Participatory Budgeting

Propose, Vote, and Win One Million Dollars

Legislation

Read, vote and comment on my legislation

Opposing the Marine Transfer Station

Marine Transfer Stations must not be placed in residential neighborhoods or existing...

Livable Streets

Safer streets for pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers ...

Join Our Open Policy Platform

Vote, comment, improve upon, or suggest your own solutions for a better city.

About Ben Kallos

Confronted with corruption in Albany, Ben put voting records online so New Yorkers could finally hold politicians accountable. Since then he's run a government reform organization that successfully removed corruption from government and served as Policy Director for former Public Advocate Mark Green.

Ben grew up on the Upper East Side with his mother, who still lives in the neighborhood, and his grandparents, who fled anti-Semitism in Europe. A Bronx Science graduate, Ben knows that our public schools are more than just budget line.  He attended SUNY Albany and SUNY Buffalo Law School, where he paid his own way through.

In the City Council, Ben chairs the Committee on Governmental Operations, where he promotes transparency to ensure every dollar gets spent to improve your quality of life--from affordable housing to senior services to better schools.

Updates

Press Coverage
Our Town
Wednesday, April 22, 2015

From Sutton Place to Second Avenue to Manhattan as a whole, luxury development must not trump community needs. You can lend your voice to the cause by signing the petition at benkallos.com/petition/SuttonPlace or contacting me at bkallosatbenkallos [dot] com. Please spread the word to your neighbors and friends so you can all be heard. To take on this issue, I will need your support.

This is our neighborhood, and it belongs to us. We cannot afford to allow luxury developments to cast our parks and communities into shadow as neighborhoods become increasingly unaffordable. Light and air should be the right of everyone, not the privilege of a few.

Read more

Press Release

Following reports that Comcast is dropping its bid to acquire Time Warner Cable, New York City Council Member Ben Kallos released the following statement:

“New Yorkers welcome competition and the opportunity it brings to finally achieve broadband for all. Now, I hope to see actual competition in New York City between Time Warner and Comcast that will finally move New York City towards high-speed, universal broadband and better service."

Read more

Press Release

New York, NY – Council Member Ben Kallos praised the administration’s OneNYC plan released today, calling it a path to a stronger and more sustainable city.

Council Member Kallos said, “Thank you to Mayor de Blasio for working with elected officials and New Yorkers throughout this city to hear our solutions for OneNYC."

Read more

Press Coverage
Gotham Gazette
Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The letter to de Blasio is signed by Council Members Garodnick, Donovan Richards, Fernando Cabrera, Rafael Espinal, Corey Johnson, Ben Kallos, Andy King, Stephen Levin, Mark Levine, Carlos Menchaca, Rosie Mendez, I. Daneek Miller, Antonio Reynoso, and James Vacca. It states, in part, "Creating a sustainable regional food system that meets [the $1 billion] demand and offers equal access to nutritious food will improve public health, bolster the city's "good food" economy, build resilience in the wake of extreme weather events and reduce the city's "foodprint" as a way to mitigate the impacts of climate change."

Read more

Press Coverage
Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Gotham Gazette reported that New York City Council members Ben Kallos, Laurie Cumbo and Robert Cornegy are trying to pass an ordinance to help parents re-enter the workplace.
 

Read more

Press Release

Council Member Ben Kallos today announced that he has appointed six new members to Community Board 8 Manhattan: Zoe Markowitz, David Menegon, Glen Pandolfino, Loraine Brown, Peter Patch and Dr. Katherine LaGuardia. The new members make up more than 10% of the community board.
 
Council Member Kallos introduced Resolution 115 with Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer in support of allowing 16- and 17-year-olds on Community Boards, and it passed the City Council with widespread support. That led to the passage of a law in Albany sponsored by Assembly Member Nily Rozic and State Senator Andrew Lanza allowing teenagers to join their community boards.

Read more

Press Release

“16-year-olds will be joining Community Boards, thanks to a resolution I introduced with Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer that become law last year,” said Council Member Ben Kallos, who served on Community Board 8 Manhattan. “Community Boards are becoming more representative of their communities because of a system of reforms implemented by Manhattan Borough President Brewer, including group interviews to see how new applicants and re-applicants alike work together when solving problems. We look forward to providing residents with a stronger voice through their Community Boards.”

Read more

Petition

58 Sutton TowerThe proposed ultra-luxury 900-foot condo tower in Sutton Place, if built, would become the second-tallest building on the Upper East Side. This project is concerning because not only will it have implications for the future construction of super-skyscrapers on the Upper East Side, but because it is creating a future where only people who can afford it will have access to air and light.


If you agree, please sign this petition urging the developers of 426-432 East 58th Street to limit their construction to a height that respects the residents of neighboring buildings and the larger Upper East Side community.

You can learn more from the initial coverage by Daniel Fitzsimmons in Our Town or my Opinion Editorial.

 

 

Read more

Press Release

New York, NY— New Yorkers could receive more than a lease from new landlords, if election reform legislation from Council Member Ben Kallos passes. Kallos’ bill would require landlords to distribute voter registration forms for every tenant signing a lease for a vacant apartment—including forms in Spanish, Chinese, Korean or Bengali upon request. Landlords can additionally provide assistance or submit the forms directly to the Board of Elections upon request.
  

Read more

Press Release

Yesterday, the New York City Council released the official FY 2016 preliminary budget response priorities, which calls for a $2 million funding increase for the Office of Special Enforcement's (OSE) budget, for a total of $3.6 million to strengthen enforcement of illegal hotels. The list of priority budget recommendations outlines that the increased funding would be used to hire 25 additional staff, expanding upon its current 11-person staff, to support a more proactive and robust enforcement operation. Additionally, the budget response calls on the Administration to involve other ticketing agencies, and increase transparency in OSE budgeting by providing a clear and complete description of OSE's budget and staffing.

Read more