Mayor’s Preliminary Budget for FY2007
Safety is a priority for our City. Modernization and maintenance of city precinct offices is paramount. Within our District, funding for the 10th precinct must be made a primary concern. Overall, and clearly, a long-term capital improvement strategy with regard to the 10th Precinct's station house is necessary. In light of our collective past experiences, our investment in our police force's ability to communicate, especially during crisis, is mission critical.
We again request that staffing levels of the police be increased. The 2007 budget does not reflect needed growth in both civilian and uniformed staff. We are pleased, however, that the Traffic Management Initiative will add additional traffic agents.
A long-term capital strategy is required to renovate firehouses and replace equipment according to need. In addition, in our District, we need a second Hazmat Unit, emergency power backup generators for firehouses and a mobile command post for use in emergencies. Upgrades for all technology related support is required, including but not limited to: the repeater system for high-rise communications, a laptop command board program and improved communication, and smoke detector, battery distribution programs and community awareness programs. We agree with increased enforcement efforts in conjunction with the ECB. We applaud the acceleration of the hiring of new fire fighters.
Department of Cultural Affairs
Cultural institutions are vital to sustaining and supporting life and tourism in our City. These institutions supply an economic engine that encourages other business and supports ancillary services in every neighborhood. With that comes a responsibility to support the cultural component to our City. Since you noted in your budget the increase in tourism and the vitality of the city, CB5 urges you to provide additional funding for program groups, cultural institutions and agency staffing especially mid-sized, non-CIG. We are disappointed in reductions in subsidies.
Generally, while we appreciate budget pressures, we are dismayed at the lack of commitment to extending the hours of the libraries, and lack of funding for the long-term capital and technology plan.
The needs of the Donnell Library Center and Mid Manhattan libraries are vital. To sustain these facilities, long term funding is needed.
Department of Parks and Recreation
CB5 houses several of the City's parks. While we have made great progress in partnership with the City in this area, more is needed. Duffy Square and Union Square master plans require funding. Employees, maintenance resources and a long-term physical plant strategy are required in order to maintain these vibrant resources for our citizens and the people who visit this City.
Department of Homeless Services
CB5 requests full funding for shelter assistance for the City's homeless population. The City must make an investment in residential facilities for the homeless as well as single-family units for adults. We believe reductions in support for adult shelters are going in the wrong direction.
Department of Housing and Preservation Development
CB5 requests expanded funding for rental assistance programs. We encourage third party transfer program expansion to allow not for profit and private sector affordable housing as one method of reducing the expense of providing services to the homeless. We advocate full funding for code enforcement, anti-abandonment, loan programs and narcotics control.
Department of Transportation
As our City continues its exponential growth, transportation issues are exploding and this is why more support is needed here. A pedestrian crossing plan is critical for Times Square. Additional staff is required in the enforcement and engineering areas. An appropriate long-term technology strategy is also required.
Department of Buildings
CB5 acknowledges past funding for computer initiatives and we encourage the continued implementation of technology to efficiently administer the City's physical plant.
Department of Environmental Protection
CB5 requests that funds for the purchase of land around reservoirs be provided in order to protect the City's supply of drinking water, and that staff inspectors be maintained at the current level.
Department of Aging
CB5 continues to request support of capital funding for the renovations, accessibility, expansions and enhancements to all facilities to support the aging.
Human Resources Administration
CB5 appreciates the City's support for the development of additional domestic violence programs. Unfortunately, this growing social issue continues to require immediate action.
We urge you to increase the annual operating expense budget for the City's Community Boards. New York's Community Boards serve a vital role in improving the quality of life in our city. For many, the Community Board is the first point of contact as they begin to navigate the often over-whelming maze of city agencies, and for some, it is the last place to turn for help in solving a problem.The above resolution passed with a vote of 17 in favor, 14 opposed, 1 abstention.