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Adams unveils recovery plans for NYC

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Moses Kuwema 

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, who is running for New York City mayor, over the weekend unveiled a recovery plan for the city.

The 100+ Steps Forward for NYC outlines an ambitious 106 policy proposals that covers public health and safety, the economy and housing, city government, education, transportation and the environment among others.

On crime, Adams proposes the need to use real-time governing tools and tracking crime trends which are predictive, saying this can help quickly shift NYPD resources from one community to another to reverse bad trends.

Adams' plan looks to regularly shift detectives and other officers from low-crime areas to crime hot-spots. 

"Living in a high-crime community and experiencing gun violence creates trauma that impacts a youth's ability to perform in school and achieve in life. 

"Without adequate services that address trauma and allow for healing, youth are placed at higher risk of incarceration, teenage pregnancy and homelessness," read Adams' plan. 

Prevention and follow up measures that serve to heal and support these youths are best delivered by trauma-trained credible messengers paired with mental health professionals, social services and violence interrupters."

Adams said once elected, his administration will recruit, hire, and train community residents who will have real-life experience to provide an immediate post-crisis healing space for, and to develop a working relationship with, affected youth.

"This helps reduce feelings of isolation and mistrust, cultivate shared investment of community-centered healing, and reduce the fear often associated with living in a high-crime, high-poverty neighborhood," read the plan.

On the NYPD's community relationship particularly, with people of color, Adams observed that one of the reasons why the NYPD continues to be plagued by incidents of bias and brutality is that the department still needs to become much more diverse.

"We will address this by recruiting from the very same neighborhoods that are suffering from crime, which are mostly Black and Brown, and by allowing peace officers at city agencies-who are not police officers and who are also more likely to be Black and Brown-to be promoted to the NYPD," read the plan.

Adams is also proposing to send the police leadership to elite institutions for training to improve department performance-both on crime and civil rights.
He also hopes to publicize the list of bad cops being monitored by the NYPD in order to be transparent and build trust. 

Adams' proposal hopes to make it easier for good cops to anonymously report bad behavior by their colleagues that should result in swift action through an outside system overseen by the Department of Investigation, protecting whistleblowers and exposing problem police.
On the impending layoffs the city intends to carry out because of a budget deficit, Adams said labor costs can significantly be reduced by $1.5 billion through attrition by not replacing or retiring City workers and working with the state to offer early retirements to others over the next two years.

"We can generate $1.2 billion by instituting a "Recovery Share"-a modest increase to the income taxes of city earners who make more than $5 million a year, sunsetting after two years. Those funds would go directly into initiatives that help us bounce back from the pandemic, including testing and vaccination programs, anti-hunger efforts, and financial help for those New Yorkers and industries hardest hit by COVID-19," read the plan.

On the business owners that are struggling to stay open during the COVID-19 pandemic, Adams is proposing to allow businesses that pay the Commercial Rent Tax, a break for two years if they demonstrate hardship and commit to certain employment levels.

"The Relocation Employment Assistance Program (REAP) has successfully drawn new businesses here from outside the state by providing a tax credit per employee per year if they locate in certain areas of the city. We will expand that to bring more business to New York," read the plan.

Other proposals in Adams' 40 page plan include empowering immigrants with municipal voting rights.

"There are more than 3 million immigrants in New York City. The vast majority of these New Yorkers cannot vote in local elections even though many are legal tax-paying residents. 

"By allowing lawfully permanent residents and other non-citizens authorized to work in the United States the right to vote, we will enfranchise nearly 1 million New Yorkers who deserve a say in how their city is run-and who runs it," read Adams' plan.

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