Tuesday, May 1, 2007

PRESERVATION ALERT: Preservation Lobby Day is Wed., May 9

LANDMARK WEST! is working with a coalition of over 30 groups (please see list below) to co-sponsor the First Annual NYC Preservation Lobby Day on Wednesday, May 9, 2007. A press conference will take place on the steps of City Hall at 12:00 noon. Please join us!

Together in a unified voice, we are urging the City Council to increase the budget of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) by $1 million (from its current, miniscule level of only $4.3 million). Why? Please see the attached Fact Sheet and bullet points below (prepared by the Citizens Emergency Committee to Preserve Preservation).

The City Council and Mayor Bloomberg need to hear from preservationists! Please show your support for helping the LPC get the resources it needs to do its job of protecting the historic places that matter most to New Yorkers by taking the following actions:

1) Call your council member (or one of their staff member). (Find contact information at www.nyccouncil.info.) Let them know that you, as one of their constituents, support additional funding for the LPC.

2) Schedule an appointment to meet with your council member. If possible, set up a time between 9:00 AM and 12:00 noon on Wednesday, May 9. Bring colleagues and neighbors with you - in unity, there's strength! For purposes of coordination, let us know if you get an appointment by emailing landmarkwest@landmarkwest.org.

3) Invite your council member to join us at the press conference. May 9, 12:00 noon, on the steps of City Hall.

4) Send an email or fax stating your support for additional funding, especially if you aren't able to schedule an appointment to see your council member (please cc. landmarkwest@landmarkwest.org).

Lack of Resources (from www.savelpc.org, Citizens Emergency Committee to Preserve Preservation)

The Landmarks Preservation Commission is one of the smallest city agencies in New York, yet its workload is impressively large and growing every day. Their staff and budget have become dangerously small:

  1. The Commission’s budget has shrunk by 35% since 1990, in constant dollars
  2. The Commission’s staff has decreased by 25% since 1990. Over this same time period, the number of applications to repair or modify landmarks (which the Commission regulates) has more than doubled, to 9,000 per year;
  3. The Commission has just 52 staff members who watch over more than 22,000 landmarks throughout the five boroughs; only 3 of which are charged with enforcing the landmarks law
  4. The Commission’s share of the city budget has shrunk by 52% since 1990. It now occupies just .007% of the entire city budget
  5. Since 1990, the Commission has increased the revenue it generates for the city from just $10,000 per year to more than $1 million per year. It now raises nearly 1/3 of its agency budget, yet the city continues to deny the Commission the funding and staff it needs

Organizations In Support of Increasing the LPC Budget By $1 Million

American Institute of Architects, NYC Chapter
Boerum Hill Association
Brooklyn Community Board # 2
Brooklyn Community Board # 6
Brooklyn Heights Association
Citizens Emergency Committee to Preserve Preservation
Cobble Hill Association
Defenders of the Historic Upper East Side
DUMBO Neighborhood Association
The Drive to Protect the Ladies' Mile District
East Village Community Coalition
Fort Greene Association
Four Borough Neighborhood Preservation Alliance
Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts
Fulton Ferry Landing Association
Historic Districts Council
The Historic Neighborhood Enhancement Alliance
Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
Landmark West!
Lower East Side Tenement Museum
Municipal Art Society
New York Landmarks Conservancy
Park Slope Civic Council
Preservation League of Staten Island
Queens Civic Congress
Queens Preservation Council
Society for the Architecture of the City
Women's City Club of New York
List in formation

If you are affiliated with an organization whose name does not appear above, please email landmarkwest@landmarkwest.org to sign on!

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