WHO IS RICHARD BASHNER?

Richard Bashner is a Brooklyn Community Board member and commercial attorney running as a Democrat for mayor of New York City. Widely acknowledged for his contributions to Brooklyn Community Board 6, Richard is a proven advocate and leader for all New Yorkers.

Richard has worked for the past 18 years to protect and cultivate our neighborhoods, for four years as Chair of Brooklyn Community Board 6, for 15 years on its Executive Committee, and as its Chair of Economic and Community Development.

A true New Yorker, Richard is committed to the well-being of a city that has been home to his family for generations.

“Outstanding service and leadership
as Chairperson of Brooklyn Community Board 6.”

New York City Council

“Bashner successfully led the Community Board
through a period of extensive growth…”

New York City Council

“A dynamic and civic-minded leader…
unwavering commitment to fairness…”

New York City Council

“Persistent encouragement
of robust public debate.”

New York City Council

“…his devotion to the principles of
inclusivity and grass-roots democracy…”

New York City Council

“…increased opportunities
for public involvement…”

New York City Council

“…headed the creation and adoption of a Responsible Development policy…”

New York City Council

WHERE I STAND

Effective, Open, Responsive Government

As Mayor, Richard will champion a more inclusive and accountable city administration.

  • Hire pragmatic, effective world-class managers, who openly work through solutions to our biggest challenges transparently and inclusively.
  • Use cost/benefit analysis to spend our $85 billion budget more wisely.  We should have seen more benefit from the Mayor’s 20% budget increase from $70 billion.
  • Shine a light on all government spending and take action to reduce waste.
  • Reduce funds to not-for-profits that use NYC funding for excessive executive pay.
  • Begin citywide local participatory budgeting, with public input for spending.
  • Stream and archive City Council, City Planning, and community board meetings.
  • Fight for campaign finance reform to lower contributions and matching thresholds.
  • Build consensus for approval for NYC to use design/build contracting, value engineering, and updated technology to reduce construction costs.
  • Fight for fair NYS funding for unfunded mandates for schools and homelessness.
  • Fight for home rule, so that NYC can determine its own future better.
  • Support the NYS constitutional convention on the ballot this year to achieve these and other goals, by jumping over Albany’s roadblocks to change.

Clean, Scandal-Free Government

As Mayor, Richard will root out corruption.

  • Follow the money. End pay-to-play, slush funds, and corruption. Don’t solicit or accept contributions from people doing business with NYC or seeking approvals.
  • Avoid even the appearance of impropriety in government by ending illegal and questionable fundraising.  Strengthen and comply with conflict of interest laws.
  • Avoid conduct that results in a need to pay $15,000,000 in taxpayer money for legal fees to fight multiple corruption investigations.
  • Do not release deed restrictions to allow luxury housing to replace a nursing home, and thereby allow the owner of Rivington House to flip it for a $72,000,000 profit.
  • Govern in the public interest rather than for personal political gain.

Land-Use, Preservation And Zoning

As Mayor, Richard will support neighborhood preservation, parks, and contextual buildings; and challenge out-of-scale development.

  • Base decisions about land-use, preservation and zoning upon what is best for the neighborhood, not upon political contributions and lobbying.
  • Appoint qualified preservationists, zoning experts, and planners, free of corrupting lobbyist influences, to the Landmarks commission, the Board of Standards and Appeals, and the Department of City Planning.
  • Protect residents, landmarks, historic districts, parks, libraries, hospitals, views, light, and air, especially against overdevelopment and the privatization of public assets.
  • Expand environmental assessment review and scoping requirements, especially for taller buildings; include bulkheads, voids, and secondary displacement effects.
  • Sanction developers, architects, and lawyers, who break zoning or construction rules.
  • Change zoning rules to ensure that buildings are built contextually, and to a human scale, with active street uses that contribute to a lively city.
  • Promote responsible development by requiring early electronic distribution of full documentation, and facilitating neighborhood input and debate.

Affordable Housing, Senior Housing, and Housing for People With Disabilities

As Mayor, Richard will champion affordable housing so New Yorkers from all walks have homes.

  • Preserve existing housing by adding building inspectors, requiring landlords to promptly correct building code violations, and summarizing open violations and fines on real estate tax bills, to put owners and lenders on notice and improve compliance.
  • Add a self-inspection system by tenants, requiring apartment building managers to accept photos of violations over the web and coordinate faster repairs with tenants.
  • Coordinate agency information to improve efficiency, make online public access more user-friendly, and create one-stop shopping for tenants and landlords.
  • Expand funding to build affordable housing, including triple-tax exempt bonds; wasted rent now paid to private landlords for homeless housing; and investments from NYC pension funds to build housing for municipal employees and others.
  • Build new affordable housing on New York City Housing Authority properties, with priority for existing NYCHA residents — especially supportive senior housing with enhanced services and facilities, to which residents can transition over time, in naturally occurring retirement communities, freeing up larger apartments for families.
  • Create new supportive mixed-use communal facilities to economically house, feed, and provide better services to seniors, people with disabilities, and homeless families displaced from the surrounding neighborhood or its schools.
  • Spread affordable housing subsidies over more renters, instead of highly subsidizing luxury apartments for a few lottery winners.

Homelessness and Our Safety Net

As Mayor, Richard will lead a compassionate city that supports and assists those in need.

  • Reverse the Mayor’s unbounded support of real estate development, which has displaced families and fueled the homeless crisis – over 60,000 homeless, including 33,000 children last year who lacked the stable housing required to stay on track.
  • Declare a state of emergency to reduce the unsheltered homeless population, which ballooned by 40% over the past year (from 2,794 to 3,892).
  • Create safe homeless housing units offered on a “housing first” basis, with supportive services, to get individuals off the streets and get them help.
  • Develop programs for “Rainy Day Fund” savings, subsidies, transition and other assistance to help vulnerable people avoid homelessness.
  • Expand access to health care, including mental health diagnosis and treatment, and encourage earlier intervention by professionals and caretakers.
  • Monitor abused children and their families remotely by regular video conference check-ins, and follow up to ensure a healthy environment.
  • Expand worker protections, safety standards, and training programs.
  • Promote economic growth and support small businesses to create more jobs.

Strengthening Our Schools, and Equal Rights

As Mayor, Richard will work to provide a first-rate public school education for every child, with a diploma and opportunities.

  • Expand the STEM K-12 curriculum, including computer coding and digital literacy.
  • Require on-grade level reading and math to graduate elementary school, with tutoring by students and volunteers to enable mastery.
  • Ensure access to laptops or tablets, and the training to use them productively.
  • Expand after-school programs, and provide free online resources, for music, arts, athletics, life skills, financial literacy, and civic engagement.
  • Create robust free online tutorials from our best teachers for our basic school curriculum and for Regents, SHSAT, and other standardized tests, so that all students have access.
  • Increase pay for teachers who transfer to new model schools or to help rescue struggling schools, to begin to end the “separate and unequal” schooling forbidden by Brown v. Board of Education over 60 years ago.
  • Shift the admissions process to a blind ranking system, so that students’ preferences are not known to the schools and they have better options.
  • Provide strong oversight for charter schools, and equitable treatment for public schools when the law requires co-location with charter schools.

Mass Transit, Transportation, and Infrastructure

As Mayor, Richard will be a champion of creative solutions that meet our 21st century transportation needs.

  • Fight for mayoral priorities on transit funding, with detailed plans to build consensus.
  • Work cooperatively with the Governor on long-term capital and expense plans to reduce delays, upgrade signals, and increase capacity.
  • Subsidize subways and buses more, especially for workers and job-seekers.
  • Extend mass transit in each borough to reach all communities, and integrate transit to allow travel throughout New York City on a single-fare.
  • Increase bus service right away, rather than merely propose future expensive unfunded projects that will be killed by local opposition anyway (like the BQX) .
  • Improve roads, street cleaning, snow removal, signs, signals, and road markings.
  • Work with neighborhoods to fix hazards and bottlenecks, and smooth congestion.
  • Add traffic calming, protected intersections, and other safety measures.
  • Improve road sharing to separate cars, bicycles, pedestrians, and buses.

Civil Rights, Public Safety, and Criminal Justice Reform

As Mayor, Richard will close Rikers Island and build better connections between the NYPD and the community.

  • Quickly close Rikers Island prison, without building new jails, by instead imprisoning only the 20% of prisoners actually convicted of a crime.
  • End bail, except for prisoners who pose a danger or a flight risk; expand electronic monitoring; and finally allow bail to be paid easily by credit or debit cards.
  • Work with police officers on better de-escalation protocols to avoid deadly force.
  • Expand training and screening to promote better police interactions with New Yorkers, and end discriminatory targeting of innocent people.
  • Fight against discrimination, and for LGBTQ rights, reproductive rights, and women’s health care.
  • Repeal the cabaret law, so New Yorkers don’t have to break the law to dance.
  • Treat drug use as a medical problem, not a criminal problem. Advocate to legalize, regulate and tax cannabis to finance education and housing.
  • Fight for amnesty for convictions under laws enforced in a discriminatory manner.

A NEW YORK STORY

Like many New Yorkers, Richard has humble roots. His family came to New York City as immigrants. His grandparents worked in retail in Brooklyn and the Bronx.

Richard’s father was a Brooklyn boy, who played on his New Utrecht High School basketball team, and worked in a knitting mill. He served in the Army and later required a wheelchair, as his multiple sclerosis progressed.

Richard’s mother is a Bronx girl, who was named Miss Southern Boulevard in a 1950’s contest. She worked as a secretary until retirement, and moved to an independent living facility in Forest Hills to recover after cancer surgery.

Richard’s parents met in the Catskills, married, rented an apartment in the Bronx, and opened a small retail shoe store on Lydig Avenue near the train on White Plains Road.

Growing up in the Bronx, Richard received a great early start from enrichment programs at PS 105 and JHS 127, the bookmobile and the library. He helped as a crossing guard. He played classic New York street games like stickball, handball, boxes, and ringolevio.

Richard delivered newspapers in high school, and worked his way through college, as a psychology research assistant, bartender, and director of the Syosset High School musical theater program for three summers.

He graduated from Harvard College, magna cum laude, with a B.A. in Psychology and Social Relations (Harvard Scholar). His honors thesis research to improve perceptions and treatment of children with disabilities was published in a journal and widely cited.

Richard earned his J.D. from the New York University School of Law, and was awarded an American Jurisprudence Prize for Constitutional Law.

After law school, he moved from Manhattan to Brooklyn, where he served as a law clerk to federal Judge Edward R. Korman (Eastern District of New York).

He worked as an associate for large Manhattan law firms, and has been a partner at the Becker, Glynn firm in Manhattan since 1998.

Richard lives in Park Slope with his wife, Audrey, a gynecologist, their two teenagers and a dog. They have a 17-year-old car and Citibike memberships. They are longtime members of their local Jewish congregation. Their son is entering college, and their daughter attends public school in Manhattan.

In 1999, Richard joined Brooklyn Community Board 6 to serve the city he loves, and to fight for the future of the people of Park Slope, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Red Hook, Columbia Street, and Gowanus.

In 2001, Mayor de Blasio was elected to the City Council, and he recommended Richard for reappointment each of the 4 times he could, for a total of 8 years.

Since 2004, Richard has coached boys’ and girls’ sports. He plays in a basketball league, runs in Prospect Park, and works out at the Prospect Park YMCA (earlier than the Mayor, traveling by foot or bicycle).  He enjoys playing guitar, singing, and music.

The candidate’s early years.

Francine Bashner,
Miss Southern Boulevard.

WHERE’S RICHARD?

UPCOMING EVENTS


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Me and NYC Mayoral candidate @Bashner2017 at the Artest Foundation charity basketball game. I'm still sore. Lol. Left knee braces at home 😡😡

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