The New York Times: Councilman Wants New York City’s Pools and Beaches Open Past Labor Day

By Nikita Stewart

April 24, 2015

Photo: Kirsten Luce/The New York Times

Citing the effect of global warming, Councilman Mark D. Levine is trying to change the tradition of closing the pools and beaches on Labor Day. He wants the City Council to pass a law keeping them open until the first day of public school, and then on the weekends through Sept. 30.

“Now’s the time for an update,” Mr. Levine, chairman of the Committee on Parks and Recreation, said in an interview.


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WNYC: How Your Vote Can Allot $1 Million to Community Improvements


April 14, 2015

Daneek Miller, Queens City Council Member, Ydanis Rodriguez, Manhattan City Council member, and Mark Levine, Manhattan City Council member, discuss the participatory budget process, which allows anyone over the age of 14 who lives in a New York City district to vote on the allocation of $1 million for community improvement to parks, libraries, streets and more. Voting takes place from April 11 to 19.

Listen to the interview here

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Columbia Spectator: Participatory budgeting aims to increase political participation

By Ariela Martin

April 13, 2015

Local politicians hope that participatory budgeting—a process that allows West Harlem residents to vote on neighborhood improvement projects—will increase voter participation. City council member Mark Levine, who represents West Harlem and Hamilton Heights, is spearheading the program...

“This is proof that people come up with amazingly creative and powerful ideas that we probably would not have thought of had it not been for this grassroots leadership,” Levine said at the event.

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Capital New York: Challenging Success Academy, charter group and Council raise ‘backfill’

By Eliza Shapiro

April 10, 2015

Photo: William Alatriste/New York City Council

The school choice advocacy group Democracy Builders and the New York City Council are highlighting the issue of "backfill," or refilling vacated charter school seats with new students—a longtime source of contention among the city's charter sector...

"If all you know about a school's performance is their test scores you don't have the full picture," Levine said in an interview on Thursday. "A school that performs well while backfilling is really achieving something impressive, while a school achieving high numbers without backfilling are effectively whittling down to a less representative mix of students."


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DNAinfo: Choose How to Spend $1 Million in Hamilton Heights

By Gustavo Solis

April 2, 2015

Photo: DNAinfo/Gustavo Solis

HAMILTON HEIGHTS — A public greenhouse, 100 trees, and a technology center for children are some of the projects proposed in the district's first go at participatory budgeting.

The program, in which City Council members set aside $1 million of their budget to let the community decide what to do with it, has been in New York City since 2011. This is the first time Councilman Mark Levine has participated.

“The ideas that have been put forward, some of them are really out of the box and original and innovating and they probably would not have emerged if it wasn’t for community input,” he said.

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Money Morning: The Price of Bitcoin Is About to Get a Little Government Help

By David Zeiler

April 1, 2015

The price of Bitcoin stands to get a boost this year from an unlikely source – state and local governments.At least two states, New Hampshire and Utah, have bills under consideration that would make it possible for citizens to pay taxes and fees in Bitcoin. New York City has proposed similar legislation...

"It started with realizing how much money the city of New York is losing on transaction fees on credit cards, ultimately it's several million a year because of all sorts of fees and fines," Levine told CoinDesk last month.


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New York Post: City Bill Would Toughen Testing for Plumbers Working on Gas Lines

by Yoav Gonen

April 1, 2015

Photo: Main: Getty Images

Two city lawmakers want to raise the certification requirements for plumbers doing gas work, in legislation drafted long before last week’s explosion in the East Village.

“This bill creates a robust standard for who can do this sensitive and potentially deadly work,” said Levine, who introduced the legislation at Tuesday’s council meeting.

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Capital New York: Council to Take Up Park Shadows

By Dana Rubinstein

March 31, 2015

(William Alatriste/NYC Council)

The Shadows cast on parks by tall buildings are about to come under City Council scrutiny...

Councilman Mark Levine introduced legislation that would create a task force to examine what he described, in an interview, as "the looming threat of shadows falling on our parks from the rising number of skyscrapers. It would "get us talking about this and tracking it and exploring possible solutions"

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Daily News: People facing noncriminal legal issues can be connected with lawyers under proposed bill

By Erin Durkin

March 30, 2015

Councilman Mark Levine (Louis Lanzano/For New York Daily News)

A new city office to connect people facing noncriminal legal issues with lawyers would be created under a bill to be introduced in the City Council Tuesday...

“In criminal court you have the right to an attorney,” said Councilman Mark Levine (D-Manhattan), noting that should be the case with other legal matters as well.

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GetBitcoin: Some US States to Offer Tax Payments via Bitcoin


March 19, 2015

Bitcoin may soon to be used to pay taxes in some states in the US, with Utah, New Hampshire and New York considering bills that will make this possible, and each with their own slightly different bent on why it will be great...

In March, democrats in New York City introduced a bill to allow any resident of the state to pay fines and fees owed using bitcoin. Mark Levine, a member of the Democratic party, cited transaction fees on credit cards a waste for everyone, with millions of dollars fed into credit card company coffers every year.

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