Gotham Gazette

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Eric Adams

Eric Adams

  • Mayor Adams Loses Series of Top Appointees in First Year-and-a-Half

    Mayor Adams makes personnel announcements (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)

    New York City’s chief housing officer, Jessica Katz, is set to step down in July, marking the latest high-profile departure from Mayor Eric Adams’ administration in barely eighteen months.

    A growing list of the Democratic mayor’s top appointees have left the administration, including senior officials who announced their resignations before the mayor’s first year in office had even concluded. It’s an unusually high level of turnover at the highest levels of city government, particularly for a mayor who has

  • Council Passes Bill Pushing Summer Youth Employment Program Across City Agencies

    Summer Youth Employment Program celebration (photo: John McCarten/NYC Council Media Unit)

    New York City’s Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) could be seeing a boost despite proposed budget cuts, thanks to legislation in the City Council that could lead to greater participation from city agencies.

    The Council is expected to pass a bill Thursday that would set a goal for each city agency to offer youth job slots as part of the landmark program, which connects tens of thousands of students with paid job opportunities in and out of city government during the summer months when school is

  • Mayor, City Council Negotiate Priorities for Mental Health Care Workforce Funding

    Mental health plans (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)

    The New York City Council is seeking greater investment in the behavioral health workforce as leaders at all levels of government grapple with the longstanding crisis of untreated severe mental illness.

    The Council and Mayor Eric Adams are negotiating the mayor's $106.7 billion executive budget for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1. On the table is tens of millions of dollars to help boost staffing levels for a range of needed services – some new and some depleted by the pandemic — both in and out of city

  • Max Politics Podcast: Top City & State Housing Officials on the NYS Budget Impasse & What Comes Next

    Ground-breaking (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)

    May 19, 2023 - Max Politics Podcast: Top City & State Housing Officials on the NYS Budget Impasse and What Comes Next, with Jessica Katz & RuthAnne Visnauskas

    At the annual NYSAFAH affordable housing conference in Manhattan, Max Politics host Ben Max of Gotham Gazette moderated a discussion with New York City Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz and New York State Housing Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas about the state budget failure on housing and what comes next at the state and city levels.

    Listen to the

  • What Advocates and Electeds Say Mayor Adams Should Be Doing Differently About the Asylum-Seeker Crisis

    Mayor Adams and others tour a HERRC (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

    As the migrant asylum-seeker crisis continues to escalate, and another surge of arrivals has begun after a federal pandemic-era border policy expired last week, Mayor Eric Adams is taking increasingly desperate steps to ease the impact on New York City.

    While virtually everyone agrees that the federal and state governments should do more to help the city, critics say there are still several concrete measures the mayor has failed to

  • Civic Tech Experts Question Mayor Adams' Decision to Contract Out Signature 'MyCity' Portal

    Mayor Adams unveils the MyCity portal (photo: Caroline Willis/Mayoral Photo Office)

    Mayor Eric Adams began to fulfill one of his major campaign promises in March as he launched the “MyCity” online portal that promises to help New Yorkers more easily apply for public benefits and access city services. The platform — which Adams calls "a legacy project" — is in its infancy, currently only providing access to childcare applications, but is meant to grow into a one-stop-shop for many if not all interactions with city government.

    But civic technologists say that the administration’s approach

  • How Mayor Adams' Albany Agenda Fared in the New State Budget

    Mayor & Governor (photo: Darren McGee/Governor's Office)

    New York State’s $229 billion budget deal for the new fiscal year has both good and bad news for New York City and Mayor Eric Adams’ Albany agenda.

    It directs additional funding for the ongoing migrant asylum-seeker crisis, provides a lifeline to the cash-strapped MTA, funds rent relief for public housing residents, extends a child tax credit, increases enforcement for illegal marijuana sales, and more. But it excluded regulatory changes and tax incentives that

  • The Theology of Mayor Eric Adams

    Mayor Adams hosts faith leaders (photo: Benny Polatseck/Mayoral Photography Office)

    Mayor Eric Adams recently made headlines for suggesting in a speech that the City of New York would benefit from there being no separation between church and state. On CNN’s State of the Union some days later, Adams clarified his remarks, stating that “Government should not interfere with

  • Does Mayor Adams Know How to Reform the City’s Troubled IT Bureaucracy? MyCity Shows He Doesn’t

    MyCity (photo: @nycgov)

    When Bill de Blasio took office as Mayor in 2014, everyone knew government information technology agencies needed significant reform but didn’t know how exactly to do it. His predecessor, Mayor Bloomberg, was a venerated technology executive who had a hugely embarrassing software development fiasco calledCity Time

  • CUNY Funding a Key Issue in State and City Budget Negotiations


    Gov. Hochul speaks at LaGuardia Community College CUNY (photo: @CUNY)

    Funding for the City University of New York, CUNY, is among a number of major focus issues as elected officials negotiate a new state budget this month and a new city budget by July.

    Lawmakers, students, faculty, and others are concerned about proposals in both Governor Kathy Hochul’s and Mayor Eric Adams’ budget proposals, which are now the source of negotiations with their respective legislatures. Though Hochul included a modest increase in overall funding for CUNY in her January executive budget, she also proposed

  • Advocates, City Council Members Push Mayor to Invest More in Parks

    City Council Members & advocates rally for parks funding (photo: William Alatriste/NYC Council)

    As Mayor Eric Adams continues to propose sweeping cuts across city agencies, Council members and advocates are calling on him to restore, and increase, funding for the Department of Parks and Recreation.

    Mayor Adams’ proposed $102.7 billion preliminary budget provided $520 million to the parks department, a drop of $42 million compared to the budget adopted last June and nearly $58 million lower than the latest budget modification in November.

    “As our council budget response made clear, the

  • As State Budget is Negotiated, A Closer Look At Mayor Adams' Albany Agenda

    Mayor Adams & Governor Hochul (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)

    With a new state budget entering final negotiations, Mayor Eric Adams traveled to the state capital this week to pitch Governor Kathy Hochul and the State Legislature on his administration’s fiscal and policy priorities. Funding for migrant asylum-seekers and the MTA as well as other fiscal matters remain at the top of his list as the mayor has otherwise presented a limited policy agenda in Albany amid attempts to recalibrate his relationship with legislative leaders.

    Last year, Adams’ intergovernmental and Albany

  • Leaders of Hochul-Adams 'New' New York Panel Push Legislature to Support Housing Proposals in State Budget

    The Governor, Mayor, ABNY leaders, Richard Buery & Dan Doctoroff (photo: Governor's Office)

    As final negotiations over the state budget take place in Albany, a panel of experts convened by Governor Kathy Hochul and Mayor Eric Adams are urging the State Legislature to support a series of proposals to tackle the state’s immense need for new housing. 

    In June 2022, the governor and mayor assembled the 'New' New York panel of more than 50 experts and leaders across labor, business, academic, nonprofit, and philanthropic circles to advise them on the future of the city and state. The panel was

  • City Council Members Question Mayor Adams' Decision to Create New Office for Asylum-Seeker Operations

    MOIA Commissioner Castro, center-left, with Mayor Adams & others (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)

    Earlier this month, Mayor Eric Adams announced the creation of a new office to handle the influx of tens of thousands of migrant asylum-seekers in the city. But, at a City Council budget hearing focused on immigration services that same day, March 7, administration officials offered barebones details about the new office’s structure and budget, and how it would interact with an existing mayoral office that is already dedicated to immigrant affairs and has been coordinating services for

  • At the City Council, Library System Heads Argue Against Mayor's Budget Cuts

    Linda Johnson, Tony Marx, & Dennis Walcott (l-r) (photo: @nypl)

    The leaders of New York City’s three public library systems appealed to the New York City Council on Monday for its help in pushing back against tens of millions in possible budget cuts in Mayor Eric Adams’ $102.7 billion preliminary budget plan for the 2024 fiscal year.

    The New York, Brooklyn, and Queens Public Libraries, along with the city’s Research Libraries, together face a $20.5 million budget cut in the next fiscal year, which starts July 1, as part of a Program to Eliminate the Gap (PEG) that the mayor instituted to cut city

  • How the Adams Administration is Thinking About Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

    Mayor Adams at a tech conference (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)

    At a February oversight hearing held by the New York City Council Committee on Technology, the city’s Chief Technology Officer, Matthew Fraser, defended blockchain as a useful tool for stimulating the economy and enhancing government services.

    As head of the city’s Office of Technology and Innovation (OTI), Fraser is at the forefront of the Adams administration’s plans to integrate blockchain and other digital tools into municipal operations while also continuing to evaluate the cryptocurrency marketplace. At the

  • Bonds, Vouchers, Tax Credits, & More: Mayor Adams' Federal Housing Agenda

    Mayor Adams and Chief Housing Officer Katz unveil housing plans (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)

    Facing an affordable housing and homelessness crisis, Mayor Eric Adams has set an ambitious goal to build 500,000 new homes, rehabilitate a collapsing public housing system, and transform social service delivery.

    While most attention is paid to policies at the city and state levels, Adams is relying in part on action from Washington, D.C. that could bring in billions of dollars in subsidies and make it easier for New Yorkers to access

  • City Libraries Launch Push to Beat Back Mayor Adams' Budget Cuts

    At a library in Queens (photo: John McCarten/City Council)

    The city’s public library systems launched a campaign on Monday to push back against tens of millions of dollars in budget cuts in Mayor Eric Adams’ proposed budget. Adams’ $102.7 billion preliminary budget for the 2024 fiscal year, which begins July 1, is now the focus of a series of City Council hearings.

    For the past several months, the mayor’s budget moves have invited criticism as he pushed major cuts to city spending. Ahead of a mid-year November

  • Making a Down Payment on New York City’s Future

    The co-authors: Richard Buery, left, & Dan Doctoroff, second from right (photo: Governor's Office)

    In 2022, we co-chaired an extraordinary group of New Yorkers tasked by Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams to rethink the city’s commercial districts. When the plan was announced in December, the once-in-a-generation alignment between our political leaders was on full display as they affirmed 40 specific initiatives in an action plan and policy agenda called...

  • Adams Administration to Launch 'MyCity' Portal in Coming Weeks with Child Care Services First

    Mayor Adams (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

    Mayor Eric Adams’ campaign promise to launch the “MyCity” centralized portal for city benefits will soon become reality, administration officials told the City Council on Thursday. 

    At a budget hearing held by the Council’s Committee on Technology, New York City Chief Technology Officer Matthew Fraser said that MyCity will be “rolling out in a few weeks,” initially offering a child care subsidy application portal before expanding to other city benefits.

    MyCity was one of the signature proposals that Adams, a first-term

  • With 16% Vacancy Rate, City Planning Department ‘Laser Focused’ on Staffing to Advance 'Ambitious' Agenda

    City Planning Head Dan Garodnick (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)

    The acute staffing crisis at city agencies threatens to undo the many ambitious plans announced by Mayor Eric Adams, and has become the central concern for the City Council as it examines the mayor’s proposed $102.7 billion preliminary budget for next fiscal year.

    On Thursday, at a Council hearing focused on the Department of City Planning, a similar refrain emerged as the agency currently faces a 18%

  • City Council Questions Mayor's Additional Planned Cuts to Internal City Government Watchdog

    City Council Member Gale Brewer (photo: Emil Cohen/NYC Council Media Unit)

    The New York City Department of Investigation has lost 86 budgeted positions, 21% of its staff, in the last two fiscal years, and is being hit with further vacancy reductions in Mayor Eric Adams’ proposed $102.7 billion preliminary budget for 2024. Those cuts threaten to undermine the agency’s work to root out waste, fraud, and abuse in city government, as it continues to handle an unchanged workload with fewer resources.

    The Department of Investigation (DOI) is a mayoral agency with law enforcement powers meant to be

  • NYCHA Rent Arrears Crisis Shifts Budget Focus from Capital Needs to Operating Assistance

    Governor Hochul makes a NYCHA announcement (photo: Governor's Office)

    After decades of neglect and underinvestment at every level of government, the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) continues to struggle to fund its annual operating expenses and massive infrastructure repair needs.

    While the city and state have made some recent investments in the public housing authority’s capital infrastructure needs, the pandemic blew a hole in its operating budget as rent revenue plummeted and its roughly 500,000 residents were

  • At First Hearing on Mayor's Preliminary Budget, City Council Takes Aim at Agency Staffing Crisis

    Budget Director Jacques Jiha (photo: John McCarten, NYC Council Media Unit)

    City Council members repeatedly clashed with budget officials from Mayor Eric Adams’ administration at a hearing on Monday, pressing for answers about an ongoing staffing crisis at city agencies that has affected the delivery of municipal services. The hearing kicked off the weeks-long process of the Council’s public examination of Mayor Adams’ $102.7 billion preliminary budget proposal for the 2024 fiscal year, which starts July 1.

    The first part of the

  • Is Mayor Adams' Spending Plan an 'Austerity' Budget?

    Mayor Adams and his spending plan (photo: Benny Polatseck/Mayor's Office)

    In January, Mayor Eric Adams proposed a $102.7 billion preliminary budget proposal for the 2024 fiscal year, stressing the fiscal restraint of his administration amid various budgetary risks and uncertainties facing the city. But while it would be a near-record sum in city spending if passed as-is, progressive City Council members and advocates have called it an “austerity budget” that proposes cuts to critical services that will hurt the city’s most vulnerable populations at a time when the city can afford to invest more in its