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The Effect of the Spitzer Injunction and Law Suit On Garden Preservation


This was excerpted from URBAN OUTDOORS,  the monthly newsletter of
Neighborhood Open Space 
Coalition and Friends of Gateway. This organization is at the center  of our
NYC  struggle to make community 
gardens a governmentally recognized and accepted land use. Dave Lutz, the
editor of the Neighborhood 
Open Space Coalition and Friends of Gateway, and a skeleton legislative and
office crew do wonders for community 
gardens in NYC and have staved off the bulldozers on many occasions. I have
attached their information at the bottom of 
this e-mail.


In a report entitled Disposition Disputes, the Citizens' Housing and 
Planning Council notes that disposition of city land that is not 
being used for community gardens continues to move forward quickly. 
The report further states that the judicial hold won by Attorney 
General Elliot Spitzer against garden destruction has had the effect 
of excluding the green oases from the expedited land sales. 

In addition, behind the scenes negotiations between agency personnel 
and elected officials are taking into account the text of proposed 
legislation to provide a process for garden preservation, according 
to an agency source. This is happening, even as the proposed bill 
appears to be stalled in Council. While the temporary restraining 
order is in place that prevents gardens from being bulldozed, many 
gardeners believe that passing the Council legislation is an 
important step to provide a permanent solution to the impasse. 
Perhaps it is time for Community Garden supporters to call Councilman 
Fisher and ask his help in moving the City legislation forward. 

In a related move, legislation has been reintroduced in Albany that 
would require state Universal Land Use Review Processes  ("ULURP"s) to be
reconsidered when the land is being 
used for other purposes. Some gardens are on land that has been zoned 
for redevelopment using the city's ULURP process more than twenty 
years ago. At that time, before most gardens were founded, the social 
capital or environmental benefits of the small parks had not been 
considered in preparing the land for expedited disposition. A call to 
state elected officials asking their help in moving the legislation 
is also in order.

Neighborhood Open Space Coalition / Friends of Gateway
356 Seventh Avenue  New York NY 10001  212.352.9330
Fax: 212-352-9338	e-mail: dave.lutz@treebranch.com

URBAN OUTDOORS is the monthly newsletter of Neighborhood Open Space 
Coalition and Friends of Gateway. It reports on citywide public space 
issues and the work of hundreds of local civic groups that take an 
interest in the spaces. To add someone to URBAN OUTDOORS list: visit 
the subscription area of www.treebranch.com. To be removed from the 
list reply with: "unsubscribe urban outdoors". 

Adam Honigman

community_garden maillist  -  community_garden@mallorn.com

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