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From: Ruben Safir (
Date: 04/05/2008

Brooklyn Responds To Congestion Pricing Plan

Free Subway Service Proposed

In response to the Congestion Pricing Brooklyn citizens have
rallied around demanding less taxes, more control, and free
subway access. Hundreds of phone calls and emails have been
sent to local assembly members and city council members
demanding a real answer to congestion within the city, and
the city business core of Midtown, the Financial District
and Downtown Brooklyn.

Michael Richardson, a resident of Flatbush for 40 years,
when discussing the City Council's vote to tax the Brooklyn
East River Bridges said, “It's just a money grab and these
politicians have been brought off by the Bloomberg
administration with pet projects, campain contributions and
promised pork. This is just a money grab by the MTA which
keeps stealing money from every New Yorker. Instead of the
MTA taking money from us for these projects, they should be
paying us? Why does the MTA not pay New York City for the
rights to run the train? Maybe we need a different
organization or a business to take over. If they're worried
about congestion, make the subways free. We're paying for
them anyway”

This sentiment has been stirring even more in the boroughs
over the last week as the council voted for the congestion
pricing plan over the strenous objections of Brooklyn and
Manhattan. In fact, the map of the ovtes shows clearly the
breakdown between Manhattan and the Bronx, which voted in
favor of the tax plan, and Brooklyn and Queens which voted
nearly 2-1 against tolling the outerboroughs. Outlined on
the map you can clearly see all the middleclass and working
nieghborhoods voted against the tax hikes. And the left over
districts had large graft thrown their way to buy votes.

Brooklyn is demanding Free Subways. Subways want to be free
as an answer to congression. With almost half the traffic
into Manhattan originating from the city proper, taxing
Brooklyn and Queens for polution problems on Canal Street is
unjust punishment. If the MTA gets the blank check the City
Council proposes, the promised increased services will just
extend the ability of the MTA to control the economy of New
York more effectively, giving them a veto over city growth
from her until the future. The real answer to congression is
free subways, saving nearly every city resident almost $1000
a year, and encouraging outsiders to use the train.

Politcal movement has started for the alternative Free
Subway congession plan. Members of the City Council are
increasing hearing the calls for a Free Subway with Free
Bridges for the residents of New York. “We pay for our
streets. We pay for our Trains. We pay and pay and pay and
make New York the world class town it is. I'll be damned to
have to keep paying more to drive my goods in Manhattan
Markets just so some fat cats at the MTA can fund their Long
Island Railroad extention to Grand Central Station. Let them
cut their bloated budget and let our Babylon brothers take a
free subway from Penn Station to Park Avenue.”

Reply #1
From: nyc taxpayer
Date: 04/10/2008
It's spelled "congestion" but I agree with you. The Plan was
a tax on the middle-class.

Reply #2
From: Larry
Date: 04/14/2008
If they really want to do something about congestion, the
answer is simple. Get rid of all the yellow cabs. They're
among the worst drivers in the world anyway. Doing so would
then force many more people to take mass transit.

Reply #3
From: Ruben Safir (
Date: 04/19/2008
Brooklyn Livin'

Kendall Stewart Watch

Kendall Stewart, the City Council Member from the Flatbush
area of Brooklyn around Brooklyn College, and who voted to
sell out Brooklyn by voting “Yes” for the congestion pricing
tax, seems to be the first council member who can be crossed
off the list of active traitors to the borough. Kendall has
a swirl of corruption running around him now, which should
be no surprise as easy as it was for him to be brought off
by the Bloomburg administration for his vote on tolling the
East River bridges.

The Associated Press and the Tabloids are reporting that two
of Kendall's staff members got caught with their hands in
the cookie jar in the growing City Council slush fund
investigation. A copy f the report can be seen here at
As it outlines, Kendall's staffers $145,000 PLUS from a
“charity” called the Donna Reid Memorial Education Fund
which in of itself seems to be nothing more than a shell
account for the City Council to deposit money into. Federal
authorities can be quotes as saying, "Without transparency
and accountability in the budget process, discretionary
items are ripe for abuse," Garcia said. "Taxpayer money
allocated to fake nonprofit entities, organizations that do
not even exist, is even more difficult to trace and more
easily diverted for personal gain." Gee, think what we can
do with 500,000,000 a year going into the MTA's black hole
with the help and over site of the city council, guaranteed
by the transportation tax voted for by Kendall.

Kendall was quoted as saying, "While I believe in the
presumption of innocent until proven guilty I must say that
I'm deeply disappointed over the allegations leveled at Mr.
Reid and the embarrassment that his actions — right or wrong
— have caused me, my hardworking staff and the people of my
district,". This guy just doesn't get it. He treats his
public office as an object to trade for his own profit
purposes. Is that a bit harsh? Well it isn't.

Kendall's overt sale of his vote for Congestion Pricing and
this money grab by his staff isn't the first corrupt grab to
use his office for private profit and corruption at the cost
of his constituencies interests. It was reported on January
17th, 2008 that Kendall was subpoenaed about graft in the
non-profits by his Chief of Staff Asquith Reid. Yes, the
same Reid who established the City Council funded slush

“[City Councilman Kendall Stewart, of the 45th district]
said Wednesday he was subpoenaed in a federal probe of
charities linked to one of his top aides. Stewart said he
received a subpoena last week from the Brooklyn U.S.
attorney's office but is not a target of the probe.
Investigators appear to be looking into nonprofits set up by
Stewart's chief of staff, Asquith Reid, a well-known figure
in Brooklyn's Caribbean-American political circles. "They're
trying to find out how monies are being utilized by the CBOs
[community-based organizations]," Stewart said.”

Then there was the shooting at Cafe Omar, which is owned by
Kendall and in which Kendall refused cooperation with the
police. The killing earlier this March is reported here
on the local blogs and also archived by Brooklyn-Living at
Kendall's tapes of the night had to be confiscated and his
the statements after the shooting outright remarkable.

"There were no problems at our place," he said. "We're about
a block away from where this happened." Stewart's son Omar,
25, said he was at the club early Saturday and that patrons
were well-behaved. "Everybody that came to our establishment
had a good time and left in an orderly manner," he said. "We
believe that this incident is not a reflection of our

Say that again? This is Brooklynites your addressing. We're
not that stupid.

According to the New York Times, Stewart, the tax Brooklyn
for living, councilman wants to go into the state Senate,
Yeah – we trust this guy with the people's business. Time to
sweep him out.

Run Up to MTA and Transit Extortion Proposals
The Call for Free Subways
Congestion Pricing Plan and it's impact on Brooklyn
Photos of Williamsburg 2006
Photos of Bastille Day in Cobble Hill 2007
Photos of Coney Island Summer of 2007
Never Published Downtown Walking Tour

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