Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today announced the appointment of Dr. Frank J. Macchiarola as Chair of the City's Charter Revision Commission. The panel is charged with amending or revising the existing charters, holding public hearings in all five boroughs to solicit public input and to issue a report outlining its findings.
"I am pleased to announce the appointment of Frank J. Macchiarola as chair of the Charter Revision Commission," said Mayor Bloomberg. "With his assistance, I will appoint the remaining members of the Commission, ensuring it reflects the excellence, diversity, perspectives, and creativity of our City. I will ask the Commission to consider the adoption of nonpartisan elections for city elected officials, to strengthen the operation of city government, including the areas of budget, procurement, and agency reorganization and consolidation. Although this is a far-ranging set of issues, I believe that there will be ample time both for the Commission's deliberations and the public's active involvement."
"The Charter is the city's basic governing document," said Dr. Macchiarola. "At a time when we face unprecedented challenges, both financial and operational, it is essential that our institutions of government are organized in a way that is effective and responsive to current and future realities. As the Commission pursues the charge of the Mayor and builds on the extensive work by the previous four Commissions, the commission will examine the entire range of the Charter and carefully consider the recommendations from interested parties and the public at large."
Dr. Macchiarola is President of St. Francis College in Brooklyn. His service to New York City stretches back three decades and he was most recently called upon to be the mediator who helped settle the Broadway musicians strike. He served as chief of staff of the Emergency Financial Control Board (1975-1976), schools chancellor (1978-1983), and president of the New York City Partnership (1983-1987). He chaired the Districting Commission (1990-1992) and he has been a member of two Charter Revision Commissions (1986-1988 and 1983), the Campaign Finance Board (1988), the Water Board (1985-1988), and the Tax Study Commission (1986-1990), and chaired a New York City Partnership study of the Board of Elections (1985). His career has included service at the City's public and private universities: as dean of the Benjamin N. Cardozo Law School, Yeshiva University; as professor and Assistant Vice President, Columbia University; as professor and Assistant Vice President, at Baruch College and The Graduate School and University Center, The City University of New York.
Dr. Macchiarola earned a baccalaureate degree at St. Francis College, a law degree from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in public law and government, Columbia University. He is married to Mary T. Collins, the father of three sons, and the grandfather of three. He lives in Rockaway Point, Queens.
Mayor Bloomberg and Chairman Macchiarola also announced the appointment the Executive Director and Chief Counsel for the Charter Revision Commission.
Alan Gartner, currently Director of Research, Office of Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott, will serve as the Commission's Executive Director. Dr. Gartner has served as Executive Director, Division of Special Education, New York City Public Schools; Executive Director, New York City Districting Commission; and at The Graduate Center, CUNY, as Dean for Research and Co-Director, National Center on Educational Restructuring and Inclusion. He is the author or co-author of greater than two-dozen books on education, race, social policy, and disability. He is the father of three children and grandfather of four. He lives in Battery Park City.
Anthony Crowell, currently Special Counsel to the Mayor, will serve as Chief Counsel. Mr. Crowell has extensive experience with the process of Charter revision. He served as Co-Executive Director to the 2002 Charter Revision Commission, General Counsel of the 2001 Commission and Counsel to the 1999 Commission. Prior to joining the City, he managed government affairs and policy at the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) in Washington, D.C. He is an adjunct professor both at Brooklyn Law School and New York Law School, where he teaches municipal law courses. He has published numerous articles on public management and legal affairs. He lives in Brooklyn.