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Manhattan Community Board Five

Jan 2024 Minutes

The Borough of Manhattan

Manhattan Community Board Five

mark levine, Borough President

Vikki Barbero, Chair

marisa maack, District Manager

Minutes of the regular Community Board Five meeting held on Thursday, January 11, 2024 at Xavier High School.  

Members Present

Nicholas Athanail

Seth Borden

Mary Brosnahan

Julie Chou

Sarah Dowson

Katherine Ellington

Kevin Frisz

Bill Gartland

Nancy Goshow

John Harris Jr.

Marc Hershberg

Elizabeth Hutton

Michael Kaback

EJ Kalafarski

Renee Kinsella

Samir Lavingia

Layla Law-Gisiko

Sam Levy

Joe Maffia (Virtual)

Iasabel Marks

Yaran Noti-Victor

Charles Ny

Tiffany Reavis

Tod Shapiro

Bradley Sherburne

David Sigman

Craig Slutzkin

James Southworth

BJ Sung

Sachi Takahashi-Rial

Pete Webb

Zona Xu

Janice Yong

Zool Zulkowitz

Present Part

Ankur Dalal

Aaron Ford


David Achelis

Mohit Bhalodkar

Aiden Blake

Tristan Haas

Zarar Haider

Robert Isaacs

Charles Miller

Christopher Nazarro

Alan Yu


Vikki Barbero

Laura Garcia

Kimberly McCall

Public Members

Elected Officials

Elected Officials Reps

Robin Forst 

Mayor’s Office of Community Affairs

Ben Lowenstein 

Assembly Member Simone

Brian MacNamara

Assembly Member Bores

Hannah Weinerman

Congressman Nadler

Laurie Hardjowirogo

Councilmember Bottcher

Curtis Young

Public Advocate Williams

Kathleen German 

Assembly Member Epstein

Franklin Richards

Councilmember Powers

Alex Marinides

Senator Krueger

Eric Strazza

Manhattan DA Bragg

Kevin Kim

Commissioner, Small Business Services


Marisa Maack

District Manager 

Kim Rodney

Community Coordinator 

Josh Hughes

Community Associate

Public Attendees 

Tom Harris

At 6:10pm on January 11, 2024 Public Hearing of Community Board Five was called to order by 2nd Vice Chair Craig Slutzkin


Tom Harris – President of the Times Square Alliance – spoke about concerns on Intro 586 passed by the NYC Council, requiring additional documentation of NYPD investigative interaction with members of the public, including the race/ethnicity, age and gender, and whether the interaction led to a summons or use of force and the Mayor’s plan to veto it. He stated that the best way to increase accountability and transparency in the NYPD is by building bridges of trust between the community and the police, rather than increasing documentation.

Seeing no other speakers from the public, the Public Hearing was closed.

The Full Board General Monthly Meeting of Community Board Five was then called to order by 1st Vice Chair Nicholas Athanail.


Robin Forst – Mayor Adam’s Office – spoke on Intro 586, stating that she felt this was not good legislation and hope that it will not be activated. She also spoke of restoration of funds to NYPD and FDNY. She stated that the Sanitation Commissioner and the Mayor announced the Next Generation Technology for snowplows called Blade Runner 2.0. 

Kevin Kim – Commissioner, Small Business Services – gave updates on efforts to help small businesses in New York City. He announced that this year there will be new technology for NYC fund finder to access local, state and federal loans and grant programs on one site where you can enter your capital access needs and get connected to a community development financial institution or nonprofit lender. He then spoke of AI program that SBS initiated to help small businesses access all their services.

Laurie Hardjowirogo – Councilmember Bottcher’s Office – announced a few highlights of projects from their office, detailing those included in the 2024 budget such as expansion of street tree beds to absorb more storm water runoff and planting of more trees, PS 340 basement floor padding, and ACE programs to support supplement sanitation services and graffiti cleanup districtwide. She spoke of legislation that will put Mental Health Services in every family homeless shelter in New York City. She then announced a forum with Attorney General Letitia James in early February.

Ben Lowenstein – Assembly Member Simone’s Office – announced the introduction of two bills carried by Senator Brad Hoylman-Sigal in the Senate to address the profit-seeking tactic of eviction through constructive eviction by 3D Property Owners. He then announced that Assembly Member Simone recently introduced The Rest Stop Restaurant act which would require all State contracts with food vendors in the New York State throughway provide restrooms at rest stops and that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey facilities to be open seven days a week.

Franklin Richards - Councilmember Keith Powers Office – announced that on Thursday, January 18th from 6:30 to 8:30pm, the Midtown South mixed use plan will be doing a residence Round Table that will be looking at places in the Midtown area particularly in Garment District and how they can better use the space for residential conversion. He then announced that expense funding and capital funding applications are now open. He then gave an update on their holiday toy and coat drive.

Alex Marinides – Senator Krueger’s Office - announced the start of legislative session and the Governor is expected to present her executive budget proposal to the legislature and the legislature will begin budget hearings soon. He stated that the Senator’s top priorities this session include climate related bills like the New York Heat Act and the climate super fund, as well as mayoral control of New York City Schools which expires this year. He stated that the State Department of Education will be holding a hearing in Manhattan next Thursday night as part of their process to evaluate the effectiveness of mayoral control, He announced that they will be co-hosting a town hall on casinos with other elected officials on February 22nd. He also announced updated senior resource guide on their website.

Hannah Weisman – Congressman Nadler’s Office stated that as of last week all three major insulin manufacturers are offering either a $35 a month cap on insulin or Savings Program to only pay $35 out of pocket. She then announced the introduction of a bill to ensure fair prices for prescription drugs by establishing an independent evidence-based process for evaluating drug benefits and pricing, stating that this legislation would advance much needed oversight and analyses of drugs that are granted FDA approval and would work in conjunction with the recently passed Inflation Reduction act to ensure lower drug prices and greater transparency for patients and consumers. She then noted that the backlog in passport applications has been mitigated and turnaround on applications have returned to pre-pandemic timing. 

Bracha Rosenberg – Manhattan Borough President – spoke of leadership training series for CB members. She also spoke of hosting of information sessions last month on how to apply for Capital funding for the fiscal year 2025 for schools, not-for-profit organizations and City agencies and all applications should be submitted ASAP with a final deadline of February 22nd at 5:00 pm. She also announced the hosting of a hearing on current open meetings law which is set to expire. She also stated that the MPB unveiled a new plan to break the cycle of the City's Mental Health crisis, calling for the creation of 600 plus long-term psychiatric beds and initiative to address the shortage of clinical staff and behavioral help.

Eric Strazza - Manhattan DA Bragg’s Office – recently announced the creation of their first Special Victims Division Advisory Council to seek feedback from external partners, including advocacy groups and service providers to make sure that their engagement with victims is working. He stated that DA Braggs alongside local elected officials announced the introduction of the Hate Crimes Modernization Act which will basically bring the hate crimes legislation into 2024 and making upgrades, including expanding the number of charges that can be consider potentially hate based from 66 to 97. He also announced their High School summer internship program applications which will be open in about a week or so. He then announced their upcoming Clean Slate event open to the community borough wide and is a platform for the community to discuss the Clean Slate legislation which automatically clears eligible records for people who have completed their qualifying sentences and remained crime free. He spoke of the uptick in phone scams.

Kathleen German - Assembly Member Epstein’s Office – announced the Assembly Member’s hosting of a District Town Hall to discuss the campaign to save Beth Israel Hospital and other panels. She also spoke of an ongoing survey on how community members use Mt. Sinai and how they feel about the closure. She spoke of the start of legislative session and Assembly Member Epstein’s fight for increase funding for SUNY and CUNY students, to advocate for safer streets and encouraged constituents to make their voices heard on congestion pricing.

Brian Macnamara – Assembly Member Bores’s Office – spoke of passing of six bills in NYS legislature one of which has now been signed into law by Governor Hochul to add a total of 20 judges across NYC and NYS and that Governor Hochul endorsed the proposal to eliminate the cap of New York Supreme Court Justices. He also announced Assembly Member Bores will be addressing the plans for Albany this session in his State of the District address. He also announced the Assembly Member’s visits all over the community hosting events. 

Curtis Young –Public Advocate Williams’ Office – announced the City Council passage of the Public Advocates bill that would ban solitary confinement and efforts to put in place a system of de-escalation, rather than separation. He also spoke about also legislation that would enhance police transparency, introduced at the end of last year. He detailed the passage of 11 of the Public Advocate‘s bills before the year end including legislation on Public Safety bills, housing safety, Environmental Protection Assistance for homeless New Yorkers. Finally, he spoke of upcoming events for Black History Month celebration of Black advocates.

Business Session




The December 2023 minutes passed with a vote of 33 in favor, 0 opposed, 0 abstaining, as follows: IN FAVOR: Borden, Brosnahan, Chou, Dowson, Ellington, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Lavingia, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Takahashi-Rial, Webb, Xu, Yong, Zulkowitz. ABSTAIN: Athanail.

Committee reports 

Mr. Slutzkin gave brief presentation on the following resolution:

Application from Madison Square Park Conservancy for Annual Roster of Programming in 2024

WHEREAS, Madison Square Park Conservancy ("Applicant") has submitted applications for their annual roster of programming for 2024; and

WHEREAS, The following roster of programming and events are currently scheduled for 2024:

WHEREAS, Applicant will also host three fundraisers in 2024:

WHEREAS, Applicant will advise Community Board Five of any changes or additions to the roster of programming, if any; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five believes that the nature of the programming is greatly to the public's benefit, and will continue to improve public access to Madison Square Park on event days from prior years; and

WHEREAS, Applicant has committed to return to Community Board Five to separately discuss any additional marketing or commercial events in 2024, subject to Community Board Five's standard review process and public hearings; and

WHEREAS, There is long-standing precedent for these events in Madison Square Park, and Community Board Five has found a significant amount of support for these events from residents and stakeholders in the community; and

WHEREAS, Applicant has agreed that if there are any material changes to any event from previous years (i.e., signage, set-up, scale, location, and/or ancillary activities), they will return and present these changes to Community Board Five; and

WHEREAS, When presenting future event applications, Applicant will clearly state whether or not these events are occurring concurrently with previously approved special events; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five recommends approval of the applications from Madison Square Park Conservancy for their annual roster of programming for 2024.

After some discussion, the above resolution passed with a vote of 34 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained: : IN FAVOR: Borden, Brosnahan, Chou, Dalal, Dowson, Ellington, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Lavingia, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Takahashi-Rial, Webb, Xu, Yong, Zulkowitz. ABSTAIN: Athanail.




Ms. Law-Gisiko gave a presentation on the following resolution:

Penn Station General Project Plan.

WHEREAS, Gov. Cuomo introduced a General Project Plan (GPP), in June 2020, to redevelop a nine-blocks area around Penn Station to develop 18 million sq/ft of office space with the goal to fund Penn Station improvements from office space development; and 

WHEREAS, Soon after she took office, Gov Hochul embraced her predecessor’s plan; and 

WHEREAS, The GPP encompasses 10 development sites in a one-block radius around Penn Station, including the site of former Hotel Pennsylvania, recently demolished and currently an empty lot; and

WHEREAS, The GPP is an override of the NYC Zoning Resolution, and

WHEREAS, Under the GPP, residential use is prohibited at 4 of the 10 sites; and 

WHEREAS, No dwelling units are allowed on Sites 3, 5, 6 and 7 (former Hotel Pennsylvania); and

WHEREAS, under city zoning regulation, residential use is permitted as-of-right on these sites; and

WHEREAS, M-CB5 has identified affordable housing as its top priority for the past 10 years, and 

WHEREAS, M-CB5 has opposed the GPP for numerous reasons since its introduction; and 

WHEREAS, The policy and zoning promoted by the GPP actively prevent the creation of dwelling units, highlighting the insufficiency of the GPP; and 

WHEREAS, M-CB5 notes the harsh reality that the GPP actively supports the taking by eminent domain of existing dwelling units, many of them affordable housing units occupied by senior residents; therefore, be it

RESOLVED, Manhattan Community Board Five demands that Governor Hochul retires the GPP.

After much discussion, the above resolution passed with a vote of 32 in favor, 3 opposed, 1 abstained: IN FAVOR: Borden, Brosnahan, Chou, Dowson, Ellington, Ford, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Webb, Xu, Yong, Zulkowitz. OPPOSED: Dalal, Lavingia, Takahashi-Rial. ABSTAIN: Athanail.

Ms. Law-Gisiko then gave a presentation on the following resolution: 

Resolution on the Department of City Planning Gaming Text Amendment

WHEREAS, The New York City Department of City Planning has proposed a Text Amendment to permit gaming facilities as a permitted use within specified certain (C4, C5, C6, C7, and C8) and manufacturing (M1, M2, and M3) zoning districts, potentially bypassing the established Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP); and

WHEREAS, The 2013 amendment to the New York State Constitution sanctioned the establishment of a maximum of seven commercial casinos in the state, and subsequently, four casinos received licenses in upstate New York, and as per the 2022 legislation, the allocation of the remaining three gaming facility licenses is exclusively designated for the downstate New York region, encompassing New York City, Nassau, Suffolk, Putnam, Rockland, and Westchester Counties; and 

WHEREAS, The oversight of gaming activities in New York State falls under the jurisdiction of the New York State Gaming Commission, and the Gaming Facility Location Board was established by the Gaming Commission to manage the selection and assessment procedures concerning the three outstanding licenses; and 

WHEREAS, In January 2023, the Gaming Facility Location Board presented a comprehensive process for evaluating applications for the three downstate casino licenses, with a procedure involving specific criteria for siting and review, including the establishment of Community Advisory Committees (CACs) tasked with the evaluation and approval of each individual application; and

WHEREAS, Each Community Advisory Committee (CAC) will comprise representatives of six elected officials, including the Governor, Mayor, local Assemblymember, State Senator, Borough President, and City Councilmember; and

WHEREAS, for a casino license application to be eligible to be assessed by the Gaming Facility Location Board, it must receive the support of 2/3 of the CAC as well as be a conforming use according to underlying local zoning at its proposed location; and 

WHEREAS, the DCP Zoning Text Amendment proposes that a gaming facility, as approved by the State, will be deemed complying and conforming with all applicable use and bulk zoning regulations, entirely circumventing ULURP and site-specific zoning evaluation; and

WHEREAS, the Amendment fails to provide any bulk, height, capacity, signage, transportation, socio-economic impact review and guideline; and 

WHEREAS, the Amendment received a EAS Negative declaration under the package of zoning text amendments known as The City of Yes for Economic Opportunities, but it has now been severed from this package and no clear EAS evaluation and conclusions have been shared by DCP regarding the resent Amendment that would permit gaming use in NYC, and therefore, DCP is failing its basic mandate to evaluation the impact of the Amendment; and 

WHEREAS, Such an amendment would diminish the oversight role of community boards, reduce the opportunity for community engagement and input, and thus would have detrimental effects on the established fabric of communities by circumventing meaningful community input; and

WHEREAS, The proposed amendment could set a concerning precedent where major land use decisions are expedited at the cost of democratic participation and thorough technical review, undermining the New York City Charter mandate for public review of "proposals for the use of land…in the district;" and

WHEREAS, The amendment would also bypass the recently adopted Citywide Hotels Text Amendment which requires a special permit for new and enlarged hotels, a notable concern given the associated non-gaming uses related to gaming; and

WHEREAS, The critical public review process established by ULURP in the New York City Charter is a fundamental tool for ensuring transparency and accountability in land use and development; therefore be it

RESOLVED, That Manhattan Community Board Five opposes the Gaming Facility Text Amendment as proposed by the Department of City Planning due to its potential to eliminate public review and undermine ULURP; and be it further

RESOLVED, That Manhattan Community Board Five calls upon the City Planning Commission to retract the proposed Text Amendment and uphold the principles and processes enshrined in ULURP, ensuring that community boards retain their essential role in land use decisions; and be it further

RESOLVED, That Manhattan Community Board Five requests a more comprehensive city public review process that includes extensive community board consultation and broader public engagement to better assess the potential impacts of gaming facilities within the community, ensuring full technical review and community input.

After much discussion, the above resolution passed with a vote of 35 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained: IN FAVOR: Borden, Brosnahan, Chou, Dalal, Dowson, Ellington, Ford, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Lavingia, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Takahashi-Rial, Webb, Xu, Yong, Zulkowitz. ABSTAIN: Athanail.



Mr. Kalafarski gave a presentation on the following resolution:

Transit Mobility Review Board (TMRB) Congestion Pricing Toll and Exemption Recommendation

WHEREAS, Community Board Five reviewed and analyzed the toll structure recommended by the Transit Mobility Review Board (TMRB) for the Central Business District Tolling Program (otherwise known as congestion pricing), held a hearing for members of the public, and discussed the merits and implications of the toll recommendation on the neighborhood of Community Board Five; therefore be it

RESOLVED, Community Board Five submits the following comment and testimony to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in regard to the implementation of toll rates, the initiation of the program, and, critically, next steps following the program’s start.

Transit Mobility Review Board (TMRB) Congestion Toll Structure Recommendation

CB5 Response


Manhattan Community Board Five appreciates the opportunity to submit comment and testimony on the base toll and exemption recommendation of the TMRB prior to the MTA’s final adoption of rates, as well as to, crucially, provide testimony on steps and considerations that the MTA can take into account during and after the start of the program and its execution.

Community Board Five strongly supports the goals of the Central Business District Tolling Program, including the reduction of congestion on the streets of the Central Business District, as well as the funding of improved and expanded transit infrastructure and options. As Community Board Five’s district sits entirely within the CBD, the intended goals of reduced congestion and improved transit options in the zone would considerably benefit our neighborhood and its residents.

We support accommodation in the final TMRB recommendation for low-income drivers in addition to the State’s full tax credit equal to tolls paid by low-income residents of the congestion zone, including a 50% discount for all low-income drivers, regardless of their place of residence, after the first 10 trips in a calendar month.


With the understanding that the TMRB recommendation prioritized simplicity, minimized the number of different exemptions, and represents only the initial rates under which the toll program will operate, Community Board Five has serious concerns that the disproportionate burden of the toll structure will fall on residents living inside the zone. While modeling has been presented by the TMRB to predict effects on traffic, to identify the demographics that will bear the costs, and to enumerate externalities of the toll, these are merely predictions, and the full effects will of course not be known until the experiment of congestion pricing is being run. Community Board Five has significant concerns about a variety of effects and implications that remain uncertain.

First, residents of the zone are likely to be impacted by the toll in unexpected ways based on their unique proximity to the boundary of the zone. A resident who happens to live near the boundary, work near the boundary, have a neighbor or family member just a few blocks away over the boundary, or have services or a place of business to attend just a few blocks away over the boundary could incur the maximum toll per day by this proximity, while conversely, a resident living deeper within the zone could drive to work, family, or business every day without incurring the toll to cross the boundary at all. This particular inequity is not yet fully understood.

Additionally, residents and businesses of the zone will absorb and primarily feel any unexpected externalities of the pricing. It is not known whether the added cost on deliveries and businesses will impact the prices of goods and services offered by businesses in the zone. Any inflationary costs passed by businesses onto consumers will be directly borne by residents of the zone as well. It is similarly uncertain how property values in the zone may be eventually affected by these increased costs. It is unknown how this kind of inflationary pressure may affect the availability of services in the zone — such as hospital services, for example, which are already closing under immense financial operating pressure, as well as other pressures that congestion tolls may exacerbate, like the availability of employees for emergency services.

Live Metrics

Understanding that these effects will not be fully understood until congestion pricing is in effect, it is critical that these practical effects are studied immediately and transparently after the program begins collecting its toll. We call on the MTA to collect and transparently publish all applicable live data about the impact of the program on its intended goals in the district, as well as the impact of side effects on the district. 

The MTA should publish live data via a publicly-available dashboard on a regular basis from the start of the program on whether congestion is truly being reduced within the zone, and whether this congestion reduction is evenly distributed between vehicles from inside and outside the zone; for example, if the residents of the zone are not able to elastically reduce their daily trips over the boundary, as the program purports to induce on drivers from outside the zone, then the cost of the toll will be inelastically borne by residents of the zone, and this must be measurable and identifiable from the data.

Similarly, monitoring must be able to establish the specific effect of the toll program on block-by-block air quality, and this data collection and publication must be started prior to the initiation of the program, to establish baseline measurements. We call on the MTA to begin measuring and publishing this data immediately, in the months prior to the program going live, so that all residents will be able to transparently understand the status quo before the program and to follow the effects and impacts of the program in real time when it begins.


With the understanding that the TMRB prioritized simplicity in its final toll recommendations, we were nevertheless disappointed, perhaps because of parameters provided to the TMRB, not to see more dynamic pricing schemes evaluated for comparative purposes. Cities such as Singapore and Stockholm provide examples of dynamic pricing schemes that can be adjusted on a block-by-block basis, while the TMRB assumed from the start that a single flat toll would be leveraged on any car that enters anywhere in the zone. As the above data is evaluated, the MTA must widen its study and evaluate alternative dynamic pricing schemes to compare the potential effects and benefits to the initial effects of a flat fee.

Similarly, as the initial toll rates and exemptions go into effect, the MTA must continue to project and comparatively evaluate the potential effects of further improvements and adjustment to the pricing scheme if they are needed, if the scheme is not accomplishing all desired goals or is causing unanticipated side effects. The MTA must be prepared to adjust not only the rates in the TMRB recommendation but be prepared, when adequately studied and if demonstrably advantageous, to adjust the principles of a simplistic flat fee and minimal exemptions. The TMRB initial recommendation imagines the program starting with a bare minimum of exemptions, but based on data and monitoring, it may be advantageous to explore further exemptions in the future, such as based on vehicular air quality.

Community Board Five is similarly clear-headed about the need for prices potentially to be adjusted upward, if the MTA’s monitoring indicates that goals such as reduced congestion are not being achieved. The TMRB’s recommendation is a baseline, and realizing the goals of the program in practice will necessitate flexibility, openness to adjustment, and transparency in success metrics.


Community Board Five is fully aware that congestion pricing in New York City is an experiment; the effects of the Central Business District Tolling Program can be modeled and predicted but cannot actually be known until the program begins. The TMRB’s recommended rates and exemptions are a starting point, but in a practical sense, the success of the program and achievement of its goals of reducing congestion and raising revenue for transit investment will depend not on a perfect initial guess at rates, but on smart, data-driven adjustment and flexibility after the program begins. The legacy of congestion pricing will rest not on its starting rate, but on publication and study of its effect and iterative, flexible adjustment after its start.

This transparent monitoring and a commitment to iteration and flexibility will ultimately define the program. Iteration from starting the program and then observing it may be the only way to make sure the rates become and remain equitable and effective. 

We call on the MTA to commit now, prior to the start of the program, to a regime of transparent measurement and publication so that the MTA and the communities around the CBD can assess the success of the program together. We thank you for your close attention to these concerns of the residents and parties living within the congestion zone as you roll out the program, and as we all work towards the same goals of decreased congestion and improved transit.

After much discussion, the above bundled resolutions passed with a vote of 30 in favor, 5 opposed, 1 abstained: IN FAVOR: Brosnahan, Chou, Ellington, Ford, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Takahashi-Rial, Webb, Yong, Zulkowitz.  OPPOSED: Borden, Dalal, Dowson, Lavingia, Xu. ABSTAIN: Athanail.



Ms. Kinsella gave a brief presentation on the following resolution:

Resolution Opposing 60-Day Limitation on Shelter Stays for Families of Public School Students

WHEREAS, On October 11, 2023, Mayor Eric Adams announced that New York City would limit shelter stays for families with children to 60 calendar days (the “60-Day Rule”), after which families would need to reapply for city shelters if they have nowhere else to live; and

WHEREAS, The re-application means that families will likely be moved to another shelter, with no control over their location within the city; and 

WHEREAS, A joint statement issued by the Legal Aid Society and the Coalition for the Homeless specifically condemned the 60-Day Rule, stating:

  1. This plan will disrupt the lives of homeless students and create chaos for their schools, as parents are forced to choose between re-enrolling or spending the day traveling across the city to their current school. That’s a terrible outcome for both families and educators; and 

WHEREAS, Many students residing in shelters have already experienced significant disruptions to their education, compounded by the trauma experienced as a result of displacement, migration, and ongoing instability; and

WHEREAS, Under the 60-Day Rule, children could be forced to change schools up to five times per school year; and

WHEREAS, The only way for schools to receive the necessary funding for new students enrolling after the October 31 cut-off date is through an arduous appeals process which creates uncertainty and delays for school staff and the students they serve; and 

WHEREAS, In order to appropriately serve students in temporary housing, schools need additional resources and personnel, including bilingual staff, nurses, and social workers; and

WHEREAS, Under the 60-Day Rule, families who re-apply for shelter may be forced to move to new shelters far from their children’s school of origin, causing significant disruption to both students’ educational progress and schools’ budgeting, planning, and allocation of resources and personnel; and

WHEREAS, Schools will not have the appropriate time or funding to serve students with Individualized Education Plans; and

WHEREAS, Although children are entitled to stay in their current school, relocation may lead to extreme school commutes, creating an emotional and financial burden for students and their families; and

WHEREAS, School bus delays have been endemic over the last several years, causing additional hardship on students who seek to continue to attend their school of origin after being moved to a new shelter; and 

WHEREAS, A review of relevant research underscores that there are significant negative effects on student outcomes as a result of involuntary and/or unplanned movement between schools, including but not limited to decreases in test scores and high school graduation rates, with the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness found that as of the 2016-17 school year among homeless students, those who experienced no instability factors had almost twice the rate of ELA proficiency as those who were chronically absent (25% vs. 14%) or transferred mid-year (25% vs. 12%) and among homeless students who were chronically absent and transferred schools mid-year, more than one in four, 29%, dropped out; and

WHEREAS, This was over seven times the rate of homeless students with no instability factors (4%) and only 56% of students who were homeless at some point in high school graduated within four years; and 

WHEREAS, When homeless students were able to attend school regularly and did not have to transfer mid-year during any of their years of high school, they graduated at rates similar to their housed peers (90% vs. 96%), and well above the citywide graduation rate of 74%; and

WHEREAS, Community Board Five acknowledges that this resolution prioritizes unhoused families over unhoused people without children and we take this action to ensure children receive consistent and stable access to education during the course of the school year; and

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, Community Board Five urges Chancellor David C. Banks and the Panel for Educational Policy to encourage Mayor Eric Adams to waive the 60-Day Rule for families with children in NYC Public Schools, in order to protect the emotional and educational wellbeing of unhoused children; and 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Manhattan Community Board Five urges the Mayor of the City of New York to advance and fund measures to more quickly move all of those living in the shelter system, not just families with children, into permanent housing.

After some discussion, the above report passed with a vote of 35 in favor, 0 opposed, 1 abstained: : IN FAVOR: Borden, Brosnahan, Chou, Dalal, Dowson, Ellington, Ford, Frisz, Gartland, Goshow, Harris Jr., Hershberg, Hutton, Kaback, Kalafarski, Kinsella, Lavingia, Law-Gisiko, Levy, Maffia, Marks, Noti-Victor, Ny, Reavis, Shapiro, Sherburne, Sigman, Slutzkin, Southworth, Sung, Takahashi-Rial, Webb, Xu, Yong, Zulkowitz. ABSTAIN: Athanail.



The public was invited to comment on topics of interest to the Board. Seeing no speakers from the public, the Public Session was closed. 

Respectfully submitted by, 

Mary Brosnahan


Samir Lavingia

Assistant Secretary

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