2010-05-07 / Letters

Money Not Available

Dear Editor,

This letter was sent to local activist Hank Iroi in response to his letter that also appears on these pages. Dear Hank:

Audrey asked that I respond to your letter regarding the Rockaway Ferry service. We look forward to working with New York City in continuing the ferry service to Rockaway. Water transportation should be a vehicle that is natural to our community.

However, at the recent ferry meeting, Deputy Mayor Wolfson indicated that 5307 money was available for the daily ferry service and that we needed to access this money to help continue funding the ferry. Immediately leaving the meeting I spoke to the Assemblywoman and she reached out to Deputy Mayor Wolfson to work together to address this issue. Unfortunately, the Deputy Mayor seems to have misspoken at the meeting. 5307 funding is an avenue that is available for NYC to utilize however, this money is similar to the $15 million dollars that NYC already has, and has not used, from Congressman Weiner.

The money is only available for capital and not operational expenses. Subsequent to the meeting the deputy mayor communicated this in a letter to the assemblywoman. I have attached a copy of this letter where he states regarding 5307 funding “we do not see it as a funding solution, given the longstanding allocation process and the restriction on its use for operating funds.”

Assemblywoman Pheffer has asked the Deputy Mayor to evaluate the cost of the subsidy if NYC was to use the $15 million, which New York City already has, to purchase boats and if the City then ran the service themselves. Possibly the subsidy would be drastically less and the service would be feasible. We are awaiting the response from the Deputy Mayor.

Please be assured I will reach out to you as soon as I hear back or have any additional information.

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