Last night, Mayor Bloomberg and the City Council announced an election year budget deal that restores funding to a range of programs and agencies, including the city's libraries, the Fire Department and the Administration for Children's Services. According to the Daily News, the budget also includes $40 million in "member items." Depending on your point view, that $40 million is either wasteful "pork" council members will use to reward their supporters or it's an invaluable piggy bank they'll draw from to restore important services slashed by the mayor.
State Senator Daniel Squadron has gotten the MTA to order a review of service problems on the "F" train. Constituents (and his fiance!) have been hating on the "F" line pretty much forever, so Squadron cornered the MTA's lobbyist in Albany.
Club owners are banding together to target elected representatives and community board members who they say are unfairly targeting them. Club veteran Steve Lewis tells the New York Post, "Both good clubs and bad clubs are constantly harassed by city
agencies, while real estate interests are trying to turn Manhattan into
a bedroom community," In the Post story, Councilman Alan Gerson gave this assessment of the new group, "The Nightlife Preservation Community,"
"They will certainly make campaigns more interesting," he says of
the NPC. "But they should keep in mind that the people who enjoy night
life are sophisticated enough to recognize that whoever is behind this
may or may not have their best interests in mind." Gerson, whose district includes TriBeCa and the Lower East Side,
points to his efforts to overturn city laws that prohibit dancing
without a license: While the freedom to shake it anywhere would
certainly be appreciated by many party people, some club owners opposed
the change, he says, because they enjoy the hearty profit that comes
with having a monopoly on dance venues in the city.
From the Civic Center Residents Coalition: it seems the NYPD is now helping solve a problem the neighborhood group has been campaigning to fix for several months – the Parks Department's practice of parking and driving its vehicles in Chinatown's parks.