Two months ago, Bill de Blasio won the democratic primary mayoral election, and Joe Lhota won the republican primary. Now, New Yorkers are leaning towards choosing Bill de Blasio for their next mayor with a three to one ratio, according to amNewYork-News 12 poll.
Before you cast your vote, here are where they stand on key issues such as transportation, education and law enforcement.

Education

Lhota has stated that he plans to double the number of charter schools within the city. He also suggested that the city should secure more space for classrooms in closed Catholic School buildings. He plans on keeping required examinations and auditions in order to enroll in New York’s prestigious high schools. “The high academic entry should be preserved and not interfered with,” he told The New York Times. Lhota also stands firmly in agreement with Bloomberg’s education record.

De Blasio plans on diminishing the expansion of charter schools by charging them rent to continue occupying existing school buildings. He also plans on repairing existing public schools, including better access to social services and health care availability. Putting an end to shutting down low performing schools is also on the candidate’s to-do list. De Blasio believes that focusing on preparing students early in education, through after school programs, would increase diversity at those schools. In a New York Times article, de Blasio also said that “curriculum, quality neighborhood schools, arts and physical education,” should be looked at in order to determine students’ grades on their report cards.

Stop & Frisk

Lhota has been quoted on multiple occasions stating that he believes in stop-and-frisk. He plans on creating better communication with the public on the police tactic. He would like to educate the NYPD on how to execute the stop-and-frisk policy legally. Lhota does not at all support the addition of an independent inspector general. Lhota is a fan of Raymond Kelly’s performance as police commissioner and would ask him to be a part of his public safety transition team.

De Blasio on the other hand would change the Stop and Frisk policy completely, to abide by the recent city’s appeal ruling that declared the policy a violation of the rights of minorities. He would also create an independent inspector general to oversee the practices of policies within the NYPD and report directly to the mayor as well as give policy suggestions to the police department. Although de Blasio commended commissioner Kelly on his work, he said he would choose a new commissioner. The stop-and-frisk policy, according to de Blasio, has driven a wedge between the police and the public, and he intends to appoint a commissioner that will repair that relationship.

Transportation

Lhota plans on removing some of the bike lanes in Park Slope, Brooklyn, which are congested with the B63 bus route. He also said he would increase the number of bike lanes but with “common sense in their placement,” reported The New York Times. To improve the subway system, Lhota plans on creating an extension to Staten Island and decrease the waiting times for subway trains. He also plans on increasing recycling policies in stations to keep the platforms clean.

De Blasio plans on increasing bike lanes and bike sharing citywide. By 2020, de Blasio aims for bikes commutes to account for six percent of all trips. He would also increase outer borough train service, yet didn’t specify which lines, according to The New York Times.

The New York Times recently reported, “Although Mr. de Blasio is unlikely to surpass Mr. Koch’s re-election margin, he is flirting with a record win for a non-incumbent; that record is currently held by Abraham D. Beame, who won election in 1973 with a 40-point victory margin, the largest in an open race since five-borough elections began in 1897.”  The New York Times polling on the mayoral race has remained the same within the past six weeks with Lhota at 26 percent and de Blasio with a whooping 65 percent. The polls predict de Blasio will win by a landslide.

This is every New Yorker’s chance to decide how their new mayor will run their city. The outcome of the mayoral race lays in the hands of residents across the five boroughs. Every vote counts. Are you ready to cast your vote?

 

 

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Shea Carmen Swan is a junior at Lang, majoring in Journalism + Design, minoring in Gender Studies. With 4 semesters of Free Press under her belt, she enjoys writing all things LGBTQIA and currently writes for Posture Magazine, a queer arts publication. Kyriacrchy.wordpress.com & Soilscript.wordpress.com host most of her literary work.

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