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Report - June 2023

7 Ideas for Boosting NYC’s Newest Businesses

Neighborhoods across New York City—from the South Bronx to Sunset Park—are experiencing an unprecedented entrepreneurial renaissance. This brief explores insights from a Center for an Urban Future policy forum on what exactly city government officials should do to ensure that a significant share of the city's newest businesses prosper for many years to come.

Commentary/Op-Ed - June 2023

To Create a More Equitable Economy, Invest in CUNY

In this Gotham Gazette op-ed, CUF's Jonathan Bowles and Eli Dvorkin make the case for why policymakers should prioritize fully funding CUNY. Despite the essential role CUNY plays in creating economic opportunity for low-income New Yorkers of color, it stands to see a net budget cut of $140.9 million in FY 2024. Now is the time to invest in CUNY’s effectiveness, not limit its potential.

Report - June 2023

NYC’s Stalled Retail Recovery

Retail is one of New York City’s largest industry sectors, and home to an outsized share of the most accessible jobs. But the retail sector is lagging well behind the city’s overall jobs recovery and other face-to-face industries, including restaurants, that were hit hard during the pandemic, raising concerns about whether this vital and diverse part of the city’s economy will ever get back to its pre-pandemic employment level.

Commentary/Op-Ed - June 2023

Expanding Micromobility Across All Five Boroughs

To make further headway in reducing NYC's carbon footprint, much more progress is needed to lower emissions from transportation—New York's second-largest source after buildings. A faster citywide expansion of green micromobility options can help achieve the city's ambitious climate goals while meeting the changing transit needs of the postpandemic city.

Commentary/Op-Ed - April 2023

To boost economic mobility, help CUNY ACE grow

In this amNewYork op-ed, CUF's Eli Dvorkin and Robin Hood's Deborah McCoy urge city and state leaders to commit to scaling the highly promising but small-scale CUNY Accelerate, Complete, and Engage (ACE) program over the next five years to ensure that more New Yorkers from lower-income backgrounds can earn a college degree.

Report - March 2023

Playing New York City’s ACE Card

Few student success programs nationally have been as effective as CUNY’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) initiative, which has grown to serve 25,000 community college students. CUNY has a promising program modeled on ASAP that is helping students at senior colleges complete their bachelor’s degrees on time: the Accelerate, Complete, and Engage (ACE) program. But the ACE program has considerable room to grow.

Commentary/Op-Ed - March 2023

Retooling SYEP for New York City’s Changing Economy

In this new commentary, CUF Fellow David Fischer credits city officials for expanding NYC's Summer Youth Employment Program but argues that SYEP could be doing much more to prepare the mostly low-income youth it serves for a labor market utterly transformed from when the program began.

Commentary/Op-Ed - March 2023

We must pass legislation to make capital construction more efficient

This new op-ed in Crain’s New York Business by CUF’s Jonathan Bowles and Trust for Public Land’s Carter Strickland urges Governor Hochul and the Legislature to pass a set of bills that would lead to a measurable improvement in the speed at which New York City builds parks, resilience projects, libraries, and other critical infrastructure.

Commentary/Op-Ed - February 2023

How to help New Yorkers by reducing red tape for nonprofits

In this NY Nonprofit Media op-ed, CUF's Jonathan Bowles and Brooklyn Community Foundation's Jocelynne Rainey urge city and state policymakers to help strengthen and stabilize the financially vulnerable nonprofit sector by reducing the unnecessary administrative burdens that government agencies impose on nonprofits.

Report - January 2023

Keeping Pace with an Aging New York State

New York State’s older adult population is booming, with more residents ages 65 and above—nearly 3.5 million—than the entire population of 21 states. An expanding share of the state’s older adults are immigrants and people of color. Alarmingly, older New Yorkers living below the poverty line increased by 37 percent over the past decade.

Insight - January 2023

New Report Reveals Boom in State’s 65-and-over Population

A new report finds that older adults make up a larger share of New York State’s population than ever before, with the 65-and-over population growing by more than 800,000 over the past decade even as the under-65 population shrunk by nearly half a million. The study also reveals an alarming rise in the poverty rate among older New Yorkers.

Report - January 2023

Strengthening NYC’s Nonprofits by Reducing Administrative Burdens

Government contract requirements are often unnecessarily complicated and inconsistent, forcing nonprofits to spend an exorbitant amount of time toiling over paperwork. Reducing these burdens could offer much-needed relief to the sector.

Report - December 2022

State of the Chains, 2022

Our fifteenth annual ranking of national retailers in New York City finds a slight 0.3 percent uptick in chain stores across the five boroughs. However, despite the continued recovery from the sector’s steep contraction in 2020, this year’s bump in chain locations was a fraction of last year’s 2.7 percent increase.

Commentary/Op-Ed - December 2022

Let’s swiftly implement ‘New’ New York blueprint

In this Crain’s New York Business op-ed, CUF's Jonathan Bowles and Fisher Brothers' and Area15's Winston Fisher urges city and state leaders to re-imagine economic development to focus more on transit, open space, cultural vibrancy, housing, sanitation, and safety, which in today's talent-driven economy are as vital to the city’s future economic competitiveness as any tax incentive or sectoral strategy.

Report - December 2022

Bolstering Minority- and Immigrant-Owned Businesses by Scaling Up CDFIs

New city and state government policies and investments are needed to strengthen New York City’s minority- and immigrant-owned businesses. Few would have a greater impact than expanding the reach of the city's Community Development Financial Institutions.

Testimony - December 2022

Reforming NYC’s Broken Capital Construction Process to Build Vital Social Infrastructure

In this testimony before the NYC Council Committee on Parks & Recreation, CUF policy director Eli Dvorkin urges the city to reform the broken capital construction process in order to build and maintain New York’s most vital social, economic, and ecological infrastructure.

Report - November 2022

How NYC Can Leverage Data to Strengthen Social Services

This is the era of data. But while individuals, businesses, and governments are now using data analytics in countless ways to get smarter about how to allocate resources and deliver services, this data revolution has only just begun to transform one vital area of city government: New York’s social services system. This report shares insights from experts on how to realize this missed opportunity.

Report - November 2022

Harnessing CUNY as a Launchpad Into Tech Careers

New Yorkers of color remain strikingly underrepresented among the city’s tech workforce. No institution is better positioned to help close this opportunity gap for tech careers, at scale, than the City University of New York (CUNY). However, fully capitalizing on CUNY’s remarkable potential to serve as the city’s largest and most equitable springboard into technology careers will require new action from city and state government, the city’s technology companies, and CUNY itself.

Report - November 2022

Video: City of Aspiration: 150 Ideas From New Yorkers for Building a More Equitable NYC

There is growing consensus that New York City leaders should take new action to build a more equitable city. Check out CUF's new report video that breaks down our report featuring 150 New York-based leaders and national experts each sharing a single policy idea for how to make progress toward a more equitable NYC.

Testimony - October 2022

Strengthening CUNY’s Vital Role as a Launchpad into Tech Careers

In this testimony before the NYC Council Committee on Economic Development & Committee on Higher Education, CUF policy director Eli Dvorkin highlights three specific recommendations for the Council to fully harness CUNY as a launchpad into tech careers.

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