StreetsPAC's Testimony to City Council on Bike Lane Obstruction and Intro 2159

We testified today during the New York City Council Committee on Transportation's remote oversight hearing on illegal parking and bike lanes, in support of legislation introduced by Council Member Stephen Levin and Speaker Corey Johnson that seeks to address the city's epidemic of dangerous illegal parking. Our testimony follows below.

StreetsPAC strongly supports Intro 2159, which would create a new violation and civil penalty for hazardous obstruction by a vehicle of a bike lane, bus lane (when bus-only restrictions are in effect), sidewalk, crosswalk, or fire hydrant, when the violation occurs with one quarter mile of a school building, entrance, or exit, imposing a fine of $175 for each such violation, judicable by the Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings (OATH).

Intro 2159 would also require the Department of Transportation to create a civilian-reporting mechanism by which members of the public could report alleged violations and submit supporting evidence. If such violations were substantiated and DOT were to bring a case, the civilian complainant would be entitled to 25% of the penalty collected as a reward.

The reporting mechanism is modeled on the Department of Environmental Protection’s Citizens Air Complaint Program, which works the same way for idling violations, and a bit like the Taxi and Limousine Commission’s complaint system, which does not pay a reward. Both existing programs are considered successful, and allow the city to increase enforcement of harmful behavior without burdening law-enforcement personnel.

Read more
1 reaction Share

StreetsPAC Joins Fellow Advocacy Organizations in Releasing 2021 Transportation Equity Agenda

Yesterday, we joined the New York League of Conservation Voters, NYPIRG Straphangers Campaign, New York Lawyers in the Public Interest, Regional Plan Association, Riders Alliance, Transportation Alternatives and the Tri-State-State Transportation Campaign in releasing a transportation agenda outlining our shared priorities for 2021 and beyond.

"We’re proud to partner once again with these vital advocacy organizations to outline a vision for the future of transportation in New York City," said StreetsPAC Executive Director Eric McClure. "We’re at an inflection point, and can either take a big step toward a more walkable, bikeable, transit-rich and humane city, or slide back into a 1970’s-style decline. The city’s future leaders must facilitate the former, and this is the road map by which we can get there."

The full agenda follows below.

Equity On Our Streets: A Transportation-Led Recovery Agenda for Candidates

COVID has transformed how New Yorkers move. At the pandemic’s height, many people rarely left home. Others rode less frequent and less crowded public transit. Bicycling boomed. Driving nearly stopped, only to roar back alarmingly though most offices remain closed.

Equitable recovery starts on the ground. Improving public space on our streets and sidewalks can boost mobility, access, safety, and resiliency. Local transportation fixes can arc toward just and sustainable growth.

The hurdles are real. Cars release the overwhelming share of our stubbornly high transportation carbon emissions. COVID cases were worsened by air pollution. Drivers and motorcyclists have recklessly used empty streets to set modern crash fatality records.

Still, subway ridership more than tripled since April. The City set records for bus lane installation and reduced more speed limits. Lockdowns revealed organic 15-minute cities, with most essentials in walking distance. Open Streets and Restaurants took traffic lanes and curbs back for people.

Big opportunities stand within reach. Streetscape improvements are quick and cheap to install and adjust. To rebuild New York and achieve New Yorkers’ shared goal of a more just and inclusive city, the next mayor and City Council should adopt a bold transportation agenda.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Statement on Polly Trottenberg’s Resignation as New York City Transportation Commissioner

We were sorry to learn today that New York City Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg will be leaving her post before the end of 2020. We’re grateful to her for her leadership and partnership in working to make New York City’s streets safer and our public transit system better.

The New York City Department of Transportation notched many important achievements under Commissioner Trottenberg’s leadership, including the lowering of the city’s speed limit to 25 mph, the vast expansion of the city’s speed-camera program, implementation of Manhattan’s 14th Street busway, significant growth of the city’s bike-lane network, and progress toward reducing deaths and injuries. And in just the past few months, her department has orchestrated the rollout of the city’s Open Restaurants and Open Streets efforts, while dealing with the devastating effects of COVID-19 within its own ranks.

As advocates, our mantra is always “do more,” and there is of course much more we need to accomplish as a city, whether it’s revitalizing Vision Zero or building more dedicated bus lanes or completing a citywide network of truly protected bike paths. But whenever we’ve pushed Commissioner Trottenberg to do more, it’s with the knowledge that she cares deeply about New York City and the safety and health of its denizens. We know that she takes personally every death or serious injury on the city’s streets, and shares our goals for a better future.

Thank you, Polly, for your dedication as NYC DOT Commissioner, and good luck in your next endeavor. We’re confident that your role on President-elect Biden’s Transition Team will ensure that walking, biking and transit will be central to his administration’s transportation agenda.

1 reaction Share

21 for 21! Gounardes Comeback Completes StreetsPAC Endorsees' Election Sweep

When Andrew Gounardes completed his comeback yesterday from a 6,000-vote Election Day deficit, it closed the door on a perfect 21-for-21 performance by StreetsPAC-endorsed candidates for State Senate and Assembly in the November 3rd general election.

When counting of absentee and mail-in ballots began Monday, Gounardes trailed by more than 5,200 votes. When counting was halted for the day on Wednesday, that deficit had become a lead of about 2,500 votes, with some 1,800 ballots still to be tallied.

Gounardes was one of eight State Senate candidates endorsed by StreetsPAC, a group that included newly elected Brooklyn Senator Jabari Brisport. We also endorsed 13 candidates for Assembly, with Khaleel Anderson, Jessica González-Rojas, Emily Gallagher, Chantel Jackson and Amanda Septimo all winning seats for the first time.

We're extremely proud of this slate and their collective commitment to safer streets and better public transit, and look forward to the work they'll be doing in Albany. Read on for a brief look at all 21 winning candidates, and some of the issues on which they'll focus in the next legislative term.

Read more
1 reaction Share

It's Election Day! Vote for StreetsPAC-Endorsed Candidates for State Senate and Assembly!

Polls Are Open Today from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

It's Election Day. Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. As long as you're in line to vote by 9 p.m., you can't be turned away. We strongly recommend that you use the New York City Board of Elections' Find My Poll Site tool to confirm your polling site, and to preview a sample ballot. If you're voting in person today, please be sure to wear a mask and adhere to safe social-distancing protocols, and do prepare yourself for a bit of a wait. If you're voting by absentee ballot, it must be postmarked today, but you can also drop it off at any polling site (go straight to the front of the line to turn it in).

For the past several months, we have evaluated responses to our detailed candidate questionnaire, conducted in-depth personal interviews with candidates, and deliberated at length over endorsement decisions. We've proudly endorsed a total of 21 candidates running for State Senate and Assembly in today's election. Below, you can learn more about each of our endorsees, and their plans for making our streets safer and our public transit better.

We urge you to get out and vote for the StreetsPAC candidate if you vote in a district in which we've endorsed. We're confident that the candidates who've earned StreetsPAC's endorsement will work diligently to promote safe, complete and livable streets, and reliable, efficient and affordable public transit.

Read on to meet our 2020 endorsees!

Read more
Add your reaction Share

StreetsPAC's 2020 General Election Voter Guide

Polls Open 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday

New York State's general election takes place tomorrow, Tuesday, November 3rd, and polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. As long as you're in line to vote by 9, you can't be turned away. We strongly recommend that you use the New York City Board of Elections' Find My Poll Site tool to confirm your Election Day polling site, and to preview a sample ballot. If you're voting in person tomorrow, please be sure to wear a mask and adhere to safe social-distancing protocols, and be prepared to have to wait for a bit. If you're voting by absentee ballot, it must be postmarked no later than tomorrow, but you can also drop it off at a polling site (go straight to the front of the line to do that).

For the past several months, we have evaluated responses to our detailed candidate questionnaire, conducted in-depth personal interviews with candidates, and deliberated at length over endorsement decisions. We've proudly endorsed a total of 21 candidates running for State Senate and Assembly in the general election. Below, you can learn more about each of our endorsees, and their plans for making our streets safer and our public transit better and more reliable.

We urge you to get out and vote for the StreetsPAC candidate of your choice. We're confident that the candidates who've earned StreetsPAC's endorsement will work to promote safe, complete and livable streets, and reliable, efficient and affordable public transit.

Read on to meet StreetsPAC's 2020 endorsees!

Read more
1 reaction Share

StreetsPAC Endorses Mike Gianaris for Re-Election

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Orchestrated 2018 Ouster of IDC

StreetsPAC today endorsed Mike Gianaris for re-election in Queens's 12th State Senate District.

MikeGianarisCroppedLarge.jpgGianaris, who serves as Deputy Majority Leader in the State Senate, was born and raised in the Queens district he now represents. He's established himself as a prominent member of the progressive wing of the State Legislature, and played a pivotal role in helping to vanquish the IDC and give Democrats control of the Senate in 2018, which paved the way for the passage of congestion pricing, expansion of speed cameras, and the legalization of e-bikes, all of which he supported.

Gianaris has been a strong advocate for mass transit, and pledges to continue to push his millionaire's-tax bill, which would dedicate revenues to the MTA. He's also interested in reforming the State Department of Motor Vehicles, including potential expansion of the DMV's Fatality Hearing program to incorporate serious-injury cases as well. In addition, he's committed to pursuing expansion of pedestrian and cycling access to MTA-controlled bridges, including the RFK Triboro Bridge, which connects his district to Manhattan and the Bronx.

You can help support Mike's relection effort here.

1 reaction Share

StreetsPAC Endorses Jessica Ramos; Voter Registration Deadline Today

Queens Senator Led Push for e-Bike Legalization

StreetsPAC today endorsed Jessica Ramos for re-election in Queens's 13th State Senate District.

Ramos, who was elected in 2018, has quickly established herself as one of the Legislature's leading voices for safer streets and better public transit. She sponsored the bill that led to the eventual legalization of e-bikes in April, has called for the reopening of the Queensboro Bridge's south outer roadway to pedestrians and cyclists, and just introduced a bill that would increase the allowable width of an e-bike, paving the way for rapid growth in the use of bikes for freight delivery.

Ramos, who won her primary in June with 86% of the vote, faces a Republican challenger in the November 3rd general election. She has pledged to continue to advocate for the complete-streets redesign of dangerous Northern Boulevard, with Select Bus Service and protected bike lanes; to keep pushing to make the immensely popular 34th Avenue Open Street permanent; and to pursue legislation that would increase New York State's gas tax, with revenues dedicated to public transit.

You can help support Jessica's relection effort here.

Today's the Deadline to Register to Vote

If you are not already a registered voter in New York State, today is the deadline for eligibility to vote in the November 3rd general election.

You can find all the information you need to register here: www.elections.ny.gov/votingregister.html.

If you believe you're already registered, you can confirm your status here: voterlookup.elections.ny.gov.

1 reaction Share

StreetsPAC Endorses Andrew Gounardes for State Senate

Safe-Streets Champ Faces Tough Re-Election Race in Trump-Leaning District

StreetsPAC today endorsed Andrew Gounardes for re-election in Brooklyn's 22nd State Senate District. Gounardes, who won the seat with StreetsPAC's endorsement in 2018, defeating eight-term Republican incumbent Marty Golden, has distinguished himself as a committed champion of safe-streets policies during his first term in Albany.

Andrew_Gounardes_Official.jpgGounardes was the lead Senate sponsor of the landmark 2019 legislation that vastly expanded  New York City's ability to deploy life-saving speed cameras, to 750 locations around the five boroughs. But Gounardes didn't stop there – he is the lead sponsor in the Senate of fully half of the pending bills we asked candidates about in our 2020 questionnaire.

Among those are bills that will make it easier to hold dangerous drivers accountable, require instruction in pedestrian and cyclist safety as part of the process of licensing drivers, and establish pedestrian safety ratings for motor vehicles.

"I’ve been fighting side by side with StreetsPAC to transform our city’s culture and our streets to make them safer for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers alike," says Gounardes. "We are working towards a city where senior citizens and parents can cross the street without fearing for their lives, and where no family has to suffer losing a loved one in a car crash. I am deeply proud to be endorsed by StreetsPAC for the work we’ve already done, like finally passing the landmark School Zone Speed Camera expansion law, and all that we will do together to fight traffic violence."

Yet despite all that Andrew Gounardes has accomplished during his first term, he's locked in a tough re-election battle. The 22nd is a purple district that voted for Donald Trump by five points in 2016, and outside groups are spending heavily in an attempt to return the seat to Republican hands.

In 2018, volunteers working with StreetsPAC knocked on more than 5,000 doors in a race that Andrew won by a little more than 1,000 votes. We need that kind of effort again – whether it's phone-banking, text-banking or safe, socially distanced canvassing – to make sure we can send him back to Albany to continue his vital work. Will you volunteer a few hours of your time to help us re-elect Andrew? Sign up here.

And of course, if you're able to support Andrew's campaign financially, we urge you to donate here now. For a limited time, StreetsPAC will match contributions via this link dollar-for-dollar, up to a total of $5,000.

Re-electing Andrew Gounardes to the New York State Senate is one of StreetsPAC's top objectives for 2020, and we hope you'll join us in making that happen.

1 reaction Share

StreetsPAC 2020 Primary Election Voter Guide

New York State's primary election is today! Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., and if you're registered with a political-party affiliation, you are eligible to vote in your party's primary.

For the past several weeks, we have evaluated responses to our detailed candidate questionnaire, conducted in-depth personal interviews with candidates, and deliberated at length over endorsement decisions. We've endorsed a total of 25 candidates for State Senate, Assembly, and Queens Borough President. Below, you can learn a bit about each of our endorsees, and the safe-streets and public transit issues they've committed to championing.

This primary will likely continue the trend of low-turnout elections, especially when factoring in the effect of the Coronavirus pandemic. That means that your vote for a candidate who supports safe, complete and livable streets, and reliable, efficient and affordable public transit, could very well be critical in deciding the outcome of a close race.

To check your voter-registration status, find your polling location, and to see a sample ballot, please visit vote.nyc (we've noted below that a few of the candidates we've endorsed do not have primaries, and thus won't appear on the ballot). We urge you to get out and vote today for the StreetsPAC candidate of your choice, but please be sure to wear a mask and adhere to safe social-distancing protocols.

Read on to meet StreetsPAC's 2020 endorsees!

Read more
Add your reaction Share

1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    18  19  Next →
StreetsPAC
StreetsPAC supports candidates for public office who will champion Safe, Complete and Livable Streets.