Transcript: Mayor de Blasio Announces NYC Will Be First City to Mandate that Existing Buildings Dramatically Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions

September 14, 2017

Mayor Bill de Blasio: Robert that said it all. That was so powerful. I want to thank you for sharing your story and I want to thank you for reminding people what this is all about. Robert served as he said in the U.S. Navy, so he has long since shown us his devotion to serving others, and he does it now helping to protect people in the community through his work in NYCHA. I wanted to say, Robert, I remember very vividly, you and I were talking about it before, in the weeks after Sandy, almost two weeks later, Chirlane and I visited Red Hook Houses and I will never forget it. We walked up and down the stairways, the hallways, everything was dark, it was evening, it was a feeling that the things we were used to were suddenly gone. People did not feel safe, they did not feel secure, they did not know when the electricity was coming back on. And that was because of one storm. As Robert said, we now see these storms are coming more and more frequently, but he makes a powerful point – in this city, we don't deny the reason for it. We understand it's because of climate change. We understand it's all our responsibility to address climate change. So, Robert, I think you today are reminding us this crisis has already been felt by New Yorkers and that should give us all the incentive in the world to lead the way and showing what this City can do and every city can do to fight climate change.

Let's thank Robert for all he does.

[Applause]

Before I get into today's announcement I want to thank everyone who is standing behind me. I want to thank members of my administration. The different agencies represented here are 100 percent devoted to fighting climate change. For all the leaders of the administration, this is a labor of love. This is something I think about every day. Today's announcement is the first in a series. We will have a lot more to say as we come up on the 90 days since President Trump tragically started the process of taking the United States of America out of the Paris Accord. We are going to make it very clear the City of New York is using every tool at its disposal to address climate change, so I want everyone to recognize that it's the leaders in the administration, here behind me, who are doing all this work every day and who feel it passionately and it can be done. Let's give them a big round of applause.

[Applause]

I want to thank all of our partners in this work. A number of groups that have led the way in fighting climate change and they are represented here and they are supporting this initiative. I want to name them and let's clap for all of them – the Center for New York City Neighborhoods; the New York League of Conservation Voters; Enterprise Community Partners; Building Energy Exchange; C40; Community Preservation Corporation; the American Institute of Architects; the Sallan Foundation; the Urban Sustainability Directors Network; BlocPower; the New York City Panel on Climate Change; and the Building and Construction Trades Council, all united in common cause.

So we wanted to make this announcement at this particular site for a reason. Because it's still not widely understood that the number one problem when it comes to deepening climate change and creating emissions and pollution in the city, the number one problem is those buildings you see behind you. We all when we think about pollution it's understandable that we think about vehicles but these buildings actually are the biggest problem that has not yet been addressed in this city. And it is a dense, dense city with so many buildings that are still antiquated in the way they are run and if we don't address this, we can't turn a corner on climate change in this city. And that is true in many places in the world. So, you know, we love our skyline. We look to it with pride. But we also have to be honest, that's part of the problem and it needs to be addressed. And another reason we wanted to be here is because of our beautiful harbor, the water surrounds us for centuries it's been our friend, it's been the reason New York City thrived, it's allowing us to do things like NYC Ferry. There's a lot of wonderful things about being a coastal city but it is also a reminder that in the era of climate change that water can also be a danger if we don't get at the root cause. We have a chance in our time to address this problem once and for all but we have to be a lot more aggressive than our predecessors were all over this country and in Washington. We, in this generation, have to set a different pace. So that is what we are here to talk about today. It's time for a different set of rules in this city to address climate change. And want to make clear at the outset, it's easy to say what can the city, what can a state do, in light of the mistakes being made in Washington. I understand that question but I would remind people that's exactly the wrong way to look at this crisis. If you wait on Washington to solve all your problems, you will be waiting in vain. In the end life is lived, here in this City, in cities all over the country, all over the world, we have to solve our own problems. And we have extraordinary ability to do so. So we're clear about the fact that we are not waiting on President Trump and his cabinet of deniers to address this crisis. We have no such illusion. We understand it's our responsibility. We are not going to put heads in the sand. We are not going to run away from the Paris Accord. In fact we are going to embrace even more intensely than ever.

It is a sad statement, that the actions of the President of the United States are putting his own hometown at risk, but that's the truth. By stepping away from the Paris agreement, President Trump has endangered New York City. But New York City is going to take it lying down. We are going to matters into our hands. And it's important that we feel that we are fighting this crisis like our lives depend on it because, in fact, they do. It's a life and death matter. It's interesting a lot of millennials I think get this with particular sharpness, they have grown up understanding their lives are on the line. For a lot of us it means our children, our grandchildren's lives are on the line, it's not an abstract matter anymore. Just like Robert said, we have actually seen it. We have actually felt it. Now we have a chance to do something about it. So, when President Trump started the process of removing the United States from the Paris Agreement we said, not only are we going to align to the Paris Agreement, we are going to go farther because this city and cities around and states around the country have to make up for the errors of our President and our national government. We have to adopt an even higher goal. Paris Agreement talks about the stretch goal of not allowing this earth to increase in temperature by more than 1.5 Celsius. That is the directive that I gave to all city government agencies to come back with plans that will allow us to align to that even higher goal and this is the first of a set of announcements that will make clear that New York City believes that it can reach that higher goal. I also want to commend 375 American cities who in light of the President's action doubled down on the Paris Agreement and that adds up to huge percentage of the American people.

So, we are going to set the pace. This City has always led the nation in so many ways. We are going to set the pace now. We are going to show that even higher goal can be reached. Let them have their debates in Washington while we get to work rolling up our sleeves and actually achieving the change. This is a very different approach than we have ever taken by this city before. Bluntly, it's a very different approach than any city has ever taken.

We are announcing the first ever city-wide mandate for building retrofits. We will work with the City Council to make this a matter of law, to make this a requirement for all building owners. Now it's the largest buildings that are the biggest challenge and they need to dramatically cut their Greenhouse Gas Emissions. So we are making it very clear that there will now be a standard and a timeline and there will be very, very serious consequences if they fail. This plan focuses on 14,500 buildings that are the worst offenders. They produce nearly – it's an amazing figure – these 14,500 buildings produce nearly one quarter of the Cities emissions. They are the target. We fix them, we fix the situation in this city profoundly. So when I had the honor of addressing the UN General Assembly three years ago, I said that someday we may need a mandate, I said someday we may need a legal mandate to force building owners to comply, well I am here to tell you that someday is today. We will now move to a mandate that will make this a matter of law. This is a tangible action but it also sends a message of urgency to all New Yorkers. Now, there will be resistance, that's a given. I'm never surprised when people are part of the status quo wants to keep things the way they are but my answer to that is to make very clear that there will be consequences for any who do not abide by this new policy. Real financial penalties, real teeth, will help to make sure this new policy works. Buildings will be required to update boilers, water heaters, roofs, and windows and to meet a strict fossil fuel use target by 2030. Now, we are ready to help those who truly need help.

Let's be clear – there are some smaller buildings owned by owners of limited means. They genuinely do need help, and we will provide low interest loans that will save them thousands of dollars a year, so they can make these changes. And then they will benefit from the cost savings because remember any time you retrofit, you reduce your energy use. It ultimately pays for itself. It's a legitimate problem for some. If they don't have the upfront money, we're going to help them solve that problem with government resources, low interest loans.

But let's be real about the big landlords. Big landlords can handle this. They can afford it. They can front the money. They have the money – I assure you. They can put forward the money. They can make these changes. They will ultimately over time benefit from these changes. They will ultimately pay for themselves. We are going to make clear to them that if they don't comply there will be consequences. So for example, the fines that would be levied for the owner of a $1 million sq ft building that does not conform to these new standards, they will pay as much as $2 million in fines every year. We're going to make clear to them that we mean business, and it will hurt their bottom line if they don't comply.

Let me give you an example of what this is going to mean. If you want to visualize what this one change would mean in our city and why this is the single most powerful action we can take right away. This change to our buildings would be the equivalent of taking 900,000 cars off the road in this city each year – 900,000 cars. So it's clear this is the motherlode. This is the place we need to focus.

And while we're at it there's another wonderful reality, and this is something we need to talk more and more about in this city, in this country. Addressing our problems can also give us an opportunity to put a lot of people to work. Things that should've been done a long time ago, now they will be done and thousands and thousands of people will get good jobs in the process. We estimate there will be 17,000 jobs – good, green jobs – created by this initiative. And what we've previously announced – the Green Job Corps – the City will pay for the training to prepare these New York City residents to do this work and to get good paying jobs, and it will give them lifelong skills that they can use for a career that puts them solidly in the middle class.

We're going to work with the City Council immediately to pass this legislation in the coming months because we know time is not on our side. We have to act urgently. And you're going to see a variety of actions that the City agencies can take on their own that we will institute immediately both related to today's announcement and the announcements that will come in the coming days and weeks. Robert talked about the pain we all felt when we watched the horrible events in Texas and in Florida, and I think every one of us – our hearts went out to people because they're our fellow Americans. Our hearts went out to them also because we've been there, and all of us had that shiver of fear that we might be there again. The only way to stop the problem is to get at the root of it. If every city, if every state did the kinds of things we're talking about today we could actually change course.

So we are not going to stand by and be victims. We understand Robert's right. The next storm is out there. It's not a matter of if – it's a matter of when, but if we do these things right, in the future those storms won't be as bad. The Earth will start to heal. But only if we act with urgency now. President Trump has turned a blind eye to climate change even after seeing firsthand the devastation in Texas and Florida. We're not going to turn a blind eye. We're going to take action right here in New York City.

A few words in Spanish –

[Mayor de Blasio speaks in Spanish]

With that I want you to hear from two leaders in the fight against climate change. They represent two organizations that long ago warned us and helped to change the consciousness and are helping to lead the charge to change the Earth. I first want to bring to you a good friend, the director of the Northeast Energy and Sustainable Communities Energy and Transportation program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, Donna De Constanzo.

[…]

Mayor: Thank you so much, Donna. And now it's my pleasure to introduce the Chief of Strategy, Global Energy, and Finance, and the New York Regional Director for the Environmental Defense Fund, Andy Darrell.

[…]

Mayor: One last thing I want to say before we take questions on this announcement – I am particularly appreciative – I mentioned that for the members of my administration, it's been a labor of love to work on this and I want to do a particular thanks to the team at City Hall. The agencies have been deeply, deeply involved and they're going to be where the rubber hits the road in so many cases, but I want to say the passion for making these changes at City Hall has been extraordinary, for pushing even farther than was ever previously imagined. So, I want to give a special thanks to our First Deputy Mayor Tony Shorris; and to Mark Chambers, our Director of Sustainability; Dan Zarrilli, our Director of Resiliency – let's give them all a big round of applause for what they have done.

[Applause]

With that, let's take questions on this announcement, and then we'll take questions on other matters.

Rich?

Question: Mr. Mayor, are there any famous old buildings on the bad list?

Mayor: Famous? That's an eye-of-the-beholder question. Famous old buildings – that's a good question, so I'm going to look at Tony, and Mark, or Rick Chandler. Anyone know of there's a famous old building or do we have to get back to him?

Deputy Mayor Tony Shorris: [Inaudible]

[Laughter]

Mayor: Bad, Tony. Strike that from the record –

[Laughter]

That was not an official answer.

[Laughter]

Rich, we will – that's a great question and we will – a very good, evocative question – and we will come back to you later in the day if we can identify specific buildings already.

Gloria?

Question: Mr. Mayor, two questions – how is this any different from what was going [inaudible] any different from that? [Inaudible]

Mayor: Excellent questions, let me try and address both. We have had a conversation with the Council, going back months. I spoke to the Speaker yesterday about this and our teams have been talking literally for months and months. There's a high level of alignment. There are still some issues the Council is working on. We felt this package was ready to go now. We wanted to put it out because we need to get to work. So, I think we're going to have a very cooperative, positive process. But the bottom line from our point of view is, we're ready to move. We think the pieces are there. As Andy said, there's going to be a legislative process, so fine-tuning will occur naturally in that. But I would predict a high level of alignment.

On the second question, this starts immediately. So, in this plan also we're talking about the continued work we're doing on our own city buildings, which we announced back at the UN. I announced three years ago at the UN. You've seen that reflected in our City budget. So far, the City has, of our buildings, 1,211 that are either completed already with their retrofits, or in the process of being completed. And then, with NYCHA, 420 buildings either completed or are in the process of being completed. So, one of the things that was an article of faith to me was to show we were putting our money where our mouth was. And you've seen, there's a huge investment we've made in fixing our old buildings to send a message to the private sector there was no double standard. We were doing it ourselves, now we need them to do it. So, that's one piece of the puzzle, but the second piece is the way this plan works – and my colleagues can get into more of the detail, if you like – we push the building owners to use their existing replacement cycles to maximum impact. So, they were already, in many cases, going to be making changes and upgrades. This raises the standards they have to meet. And since they're being told right now these standards are looming right ahead and there's real consequences attached, it's an encouragement for those who are making those changes to make the changes to this standard right now. That's probably, on average, 500 to 1,000 buildings a year, just naturally because every building is on a different replacement cycle. We also believe the financing is going to encourage a lot of the smaller buildings to start taking advantage of this opportunity sooner because they can get an even better deal than they could with private lenders. So, this is something you'll start to see the effect of right away. It culminates in 2030, but the impact will start to be felt year by year.

Other questions? Yes, Willie?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: I cannot tell a lie about being an expert about whether our two very small buildings meet these standards, but I can say as we have been improving the buildings we've been putting energy efficiency elements into them. So, I'd be happy to come back with a clearer answer, but we've tried to do that as we've gone along.

What's the other question?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Well, I made a lot of announcements in April, so you'd have to remind me of the specific one, but this is about a legal mandate – that is the fundament difference. We foreshadowed years ago that if we, in our dealings with the private sector, did not see enough progress we would move to a legal mandate. Now, we are formally moving to a legal mandate.

Yes, sir?

Question: You mentioned [inaudible] retrofitting boilers, roofs –

Mayor: Windows, yeah –

Question: What about – I'm not an environmentalist – what about solar panels? The Governor – excuse me for saying this – the Governor pointed out yesterday the largest solar panel [inaudible]

Mayor: You're going to see in this plan further investments by the City in using solar with our buildings. Obviously, we have solar on top of City Hall, we have solar on a number of our schools. That's going to keep growing and that's going to be part of this plan. Up ahead a little bit more, we're going to be putting forward plans about greater use of renewables for New York City as a whole. That plan has still got a little more work to be done. But I think the way to think about it is – and the experts can speak to this more eloquently than I can – but these emissions problems, this is a clear and present danger right here. That has to be addressed head-on. These buildings use fossil fuels right now. They have to change their standards quickly. We also have an opportunity to use more and more renewables – those two pieces are complimentary, we need both of them for the future of this city. But we know that for a lot of reasons, including just physical realities, not everybody's converting to solar right away, but they can fix their current physical realities to use a hell of a lot less energy and to reduce emissions greatly.

Juliet?

Question: So, are you going to be giving guidelines to builds and building owners on what is recommended [inaudible]

Mayor: You mean like specific examples? Let me see if Tony or Mark want to speak to that.

Question: [Inaudible]

Director Mark Chambers, Mayor's Office of Sustainability: The goal is the provide them with the kind of technical assistance that you're exactly describing. There's a program called Retrofit Accelerator, which is literally guidance for individual building owners on, these are the kinds of things you can do to meet – and it'll be different building by building, and we respect that, and different building owners may have different cycles they want to do to achieve those goals. We'll set the targets, we'll give them the technical assistance, and, where appropriate, we'll give them financing assistance as well – all tools to get them where they have to go.

Mayor: For the English-speaking audience, explain what technical assistance means.

Director Chambers: He always say that –

[Laughter]

But anyway, it means guidance to answer the question you've posed. If this is my target, what is it I have to do. What kind of window do I need to put in? What kind of boiler do I need to change? What do I need to do to my roof? If I make those changes, will I reach that target?We'll help them answer that question.

Question: [Inaudible]

Director Chambers: I don't think it goes so much that way. It's more, encouraging them to move to more and more effective – it'll be very clear that you'll never be able to reach those targets if you have certain kinds of equipment in your buildings. So, we'll be urging them in the right direction and, again, providing them financial assistance too.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: That's a question I want one of our experts to speak to. I don't know if Mark knows – do all of the buildings use fossil fuel? Or have they started conversion to renewables? I think the answer is, too many still [inaudible] fossil fuel, but you can speak to the specifics.

Director Daniel Zarrilli, Mayor's Office of Sustainability: Absolutely, I think the big distinction is that fossil fuels are typically used for heating and hot water. A lot of big buildings also utilize steam energy. So, yes, many buildings have made conversions, but it's not a wholesale conversion, it's about reducing your overall demand both on the – for heating and hot water, as well as for electricity.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Our deadlines are faster, if I remember correctly. So, the – I'm going to have Lisette Camilo, our DCAS commissioner come up on the specifics. But we – as you're going to hear from the numbers – I'm going to repeat them – that with city buildings, 1,211 already completed or in progress. 420 NYCHA buildings completed or in progress. Our goal, and we said it in the original plan, is to reach all of our buildings of any size and get this done as quickly as possible. And we want the fastest – and again, it's the right thing to do for the environment, but I remind everyone another really good-news thing about this is when you do a retrofit, you ultimately save money, it ultimately pays for itself. So, it's in our interest.

Commissioner Lisette Camilo, Department of Citywide Administrative Services: Yes, we're very confident that we will meet the deadline for our internal City-owned buildings. We did an analysis and about 25 percent of the municipal buildings will require deep-energy retrofits. We are confident that we have the capital and the plan to make that happen.

Question: [Inaudible]

Commissioner Camilo: It's about 425 that require the deep-energy retrofits, and about 65 percent of the entire building stock either don't need retrofits, or very minor work.

Question: [Inaudible]

Commissioner Camilo: We don't have that costed out, but we do have $2.7 billion in the capital budget to address all of those needs.

Question: [Inaudible] last September, you said that the City was on track to meet the 80 by 50 –

Mayor: 80 by 50, yeah.

Question: [Inaudible] more voluntarily, cooperatively. I'm wondering, what changed your mind [inaudible] and what kind of response [inaudible]

Mayor: You know, I think we gave people a very fair amount of time in the private sector to come forward and really agree to voluntary goals that will be sufficient. I'm not shocked they didn't, but I'm glad we went through the process of giving them the opportunity. I think it educated people. I think it makes clear the process was fair. Look, folks in the private sector often are resistant to change, and are often resistant to spending money, even if it's in the interest of the earth, and their children and grandchildren, and even if they're going to make them money back. But time was up is the answer. Time was up – it was time to move to mandates. You've seen some of the hyperbole this morning from the Real Estate Board, which is just nonsensical to me. Of course, you've got some of the great buildings in this city – I'm not an expert on the Freedom Tower, but I believe it was made with appropriate standards. You know, there's plenty of people in the private sector who recognize this can be done. There's too few who are coming forward and doing it themselves – that's when it's time for mandates.

Go ahead.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: I gave you a lot, brother. I'll come back to you.

Go ahead.

Question: Mr. Mayor, what is the average cost of retrofits and how long will it take on average [inaudible]

Mayor: Okay, I heard the first part – and again, some lucky expert can come forward – what is the average cost of retrofit? And what's the second?

Question: How long will it be on average [inaudible]

Mayor: How long on average –

Question: Will it take to make up the cost.

Mayor: To make up the cost – okay, to make the money back.

Director Chambers: So, average cost definitely depends on building size. We're estimating around – you know, $1,500 is the base for a lot of some of the minor upgrades.

Mayor: [Inaudible]

Director Chambers: For a typical – a base, 25,000 square-foot building. So, as you get higher, there's going to be more investment. When this starts – this is for when you have to do the larger investments for big boilers, it can move to upwards of a million dollars for similar buildings. As far as the timeline to repay those investments – that's one of the benefits of pursuing the pace-financing that the Mayor discussed. It utilizes a longer timeline to pay back those investments – a timeline up to about 20 years, versus seven years – what is typical for private investment.

Mayor: I think the question was more when does retrofitting pay for itself because of the energy savings and the cost reductions. Just broad guidelines –

Director Chambers: Broad guidelines – between 5 and 15 years, depending on the investment.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: I think we need to have him come back because I think there's a lot of nuance in it, but let's see if we can get you that.

Who has not gone yet? Jillian?

Question: [Inaudible] has been in the Council for a while. I'm just curious why no one in the Council is here [inaudible]

Mayor: We spoke to – I spoke to the Speaker, we've been speaking extensively with Council staff and we've been speaking to the chair of the Environmental Protection Committee – Councilmember Constantinides. Again, there's a lot of agreement. There are some areas that have still not been ironed out. We adamantly believe it was time to start moving, so we're announcing our vision. We'll not go with the Council to calendar things and to work on the specifics through the legislative process. Just came to the conclusion that it was time to go.

Question: [Inaudible] I don't think there's a permanent head of the Department of Environmental Protection [inaudible]

Mayor: There's an excellent acting head – he's excellent.

Question: I'm curious if you have any plans that would make the acting head the permanent commissioner of the department, or you're looking for somebody –

Mayor: We'll have more to say later in the year. But Commissioner Sapienza is doing an outstanding job. I'd say it even if he wasn't here.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Well, you can see it in the article this morning. But the notion that coming up with sane energy standards and helping to save the earth would somehow inhibit normal buildings in New York City I found outrageous. We're going to – you know, life's going to go on. Again, this has been something that has been proven to work. Some enlightened companies have already taken such actions. It's time for everyone to take them. And again, I want to emphasize, I get the little guys, the small owners for whom the up-front costs are daunting. That's why we're going to provide public financing to help make that work and we believe it's a great equation. As Mark said, if your time for realizing the savings is between five and 15 years, and you've got a low-cost loan that you're paying off over 20 years – that's a very, very fair equation. But for the big guys, they can handle it, they just don't like to spend money.

Question: Is the article you're referring to the Washington Post?

Mayor: Yes.

Question: Would you mind just explaining why you thought the Washington Post was the best outlet to have this information.

Mayor: Yeah, I'm going to shock you here – I don't actually decide who we talk to in the media on each article. So, you can have a separate conversation with Eric Phillips about that.

Mayor: Go ahead, anyone who hasn't asked? Yes?

Question: [inaudible]

Mayor: What is considered a small building? Someone – what's our cut off?

Below 25,000 sq ft.

Yoav?

Question: [Inaudible] New York City is on track to achieve the vision 20 x 80 goal. I just wanted to clarify what has changed since then because this seems pretty drastic a year later?

Mayor: So, we said in the announcement of the 80 x 50 goals that they would be achieved either by a voluntary action of the private sector or by mandate, so baked into that vision was that something was going to change one way or another. But this is also an acknowledgement that we have to go faster, and we have to achieve more earlier. So we're still aligned with the 80 x 50, but this will put us on a faster timeline because again that previous global goal, which is in the Paris agreement – the two percent growth in global temperature, two percent Celsius growth in temperature – that now needs to be, in our view and I think a lot of people around the world believe this – we need to go even farther especially because of the action of President Trump. So we are aligning to the 1.5 degree increase, so it's a tougher, higher standard. That means doing more earlier. That's what the mandate was given to all of our City agencies – to come back with what they could do to help us do more earlier. This is the first piece of several to achieve that higher goal. So we've always been on 80 x 50. We always knew the buildings had to change radically to achieve the 80 x 50 goal. This is now the way to force that change, and it's specifically speeds up the trajectory so more of it will happen earlier.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: We're ready to move as quickly as possible. Again, I think the Council has issues they're working through. If they're ready to go in the coming weeks, we are. If for any reason they're not, we'd be ready to immediately after.

Yes?

Question: Are these the kind of upgrades that landlords could charge their tenants more money for?

Mayor: A little bit louder.

Question: Are these the kinds of upgrades that landlords can charge their tenants more money for?

Mayor: We want to ensure landlords don't do that. So this gets to a very, very important issue around affordable housing. In this plan we separate out the affordable housing buildings. We put them on a different timeline on purpose. We intend to work with a lot of other people in the City and State who want changes in rent regulation in general. They've wanted them even before this – to go to Albany to achieve a series of changes. The current approach to what's called 'major capital improvements' MCIs is broken to begin with. It's totally unfair to tenants. Landlords have been taking advantage of tenants, making quote-unquote "improvements" charging the tenants forever even when the improvements paid off, and they've been using it as a way to also force out tenants. We don't accept any of that. That's all broken. It has to be fixed with legislation in Albany. Rent regulation needs to be strengthened. There's a whole series of changes that we have to make in rent regulation.

While we're doing that we want to make sure that when it comes to energy retrofit that tenants are held harmless entirely. Here's why – this is not even like other theoretical MCIs. This is an improvement that is not only good for the Earth and will be a matter of law. It also ultimately pays for itself, so there's no reason to burden tenants. Landlords are going to get their money back one way or another, so it's going to be a real simple ground rule from our point of view. A landlord has a requirement – legal requirement – you don't do it, we're going to charge you millions of dollars if you're a really big landlord. And we're going to go to Albany to fix the MCI law so this is considered entirely outside of that.

Who has not gone? Who has not gone?

Anyone not gone? Back to you, Rich.

Question: Mr. Mayor –

Mayor: You're supposed to now say is Trump Tower one of these buildings?

[Laughter]

Question: Well let me ask, is Trump Tower one of these buildings?

[Laughter]

Mayor: Same answer. We'll come back to you.

Go ahead.

Question: My question was [inaudible] is there an overall percentage goal you're shooting for here in reductions in greenhouses gases and by what date?

Mayor: Okay, this – so, I really pushed everyone to get this super clear because there's so many different numbers it's kind of hard for us lay people to understand. I hope I will break it down for you here for everyone's good. 80 x 50 was the global standard even before the Paris Agreement. That was considered by the United Nations the tough standard that needed to be met if we actually wanted to avert disaster – 80 reduction of emission everywhere by 2050. New York City aligned to that goal three years ago, but then we had to put all the building blocks in place to show how we would do it. That standard is based on 2005 – globally it's based on 2005 as the base year. So you say 80 percent of what? 80 percent reduction in emission everywhere compared to the emission levels on the Earth in 2005. And then you can look at it in any city, in any state by their local emissions level.

The previous efforts made by the City – and they've been substantial, and I certainly want to give Mayor Bloomberg credit as well because he started the ball rolling, and I obviously appreciate what he's done with C40 which has been very, very important. The previous efforts locally and the previous effort nationally and globally covered some of that ground already – that 80 percent – and that magic number so far we've gone, how much? 15 – 15 percent. So we've got to cover 80 percent. We're about a sixth of the way there already. The building retrofits alone will cover another seven percent. That will get us to 22 percent of our 80 percent goal. The other elements you'll see in this plan today, and the other elements coming up in the coming weeks – a lot of different pieces will add to that improvement. It's many, many, many pieces of what we do. So I mentioned before for things like having an all-electric car fleet for example. Something that we're going to come back in a number of weeks on – how we're going to increase the amount of renewable energy used by the city. These are all going to be contributing pieces, but it ultimately has to add up to an 80 percent reduction by 2050. So this is the single biggest piece that can be achieved, and this is why we're making it the focal point.

Way back was there one? Juliet?

Question: Mr. Mayor, what did you think of the vandalism of the charging bull –

Mayor: We're still on this, and we'll come right to that. Let's just stay on anything on –

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: I don't see that, so let's stay on this plan, and then we'll come to all other questions. On this plan – Gloria?

Question: [Inaudible] you said the Council has issues they're going to work through, do you know what those issues are?

Mayor: I obviously will let them speak for themselves. It's been a very collegial process, a lot of dialogue. Everyone's trying to figure out how to make a plan that has teeth, that is workable, that is fair. Of course we expect all sorts of complaints from the landlords. We're not surprised by that. But I think because there's a lot of moving parts in this plan the Council still has some things they're trying to work through. That's normal, but we're convinced this plan is ready to go.

Question: Do you suspect after [inaudible]?

Mayor: No, again, I don't know what part I'm not articulating here. There's a high level of agreement. We've been talking together. We've been agreeing on a lot of stuff. Their vision and our vision are very similar. We consider our vision. They have some other things they're still concerned about. Normal legislative process – executive and legislative branch – everyone is working together. I believe in the final analysis there will be a high level of alignment.

Question: Is there a way to actually test the level of emissions of [inaudible] test the emission of a car [inaudible]?

Mayor: I'm going to see if it's Mark or someone else – is there a way to test the emissions of a building the same way you test the emissions of a car? Is there some way to get a standard? Whoever has got that answer, come on over.

Director Chambers: It's not the same of a car in terms of what's coming out of the emissions, but yes the quantity of emissions is relative to how much energy they are consuming, so that's how the calculation is formulated. So you consume more energy, and that energy is typically burned if you're looking at boilers.

Mayor: Just give some real life of how you measure that.

Director Chambers: So, if you have a building that has a boiler in the basement. That boiler is taking natural gas in typically and there's a small flame, and that's what keeping the water hot typically. The gas that's being burned there, we calculate the quantity of that gas, and that's how much – that's how we determine how much emissions that building is responsible for.

Question: [Inaudible]

Director Chambers: Yes, and not just from buildings – also from waste and from transportation as well.

Question: I'm sorry if you already covered this but how will building owners know exactly what their emission are [inaudible]?

Director Chambers: So, I believe the Mayor and Tony mentioned that the program that we utilize is called the retrofit accelerator, which is directly targeted to connecting building owners to technology, to resources, and to specific technical expertise about what exactly they can do to meet their targets.

Mayor: Jillian?

Question: Mayor, just to come back to the question about landlords passing on through rent increases – what about tenants who are maybe not lucky enough to be in affordable housing, haven't won a lottery for that, whose landlords could raise the rents and say well it's because I have to put in this new boiler – I mean is there any way for the City to try to mitigate that, or what would you say to those tenants?

Mayor: Look, our first focus is going to be affordable housing because we have a legal way to put those protections in place because of rent regulation. I'll look for every opportunity to protect tenants in this. Again, it's quite clear that ultimately the landlords get this money back. So we're going to look for every other way to improve the ability to make sure that any increases are not passed on. That being said, the bottom line need here is profound. We have to get this done, and we have to get it done soon. I said to the team earlier this is an Apollo 13 situation. Failure is not an option. So we have to get these retrofits to happen, but we're going to do everything we can to protect all kinds of tenants in the process.

Willie?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: A little louder.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Willie, I know you're going to have this question probably for the next 54 days. It's just not –

Question: Why wouldn't –

Mayor: It's just not – it has nothing to do with anybody else's calendar. It's just about getting the work done. The preference was a voluntary system. I said that from the very beginning. We worked hard to achieve it. We came to the conclusion it was not going to happen the way it needed to. Everyone has been working as expeditiously as possible to get this whole plan to come together. Tony or Mark if you want to add to that, and you said have another question for Mark?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mark: So, look as we mentioned in response to Richard's questions, we'll give you a list of some of the buildings. It's not as obvious as you think. There are actually relatively new buildings that are in excess of what these standards are, some of them quite substantially. Some that were build yesterday afternoon are probably much closer to these targets and may exceed them in many cases. Some owners have done what is in their economic interest, which is to make the investments and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, and they'll be not troubled by these standards because they've already met them. But there are a lot of buildings – 14,000 some buildings – many of them residential, many of them commercial that are not even close to what those standards are. Some of those are as new as the last 10 years or so. Some of them are much older than that.

So no, the reason the Mayor used that is that is exactly the notion. It's not those particular buildings those. It's all the buildings in the city – those included – but also all the buildings if you turned your head the other way. So the standard here has to apply across the board. Everybody's going to have to reach a certain level. If some have done better than that, that's great. We have platinum LEED level buildings in New York City that are doing a terrific job. At Cornell we just opened a building – the Cornell campus – that's a zero emissions net building. That's great. They're in terrific shape, but we have to work on the ones that are far, far below those standards.

Question: [Inaudible] obviously you're going to try to stop any rent increases from happening, but that if some do, you know, this an urgent problem that has to be tackled. I'm just curious why you wouldn't use the same standards towards something like congestion pricing where people might also see some outlay of money in an effort to reduce traffic which also causes emissions, many environmentalist would –

Mayor: Point one, this is a bigger problem than vehicles period. This is the number one pollution problem in New York City. And so it's apples and oranges right there as a matter of degree. Point two, there is no congestion pricing plan before us right now. I understand you guys have a job to do, but you've spoken extensively about a plan that doesn't exist. If a plan comes forward, I'll assess it. My response has been to everything we've seen previously, which again I consider a regressive tax, and I consider not addressing a host of equity issues. Bring forward a real plan, we'll look at it then. I have a different plan, which I think will address a core question there, which is about the subways and also will get more and more people to use mass transit, which is a millionaire's tax. You've seen a number of NYC Ferry going by – another way that people are going to get out of their cars and get into mass transit. But everything pales in comparison to addressing the buildings issue.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: That's a fair statement.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: If someone does, we'll look at it, but this is not – that's obviously – congestion pricing is something that has to be resolved in Albany. I have not seen a plan I can support previously. I haven't seen a new plan yet. This is what we can do and we think it's going to have a huge impact.

Who else? Go ahead.

Question: You mentioned this plan is the equivalent to taking 900,000 cars off the road. You also mentioned [inaudible] do you have anything else coming up that you think would help take more cars –

Mayor: Do you really think I'm going to say what's coming up?

[Laughter]

Question: You said there was solar – there's going to be solar involved –

Mayor: What do you take me for, sir? We have a series of announcements coming up. Once they're ready, but not before they're ready.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: No, what I'm saying to you is – I just said it before, I'm going to repeat it. One, in this plan, this is the biggest piece. And in the plan are other pieces, not just the building retrofits, but other things you're going to see if what we're putting forward today. Then you will see additional announcements related to the 90 days we gave each agency to come up with every conceivable way they could work towards the 1.5 degree celsius goal. I foreshadowed that some of that is going to be about renewable energy. Then you're going to see later some additional announcements about renewable energy, but all of that is still being perfected.

In terms of cars off the road, there's a lot of things we want to do, but it begins with maximizing everything in the way of mass transit; select bus service, which continues to grow; NYC Ferry, which continues to grow; Citi Bike, which continues to grow; ultimately, light rail. That's the way forward.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: I don't know the answer to that question. Let's see if our panel of experts – anyone got that?

Deputy Mayor Shorris: Again, the premise of this is, these are investments that save buildings money. Landlords should be doing this to reduce their operating costs for the building, not to increase it. How individual buildings make their decisions about what their maintenance costs are for condos, co-ops and others obviously has a lot of factors going into it, and that's a decision in some cases of the owners of the co-op, and in some cases of the sponsor of the building. But the fundamental issue here is, these are improvements that should reduce costs, not raise them. If people have trouble financing it initially in order to access those savings, we'll help them. But that's really what they should be doing.

Mayor: And stating the obvious, if we help them with the financing, we put ground rules on the situation as well. And we'll have more to say on that as it plays out.

Yes?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Between 500 – just by normal projects, since the schedules for buildings to upgrade – each company and each landlord has some kind of schedule for improving their physical plant – just looking at that over the timeline we're talking about here, sheer randoms numbers would suggest it's going to be between 500 and 1,000 a year to begin with just naturally. We're obviously hoping the financing is going to pump that number up and encourage people to move quicker. The fact that there are real consequences up ahead encourages people to move quicker. The fact that they already know what the standards are going to be in 2030, why would they do an upgrade now and then do another one later? Why not just go right to that standard? It makes a hell of a lot more sense. It'll save them money just to get with it now. So, I think you'll see those numbers tick up even more, but just naturally we should have something around the order of 500 minimum a year that are making these changes.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: 2030. Did you have one, or not? Okay.

Question: Will design be taken into consideration? [Inaudible]

Mayor: Well, look, again, them message is going to be you have to meet these standards, so that is going to encourage everyone to factor that into their designs. It's not the aesthetics, but it gets to – if you're going to meet these standards, you then have to think about how to make your building align to them, or, if you're building something new, you have to include it in it. So, that will affect designs.

Last call – okay, Bobby?

Question: [Inaudible] until 2030, right?

Mayor: I'm going to check – when the law takes full effect – so, again, you're going to see a lot of buildings making the changes earlier, but they have until 2030 to get right. At that point, these stringent penalties start to take effect.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: No, because – one, again – I learned all of this in the last 24 hours about building maintenance cycles, so I don't expect any of you to be an expert any more than I was. There's a certain amount happening anyway. So, it just stands to reason – if you own a building and every 10 years, let's say, you're upgrading, you're putting in a new boiler or whatever it may be, now you find out that there's a set of standards not that far in the future that are very stringent, you would be well served to meet them sooner rather than later. There is financing available if you are a smaller building and you don't have a lot of resources. We think a lot of buildings are going to align to them now. A lot of times when you see these changes in public policy, it creates a momentum that more and more people just have to deal with it. We'll have more and more trained people – that's another important part of the equation, Bobby, that, you know, we have this Green Jobs Corps. I think it's going to be 3,000 – Tony, is that right – ultimately, we'll train. So, there's going to be more workforce available. The standards are really going to be clear so people have a pretty easy pathway – get with these standards now so you don't pay later. Get with these standards now, you'll actually start to save more money. You need financing? We've got financing. And I think you'll see momentum in the industry that they would be better served to just start aligning to this rather than waiting.

Okay, last call on this topic. Going once – going twice – okay, new topics. Yes, sir.

Question: Yes, speaking of climate change, forecasters are talking about Hurricane Jose out in the Atlantic right now, and some are saying by Tuesday it could be a close call around here maybe. [Inaudible]
­
Mayor: We're very focused. Tony, if you want to add come on over. But I will state the obvious before Tony goes into the specifics. We talk about hurricanes literally every day during hurricane season. Tony and I are in constant dialogue – Joe Esposito at OEM. And we have learned – I have the greatest respect in the world for the National Weather Service, and I've also seen predictions change pretty suddenly. So the minute anything might come to New York we start a preparation process like it will come to New York, and then there is a day – it could be four or five days out – when it's time to decide do we think the likelihood is that? If the likelihood is then we start a whole series of preparations and obviously public information. So Tony as to Jose at this moment? I know there is an 11 o'clock National Weather Service report.

Deputy Mayor Shorris: Yes, we watch. We get a couple of forecasts every day, and we watch to see whether the trajectory changes – the core trajectory as well as the risk around it. We get a forecast that shows us boundaries of where it might be. Right now we're not looking at substantial New York City impact, but that obviously could change at any point. We track essentially all the storms as they begin of the coast of Africa. The sequences, they begin over the African subcontinent. They organize into storms off the African coast. At that point that's when we begin our tracking and we watch them through the Atlantic as they move either North or South and organize and become either stronger or weaker. Jose we've been watching since it began exactly off the coast of Africa a week ago. So we'll continue to watch and as the Mayor says we're on this constantly.

Mayor: And Tony will have – Tony, you can check and see if the 11 o'clock has come in, and if there's something we can add in the course of press conference or else we'll update people later on today.

Back there?

Question: Mr. Mayor State Senator Jeff Klein held a press conference [inaudible] sex offenders on homeless shelters are on the rise in the city. Can you confirm that and what if anything the City is doing to combat this issue?

Mayor: So everything we do conforms to the law, and the law sets different standards depending on what people have done. We have an obligation to house someone who is homeless. Obviously we're not going to leave people on the street. We also have an obligation to public safety. And I will remind you, unlike in the past, the NYPD now supervises all shelter security. So anyone who ends up in a shelter has to meet a legal requirement and has to be there based on a security system that's supervised by the NYPD. There are individuals who would never be allowed in depending on their past history. The other individuals if the offense was minor enough and the law dictates that they be treated differently that we treat differently.

So that's the standard we're using right now. We'll certainly be talking to Senator Klein. We all have a common interest in safety, but I think if you look at the specifics it's a little more complicated than what you may be hearing.

Marcia?

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: Little bit louder?

Question: I have several questions.

Mayor: Well, you do two to begin, and we'll come back around.

Question: [Inaudible] how do you feel about Barry Diller decision [inaudible]

Mayor: So, look I think it's sad that it's come to this. I think Barry Diller was trying to do something good for New York City, and I very much supported this effort. It was very generous. He was putting a lot of his own money in to create a publicly accessible park for everybody. So I'm disappointed that it's come to this, but I'm not disappointed in him. I mean I think he did everything he could do, and I appreciate his efforts, but I think he got to a point – I can't speak for him – but I think he got to a point where he felt there just wasn't a path forward. We're certainly going to look for anyway to revive the concept, but I don't know of any other source of revenue that would match what he was offering.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: No, the City is not going to cover that expense. The only way we could do it is if there were private funds.

Question: [Inaudible]

Mayor: A little bit louder

Question: [Inaudible] the environmentalists were too [inaudible]

Mayor: Look, there are a lot of things going on. I won't try to micro analyze it. I think the efforts to stop it were a mistake. I've said that very clearly. I think we had a chance here to have someone else's money pay for a public park in a world where we don't have enough money in the public sector. I think it would've been a good thing for everybody. I think it was a generous action on Mr. Diller's part. I think it's very unfortunate that it's not moving forward, but we're not going to use public money. We don't have another source right now. I think the opponents should've been more willing to compromise, but here we are.

Let me go to other people, I'll come back to you.

Juliet?

Question: Mr. Mayor, back to the charging bull this blue substance that was put on it was done to protest the president's negation of the Paris accord. What do you think about that as a form of protest and also [inaudible]?

Mayor: [Inaudible] bad form of protest. I am someone who has been to my share of protests, and you don't commit acts of vandalism in my view. In a democratic society you use peaceful protest, you use things like civil disobedience and you follow the rules of the police in any situation, and you don't deface property and you don't destroy property. And by the way, you know, look at the civil rights movement in this country which fundamentally changed this country without ever resorting to vandalism or violence. So that's the wrong way to do things. I think going forward; people, most the vast majority of people who want change. The vast majority of people who oppose President Trump's decision on the Paris Agreement do not resort to anything but peaceful protest.

Question: You know that these statues [inaudible]?

Mayor: I think they've been political targets for millennia. I don't think this is anything new Juliet. But the bottom line is again that is the acts of very few. We will obviously do everything we can to make sure there is consequences, but this is not a new reality in you know the world of public life.

Question: [Inaudible] Board of Elections [inaudible] –

Mayor: Yes.

Question: – primary voters that violates the law [inaudible] last year. Is there anything [inaudible] Board of Elections [inaudible]?

Mayor: I think you know, the Board of Elections time has come and gone. I think it's time for fundamental change. This model doesn't work, period. And I wish we could change it at the city level, it frustrates me greatly. It's another example that should not be decided by Albany but is. I will go to Albany and the first thing we could do, and there is a piece of legislation that exists right now is professionalize the agency and give the executive director a professional role not dependent on a political board to make fundamental changes in the operations. I believe we should find a way to work with Albany to compel the board to take the $20 million we've offered for modernization. Any way you slice it; this current model is unacceptable and must change.

Question: [Inaudible]?

Mayor: I don't know about this incident, so I don't want to comment on the specifics. We have adamantly suggested to the state that more steps be taken to ensure that ICE officers are not present in court buildings. The same way we do not allow them on school property or our public hospital property, unless there is a very specific thing that has been agreed to in advance by our legal teams. So I think it is very problematic to have ICE just showing up in court buildings. I think that's dangerous to the process of people who happen to be undocumented participating in the judicial process, working with law enforcements – the whole point that Commissioner O'Neill has made, and Commissioner Bratton before made that this endangers the ability of law enforcement to do their job. I don't know the latest in terms of the state's actions, but we've made our position very clear to the state, which obviously runs the Office of Court Administration.

Mayor: Yes, Gloria.

Question: Mr. Mayor, I wanted to ask you about [inaudible] if you would willing to put more city money [inaudible] project in order to [inaudible] or are you just going to continue to push [inaudible]?

Mayor: A couple of things. The community spoke in the election. You know a lot of times people – I say this to my staff all the time, they use the phrase – this is not a comment on you but just a general comment on our language we use. We say "the community", there is no such thing as any individual, any organization that represents the views of all the members of a community. We're New Yorkers; there is 8.5 million people who have 8.5 million different opinions. So there are people in Crown Heights who do not like the current plan, that's obvious. And some of what they've said, some of the suggestions are things we're going to look at aways the things we could improve the project for sure. But Councilmember Cumbo was very unfairly attacked. There was an election, she won a clear victory. I think that speaks volumes to the fact that sometimes the loudest voices do not represent the views of the majority. But look, we want that to be the best possible project for the community, we're going to look at every to improve it. I remind you, it is a project that comes with a lot of affordable housing, and something that the community has wanted for decades, which is a recreation space in that armory. And we have to have a way to pay for it on ongoing basis. So, the plan as its written now is a sustainable plan that can actually keep that facility open for the community for the long haul at an affordable level. That's what we need to come out of this in the end. But were going to work with the Councilmember to see if there is a way to improve the project that would win her support and be more comfortable for the community.

Question: [Inaudible].

Mayor: Its – that's what I said, we're going to work with her and see if there's things we can do that would be helpful to the concerns of the community and would win her support so we could move forward.

Question: [Inaudible].

Mayor: Not going to speak to specifics. Marcia.

Question: Going back to Barry Diller Park –

Mayor: Again?

Question: Going back to Barry Diller Park –

Mayor: Yeah.

Question: I want you to name the conversations him, seeking [inaudible].

Mayor: No, I had spoken to Barry over the years about this, I had made very clear and I've said it very publically that the City of New York fundamentally supported his project and we were going to do everything we could to help make it happen. Again, I think he did something very generous and I think he's been treated unfairly. But there was nothing left to do. I think he came to a conclusion that was unfortunately pretty logical. That it had just dragged on too long and there was no way to move it forward that he could foresee. So, he knows that we tried everything we could to be helpful, but sometimes a good plan just doesn't happen. Melissa.

Question: Mr. Mayor [inaudible] –

Mayor: Yep.

Question: [Inaudible] what [inaudible] millionaires tax [inaudible]?

Mayor: Look I think, again, I'm just going to say just a couple of quick things. One I think something has already happened that's really important. Responsibility has been laid at the doorstep that actually needed to take responsibility. And I commend you all for being a part of that process. For the first time in decades more and more New Yorkers actually know who runs the MTA. And now the Governor and the State are being held accountable, that's good, just like I am held accountable for everything that I run. And I think that is forcing action. The fact that the Governor chose Joe Lhota and Pat Foye is a good thing. The fact that Joe Lhota has an initial plan is a good thing. I'd like the Governor to now make sure that the $456 million that was taken away from the MTA by the State is returned to the MTA that will fund everything needed in the short term. The millionaire's tax I think is the best plan to move the MTA forward. But, if there are other plans, you know we'll look at them and we'll asses them. But I do think progress is being made. The other thing I want to note, and I've said before and I want to say it again strongly. I support fully the efforts to cut down on the track fires, with increasing the fines for littering. The NYPD is very ready to play a bigger role in an anti-littering efforts in the subways. We will pay for that. And meaning we'll send more officers down to do that work where ever it's needed. The NYPD is one piece of the equation. FDNY is ready to be an ever more aggressive element of addressing any crisis in the subways. I've talked to Joe Lhota about that, I've made it very clear. We'll help, we'll take that expense. And anything related to homeless folks in the subways, if there is more outreach needed. We will do that, we will pay for it. So there is pieces that I think are my part of the equation. The other parts of the equation belong to the state.

Question: Mr. Mayor, there is a forum tonight that is being held by a radio station that involve several of your mayoral competitions; Nicole Malliotakis, Bo Dietl, Sal Albanese –

Mayor: This one is WABC?

Question: Yeah [inaudible], also it includes apparently Sheriff David Clarke –

Mayor: Really? I didn't know he was running too.

Question: Apparently he'll be there.

Mayor: Well that would make it a more interesting race.

Question: Yeah, I just want to kind of get your reaction to that. [Inaudible] obviously I take you're not attending –

Mayor: I am not attending.

Question: [Inaudible].

Mayor: Yes, I think he should stick to Milwaukee. The – no I couldn't disagree with him more, I think he's been a very negative influence. I knew in advance I could not make that because we have a town hall meeting this evening in Southern Brooklyn. I did do an interview over the weekend with Rita Cosby just to be able to contribute something to what she was doing there. But look there's going to be two debates. I look forward to those two debates, but I do not look – do not anticipate debating Sheriff Clarke, he should stick to his home state.

Question: Do you think he is even qualified for the city race?

Mayor: I don't project; it's up to the debate sponsors.

Question: I'm just curious, we're getting a list of the buildings that are [inaudible] buildings are on that list, what would you – how would that make you feel?

Mayor: To be totally clear I would expect the Trump organization to act like every other landlord and fix their buildings. Yeah, it would ironic obviously if the guy who pulled out of the Paris Agreement didn't have buildings that were clean. But it wouldn't shock me. But the bottom line is we want things fixed. So, what I will say is we'll give you a sense today. And I think the famous buildings question is a very good one. But I did not note this before, I should. As we move forward we want to have an online – what's the word I'm looking for in English. A regular updating online of the buildings that have been completed and the progress we're making. So we are going to hold ourselves to a standard of reaching this overall goal. We want to show people in real time that progress is being made toward that goal. Last one.

Question: You said, you said repeatedly that November should be easier in the wake of calling people about voting, etc. Are you concerned that New Yorkers, given the turnout in the primary? Are you concerned that New Yorkers haven't gotten that message that people aren't engaged enough in coming out to vote, and does that worry you for November?

Mayor: No, I think they're apples, and oranges. I think a primary particularly one where I don't blame the media for projecting the people that it was fait accompli. But I think that's a statement of fact that that's what people received. But a primary is very, very different from a general election. When they are talking about my opponent who is a pro-Trump Republican that's a literal factual statement a pro-Trump Republican. So folks who don't like what's happening in Washington and want to speak to that have a chance to cast their vote here. Folks, who have a view on the future of this city, have a chance to cast their vote here. I think it's going to generate real interest. Because it's the first general election since November 8th. And I think that's going to be true in New Jersey, I think that's going to be true in Virginia that the general election that is going to trigger the deep interest and remind people to never sit out another election. So I think we're going to see a meaningful turnout.

Question: You had a pretty robust; Get out the vote operation –

Mayor: Yes.

Question: – campaign. Are you looking at that and saying it [inaudible] it didn't get enough people out, or are you satisfied with that number?

Mayor: I am never satisfied. I think we as a society have to crack the code on ways to get people to vote with huge numbers going forward. And I think it has something to do with scourging much greater civic participation in-between election. But obviously it requires changes in our electoral law. So one thing I want to state again is on November 7th I will no longer be in the elections business. So I am going to focus my attentions on getting electoral reform. And we're going to start very early on this to build up ahead of steam to force change in Albany. It's too hard to vote, it's another big piece of the equation. In some ways much more elemental than what people think of the candidates or how they felt about Donald Trump is it's just too hard to vote. And we know this is one of the hardest states to vote in. And we know for a fact that the easier that the voting is made, the higher participations levels go. You see it in Oregon is a great example, Minnesota is a great example. So we need early voting, we need same day registration, we need a functioning board of elections. As we fix those problems, were going to see more and more participation. So that's the big answer in my view. But in terms of our Get out the vote operation look, I think it was a really vibrant operation. The overall vote total for the city for the primary was higher than 0-9 that's a good sign, that's progress, because 0-9 would have been the last one at all comparable. We're going to be built on that, were going to put more energy still into Get out the vote for November. So I am hopeful, but right after that my focus is going to be on fundamental electoral reform because we cannot get turnout to be what it should be until fix the laws in this state.

Thanks, everyone.

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