James F. “Jim” Gennaro is a former Democratic member of the New York City Council, where he represented the 24th Council District and chaired the Council’s Committee on Environmental Protection. Jim served from 2002 to 2013. On January 10th 2014, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the appointment of former New York City Councilman James F. Gennaro as Deputy Commissioner for New York City Sustainability and Resiliency at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Gennaro stepped down from the Cuomo Administration on May 1, 2020, to run for his former seat in the NYC Council in a Special Election to be held on February 2, 2021.
Although most closely associated with nationally-acclaimed environmental lawmaking, Jim authored more than 50 laws covering many issues, including increasing protections for women against domestic violence, protecting consumers from unscrupulous bankruptcy counselors, and in 2013 Gennaro authored and passed a law that raises the age of sale of tobacco products and e-cigarettes to 21, known as the “Tobacco 21” law, the first-in-the-nation law of its kind. In 2020, Tobacco 21 was adopted as national policy. A recent issue of the New England Journal of Medicine states that the Tobacco 21 movement has saved “countless lives” across the United States.
Jim is running for City Council because he believes his crisis management experience is needed in managing the COVID crisis (Jim took office for his first term in the Council 3 months after 9/11 when the City was in crisis). He also believes his budget experience is needed to help see the City through the COVID financial recovery, and his proven, practical, common sense approach to governing is sorely needed when the prevailing political climate seems to favor political philosophy over fair, results-oriented government. Jim will return common-sense governance in a manner that reflects the values of our community and he will fight to restore public safety and protect and enhance our quality of life.
Governing, Jim believes, is an action verb -- it is about doing, it is about achieving, not merely discussing. No one in the entire City has his depth of experience and legislative achievement with the Council, and no candidate in this race has his proven record of service to all of the residents and to all the diverse racial, ethnic, and language constituencies of the 24th District. His proven record of service to all of the residents of our community and his unparalleled record of legislative accomplishments at City Hall make Jim the obvious choice in this election -- his experience is the difference.