Jessica Lappin


City Will Add Seats to Schools, but Still Fall Short of Demand

Monday, March 26, 2012

New York City's Education Department says it plans to add a total of 34,000 seats for students over a five-year period. But the number lags behind an estimated 50,000 seats needed to meet demand.

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The Empire

Veterans Day sparks veteran-focused legislative actions

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Elected officials at every level in the state are pushing for better protections and opportunities for military veterans--recent and those who served awhile ago.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is launching a program to help returning veterans find worker easier.

Military veterans are highly trained, often in specialized skills that are in great demand in the public and private sectors. However, veterans' training is often unacknowledged when they pursue licenses, degrees, and certifications in the civilian workforce. Through the Governor's "Experience Counts" campaign, state agencies will now identify ways that New York can better recognize the skills and training that veterans possess.

"As our veterans return home to New York, we must do everything within our power to ease their transition back into civilian life," Governor Cuomo said. "That is precisely what the 'Experience Counts' campaign and the newly revitalized Council on Returning Veterans and Their Families have been set up to accomplish. With this campaign, we can give veterans the credit they deserve for their military training and ensure that the state government works efficiently and effectively on their behalf."

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman released a "guide to provide veterans and active duty military personnel information related to benefits, consumer protections and other legal issues."

“To honor the brave men and women who selflessly serve our country, we must do everything we can to ensure military families are protected here at home,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “From foreclosure protection to educational benefits to employment issues, veterans and active duty military personnel deserve to know the rights and benefits to which they are entitled. My office will continue to fight for those who have fought for us.”

State Senator Tony Avella is introducing legislation to help veterans get preferential housing treatment.

Under the current law veterans who served in the Vietnam War are afforded specific eligibility into public housing projects at income levels slightly higher than the income levels set for the general public. Avella’s bill will extend those provisions to encompass veterans who have served or are serving in the armed forces from September 14, 2001 through December 31, 2014--reflecting the period from the Joint Resolution authorizing the use of force against those responsible for the September 11th terrorist attacks.

“Today, just as we did in the Vietnam War Era, we are seeing more and more of our soldiers returning home having served our country through lengthy deployments in hostile theatres with nowhere to live,” stated Avella. “Making sure that each one of these heroes is ensured preference when applying for public housing is the least we can do to prevent them from finding themselves in difficult situations. We should feel obliged to look out for those who selflessly risked everything to ensure our safety.”

City Councilwoman Jessica Lappin is putting forth a resolution caling on the Congress to do more victims of sexual assault inside the military.

Thousands of women in uniform have been victims of sexual assault and harassment during their military service. But women suffering from this condition, known as military sexual trauma (MST), face serious barriers to receiving medical benefits. Council Member Lappin, Co-Chair of the Women’s Caucus, is calling on Congress to pass a federal law that would make treatment more accessible to these victims.

“Thousands of veterans are carrying invisible battle scars,” Lappin said. “We need to provide them with the help they need, so they can begin the healing process.”

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Park Reopens on Roosevelt Island

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Southpoint Park reopened on Roosevelt Island Tuesday. The park surrounds the abandoned smallpox hospital on the island.


Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Biden, LaHood to Tout Infrastructure In Philly Today, Pentagon Blamed For Traffic Congestion, and Miami Beach Looks At Sharrow Program

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

The Takeaway looks at why equal rights in public transit are still an issue in this country -- yes, I'm talking about TN's documentary Back of the Bus.

The government plans to release the findings of its investigation into reports of sudden acceleration in Toyota vehicles today. (AP via Boston Globe)

The Pentagon should foot more of the bill for fixing traffic problems around military bases that are receiving thousands of new workers under a national realignment plan, a report commissioned by Congress said yesterday. "Though the closings were nationwide, nowhere has the impact on transportation been more profound than in the Washington area. Citing security concerns, the Pentagon relocated thousands of the jobs from inner-hub locations served by public transit to areas accessible only by car." (Washington Post)

President Obama talks infrastructure with the US Chamber of Commerce: "We have ... outdated, inadequate infrastructure.  And any of you that have been traveling to other countries, you know it, you see it, and it affects your bottom lines.  That’s why I want to put more people to work rebuilding crumbling roads, rebuilding our bridges. That’s why I’ve proposed connecting 80 percent of the country ... to high-speed rail."

And VP Joe Biden will be in Philadelphia today with USDOT Secretary Ray LaHood to talk about roads and rail. (Times-Leader)  (See more TN coverage on this visit here.)

How'd you like this to be your morning commute? A zip line strung 1,200 feet over a Colombia ravine. But it saves several hours of hiking for the locals. (Slate)

A east side NYC Council member gives Manhattan's M15 Select Bus Service a "B-" on a report card. As in "needs improvement." (NY1)

Miami Beach is studying how effective their sharrow - shared road - program is, in hopes that it's made bicycling safer. (Miami Herald)

Winter's storms may have already cost airlines more than $6oo million, as tens of thousands of flights were cancelled from Boston all the way to Austin, Texas. Adding to their difficulties, airlines are also grappling with rising fuel costs. (NPR)

Boston says aging equipment is to blame for rail delays this winter: Their oldest cars, on the Orange and Green Lines, suffered the most delays. The Blue Line, with cars ordered just four or five years ago, had few delays in the cold. (WBUR)

As part of a study on how electric vehicles affect the grid, 300 homeowners and early adopters of EVs in the Carolinas will be receiving free charging stations from their local energy providers.(

Good asks, with trepidation: Is the YikeBike the new Segway?

Top Transportation Nation stories we're following: Initial reaction to the Gateway tunnel (think 'son of ARC') is positive. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he's not going to be leading the city's congestion pricing charge. And: we take a look at the psychological underpinnings of NY's bike lane battles.

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The Empire

On the way

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Manhattan City Council woman Jessica Lappin breaks the news on her Facebook page:

"just realized i haven't shared the good news. I'm pregnant and due in early April. Luke can't wait to be a big brother."
13 minutes ago

Not everyone has made such public pronouncements of this kind.

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