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Margaret Chin: First Day on the Job

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Although she’s been meeting with constituents and making preparations for many weeks, today was Margaret Chin’s first official day representing District 1 on the City Council. On Wednesday, the new Council will meet for the first time — electing a speaker, swearing in members and deciding committee assignments.

This afternoon, however, there were a few last minute details on Chin’s plate: setting up her new office, making final staffing decisions and looking for a few good interns.

Chin will have two locations: a legislative office at 250 Broadway and a district office (where constituents will go to seek help) at 165 Park Row, in the sprawling Chatham Green complex. She plans to make the most of limited resources. Most Council members are able to hire four or five staffers. For the moment, her onetime campaign manager (now director of communications and legislative affairs) Jake Itzkowitz is doing everything from coordinating a packed daily schedule to figuring out how to convert a shower stall into a coat closet.

As a candidate, Chin vowed to emphasize constituent services. During the transition, her office has been helping residents solve all sorts of problems — including tenant/landlord disputes. Once the office is fully staffed, they’ll be open to constituents six days a week — and will be able to field concerns in English, Chinese and possibly Spanish.

To reach Margaret Chin’s office, call 212-587-3159. The new office is located at 165 Park Row, Suite 11.

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