As a follow up to his Seventh Annual Community Convention held this past April, State Senator Daniel Squadron held a Town Hall at Brooklyn Law school on Wednesday night. The full Convention Report was made available to all attendees. In his opening remarks, Senator Squadron emphasized his belief in “participatory government” adding, “State Government has the potential to have positive impact in people’s lives.”
The Senator did a bit of “house-keeping” and spoke briefly about his latest endeavors including the newly LLC Loophole report, released earlier in the day along with Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon who was also in attendance. The Senator acknowledged District Leader Paige Bellenbaum for her work in organizing the District 15 School Overcrowding Forum. Also of note was an MTA Bus Town Hall was held in Manhattan last week.
The Senator fielded questions from constituents via index cards. Over-development, preservation of open space and school overcrowding dominated the conversation. Greenpoint & Williamsburg advocates asked about Bushwick Inlet Park. Others raised concerns about the Brooklyn Heights Library and encroaching development in Downtown Brooklyn.
Squadron responded thoughtfully saying in part, “Open space is a critical part of our life here in New York City…every where in the life cycle it is critical. And, not as an after thought or a luxury to who we are as a city. And it’s too often thought of in that way and in fact it’s dangled out as an enticement when you have development or added density or something else that community isn’t comfortable with and too often that enticement isn’t really truly public open space.”
On school over-crowding a parent pointed out the proposed re-zoning of P.S. 8 does not alleviate over-crowding at the school asking ” “If you’re going to build an apartment, how do you makes sure there’s a school seat that matches that?” Squadron described the DOE’s response to his outreach as “too little, too late.”
The Brooklyn Daily Eagle’s comprehensive re-cap offers more details on this and all the topics discussed. But no community meeting would be complete without long-time Brooklyn Heights resident Jeff Smith’s unique perspective. He suggested the epidemic of gun violence is the fault of the Pharmaceutical industry’s over-prescription of psychiatric drugs adding,”gun control is over” due to the invention of 3-D printing.
Senator Squadron represents neighborhoods in Downtown Brooklyn from Greenpoint to the Columbia Waterfront and in Lower Manhattan from Tribeca to the Lower East Side. We applaud and appreciate his continued efforts to advocate on behalf of the residents of Brooklyn Heights and all his constituents throughout the 26th District.