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Meet the Candidates: Call Bill de Blasio

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Our last round of candidate interviews before the mayoral primary continues. New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio discusses his rise in the polls, his policy proposals, and his final-week campaign strategy.

Guests:

Bill de Blasio

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Comments [31]

Judith from West Village

I would like to know whether Bill Di Blasio (and all other candidates) will uphold Mayor Bloomberg's public health legacy.

Sep. 05 2013 08:36 PM
CG CORD from GOWANUS/CARROLL GARDENS

Carroll Gardens CORD/Coalition for Respectful Development has three questions for Mr. DeBlasio and ALL the NYC mayoral candidates:

Q. Will you, as the next NYC mayor, comply completely without opposition to whatever the final EPA record of decision demands regarding the Gowanus Canal clean-up in Brooklyn? Specifically, will you agree to finance the retention tanks in the locations currently proposed by the EPA?

Q. Who among you will be brave enough to scrap the idea of high density housing on the spectacularly compromised/ environmentally hazardous Public Place site and return it to the NYC Parks Department for our green space use as was originally intended and is certainly more environmentally appropriate and safer health-wise for all??

Q. Who among you disagrees with the plan to place housing in the flood zone A along the Gowanus Canal, a zone that suffered immense flooding all the way to Bond Street during Hurricane Sandy 2012, more flooding during the Hurricane of 2011, AND what is now referred to as the "Poo Poo Tsunami" or massive untreated sewage wave surge after the tornado of 2010? In other words who among you is in disagreement with placing brand new housing and unsuspecting new residents in the path of the next toxic storm surge?

We look forward to your responses.
Thank you.

CG CORD

Sep. 05 2013 02:23 PM
CG CORD from Carroll Gardens/Gowanus, Brooklyn

Carroll Gardens CORD/Coalition for Respectful Development has three questions for Mr. DeBlasio and ALL the NYC mayoral candidates:

Q. Will you, as the next NYC mayor, comply completely without opposition to whatever the final EPA record of decision demands regarding the Gowanus Canal clean-up in Brooklyn? Specifically, will you agree to finance the retention tanks in the locations currently proposed by the EPA?

Q. Who among you will be brave enough to scrap the idea of high density housing on the spectacularly compromised/ environmentally hazardous Public Place site and return it to the NYC Parks Department for our green space use as was originally intended and is certainly more environmentally appropriate and safer health-wise for all??

Q. Who among you disagrees with the plan to place housing in the flood zone A along the Gowanus Canal, a zone that suffered immense flooding all the way to Bond Street during Hurricane Sandy 2012, more flooding during the Hurricane of 2011, AND what is now referred to as the "Poo Poo Tsunami" or massive untreated sewage wave surge after the tornado of 2010? In other words who among you is in disagreement with placing brand new housing and unsuspecting new residents in the path of the next toxic storm surge?

We look forward to your responses at
cgcord@gmail.com.
Thank you.

CG CORD
www.carrollgardenspetition.blogspot.com

Sep. 05 2013 02:15 PM
Diane Buxbaum, MPH from Brooklyn, NY

I am sorry that I was unable to make a comment, nor were any of my Brooklyn neighbors, which is where deBlasio is based.

Bill has been totally absent for those of us who want any development that happens to fit into what Carroll Gardens/Cobble Hill is. Bill has taken monies from developers right and left. He is totally supported by Buddy Scotto, whom I really like, but who is prodevelopment, and often, I believe, development that is totally unfit for this area.

In addition, he did not support having the Canal superfunded. Did he acutally believe, like Bloomberg still does, that NYC DEP could do the cleanup with all the dithering that DEP has undertaken since I moved in in 1995?

Tony Avella when he was chair of one of the City Council Committees (maybe it was zoning) laid into Bill after one of my neighbors testified that she was not going to read her statement because de Blasio would just ignore it anyway. Bill got up and lashed out a my neighbor saying I do meet with you. I just do not choose to do what you ask (that you could be many, many of us). Tony laid into Bill saying that my neighbor was correct, that Bill did not listen to his constituents, etc. etc. etc..

Why did Bill get active in Lich and Interfaith just 3 or 4 weeks ago, when it suited him politically and why was he never around before that time.

Years ago, I personally had an experience, which my son-in-law Richard Bashner, says that I should forget about because it was so long ago, but I cannot, because I believe Bill has not changed: I am very active in the Sierra Club and have worked at EPA for 31 year...retirning this fall or January. This as a bit of background about why I have always believed that there is a nexus between environmental degradation, consumption and population, hence I have been very active in supporting access to family planning and women's reproduction health. I along with a number of other similarly mined Sierra Club activists call Hillary's NYC campaign office 9 times over a period of weeks to meet with someone, anyone in that office to discuss issues that we hoped Hillary would address. Bill was running her campaing. Not a single person ever called any one of us back.

Ultimatley, the State Sierra Club (and I was there, active at the state level)did meet directly with Hillary. What a pleasure that was, but it was definitely no thanks to Bill de Blasio.

I could go on and on, but I have other things to do. I will not vote for Bill de Blasion. Diane Buxbaum, MPH

Sep. 04 2013 02:19 PM

Do wish the media would question de Basio on the things that he actually did do and what he didn't do, though he said he would do, when he served the community in Brooklyn as councilman. What was it he ever did that could be construed as progressive? Really? And what did he do because the old party bosses told him to do? Is everyone that bored by this election that even the media seems to just accept what de Blasio says at face value?

Having lived under his reign as city councilman, I am very fearful of a De Blasio administration. He will destroy our livable communities in Brooklyn because for him even developing on toxic lands or in flood zones is appropriate so long as there is some affordable housing component. Yes he even wants a residential project on top of the most toxic land in the city, where the developers plan a day care center right next to a toxic recovery wall that would forever emit cancer causing vapor.

What we have witnessed is the developers get what they want at any cost, and the community gets ignored--that is what you risk getting under a de Blasio admin.

Sep. 04 2013 01:58 PM
Christina the Carriage Driver from Central Park South

To clarify for our readers and listeners:

Christine Quinn is the ONLY mayoral candidate who does NOT want to ban the horses. Speaker Quinn presided over the passage of Local Law 10 (Intro 35), that added additional protections and benefits for the horses (bigger stalls, more vet inspections, mandatory turnout "vacation" time on farms) as well as raised the fares for the first time since the late 1980s, thereby assuring the middle class families that rely on their horses' labor to be able to continue to live and work (and afford to properly take care of their horses) in NYC.

Bill De Blasio has received the maximum donations from real estate developer Steve Nislick and his wife and from top-15 (more than $100,000 a year) PETA donor and real estate person Wendy Neu and her late husband. Nislick and Neu are two of the three board members of NYCLASS, which is the group behind the electric car nonsense. Nislick, Neu, NYCLASS and Nislick and Neu's subsidiary corporations have given in excess of $774,000 to the superPAC NYC Is Not For Sale, which runs the whole "Anybody But Quinn" thing (NYCLASS executive director Allie Feldman is the coordinator of ABQ). Bill De Blasio was also the recipient of a fundraiser hosted by Mary Max, NYS director of the Humane Society of the United States. Both the HSUS and PETA are opposed to ANY animal ownership (forget your dogs and cats... as far as these radical special interest groups are concerned, not only is the city no place for horses, it's also no place for Fido or Fluffy!).

Bill De Blasio has NEVER met with us in the carriage industry (I gave my horse-knowledge credentials in my question on the show) and he has NEVER been our stables. Yet he says "advocates" have told him how bad it is for the horses... the same "advocates" who are giving him money and who are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to defeat the only candidate who knows anything about horses and who loves her rescued dogs, Christine Quinn.

If Bill De Blasio is elected, small business owners and their families will suffer. (We don't want mere *jobs* driving somebody else's stupid electric car... We want our calling, our tradition, and our relationship with our horses to be preserved!) And if Bill De Blasio is elected mayor thanks to the huge cash infusion of radical animal rights activists, all of MYC's animals, not least of all its horses will suffer.

Sep. 04 2013 01:11 PM
Lizzie from Brooklyn

Bill De Blasio speaks about developing affordable housing as a top priority were he elected mayor. Yet during his tenure on the City Council (2002-2009), he was in fact closely aligned with Mayor Bloomberg and Chairperson Amanda Burden and the Department of City Planning regarding zoning changes in support of large-scale real estate development. We saw neighborhoods transformed by new, large-scale glass and steel luxury buildings, often without the inclusion of any affordable units which resulted in greatly increased neighborhood rents, loss of long-time residents, and the dislocation of small industries and jobs.
For example, zoning changes which brought about Brooklyn's mini-building boom along Fourth Ave. (De Blasio's district) were finally approved without, to my knowledge, including a single affordable unit. In addition, Bill De Blasio helped push through a spot re-zoning on Brooklyn's Gowanus Canal for the Toll Brothers to develop a large-scale luxury apartment complex, despite opposition from the community regarding infrastructure and environmental concerns. The toxic site was then nominated for a Superfund clean-up which De Blasio opposed, again aligning himself with the Bloomberg administration. At the time, he claimed to be doing so in the interests of creating more "affordable housing", though ultimately this was in conflict with the Federal EPA's environmental assessment and the voices of concern coming from within the community.
Balancing the need for affordable housing against the interests of private real estate developers is crucial for the future growth of the city. But zoning changes for new residential buildings should be viewed comprehensively and objectively with regards to existing infrastructure, environmental sustainability, and the needs of our city's communities.
In looking at De Blasio's record on issues of zoning and real estate development, it comes as no surprise that a good portion of his campaign support and funding has come from within the real estate industry. How then would zoning and development under a De Blasio administration be truly progressive and different from what we've experienced under Bloomberg's, now and into the future?

Sep. 04 2013 12:58 PM
Lailapoje from Manhattan

Until today,I liked Bill de Blasio and would have voted for him, but his categorical, rigid and unreasonable stance on carriage horses convinced me that he is NOT my candidate. (It's also Ms. Quinn's position and that's why I will not vote for her either.) I am a horse lover and used to ride a lot. Using horses to till the fields,to ride, to transport us, etc. has been a long tradition. The NY carriage horse laws are excellent and ensure that they are well treated, and their owners do this job because they love horses and want them to be well cared for and well treated. These horses are a magnet for tourists and I they love them. People have to work, so why not horses, as long as they are well treated? Would Mr.de Blasio prefer that these lovely horses be turned into dog and cat food? Because that's what will happen for sure. And "antique cars"? Give me a break, do we really need more cars on our city streets? Mr. de Blasio should stop pandering to a very small but loud extremist group. One can be an animal lover without going to extremes. I do hope this gets Mr. de Blasio's attention and that he will reconsider his stance.

Sep. 04 2013 12:13 PM
Linda Mariano from Gowanus

Brian, I believe you have given way too much air time to deBlasio. Why is that?

Are you playing favorites?

Sep. 04 2013 12:01 PM
Linda Mariano from Gowanus

As a city council member in 2008 you promoted and granted "spot rezoning" for the Toll bros.
housing developer in Gowanus Brooklyn. "Spot Rezoning" in New York is illegal. You an the political machine got your way. However,Toll Brothers left Gowanus, when Gowanus Canal became designated a Superfund site.Now, Lightstone developers are piggy backing on the illegal spot zoning granted to Toll. Since when are 12 story apartment rentals with no affordable housing component allowed to exist completely out of context next to a Superfund site. After Sandy, no new EIS was required. We had a 13 foot storm surge in Gowanus.The Toll/Lightstone development is in a FEMA mandatory evacuation zone. Zone A. The storm surge caused severe flooding in Gowanus. The people of Gowanus can not trust you to be our mayor. You once said "I will build right up to Gowanus" and you did. Just look at Fourth Avenue and all of the horrid and ugly over sized housing developments, which also experience extreme flooding, after a heavy rain. Shame on you Bill.

Sep. 04 2013 11:54 AM
Tony from Canarsie

Correction: in my comment below I wrote that "Joe Lhota was Rudy Giuliani's main hatchet man in City Men." That should have been City Hall. City Men sounds like a series on AMC in which an older, but not wiser, Don Draper gets a cushy civil service job in the Manhattan Municipal Building.

Sep. 04 2013 11:26 AM
Sandra from UWS

I like Bill de Blasio and think it's past time for a shift in NYC politics, but I completely disagree about those horse drawn carriages. Show me a documented instance of horse abuse. The Central Park horses are better protected and treated than most ordinary workers in New York City--the horse drivers baby them, kids love them, and how right that is. Horses are wonderful. How very much better to see a horse than yet another machine. I even like the slight whiff of horse manure. Gives a welcome reminder of the countryside in our asphalt and cement world. Just too politically correct and PETA driven. Feh.

Sep. 04 2013 11:21 AM
Elsie from Brooklyn

His answer about tenant rights is one of the more intelligent responses I've heard from any of the candidates. While the other candidates sound like corporate shills, de Blasio seems genuine and sincere. I don't feel like he's hitting talking points or avoiding direct answers because he doesn't have any (or worse, has no plans to implement the ideas he's running on once in office, which let's face it, is what the majority of candidates do).

As for the whole horse carriage debate in Central Park......who cares. Really. We have bigger issues to deal with. And de Blasio's counter plan seems perfectly reasonable and better for the environment.

Sep. 04 2013 11:13 AM

Please address the unconscionable NYU takeover of the Villages. As a Village resident, THAT's my crucial issue--part of why I doubt I'll vote for Quinn.

Sep. 04 2013 11:12 AM
Tony from Canarsie

Fuva from Harlemworld -- "Bill, how will you beat Joe?"

If I may put in my two cents: since Joe Lhota was Rudy Giuliani's main hatchet man in City Men, and is the former head of the MTA (i.e., one of the most despised official positions in the City), it should be quite easy to defeat Mr. Lhota. In fact, the image of a steamroller comes to mind.

Sep. 04 2013 11:10 AM

I'm going to have to check on the audio file, but didn't you ask Deblasio about the number of "millionaires" in the City? I think he "blew you off".
(or maybe you just didn't want your questioned answered.)

Sep. 04 2013 11:09 AM
Marlene from Gowanus Brooklyn

De Blasio's campaign has presented him as the 'progressive” candidate. Could he please explain how his past positions represent a “progressive” prospective?

In your final year as our City Councilman, the State of NY invited the EPA to assess the Gowanus canal, in your district, for a Superfund cleanup. To no one's surprise, the EPA found extremely high levels of toxin which made the canal eligible for Superfund status. The community and almost every community group south of Atlantic Ave, whole heartedly supported a Superfund cleanup for the canal. Congresswomen Nydia Velasquez supported the community in the call for a Superfund listing that would require the polluters to pay the close to half-a-billion cleanup cost to remove toxins from out community and public waterway.

But the old guard party bosses and your friends at Toll Brothers (who have been running fundraisers for you) didn't want the EPA looking over anything in Gowanus. So the mayor's office came up with a plan that suited them, where the city with the Army Corp would run a cleanup at tax payers expense. This is the plan you backed rather than the one the community wanted, supported by Nydia; and because of her support, the old party bosses tried to run her out of office.

Please explain how your position to not support a Superfund Cleanup for Gowanus is the progressive position, compared to Congresswomen Valasques's position to stand with the people of this city and not the old party bosses, to bring a cleanup to our community that would require the polluters to cover the cost to remove those toxins from our community. Why should anyone see your position, to get 30 or 40 units of affordable housing in the Toll Brother's development project, in exchange for the taxpayers footing the half-a-billion dollar bill for the environmental cleanup?

Sep. 04 2013 11:07 AM
mbk from manhattan

Great question Brian. If BdB is the dem nominee, I will vote for Lohta. If Quinn, Quinn will win.

Sep. 04 2013 11:06 AM
Scott fromProspect Heights

I can't believe the way Bill de Blasio has exploited his son Dante in an effort to gain votes. He should be ashamed of himself for doing this.

Sep. 04 2013 11:06 AM
Peg

Given that many consider life in NYC (and all large cities) comparable to a factory farm for humans, how can mayoral hopefuls guarantee a better life for its human residents in comparison to NYC horses?

Sep. 04 2013 11:05 AM
Christina from Manhattan

I had a follow up question for Bill De Blasio:

Jobs are not the same as businesses. And carriage horses in New York City are very well treated.

Bill de Blasio has NEVER met with the NYC carriage drivers. His information comes from very wealthy PETA members who run NYCLASS.

Will Bill de Blasio meet with the middle class working people whose lives he proposes to impact - or do the wealthy donors who have maxxed out their giving to him and who fund the majority of the NYC is Not For Sale "Anybody But Quinn" campaign hold all the power?

Sep. 04 2013 11:04 AM
Michael from Manhattan

Key to making the lottery more FAIR and also a bit of wealth distribution. STOP these ridiculous MEGA lottery games with hundreds of millions of dollars in prizes ... make the lottery awards ZIPCODE sourced and awarded . This way, the communities that PLAY the most get the MOST from the prize money .

Handing out 3 and 4 hundred million prizes to someone in some small town in Iowa is a symptom of the deception that the Lottery perpetuates.....

Sep. 04 2013 11:04 AM
George from Brooklyn

What do you think of Christine Quinn's TriboroRX proposal?

Sep. 04 2013 11:00 AM
Fuva from Harlemworld

Bill, how will you beat Joe?

Sep. 04 2013 10:59 AM
Sue from Manhattan

As a tenant advocate, I'm concerned about the recent Daily News report of your relationship with landlord Michael Shah. The News asserted that although Shah had more violations than had the 2 top "worst landlords" on your list, you didn't list him - and he did contribute to your campaign. Could you talk about that?

Sep. 04 2013 10:58 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

De Blasio reminds me of John Lindsay, and I know where his policies led this city to. Any candidate who uses the term "progressive" has automatically lost my vote.

Sep. 04 2013 10:56 AM
Ryan from Chelsea, New York, NY

Will you change the arts giving in the city? Bloomberg did a great job of streamlining the funding process through the Department of Cultural Affairs. Will you continue his legacy or will you change the way the city gives?

Sep. 04 2013 10:21 AM
Javier A. from Bronx

New York City represents over 42% of New York State's population; Yet in the last Gubernatorial election in 2010, the City only represented 29.34% of the total voting percentage of the state. There have even been instances where precincts in the city have recorded voter turnout as low as 10-12%. As mayor, what policies would you implement to improve voter turnout and energize the boroughs and city to actively participate and vote not only in local and city, but state and national elections as well?

Sep. 04 2013 10:12 AM

Is your son ready for fame?

Sep. 04 2013 10:11 AM
Net from NYC

I am beginning to lean Quinn away from de Blasio.
How is de Blasio going to tax the rich exactly?
He supported lifting term limits?
His campaign is sounding too good to be real.

Sep. 04 2013 10:08 AM
john from office

A baby was killed in Brooklyn over the weekend by gang violence. The target hoodlum father will not cooperate with police. How will Mr. DeBlasio, he of the afro headed son, deal with the culture of violence in parts of our city and the lack of cooperation form the same people Mr. Deblasio claims are victims of racial profiling. How do you defeat a culture of "no snitching" with feel good programs and not real world solutions like stop and frisk. May I add, there were two shootings at the West Indian day parade, maintaining a record of shootings for each of the last several years.

Sep. 03 2013 08:24 AM

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