News & Events

Common Dreams — Over 150 advocacy groups from across the Empire State Tuesday sent a letter to New York legislative leaders urging them to follow in the footsteps of places like North Dakota, Germany, and Costa Rica and pass legislation allowing the creation of public banks that would help “advance racial equity and ensure a just recovery for all New Yorkers.”

Next City — Marcus is a disabled, 66 year-old Vietnam war veteran. He lives in a house in the East New York neighborhood of Brooklyn that has been in his family since the 1960’s. An only child, he inherited the home when his parents passed, his only piece of generational wealth. But after falling behind on property taxes, the city placed an $11,000 lien on his home. That lien will be sold to a third party, making the debt nearly impossible to pay off.

Ahead of the City’s tax lien sale this Friday, the Abolish the NYC Tax Lien Sale Coalition released a new analysis revealing the lien sale list includes 392 vacant lots that could support the development of over 3,600 affordable housing units. This represents a recurring missed opportunity for the City to partner with community land trusts (CLTs) to acquire these vacant lots and develop deeply-affordable housing for low-income New Yorkers, the organization said. 

WhoWhatWhy — New York City, once the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, is bouncing back. Broadway is reopening its doors, international tourists are arriving, and workers are returning to jobs. 

But not all the way. According to the New York City Recovery Index, the city is still just about 80 percent “back.” Hotels are still running deficits, office vacancies are at a 30-year high, and small businesses — hundreds of which closed in 2020 and 2021 — are facing long roads to recovery.

Fresh off his electoral victory, Eric Adams declared that his administration will look abroad for policy solutions to New York City’s myriad social and economic problems. “Let’s learn what they’re doing there so we can do it here,” he urged.

It just so happens, there’s a broad-based citywide coalition pressing for a bold policy solution that is common throughout the world: public banking. Bringing public banking to New York, as a proven strategy for addressing racial and economic inequality, should rank among Mayor-elect Adams’ top priorities.