highly coveted seat, with competition that includes former Mayor Bill de Blasio, Rep. Mondaire Jones, Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou, Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon, former New York City Comptroller Elizabeth Holtzman and Dan Goldman, former lead counsel for House Democrats during the first impeachment of Donald Trump. 

In interviews yesterday, Rivera emphasized her local roots. 

"I was born in Bellevue Hospital. I grew up in Section 8 housing on the Lower East Side. I went to school here. I played basketball here. Every milestone in my life is here," she told City & State

Here's more from The City
The new 10th District leans heavily Democratic, spanning all of Manhattan below 14th Street and areas of Brooklyn spanning Dumbo and Brooklyn Heights to Park Slope all the way to Sunset Park and Borough Park. Whomever wins the Democratic primary in August is expected to cruise to a November general election victory. 

First elected to the Council in 2017, Rivera now represents several Manhattan neighborhoods where she'll be wooing voters, including parts of Chinatown and the Lower East Side, the East Village and Alphabet City. 
In a phone interview on Tuesday, Rivera listed housing and climate change among the top issues in the district and touted her efforts to expand affordable housing development and climate resiliency.
Meanwhile, Politico pointed out the challenges her campaign faces. 
A POLITICO analysis of the 2018 Democratic primary for governor — the last year New Yorkers voted in a midterm election — showed that parts of Rivera's lower Manhattan district, including Chinatown and the Lower East Side, voted in far fewer numbers than Park Slope and Cobble Hill. Not only did those Brooklyn areas lead turnout in the newly drawn congressional seat, they are consistently among the highest-performing districts across the city, election returns and data from the CUNY’s Center for Urban Research show. They are also the home turf of competitors, including de Blasio and Simon.


While she doesn’t have the baggage of former Mayor Bill de Blasio ... she also doesn't have his near-universal name recognition. What's more, Rivera hails from lower Manhattan and hasn't appeared on the ballot in some of the most civically active neighborhoods within the district, which de Blasio represented for eight years in the Council.

While she grew up in the district — unlike fellow hopeful Rep. Mondaire Jones , whose nearest office is more than 20 miles away — she now lives eight blocks north of its boundaries. And she has just begun to fundraise, whereas Jones already has $2.9 million in the bank as of the most recent filing.

Still, her team believes she will prevail, as outlined in an email — titled "Carlina Rivera NY-10 Path to Victory" — sent to media outlets yesterday.

We believe that Council Member Rivera has the clearest and most straightforward path to victory in NY-10 of any announced or potential candidate in the race. 

Rivera has a reliable voter base in Council District 2, the clear ability to win Hispanic voters across Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, a history of winning in NYCHA and housing cooperatives, and a proven appeal to high-turnout liberal voters in racially and economically diverse neighborhoods throughout the district who aligned with Maya Wiley and Kathryn Garcia in the 2021 Democratic mayoral primary. 

No other candidate in this race combines such a strong existing constituency with such a  clear path to building a district-wide coalition, and no other candidate has been able to secure such a strong level of support from elected officials both within the district and around the city. 

A recent poll conducted by PIX11/Emerson College/The Hill (before Rivera entered the race) found that 77% of Democratic voters in the district are undecided on who they would vote for in the Aug. 23 primary.  


For further listening: Carlina Rivera on Running for Congress in the New NY-10 (Podcast at Gotham Gazette)

Monday, May 9, 2022

Councilmember Carlina Rivera calls for an immediate end to the city's encampment sweeps

Photo from 9th Street on April 6 by Stacie Joy 

Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera is demanding an immediate end to "the dehumanizing homeless encampment sweeps" in the East Village and throughout New York City. 

The demands came in a letter that Rivera sent to Mayor Adams this past Thursday...

It reads in part: 
For over a month, my office, other local elected officials, and community leaders have conveyed to your office through meetings, phone calls, and emails that these sweeps represent an egregious misappropriation of resources with very few housing placements as outcomes and further deepen the mistrust between government and the public. The acts themselves also appear to be among the most tragic misfires in community engagement to have transpired in recent years. Despite our best efforts in seeking your attention to this urgent matter, yesterday afternoon the NYPD Strategic Response Group, an entity designated for counterterrorism efforts, aggressively executed multiple arrests, a continuation of the harmful behavior we have witnessed since the first confrontation at the intersection of East 9th Street and Avenue B in Manhattan on April 6, 2022

I both respect and commend your administration's commitment to ending homelessness in New York City. With that goal in mind, I urge you to put an end to the ineffective sweeps and instead commit to supporting and investing in the policies and programs our communities deserve. We must build more housing across the five boroughs and we should start now; we must legalize nontraditional uses for housing, like basements and vacant commercial properties; and we must fully staff the agency teams tasked with securing affordable housing for the New Yorkers who qualify. 
A Community Board 3 committee drafted a resolution in support of the asks of the letter, which will go to the full Board for a vote on May 24. 

The NYPD and other city agencies have continued with their sweeps, with at least seven on the group of several unhoused residents staying in tents on Ninth Street between Avenue B and Avenue C under the sidewalk bridge at the former P.S. 64. There was yet another one — unannounced — yesterday on Ninth Street that led to more arrests.

According to city stats cited by The New York Times, there have been more than 700 cleanups from March 18 to May 1 — many of them of the same site multiple times — and 39 people have accepted the placement into shelters.

"Our teams are working professionally and diligently every day to make sure that every New Yorker living on the street knows they have a better option while ensuring that everyone who lives in or visits our city can enjoy the clean public spaces we all deserve," Mayor Adams said in a statement last week.

And as the Times noted: "Several videos of officers roughly handling homeless people and their belongings have circulated widely on social media, complicating Mr. Adams's attempts to portray the dismantling of encampments as something being done for the good of the homeless people themselves."

Unhoused residents have said that the shelter system is not safe. Read our interviews with some of the Ninth Street residents here.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Election results: Rivera, Marte win local City Council races

Carlina Rivera has won another term as District 2 City Council member. 

According to tallies from the Board of Elections, Rivera easily topped indpendent candidate Juan Pagan and neighborhood candidate Allie Ryan with nearly 80 percent of the votes.
In the District 1 race for City Council, which includes Chinatown, Little Italy and the Lower East Side, Christopher Marte had more than 70 percent of the vote in beating Republican candidate Jacqueline Toboroff and independent Maud Maron.
Here's Rivera's statement... And from Marte's camp... 


And as expected in the race for mayor, Eric Adams "cruised to victory" in the general election over Republican Curtis Sliwa. You can find the full NYC results here.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Elected officials call for more rooftop oversight; details emerge about woman who fell from 202 Avenue A

Local elected officials are calling for more city oversight and increased landlord responsibility after a 24-year-old woman died from a fall while attending a rooftop party at 202 Avenue A early Saturday morning.

"This tragedy shows just how dangerous overcrowded or mismanaged rooftop parties have become, and how often they have little to no safety protections or monitoring," local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera said during a press conference on Sunday morning outside the building between 12th Street and 13th Street. "We will continue to pursue my legislation to ensure agency responses so that these deadly situations do not happen again. But landlords are ultimately responsible for ensuring outdoor spaces are legally and safely accessible and are not used improperly. If you make the decision to buy a building, you are responsible for the lives of its residents. And these landlords are not living up to that responsibility."

Rivera is working on two bills to address this issue. She has already introduced Intro 1292, which would require tenants to sign and acknowledge their understanding of the city's noise codes. She's planning on introducing a second bill that would ensure enforcement agencies have easier access to phone numbers of overnight building supers or contacts and require better oversight of rooftop use and capacity.

"We've heard complaints from constituents regarding out-of-control rooftop parties, even before the start of the pandemic," said Assemblymember Harvey Epstein. "I'm committed to ensuring we push state legislation and hearings to address this ongoing problem. The city and state need to take control of this situation before we lose more lives."

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer also said that she supports a City Council hearing and a City Hall review of building code enforcement procedures related to rooftop parties, which some residents say have increased in recent years with a spate of new or renovated buildings offering outdoor amenities.

Residents who have been enduring unending rooftop parties hope that the proposed legislation will call on landlords to prevent these events from occurring or assess penalties to tenants for disturbances.

Meanwhile, more details have emerged about the victim, identified in published reports as Cameron Perrelli, a Connecticut native and Lower East Side resident who worked in finance.

Her uncle, Michael Perrelli, told the Daily News that the family received three versions of what led to her fall into an airshaft at around 3 a.m. 

"We got three stories — that she was jumping from one building to the next, and we heard that she was walking on an air-conditioning vent, and then somebody just said she slipped," he told the paper. "Don't they have a fence on top of the building? They allow parties?"

Said her father, Louis Perrelli: "It's not like her to be a risk-taker. She's not one to take those risks. I don't get it. She was perfect. ... She was always the designated driver, the good person, the peacemaker. She was an angel — that good."

The Daily Mail reports that Cameron Perrelli attempted to climb from the roof at 202 Avenue A to the roof next door at 200 Avenue A. A Daily Mail photographer accessed the roof yesterday morning, taking photos showing that 202 Avenue A is about four feet lower than the adjacent building at 200 Avenue A with a 3- to 4-foot airway in between.

As previously reported, workers added a horizontal and vertical enlargement of the existing 4-floor structure at 202 Avenue A, doubling the total square footage from 5,334 to 10,920. There are eight residences here at The Topanga. The penthouse units, featuring advertised rooftop access, are renting for $12,000 monthly, per Streeteasy.

Highpoint Property Group bought No. 202 in a deal that closed in late 2017 for $6.75 million. To date, Highpoint has not publicly responded to the tragedy despite requests from various media outlets, including The Daily Mail and People magazine.

In a complaint filed yesterday with the Department of Buildings, there's a "report of recreational use of the rooftop, contrary to the C of O [Certificate of Occupancy]."
It's not clear who filed the complaint. A DOB rep told ABC 7 yesterday that the department "was not requested to investigate the fatal fall and has not received any 311 calls related to illegal occupancy of the rooftop."
The DOB said in order for rooftops to be legally occupied as a recreational space, the building owners must obtain a Certificate of Occupancy for that use. They said 202 Avenue A does have a Certificate of Occupancy which includes an accessory roof terrace. The adjacent building, 200 Avenue A, does not have the certificate.
The most recent C of O we spotted online for 202 Avenue A was for the pre-renovated building and dated December 1992. (There appears to be a temporary C of O posted to the DOB Now portal.)

Also, according to 311 records, there have been 75 noise complaints at the address going back to December.
Records at Streeteasy show that the first penthouse at the renovated building — with a $12,000 ask — was rented in November 2020.

Image via Twitter

Saturday, May 22, 2021

[Updated] Woman dies after falling from Avenue A rooftop; Rivera demands review of building enforcement procedures

According to several nearby residents, a woman attending a rooftop party at 202 Avenue A fell to her death early this morning. Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera's office confirmed the tragedy.

Rivera's office stated that it was "a dangerously overcrowded rooftop party" here between 12th Street and 13th Street. 

Following the death, Rivera is calling on City Council to address tenant and landlord neglect of rooftop events, "as well as for an official review of the lack of agency enforcement by DOB, DEP, FDNY and NYPD of dangerous rooftop parties in Manhattan."

Earlier this week, East Village residents noted the ongoing disruptive rooftop parties at 330 E. Sixth St., prompting other reports of addresses holding similar events. 

According to a media advisory from Rivera's office late this afternoon:
[T]his event is just the latest in a string of documented and reported weekly parties that far exceed safe occupancy levels and often feature concert-level amplified sound on a series of East Village rooftops. Partygoers have even recently been reported to be jumping from rooftop to rooftop during these gatherings. 
Electeds have sent letters to City Hall and building managers, but agencies have failed to respond to these hazardous conditions. Community boards have followed up directly with the appropriate agencies but have received inadequate answers.
Rivera is working on two bills to address this issue — one introduced that would require tenants to sign and acknowledge their understanding of the city's noise codes. Another that is planned to be introduced soon requires better oversight of rooftop use and capacity.

Tomorrow morning at 10, Rivera, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, State Sen. Brad Hoylman, local Assemblymember Harvey Epstein, reps from Community Board 3 and the local block association will gather outside 202 Avenue A to discuss the new bills. 

The NYPD continues to investigate last night's rooftop death. The victim's name has not yet been released. 


Update: According to the Post, the woman was 24 and lived on Delancey. She was reportedly climbing from 202 Avenue A to 200 Avenue A  around 3:30 a.m. when she lost her footing and fell between the buildings.

Update 2: Published reports identified the woman as Cameron Perrelli, a Connecticut native who worked in finance in Manhattan. 

Cameron’s father Louis Perrelli said, "It's not like her to be a risk-taker. She's not one to take those risks. I don’t get it. We don’t really know a lot. We got three stories — that she was jumping from one building to the next, and we heard that she was walking on an air-conditioning vent, and then somebody just said she slipped. Don't they have a fence on top of the building? They allow parties?"


As previously reported, workers added a horizontal and vertical enlargement of the existing 4-floor structure at 202 Avenue A, doubling the total square footage from 5,334 to 10,920. There are eight residences here at The Topanga. The penthouse units, featuring rooftop access, are renting for $12,000 monthly, per Streeteasy.

Highpoint Property Group bought No. 202 in a deal that closed in late 2017 for $6.75 million. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

CM Carlina Rivera calls for Parks Dept. to review fate of Cox statue in Tompkins Square Park

Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera is calling on the Parks Department to address the future of the Samuel S. Cox statue in Tompkins Square Park.

In a letter dated Thursday, Rivera asks Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver to address the community about the plans for the statue, created in 1891 and standing at this location since 1924.

Per the letter:

Historians and numerous New Yorkers have highlighted that Cox’s history — beyond his work regarding pro-labor policies at the United States Postal Service — includes very disturbing examples of white supremacy, particularly as it relates to emancipation and Black civic participation in the mid-1800s.

Today’s demands for social justice that are being raised across this country must be met with a holistic review of the (mostly) men whom we honor with place names and statues in our public spaces.

I am sure most New Yorkers would agree that these landmarks should not remain as a public reminder to many of our neighbors that, for much of United States history, they were not considered nor treated as equals to white Americans. As many historians have suggested, such statuary is better situated in non-public settings, such as museums, where they can remain as an educational tool for future generations choosing – operative word — to view and understand our nation’s racist legacy. Encountering the Cox statue while visiting Tompkins Square Park is not a choice.

I hope that you will consider speaking with the local community immediately, specifically Black residents of the Lower East Side, to consult with them on the Cox statue’s fate.

The Cox statue has been under 24/7 NYPD supervision since July 25. It was tagged overnight with ACAB and "black power" on July 16-17. One of the officers in the Park told us that they will be on duty outside the Cox statue "for the foreseeable future." It is unclear if there was a threat against the statue to prompt police protection.

Cox (1824–1889) was a longtime member of Congress who spearheaded legislation that led to paid benefits and a 40-hour workweek for postal employees.

In a post titled "Why Is New York City Still Celebrating Statues of Racists?" from 2014 for the History News Network, Alan Singer, a historian and professor at Hofstra, wrote about Cox's history: "[He] fancied himself a champion of the United States Constitution but somehow his interpretation of the Constitution always seemed to deny rights to Blacks. On June 2, 1862, a year after the Civil War had begun but six months before the Emancipation Proclamation, Cox argued in Congress that the United States was made for white men only."

Earlier this summer, the city announced it was removing the statue of Theodore Roosevelt — long considered a racist symbol — from the American Museum of Natural History's entrance.

The death of George Floyd has led to the removal — by protesters in some cases and city leaders in others — of statues across the country because of the racist ideals they represent.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Carlina Rivera states her opposition over plan to transfer air rights for new St. Mark's Place office building

[A rendering of 3 St. Mark's Place]

Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera yesterday joined the chorus of opposition to the air-rights transfer for the new office building planned for the northeast corner of St. Mark's Place and Third Avenue.

To date, Rivera, who holds the key vote when the proposal comes before City Council, had previously expressed concerns about the project, but hadn't gone as far as officially opposing it.

During yesterday's City Planning Commission hearing, Rivera submitted joint testimony with Assemblymember Deborah Glick and State Sen. Brad Hoylman, which read in part:

"This development would clearly be out of context with the landmarked 4 St. Mark’s Place, as well as the surrounding street scape and character. It's clear that the developers, in the wake of numerous concerns raised by neighborhood groups, Community Board 3, several members of the Landmarks Preservation Commission, and elected officials, have not proposed or addressed any serious 'appropriate conditions and safeguards' that the 74-79 permit states should be considered in order to 'minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area."

The City Planning Commission will cast their vote at a later date as part of the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure. They are expected to approve the plan to transfer air rights from 4 St. Mark's Place to the new development across the street at 3 St. Mark's Place. In issues such as this, City Council usually follows the lead of the local Councilmember.

Andrew Berman, executive director of the Village Preservation, has long been opposed to this plan. He said that he was pleased by Rivera's decision.

"We are hopeful that her statement ... will be followed by a no vote in the Council and a call to her colleagues to do the same," Berman said in an email. "We have said from the beginning that this proposal to increase the size of the planned tech office tower at the 'gateway to the East Village' is wrong, and would only serve to accelerate the spread of Midtown South and Silicon Alley to this neighborhood."

The Village Preservation and more than a dozen residents also spoke out against the plan yesterday.

[Photo yesterday via Village Preservation]

With the air-rights transfer, developer Real Estate Equities Corporation (REEC) would be allowed to build 8,386 square feet larger than the current zoning allows.

Regardless of an extra 8,000 square feet, the project will continue. Per Gothamist:

At Wednesday's public hearing, the project's architect Morris Adjmi emphasized a building of a similar height size could be built as-of-right, saying, "one could build this building without a special permit, without transferring any air rights, and it is 22 feet taller at the street wall and also more or less the same height overall."

A rep for the developers, Adam Taubman of the law firm Kramer Levin, also said at the hearing the currently vacant lot would see construction whether or not the permit is approved.

REEC picked up the 99-year leasehold for the properties here for nearly $150 million in November 2017. The corner assemblage is owned by the Gabay family.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Demolition permits filed for northeast corner of 3rd Avenue and St. Mark's Place

End is nearing for the businesses on the northeast corner of 3rd Avenue and St. Mark's Place

New building plans revealed for 3rd Avenue and St. Mark's Place

Concern over potential air-rights transfer for new office building on St. Mark's Place and 3rd Avenue

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

DOB fines crane operator $110,000 for boom collapse last month at the Riis Houses

[Photo on July 30 by @FDNY]

Officials at the Department of Buildings yesterday stopped all work citywide by United Crane and Rigging, the company reportedly responsible for the July 30 boom collapse at the Jacob Riis Houses, 749 FDR Drive and Sixth Street.

According to their report, the operator hoisted a load of steel beams that weighed 700 pounds more than the crane's permitted lifting capacity. The collapse forced the temporary evacuation of more than 100 families as well as the closure of the FDR.

United was also involved in a fatal accident this past April 13 at 570 Broome St., in which the counterweight of a crane fell to the ground and killed a worker.

Here's more from a news release via the DOB:

The agency’s order will remain in effect until the firm replaces the personnel who supervised the crane work at this and 21 other locations, and puts in place an independent monitor who will make monthly safety-compliance reports to DOB regarding United’s work.

DOB’s investigation of the FDR Drive incident revealed that the crane’s operator lifted a load of steel beams that weighed more than 4,400 pounds, exceeding the crane’s permitted lifting capacity of 3,700 pounds. The total load weight caused the crane’s boom to bend and partially collapse. The collapse of the boom caused the operator to lose control of the load, which struck the roof and side of the building before falling to the ground. The load of steel was intended to be placed on top of the building to support future mechanical equipment.

Accordingly, DOB issued five violations today to United that carry penalties of $110,000. The violations include failure to designate a qualified and competent Lift Director; failure to make proper notifications to DOB regarding the work that was being performed; inadequate safety measures on site; failure to safeguard the construction site to protect workers and the public; and failure to have proper construction documents on site.

Assemblymember Harvey Epstein reacted to this news...

The city has been upgrading buildings in the Riis complex in recent months as part of the Sandy Recovery Program Restoration.

In a blistering open letter to incoming NYCHA director Greg Russ on Friday, local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera urged the agency to ramp up its oversight of contractors carrying out federally funded reconstruction work.

As she wrote, the crane collapse was "the latest in a string of failures for an agency with an entrenched culture of mismanagement, documentation of wasted resource and a seeming disregard for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers who live in public housing."

[Click on image for more detail]

You can read more about the Rivera letter at the Post and Curbed.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Winning projects revealed in District 2's Participatory Budgeting vote

In late March, local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera kicked off Council District 2’s first-ever round of Participatory Budgeting (PB) voting.

PB allows for residents to decide how to spend capital funds, allocated by the Councilmember, for community improvements.

And yesterday, she revealed the winning projects (there were 11 total on the ballot):

• Countdown clocks along the M9, M14A, and M14D bus lines
• Science mobile carts for P.S. 34, 730 E. 12th St.
• Street resurfacing throughout the District
• Gym renovations at P.S. 188/Girls Prep, 442 E. Houston St.
• An accessible lift at P.S. 40, 320 E. 20th St.

Rivera said that the PB cycle ended with nearly 4,800 votes.

"I was very proud to see our community so involved in what really is civic engagement at its best, where district residents as young as 11 directly decided how some of their taxpayer dollars would be spent in their community," she said in her May newsletter released yesterday.

Friday, March 29, 2019

You can vote on what neighborhood projects receive funds from Councilmember Rivera's office

[Click on image to go big]

Local City Councilmember Carlina Rivera is kicking off Council District 2’s first-ever round of Participatory Budgeting (PB) voting, which begins tomorrow (Saturday!) and continues through April 7.

Here's more via the EVG inbox...

To celebrate the start of Vote Week, Rivera is hosting a PB Vote Week Kick Off tomorrow (Saturday!) at the LES Girls Club (402 E. Eighth St. at Avenue D) from noon to 3:30 p.m. Individuals interested in attending the celebration can RSVP online by going to this link or calling her office at (212) 677-1077.

At the event, residents will get the opportunity to learn about all the Participatory Budgeting projects on the ballot and vote for their favorite projects. PB allows for residents to decide how to spend capital funds, allocated by the Council Member, for community improvements. This year, out of the 135 ideas submitted, 11 projects were placed on the final PB ballot. (Up to $1 million of projects will be funded based on the votes of residents.)

The final list of projects on the ballot:

· Fence installation at El Jardín del Paraiso Garden, 710 E. Fifth St.
Replacing old fence with a new iron fence.
Estimated cost: $225,000

· Water system construction at 6BC Botanical Garden, 630 E. Sixth St.
Designating a water source, includes new tap, piping, hydrant, and RPZ to support the 6BC Garden.
Estimated cost: $300,000

· An accessible lift at PS 40, 320 E. 20th St.
Install a lift to help disabled seniors and children entering the building.
Estimated cost: $350,000

· Gym renovations at PS 188, 442 E. Houston St.
This would include replacing walls, seating, padding around the walls, gym equipment and installing storage space.
Estimated cost: $150,000

· Science mobile carts for PS 34, 730 E. 12th St.
Two science mobile carts for students to do laboratory work.
Estimated cost: $140,000

· Countdown clocks along the M9, M14A, and M14D routes
Countdown clocks for routes along the M9, M14A and M14D in District 2.
Estimated cost: $200,000

· Street resurfacing district-wide
Many of the roads are in bad condition, and constituents are seeking road resurfacing throughout the district.
Estimated cost: $250,000 per lane mile

· Garbage compactor upgrades at Straus Houses, 243 E. 27th St.
Upgrades to two interior compactors and compactor room.
Estimated cost: $100,000

· Playground renovations at Lillian Wald Houses, Avenue D between Fourth and Fifth Streets
Upgrade to play equipment, new set of monkey bars and new slide
Estimated cost: $500,000

· Playground renovations at Jacob Riis Houses, 178 Avenue D
Renovations would include new monkey bars, a new slide and a new sprinkler system.
Estimated cost: $500,000

· Basketball court renovations at Jacob Riis Houses, 178 Avenue D
Basketball court will be re-painted, install new basketball hoops and overall upgrade to court.
Estimated cost: $500,000

Residents who live in District 2 and are older than 11 years of age can vote for up to five of the 11 ideas on the ballot.

Rivera's office will have specific sites set up throughout District 2 where residents will be able to vote (the image at top of this post has the locations). Residents can also vote online at (note – the link will go live at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow).

Friday, March 22, 2019

Local elected officials urging the MTA/DOT to keep local service in M14 SBS plan

[EVG file photo]

Last month, the MTA presented a preliminary proposal for permanent M14 Select Bus Service (SBS) on 14th Street.

The Villager recently had a recap of that meeting, gleaned from attendees:

Currently, the new planned SBS route calls for fewer stops by the M14, particularly in the East Village and Lower East Side, as well as off-board ticketing. The MTA has not decided yet whether it will eliminate current M14A and M14D service following SBS implementation. But, officials at the meeting said the authority was “open” to that idea.

The elimination of service/stops along the M14A and M14D routes isn't sitting well with local elected officials.

This afternoon at 1, several of them — including City Councilmember Carlina Rivera, State Sen. Brian Kavanagh and State Assembly Member Harvey Epstein — along with other community leaders are gathering on the northwest corner of Avenue A and Fourth Street to call for "a new M14 Select Bus Service (SBS) plan that retains local bus service while creating a new, faster SBS alternative with fewer stops."

The rally comes on the heels of a letter urging the MTA and DOT (see below) for a "real M14 SBS."

Here's some background via the EVG inbox...

Community District 3, which encompasses most of the future M14 SBS route, is one of the most underserved transit areas of Manhattan, with 15 percent of our residents living more than half a mile from the nearest subway stop.

At the same time, this area is home to one of the 10 largest senior populations in New York City. These seniors rely on the current M14A/D to get to medical appointments, supermarkets, and social activities. If these individuals lose their local stops, many will also lose a critical connection to their community.

The current proposal also ignores the challenges that stop removal will pose for our neighbors living in New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments and the 28 percent of residents of the Lower East Side and Chinatown who live below the Federal Poverty Level.

A real M14 SBS with supplemental, local service, would service these populations while improving on the proposed SBS plan, which is currently a clear compromise between a local route and a typical SBS route – meaning that the proposed M14 SBS will not have the “express” travel times that other routes have.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Reminders: City Council's oversight hearing on the revised East River Park stormproofing is tomorrow

Tomorrow afternoon at 1, City Council is holding a joint committee hearing with de Blasio administration officials and relevant agency commissioners about the updated East Side Coastal Resiliency Project. (Find the agenda item at this link.)

Council members — led by District 2's Carlina Rivera — hope to learn more about the city's new vision for the revamp to stormproof East River Park. The updated plan was released in the fall, in an L-train-ish fashion that caught many stakeholders by surprise after years of outreach and groundwork.

The updated plan — released without any community input — is radically different than what had been discussed, and its expected cost will increase from $760 million to $1.45 billion, while closing and burying the current East River Park for up to three-plus years. (The city's new design renderings are at this link.)

The Times caught up to the story in a piece headlined To Save East River Park, the City Intends to Bury It on Sunday.

An excerpt from the Times:

In a separate interview, the Parks Department commissioner, Mitchell J. Silver, said that unlike passive parks that double as floodplains, like those by Jamaica Bay, East River Park has structures, lights and synthetic turf, which “does not do well” in floods. And with the river projected to rise two and a half feet in 30 years, raising the park is the only way to save it.

By bringing in landfill and soil by barge, the new plan allows for daytime construction away from the highway, minimizing traffic disruptions. After its scheduled March 2020 launch, the new plan can thus be completed in three years rather than five, with flood protection in place by 2022.

Still, the park’s closing under either plan has left people like Joan Reinmuth, a retired nurse and 30-year East Village resident, doubtful. “This park is more than a recreation facility,” she said. “These kids in NYCHA houses don’t take vacation cruises. They don’t shop at Zabar’s for fish; they fish to eat. Early mornings, men are shaving in the fountains.”

Rivera, who called for Wednesday's oversight hearing, shared her thoughts on the project in series of tweets on Friday...

Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: The reality of storm-proofing East River Park in 2020

Storm center: Questions linger over updated plans for the East Side Coastal Resiliency project

Mayor's new East River Park flood plan faces City Council scrutiny

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Mayor's new East River Park flood plan faces City Council scrutiny

On Jan. 23, City Council is holding a hearing with de Blasio administration officials about the updated East Side Coastal Resiliency Project. (Find the agenda item at this link.)

As you know, the Mayor's office announced a new vision for the long-delayed revamp to stormproof East River Park back in the fall. The updated plan is radically different than what had been discussed, and its expected cost will increase from $760 million to $1.45 billion, while closing and gutting the current East River Park for up to three and a half years. (The city's new design renderings are at this link.)

City Councilmember Carlina Rivera, whose district is most impacted by the new plans, announced the joint hearing of the City Council’s Committees on Parks and Environmental Protection yesterday.

Here's part of her statement:

"This hearing will finally give the Council and our community the chance to hear directly from the Mayor’s team and relevant agency commissioners regarding the recent changes to this monumental coastal protection project. Even with multiple community briefings and meetings with elected officials, we still do not have important details about this project, and I expect the Mayor’s team to come well prepared and help us understand the need for these drastic changes.

This new plan represents a fundamental departure from anything the City has previously discussed and would reportedly bring the projected cost of the project to $1.45 billion. The Mayor’s Office has failed to provide detailed analyses for explaining why this $700 million increase is necessary.

In addition, this new plan would require the closure of East River Park, the only real green space for tens of thousands of NYCHA residents and community members on the Lower East Side, for three years. Officials have not explained in any way how they will provide alternate outdoor space for this community, which has one of the highest asthma rates in the city.

We want a resilient city, and we will use this hearing to ensure that this project and others like it throughout the city can actually accomplish our progressive environmental goals."

The previous stormproofing as part of the East Side Coastal Resiliency Plan would have required closing a lane of the FDR and working around Con Edison power lines. However, city officials have said that building out the flood protection and reconstructing the park would eliminate these FDR traffic issues as well as speed up the construction process by one hurricane season.

In addition, the most recent version of the plan would transform the East River Park into a "world-class park" with a variety of courts for tennis and basketball and (fields for soccer) — all protected from storms and sea-level rise.

Meanwhile, tomorrow night, CB3's Parks, Recreation, Waterfront, & Resiliency Committee will hear updates on the East Side Coastal Resiliency project. The committee meeting starts at 6:30. Location: BRC Senior Services Center, 30 Delancey St. between Chrystie and Forsyth.

[Proposed schedule via the city. Click to go big.]

Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: The reality of storm-proofing East River Park in 2020

Storm center: Questions linger over updated plans for the East Side Coastal Resiliency project

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Councilmember Rivera introducing new bill to protect bike lanes in construction zones

[EVG photo from June at 75 1st Ave.]

In other bike-related news... District 2 City Councilmember Carlina Rivera, along with advocates and neighborhood residents, is announcing the introduction of a new bill this morning that will require holders of DOT permits that authorize construction or equipment on the street to preserve any impacted bike lanes with a safe and sufficient detour.

Per Rivera's office:

This includes any specifically marked bicycle lane, whether it has painted, separated and protected, or a bike path. Any detour bike lane would have to feature protective barriers and be three-quarters the size of the original lane, unless that would make the detour lane less than 4 feet wide. The bill would also require DOT to notify community boards as well as post on their website when any permitted construction impacts a bike lane.

Councilwoman Rivera is pursuing this legislation after hearing about construction projects in her district and elsewhere where bicyclists were being forced out of protected bike lanes and directly into car traffic with little notice right for riders or drivers.

Rivera recently spoke with Streetsblog about this proposed legislation:

You said a specific location in your district spurred you to introduce this bill.

It’s on First Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets, right on the west side where the bike lane is. There was construction there, and there was no detour. As someone who cycles up First Avenue all the time, I can tell you that as soon as you got to that street, it just said, “Bike lane closed.” So you have to go and venture into the traffic, and you know that First avenue is incredibly busy, not just with [cars], but with the SBS, the M15.

There was no sign. There were no protective barriers. This was something people contacted our office about repeatedly, so we know that we really had to legislate this in order to protect cyclists everywhere.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

The conversation continues on the now-approved tech hub for 14th Street

[Rendering via NYCEDC]

The conversation/fallout continues from last week's City Council approval of the the mayor's plan for the Union Square Tech Training Center (aka tech hub) at the former P.C. Richard site on 14th Street at Irving Place.

The unanimous approval includes the rezoning required to build the the 21-story tech hub — which is larger than what current commercial zoning allows. For months, some residents, activists, small-business owners and community groups expressed concern that the rezoning necessary for the project would spur out-of-scale development on surrounding blocks.

The project is being developed jointly by the city’s Economic Development Corp. and developer RAL Development Service. The 240,000-square-foot building includes Civic Hall, which will offer tech training for low-income residents, as well as market-rate retail and office space.

The support of local District 2 City Council member Carlina Rivera was key to making the tech hub a go, as Crain's other other media outlets noted.

Rivera had reportedly promised to seek a separate rezoning for the surrounding area during her campaign last year to establish height limits and, in some cases, cap commercial square footage in exchange for her support of the hub.

In voting yes on the project, Rivera said the tech hub would bring "true community benefits, tech education, and workforce development services that will finally give women, people of color, and low-income New Yorkers access to an industry that has unfairly kept them out for far too long."

This link goes to the letter that Rivera shared following the vote.

Meanwhile, the Greenwich Village Society for Historical Preservation (GVSHP), which had lobbied for protections for the surrounding neighborhood as a component of the tech-hub plan, released this statement from executive director Andrew Berman critical of Rivera's yes vote without any substantial zoning limitations.

The GVSHP and other critics (the Met Council on Housing, the Historic Districts Council, the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative, the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors and the East Village Community Coalition were among the groups to express concern during the approval process) have said that the tech hub will provide important and valuable training services for low-income residents and small businesses starting out. However, Berman has pointed out that the training facilities could have fit in a smaller building on the site, which wouldn't require any commercial upzoning that only serves the mayor's real-estate interests.

On Monday, Rivera released a letter to Marisa Lago, the director of NYC's Department of Planning, calling on that agency to establish a special permit for hotel developments south of Union Square from Third Avenue to University Place. The permit would require an additional site-specific review process for extra time to evaluate a given project's impact on the local community, as Patch reported. (The Villager published a copy of Rivera's letter here.)

Berman quickly issued a rebuttal, stating, in part:

The requirement of a special permit for hotels will have little to no effect on the development problems the Tech Hub will exacerbate. First, any hotel can still be built with the approval of the City Council. Second, this really only applies to a portion of the affected area, since the zoning for about half the area already prohibits or restricts hotels. Third, hotels are only one of many forms of bad development this area is experiencing which this measure will not address, such as office buildings and high-rise condos, as well as doing nothing about affordable housing which the community rezoning plan Rivera promised to hold out for would have.

The GVSHP also created a table, comparing the neighborhood protections that were promised to accompany the tech hub, and those that were actually delivered. (For more detailed analysis, follow this link.)

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Council Member Carlina Rivera introducing bill that would fine Airbnb for undisclosed listings

District 2 City Council Member Carlina Rivera will introduce legislation today that seeks to fine Airbnb for every listing it fails to disclose to the city.

Here's more about the bill via Politico:

The legislation would require online home-sharing companies to submit identifying data about their individual listings to the Mayor's Office of Special Enforcement, which is tasked with going after illegal hotel operators. They would have to report the addresses of all booked listings, the hosts' names and their home addresses, as well as the online posting numbers.

The city would be able to fine Airbnb and similar companies between $5,000 and $25,000 for each listing left off the report.

Rivera, sponsor of the bill, told Politico: "[T]o be clear, this bill is not going to punish the operators — it's going to mandate consequences, financial consequences, that apply only to Airbnb, not the operators, if they do not hand over the info that we're requiring. We are trying to get as much info as possible to make links to identify the bad operators."

For their part, Airbnb seeks passage of a state bill that would legitimize its business practice. And Airbnb representatives have suggested that this new city legislation would violate internet privacy laws.

"Let's be clear about who will feel the pain from this bill: seniors who share their space to avoid economic hardship while living on a fixed income; millennials who have opened their doors to pay off student debt; families of color who share their home to stay in their home amidst rising rents," Josh Meltzer, Airbnb's head of policy in the Northeast, said in a prepared statement.

Under state law, residents of most apartment buildings are barred from renting their units for fewer than 30 days unless they are present. Airbnb is reportedly looking to do away with this stipulation, as the Daily News reported in March.

The Real Deal had more about the bill last month. (Find that article here.)

Image via Shutterstock

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

City Council investigating claims of tenant retaliation at NYCHA properties

[Photo of Carlina Rivera yesterday at City Hall via Twitter]

City Council members are taking action following published reports that a resident of the Jacob Riis Houses on Avenue D received an eviction notice after complaining about the NYCHA during a PIX-11 story earlier this month.

During a press conference at City Hall yesterday, New York City Council members Carlina Rivera (District 2) and Ritchie Torres (District 15), chair of the Council Committee on Oversight and Investigations, joined NYCHA residents and advocates to rally against negligent property managers at the Riis Houses. The elected officials say that the property managers are allegedly retaliating against residents who have gone public over the lack of repairs and possible lead exposure in their apartments.

Keshia Benjamin, a Riis Houses resident and organizer of the rally, had her apartment featured on PIX-11 earlier this month over numerous unrepaired health hazards, including leaking pipes that flooded her apartment, damaged doors and bathrooms, and pest, mold, and lead exposure.

Management at Riis Houses reportedly then sent Benjamin a notice that they were examining her record to possibly begin eviction processes for unpaid rent, even though Benjamin said that she had fully paid.

NYCHA officials denied any retaliation, the Daily News reported yesterday.

Following a query by the News, NYCHA officials said that Benjamin's termination notice has been canceled. Per the paper: "It was automatically generated because she had been delinquent on rent within a 12-month period, but has been rescinded because she is now up to date, a spokesperson said."

The spokesperson also said, "NYCHA does not retaliate against residents for any reason."

City Council members claim that Benjamin's story is not the only one at the Riis Houses, and "it appears that Riis property managers are held unaccountable by central staff at NYCHA and use that power to promote a culture of silence amongst residents looking for help."

The Council’s Committee on Oversight and Investigations is now investigating reported instances of retaliatory actions at Riis Houses, as well as the grievance process for tenants and the overall accountability structure within NYCHA.

In addition to the Council investigation, Rivera is planning to introduce legislation to create a formal grievance system so that NYCHA tenants can submit their complaints anonymously and have them investigated fairly. This piece of legislation comes after the recently introduced legislation from Council member Rafael Salamanca that would mandate performance reviews for NYCHA employees.

"NYCHA seems to be focused on moving bad actors around the system whenever they are in the spotlight and not on providing accountability," Rivera said at City Hall yesterday. "This simply cannot continue — the NYCHA must explain themselves in person for these actions."

Thursday, April 26, 2018

City Council member Carlina Rivera hosting community resource fair Saturday

Via the EVG inbox...

Carlina Rivera is holding her first Community Resource Fair of her City Council term, giving residents of Council District 2 the opportunity to access a number of programs and informational booths. Attendees will be able to access free-blood pressure screenings, information about affordable housing applications, information about volunteer opportunities, and more.

The event takes place from 1-4 p.m. at Grand Street Settlement’s main building, 80 Pitt St. (between Rivington and Stanton). You can RSVP by emailing, or by calling 212-677-1077, ext. 107.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Primary victory for Carlina Rivera in District 2 City Council race

In yesterday's Democratic Primary, Carlina Rivera handily won the District 2 race to succeed City Council member Rosie Mendez.

Rivera, a former Mendez staff member who grew up on the Lower East Side, received nearly 61 percent of the vote, according to election information published by NY1.

The seemingly runaway race wasn't without its last-minute drama. In a rare political turn, former New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter reportedly threw his weight behind Ronnie Cho with an endorsement released Monday night.

Turns out that while Jeter may have nice things to say about Cho, he wasn't endorsing him. As the Post followed up: "There was a communications mix-up and a draft release was sent out prematurely."

In addition, supporters of Rivera's opponents on Monday were also peddling since-deleted Facebook photos of her husband, CB3 chair Jamie Rogers, sailing on his father's yacht during races in recent years. Other critics questioned why/how they were living in Section 8 housing. The Villager explores that angle here. Rivera and Rogers both said that "it’s perfectly legal for them to live in the apartment and that their incomes were fully vetted under the requirements of the Section 8 program."

Finally, as The Lo-Down reported, developer Gregg Singer, who owns the former P.S 64 and CHARAS/El Bohio community center on East Ninth Street, began campaigning against the District 2 candidates, including Rivera, who might try to force his hand at returning the property for community use.

In other election news, Mayor de Blasio won big.

The Villager has other local election results here. According to the Daily News, there was "terrible voter turnout" yesterday.