Brooklyn Lawmakers On The Move Aug. 15, 2018

News Site Brooklyn

BP Adams, Espinal Announce New Urban Agriculture Legislation

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams
City Councilman Rafael Espinal Jr.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams and City Council member Rafael Espinal (D-Bushwick, East New York) will join community gardeners and urban farming advocates in unveiling new City Council legislation today aimed at promoting urban agriculture in New York City.

The new bill would require the City to produce a report on the potential of urban farming, create a comprehensive urban agriculture plan, as well as extend the period by which a community garden’s license can be taken away.

Urban agriculture is estimated to be a $9 billion industry in the United States, with the potential to feed 20 million people in the New York City metropolitan area as well as the ability to help strengthen communities, improve public health, and increase civic engagement.

Espinal and Adams previously teamed up with advocates to launch the City’s first-ever website for urban agriculture, which they view as the first step in increasing transparency and providing resources to existing and new practitioners across the urban agriculture spectrum. The website

The event is slated for 11:30 a.m., today, Aug. 15, at Ashford Street Abundant Garden, at 330 Ashford Street in East New York.

Golden Blasts Recent Report On State Parole Board 

State Sen. Marty Golden

State Senator Marty Golden (R-Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Gerritsen Beach, Bensonhurst, Marine Park, Gravesend and parts of Midwood, Borough Park, Sheepshead Bay) yesterday blasted a recent report criticizing the New York State Parole Board.

The report “New York State Parole Board: Failures in Staffing and Performance,” noted the State Board of Parole was understaffed and routinely rejected prisoners releases without due consideration. The reports aim was to understand the low rate of release for parole eligible inmates particularly ones serving long-term or life-in-prison sentences.

Golden in recent months has been at odds with the state’s parole board for their releases of convicted cop killers Herman Bell, John Ruzaz and Robert Hayes. The three men were released earlier this year, respectively, after decision from the parole board.

The report was authored by The Parole Preparation Project and The Release Aging People in Prison Campaign. The Parole Preparation Project works with advocates for people serving life sentences in New York State Prisons. While, The Release Aging People in Prison Campaign is working to end mass incarceration and promote racial justice through the release of older prisoners.

“The report notes that the Board only has 12 of 19 commissioner positions filled. That is not the fault of the Board. The recent releases of cop-killers and unrepentant murderers has been inexcusable. While I don’t like what the Parole Board has been doing, this report ignores the truth and misses the mark. Reforming the Board of Parole is too important to be driven by out of context information and political hyperbole,” said Golden.

“The fact is the Parole Board has a very important job. Keeping violent, unrepentant criminals behind bars, and releasing those who have been rehabilitated. Public safety has been under attack in New York State.  Pointing fingers at commissioners is not going to fix this problem. Fully staffing the Board of Parole with thoughtful, reasonable, qualified people is a step in the right direction,” added Golden.

Hamilton To Announce 911 Anti-Discrimination Legislation

State Sen. Jesse Hamilton

State Senator Jesse Hamilton (D-Central Brooklyn) will announce his proposal of 911 Anti-Discrimination legislation today.

Hamilton’s proposal aims to combat the misuse of 911 calls and the many “living while black” incidents that have occurred across the nation, including his own, “campaigning while black” incident, that happened to him last Thursday.

Last week, the Central Brooklyn lawmaker was confronted by a self-proclaimed Trump supporter as he spoke with constituents at the Prospect Park (B, Q, S) subway entrance. The Trump supporter accused the State Senator of supporting immigrants excessively and then went onto block Hamilton from speaking with other constituents, before calling 9-1-1.

“The pattern of targeting Black men and women for being Black and alive in the communities we all share has to stop. This pattern of calling the police on Black people going about their business and participating in the life of our country has to stop,” said Hamilton.

“From a student taking a break at Yale, to a student eating lunch at Smith College, to a child selling lemonade, to a person having a barbecue in Oakland, to an Oregon state legislator knocking on doors – the list goes on and on. I will continue to speak to neighborhood residents about the important work we must accomplish together – including changing a culture of targeting Black men and women for living while Black,” added Hamilton.

The event is slated for 1 p.m, today, Aug. 15, at the Prospect Park B/Q/S Station Entrance, at 486 Flatbush Avenue in Central Brooklyn.