Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

 

Rory Lancman

Rory Lancman

  • finance comm hearing

    (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    The NYPD’s body-worn camera policies are a “work in progress,” a police official said at a hearing of the New York City Council’s public safety committee on Monday, seeking to allay concerns expressed by Council members about the program that now includes more than 20,000 uniformed officers. At the hearing, Council members had questions and criticisms about transparency and accountability taking a back seat to surveillance and police authority, particularly with regard to the NYPD’s control over body camera footage.

    The NYPD

    ...
  • caban qda

    (photo: @CabanForQueens)


    Tiffany Cabán, a 31-year-old public defender, made national headlines and shocked the New York political world on Tuesday evening, taking a commanding lead and declaring victory in the crowded Democratic primary for Queens District Attorney. Her closest rival, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, did not concede, however, and said she wants to see every vote counted, and perhaps recounted.

    A primary win would set Cabán up toward victory in November -- something she indicated in her remarks she believes is a given -- in the overwhelmingly

    ...
  • gov completion qbp

    Melinda Katz (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    “If it’s good for families, it’s good for Queens,” Melinda Katz likes to say. It’s a line she used in her first State of the Borough speech as borough president, a position she has held for six years and she now hopes will propel her to the office of Queens District Attorney.

    Katz is one of six Democratic candidates running to be the top prosecutor in Queens, home to more than 2 million people, 48% of whom are foreign-born. About 190 nationalities are represented across the borough’s population, with more

    ...
  • queens da seven

    (l-r)Tiffany Cabán, Melinda Katz, Rory Lancman, Greg Lasak, Betty Lugo, Mina Malik, & Jose Nieves


    June 19, 2019 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Breaking Down the Queens District Attorney Race

    Journalists Emma Whitford, who has written for Gotham Gazette and other outlets, and David Brand of the Queens Daily Eagle joined the show to discuss the Queens District Attorney race, just days before the June 25 Democratic primary vote.

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

  • District Attorneys New York City

    Four sitting New York City District Attorneys (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Does the top prosecutor for one of New York City’s most populous boroughs need to have prosecutorial experience? Should the top prosecutor have spent significant time -- years, maybe decades -- arguing in court proceedings? Do they need to know how to put people in prison? Do they need to know to keep them there?

    That’s part of the “qualifications” debate ignited in recent weeks in the Democratic primary for Queens District Attorney, an election to replace the

    ...
  • r lancman photoop

    Valerie Bell, the author, left; Rory Lancman; and Gwen Carr


    On November 25, 2006, my son Sean Bell was killed in a hail of 50 bullets from the NYPD on his wedding day. The officers who killed my son were acquitted due to the lack of an unbiased relationship between the judge and the Queens district attorney. Sean never received the justice he deserved and the men that murdered my son suffered no consequences under the law.

    Subsequent to this marred process of criminal justice, I worked diligently alongside other mothers who were victims of police

    ...
  • queens da seven

    (l-r)Tiffany Cabán, Melinda Katz, Rory Lancman, Greg Lasak, Betty Lugo, Mina Malik, & Jose Nieves


    Candidates running for the Democratic nomination for Queens District Attorney have filed their first pre-election campaign finance disclosures since January, showing their fundraising and expenditure from the last four months with just under a month to go until the all-important primary.

    There are seven Democrats competing in the June 25 primary to replace the late Queens DA Richard Brown, who passed away earlier this month. Brown had already announced

    ...
  • queens da seven

    (l-r)Tiffany Cabán, Melinda Katz, Rory Lancman, Greg Lasak, Betty Lugo, Mina Malik, & Jose Nieves


    There is just over a month till the June 25 Democratic primary election for Queens District Attorney, which will effectively decide who wins the November general election in the overwhelmingly Democratic borough.

    Seven Democratic candidates are vying for the open seat -- long-time Queens District Attorney Richard Brown recently passed away at the age of 86, just short of his planned retirement date.

    The seven candidates have been appearing at many local forums and

    ...
  • Gotham Gazette:

    3/12 Queens DA debate (photo: @alyssaguilera)


    The candidates for Queens District Attorney are becoming increasingly clear about where they stand on key criminal justice issues and how they would run the office if elected later this year. Queens is home to its first competitive district attorney election in decades, with long-time District Attorney Richard Brown set to retire and a crowded Democratic primary set for June 25. The general election will be in November.

    There are seven candidates currently running, all in the Democratic primary, and six of them met last week for

    ...
  • alyssaguilera vocal

    3/12 Queens DA debate (photo: @alyssaguilera)


    Six of the seven candidates for Queens District Attorney gathered for a debate on Tuesday, March 12 at CUNY Law School in Long Island City, sponsored by a broad range of reform groups that have formed the "Queens for DA Accountability Coalition" and moderated by Gotham Gazette's Ben Max and Fordham Law Professor Zephyr Teachout. This year, Queens will elect its first new District Attorney since 1991. The Democratic primary is June 25. The six participating candidates at Tuesday's forum were Tiffany Cabán,

    ...
  • dwamhvfwoaejtul

    Queens Borough President Katz swears-in community board members (photo: @QueensBPKatz)


    Uncontested for seven terms spanning more than a quarter-century, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown has hung back while his counterparts in Brooklyn and Manhattan join a growing national conversation about criminal justice reform and the power of prosecutors to decarcerate jails. While the retiring Brown is a “dear friend,” former New York Appeals

    ...
  • city council ar rl jw dr marij

    Rory Lancman (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    This is part of AGENDA 2019, a joint Gotham Gazette-City Limits project
    Find the rest of the series here

    Off-year elections in New York City, like the one next year, tend to hold little significance and command minimal attention, with few positions on the ballot and no headlining executive race like mayor or governor. But in Queens, next year will offer a momentous opportunity for

    ...
  • Speaker Corey Johnson podium

    Council Speaker Johnon (photos: John McCarten/City Council)


    City Council members pressed budget officials from Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration for more transparency and a better accounting of spending and revenue plans at a Monday hearing on the mayor’s $88.67 billion proposed preliminary budget for the 2019 fiscal year, which begins July 1. It was the first hearing of what will be weeks of public discussions, and the first under the new City Council speaker and new Council finance committee chair.

    “I want to focus on what will

    ...
  • City Council Speaker Corey Johnson members

    Members of th new City Council with Speaker Johnson (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    The new class of the New York City Council took greater shape on Thursday with the appointment of chairs and members to the 40-plus committees and subcommittees that oversee the broad legislative, land use, and oversight roles of the 51-member body. Most returning Council members were reassigned to lead different committees while

    ...
  • Speaker Corey Johnson press conference

    Council Speaker Corey Johnson, at podium (photos: William Alatriste)


    Just after he was elected Speaker of the City Council on January 3, Corey Johnson had some initial business to take care of: naming a temporary rules committee, including a chairperson. And in this first official decision in his new role, Johnson made a relatively small but important move that is emblematic of the broad shift in the City Council and

    ...
  • corey johnson moments after being elected speaker of the city council cfredit william alatriste

    Speaker Corey Johnson (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    City Council Member Corey Johnson, a Manhattan Democrat, was elected speaker of the New York City Council with near unanimous support on Wednesday, becoming the first leader of the 51-member legislative body who is an openly gay man and openly HIV-positive.

    Johnson took the helm at the first charter meeting of the new Council

    ...
  • Mayor de Blasio Speaker Mark-Viverito

    (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Melissa Mark-Viverito, the first Latina to preside over the 51-member New York City Council, leaves office having shepherded a progressive shift in the city’s direction, in conjunction with fellow Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio, a philosophically aligned partner in government who was the deciding factor in her winning the powerful speaker position four years ago.

    As arguably the second most powerful elected official in the city, Mark-Viverito oversaw an agenda of progressivism

    ...
  • lancman rally council

    Council Member Lancman (photo: @NYCCouncil)


    The City Council’s Courts and Legal Services Committee held an oversight hearing on Monday dedicated to New York’s Integrated Domestic Violence Courts, a program designed to increase accountability and responsiveness to domestic violence victims in the legal system by combining the different courts one might interact with in a domestic violence dispute into a single court, with a single judge handling a couple’s or family’s multiple cases, including criminal, custody, and visitation cases.

    Integrated

    ...
  •  rory lancman presser city hall

    City Council Member Rory Lancman, the author (photo: @RoryLancman)


    We’re now more than 30 days into Donald Trump’s presidency, and it is already crystal clear that the hostile and offensive rhetoric he used toward immigrants on the campaign trail will be put into practice by his administration.

    It was just this week that Trump’s Department of Homeland Security issued ...

  • lancman presser micah institute

    City Council Member Rory Lancman (photo: Micah Institute)


    In 2016, 159 people were exonerated in the United States after being wrongfully convicted for a crime they did not commit, according to the National Registry of Exonerations. Fourteen of those wrongful convictions took place in New York, the

    ...
  • de Blasio rikers ponte officers

    On Rikers Island (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    There is an ongoing conversation in New York about how to fix the bail system that many agree is broken, keeping too many poor people in jail after they are arrested for low-level nonviolent offenses but cannot afford to post bond and, at times, allowing individuals back onto the street who are prone to violence but able to pay bail. Efforts at reform have been full of fits and starts.

    About a month ago, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced measures to make

    ...
  • Kallos

    Council Member Ben Kallos (photo: John McCarten for the City Council)


    At least three City Council members have made requests to the Council’s bill drafting unit to formulate legislation that would regulate political participation by and with “social welfare” nonprofit organizations. These are political advocacy, or lobbying, groups, which have been the subject of intense scrutiny in New York City of late due to the Campaign

    ...
  • Garodnick NYPD

    City Council Member Garodnick, in NYPD hat, & colleagues (photo: William Alatriste)


    A bill introduced by City Council Member Dan Garodnick to require the NYPD to publish its patrol guide online will be heard for the first time by the City Council’s Committee on Public Safety next week. The hearing, set for Thursday, September 15, follows shortly on the recent controversy over the Right to Know Act, a package of police reform legislation that Council Speaker Melissa

    ...
  • de blasio nypd tucker bratton oneil et al

    photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office


    Many believe that the biggest responsibility of the Mayor of New York City is to keep people safe and Bill de Blasio has largely done that, in no small part by letting his lightning-rod police commissioner, Bill Bratton, call the shots on public safety policy. The mayor has focused on pre-kindergarten and affordable housing while Bratton has governed the streets, helping bring crime down to historic lows. At the same time, Bratton has led an evolution of sorts

    ...
  • jumaane williams

    Council Member Jumaane Williams (photo: William Alatriste)


    The City Council’s Committee on Oversight and Investigations heard a bill on Tuesday, sponsored by Council Member Jumaane Williams, which would require centralized reporting of data on police misconduct from multiple agencies to identify systemic problems and help create an early intervention system for the NYPD. To the disappointment of Williams and others, though, key stakeholders to be affected by the bill and instrumental in implementing it if it becomes law, were not

    ...