April 17 Meeting with Rep. Goldman & CM Marte

We want to wish all our members and neighbors that celebrate these spring holidays a wonderful week. As the daffodils, cherry blossoms and magnolias bloom, this is certainly the time of year for reflection, renewal and for spending time with loved ones.

Thank you to all of our GSD members for their efforts at getting signatures for our petitions, whether you stood on street corners or knocked on doors. We have collected and submitted more than 700 signatures! That is community in action!

After a busy year of elections and redistrictings, our VP of Elections, Sandra Strother-Ribeiro, has resigned. We thank her so much for her partnership and expertise navigating an unusual election season! We wish her well and look forward to opportunities to collaborate.

Please look out for our upcoming events: GSD General Meeting on April 17thWelcome Wednesday on May 10th and our June primary kick-off on June 15th. See below for details.

Press Conference with AM Grace Lee

It’s been a busy week petitioning so sorry about the last minute notice about today’s press conference at 10am. Assemblymember Grace Lee invited Grand Street Democrat members to join her for a press conference to stand with the state legislature to not lift the FAR cap in New York City. AM Lee is hosting a press conference with Assemblymember Glick at 10am, Friday (3/24) in front of 250 Broadway.

When: Today Friday, March 24th @ 10:00am

Where: 250 Broadway

Who: Assemblymembers Grace Lee, Deborah Glick, Jo Anne Simon, and community leaders

Club Members Give Climate Update

Thank you, Mary Jo Burke for sharing the Climate and Sustainability Update and to Alec Appelbaum for the update on Army Corp of Engineers Resiliency plans. Next week, we will share the Traffic Committee report.

  • There is a drug take-back bin located in CVS, at the corner of Grand and Willet Streets, located near the pharmacy. Use this link for information about which drugs are accepted and which are not included for takeback.
  • The Lower East Side Ecology Center will have an electronic recycling takeback event in Thomkins Square Park on Sunday March 19th, from 10am – 2pm.
  • Precycle is hoping to open their space in Essex Market during the week of March 20th, 2023. Keep your eyes open for their booth when you’re in the Market.
  • Governor Hochul signed into law the “natural organic reduction”, or human composting, legislation. Further work will be required to regulate the activity within the state. Recompose is a company that is based in Washington State, and they currently provide human composting for anyone in the US. They work with local funeral homes to handle the death care which will facilitate transportation of the body to Recompose in Washington. Articles on the legislation from Bloomberg News, The Guardian, and SILive.
  • For information on the orange compost bins in lower Manhattan, including a link to the app, FAQs and bin locations, use this link. Bins are accessible 24/7.

The Army Corps of Engineers has produced the first iteration of a multi-stage study on how to prioritize federal funds for protecting the waterfront communities of New York and New Jersey from storm surge and sea level rise. Its favored solution is fugly and impractical, relying heavily on walls. Enter you, the citizen. If you send comments to NYNJHarbor.TribStudy@usace.army.mil (deadlne extended to March 31st) and include ‘Harbor and Tributaries Focus Area Feasibility Study” in your message, they promise to take you seriously, The civic activists at Rebuild by Design offer this “comment writing template” to make effective comments easy and replicable.

Folks should email Alec Appelbaum with questions or concerns. Thanks again and be well.

March Madness Begins

Thanks to all who joined us at Monday evening’s meeting. It was a very full agenda so this email is chock full of information! Special thanks to Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine and Councilman Chris Marte for speaking to the club and fielding lots of questions. MBP Levine shared his plans to encourage buildings to remove scaffolding in a timely (and safe!) manner, efforts to locate sites for affordable housing, and to make Smart Composting more accessible in Manhattan sooner than the proposed Spring 2024. Mary Jo Burke shared that Lower Manhattan has some locations through a pilot program

And We’re Off: GSD Starts Petitioning Season at Saluggis

We had a great petition kick-off and want to thank all of our members and friends for showing up and getting their petitions to get signed! Please join the process by knocking on doors in your building or going to your favorite corner to get them signed. The first gathering to turn in petitions and get more blanks if needed will be on Sunday, March 19 at Saluggi’s from 7-9pm. We will also be setting up some tables over the next two weeks (see schedule below) and invite you to come join us. It is usually more effective and more fun when there are several of us around.

Petition, Pizza, & an Inauguration

Primary season means it’s time to collect signatures to ensure our endorsed candidates get on the ballot! Join us for our GSD Petitioning Kick Off party on Sunday, March 5th, noon, at Saluggi’s. Speak to endorsed candidates, get a quick training and collect your petitions. Afterward, we are invited to attend Assemblymember Grace Lee’s inauguration ceremony at the Seward Park Educational Campus. RSVP info below!

At our general meeting on February 13, we endorsed Caroline Laskow and Lee Berman for reelection as District Leaders. Prior, we endorsed Council Member Christopher Marte for reelection. All three will join our slate of county committee members, judicial delegates and alternate judicial delegates on our petitions. Pizza on us!


After Multi-Club Forum, Marte Wins

Last night, GSD hosted a forum on Zoom with our sister club, Downtown Independent Democrats, for City Council District 1 endorsement. Each candidate gave a 5 minute opening statement followed by 15 minutes of questions. After the forum, GSD discussed and at 9pm online voting was closed. Council Member Christopher Marte won GSD’s endorsement. GSD previously endorsed CM Marte in 2018 & 2020 for State Committee and for City Council in 2021.

City Council Forum & Endorsement Vote Jan. 23

During our scheduled monthly meeting on January 23, we will hold a forum with the candidates for City Council District 1, including incumbent Christopher Marte. The meeting is scheduled to take place over Zoom due to the spike in Covid. Our vote for the endorsement of our City Council candidate will happen directly after the forum on Jan 23–look out for an invitation to vote via OpaVote


GSD Celebrates the Community in a Parade

GSD marched in the annual event on Three Kings Day for the children of Loisaida, the Lower East Side and the East Village. Each year the festivities begin with a parade through the streets of Loisaida with a marching band. Local residents, organizations, and small businesses join along the route which delivers everyone to St. Mark’s Church On The Bowery. There a live camel greets the parade and a large gathering of children from the neighborhood, including students from Henry Street Settlement, one of the main sponsors. As children pose for photos with the camel, they receive small hand crafted figurines of the nativity. At 4:20 we begin the performance of Angie Hernandez’s Gifts Of The Magi which tells the story of the Three Kings using Puerto Rican music and dance, bringing this story home to the children from the neighborhood. After the show children receive wrapped gifts from cast members.