Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Brian Benjamin

Brian Benjamin

  • Gotham Gazette:

    (l-r) top: Brian Benjamin, Brad Lander, Kevin Parker, David Weprin, Corey Johnson; bottom: Reshma Patel, Zach Iscol, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, Terri Liftin


    Democratic New Yorkers are being handed an extensive ballot for this month’s primary elections, with all of city government on the ballot and the first full implementation of ranked-choice voting. The race for New York City Comptroller, too-often neglected by the press and voters, is of great importance given the responsibilities of the job and the fact that whoever wins is all but certain to eventually run for mayor, as a

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    (l-r) Brian Benjamin, Brad Lander, Corey Johnson, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, David Weprin


    Leading Democratic candidates for New York City Comptroller, the city's chief fiscal officer, met for two debates this past week, just ahead of the Saturday start of early voting, where they laid out a range of positions and occasional attacks.

    Candidates discussed how they would use the comptroller's power to audit city agencies, provide oversight of city budgeting, manage the city's sizable pension funds, and more. They also answered questions on hot-button issues

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  • mental health thrive

    Rikers Island detainees (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    In New York, our rates of recidivism are unacceptably high. An estimated 45% of all parolees in New York City experience a re-arrest within two years. 

    Eliminating barriers to reintegration into society is a proven, fact-based way that we can reduce recidivism, and that starts by treating formerly incarcerated people as regular people. 

    In New York, we place a needless hurdle in the way of enabling a formerly incarcerated person from succeeding.

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  • 5x4 comptrollerl

    (l-r) Top: Brian Benjamin, Brad Lander, Kevin Parker, David Weprin, Corey Johnson; Bottom: Reshma Patel, Zach Iscol, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera,Terri Liftin


    This article was updated on May 29, reflecting the Campaign Finance Board's latest public funds payment made on May 27. 

    As candidates filed their latest campaign finance disclosures on Friday, the Democratic primary for New York City Comptroller has become one of extremes. The leading campaigns have millions in the bank as they head into the closing stretch of the race while

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  • whats the data point


    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 107 -- $250 billion [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    $250 billion—the assets held by the five pensions funds for which the New York City Comptroller is custodian, administrator, and investment advisor. But that's not the Comptroller's only

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  • Brad Lander, Brian Benjamin, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, Corey Johnson, David Weprin, Zach Iscol

    (l-r) Brad Lander, Brian Benjamin, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, Corey Johnson, David Weprin, Zach Iscol


    Six leading candidates running in the Democratic primary for New York City Comptroller in the June election appeared at a forum on Tuesday to offer their perspectives on the role of the office, solutions to the city’s uncertain fiscal future, and how they would wield their powers to ensure city government is effective and fiscally responsible. 

    The candidates at the

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  • 5x4 comptrollerl

    (l-r) top: Brian Benjamin, Brad Lander, Kevin Parker, David Weprin, Corey Johnson; bottom: Reshma Patel, Zach Iscol, Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, Terri Liftin


    The Democratic candidates for New York City Comptroller joined "Decision NYC with Ben Max" for in-depth one-on-one interviews about their campaigns and visions for

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    Brian Benjamin (photo: Brian Benjamin Campaign)


    As part of the "Decision NYC with Ben Max" series of candidate interview s from Manhattan Neighborhood Network and Gotham Gazette, Democratic candidates for New York City Comptroller talked about their campaigns ahead of the June primary. In this episode, Brian Benjamin joined host Ben Max to explain his vision for the

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  • Brian Benjamin

    Senator Benjamin (photo: NY Senate)


    As the coronavirus ravaged New York City, it quickly became apparent that its effects were being felt disparately across the boroughs. Black and brown communities that have been the dumping ground for the city’s most-polluting infrastructure, where respiratory illnesses occur at higher rates, were more prone to a pandemic caused by a respiratory virus. The problem of environmental racism is not new, but State Senator Brian Benjamin is hoping that it is finally dire enough to be taken seriously and that, if elected the next New York

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  • city comptroller candidates Dems 4

    (l-r) Brad Lander, Brian Benjamin, David Weprin, Kevin Parker


    Five Democratic candidates running in the primary for New York City Comptroller appeared at the first debate of the race on Sunday, trying to set themselves apart as most qualified and with the right vision to be the city’s next top fiscal officer.

    The comptroller is the watchdog of city spending, with a job that involves auditing city agencies to root out waste and mismanagement, reviewing city contracts, acting as the fiduciary to the $240 billion public pension funds, providing

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    State Senator Brian Benjamin (photo: NY Senate Media Services)


    January 27, 2021 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Brian Benjamin on His Run for New York City Comptroller

    Brian Benjamin, a Democratic State Senator representing parts of Manhattan, joined the show to discuss his campaign for New York City Comptroller in this year's election.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think -- we're on Twitter @TweetBenMaxand ...

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    (l-r): Brad Lander, Brian Benjammin, David Weprin, and Kevin Parker)


    The four Democratic candidates running in this year’s election for New York City Comptroller appeared one-by-one at two recent online forums hosted by Manhattan Democratic clubs.

    The West Side Democrats, during a forum moderated by district leader Joan Paylo, hosted the candidates on January 12, while the Uptown Community Democrats and the Audubon Reform Democratic Club, with moderators Curtis Young, co-president of UCD, and Maria Luna, district leader of the

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  • city comptroller 2021 parker lander benjamin weprin

    (l-r) Kevin Parker, Brad Lander, Brian Benjamin, David Weprin


    The four Democratic candidates running in this year’s election for New York City Comptroller appeared one-by-one Sunday afternoon at an online forum hosted by several downtown Manhattan Democratic clubs. The comptroller is the city’s chief fiscal officer, responsible for auditing city agencies, leading management of the public pension funds, analyzing the city budget, approving city contracts, and providing broad oversight of city government and other entities that impact New

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  • legis adv cel

    David Weprin (photo: Mike Wren/NYS Department of Health)


    State Assemblymember David Weprin, a five-term Queens Democrat, officially launched his 2021 campaign for New York City Comptroller on Monday. He is running to replace term-limited Comptroller Scott Stringer, and is competing with three other sitting elected officials to become the city’s next chief fiscal officer in the Democratic primary set for June.

    “I'm the only one of all the candidates that has both private and public sector finance experience, something that's going to be very needed as we're in

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    State Senator Kevin Parker (photo: Parker campaign)


    State Senator Kevin Parker, a Democrat from Brooklyn, officially announced his campaign for New York City Comptroller on Wednesday evening in an interview on NY1. He joins three other Democrats who have already jumped into the race to replace Comptroller Scott Stringer, a Democrat who is term-limited next year and is running for mayor.

    In a phone interview prior to his announcement, Parker touted his long record in government, including the more than five dozen laws he has sponsored, and his background in finance as what he

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  • benjamin kick off comptroller

    Brian Benjamin at his campaign launch


    State Senator Brian Benjamin launched his campaign for New York City Comptroller on Thursday, officially entering the Democratic primary for the citywide position of the city’s chief fiscal officer.

    Stressing his finance background and work in the state Legislature on a variety of issues including police reform, Benjamin held a campaign event in his home neighborhood of Harlem, surrounded by supporters including several other elected officials endorsing him.

    Benjamin, who is first

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    Council Member Helen Rosenthal (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    New York City Council Member Helen Rosenthal, a Democrat from Manhattan, is dropping out of the 2021 race for Comptroller, she told Gotham Gazette in an interview Friday morning.

    Next year, the entire city government – the mayor, comptroller, public advocate, five borough presidents and 51 City Council seats – will be on the ballot. Rosenthal is currently serving her second term representing District 6 on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, and cannot run for reelection

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  • de Blasio city budget graph trends

    The city's economy & budget are in free-fall (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    New York City’s fiscal woes are worsening by the day as the COVID-19 pandemic has deprived the city of much needed tax revenue while likely forcing severe budget cuts that could be compounded by reductions in state aid. Though there is broad agreement that the best solution can only come in the form of a federal bailout, various other strategies and contingencies are being debated. And several of the candidates seeking to become the city’s next chief fiscal

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  • Mayor de Blasio property tax reform dead

    Mayor de Blasio's slow-play on property tax reform has now been compounded (photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Mayor's Offie)


    The start of the year 2020 offered what many believed to be the most promising steps in decades to revamping New York's confusing and unfair property tax system. In January, an advisory commission established by Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Council, which was tasked with comprehensively assessing and reevaluating the property tax system, released a set of recommendations. While coming much later than many had

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  • state senator brian benjammin

    State Senator Brian Benjamin (photo: New York Senate)


    May 27, 2020 - Max & Murphy Podcast: State Senator Brian Benjamin on Rescuing New York's Finances & More

    State Senator Brian Benjamin joined the show to discuss the New York State and City fiscal crises brought about by the COVID-19 outbreak and its fallout. Benjamin, who represents parts of Upper Manhattan and chairs the Senate revenue and budget committee, talked about the city saving, borrowing, and looking for other solutions,

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  • fiscal year prelim

    Mayor de Blasio gives a budget presentation (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    As Mayor Bill de Blasio desperately searches for solutions to the city’s financial woes caused by the coronavirus outbreak, lawmakers and fiscal watchdogs are advocating for legislation that, had it been approved years ago, would have helped the city better weather just such a storm by allowing it to create a dedicated fund for fiscal emergencies.

    In January, de Blasio had proposed a $95.3 billion budget for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1, that was a more

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    A nearly-empty State Senate Chamber as business is conducted amid coronavirus outbreak (photo: NY Senate)


    If New Yorkers take Governor Andrew Cuomo’s word for it, the new $177 billion budget approved last week will “deliver results” for the people of the state and was a far cry from a “bare minimum” spending plan at a time when the state’s finances are racked by the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. But within his own Democratic Party, which controls both houses of the Legislature where the plan was passed, the budget is a highly unpopular document that to

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    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    A long-awaited report from the city’s Advisory Commission on Property Tax Reform was released Thursday, outlining recommendations for potentially drastic changes to the way residential properties are taxed across the five boroughs.

    The report, which contains ten recommendations to update and add equity to New York’s vast property tax system, comes after months of delay and almost a year after the commission, created by Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, completed its mandated public

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  • inauguration jan

    (photo: Mayor's Office)


    Candidates running for local office filed their latest campaign finance disclosures with the New York City Campaign Finance Board this week, showing their fundraising and expenditures from the last six months, and cumulative numbers for the 2021 election cycle.

    Next year’s election is shaping up to be highly competitive and consequential, with two of three citywide elected officials, four of five borough presidents, and 35 of 51 City Council members facing term limits. The city will elect a new mayor and comptroller for the first

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  • ocean bayside apt

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    It is taking more time than promised for the city’s property tax reform commission to come out with its initial and final reports with recommendations for changes to the antiquated and unfair system, a delay that threatens to undermine the de Blasio administration’s footing in Albany, where many of the changes would need to be made.

    The Advisory Commission on Property Tax Reform, created by Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson in 2018, was expected to issue a preliminary report with

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