MBP Harlem/Uptown: Gale Brewer News

Here’s a curated version from Manhattan Borough Presidents Gales Brewer’s MBP Harlem/Uptown News: Gale Brewer’s Weekly Newsletter.

Ukraine

We haven’t posted much about the Russian invasion of Ukraine lately. NPR had a good update Monday (7/25). Videographer Jon Farina went to Ukraine when the war broke out. He ended up in Kharkiv and fell in with a group of Ukrainian volunteers, recording their efforts. The result is a heartbreaking 30-minute video (“Meet the ‘Not Calm Hearts’: Four civilians’ mutual aid keeps the Ukrainians of Kharkiv alive”) about conditions there in recent months. Independent journalist Matt Taibbi (yes, the son of local TV reporter Mike Taibbi if you’re as old as me!) interviewed Farina for an edition of his Substack newsletter here.

News & information

Senators Joe Manchin and Chuck Schumer have come to terms on the “Inflation Reduction Act of 2022,” which raises corporate taxes, increases tax enforcement, closes the carried-interest loophole, and starts to allow Medicare to negotiate some drug prices (something Democrats have been fighting for since the Part D Medicare drug benefit was passed during the Bush administration). The funds raised by those provisions will reduce the deficit by about $300 billion, funds an extension of subsidies for the Affordable Care Act begun during the pandemic, and allots $369 billion to address “energy security and climate change.”


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If passed—the key phrase—this will be the largest climate investment ever made by any country; it’s projected to reduce carbon emissions in the U.S. by 40% by 2030. And it will hasten investments by private capital and prompt other countries to make their own investments too (according to The Intercept’s Ryan Grim, because those countries don’t want to fall behind in the industry that will dominate the next century). To quote Joe Biden after passage of Obamacare, this is a big f****** deal. More about the bill here


We’ve heard from constituents about the sorry state of the Dinosaur Playground in Riverside Park at 97th St. The broken paths and stairs leading to it, the erosion and drainage issues, peeling paint, the nonworking water fountains, etc etc. That’s why I worked to include almost $7 million in the new FY 22-23 budget for its renovation, with the help of Speaker Adrienne Adams and with funds from former Council Member Helen Rosenthal.

The Speaker and I also worked together to secure $3,180,000 for major repairs to the Sol Bloom playground at 91st St. and Columbus Ave. Funding will be used to reconstruct the playground including play equipment, safety surface, spray shower, seating, landscaping, fencing and sidewalks.
 
The Parks Department will hold a series of community events to gather input on designs. I will keep you posted when those are announced.


Next Thursday (8/4) will be another “Pickup Thursday” for my Fresh Food for Seniors program (in partnership with Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine). That’s when you can stop by the Goddard Riverside Older Adult Center between 1 – 3 pm, pay $10, and order a bag of fresh local produce (a $15+ value) for pickup on 8/18. Sort of like a one-week CSA! Here’s the schedule for the rest of the season:

  • August 18 (Sign up for Sept 1)
  • September 1 (Sign up Aug. 18)
  • September 15 (Sign up Sept. 1)
  • September 29 (Sign up Sept. 15)
  • October 13 (Sign up Sept. 29)
  • October 27 (Sign up Oct. 13)
  • November 10 (Sign up Oct. 27)

Three Saturdays in August (8/6, 13 and 20) from 7 am – 1 pm: NYC Summer Streets is back. Everyone is invited to play, run, walk, and bike on Park Avenue and feeder streets, from Brooklyn Bridge to East Harlem. Public art installations, performances and activities will be along the route. Check out the activities, art and performances happening during Summer Streets 2022. On August 6, Citi Bike will be offering free day passes. Use the code SUMMER22 in the Citi Bike app to receive unlimited 30-minute rides on a classic Citi Bike for 24 hours. Click the links for more information.


Last week the Upper West Side Coalition of Block Associations held a forum about licensed cannabis retailing, with a presentation from the NYS Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) on how last year’s “Marijuana Revenue and Taxation Act” seeks to achieve social justice, economic development, and public safety. and Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office is working with NYPD and coordinating with the special narcotics prosecutor to address the illegal sales going on in plain sight now. OCM issued cease-and-desist letters to 52 unlicensed merchants who are illegally peddling marijuana in NYC. Follow this link to view the forum recording on YouTube. Click the first link to download the OCM presentation.


Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine has launched a pilot $50,000 Composting Initiative to support composting programs throughout Manhattan, funding projects between $5,000 – $7,500 aimed at composting education programs for youth, for seniors, or general community engagement. Apply here by close of business 8/26/22 (Use code: MCI2023). Learn more here. 



Items

Goddard Riverside Community Center is surveying the community about neighborhood needs. (To learn more about the programs and services offered by Goddard, click here.) Take Goddard Riverside’s short, ten-minute community survey here


Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce is once again hosting Harlem Week next month, from 8/12 to 8/21. Exhibit and vendor space is available for rent, via this form (pdf—print, fill it out and email or mail to Harlem Week, 200A W. 136th St, New York, NY 10030) or call 1-877-427-5364, or email vend@harlemweek.com. 

Events

There’s STILL a lot of Shakespeare…

The Classical Theatre of Harlem’s “Afrofuturistic” production of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” starring Kara Young (a 2022 Tony nominee for her performance in “Clyde’s”) continues through Friday 7/29 at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem. Reserve free tickets here.

This year’s second production of Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park is As You Like It, opening 8/10 and running through 9/11. Ticketing options: in-person distribution in Central Park; in-person lottery at The Public Theater; in-person distribution in the boroughs; a digital lottery with TodayTix; and in-person standby line in Central Park.

The Hudson Classical Theater Company is performing “Macbeth” at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, 89th St at Riverside Park, Thurs. – Sun, at 6:15 pm, beginning 7/28 until 8/21. —


Tomorrow, Friday, 7/29, 7 pm at Marcus Garvey Park, 5th Ave. at W. 124th St.: Jazzmobile’s Summerfest 2022 continues with Happy Birthday Dr. Billy Taylor Wwith The Cyrus Chestnut Trio. Click here for the complete Jazzmobile schedule, or sign up for emailed updates.


Sundays from 2 – 4 pm, at the Charles A. Dana Discovery Center at the Harlem Meer in Central Park, 110th St. near 5th Ave.: The Harlem Meer Music Festival. Remaining performances: 7/31, Spanglish Fly (Latin Boogaloo); 8/7, Johnny Rodriguez and the Dream Team (New York Salsa); 8/14, Clean Money Music; 8/21, Despers USA Steel Orchestra.


Saturday, 8/6, 1 – 3:30 pm, Ft. Tryon Park (Enter at Ft. Washington Ave/Margaret Corbin Circle): Stanley Michels Memorial Jazz Concert sponsored by Ft. Tryon Park Trust. Join the Fort Tryon Tryon Park Trust, NYC Parks, and the Michels family to honor the late Council Member Stan Michels at the 14th Annual Stan Michels Memorial Jazz Concert. Enjoy live jazz by local impresario Marjorie Eliot, her son Rudel Drears, and their ensemble. In the event of rain, the concert will be held indoors at Our Saviour’s Atonement/Cornerstone Church: 178 Bennett Ave. (Stan was a beloved colleague who represented Northern Manhattan for 24 years, 1978 – 2001. He was a steadfast advocate for parks, allocating over $50 million for park improvements in Washington Heights, Inwood, and Harlem, and virtually every playground in his district!)


Saturday–Sunday, 8/20 – 21, 2 – 6 pm, Morris Jumel Mansion: 30th Annual Jazz at the Mansion Concert with Marjorie Eliot and Parlor Entertainment with support from the Jazz Foundation of America. The lineup:

  • Rudel Drears – Piano, Vocals, Founder & Musical Director
  • Marjorie Eliot – Piano, Founder & Artistic Director
  • Sedric Choukroun – Saxophone
  • Nicholas Mauro – Trumpet
  • Jeffrey Michels – Guitar
  • Yuma Takagi – Bass
  • Will Glass – Drums, Percussion

Their location is across the street from 555 Edgecombe Avenue (also known as the “Triple Nickel”), a historic apartment building home to Count Basie, Paul Robeson,  and Cassandra Wilson. This outdoor event is free and open to the public. This event has a limited capacity, and it is recommended that you arrive early to obtain a seat. In case of inclement weather, the concert will be canceled. (Visit the brand new Morris Jumel website with in-depth stories about the Mansion and its collections.)  


As always, get in touch if you have a problem or concern we can help address: 212-669-8300 or info@manhattanbp.nyc.gov.

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"Dr. Harry Delany is a renowned Harlem born and raised surgeon, the son of the great jurist and civil rights leader, Hubert Delany...." This monthly post is made in partnership with Harlem Cultural Archives.

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