Queens councilwoman delivers budget address at York College, celebrating significant wins and investments for her district

Councilwoman Adrienne Adams delivers her fiscal year 2022 budget address for southeast Queens at the York College Outdoor Amphitheater. (Photo by Gerardo Romo/New York City Council)

Councilwoman Adrienne Adams was joined by elected officials, community organizations and local leaders at the York College Outdoor Amphitheater on Monday, July 12 to deliver her District 28 budget address, highlighting significant investments for southeast Queens. 

Adams represents Council District 28 which includes the neighborhoods of Jamaica, Richmond Hill, Rochdale Village and South Ozone Park. 

The investments in the fiscal year 2022 budget for southeast Queens includes more than $26 million in capital funding for schools, parks and housing projects. Through Adams’ discretionary funding, District 28 organizations will also receive a total of $710,000 in funding for youth development and education, senior services, legal services, cultural programs, sanitation services and health programs. 

Adams said she is proud to have secured “tremendous wins” for District 28 in the budget, which will spur the city’s recovery while making crucial investments in the programs and services to support marginalized and vulnerable New Yorkers. 

“Our District 28 Budget Address not only outlined these budget victories, but also highlighted the impact that this funding will have on our community organizations and the constituents they serve,” Adams said. “I thank all of the elected officials and community leaders whose collaboration made this event possible, and York College for hosting us on their campus.”

Adams, who co-chairs the City Council’s Black, Latino, and Asian Caucus, advocated for and secured funding for initiatives that particularly impact communities of color. 

The budget includes $4.25 million for Foreclosure Prevention Programs, $4 million for the CUNY Research Institutes initiative, and $4 million for the AAPI Community Support initiative.

Along with leading Black educators and advocates, Adams fought for and won $10 million in the budget for the Education Equity Action Plan, which will create a commission to produce and implement a comprehensive, K-12 Black Studies curriculum for New York City students.

Adams also secured the following capital budget allocations for District 28:

  • Track and Field Renovation at August Martin High School: $11.2 million
  • South Rochdale Playground and Comfort Station Renovation: $5.7 million
  • New Public Address (PA) System and Auditorium Seating Repairs at PS 80: $2.15 million
  • Maurice Fitzgerald Playground Upgrades: $1.45 million
  • Breaking Ground Senior Housing Development: $1 million
  • Project Hope Charities’ New Vehicle: $109,000

Through Adams’ discretionary funding, District 28 will see the following investments:

  • Youth Development and Programming: $325,500
  • Environmental and Infrastructure Improvements: $605,000
  • Senior Services: $153,000
  • Community Development: $100,000
  • Public Safety: $81,000
  • Legal Services: $78,500

The budget includes the following programs and initiatives that Adams championed:

  • $30 million restoration for cultural programs and Cultural Institutions Grant subsidy
  • $25 million to restore 150 Parks maintenance workers, hire 80 PEP officers, restore 15 GreenThumb staff, and hire 50 Urban Park Rangers
  • $25 million for Fresh Food and Community-Based Pantries
  • $12 million baselined for Fair Futures program for foster youth
  • $10.3 million restoration for city libraries
  • $9.7 million for Work, Learn, Grow Youth (WLG) Youth Employment Program
  • $8 million for Adult Literacy
  • $4.59 million for Digital Inclusion and Literacy Initiative

At the District 28 budget address, elected officials spoke about the importance of the funding for the district.

District Leader Dr. Anthony Andrews said Adams continues to represent the district at a high level. 

“Her dedication, diligence, and internal fortitude have served to catapult her into the upper stratosphere of leadership in New York City government, and I am proud to have her as the Council member that represents the majority of my constituents,” Andrews said.

Leaders from the Rochdale Village Board of Directors, New Beginnings Outreach, LiteracyINC, and Guyanese Girls Rock Foundation also discussed the impact that the funding has had on their community organizations. The event kicked off with remarks by Dr. Berenecea Johnson Eanes, president of York College.

Emily Gertz, director of strategic initiatives with LiteracyINC, thanked Adams for her passion and commitment to making early literacy a priority. 

“At the heart of South Jamaica Reads is the belief that literacy is the key to all future learning,” Gertz said. “With this investment, South Jamaica Reads partners will continue our critical work ensuring that children in District 28 have the tools and community resources necessary to achieve, exceed, and sustain reading proficiency.”