The Remarks Of Speaker Sheldon Silver

Governors Island Press Conference

City Hall, Blue Room, Manhattan
Sunday, April 11, 2010 [6 PM]

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Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (at podium) joined Governor David Paterson (right) and Mayor Bloomberg (left) to announce the City of New York will take control of Governors Island from the state. At the City Hall news conference, Silver said the agreement provides the island with responsible stewardship and a reliable funding stream and ensures that Lower Manhattan residents will have access to the island and its many outstanding recreational facilities.

Governors Island Access Assured to Lower Manhattan Community  video camera
Silver Urges Residents To Visit Governors Island  video camera

Aerial photo of Governors Island. Assembly Speaker Silver urged his district's residents to visit the island this summer to enjoy all its biking trails, ball fields and the other recreational opportunities as well as all the amazing views of the city skyline. Silver noted that the agreement to grant New York City ownership of Governors Island provides the Lower Manhattan community with a voice in the administration and planning of the island from now and into the future.
Thank you, Mister Mayor.

I am delighted to be here this afternoon with Mayor Bloomberg, Governor Paterson, my Council Member, Margaret Chin, and Mike Nelson, the Council Member who is in charge of the waterfront of New York. I am also delighted to join my colleagues who represent Governors Island with me:

As the assemblyman who represents Governors Island, I have been actively involved in the debate over the future of this beautiful and historic property for a quite a while, going back to the original conversation between Senator Moynihan and President Clinton.

I support this agreement, because it addresses the essential issues that I - and my Lower Manhattan community - have long identified as critical to our quality of life:

One the provision and preservation of open space and recreational space for a community where such fundamental quality-of-life park environments are rather scarce;

Two the assurance that our community will have a voice in the administration and the planning of Governors Island, now and into the future;

And three a consistent and reliable source of funding, so that the residents of Lower Manhattan will not have to worry each year whether the Island's facilities will be available for their children and their families.

The agreement announced this evening meets these requirements and for that reason, I commend the Mayor and the Governor for their efforts on behalf of Governors Island.

Let me also acknowledge some of the state and local leaders who have invested their time and effort to ensure that Governors Island is a "first-rate" recreational space that our growing Lower Manhattan community deserves:

In closing, let me extend - as we do each year - my personal invitation to all of the residents of Lower Manhattan to visit Governors Island and to take advantage of the biking trails, the art exhibitions, the ball fields, and all of the recreational opportunities that are available there.

Summer is coming. Governors Island opens on June 5th. It is a wonderful place to be. Bring a camera and take a picture of the Downtown skyline. It is one of the more beautiful things to see in Manhattan.

Thank you, Mayor and thank you, Governor, for helping to make this day a reality.