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Bill de Blasio

Bill de Blasio

  • Facing Reality, City Leaders Reassess 'Trump Effect'

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    Mark-Viverito at Trump Tower (photo: Sofie Hecht/Gotham Gazette)


    Local elected officials continue to take stock of what a Trump presidency might mean for New York City, and with budget season around the corner, only one word can describe their feelings: uncertainty.

    Mayor Bill de Blasio, Comptroller Scott Stringer and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito are all waiting to see what President-elect Donald Trump will actually do when he takes office in January. Trump, a Republican, made many campaign promises that alarmed city officials, who are almost all

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  • De Blasio Appeals for Support in Pushing Albany on Voting Reform

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


    In order to improve New York’s dismal voter turnout rates, it’s necessary to “shake the foundations of things,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio in his keynote speech at a voter turnout symposium at New York Law School on Friday.

    Speaking to an audience of more than a hundred people, many of them advocates of voting and election reform, the mayor made a forceful appeal to reinforce his recent call for reform bills in Albany. De Blasio lamented the fact that New York is well behind dozens of other states in

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  • Taking Up Voting Reform, De Blasio Cites Sanders Campaign as Motivation

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    De Blasio registers a voter (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    As Public Advocate, Bill de Blasio strongly pushed for voting reform in New York, but as Mayor, it has not been high on his list of priorities. Last month, with Election Day around the corner, that seemed to change as de Blasio renewed his call for a system that will encourage voting in a state with one of the lowest voter turnout rates in the country.

    The advocacy comes just ahead of de Blasio’s re-election year and is spurred in part, the mayor said, by the

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  • Bill De Blasio and the Presidential Election That Didn’t Happen

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    Clinton & de Blasio at Inner Circle (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Just two weeks before Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders stepped into the 2016 presidential election with his uber progressive proposals that would eventually pull the Democratic Party to the left, Mayor Bill de Blasio stuck his foot in the door. The mayor’s attempt to seize the moment for national change was borne from his own electoral success in New York City and began in

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  • On Election Day, Federal Policy & Funding Stakes High for New York City

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


    Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will be in New York City on election night, and one of them will be the next President of the United States. Through the results of the presidential election, which comes down to one native New Yorker and one New York transplant, and with the congressional elections on the ballot, there’s a great deal at stake for New York City.

    According to the fiscal year 2017 ...

  • Savings Debate Intensifies Ahead of City Budget Modification

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    Mayor de Blasio in a budget presentation (photo: NYC Mayor's Office)


    Reading the tea leaves and heeding calls to be more prepared for an inevitable recession, the de Blasio administration has formed a new unit in its budget office tasked with coordinating additional agency savings, a move expected to be more formally announced in conjunction with the coming November budget modification.

    City tax revenue growth has slowed, but a recession is not yet here, and may not be imminent. Though alarm bells have been ringing of late, city tax revenue

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  • Cuomo and De Blasio Outline Priorities for a Democratic Senate, with A Lot In Common

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    Cuomo & de Blasio in Chelsea (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    In typical fashion, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio are saying a lot of the same things, but doing so nowhere near each other and without mentioning the other.

    In a role reversal from 2014, during the current election season Cuomo is actively pushing for Democrats to win key swing seats and take control of the State Senate, Republicans’ last bastion of power in statewide government, while de Blasio is on the sideline.

    But if you listen closely,

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  • Ahead of Election Year, De Blasio Must Name New Campaign Finance Board Chair

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


    With the impending departure of the head of the city’s campaign finance regulatory body, good government advocates say Mayor Bill de Blasio must be careful about who he chooses to fill the position as the city heads into an election year.

    “The chair of the campaign finance board is probably the single most important player in government ethics,” said Gene Russianoff, senior attorney at the New York Public Interest Research Group, a government reform organization.

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  • Ulrich Starts Raising Funds on Message of Beating De Blasio in 2017

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    de Blasio, seated, & Ulrich, to his right (photo: Ed Reed, Mayor's Office)


    He’s not sure he’ll take the plunge, but City Council Member Eric Ulrich is beginning to raise money and test the waters for a possible 2017 mayoral run. The key motivator for Ulrich, a Queens Republican, is his belief that “Mayor de Blasio is destroying and dividing our beloved city.”

    That is how Ulrich is framing a fundraiser he is holding Tuesday evening, adding of Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, “I believe he can be beat in 2017 but I need your help” on the

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  • Council Member Richards to Host Fundraiser for Mayor De Blasio

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    Richards, right, & de Blasio (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    On Tuesday, November 15, City Council Member Donovan Richards will host a re-election campaign fundraiser for Mayor Bill de Blasio in Rosedale, Queens. Richards, who has been one of de Blasio’s staunchest supporters in the Council, where some of the mayor’s goodwill has frayed, said that he’s generally supportive of de Blasio, appreciates what the mayor is doing for his district, and wants to give locals a chance to support de Blasio at a small-dollar

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  • Mayor Goes Quiet on Key Education Challenges

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


    If Bill de Blasio wants to be the Education Mayor, he needs to do better than this.

    In Friday’s “Equity and Excellence” address sponsored by the Association for a Better New York before a generally well-heeled, overwhelmingly white audience, de Blasio discussed a list of programs that he’s largely been repeating for over a year.

    We’ve heard it before and surely he can claim credit for planting seeds: Pre-K for All, Literacy for All,

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  • Inside the City’s Personnel Growth and Agency Hiring Practices

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    There were 313,092 full-time and full-time equivalent positions employed by the City of New York as of June 30, the final day of last fiscal year, according to headcount data provided by the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB). According to forecasted staffing levels in the Adopted Budget for Fiscal Year 2017, released by OMB on June 14, the City plans to add

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  • Bill de Blasio Versus NIMBYism

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    Mayor de Blasio at a town hall (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    In recent weeks, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s policies have run up against an age-old forces of inertia and resistance in the city, especially one that springs forth in policy debates on everything from housing to bike lanes to school desegregation and even closing down Rikers Island jails. That force -- NIMBY or Not In My Back Yard-ism -- has taken distinct forms on different issues, but has been causing the de Blasio administration trouble and frustrating the mayor. At

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  • Crime Under Mayor De Blasio, The Long View

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


    This September was the safest September in the more than two decades that the NYPD has been keeping statistics of the seven major felonies through its CompStat system.

    Announcing that fact on Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD officials, including new Commissioner James O’Neill, again touted crime numbers largely heading in the right direction.

    The press conference came one week after the first Presidential debate between

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  • At Rivington Hearing, Discussion of Extent of City Hall Mismanagement

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    First Deputy Mayor Shorris testifies (photo: William Alatriste)


    Over the course of a Thursday oversight hearing lasting more than six hours, top officials from the de Blasio administration attempted to explain to the City Council all the missteps that led to a Lower East Side AIDS hospice being sold to a luxury condominium developer with virtually no public benefit.

    Council Member Ben Kallos, chair of the governmental operations committee, said early in the hearing, “Something went very wrong here and we must address issues

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  • City Council Drafting Bills to Regulate Political Nonprofits Like Campaign for One New York

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    Council Member Ben Kallos (photo: John McCarten for the City Council)


    At least three City Council members have made requests to the Council’s bill drafting unit to formulate legislation that would regulate political participation by and with “social welfare” nonprofit organizations. These are political advocacy, or lobbying, groups, which have been the subject of intense scrutiny in New York City of late due to the Campaign

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  • Highlights from the New Mayor's Management Report

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


    On Monday, The Mayor’s Office of Operations released the Mayor’s Management Report for Fiscal Year 2016, which ran from July 1 2015 to June 30 2016. For nearly 40 years, the MMR has been a report card of sorts for city agencies that the public and City Council can use to assess city performance in delivering services to New Yorkers. It now includes over 2,000 reported data

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  • Council to Examine Young Men’s Initiative, a Bloomberg Program & National Model

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    YMI's Cyrus Garrett (photo: @NYCyoungmen)


    In August of 2011, then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg addressed a group of nonprofit and community leaders as he announced the launch of a landmark approach to tackling persistent problems facing young black and Latino men. The Young Men’s Initiative, ...

  • Inside 311, the City’s ‘Front Door’ to Government

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    311 in 2013 (photo via the Mayor's Office on Flickr)


    The vast LED board updated in real-time: 36,529 calls since midnight, it said for a late-afternoon moment one August day. Perched in a high-ceilinged room in Lower Manhattan, the board tallied work done and signified work to be done, with numbers jumping every few seconds as the New York City 311 call center buzzed with the steady hum of staff members speaking into headsets.

    “Hello, and thank you for calling NYC 311.”

    “Did you

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  • James Wins Battle in Long War Over Public Advocate's Legal Standing

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    Public Advocate Letitia James (photo via @TishJames)


    The Public Advocate’s office was created in 1993 to give a voice to everyday New Yorkers and act as checks on the authority of the Mayor and the function of city agencies. Letitia James, the fourth New York City Public Advocate, has made litigation a major tool in her attempt to fulfill the office’s mandates. James, who has a background as an attorney and has hired several lawyers to her staff since taking office in 2014, has fought the city and its agencies in the

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  • Mark-Viverito: New York City is ‘Heading in the Right Direction’

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    Melissa Mark-Viverito (photo: William Alatriste)


    New York City is well on its way to correcting the policies of 20 years of Republican rule, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito said during an interview last week. Discussing her time as Speaker, upcoming priorities, working with Mayor Bill de Blasio, and more, Mark-Viverito spoke with Gotham Gazette at length in the Speaker’s office at City Hall.

    On a relatively quiet August Thursday, Mark-Viverito addressed a wide range of topics, from her approach to leading the Council through

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  • Justice Department Decision Boosts Push for Private Prison Divestment

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    A recent decision by the federal Department of Justice to scale back and eventually end the use of private prisons indirectly impacted New York City’s pension funds, reducing holding values by millions of dollars and leading to renewed calls from activists for the city to divest from the for-profit corporations that operate these prisons.

    Earlier this month, the Obama administration took a major step against an industry that has long been criticized for its culture of violence, secrecy, and the devaluation of human life: private

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  • Touted Bloomberg Anti-Poverty Incubator Sees New Life in De Blasio Era

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    Above: Mayor Bloomberg speaks (Ed Reed). Below: Gibbs & Doar on panel


    Data-driven Center for Economic Opportunity paves way for workforce development vision in Career Pathways

    On July 14, former Bloomberg Deputy Mayor Linda Gibbs and Robert Doar, former commissioner of anti-poverty efforts, participated in a panel discussion in Washington, D.C., fielding questions

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  • The Week Ahead in New York Politics, August 29

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    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This pre-Labor Day weekend week is looking like a fairly quiet one in New York politics, though there are a few things to watch for. Mayor Bill de Blasio is due to return Sunday evening from a vacation week traveling throughout New England with his family and could have an active week. The mayor starts the week with one public event on his schedule: he'll be in Queens Monday evening to deliver remarks at the

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  • Increase in Rape Reports Given Little Attention Amid Celebration of Crime Drops

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    Mayor de Blasio at a press briefing (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    “You’re going to hear some numbers that are striking,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio as he began an August 4 press conference on the city’s latest crime statistics. “2016 saw the fewest shootings, the fewest robberies, the fewest burglaries, the fewest

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