Proponents Push Billboard Scaffolding Bill
Supporters of the City Council’s Intro. 623, which would for the first time allow billboards on sidewalk sheds (scaffoldings), continue to argue for the the bill’s passage, claiming that tough economic times call for measures like this which will generate revenue for the City through a licensing fee mechanism. What this argument neglects to mention is that the proliferation of sidewalk sheds which the bill encourages will also have a devastating impact upon small businesses, which are particularly vulnerable in the current economic climate. An op-ed by GVSHP was recently published in The Villager newspaper to argue this point. The damage such a measure could do to small businesses, as well as the recent downturn in the market for billboards in New York, belies supporters’ claims that Intro. 623 will actually help the cash-strapped city.
In spite of this, a majority of members of the City Council are currently sponsors of Intro. 623, and a vote on the bill could come any day.