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City Council

  • Meet The Three State Legislators Likely Heading To The City Council

    gjonaj election night crop 

    Mark Gjonaj & Bronx Democratic leadership (photo: @MarkGjonajNY)


    With the New York City primary election behind us, it appears that at least three state legislators are likely to be leaving behind the trips to Albany for plush City Council seats.

    Following the path of former State Senator Bill Perkins, who was elected to the City Council in a special election earlier this year, two Assembly members and one state senator are likely to be making the same jump come January: State Senator Ruben Diaz Sr, Assemblymember Mark

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  • 2017 New York City Primary Election Results

    nyc votes i voted sticker

    NYC Votes sticker, design by Marie Dagata and Scott Heinz


    Mayor Bill de Blasio prevailed convincingly in the Democratic primary Tuesday as he seeks a second term. De Blasio was facing four challengers, most prominently former City Council Member Sal Albanese. With 98% of precincts reporting, de Blasio had secured 74.4% of the vote, to Albanese’s 15.4%, and Michael Tolkin’s 4.7%, Robert Gangi’s 3.1%, and Richard Bashner’s 2.4%. De Blasio had about 317,000 votes; Albanese with about 65,450 in a very low turnout election, where about 15% of

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  • Risks and Rewards in De Blasio’s Bevy of City Council Endorsements

    ayala de blasio

    City Council candidate Diana Ayala (photo: @DianaAyala2017)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio is a heavy favorite heading into Tuesday's primary election, which includes numerous races across the city for which the Democratic primary is determinative of the next officeholder. In certain City Council races, de Blasio has endorsed candidates for the primary, including a small flurry of support just a few days before voters head to the polls, in what could be a sign that the mayor and his allies are concerned about turnout.

    But it’s unclear what effect, if any, the

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: A Candidate's Final Campaign Hours

    Jarrett Murphy, left, of City Limits, and Ben Max, right, of Gotham Gazette


    September 11, 2017 - Max & Murphy with guest Gifford Miller, former Speaker of the City Council and mayoral candidate

    gifford miller city council 277px

    The day before the 2017 New York City primary elections, we spoke with Gifford Miller, former City Council Speaker and 2005 Democratic candidate for Mayor. Miller was elected to the

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  • Forecasting the Upcoming City Council Gender Imbalance

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    CMs Chin, left; Rose, center; & Rosenthal, center right (photo: Gotham Gazette)


    There are currently only 13 women in the 51-seat New York City Council, a troubling 25 percent. The number is down from 18 women in the Council a few years ago. With the city’s quadrennial elections upon us, a new Council class will be inaugurated in January, with the September 12 primaries largely determining who will fill the city’s legislative body for the next four years in this very Democratic city.

    Most would agree that gender balance in the City Council

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, September 5

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This week will be full of campaigning as we hit one week until primary day on Tuesday. Are you ready to vote on September 12?

    It was a busy weekend of campaigning for Mayor Bill de Blasio, his main primary opponent Sal Albanese, and the mayor's expected general election opponent Nicole

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  • Incumbent Brooklyn City Council Rep Attempts to Fend Off Prominent Challengers

    Carlos Menchaca

    City Council Member Menchaca (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    As he runs for reelection this fall, Carlos Menchaca, the City Council member for District 38, which includes Red Hook, Sunset Park and Windsor Terrace, faces several challengers in the Democratic primary. In a rare occurrence, one of his opponents is another sitting elected official from the same party, Assemblymember Felix Ortiz.

    Though he was not an elected official at the time, Menchaca himself challenged and unseated an incumbent from the same party in a contentious 2013 primary that focused on

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  • Queens Council Candidates Attempt to Offer Stability to Burned District

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    Candidate Richard David (photo: David campaign)


    The July corruption conviction and August sentencing of City Council Member Ruben Wills created a newly-open seat representing Council District 28 in southeast Queens. Because of the timing of the vacancy, the seat will be filled through the normal electoral calendar, with the determinative September 12 Democratic primary rapidly approaching.

    The 28th Council District includes neighborhoods such as South Jamaica, Rochdale Village, Richmond Hill, and Ozone Park. Along with the

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  • Voters Guide for the 2017 City Primary Election

    de Blasio voting election

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


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    by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette
         

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  • Mass Mailer Loophole Gives State Legislators Advantage in City Council Races

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    The top of Assemblymember Felix Ortiz's recent constituent mailer


    Members of the New York State Legislature have a key resource at their disposal to communicate with their constituents: mass mailers. Both the Senate and Assembly allow lawmakers to send public communications through different media -- chiefly employed in the form of direct printed newsletters and mailers -- to inform residents of their districts about recent legislation or special events, or to alert them of emergencies, and more. While these mailers are subject to certain restrictions in the run up to an

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  • ‘Fair Share’ Reform – An Essential Step to Solving the City’s Homelessness Crisis

    Carlina Rivera

    Carlina Rivera, the author (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    Repairing the subways, closing Rikers, rescuing failing schools – it can seem like New York’s most insurmountable crises are always being dealt with by cutting corners and taking the path of least resistance. This isn’t how it’s always been in our city. When the city passed the historic Fair Share Criteria in 1989, officials finally said enough to the inequitable distribution of city facilities and called for investment in a long-term plan for facility siting in the future.

    These rules were supposed to

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, August 28

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    It was a busy campaign weekend for Mayor de Blasio, who exchanged reelection endorsements at events with Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., as well as making several other campaign stops. De Blasio will mix governing and politics this week, including, on the government side, a bill-signing and press conference on Monday, and a town hall Wednesday night in Williamsburg with City Council Member

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  • Lower East Side City Council Candidates Make Their Case in Debate

    City Council District 2 candidates

    The CD2 Democratic candidates at Manhattan Neighborhood Network


    There are five candidates vying for the Democratic nomination in the race to replace term-limited Rosie Mendez as the City Council representative for District 2, which includes the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The candidates -- Carlina Rivera, Ronnie Cho, Mary Silver, Jasmin Sanchez, and Jorge Vasquez -- gathered recently at the Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN) for a debate to be televised by the station.

    The debate, moderated by Gotham Gazette’s Ben

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  • Heated Rematch in Central Brooklyn, Where Incumbent Seeks to Hold City Council Seat

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    Council Member Laurie Cumbo (@cmlauriecumbo)


    Hundreds of Crown Heights residents and community activists laughed and jeered at a recent community forum as a lanky man wearing a paper mask of Mayor Bill de Blasio joked about bringing affordable housing to their neighborhood.

    The event was punctuated by moments of levity but mostly dominated by anger from residents who feel their elected representatives have sold out their interests to the real estate industry, with a focus on the proposed redevelopment of the vacant Bedford Union Armory. The

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, August 21

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    Mayor de Blasio was back in town this weekend after a four-day vacation in Rhode Island. The mayor participated in several weekend evetns. He's not only returning this week to work at City Hall, but he's facing former City Council Member Sal Albanese in the first Democratic mayoral primary election debate on Wednesday night. It will be must-see TV on NY1 or must-hear radio on WNYC -- along with those two networks, the debate is also being

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  • City Council Bail Fund Begins Operations

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    Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito (photo: @NYCCouncil)


    The New York City Council’s bail fund, a signature project of Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, has officially launched operations and is actively taking on cases in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

    “We had a very soft rollout in June and July,” said Dave Long, executive director of The Liberty Fund, the official name of the fund, which provides bail to low-level offenders facing misdemeanor charges who cannot afford to post bail. The most common misdemeanor charges in Brooklyn, for instance, are for

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  • A Rarity: City Council Candidate Releases Detailed Reform Agenda

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    City Council candidate Keith Powers (photo: @KeithPowersNYC)


    Candidates across the city this year are running for City Council on all sorts of issues, but only one has released a detailed list of government, campaign finance, and voting reform proposals. That agenda, called “

    On the Lower East Side, Council Contenders Seek to Upend Favorite for Open Seat

    Carlina Rivera City Council

    Carlina Rivera (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    One of the 10 “open” City Council seat races is taking place on the East Side of Manhattan, in District 2, currently represented by Rosie Mendez, who is term-limited out of office. Several candidates, including Mendez’s preferred successor, Carlina Rivera, are competing in the Democratic primary, which will determine who holds the seat next given it is a staunchly Democratic district.

    Rivera, Mendez’s former legislative director, has a good deal of momentum and support from the

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, August 7

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    Mayor Bill de Blasio is starting the week with a news conference Monday morning where he is expected to announce a new "millionaire's tax" which would fund MTA upgrades and subsidize MetroCards for low-income New Yorkers. The proposal comes amid a dispute between the city and

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  • Queens Council Primary Pits Assembly Member Versus Disgraced Former Rep

     Francisco Moya City Council

    Francisco Moya (photo via Moya's Facebook)


    Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, City Council Member for District 21 in Queens and chair of the powerful finance committee, shook up city politics in June when she announced she would not be running for re-election. Now, with her seat up for grabs and several potential candidates removed from the ballot by the Board of Elections, there is a dramatic head-to-head Democratic primary matchup to fill the City Council seat.

    The contest is between State Assemblymember Francisco

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  • 20 Races to Watch in the 2017 City Election Cycle

    Menchaca Kallos Lander

    City Council members & candidates (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    The 2017 city elections are quickly approaching, with party primaries to be held September 12, followed by the general election on November 7. The offices up for election are the three citywide posts of mayor, comptroller, and public advocate; the five borough president positions; all 51 City Council seats; and two district attorneys (Manhattan and Brooklyn).

    The citywide positions all have Democratic incumbents seeking a second term: Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, July 24

    640px New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    It's a relatively quiet week in New York politics. The City Council has only a few hearings scheduled this week after holding a full meeting last week where they passed a number of bills, including the 'Right to Counsel' bill to provide free legal services to low-income tenants in housing court.  

    Mayor Bill de Blasio is back at City Hall after spending a week in Queens

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, July 17

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    From Monday through Friday, the de Blasio administration will hold the third installment of the week-long City Hall in your Borough series, wherein the mayor and many members of his administration run the city away from City Hall and in the boroughs. This installment will take place in Queens. De Blasio has already announced the borough hall-based open house-style constituent “resource fair” and one town hall that he’ll hold, each of which he

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  • Crowded Field Competes to Represent Manhattan City Council District

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    City Council Member Dan Garodnick (photo: @DanGarodnick)


    Due to term limits, popular City Council Member Dan Garodnick is not allowed to run for reelection this year, leading to a crowded field of competitors vying to replace him representing the politically active Manhattan district that includes East Midtown, Gramercy Park, Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village.

    Ten candidates, mostly Democrats like Garodnick, competed in a debate at Waterside Plaza on June 22. The event, hosted by news publication Town & Village and

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  • High Participation in Campaign Matching Funds, But Several Big Name Opt-Outs

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    Council Member Kallos (photo: City Council)


    As the September 12 primary elections approach and campaigns kick into high gear, a vast majority of candidates for the city’s elected offices will have their coffers bolstered by the Campaign Finance Board’s (CFB) public matching funds program, which matches eligible donations at a 6-to-1 ratio.

    Most candidates, but not all. According to data provided by the CFB, 14 of 51 incumbents this cycle are not participating in the program, which was created by the city in 1988 in part to allow

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