|City Councilman Jimmy Van Brammer with Sen. Chuck Schumer, representatives from Kaufman Studios, and other local elected officials.|
At least that was the message today on the corner of 36th Street in Astoria, Queens, where Sen. Chuck Schumer, flanked by relevant neighborhood politicians, called on the National Park Service to stop making it difficult for a local film company to build New York City's first-ever outdoor studio.
This project -- which would convert 36th Street between 34th and 35th avenues into a movie studio lot -- apparently could make all the difference in attracting filmmakers and production companies to New York City, instead of Los Angeles, or Toronto, or New Orleans. That means, you guessed it, lots of jobs and economic development, all on one block in Queens.More »
|via Good Men Project|
It was hard to feign much surprise last month when the New York Times slapped New York's finest with a lawsuit, accusing the department of habitually withholding information and flouting government transparency laws. In fact, as any reporter would certainly know, one of the city's toughest agencies to crack for information -- even information it's obliged, by law, to cough up -- might be New York's boys in blue.
Freedom of Information Law requests (or "FOIL requests," as they're known) are supposed to be a useful tool for the public; immigrants applying for citizenship use them to collect documentation, inmates use them to prove their innocence, reporters use them to uncover wrongdoing, and advocacy groups have used them to gather a breadth of data on subjects like political surveillance, school performance, racial profiling and homelessness.
But ask anyone who's filed a FOIL, and they'll tell you that prying loose information isn't always so simple. Especially, it seems, from the NYPD.More »