Protest held outside NYC Councilman's office over East New York housing plan

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Joe Torres reports from East New York, where demonstrators marched to protest the mayor's affordable housing and rezoning plan.

Demonstrators held a vocal protest in Brooklyn Wednesday, over a measure they say could force thousands of New Yorkers from their homes.

The group is upset about Mayor Bill de Blasio's affordable housing plan and specifically the rezoning that is scheduled to take place in a section of East New York.

They were born and raised on those streets, but now they fear gentrification will push them out.

Low-income blacks and Latinos are so frustrated and angry with the mayor's rezoning and affordable housing plan that they came together to march, to chant, to get arrested.

"You need to have an affordable plan. The mayor's plan is not affordable," said one of the protesters, Bertha Lewis.

Not affordable, they say, because the mayor's low-income housing plans are based on a median family income of about $45,000 to $60,000.

"Nobody from East New York is making 45 or 65 thousand dollars. That's means it's affordable for who? It's affordable for middle class and we are not in that position," said East New York resident Maria Nunez.

And so, the about 100 protesters ended their two block march in front of the East New York office of City Councilman Rafael Espinal.

They want him to vote against the mayor's plan when it comes before the council next week. And, mission accomplished.

"I will vote 'no' the way the plan currently stands," said Espinal. "We have to remember, there are a lot of moving pieces to this. It also has to be a jobs plan, a community infrastructure plan, and it has to be a housing plan."

Espinal told us his city council colleagues often follow the lead and wishes of the council member whose district is most affected by the proposal before them, meaning if nothing changes in the mayor's plan he doesn't think it will pass.
Related Topics:
realestatehousingbrooklyn newsbill de blasioEast New York
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