City budget includes bucks for southern Brooklyn schools, parks, libraries and more

Crucial funding, including significant investments in local schools and parks, is coming southern Brooklyn’s way under the City Council’s recently adopted Fiscal Year 2018 budget.

Victories for Councilmember Vincent Gentile’s 43rd Council District – which encompasses portions of Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst and Bath Beach – include $300,000 in funding for roadway resurfacing, $175,000 for renovations to the Fort Hamilton Library and, perhaps most notably, more than $1 million towards schools in District 20.

According to Gentile, District 20 will receive $180,000 towards technology upgrades, $50,000 towards playground equipment and a whopping $1.2 million towards classroom renovations and additions.

“We are very grateful for Councilmember Gentile’s support to our schools,” said Community Education Council 20 President Laurie Windsor. “His funding helps our schools and students further their academic achievements by providing much-needed resources that are not otherwise available. We couldn’t do it without him and are thankful for his support.”

In addition, two local parks – Bath Beach Park and Calvert Vaux Park – will receive nearly $5 million in City Council funding, $4.1 million of which will go to the former to complete renovation of the playground, with the other $750,000 going to the latter for general renovations, such as a revamp of the park’s fieldhouse.

Other district-wide wins include $285,000 towards equipment to assist with trash collection and other sanitation efforts, $164,000 for two new state-of-the-art ambulances for Maimonides Medical Center and more than $1 million towards renovations to the Guild for Exceptional Children’s Olga’s House Residence – the second house Gentile has channeled funding to for the Guild.

On a citywide level, Gentile dubbed Fiscal Year 2018 the “Year of the Senior.”

This new budget, the pol said, reflects a commitment to seniors citywide through a record $23 million in baseline funding for things like senior centers, addressing the home care and case management wait lists and weekend meals citywide, as well as the creation of a new Caregiver Support Program.

Other noteworthy allocations include $4 million towards supplying city firefighters with a second pair of work boots and $12.5 million towards expanding the universal lunch program in schools citywide and providing breakfast for all elementary school students.

“Since my first day in the City Council some 14 years ago, it has been a privilege to fight each and every day to improve the lives of the residents of Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights and Bath Beach,” said Gentile. “I am proud of this budget because whether it’s funding to support our seniors, renovate our schools, pave our streets or refurbish our parks, it will positively impact all the many facets of the great 43rd District from Shore Road to Shore Parkway.”

This is the final council budget for Gentile, who is term-limited and cannot run for re-election this November, and is running instead for Brooklyn district attorney.

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