City Council Green Scores Revealed

BY JOE MARVILLI
Staff Writer

The scores are out, and when it comes to the City Council’s environmental policies, many Queens officials have earned high marks.

The New York League of Conservation Voters released its Environmental Scorecard on Jan. 29, examining how well the members of the City Council have done in terms of sponsoring and voting for bills that have an effect on the environment.

The scorecard, which covers the 2012-2013 legislative session, looked at the votes and sponsorships for 17 bills that indicated the highest collective priorities of the Council, covering everything from recycling to clean energy, biodiversity to transportation and energy efficiency to air quality.\

Councilmembers Elizabeth Crowley, Daniel Dromm, Peter Koo and Jimmy Van Bramer all scored 100s on their environmental scorecard from the League of Conservation Voters.

Councilmembers Elizabeth Crowley, Daniel Dromm, Peter Koo and Jimmy Van Bramer all scored 100s on their environmental scorecard from the League of Conservation Voters.

The League of Conservation Voters is the only organization that produces an environmental scorecard to give an independent assessment of the City Council, according to its press release.

While Queens as a whole appeared to do well, earning a 91 out of 100 average, it actually came below the City average of 92. The Manhattan delegation had the highest score, with a 98 average. Brooklyn was in second with 93. The Bronx tied with Queens and Staten Island came in last with 88.

Those at the top of the pack for Queens were Councilmembers Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village), Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights), Peter Koo (D-Flushing) and Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside). All four of those elected officials received perfect scores of 100.

“The New York City Council has continued to keep environmental issues at the top of its agenda. There is no doubt that we will maintain an open dialogue with environmental advocates in order to continue passing meaningful legislation that makes New York City more sustainable and greener for all,” Van Bramer said.

Dromm’s comment stressed the importance of the green legislation that was passed last year.

“We must protect our environment and by changing policies, we can set the City on a greener path,” he said. “I supported legislation that banned plastic bags and Styrofoam as well as bills addressing composting, recycling and truck emissions, among others.”

Koo was also happy about his score and is already looking towards this year’s environmental legislation.

“I won’t rest on my laurels however. I am in the process of writing more environmentally-friendly bills that I look forward to discussing with my colleagues and the public in the near future,” he said.

Councilmen Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) and Donovan Richards (D-Laurelton) also received high scores, earning a 94 and 91, respectively.

“I am proud of my environmental record because creating a more sustainable city is a promise we make to our children and to future generations,” Weprin said.

Richards, the new Chair of the Environmental Protection, said he was ready to help create a more environmentally-friendly New York.

“I’m elated to have received a 91 on my environmental scorecard from the League of Conservation Voters last week. I look forward to working with the LCV to build a more sustainable, green and resilient city,” he said.

The lowest scores for Queens went to former councilmen Dan Halloran and Peter Vallone Jr., who both received a 76. Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst) also received a 76, but the league noted that she missed several important votes due to maternity leave, skewing her score.

Reach Joe Marvilli at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 125, jmarvilli@queenstribune.com, or @Joey788.