Archive for May, 2006

Supporting Working Class Mothers
May 15th, 2006

Citing a flurry of heartbreaking statistics, Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum and Nancy Rankin of the Community Service Society, in an op-ed piece for the Times, on Mother’s Day make the case for an increase in support for low-income, working mothers.

The city and state should simplify enrollment for government sponsored health plans, and reduce costs for small business health coverage, they say. But ultimately, they say, Albany and Washington need to step up to the plate.

They point to a federal bill that would “guarantee seven days paid sick leave to full-time workers and prorated benefits for part-time employees.” And on the state level, they point to California as an example, where the state provides comprehensive paid family leave and paid leave for maternity and serious illness.

By on May 15, 2006, 12:23 am
In category: Albany,Health,Social Services | Comments Off on Supporting Working Class Mothers

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High Density Planning To Save Energy
May 14th, 2006

“The long-term solution [to high energy costs] in this country, which nobody wants to hear, is to use an awful lot less energy and to get away from fossil fuels,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in his weekly radio adress on WABC-AM.

Bloomberg’s energy task force last published a report in January 2004 (pdf format).

Blogger Aaron Donovan, contributing to NYC Oil Drum, suggests that the mayor encourage high-density development as a means of increasing the city’s energy efficiency.

The notion was also supported by the city’s Office of Environmental Coordination in a report (pdf format) issued this January. High density concentration, mixed with the city’s transportation system, “provide many advantages in terms of New York’s energy use,” it said. But they also note that, “Although high-density urban living often allows residents of cities to consume less energy on a per capita basis, it is important to recognize that urbanization plays a key role in stimulating aggregate energy consumption.”

Frank Braconi, formerly the executive director of the Citizens Housing and Planning Center and now the mayor’s chief economic advisor, recently called on the city to develop at higher densities to handle the forecasted population growth.

One reader on Oil Drum calls the mayor’s planning “piece meal”, and points to London’s Spatial Development Strategy, which we wrote about here, suggesting it as a model for New York City. The London Plan “articulates a coherent, long-term vision that says where development should occur, and what it should look like.”

In his 2006 State of the City address , Bloomberg announced a five-borough Strategic Land Use plan, which will coordinate housing, transportation, energy, and infrastructure planning. It was scheduled for release in April, but has yet to be published.

By on May 14, 2006, 11:43 pm
In category: Demographics,Environment,Housing,Land Use | 8 Comments »

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Revised Atlantic Yards Plan: What's the Difference?
May 12th, 2006

The blogs that have been the thorn in the side of Bruce Ratner quickly dismissed yesterday’s announcement of a scaled-back version of the plan as a slickly-presented way of changing practically nothing.

The Atlantic Yards Report, which was banned from the press conference, gives a lengthy point by point rebuttal, questioning everything from the assertion that the buildings in the new plan are smaller to the timing of the press release itself (the actual changes, the blog writes, were made public some time ago).

Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn points out the project seems to change depending on who it is being presented to. In a brochure sent out to Brooklyn residents, there were no images hinting at the high rises shown in yesterday’s press conference.

No Land Grab has photos of the revised plan next to the one from a year ago. It declares the difference “negligible.”

By on May 12, 2006, 7:31 am
In category: Land Use | 3 Comments »

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Blacks and Immigrants Together
May 10th, 2006

The Reverend Al Sharpton takes to the Daily News to address African American critics who have faulted him for actively supporting the movement for immigrant rights. While low income workers may lose jobs to immigrants, Sharpton writes, the proper targets of ire are “businesses that exploit and underpay illegal immigrants” and corporations that move jobs overseas.

Calling on blacks to resist a “a dangerous right-wing attempt to divide two communities,” Sharpton invokes previous civil rights struggles, and concludes, “It is no wonder that when we see people’s human value questioned and their legal status denied, those of us who have spent decades fighting for justice, respect and equal citizenship would rush to their aid.”

By on May 10, 2006, 9:18 am
In category: Civil Rights,Gotham City,Immigrants | 2 Comments »

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Memorial Morass
May 10th, 2006

The Daily News hones in on the controversy around the Ground Zero memorial. In an analysis, Paul Colford says five key blunders, including infighting and a lack of leadership, led to the fundraising problems, $1 billion cost estimate and likely delays.

The paper’s editorial echoes the criticisms,calling the current situation “an unseemly and corrosive mess.” It wants Governor George Pataki or Mayor Michael Bloomberg to take charge, the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation to make its operations public, and “a comprehensive, securely financed plan for what must be a national landmark.”

In her column, Lenore Skenazy calls for radically scaling back the plans, abandoning the Reflecting Absence design in favor of “a simple, beautiful park and a wall of names at the site.” “Spend the savings on safety,” Skenazy advises. “If much of the memorial funding could be transferred to anti-terror equipment bearing the names of the dead…, the dearly departed would spend eternity preserving life“

And Michael Goodwin sees the problems over the memorial as emblematic of even more serious failings: “The chaos involving our intelligence operations and the rebuilding at Ground Zero are both deeply troubling. We are vulnerable to an attack even as we argue over how to respond to the last one. In both cases, the national interest has been overshadowed by turf battles, partisan politics and private agendas.”

Writing in the Post, Steve Cuozzo takes a narrower approach. “The basic problem with the memorial as now conceived isn’t that it would cost twice what we were led to believe… Nor does it have much to do with security issues or with pressure from a handful of “victims’ families.” … No, the real problem is the one enunciated on this page last Nov. 28 under the headline, ‘It Stinks.'”

By on May 10, 2006, 9:06 am
In category: Gotham City,Land Use | 3 Comments »

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Clinton and Murdoch
May 10th, 2006

The burgeoning relationship between Senator Hillary Clinton and New York Post and Fox News owner Rubert Murdoch — who Clinton describes as a “constituent” – raises eyebrows and ire.
Writing that Murdoch will hold a fund-raiser for Clinton this summer. Anne E. Kornblut notes in today’s Times, “The developing relationship between Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Murdoch… has drawn special attention, perplexing some political analysts and infuriating some liberals already suspicious of Mrs. Clinton’s centrist positioning,”

That’s for sure.

“I certainly believe it’s important for any Democratic candidate to reach out to those to our right. But shouldn’t this stick in Hilary’s craw a bit?” writes Tikun Olam. “What troubles me about the embrace of Murdoch is that it is part of a pattern of turning hard right in order to win this nomination.”

And David Sirota says on the DMIBlog, “Here you have a leading Democratic U.S. senator engaging in a ‘mating ritual’ with the head of the news network that has overtly worked to systematically destroy both the Democratic Party and her own husband’s administration. Here you have a top member of the American government shaking down cash from a guy whose record is chock full of union-busting, tax-evading, local media crushing, war mongering and all sorts of other disgusting behavior – behavior permitted by Congress without question, thanks to America’s system of legalized bribery, as epitomized in the Clinton-Murdoch fundraiser.”

Conservatives aren’t thrilled either. “One can only hope that this is part of a ‘vast right-wing conspiracy’ and Murdoch is hoping to get on the inside to get the dirtiest of dirt to filter down to Fox News Channel,” writes Rightwinged.com.

Others see it as politics as usual. “McCain’s going to Falwell’s Liberty University. Rupert Murdoch is holding a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton,” notes Real Clear Politics. “Being the leading candidate for your party’s presidential nomination sure makes strange bedfellows.”

By on May 10, 2006, 8:00 am
In category: Electoral Politics,Gotham City | Comments Off on Clinton and Murdoch

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Sparring Over Art in Brooklyn
May 9th, 2006

Today there are editorials in both the New York Sun and the Daily News (scroll down to “Plan B From Outer Space) applauding the city for closing down an exhibition of artwork by Brooklyn College masters’ students containing some sexually explicit material. The exhibit at a war memorial at Cadman Plaza Park was shuttered last Thursday.

The Sun seems to think that such sexual material should not be encouraged by any institution that receives public funding, and even criticized Brooklyn College for agreeing to take the artwork back (the Sun doesn’t make clear what it would prefer to happen to it). Despite the deep offense that the newspaper takes to the art, its editorial actually provides a link to a particularly explicit painting featured in the exhibit — presumably so its readers can also be offended.

The Daily News criticizes the “mewling” of the “young artistes..Get used to not being the center of the universe, kids.”

A blog speaking for the student artists — called Plan C(ensored) — quickly popped up, and has been posting updates and statements regarding the situation. Its authors are angry that the work was taken down without the permission of the artists, and claim that some has been damaged in the process.

By on May 9, 2006, 4:13 pm
In category: Arts,Gotham City | 6 Comments »

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Trimming City Council Pork
May 9th, 2006

A Daily News editorial, entitled “Processed Pork,” reprinted in its entirety:

“Poor little piggies of the City Council. Speaker Christine Quinn won’t let them make unlimited trips to the trough to fatten the city budget with ill-conceived pet projects. And thus may end the annual spectacle in which Council members have run up wish lists for spending as much as $1 billion, documenting the need for each item with little more than a scribble on a cocktail napkin.

“Now, Quinn says, requests must be submitted on an official form by an actual deadline. Council members will be limited to four requests. Each must bear the signatures of nine other members from at least three boroughs, potentially signaling that the proposed spending is not just narrow-interest lard. They’ll still spend the money, but there may be less slop. Oink.”

By on May 9, 2006, 5:33 am
In category: Public Finance | Comments Off on Trimming City Council Pork

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FAILING TO ACT
May 8th, 2006

Long Island’s corruption scandal finally wrapped up last week with the sentencing of former Town of Islip Supervisor Pete McGowan.  McGowan was convicted in March of shaking down campaign contributors for kickbacks and for illegally using his campaign account to fund personal activities, like vacations in Europe and Florida.

 
As part of his sentence, the 69 year-old McGowan was required to return $1.2 million in campaign contributions to donors, and spend 90 days in the slammer, serve 5 years probation and perform 420 hours of community service.

 
McGowan’s conviction is just another example of scandals and controversies that have erupted over the past few years regarding the misuse of campaign contributions.  Former Assemblymember and Brooklyn Democratic leader Clarence Norman has been convicted for such misuse.  And controversies have swirled around the Insurance Superintendent, current Senators and Assemblymembers for using their contributions to essentially subsidize their lifestyles through the leasing of luxury cars and trips to exotic locales.

 
You would think that lawmakers would, at a minimum, be holding news conferences, introducing bills and promising reforms. 

 
But you would be wrong.

 
The mounting evidence of a political culture that has lost is moral compass has been ignored by Albany’s elite.

 
Some have argued that the “system has worked” since McGowan got punished and it is an isolated incident.  Some have argued that, while McGowan’s activities were clearly illegal, they see nothing inherently wrong with the use of campaign contributions for any activities related to their roles as elected officials.  According to them, spending contributions on expensive SUVs for the entire two years that they are in office is fine.  After all, they argue, they are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

 
But such rationalizations ignore the inherent conflicts of interest.  Most of the campaign money coming into the system originates with lobbyists and their clients.  Allowing the use of campaign contributions for essentially personal spending allows special interests to subsidize the lifestyles of elected officials!  What could be more of a conflict?

 
Only Assemblymember Bob Reilly, joined by Assemblymember Michael Fitzpatrick, have ventured to offer legislation that would sharply curtail the use of campaign contributions as a personal “cookie jars.”

 
At least so far, there has been no serious legislative reaction to the ethical mess in Albany.  There have been no hearings on the issue; no news conferences of elected officials, no promise of action, nothing.  They are simply hoping that the public will forget about it by November.

 
We can’t let that happen.

 
Lawmakers need to hear from their constituents.

 
As lawmakers head down the legislative “home stretch,” it’s important that they feel public pressure to address some of the major problems facing New York State.
 
Help put pressure on state legislators by urging them to support meaningful campaign finance, redistricting, ethics and budget reforms.

By on May 8, 2006, 6:28 pm
In category: Eye on Albany | Comments Off on FAILING TO ACT

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Is This Free Daily "Socially Responsible"?
May 8th, 2006

Recently, the free daily, Metro, put into place a new plan to begin recycling of its papers as a result of reader feedback, and the paper’s “sense of social responsibility”. They have a goal of recycling 40,000 papers each month.

But media gossip blog, Fish Bowl NYC, questions whether this initiative is simply “green-washing” – an attempt to appear environmentally friendly for public relations reasons.

They point out that out of the 18.5 million copies printed daily, worldwide, Metro‘s goal of recycling 40,000 copies a month would only amount to 0.0001 percent of issues being recycled. In New York, Metro distributes an average of about 9,750,000 copies monthly.

Megan Considine, marketing manager at Metro NY, told the Wonkster they will be sending out a new release within the next couple of weeks that will elaborate on plans to expand their recycling program and increase their goal.

By on May 8, 2006, 1:00 pm
In category: Environment | Comments Off on Is This Free Daily "Socially Responsible"?

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Reform New York Lobby Day — Road Trip To Albany
May 8th, 2006

Tuesday May 9 will mark the second year in a row that New Yorkers will converge in Albany as part of Reform New York Lobby Day to press for government reform.  Activists and everyday New Yorkers will make their case for a more transparent, accountable and democratic state government.

Building on the success of last year’s effort the group will focus on the key issues of campaign finance and election reform, greater budget transparency and accountablility, ethics reform and reform of how the state draws legislative district lines. 

Last year’s efforts served as a catalyst for much needed legislative rules reforms that were announced by legislative leaders immediately following the event providing citizens that made the trip to Albany a valuable sense of victory. 

This year’s Reform New York Lobby Day events will begin at 10:30 am at the Hart Lounge, Egg Theater with issue briefings and appearances by legislative leaders and gubernatorial candidates.  

At 1:00 pm the group will split into teams that will meet with legislators to make their case for reform of how government operates.  This will be followed with a rally on the East Side of State Capitol at 3:00 pm. 

All are invited to attend.  

For more information or to register for the event contact [email protected], call 1-800-300-8707, or visit www.commoncause.org/reformnyday 

(The coalition of groups co-sponsoring the event include:  Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, Business and Professional Women of New York State, Capital District Alliance for Democracy, Center for Governmental Research, Center for an Urban Future, Citizen Action of New York, Citizens Budget Commission, Citizens for Better Government in New York, Citizens Union of the City of New York, Common Cause/ NY, Coro New York Leadership Center, Democracy Matters, Demos, Environmental Advocates of New York, Hunger Action, Network of New York State, The Interfaith Alliance of Rochester, League of Women Voters of the City Of New York, League of Women Voters of New York State, League of Women Voters of Westchester, New York Citizens for Clean Elections, New York Civic, New York City Americans for Democratic Action, New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), New York Statewide Senior Action Council, People for the American Way, Plainville Farms, Professional Staff Congress, Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy, Tenants and Neighbors, Urban Justice Center, Welfare Rights Initiative, Women’s City Club of New York. )

By on May 8, 2006, 7:15 am
In category: Eye on Albany | Comments Off on Reform New York Lobby Day — Road Trip To Albany

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Transportation Priorities
May 8th, 2006

The plan for a rail link from JFK airport to lower Manhattan is more important than the Second Avenue subway, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver tells The Downtown Express (via The Real Estate). The fact that it connects Long Island to downtown is whats most important, he said, “I don’t care if it stops at the airport or not.” Silver has a specific intersest in the project; his district (pdf format) includes lower Manahattan.

But Gene Russianoff, staff attorney for the Straphangers Campaign, says that the benefits gained by the rail link are based on “almost a religious belief on their part that’s not supported by the data.”

The plan for the rail link is currently going through its Draft Environmental Impact Statement.

Speaking at a Regional Plan Association conference, gubernatorial candidate Elliot Spitzer listed his top three priorities for transportation projects: the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway, a Long Island Rail Road connection to Grand Central Terminal, and replacement of the Tappan Zee Bridge.

Spitzer briefly mentioned the rail link as “part of what should be our top economic development priority” in the city. But Jon Orcutt, executive director of the Tristate Transportation Campaign, a mass transit advocacy group, told the Times that it was “definitely significant” that Spitzer said little about the rail link.

By on May 8, 2006, 6:57 am
In category: Albany,Transportation | 2 Comments »

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Debating NASCAR
May 7th, 2006

The Daily News features dueling editorials on the proposed NASCAR speedway in Staten Island.

Lesa France Kennedy, president of International Speedway Corp. and a member of the NASCAR board of director, promises that the race track will create 1,200 permanent jobs and will ”host no more than three major race weekends a year, with public access to hundreds of acres of restored wetlands and green space the other 49 weeks.”

Staten Island City Councilmember James Oddo argues that NASCAR is a “six-letter word meaning a well financed, lobbyist laden, public relations juggernaut trying to fit an 82,500-seat square peg into an overdeveloped, infrastructure-challenged round hole.”

By on May 7, 2006, 9:35 pm
In category: Gotham City,Land Use,Parks | Comments Off on Debating NASCAR

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Guidelines for Governors Island
May 7th, 2006

Proposals for how to develop Governors Island are due to City Hall next week, and the New York Times offers four guiding principles for deciding what happens next:

1. It must not be driven by deals with real estate developers.

2. Officials must insure that there are grand public spaces, and be ready to pay for them.

3. Preservationists must accept some major commercial buildings on the south end of the island as the price for the island’s long -term viability.

4. Castle William and Fort Jay, at the north end of the island, would be a powerful tourist attraction when restored.

By on May 7, 2006, 1:01 pm
In category: Gotham City,Land Use,Parks | 1 Comment »

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Remembering 9/11 in Film and Memorial
May 7th, 2006

WNYC’s Brian Lehrer compares two memorials to the victims of 9/11 – the new movie “United 93” about the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania on that fateful day and the $1 billion plan for the World Trade Center memorial. Lehrer argues that only one of these works.

“The release of ‘United 93’ at first sparked questions about sensationalizing the events of that awful day, and about whether it was too soon to depict those events on film,” says Lehrer. “Both questions have now been answered by the film itself and the public response.”

In contrast, the World Trade Center memorial, he argues, “has deteriorated into endless bickering between a greedy developer and a patronizing Governor. Even the 9/11 families have come to be seen as a special interest group, though no one wants to say that too loudly.”

“Thursday’s announcement that the World Trade Center Memorial would now double in cost compared to the original estimate is just the latest assault on trust in public works,” says Lehrer.

By on May 7, 2006, 12:41 pm
In category: Arts,Gotham City,Land Use | Comments Off on Remembering 9/11 in Film and Memorial

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The $1 Billion Memorial
May 5th, 2006

The cost of the Ground Zero memorial is reportedly nearing $1 billion.

Bloggers near and far have been quick to voice their frustration this morning, calling the memorial a “farce, a “billion dollar boohoo“, a “monument to the inadequacies of New York’s government” and noting that “it would be cheaper to pile up $330,000 in cash for each and every victim of the 9/11, and light it on fire.”

Public officials agree that the costs are out of control, and Mayor Bloomberg called for a $500 million cap on spending.

Both the New York Post and the Daily News doubt that the attempt to control spending will be successful. Before the memorial can even be built, notes the Post in an editorial, $300 million in infrastructure costs — not included in the $500 million cap — are scheduled.

The Daily News believes that the high profile public process through which the memorial design was developed will have essentially been for nothing:

“What’s clear is that the memorial and museum Pataki promised the public after design competitions, public hearings and consultations with the families of 9/11 victims are no more,” writes the paper in an editorial. “They will be changed, just as Pataki was forced to change the Freedom Tower and to expel the Drawing Center and the International Freedom Center from Ground Zero. Changed into what, no one knows.”

By on May 5, 2006, 7:20 am
In category: Gotham City,Land Use | Comments Off on The $1 Billion Memorial

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Moussaoui Verdict
May 4th, 2006

Today, New York newspaper editorial pages weigh in on the verdict that sentenced Zacarias Moussaoui to life in prison rather than the death penalty that prosecutors and some 9/11 victims families had sought.

The Daily News is outraged. “This is not justice. This is an abomination. This is a reprieve from hell for a soul who deserves an eternity in flames no less intense than the infernos that brought down the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.”

While the New York Post argues that “it’s hard not to believe that Zacarias Moussaoui deserves to die” it acknowledges that “execution would both make him happy, and transform him into a martyr.”

The New York Sun focuses on the problem of treating terrorism as a law enforcement matter. “Those who have railed against the administration’s policy of treating most terrorists as unlawful combatants instead of as common criminals now confront the fact that the regular criminal justice system may not always deal with terrorists in a way that most Americans would recognize as just or effective.”

The New York Times concludes that the most important thing about the Moussaoui trial was that it happened. “The proceedings -including the jury deliberations – were long and difficult, but they were also fair and in accordance with the rules of American justice.”

By on May 4, 2006, 6:50 am
In category: Crime & Safety,Gotham City | Comments Off on Moussaoui Verdict

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To Elect or Appoint a Judge?
May 4th, 2006

In January, a federal court judge, John Gleeson, ruled (pdf format) that New York’s process of choosing Supreme Court Judges violates voters’ and candidates’ rights by giving too much power to county party leaders. (Wonkster summarized the reactions around the city at the time.)

In New York City, there are a variety of methods used to select different kinds of judges, ranging from mayoral appointments to direct elections. For a list of all judgeships in the state and their means of selection, click here.

While a new method for selecting Supreme Court Judges awaits an appeal, a coalition of good government groups (including Citizens Union, the sister organization of Gotham Gazette’s publisher) held a panel discussion about how best to pick judges.

Many advocates prefer an appointive system, or “merit selection,” over elections. A member of the audience during the discussion said that it is impossible to find information on judges when attempting to make an informed vote.

But Paul Wooten, a civil rights attorney and former candidate for Brooklyn District Attorney, said that “merit selection” leads to a lack of diversity, and cited Governor George Pataki’s appointments: Only one African American and one Latino serve on the 22-member bench for the second circuit, which includes Queens, and also Brooklyn, whose population has more African Americans and Latinos than whites.

But electing judges won’t necessarily improve diversity, according to an argument put forth on the Web site of the Fund for Modern Courts, which argues that outside of the city, the election of women and minorities to the bench is very difficult.

And Deborah Goldberg, director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center – which published a study (pdf format) on diversity on the Supreme Court bench, showing it to be severely lacking – posits that appointive systems can result in diversity if those appointing care about diversity.

There are other challenges to a system of elections, Goldberg argued: In order to provide voters with a real choice, they would have to be publicly financed, and the districts would have to be smaller, so that the costs of running would be less.

Michael Cardozo, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s chief lawyer, ultimately supports merit selection across the board, but sees it as legally and politically unfeasible.

As a practical solution, he has proposed a hybrid system, where an independent commission (pdf format) would screen candidates, producing a short list of recommendations from which party leaders would choose their party’s nominee.

Joel Jacobsen, an Assistant Attorney General in New Mexico, writes on his personal blog, Judging Crimes, “The wonder isn’t that both systems sometimes produce clunkers. It’s that sometimes they don’t.”

By on May 4, 2006, 5:39 am
In category: Albany,Civil Rights,Demographics,Electoral Politics,Governing,Law | 4 Comments »

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Can Private Development Clean Up the Gowanus Canal?
May 2nd, 2006

A prominent developer, Shaya Boymelgreen, has recently increased his portfolio of land owned along a northern stretch of the Gowanus Canal, in Brooklyn, to include more than two contiguous acres, Ariella Cohen reports for the Brooklyn Papers. The developer plans to build a mixed use neighborhood called Gowanus Village on the land.

The Brooklyn Papers editorial board supports the development, “if only because it will jumpstart long-failed city efforts to clean up the putrid corpse of water.” As long as the development includes affordable housing,they say, it should be “applauded” because the developer and his investors will become a powerful ally in the effort to get the canal cleaned up.

Cohen reports that Boymelgreen and other developers are “intrigued” by The Gowanus Canal Community Development Corporation‘s plan to turn the entire neighborhood around the canal into a “Mixed-Use Green District,” (pdf format) providing a mix of industrial, commercial, and residential development, all built in an environmentally and energy efficient manner.

Indeed, Boymelgreen’s plan will be LEED certified, a city recognized standard for green building. All private construction in in the city that receives at least $10 million in city funding must be LEED certified, although it is not clear if Boymelgreen is receiving public funds from the city.

By on May 2, 2006, 3:06 pm
In category: Community Development,Environment,Health,Housing,Land Use,Waterfront | 2 Comments »

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Day Without Immigrants
May 2nd, 2006

Photo By Susan Sipprelle

To the editorial writers at El Diario, yesterday’s “Day Without Immigrants” demonstrations and boycott were an “exhilarating show of unity and power. To those at the New York Post, they “amounted to a nationwide temper tantrum in service of a not-very-subtle effort to nullify the law.” The Daily News says the day of demonstrations, in which immigrants were asked to stay home from work, “proved the foolishness of addressing illegal immigration by deportations and prosecutions…What would happen in the city if every illegal immigrant were given the boot? First, the population would fall by as many as 650,000 people, pushing the census back to roughly 7.5 million. Neighborhoods would empty, buildings would be abandoned and property values would drop. Segments of the economy, such as manufacturing, construction, restaurants and health care, would take huge hits as roughly 10% of the labor force disappeared.”

By on May 2, 2006, 6:48 am
In category: Immigrants | 3 Comments »

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Gotham Gazette is published by Citizens Union Foundation and is made possible by support from the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Altman Foundation,the Fund for the City of New York and donors to Citizens Union Foundation. Please consider supporting Citizens Union Foundation's public education programs. Critical early support to Gotham Gazette was provided by the Charles H. Revson Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

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