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Gotham Gazette

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City Council

  • city spe canidates

    the City Council Speaker candidates at a prior forum (photo: William Alatriste)


    Seven of the eight candidates vying to become the next Speaker of the New York City Council convened at New York Law School on Monday night for a forum focused on government reform, running the Council, transparency, ethics, voting, and elections.

    The candidates made their cases for their leadership prowess, and discussed extending term limits for Council members, greater transparency around lobbying, key questions about campaign finance reform in the city, and

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    Welcome to Thanksgiving week, which has a lot going on the first couple of days before quieting down for the long holiday weekend.

    Mayor Bill de Blasio is back in town after a week on family vacation in Connecticut. While de Blasio was away, controversy blew up around NYCHA’s mishandling of lead inspections. De Blasio defended Chair and CEO Shola Olatoye amid calls from Public Advocate Letitia James and others

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  • whats the data point


    What's The Data Point? Episode 20 -- 44, with City Council Member Dan Garodnick [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    ep20 garodnick podcast

    City Council Member Dan Garodnick has represented his Manhattan district for the past 12 years. At the end of this year, he's leaving the Council due to term limits. He joined

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  • Helen Rosenthal City Council Speaker

    Helen Rosenthal among Speaker hopefuls Cornegy, Levine, Johnson (photo: William Alatriste)


    The Women’s Caucus of the City Council recently interviewed the eight candidates -- all men -- seeking to become the next Speaker of the Council, arguably the second most powerful position in city government. While the Women’s Caucus will not be endorsing a speaker candidate ahead of the January vote, according to caucus co-chair Helen Rosenthal, it did secure important commitments from each candidate and the process, which also

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  • Mark Peters DOI City Council

    DOI Commissioner Mark Peters (photo: William Alatriste)


    Four years ago, over the veto of then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the City Council passed the Community Safety Act, a landmark piece of legislation relating to policing in New York City. One of the law’s most prominent planks was the creation of the NYPD Inspector General, an independent police department watchdog that would audit NYPD practices and operations and make recommendations on improvements.

    With the nation on edge over widely disseminated videos of black men

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This week after the election does not look like it will be too quiet, though Mayor Bill de Blasio will be away on a family vacation in Connecticut all week, Monday through Friday. Still, there is a lot going on, including the ongoing attempts to fight a Republican effort to overhaul the federal tax code that has many in New

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  • polling place

    Polling place (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    As New York State’s archaic election and voting laws continue to dampen voter turnout, the New York City Council is about to take a step to encourage participation. The City Council’s governmental operations committee will vote on Tuesday, November 14 to approve a bill allowing online voter registration for city residents, Council Member Ben Kallos, chair of the committee, told Gotham Gazette on Thursday. The bill is then expected to pass the full City Council on Thursday.

    “With the historic low in

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  • voting elections New York City

    (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio won reelection on Tuesday, earning about two-thirds of the vote in another low-turnout election -- about 1,070,000 voters cast ballots in the mayoral race. De Blasio's fellow incumbent citywide Democrats, Comptroller Scott Stringer and Public Advocate Letitia James, also won reelection, each with about three-quarters of the vote.

    Among the most notable other votes cast in New York this Election Day, the constitutional convention ballot question -- proposal one on

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    CM Garodnick speaks at a groundbreaking ceremony (photo via @DanGarodnick)


    [editor's note: the bills discussed in this story have passed the Council since its publish; the headline has been tweaked to indicate that fact, but the story remains unchanged from its publish]

    The New York City Council is set to pass a package of three bills that will expand its oversight of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, a city-affiliated non-profit that is instrumental in the city’s efforts to stimulate business and create jobs.

    The

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    The big event this week will be Wednesday night’s mayoral debate, the second of two televised debates ahead of Election Day, November 7. Mayor Bill de Blasio, the incumbent Democrat; Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis, the Republican nominee; and Bo Dietl, running on his own independent line, have been invited to participate. [This section of our article has been updated to reflect that CBS decided to invite Bo Dietl to

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  • de Blasio subway tax

    De Blasio on the train (Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    Amid an ongoing feud -- between the Mayor Bill de Blasio on one side and Governor Andrew Cuomo and the MTA on the other -- over funding for mass transit infrastructure in New York City, 27 New York City Council Members on Thursday announced support for the mayor’s proposal to tax wealthy New Yorkers to raise money for subway and bus improvements.

    The mayor has pitched a tax increase on the top-most earners in the city as part of his “Fair Fix” plan, which would raise about $700

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    It’s City Hall in Your Borough week in Brooklyn. While we don’t have a full rundown of events, we know that Mayor Bill de Blasio and much of his team will operate out of Brooklyn Borough Hall; they will hold a resource fair and constituent services event on Wednesday; and there will be two town halls, Tuesday and Thursday evenings.

    On Monday, de Blasio has several public events -- see below for details.

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This week starts with a bang: the lone Public Advocate debate on Monday night and the lone Comptroller debate on Tuesday night -- see below for more details.

    The mayoral race will continue to chug along this week, of course, though the next and final debate in that contest is not until November 1.

    As he has been of late, Mayor Bill de Blasio is set to hold two evening town hall events this week -- see details below.

    The

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    As this shortened holiday week begins all eyes are on Tuesday night's mayoral debate, the first general election televised debate as part of the city's campaign finance system and debate program, which will feature Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, Republican Nicole Malliotakis, and independent Bo Dietl. The debate

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  • paul vallone by john mccarten

    Council Member Paul Vallone (photo: John McCarten)


    Legislation barring City Council members from making outside income will go into effect on January 1, forcing several sitting and incoming Council members to make tough decisions about their side jobs.

    The regulations, which were linked to a significant pay increase for all city elected officials, including a salary bump from $112,500 to $148,000 for City Council members, were approved by Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council last

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  • de blasio voting 2017 elections

    Mayor de Blasio signs in to vote (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    With the party primaries over in the 2017 city election cycle, we head toward the general election, which will take place Tuesday, November 7. Dozens of races will be on the ballot, headlined by Mayor Bill de Blasio’s attempt at re-election.

    The other citywide positions of Public Advocate and Comptroller are also being determined this year, as well as all five Borough Presidents, all 51 City Council seats, and two District Attorney positions (Brooklyn and Manhattan). However,

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This week, the spotlight remains on relief efforts in Puerto Rico, where more than half the population is without clean drinking water and the entire island is without power after the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria. Elected officials in New York continue to criticize the Trump administration for its slow response to the crisis and are urging the federal government to step up assistance, while also rallying New Yorkers to donate supplies

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  • NYPD de Blasio

    Mayor de Blasio & law enforcement officials (photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Mayor’s Office)


    At a recent hearing, New York City Council members discussed the effectiveness of NYPD responses to “emotionally disturbed person” (EDP) calls, the slow pace of implementation for new NYPD crisis intervention training, and the tragic outcomes of several recent interactions between NYPD officers and emotionally disturbed individuals.

    At the hearing, held Sept. 6 jointly by the Council’s Committee on Public Safety and Committee on Mental Health, Developmental

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  • people festival mayor's office

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    With the primaries over, there is still room for evaluating what happened and analyzing what it all means, but it is also time to shift into the general election and what to watch as the city heads toward Tuesday, November 7: Election Day 2017.

    Unless there are races too close to call, that night we will know who the mayor will be for the next four years, as well as who will hold the other citywide offices of comptroller and public advocate, the five borough president positions, all 51

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  • nice immigrant protections

    (photo: NICE)


    Just last week, Juan Chonilla and another still unidentified worker died from construction accidents. These men were important members of our immigrant community. As one of the members of New Immigrant Community Empowerment (NICE), one of these men was family. These tragic deaths and severe injuries of multiple construction workers last week, on sites with safety violations, underscore the urgency for New York City to enact legislation that meets the needs of all workers.

    The City Council is currently considering a

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    Mayor Bill de Blasio had a busy weekend, speaking at several events on Saturday and Sunday, wearing governmental and campaign hats at different times. De Blasio will hold City Hall in Your Borough this week in Manhattan, with many top administration personnel working out of an upper Manhattan space at NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem. This will be de Blasio’s fourth City Hall in Your Borough week, with only Brooklyn still left. Several events

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  • aya keefe and cm mark levine crop

    Council Member Mark Levine & his Chief of Staff, Aya Keefe (photo: Levine's office)


    The New York City Council, a 51-member body, currently includes only 13 women, down from 18 in 2009, and that number is likely to soon fall to 12 when the next Council is seated in January, if this year’s elections continue as expected. There has been widespread recent attention given to the City Council gender imbalance, in part because the Council’s Women’s Caucus released a report on the subject, and there are efforts underway to improve

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  • lancman rally council

    Council Member Lancman (photo: @NYCCouncil)


    The City Council’s Courts and Legal Services Committee held an oversight hearing on Monday dedicated to New York’s Integrated Domestic Violence Courts, a program designed to increase accountability and responsiveness to domestic violence victims in the legal system by combining the different courts one might interact with in a domestic violence dispute into a single court, with a single judge handling a couple’s or family’s multiple cases, including criminal, custody, and visitation cases.

    Integrated

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    This week we’re still assessing the outcomes of last week’s primary elections, while also kicking into full gear with the general election that is upon us, though it has far fewer competitive or interesting races.

    It’s also a busy week at the City Council, where current Council members who won their primaries will no doubt have more bounce in their steps knowing they are good for another four years. Virtually all of the incumbents

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  • alicka samuel facebook crop

    Alicka Ampry-Samuel (via Facebook)


    It was late Tuesday afternoon, primary day, in Brooklyn, and amidst the rattle of the subway and wafting aroma of a not-far-off Popeyes fried chicken restaurant, Alicka Ampry-Samuel danced on the sidewalk with Corey Johnson, a current City Council member from Manhattan, to “Ain’t No Stoppin Us Now.” Although the outcome of Samuel’s race -- she was a leading candidate in the crowded Democratic

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