Press Releases

Statement By Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito Re: Proposed Defunding of Planned Parenthood

“Over four million Americans benefit from the critical health services Planned Parenthood provides each year.  For many, particularly those already facing the greatest health care disparities, Planned Parenthood is their only source of health care.  Any attempt to defund Planned Parenthood would set reproductive rights back by decades. We cannot allow the Republican Congress to undermine the Medicaid reimbursement system and deny 55 million women access to free, comprehensive preventative care, birth control and cancer screenings. READ MORE

Statement by Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito Re: Governor Cuomo’s Tuition Announcement

“Making college affordable and accessible is a fundamental cornerstone of the fair and equitable future we strive toward as New Yorkers. The Excelsior Scholarship puts the potential of our students at the forefront of higher education decision-making, and I commend Governor Cuomo for his work to level the playing field for all. Education is a great equalizer, and one of the strongest tools lower- and middle-income individuals and families have for improving their circumstances and those of others in their communities. READ MORE

City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito Urges Governor Cuomo and Albany Leadership to Establish Statewide Policy Recognizing Immigrants as Essential Members of the New York Community

Sends Letter Calling on New York State to Limit Involvement in Federal Immigration Law Enforcement Efforts

City Hall – Today, New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito released a letter imploring Governor Andrew Cuomo, State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, State Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, and State Senate Independent Democratic Conference Leader Jeff Klein to undertake a coordinated and comprehensive policy to limit the State of New York’s involvement in federal immigration enforcement. READ MORE

Council to Vote on Legislation to Regulate Non-Governmental Organizations Controlled by Elected Officials and to Reform Campaign Finance Board Rules and Public Matching Program

Council will also vote on Maintaining a Database of Land Use Commitments and Applications

City Hall – Today, the New York City Council will vote on legislation to regulate, for the first time, contributions to non-governmental organizations controlled by local elected officials. The Council will also vote to establish reforms to the New York City Campaign Finance Board (CFB) and its public matching program. READ MORE

Statement by Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito Re: New York City Reimbursement From Congress

“New York City cannot single handedly shoulder the staggering cost of protecting the President-elect and his family. It’s outrageous that the proposed spending bill from the House of Representatives includes just $7 million dollars in owed reimbursement to New York City- a fraction of the $35 million the City of New York has asked for. The President-elect and Congress must commit to repaying NYPD, the taxpayers, and our City. READ MORE

Council to Vote on Legislation Establishing New Procedures for Modifying Deed Restrictions and Reforming the Department of Correction and Criminal Justice System

Council will also vote on Increased Reporting of Educational Programming in City Schools

City Hall – Today, the New York City Council will vote on legislation creating a new approval process for deed restriction modifications, requiring a comprehensive, public review before the City can relinquish its rights to determine how formerly-owned property is used. READ MORE

Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Council Member Dan Garodnick Launch Petition Calling on President-Elect Donald Trump to Commit Federal Funds to Reimburse City for Cost of Protecting Trump Tower

Urges incoming administration to pledge federal funding for security measures

Additional NYPD presence and measures cost an estimated $1 million each day

City Hall – Today, New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Council Member Dan Garodnick launched an online petition calling on President-elect Donald Trump to commit necessary federal funds to reimburse the City of New York City for expenses incurred providing security protections to Trump Tower. READ MORE

Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer, Council Member Andy King, The Department Of Correction, And The Three New York Library Systems Announce Expansion Of Video Visitation Program

$600,000 investment will connect families with incarcerated loved ones

East Harlem, NY – Today, Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Majority Leader and Chair of the Cultural Affairs and Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, Chair of the Subcommittee on Libraries Council Member Andy King, Tony Marx, President and CEO of New York Public Library, Linda E. Johnson, President and CEO of Brooklyn Public Library, and Dennis Walcott, President and CEO of Queens Public Library, and Angela Tolosa, Assistant Commissioner of Program Operations at the New York City Department of Correction gathered to celebrate the $600,000 in Council funding to expand a video visitation program with the City’s 3 library systems to provide free live video services for families who wish to visit with their NYC Department of Corrections (DOC) incarcerated loved ones. READ MORE