City Council Public Hearing on Parks This Thursday 3/22

Our promised parkland on the North Brooklyn waterfront has never been in more danger. In January, the mayor unveiled his budget plan for coming fiscal year. Unlike last year – when deep cuts were administered across the board – this year’s budget was remarkably robust. In fact, Mayor Bloomberg proposed $700 million in new capital spending over the next five years—a huge increase.

Certainly, those of us who have waited patiently for long-promised funding from the mayor would be first in line and finally receive our vital open space…right? Wrong. Not only did the mayor choose brand new pet projects and other parks funding over our neighborhoods, but his administration is still insisting there isn’t enough money to go around.

We know better. And we’re not going to let them get away with it.

This Thursday, March 22nd at noon, is your chance to let the mayor know how you feel about how he has mistreated and ignored our community. The City Council will hold its once-yearly budget oversight hearing at which the Bloomberg Administration will have to answer questions publicly about their now seven-year-old broken promises.

Your presence will show the administration how serious we are about getting our parks. You can also participate in the hearing itself by joining your neighbors, testifying to the Council and arguing our case. The Council ultimately makes our budget, and so it’s important they understand the injustice happening on our waterfront.

Info for attending the hearing is at the bottom of this e-mail. We’ll continue to update you as our campaign to reclaim our waterfront progresses, and we have other ways for you to get involved as we fight for our parks throughout this year’s budget process, ending in June.

As always, you can help us organize and educate the community by also doing three easy things:

– If you haven’t already, spread the word about Where’s Our Park to your networks through Twitter, Facebook, email and any listservs or news groups you’re a part of. It’s easy to do through the wheresourpark.org website.

– Sign the petition for our parks at wheresourpark.org.

– Volunteer by sending a note to info@wheresourpark.org.

Please get involved however you can, and join us at the Council hearing on Thursday. This is a critical time for our parks. Together, we can get the open space our community so desperately needs.

Info for March 22nd City Council Hearing*

Hearing title: Mayor’s FY’12 Preliminary Management Report and Agency Oversight, Department of Parks & Recreation

Time: Thursday, March 22nd at noon (FYI – you can get there as early as 10 AM and as late as 2 PM; the hearing has an earlier portion on expense spending, and a later portion on capital, starting at noon—the earlier you get there, the more likely you’ll be able to get in to the hearing right away.)

Place: New York City Council offices, 250 Broadway in Manhattan – 14th Floor hearing room (To enter: tell the Sargent at Arms at the front desk which hearing you are going to, and they will give you a pass and send you through security.)

*If you plan to testify, please let us know at info@wheresourpark.org, and we can make sure you’re on the list.

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