Ensuring Economic Fairness for All
New York is still recovering from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. While unemployment figures across the country are falling, New York City continues to struggle. What's worse is that one in every three children in New York are living in poverty. For millions of working and middle class families, just getting by is a daily struggle. I strongly believe that no one who works full-time should be living in poverty or feel as if they are.
Rather than working to solve these critical problems, our current State Senator has ignored working and middle class families while defending millionaires and weakening rent laws. Our government can and should help New Yorkers secure a sturdy footing during tough times. It can't solve every problem, but there are things it can do to help stop the squeeze on our families and businesses.
Giving Families the Opportunity to Prosper
Everyone deserves a decent wage and freedom from the fear of having those wages stolen. Yet, the National Employment Law Project estimated in 2010 that $1 billion is stolen from workers in New York City annually. That's why I support a raise in the minimum wage and will work to give workers the tools and information they need to report wage theft and payroll fraud.
A good wage only goes so far if our neighbors can't find an affordable place to live. Unfortunately, nearly 10,000 rent-stabilized apartments are disappearing from New York City each year. That's why I support strong rent regulations and smart measures to stem the flow of buildings leaving rent-stabilization. I believe that we need to work together with property owners to offer incentives and increase the availability of affordable housing options.
Helping Local Businesses Compete
Small businesses are the backbone of New York's economy and the heart of our communities. Almost 4 million people are employed at nearly 2 million small businesses in the state. Yet, our avenues are filled with empty storefronts because the cost of doing business is too high and too few of us can afford to shop locally. I'll work to make sure our government puts small businesses first by helping entrepreneurs secure low-interest loans and by replacing bureaucratic burdens with common-sense rules. I'll also fight to enact measures that would help New Yorkers put their hard-earned money back into their communities.
Keeping Corporate Promises to Our Community
Corporations and private entities that invest in New York help to strengthen our economic foundation. Recognizing the importance of these partnerships, New Yorkers have always supported public investment in the right private projects. But, as taxpayers across Brooklyn know, developers have too often tried to skirt their obligations to the community. When tax dollars are used for these developments, I'll strive to hold companies accountable to the promises that they make and ensure that they're actually giving back to New York.
Rebuilding and Renewing New York
New York has a rich tradition of leading the way with bold and innovative public works projects like the Verrazano Bridge and the Erie Canal. But yesterday's infrastructure won't meet the demands of tomorrow. We need to rebuild New York and we can do it by re-employing New Yorkers. We can build new subway lines to move our people, new schools to educate our children, and new sustainable energy systems to power our way of life.
Sustainable development will be a huge part of New York's economy for decades to come. That's why I support training programs that give the developers and builders of tomorrow the skills they need to help New York lead the nation once again.