Friday, August 02, 2013

Margaret Chin, the developer's candidate

Margaret Chin is taking money from the Real Estate Board of New York's Political Action Committee. You'd want to ask, why would the founder of Asian Americans for Equality welcome large campaign support from real estate?

Affordable housing is built in NYC through incentives given to developers. So if you want to get any affordable housing here, you've got to welcome a market-rate developer, otherwise you get nothing.

Does that explain why Margaret voted for the NYU development (albeit curtailed)? Maybe. Does it explain why she voted for the Chinatown BID against widespread opposition within Chinatown? Maybe. Why she voted to help First American International Bank, the promoter of the BID, demolish and redevelop 135 Bowery?

The BID benefits larger property owners, larger businesses and developers and banks. But the small property owners and the small businesses are the anchor of Chinatown. At what point does a commitment to building new affordable housing sacrifice community entirely?

The city has shoved a wedge between affordable housing and community, turning affordable housing into a tool of gentrification and displacement. Look at Williamsburg. Chinatown next? The BID is a step towards the new Downtown Hotel District (DoHo?) formerly known as Chinatown.

From Crain's about REBNY's funding of Chin's campaign

From City Council Watch, Seth Barron (writer for City & State) "Margaret Chin Progressively Awful"

Sean Sweeney in The Villager "The billionaires back Margaret Chin for City Council"

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