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District 5

Ben Kallos

Upper East Side's Yorkville, Lenox Hill, Carnegie Hill, Roosevelt Island, Midtown East, Sutton Place, El Barrio in East Harlem

72. Ben Kallos New York City Councilman 

This Upper East Side reformer has carved out a niche as a fierce advocate for increased government transparency and bolstering the city’s campaign finance system. This year, Ben Kallos has been grabbing headlines for his push to implement larger matching funds for political candidates, a measure that was approved on the 2018 ballot.

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Parents with young children on a New York City street | Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Mothers and fathers should both spend time with their newborns.
By BENJAMIN KALLOS, ANTONIO REYNOSO | FEBRUARY 11, 2018

Four years ago, after being elected to the New York City Council, we both learned what it means to be a public official the only way you really can: on the job.

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Traffic moves along Delancey Street approaching the Williamsburg Bridge. (Mary Altaffer/AP)

By BEN KALLOS| NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |MAR 21, 2019 | 10:43 AM

New Yorkers get stuck in traffic every day. Car traffic, bus traffic, even somehow subway traffic.

As New York City grows, our city and state have failed to adequately invest in new transportation infrastructure, making it harder and harder for 8.6 million residents, 4.4 million workers and 60.7 million annual visitors to get around.

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Developers and landlords have always been at the mercy of city politicians, and Mayor Bill de Blasio’s ambitious housing agenda has further highlighted the tensions between real estate interests and City Hall.

While only a select few elected officials get a place on the Power 100, there are plenty of folks in and out of City Hall that are paving the way for development and fighting for tenants’ rights.

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Breakfast had already been free systemwide, school officials said, and the city’s stand-alone middle schools had a universal free-lunch pilot in place since 2014 that fed an additional 10,000 children who would not necessarily have qualified for free or discounted lunches, officials said.

Among the parade of speakers at Wednesday’s announcement was City Councilman Ben Kallos, who recounted his own experience with the stigma of subsidized school meals.

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“New Yorkers are exhausted by overdevelopment,” said Ben Kallos, the city councilman who represents the area and a leading opponent of the tall tower. “This is about standing up and showing the city that there’s another way to do things.”

Critics of the project say that supertall towers in residential areas tend to overwhelm the neighborhood and displace less wealthy residents.

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City jobs would have to be publicly posted for two weeks before someone is hired under a bill set to be introduced in the City Council this week, in a move meant to cut down on patronage.

Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan) is sponsoring the legislation to require 14 days of online job postings before interviews are done for government jobs.

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New York City Council legislation requiring landlords to register their rent-regulated apartments with the city or face fines is a “waste of taxpayers’ resources.”

That was the blunt message delivered by Anne-Marie Hendrickson, a deputy commissioner at the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), at an often combative, six hour-long public hearing on Monday about potential reforms to city housing laws.

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Summer brings the Daily News’ semi-annual ritual of shaming hypocrites on the City Council and of noting those who are true to their word.

Twice a year, the speaker doles out bonuses to members as rewards for obeisance. The Council justifies the payments, known as lulus, by calling them compensation for added committee duties that supplements the standard annual salary of $112,500.

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The young Councilman Kallos wants a New York where healthy meals are accessible to all, obesity is long gone and every street corner composts and recycles.

Credit: Facebook/Ben Kallos

City Councilman Ben Kallos has come a long way from his days at The Bronx High School of Science, though not so far from its rooftop greenhouse, where he tilled the soil as a teenager.

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