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Cuomo: Carrots and Sticks for Schools
January 17th, 2012

Two weeks after he signaled his intention to focus on education, Gov. Andrew Cuomo today filled in some of the details and inserted himself squarely in the dispute over teacher evaluation.

In his budget address Cuomo confirmed that, as announced previously, the state would up its aid to districts by 4.1 percent or $805 million next year for a total of about $20 billion.

Unlike last budget year — when the governor cut spending across the board regardless of a district’s needs — the increase would be weighted toward higher needs areas. These parts of the state will receive 76 percent of the hike and 69 percent of all school aid, according to Cuomo’s Budget Briefing Book.This means New York City stands to gets almost $6.4 billion next year, an increase of 2.6 percent over the approximately $6.2 billion it is getting this year.

Districts also would be able to compete for some $200 million in special state grants, under a New York version of the federal Race to the Top program.

The Road to the Money

But Cuomo put a big condition on all the additional money. To get it, districts will have to come up with a new evaluation system for teachers.

Details after the jump.
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By on January 17, 2012, 5:23 pm
In category: Albany,City Hall,Education,Eye on Albany,Public Finance,Work and Labor | 1 Comment »

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Quinn Sues Bloomberg
November 29th, 2011

The New York City Council today will ratchet up its efforts to block the citys proposed change in eligibility requirements for homeless shelters. At its meeting this afternoon, the council will take steps to file suit against the controversial change, which will require homeless adults seeking to enter the shelter system to prove they have no other place to go.

The suit is the first filed by the council against the Bloomberg administration since Christine Quinn, a frequent ally of the mayor, became speaker in 2006. In addition to highlighting the policy itself — which Quinn has called inhumane and cruel — the suit also takes aim at the way the city has attempted to implement the change. By most accounts, council members learned of the new rules through a report on WNBC less than two weeks before the change was to take effect.

I cannot just turn away when it is clear the City of New York has not followed rule making requirements, Quinn said.

The shift has come under sharp attack since it was announced earlier this month. While a similar policy exists for homeless families, council members and advocates note that homeless single adults are a far more vulnerable group — with high levels of substance abuse and mental illness. Under the change, these individuals would have to document any places they had stayed and show why they could not return to that bed. People would risk being denied a shelter slot if they had a relative with a spare bedroom — even if that relative refused to take them in.

The Legal Aid Society and the Coalition for the Homless have already filed suit to block the change, prompting the Department of Homeless Services to postpone its implementation pending a court hearing. In addition, the state has raised serious concerns about the new policy and the citys apparent rush to put it in place.

In the face of this, the city has stuck by the policy, saying it makes the best use of scarce resources.

Youd rather not end up in court, Quinn said yesterday. Weve exhausted our other options, and thats why were here.

By on November 29, 2011, 2:44 pm
In category: Uncategorized | 3 Comments »

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Testing the Wonkster
November 26th, 2011

There are some changes in the back end taking place at Gotham Gazette, changes we don’t think readers will even notice. But just to make sure everything is working, this is a test of the new system.

By on November 26, 2011, 4:31 pm
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Rodriguez on His Arrest
November 16th, 2011

For the second time in less than three months, reporters, members of the City Council and other public officials clustered under the overhang at City Hall in the rain to hear a City Council member describe his alleged mistreatment by the New York City Police Department.

This time it was Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez, who spent about 20 hours in police custody after being arrested by police near Zuccotti Park early Tuesday morning. Rodriguez, who has emerged as a major supporter of Occupy Wall Street, said he received a text message at about 1 a.m. Tuesday alerting him that police seemed to be moving in on the protesters in Zuccotti Park. After his wife repeatedly cautioned him to avoid getting arrested, Rodriguez said he proceeded downtown to see what was happening.

A couple of blocks from Zuccotti Park and across Broadway from the plaza — Rodriguez said he was confronted by a group of police officers who began pushing him. Even after, he said, he identified himself as a council members he also said he was wearing a suit, not exactly the standard garb of the Occupy Wall Street crowd the police kept pushing. Rodriguez said he fell, sustaining a cut, and was arrested.

In the time that followed, Rodriguez said he was kept in a van for two hours. He eventually was taken to 1 Police Plaza, where his lawyers were not allowed to see him in keeping with police policy that apparently lets attorneys visit their clients in other jails and station houses but not police headquarters. He was finally released at around 8 p.m. after being charged with resisting arrest.
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By on November 16, 2011, 4:01 pm
In category: Gotham City | 1 Comment »

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Shelter Rules Delayed
November 10th, 2011

Correction: Apparently contrary to what we originally reporterd, the court did not order the delay. The city postponed its plans after the Legal Aid Society filed suit to block the new rules. The item has been corrected to reflect that.

The new intake procedures for single adults seeking to enter the city’s shelter system apparently will not go into effect Monday after all. Although we could not confirm this, a statement from the City Council said that a court has order postponement of After the Legal Aid Society filed suit Thursday, the city reportedly agreed to postpone implementation of the rules until next month. According to the Wall Street Journal, the city did this “because of the possibility of a state judge issuing a preliminary injunction.”

Arguments in the case are now scheduled to begin Dec. 9.

In a statement issued Thursday evening, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said, “I am pleased that, as a result of todays court hearing, the city’s dangerous new policy changing the intake procedure for single adults seeking shelter will not go into effect on Monday. I am encouraged that this matter will be heard by the court, and I continue to call on [the Department of Homeless Services] to permanently reverse course and prevent these harmful changes from going into effect.

And City Council General Welfare Committee chair Annabel Palma hailed the move as well. “I am pleased with the court’s favorable decision to stop the city from implementing its proposed eligibility changes for single adults. Absence of leadership from the administration on this issue, once again, has the city;s homeless policies shaped more by the court system rather than through collaboration and partnership with stakeholders,” Palma said.

By on November 10, 2011, 6:50 pm
In category: Gotham City | 2 Comments »

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State Does Not Support New Shelter Rules After All
November 10th, 2011

At yesterday’s acrimonious hearing on changes in the city’s procedures for admitting single adults to homeless shelters. Council Speaker Christine Quinn pressed Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Seth Diamond over whether the state had - as Diamond contended — actually approved the change.

To some in the audience it may have seemed as though Quinn was splitting hairs. Diamond certainly seemed peeved at her approach.

Now, though, it looks as though she was correct. In a letter to Diamond dated yesterday and released this morning by Quinn’s office, Elizabeth Berlin of the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, says that any suggestion that her office approved the new eligibility procedure is “inaccurate.”

And Berlin went further:

Moreover, this office has serious concerns that DHS failed to submit this proposal to the New York Supreme Court for review. For over 30 years, such a review process has been DHS’s practice when making a policy change relating to the Callahan Consent Decree. Given DHSs failure to share this policy with the court, OTDA finds the Nov.14 implementation date a mere 10 days after the policy change was announced to be completely unreasonable and is not supported by the state.

The Callahan decree, reached between the city, state and advocates in 1981 provides a right to shelter for adults who qualified for welfare or who are homeless “by reason of physical, mental or social dysfunction.”

To read more on the issue and the debate over it, go here. And more on the exchange between Quinn and Diamond after the jump.

At the hearing yesterday, Diamond told the council that the state had informed his office that the change, which seeks to compel people to find alternatives to shelters including staying with relatives or even leaving the country, is “consistent with state rules.” Quinn countered that that did not mean the state approved it. “Our understanding from the governor’s office is that they have not approved it,” she said.

Diamond responded that the department did not need approval. “We have the flexibility to implement procedure that are consistent with state laws and regulations,” Diamond said, adding he believed his office had “what is needed to allow us to go forward.”

Berlin’s letter explicitly addresses that point. “OTDA has not commented on the substantive merits of the proposed change, but instead determined that the proposal was not inconsistent with state law,” her two-paragraph letter said,

We’ll try to get some reaction and pass it along.

By on November 10, 2011, 11:54 am
In category: Albany,City Hall,Housing,Social Services | 2 Comments »

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The Races for DA
November 6th, 2011

Three of New York City’s five district attorneys are up for re-election this year, but for only one — Staten Island Daniel Donovan — is the contest’ outcome in any doubt.

(For more on who can vote and how this year, go here. For more on the judicial contests, go here.)

Two of the veteran prosecutors, Richard Brown in Queens and Robert Johnson in the Bronx — will appear on the Democratic, Republican and Conservative lines and will not face any opposition.

Brown, who will turn 79 later this month, is headed to his sixth-term.

Johnson, who already is in his sixth term, was the first black district attorney in the state. In a somewhat strange twist, he received a rating of “not approved” by the city bar association this year. Johnson attributed the rejection to his not agreeing to an interview with the association and said he thinks it make little sense for the group to rate candidates in uncontested elections.

“If they think that I have not demonstrated the qualifications to hold this office,” Johnson told Reuters, “they must have been stuck in a cave for the past two decades.”

The bar does not explain or amplify on its ratings although they do not endorse candidates they can’t interview.

The Staten Island race offers a reprise of the 2007race in which Republican Donovan defeated Democrat Mike Ryan with about 70 percent of the vote. Donovan has the backing of the Independence Party too, while — perhaps owing to a long-standing rift between Donovan and Conservative Borough president James Molinaro, Ryan has the Conservative Party line.
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By on November 6, 2011, 9:58 pm
In category: Electoral Politics,Gotham City,Governing,Law | 6 Comments »

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Here Come the Judges
November 6th, 2011

Occupants for 29 seats on the bench in New York City will be selected Tuesday — at least theoretically. In many cases, though, the primary process and political insiders have filled the posts already — leaving voters with nothing more than the opportunity to ratify the choice.

All candidates for Manhattan judgeships — including places of the state Supreme Court and Civil Court — face no opposition. All have the Democratic Party line; a few also have the GOP nod. In no case, though, have the Republicans — or any other party for that matter — put forth candidate who is not the Democratic standard bearer. In the one judicial race on Staten Island the sole candidate — Acting Judge Joseph J. Maltese — has support from the Democratic, Republican, Conservative and Independence parties.

The contested elections come in Brooklyn and Queens. There are no judicial races — contested or otherwise — in the Bronx.

(For more on who can vote and how this year, go here. For more on the district attorney contest, go here.)

More on the individual judicial races after the jump.
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By on November 6, 2011, 9:54 pm
In category: Electoral Politics,Gotham City,Governing,Law | 2 Comments »

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A Quiet Election Day
November 6th, 2011

Even by the standards of the off-off-year election — those contests in odd-numbered years when there is no mayoral race — this is a non-election election year.

There are no contested races of any kind in the Bronx or Manhattan, according to the Board of Elections’ lists of candidates. In Queens and Brooklyn, the sole seats up for grabs are judgeships. Only Staten Island residents will have the chance to vote for or against someone they might actually have heard of: Republican District Attorney Daniel Donovan, who faces a challenge from Democrat Mike Ryan. It’s a repeat of their 2007 contest.

(For details on the district attorney race, go here. For more on the judicial contests, go here.)

Sleepy elections occur about once every four years in New York, Unlike the one in 2007, this year’s features no ballot measures, fewer contests for the bench and no particularly high profile ones. As is often the case in general elections in New York City, many candidates including those for some important posts face no opposition.

More voting details after the jump.
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By on November 6, 2011, 9:39 pm
In category: Electoral Politics,Gotham City,Governing | 7 Comments »

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Mayor Vetoes Contract Bill
November 4th, 2011

As expected, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has vetoed the Outsourcing Accountability Act. The measure, passed by the City Council last month, would subject city contracts to a kind of cost-benefit analysis and require agencies to publicly disclose what services they plan to contract out in the coming year.

The veto represents the latest in an escalating fight over the city’s growing contract budget between the Bloomberg administration on the one hand and City Council members and municipal employee unions on the other. As city spending on the contracts has increased, a number of scandals have erupted, particularly with technology contracts.

The mayor, however, has said contracts help cut costs and reduce government efficiency. “To put impediments to us getting the best deal for the taxpayers particularly during this economy is something we can not tolerate. We are just not going to have this bill,” Bloomberg said after it passed.

In her statement on the veto, though, Council Speaker Christine Quinn said the measure would save money. “The council simply wants city agencies to consider costs and thoughtfully review decisions to outsource,” she said. “These tough economic times demand nothing less.”

Since the bill passed unanimously, the council has the votes to override the veto. Bloomberg, though, has said he thinks the measure could be unconstitutional, meaning the whole issue could end up in the courts.

By on November 4, 2011, 4:16 pm
In category: City Hall,Public Finance | 3 Comments »

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Change for the Homeless
November 4th, 2011

Advocates for the homeless and some City Council members are reacting with alarm to reports that the city will institute a policy later this month that will make it more difficult for single adults to gain admission to city shelters.

According to WNBC, which first
reported on the move, workers will subject people applying to stay in shelters to more questions about where they have lived recently and whether they have another place to stay. This could create a problem for someone who, say, lost her apartment, doubled up with a sister for a short time and then was asked to leave.

The move apparently an effort to save money has been in the works for a while but needed state approval. City officials told NBC they received the OK yesterday. The city already conducts similar reviews for homeless families.

Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Seth Diamond told Reuters that many people applying to shelters these days may have other options. They include, he said, “a lot of people who are working or capable of work, who may have gone through a little bit of a rough time — their employer may have reduced their hours, or they may have lost their jobs.”

But advocates dispute such arguments. “The city is playing with fire by implementing this policy, particularly in the winter,” Steven Banks of the Legal Aid Society told WNBC. “It’s certainly going to result in vulnerable New Yorkers ending up on the streets. He said the society would go to court to try and block the change.

Earlier today, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and General Welfare Committee chair Annabel Palma. Issued a statement condemning the move. “This policy is cruel, risky, unacceptable and will not reduce homelessness in the city of New York. Denying people shelter because they have found another option for some period of time is punishing people for trying to do the right thing,” they said.

The council will hold an emergency oversight hearing on the policy at 1 p.m. Wednesday.
By on November 4, 2011, 3:28 pm
In category: City Hall,Gotham City,Housing,Social Services | 4 Comments »

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City Council Takes to the Streets
November 4th, 2011

On the same day, it tackled the issue of undocumented immigrants (for that story, go here), the City Council took on something really controversial: the battle for spaces on the city’s crowded streets.

At its stated meeting Thursday, members enacted two measures.

One reflected concerns that the Bloomberg administration, in its zeal for bike lanes, has sometimes ignored wishes of local residents. Intro 412, which passed unanimously, would require that the city Department of Transportation provide community boards with at least 90 days notification of any planned bike lanes in their area, allowing the board to hold hearings. If the board wanted, transportation officials would have to make presentations to the affected boards.

This does not mean the board could veto bike lanes, but simply that it be informed and consulted.

More on the bike law bill and residential parking permits after the jump.
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By on November 4, 2011, 1:20 pm
In category: City Hall,Gotham City,Transportation | 1 Comment »

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The Union on School Cuts
November 1st, 2011

With the city facing a multibillion dollar shortfall and the Bloomberg administration demanding further cuts, the United Federation of Teachers went on the offense today, with a study it says shows that fiscal constraints already have taken a toll on the city’s more than 1.1 million students.

A survey of union chapter leaders (perhaps not the most objective of sources) found, the UFT reports, that 74 percent of elementary schools have seen class size increase this year. The number of students in a class rose at 61 percent of the middle schools reporting and 59 percent of the high schools.

More than half of elementary schools responding have scaled back services to help academically struggling students, and almost two thirds cited reductions in supplies. In general, the chapter leaders at high schools cited fewer effects from cuts than those in elementary schools. And despite Chancellor Dennis Walcott’s pledge to focus on improving middle schools, 63 percent saw their afterschool programs curtailed and 59 percent lost extracurricular activities.

While the administration enthusiastically supports charters schools, which often offer after school and or weekend programs, it has ramped back efforts to expand instructional time for students in its conventional public schools, according to the report. About 60 percent of schools at all levels reported cuts in afterschool programs, and about 40 said weekend programs had been reduced.

In a statement on his union’s report UFT president Michael Mulgrew said, “Based on our survey, an estimated 91 percent of our school population — nearly 1 million children — are in schools where budget cuts are having a direct and immediate effect on their education.”

By on November 1, 2011, 2:09 pm
In category: City Hall,Education,Gotham City,Public Finance | 1 Comment »

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Closing Public Spaces
October 31st, 2011

(Gotham Gazette parks reporter Anne Schwartz filed this post.)

Last week, Crain’s reported that landlords, taking action in response to Occupy Wall Streets weeks-long occupancy of Zuccotti Park, want the city to revamp its laws covering the citys privately owned public parks to set hours of operation and prohibit large gatherings. Crain’s has a survey asking readers whether they think “private parks” should be allowed to set their own hours. As of today, the 201 people who bothered to respond said yes by a margin of almost two to one.

The business paper, however, did not note that these spaces are actually public places that developers were required to create — and keep open — in return for the right to build taller buildings under city zoning laws. Having already received the financial benefits of the added floor space, the landlords now are seeking to restrict some of the public benefit.

A study conducted in 2001 by Jerold Hayden, a Harvard professor of urban planning and design, with the Department of City Planning and the Municipal Art Society, found that 40 percent of these parks “were and are practically useless, with austere designs, no amenities and little or no direct sunlight. Roughly half of the buildings surveyed had spaces that were illegally closed or otherwise privatized.” (For Gotham Gazette’s report on that study, go here.)

The results still hold today, Kayden wrote in a recent New York Times piece.
Kayden said he welcomes the attention the protesters have called to the city’s privately owned public spaces, but calls for a much broader discussion on how they can contribute meaningfully to city life. “They need a champion, an independent steward or curator who actively promotes their use, not only by assuring that spaces are provided as legally promised but also by encouraging improvements, activities and public educational opportunities,” Kayden said.

By on October 31, 2011, 3:06 pm
In category: Civil Rights,Gotham City,Land Use,Parks | Comments Off

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Quinn Ducks and Parries
October 6th, 2011

Yesterday, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn presided over the passage of a bill that Mayor Michael Bloomberg adamantly opposes. Will she do it again?

This issue yesterday was the city’s increasing reliance on outside contractors. The City Council — obviously with strong backing from Quinn or else it wouldn’t have happened — unanimously passed a bill requiring a kind of cost-benefit analysis of proposed contracts.

Bloomberg later, according to WNYC’s Bob Hennelly blasted the measure. “To put impediments to us getting the best deal for the taxpayers particularly during this economy is something we can not tolerate. We are just not going to have this bill,” Bloomberg said.

The next issue could be the so-called Living Wage bill, a measure that would require businesses that get a city subsidy to pay their workers, not just the minimum wage but a living wage of $10 to $11.50 an hour, depending upon benefits.

The administration opposes that one too — usually trying to obscure the fact that it would only apply to employers getting city money. Yesterday Bloomberg somehow linked it to the Soviet Union.

Quinn wants the mayor’s business supporter and backing for her mayoral quest. She’s also probably like at least some unions on her side and a stamp of approval from the many council members who are for the living wage. And so despite repeated questioning from reporters who phrased and rephrased the question yesterday, Quinn would not be pinned down.

The verbal dueling after the jump.
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By on October 6, 2011, 3:55 pm
In category: City Hall,Economy,Gotham City,Health,Work and Labor | 3 Comments »

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Education Councils: Weak by Design
October 3rd, 2011

Whatever else it has and has not done, the system of mayoral control of schools as practiced in New York City must have set some kind of record for the creation of toothless bodies.

The chief one of course is the Panel for Educational Policy, which as Patrick Sullivan, a member, wrote on New York Public School Parents, routinely rubber stamps Department of Education contracts even ones dripping with corruption such as the agreement with Future Technology Associates.

The impotence of the PEP is hardly surprising Bloomberg always vowed the body would not do anything. But committed parents across the five borough hoped the Community Education Councils, heirs to the former Community School Board might function a bit better. They were, alas, wrong.

A report released by four of the five borough presidents (all but Staten Island James Molinaro), Pubic Advocate Bill de Blasio and parent leaders, tells some of the sad history of the councils under this administration, focusing to a large extent on the repeatedly botched election for members in 2011.

To remedy this and other ills, the report calls for major changes in the current two-tier voting system, where parents first cast an advisory vote and then leaders of parent organizations in the respective area make the final choice. The borough presidents et al would replace that with an actual election among parents. They would also improve training for council members, call for the councils to do more outreach and revise the council’s responsibilities. (Now the most meaningful thing they do is approve school zones within the district, influencing which neighborhood sends its children to what school.)

Perhaps most notably, the report’s writers would take the responsibility for the councils away from the Department of Education and give it to an independent nonprofit or government body.
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By on October 3, 2011, 3:20 pm
In category: City Hall,Education,Electoral Politics | 2 Comments »

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Questioning Police Power
September 30th, 2011

Following a meeting with leaders of city civil rights groups and other organizations, City Councilmember Jumaane Williams and Kirsten John Foy, an aide to Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, are still awaiting a public apology for their detention and handcuffing by police following the West Indian Day Parade earlier this month.

And Mayor Michael Bloomberg has apparently not responded to their proposal that he and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly meet with Williams, Foy and young black and Latino New Yorkers that have been affected by what Williams, Foy and may others see as unfair and discriminatory police tactics. Instead Bloomberg, calling the police action a “misunderstanding,” had suggested he and Williams sit down over a beer “and work it out.”

Williams and Foy have repeatedly said their arrest highlights the effects of police policies — most notably stops and frisks — widely used against young black and Latino men in the city. In their statement issued last night, the two said they plan to hold town-hall style meetings in all five boroughs where others stopped by police can tell their stories. And they want the city Department of Education to “mandate ‘Know Your Rights’ training in middle and high schools.”

The statement comes as police are under scrutiny for other alleged abuses of power — police surveillance of Muslim New Yorkers, unwarranted marijuana arrests, and the pepper spraying of Wall Street demonstrators last weekend. Police have reportedly begun probing the latter incident, which has been viewed by hundreds of thousands, if not millions on YouTube.

All of these occurrences come after years that saw a massive expansion of police powers in the city, as Jim Dwyer writes in today’s Times. The department, Dwyer says, “has done so in a bubble of isolation from ordinary democratic processes. It exists in a world apart. ”

In their statement, Williams and Foy expressed hope this might be change. “We are all excited that our communities are focused and working together,” they said. “This is a fight for civil rights, and we are hopeful that civil rights will ultimately prevail.”

By on September 30, 2011, 8:52 am
In category: Civil Rights,Crime & Safety,Gotham City | 4 Comments »

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Bloomberg's Technology Pit
September 29th, 2011

Another day, another disturbing revelation about the city’s handling of its technology contracts.

This time it’s the latest chapter in the scandal involving computers at the Department of Education. The company the department paid $75 million to do technical work on its purchasing, payroll and finance systems Future Technology Associatesbilked the city out of at least $6.5 million, according to a report by Richard Condon, the city’s special commissioner of investigation.

Among other things, Future Tech set up shell companies and then vastly inflated its claims of how much those companies charged. So the Department of Education was being charged between $55 and $110 an hour for work that actually cost Future Tec $10 to $14 an hour.

Concerns about Future Technology have been circulating for some time.

According to a letter-report from the city comptroller’s Bureau of Audit, given to Gotham Gazette today (posted here), in 2005 the department submitted a request that Future Tech get a no-bid contract. (No-bid contracts at the Department of Education have raised concerns in the past.) “This request appears to have contained inaccurate and misleading statements from FTA, which, if DOE had known, should have precluded FTA from being awarded this contract,” says the report from the comptroller’s office, which went to Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott and Condon’s office.
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By on September 29, 2011, 4:24 pm
In category: City Hall,Crime & Safety,Education,Gotham City,Governing,Tech | 12 Comments »

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The Dicker Question
September 28th, 2011

The New York Post’s Fred Dicker was not (at least as far any any of us could tell) at the New School last night for the discussion on Cuomo and the Media. But his ears must have been burning anyway.

To the four journalists on the panel it was clear that in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s handling of the press, there’s Fred Dicker and then there’s the rest of us ink-stained wretches. (For more on that relationship, see Cuomo Cultivates His Media Messenger.)
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By on September 28, 2011, 6:47 pm
In category: Albany,Eye on Albany,Gotham City | 1 Comment »

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Discussing Cuomo's Glow
September 28th, 2011

Even on a day a public employee union dealt him a serious setback few would deny that Gov. Andrew Cuomo has emerged as an exceedingly adroit politician. And none of members of a panel on Cuomo and the Media at the New School last night even tried to.

If their assessments of the governor varied at all, they ranged from skilled to brilliant. And the four reporters, joined by one pollster, did differ on how long the governor could keep his glow.

“This is an administration incredibly interested in managing their message. They are enormously good at it. They are artists,” Liz Benjamin of State of Politics and the evening’s moderator said, setting the tone from the get-go.

To control his image and his message, the governor and his minions call and lobby reporters ceaselessly but rarely publicly. “He almost never goes on the record in a free setting,” said the New York Times‘ Nick Confessore.

The panelists seemed almost in awe of Cuomo’s skills — his ability to listen to people and engage with them, his focus on two or three key things and skill at avoiding distractions, his hard work, his smarts, his ease with “working a room.” (Panelists declined to discuss his capacity observed on at a lake in the Adirondacks last month, to walk on water)

“His job is to manage his positive image, and he’s doing an excellent job,” said Steve Greenberg, pollster with the Siena Research Institute.

So will his star ever fade?

Possible answers after the jump.
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By on September 28, 2011, 6:45 pm
In category: Albany,Electoral Politics,Eye on Albany,Gotham City,Governing | 2 Comments »

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Gotham Gazette the Place for Politics and Policy

Gotham Gazette is published by Citizens Union Foundation and is made possible by support from the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Altman Foundation,the Fund for the City of New York and donors to Citizens Union Foundation. Please consider supporting Citizens Union Foundation's public education programs. Critical early support to Gotham Gazette was provided by the Charles H. Revson Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

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