Mayor Eric Adams on Tuesday issued an executive order directing city agencies to figure out which violations most commonly affect small businesses, and recommend changes including reducing or eliminating those penalties.
Adams, who campaigned on a firmly pro-business stance, used an appearance at Chinatown's iconic Pearl River Mart to unveil the plan.
"I know this city. This city is resilient. We just need to get out of the way and allow that resiliency to happen. We have used our agencies to turn the American Dream into a nightmare. Every day, all day, in the way of small businesses, not allowing them to flourish and grow. Resenting the fact when an agency walks through the door, not to say 'we're here to help,' but 'we're here to hurt' - and that has to stop," Adams said.
The order to six agencies - Department of Buildings, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Sanitation, Fire Department, Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene - is designed to reduce fines and give first-time violators warnings or periods to fix their violations.
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The agencies will have to present their recommendations within three months.