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Bill de Blasio

Bill de Blasio

  • Bronx Electeds, Residents Cry Foul as Mayor and Council Announce Jail Site

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    Planned Bronx jail site (photos: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    When Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson announced last week that they’d reached a deal to speed up the closure of Rikers Island by creating or expanding jail facilities in every borough except Staten Island, it seemed to be a clear sign of a productive partnership between the administration and local elected officials.

    The mayor and speaker made the announcement at a news conference at City Hall, alongside four Council members -- Diana Ayala, Karen

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  • Next Steps and Recent Precedents for De Blasio’s Charter Revision Commission

    Mayor de Blasio State of the City

    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    Last week, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in his State of the City speech that he would convene a commission to consider changes to the city charter, New York City’s seminal governing document. De Blasio said the charter revision commission would undertake the significant task of reducing the impact of “big money” on local elections and to engage voters in a democracy that has suffered from their apathy. The mayor is hoping the commission members, whom he has yet to name, will

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  • City Pays $2.6 Million De Blasio Legal Fees; Campaign-Related Debts Unclear

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    At a public hearing Thursday morning in downtown Manhattan, an official from the city’s Law Department plainly read the fifteenth item on the docket: a proposed contract for legal services that would cost the city $2,627,500. No individuals testified and the hearing was over in less than five minutes, allowing the city to move forward with its intent to award the contract.

    That contract is just the latest development in the long-running saga of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s ethical and

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  • Comptroller Again Calls Out City on Vacant Land; City Again Punches Back

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    Comptroller Stringer press conference at a vacant lot (photo: Sam Raskin)


    Comptroller Scott Stringer held a press conference Monday morning in front of a vacant lot on West 115th Street to criticize the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) for “dragging its feet” on creating affordable housing on empty city-owned land.

    Stringer released an update to his 2016 audit on vacant lots, which initiated a reshashing of a yearslong dispute between the comptroller and the de Blasio administration over

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  • City Council To Examine Government Sexual Harassment Policies

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    Council Member Rosenthal (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Amid a national reckoning with sexual harassment and misconduct that has led to the downfall of prominent men in media, entertainment, and politics, the New York City Council is turning an eye to its own backyard.

    The City Council will convene a hearing on February 28 to examine best practices

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  • De Blasio Promises Fairness, Democracy in State of the City Address

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    Mayor de Blasio delivers his 2018 State of the City (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio delivered his first State of the City speech of his second and final term at the Kings Theater in Brooklyn on Tuesday evening, mostly retreading old ground on policy while exploring new ways to improve the city’s “battered” democratic and electoral processes.

    De Blasio, a Democrat, made few new policy announcements as he enumerated a 12-point “gameplan” to make the city fairer and safer while improving the lot of the

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  • Union Square Hub, with 600 Projected Tech Jobs, Appears on Smooth Path to Reality

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    Union Square tech hub rendering via the mayor's office


    This past week, two Manhattan Community Board 3 committees voted to approve the city's application for the proposed Union Square Training Center, also known as the Union Square tech hub, which the de Blasio administration says will create 800 construction jobs and then 600 permanent jobs in the growing technology sector. The land use and economic development committees of CB3 opted not to condition their vote in favor of the proposal on rezoning several blocks south of the proposed project as the

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  • Savino Asks De Blasio for Help Passing ‘Subway Grinder’ Bill He Once Supported

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    Senator Savino and Mayor de Blasio at lunch (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor’s Office)


    As a debate rages over the appropriate law enforcement response to subway fare evasion, in Albany, a bill steepening the penalty for certain subway sex offenses is getting another look.

    During Mayor Bill de Blasio’s ...

  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Deconstructing De Blasio's Visit to Albany

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


    February 6, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Deconstructing De Blasio's Visit to Albany

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    Mayor de Blasio made his annual trip to Albany Monday to testify at a joint legislative budget hearing. In this episode of the podcast we recap the key moments -- on NYCHA, the MTA, Rikers Island and more -- and break down important

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  • In Albany, De Blasio Budget Testimony Centers on MTA, NYCHA

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    Mayor de Blasio testifying in Albany (Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    Testifying in Albany Monday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio responded to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s $168 billion executive budget and outlined the city’s funding priorities for the next fiscal year.

    De Blasio was the first to testify at a joint legislative budget hearing on local governments, making his annual journey to the Capitol, where he also met privately with Cuomo for an hour, and was scheduled to meet with three of five legislative conference leaders:

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  • Under 'Threat' from D.C. and Albany, De Blasio Presents $88.67 Billion Preliminary Budget

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    De Blasio's Feb 2018 budget presentation (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    As the state and federal governments continue to pursue policies that threaten the city’s fiscal future, Mayor Bill de Blasio again said he is investing in making New York City the “fairest big city in America” as he proposed spending $88.67 billion for the next city fiscal year, which begins July 1.

    On Thursday afternoon, the mayor released his preliminary budget proposal for next fiscal year, which increases city spending by nearly $3 billion

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Education in De Blasio's Second Term

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


    January 30, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Monica Disare of Chalkbeat-NY and Eliza Shapiro of Politico New York

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    The day after he won reelection in November, Mayor de Blasio said, "We have to achieve 3-K in the next four years...We have to get our kids reading on grade level by third grade. We need the school system to look entirely different in

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  • MTA Funding Fight May Dominate This Year’s City-State Budget Struggle

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    Gov. Cuomo in the subway (photo: The Governor's Office)


    Three key points of contention between the city and the state have emerged over transit funding, highlighted during Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) Chair Joe Lhota’s testimony at the joint legislative hearing on transportation Thursday in Albany.

    The hearing, which included discussion of the MTA plan to restore New York City’s ailing subway system, occurred amid an ongoing feud between New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo over the funding of crucial

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  • Cuomo Omits Design-Build for New York City from Budget Plan

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    Gov. Cuomo at a construction scene (photo: The Governor's Office)


    Governor Andrew Cuomo has repeatedly extolled the virtues of design-build, a process that allows state authorities to seek combined design and construction bids for infrastructure projects from a single entity, saving billions of dollars and valuable time. Streamlining procurement and construction, it is a tool currently employed by five state agencies.

    But, even as design-build is praised as a commonsense measure to ensure government savings, the state continues to deny New

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  • Candidates File Final Campaign Finance Reports of 2017 Election Cycle

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    Mayor de Blasio at inauguration (photo: NYC Mayor's Office)


    The recent citywide municipal election saw more than $53 million in spending, with nearly $42 million in private funds raised by candidates and more than $17 million in public matching funds disbursed by the New York City Campaign Finance Board. Candidates just filed their final campaign disclosures with the Board, which were due Tuesday, showing the last weeks of activity as the

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  • De Blasio Lays Out Initial 2018 Albany Priorities

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    Mayor de Blasio in the snow (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    The state Legislature is back in session, beginning the months-long process of deliberating on its $160-billion budget and legislation for the coming fiscal year that starts April 1. For New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a second-term Democrat, it poses the annual opportunity to lobby for the city’s priorities, including small and large policy changes and additional funding for city agencies.

    De Blasio had mixed successes in the state capitol, where he has few

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  • What’s The [Data] Point? 374, with Laura Nahmias

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    What's The Data Point? Episode 25 -- 374, with Laura Nahmias [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

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    It's been a very busy start to the New York political year. No better guest to recap and analyze the first week of 2018 in New York politics than Laura Nahmias of Politico New York.

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  • Why Does Crime Keep Falling in New York City?

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    James O'Neill, Bill Bratton, Bill de Blasio (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York Police Department have much cause for celebration. Last year was undoubtedly the safest year on record in decades, setting new benchmarks for crime reduction across most major categories, according to the latest crime data released by the NYPD on Friday.

    The total number of major felony crimes fell below 100,000 for the first time ever, no small feat for a city now home to more than 8.5 million residents.

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  • New York City Takeaways from Governor Cuomo's 2018 State of the State

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    Gov. Cuomo delivers his 2018 State of the State (photo: Philip Kamrass/Governor's Office)


    Governor Andrew Cuomo unveiled his full policy agenda for the 2018 legislative session on Wednesday, returning to his traditional State of the State format: a single address at the Empire State Convention Center, chock full of slideshow-aided proposals and lofty rhetoric, with legislative leaders of all five conferences and other statewide elected officials accompanying him on stage.

    During the 92-minute speech, Cuomo gave

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Big Political News to Start 2018

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


    January 3, 2018 - Max & Murphy:  Big Political News to Start 2018

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    2018 has started with a bang in New York politics: already this week we've seen the re-inaugrations of Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Letitia James, and Comptroller Scott Stringer; the election of new City Council Speaker Corey Johnson; and Governor Cuomo delivering his

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  • Embracing Sanders, De Blasio Leaves Behind His Clinton-Cuomo Era

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    Bernie Sanders swears in Bill de Blasio for a second term (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    Bill de Blasio was inaugurated for his second term as New York City mayor on Monday, taking his oath of office on a frigid day blanketed by the warmth of mutual admiration with Bernie Sanders. With praise from the Vermont senator and leading national progressive, de Blasio may also have been attempting, whether consciously or not, to finalize his shift away from the Clinton-Cuomo wing of the Democratic Party, where he has kept one foot as he has

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  • Sworn In for Second Term by Bernie Sanders, De Blasio Claims 'New Progressive Era'

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    De Blasio is sworn in by Sanders (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, was sworn in for a second and final term at City Hall on a frigid Monday afternoon, in a ceremony attended by nearly a thousand people and starring United States Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

    De Blasio’s oath of office was administered by Sanders, the popular progressive leader who has championed policies to benefit middle- and working-class Americans, similar to the mayor’s own

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  • Melissa Mark-Viverito, a Mayor-Made Speaker, Sought a Member-Driven Legacy

    Mayor de Blasio Speaker Mark-Viverito

    (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Melissa Mark-Viverito, the first Latina to preside over the 51-member New York City Council, leaves office having shepherded a progressive shift in the city’s direction, in conjunction with fellow Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio, a philosophically aligned partner in government who was the deciding factor in her winning the powerful speaker position four years ago.

    As arguably the second most powerful elected official in the city, Mark-Viverito oversaw an agenda of progressivism

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  • Brooklyn Armory Deal, and Larger De Blasio Development Debate, Move Toward Term Two

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    (Armory rendering via BFC) (photos within piece by Rachel Holliday Smith)


    Following years of ferocious debate, negotiation, protests and anguish, City Council Member Laurie Cumbo was finally ready to vote “yes” on the redevelopment of the publicly-owned, vacant Bedford-Union Armory.

    At very nearly the last minute, she and the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio worked out a deal for the Crown Heights building with the city’s chosen developer, BFC Partners, the night before a crucial City Council land use

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  • Ahead of 2018 Session, Cuomo Mum on Pursuing MTA Board Overhaul

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    Gov. Cuomo (photo via the Governor's Office)


    In June, as New Yorkers became increasingly frustrated with subway performance and braced themselves for the expected “summer of hell,” Governor Andrew Cuomo was the focus of intense criticism, responding with a series of measures he said were needed in order to fix the ailing Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA).

    Among them, Cuomo introduced last-minute legislation that would allow the governor to appoint a majority of MTA board members, a gesture some saw as an attempt to bolster his

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