Notes on the 12/15 Boardwalk Community Garden Hearing

by Aziz Dehkan on December 18, 2014

On Monday December 15th the Boardwalk Community Garden case had its day in court.

Given the limited nature of the hearing, we were only able to convey to Judge Sweeney the major parts of the case, and in quite broad strokes.  There are a lot of issues that we didn’t cover in Court that we most certainly brought up in our various papers-including, but not limited to, case law on parkland alienation, both temporary and permanent; the detailed factual history of the Boardwalk Garden; the history of the City’s relationship with both this garden and others throughout the five boroughs; detailed problems with their floodplain analysis; issues with their discussions of stormwater and terrestrial resources; their failures to properly survey the site; their illegal bulldozing of the garden; and others issues.  But in general, the purpose of the hearing was to convince the Judge that there were serious merits to our case.

I think we clearly accomplished this objective.

Judge Sweeney asked both sides to brief the issue of a jury trial in this case.  What this means is that each side will explain what the law says about the use of jury trials to determine facts in these types of proceedings, and then argue why such a trial is or isn’t appropriate in this case.  We’ll then submit this to him next Monday and wait for his decision-on both the issue of a trial and/or on the bigger issues in the case.

There is a chance that, given his willingness to bring the parkland issue before a jury, he might break up the case along its two issues and rule separately on each.  Or he might wait to rule on either issue until after he or a jury decides on the parkland issue.

Our arguments are fair, the law is on our side, and we’re more than happy presenting this evidence to anyone-judge, jury, or otherwise.  The energy in the room yesterday was great, and, upon hearing both sides’ arguments, I’m very pleased with where things stand.  As we move forward, we need to make sure that we keep discussing the case and keeping in within the publics’ consciousness.  A trial will no doubt help this, but even if that doesn’t happen, we still need to keep pressuring our leaders and representatives to support both the West Coney Island community and gardens, gardeners, and open space citywide.

Again, thanks to everyone for their support.

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THANK YOU! Party this Thursday

by NYCCGC on December 17, 2014

THANK YOU

We packed the court!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Thank you so much to everyone who came out in support of Boardwalk Community Garden yesterday. This case could impact all community gardens on public land in New York City, and your solidarity rang loud and clear. We will provide an update on the case soon (or come to the general meeting/party on Thursday!

Read all of our past posts on the case here.

Our work on this case could not happen without your support. As this case continues, we hope you will consider a donationto NYCCGC so that we can keep paying the incredibly talented and generous lawyers at the NY Environmental Law and Justice Project, who have donated many, many, many hours of pro bono work on this case. THANK YOU!

PARTY!!

Our December general meeting will be a party! Come one come all for a celebration of another year of community gardening in NYC. We’ll hear updates on current cases and plan for next year. Bring fellow garden members and something yummy to share.

December 18, 6:30pm-8:30pm
Neighborhood Preservation Center
232 E. 11th St, Manhattan

January & February: Bylaws & Elections

Thank you to everyone who came to our board meeting on Thursday, 12/4, to discuss bylaws. Notes from that meeting are forthcoming, but one outcome was the suggestion to review other community organizing, base-building organizations’ bylaws at our meetings in January. We plan to invite representatives of such organizations to share with us how they govern themselves. We’d like you to join us.

Mark your calendars:
Neighborhood Preservation Center
232 E. 11th St.

Thursday, January 8, 6:30pm-8:30pm, NYCCGC Board meeting
Thursday, January 15, 6:30pm-8:30pm, NYCCGC general meeting
Thursday, February 19, 6:30pm-8:30pm, NYCCGC general meeting

Elections

Elections will be held the first quarter of 2015. What this means for you: If you’d like to join our board but haven’t made it to any meetings or events this year, OR if you would like to nominate someone for the board, there is still time! Information about eligibility is on ourwebsite. Executive Director Aziz Dehkan will be managing board elections, so if you’re interest in running, please contact him at aziz@nyccgc.org! PLEASE JOIN US!

Thanks again – see you on Thursday!

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PACK THE COURT! Stand with Boardwalk Community Garden

12.08.2014

After the previous judge recused himself, the Boardwalk Community Garden has a new judge and a new court date! Please help us PACK THE COURT and show Judge Peter Paul Sweeney how important this case is to the future of community gardens in NYC. December 15, 2014 Brooklyn State Supreme Court 360 Adams Street (near […]

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Boardwalk Community Garden Lawsuit Update

11.24.2014

By NYCCGC President Ray Figueroa  MARK YOUR CALENDARS & SPREAD THE WORD – COME OUT TO THE RALLY & PRESS CONFERENCE at 10:30 AM and to PACK THE COURTROOM at 12:15 PM on MONDAY, the 15TH of DECEMBER at BROOKLYN (KINGS COUNTY) STATE SUPREME COURT, 360 ADAMS STREET (in the same plaza as Borough Hall). WHY? Read on. After […]

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Friends of Brook Park Youth Farm Featured in Alternatives to Incarceration Report

11.23.2014

Ray’s Program at the Friends of Brook Park Youth Farm highlighted in newly released Alternatives To Incarceration (ATI) Report, and Ray was a featured ATI Panel Presenter! NYCCGC president, Ray Figueroa, was a featured panelist on a panel: “MORE COMMUNITY RE-INVESTMENT, LESS YOUTH INCARCERATION” along with the Commissioner of the New York City Dept. of Probation, the Associate Commissioner for […]

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Putting community gardens on the map

11.21.2014

JOIN US! Open Street Map is hosting several events for Geography Awareness Week, one of which we’ve helped organize: Map Community Gardens on Open Street Map. WHEN: Saturday, 11/22, 12pm-3pm WHERE: The Bark Room, Ground Floor, Parsons School of Design, 2 west 13th street, New York, NY (map) Open Street Map is “a map of the world, […]

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For Immediate Release: Response to NY Post article “Root of all evil: Vegetables in NYC gardens are ‘toxic’”

11.21.2014

For Immediate Release: NYCCGC response to the New York Post November 16th 2014 article “Root of all evil: Vegetables in NYC gardens are ‘toxic’” by Gary Buiso  Contact: Aziz Dehkan, Executive Director, New York City Community Garden Coalition (NYCCGC) — 973-222-5413   aziz@nyccgc.org In response to yet another Post article, it continues to be both irresponsible to our communities and inaccurate to […]

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Open Letter from East New York Farms

11.18.2014

By David Vigil, reposted with permission It was with disappointment, but with little surprise, that we read the article “The Root of All Evil” in this Sunday’s New York Post.  This article is the third that Gary Buiso has written concerning lead contamination in NYC garden soils–his fear-mongering, faulty reasoning and sham investigative reporting are […]

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November General Meeting

11.17.2014

Come join us at our November general meeting! All are welcome. We’ll get updates from threatened gardens, plan for December’s Board elections, and start planning for next year. WHEN: Thursday, November 20, 6:30pm-8:30pm WHERE: Neighborhood Preservation Center, 232 E. 11th St., Manhattan

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NYCCGC Goes to Moscow

11.09.2014

NYC Community Gardens featured at the 1st Moscow International Forum, 16 October 2014 By Magali Regis, NYCCGC Board Member I was invited to participate in the 1st Moscow International Forum. The theme this year was: Culture – Look into the Future. The event was organized by the Department of Culture of Moscow and took place […]

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