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Gotham Gazette

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Citizens Union
 

City Council

City Council

  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    The week begins with continued attention on the children separated from their families at the southern U.S. border who have been placed with New York agencies to care for them. The Trump administration has stated that it has stopped separating children and parents at the border and begun reuniting those separated, but it is unclear if they have a good process in place for doing so or how quickly they will be able to

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  • De Blasio City Council members

    Johnson, de Blasio, Dromm (l-r) (photo: John McCarten)


    At several budget hearings earlier this year, New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson took a hard line on transparency. He insisted that Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration was being less than forthcoming on how money is spent and was hampering the Council’s charter-mandated authority to review and approve the city’s spending plan. To wit, in its official response to the mayor’s preliminary budget in April, the Council proposed adding 123 new units of appropriation -- budget lines that explain

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  • cm stephlevin ant reynoso

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


    The new city budget does not do enough to address the tremendous backlog of city contracts with nonprofit groups that have been left languishing by city agencies, the groups say. This comes after a recent report from the city comptroller that shows

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  • City Council Airbnb

    (photo: John McCarten)


    For more than 30 years, a variety of federal laws have protected the personal data of Americans online at a time of unprecedented technological development. These laws have helped foster the growth of many iconic American companies -- Amazon, Ebay, Google, Twitter, and Airbnb, just to name a few -- and create a thriving tech economy that employs hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers, and many more from coast to coast.

    And yet, despite this extraordinary success, a bill pushed in the New York City Council by the hotel industry

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    The final three scheduled days of this year’s legislative session in Albany are Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of this week. Will there be the annual “big ugly” mash-up of compromise policy passed on the final night of session? Stay tuned.

    There are not very many issues that appear close to a compromise among Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, the Democrat-led Assembly, and the Republican-led Senate. But, most

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  • council meeting cojo

    Speaker Corey Johnson (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    The New York City Council increased the funding it distributes to local nonprofits and for Council members’ favored projects in their districts to $66.4 million for next fiscal year, which begins July 1, an increase of about $5 million, which largely went to initiatives sponsored by Speaker Corey Johnson. The money is part of the larger $89.2 billion budget

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  • de Blasio Corey Johnson budget City Hall

    De Blasio & Johnson shake on it (photo: William Alatriste)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson on Monday announced an agreement on an $89.15 billion budget for the 2019 fiscal year that includes key Council priorities that the mayor had been hesitant to fund for months.

    “This budget is profoundly responsible, it is balanced, it is progressive and it is early,” de Blasio said at the ceremonial budget handshake with Johnson and other Council members at City Hall on Monday evening, about three weeks before the

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    Tuesday will mark two weeks until congressional primary election day in New York: June 26. Until then, hotly contested races will feature intense campaigning, and there will even be a few debates. In New York City, there are a handful of House of Representative primaries worth watching, headlined by the Republican contest between Rep. Dan Donovan and former Rep. Michael Grimm. There are two Donovan-Grimm debates set

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  • cojo cm team

    Speaker Johnson, middle, and Council members (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    In December, several City Council members jostling to become the powerful next speaker of the 51-member legislative body signed on to a broad platform of reforms to the Council’s rules and procedures, which can have a significant impact on city law-making and funding for communities. Both returning and newly-elected Council members, 33 of them in total,

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  • citycouncil cojo

    Speaker Johnson on the subway (photo via City Council)


    A budget proposal to provide half-priced MetroCards to low-income New Yorkers has the New York City Council’s full weight this year. Well, almost.

    Only three City Council Members -- Joe Borelli, Steven Matteo, and Ruben Diaz, Sr. -- in the 51-member body have so far declined to support Fair Fares, the proposal that would cost the city about $212 million to offer discounted fares to nearly 800,000 city residents living below the federal poverty line.

    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson has

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  • time share airbnb

    (photo: Sofie Hecht / Gotham Gazette)


    Teaching children to share is difficult. Teaching Airbnb to share is impossible. Airbnb’s version of the “sharing economy” means more profits for the company and less affordable housing for the rest of us. 

    Airbnb repeatedly allows and provides cover for commercial operators to break the law, turn our homes into hotels, and parachute into our communities to make a profit, pilfering

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    We're about to hit three weeks until congressional primary day in New York, which is Tuesday, June 26. There are several contentious primaries in New York City and more around the state, all of which will help set the stage for extremely important general elections in November, where New York races will be key to which party has control of the House of Representatives in January.

    We're also now in the final

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  • Inez Barron City Council

    Council Member Inez Barron (photo: Ben Brachfeld)


    A long-awaited report was released on Thursday by the Task Force on Affordability, Admissions, and Graduation Rates at the City University of New York -- convened through City Council legislation -- that included recommendations for broad changes to the operations and funding of CUNY. Most notably, the task force, consisting of students, faculty, advocates, government officials, members of the business community, and one member of the CUNY Board of Trustees, recommended that tuition charges be eliminated at

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  • whats the data point


    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 42 -- 1,988, with Antonio Reynoso [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    antonio reynoso

    1,988 pounds

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  • City Council Cabrera Vallone

    CMs Cabrera, left, and Vallone (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    How does the New York City Council check city government agencies without legislating agency operations, which it sometimes does not have the power to do? Reporting bills.

    The Council often passes legislation that requires an agency under the direction of the mayor to produce a report, like Local Law 47, which compels the NYPD to compile data on subway fare-beating arrests. This bill, and the NYPD’s response, quickly became another flash point in tensions between city agencies and the

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    We're less than a month from New York's congressional primaries, to be held Tuesday, June 26. This Friday, June 1, is the deadline to register to vote to be able to vote in those primaries.

    As those congressional primary races hit the home stretch, we're also now fully into campaign season for the state-level primaries that will be voted on September 13. Most party nominee designations are set for governor,

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  • Council Member King City Council

    Council Member King, one of the authors (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    As we talk about legalizing marijuana, or cannabis, in New York, let’s look back on our nation’s history and see the good of endorsing harmful substances. We recognize that alcohol is legal, but let's face it -- it isn't good for you. Alcohol impairs judgement and making it easily available for adults means it is easily available for young people. For decades, our nation has seen alcoholism ruin marriages, families, and lives. We've seen countless

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  • Joe Borelli City Council

    Council Member Borelli (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    The general election debates in last year’s mayoral race largely lacked substance and order, as Mayor Bill de Blasio twice faced off against two challengers -- Republican Assembly Member Nicole Malliotakis and independent candidate Bo Dietl. Perhaps in part because de Blasio was not seen as vulnerable to defeat in an overwhelmingly Democratic city, the debates also lacked a wide audience. But there was another issue at play, for those debates and others mandated as part of the city’s

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    It’s political party nomination season as this state and federal election year heats up, with federal primaries on June 26, state primaries September 13, and the general election November 6.

    Over the weekend, the Working Families Party held its nominating convention on Saturday and the Reform Party held its nominating convention on Sunday.

    As expected the WFP nominated Cynthia Nixon for governor,

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  • Carlina Rivera City Council

    Council Member Rivera, one of the authors (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Even in an era of relentless attack on health care by the Trump administration and its allies in Congress, New York City is continuing to reap enormous benefits from the Affordable Care Act. This year alone another 80,000 city residents enrolled in health coverage through our state’s Obamacare exchange.

    But a huge number are still being left behind: an estimated 962,000 adults in the five boroughs remain uninsured. These New Yorkers -- many of whom are

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    On Friday, state legislative leaders released the list of candidates who applied to be named Attorney General through a process that will include public hearings on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. The list of candidates includes current Attorney General Barbara Underwood, who took over upon Eric Schneiderman’s resignation:

    Thomas J. Abinanti; Lloyd Constantine; Michael D. Diederich, Jr; Jose W. Fernandez;

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  • mxm logo

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


    May 7, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: City Council Member Joe Borelli

    joe borelli podcast map 277

    Joseph Borelli is a City Council member, former state Assembly member, Staten Islander, conservative Republican, and outspoken Donald Trump supporter. On the podcast, Borelli discusses his district, his constituents

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  • de Blasio corey johnson meeting

    (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio says he doesn’t have the money. The City Council says it is very much there.

    On April 26, the mayor released his executive budget proposal for the 2019 fiscal year, an $89.06 billion spending plan that he called “a downpayment on a more fair future for New Yorkers.” But the plan didn’t include major priorities previously outlined by the City Council, namely $212 million to fund half-priced MetroCards for thousands of low-income New Yorkers, a one-time $400 property

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    As the week begins we’re watching for any signs of possible action in Albany. There are scheduled legislative session days before the session ends in mid-June, including the three scheduled this week. 

    The gubernatorial race is in full swing, of course, and this week is sure to see further campaigning from Cynthia Nixon, Marc Molinaro, and others. On Saturday, Nixon participated in a “Cinco de Mayo march

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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 continuing to dissect Mayor Bill de Blasio's recently-released $89 billion Executive Budget plan for fiscal year 2019, which begins July 1. The de Blasio administration and the City Council now enter another round of Council hearings on the budget as well as behind-the-scenes negotiations, rallies,

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