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Gov. Cuomo (photo: Philip Kamrass/Governor's Office)

We recently published “The 10 Most-Read Gotham Gazette Stories of 2017” and while those pieces are all very good and deserved all of the readership they received, we also published many other strong pieces in 2017 that didn’t crack the top ten in readership, or even the top 25 or 50, necessarily.

So we’re publishing a second list -- our ten “best” stories of 2017, which include excellent pieces of journalism that showcase the type of reporting Gotham Gazette is known for: in-depth, sharp, interesting, tough, and fair. The entrants on this list are chosen by me, the executive editor, and do not overlap with the ten most-read list, even though some of those stories were certainly among our “best” of the year.

As you may know as a Gotham Gazette reader, we focus a lot of our efforts on some of the less typically exciting aspects of city and state politics and government -- this is part of our mission, which is to hold powerful people and institutions accountable, report on aspects of politics not being covered elsewhere, focus on process, voting, campaign finance, transparency, ethics, and government function.

Gotham Gazette, a publication of nonprofit, nonpartisan Citizens Union Foundation, exists to inform the public, to ensure tough but fair coverage of city and state politics, and to make sure that light is being shone on parts of government that may otherwise operate in darkness. We are there at City Council hearings and candidate forums that too often go uncovered and offer important insights into policy and budgetary decisions, government effectiveness, candidate platforms, elections, and more.

As far as I’m concerned, that’s pretty exciting.

Please do review the list below and see if there’s a story or two or three that you missed. Share one or two with your networks -- we’re on Facebook and on Twitter @GothamGazette.

If you’re not a subscriber already, you can sign up for our morning newsletter, The Eye-Opener, here, and receive it each weekday morning at about 7:30 a.m., full of the day’s top news from publications around the city and state, including the latest published by Gotham Gazette.

And, lastly before our "10 Best" list (which is not in any particular order), a reminder that we now have two weekly podcasts: “Max & Murphy on Politics” a partnership with City Limits, and “What’s The [Data] Point?” which we produce with Citizens Budget Commission. You can find both on iTunes and other podcast platforms, or on our website through the Podcasts tab on the main menu.

Gotham Gazette’s 10 ‘Best’ Stories of 2017

10. Federal Government Halts City’s Plan to Establish Private-Sector Retirement-Savings Program, May 2017, by Ben Max

9. De Blasio Says He Doesn’t Take the Subway More Because New Yorkers Don’t Want Him To, May 2017, by Samar Khurshid and Ben Max

8. Cuomo Contradicts Bharara on Prosecutors’ Role in Government Oversight, March 2017, by Rachel Silberstein

7. With Phase One Going to Trial, Cuomo’s Buffalo Investment Moves Ahead with Broken Reform Promises, December 2017, by Rachel Silberstein

6. The 'Three Men in a Room' and Millions Outside, March 2017, by Rachel Silberstein

5. Investigations into De Blasio Spurred City Reform, Renewed Calls for State Changes, April 2017, by Samar Khurshid

4. City Council Members Opt Out of Campaign Finance Program, April 2017, by Samar Khurshid

3. As Incidence Reports Rise, Officials Seek New Answers to Combat Domestic Violence, by Ben Max and Jynn Schubert

2. What About The Buses?, August 2017, by Sam Raskin

1. While Calling for CUNY Investigations, Cuomo Sought Endorsements from College Presidents, June 2017, by Felipe De La Hoz

Bonus: we’re proud of all of our election coverage from 2017, but especially of our several-part series on Mayor de Blasio’s record, which we published in the lead up to Election Day. Revisit it here:
Dissecting Mayor De Blasio's Record As He Seeks Reelection

[Read next: The 10 Most-Read Gotham Gazette Stories of 2017]

by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette

Read more by this writer.

The 10 Best Gotham Gazette Stories of 2017 Thu, 28 Dec 2017 05:00:00 +0000
The 10 Most-Read Gotham Gazette Stories of 2017 De Blasio City Hall Safer Press Conference

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

As we head into 2018, we say goodbye to 2017, a year that featured a New York City election cycle, extended drama in Albany as both the budget was late and the legislative session finished through special added time, and a number of major developments in the five boroughs, as Mayor de Blasio did not face charges in twin criminal investigations, continued to struggle to reduce homelessness, saw his affordable housing agenda move forward with some fits and starts, oversaw record lows in major crimes, and more. The City Council and its Speaker, Melissa Mark-Viverito, spent the last year of the four-year term passing a wave of legislation and pushing closure of the Rikers Island jails, which de Blasio came around to support. Everyone was talking about Donald Trump.

And in our way, we covered it all during a very busy and productive year at Gotham Gazette. While we don’t typically report on all of the day-to-day of city and state politics, we specialize in deep-dive stories; finding important angles to popular storylines that aren’t being covered; reporting on topics and events that others often don’t, like campaign finance reform and City Council oversight hearings; and holding elected officials accountable for being ethical, transparent, and consistent.

We also specialize in election coverage and for this city election year we again partnered with WNYC radio and City Limits to create an interactive voters guide, along with a long list of election-related stories that we published at Gotham Gazette.

Before we jump headfirst into the new year, we look back at 2017. Below is a list of the 10 most-read Gotham Gazette stories of 2017, a list curated using a dash of editorial discretion given that much of our election coverage saw our highest traffic. For the sake of keeping this list mostly focused on our investigative and accountability-focused reporting, we’ve removed some of the election-related articles that received a great deal of readership, including our preview of the three ballot questions and our look at 20 Races to Watch in the city election cycle (primary election focused), and we also aren’t including the most-read op-ed columns, though several of those saw exceedingly high readership. The purpose here is to spotlight some of our best reporting of the year that was widely read.

We hope you’ll revisit some of these stories that you may have caught when we first published them or find them for the first time -- and share them! We’re on Facebook and we’re on Twitter @GothamGazette -- use the hashtag #GGBestOf2017

One other note: not included here are our two podcasts, Max & Murphy, which we produce with City Limits, and What’s The [Data] Point?, which we produce with Citizens Budget Commission. You can find all the 2017 episodes of Max & Murphy here, including the final one of the year, with City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and all the 2017 episodes of What’s The [Data] Point? here. (All episodes of both are also available on your favorite podcast platform, like iTunes.)

The 10 Most-Read Stories of 2017 from Gotham Gazette

10. ‘Community Preference’ Lawsuit at Center of Affordable Housing, Segregation Debates, March 2017, by Ethan Geringer-Sameth

9. Little Progress Made on Utica Ave Subway Extension Study, Feb. 2017, by Elena Burger

8. The East New York Rezoning One Year Later, March 2017, by Samar Khurshid

7. Wary of Gentrification, East Harlem Braces for Rapid Change, April 2017, by Maggie Calmes

6. Consulting Firm with Deep City Ties Adds New Class of Clients, Looks National, April 2017, by Samar Khurshid

5. Where’s The Polling in the Mayoral Race?, Sept. 2017, by Samar Khurshid

4. Constitutional Convention Absent from Cuomo’s 2017 Agenda, Jan. 2017, by Rachel Silberstein

3. Nicole Malliotakis on Trying to Become New York City’s First Female Mayor, July 2017, by Ben Max

2. Rochester Mayor Accused of Circumventing Campaign Finance Laws, July 2017, by Rachel Silberstein

1. Killing of FDNY EMT Spotlights Issues for Unsung Profession, March 2017, by Felipe De La Hoz

Bonus: our several-part series on Mayor de Blasio's first term record, published in the run-up to Election Day, which accumulated a good many readers:
Dissecting Mayor De Blasio's Record As He Seeks Reelection

Thanks for reading Gotham Gazette! Look for our final stories of 2017 and all that 2018 brings.

by Ben Max, Gotham Gazette

Read more by this writer.

The 10 Most-Read Gotham Gazette Stories of 2017 Wed, 27 Dec 2017 05:00:00 +0000