WHORES, WHORES, WHORES……………………………and not even the good kind. These so-called “Progressive Democrats” are not for the people, especially these questionable one here in Corrupt New York. De Blasio and Mark-Viverito have proved over and over again they are just political whores that could care less about the people, even though they say otherwise. But their action speaks volumes.
From Take Back NYC:
For Immediate Release
May 4, 2016
Contact: Kirsten Theodos
Mayor de Blasio, Speaker Mark-Viverito, and Councilman Cornegy earn A+ grade for serving special interest
Earn an F for NOT serving the people and small businesses
Dateline NYC, May 4, 2016: Recently, 80 advocate groups representing small businesses, professionals, and tenants’ rights released their mid-term grade of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s economic policy for NYC’s small businesses. The conclusion: F.
A special committee organized by the Small Business Congress “…was comprised of only people who have a minimum of 25 years experience in owning and operating a small business in NYC or advocating for small businesses. Furthermore, to avoid conflict of interests, no member has received government funding or has contracts with the city/state, or was consultant to any big business or government funded organization. No member’s organization has board members or officers who represent banks, SBA, the real estate industry or promoted loan programs. This committee was comprised of representatives from each borough, most of the city’s ethnic minority and women business owners, professional businesses, and every type of business in NYC including arts and Not for Profits.”
The committee found “The record shows as Councilman, Bill de Blasio had first-hand knowledge of the dire consequences faced by business owners under Bloomberg’s anti- small business policies and the instability and crisis it created. As Councilman and candidate for Public Advocate he was the strongest voice for the passage of real solutions to the real problems of NYC businesses, like the Small Business Jobs Survival Act (SBJSA) to stop the closing of long established businesses caused by exorbitant rent increases. Yet as Mayor, he remains silent on the small business crisis and the need to address any major problem which would save a single small business or a single New Yorker’s job.”
The report concluded that the crisis had gotten significantly worse during the first two years of Mayor de Blasio’s Administration. During that time, 12,363 Court Warrants to Evict Commercial Businesses were issued with an est. 30,000 Businesses Closed Citywide and an est. 200,000 NYers lost their jobs. “…under Mayor de Blasio’s economic policy, for long established businesses, NYC is the worse major city in the world to survive lease expiration and negotiate fair lease terms which allow a reasonable profit.”
Many NYers are confused that with a “progressive” Mayor, Speaker and City Council all pledging to promote progressive legislation and declaring to be pro-small business (because they are “the backbone of our economy”), why they have remained silent as our small businesses are being destroyed. Even more perplexing, why is our progressive City Council denying democracy to a bill that would stop the closing of long established small businesses? It is apparent that like Albany, our city’s political system is being rigged by electeds who have received big real estate campaign contributions, as our Mom & Pops become extinct.
The F grade given to Mayor de Blasio is the result of his failure to address the crisis faced by our city’s small business owners. But this failure is not solely on the feet of NYC’s chief executive. It also falls on our City Council and those we have elected to represent us. Chief amongst these fellow failed progressives are Chairman of the Committee on Small Business, Council Member Robert Cornegy, and City Council Speaker, Melissa Mark-Viverito. Both along with the Mayor are perpetuating former Mayor Bloomberg’s anti-small business policies, making the crisis worse by continuing to collaborate with the real estate lobby to keep the status quo and denying a vote on the SBJSA.
Also contributing to the F grade is the fact that in July 2014, Chairman Cornegy began working on legislation to address the problem of businesses closing due to exorbitant speculative rent increases and still he has not produced anything. Since then, the crisis has significantly worsened and in the two years since he began his work, he has presented nothing to his committee to consider in an attempt to save a single small business. For two years, Cornegy has stalled and abandoned the NYC small business community while they are closing in record numbers and struggling to survive. (Over 1,000 small businesses close every month across the five boroughs) Cornegy has also turned his back on 27 true progressive Council Members who support the SBJSA; a clear majority of the City Council and of his Committee. Today, under his leadership the courts are evicting on average 542 businesses per month with that number growing disproportionately in the boroughs of the Bronx and Brooklyn. While Cornegy acknowledges a crisis exists and something has to be done to stop the closing of small businesses, he has done absolutely nothing except talk about hypothetical legislation originating from MBP Brewer’s small business proposal and doing what big real estate wants: keeping the power with the landlords and not calling a hearing on the SBJSA.
Recently, the NY Daily News reported on the small business crisis in NYC with their piece ”Malls of America”. A crisis that Cornegy continues to acknowledge but still does nothing to address it. Under Cornegy and Speaker Mark-Viverito’s leadership, it is acceptable to stall and do nothing while our small businesses disappear as Cornegy’s predecessor, Small Business Committee Chairman Yassky had rightly predicted. It’s not just the business owners who are suffering under Cornegy and Speaker Mark-Viverito’s do nothing policy created by the real estate lobby. The other victims are their employees and their families facing lower wages or being laid off, the character of our neighborhoods changing, lost job opportunities for low income families and hard to employ NYers, fixed income families forced to pay higher prices, and jeopardizing our city’s entire middle class when the backbone of our economy is breaking due to high rents.
When Cornegy was asked why he won’t allow for a public hearing of the only solution before the City Council, the SBJSA, he responded, “I’m not certain it will get passed.” The sheer audacity that his opinion somehow carries more weight than the majority in the City Council who support the SBJSA, not to mention the cumulative nearly 4 million NYers they represent, is a complete failure to understand democracy and the role he was elected to serve.
Cornegy’s added excuse for his inaction was, “it (SBJSA) will not yield what people are looking for.” What the people are looking for are their beloved Mom & Pops to survive, not giving them a one year extension to move. The real estate lobby on the other hand is looking to keep the status quo which protects landlords’ windfall profits by encouraging phony proposals that would make the crisis worse and expedite the displacement of our small businesses. Cornegy needs to be enlightened about the democratic process. Legislation is not made behind closed doors by career bureaucrats working in the Speaker and Mayor’s offices, who are following orders from the real estate lobby. Cornegy’s allegiance to City Hall’s shadow government controlled by big real estate and his lack of experience with small businesses has actually made the crisis worse. Rent gouging is out of control and is now happening all over the city and Cornegy is calling this part of an organic natural growth progress, a talking point originating from the real estate lobby to justify the unintended consequences of real estate speculation and greed.
Speaker Mark-Viverito also contributes to the Mayor’s F grade for allowing her office to be influenced by the real estate lobby and stopping a vote on the SBJSA. In 2009, the SBJSA had 32 sponsors including the entire Small Business Committee and was certain to easily pass into law. To stop a vote on the SBJSA, then Speaker Quinn used an unsubstantiated lie created by REBNY, that the bill had “legal problems”. Even though this claim was later proved to be without any legal merit, it is still being regurgitated today by many members of the Council to justify inaction and deny sponsorship of the SBJSA. The Speaker’s office today is using the same lie about the bill’s legality to deny a public hearing on the SBJSA. NYers did not expect a continuation of Speaker Quinn’s sell out to the real estate lobby from a so called “progressive”. And to add further insult to our desperate small business owners and to democracy, the Speaker recently announced at the State of the City address that the Council will create a planning committee to study the small business problem and recommend solutions like tax incentives to landlords. Another study, (this will be the third small business study since 2014) is an already used stalling tactic created by REBNY to prevent a vote on the SBJSA.
Self-anointed ‘progressives’ like de Blasio, Cornegy, and Mark-Viverito were elected to pass progressive legislation and the SBJSA is progressive legislation. Instead, we get a phony ‘progressive’ Mayor and City Council whose only true claim to progressiveness is progressively lining the pockets of big real estate.
It’s time to begin recognizing progressive elected officials by their actions, not by their rhetoric. With this measurement, we have 27 of the 51 City Council Members we can truly call progressives whether they call themselves democrat or republican. Progressiveness lies in not only passing progressive social legislation but economic as well. By any measure, Mayor de Blasio, Chairman Cornegy and Speaker Mark-Viverito are failures when we look at their actions to save our small businesses, not what they say — they all deserve a big F grade. It’s time to pass the SBJSA, it’s time for action, it’s time for democracy to return to City Hall.