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REBNY WatchViews

Rebuilding America’s infrastructure is a win for New York

It is a good sign that everyone in Washington seems to agree that America needs a robust plan to rebuild our nation’s infrastructure – and it is just as clear that such a plan would pay huge dividends for New Yorkers. That is why we were very pleased to see Senator Chuck Schumer and the Senate Democrats lay out a $1 trillion federal investment plan to revitalize our infrastructure – a priority issue on President Donald Trump’s campaign agenda – that would create millions of new jobs and grow our economy in New York City and across the nation.

JOHN-BANKS-REBNY-WATCH-300x180The Blueprint to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure, as the Senate Democrats have named it, provides a truly comprehensive vision of how to transform crumbling foundations into vibrant economic engines. This is an issue REBNY has promoted for years and we strongly urge all members of Congress to support the plan and ensure it is passed as quickly as possible.

Overall, the Democrats’ infrastructure proposal would create around 15 million new jobs nationwide, many of which would benefit New Yorkers. It is important to recognize the many different facets of this plan and what exactly it would do for communities across the nation.

The plan would provide $210 billion to repair roads and bridges – a transportation advancement that would save the average American family more than $1,700 per year. It would also allocate $180 billion to replace and expand rail and bus systems, providing even greater benefits to the millions of Americans who rely on daily commutes to get to work.

The infrastructure blueprint would also deliver $110 billion to modernize water and sewer systems across the nation, all without burdening local taxpayers. And another $65 billion would be used to enhance America’s ports, airports and waterways, making it easier to ship goods and develop more resilient communities.

Yet another vital initiative would provide $100 billion to bring all of our energy infrastructure into the 21st century by upgrading power grids and making other improvements that will help increase efficiency and lower electric bills for millions of Americans. Other initiatives include funding for rebuilding schools, expanding broadband access and constructing new hospitals and extended care facilities for our nation’s veterans.

Every piece of this plan would provide major benefits for New York City residents, workers and businesses that want to see our economy grow. But it is important to recognize that thoughtfulness of the Democrats’ infrastructure plan goes even beyond the investment noted above.

We are especially pleased that the plan includes a clear commitment to strengthening participation of minority- and women-owned business enterprises (MWBEs) at every stage of the process. Our team at REBNY is proud of our work to advance MWBEs across the city and this new initiative would be another welcome step in that effort.

It is my hope that all New Yorkers will take some time to read the Blueprint to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure and learn more about this important proposal. New York’s growth depends on our ability to find ways to expand and modernize our transportation network.  We are committed to work with President Trump, Senator Schumer, and our partners in government to update and strengthen our aging infrastructure.

In other REBNY news:

Leslie Himmel, Co-Managing Partner of Himmel + Meringoff Properties, will offer “An Owner’s Perspective on Capital Markets” at our Sales Brokers Committee Luncheon on Tuesday, February 28th from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the Cornell Club (6 East 44th Street). Non-REBNY members are permitted to attend only as a guest of a REBNY member. Contact Desiree Jones at to register.

At our Sales Agent Boot Camp on Thursday, March 7th, 9:00-11:00 a.m. in the REBNY Mendik Education Center (570 Lexington Avenue, Lower Level), Jeff Appel, Antonio del Rosario of Town Flatiron LLC, and Renee Fishman of Halstead Property, LLC will share their expert insight on third party internet leads and how they impact the residential brokerage business. Register online at

Join us for our 19th Annual Residential Management Leadership Breakfast on Thursday, March 9th from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. to honor outstanding leaders in residential property management: John McDermott of Ogden CAP Properties, LLC, who will receive the Residential Management Executive of the Year Award, and Gene Boniberger of Rudin Management Company, Inc., who will be presented with the Residential Management Community Service Award. Jonathan J. Miller, CRE, CRP, of Miller Samuel Inc., will give the keynote address at the event to be held at the New York Hilton Midtown (2nd Floor, Sutton Ballroom, 1335 Avenue of the Americas). Tickets are available for purchase on Contact Cindy Ramotar at for information on sponsorship and patron opportunities.

At our Members’ Luncheon on Wednesday, March 15th at the New York Hilton Midtown, REBNY members will hear from Nadeem Meghji, Blackstone’s Senior Managing Director in the Real Estate Group & Head of Real Estate Americas. “The $100 Billion Interview” will be moderated by James D. Kuhn, President of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank. Visit to register for this networking event sponsored by CBRE, Donald Zucker Company, Eastern Consolidated, Extell Development Company, Jamestown, and Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson. The winner of the 2016 Most Promising Commercial Salesperson of the Year Award will be announced at the luncheon.

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