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Citizens Union
 

State Legislature

State Legislature

  • gov cuomo congepric

    Cuomo in the midst of his ABNY presentation


    One major issue that hung over the 2018 state budget season was congestion pricing, a plan to charge a fee to all motor vehicles entering parts of Manhattan and diverting the revenue toward funding the beleaguered subway system. Governor Andrew Cuomo directed a panel to study the issue, which determined that a congestion pricing scheme should be implemented and offered options for what it could look like, including a three-year, three-phase proposal. Activist groups applied significant public pressure on the governor and the

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  • gottfried org 2

    Assemblymember Gottfried (photo: Dickgottfried.org)


    Wendy Stark is ready to press the reset button on health care. The executive director of Callen-Lorde Community Health Center, based in Lower Manhattan, Stark is hopeful that an overhaul may be on the horizon in New York through controversial legislation gaining increasing attention as this fall’s elections determine the upcoming balance of power in state government, from the governor’s office through the state Legislature.

    The New York Health Act -- which has increasingly strong chances of passing the

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  • Andrew Cuomo voting

    Gov. Cuomo votes (photo via The Governor's Office)


    In 2018, New York will be home to elections for statewide seats including Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, and Comptroller, as well as one of its two United States Senate seats. In all five positions but Attorney General, incumbent Democrats are seeking reelection. In three -- Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General -- there are competitive primaries that will be decided Thursday September 13.

    New York is also home this year to elections for all of its 27 seats

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  • Cuomo Women's Equality Act presser 2013

    Gov. Cuomo in 2013 (photo: The Governor's Office)


    As part of the #MeToo movement, a group of women who experienced sexual harassment or abuse while working in New York state government have for months been advocating for public hearings on the culture that enables that misconduct in government, especially the state capital, and in the private sector. Their calls have intensified -- and been echoed by prominent women running for state elected offices this year -- after Governor Andrew Cuomo and state legislative leaders passed new anti-harassment

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  • Tom DiNapoli Comptroller Bronx

    Comptroller DiNapoli (photo: @NYSComptroller)


    For New York’s fiscal picture, “Trump’s policies are as great a concern as the economic cycle,” according to State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, who spoke at length recently about the state’s finances and economy, which are precarious for a number of reasons.

    During a 30-minute interview with Gotham Gazette Executive Editor Ben Max for a special on Manhattan Neighborhood Network that aired Sunday, DiNapoli discussed

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  • gov dpa

    Gov. Cumo signs ad transparency bill (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    The recent federal indictments of 12 Russians involved in the country’s interference campaign in the 2016 United States presidential election comes at a time of already heightened interest in election security given other previously known facts and allegations about Russian meddling in the election, the promulgation of “fake news,” attempted hacking of state elections systems, and questionable practices by social media platforms like Facebook. Though election security and integrity at the federal level has dominated

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  • catalina cruz parade Queens

    Catalina Cruz (photo: @CatalinaCruzNY)


    Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Democratic primary victory over Rep. Joe Crowley last month in New York’s 14th congressional district sent shockwaves throughout the country and signalled a monumental shift in Queens politics, where the Crowley-led county party has held significant sway in local elections for many years. The effects of Ocasio-Cortez’s win and Crowley’s loss, both nationally and locally, are still developing, but reverberations are certainly being felt in the already-competitive Democratic primary for New York

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  • progressive caucus 2009

    City Council Progressive Caucus (photo via Progressive Caucus website)


    The Progressive Caucus of the New York City Council sent a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo urging him to sign a bill, passed at the end of the legislative session in June, which would create a new state commission on prosecutorial misconduct. The caucus, which includes 21 of the Council’s 51 members, referred to the bill as “the most substantive criminal justice reform passed

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  • gov cuomo bill clinton electoral

    (photo via the Governor's Office)


    The problem of sexual harassment in New York state politics is systemic and plaguing young women beginning their careers, according to a group fighting to change the culture and the laws around the issue. And, they argue that recently adopted state measures to fight the scourge are insufficient, despite being touted by Governor Andrew Cuomo as “the best in the nation.”

    The seven women of The Sexual Harassment Working Group -- all of whom have been personally affected by sexual harassment

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  • gianaris via facebook

    Senator Gianaris and colleagues (photo via Gianaris Facebook)


    Predictions of a nationwide “blue wave” of anti-Trump sentiment resulting in major Democratic gains have been tempered as the president maintains strong support among Republicans and the economy, broadly speaking, is going strong.

    But even if the blue wave ends up being more like a trickle, that would be good news to state Senator Michael Gianaris of Queens, who chairs the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee (DSCC) and needs to net just one seat this fall to take control of the

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  • Cuomo gun safety press conference

    Gov. Cuomo holds a press conference (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    A particularly dysfunctional, even for New York, state legislative session came to a halt on Wednesday with little movement on most of the major issues animating state government. The reunification of the Independent Democratic Conference and the mainline Senate Democrats led to business slowing to a drip in the Senate after the passage of the state budget; things became particularly impaired after one Republican senator, Tom Croci, was recalled to active military

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  • sengianaris press

    Senator Gianaris (photo: @sengianaris)


    New Yorkers may soon have a new tool to influence their government. A bill in the state Legislature would allow members of the public, given enough support, to compel state agencies to hold public hearings on proposed rules.

    The bill (S2397), sponsored in the state Senate by Senator Michael Gianaris of Queens, would establish a three-year pilot program ordering seven regulatory agencies — the Workers' Compensation Board and the Departments of Education, Environmental Conservation, Health, Financial Services, Labor, and Family Assistance

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  • andrea stewart cousins sk gg2

    Andrea Stewart-Cousins at the state party convention (photo: Samar Khurshid/Gotham Gazette)


    While policies to prevent and punish sexual harassment were being decided in Albany during state budget negotiations earlier this year, four men led the closed-door talks: Governor Andrew Cuomo, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, and the leader of the now-defunct Independent Democratic Conference Jeff Klein. Even as female aides had some level of participation, there was a great deal of scrutiny of the absence

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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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  • Carl McCall Cuomo

    Carl McCall (photo: Governor's Office)


    The pay commission tasked with proposing salary adjustments of New York State legislators, statewide elected officials, and top executive branch employees, created in this year’s enacted budget, appears to be in a state of disarray.

    The appointed chair of the commission, New York State Chief Judge Janet DiFiore, announced in May that she could not serve on the commission, citing what she believed to be the unconstitutionality of a judge determining matters that could end up before her in court. She has not been

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  • govcuomo speakerheastie

    Speaker Heastie, left, and Governor Cuomo (photo via the Governor's Office)


    Amid open conflict with Governor Andrew Cuomo, a second-term Democrat, the Republican-controlled state Senate recently passed a package of bills aimed at shedding light on taxpayer-funded economic development projects, among other reform measures. The move helped reignite attention on the legislation and put pressure on the Democrat-led Assembly to pass bills it has previously supported.

    The legislation includes the Procurement Integrity Act, which would restore

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  • comptroller tom finger lakes economic

    Comptroller Tom DiNapoli (photo via the Comptroller's office)


    In March, Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature once again passed a budget in the middle of the night with little public review. Keeping form with past years, elected members of the Assembly and Senate voted through major budget and policy decisions that they did not know the details of, while there was also no time for feedback from outside watchdogs. The State Comptroller, Thomas DiNapoli, did release a budget ...

  • mxm logo

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


    June 1, 2018 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins

    andrea stewart cousins

    State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins is the leader of the Democratic minority in the Senate, but has high hopes that come January, after this fall's elections, she will be the first woman and

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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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  • 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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  • flanagan via nysenate

    Senate Majority Leader Flanagan and colleagues (photo: @nysenate)


    The Republican-led New York State Senate, which for years had a collaborative working relationship with Governor Andrew Cuomo, passed a slew of government transparency and accountability bills on Wednesday that further highlighted the GOP majority’s recent split with the governor.

    The package of 11 bills, covering everything from campaign contributions to state contracting processes, made its way through the chamber and was sent for approval to the Assembly, which is controlled

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  • shelley mayer

    Shelley Mayer (photo: @Shelley4Senate)


    The Democratic conference in the New York State Senate will soon be one seat shy of a majority. After special election wins Tuesday night to fill two vacant Senate seats, both previously held by Democrats, the party will soon have 31 members in the 63-seat chamber. Shelley Mayer has won in Senate District 37, in Westchester, and Luis Sepulveda has won in Senate District 32, in the Bronx. Both are currently members of the Assembly, seats they will vacate to move to the Senate.

    Democrats hold an overwhelming majority in

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  • New York City Hall

    New York City Hall


    What to watch for this week in New York politics:

    The week begins with the New York political world fixated on the race for Governor after the Working Families Party endorsed Cynthia Nixon on Saturday. The WFP also endorsed City Council Member Jumaane Williams for Lieutenant Governor. Both Nixon and Williams are also running in their respective Democratic primaries, hoping to unseat Governor Andrew Cuomo and Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.

    The WFP

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  • Cuomo Mujica David DeRosa

    Gov. Cuomo and top aides announce a budget deal (photo: Mike Groll/The Governor's Office)


    Governor Andrew Cuomo and his top aides held a press conference late Friday night to announce a deal with the Legislature on a new $168.3 billion state budget for fiscal year 2019, which begins April 1. The announcement came several hours before the final budget bills were voted through both the Senate and Assembly, despite reservations from some lawmakers and another flawed process wherein legislators did not know the full details of what they were voting on and the

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  • krueger doctors

    Senator Krueger, the author, with doctors (photo: @jmumfordmd)


    On March 13, the New York State Assembly passed three critical bills regarding reproductive health and rights: the Reproductive Health Act (RHA), the “Boss Bill,” and the Comprehensive Contraception Coverage Act (CCCA). Unfortunately, the majority coalition in the State Senate continues to bottle these bills up in committee, as it has for years, preventing them from getting an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor. This obstruction simply cannot continue.

    New Yorkers deserve modern laws to

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