Brooklyn Lawmakers on the Move Jan. 20, 2021

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Gournadres Seeks to Memorialize COVID Victims 

State Senator Andrew Gounardes
State Senator Andrew Gounardes

State Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D-Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Gravesend, Gerritsen Beach, Manhattan Beach, Marine Park) comments on the United States surpassing 400,000 COVID-19 deaths.

“The grief and pain at times can feel insurmountable, but in these moments, we have to remember that we are not alone. We, as a community, have lost friends and loved ones, and made great sacrifices. We, as a community, have seen our brave frontline workers put their lives on the line for the good of all. We, as a community, can and should grieve together.

“I invite you to share the names and stories of those we lost to the pandemic as part of our online COVID memorial so that we can celebrate their lives as a community. Those who left us are more than names. If you so choose, we would love to hear more about the person you are remembering, so that we might celebrate their life and memory more fully. All thoughts are welcome — What they meant to you, memories that bring you peace, their impact on the community and to your world,” he said. 

Gounardes also reminds his constituents that If symptoms of stress and grief become overwhelming for you, you can connect with trained counselors at NYC Well, a free and confidential mental health support service that can help New Yorkers cope. NYC Well staff are available 24/7 and can provide brief counseling and referrals to care in over 200 languages. For support, call 888-NYC-WELL (888-692-9355), or text “WELL” to 65173 or chat online by visiting

The NYS COVID-19 Emotional Support Helpline is available as well at 844-863-9314. It is staffed 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., 7 days a week. The phone line is staffed with specially trained volunteer professionals who are there to listen, support, and refer if needed.

Levin Wants Fair Future Model Sustained

City Councilman Stephen Levin

City Council Member Stephen Levin (D-Boerum Hill, Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn Navy Yard, Downtown Brooklyn, Dumbo, Fulton Ferry, Greenpoint, Vinegar Hill, Williamsburg) will call on Mayor Bill de Blasio tomorrow to sustain and baseline funding for the Fair Futures model citywide. 

Fair Futures, a transformative model implemented at all 26 foster care agencies in New York City, connects youth in foster care — 85% of whom are Black or Latinx — with 1:1 dedicated coaches, tutors and education, employment and housing specialists starting in middle school. Ensuring all youth in care have access to Fair Futures is essential to giving them a fair shot at success and uprooting systemic injustices that disproportionately affect children in foster care. 

Last month marked the one year mark of implementation for Fair Futures in partnership with the Administration for Children’s Services. To date, Fair Futures has connected 3,000 young people between the ages of 11-21 with an irreplaceable support system. Advocates are calling on the City to sustain and baseline current funding levels at a minimum to ensure youth do not lose their Fair Futures coaches and tutors during the pandemic. Advocates also urge the City to consider expanding funding so all youth can access a Fair Futures coach as they age out of foster care up to age 26. 

This virtual event is slated to take place at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan 21. RSVP to and register here:

James Challenges Last-Ditch Efforts on Trump’s Regulations

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

New York Attorney General Letitia James yesterday led several coalitions of states from across the country in filing five lawsuits challenging rollback regulations issued by the outgoing Trump Administration. 

The rollbacks seek to hamstring the ability to use the best available science and sound economics in U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) decision-making; stall progress in ensuing public access to clean, healthy air; and threaten New York’s $4.2 billion birdwatching and wildlife watching industry by removing critical protections for migratory birds. There is also a regulation that will add costs to consumers and businesses by eroding national energy efficiency standards. 

“These ‘midnight’ regulations are the last gasp of an administration more devoted to providing handouts to big corporations than protecting Americans’ health and the environment,” said Attorney General James. “Over the past four years, the Trump Administration has relentlessly, recklessly, and illegally bent to the will of polluters by attempting to gut critical safeguards on which individuals, families, and communities in New York and across the country depend on. Although this administration is coming to an end, immediate action must be taken now in order to stop and repair the immense damage that’s been done. I will continue to work with states, counties, and cities across the country to overturn these final shameful chapters of the Trump Administration and protect our environment for good,” said James

Jeffries on COVID Deaths

U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries

U.S. Reps. Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn, Queens) issued the following comments on the United States surpassing 400,000 deaths from COVID. 

“Too many souls have been taken away from us too soon because of a response that was a complete and unmitigated disaster. When President-Elect Biden is sworn in at noon tomorrow, House Democrats stand ready to work side by side with an administration that will rise to the occasion and finally take the unprecedented loss of American life seriously.

While we work to get this virus under control and provide relief to our most vulnerable, we continue to mourn with the families and loved ones experiencing immeasurable amounts of pain and suffering in every corner of our nation.”

Eugene Updates on Discrtetionary Funding

Mathieu Eugene
City Council Member Mathieu Eugene

Council Member Mathieu Eugene (D-Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Kensington, Midwood, Prospect Park, Prospect Lefferts Gardens) reminds that the application period to apply for discretionary funding is underway and the submission deadline will be Tuesday, February 16th, 2021. 

“This is a friendly reminder that your organization may be eligible to receive discretionary funding from the City Council. I am honored every year to allocate funding to not-for-profit organizations who are committed to providing resources that improve the quality of life for our residents. Despite the ongoing challenges brought forth by the COVID-19 pandemic, I remain steadfast in my commitment to providing the necessary budget allocations to those who need them most,” he said.  

  • 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.