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City Council

City Council

  • hearing gov joint

    Budget Director Jacques Jiha (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The New York City Council on Tuesday began its examination of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s $92.3 billion preliminary budget for the 2022 fiscal year, which begins July 1. The hearing was the first of many that will take place over the next few weeks as the Council digs into the mayor’s final budget plan of his eight-year tenure and as key questions remain about the city’s fiscal future. 

    The coronavirus pandemic stripped the city of billions in tax revenue,

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  • Vanessa gib participates food

    Council Member Vanessa Gibson, left, is a coauthor (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    The pandemic is setting women back and eroding years of progress, particularly for women of color in New York City. The pressure is coming from two places: women of color are more likely to work in sectors that have been hit hardest by layoffs, and women of color are more likely to have had to leave work or reduce hours to care for

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  • daily life short

    New York City (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    City Council members and officials from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration clashed at a Tuesday hearing over proposed legislation to overhaul, consolidate, and in some ways expand the city’s planning processes into a singular ten-year procedure that would align budget, policy, and land use decisions.  

    The proposal was released by City Council Speaker Corey Johnson in December and seeks to replace what he calls redundant, antiquated, inequitable, and ineffective existing

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  • de Blasio food plan

    Mayor de Blasio at a food pantry, pre-pandemic (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    The New York City Mayor’s Office of Food Policy is announcing the city’s first-ever 10-year food plan, called Food Forward NYC, to better address food insecurity, improve a number of food- and nutrition-related processes, and meet the requirements of legislation passed by the City Council early last year.

    The policy, previewed by Gotham Gazette before its public release on Monday,

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  • construction city projects

    Construction underway (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    Officials at the city’s Department of Design and Construction, the agency responsible for designing, procuring, and constructing public buildings and infrastructure, told the City Council on Wednesday that the coronavirus pandemic has shown how its work can be made more efficient.

    That includes the city using its new design-build authority -- which the state approved an expansion of

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  • de Blasio NYPD officials briefing dais

    Mayor de Blasio & NYPD officials (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    When Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order in June mandating that localities set blueprints for broad police reform or risk losing state funding, he tasked mayors and other municipal leaders to engage the public and local legislatures in a collaborative reform process. Now, in response to delays and limited communication from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration, the New York City Council has signaled that it will move ahead with its own police reform agenda to meet

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    (l-r) top: Samar Khurshid, David Brand, Soma Syed; middle: Dilip Nath, James Gennaro, Deepti Sharma; bottom: Neeta Jain, Moumita Ahmed


    Six candidates running in the special election for City Council District 24 in eastern Queens met for a debate on January 26 hosted by Gotham Gazette, Queens Eagle, and Citizens Union Foundation. The special election to replace Rory Lancman, who stepped down to take a position in the Cuomo administration, is ongoing, with early voting January 23-31 and election day on February

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  • 5 city finally rel

    Mayor de Blasio at an announcement (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    The pandemic's greatest health impact has fallen on older New Yorkers, but its economic effects are being deeply felt by the city's young adults.

    The number of young people who are both out of school and jobless in New York City -- so-called "disconnected youth" -- has likely doubled since the coronavirus roiled the city beginning last spring, according to a new and long-awaited report from

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  • 4 guide upcoming city

    Voters voting (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    New York City’s first ranked-choice election is underway in Queens. The crowded and competitive special election to replace former City Council Member Rory Lancman, who resigned for a position in the Cuomo administration, saw early voting begin this past Saturday. It will run through January 31, followed by election day on February 2.

    While it is the city’s first election using ranked-choice voting, which took effect this year after being approved by voters in 2019 and only applies

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  • City Council chambers City Hall

    The City Council chambers (photo: William Alatriste)


    With 31 members facing term-limits and with special elections slated to fill five recent vacancies, it is set to be a transformative year for the New York City Council. City politics have undergone a dynamic shift since the last class of Council members was seated after the 2017 municipal election, and activists and organized labor are hoping to take advantage of that fact in announcing their support for a new crop of Council contenders.

    Almost every “open” City Council seat where no

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  • police academy a

    The covid vaccine (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    The first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic devastated Black, Latino, and immigrant communities across New York City at disproportionate levels last spring and since. Some lawmakers are now asking why the same populations were not included in vaccine priority plans crafted by the state and city.

    At a January 12 City Council oversight hearing on the de Blasio administration's roll-out of the first batches of the covid vaccine, members of the Council’s committees on hospitals and health asked the city's top

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    Rep. Ritchie Torres (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Ritchie Torres, a Bronx Democrat, was sworn in early this month among the new class of the House of Representatives, becoming the first openly-gay Afro-Latino member of Congress. After seven years advocating for his district on the New York City Council, Torres now takes to the halls of Congress to exert whatever influence he can for his constituents, particularly through a plum committee assignment not often given to freshman lawmakers. One of his chief priorities remains the state of public

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  • mayor slow vaccine

    Mayor de Blasio vaccine promises (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Three weeks after New York City received its first batch of COVID-19 vaccines, and more than five weeks after officials knew when they were coming, only a third of the half-million doses had been dolled out, raising questions about why the city wasn't more prepared to step into "the light at the end of the tunnel."

    That has been a favorite phrase of Mayor Bill de Blasio since he signaled the city was on the verge of receiving the life-saving, pandemic-ending treatment over a month ago.

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  • East New York CCD37

    Former City Council Member Rafael Espinal in the 37th District (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Darma Diaz is one of the newest members of the New York City Council, having recently won the election to represent Brooklyn’s District 37, filling an unexpected vacancy at the beginning of December. But her election did not take place under normal circumstances and now the Democrat must defend the seat that she won unopposed in both the June primary and the November general.

    District 37, which covers Bushwick, East New York, Cypress Hills, Ocean Hill,

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  • 1 city council examines admin efforts

    Council Member Paul Vallone (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    The City Council’s committees on economic development and small business met last week for an oversight hearing to assess how the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), the city Department of Small Business Services (SBS), and the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development have adjusted their programming because of COVID-19 and discuss what they’re doing to promote equity across the five boroughs.

    According to the New York State

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  • 2 still no sign

    Organizers and activists (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    While unemployment booms and New York City faces its worst economy in decades, the fate of the city's disconnected youth -- people aged 16 to 24 who are both out of work and out of school -- is getting a shrug from city government.

    The city's Disconnected Youth Task Force, created by the City Council and Mayor Bill de Blasio to examine the factors that inhibit employment and school enrollment among this group numbering in the hundreds of thousands, is more than two years late to submit its

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  • m b skyline

    New York City development (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson on Wednesday unveiled legislation that would overhaul New York City’s long-term planning processes, eliminating duplicative procedures, streamlining agency coordination, and establishing a more proactive, holistic approach to land use and budgeting that prioritizes racial and economic justice. 

    For decades, the city’s zoning, land use, and development have been subject to disparate sets of mandates and guidelines, some overlapping and redundant, in

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  • nurse gotham health hospital survive

    Gotham Health (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    On Friday, the New York City Council’s Committee on Higher Education heard from administrators and students of CUNY’s nursing schools to understand how they have maintained student progression despite transitioning to online learning amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    CUNY has 14 nursing schools that offer a variety of certificates and associates, bachelors, masters, and doctorate degree programs. An average of 1,800 students graduate every year from CUNY nursing programs, many of whom go off to

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  • 1 city lib pandemic

    Libraries have mostly been empty, but active (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Last month, the New York City Council’s Committee on Cultural Affairs and Libraries held an oversight hearing on the city’s public libraries and COVID-19. The committee, chaired by Queens Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, heard testimony from Anthony Marx, the President, and CEO of New York Public Library, which is the system for Manhattan, the Bronx, and Staten Island; President and CEO of Brooklyn Public Library Linda Johnson; and President and CEO of Queens Public Library

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  • City Council Andy King special

    Former Council Member Andy King (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    The ouster of Andy King from the New York City Council in October over repeated ethics violations triggered a special election that moved up the timeline for the race to replace King, who was term-limited but then expelled by his colleagues, from the standard 2021 election dates to this month. The race will effectively be the first of the 2021 city election cycle, when all of city government will be on the ballot, and could provide interesting initial bread crumbs about where the

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    SBS Commissioner Doris at a small business (photo: @NYC_SBS)


    Frustrated City Council members and hopeful––yet weary––small business advocates took to a hearing Tuesday to express their concerns about the Open Storefronts program launched recently by Mayor de Blasio after outcry from the business community, particularly smaller retailers. Small businesses, many of which are struggling to hold on if they haven’t already closed due to the pandemic and a lack of government help, can enroll in the program that, as of now, will give them through December 31 to sell their merchandise

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  • 3 cm joins

    Council Member Mark Treyger, right (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    November 18, 2020 - Max & Murphy Podcast: City Council Education Chair Mark Treyger on What's Next for City Schools

    Brooklyn City Council Member Mark Treyger, chair of the Council's education committee and a former teacher, joined the show to discuss the closure of city school buildings and what's next, including a proposal he has for how to restructure in-person learning.

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

  • mark tch co

    Council Member Ben Kallos, center (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    As the city heads into the 2021 municipal elections that are already drawing hundreds of candidates and will see many millions of dollars in campaign spending, a City Council member wants to preempt violations of the law on independent expenditures by increasing penalties. 

    Council Member Ben Kallos, a Democrat from the Upper East Side who is running for Manhattan borough president in the 2021 election cycle where all of city government is on the ballot, will introduce two bills on Thursday to penalize

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  • 3 cuny statelocal

    Students in CUNY class pre-pandemic (photo: CUNY)


    The New York City Council’s Committee on Civil Service and Labor and Committee on Higher Education held a joint hearing Thursday about the City University of New York’s layoffs earlier this year. 

    The hearing, which was co-chaired by Council Members I. Daneek Miller and Inez Barron, who chair the two committees, respectively, focused on questions about why nearly 3,000 adjunct professors

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  • lh hc w

    Covid testing (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    City Council members and public health professionals gathered over Zoom late last week to discuss how the city can better support public hospitals so that they’re prepared for a potential second wave of COVID-19, which experts say could overlap with the annual flu season and recent case upticks indicate may be looming.

    The public hearing — held by the Council’s Committee on Hospitals and billed as an oversight hearing “Examining the City's Support of NYC Hospitals During the COVID-19 Pandemic” — covered issues

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