Saturday, September 6, 2014
Katz releases strategic policy statement
September 4, 2014
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
I hope all is well with you and that you’ve had a wonderful summer. As school begins for the hundreds of thousands of children around the Borough, I dropped my son off, as well, on his first day of public school. Mother and son were both very excited!
I also wanted to take this opportunity to pass along exciting news for the Borough of Queens. Every four years the City’s five borough presidents each prepare Strategic Policy Statements that summarize the most significant long-term challenges faced by our Boroughs, the policy goals related to these challenges and the proposed strategies for addressing these issues.
My office’s Strategic Policy Statement was submitted to the Mayor’s Office and the City Council. Highlights from this 138-page document organized under eighteen policy areas include discussions about:
· Rockaway Ferry: The need to fund permanent Rockaway Ferry service to allow greater access to the peninsula and to provide Queens with an additional mass transit option;
· Immigrants and Intercultural Services: Helping new immigrants by making services available in multiple languages and improving outreach so that culturally sensitive programming can be made available to all immigrant groups;
· Tourism: My pledge to continue to promote Queens (“The World’s Borough”) as a major tourist destination with top-level attractions;
· Economic Development: The need to encourage economic development by facilitating job training, welcoming start-up businesses, encouraging new technologies and helping small business owners navigate City regulations and take advantage of government procurement opportunities;
· Housing: My commitment to address the impact of the housing shortage by securing additional funds for housing assistance and working to improve the enforcement of rules aimed at deterring people from creating illegal and substandard apartments;
· Zoning: A continuing need to contextually rezone Queens neighborhoods to preserve their existing characters and to allow increased density only in appropriate locations where new housing should be developed;
· Education: The need to solve overcrowding in Queens schools by convening the Queens Borough President’s Education War Room, a monthly meeting that brings the School Construction Authority and school superintendents together with my office to identify ways to reduce overcrowding and address other problems that can hinder our children’s education;
· Parks: The importance of making sure Queens parks are adequately funded, upgraded and accessible for all to enjoy;
· Public Safety: My support for a plan to improve police response times by creating a new police precinct that would serve part of the area now served by the 105th Precinct in eastern Queens.
The Office of the Queens Borough President is dedicated to making sure Queens is the best possible place to live, work and visit. This Strategic Policy Statement will guide our efforts to achieve these goals.
I invite you to read the entire document linked here. I also look forward to working with you over the weeks, months and years ahead as we strive to achieve our collective objectives on behalf of the people of “The World’s Borough.”
Borough of Queens