Brooklyn Lawmakers on the Move Jan. 15, 2021

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Colton, Abbate Fight for Screening in Middle School 

Assembly Member William Colton
Assemblyman Peter Abbate Jr.

Assemblymembers William Colton (D – Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Dyker Heights) and Peter Abbate (D-Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, and Sunset Park) joined yesterday to continue the fight in restoring screenings and auditions for Middle Schools’ admissions.

Both Assemblymembers will be asking other state and city legislators to sign on to a letter to Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza demanding they revise and reverse the policy to eliminate all screens and auditions for the Screened Middle Schools and instead use a lottery to select students for these schools.   

“I am calling for the Mayor and Chancellor to overturn their decision on the elimination of Middle School’s screens and auditions. This illogical policy replaces such screens and auditions with a lottery of chance, instead of by the student’s hard work and special talents. All children are equal, and they should not learn the sad lesson that hard work does not matter but only the luck of a draw and chance will determine which children are selected,” Colton stated.

 “We must demand quality education for all children, including those with advanced skills and talents, including those children who are underperforming and who need quality remedial programs, including special needs children who the DOE must comply with their educationally sound IEP’s and including all children who must be provided with quality programs that meet their unique educational needs,” Colton continued.

“Parents must not accept any changes to the existing Middle Schools’ admission, especially at the last minute right before the implementation of the admission process is to start. We cannot allow the Mayor and Chancellor to scrap Gifted and Talented admission policies. The Mayor and Chancellor must know that we will not stand by and permit them to destroy our children’s future. The fight will continue until parents are heard. Together we will prevail in our fight against such unsound educational policies by this administration,” Colton added. 

AG  James on Tax Lien Reform

Attorney General of NY Letitia James
New York Attorney General Letitia James

New York Attorney General Letitia James released the following statement on reforms to the tax lien sale: 

“Over the last few months, I have worked hard with stakeholders and lawmakers to address the problems associated with New York City’s tax lien sale program. I have long believed it is unjust to sell the debt that struggling homeowners owe to the city for water or taxes to private, profit-seeking enterprises. The lien sale program subjects homeowners already facing adverse circumstances to interest rates that compound daily, and thereby jeopardizes their homeownership and risks shifting wealth from individuals and families to private banks and real estate prospectors.

“After a lot of work, I understand that advocates and the city have reached an agreement on legislation that will be more equitable, less prone to abuse, and will chart the city on a course to a new program that will prioritize homeownership, neighborhood preservation, and affordable housing, over maximizing profits for private enterprises. I support this development. Thank you to my partners in government and to the many advocates for finding a way to move the city in the right direction.”

At post time it is not clear on which legislation James is speaking.

Adams to Discuss Public Obesity and Health

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams will join the President of Applied Medical Research, Inc., Dr. Barry Smith, along with health care start-up pulseData and the One Brooklyn Health System, to promote a new initiative called Rise Up East New York, a community-led effort, which aims to address the disproportionately high rate of chronic health issues in one of Brooklyn’s most economically challenged neighborhoods, guided by the overriding concept of health as a product of the totality of society, and not just biology. 

The initiative, which partners with local health care institutions and other organizations from many sectors, will employ cutting-edge technological solutions and community engagement to prevent disease and improve health outcomes for those suffering from chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and kidney disease. Borough President Adams and Dr. Smith will tout this model as a way to reduce the vast health care disparities throughout the city, which have been thrown into sharp relief during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This event is slated to take place at 11:00 a.m. today, Jan 15 at 

Eugene Issues Call to Those Seeking Discretionary Funding

Mathieu Eugene
City Council Member Mathieu Eugene

City Councilmember Mathieu Eugene (D-Flatbush, Prospect Lefferts Gardens, East Flatbush, Ditmas Park) is reminding constituent non-profits in his district that now is the time to apply for discretionary funding allocations from his office to organizations committed to providing resources that improve the quality of life for our residents.

Please be advised that all not-for-profit community-based organizations that wish to apply for discretionary funding for FY 2022 must submit a Council Application, found here.

You should also note that if an application is not submitted within the filing period, the community-based organization will not be eligible for funding.

Non-City organizations applying for Fiscal Year 2022 capital funding may now download and submit applications through the CapGrants portal. All groups should submit their completed applications through this portal.

For all Cultural Capital Project request, please use this link.

What follows are additional materials that must be filled out by clicking on the links provided:

FY2022 Authorization Page

FY2022 COI Disclosure Form

FY2022 Organization Elected Official Affiliation Disclosure

FY2022 Supplementary Form Final

FY2022 Charities Exemption Form

Application deadlines vary depending on the source of the funding your group has requested.

The deadline is 5 p.m., Thursday, February 25 if your project requests any funding from Borough Presidents (including those groups that are also requesting funding from the Council or Department of Cultural Affairs).

The deadline is 5 p.m., Thursday, March 25 if your project is only requesting funding from the Council and/or the Department of Cultural Affairs.

For any questions about the application or any related budget matter, please contact Eugene at his District Office at (718) 287-8762, his Legislative Office at (212)-788-7352 or email