Let’s take a moment to geek out on some charts just released by the Manhattan Borough President’s office regarding this year’s community board applicants. Today the office is beginning to interview nearly 600 applicants who applied to serve on the borough’s 12 community boards.
There were 328 new applicants, including 24 in Community Board 3, which covers the Lower East Side and Chinatown. That’s not a lot, but as you can see, the numbers are similar for other boards (with the exception of CB7 on the Upper West Side.) Half of the members of community boards are up for renewal every year. On CB3, four current members (out of 50) have chosen to bow out. It remains to be seen how many other representatives the Borough President will choose not to reappoint. According to a press release:
…finalists will be invited to participate in group role-playing exercises to assess their consensus-building skills. New applicants will also first be screened by a committee of representatives from good government groups, civic and community organizations, and staff from the borough president’s office. The BP’s office also tracked data on this year’s new applicants to serve as a baseline in helping identify where recruitment efforts should be expanded next year.
The two slides you see here reflect the makeup of new applicants borough-wide. The press release notes that next year’s recruitment efforts will be focused on more applications from diverse residents. Although a large number of those applying for positions were white, they make up less than half of the population of Manhattan. You’ll also notice that very few applicants live in public housing.
As we reported last month, one Lower East Side advocacy organization is campaigning for more Latino representation on Community Board 3. There are currently four Hispanic members of the board; one is stepping down this year.
Thee new borough president. Gale Brewer, will announce the new appointees April 1. Local city Council members help select half of the community board’s members.
UPDATE 5:17 p.m. Responding to a few questions left in the comment section…
Here’s the breakdown indicating whether applicants live and work in the district:
The board members who did not re-apply are: Bernard Marti, Wilson Tang, Stephanie Domenici and Elinor Tatum.
Community Board 7 is on the Upper West Side.