The overarching goal that Council Member Williams has for his efforts in the 45th District is for all young people to have a safe place to learn and grow. To achieve that, he has taken an assertive approach to addressing constituent issues and improving the climate for families, seniors and small businesses alike to flourish.
Jumaane has performed community outreach across the district on a wide variety of issues, including holding yearly health and resource fairs, community screenings for breast cancer and brain tumors and free workshops and clinics on legal issues. With the help of his Community Volunteer Corps and his youth group, Students Taking Action Today (S.T.A.T.), he has organized community clean-up days to engage young people in beautifying their neighborhood, donation drives to provide books, school supplies and food to the less fortunate as well as holiday concerts and parties for local senior citizens. Going forward, Jumaane also looks forward to continue advancing entertainment in the community, hosting film screenings and promoting local artists and musicians.
One of Jumaane’s primary missions has been to establish a full-service community center in the 45th District. He is proud to have secured funding from City Hall for a feasibility study that represents the first step towards its construction. Jumaane has also allocated millions of dollars in his capital budget towards improvements at local parks such as Glenwood Playground and Paerdegat Park, and he looks to continue exploring ways to maximize the use of current and future open space in the community, such as the creation of community gardens and community murals.
Improving the local environment has always been a focus for Jumaane, including his advocacy for home weatherization and solarizing local buildings. One of his legislative priorities is the passage of Intro 966, his effort to address flooding concerns by requiring the Department of Environmental Protection to regularly report inspection, cleanup and maintenance of catch basins. He also seeks to address the health problems that local air quality has created and to improve access to healthy food options, in part through the creation of a farmer’s market pilot program in the Flatbush Junction.
Jumaane has been a friend to small businesses, advocating for the reduction of fines by the Department of Consumer Affairs and co-chairing a Council hearing on the restaurant grading system, which called into question the over-penalization of well-intentioned entrepreneurs by the Department of Health. At the same time, he has been staunchly opposed to enterprises attempting to prey on New Yorkers, as he identified with the emergence of internet sweepstakes cafés engaged in illegal activity. In May 2013, he led the passage of Local Law 45, which will require the mandatory revocation of an amusement arcade or gaming cafe license for engaging in unlawful gambling. Jumaane has organized business corridor forums to assist local small businesses, has begun efforts to help establish a business improvement district on Utica Avenue as well as a merchants’ association on Nostrand Avenue and is exploring ways to help brand the “Little Caribbean”, all in an effort to help spur economic activity.
Transportation safety is a growing concern in the community which Jumaane is helping to address. After labeling part of his district the “East Flatbush Motorist Danger Zone”, the Department of Transportation partnered with him to address a problem intersection at Kings Highway and Foster Avenue in May 2013. He will continue to monitor issues of speeding and traffic congestion that pose challenges to pedestrians, cyclists and drivers alike, proposing solutions like neighborhood slow zones in Midwood and speed cameras near schools. Jumaane looks forward to the improvements that the new Streetscape project will bring to the Flatbush Junction and will consider how bus rapid transit and other public transportation improvements could enhance the quality of life of his constituency.