Morning Political Odds & Ends Nov. 8, 2021

Black chalkboard with drawing of a loudspeaker and inscription odds and ends

Hochul signs Legislation Protecting Brooklyn Homeowners from Aggressive Solicitation

Kathy Hochul
Gov. Kathy Hochul
State Sen. Kevin Parker

Governor Kathy Hochul yesterday signed legislation requiring the Department of State to hold hearings and conduct an investigation to determine if Brooklyn needs to be designated as a real estate cease and desist zone, which will help prevent aggressive real estate solicitation from brokers or agents at private residences.   

If the Department of State finds a zone is warranted, homeowners in Kings County would be able to place their names and addresses on a real estate cease and desist list, providing them with a choice to opt out of receiving unwanted real estate solicitation at their homes. The Department of State approved a similar measure for Queens County more than 80 years ago, and under the new law, homeowners in Kings County would enjoy the same protection.

“The last thing homeowners should have to deal with are unwanted solicitations at their door,” said Hochul. “This legislation brings us one step closer to protecting Brooklyn homeowners from aggressive real estate solicitations.”

State Sen. Kevin Parker (D-Brooklyn) who sponsored the legislation on the senate side, said the  law will protect homeowners from illegal solicitation of their property and will designate zip codes in my district as cease and desist zones. 

“Moving forward homeowners will have the choice to formally opt-out of receiving unwanted offerings from brokers and agents. This is a very important layer of protection for senior citizens who oftentimes fall victims to these solicitations,” said Parker. 

Persaud Hosts Emergency Rental Assistance Pop-Up App

Roxanne J. Persaud
State Senator Roxanne J. Persaud

State Sen. Roxanne J. Persaud (D-Brooklyn) and Good Shepherd Services (GSS) are hosting an Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) pop-up application event, in which both tenants and landlords are invited to attend.

ERAP is a $2.1 billion federal program administered through the state that pays back rent for tenants affected by the COVID pandemic directly to landlords.

If you are unable to attend this particular event, assistance is still available from GSS and other Borough-specific organizations serving both residents and landlords. Borough-specific contact information is available here. Additional information about the ERAP program, administered by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) is available here.

The event is slated for between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., tomorrow, Nov. 9, at the Prince Joshua Avitto Community Center (PJACC), 876 Schenck Avenue in New Lots, Brooklyn.  

AM Simon Lobbies to End Non-Essential Helicopter Noise

Assembly Member Jo Anne Simon

Assembly Member Jo Anne Simon (D-Brooklyn) is continuing her efforts to end the helicopter noise and environmental pollution from the tourist helicopters flying over the East River to glimpse the Manhattan skyline or the Brooklyn Bridge—as well as the helicopter flights to the Hamptons.

“I joined Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, the Brooklyn Heights Association, Congressman Jerry Nadler, many NY/NJ colleagues, Stop the Chop Coalition and community members to call for an end to non-essential flights that cater to the wealthy,” wrote Simon in a e-newsletter to constituents.

“The coalition recently held a press event and released a letter calling on U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and the EPA to impose rules for non-essential helicopter flights over our region and to support the proposed federal Helicopter Safety Act,” she wrote.

To get involved in the issue follow @StopTheChop on Twitter. Their website www.stopthechopnynj.org has a pdf with tail numbers of helicopter owners/users that will facilitate reporting (check out their “About” section.)

Richards, Queens Borough Board Hear Reports from DEP, DYCD

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards

The Queens Borough Board, chaired by Borough President Donovan Richards Jr., will hold a virtual meeting tonight to hear presentations from the City’s Department of Youth & Community Development (DYCD) and the City’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

The DYCD presentation will include information on DYCD services that can be found on the Department’s “discoverDYCD” website at https://discoverdycd.dycdconnect.nyc.

DEP will address DEP-related concerns raised by Queens Community Board members, particularly in regards to the DEP’s efforts to deal with and prevent flooding events.

This meeting will be conducted virtually with Borough Board members participating via videoconference. 

The event is slated for 5:30 p.m., tonight, Nov. 8 and live-streamed to the public on the Borough President’s website at www.queensbp.org.

Manhattan DA-elect Alvin Bragg Announces Transition Committee

Manhattan District Attorney-elect Alvin Bragg

Manhattan District Attorney-elect Alvin Bragg on Friday announced the formation of a transition committee comprised of legal experts, service providers, faith based and community leaders, law enforcement, and those directly impacted by the office, that will help reimagine the office to deliver safety and justice for all.

Transition Committee will be co-chaired by Lauren-Brooke Eisen, Director of the Justice Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, Leroy Frazer, former Chief of Staff and Executive ADA, in Brooklyn and Manhattan District Attorney Offices respectively, , and Insha Rahman, Vice President of Advocacy & Partnerships at the Vera Institute of Justice. Judge Milton A. Tingling, a retired Justice of the NYS Supreme Court, will serve as Senior Advisor to the Transition Committee.

“I am grateful to this group of talented and committed leaders who are volunteering their time and wisdom to ensure we are ready on Day 1 to transform the office to make it the progressive leader it should be,” said Bragg, a civil rights lawyer and former Chief Deputy Attorney General of New York. 

Bragg said the transition committee will be focused on doing the work necessary to identify the plans and people to implement his agenda to address both the need for fundamental reforms in the criminal legal system and the need for community safety. The two goals of justice and safety are not opposed to each other and are inextricably linked, said Bragg.

“Together, we will make this office a leader on reform. One that ends racial disparities and mass incarcerations; makes us safer by getting justice for survivors of sexual assault and stopping the flow of guns onto our streets; one that invests in reentry programs and expands treatment for mental health and substance abuse; one that addresses the humanitarian crisis at Rikers; and one that holds police accountable, frees the wrongly convicted and delivers justice for all,” Bragg said.

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