New York Tech Meetup steps up to help shape NYC’s tech policy
By Devindra Hardawar | VentureBeat.com,
After successfully rallying New York City’s tech community around policy issues like SOPA and PIPA, as well as the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, the New York Tech Meetup (NYTM) aims to play a more steady role when it comes to the city’s technology policy.
NYTM is taking advantage of its more than 29,000 members by starting discussions around significant policy issues like making high-speed broadband readily available at low-cost and making tech-skills a component of the education system. The results of the discussions will be brought to the attention of candidates running for public office later this year.
With elections taking place for Mayor, Public Advocate, Comptroller, Borough Presidents, and City Council seats, this year is a good opportunity for the tech community to make its voice heard. NYTM has been the heart of NYC’s burgeoning tech community for years, so it’s the perfect outfit to actually make a difference with city politicians.
The meetup is encouraging its members to add to its policy goals, share the initiative over social media, and host public policy meetups of their own.
“It’s hard to overestimate the importance of the opportunity ahead of us,” said the NYTM board in a blog post today. “The policies implemented by public officials going forward will have a profound effect on the city’s future, so by doing our part to ensure the candidates are well-informed and are committed to implementing sound policies, we’ll have played a significant role in helping make a better NYC for everyone for a long time to come.”
Here are the initial policy goals NYTM is pursuing:
1. Make New York City the most wired city on earth by providing every New Yorker and every New York business regardless of location access to the fastest broadband networks at the lowest cost.
2. Reinvent the education system to allow every child, young adult, and all New Yorkers to develop the skills necessary to thrive in a 21st century economy.
3. Make New York City the clear choice for entrepreneurs, software engineers, and other technically skilled professionals to start a business and build a career by making it easy to find partners, financing, office space and housing, employees, and access to markets.
4. Support the appointment of a deputy mayor for technology innovation with an appropriate budget charged with the responsibility of reinventing New York City government with a 21st century framework.
5. Make New York City’s system for civic participation the most open, transparent, accountable, participatory, and innovative in the world.
6. Make New York City the most citizen-connected community on earth, where its people connect with each other to unleash a powerful 21st century economy: Selling to each other, renting to each other, funding each other, sharing with each other, coworking with each other, meeting up with each other, and hiring each other.
7. Support public policies that would ensure that technology and the opportunities available to the tech community can reach all New York’s citizens, and help solve issues related to healthcare, human rights and justice, gender equality, transportation, the environment, and other issues of fundamental importance to all New Yorkers.
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