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A special Villager supplement pp. 13 - 24 Volume 83, Number 4 $1.00 West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Hudson Square, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933 June 27 - July 3, 2013 park bill made little noise, could have huge impact BY LINCOLN ANDERSON As the State Legislature’s session drew to a close last week, a sweeping bill to modify the Hudson River Park Act, which would, most notably, allow the park to transfer its unused air rights, was quietly passed by both the Assembly and the state Senate. “Radio silence” was how one stunned park watchdog described how the bill suddenly Photo by Tequila Minsky Victorious DOMA plaintiff Edie Windsor, right, spoke outside the Stonewall on Wednesday evening as Council Speaker Christine Quinn beamed proudly. Jubilation at Stonewall Inn BY JEFFERSON SIEGEL AND LAEL HINES It’s not often that a Supreme Court ruling can set hearts aflutter and joyous crowds streaming into the streets. However, the court’s ruling on Wednesday, striking down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional, sent ecstatic shockwaves across the country, especially on Christopher St. in the West Village. Hundreds filled the block in front of the historic Stonewall Inn Wednesday evening for speeches by politicians, lawyers who fought to overturn the act, and Edie Windsor herself, the Village resident whose original lawsuit was spurred by the death of her late wife, Thea Spyer. Upon Spyer’s death, Windsor owed $360,000 in estate taxes, money she wouldn’t have owed if the government had recognized gay marriage then. After an hour of speeches by the likes of Council Speaker Christine Quinn and lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union, the celebrations began. Mayoral candidates Bill de Blasio and Anthony Weiner spoke with people, while mobs made their way into the Stonewall and other local bars for a night of celebratory imbibing. CATS For MAYOR Earlier, outside the bar, a man who gave his name as Brian exulted, “Hooray! It’s about time! We’ve been married for 16 years but now tax time will be so much easier. Now very practical legal things like Social Security will become so much simpler!” Standing beside him, James added, “This is the best and largest federal step we can take. However, we also need to focus on the change that still needs to come. Gays still aren’t able to donate blood or be fully respected in the workplace. Thirty-seven states still need to change.” popped up in the session’s final days, seemingly without anyone — other than local affected politicians, the Hudson River Park Trust and, no doubt, key stakeholders — having heard a peep about it until then. The bill was approved by the Assembly 96-5 last Thursday. Then, after a marathon ses- Continued on page 7 City makes part of l.e.S. children’s garden permanent BY SARAH FERGUSON The Children’s Magical Garden won a major victory Wednesday when the city agreed to transfer two of the three lots that make up this green haven to the Parks Department for preservation under the city’s GreenThumb program. “After a thorough assessment of all available options, we will be initiating the pro- cess of transferring the two city-owned lots to the Parks Department so they can be maintained as community gardening space,” Eric Bederman, a spokesperson for the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development, told The Villager. Continued on page 4 JOHN CATSIMATIDIS FOR MAYOR A New Yorker for all New Yorkers Paid for by Catsimatidis 2013 5 15 C A N A L STREET • N YC 10 013 • C OPYRIG HT © 2013 N YC COMMU NITY M ED IA , LLC

The Villager, June 27, 2013

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