Coward Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr Removes Opposition To FreshDirect From Community Board 1

A. Mychal Johnson, one of our strongest voices in our community.
A. Mychal Johnson, one of our strongest voices in our community.

In what is perhaps one of the most DISGUSTING moves from Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr, A. Mychal Johnson was told by Diaz that he is no longer a member of Community Board 1.  As you all know, Mychal has been a strong opponent and vocal ally against the sweetheart deal for FreshDirect to overtake our waterfront in the Bronx along with $127 million in tax subsidies.  Mychal Johnson has served on our community board for 7 years and is one of the FEW on that board who takes his position seriously and works with the community to make sure that we are heard.

We are not asking Ruben Diaz, Jr but we DEMAND that he be reinstated as our voice in our community.  We have been fighting a clean fight since this dirty FreshDirect deal was announced from day one but borough hall, FreshDirect and all involved have been working hard at trying to silence us.  We will NOT be silenced, Ruben Diaz, Jr.  We are a strong group of over 35 organizations OPPOSED to this dirty deal while you only have 6 organizations backing you up.  The interests of the Bronx MUST come over any corporate interest.  You have proven yourself to not be for the people but only for corporate interests.  Since you continue to play dirty with your crew, we will work hard to make sure you never get elected in representing the folks of the Bronx.



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Removal Follows Rigorous Opposition to FreshDirect’s Relocation to the South Bronx and Competing Visions for the Future of the Waterfront
One of the most outspoken opponents to Ruben Diaz’ plan to bring truck-laden FreshDirect to the South Bronx, A. Mychal Johnson, was notified by the Bronx Borough President today that he is no longer a member of Community Board 1. Mychal had served on the board for seven years, but it was his vocal opposition to the $127 million-subsidized FreshDirect deal that drew fire from the Borough President, who announced the deal as final before the sole public hearing on the matter. The news of Mychal’s removal came as Public Advocate Bill de Blasio released a report citing subsidies to FreshDirect as wasteful and unwise economic development policy.

Over the last year and a half, Mychal and a broad-based coalition of residents under the banner South Bronx Unite have successfully stopped the project by bringing visibility to the company’s intent to add upwards of 1,000 diesel truck trips every day through the community already facing asthma rates eight times the national average and its reliance on a 20-year-old environmental impact assessment.Early on, the Bronx Borough President tried to meet privately with Mychal to discuss the deal, but Mychal rejected the offer.

“For too long, the South Bronx has been run by backroom deals that have been perpetuating poverty and environmental degradation in this district,” said Mychal.“The seeds of change grow from the ground up, not from the top down. We need to work together, and we need to ensure broad public participation in decisions about the future of the community.”

Most recently, as an appointee to the Open Space Conservation Plan Regional Advisory Committee (administered by the State of New York Department of Environmental Conservation and State of New York Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation), Mychal helped usher in a landslide vote in favor of recommending priority status for the Mott Haven-Port Morris Waterfront Plan. The plan is a dynamic blueprint of seven interconnected sites on state-owned land that would permit and preserve public access to the waterfront and encourage diversified economic development in an area currently occupied by waste transfer stations and fossil fuel power plants in the direct line of climate change coastal impact.The sole objection to the Mott Haven-Port Morris Waterfront Plan was lodged by the Bronx Borough President’s office.

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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.