- What is the policy? Identify what the policy is in one paragraph.
The introduction of PlaNYC as New York City’s sustainable urban development policy mandated thirty three (33) actionable objectives targeting core infrastructure and neighborhood green initiatives in the interest of a “Stronger, More Resilient New York” (NYC Government, 2013). The public policy instituted to coordinate the City’s Green Buildings and Energy Efficiency 2030 policy as part of the overall Greener, Greater Buildings Plan for New York provides the framework to sustainability for “commercial buildings, multifamily residences, hospitals and 1- to 3-family homes” around the city (NYC Government, 2013). Community involvement in the sustainable lifestyle choices public education initiative is designed to encourage New York City’s overall standard of living into the future.
2. What is the purpose of the policy or what is the need for such a policy?
When New York City enacted Local Law 42 in September of 2012, the city sought “to establish the Panel on Climate Change as an ongoing body to advise the City on the latest climate science (NYC Government, 2012). From the point-of-view of policy analysis, project illustrates: 1) legitimacy and support, 2) operational capabilities and 3) public value (NYC Government, 2012). The three (3) principle action items to the PlaNYC implementation strategy, the legislation informs the city’s Resiliency Task Force. Since the launch of the 33 point plan, the Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency has implemented climate change and environmental programs across the zones in the municipal strategy for sustainable growth.
Approximately a year after the May 2012 address by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in joint collaboration with New York City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn of the PlaNYC Green Buildings and Energy Efficiency 2030 agenda, new projects, financing and partnership incentives have promoted the mandate. The PlaNYC Resiliency Task Force has worked on behalf of the Strengthen the City’s policy to improve building standards, and initiate commercial opportunity for additional public-private partnership (PPP) and private financial investment (PFI) in both the business sector, and amongst residential communities (NYC Government, 2013).
The initiatives designated to fulfill a “Stronger, More Resilient New York” in the 33 point action plan are inform recommendations in the reconstruction and fortification of buildings and residences involved in the initiative (NYC Government, 2013). Building Code and Zoning Resolution rules amended to ensure continuity in future construction and maintenance of PlaNYC activities throughout the City of New York enhance former municipal code. The fiscal policy behind the financial model to the plan will increase tax savings to New Yorkers to the tone of billions of dollars, while advancing the sustainable condition of the city and its buildings and infrastructure in perpetuity. Moreover, the preservation of new construction implemented during the course of the project will provide long term leverage as the city creates new economic opportunities.
- Which department/s, agency/ies or government instrumentality is/are responsible for implementing the policy. Identify the lead department or agency.
Executive Director, Unger of the Urban Green Council and also Task Force Chair to PlaNYC sustainable programs and projects offers visionary leadership to the policy implementation strategy through provision of time and resources. The not-for-profit organization is a key partner in the municipal public infrastructure project, and is essential to the realization of Mayor Bloomberg’s landmark climate change agenda as part of the overall mission of the public policy initiative (NYC Government, 2013).
The Mayor’s plan for carbon global greenhouse emissions (GHG) reduction is a significant action item within the PlaNYC mandate. The Mayor’s pledge to reduce municipal emissions (30%) by 2030 is the target goal (NYC Government, 2013). If successful, the carbon program will accelerate GHG reductions to below FY 2006 levels (NYC Government, 2013).
The Building Resiliency Task Force Report guides assessment to the policy implementation strategy. The PPP and PFI components to the major metropolitan agenda stand to greatly improve the efficiency of government led infrastructure projects in partnership with private partners, and provide important insight and maintenance to those projects once realized. In the interest of achieving sustainable community objectives are part of the PlaNYC goal of participatory governance and finance, New Yorkers are critical to the implementation of the policy mandate and ongoing evaluation of its success (Jacobson, 2008).
Consolidation of the Plan’s PPP approach to municipal management and capitalization on those projects is the primary focus of the policy and its sustainability as an environmentally sound and commercially viable project (Santon, 2000). Performance modeling of the project for government, business and real estate owners, investors and residents provides a touchstone for measuring the adequacy and productivity of the plan.
If community development is at the heart of sustainability as a participatory mandate, the potential for PlaNYC to create the proper infrastructure for engaging private energy and resources is high. Private contribution to New York City confirms the efficacy and importance of public policy as a sustainable model for the common good. From a theoretical perspective, PlaNYC is a perfect representation of Tullock’s (1994) public choice model; setting the pace for community decision making at every level of urban development (Tullock, 1994). Additional protections adopted to ensure continuous community involvement in the future of the municipal action plan, serve such a concept.
Since the transformation of New York City’s municipal code in response to PlaNYC, the city has seen change in regulatory rules to construction and maintenance of public works. If the plan has been effective in one area, it has been to “raise resiliency standards in future construction” so that efficiency in cost and maintenance is met (NYC Government, 2013). Oversight by the Urban Green Council, the local chapter of the US Green Building Council is made possible by nearly two hundred volunteer experts from the architectural, construction, engineering and real estate investment sectors. Advisory by firms to sustainable building certification criteria (i.e. LEED) is part of the Plan’s 33 actionable implementation strategies (NYC Government, 2013).
4. How effectively is the policy being implemented based on the historical record?
Since the introduction of Mayor Bloomberg’s Carbon Plan, New York has initiated a full-scale policy mandate response designed to create a greener, greater New York. If the next 22 years are dedicated to making this happen, the extended life of the plan has implication for the vitality and sustainability of New York City as an environmentally compliant municipality (NYC Government, 2013).
Details to the future of New York’s communities is outlined in the GreeNYC’s Behavioral Report Analyzes Potential Green Impact of New Yorkers (2012) which reports findings to the Plan’s feasibility study about community involvement and localized governance. To this end, the study further defines PlaNYC’s “first of its kind to do an analysis of the potential impacts of resident behavior across all sustainability sectors such as transportation, water, air quality, and waste in New York” (NYC Government, 2013).
Coordinated service delivery across the PlaNYC programs and institutional partners, are monitored for quality assurance; which includes community feedback on programming to the initiative, as well as results from response evaluation to the public education campaign. The Plan’s public education campaign promotes New York City’s neighborhoods, as well as serves as a voice for community participation in the definition and ongoing development of the most viable sustainable lifestyle for New Yorkers.
Resident choices and perceptions about standard of living in the city attribute meaning within the public education campaign. Designed as a platform of participatory governance, the Plan’s public education vehicle is best illustrated in the individual neighborhood associations involved in the initiative.
Total projected expenses on the project are significant. The Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency report is an estimated $20 billion cost alone (NYC Government, 2013). Finance sourced from City capital funding and Federal relief stands at $10 billion, plus $5 billion in earmarked relief funding appropriated by way of Congressional allocation. The remainder, $4.5 billion closes the gap in the Task Force budget. It is predicted that contributions from Federal funding and City capital will be allocated to the project for maintenance.
While the report does not include estimated cost of the GHG emissions reduction project, or for the business, co-op and condominium residence maintenance plans beyond the duration of the project, it is expected that PFI from current private partners will be made available to sustain those activities (NYC Government, 2013). As part of the commitment to joint-collaboration governance and leadership, the Urban Green Council of New York leadership will continue as a partner in the consolidation of PlaNYC’s over one hundred programs; taking action on implementation and policy requirements at the community level as they arise (Santon, 2000, Urban Green Council, 2013).
Jacobson, J. (2008). Participatory Democracy in Europe. Transnational Institute.
Panel on Climate Change (2012). NYC Government.
Santon, A. (2000). Chapter 3: The Decline of the Consolidationist Movement in the United States, the Emergence of 'Public Choice,' or the 'New Regionalism. in: Merger mania: the assault on local government. Montreál: McGill-Queens University Press, 69-82.
The City of New York (2013). PlanNYC: Progress Report 2013. NYC Government. Retrieved from: http://nytelecom.vo.llnwd.net/o15/agencies/planyc2030/pdf/planyc_progress_report_2013.pdf
Tullock, G. (1994). The New Federalist. Toronto: The Fraser Institute.
Urban Green Council (2013). Retrieved from: http://www.urbangreencouncil.org