Bronx Not for Sale!

By Umaro Darame

City Council Candidates fight against special interest groups as City Council Election nears.

District 15 candidates Latchmi Devi Gopal and Kenny Agosto held a press conference denouncing special interest groups and PACs involvement in the upcoming election.

Council Candidate Kenny Agosto (left) alongside Latchmi Devi Gopal (right) addressing the media at City Hall.

District 15 City Council candidates Kenny Agosto and Latchmi Gopal teamed up days before the election to speak out against special interest groups and real estate developers who are funding some of their competitors. They say the political donations undermine the integrity of the election and is meant to benefit the companies writing checks not the people of the Bronx. The two candidates spoke at a press conference in City Hall park on Sunday.

“Real estate developers and special interest groups are focused on The Bronx because they want to make a profit off of our predominantly Black and brown working-class neighborhoods. We are especially concerned about PACs, such as New Yorkers for a Balanced Albany, that have spent over $90,000 on this race,” Gopal and Gosto said in a statement Sunday. “This leads to policy that fails to prioritize the needs of our community members and instead funds high-rises and market-rate housing that would displace the many Bronxites who are struggling to pay rent in our neighborhoods right now.”

Gopal and Agosto worry that outside interest groups don’t have the needs of the people of the 15th district at heart. Concern about the impact of major corporate donors to their competitors motivated Gopal and Agosto to work together, even though they are vying for the same seat.

“We are doing this joint press conference because we believe that politics should be about coming together to make tangible change in our communities. We also believe that it is vital to give voters the information they need to make an informed decision at the polls,” Gopal and Agosto said in the statement. “We need to be transparent because this moment could not be more important. The Bronx is not for sale, plain and simple, and our leaders should not be for sale either.”

Both Agosto and Gopol are committed to not taking money from interest groups or Political Action Committees.

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