New York City Council to Vote on Enhancing Oversight of In-School Food Service Facilities

Multiple State Legislation Resolutions and a Communication from the Mayor Will Also Receive a Vote

City Hall – Today, the New York City Council will vote to enhance oversight of in-school food service facilities through the publication of cafeteria inspection results. The Council will also vote on multiple state legislation resolutions – or ‘home rules’ – related to benefits for relatives of deceased state workers, real property tax law, and parkland alienation, as well as a Communication from the Mayor regarding the use of speed cameras in school zones.

Enhancing Oversight of In-School Food Service Facilities

School cafeterias are inspected in the same manner as restaurants, but the inspection results are not currently available without a Freedom of Information Act request.

Introduction 1263-A, sponsored by Council Member Daniel Dromm, would require the results of school cafeteria inspections to be posted online on the Department of Education website (for public schools) or the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene website (for private schools).

“Bacteria, mold and other fungi belong in science lab Petri dishes—and not in school lunches,” said Committee on Education Chair Daniel Dromm.  “I hail the Council’s passage of my legislation, Introduction 1263-A. Now we can expect that school cafeterias and kitchens will start to behave responsibly for the wellbeing and safety of our students.  New York City’s SchoolFood program is one of the largest food service operations in the country. System-wide quality control is crucial to ensuring that our schools are serving fare to nourish young minds and encourage a lifetime of healthy eating.  Without a doubt, parents and students deserve to know whether the food from their cafeteria could make them sick.  I thank Speaker Mark-Viverito and Council Member Johnson for their support of this important effort.”

The City Council will vote on the following home rules…

State Legislation Resolution 0005-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator Martin Golden (S.6626) and NY State Assembly Member Herman Farrell (A.8323); “An Act to amend the real property tax law, in relation to the determination of adjusted base proportions in special assessing units which are cities for the fiscal year two thousand eighteen.”

This bill would adjust the State Board of Real Property Services (SBRPS) class equalization rule for one year only, to cap the maximum class growth at 0 percent for New York City. This formula is used to determine the tax rates for each of the four classes of property. The effect of this change would be to reduce the amount by which the current base proportions for any class, including class one (1, 2 and 3 family homes), is allowed to grow, resulting in citywide savings of about $250 for a typical owner of a class one single family home. If it does not pass, the Council must adopt the default SBRPS formula and tax rates for class one residential home would rise by over 6%.

State Legislation Resolution 0006-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator Martin Golden (S.5706) and NY State Assembly Member Peter Abbate (A.7603); “An Act to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation providing awards to spouses of emergency medical technicians and advanced emergency medical technicians who are killed in while engaged in the discharge of duty.”

This bill would create a death benefit for the surviving spouses of EMT’s employed by the FDNY who are killed while engaged in the performance of their duties.

State Legislation Resolution 0007-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator Martin Golden (S.5484) and NY State Assembly Member Michael DenDekker (A.7185); “An Act to amend the retirement and social security law and the general municipal law, in relation to pension benefits of widows or widowers of sanitation workers.”

This bill would make the widows and widowers of sanitation workers who are killed in the line of duty due to accidents, eligible to receive accidental death benefits as are afforded to the surviving spouses of other uniformed services including the NYPD, FDNY and NYC Correction Officers.

State Legislation Resolution 0008-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator Jose Peralta (S.6703) and NY State Assembly Member Jeffrion Aubry (A.8305); “An Act authorizing the city of New York to discontinue parkland for the purpose of construction and operation of a pre-kindergarten center with a focus on instruction in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.”

This legislation will provide New York City the authority to discontinue the use as parkland of certain parkland in Flushing Meadow Park in order to permit the construction of a new pre-kindergarten facility in the proximity of the New York Hall of Science. This facility would provide opportunities for children to attend a prekindergarten program that focuses on science, technology, engineering and math.

State Legislation Resolution 0009-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator José Serrano (S.6724) and NY State Assembly Member Latoya Joyner (A.8422); “An Act to authorize the city of New York to discontinue the use as park land of a portion of Corporal Fischer Park in the borough of the Bronx and to sell and convey such land upon terms and conditions to facilitate the construction of affordable housing.”

This legislation will provide New York City the authority to discontinue the use as parkland of Corporal Fischer Park in the Bronx for the purposes of creating a housing complex where 100 percent of the units will be affordable housing units as defined by the law, the parkland will be replaced by new park land.

State Legislation Resolution 0010-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator José Serrano (S.6721) and NY State Assembly Member Michael Benedetto (A.8419); “An Act in relation to authorizing discontinuance of the use as parkland of land in the city of New York commonly known as Marx Brothers playground.”

This legislation will provide New York City the authority to discontinue the use as parkland of Marx Brothers playground, and to transfer such land to the New York City Educational Construction Fund to permit the construction of a combined occupancy structure that will include several schools.

Mayor’s Message 0520-2017 – requesting the New York State Legislature to pass bills introduced by NY State Senator Jose Peralta (S.6046) and NY State Assembly Member Deborah Glick (A.7798); “An Act to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to photo speed violation monitoring systems in school speed zones in the city of New York; to amend chapter 189 of the laws of 2013, amending the vehicle and traffic law and the public officers law relating to establishing in a city with a population of one million people or more a demonstration program implementing speed violation monitoring systems in school zones by means of photo devices, in relation to the effectiveness thereof; and to amend chapter 43 of the laws of 2014, amending the vehicle and traffic law, the public officers law and the general municipal law relating to photo speed violation monitoring systems in school speed zones in the city of New York, in relation to making technical corrections thereto.”

This legislation expands upon the school speed safety cameras program by increasing the cap to 290 schools from the current cap of 140. The NYC DOT reports an average drop of almost 60% in speeding infractions at the school speed camera locations. The purpose is to expand the program to cover more children and increase safety.

“Passing Mayor’s Message 0520-2017 is a vital public safety measure – full stop,” said Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “Speed cameras make our streets safer and help save lives. Over the next three years, the installation of 150 additional speed cameras along school zones throughout the city will protect drivers, shield pedestrians, and safeguard young people from the dangers of unchecked speed. This Council has made strengthening street safety a top priority, and I am proud of this resolution for continuing that commitment today. I thank my Council colleagues for their work to champion our successful efforts to bring more oversight to the streets of New York City.”

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