A number of members are already active in their Community Boards and Local 79 is very appreciative of their volunteer efforts. For those of you who are not currently involved with your Community Board, Local 79 wants to see the number of members at Community Board meetings grow. Eventually, the Local would like to have a membership presence at all 59 community boards throughout the city.

Why is it important to have members present at Community Board meetings? The central reason is that Community Board participation by our members can result in more jobs.

How can attendance at Community Board meetings result in jobs for members? The majority of large development projects go through a series of stages before being approved. One of the first steps in the approval process for projects, known as ULURP, occurs at the Community Board level. The earlier Local 79 knows about upcoming projects, the more opportunity it has to try to make them go union.  Also, the more active members become in their Community Board, the better they will be at persuading the Board to respond appropriately to the proposed project.

What level of commitment is Local 79 asking for? The most basic thing is to start attending monthly meetings, find out about public hearings related to land use, and then attend those meetings. Some members may choose to get more involved by either becoming members of the Community Board and/or actively serving on the Community Board Land Use Review Committee. Any and all levels of participation are needed and appreciated.

Who do I contact if I want to get involved or am already involved in my Community Board? Please email communityboard@laborerslocal79.org.

Why is it important that I contact someone? Local 79 is establishing a database of all members involved in Community Boards, which will allow Local 79 to collect information from members about upcoming projects in their neighborhoods and, once the Local knows about the projects, to begin to strategize about how to ensure the projects are built by union labor. In addition, Local 79 will be conducting Community Board training sessions for members to develop practical skills that make them effective at communicating their concerns at meetings.