The city has settled a lawsuit between Mayor Bill de Blasio and Queens Councilman Rory Lancman over membership of an organization dedicated to improving Flushing Meadows Corona Park.
Lancman, who represents an area including the southern section of the park, announced on Aug. 18 that the settlement will result in the the restructuring of the Flushing Meadows Corona Park Alliance, a group whose mission is to “preserve, maintain, and improve Flushing Meadows Corona Park for the benefit and use of the surrounding communities and all New Yorkers,” as noted on its website.
The court decision will now grant all legislators whose districts overlap or touch the park representation on the Alliance’s board. This includes Lancman and fellow City Council members Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, Karen Koslowitz, Peter Koo and Paul Vallone.
The Alliance’s board of directors was previously comprised of 15 government, community and business leaders. Lancman’s lawsuit alleged that both the entity’s membership and funding scheme violated both the City Charter and Administrative Code.
De Blasio attempted to dismiss the lawsuit earlier this year. However, the court denied the mayor’s motion on the grounds that Lancman’s claims were barred by the statute of limitations.
“I’m very pleased that the resolution of this lawsuit will mean fair representation for myself and all the Council members whose districts overlap and abut Flushing Meadows Corona Park,” Lancman said. “Our constituents all use and care deeply about the park, and I look forward to working together to bring resources to Flushing Meadows to make it the truly great park it was meant to be. I want to thank Mayor de Blasio and Council member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland for their sincere efforts to bring about this resolution.”
“The city is pleased this matter was resolved,” said city spokesperson Nicholas Paolucci. “We were able to expand the FMCPA Board to allow for broader community representation.”