Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Joseph Viteritti

Joseph Viteritti

  • Searching For The Soul of New York: Part I, Literature

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    Reading New York (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)

    Another school year has passed, the most unusual I can remember. Forced into remote learning by the pandemic, I never actually met any of my students. All I could see were twenty-four curious and anxious faces in small squares across the computer screen. They were there, nevertheless, fully engaged in our journey through New York City history, politics, and government, trying to get a better grip on the city that has been a destination for generations in pursuit of the American

  • Searching For The Soul of New York: Part II, Politics and Leadership

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    Mayors Dinkins, Koch, Bloomberg (photo: Kristen Artz/City Council)

    This is part two of a two-part reflection. Read part one, on searching for New York's soul in literature, here.

    By most informed estimates, Fiorello La Guardia stands out as the most admired mayor in the history of New York. That, in itself, tells us something about what New Yorkers expect of their leaders and their city. La Guardia is associated with the progressive

  • Amazonian Lessons for Urbanists

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    Gov. Cuomo & Mayor de Blasio announcing Amazon deal (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)

    As soon as Amazon announced last year that it would be opening a second headquarters to house 50,000 new employees, cities across the country feverishly competed to lure the colossus retailer. With promises of tax breaks, infrastructure upgrades, employee training and just anything they thought would work, local politicians courted billionaire entrepreneur Jeff Bezos hoping he would deem their town worthy of his high tech presence. The bragging rights alone seemed well

  • As City Proceeds with Two Charter Revision Commissions, A Cautionary Tale from Los Angeles

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    City Hall (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)

    Public awareness is at the heart of achieving buy-in and delivering progress through a charter revision commission, which can propose foundational changes to city laws that go before voters for approval or disapproval. But in New York City, there will soon be two such commissions running concurrently -- one launched by Mayor Bill de Blasio and another through City Council legislation -- creating risk of competing and overly-politicized messages, a confused public, and, ultimately, failure at the polls

  • Council Speaker Backs Charter Commission Bill That Gives Him More Sway

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    Speaker Johnson (photo: John McCarten/City Council)

    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson said last week that the Council would forge ahead with legislation to create a Charter Revision Commission to review the broad structure of city government, bucking Mayor Bill de Blasio’s intention to unilaterally create a commission meant to explore campaign finance and electoral reforms. And Johnson’s support of the bill -- first proposed in December by Public Advocate Letitia James and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer -- also came with one significant change to

  • Next Steps and Recent Precedents for De Blasio’s Charter Revision Commission

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)

    Last week, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in his State of the City speech that he would convene a commission to consider changes to the city charter, New York City’s seminal governing document. De Blasio said the charter revision commission would undertake the significant task of reducing the impact of “big money” on local elections and to engage voters in a democracy that has suffered from their apathy. The mayor is hoping the commission members, whom he has yet to name, will

  • Max & Murphy Podcast: De Blasio Author Joseph Viteritti

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    Ben Max, left, of Gotham Gazette, and Jarrett Murphy, right, of City Limits

    August 30, 2017 - De Blasio Author Joseph Viteritti

    cover joe vitJoseph P. Viteritti, public policy professor at Hunter College, CUNY, where he is chair of the Urban Policy and Planning Department, has written a new book about Mayor Bill de Blasio: The Pragmatist: Bill de Blasio's Quest to Save the Soul of New York. Published by