Under Fire, Hochul Backs-Off "Abolish the Suburbs"


by Maureen Daly

Under fire from both Democrats and Republicans on Long Island over her controversial proposal to ban single-family housing in New York, Gov. Kathy Hochul has dropped the radical proposal from her budget.

The Hochul proposal - long favored by radical Socialists like the DSA and the WFP as part of their "Abolish the Suburbs" agenda - would have required all municipalities to abolish every single-family zoning neighborhood into a multi-family housing area.

Huntington Supervisor Ed Smyth (R) applauded Hochul's retreat, but warned that “Albany extremists will resurrect this terrible idea the moment bi-partisan opposition gets distracted. Stay vigilant!”

Three weeks ago, a bi-partisan group of Long Island officials blasted Hochul for the radical proposal, and urged the NYS Legislature to reject it. A local press conference included Congressman Tom Suozzi (D-Glen Cove); Huntington Supervisor Ed Smyth and Council members Sal Ferro (R), Gene Cook (R) and Joan Cergol (D); NYS Senator Mario Mattera (R); Assemblyman Steve Stern (D-Huntington); and Suffolk Legislature Presiding Officer Kevin McCaffrey (R- Babylon).

The officials warned that changing single-family neighborhoods to multi-family would overload sewer systems, schools and available parking, and cause traffic nightmares on local roads. Hochul charged that their opposition to her plan was "racist" and from "white supremacists" in the suburbs. Critics responded stating "Hochul is herself a racist for thinking that hard-working and successful minorities should never be allowed to live in single-family homes, but should be crammed into crowded apartment blocks. It is racist to try to forever deny minority children - no matter how hard their parents work - green lawns, safe neighborhoods and fresh air." Congressman Suozzi is facing Hochul in a Democratic Party primary for Governor this June. Long Island Congressman Lee Zeldin is the Republican nominee for Governor, and he strongly criticized Hochul for her radical proposal. By contrast, the Socialist Working Families Party has already endorsed NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams as its candidate for Governor. Williams criticized Hochul as a weak "corporate" sell-out, for withdrawing the proposal.