Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer recently
Second Year of Stringer’s Revamped Recruitment and Appointment Process Results in More than 300 New Applicants, No Unfilled Vacancies
33% of Appointees are New Community Board Members
(March 26, 2007) New York, NY - Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer today made public the names of the 2007 appointees to Manhattan’s 12 Community Boards completing his second year of a revamped recruitment and appointment process that has resulted in greater community empowerment throughout the borough. The appointments were again guided by Stringer’s newly implemented set of reforms aimed at depoliticizing the appointment process and making the boards more reflective of the constituencies they serve.
Stringer released the following data pertaining to the 2007 appointment and recruitment process:
Total number of applications: 571
Total number of new applicants: 308
Total number of interviews conducted by the MBPO: 483
Percentage of applicants that received interviews: 85
Total number of new appointees: 101
Total number of re-appointees: 263
Percentage of appointees that are new board members: 33%
In announcing the appointments Borough President Stringer said, “I am proud to report that the second year of our newly instituted recruitment and appointment process has again resulted in an outstanding group of appointees. The quality and total number of this year’s pool of applicants was exceptional. We are witnessing a level of interest and excitement in this unique form of local government that has never before been seen in Manhattan. The result of this excitement is bearing fruit in community based victories across this borough.”
Under the City Charter, the Borough President is charged with appointing all 600 members of Manhattan’s 12 Community Boards; half upon the recommendation of City Council Members. Each year half of the current board membership must apply for reappointment and go through Stringer’s new screening process.
In 2006, Borough President Stringer created an independent screening panel – the Community Board Reform Committee – whose job was to overhaul the appointment process, end ad hoc removals and ultimately review and recommend Community Board applicants to the Borough President. Since their inception, the panel has worked to design a new, more thorough application for potential board members in order to gain a better understanding of applicants to balance the boards with a variety of backgrounds and interests.
Borough President Stringer’s Community Board Reform Committee is comprised of leaders from good government and community groups including: The New York League of Conservation Voters, the Partnership for NYC, the League of Women Voters, the Municipal Art Society, NYPIRG, the Brennan Center for Justice, Citizens Union, the Women’s City Club of New York, the Hispanic Federation, West Harlem Environmental Action, the Regional Planning Association, the NAACP, LGBT Community Center, and the Urban League.
Over the last year Borough President Stringer’s office has taken on an aggressive outreach program that included more than 50 power-point presentations to community groups, religious institutions, businesses and other important groups in the hopes of interesting a cross section of Manhattanites to join their Community Boards. Borough President Stringer credited that outreach effort with the high number of new applicants.
“This process would not have been able to continue growing and succeeding without the work and commitment of Manhattan’s City Council delegation,” Borough President Stringer said. “They have all been active partners in this process and I commend them for their commitment to strengthening this vital form of government.”
Click here for a list of the 2007 Appointees to Manhattan’s 12 Community Boards.
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To ensure that Board members embody the diversity and expertise necessary to fight for all local residents’ needs, we are strengthening the recruitment and application process. Specialized community liaisons from my office are meeting with a range of groups and community-based organizations throughout the borough to raise awareness of our revitalized Community Boards.
Developing a More Thorough Application Process to Become a Community Board Member
Incorporating Feedback from the Borough President’s Community Board Questionnaires
Assigning Urban Planners to Support Each Community Board
Introducing Legislation to Make Conflicts of Interest Laws Enforceable
Setting Board Budgets to Reflect Their Constituencies
Providing Ongoing Training and Support for Community Board Members and their Staffs
Strengthening Accountability of Community Board Operations