Community Board 8, like all the community boards within NYC, has an important advisory role in dealing with land use and zoning matters, the City budget, municipal service delivery and many other matters relating to their communities' welfare. Some of the major issues that Board 8 has addressed in recent years include: the creation of a comprehensive vision for the community through a 197-A Plan; the rezoning of various areas to prevent development that is out of character with a local area; amendments to the Greenbelt or Special Natural Area District provisions; and the economic revitalization of West 230th Street and Broadway.
Bronx Community Board No 8 meets the second Tuesday of every month - except in summer - in varying locations. Check the calendar for more information.
The Charter permits community residents who are not Board members to serve on Board committees. Bronx Community Board No. 8 has fourteen (14) committees that meet regularly. The committees are: Aging; Budget; Economic Development; Education; Environment & Sanitation; Health, Hospitals & Social Services; Housing; Land Use; Law, Rules & Ethics; Libraries & Cultural Affairs; Parks & Recreation; Public Safety; Traffic & Transportation; and Youth
Land Use and Zoning
Community Boards must be consulted on placement of most municipal facilities in the community and on other land use issues. They may also initiate their own plans for the growth and well being of their communities. Also, any application for a change in or variance from the zoning resolution must come before the Board for review, and the Board's position is considered in the final determination of these applications.
The City Planning Commission and the City Council approved the comprehensive plan submitted by Bronx Community Board 8 pursuant to Section 197a of the City Charter. The plan covers the entire community district, including the neighborhoods of Fieldston, Riverdale, Kingsbridge, Kingsbridge Heights, Marble Hill, Spuyten Duyvil, and Van Cortlandt Village. It also includes one of the City's four Special Natural Area Districts, designated in the Zoning Resolution to guide development in areas of outstanding natural beauty. The plan's goals are to: preserve the scale and character of those neighborhoods; strengthen protections for sensitive natural features; improve the appearance and economic vitality of local commercial districts; foster economic opportunities and access to cultural and educational facilities; create additional recreational resources, enhance existing parks and promote the greening of major corridors; and preserve and educate the public about historic resources.
Community Boards assess the needs of their own neighborhoods, meet with City agencies and make recommendations in the City's budget process to address them.
Other Community Concerns
Any problem which affects part or all of the community, from a traffic problem to deteriorating housing, is a proper concern of a Community Board.
The Community Board, its District Manager, and its office staff serve as advocates and service coordinators for the community and its residents. They cannot order any City agency or official to perform any task, but Boards are usually successful in resolving the problems they address.
Community Boards are local representative bodies. There are 59 throughout the City. Each Board consists of up to 50 unsalaried members appointed by the Borough President, with half nominated by the City Council members who represent the community district. Board members are selected by the City Council person and Borough Presidents from among active, involved people of each community, with an effort made to assure that every neighborhood is represented. Board members must reside, work, or have some other significant interest in the community.
Boards meet once each month. At these meetings, members address items of concern to the community. Board meetings are open to the public, and a portion of each meeting is reserved for the Board to hear from members of the public. In addition, Boards regularly conduct public hearings - on the City's budget, on land use matters, and on other major issues - to give the people of the community the opportunity to express their opinions.
Board committees do most of the planning and work on the issues that are acted on at Board meetings. Each Board establishes the committee structure and procedures it feels will best meet the needs of its district. Non-Board members may apply to join or work on Board committees.
The Board Office
The District Manager and the Board staff are hired by a Community Board and serve at the Board's pleasure. The District Manager establishes an office, hires staff, and implements procedures to improve the delivery of City services to the district. District Managers play many different roles. They are complaint takers, municipal mangers, information sources, community organizers, mediators, advocates, and much more. The main responsibility of the District office is to receive and resolve complaints from community residents. Many Board offices have assumed the responsibility of providing additional services. These include processing permits for block parties, street fairs, etc. In addition, some offices may handle special projects depending on community needs.