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Mike Muller

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The hard-earned lessons of Superstorm Sandy shaped a mayoral forum yesterday where candidates fielded questions on waterfront development, expanding ferry service and creating a new agency to oversee the city's vast coastline. "Make no mistake," said Democratic candidate and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, "you get to say once, 'It was an unprecedented storm.' You don't get to do that again." Six candidates were asked to respond to policy proposals put forward by the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance that touches on everything from docks to land use. The public also got to submit questions. Continue reading the story on the Gotham Gazette to see what the other candidates had to say ...

Other Stories We're Following

Cuomo Proposes Bribes Legislation (Wall Street Journal)

NAACP: Stop-And-Frisk A National Priority (Associated Press)

Albany Riveted By Double Life Of Assembly Informer (NY Times)

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Without going into specifics, Gov. Cuomo called for a series of reforms yesterday in the wake of the bribery scandals that have rocked the state - and added to the growing criticism he's faced over the past two months. In a radio interview, the governor said the crisis should not be wasted and instead used to pass reforms in areas like political party balloting, member items, campaign donation limits, and the state Board of Elections. He would also enact lobbying reform and make it easier for local prosecutors to bring corruption cases. But he went on to argue that Albany is actually functioning better under his watch than before, particularly on New York City issues. When speaking with the NY Post, Cuomo blamed the capitol's incumbent-driven political culture for the rash of corruption. So far, he won't order a corruption commission to investigate state politics as his father did in 1987.

Other Stories We're Following

State's Recovery Uneven (Albany Times Union)

Cuomo Calls On Federal Mortgage Backers To Protect Sandy Victims (Daily News)

Private Development Feared In City-Owned Complex (NY Times)

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More details have emerged from the arrest of State Sen. Malcolm Smith and Councilman Dan Halloran. Four local Republicans were arrested as well, including the Bronx party chairman and the Queens party vice chairman. Another worked on John Catsimatidis's campaign but has now been fired. All six were charged with wire fraud and bribery. The senator was also charged with extortion. The money from the bribes was to come from state funding secured by Smith for upstate developers - actually an informant and undercover FBI agent - who would then pay the GOP leaders. Halloran was using council discretionary funds. Smith had previously survived a series of scandals and Halloran was hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. This is just the latest in a series of Albany scandals.

Other Stories We're Following

With Legacy On His Mind, Mayor Adds 78 More Schools (NY Times)

Who Policies Prosecutors? (WNYC)

Push To Address Possible Danger In Smoke Detectors (City Limits)

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The New York Post reports that State Sen. Malcolm Smith was arrested today for trying to bribe GOP leaders into getting his name on their mayoral ballot. He allegedly had Councilman Dan Halloran, a Republican, meet with party leaders and negotiate thousands in bribes. Halloran was also arrested today and is accused of collecting thousands in bribes for himself.

Other Stories We're Following

Kelly Wanted To Instill Fear In Blacks, Latinos: Senator Testifies (NY Times)

Councilman Poses With Man Charged With Photographing Sex-Assault Victim (NY Post)

Report: Millions Wasted By City Board Of Elections In 2011 (Daily News)

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This new report - by the New York State Youth Leadership Council and NYU Law School’s Immigrant Rights Clinic - outlines the economic and social benefits that would accompany passage of the New York DREAM Act. The act would provide that all New Yorkers, regardless of status, have access to financial assistance for higher education. (read the full report)

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