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Bill de Blasio

Bill de Blasio

  • Planned Change to Veterans Department Budget Causes Stir

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    photo: @nycveterans


    Mayor Bill de Blasio’s preliminary budget, released January 24, proposes nearly $1 billion in increased spending for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1. But a conspicuous, albeit infinitesimal, reduction for one agency has irked elected officials and advocates.

    The mayor’s spending plan, which will be evaluated by and negotiated with the City Council, includes a $318,000 decrease in the budget for the newly-minted Department of Veterans Services, which was created last year as an agency outside

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  • To Defeat De Blasio, Republicans Attempt Early Rally Behind One Candidate

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    GOP mayoral candidate Paul Massey, right (photo: @MasseyforMayor)


    In hopes of denying Mayor Bill de Blasio a second term, some New York City Republican leaders intend to rally around a single candidate to avoid a contentious primary and present a stronger challenge in the general election.

    Starting this week, Republican Party leaders and members will begin the process of vetting candidates who have declared their intention to run for mayor or are exploring a mayoral bid. Party organizations will host public meetings where each candidate will

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  • Saying City ‘Can’t Afford’ ‘Fair Fares,’ De Blasio Points to State

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    Mayor de Blasio & First Lady McCray in the subway (photo: Edwin J Torres/ Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio says he supports the “Fair Fares” campaign to reduce public transit fares for low-income New Yorkers, but insists that the city cannot afford it and that the funding must come from the state.

    Both Tuesday during his preliminary budget presentation and Wednesday during an transportation-related press conference de Blasio was

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  • With No 'Trump-Specific Adjustment,' De Blasio Unveils $84.7 Billion Budget

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


    Acknowledging that there is significant “uncertainty” emanating from the new federal administration, Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday unveiled an $84.67 billion preliminary budget for Fiscal Year 2018 that focuses on increasing the city’s savings while building on accomplishments from the last three years and addressing persistent challenges.

    “I want to say at the outset that this budget was written with the assumption of profound challenges from Washington,” de Blasio said

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  • De Blasio ‘Frustrated But Not Surprised’ by Lack of Cuomo Communication on Budget

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


    Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Tuesday at about noon that he had not yet been briefed by Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration about the governor’s Executive Budget, which was set to be released several hours later.

    “Coming in the door, we have still not been given the details of the state budget. Obviously that’s frustrating, but not surprising,” de Blasio told Gotham Gazette at an unrelated news conference in Queens. “We’re hoping to learn more in the course of the day and then we’ll be able to

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  • Council Member Johnson to Chair Fundraiser for De Blasio

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    Council Member Corey Johnson (photo: William Alatriste)


    City Council Member Corey Johnson, a top contender to become the next Speaker of the City Council, will chair a fundraiser for Mayor Bill de Blasio’s reelection campaign on Wednesday evening.

    Johnson, a Manhattan Democrat, has not publicly endorsed the mayor for reelection. Still, he is listed as one of four chairs for the fundraising event being held at the

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  • For Election Year, De Blasio Moves to Eliminate ‘Distractions,’ Except the Gym

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


    Heading into 2017, his re-election year, Mayor Bill de Blasio moved to eliminate several “distractions,” as he called them, attempting to clean up potentially self-sabotaging messes of his first term so that he can make as clear a case as possible for a second.

    De Blasio came under fire -- and law enforcement investigations -- for behaviors that he has largely eliminated in the run-up to his re-election bid. While he can’t make the investigations, and resulting grand juries, go away by changing

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  • Several Overlapping Campaign Bundlers for De Blasio and Stringer

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    De Blasio & Stringer in 2014 (photo: Rob Bennett/Mayor's Office)


    There’s overlap in those who have bundled campaign donations for Mayor Bill de Blasio and Comptroller Scott Stringer, a review of campaign finance documents shows.

    According to records from the New York

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  • De Blasio Opted for Quiet End to 2016

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Mayor's Office)


    At the end of 2015, his second year in office, Mayor Bill de Blasio held a two-hour roundtable with members of the media to promote his administration’s accomplishments, reflect on his tenure, and field whatever questions the 20-or-so assembled journalists wanted to ask.

    There was a multi-page handout from City Hall with “de Blasio Administration” and “YEAR TWO ACCOMPLISHMENTS” across the cover page, followed by sections on “Housing & Homelessness,” “Management & Economy,”

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  • New Year’s Resolutions for Mayor de Blasio

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


    At the end of his first year in office, Mayor Bill de Blasio said his new year’s resolution for 2015 was to be on time more often. The chronically late mayor mostly made good on that resolution. At the end of 2015, NY1’s Errol Louis asked de Blasio for a resolution and the mayor didn’t come up with anything on the spot -- I subsequently offered several to him in a Daily News

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  • 70 Questions for 2017 in New York Politics

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    De Blasio & Cuomo (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Happy New Year! As we get ready for 2017, there are, as always, many questions in New York politics. In early 2016, we asked 40 questions for the year ahead. This time, we’re asking 70 for 2017.

    There's a lot to look for in the new year, including a mayoral race and other city elections; so here are our big political questions for the year ahead -- if you want to share them, answer any,

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  • Federal Government Paves Way for City-Backed Retirement Savings Program

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    Mayor de Blasio at a February rally (Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    Responding to interest from cities including New York, the federal Department of Labor has ruled that certain municipalities can establish publicly-run retirement savings programs for private-sector workers whose employers do not offer such a program.

    In February, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his intention to create a new

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  • Bill de Blasio’s Police Accountability Problem

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


    Mayor Bill de Blasio’s campaign account recently posted a Twitter message touting the NYPD’s neighborhood policing initiative. “New York City is proving to the rest of the country that respectful, compassionate neighborhood policing drives down crime & makes us safer,” the tweet from @BilldeBlasio read.

    In a response symbolic of a problem de Blasio is facing as he heads into his re-election year, Lumumba

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  • Predictions! Experts Look Ahead to 2017 in New York Politics

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    New Year’s Eve 2015/16 (Michael Appleton/Mayor’s Office)


    As we usually do around this time of year, Gotham Gazette asked New York politicos to look into their crystal balls for predictions for the year ahead. Below you'll find insights from elected officials, journalists, advocates, analysts, and others who are tuned in to New York politics.

    We know that 2017 will be interesting given it’s a city election year, and there’s

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  • Top Ten Stories of 2016 in New York Politics

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    Bill Bratton departs (both photos: Michael Appleton/Mayor’s Office)


    Gotham Gazette's Top Ten Storylines of 2016 in New York Politics:

    10. Bill Bratton Leaves ‘On Top’
    In an extraordinary send-off -- his own mini-parade -- Bill Bratton departed 1 Police Plaza on September 16, 2016 for the final time as NYPD commissioner. For about two-and-a-half years Bratton was Mayor Bill de Blasio’s police commissioner and the arrangement worked mostly well for both: Bratton had the job and power in it that he wanted, de Blasio had

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  • Amnesty Program Clears $150 Million Owed to City

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    Mayor de Blasio hands a pen to CM Ferreras-Copeland (photo: @JulissaFerreras)


    A three-month amnesty program run by the city Department of Finance cleared more than $150 million in penalties owed by New Yorkers due to fines from various city agencies. Proposed by City Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland and agreed to by the City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio, the September-to-December fine forgiveness program was aimed at addressing some of $1 billion in debt owed to the city and is being heralded as a success by officials involved.

    The program, which was the first of its kind

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  • City Hall Hire to Help First Deputy Mayor with Vast Portfolio

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    First Deputy Mayor Shorris testifies (photo: William Alatriste)


    The de Blasio administration is bringing in a new chief administrative officer to work under First Deputy Mayor Tony Shorris starting January 1. Laura Anglin, who comes to City Hall after serving as president of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities for the last seven years, “will support the work of a number of City agencies,” according to the December 15 press release announcing her hire.

    Those agencies include several within Shorris’ 30-agency

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, December 19

    New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    There are just two weeks left in 2016, so get to work accomplishing any past new year’s resolutions you may be slacking on. And, prepare some good ones for 2017.

    As the year winds down -- this is our last Week Ahead of the year -- we’re watching to see if Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state legislators will agree to hold a special legislative session in Albany. Time is obviously running out to do so. The full package

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  • Campaign Finance Board Fines De Blasio, Others for 2013 Campaign Violations

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    Mayor de Blasio accepts a union endorsement for re-election (photo: Ben Max)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio’s 2013 campaign is being fined $47,778 by the Campaign Finance Board for ten separate violations, including improper post-election spending. Additionally, the board determined at its Thursday hearing, of the $3,994,496 in public matching funds de Blasio’s 2013 campaign received, it must repay $485.02.

    The single largest fine to de Blasio’s campaign, $21,159, is for making impermissible post-election expenditures. ...

  • Part of Rezoning Plan, City Opens New Career Center in East New York

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    Mayor de Blasio & CM Espinal (photo: Jeffrey Reed for the City Council)


    After serving jail time in 2014, Anthony McGlashan, a resident of East New York, Brooklyn, struggled to find employment for three years. While he had a certification from the Anthem Institute in the field of Information Technology, he continued to be rejected by employers due to his lack of experience and his criminal background. McGlashan then turned to one of New York City’s Workforce1 Centers, a city initiative that provides free career services by pairing employers with workers, holding

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  • Much Agreement on Need for Bail Reform, But Little Movement

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    On Rikers Island (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    There is an ongoing conversation in New York about how to fix the bail system that many agree is broken, keeping too many poor people in jail after they are arrested for low-level nonviolent offenses but cannot afford to post bond and, at times, allowing individuals back onto the street who are prone to violence but able to pay bail. Efforts at reform have been full of fits and starts.

    About a month ago, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced measures to make

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  • Citywide Electeds Make Social Media Moves Ahead of Election Year

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    Mayor de Blasio at Facebook (photo via Mayor's Office)


    If there’s an undeniable takeaway from the 2016 presidential election, it’s that social media can play a crucial role in how candidates for public office communicate. Nationally and locally, political candidates and elected officials have for years recognized the role that platforms like Twitter and Facebook can play in public engagement and influencing traditional media.

    For New York City’s three citywide elected officials -- Mayor Bill de Blasio, Comptroller Scott Stringer and

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  • De Blasio Undermines Own ‘Highest Standards' Claim

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    In a surprise move on Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio declared during a NY1 television appearance that going forward his communications with five outside advisors would be subject to public disclosure. In doing so, the mayor betrayed his own rhetoric from a week prior when he vigorously defended his actions in keeping those communications

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  • De Blasio Limits Government Contact with Top Outside Advisor

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio indicated on Tuesday that he has cut down his contact with Jonathan Rosen, a campaign consultant who has remained a top advisor to the mayor since de Blasio took office in 2014. Earlier this year de Blasio told reporters that amid controversy and investigations into his behavior he had reduced his communication with lobbyists. It appears that the mayor has also adjusted his approach to controversial political advisors like Rosen who are not on the government payroll but who

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  • The Supreme Court Case De Blasio Is Relying On To Defy Trump

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    De Blasio emerges from Trump Tower (photo: Ben Max)


    Since Donald Trump’s election as the next President, Mayor Bill de Blasio has had to face the reality of a threat he outlined as dire during the campaign. In doing so, de Blasio has met with Trump, spoken of being open-minded about the president-elect, and declared actions his city administration is ready to take if Trump attempts to follow through on some of his most extreme campaign promises.

    The most clear threat from Trump to New York City was his pledge to cut off federal funding to so-called

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