On June 17, I joined U.S. Senator Charles Schumer and my colleague, New York State Senator Little (R-Queensbury), at a press conference calling on Amtrak to add baggage cars capable of carrying bicycles on their Adirondack and Ethan Allen trains, which run from Penn Station to Albany and Saratoga, and other points north. Presently, there is no room on those lines for passengers to bring their bicycles on-board, but Senator Schumer revealed that Amtrak is currently building new baggage cars that could be configured for bike storage at a facility in Elmira, NY. Moreover, Amtrak already has successful “Bring Your Bicycle On Board” programs on its Boston-Portland line, New York-Charlotte line, and in California, where the program is so popular that Amtrak now requires reservations.
On June 14, I held a public forum in my capacity as Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Investigations and Government Operations to assess the efficacy of New York State’s 13-year-old Hate Crimes Law, including how state and local government agencies are implementing and enforcing the Law and whether amendments should be considered to expand the data collection, statistical reporting, law enforcement training requirements and/or otherwise further the Law’s goals.
On June 13, I submitted comments at a public hearing concerning the New York City Education Construction Fund’s (ECF) plan to solicit proposals to redevelop the current sites of P.S. 191 and P.S. 199 as residential towers with new school facilities. The hearing, organized by the Save Our Schools Coalition and Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal, gave community members the opportunity to hear from experts about the potential implications of the redevelopment plan, as well as a platform from which to voice their own opinions.
On June 13, at the New York City Rent Guidelines Board’s (RGB’s) only public hearing on its proposed rent increases of up to 6.25% for one year lease renewals and up to 9.5% for two year lease renewals in rent stabilized apartments, I submitted testimony urging the RGB to impose a freeze on rents for all rent regulated apartments as well as for lofts, hotels, rooming houses, single room occupancy buildings and lodging houses. Please see my testimony below.
On June 11, I submitted testimony to the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) echoing CB7’s resolution in favor of landmark designation of the Church of St. Paul the Apostle, located at 120 West 60th Street. I urged LPC to act now, nearly half a century after the Commission originally identified the building as historically significant, to preserve the remarkable 19th Century Medieval Revival-style church – particularly in the context of looming overdevelopment on the Upper West Side. Please my testimony below.
On June 10, 2013, the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) held a public hearing regarding its proposed amendments to the Rent Stabilization Code, the Tenant Protection Regulations and the State and New York City Rent Control Regulations. While I firmly believe that much more needs to be done to ensure all tenants have access to safe, affordable housing, and to combat landlord fraud and misconduct, the proposed amendments are a welcome improvement to the rent regulations. Please see my testimony below.
On June 4, 2013, on the floor of the New York State Senate, Senator Hoylman opposedS4487, a bill which would amend the Criminal Procedure Law to authorize a court to order a defendant, at the request of a victim, to submit to HIV testing within 48 hours of the filing of an indictment or superior court information charging the defendant with certain enumerated sex offenses.
Senator Hoylman made the following statement on the Senate floor explaining his vote against the bill:
On May 31, I was joined by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, New York State Senator Daniel Squadron, New York State Assembly Member Brian Kavanagh, and New York City Councilmember Rosie Mendez in sending a letter to the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) in support of Tompkins Square Park & Playground Parents’ Association’s application for a neighborhood slow zone. As CB3 knows, a slow zone in this area would reduce the speed limit for motor vehicles from 30 to 20 miles per hour which, according to DOT, would reduce traffic-related accidents and pedestrian injuries.
At the request of parents in my district, I recently wrote a letter to the New York State Education Department (NYSED) regarding the high-stakes standardized English Language Arts and Mathematics tests that the agency has contracted with Pearson PLC (Pearson) to design. Given the legitimate questions about Pearson’s reliability, I urged NYSED to require Pearson to release to parents or legal guardians of every child who took this past April’s State Assessment Exams a copy of the individual student’s completed and graded exam. Parents deserve to see first-hand whether their children’s exams were graded correctly and whether the questions asked align with material their children had been taught. Please see my letter below.
On May 21, I joined Councilmember Rosie Mendez, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and Assembly Member Brian Kavanagh in submitting joint testimony before the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) regarding 515 East 5 Street. As you may know, the owner of the building built illegal rooftop apartments and, in the process, greatly decreased the existing tenants’ quality of life. The BSA previously found the 6th floor addition illegal and the owner is now seeking to reverse that finding. In our testimony, we express our collective opposition to the owner’s appeal. Please see our testimony below.
Today, I joined the Senate Democratic Conference to call for action to enact a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing and require a comprehensive health impact study. The moratorium will provide experts more time to assess concerns about the potential impacts hydrofracking will have on New York’s environment and economy. We shouldn’t be fracking first and asking questions later. That’s why I’m co-sponsoring S4236-A along with my Senate Democratic colleagues to demand a moratorium on fracking until a comprehensive health impact assessment is completed. The health of our kids and the purity of our ground water is just too important to risk it.
Each year, the New York State Senate selects nominees to the New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame to honor and recognize outstanding veterans from the Empire State who have distinguished themselves both in military and civilian life. This year, I was pleased to nominate Stuyvesant Town resident and longtime New York City public school teacher Jerry Alperstein. Jerry, along with his wife, daughter and grandson, traveled to Albany on May 21, 2013 for the official induction celebration, at which he and dozens of other veterans from across New York State were recognized for their service to their country and communities.
New York, NY – New York State Senators Brad Hoylman and Daniel Squadron released the following statement today about a reported anti-gay attack on Broadway between Prince and Houston Streets early Tuesday morning.
In the wake of the apparent hate-motivated killing of a gay man in Greenwich Village early in the morning on May 18 and four other apparent anti-LGBT hate crimes in Manhattan over the prior two weeks, New York State Senator Brad Hoylman released the following statement:
In the wake of an outbreak of a strain of invasive meningococcal disease among men who have sex with men (MSM) in New York City, I joined with New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and other LGBT City and State elected officials in a coalition working closely with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the New York State Department of Health and the New York State Department of Financial Services to respond swiftly and comprehensively to this threat to public health. Please see a press release issued by Speaker Quinn’s office, which details our efforts, below.
On May 17, I testified at a New York City Council Committee on Public Housing hearing regarding a resolution in support of my bill, the NYCHA Real Property Public Review Act (S4641/A6964), which is sponsored in the New York State Assembly by Housing Committee Chair Keith Wright. Our legislation would ensure that any time the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) seeks to sell or lease its land or buildings, public housing residents and the broader communities to which they belong would have a voice through the fair and transparent process afforded by the City’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP).
On May 15, I joined State Senator Liz Krueger, other Democratic State Senators, State Assembly Members and City Councilmembers, and leaders of the Women’s Equality Coalition at a press conference restating our commitment to passage of Governor Cuomo’s full 10-point Women’s Equality Act in this year’s legislative session.