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Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

 

Corey Johnson

Corey Johnson

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    ritchietorres ch230

     (photo: @RitchieTorres)


    On the steps of City Hall Wednesday afternoon, a coalition of LGBTQ rights advocates and current and former City Council members announced the launch of an initiative to elect queer candidates to the Council in 2021, when 35 seats will be open because of term limits.

    There are currently five members of the 51-member City Council who identify as LGBT, all of whom are a part of the body’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Caucus, and all of whom are not elligible for reelection to the Council: Speaker Corey Johnson and

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


    With subway and bus riders so frustrated with poor service, it is understandable that city leaders are talking about changing the governance of the MTA and its New York City Transit (NYCT) division as a solution.

    Most notably, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson has come up with a well-intentioned but ultimately misguided plan to break NYCT off from the MTA and vest full responsibility for its funding and operation in a mayor-controlled structure he’s named Big Apple Transit, or

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  • Corey Johnson criminal justice speech

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


    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson announced on Thursday a package of proposals aimed at reforming New York City’s criminal justice system to be more fair and equitable, building on changes championed by progressive politicians and advocates in New York and Albany over the last several years.

    Johnson presented a vision of criminal justice in New York based on refocusing the system away from incarceration and expanding the tools available to pursue his

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    Council Member Dromm and Speaker Johnson (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    The New York City Council and budget officials from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration engaged in a familiar push-and-pull on Monday, at the first hearing on the $92.5 billion executive budget proposal for the 2020 fiscal year that begins July 1.

    The Council, disappointed that many of its priorities were not included in the latest spending plan presented by the mayor, pushed for more funding and pointed to hundreds of millions in revenue available to the city, but

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    Gov. Cuomo at a charter school rally (photo: governor's office)


    After several new charter schools were approved last month, the cap on such schools allowed in New York City was reached. New York State has a cap on the number of issuable charters, which allow a group to start a new charter school, the controversial, privately-run, publicly-funded schools that mostly proliferate in the five boroughs and educate roughly 10% of the city's 1 million students. Within the larger cap, there is a sub-cap for charters that can be issued for schools in New York

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    Speaker Corey Johnson, one of the authors, with Mayor de Blasio (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Three years ago, the idea of closing the nine jails on Rikers Island was widely considered impossible. But in April 2017, after an intense campaign by advocates and the findings of an independent commission convened by former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and chaired by Judge Jonathan Lippman, Mayor de Blasio committed to the goal.

    Today, we are within hailing distance.

    The starting point for closing the Rikers jails is

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    The Mayor and the Council in a budget briefing (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    The City Council on Tuesday released its response to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s fiscal year 2020 preliminary budget, calling its own outline “a fiscally responsible plan that safeguards the city’s financial future and secures the city’s social safety net for New Yorkers.” Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Council members are calling for additional reserves and targeted investments, while also saying they’ve identified roughly $1 billion in savings

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    Speaker Johnson with Max & Murphy at City Hall (photos: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    April 10, 2019 - Max & Murphy Podcast: City Council Speaker Corey Johnson

    inset emil cohenCity Council Speaker Corey Johnson joined Max & Murphy for an extended, wide-ranging onversation about his leadership of the City Council, his relationship with Mayor Bill de Blasio, city budget negotiations,

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


    New York City Council Member Barry Grodenchik, a Democrat from Queens, will face formal disciplinary charges after a complaint of sexual harassment against him was found to be credible by the Council’s Committee on Standards and Ethics on Thursday.

    Council Member Steven Matteo, chair of the standards and ethics committee, announced at a hearing Thursday afternoon that the committee would initiate formal disciplinary proceedings against Grodenchik regarding Section 10.80 of the Council’s

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    OMB Director Hartzog testifies (photo: William Alatriste/NYC Council)


    As usual, the City Council’s March agenda was mostly dominated by preliminary budget hearings, evaluating the mayor’s initial spending plan for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1. This stage of the city budget process started and finished with a general hearing held by the Council’s Finance Committee, along with its Capital Budget Subcommittee, with a series of more specific agency- and service-related hearings in between.

    The preliminary budget hearings finished where

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    Mayor de Blasio announces specialized high schools plan (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    In June of 2018, Mayor Bill de Blasio rolled out a plan to eliminate the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) for New York City’s specialized public high schools, in an effort to increase diversity, especially for black and Latino

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    Speaker Johnson, the author (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    In New York, you can be locked up based on purported evidence that isn’t even disclosed to you, until a trial that can be postponed indefinitely, unless you are wealthy enough to pay your way out. That is the reality under our state’s antiquated laws governing cash bail, discovery, and speedy trial. With Democrats truly controlling both houses of the state Legislature and the governorship for the first time in decades, we now have a meaningful opportunity to

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    (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayoral Photo Office)


    Many New Yorkers know the city has trouble completing construction projects on time and under budget. Projects like school renovations and the build-out of park facilities are capital projects, the subject of increasing scrutiny and some reform, with more promised, as frustrations persist and residents, watchdogs, lawmakers, and other city leaders seek answers.

    Top officials from the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio to City Council Speaker Corey Johnson to Comptroller Scott Stringer have taken a fresh

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    Gov. Cuomo (governor's office) & Speaker Johnson (William Alatriste/City Council)


    On February 26, Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio released a 10-point plan to “transform and fund” the Metropolitan Transportation Authority

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    Jumaane Williams (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Jumaane Williams, the City Council member elected public advocate in a special election last month, has vowed a renewed push for increased funding and an independent budget to bolster the meager resources of the office he now occupies.

    Over the course of the six-week long special election that Williams won, virtually all of the 17 candidates who were on the ballot argued that the public advocate’s office needs more funding. One of just three elected

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    (Photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson appeared frustrated on Wednesday with the de Blasio administration budget at the Council’s first hearing to examine the mayor’s $92.2 billion preliminary budget proposal for the 2020 fiscal year, which begins July 1 of this year.

    Mayor Bill de Blasio released his preliminary budget proposal last month ...

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


    March 6, 2019 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Should the City Run the Subways?

    citycouncil r bay200New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson has proposed a city takeover of the subways, part of a lengthy and ambitious new transit plan he announced at this first State of the City speech. The hosts discuss Johnson's proposals

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    Speaker Johnson (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson unveiled an ambitious proposal for municipal control of the city’s mass transit system on Tuesday at his first State of the City speech at LaGuardia Community College in Queens.

    “I am not here to be typical,” Johnson, who is considering a run for mayor in 2021, promised early on as he delivered a speech focused on nothing but transit, including a forceful push for replacing the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the state entity that controls the

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    Speaker Johnson (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    The New York City Council’s Democratic conference held on Thursday what officials said was its first ever public vote to appoint three new commissioners to the New York City Board of Elections.

    The BOE is a quasi-city agency, funded in the city budget but governed by state law. It has ten commissioners -- two from every borough, with one each recommended by the Democratic and Republican parties and appointed by the City Council for four-year terms. The board’s executive director is chosen by the

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    (Photo: John McCarten/NYC Council)


    In a rare move on Wednesday, the New York City Council voted to dissolve a standing committee after its chair, Council Member Ruben Diaz Sr., made homophobic remarks in a recent radio interview and repeatedly refused to apologize for them in the days after.

    Diaz Sr., a Pentecostal minister with a long history of anti-LGBT positions and actions, said last week in the radio interview that the City Council is “controlled by the homosexual community," ...

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    Council Members Holden, right, and Yeger (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    The City Council recently held its second in a two-part oversight hearing on the city’s 311 system, the country’s largest non-emergency call center. City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and City Council Member Fernando Cabrera, the chair of the governmental operations committee, led both hearings. While the first hearing focused on system upgrades to 311 that are in process and language

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    (Photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    The New York City Council wants a voice in picking the commissioner of the NYPD, more independence for ethics and oversight agencies, and greater power over the city budget.

    Those are among the recommendations that the City Council made in a new report to the 2019 Charter Revision Commission, seeking amendments to the city’s governing document that would broadly strengthen the powers

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    An Atlantic Yards groundbreaking (photo: Spencer T Tucker)


    More public participation might help. So might ULURP. But rigorous skepticism is more important.

    It was fascinating, having watched in 2004 and 2005 two New York City Council subcommittee hearings on the announced Brooklyn Atlantic Yards project, to see the Council's Committee on Ecomomic Development, with the Speaker prominent, on December 12 take a distinctly

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    former Mayor Bloomberg at 311 (photo: Edward Reed)


    The city’s 311 non-emergency call center for information about city services and to lodge complaints is nearing a mid-year re-launch, its first major overhaul since being introduced by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2003. The revamped system, estimated to debut in July, will modernize 311’s currently outdated system that limits its capability to assist New Yorkers. The next iteration of the system will eventually allow for increased language access, user accounts to track inquiries and complaints, and a better app

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  • Corey Johnson Tish James

    Corey Johnson, Laurie Cumbo, Tish James (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    A charter-mandated city commission meant to help New Yorkers access information about their government sputtered to a stop in 2016 owing to a lack of funding, barely three years after being revived by former Public Advocate Letitia James. Now, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who is also acting public advocate for the next several weeks, is taking up James’ unfinished business and attempting to raise the commission from its grave.

    The Commission on

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