It has been two weeks since Antonio Reynoso started as Williamsburg’s new councilman, taking over for term-limited Diana Reyna, who moved to a post at Borough Hall. The 30-year-old councilman, who bested disgraced former Assemblyman Vito Lopez last fall, spent six years working for Reyna and brings some youthful idealism to the office. Reynoso has spent the early days of his term getting his new staff up to speed and deciding which issues to tackle first.
At the top of his list? Gentrification.
Danielle Furfaro: What have you been up to since Jan. 1?
Antonio Reynoso: I’ve been meeting and talking with my staff mostly. Everything I know about the City Council I have to get out of my head and into theirs. I’m trying to build a strong foundation so that we can be as effective as possible.
DF: What do you plan to do in your first few months in office?
AR: I will be introducing the staff and myself to the community again. I’ll be meeting with the leaders and the police officers, anyone with relevance in this community. We want to put forth a plan that is strong, so I’m working with the staff to find out what their priorities are.
DF: What are your highest priorities?
AR: The highest priority is dealing with sustainability and displacement. Education, of course, is also a very strong and important priority. We want to triangulate between local schools and housing, to get to the core of the displacement.
DF: What are your goals for the first six months?
AR: We want to have a very proactive six months, but most of the goals, we have set for one year. We want to improve the proficiency of the school system and see more affordable housing built. It’s an organism, a living creature, nothing is set in stone. A lot of these policies will come about organically and naturally.
DF: What committees are you going to be a part of?
AR: The committees have not been chosen yet. I have to decide which ones I want to be on. Right now, everyone is focused on getting the budget done.
©2014 Community News Group
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