Post tagged with


Interview | State Sen. Daniel Squadron

Senator Daniel SquadronCourtesy of Daniel L. Squadron State Senator Daniel L. Squadron, with constituents last fall, said that he favors expanding the East Village’s “bike network so that it’s a viable way for folks to get around to commute and recreate.”

A new year brings a new legislative agenda for State Senator Daniel L. Squadron, who – entering his second term – says that he wants to bring issues that are important to neighborhood residents to the forefront in Albany. In an interview with The Local, Senator Squadron, whose 25th District includes the East Village, the Lower East Side and parts of Brooklyn, discussed the importance of bike lanes, renewing housing laws, cracking down on careless drivers and noisy bars, and expanding East Village parks.


Bike lanes are a hot topic right now. But there are battles still brewing. What will you do this year to help smooth out the sometimes rocky relationship between bikers, businesses, the community and the Department of Transportation?


There’s an overall increase in the bike lanes use, and I think that is great. We are continuing to develop the bike network so that it’s a viable way for folks to get around to commute and recreate.

I like the idea of a bike share program. As we have more bicyclists and more access, which is a great thing, we need to increase compliance with laws. And we need to expand our bike networks for more people out there.

My frustration at bike lanes comes from two places: failure, in some cases, to be fully collaborative with communities and think through the consequences as we expand the network, and secondly, from those few who don’t follow the rules. Too often, the DOT implements lanes without preparing businesses to understand what the rules are. They’ve done it in ways that are not responsive to the community. DOT has gotten better at this; my job is to keep the pressure on. We need clarity about rules for bicyclists and members of the community, and work with community boards, businesses and residents before implementing them. We need opportunities for folks in bicycling communities and other groups to weigh in.
Read more…

Interview | Daniel L. Squadron

Senator Daniel SquadronDaniel L. Squadron.

State Senator Daniel L. Squadron, re-elected Tuesday to represent the 25th District, which includes the East Village, said that he has plans for an ambitious agenda in his next term that will continue to emphasize neighborhood issues such as reducing noise and increasing pedestrian safety.

Senator Squadron, who spoke to The Local the day after the midterm elections, said he will continue to help craft legislation focusing on those issues and others, including better living standards in public and affordable housing.

Like any other political watcher, Senator Squadron has followed the legislative seachange in Congress with deep interest and he remains hopeful that his fellow Democrats will stay focused on President Obama’s agenda.

He talked with The Local about his plans in Albany, his hopes for the new Congress and his appreciation of East Village-made dumplings.


Going into your new term, what are your priorities right now for the East Village?


I have a lot of the same priorities I had in the previous term. We need a state government that does a better job responding to people’s needs so that the people have more faith in their community. We have to keep fighting for the community. We need effective laws on nightlife and pedestrian safety, which is very important to the East Village.
Read more…

East Village Election Issues

In an Election Night appearance on NYU News, Suzanne Rozdeba, who covered the key local political races, discusses how neighborhood issues such as noise complaints, liquor licenses, bike lanes and pedestrian safety played a role in Tuesday’s balloting.

Results of Local Races

Voters cast ballots for candidates in seven local races — three for U.S. representative, two for State Senate and two for State Assembly — and by overwhelming margins returned every incumbent to office.

Read more…

An Analysis Of East Village Elections

With just hours until the polls close in today’s general election, NYU Journalism’s Molly O’Toole and Clint Rainey offer an analysis of tonight’s likely winners and losers in races involving the East Village.

New Penalties for Careless Drivers

Daniel SquadronElisa LagosState Senator Daniel L. Squadron discusses Hayley and Diego’s Law, a measure that makes it easier for prosecutors to seek penalties against careless drivers. The law goes into effect today.

Traffic accidents are nothing new in a neighborhood like the East Village where pedestrians, drivers, and bicyclists rush along the road. But a new state law that goes into effect today aims to prevent and punish careless driving.

The law, called “Hayley and Diego’s Law,” will impose a $750 fine, a 15-day jail term, and suspension or revocation of a driver’s license for reckless driving that injures pedestrians and bicyclists for a first offense. A second offense could have the same consequences and land a driver in jail for a year.

“Every driver in New York State should know driving carelessly is not just something to fix next time,” said State Senator Daniel L. Squadron, who represents the East Village, the Lower East Side and parts of Brooklyn. “Driving carelessly is not a minor problem that you should laugh about. Driving carelessly puts people at risk. Driving carelessly can have devastating consequences.”

Senator Squadron sponsored the legislation in the State Senate following the deaths of Hayley Ng, 4, and Diego Martinez, 3, in Chinatown last year. The two children were struck and killed by a delivery van that had been left in reverse as the driver stepped out.

“To all the careless drivers out there across New York, I know you’re busy, I know the phone is ringing, the Blackberry is buzzing, the coffee is spilling but focus on the road – do it for the safety of all the other users of the road,” the senator said at a news conference on the corner of Essex and Delancey Streets. That intersection is one of the 10 most dangerous for pedestrians in the city, according to an analysis of crash data by Transportation Alternatives.

Prior to “Hayley and Diego’s Law,” prosecutors could only charge careless drivers with minor traffic violations or a more serious charge of criminal negligence. There was no middle ground. In the crash that killed Hayley and Diego, that meant the driver of the delivery van was not charged after the children’s deaths. The new law will make it possible for prosecutors to charge drivers in similar circumstances.

“Careless driving already exists in the law,” Senator Squadron said. “The problem is we don’t have any penalty structure to distinguish it from non-careless driving and this law will fix that as well. There is standard due care that must be exercised.”

Law May Help Close Troublesome Bars

Senator Daniel L. SquadronState Senator Daniel L. Squadron, with constituents this summer, co-sponsored a recently enacted law that can help close troublesome nightspots.

There’s a new weapon to close down noisy and violent bars. At Tuesday’s Community Council meeting, Daniel L. Squadron, a Democratic state senator for the 25th District, which includes the East Village, discussed a new law signed by Gov. David A. Paterson just last month, designed to fight the very problems making life miserable for many locals. But for it to work, neighbors have to voice their complaints.

In an interview Wednesday, Senator Squadron told The Local East Village that with the Squadron/Schimminger Bill, signed into law on Aug. 15, the State Liquor Authority can revoke a liquor license from an establishment when police have referred six or more noise or disorder incidents to the authority within 60 days. Before the new law was enacted, liquor licenses could be revoked for repeated noise violations, but a police complaint was not considered evidence of a disturbance unless the liquor authority could show that the license holder was responsible.
Read more…