Gotham Gazette

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The Week Ahead in New York Politics, June 25

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 help those childen in New York reunite with their parents.

The week also begins with much consternation over how the state legislative session ended, particularly with regard to speed cameras around New York City schools. The State Senate refused to do a straight extender or an expansion of the current legislation authorizing cameras near some schools, meaning the permission for their use will expire in July. Senators led by Majority Leader John Flanagan and Brooklyn’s Simcha Felder, a key member of the Republican conference, attempted to attach other provisions to the legislation, which the Democrat-led Assembly refused to pass. The cameras have proved successful in catching speeders around the schools at which they are placed and reducing the speed of drivers in those zones.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, Governor Andrew Cuomo, and many other elected officials and others from the city are calling on the Senate to return to Albany to pass the bill that the Assembly passed to extend the speed camera program. De Blasio, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, and many others rallied on Sunday to push the Senate to act. The Senate Republicans, meanwhile, have put forth an alternative proposal that includes more stop signs around schools.

While we’re watching for any news of a special session in Albany to address the school zone speed cameras, and possibly other matters, the major storyline of the week will likely be Tuesday’s congressional primaries. In New York City, there are a handful of Democratic incumbents facing spirited challengers from the left and the hotly contested Democratic and Republican primaries in the 11th Congressional District, a seat currently held by Rep. Dan Donovan, who is trying to stave off former Rep. Michael Grimm in the GOP primary. [Read: Donovan, Grimm in Final Days of Contentious Congressional Primary]

And, there are several other political events to be aware of this week, including a full meeting of the City Council, at which previously considered bills are passed and new legislation is introduced -- see the day-by-day rundown below.

***Do you have events or topics for us to include in an upcoming Week Ahead in New York Politics?
e-mail Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.***

The run of the week in detail:

At 11 a.m. Monday, Governor Andrew Cuomo will make an announcement, at 7 World Trade Center.

On Monday at 7 a.m., Mayor de Blasio will appear live on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. "Later, the Mayor and Interim NYCHA Chair Stanley Brezenoff will visit an apartment at Campos Plaza." After, at about 11:15 a.m., "the Mayor and Interim Chair Brezenoff will hold a media availability to make an announcement about NYCHA repairs and renovations." Later, the mayor will appear on NY1’s Inside City Hall, in the 7 and 11 p.m. hours.

"On Monday, Chancellor Richard A. Carranza will visit Spruce Street School and join students in a video conference with NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station. After, he will deliver remarks at Leadership and Public Service High School’s commencement ceremony."

At the City Council on Monday:
--The Committee on For-Hire Vehicles will meet at 10 a.m. to discuss proposed laws related to commuter vans, and to “reducing certain penalties for taxi and for-hire vehicle drivers.”
--The Committee on Technology and the Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises will jointly hold an 11 a.m. oversight hearing on “the city’s cable television franchises.”
--The Committee on Parks and Recreation will meet at 11 a.m. for an oversight hearing regarding “how to protect the city’s beaches from increased erosion.”
--The Committee on Juvenile Justice will tour the Bronx Family Resource Center in Concourse Village at 1 p.m.
--The Committee on Environmental Protection will meet at 1 p.m. to discuss proposed laws related to reducing and preventing sewer system backups.

At 8 a.m. Monday, Common Cause New York will host “Speaking Our Truth In The Age Of Trump” at the NYIT Auditorium on the Upper West Side. Featured speakers will include former City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Black Lives Matter activist Deray McKesson, and Jezebel reporter Prachi Gupta.

At noon Monday, the New York State Board of Elections will hold a commissioners’ meeting at the its offices in Albany.

On Monday, this week’s episode of the Max & Murphy podcast will be recorded and published by Gotham Gazette and City Limits. It will feature former City Comptroller Liz Holtzman and current City Council Member Helen Rosenthal discussing the long fight for new sexual harassment prevention legislation.

At 6:30 p.m. Monday, the Brooklyn Historical Society will host “The (New) Urban Resistance: Progressives Go Local,” discussing the increasing role of cities in enacting progressive policies. Panelists will include City Council Member Brad Lander, Juan Gonzalez of Democracy Now, Yaritza Mendez of Make the Road New York, and Philadelphia City Council Member Helen Gym. The panel will be moderated by Lizzy Ratner of The Nation.

Tuesday is primary day for New York’s congressional races. Polls open at 6 a.m. in New York City as well as Dutchess, Erie, Nassau, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties, and at noon everywhere else. All polls close at 9 p.m. [See Congressional Primary Races to Watch in New York City and Beyond]

"On Tuesday, Mayor de Blasio and First Lady McCray will vote in New York City’s Congressional primary election. This event is closed press. Later, the Mayor will hold a hearing for and sign the following eight bills: Intro. 401-A mandates that every borough have a full-service animal shelter; Intro. 615-A requires DOHMH to distribute the overdose-reversal medication, naloxone, to syringe exchange programs, and requires that their staff be trained in its use; Intro. 667-A requires DSS and DHS to refer individuals receiving opioid antagonists for additional services; Intro. 668-A relates to overdose prevention and reversal training; Intro. 623-A requires the FDNY to submit a report relating to the administration of opioid antagonists; Intro. 669-A requires the Municipal Drug Strategy Advisory Council to include data about opioid antagonists use in their report; Intro. 717-A requires the NYPD to issue reports about opioid antagonist use; Intro. 618-A relates to the distribution of educational materials on drugs and opiates awareness and prevention to middle and high school students. This event is open press. There will be no Q-and-A. In the evening, the Mayor will attend and deliver remarks at the Jewish Heritage Reception at Gracie Mansion. This event is open press. There will be no Q-and-A."

At the City Council on Tuesday: The Committee on Housing and Buildings will meet at 10 a.m. to discuss proposed laws related to new penalties for illegal conversions of apartments into short-term rentals.

At 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics will hold a commissioners’ meeting in Albany.

On Tuesday evening, Public Advocate Letitia James will deliver remakrs at the The Seneca Democratic Club Anniversary Dinner in Brooklyn.

At 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, City & State will honor its “Long Island Power 50” at a reception at the Mansion at Oyster Bay in Woodbury, Nassau County.

At 7 p.m. Tuesday, the Rent Guidelines Board will hold its final vote on 2019 rent increases for stabilized apartments at the Cooper Union in the East Village.

At the City Council on Wednesday:
--The Committees on Women and Health will meet jointly at 10 a.m. for an oversight hearing regarding “maternal mortality in New York City,” as well as to discuss proposed laws related to “access to doulas in New York City” and “reporting on maternal mortality.”
--The Committee on Transportation will meet at the Cardozo School of Law’s Jacob Burns Moot Court Room in Greenwich Village at 1 p.m. for an oversight hearing regarding “the latest mitigation plans for the 2019 L train tunnel closure.”
--The Committees on Education and General Welfare will meet jointly at 2:30 p.m. for an oversight hearing regarding “implementation of UPK and 3K expansion and the transition of EarlyLearn NYC to DOE,” as well as to discuss a resolution “calling upon the City of New York to eliminate the disparity in compensation paid to teachers, staff and directors at community-based EarlyLearn NYC centers, as compared to the compensation paid to Department of Education instructors for similar employment.”

At 10 a.m. Wednesday, the City Planning Commission will hold a public meeting at 120 Broadway.

On Wednesday, "the de Blasio Administration will commemorate the achievements of more than 100 college-bound high school graduates currently residing in shelter. Together with their families, the graduates will join leadership from the Department of Homeless Services and partners from the Department of Education and the New York Public Library for an evening celebration and commemoration ceremony, where they will be awarded a free laptop and duffel bag full of move-in necessities to help them with their college studies." Participants will include Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Dr. Herminia Palacio; Department of Social Services Commissioner Steven Banks; and others.

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Mayor de Blasio will hold a town hall meeting at PS 191 on the Upper West Side. He’ll be joined by Council Member Helen Rosenthal, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, U.S. Rep Jerrold Nadler, State Senator Marisol Alcantara, and Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal.

The City Council will hold a stated meeting at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. Council Speaker Corey Johnson will hold the usual pre-stated press conference at 12:30 p.m.

Friday and the weekend
Mayor Bill de Blasio may make his usual weekly appearance on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show on Friday at 10 a.m.

At 10 a.m. Saturday, the New York Immigration Coalition will host a rally at Foley Square, in conjunction with rallies in other cities, to protest the Trump administration’s policy of family separation at the border.

NOTE: There will be no Week Ahead in New York Politics published for the week of Monday, July 2. The next Week Ahead will be posted on Sunday, July 8 for the week starting Monday, July 9.

Have events or topics for us to include in an upcoming Week Ahead in New York Politics? E-mail Gotham Gazette executive editor Ben Max any time: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (please use "For Week Ahead" as email subject).

by Ben Brachfeld and Ben Max

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