Gerson’s “Lame” Amendment, Little Steven on SPURA, Bike Lane Wars and More

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District 2 City Council member Rosie Mendez plans on making an endorsement in the First District City Council race soon. But she doesn't seem to be too pleased with the incumbent, Alan Gerson. Speaking of Gerson's failed amendment to hold a referendum on extending term limits, Mendez says, “Alan…all I can say about that amendment is it was lame — and everyone knew it.” After the proposal failed in the Council, Gerson voted to extend the limits. Mendez voted "no."  Some good news for Gerson: he'll be endorsed by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer this afternoon.

SPURA update via The Villager: "Steven Van Zandt, a.k.a. Little Steven of the E Street Band,
a.k.a. Silvio Dante of “The Sopranos” fame, recently toured part of the
site, specifically the old market buildings along Essex St. south of
Delancey St. (City Council member Alan) Gerson said Van Zandt was interested in creating a 'recording-studio complex' at the location, but then the stock market
crashed, and everything got put on hold. Gerson said, in addition to
eying the renewal area for cultural uses, he’s pitched the area to the
garment industry as a place for fashion manufacturing, design and
retail…"

A man died in the aftermath of a fight that broke out at a homeless shelter on the Bowery.

Work is progressing on the Allen Street Mall. This from Curbed: "Yes, friends, that's a brand spanking new protected bike lane that's coming to life… a bike lane that's going to reduce Allen Street to a mere two lanes, a move planners hope
will curb excessive driver speed through Chinatown and the LES. To
follow: "higher curbs, permanent planting beds, and post and chain
fencing."

NYC's non-profits are continuing to struggle, even as there are new signs of life in other parts of the city's economy. Danny Rosenthal of the Educational Alliance says its hasn't been easy absorbing cuts in the organization's city contract to provide childcare services.

The New York Post takes a look at the Howl Festival.

Silver, Stringer Announce Recycling Program at Russ & Daughters

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Russ & Daughters owner Niki Russ Federman speaks Friday as State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, DOE Fund Founder George McDonald and Tara DePorte of the LES Ecology Center look on.

State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer came to Russ & Daughters, the legendary Lower East Side appetizing store, today to announce a program to make it easier for restaurants to recycle their used cooking oil. The Doe Fund will pick up the cooking oil for free and sell it to producers who will convert it to biodiesel fuel.

When first approached about the program, Silver said he immediately wanted to get Russ & Daughters involved. He said it made a strong statement to other restaurants and food stores that an “institution” in the neighborhood was getting behind the recycling initiative.

Tara DePorte of the Lower East Side Ecology Center said her organization has been training students and quite a few New Yorkers who have lost their jobs to help restaurants reduce their impact on the environment. The program will soon expand to East Harlem and Washington Heights. Restaurants who take part in the program are eligible for special tax credits from the state.