Brooklyn Lawmakers On The Move Dec. 12, 2016

News Site Brooklyn

Levin, Williams Respond To Construction Workers Death

City Councilman Stephen Levin

City Council Memebers Stephen Levin (Williamsburg, DUMBO, Downtown Brooklyn, Boerum Hill) and Jumaane Williams (Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood) both called for a reveiew of safety standards following the death of construction worker Wilfredo Enriques, 59, who fell six stories to his death while working on the redevelopment of the old Domino Sugra Factory, 325 Kent Avenue in Williamsburg last week.

The mixed use project combining both businesses and apartments is part of the city’s nclusionary Housing Program, which includes 20 percent of the aprtments going towards affordable housing through a city lottery system.

It was the 11th construction-related death this year.

“My deepest condolences and sympathies go out to the family, friends, and community that held Wilfredo Enriques dear. There are no words or actions that can replace a life lost. By all accounts, Wilfredo was an experienced worker and a proud contributor to the construction industry that shapes our city at the most basic level,” said Levin, whose district includes the site where the death happened.

“It is no secret that our city is the stage for construction activity of tremendous proportions. On any given day, construction workers face dangerous conditions that, unless properly managed, can quickly and tragically lead to death. Our city has made a lot of progress by enacting stricter standards and bolstering enforcement. Despite that progress, we cannot be satisfied with the status quo.

“While it is certain our city is in need of housing, particularly affordable housing, when it comes to construction, we must prioritize safety above all, each and every time.”

City Councilmember Jumaane Williams

Williams, who chairs the Council’s Housing and Buildings also offered up his condolences, and said it’s becoming apparent that the city is not doing enough in balancing the need to protect the lives of construction workers and the public in keeping up with the pace of demand for morwe housing.

“This death could have been avoided if safety regulations were followed this is becoming an all too common refrain,” said Williams. “While progress has been made in improving safety on job sites, this latest tragedy is evidence we have a long way to go.  It’s the responsibility of contractors to ensure safety at their work sites. It’s the responsibility of the City to provide proper oversight, and effective punishment to insist that this happens. If we cannot commit to addressing this effectively, then it’s time to start thinking about halting construction until we can.”

Schumer Wants More Rail & Mass Trasit Security Checks On Workers

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer

As holiday traveling season ramps up, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer yesterday called for better cross checking to ensure that rail and mass transit employees are not on the federal terror watch list as is done with airline employees.

“With terror threats from ISIS sympathizers and lone wolves ever possible, it is just not acceptable that every single front line transit employee is not checked against the federal terror watch list like airlines do,” said Schumer. “Railing for rail security is a no-brainer and we simply cannot leave our transportation arteries vulnerable to a possible terror threat. I’m urging the feds to immediately finalize this commonsense employee background check so that our nation’s railways are kept safe.”

Schumer said that the 9/11 Commission Report, published more than a decade ago, first urged to close this loophole under Passenger Rail Requirements. Yet, despite recent acts and threats of terror in New York City and beyond, Schumer said that it’s shocking that this commonsense safety gap was never closed.

Schumer today urged the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) to immediately fix this rule and, just as airlines already do, and make sure all rail and transit employees, especially those of the frontline, are cross-checked with the federal terror watch list.


Persaud Reminds Consumers Of New Bill Stopping Hidden Costs On Gift Cards

State Sen. Roxanne Persaud

State Sen. Roxanne Persaud (Canarsie, Mill Basin, Bergen Beach, Brownsville, East New York) last week reminded consumers that as the hilday season gets in full swing there is a new law on the books protecting consumers using gift cards against hidden costs and fees.

“Recently, the Governor signed into law legislation to restrict fees on gift cards and gift certificates issued by merchants for goods and services.  Currently, New York State law requires notice of expiration dates as well as any fees that will be charged to be clearly stated on the card, package, or accompanying printed document,” wrote Persaud, in her weekly newsletter emailed to constituents.

Specifically, this new law includes the following provisions:

·         No monthly service fees for unused gift cards for the first 24 months from the date of issue;

·         Gift cards are prohibited from having an expiration date of earlier than 5 years from the date of issue;

·         Gift cards must include a procedure for the replacement of a lost card.

Persaud said the new law takes effect on December 25 and covers all gift cards issued on or after that date. For more information about this new law and other important legislation, please visit my web site at: Persaud.Nysenate.Gov.


Lander Protests Anti-Islamic Graffiti Found In Windsor Terrace

City Council Member Brad Lander

City Council Member Brad Lander this morning will hold a ‘Not in our Neighborhood’ rally in Windsor Terrace following an incident last week where anti-Islamic graffiti at the Ft. Hamilton subway station.

The incident involved a vandal(s) scrawled “F— Allah” on a bench inside the Fort Hamilton Parkway F and G station in Windsor Terrace near the border of Kensington, which has a large Muslim population.

Lander and some local leaders said it is the first Islamophobic graffiti they’d seen in the area in more than a year and they blame Donald Trump’s victory for emboldening bigots to once again blight the area with their hate.

Lander is a driving force behind the #GetOrganizedBK movement against the uptick in both hate crimes both citywide and in Brooklyn.

The rally is slated for 7:30 a.m., this morning, Dec. 12 at the Reeve Place entrance to the Ft. Hamilton subway stop in Windsor Terrace.


Williams, Parker Holds Rally To Raise Heat Temperature For Tenants

City Councilmember Jumaane Williams

City Council Member Jumaane D. Williams (Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood), Deputy Leader, and Chair of the Housing and Buildings Committee, today will hold a rally on the steps of City Hall to call for the de Blasio Administration to move forward with Intro 0722, which amends the minimum temperature to be maintained in residential dwellings.

In order for this bill to move forward, the Administration must conduct an environmental impact study. The City Council has been waiting for this review since March 2016, and to date the City has not given an expected start date.

Joining Williams are State Sen. Kevin Parker (Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood, Ditmas Park, Kensington, Windsor Terrace, Park Slope) Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, housing advocates and impacted New Yorkers

According to current laws, tenants have a right to adequate heat from October 1 to May 31; yet the current heat mandates are not sufficient enough for a number of residents, who still complain they grapple to keep warm. Intro 0722 is essential to remedying this problem by raising the inside temperature to 65 degrees (up from 55) between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

The rally is slated for 11 a.m. today, Dec. 12  on the steps of City Hall in Lower Manhattan.

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