NY Daily News
The city will prohibit construction of new jails on Rikers Island under a proposal approved by the Council’s land use committee on Thursday.
The resolution allows the Council to submit an application to the Department of City Planning to remap the island so that the land can’t house inmates after 2026, when the troubled complex is expected to close.
Mayor de Blasio and Council Speaker Corey Johnson said the map change, which must go through the city’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure, ensures the island will cease as a correctional facility after the new jails are built even after they leave office.
“We’re making our commitment ironclad and ensuring no future administration can reverse all the progress we’ve made,” de Blasio said in a statement. “Mass incarceration did not begin in New York City, but it will end here.”
The 17-member Council land use committee passed the resolution 11 to 2, with two other lawmakers abstaining and two absent from the vote. Councilman Bob Holden, who is not on the land use committee, said the vote “sets an extremely dangerous precedent in New York City, with the Council essentially turning the ULURP process on its head and neglecting the voices of our citizens.”