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Update February 7, 2014- By Steven E. Greer
The new City DOE Chancellor Carmen Fariña announced revisions to the old Bloomberg plan for new schools, and Downtown “aint gettin nothin”, so to speak. Despite Downtown Manhattan being one of the fastest growing residential neighborhoods in North America, the 60,000 residents, and soon-to-be numerous new high-rises, will receive no new schools from the city, according to the DOE’s January 31st statement.
Recall, the DOE blindsided the CB1 Youth Committee last year by announcing that the new schools that had been promised to relive overcrowding were in fact not going to materialize after all. In response, “Downtown school advocates, through Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s School Overcrowding Task Force, had been urging school officials to reconsider the Bloomberg administration’s original spending proposal, announced last November, that would add fewer than half the number of elementary school seats they say are needed in the next few years.”, according to the Tribeca Tribune.
On February 5, Mr. Silver wrote a letter to the DOE, “I strongly urge that the DOE amend its capital plan so that we have 1,000 seats sited in this community,”.
The January 31st announcement from Chancellor Fariña is yet another loss for the growing ineffective lame duck CB1 and Mr. Silver. Many members of the CB1 could be ousted when the new Manhattan Borough President selects new board members in April, and Mr. Silver will have a tough re-election campaign this year.
BatteryPark.TV previously reported that elected officials, such as Mr. Silver, are not pressing the real estate companies developing numerous new high-rise residential towers to include school space, due to campaign donation conflicts of interest.
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