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    Occupy Wall Street: What Just Happened? eBook on Amazon

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Bronx Green Party Call Charter Revision Effort “Power Grab”

Members of Bronx County Green Party are planning to demonstrate at Monday’s Charter Revision hearings being held at Hostos Community College. Calling the proposed changes to the City Charter (which calls for scaling back or eliminating local community Boards altogether) another power grab by Mayor Mike Bloomberg, BCGP Chair Carl Lundgren urged the public, community activists and community board members to speak out now before our voices are reduced to a whisper. Demonstrators will don green gags to represent the silencing of the public’s voice that would result from the changes.

BCGP is recommending that, instead of doing away with community boards, they be saved and strengthened. In addition, they call for community board members to be elected rather than appointed.  John Reynolds, Green Party candidate for State Senate District 33 said:

It’s clear that community boards don’t function as well as they could, but the answer isn’t to eliminate them. Democracy requires that citizens have a forum in which to take their concerns, advocate for their neighborhoods and share in the responsibility of determining what’s best for them. Community boards serve that function and more. They’re our equivalent of the town hall or the village square. They’re the only places we in the city have for large numbers of our citizens to assemble peaceably to redress their government. It’s within our community boards that government and democracy at the most basic level are practiced.

“Community boards serve an important purpose in giving residents a say in the life of their neighborhoods” , said Lundgren, who has been attending community board and committee meetings on a regular basis. “This is also one of the few ways that an alternative party such as ours can participate in the political process in a meaningful way”, he added. “To even consider eliminating our community boards is nothing less than an assault on the democratic process and an affront to our citizens. It’s the continuation of a pattern of dismissiveness this Mayor has shown for the people of New York.”

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